Even Angels Fall


AUTHOR: CCke (aka ASET)
SUMMARY: The daily grind at Angel Investigations take a dark turn.
RATING: R
POSTED: 21 Mar 2004
CATEGORY: Drama
CONTENT/PAIRING: C/A in season 3 before WITH, after Birthday
WARNINGS: Violence, Torture
FICPIC CREDIT: N/A
AUTHOR NOTES: None


Prologue
————–

She gasped as she felt the cold metal cut her flesh. A scream escaped her already soar throat as she felt the excruciating pain spread through her tortured body. Another flood of tears escaped her already red and swollen eyes as more blood coloured her now red dress.

‘Please…Please stop.’ she pleaded in a hoarse voice, looking at him through her tears. But the only answer she got was laughter…

She could see how the scar across his cheek stretched out as his chuckles filled the air, and how the dirt on his face cracked open. She let out another scream.

‘You foolish girl, scream all you want, no one can hear you here… No one cares.’ His deep voice ran through the old warehouse as he played with the knife in his hands, removing the blood on it before making another cut into her pale, delicate flesh, allowing more blood to soak her previously white dress.

She felt it trickling down, weakening her.

Again she begged him to have mercy, but her pleas were in vain as he slowly raised the knife, placing it against her throat. She could see the metal reflecting in the artificial light, and her blood on the blade.

She tried to scream, but the only sound she could produce were rattles as he slit her throat, blood trickling down her chest and filling her lungs… Then she entered the night as eternal darkness filled her.


Chapter 1
—————-

She was in the lobby, he could smell her. That sweet scent of her expensive perfume. He could hear her, hear her laughter fill the lobby of his hotel, and it filled his unbeating heart with joy. She couldn’t see him, smiling in his office as he thought about her, dreamt about her.

Over the years they had developed a close friendship, but as so many things, that was getting more and more complicated as his feelings towards her slowly developed and grew stronger. And to be honest it scared him. A simple word of her, and he was smiling all day long, a smile of hers, and he was in heaven. It was she who could make him laugh, and it was she who visited him at night, in his dreams.

If they’d told him four years ago he would be working with Cordelia Chase in LA at a detective agency, more, that they would be close friends and that he’d fall in love with her, he wouldn’t have believed it.

But she had changed, a lot, and so had he. Both had grown and become more human in their ways… Well… He did anyway. She on the other hand, had given up her human life, as she became part-demon, to be able to stay with him and carry the visions. She was his seer, and the part of his family he held dearest. She and his son…

Another smile played on his lips as he thought of his little boy, who was now sleeping in his cradle near the desk. Another miracle in his life.

A dream filled his mind as he looked at the little angel sleeping there… A dream in which he was human, playing on the beach with Connor while Cordy lay there in her bikini, beautiful as ever, sunbathing and keeping an eye on their little baby girl, playing in the sand.

‘So here’s where you’ve been hiding out!’

Her cheerful voice pulled him out of his daydream, and he fell his jaw drop a little as he saw her standing there in the door-entrance, a deep-red blouse hugging her figure, and dark pants bringing out her slim figure.

Realising he was staring at her, he quickly regained his posture, and cleared his throat.

‘Cordelia…Hi.’

‘Hi.’ She said, stepping over to the cradle where the baby was sleeping, ‘how’s our boy doing today?’ she asked in a soft voice as she caressed the infant’s cheek.

‘Fine…I’m good.’ Angel said, a little smile plastered on his face.

‘Not you, dork! The baby.’ She said, a bit annoyed, but she kept smiling.

‘Oh.’ He said, moving closer towards her, ‘He’s… He’s okay…Sleeping.’ he concluded.
He wanted to hit himself on the head, realising how stupid that had sounded, but she didn’t seem to mind. Or she’d just got used to that.

‘So…Why are you in here? Brooding again, mister?’ she asked, a playful smile spread across her face as she poked her finger into his chest.

‘No!’ he said through his chuckles, bringing his arms up to his chest, trying to defend himself from her torturing tickles. But she kept teasing him, making him laugh, only to squeal herself as he tickled her back.

His tickles slowly changed into gentle ministrations as she rested her hands on his back… She was close enough to see the little sparkle in his eyes. The smile on her face slowly faded as their heads moved closer. He could hear her increasing heartbeat, and how she held her breath a little, then their lips met in a gentle touch.

She took a deep breath as she looked into his eyes, and saw what had been there all along…love.
Intoxicated by the sweetness of her lips, he moved his head closer again, capturing her mouth with his own. Encouraged by their mutual feelings of passion and longing, their kiss deepened and for a moment, it seemed like the world around them had disappeared.
Cordy felt her legs grow weak as Angel held her close. As he pulled back, she rested her head against his shoulder, both lost for words.

*-*-*

John Kent sighed as he got out of his car, pulling his belt back into place. The afternoon sun shone down mercilessly on his bald scull and even though it was only the beginning of April, little pearls of sweat were already forming on his forehead.
They’d got an anonymous call a couple of hours ago, saying they’d seen something ‘unusual’ near the old soap factory in the docks.
The inspector decided to check it out, and John Kent was set out to have a look around.

About 30 years ago, when he just started out at the LAPD, the building in front of him had been a flourishing factory. Now, it was just another empty building in the docks, slowly turning into a ruin.
He walked up to the rusted gate, some graffiti sprayed upon it.
It opened with a creeping sound and an awful smell greeted the white cop. Resisting the urge to puke, he pulled out his handkerchief and brought it up to his mouth, stepping into the old warehouse. But 30 years of service couldn’t really prepare him for the horrifying view in front of him…

The remains of a young girl, chained up against the wall, a dark puddle of dried blood underneath her. Cuts covered her barely dressed body; maggots and flies roaming over the naked skin and the entrails hanging out of her partially digested body. Her eyes were open, but in the place where once her eyeballs were, worms were now moving around.
‘Oh God.’ He uttered. A last look at the body and he ran outside, emptying his stomach before calling his superiors.

It wasn’t until the back up arrived, about 15 minutes later, that John Kent found the courage to go back inside. He hated this… When he joined the police force, he wanted to help people. Instead he had been looking at dead bodies over and over again, and it sickened him. In the beginning he though he could get used to it, that it would just take time, but it never did. You just don’t get used to death, even if you’d seen it a thousand times.

*-*-*-*-*

She let out a sigh as he gently placed a stand of hair back behind her ear. They were on top of the hotel, sitting against a chimney, his arms securely wrapped around her as a pale moon shone down upon them.

‘I love you.’ He whispered, a little smile playing on his face as he tried out the words for the first time out loud. After 6 years of knowing her, and being in love with her for over a year now, he finally found the courage to say those words.
He was nervous, and if his heart could beat, he swore it would’ve jumped right out his chest.
It took her an eternity to absorb those words, and finally founding the courage to look into his eyes, she knew he was telling the truth. Looking into the dark puddles, she could see right into his soul, and realised now she loved him too, completely.
Taking in a deep breath, she forced a little smile while she whispered into his ear ‘I love you too.’ before placing a gentle kiss on his cheek.

She felt 16 again, waiting for a date to pick her up, heart racing, blood pumping at an incredible rate when she felt the tension rising… Will he, or won’t he kiss her that night?

‘What about Wesley and the others?’ she said as he slowly caressed her soft hair.

‘What about them?’
‘Should we tell them…about us?’
Her voice had become nothing more then a whisper again.

‘Maybe we should.’ Angel decided. He loved her, that’s it. He didn’t feel like hiding it from the world, not any more.

‘Maybe we shouldn’t.’ She concluded almost at the same time.
She could see the confusion etched on his face, and the hurt reflected in his dark eyes.
Letting out a sigh she said, ‘They wouldn’t understand…’

‘You’re probably right.’ He said, pulling her closer towards him, wanting to feel her warmth more, ‘I just… it’s that I finally got you here with me now…’
She raised her head, and their eyes locked; a smile spread across her face.

‘I know.’ She said, ‘but it doesn’t have to be forever… just… just ‘till we can prepare them for it.’

She wanted to tell him it didn’t really matter if they knew or not, approved of it or not, she loved him anyway, no matter what, but he’d clamed her mouth once more, taking her breath away, his tongue seeking access to her sweet mouth.

She moaned, then found herself lost again in a passionate kiss and with that, he hoped this night would never end.

*-*-*

She moaned as he laid another file upon her desk.

‘Coroner’s report of last night’s murder.’ The man said, a sympathetic look upon his face.
She looked at him, her icy-blue eyes looking right into the very core of him, and he found himself staring at her, her eyes and her blonde locks…

‘Anything else, officer Parker?’ her voice pulled him out of his little daydream.

‘Um…no…no.’ he said, a bit off guard, and moved away again.

Letting out another sigh she took the file and looked through the pages… The fifth murder in two months… All young girls, tortured, raped and mutilated, cuts covering their bodies.

Serial killer she had concluded. Since nothing was taken, even their wallets were still there, a killer for the sport…

The autopsy didn’t really bring any new information to the case, and Kate Lockley was about to toss the file and pictures aside when something caught her eye… A little mark on the girl’s hip. It seemed like an ordinary tattoo, some blue spots on the hip of one of the other victims…

‘Jerry! Get me the coroner reports of the other girls.’ she said, getting up from behind her desk, moving towards the drawing board, copying the mark upon it.

‘Okay people, may I have your attention…’

*-*-*

‘Eureka!’ Wesley’s voice ran through the lobby of the hotel as he stormed out of the office, a large and heavy tome in his hands, ‘It’s a Balofnushlur’k ‘ he said, pointing at a drawing in the book, ‘it’s related to the kenbanusklur’k, that’s why I mixed them up in the first place! Balofnushlur’k’s have got a small horn on their tail! And are not killable by decapitation.’

‘Yes, English, we figured that one out already. We were there too, remember?’ Gunn said, giving the former watcher an angry glance as he continued to pluck pieces of demon goo out of Fred’s hair.

Throwing an apologetic look in their direction Wesley retreated into his office, closing the door behind him.

‘Can I just say … ew?’ Cordy sighed as she patched Angel up some more, taking care of a large cut across his chest.

‘It’s not that bad, I’ve had worse.’ Angel said truthfully.
She smiled, that one that made his heart melt completely. The one he couldn’t fight, even if he wanted too…

‘Uhm… Actually I meant the demon, but yeah, this is pretty gross too.’ she admitted as she covered the wound with some gauze. Angel hissed.

‘Oh, don’t be such a baby!’ she said as she gave him a playful pat on the shoulder.
He gave her his puppy dog look.

‘Aargh! He’s so gonna pay for this!’ she thought as she moved away from him, trying to diminish her longing to kiss him. It was hard; being so close to him and not being able to touch him, kiss him… They shouldn’t know.

*-*-*

Angel’s POV

In the silence of the room I watch them both… She’s stretched out on a blue blanket on the lobby-floor, her head resting on Connor’s fluffy bunny. One hand is next to her head; the other one is around my boy… my sweet little boy, asleep next to her. It strikes me that they do look alike, even though they don’t have any blood ties. Just the way they act… The way he raises his little eyebrows, imitating her, the funny faces he makes just like her … the drooling. It doesn’t sound really flattering, but it’s the truth. And in a way it’s cute. They both look so innocent there, sleeping, a little bit of drool on her lips… Involuntarily I begin to smile. They look perfect like that, my little family. Yes, a family, that’s what we are now. Cordy and me madly in love, but not as in sheer bliss – perfect happiness love… yes, maybe it’s like that, but we’re still careful, and trying to find a way around the curse. But luckily love isn’t just about sex. And I do love her, with every fibre of my being.

I love watching her too, now here asleep in front of me, my … our baby boy curled up against her, both in a peaceful sleep. Well, peaceful? I know Cor will probably have a soar back when she wakes up, but that’s no problem… I’ll just rub the badness out… gently of course ;o)

Connor makes a gurgly sound, and I can see her stir, but then he turns quiet again and sleeps on, and Cordy dreams on too.

About half an hour ago we were all on the blanket, the three of us, surrounded with stuffed animals, and other shiny, coloured baby toys, and now here I am, sitting in my chair, watching over them.

I’d took an old copy of Death of a Salesman after covering them both with a blanket, but I haven’t really read that much. Most of the time I just watch them. And frankly I don’t want anything else. My son and the woman I love, that’s all I need.

It’s silent in the hotel and I’m glad for it. Wesley’s at home, and Fred went to spend the night at Gunn’s place, probably trying to work things out, add some new fire into their relationship. But somehow I doubt it’ll work. They do fight a lot, and I don’t want to be the pessimist here, but for a new couple, still blissfully in love, that’s not exactly a good thing. And then there’s Wesley. I know he’s still got a crush on our little Fred…

My mind drifts off again as I set once more, my eyes upon the cuteness displayed in front of me, and I can feel the warmth setting into my heart. Its just love.
Slowly I can feel my eyelids grow heavy and a sleepy feeling takes control over me. I don’t really want to fight it. I’m just tired…and slowly I let myself drift of into a peaceful sleep…

*-*-*

Kate Lockley let out a deep sigh as she took up her, now cold, cup of coffee. With a quick glance at the clock she learnt it was already two in the morning. And she was practically all alone in the office. She’d been researching all evening, and now good on her way to make it a memorable night too.

She’d ran over the details over and over again, still feeling something was missing… 5 victims, all the same blue markings on their left hip, but only with the last victim, 23-year-old Sarah Cameron, there was a pattern visible, a real sign.

She’d searched the net, and all other resources she had access too, and even sent out some officers to go and look around at local tattoo shops, hoping someone would recognise the symbol. She’d also told some others to check out some books in the library on symbols, more specific Celtic symbols.

Now here she was, behind her desk, practically hidden behind a pile of books and files, but still no real clues…

Stretching out, trying to get the knots out of her back, she moaned. What wouldn’t she give for a good massage now…

She thought about going home for a moment, but then again, she’d be alone there too. No one waiting for her, no one who cared. Ever since her dad had passed away, drained by a fanged fiend, she’d tried to date again. God, yes, she’d tried, going back to D’Oblique and other fancy clubs, but it didn’t really matter. She’d learnt you couldn’t fool love. You won’t find it in a bar, where everyone’s just desperate to make the hollow feeling nagging inside of you leave. No, love will come around; all you have to do is wait.

Well, waiting is what she’d been doing, and frankly she was getting tired of that!
She could have officer Parker if she wanted too. He’d made that quite obvious. But he wasn’t the one she was looking for. He was about her age, and apart from the scar that covered his cheek, a leftover from a fight a couple of years ago, he was pretty good-looking, and had been trying to seduce her for a couple of weeks now. She just acted like she didn’t notice… Her heart wasn’t in it.
Letting out another sigh, she took a file from the pile and began reading again, hoping to find out something she’d missed the last time.

Even though the late hour, she wasn’t really tired. She’d turned into a creature of the night.

‘Like Angel.’ she thought and smiled involuntarily, but it was gone as soon as it came as she remembered what he was, and what he’d done.

Soul or not, he was a monster, a killer like any other, like the one murdering and molesting these young girls…

But then again, he did save her when she‘d taken those pills… Epiphany, redemption…
Another sigh and she turned back to the file, hoping to make a difference for once.

*-*-*

‘Bloody hell.’ he muttered as he walked through the iron gate, following the neatly maintained path towards the large doors.

‘If I’d known earlier the poof had a place like this, I’d dropped by for a family reunion sooner.’
The glowing point of his cigarette burned brightly as he inhaled the smoke. Leaving a white cloud behind, he made his way towards the entrance of the hotel.

‘Well, dear granddad, time to catch up a little.’ he said as he took a hold of the copper doorknob and turned it around.

He’d arrived in LA only about an hour ago, after the two-hour drive away from Sunnydale, away from the Slayer.

A sigh escaped his throat as he thought of the blonde girl that had captured his mind, and his heart. She’d turned to HIM, a dead guy, after retuning from the dead. And their talk had warmed his unbeating heart. He’d stopped denying long ago that he was falling for her; but he’d sworn himself he wouldn’t tell. Then that demon had come along,

Sweet, and had made them all sing, and dance, and bare their hearts and souls. And he’d kissed her…

Running had seemed like a good plan, but why he’d come to LA…he had no idea.

Taking in an unnecessary breath, he pushed open the large glass doors. He’d wanted to yell something, to make his revolting presence know… Maybe even flirt a little with the cheerleader. He’d always liked that chit, and her marvellous body…

But the sight in front of him made him keep quiet…

Angel, asleep in a chair, an open book on his knees…He seemed so peaceful. A smile tugged at his lips, and he repressed the urge to laugh as he saw who was lying at his feet, curled up underneath a comforter, surrounded with toys, a little child in her arms… Cordelia Chase…

‘What the..’ he started, then kept quiet again as he saw his grandsire wake up…
Blinking his eyes… once… twice…before noticing his bleach-haired childe on his doorstep, he jumped up. The book on his knees felt on the ground with a loud bang, causing the baby to cry and Cordy to wake up…

‘Oh God…’

‘What are you doing here?’ Angel growled before picking up his crying son, whispering him soothing words.

‘What, I can’t come over and visit?’ Spike asked in an innocent voice as he stepped further into the lobby of the hotel.

’Spike?’ Cordy asked as she rubbed her eyes, still sleepy, when she saw the vampire standing there.

’There’s always a reason when you’re somewhere, Spike’ Angel said.

’Angel’ Cordy said in a warning tone. It was true last time Spike was in town he was after the Gem of Amarra, but from what she’d heard from Willow, he’d gotten a chip and was a do-gooder now.

‘Cor…’ Angel got ready to reply, but one look in his lover’s eyes was enough to make him hold his peace.

’So, why are you here, Spike?’ she asked, taking the baby form Angel and walked on to the bleach-haired vampire.

Fighting back a laugh, Spike gave Cordy an annoyed look. ‘The poof’s really become a lapdog’ he thought

’I already told you… just visiting’ he said, letting out a sigh.

‘Okay…Angel! Will you prepare a room for Spike?’ Cordy called out, giving Angel one of her sweetest smiles, but before she could give him any more comments, Angel was next to her, pulling her into the office.

‘He’s not staying’ he said, his voice giving away a hint of anger and panic.

‘Angel…he’s your grandchilde’

‘Yes… a vampire!…no soul! That’s why he’s leaving.’

‘Chip… he’s staying’

‘He could hurt Connor, or you!’

‘Again…Chip!’

‘No!’

‘Angel, stop being such a baby. He’s good now, he wants to catch up, and last time I checked he wasn’t hitting on me, and I wasn’t attracted to him, so you shouldn’t be so jealous! He’s staying and that’s final!’ And with that she opened the door, leaving a dazed Angel behind.

*-*-*

Letting out a sigh Kate Lockley picked up the page that emerged from the printer. She’d turned once more to the Internet when her search in the books had led to nothing. She was at a dead end, but wasn’t really ready to give up. There was something about the symbols; she could feel it in her guts! She remembered some site she’d come across when she was researching Angel a while ago, some demon database… It sounded quite absurd, but in her desperation, she’d decided to try it anyway.

All she wanted to do was forget about it all, turn away and pretend it wasn’t real…But she no longer could do that. Not after what happened to her father, not after Angel…
The demon database had given her a name, a description… More then she wished, but then again, deep inside she wished she’d find nothing there either.

Sitting down at her desk, she took a sip of her coffee, looking at the paper in front of her, thinking over her options…

She looked over at the board on the wall, the pictures of the mutilated corpses pinned upon it. Taking a deep breath, she put down the cup, got up and walked out of the office, making her decision. Wanting to make a difference.

*-*-*

He’d been lying on the bed for about an hour now. The sun was up, but heavy old curtains prevented the rays of sunlight to come in and turn him into a pile of ashes. Although he was pretty tired, he couldn’t sleep. His eyes were open and he was staring at the ceiling. Only a brief moment his gaze shifted, that’s when he heard a knock on the door. Instead of answering, he just let out an unnecessary breath, and continued his visual exploration of the ceiling.

A moment later the door opened with a peeping sound, and Cordy’s face popped through.
Seeing his eyes were opened, she entered the room, handing him a mug.

’Here’ she said, a smile on her face, ‘I figured you might be hungry’ then she turned on a light.
He grumbled, but sat up, taking the mug from her.

’It’s hot’ he stated, a bit surprised.

‘Well duh!’ she said, sitting behind him on the bed, ‘you want it cold?’

‘Well, no!’

‘Aren’t you going to drink?’ she asked, smiling at him.

He raised his eyebrows, marvelling on how the girl next to him had changed in the past few years. Of course he never really knew her that well, but still… He could notice the change she went through. She wasn’t the shallow rich girl he knew back in Sunnydale, that’s for sure. She even seemed nice now. And way too friendly with the poofster. If he didn’t know better, he’d say they were in love… It was just a bit too weird too, Cordelia with a child (he did see that right, right? And heard that too, right?), Angel being the whipped puppy with the goofy smile, all weird to say the least.

’You don’t mind?’ he asked. He actually had planned on giving her a bitty remark, but just couldn’t, somehow he liked her.

’Nah! I’m used to it.’
He gave her a sympathetic smile and started to drink.

‘Poor you.’ He added, getting a bright smile in return.

’So… How are things in Sunnydale?’

‘Pretty much the same’

‘Dru still gone?’ she asked, now she being the one giving the sympathetic look.
She knew how Spike felt, or used to feel, about the crazy vampire. The look on his face was enough to quickly change the subject. She knew something was bothering him, and she wouldn’t be Cordelia if she didn’t find it out…

’What about Buffy… She still being…’ she started asking, but something in his eyes made her stop.

‘Bingo’ she thought.

‘It’s her, isn’t it?’ Cordy triumphant…

’What are you talking about?’ Spike changing status to defensive…

’Buffy… she’s the reason you’re here’

‘So…What’s the deal with you and peaches?’

‘Oh, we’re okay, perfectly in love.’ she started babbling again, a bright smile covering her face, then suddenly realising…’ Hey, not changing the subject, mister!’ hitting him on the arm.
A sigh escaped the vampire’s throat, then silence.

’That bad, huh?’

‘Look, luv, I don’t really want to talk about it’

‘You love her’ she stated. She just knew it.

‘I…’

‘Oh, don’t you try to deny it! I just know it! You love her’
Another sigh, then Spike started telling his story…

*-*-*
——— chapter———
It was 11 pm when she stepped into the building, letting memories come back… it had been over a year since she’d last been here, a year since she’d last seen him, but she could still remember every detail of his handsome features.

There was a time, over two years ago now, when she’d fallen madly in love with him, until her father got killed, and she’d found out just what exactly he was… a monster, a killer, a beast. And she’d grown to hate him.

In a moment of utter desperation, she’d tried to kill herself, but he’d come, and saved her. That night they’d had a long and meaningful talk on top of the hotel he owned, the same one she’d just entered, and the man she’d once fallen for had become a close friend. Then she learnt that even heroes make mistakes, even angels fall.

‘Can we help you, miss?’ a young girl’s voice pulled her out of her thoughts.

’I’m looking for Angel.’ She said as she studied the slim, fragile girl behind the counter.

‘Oh, well Angel is…’ the girl started, but was interrupted by the manpire himself walking down the stairs, his son on his arm.

’I’m here!’ he said, then when he recognised the cop, ‘Kate’

’Angel.’ she greeted him.

’Uhm…What are you doing here?’

‘Well…Can we talk?’ she asked, gesturing towards Fred, who got the hint and made her way upstairs, taking Connor from Angel as she passed by.

’It’s been a while.’ Angel said, inviting Kate to sit down on the red couch in the lobby;

‘Would you like something to drink?’

‘No thanks…Angel, I need your help’.

*-*-*

‘Wow’ she said.

‘Wow, is that all you can say?’ he asked before drinking up the remaining blood, finishing by licking a spilled drop of the dark red liquid of his lips.

‘Well… What do you want me to say? Congratulations, you’re turning more and more like Angel every day?’ she said, a look of disgust on her face as she watched him licking his lips.

Her words had gotten a growl out of him, and she’d sworn she’d seen his grey-blue eyes flash golden. It scared her a bit, even after all this time…

‘Look, all I’m gonna say is that if you love her, you should tell her’

‘Why? ‘Cause you and Angel did?’
A sigh out of her…

’Which leads me to another question…’

‘What?’ her tone was a bit harsh, but then again, she didn’t really get much sleep…That’s an excuse, right? Somehow she knew just what he was about to ask. Connor…

‘The kid’

‘Connor?’

‘I don’t know his name, yes I suppose so…’ he said a bit annoyed. She knew damn well what he meant. He could hear her heart speed up. She was nervous.
Taking a deep breath, hesitating a bit, she said ‘Connor is…’

‘A baby, right… Yours I presume?’ he said, interrupting her.

‘And Angel’s’ she added, not really wanting to get into details;

‘I thought vampires couldn’t have children?’

‘They can’t…It’s just… Connor is special…Miracle child, prophesied and stuff.’ Another sigh escaped her throat.

’So you and Angel got it off, and then there’s the crying little bit? What about that pesky curse of his?’

‘I’m not the biological mother.’ Cordelia said, staring at her feet, her voice revealing the pain hidden within, ‘Darla is.’

’Darla is dead.’

‘Well, she is…again. Wolfram and Hart brought her back, she becomes fangy again, Angel goes all dark and sleeps with her, she’s pregnant, stakes herself, exit Darla, hello Connor.’
Silence as Spike takes in the story.

Wow, he seriously needed to talk to his grandsire, or his friends, more often. It’s been only two years, and now he’s got… an uncle in diapers?

*-*-*

‘So you’re saying it’s a demon that killed these girls?’ Angel asked as he looked at the pictures Kate had given him.

Photos of the girl’s mutilated corpses, fear etched on their lifeless bodies… He’d seen that before, and there had been a time when he’d loved this, but now it only made his stomach turn.

‘Yes. I’ve done some research, and the best match would be a…’

‘Green-brown, 6 feet tall creature with three eyes, blobby skin and a really bad breath’ Cordelia finished as she walked down the stairs.

Angel always worried when he knew she had a vision, got up and walked over to her, wanting to make sure his precious seer was all right.

‘I’m fine, Angel. But you should hurry or that girl won’t be’ she continued, a sad look on her face as she remembered the horror-movie that had played in her head just a couple of moments ago. A Technicolor version with real life action, heavy on the blood and smell.

She’d once said she wanted to punch the PTB in the nose when she’d meet them, and having to have to smell the stench of blood, rotten flesh and excretions over and over again, she was still planning on doing just that… That was if they have a nose. She still hadn’t figured that out.

She gave Angel the address and as Angel rushed into the dark streets of LA, she dropped into the couch in front of Kate, giving her a quickly fading smile.

Kate had closely observed the interaction between Angel and his female friend, and she had soon realised that there was more between those two then just friendship. Cordelia had gone through a change too she’d noticed. She’d cut her long brown hair, and now had nice blonde streaks in it. It looked nice on her. But as her hairdo had changed, so had the look on the young girl’s face. Innocence was lost, and pain and suffering had left its marks on her features, but hadn’t taken away her beauty.

‘So, Kate…Long time no see.’ Cordy started, trying to make a conversation, ‘how are you?’
But before she could answer, she saw how Cordelia’s face turned pale, and her eyes went white.

‘Oh no, Angel!’ She screamed as she got up, starting to walk around the lobby, reaching out into the air as she tried to grasp the horror in front of her.

‘Cordelia?’ Kate asked, a bit frightened by Cordy’s abnormal behaviour.

’Oh God.’ Cordy uttered as she walked back towards the couch where Kate still was. Her face had gained some colour again, and her eyes were back to being the nice hazel they were before.

’It’s not a demon… a man is attacking the girl.’ She said to Kate, her eyes widely opened, still slightly in shock from the things she’d witnessed, letting the details of the vision slowly wash over her.

’What? Cordelia?’ Kate asked again, still clueless about what’d just happened. She watched how the other girl moved towards the reception desk, dialling a number, calling out ‘Fred!’ in the meantime.

While she witnessed Cordelia trying the number once more, sighing in desperation, she saw the girl she’d met before come down the stairs, a pale man with blonde hair with a baby in his arms right behind her.

‘What’s going on?’

‘I had another vision… Angel’s in trouble…’

*-*-*

Angel’s POV
—— —— —–

A fierce cry pierced my ears as I near the alley Cordy directed me to, and I speed up a little as I feel the waves of fear coming my way. I can see the metal of a knife reflecting in the pale moonlight and I vamp out. I can’t help it, it’s who I am.

It’s a young girl, quite pretty, trapped in the narrow, dirty street. A pathetic, crying hump of meat, crawled on the ground, against an old fence. Her eyes are closed, and sweat makes her skin gleam in the moonlight, slowly washing away the dirty traces hands had left there. He’d touched her, no doubt about it, and I’m sure he’ll touch her again…A cool blade against her throat as he presses his quickly-growing manhood against her, making her whimper as he roughly pulls her up, his hands roaming her delicate skin.

A little cut, roughly licking up the blood trickling down.

I can feel my demon rejoice at the thought, old memories coming back, and I fight the urge to let out a groan.

The girl’s cry pulls me back into reality, and I attack, disarming the dark-haired creature in front of me. He’s human I realise as I smell his blood on the blade, and I see the cut on his arm. He must’ve gotten hurt as I knocked the knife out of his hands.

‘Run!’ I yell as I turn towards the girl, and I can see her eyes widen as she looks at me. In a way it hurts, seeing the hate and fear in their eyes as I show my true face. A stranger, a friend… They’re all scared seeing my inner demon. Even my sweet Cordy, even if it’s just a little…

‘Go.’ I say, and now she obeys. One last glance in my direction, then the cries return, and she’s gone.

I’ve got the man in a death grip shoved against the wall, my arm against his throat, my fingers pulling his hair, urging him to look up. The first thing I notice, besides the fear in his eyes, is the scar on his left cheek… Accidents and fights had left their marks on his body, and so had time… Small wrinkles around the eyes…

He’s having trouble breathing, and then I realise I’m pushing too hard. He’s a human. Not the ugly demon Cordy told me I’d meet. That’s when I realise the man in front of me is just a minion.

‘Where is he?’ I ask, but the man simply shakes his head.

‘Who are you talking about?’

‘I think you know who…’ but the low growl behind me, and the sudden and immense wave of fear coming from the human, told me my question was no longer necessary…

The next thing I wanted to do was toss the man in front of me aside like a poor rag doll, then turn around and kill the demon, finish the job. My plans were painfully interrupted as I feel an excruciating pain spread through my body and I can see the human widen his eyes in fear. He tries to let out a scream, but only a gurgling sound comes out of his throat, then the blood comes. Dark liquid coming out of his mouth, colouring his teeth, and trickling down, dark spots on his dark shirt… then his body goes limp.

Looking down at the same time… Two root-like arms shot through my body, right into the other man’s stomach.

I gasp as the creature behind me withdraws his deadly body parts. It hurts like hell, and in a way I wished someone would stake me right there. Having mercy on me… no such thing.
I try to pull my sword, wanting to embed the cold blade into his greenish skin, cutting him open, ripping out his throat, but it’s heavy and painful. I do succeed, raising the weapon up above my head in a smooth movement, but the demon screeches even before my sword hits him…

I can see the horrified expression on the fiend’s face, then his head falls off and hits the dirty ground of the alley. The body collapses, revealing the killer…Spike.

’Thought you could use a hand.’ Gunn’s voice reached my ears as he and Wesley stepped up besides Spike.

That’s the last thing I hear, then my world goes black…


…THE END…


 

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