Rogue Demon Hunters
Buffy and Willow come back downstairs after a brief conference. The clincher had been the uber evil that they both know is on the way. They needed all the help they could get and if Angel said that Conner is a good fighter... well that was saying something. Now to just convince the kid. Walking into the kitchen, the back door is wide open and there is no sign of Spike, Dawn or Conner. "DAWN!!!" Buffy calls out in a rush going over to the door. And open door might keep out vamps... although they weren't much of a threat during the day but it didn't keep out the other host of nastys including flies.
"We're down here." A voice comes from the basement. Buffy starts down the stairs and is amazed at what she sees. Dawn and Conner are sitting crosslegged at Spike's feet. He is ensconsed in an old chair that had been broken one too many times from demon break ins at the house. By his side is an endtable also rocking on three legs but carefully balanced to support the smokeless ash tray. "Spike is just telling us how Angel and Darla met."
Buffy rolls her eyes. "Great." She crosses her arms. "I figure with being raised in Quortoth and all... you would be an asset to me, living on the hellmouth like we do. You don't have anything tying you to LA... would you consider staying?"
"I have to get back to LA. I have to find Justine." Conner gets to his feet.
"Who is Justine?"
"Somebody that Wesley is hiding to make Conner do what Wesley wants." Dawn gets to her feet. "Wesley was talking like he had total control over her and that there was no way that Conner could talk to her unless he said so."
"Wesley?! Are we talking the same Wesley... about this tall, skinny, wears glasses and talks like he has a stick up his butt?"
"He's about that tall." Conner shrugs. "As for the other I never looked."
Willow has been standing at the top of the stairs during this whole conversation. Going back to the phone where she'd taken the call from Wesley she searches back in the stored call log and redials the number that Wesley had called from. "Wesley, it's Willow, Willow Rosenberg, um... Angel thinks it would be a good idea if Conner stayed here-- for Buffy to train him. But he's in a hurry to get back to LA to find some Justine person."
Wesley looks up from the call and sees Justine lurking in the corner of the room. She was always lurking when she wasn't either in her closet or scraping by like some silent obsequious twit. "One moment, Willow." Wesley hits the mute on the phone and walks over to Justine. She backs up against the wall as far as she can go. She really doesn't like the look in his eye and wonders if this will be the day when Wesley finally gives in to the murder she sees in his eyes. With a movement as smooth and quick as a snake, Wesley puts a single hand around Justine's neck pinning her to the wall like a bug. Her hands come up automatically to cover his to try to pry his fingers from around her throat. "Ah-ah." Wesley tsks and quirks a brow. Justine drops her hands. "You will talk to Conner and you will convince him to stay where he is and grow strong and skilled. That you are just fine assisting me here in LA."
"And if I don't?" Justine gasps. Wesley just smiles. It's a smile that sends a shiver down Justine's spine. Finally there is a small nod of her head.
"Good girl. I knew you'd see things my way." Wesley takes the mute off the phone. There is a different tone in his voice when he talks to Willow even though his voice is low with a hint of gravel, a permenant consequence of Justine's duplicity. "Willow, Wesley here. Sorry for the delay. If you would please put Conner on the phone."
"Conner? Phone for you. It's Wesley." Wesley can hear Willow calling out to the boy and even the sound of pounding feet.
"I got her home safe. Now I want to see Justine." Conner demands. "I'm on the next bus to LA."
"I think not. But since you did follow my directions I do have a reward for you." Wesley hands the phone to Justine holding it to her ear but staying close so he can hear every word said between the two of them. He keeps a hand on her throat ready to silence her if she should take a step in the wrong direction.
"Steven." Justine says into the phone finally.
"Where are you? How are you? Why did you disappear?"
"I'm fine." Justine ignores the first question. She maintains eye contact with Wesley at all times. "Fighting the good fight like Daniel would have wanted. Helping where ever, however I can."
"Why won't Wesley let me see you?"
"It isn't safe. Not for any of us. We're better off keeping in touch this way. You know what Daniel would have wanted." Justine arches her head back wincing at Wesley's tightening grip. "He wanted you to fight evil. He trained you to fight evil but died before he could complete your training. Daniel would want you to find someone, a vampire hunter of some kind, to complete your training..."
Wesley takes back the phone. "That's enough. You've gotten to talk to Justine. Put Buffy on the phone."
Wait a minute! Conner protests.
"Do not test me, boy." Wesley counters and warns. "You know how I feel about repeating myself."
A few seconds later. "Wesley? It's Buffy."
"Obscure all connections between us. Do not call here again. I'll make sure that nobody on this end finds out where Conner is." Wesley hangs up the phone and then destroys it beating it against the wall next to Justine's head. She collapses to the floor covering her head with both arms. When the phone is nothing but pieces, Wesley steps away. "Clean that up." Justine reaches out scooping the pieces of phone to her to be disposed of... not rising from the floor. Wesley goes thru some correspondance on his desk checking the return addresses on the envelopes. Absently he makes his threat. "If I ever think you will tell anyone where Conner is... I will cut out your tongue and shove you thru a portal to Pylea."
"I would kill myself before I'd ever hurt Steven!" Justine protests.
"Make sure you do." Wes' gaze pins Justine to the floor. "Lilah will be dropping by later. The sheets need changing."
Buffy hangs up the phone and shakes her head. "Okay that was weird." She turns to Willow. "He said to obscure the trail between Conner and him. He'd do it at the other end." Rather than destroying the phone or resorting to spells. Willow takes the phone and start erasing the log of calls. She looks over at Conner. "I think we've been asking the wrong questions. What the hell is going on in LA?!"
Conner looks away.
Coming on to dusk later that day. Conner is now dressed in a more fashionable look including a leather jacket that is tough enough for an evening of patrolling. The women of the house have showed him where all the trunks in the house are with the various implements of demon death. Buffy has offered him the couch for as long as he is staying in Sunnydale.
"Un-uh. Where do you think you are going, Miss You're So Grounded?" Buffy asks of Dawn as she is coming down the stairs.
"I'm supposed to help Anya at the Majik store since she cut back on the vengence stuff she wants to have store restocked for the holidays."
"Well she already missed Halloween."
"Besides I still owe her for all the stuff.."
Buffy holds up a hand. "We'll walk you over. Give.."
"...Willow a call before I leave I know." Dawn rolls her eyes. She checks her backpack to make sure that Son of Pointy is there and then slings it over her arm.
"Be safe." Willow comes in from the dining room. "I don't have to do this stuff right now I can go with you." She offers.
"Nah. Thanks though. It's more important to get those papers forged so that Conner can start at Sunnydale High on Monday."
"It's a good thing that homeschooling is in fashion now. It'll make everything easier to make up. But I still need some time, Conner, to go over what you do know to really make the transcript look good. And unfortunately everything that you ever learned bout Quortoth will not be on the test."
"It will be a piece of cake." Buffy says reassuringly. "Willow was the smartest person to ever go thru Sunnydale high. She was teaching before she graduated."
"Tutoring." Willow says in the interest of clarity.
"See even better." Buffy smiles. "We better get going. We're burning moonlight."
Willow groans but waves as the rest leave.
Buffy, Dawn and Conner walk the streets of Sunnydale. Buffy and Dawn pointing out the sights and good defensive positions. They walk by the Double Meat Palace. Buffy shudders at the memory although the fast food joint had keep a roof over the Summers girls' head right up until Buffy had gotten the job at the high school. Conner and Buffy wait outside while Dawn goes into the magik shop and then head out to patrol the really hot spots... the cemetaries and the playgrounds with a final stop off at the Bronze. "This is the Bronze!" Buffy hollars over the crowd. "Rules here are no drinking, no smoking, no school nights and no hanging with vamps in the corners. Something happens take it outside. Other than that have a good time! Come on. I'll introduce you around." Buffy tugs on Conner's arm and drags him into the throng of dancing people.
Sex with Lilah involves very little conversation. If he wanted to talk he'd call her on the phone. And that was mildly amusing in it's own way. Sex isn't about intimacy or even orgasms. Neither of them felt the need to fake anything. It's about getting hot, sweaty and working out the days frustration on a more than willing partner. And as with everything with Lilah it was about Power. Who got to be on top. Who was scamming whom. Wesley drives into Lilah urged on by her heels in his ass. If she could wear spurs to bed she probably would. He rolls to the side closing his eyes briefly and catching his breath before getting up and pouring himself a glass of water. Any minute now.
"So does Angel know that Conner left town?" Lila calls out from the bed. She checks her manicure and silently swears. She is going to have to schedule some time in to get her nails done tomorrow.
Wesley comes back into the bedroom carrying a water for his companion. He hands it to her and quirks a brow. She really doesn't have a modest bone in her body. Taking an ice cube from the water he rubs it against first one nipple and then the other, watching them pucker. "You're growing really quite predictable."
"And you're not surprised." Lila gasps.
"By your predictability? No."
"Conner leaving town."
"I thought Angel told you to stay away from his son." Wesley sits down on the bed next to Lila continuing to toy with her and the ice cube.
Lila sucks in her breath as Wesley starts icing
her off south of the border. But she can't complain... the man
made her so hot that she felt like she was about to burst into
flames anyway. Her body contracts around his fingers. "The
girl.. he was with at the bus station... didn't get all the video
tapes. But I.. did." Lilah's hips come off the bed and she
groans her eyes rolling back as she bites her lip. And then she
swears because sure enough the bastard stopped with the magic
With a growl she shoves him down on the bed and begins to ravish him, teasing him with her mouth, hands and body until he impales her upon him, his grip sure to leave bruises. Nice deep finger shaped bruises she could press on tomorrow in that damn meeting with Gavin to stay awake and remember what was waiting after she got out of the office. She bites down on his shoulder to smother any sound she might make, tasting blood as she spasms around him.
"Really Lilah. I think you've been spending too much time with your clients." Wesley sneers. Actually the pain of the bite had been what sent him over the top and the bitch knew it.
Lilah smirks at him and then climbs from the bed. It had been freshly made when she arrived.. with crisply ironed cotton sheets tight enough to bounce a quarter off of. That hadn't lasted the first round. "You're gonna have to get your little blow up doll out of the closet and have her remake the bed." She slides on her skirt and tucks in her white manstyle blouse not bothering to button it since the buttons littered the living room floor. "I thought you were going to get rid of her."
"Good help is so hard to find." Wesley puts one hand behind his head watching her dress.
"Don't I know it." Lila grouses. "That's why I have to leave early. Meeting with Gavin in the morning. Otherwise we'd go best two out of three."
"I believe it was three out of five... but who is keeping score."
"Finger ****s don't count." Lilah bends over to put on one of her heels and then balances with one hand against the bed as she puts on the other.
"Shame that." Wesley says mockingly as he slides his hand up under her skirt.
Lila shoves his hand away reluctantly. There is nothing she'd rather do than let those magic fingers go to it. But duty called. "I'll call you."
Wesley rises from the bed and pulls on a pair of black slacks. "Maybe I'll be here."
"Maybe you will." Lilah replies smugly. It's not like Wesley would be over at a friend's house. It is probably why Justine was still staying here. Wesley's apartment wouldn't allow regular pets.
Wesley goes over to the window and uses the reflection of the glass and then with a slight turn of his head, a mirror, to watch Lilah leave. Noting that she stops to check that he has a different phone. He watches her glance longingly at the locked closet door. She'd tried it before, even tried picking it before. But Lilah hadn't anticipated that there would be someone on the other side of the door holding it shut. "You would be difficult to replace, Lilah."
"Oh?" Lilah turns around.
"But not impossible. Been locked in any wine cellars lately?" Wesley reminds watches the color leave his sex partner's face. "Leave Conner alone. You'll live longer." Wesley walks Lilah to the door then locks it after her. He takes the key for the closet out it's hiding place and unlocks the door. He doesn't open it but puts the key back and then goes to take a long, hot shower.
After a few minutes, Justine hesitantly opens the closet door looking around to make sure the coast is clear. She checks the front door to make sure it's locked and secure. Picks up the buttons to Lila's shirt and puts them in a small box on top of the television. Goes into the master bedroom and quickly strips off the sheets and remakes the bed. She'd start a load of sheets as soon as Wesley is out of the shower. She hates the smell of Lilah in the apartment but she knows Wesley's game. It is the same one that Daniel had played on her-- manipulation with the perk of getting his rocks off. Cept Lilah is playing the same game. Everything Wesley had ever done was to protect Steven. He'd suffered and lost for it. Both of them had...Wesley and Steven. That is all her fault and she'd pay. In whatever coin Wesley demanded, she'd pay.
"So I went up to LA to see my dad, wish him a happy birthday. You know the good daughter stuff." Dawn calls out while carefully dusting the displays of the Magik Store. Anya had a firm you break it you buy it policy... even with unpaid employees.
"He's not your father."
"I know but he's the closest I've got and the monks made him think he was my father so who am I to argue right?"
Anya shrugs and shakes her head. The closest she'd had to a father figure for the last twelve hundred years is Dihofran and his style of parenting isn't to be recommended. She carefully reconciles the receipts for the day's sales. "So you were going to be the good daughter implying that Buffy is the bad daughter. Score a few family points."
Dawn winces but can't argue that one. "But instead we end up having it be the stupid and naive daughter...me. And the smart overprotective daughter again. Dad... I mean Hank..." Anya winces at that and shakes her head knowing this isn't going to be good. "...has a whole new life with a new wife and a new kid, a son. And I found out from the neighbor telling me. No phone call, no letter, no drop in visit. Nothing. It's like Buffy and I are a bad memory or something. I wish..."
"STOP!" Anya turns to face Dawn. "Just stop right there. Don't say another word. Don't think another word. You do and I'm required to act on it. 'Cause if a situation ever called for a little vengence demon action this is it."
Dawn blanches. "Damn. Do I ever learn?" She takes a deep breath. "I don't want anything bad to happen to Dad or his family, not really. Any vengence I'll take on my own-- thanks."
Anya releases the breath she'd been holding. "You had Joyce. You have Mr Giles as long as you can get a good international long distance phone rate. You have Buffy and Willow and... Zander." Anya trips over that a bit.
"I have you." Dawn adds.
Anya smiles sadly but grateful to be accepted by at least one of the scoobies. "You have me at least until you've finished paying me back for everything you stole." Dawn rolls her eyes but grins engagingly. "You have me, Dawnie." Anya nods and leaves it at that.
"So anyway... I'm killing time waiting for the bus back to Sunnydale, get hungry so I go to this dinner a few blocks from the bus depot. Get attacked by vamps."
"You what?! Does Buffy know?"
"She probably does now. This guy who is Angel's son shows up, helps me to finish them off and then follows me back to Sunnydale. There were big powwows going on between Buffy and Willow, and then Buffy and Angel, and I think between Buffy and Wesley Wyndam-Price and Steven is going to be STAYING. Buffy is going to train him."
"Vampires can't reproduce." Anya states flatly.
"Yeah, and little bundles of power can't be formed into a girl. Anyway..." Dawn rolls her eyes and waves her hand. "...It's LA. There was probably some prophecy. Maybe he's suppose to end the world or save it or something."
"You want him to give you orgasms."
"Lots of multiple orgasms."
"No!" Dawn protests but then smirks. "But it wouldn't bother me if say there was maybe some kisses."
Spike slinks up from the basement. Checking to see if the coast is clear. He had to get out of here. It was too hard to be here. To be around Buffy... to be in Joyce's house where he'd treated that gentle lady's daughter so shamefully.
"You're not crazy you know." Willow says from the doorway.
Spike stares at the floor. "I don't know what you mean."
"You're not crazy. It's not crazy to feel remorse or shame for actions."
"Memories. Memories you are going to have to deal with or eventually they will drive you crazy. Angel went thru it when he got his soul back too. And from all the research... things that Angel admits and that Giles found out... he was no saint before he was turned. Maybe that made it easier."
"I hurt her." Spike protests.
"You stopped. Even when you didn't have a soul... you stopped. Even though the chip doesn't work against Buffy anymore... you stopped. I didn't. I know it's not the same. Buffy can come up with a million excuses for me. It was grief. It was vengence. Doesn't make Warren any less dead. I know that I would do it again. That's the scary part and what makes us different, William. You had a gentle soul and you've gotten it back. I feel like mine was burned out of me when I lost Tara. When I watched her die-- there was nothing left inside of me but rage and grief. They're still there." Willow smiles bitterly. "I've spent the last months in England caging my demons. I think you know what that feels like. The elders there know I'm not cured."
Spike eyes her with a sidelong glance before looking away. "It's not just the voices. I feel it."
Willow nods. "So do I. It's coming. We both know it's coming. And we're going to need all the help we can get. Which means your breakdown is just going to have to wait."
"I have to go." Spike keeps edging toward the door.
"Think about it."
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