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29 June 2006 @ 04:31 pm
Walking In My Shoes (14/?)(NC-17)  
Title: Walking In My Shoes (14/?)
Author: Kelly and Mike (collaborative writing team)
Rating: Chapters range from PG-15 to NC-17
Chapter: Chapter Fourteen rated NC-17
Email: jjsoapchat AT yahoo DOT com
Content: CHARACTER DEATH, Rape, Violence. So not pretty stuff.
Scenes include: Wesley, Lilah, Harmony, Eve, Angelus
Summary: Written for a challenge proposed on the Stranger Things message board. Challenge By rousedower. An AU/TT Challenge: Angel goes to another dimension, hence AU, somehow. And in this dimension he is married to Cordy and they have kids. But something happened to the other Angel (he's missing or dead), so there's mad tension and what not between this Angel and AU!Cordy. She knows he's not her Angel, but the kids (a boy and girl) are pretty young and think he's their father. I imagine a scene where their little daughter asks him to read her a bedtime story/tuck her in with Cordy trying to explain to her that he's not her father (really), and he does it.
Disclaimer: The characters in the Angelverse were created by Joss Whedon & David Greenwalt. No infringement is intended, no profit is made.
Distribution:
Notes: Cast List: Kelly writes for Cordelia, Gunn, Lorne, Lillian, Kat, Ian, Illyria/Fred, Lilah, Eve, Faith, Gwen, Harmony, random shop owners/demons. Mike writes for Angel(us), Connor, Wes, random filler chars.
Feedback: Yes, please. Tell us how we are doing!
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This was the third magic shop Wesley had been to. It was the same story; people had either tossed them, lost them, stop selling them or were using them as paperweights. He got a tip from one of the local demon bars about one last shop owner in town. There was a possibility that he might have one laying around in the back. He had a fondness for things like that, outdated magic.

Wesley wasted no time in getting across town. He found the little shop tucked away between a pizza place and a Chinese take out restaurant. If someone were walking by, they would go right past it. Wesley went inside, rushed inside more like it. He didn’t have any time to waste. The longer he spent running around the LA, the less daylight he had. When night fell, the killing would start again. That is, if Angelus hadn’t already been killing during the day, using the sewers.

“Excuse me?” Wesley spoke up when he got to the counter. “Do you have an Orb of Thesulah?” This man had to have it. He was their last chance. Wesley cursed himself for letting Ian playing with the one at the office now. The small child dropped it and that was the end of it.

“Well, I did...until this morning. Pretty lady came in, bought the last three that I had.”

Wesley frowned. This man had three while the rest of the city had none and he sold it to a woman. “Can you describe her perhaps? Please. It is of utmost importance.”

The shopkeeper nodded and spoke once more as he reached under the counter to retrieve a thick ledger. “I like to keep all my purchases recorded. Never know when some fool is going to use Ickdine Powder on a woman and the police are knocking at my door.”

The old man ran his finger down the page; spectacles perched on the corner of his nose. “Ahh...here it is.” He turned the book and pointed an age-spotted finger at the name.

The Englishman didn't seem surprised but yet he did. "Thanks," he told the pudgy man and handed him a twenty for his efforts then walked out. He got in his Cherokee and sat there a moment. So, she's collecting. Only thing Wes could think if is that she's found out. Wes sat there for a long moment. He thought of when he had to ask her for this spell the first time.

-----Summer 2002-----

The last time that Lilah Morgan would ever see Wesley Wyndam-Pryce romantically started out mundanely enough. Standing outside of his apartment door, she kept her anger carefully in check. She knocked on the door. It wouldn't take him long to answer it. He was expecting that she was coming over for sex. How wrong he was.

Wesley opened the door. "Lilah, what an unexpected surprise."

She wasn't going to be playing any kind of strange sex games with him tonight. She had heard and seen things that were most definitely pissing her off. "I could say the same thing about you."

Stepping aside, he allowed her to come in. "Lilah, you seem to be upset. Thong in a bunch?"

She came into the apartment and waited for him to close the door. She turned to face him. "I am not here for one of our little evening trysts, Wesley."

After closing the door, he turned to her. "Then why have you come?" he asked her in that calm voice of his.

She just looked at him. He honestly couldn't figure it out. Here she thought he was smarter than the shaved apes he worked with. "I know you have been poking around my contacts."

"And you are pissed that one of them gave me the secret Wolfram & Hart really didn't want Team Angel to get a hold of," he said. He knew. "Well, didn't exactly give to me, but you get the meaning."

"Oh, I am pissed about that. There is a really good reason we don't want Angel running around with a permanent soul. Something you can't even begin to understand. But you've jeopardized my job and my life." She might just have to kill him. Or rather, she might have to have someone kill him. She would much rather hire someone than to get her own hands dirty. "Is this to get back in with the good guys, the ones who tried to kill you?"

"Well, seeing that Wolfram & Hart have been trying to unleash Angelus for how many years now," Wesley said as he poured a couple drinks. He walked back to her and handed her one. "Champion or not, I'm not really anxious to let Angelus out. You've no idea what could happen and I assure you, Lilah, you'd be on his list. Angelus retains all of Angel's memories.”

"We have contingency plans to protect our employees." She takes the drink from him but she doesn't drink it, not yet. "You went behind my back and for what? Those do-gooding idiots?"

"For them or not," he said, "I've no desire to have a crazed, psychotic vampire on the lose. A normal vampire is bad enough." He drank the entire contents of his scotch in one gulp.

"Are you trying convince yourself or me, Wesley? Angelus on the loose, you can kill Angel without feeling guilty. Quick stake to the heart, from long range even. Hell, you owe him it. He tried to smother you, after all."

"I also owe him my life many times over, Lilah," he said. "Angel was hurting. Connor was a child that shouldn't have been and Angel knew this. Something he never dreamed he could have."

"It still sounds like you are talking for your own benefit." She set her drink down on the end table but she doesn't move closer to him. "Your precious prophecy, that you risked your life and your friends for. False. Completely false. Then again, you did a little better research, you'd know that."

“I worked with what I had, since, it seems the main script was stolen from us." Wesley went to pour himself another drink.

"Just full of excuses tonight, aren't you?" She paused for only a moment. She reached into her purse. "You didn't really think I am was going to let you get away with going behind my back, did you?"

"And if in my shoes you wouldn't have done the same? Come now, Lilah," he said, not seeming worried. He knew he well enough to know that she wouldn’t dirty her hands.

"I think you forget who I work for. Not in the business of helping Angel and his flunkies. And I've held off on anymore Connor captures for you. Nice to see how I am repaid."

"Don't think I wasn't expecting a possible visit from you about this," was all he said.

"I knew you would. You know, you could great things if you just came to work with Wolfram and Hart. I know you are attached to the good side and everything but...well, every thought about taking us down from the inside?" She gave him a smile as she kept her hand concealed within her purse.

"Yes, well, I am but one man, I'm afraid." Suddenly, his hand was at her wrist. "I'd advise you to take your hand out slowly."

"You have a problem with a lady getting out her lipstick, Wesley? Paranoid much?" She didn't remove her hand from her purse. She wasn't planning to either until he let go of her wrist. "Must be at the bottom. Having a hell of a time finding it."

"I'm sure." Slowly, he released her wrist but he was ready at the first sign. He wasn't the bumbling idiot he had once been. Life tends to do that to a person.

She did finally draw her hand out once he let go of her wrist. Clasp between two fingers, was a folded piece of paper. She held it still close to her body. "There's always a price to pay. You sure you are ready?"

"I'm sure whatever it is...I've already paid it," he said, knowing that his soul was probably already damned.

"You might be surprised." She moved her hand, holding that paper just barely out of his reach. "How to contact a being powerful enough to give Angel his soul with no strings attached."

"Maybe not to him," Wes said, keeping his eyes on her. Sex was great with her but trusting her, now that wasn't so great. "But what about to you?"

Yet he is the one that went behind her back. There was something to be said for her coming out of this looking like the more loyal companion. "I know you can be clearer than that, Wes. What do you mean?"

"I'm sure you want to extract some price for this." Wesley downed that second scotch. He could only imagine the price that Lilah was going to request of him. He knew that no matter what he imagined, what she said would be far worse. She had a talent.

"Oh baby, now I am hurt." She put the piece of paper down on the edge of the end table, next to her drink. She didn’t say another word as she started for the door.

"Lilah," he said in that quiet tone of his.

Her hand was already on the doorknob, her body just barely turned towards him. "You go behind my back again and they will need a microscope to find all the pieces of you in the desert."

"Thank you," is all he said as he watched her.

She merely snorted as his thanks. She opened the door to his apartment and stepped out. She shut the door behind him. She'd risked everything in giving that to him. And once the Senior Partners found out, she would most likely be dead. However, like always, she had a way to spin it in her mind. She only hoped they would buy it. She walked away from Wesley's apartment and more importantly...Wesley. 


The entire exchange haunted him as he drove. Lilah still hadn’t asked for her price yet. He thought that perhaps that would come now. Wesley Wyndam-Pryce pulled up in front of Wolfram & Hart. He got out and headed into the pristine building. Rather than risk the reception desk and alerting Lilah he was here, he checked her name on the directory. Her office was on a different floor but not hard to find.

It seemed that the spin she put on the whole situation had worked with the Senior Partners. No longer Junior Vice President, she was President of Special Projects. It was mostly taking down Angel and company. She couldn’t claim credit for the assaults on the Slayer Academy but she had to admit it, that was an excellent idea. Her plans consisted now of generally making Angel’s life hell. Of course, that was completely down the gutter now. The Senior Partners weren’t happy about Angel being dust.

She was in her large plush office, turning her chair slightly from side to side as she looked over the latest file. Their intelligence had gotten a lot better. Why does one need cameras when Angelus is bragging all over the streets and to his victims about what happened? She was trying to determine the next course of action. She had plenty of proposals and plans. Now, she just had to pick one of them.

Wesley entered her office without a word or greeting. Her personal secretary was out on a break so it was perfect timing on his part. He looked to the shelf to the side of the room and saw them there. She had five Orbs now. He moved over there and picked one up. He paid Lilah no mind.

"I would put that back where it belongs if I was you" He must have really been distracted if he didn't see that she was, in fact, sitting in her office. She didn't even put the file down. She just continued doing what she was doing. But her hand was resting in her lap, fingers curled around the handle of a concealed 9mm.

Wes saw her, he just didn't care. He turned to look at her. "One would think you were hoarding these to keep Angelus on the loose."

"I resent that accusation." She shut the file. She tossed it on her desk. Her look to him was one that would have withered a lesser man. "Put it back. Don't forget whose turf you are on."

"In case you haven't heard the rest of the story," he said as he stepped towards her desk. "This isn't our Angel or Angelus. He's a creature from another dimension that we know very little about."

"He is telling it to just about every single demon he meets. Not some big secret you can use as leverage, Wesley." He must have, in his desire to touch her nice things, also forgotten that Wolfram and Hart was pandimensional. They had offices all over this world and thousands of others. She always thought he was the smartest of that group of morons but it seemed she might be wrong about him.

"You must realize its for the better we resoul him," he said to her. "Our Angel is gone. Killed in a fight saving a young girl."

She chuckled softly as she keeps her eyes trained on him. "Tell me exactly WHY resouling him is better? We are an EVIL law firm. Now we have what we always wanted, Angelus running around. No pesky soul to keep Angel a Champion. Maybe you would like to know exactly whom you are bringing back? His file reads like a Kentucky Fried soap opera." She shoved the file towards Wes. "He works for us." She had, for her own purposes, omitted large chunks of history of this other dimension Angel out of the file she was giving to Wes.

Taking the file, he read it over quickly. He barely skimmed it. He couldn’t believe her. Or rather, perhaps, he didn’t want to believe her. "Next, you'll be telling me the death of our Angel was orchestrated by Wolfram & Hart so you could bring this one over and arrange for him to become Angelus." He looked up at her from the file.

"We had nothing to do with that. You know the rules in regards to Angel. Look but don't touch. Torment but don’t kill. Can't come at him directly. That was just a stroke of luck." She leaned back in her chair. "And we had nothing to do with this. It was one of The Old Ones."

"Why would one of The Old Ones ever bother with him?" This puzzled Wes. He knew that if any of them were set loose it would just as soon kill a person as to toss them in a portal.

She opened her desk drawer, reaching in to pull out several other files. On the tab of each folder were the names of each member of the AI team: Wesley, Fred, Gunn, Cordelia, Connor. These were followed below by a series of numbers that matched the one on the Angel file Wesley had. These were to tell what dimension they were from. She handed them over to him. "Go ahead and keep them. We have plenty of copies."

"I'm sure they'll make interesting reading tonight. And how fortunate you must feel to have this fall into your lap." He paused then looked from the files to her. "Did you ever think, Lilah, that this Angelus just might come for you like ours' would have? From what we've experienced, he's just as crazy and unpredictable. He kills for the sheer pleasure and not just the need to feed as is the case with other creatures, even vampires."

"He is one of our employees. And in this dimension or any dimension, there are certain little...failsafes implanted. Your concern isn't needed or appreciated." Lilah answered him dryly.

"Then I guess I'll just take my leave," Wes said as he turned for the door.

She stood up from her chair, her 9mm now aimed for the back of his head. "Take the Orb out of your jacket and put it back on my shelf. I don't want to have to get brains all over my original Matisse."

Stopping, he didn't turn to face her but his head just turned just slightly. "You can't blame a bloke for trying." He then turned as if to take it back with his left facing her and in a quick fluid motion he pulled his own gun. He rolled and fired, just intending to shoot the gun from her hand or the very least cause some confusion.

The sound of gunfire was enough to alert security to her office. The gun flew from her hand and landed on the floor. She slammed a button under her desk, on the off chance that security was running slow. "You'll never make it out alive, Wes. Give up now and they might let you go with minimal torture."

"I'll risk it." He ran out of her office, down the stairs, and then across the lobby. He had everything in his SUV ready. He could recite the spell as he drove if he had too. He could hear the running of the security guards and see the security doors at the front starting to come down. He sped up his pace.

She grabbed her gun up from the floor so that she could give chase. Her heels slipped on the floor, causing her to curse. He might be able to get the soul into the Orb but she would make sure that he didn't get that soul back into Angel. "Shoot him already!" She shouted at several guards as they ran up to her. They paused, took aim, and fired at the retreating man from the upper floor.

The lobby floor was slick as it had been freshly waxed. Wes was going to use that fully to his advantage. He sped up his running then went down like he was sliding for home as those security doors came down. He just barely made it as bullets hit the barrier as it locked down. Outside, he stood and looked back into the building. He could see Lilah seething at the window. He waved at her then took off running for his Cherokee.

Lilah pistol-whipped the nearest security guard in her rage after she saw Wes waving. She stalked back into her office, almost ripping the phone out of the jack as she grabbed it. She dialed a single number. She brought the phone to her ear. "He got one of the Orbs" She slammed the phone down in her annoyance.

Getting in his SUV, Wes placed the orb on the seat with the other items. He started the car and drove at breakneck speed for the hotel. He didn’t want to waste any time as the sun started to set. He started the incantation as he drove. Now it was just up to the rest to lure Angelus into the trap they had set.

Angelus entered the seedy demon bar. His face, burned on the left side, was still red from that damn bitch, Cordelia, and the holy water. That stuff should be illegal. It hurt like hell. The vampire paused and glanced around. The place was dead. He made his way towards the bar. He looked at the tender. "Whiskey," he said to him as he sat. He touched his injured face and hissed when it hurt.

The bartender just nodded his head, his jowls swinging in the air as he did. He turned to pour Angelus his whiskey. The bar was relatively quiet. It was still daylight out so most of the vamps weren't around. A lot of the demons that came in here worked during the day as lawyers, stockbrokers, priests, talk show hosts. He set the whiskey down in front of Angelus. "That'll be five dollars or one kitten, mate."

Angelus just looked at the demon barkeep then took the glass with that fast vampiric speed. He knocked it back and put the shot down, his eyes never leaving the ugly demon.

"Five dollars or a kitten." The demon, which looked like he was made up of mounds of bread dough, held one meaty hand out for his payment.

In another fast move, Angelus had a large blade. He grabbed the demon’s hand, slamming it onto the bar counter. He held the demon’s hand down on the bar and cut a finger off. "I hear you talk again and I'll cut another off." He grabbed the bottle from the demon's other hand.

It was probably a good thing that he didn't have any real feeling in that hand. Angelus cut off the finger, which wiggled around the bar. The demon grabbed it up and jammed it back onto his hand. Like the wad of dough that he was, it melded back into. It just took a bit of kneading. "You want that whole bottle, you better have a litter off kittens under your coat, Scarface."

Angelus watched as the demon reattached his finger like nothing was wrong. A slow, sadistic grin spread across the vampire’s features, despite the pain it caused due to the holy water burn. Oh, the fun he could have with Pillsbury Doughboy.

The grin, no doubt, would be short-lived as a shriek came from behind Angelus. It was a happy shriek. The voice was like a Valley Girl on helium, way too enthusiastic for someone who wasn’t high on cocaine. "ANGEL! OMIGOD!"

The grin was very short lived and faded quickly. That sound was like nails on a black board to him. He took one long pull from that whiskey bottle. Maybe if he just ignore her, she would go away. What the hell was Spike thinking when he turned her? Well, he wasn't thinking as usual or rather, he was thinking with his dick.

Harmony rushed over to his side. Last time she had seen Angel had been when she tried to turn him and the other members of the gang over to the cult. She had a tendency to just forget her evil ways. "What are you doing here? Never thought you would come to a dive like this. No offense, bartender demon dough man." She gave the doughy demon a winning smile before looking back to who she though was Angel. "Oooh, drinking. Did Cordelia dump you? And eww...what happened to your face?"

He was getting a headache already and she had only been here a few seconds. "Harmony, I'm in here getting a drink and thinking...what can I kill in the next ten minutes to help with some stress relief?" He turned, finally, to look at her. "Something wrong with my face?"

"Yeah...it’s all scar-y and pink and stuff." She gestured vaguely around his face. "You are here to kill demons right? No hard feelings about the whole cult thing, right?" She gave him a sheepish smile.

"Yeah, well," he reached for her face and pushed some of her hair back. She had his bloodline in her and he did not like that. Spike should have been more picky in who he chose to sire. "Since I couldn't kill my own kids tonight."

"Heeey..." She whined as she tried to pull away from him as he reached for her face and pushed her hair back. "Watch the hair. You know how hard it is to find a stylist that will do vampire hair? Most of them don't like it when you try to take a bite out of them!"

Angelus grabbed her at the back of the neck. "Do you think I give a shit? Do you think it matters in the big picture?" His other hand grabbed her by the throat. Though a vampire couldn’t be choked to deprive them of air, it still usually sent the young ones into a panic.

"Angel, what are you doing? I thought we were okay about the whole trying to kill you thing." Harmony reached up and tried to take the hands away from her neck. She didn't like that. She didn't like it one bit. "Sorry about your face. It looks good...really it does."

"Angel would forgive you," he said the name in disgust. "Angel is a bitch whipped soul boy that I'm forced to watch as he does his good deeds."

No one would ever accuse Harmony of being a Mensa member so she still has yet to figure out that she was dealing with Angelus. "You can let me go now. Please. I have a really important thing I have to be at tonight. Once the sun goes down and everything." She tried once more to get the hand gone from around her neck.

The older vampire shoved her down on the bar. "Oh, I don't think you're going to have to worry about it. Its about time I cleaned up the bloodline.”

Harmony was never much of a fighter either. She never really had to be. Shoved down on the bar, she just looked to the tender for help. But fights and deaths were a common occurrence here. She looked back to Angel. "Hey! I am your wife's friend. You can't hurt me. We were BFF! How come I didn't get an invitation to the wedding? It was at night, I could have gone!"

"News flash, you dim bitch," he said. He reached over and flipped over a barstool with his free hand. He broke off a leg to make a jagged and deadly stake. "Angel is dead. Angelus is back and ready to take control of this city."

She grinned at him. "That's great! There are so many people in this city that need to be eaten or killed. It’s a shame that my Blondie Bear is dead. You two could have really raised some hell! Can I join the gang then now? Since Spike is gone and everything. I am his...whatever you call it, after all."

"You'll join the gang. Tell Darla and Spike I said hello when you get to Hell." He brought that chair leg up and brought it down hard into her chest. Harder than he needed to but she deserved it. As expected it hit right on target, going through her chest to hit her heart..

"Do we get to wear matching..." Harmony never got to finish her sentence. She was so busy thinking about how cool it would be to be part of a group again, thinking about wearing matching jackets, that she didn't see the stake until it was too late. She was staked mid-thought, turning to dust. Her leftovers joined the other vampire remains before her in coating the bar.

Angelus tossed the stake aside and turned back to the bartender. "Now that we have that problem solved, let's get to ours." The vampire walked the length of the bar. At the end, he stepped around and started to come slowly towards the tender behind the bar. "I'm sure you heard now who it is you're talking too?"

The bartender made a slight clicking sound, as if his jaw was popping as he chewed tobacco. This being a demon bar, however, it was more likely that he was chewing on a human ear. "I know you are the guy who owes me a litter of kittens and is going to clean my bar." He tossed a damp rag at Angelus, hitting him right in the face.

When he pulled that towel down, his true face had come to surface. His yellow eyes seemed to glow and he bared those sharp fangs and teeth. He grabbed something quickly from under the bar and then he was within inches of the bar keep. The thing even smelled like bread, bread that was wet and had been left out on the counter too long.

"Get back on your side, leech." The bartender didn't seem the least bit afraid of Angelus. He had all kinds coming in here. Vampires were the lowest rung on the ladder, especially punk vampires. He was from a Hell dimension so it took a lot to rile him.

Angelus didn't stop his advance on the demon. The fold of his duster was hiding what he had picked up. He ran his tongue over his teeth between his fangs. Then in a swift move, he had his fingers buried in the doughy flesh at the top of the thing’s head. He had taken a large butcher knife from under the bar and he brought it up. He cut across the neck of the bartender, separating his head from his budda-like body. He'd came across one of these demons before. He quickly pitched the head in the little freezer then got a tub of ice. He turned it upside-down over the opening where the demon’s neck used to be. "Okay, Doughboy," he spoke back to the freezer, "colder your head gets there, the harder its going to be to re-attach. Meanwhile, I just might make a strudel out of the arm of your body...or better yet run it through the grater." He couldn’t threaten the thing’s dick. They didn't have one. Well, they did when they wanted or a vagina when they wanted. Damn asexual bastards, he was thinking to himself.

The vampire moved too fast for the slow moving demon to really react. Before he knew it, his head was in a freezer. He glared, as best as he could, at Angelus. "What is your problem? Didn't get enough love as a child?"

"How'd you guess? Probably why I ate my parents, tasted like chicken." Angelus replied. "Now, you're going to tell me what I want to know while I have a couple more drinks or I'll have your body served up as pastries. And mind you, I am a decent cook." He looked at the doughy body. "I'll start with finger sandwiches." He grabbed his bottle again, He opened it and took a pull from it. "Now, people have been running around asking about Orbs."

“I don't know nothing about no Orbs." There was very little he could do. He couldn't control his body with his head not attached. It just stood there, unmoving. He wished he had Jedi powers like the movies, to will his body to move to him.

The vampire just shook his head and pulled out a plate. He sat the hand of the body up on the counter once more and got another knife. "Have to keep with health codes now," he said. "You got mayo and mustard?" He looked back at the glass door of the freezer where the head was sat between a bottle of Killian's Red and a Bud.

He watched Angelus put his hand on the counter. The counter was filthier now since he had dusted the big-mouthed blonde vamp on it. He would end up reattaching his fingers along with bits of vamp-dust. It wasn’t something he wanted. "There is only place in town you can get Orbs anymore."

"And what place is that?” he asked. "How about onions, tomatoes, lettuce? Pickles even?" He was rummaging for all the good sandwich stuff, pausing now and then to get a drink of his whiskey. "You really need to start serving drunks in here, man. This takes forever to get a vampire drunk, or buzzed even."

His eyes widened as the vampire put the sandwich stuff on the bar. He was serious! The only reason he kept that stuff around was that there was a certain breed of demon that got drunk off veggies. He wasn't a big fan. "Its a little bookshop. On Ivy. It’s tucked in between a pizza place and a Chinese place. If you aren't looking for it, you will miss it."

Angelus stopped and turned to face the freezer with a “duh” look. "All you had to do to save the trouble was tell me that." He shoved the body so it fell back on its ass on the floor. He stepped over it. He made his way from behind the bar and started for the door.

The demon yelled at Angelus as he went. "Hey! Wait! What about my head? My body? I need to reattach!"

The vampire stopped at the door. He turned back and looked at the freezer where the head was. "What about it?" Stepping out, he said, "Dude just needs to chill out a bit. Too uptight about his job." With that he went to find a little magic shop that could pose an annoying problem.

After slipping down into the sewers from the access by the demon bar, Angelus walked the tunnels towards his destination. He paused under the access that would take him up into the alley next to the pizza shop. He took the ladder up and slowly lifted the cover to make sure the alley wasn't in direct sunlight. The sun had lowered back behind the buildings so shadows were cast in the alley. He climbed out of the manhole then moved to the front of the building. He was such a lucky bastard. Awnings lined all down the buildings. He walked to the magic shop and stepped in.

The diminutive shopkeeper heard the bell ring over the door. He glanced up from his reading. It was Miller's Demon Compendium. A good read but it was one he had read several times before. He had only seen two customers today and he was curious if this third was seeking the same thing as the others.

Angelus glanced around at the contents of the shop. He wasn't seeing anything to lead him to believe what he was looking for was here. There were on Orbs just sitting out on the shelves. He looked at the man and leaned down on the counter on his arms. "Nice little place here," the vampire said

The shopkeeper pulled back as the vampire leaned down on the counter. He just knew, after years of working in this business, when a vampire came in. He adjusted the spectacles on the end of his nose as he regarded the vampire. "How can I help you?"

"I really hope you can," Angelus said, looking like an oh-so-troubled customer. "I need this orb thing. Thesulah, I think it’s called. I was told you were the last place in town to have them."

The man just looked the vampire over. He could sense something was wrong with this situation as the hairs on the back of his neck stood up. "You looking to get souled?"

Angelus just chuckled a bit. "What does it matter what I want with a glass bauble? I want it." His voice changed slightly to a lower near growl.

He tilted his head. It was the chuckle that had done it, had put him off for the moment. After the change in tone, he knew that those hairs on the back of his neck were correct. "We are all out. My apologies. But I have a lovely Stone of Petra if you are interested."

"That's really not what I wanted to hear," Angelus said as he propped his chin in his hand. "Now, next thing I want to ask is...Who bought them?"

"I don't know." He was lying. He hadn't had to lie much in his life. He wasn't particularly versed in it. He only hoped the vampire didn't notice the bead of sweat forming at his brow or the way his heartbeat skipped a beat before increasing.

Lying to a creature that can sense your respiration and heart rate was a bold and stupid move. "You know, this isn't going well," he said, "not for you, at any rate." Turning, he found a horse hair rope on one of the shelves. He grabbed it, swinging it slightly. He moved slowly down the counter. Already once today he had to slip behind a counter to get answers.

"I don't know what you are talking about. Like I said, I don't know who bought them. I let that stuff stay private." He was thankful now that he had put the large ledger away after the Englishman had come in earlier. He backed away as Angelus advanced on him

The vampire uncoiled the small cord of rope. It was beaded on either end. That was probably for some Native American magic. But Angelus could use if for some magic of his own. "Lying isn't good for your health, you know that?" Lunging over the counter, he pulled the keeper around. The keeper was now on his back against the counter while Angelus slipped the rope around his neck quickly. He managed to tie it off on a large iron urn, just at the base of the counter

He tried to struggle to get away from the vampire but the vampire's speed coupled with the shopkeeper's old age was no match. He found himself against the counter, rope around his neck, and tied to one of his most prized containment urns.

Angelus looked to the case and saw a very thin, sharp blade in it. Yet another piece that was no doubt used in rituals. He broke the glass and pulled it out. "Memory getting any better?"

He knew that if he said anything, neither the Englishman nor the woman would be able to use those Orbs to restore this creature's soul. He was smart so he could jump to those kinds of conclusions. He turned his head away from Angelus, pulling at the rope around his neck.

Turning to the man, he tore open the man's shirt. He started counting ribs, using the tip of the thin dagger. "This would make my job easier if you'd stay away from the Big Macs."

He was old and his body showed his age. Marked with age spots and the sagging skin of being a senior citizen, he was exposed now. His hands were still free however. He used them to close his shirt up. It was worth a try though, no doubt, it would only anger the vampire further.

Angelus grabbed one of those arms and in a quick motion broke the fragile wrist bones. The sound of them snapping was like the sound of a .22 pistol.

The old man whimpered in pain as the vampire broke his wrist. It was quick and he was thankful for that. He held the wrist against his chest with his other hand to help with some of the pain that was shooting up his arm

Angelus went back to opening the man's shirt. Finding the place he wanted, he slowly slid the small dagger into the man’s body, not hitting anything vital. Angelus found another dagger in the case, this one with a jagged edge. "Now, who bought the orbs?"

The old man bit his lip so hard that he drew blood as Angelus slid the first dagger into his chest. The hand that was holding his wrist flexed in pain. "I told you..." He said breathlessly. "I don't know."

"Not what I wanted to hear." Instead of driving it in this time, he ran the jagged dagger down the center of the man's chest, just skin deep. He got a little blood on his finger and he licked it off. He made a face. "How many drugs are you on to keep this old bag of bones going? I am going to have to find some girl scouts or nuns to kill before I visit our friend. Now where do I find the person that bought the Orbs?"

The jagged dagger cut down his flesh, stinging along the way. Most of the time, being on all those drugs kept him safe from being eaten by demon or vampire alike. He didn't answer Angelus. He was counting back the hours. How long ago was it that the woman bought them? How long since the Englishman came in? Could it be possible that they had started the spell, gotten this creature’s soul, and the necessary magical firepower to do it?

Angelus made a crosscut now across the man’s torso. He started lifting the skin and cutting just under it. Yes, the old man was getting skinned. He looked up at the old man's face. He knew what he wanted. What was the point in asking again when it would just interrupt his beautiful work?

He might not have believed in a single God or even in multiple Gods, but he was praying to someone or something greater than he was now. His lips moved over an ancient prayer, trying to remember the words to help take this pain away.

"Its surprising what the body can endure. Even a tired, worn out one like yours. Now, it can all stop if you just give me some information." He was bent over now and you should see how much of that skin he has separated from the old man's rib cage.

The old man prayed for forgiveness but mostly, he prayed to be delivered from this torment. Then he felt it, that tingly numbness spreading up through his arm. He knew what this was. It had been almost twenty years since his last heart attack and triple bypass. It seemed the Gods smiled on him in his hour of need after all.

Angelus folded some of that skin back then started on another section. "I probably could have been a doctor. Missed my calling, though I am somewhat of an expert on the human body." He pulled the skin back, running the sharp knife under it to cut it from muscle.

The old man felt it as his heart seized up. He felt the last breath of life escape his lips, his soul departing with it. He went quickly, which was once more a blessing in disguise in regards to this whole situation.

When the old man died Angelus stopped. He paused a moment then he looked to the man's face. He stood up straight, slowly. He leaned on the counter, looking up in annoyance. "You goddamn sonuvabitch," he said quietly. He just stood there for a moment like that. Then suddenly, he hit the counter on either side of the old man and the counter shattered, falling with the dead body.

"NOOOO!" He turned, grabbing one of those urns and threw it. The heavy containment vessel broke the shelf and everything on it. Picking up a large club-looking weapon, he turned and hit the old man's body in the head. "You motherfucker! You fucked me over dying, you bastard!"

Angelus swung the club again at another counter and it shattered. When it did, a large book fell from it. It opened, pages spilling open to reveal a list of names and purchases. He stopped upon seeing it. Bending down, Angelus picked it up and what he read, put a grin on his face. Then, he chuckled. "Well, well, isn't this a sweet turn and surprise." He tossed the book and turned for the door to leave. This was turning out to be an entertaining evening already.

Angelus made it up from the basement/garage levels of the Wolfram & Hart offices. After leaving the shop, he had found himself a delicious troop of Girl Scouts, selling cookies. He wanted to heal his face so that he could look his best when he went to see Lilah. The sun had set just enough then that it wasn’t a threat as he drained them all quickly. Each of them was like a little juice box, just enough to sate his thirst for a moment. They had gotten their merit badge for being dinner.

He dusted himself off. After all, he used to be the CEO of, well, Angel was, of a branch. Finally, he came off the elevator into the lobby. He stopped at the directory to look up a certain office. He took the steps quickly and went down the hall, looking for that office. He stopped short though, seeing a familiar face. He couldn’t believe who was behind that reception desk. It seemed that the mighty had fallen. He stepped over to the desk with that devilish smirk. "You know, the problem with all these buildings the firm builds, they are all the same."

Eve looked up from her workstation to see...Angel? What was he doing here? She was just a lowly secretary so she didn't have the same knowledge that those in the big offices upstairs did. How was she to know that Angelus was loose? Or that this vampire wasn't the same vampire that they all knew? Then again, anytime Angel came to 'visit' Wolfram and Hart, there was always trouble. He had brass balls walking through the front door. If the vampire alarms didn't catch him, the fact that she was reaching for her own alarm button should. It was late and most of the security was still cleaning up the mess made earlier by Wesley.

"Uh, uh, Eve," Angelus said, "wouldn't do that." He moved around the desk. "And as for you vampire detectors, I have a free pass.” He still had that charm Angel had to come and go. He pulled it from his pocket. "Makes me invisible to them. So, Eve, you still like that little mole behind your ear nibbled?"

"What?" She was up from her seat in an instant. She turned around to look at him. Her fingers were still stretching, reaching for that alarm button. At this moment, she hated Lilah. If the boss worked late, she had to work late too. It was one of the “perks” of being the personal assistant to the President of Special Projects. "Don't you have some puppy to save?"

He grabbed her wrist with that quick vampire speed. His real face was showing now. He was sick and tired of her already. "Why can't a woman ever listen like they used to back in the day? They didn't and they'd get shown the error of their ways." He slammed her against the wall behind her desk.

Eve's head slammed against the wall. Along with it the dull thud, was a sickening squishing sound. She was just a human in this dimension, albeit, an evil human. The smell of her blood permeated the air as the back of her head smashed against the wall. She was dizzy and disorientated now, fighting weakly to keep Angelus off her.

Angelus ran his finger on that blood smear on the wall then licked it. "Mortal," he sounded a little disappointed. He looked at her, He knew exactly what he was going to do to Eve. "I'm a bad guest. I came here to see a friend and didn't bring a gift."

His voice sounded as if it was coming through a tunnel. Her vision was starting to go black around the edges but she was fighting to stay conscious. She scratched feebly at his face, her nails barely nicking the surface of his skin.

When she did that, his hand came to her face and forced her eye open. With his other hand, he yanked out her eyeball with a practice skill that suggested he had done this several times before. He held it in his left hand.

The pain cut through the fog in her mind. She felt his fingers push into her eye socket and she was too weak to fight him off. She screamed though. She screamed loud and long, in anguished pain as he pulled her eye from the socket. Blood streamed down her face, over her cheeks, like red tears from the open wound.

"Normally I'd let this draw out so we could really bond and all, but I have to see somebody." With that he crushed her windpipe to let her asphyxiate. He let go of her so she could drop and then headed for Lilah's office.

Her throat crushed, once let go of her, her body crumpled to the floor. Her body spasmed in death, voice making a last few choked and gurgling noises. The blood pouring from her eye pooled at the side of her face as she shook with the final stages of her own death.

Stopping at the office door, he read the name and title. "Lilah Morgan. President. Special Projects Division." He opened the door and stepped on in. "Man, what did you do to piss off the Senior Partners in this dimension. I mean Angel was CEO and he didn't have a law degree." He moved on in and took a seat in front of her desk. His feet went up on it. "In fact the only major he had was in Stupidity."

Lilah sat at her desk. It was a good thing her office was soundproofed or she would have been distracted from the screaming in the outer office. Her head was down but when she heard her door open, it snapped back up. "You really should think about making an appointment next time, Angelus. I'm a busy woman." She had no fear. In his home dimension, he was an employee of Wolfram and Hart. The failsafes there should work here, even if he did bring the Apocalypse down on his world.

The vampire tossed that eyeball up and caught it as if he were playing with a little ball. He tossed it on her desk, letting it roll in front of her. "Present. I mean I didn't want to be a bad guest."

She watched as the bloody eyeball rolled across her desk. She frowned and flicked it away with her pen, back towards him. "Was that suppose to impress or scare me? I deal with demons every day. Eyeballs on my desk are par for the course."

He looked around the office and his yellow eyes settled on that bookshelf. He stood and walked over to it where four crystal-like orbs sat. "You should keep these things in a case because they are so fragile. Didn't you know that?" Reaching up with two bloodied fingers, he rolled one off the shelf. So delicate it was, it shattered on the floor. "Ooops, clumsy of me."

She barely watched him as shattered the Orbs. She just went back to her work. She didn't want Angel back anymore than he did. "I assume you still remember how to get to the White Room if you want your old job back. Or if you want to ask them to send you back to own dimension."

He knocked another off then another. There was only one remaining. He picked up the last one. "I was told you had all of these," Angelus said and he looked at this orb. He tossed it from one hand to the other and looked back at her. "And well, there's not much left of home," he said, tossing the orb higher. "Sort of got Apocalypsed Now."

"Sort of Angel's fault too. You don't have to worry about him here. He's dead." Her voice had all the emotion as if she was reading off a grocery list. "If you were just here to kill my receptionist and destroy the Orbs, can you finish already? I have a big merger I need to work on. I can't be entertaining you. Go kill Wesley or rape some nuns."

"I'll get around to it," Angelus replied as he came back to the desk. "Didn't you ever wonder, Lilah, what we'd be like? You, me. After all, I was the one you wanted."

She frowned deeply and looked up at him. She wanted him out of her office. She pointed to the Orb with her pen. "That isn't the last one in town. Sure Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys are looking for one right now."

Tossing it over his shoulder, he heard it break as it hit the floor. Now that was over with, he could get back to his fun. He replied, "I'm sure they are." Angelus moved around her desk to her side. Reaching for her now, he pulled her up. "But I'm suddenly in the mood for some office romance." He backed her ass to the desk, his hand went up that short skirt of hers. He merely grinned at her.

Her ass hit the papers on her desk. All she could think was so much for her merger. Her butt was going to smear the ink. She shoved her knee hard against his stomach. One of the perks of being President of Special Projects was that she wasn’t human anymore. "I don't have time for your 'I am so evil, I take what I want' posturing. Get out of my office."

Angelus doubled a moment then looked at her. "We'll just leave out the posturing then." He turned her and slammed her face down on the desk. Before she could react, he ripped her skirt off her exposing her ass. He made short work of her thong. He was so evil and he was taking what he wanted.

Her face hit the desk hard enough to split her lip. There was no way she was going to allow this to happen, not to her. She was Lilah Morgan, shining star of Wolfram and Hart. She was not some random girl off the street or someone who was so emotionally attached to Angel, she wouldn’t hurt him. She struggled to try to free herself from him, wiggling on her desk like a fish. She kicked him hard with her heel. When he stumbled back from the force of it, she was off the desk. She ran, tripping once, as she tried to make it to the door. She’d let security deal with him.

Stumbling back, Angelus wasn't put off but for a second. He leaped over the desk and was on her before she reached the door. "Wolfram & Hart wanted me, babe, now they got me," he growled out. He grabbed her by the back of the hair to pull her up and rammed her head into the doorframe. "I'll have you, bitch, alive or dead, doesn't matter to me. Or both."

Her head snapped back as he grabbed it before it was slammed back into the doorframe. This time it was enough to break her nose. Her eyes watered as her nose started to bleed, the blood slipping down over her lips. She was a little disorientated now as she felt him start to pull her back.

"Is this how you saw our first night together," he said, dragging her back to the desk. He slammed her down on it, bent over with her ass in the air. He grabbed the fountain pen out of the holder on her desk. He laid her hand out, palm down on the desk. He rammed the pen through her hand and through the top of the desk, pinning her hand to it.

The edge of desk bit into her stomach as he slammed her against her desk. She held back against crying out. But when he pinned her hand to the desk with her fountain pen, she had to scream out in pain. She was more upset at the fact that he had put the pen through her merger, her blood staining the paperwork than she was of the physical pain. Pain faded but failure lasted forever.

"Now then," he said with a rather ominous tone. She could hear the sound of the metal clink of a belt buckle then that of a zipper. "Let me show you what you've been dreaming about." He rammed his cock into her asshole hard and laughed while he did.

She was able to hold back that scream. She squeezed her eyes shut against the pain of the invasion. She almost wished that she were dead for this. Then, it wouldn't hurt so much. Wolfram and Hart would bring her back, all in her contract. Her other hand grabbed the edge of the desk to keep her body from flying too far forward with each of his thrusts against her. That would only make the fountain pen dig even further into her hand.

Angelus rammed her hard and with each thrust he cut her back with a blade he had pulled from his coat. He wanted to mark her, to make her bleed, and make her suffer. "How do you like me now?"

She heard the tearing of the fabric of her blouse first before she felt the cool metal slicing through her skin. Then came the wetness as the blood seeped up and pearled along the cuts. She shut her eyes tighter against the assault. If she could just escape to a place within herself, then she wouldn't have to endure this. Children weren't the only ones that could use retreating into their own minds as a means of defense.

Angelus plunged once more into her savagely. He was going to give her the fucking to remember, or remember until he killed her. He could smell her blood in the air and it excited him further. It was partly from him cutting into her skin and partly from his brutal assault on her ass. “Feeling tight, Lilah. Never let ol’ Wes get in the backdoor?”

The last thing Lilah wanted to think about during this ordeal was Wesley. The pain was causing her see spots on the backs of her eyelids. She wanted to cry out but at the same time, she didn’t want to give him the satisfaction. The fingers of her free hand brushed something on the underside of the desk and for a flash of a moment, she had hope.

After the last cut, he leaned down and bit her hard as he got off. How lucky could she be but to be raped and abused by Angelus. Well, he could kill her. And she would receive that privilege that had been given to so many since he was released.

As she felt him start to climax, she knew he would be too distracted, too lost in the moment. She formed her hand into a fist and hit the alarm button hard. The sirens started to blaze loudly in the building as for the second time today, Wolfram and Hart started to lock down.

Hearing that, he stopped. Bitch knew how to ruin a moment. He knew what was coming. He heard the building locking down. "This isn't over, Lilah." He went for the window that the security system almost had sealed. He broke out, the high tempered glass shattered with his force like the four Orbs he had destroyed ...and he was gone into the night.

-TBC-