Archive for the ‘Complete’ Category

Getting to Know You 18   Leave a comment

Part 18

Four Months On…

“He was cured.” Giles looked up from the book he was perusing, at Buffy’s blunt statement.

“I’m sorry?” he asked, confused as he stared over at her. “Who?” Glancing back to the pages of the book with a frown, Giles wondered how this pertained to the latest demon issue they were researching. Had he missed something?

Willow, sitting across from the blonde at the library table, reacted in a completely different manner; staring with wide anxious eyes at the girl in slowly dawning dread. And sadness.

“When I killed him, Angel was cured.” Buffy turned to look at her friend. “The spell finally worked at the last minute …” Willow swallowed tightly, glanced awkwardly at the  Watcher’s darkening expression then looked down at the table.

“I was about to take him out, and, um… something went through him… and then he was Angel again. He-he didn’t remember anything he’d done.” He just held me, “she explained raggedly. “But… i-it was… it was too late. Affalfa was already starting it’s whole sucking into Hell thing, and I, I had to do it to stop it. So I, I told him that I loved him… and I kissed him… and then I killed him.” Buffy’s eyes glossed with unshed tears and looked down at her hands for long moment, her slight frame trembling.

Stunned silence pervaded the room, no one knowing quite what to say.

Rupert Giles was eternally grateful that he hadn’t confronted his Slayer when being made aware of the spell casting. Was she aware that the first attempt failed? He doubted she even knew of the second attempt. how could she have? Willow had been in hospital at the time of Buffy’s fight with Angelus.

“I’m so sorry.” Willow finally broke the dreadful quiet that ascended, her voice thick with sympathy.

Taking a deep breath and attempting to shake off the almost debilitating grip of pain, Buffy husked “It’s okay,” and gave a small tight smile. “I’ve been holding on to that moment for so long. Felt good to get it out.” The smile thinned a little as she rose to her feet and glanced briefly towards Giles before grabbing the stake she’d earlier tossed onto the table and turned towards the exit.

“I’ll, uh, see you guys later.” With a half hearted wave of her hand, she walked out of the library, her eyes fixed to the floor in front of her.

Willow watched her friend leave, the sadness she felt almost making her want to cry at the injustice of it all. The heavy scrape of a chair turned her attention towards the sound.  Obviously, she’d known Giles hadn’t ratted her out to Buffy re: her indiscretion. Hello? still in one piece.

But it must have been so hard for him to stay schtum considering how put out he’d been when she’d confessed. Especially since it had, after all, worked. If Acathla hadn’t been ‘activated’, Angel would still be here. And after the reaming out given by Cordelia; the  disappointment seen in the older man’s face, she was kinda relieved it HAD been too late.

She waited until he’d closed his book shut, picked it up and turned away before speaking. “Should we, um, tell the others? Xander, Oz?”

Giles’ hand paused on the door handle of his office;  lips pursing thoughtfully before replying.

“Did they know about the spell?” he asked, glancing over his shoulder. At Willow’s hesitant nod he sighed wearily. Everyone but me, it seemed.  And a certain brunette.  “As long as they are discreet, then I see no reason why not – but” he added as the redhead nodded briefly. “I  see no reason to divulge this to Cordelia – no need to reopen old wounds.”

Except for her occasional need for books from the Library for project purposes, Giles had rarely seen the girl the last couple of months. Only once had he attempted to engage with more than a “what book do you need?” and had received an irritated glare for his trouble.

Willow concurred a little too eagerly. “Oh, sure! I mean, it’s not as if he’ll be, you know – why remind her of it?” and my faux pas. Flushing a little at the memory. She hadn’t even connected eyes with Cordelia since that embarrassing afternoon.

“Quite.” So much left unsaid in that one word.

The flush quickly spread down her throat.

***

Twisting the silver ring on her finger, Buffy glanced around now wondering why she  was even here.

The large room was thick with dust; motes floating in the odd spear of sunlight that penetrated the darkness.  The place looked like it had been abandoned for decades. No one had lived in it for even longer than she’d arrived in Sunnydale. What had she expected? A few nik naks lying around, left behind by the last occupants?

She sighed when her roaming eyes stopped to rest on heavy chains attached to the wall next to the cavernous fireplace. Check.

It was time to move on. Turn the page and begin a new Chapter of her life.  A small sob left her as she finally pulled the claddagh ring from her finger and crouched to place it in the centre of the room.

Ashes to ashes, Dust to dust...

Straightening up, one last look around and then the Slayer turned and walked away.

********

A Month Later...

A bright beam of light illuminated the Claddagh ring on the floor of the room, causing it to sparkle so prettily.

The beam glowed with more and more intensity until the ring began to vibrate, clinking madly against the marble. Suddenly the room was awash with a blindingly bright white light emanating from a dimensional portal opening above the ring.

A large body fell through and hit the stone floor hard. The light faded as the portal closed, and a naked man was left lying there. He was unsteady as he tried to get up, but was too weak to do more than lift his face. His breathing was shallow and laboured, and he shivered violently as he looked up hazily at the room around him…

TBC

nb: I had real problems with the last couple of Chapters posted. It had been so long since I’d first written the fic (or watched the reruns) that I bloody well forgot Giles was supposed to be ignorant of the Soul Ritual in this fic. … aaagh! Anyhoo, please forgive the editing and shakiness that’s hit the flow.

Posted July 21, 2018 by califi in Complete

Reboot? Nooooo!   Leave a comment

*

So just read on Twitter that good ol’ Joss Whedon is considering a ‘reboot‘ of BtVS!

The Joss whedon, who sliced open, GUTTED  and eventually killed off the character of Cordelia post S3 (not to mention her character slaying in Pylea) and instead ramped up the appeal of Fred in her place. Yesss, I’m still pretty pi**ed off with that.

Anyhoo, back to the point of this post:

Does this mean, if he goes ahead with it, that my Site will be defunct? *cries*

I’m feeling pretty GUTTED! It is all in the character descriptions. They will no longer make sense to those who watch the rebooted show.

What do the visitors of this Site think about it? (interested in finding out).

Back to Bloggy Bit

Posted July 21, 2018 by califi in Complete

Domination 8   Leave a comment

Part 8

Gunn and Wesley arrived at the Hyperion at the same time. It was mid-afternoon, and both were ready to get down to business. But walking into the lobby, they found everyone watching television.

“What’s going on?” Wesley asked. “Where are Lilith and Reynolds?”

“Good question,” Angel answered.

“They’re gone,” Lorne answered. “Angelcakes went to check on them and both were missing.”

“What?” Gunn asked incredulously. “After all that work, they just disappear like a fart in the wind?”

“It gets better,” Cordelia said and pointed to the TV. The room fell silent as they watched the CNN news report.

“The investigation into Senator John Martin’s death seems to be coming to a conclusion. New details suggest that the Senator committed suicide with a large caliber weapon. Members of both political parties are stunned by the revelation that a man respected by Democrats and Republicans alike could do such an act. Spokespeople for the Democratic Party are expected to make an announcement shortly regarding these new finding.

“In related news, the sister of Senator John Martin, Rebecca, was found dead in her home earlier this morning. Rebecca Martin apparently killed herself by hanging during the night. Police report that a suicide note was found, and in it, Rebecca commented on her depression following the death of her beloved brother. 

“This is Angela Kelly reporting for CNN. Stay tuned for further developments on this story.”

“So that’s it?” Fred asked. “It just ends like this?”

“Apparently,” Angel said as he flipped off the television. “I doubt Lilith escaped on her own. The PTB’s probably found her and took her. Reynolds is probably the one we can thank for that.”

“And since Lilith is gone, there’s no threat of future murders,” Cordelia reasoned.

“But that’s bullshit!” Gunn yelled. “After all that work, after all that we discovered, that’s bullshit! For @#%$’s sake, we found out the people we work for are running their own Final Solution type experiments! It can’t end here!”

But not even Gunn believed that. The group sat in silence. Nothing for them would ever be the same again.

***********

Reynolds was glad to be home. It had been many months since he had left his Seattle home to travel to LA. But now that whole sordid mess was behind him. Tossing the copy of ‘Jane Eyre’ onto his kitchen counter, he went into the hall intent on heading up to bed.

But from his study, he heard the sounds of movement. Bypassing the stairs, he continued down the hall towards the room from which he heard noise. Throwing open the door, he found a man looking through his desk drawers.

“Who are you and what the hell are you doing here?” Reynolds yelled.

“Mr. Reynolds,” the man greeted. “Never figured you to be the type to betray the Powers.” The man showed no fear as Reynolds approached, despite the fact that he was much smaller. “You should know, the Powers do not tolerate traitors.”

“I didn’t betray the Powers,” Reynolds defended.

The man clearly didn’t believe him. “You knew the location of subject JFB5183 and you didn’t alert the authorities until much later. For your insubordination, the Powers have decided you must be punished.”

Reynolds never saw the second man from behind him. He barely recognized the soft thump of a silenced Beretta before his brains were splattered all over his desk.

The second man tossed the unmarked weapon aside. The first man grabbed a few files from the desk and led the way out. Several hours later the police received a call about a disturbance at the house of Peter Reynolds.

************

The LA County Morgue was surprisingly quiet. A young blonde woman walked briskly through the deserted halls to the Records Room. Pulling a small flashlight from her pocket, she searched the cabinets for recent files. Finding the two she was looking for, she pulled them out and tucked them into the back of her pants.

From another coat pocket she pulled a small bottle of accelerant. Dousing the remaining records with the fluid, she lit a match and ignited the cabinets.

It didn’t take long for the files to begin burning furiously. However, thanks to a set of pliers, nobody realized that there was a fire downstairs. Days later it was discovered that wire connecting to the fire alarms had been severed. Foul play was initially suspected, but blame quickly fell to the company that installed the system.

No one ever missed the fact that John and Rebecca Martin’s files were never recovered from the ashes.

************

The anesthetic wasn’t nearly as affective as Lilith would have liked. She could still see the bright lights overhead. She could still feel the cool metal table pressing against her back. She could still feel what They were doing to her.

Even in her drug-induced haze, she could hear the wails of a child. Her child. She struggled to get up. She may be a monster, but that was HER baby. A strong pair of hands forced her shoulders back to the mattress. She was too weak. Too weak to save her child.

The doctor finished cleaning off the bloody child and handed it to a nurse. “Take him to Nursery Three,” he commanded. The nurse took the child and obeyed the order. Turning to an orderly, the doctor ordered him closer.

“Give subject JFB5183 a potassium shot and take her down to Incineration. We have no further use for her.”

The orderly nodded and waved a friend over to help him. Together they wheeled the gurney to the elevator down to SubLevel-27. When they came back ten minutes later, they were hauling an empty gurney.

*************

Nursery Three was silent. Turning the baby over to an attendant, the nurse signed some papers before turning to leave. But then, the silence was broken. One baby’s moanful wail awoke the other four-dozen babies housed in the nursery.

“@#%$ kids,” the nurse muttered before leaving. It was the job of the four attendants working this section to silence the little brats.

Walking down the hallway, her heels clicking on the tile, the nurse passes doors marked Nursery One and Two. The sounds of 50 toddlers laughing and crying could be heard come from Two. The sounds of martial arts training could be heard in One, where the 50 teenagers were practicing fighting skills.

F-2 was proving to be a success.

End.

Liam

Posted July 19, 2018 by califi in Complete

Domination 7   Leave a comment

Part 7

“Okay, now you guys know what I am, right?”

The soldiers paid no attention to the vampire and began to slowly advance on them. Weapons trained, they were fully prepared to take both demons out.

“Guess not,” Angel muttered. “Well, you’re about to get a lesson.”

Before any of the men realized what happened, Angel used a burst of vampire speed to grab a fragmentation grenade from a soldier and toss it into the open furnace. The blast gave Angel all the time he needed.

Quickly beating down the opposition, he beckoned for Lilith to follow him. The demon was hesitant, unsure if she should trust the vampire. But as the flames from the furnace began to catch on the wooden support beams, the decision was made. Grabbing the vampire’s outstretched hand, she allowed him to lead her past the flames.

At the top of the stairs, Angel savagely uppercut a young soldier stupid enough to get in his way. From there they met no resistance, and they were able to easily make their escape.

Angel made sure the demon followed as he led the way to his friends. Upon reaching them, he didn’t expect the reaming he got from Cordelia.

“You stupid @#%$ vampire, you could have been killed! You have a son to think about, you stupid dorkhead!” When she finally noticed his companion she asked, “Is this her?”

“Yeah, but do you think we could discuss this when we get the hell out of here?” Cordelia would have ignored the suggestion had Wesley not interfered and led the way back to the cars. Angel took a last look at the battlefield below and hoped the decision he made was the right one.

*****************

The AI gang was trying to keep busy as Wesley interrogated the demon in his office. Gunn sat next to Fred playing on his Gameboy, while she looked at news websites. Cordelia had finally tired of cursing Angel for his stupidity and sat down to read the newest issue of Cosmo.

After listening to Cordelia’s justified ass chewing, Angel decided to stand guard by Wesley’s door in case of trouble. His vampire hearing allowed him to catch snatches of conversation, but not enough to keep up.

Several minutes later Wesley exited his office. The look on his face told the entire story. “She won’t say much of anything,” the Watcher said. “The only thing significant she said was ‘I won’t go back to that place’. She repeated it several times.”

“She said that to me at the house,” Angel offered.

“Whatever her home world is, it would appear she no longer wants a part of it.”

“Maybe it’s not her home world she’s afraid of,” Angel suggested. The vampire turned to Reynolds who sat on the couch reading one of the vampire’s novels. “You. You work for the Powers. I bet you can tell us where she was at.”

Reynolds continued to read ‘Jane Eyre’ as the vampire stalked towards him. He could tell them, but the question was if it would affect their future work for the Powers. He may have helped Martin in his time of need, but now he was dead, and Reynolds never lost his allegiance to the Powers.

“I’m waiting,” the vampire said.

“Fine,” Reynolds said. “What the hell. For the past few years, Lilith has been a Powers prisoner of war in the dimension of Elysia. Lilith’s race had a reputation for being badasses and terrorized the other clans on her planet. A coalition was formed and Lilith’s clan was defeated.

“But before the coalition could annihilate Lilith’s clan, the Powers stepped in. You see, the Powers have quite a few enemies, and they know a good opportunity when they see it. They captured several members of the defeated clan and took them to Elysia where experiments were performed.”

“What kind of experiments?” Wesley asked.

“The Powers wanted a new weapon to battle a race of demons in the Othrys dimension. They wanted to use their new prisoners, Menglers they call themselves, as the soldiers in the war. But Menglers were too hard to control.”

“So what did they do?” Cordelia asked, even though she wasn’t sure she wanted to know.

“The Powers began cross-breeding Menglers with a souled entity.”

“Humans,” Angel said disgusted.

“Humans,” Reynolds agreed. “They figured a creature with a soul would be easier to control. But the F-1 generation didn’t met expectations. Many were still violent. So work began on F-2.”

“Lilith’s an F-1,” Wesley realized. “Once you saw her generation failed it was decided to cross-breed again. That makes the child three-fourths human.”

“The Powers anticipate a much higher success rate with this generation, but still, plans for F-3 are ready to be implemented once the F-2 generation reaches maturity.”

“Son of a bitch!” Cordelia yelled. “You mean this baby is nothing but a guinea pig for the Powers?” Cordelia didn’t like that idea at all.

“But that still doesn’t explain why she’s here,” Angel brought them back to focus.

“How she escaped isn’t known for certain, but it’s believed she seduced a guard and used the advantage to make it to the Prison Jumpstation.”

“Jumpstation?”

“A room most PTB facilities have. From there authorized personnel can jump between dimensions,” Reynolds explained.

“So Lilith discovered she was pregnant and decided to make her escape to a dimension where she could more easily blend in,” Wesley hypothesized.

“Good theory, but no,” Reynolds said. “Lilith wasn’t pregnant when she jumped. The PTB’s had her in holding until the doctors were ready to experiment on her group.”

“So that means that Martin is the father,” Angel said.

“Probably,” Reynolds agreed. Off the questioning glances he continued. “There have been isolated instances of guards impregnating the female subjects. So when I say she wasn’t pregnant when she jumped, I mean the PTB’s didn’t impregnate her.”

The group was silent for several moments. They couldn’t believe these were the people that they worked for. “Why didn’t you tell us this earlier?” Angel asked.

“I didn’t think I needed to. I expected you to do the usual seek and destroy, not take the girl in like a stray puppy. The PTB’s would be pissed if they knew you know.”

“So,” Wesley asked. “How long before Lilith gives birth?”

“Gestation for the F-2’s seems to be about two months. Considering how long the murders have gone on, I’d say you got a month before she delivers. Projections indicate the offspring reach maturity in about three years.”

“This is @#%$ great,” Cordelia said. “So now we work for a bunch of people who took a page from Hitler’s playbook.”

“She’s right,” Wesley said. “It’s the Final Solution or Project 731. This is blatant manipulation on the part of the Powers. We’re working for beings no better than the Nazis.”

“But does any of that give us a clue as what to do?” Gunn asked.

“Not really,” Angel said. “Its just tells us the people we work for are sick fucks. But in the meantime, I think we should probably keep her here until we do decide a course of action.”

Wesley agreed to that, and he and Gunn escorted the demon to a bedroom upstairs. Confident that she wouldn’t be going anywhere, the two men came back downstairs. The group decided to disperse for some rest, all wanting some sleep before any major decisions were made.

Once alone, Reynolds picked up the copy of ‘Jane Eyre’ and finished the chapter he was on. Marking the page he was on, Reynolds tossed the book aside and began to head up to the room he had been given. But before reaching the stairs he stopped. As if coming to a conclusion, he headed back to the offices and picked up a phone.

Deciding it was the best way to cover his ass, he dialed a number from memory. After three rings a voice picked up. “Alvin? It’s Peter Reynolds. Yeah, can you do something for me? I need you to send some people over to the Hyperion Hotel here in LA. Yeah, I think the people inside are harboring our fugitive. That’s right, JFB5183. Send a recon team for a silent op. Thanks.”

Reynolds hung up the phone pondering his action. Basically, since Martin was no more, he had no reason to play against the Powers. Maybe by doing this, they might not dig too deep in his recent indiscretions. Reynolds smiled. He might be able to keep his head.

Walking back into the lobby, he grabbed the first edition copy of Austen’s novel. It was payment for making him stay in a shitty room, Reynolds decided. Tucking the book into his pocket, Reynolds made his way out into the streets, the rising sun making its appearance.

Part Eight

Posted July 19, 2018 by califi in Complete

Domination 6   Leave a comment

Part 6

There are people who say that in life there is simply black and white. Good and evil. Right and wrong.

You know what? That’s bullshit.

There are many gray areas in life. Oftentimes, I like to think that I fall into this category. I can’t deny the fact that for nearly 150 years I was as ruthless and brutal a killer as ever walked the Earth. There was no humanity inside me; I was the essence of evil. But what of me now?

I’ll never claim that my having a soul makes me a good and righteous man. I know better than anyone that I’m still capable of some heinous and vile acts. But without the soul, I wouldn’t care. I wouldn’t do the things that I do.

How many are alive because of the things I’ve done in the past few years? I am a being capable of extraordinary evil, but instead I’ve made the conscious decision to save lives instead. Doesn’t that make me a gray?

The same philosophy can be applied to a situation. I don’t think that anyone would disagree with the suggestion that Lilith is evil. Regardless of the fact that she kills to survive, she is still evil. I know that from personal experience.

But there is a life inside her. An entity that has yet to be corrupted by the world. A being that if given a choice could choose the path of righteousness. How in any good conscience could I, or anyone else be asked to sacrifice this soul to destroy the malevolent one which houses it?

This is a gray area. The child isn’t guilty of anything. It’s merely caught in a situation it has no control over. But the question still remains: how do you resolve the situation?

I have no doubt that Wolfram and Hart would destroy both if given the opportunity. But maybe by beating them to the punch we can save at least one innocent soul. As I look at Cordelia, I can tell this is the option she prefers. She wants this child to live.

I know that she sees this child as Connor. Cordy risked her life by trying to protect Darla so she could give birth. I know she’ll try to do the same for Lilith. And so will I.

************
“I thought we agreed the next time we had to do this we’d check the last place first.” Wesley just ignored Gunn’s comment, while Angel slapped him in the back of the head. “What?” Gunn asked.

They had checked the first six possible locations and had turned up empty. Deciding to try the seventh local together, the party discovered they were a little late.

“I’m sorry,” Cordelia said, “but is that a Hummer with a machine gun?” The guys all looked to where Cordelia was pointing. Sure enough, it was a Hummer with a machine gun.

“Damn,” Gunn said. “I gotta get me one of those.”

“It looks like they’ve laid siege to the house,” Wesley said. It appeared the Watcher was right. From what Angel’s demon senses could detect, there were at least two-dozen fully armed riflemen waiting to storm the house.

“This could be really bad,” Angel said.

“What do we do?” Cordelia asked. “We can’t let them just go in and kill the baby.”

“We also can’t take on two army platoons loaded with automatic weapons,” Wesley calmly replied. “I think we’ll have to wait and see what happens.”

A small explosion at the front door quickly ended the debate. Three troopers were sent flying when they tried to break down it down. Another explosion in back told of the same story happening at the back door.

“Somehow, it seems as if Lilith isn’t completely defenseless,” Angel pointed out. Medics quickly approached the fallen men and pulled them to the woods surrounding the house. The man apparently in charge began barking orders to the troops now in disarray.

“Perhaps we should get closer,” Wesley suggested. The four began to sneak downhill towards the edge of the trees. Another team stormed the house from the front, but soon, their screams were heard resonating through the forest.

“Uh, now we were going to go in there?” Gunn questioned. “I’m sorry, but I’m not looking to walk into a massacre.”

“What do you think, Angel?” Cordelia asked. Everyone looked when he didn’t answer. Angel wasn’t to be found.

****************
Angel quietly slipped away from the others and approached the house from in back. With an easy jump, Angel was on the balcony outside an upstairs window. A swift kick shattered the door and Angel was granted access.

The vampire paused a moment to tune his sense to the surroundings. He felt the weakened pulses of the second assault team that stormed the front door. He could also smell a distinct scent. It was one he had smelled before. Once at ‘The Palace’, the other time at Martin’s mansion.

“Lilith?” Angel called. “I know you’re here.” Angel stepped into the hallway. Trying to determine which direction the scent was freshest, he allowed his nose to lead him downstairs. At the bottom, he saw the mangled bodies of the assault team. One man was missing a leg, another appeared to have a large piece of shrapnel embedded in his head.

“Lilith?” Angel called once more. “I want to help you. I want to help your baby.” Cautiously, Angel stepped past the fallen soldiers, ignoring the survivors’ pleas for help. He couldn’t stop. He had to find her. Angel noticed and managed to avoid stepping over a tripwire running along the entrance to the kitchen. His eyes finally settled on a door that led to the cellar. Pushing it open slowly, he allowed his eyes to adjust to the dark below.

“Lilith?” Against all better judgment, Angel stepped down onto the first step. Only his vampire reflexes prevented his decapitation by an axe swinging from above. Taking in several unneeded breaths, and thanking a God that damned him, the vampire collected himself and crept downstairs.

“Hold it there,” a voice called as he reached bottom. Angel turned to find Lilith aiming a very large pump action shotgun at him.

“I don’t know what you plan to do with that, but I guarantee it won’t work,” Angel said pointing to the gun.

Lilith stepped closer, sniffing the air as she approached. “You’re a vampire,” she said flatly. Angel nodded. “You have a soul. Who do you work for?”

“The Powers That Be,” Angel told her.

Lilith’s eyes widened. “I’m not going back to that place,” she said. The demon pumped a shell into the chamber and fully prepared to fire.

“Whoa,” Angel said. He put his hands up to show no harm. “I don’t have any idea what you’re talking about. I’m here to help you and the baby. And what do you mean go back? Go back where?”

A stampede of footsteps stopped any further questions. Within moments, a storm of commandos had the area surrounded.

“Freeze!” one commando yelled. “Put down the weapon!”

Angel groaned at the sight of the soldiers. Lilith began to slowly back away from them until her back was against the wall. She did not like this at all. And she damn sure wasn’t going back.

Part Seven

Posted July 19, 2018 by califi in Complete

Domination 5   Leave a comment

Part 5

“We don’t have any solid information on where Lilith might have ran,” Wesley told the gang. “And with our limited resources, I doubt we’ll be able to glean much information either.”

“Well, there is one way,” Angel said with a glance to Cordelia. His Seer knew exactly what Angel meant, and she liked the idea.

“We send someone after her with greater resources,” she told Wesley. Walking over to her desk, she found the notebook with the names of all the clients of ‘The Palace’. “John Martin wasn’t the only familiar name in this book.” Flipping through the book, Cordelia found the name she wanted. “According to this book, he was also a client of Lilith’s.”

“Who?” Gunn asked impatiently.

Cordelia grinned evilly. “I’m going to Kinko’s to use a copier and a fax. Be back soon.” The lovely Seer was out the door before anymore questions were asked. All eyes then turned to the vampire sitting on the couch.

“What?” he asked defensively. “It’s the best choice right now.”

********************
Lilah certainly didn’t see this move coming, but still, it would have made her giggle if it wouldn’t ruin her cool exterior. Still, she had to give them credit. It was a great play. Lilah knew exactly how the superiors would respond to this, and evidently, so did the folks at AI.

Holding the transmission from the fax machine up, she read it once more.

Frenchman Pierre La Croix
Copperfield David Lynch
Apollo Gavin Park
Lancelot Paul Cransfield

Never in a thousand years would Lilah thought that Gavin Park would be into the whole dominatrix things. Perusing the book before she sent it to AI, she had been shocked as hell to find his name inside.

She almost felt sorry for what would happen to him. The superiors would bring the hammer down on his ass. Then they would send a team to locate the murderer of the Senator. What they would do to her, Lilah didn’t know.

It wasn’t a secret around Wolfram and Hart that Senator John Martin didn’t like some of the people in charge. Lilah didn’t know the details, but apparently there was a feud between Martin and the firm. That was part of the reason why she sent Angel the book. It could be used to destroy Martin. And that would be good for her once it was found she was responsible for it.

Right on cue, other lawyers began to come out of their offices with copies of the fax. Only moments later, security burst through the main doors and headed straight for the office of Gavin Park. Lilah leaned back on her secretary’s desk and watched the scene with interest.

A pair of burly guards flanked Gavin as they exited his office. A scared Park looked desperately around, trying to understand what was happening. Locking eyes with Lilah, he pleaded for help. Lilah merely smiled and waved at the man being taken for ‘interrogation’.

Once the guards escorted Gavin out, the rest of the lawyers looked at each other stunned. “Who wants a drink?” Lilah asked cheerily, causing many to look at her strangely. “I need a cigarette, too,” Lilah muttered to herself. “That was almost better than sex.”

*******************
“So I guess the plan now is just to keep tabs on Wolfram and Hart?” Gunna asked as he popped the tab on a Coke. The gang had assembled in the kitchen eating Chinese. Even Angel was eating egg rolls, although he was the only one dipping them in pig’s blood.

Reynolds dropped his chopsticks after watching the vampire for a moment. He noticed no one else paid attention to the Champion’s strange eating habits. Hell, the Seer warmed the blood for him.

“It’s a smart move,” Reynolds admitted. “I know Wolfram and Hart. They’ll want to find Lilith just to make sure this fellow didn’t leak any information he wasn’t supposed to.”

“Quite right,” Wesley said. “So for the time being, it’s reconnaissance work. We just observe while Wolfram and Hart does the work for us.” The rest of the gang agreed to the action. Cordelia then excused herself and took Connor upstairs. Angel tossed aside an egg roll and followed his Seer.

The vampire found her singing to Connor in his bedroom. Angel once again found himself envying Lorne for his ability to read auras. He would love to know what Cordelia was thinking. Guess he’d have to do it the old fashioned way.

“Are you okay?”

Cordelia didn’t jump at Angel’s appearance. She had long since become accustomed to his popping out of nowhere. “I’m fine,” she told the vampire. “Just tired of this case is all.”

“I know,” Angel said. He walked forward and placed a hand on his Seer’s shoulder. “I know this is frustrating, that you think the visions haven’t helped us.”

“That’s because they haven’t Angel,” she said. Turning to face the vampire, he could see the frustration marring her lovely face. “All the breaks we’ve gotten are because of informants.” Cordelia sighed and shook her head. “I feel I haven’t helped on this case, that you don’t really need me.”

“I always need you,” Angel told her. “In more ways than you realize,” he admitted. “And just because the visions haven’t solved this thing, that doesn’t mean you haven’t helped. You’re intelligent, level headed, and oftentimes the sole voice of logic around this joint.” He was glad to see her laugh at that last point.

“Who’d a thought that a few years ago? Me being the voice of logic?”

“Well you changed,” Angel said. “For the better. I don’t know if I’ve ever told you, but I like the woman you’ve become.” Cordelia actually blushed. Angel didn’t know if he’d ever made her blush before.

“We will find Lilith,” he said. “We will stop her.”

“But what if what Wesley said is true? What if Lilith really is pregnant? I know that Lilith is evil, but the child inside her is probably part human. We don’t know what it would be like. It could have a soul.”

Angel could see the confusion and desperation in her eyes. They were the same emotions in her voice. They were also the same emotions he was feeling about the situation. “I don’t know,” Angel admitted. “But we will figure something out. We always do, right?” Cordelia gave a small smile and nod. “C’mon, lets put Connor down and go back downstairs. There’s probably work to do.”

Cordelia reluctantly set the child down in the crib. She followed Angel downstairs to start working once more.

*********************
The team leader slung his M-16 over his shoulder as he entered the hotel room formerly occupied by Lilith. Scanning the room, he noticed that the room didn’t seem very lived in.

“Report Sergeant,” he barked at the other man in the room.

The sergeant snapped to and saluted. “She’s gone sir,” he told his commander. “According to hotel management, she only had the room for a day and a night. Cleaning hadn’t been here yet when we arrived.”

“Anything interesting?”

“No sir. The only trash found was a couple soda cans and some takeout from a local deli. There is no evidence that she fed while here.”

The leader nodded. The orders came down less than six hours ago. The target was to be located and apprehended for questioning. And it was to be found ASAP. “Alright, gather whatever evidence there is and ship it back to base. We need to saddle up and get going. We’re on the clock.”

The sergeant saluted and grabbed a box. The leader took a last look around the room before following the soldier out of the hotel.

******************
“Did Martin own any other properties that Lilith would have known about?” Cordelia wondered.

“I don’t think so. They were friendly, but I don’t know why he would have told her about any of that,” Reynolds answered.

Cordelia gave the man a funny look. “Guys say weird things when they’re getting some action.” Gunn, Wes, and Angel stopped in their tracks at that comment.

“Do they ever,” Fred agreed. Even Cordelia turned to stare at her. “Or so I’m told,” Fred stuttered.

“Well,” Wes started, wanting very much to change the conversation. “Is there any way we could find property records?”

“Sure,” Fred said. Her cheeks were still very much red. “That should only take a half hour for me to find here.” Fred fired up her laptop to begin the search.

“Yeah, but wouldn’t Wolfram and Hart already think of that?” Gunn asked.

“Maybe, but it’s still worth the effort,” Cordelia said. The Seer tried to stifle a grin as Angel snuck up behind Gunn.

“Hey Gunn,” Angel said. The black man jumped a foot in the air.

“Damn, man. Don’t do that. Need to get your undead ass some bells or something.” Gunn ignored the vampire’s grin and continued clutching at his heart.

“What’d you find?” Cordelia asked him.

“Wolfram and Hart’s goons hit a hotel on the outskirts of town. It was evidently clean, no evidence of a kill.”

The gang took solace in that. Maybe they would find her before she fed again.

*******************
So this was home. Lilith dropped her bag unceremoniously on the floor by the door. It was certainly better than the hellhole she had stayed at earlier. Walking into the living room and fingering the drapes, she decided the place was acceptable. For a while at least.

Lilith tossed a picture of Janice and Christopher into the fireplace and went into the kitchen. Liking the large glass windows, she decided the place was fairly nice. It was certainly better than her home back in her own dimension.

********************
“I found a listing of seven properties,” Fred told the gang. “Some where owned by Martin’s wife and her family. Others were owned by him.”

Grabbing the list, Wesley immediately went into leader mode. “Fine. We’ll go in teams. Gunn can come with me. Angel and Cordelia can handle themselves, right?” The vampire and Seer nodded in agreement. The watcher divided up the properties. “Lorne, you can stay with Reynolds and Connor?”

“Sure sweetie,” the green demon answered.

“Then let’s go.” The four grabbed their favorite weapons from the closet and prepared to begin narrowing down the list.

********************
A private entered the control room and handed a folder to the major in charge. The list consisted of several properties that were owned by the Martin family.

“I want recon teams to check these out,” Major Cooper told the soldier. “Put Jorgensen’s and Harper’s people on it.” The private quickly snapped a salute and trotted off to carry out the order.

Part Six

Posted July 19, 2018 by califi in Complete

Domination 4   Leave a comment

Part 4

“The pituitary gland,” Wesley said with realization. “She needs it to survive.”

Reynolds nodded. “For some reason Lilith’s species is unable to produce several of the hormones it needs to survive. In her home dimension, she could simply take in what she needed from the food she would naturally eat. But in this world…”

“So she uses humans as a vitamin supplement,” Cordelia finished.

“Basically,” Reynolds answered.

Cordelia shook her head in disbelief. “In her own world, how often would she need to feed?”

“Every two weeks maybe.”

“She’s feeding much more often here,” she told Angel. “The murders are happening about every five days.”

“The ones you know about anyway,” Reynolds supplied. At the AI gang’s looks he continued. “Five victims over approximately a twenty-five day span, right?” Angel confirmed this. “She’s been here longer than that.”

“How long?” Angel demanded.

“Couple months,” Reynolds shrugged.

“I don’t believe this,” Cordy said. “This makes no sense.”

“Then I’m wondering whether this information will help or hinder your understanding. Wanna guess who runs ‘The Palace’?”

*****************
Lilith was bored and hungry. And that was not a good thing. She was tempted to ask Rebecca if she could take an appointment tonight. That would satisfy both needs.

Stretching elegantly on the Senator’s bed, she wondered where the hell John was. If he were here, then at least she wouldn’t be bored. He was probably still off worrying about that Reynolds dick. A look of disgust passed over the pretty brunette’s features. She didn’t like Reynolds. But even she had to agree with John that he was a necessary person to have around.

But she still didn’t like it. Because of Reynolds she wasn’t having fun now. Propping herself up on one elbow, Lilith wondered if John would miss the stupid looking bodyguard if she were to invite him in.

A sharp pain in her abdomen interrupted the demon’s moping. “Fuck!” she shouted. Even though a pleasant surprise, this was still a surprise nonetheless. This latest development might make her change her plans.

Stomach growling, the demon slipped on a robe and went of in search of food.

***************
“Excuse me?” Gunn said. “But the sister of a U.S. Senator runs a dominatrix shop that currently employs a serial killing demon?” Gunn shook his head. “This city is fucked up.” No one disagreed.

“It’s perfect for her. She gets to do her two favorite things. Feed and torture. But as I was saying before you so kindly interrupted me,” he glared at Gunn. “Rebecca hired her mainly because she thought John would like her. Only after she killed for the first time did they learn about her nature as a demon. But by then, John had become attached to her, so he decided he wanted to protect her and called me in.

“My job originally was to block the visions the PTB’s would send to their Seer’s. I only partially succeeded. The vision’s were being delayed a few days.” Reynolds laughed sarcastically. “I thought that would be enough.”

“So why would you help Martin cover this up?” Angel asked. “If the Powers discover what you’ve been doing, it’ll be your ass on a platter.”

“I know,” Reynolds sighed. “Believe me. I didn’t want to get involved with any of this. For trying to take the child I’m sorry.” He directed this last part to Cordelia, who was still shooting daggers at him. “But I owed him a favor. He helped me out a long time ago when he was Lieutenant Governor.” Reynolds thought a moment before reaching a conclusion. “I’ll help you bypass the security in Martin’s mansion if you want to go after her.”

The AI gang was surprised at the offer. Before Cordelia could decapitate the man who was about to kidnap her boy, Angel spoke. “Fine. But if I have any suspicion that you are lying to us, well, I saw many other invoices at ‘The Palace’.” Angel’s tone left little doubt what he meant.

Reynolds looked at the vampire with believing eyes. “Okay,” he agreed.

****************
“Hi baby,” Lilith purred when John finally came back to the bedroom that night. He was fully intent on ignoring her and just going to bed. That was before he saw what she was wearing.

The black leather covered only the most private of places. The shiny black material contrasted beautifully with her smooth, white skin. Playing aimlessly with a whip, Lilith smiled seductively at the man. Martin forgot all else as he approached the sexy demon.

Lilith took his hand and led John to their ‘special area’. Along the wall near the bed was a pole jutting out horizontally seven feet above the floor. She placed his wrists in the manacles on the pole giving her full access to his spread-eagle body. With a teasing kiss, the demon slowly began to remove his clothing, stopping every so often to bite and lick her favorite parts.

John’s moans were easily heard in the hallway outside. Slightly annoyed, the guard pulled his Walkman from his jacket pocket and turned up the volume. He really didn’t need to hear that.

Martin was quickly lost in the attention Lilith was giving him. After experiencing the electric nipple clamps and choke collar, Lilith moved on to her favorite toy.

It didn’t take long for John’s screams of pain and ecstasy to fill the room. The cracks of her whip left angry red welts on his back. Lilith whispered confessions of love in his ear between strikes. She wiped away his tears and kissed his shoulder sweetly.

Stepping behind her lover, Lilith’s face began to slowly contort. The proboscis emerged from her mouth in a deadly arc toward the back of John’s head. Absorbed in his own sobs, he never realized what happened as the proboscis shattered his skull.

*****************
The routes Reynolds told to approach the mansion from proved to be effective. Working in two pairs, the AI gang was quickly able to knock out any guards that tried to put up opposition.

As Angel and Cordelia neared a side door, his demon senses became confused. Noting his expression Cordy asked what was wrong. Instead of answering, Angel just simply snapped the lock to the door. Cautiously he stuck his hand across the threshold.

“No force field,” he told his Seer.

“Shit,” Cordy moaned. Angel quickly led them to the main staircase where they met Wes and Gunn.

“Angel, how…?” Wes started. Suddenly it dawned on him. It didn’t take long to remember from Reynolds description to find Martin’s bedroom. Inside, they found the US Senator hanging limply from manacles attached to a pole above. Blood poured from a wound in the back of his head.

“It’s a fresh kill,” Angel said. “I can smell the blood’s warmth.” Wes was the only one to come near the body, but still he didn’t touch it.

“So what now?” Gunn asked.

“We get out before the police show up. Then we find Lilith,” Angel said simply.

The AI gang had just driven out of site when the first police cars arrived on the scene.

*****************
Lilith watched the television with vague interest. She didn’t like this place. After several months of living in luxury, it was a tough adjustment to living in a shitty motel. Taking a sip of her soda, she remembered that the plans had changed. She would simply have to make do.

When a story about John’s death came on, Lilith fumbled for the remote and turned up the volume.

“Last night, the body of United States Senator John Christopher Martin was found in the bedroom of his mansion in the foothills of LA. Police say the cause of death has yet to be determined, but several sources would indicate foul play.

“The California Democrat easily won re-nomination in the primary held only a few months ago. Senator Martin was seeking his third term in the United States Senate. The Senator is survived only by his sister who has yet to be located. As many may remember, Senator Martin lost his wife Janice and son Christopher in a fatal car crash only months after his first election to the Senate.”

Lilith flicked the television off after that. She had no interest in that whore and the child. What did interest her was finding a safe place for the time being. She remembered John telling her of a small house he owned someplace outside Los Angeles. With a little research, Lilith thought it should be easy to find.

**************
The AI gang had set up a television in the lobby. They were all watching news reports of the Senator’s murder, all except Wesley, who was busy flipping between a medical book and a demonology tome.

“This is insane,” Cordelia said. She turned to glare at Reynolds. “I thought you said she cared about Martin. Why would she kill him?” Cordy accused.

“I don’t know,” Reynolds snapped back. “I thought she did.” It was apparent that he was just as confused as the rest of them.

“I may be able to account for Lilith’s increased killings,” Wesley said. All eyes turned to him. “The pituitary controls many vital functions. While this could be merely interpreted as bloodlust on her part, I think it’s something different. What if she’s taking in all these hormones because she’s not the only one who needs them?”

“What do you mean?” Gunn asked.

“What if she’s pregnant?”

Part Five

Posted July 19, 2018 by califi in Complete

Domination 3   Leave a comment

Part 3

Rebecca Martin ignored the secretary’s protest and entered the large office. John looked up in surprise to see his younger sister standing in his office. “John, we have a problem.”

“What?” John asked nervously.

“”My blackbook,” she said, “it was stolen.”

John felt his heart catch in his throat. “W-what?” he stuttered.

“My home was broken into. My desk was ransacked and my blackbook is gone. John,” she choked, “all the names and codenames of the companies clients are in there. Even yours.”

John Martin leaned back in shock as he absorbed the news. His worst nightmare was coming true. If the information in that book were to become public, he could kiss re-election goodbye.

“Shit, John, if this becomes public, we’ll both go to jail.”

“Don’t you think I know that?” John snapped. “Then I guess we better make sure it doesn’t go public. Besides, I got a good idea on who might have it.” John pressed the button on the intercom. “Shirley? Call Reynolds. Tell him he’s going to have to add a second contingent to his plan.”

*************
Cordelia hadn’t let go of the notebook since the mail had been delivered ten minutes ago. Finally, she thought, they got the big break. In her hands she held the Holy Grail to this case.

“Eww,” she moaned as she recognized one of the names.

“What is it?” Angel asked.

“John Martin is in here,” she said. At Angel’s confused look she went on. “SENATOR John Martin. Up for re-election this year. I was going to vote for the guy. To Hell with that, I’m going Independent now.” She ignored the look the vampire sent her way.

Shutting the book, she tossed it to Fred. “Now that we have this, we can contact people who have appointments in the near future.”

“And hopefully stop the next murder from occurring,” Wes added.

Fred’s eyes widen as she saw the number of names listed in the book. There had to be two hundred names at least in here. “I’ll start getting addresses,” she said going to the phone book.

The members of AI smiled for the first time in days. They were getting very close.

**************
Things were just going from bad to worse, Reynolds decided. He did not want to be doing this. He was a man who actually had some morals. What he was being asked to do went against all of them.

But some things couldn’t be avoided.

The question was when to do it. It would have to be when the main crew was out of the hotel, leaving only the green Pylean refugee home. Reynolds didn’t think it would take much to disable him. After that, the rest of the job should be easy.

John seemed sure that the people at AI had the notebook, and Reynolds concurred with that. After knocking out the demon, it shouldn’t take long to find the notebook. Reynolds had no problem with this. It was part two of the plan that he didn’t like.

The goal was to make the vampire chase after something more important than some demon murderer. The vampire would have to devote his energies to finding his missing son.

**************
Angel couldn’t shake off the nagging feeling he’d been having. The feeling had nothing to do with this stakeout, but it was…something else.

He’d read books and such about parenting. There had been stories where a parent would get this bad feeling that something was wrong with their child. Angel had thought the notion to be silly. But right now, he wasn’t sure. He felt he should check on Connor.

Angel, Fred, and Wes were set up in an empty apartment opposite one of a ‘Palace’ client. Gunn and Cordelia were staking another place across town. As much as Angel felt it his duty to stay, he just couldn’t shake this feeling.

“Will you guys be okay if I run back to the hotel real fast?” he asked his friends.

Wes lowered the binoculars he was using to look back at the vampire. “I suppose so. Why?”

“I dunno,” Angel said. “Paternal instinct thing. I need to check on Connor.”

“Well Angel, I’m sure that Lorne would call if something were wrong, but if you need too,” Wes said. Angel smiled at the watcher’s understanding. Clapping his friend on the shoulder, Angel headed downstairs to the convertible.

He was just being paranoid, Angel thought. Wes was right; if something were wrong Lorne would call on the cell phone. His worry was completely unsubstantiated. Right?

**************
The green demon had been more trouble than he originally thought, but in the end, he’d knocked the creature out.

Reynolds searched the Hyperion’s offices a good thirty minutes before he finally found the notebook. With a slight grin, he tucked the notebook into his pant waist and headed up the stairs. Entering Connor’s room, he found the demon still unconscious on the floor. Just as he reached the crib, a voice from behind stopped him cold.

“I really wouldn’t touch him.”

Reynolds was out cold before he realized who it was.

**************
Angelus had always been a master at torture. He had turned torture into an art form.

But having a soul really put a damper on that.

Not to say that Angel couldn’t be a royal bad ass when he wanted to be. He could. It was just the fact that killing would weigh on his conscience. But having a demon inside insured you could be evil when necessary.

But what Angel was doing to this man was hardly lethal. Unless of course he breathed at the wrong moment. And Angel really hoped that didn’t happen. Being breathless himself prevented the whole doing CPR thing.

“I’d start talking,” Angel said. “Because if you don’t, I might just see how long you can hold your breath.” When the man refused to respond, Angel lowered him headfirst into the bathtub. After a minute, Angel pulled on the rope and raised him back out. “Well?”

“Fuck you,” the man spat.

“Nothing’s ever easy around here,” Angel muttered. Angel tied the rope so the man was left hanging over the water. Disappearing for a minute, the vampire reappeared carrying something wrapped in cloth.

“When Cordy and I broke into ‘The Palace’ offices, I got a good look at some invoices.” Unwrapping the cloth, he revealed a cattle prod. “And I just said I have got to get me one of these. Just scream if I get the voltage too high.”

**************
Cordelia clutched Connor closer as the first scream reverberated through the hotel. Normally she would strongly disapprove of Angel doing something so Angelus like. But not today. Trying to hurt her baby was simply unacceptable. She almost smiled at the sound of the second scream.

“Are you sure we should allow Angel to be doing this?” Wes asked her.

“That man tried to hurt Connor.” The tone in her voice left no room for argument. Wesley wasn’t stupid. You do not mess with a pissed off mother.

The screams continued for several more minutes. The gang watched as Angel carried the man over his shoulder down the stairs. Angel dropped the man unceremoniously on a couch in the lobby.

Cordelia glared at the man who tried to hurt her baby. As much as she would like to play with the cattle prod, she knew that such action would be pointless now. Evidently the man had decided to talk, and she wouldn’t risk changing his mind.

“What’s your name?” Angel asked.

The man glared at Angel a moment before answering. “Peter Reynolds.”

“Who do you work for?”

Reynolds smirked a bit. “The Powers That Be.”

****************
John Martin was sore from his latest ‘session’ with Lilith. He knew fully well he was a sick man for enjoying this. And this little fetish of his might be the cause of his ruination.

Rubbing his sore wrists, he entered his office and checked his answering machine. No word from Reynolds yet. Glancing at the clock he saw it was well past two in the morning. Perhaps he’d wait to call in the morning. There was no reason to worry.

Sitting gingerly in his plush leather chair, Martin wondered when things became so complicated. His sister had always known of his particular sexual preferences. Hell, she shared most of them. Otherwise she wouldn’t be running ‘The Palace’.

But one visit his sister told him of a new arrival. She called herself Lilith. Only much later would he learn how appropriate the name was. John sometimes wondered why she never killed him like the others. He liked to believe it was because she cared for him. But more likely it was the protection he could give her.

His Lilith had a mean streak matched only by her hunger for survival. As much as she killed for the pleasure of hurting tortured souls, she did it for a much more primal purpose as well.

And he wondered when Lilith would decide she didn’t need him anymore.

****************
“She’s not of this world,” Reynolds explained. “This is a creature straight from the depths of Hell. The victims she chooses, they aren’t random, you understand that?”

Most everyone but Angel was confused. He had seen the similarities in the files. “All of them were alone,” he said sadly. “No families. Some divorced, some widowed. They had all been hurt at some point. She feeds on that.”

“Psychologically, yes” Reynolds agreed. “But she needs them for something more. Something far more basic. They have something she needs.”

Part Four

Posted July 19, 2018 by califi in Complete

Domination 2   Leave a comment

Part 2

With a quick jerk, Angel was able to snap the lock on the door.

The address he had received lead to this hidden building in a less than respectable section in LA. Listening for any heartbeats behind the door, Angel decided it was clear to enter. After double-checking to make sure the area was clean, he motioned for Cordelia to follow.

Moving silently, the pair found a room at the end of a hallway that appeared to be an office. With a twist, Angel had gained access for the both of them.

“Are we sure this is the place?” Cordelia asked quietly.

“No,” Angel answered. “But it’s all we have to go on.” Angel immediately went to the file cabinet in the corner while Cordelia booted up the computer.

“We definitely have the right place,” Angel said. “I don’t know of many places that need to stock this much lubricant.” Angel barely heard Cordelia’s comment about him being a dork when she had her eureka moment.

“I may have something here,” Cordelia said. “I think it’s a client list.” After a moment she cursed. “Damn! All the listings are code names.”

“Makes sense,” Angel observed. “Protects the anonymity of any high profile members.”

“Really?” Cordy asked. “You think famous people maybe come here? Like actors or politicians?”

“With government workers you never know,” Angel said. “But don’t worry. I don’t think Jude Law is into this sort of thing. Can you pull up appointment schedules or something?”

“You want me to find the past victims?” she asked. Angel nodded before turning back to the cabinet. As he was wondering what the hell this place was doing ordering cattle prods, he heard Cordelia printing.

“What are you doing?” he asked.

“I’m printing off the client list and all upcoming appointments. It will take some deciphering, but at least it’s something,” Cordy smiled. “Did you find out anything interesting?”

“I found out that humans are some strange creatures. What do you think they can do with a high pressure hose?” the vampire asked.

Any response the Seer might have made was cut off as both demons detected human presence near. Thinking quickly, Angel removed the vent entrance from the corner of the ceiling. After quickly booting down the computer and grabbing the printouts, Cordelia allowed the vampire to boost her up. Angel quickly followed and replaced the grate moments before a night janitor entered the room.

*************
John was sitting behind a massive oak desk signing papers when Mr. Reynolds entered his office. Without looking up he addressed the other man.

“Have you found out who is receiving the visions?” he asked.

“Good day to you, John,” Reynolds began sarcastically. “I slept well, how about you?”

“Cut the crap, who’s receiving them?”

Sometimes Reynolds didn’t know why he bothered. “Some half-breed named Cordelia Chase in LA.”

“She going to be a problem?” John asked.

“Probably not,” Reynolds told him. “Her champion might be a different story. He’s a vampire named Angel. He used to be a royal badass, now he’s the Powers best warrior.”

“That’s just great,” John said disgustedly. “The person investigating these deaths is a damn vampire?” Reynolds gave a small smile. That about summed it up. “Can we kill him?” John asked.

“No!” Reynolds shouted as if talking to a small child. “That’s a great way to cover up the deaths, kill the PTB’s best warrior. You want to go ahead and take measurements for that orange jumpsuit you’ll wear at Marion?” Reynolds sighed. He definitely didn’t know why he bothered sometimes. “Just let me take care of it. We’ll watch, nothing more. Angel won’t be a problem.”

***************
Madrid
1867

“Come on Angelus,” Darla taunted. “Beg for me.” The blonde vampire tugged on the collar around his neck. “You’re about as much fun as that girl over there.” Darla pointed to the Madridian prostitute the two had ‘played’ with earlier. Nearly drained of blood, the pretty Spanish girl moaned inaudibly.

“You like that my boy?” she asked as she dragged her nails down his back. “I know that you do,” Darla teased. “I can see that you like it.”

In the warmth of a torrid Spanish summer, the two vampires played one of their favorite games: Master and Slave. Darla pulled harder on the collar as Angelus writhed on the silken sheets of the canopy bed.

“You’re such a bad boy,” Darla told her childe. “The way you seduced that poor girl over there. For shame,” she grinned.

“Please,” Angelus moaned. How could be possible to love something so much but hate it at the same time? That’s the way it was with Darla’s teasing. He needed release damn it!

“Say the magic words, Angelus,” Darla continued to taunt.

“Fuck me,” he cried.

Darla grinned at her childe’s impatience. “That’s my boy.”

***************
Angel cooed at his son as he feed his boy the bottle. By the counter, Fred was busily working at her computer. Cordelia was exchanging sword blows with Gunn in the lobby as Wes was reading yet another demon book.

“So what do you have, Fred,” Angel asked the girl.

“I’ve determined which names the four victims went by at The Palace. All seem to have been long time clients. There have also been several appointments since the last murder,” Fred said worried.

“Great,” Gunn said from the lobby. “More chances for more dead bodies.”

“Is there anyway to find out a way to contact these people?” Cordelia asked as she tossed her sword aside. “If we can, then that goes a long way to stopping the next one.”

“No,” Fred said. “If ‘The Palace’ keeps personal records, then they aren’t here. I don’t know of anyway to uncover the identities.”

“Can’t you trace any money transfers from the victims?” Cordy tried again.

“No. All four men made $2,000 cash withdrawals shortly before their deaths. Can’t trace cash transfers.” Fred shrugged. “Well, you can, but not with the information I have.”

Wes came out of his office. The frustration was plain on his face. “I cannot find what the hell we are looking for. My only guess is that it’s from another dimension.”

“Great,” Cordelia groaned. “Our killer is an inter-dimensional refugee and a dominatrix on the side. I’m loving this.”

Angel grinned at his Seer. “Well, we got to keep things interesting around here.”

“Interesting?” she asked incredulously. “Interesting is a new Mel Gibson movie. Interesting is the Gucci spring collection. This is a freaking nightmare!” Suddenly Cordelia’s hands went to her head. “Aw crap.”

“What’s wrong?” Angel asked.

Cordy looked at him with sad eyes. “I just saw number five.”

****************
Reynolds watched as the AI team went up to the apartment of Lilith’s last client. He immediately recognized the infamous ‘vampire with a soul’. He figured the shorthaired brunette must be his Seer.

Reynolds was impressed with both of them. They were quickly becoming legends in the Powers community. Especially the girl. She was a tough cookie from what he read. The vampire was also impressive, if a little misguided. The fool still believed he had a chance to become human.

Reynolds sighed. He didn’t like being involved in this. If the Powers ever found out, it would be his head. But he owed John a favor, and Reynolds didn’t go back on favors. Loyalty was a bitch. So, like it or not, he would protect John and Lilith.

When the gang finally came back out, Reynolds pulled out his cell. “Hey John? It’s me. They found the last one. Yeah. I think we need to do something. How? We divert the vampire’s attention. It’s okay John. I think I know how.” Reynolds shut of the phone. He didn’t like what he was planning to do, but he supposed it was necessary.

*****************
Lilah Morgan fingered the small notebook in her hands. Her bosses would love to see some of the names in this book. They could have a field day with it. But Lilah had other plans.

Some might say they were petty, but damn it, revenge was sweet. Afterwards, when the dust settled. she’d tell her people what she had done. And she would be considered a hero for it.

It was much to easy to simply hand over the notebook to the bosses. Instead, she had a better plan. It was often that she would even considered doing this, and even rarer that she would do it. She would help ‘Them’. Just like she had earlier.

Sliding the notebook into the manila envelope, she sealed it and marked the address. Yeah, Lilah thought, this was far more interesting.

‘To Angel Investigations
Hyperion Hotel
Los Angeles, CA’

Part Three

Posted July 19, 2018 by califi in Complete

Domination 1   Leave a comment

Title: Domination
Author: Liam
Disclaimer: Joss Whedon owns Angel and its characters. This story will likely be rated R for various reasons.
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Summary: When several people are found dead, the Fang Gang makes a connection that could lead to disturbing consequences. Because of the great response to my ‘Retrospective’ trilogy, I decided to write this. Buckle up, because I plan on making this a dark fic.
Dedication: (Part 2) To psychofilly, whose idea of praise is to threaten to send two UberEvil Vampires after me.

 


Part 1

The whip made a resounding crack as the tip made contact with the fleshy skin above Robert Wells’ thigh.

The forty-two year old investment banker was fully exposed to the harsh treatment he was receiving. His hands were bound as he hung spread eagle from the ceiling. Another crack of the whip on his naked form sent the man whimpering in pain.

“Do you like that?” a beautiful brunette whispered into his ear as she stroked his red and welted skin. “Do you like the pain I give you?”

“Yes,” the man said softly. God help him, but he did like it.

“Yes what?” the brunette demanded as she lifted his chin with the whip.

“Yes mistress,” Robert said between his tears. The woman’s harsh features melted into a softer, more angelic face. She gently wiped the tears from his face as she placed light kisses on his lips.

“You’re my favorite you know,” the woman said to her client. “I don’t love them, but I love you.” Another crack of the whip had the man writhing in pain and pleasure once more. “You know that I love you, right?” she asked.

“Yes mistress,” the man answered. His body was sore from the abuse he had taken, but it also felt so good to him.

“I know you’re hurting,” the dominatrix said. “I can make that pain stop,” she breathed into his ear. “Let me make the pain stop. I love you,” she pleaded.

“Yes!” Robert answered with a sudden burst of fervor. “Make it stop,” he said weakly.

The woman smiled and gently stroked his cheek. Stepping behind Robert, she kissed his shoulder one final time. Her beautiful face began to contort: her head elongated and her jaw unhinged. A long proboscis rose from her throat. With a quick strike, the proboscis broke through Robert’s skull. As quickly as it entered, it was retracted back into her throat.

Smiling, the woman wiped her lips clean of any blood. Putting her trench coat on over her leather jumpsuit, she blew a kiss at Robert Wells’ slumping form. Deciding to leave him hanging, the woman opened the door to the apartment and left.

***************
Cordelia ducked beneath the police tape blocking the door to the luxurious upscale apartment that used to belong to Robert Wells. Angel followed suit as he glanced around the fancy apartment.

“There was a demon here recently.” Cordelia said. Angel’s vampire smell also detected the traces of a non-human presence. Cordy pulled out a video camera and began filming around the apartment.

“Wes is supposed to meet us here right?” Angel asked his Seer. Angel fingered the manacles that still hung from the ceiling as Cordelia answered in the affirmative. He sidestepped the dried pool of blood as he walked to the large oak desk in the corner.

Pulling open drawers on the desk, Angel finally found a stack of opened mail. Finding one that looked familiar, he pulled the card out of the envelope. It was marked the same as the other three they’d found on previous victims.

The Palace
Your appointment is tonight
Be ready for the pain
And the pleasure

“Why would a guy let someone torture them like this?” Cordelia wondered.

“Some people like pain with their pleasure,” Angel answered vaguely.

“Talking from experience?” Cordelia teased.

Angel gave his Seer an amused smirk. “I spent 150 years as a soulless demon. What do you think?”

Cordelia shook her head as she continued to film the crime scene. “I mean really, what kind of man gets his ya-ya’s off by coming to a whatchamacallit?”

“Dominatrix,” Angel supplied as he continued to flip through the mail. “Some guys just want attention. Some just want to feel something other than loneliness.”

“But this?” Cordelia emphasized by waving her arms.

“What I’m wondering is why the Powers are sending this information days after the murders occur,” Wes interjected as he entered the building.

“Good point,” Cordy admitted. “Maybe their mystical brain channels are blocked or something.” Everyone was silent a moment as they pondered all the possible reasons. Angel was the first to break the reverie.

“Same as the others?” he asked the watcher.

Wes nodded and handed the vampire the folder he carried. “A sharp blow to the back of the head. The pituitary gland precisely removed and the victim dies immediately from the trauma.”

Angel glanced at the photos. A hole about an inch wide was punctured into the back of the head. Flipping past the coroner’s reports, he found the conclusion of the autopsy.

“The blow was made by an object of unknown origin,” he read aloud. “The force of the impact cause instantaneous death.” Angel sighed as he tossed the folder back to the watcher. “We have any idea what’s doing this?”

Wesley shrugged. “I’m leaning towards a demon with possibly a serrated tongue or a proboscis. However, the ones in my in my books that match that are quite hideous beasts. I can’t imagine this clientele coming to someone like that. Whatever it is, I imagine it has a human form.”

“This would be a lot easier if we could locate this ‘Palace’.” Cordelia said.

“True,” Wes answered. “But so far Fred has yet to find any businesses by that name which would cater to these services.” After a few more minutes it was decided to pack up. Downloading some files from the computer and taking some more recent mail, the gang headed back to the Hyperion hoping to find a clue.

**************
“That’s my girl,” the gray haired man smiled as the brunette demon kissed his belly. “Did you have fun with that Wells fellow?”

“Yes,” she purred as she continued her ministrations.

“Good,” the man said. “Perhaps you should lay low for a few more days,” he suggested. “I wouldn’t want somebody to find out what naughty things you’ve been doing.” The man moaned as the demon’s attention went progressively lower than his belly.

“Oh,” the demon pouted. “But I want to have fun.”

“But you can have fun with me,” the man offered. The demon gave a mock sigh and then a grin as she continued to play. Knocking at the bedroom’s large oak doors interrupted anything further.

“What?” the man shouted. A moment later a young black man poked his head into the room.

“Sir?” the boy asked. “I’m sorry to interrupt, but Mister Reynolds is here to see you. He says it’s important.”

Exasperated, the man told the boy he’d meet Reynolds in his office. Excusing himself from the arms of the lovely demon, he tossed a robe on and followed the boy to his office.

***********
“Said that the Powers wouldn’t be able to broadcast the visions to any of their Seers,” the man shouted at Reynolds. The handsome man tried to soothe his friend.

“Relax John,” Reynolds said. “I know perfectly well what I told you. I wouldn’t worry too much about it. From what I gather, the Powers aren’t sending the visions out until several days after the fact. By then, the trail goes cold.”

John glared at Reynolds. “Relax? How can I relax? Do you know what would happen if it were found out that I’m harboring her?”

“I know what would happen John, but like I said, don’t worry about it. I’m going to make sure that you’re taken care of. I promised I would, right?”

John took a breath to calm down. “Fine,” he huffed. “So do we know who’s receiving the visions?”

“Not yet,” Reynolds admitted. “But whoever it is shouldn’t be hard to track. They must be in the LA area.” Reynolds straightened his jacket. “Just trust me.”

************
Cordelia bounced a drooling Connor on her hip as she searched the bookshelves for a volume Wes needed. The case was aggravating everyone at Angel Investigations. No one more so than her. What was the point of the visions if they came after the damn murders?

“But Uncle Wes should be able to find something in his books,” Cordy told the child as she found the desired volume. “Being a bookworm may make him a dork, but it also makes him a very smart man.” Connor giggled at the words he didn’t understand.

“And whenever we find out what’s doing this, then your Daddy will go out and stop it, because that’s what he does. Because we can’t have a proboscis wielding demon going around killing people, even if they happen to be perverts.”

Taking the book into the office, Cordelia dropped in on Wes’ desk before heading back into the lobby. She saw Gunn coming in through the courtyard.

“Any luck?” she asked him.

“Nope,” he answered frustrated. “I talked to four of our informants and none of them have heard anything about ‘The Palace’.”

The gang had met with over a dozen informants in the past two weeks, and none had provided any information. It seemed that they would never get a break in the case.

“Where’s Angel?” Gunn asked the lovely Seer.

“He’s off meeting someone. Maybe he’ll have some better luck.” She kissed the top of Connor’s head and hoped that perhaps Angel would.

***********
Angel had been waiting for over an hour for his informant to arrive. But with each passing minute, the vampire’s anger grew. From behind him, he heard the sound of a pay phone ringing on the street corner. He tried to ignore it, but after a minute of incessant ringing he finally went to pick it up.

As soon as he entered the booth the ringing stopped. His irritation would have grown more had it not been for the envelope taped to the receiver. Looking around for any intruders, Angel grabbed it.

It was a short note, but it was one that gave him some hope. Maybe they had finally gotten a break.

*************
“I can make the pain stop,” the brunette demon whispered into the man’s ear. “I love you. Please, let me make your pain stop,” she pleaded.

“Yes,” the young man cried. “Make it stop.”

The demon smiled and kissed the young man’s cheek. “I love you,” she said again. “I’ll make it stop hurting.”

Part Two

Posted July 19, 2018 by califi in Complete