Title: Cordy the TV Star
Author: anneb aka OnlyAnne
Posted here: 08/05
Spoilers: Birthday (Cordy’s options were to go with the TV fame or death, (for now I’m forgetting the demon choice- so-there)
Disclaimer: The characters in the Angelverse were created by Joss Whedon & David Greenwalt. No infringement is intended, no profit is made.
Distribution: NF- yes of course, whatever…. the rest- while I’ll always say yes, please just ask. Wow. I almost felt important.
“I don’t get it, man.” Gunn jerked his head towards unkempt lumped figure staring at the TV screen. Wesley glanced at the black man then back to the vampire huddled directly in front of the television.
“Definite hottie, but him- I don’t get it.” Gunn urged.
Wesley sighed and straightened. “I’m not sure. But, he knew her in Sunnydale, as well. Perhaps it’s just that she is familiar to him. A face he can remember. The show seems to calm him for a few days at least.”
Both men looked back at the TV as the credits rolled and the theme song faded along with the imagines of the beautiful young woman.
Gunn rubbed his face. “Got to hope that syndication deal with the WB goes through. ‘Cordy’ every night would be a nice break from his raging crazy mad hatter routine. Maybe allow him to actually make it through a vision without descending into the rabbit hole and maybe even sleep.” Gunn shook his head.
“If not WB, then UPN, both of them want it.” Wesley shrugged his shoulders, making obvious the loss of one arm. “Angel, the vision?” The vampire turned and took the cup.
Wesley sighed, still amazed. Every week, the vampire sat glued to the TV set watching a sitcom starring Sunnydale’s own Cordelia Chase. Once the credits ended, Angel almost seemed to be normal. Or as normal as a vampire with a soul and visions+ and centuries of guilt producing package can be. But, still there would be no need for restraints for at least a couple of days.
“Taken care of.”
Angel nodded, slowly moving back into his bare room settling on the lone mattress on the floor. “I’m tired,” handing Wesley the empty mug.
Wesley motioned Gunn to the door. “Good night, Angel.”
“Hey, Wes,” Gunn said as soon as the door was closed. “You know her, call her write her, maybe she’ll send an 8’ by 10’ glossy we could have better than the screen version for him.”
“Cordy, you have to call the police.” The young man waved a letter around in the air. “It’s the third one. From the same sicko, no doubt.”
The beautiful young woman scrunched up her face. “Nevin, they don’t really threaten me, they’re just the usual. Don’t be such a worry-wort.”
“Cordy, he’s a sicko, pure and simple. The creep somehow has the ability to just drop this crazy fan notes off. He’s got to have an in on the inside.” The young man looked suspiciously out the door of the office to the sound stage. “Cordy, you’re a big star and that causes all the crazies to come crawling out from their rocks. And this guy is crazy.”
“Calling me a princess, isn’t necessarily crazy, it’s kind of sweet.”
“Sweet? How about ‘your life is a lie, your destiny is with me. I am your champion. Demons or dimensions won’t separate us. The beast will never touch you’, Uh? Not real high on the sane scale. ‘I’m coming’- not reassuring. Jesus, Cordy, you know the stories- some crazed whacked fan kills or shoots the ‘star’ they adore. Call the police.”
“Nevin, I believe you are over reacting. The firm agrees with Ms. Chase. There is no need for police involvement. Wolfram & Hart can conduct a discreet investigation into this matter. This is not the time for sensational publicity. The Emmys are not far off. Lindsay McDonald stood. “Cordy, if I could have that letter. I’m sure it is nothing to worry about, I’ll handle everything.”
Cordelia reluctantly gave the letter over to the lawyer.
Lindsay flashed a smile. “Maybe dinner next week?”
“Ah, my schedule is pretty booked. I’ve got to make the talk show circuit, the Emmy’s.” Cordelia shrugged and smiled regretfully.
Lindsay nodded and left.
“Nevin, who recommended Wolfram & Hart? Remember, please, so I can cross them off my Christmas list. I just don’t get warm fuzzy feelings from that group. Even Lindsay with all his good looks and charm gives the heebie jeebies.
“They’re lawyers, they’re not supposed to make you feel warm and fuzzy.” Nevin commented. “Cordy, I still think….”
“No police. But, if it makes you feel better- a compromise, give me the phone book.”
Cordy flipped through the yellow pages. Her eyes were drawn to the first listing. It was smaller than the rest. Not big on the advertising. It was very simple, really, just a name. Angel Investigations. Angel? Lord, Cordy hadn’t thought about the Sunnydale vampire in ages. In fact, she had pretty well blocked all of the memories of the Hellmouth out of her head.
It seemed so far in the distant past, more a nightmare, not her reality. But, she couldn’t deny that the recent letters had sort of freaked her. The usual mash notes she received as a celebrity didn’t mention demons, dimensions or beasts. All things that reminded her too much of her hellish hometown. Well, Buffy wasn’t around and her boyfriend vampire wouldn’t be swooping down in all of his ‘salty goodness’ to fix this.
God, Cordelia was glad she was away from all that. She scrunched her nose at the listing. Still, it could be an omen. And things were getting kinda of weird and maybe she did need help. Whatever, Cordelia pushed the yellow book forward. It was the damn books fault. Can we at least try to bypass the ‘B’s and go straight for the ‘c’s. Or any other odd combination of the alphabet.
“Talk to me Nevin.” Cordelia glared.
“I…look….the guy I talked to didn’t seem real professional. He wants to meet you at a coffee shop. Not the sign of high rent. He didn’t even discuss a fee. Just seemed anxious to see you. He’s another crazy, I bet. I say don’t go.”
“Nevin, give me the address.” Cordelia held out her hand.
“Fine,” Nevin handed the paper to Cordy and spoke into his cell phone at the same time. “Josh, bring the car around for Ms. Chase and don’t let her out of your sight.”
“Oh, Nevin, did this guy have a name?”
“Yeah, Wesley Windy- Price or something. Sounded great, had that PBS voice, but still he sounded crazy?”
“Wesley…” Cordelia turned. “Wesley Wyndham-Price?”
“I guess that could have been it.”
“Oh.” Cordelia walked to her waiting limousine in a daze. Wesley working for a private investigation firm named ‘Angel Investigation’. That just seemed very weird. An uneasy feeling settled in the pit of her stomach.
Emmys or no Emmys, Cordelia was beginning to feel that she hadn’t left Sunnydale as far behind as she hoped.
“Are you comfortable?” Lindsay said from the doorway of his office.
“Very, I like this office. Better view.” Lilah Morgan smoothed the expensive silk of her suit skirt, her long legs resting on Lindsay’s desk.
“Too bad, honey. It’s mine.” Lindsay pushed Lilah’s designer clad feet to the ground.
“We’ll see. Well, what’s up with the bimbo starlet? More ‘fan’ letters?”
“That’s not your concern.”
“Actually, it is now. Holland just gave the word. I’ve been assigned to help you baby-sit America’s TV sweetheart. So, fill me in. Why is Wolfram & Hart interested in a nobody actress.”
“Nobody? She’s won two Emmy’s; her show has been the highest rated show since it aired. And she’s been able to crossover into films, as well. Both that she starred in broke box office records. There is talk of an Oscar for the last one. Cordelia Chase is golden.”
“Fine, she’s the next Sally Fields, what’s Wolfram & Hart’s interest?”
“That’s it- she’s golden. She exploded onto the Hollywood scene with a powerful agent and a hit TV show within two months of arriving in LA. About the same time, the big heads in the basement sensed a major surge in mystical energy right here in LA. The type that can create or destroy universes.”
Lilah tapped her long nails on the hard surface of the desk. “She caused it? I find that hard to believe.”
“No, but she was the center of whatever happened. Someone or something has provided Cordelia Chase with her very own little garden of fame and fortune to play in.”
“And since it wasn’t us, we need to know.” Lilah said understanding.
“And make sure it remains, so.” Lindsay added.
Lilah raised her brows.
“The statistics on the balance of good vs. evil spread sheet has been swinging to our side since the little occurrence. It’s marginal, but the slide is there. They want it to stay that way. Why were you reassigned? I thought you were monitoring Project ‘Angel’?”
“It’s been de-prioritized.”
“Really? I thought it was number one because of the prophecy.”
“The vampire with a soul came on the scene strong, but his increasingly unstable mental state has made the fruition of the prophecy skeptical. It’s projected that his influence on the balance will be non-existence in another year.”
Lindsay looked out across the city, thinking. “Angel came to LA, when? Almost three years ago?”
“That’s about when Cordelia Chase showed up. Her career skyrockets, Angel’s effectiveness as the ‘champion’ plummets and the balance is swinging in Wolfram & Hart’s favor.”
“You’re seeing a connection.” Lilah shot up straight in the chair.
“I’m seeing a possibility of one. Cordelia Chase grew up in Sunnydale, where Angel was before he came to LA.”
“She’s a Hellmouth babe? Did they know each other?”
“No clue. Maybe we should find out. But, first we need to make sure that whoever or whatever is sending Cordy love note’s is not a threat.”
“Yeah, most human stalkers don’t mention demons and dimensions in their fan mail. Oh and Lilah, you maybe resigned to this project, but remember it’s my project, just like this is my office. Now, please get your ass out of my chair.”
Cordelia searched the shop for the tweedy presence of Wesley Windiem-Price. She blinked as her eyes shot back to the two men sitting in a booth. The tough black man was definitely not the pressed stuffy young watcher.
But, neither was the other man. It couldn’t be. But it was. “Wesley?” Cordelia walked up to the rumpled man. “What happened to the prim and proper attire?” She glanced at the worn jacket and t-shirt underneath. “For that matter what happened to your arm, it’s gone.”
“Hello, Cordelia.” Wesley stood. “Still stating the painfully obvious, I see.”
“You had two the last time I saw you. Now you have one. Two minus one is one. I can subtract.”
“Yes. A Kungai Demon a couple of years back. I don’t like to talk about it.”
“Then don’t.” Cordelia shrugged and sat down. “So, you’re a private investigator, uh and fighting demons. How does that work with your habit of screaming and fainting like a girl.”
“I resist the urge.”
Cordelia shrugged again. “Hi.” She turned to the black man. “You can close your mouth.”
Gunn’s mouth slammed shut.
“I’m sorry, Cordelia this is Charles Gunn, my partner. Gunn, this is…”
“Dawg, I know who this is. You do know her. Wow.”
Cordelia smiled. “Yeah, we go way back.”
“Is it true that you and Wes…you know. Had a little thing…”
“…Humiliating kiss. Where he drooled all over my chin? Though I’ve worked really hard to repress it.”
“Right. Cordelia, your assistant called and said that you had a stalker or was this just your way to get me to enjoy a forced death march down memory lane?”
“Yes to the stalker. No to the stroll down memory lane. I didn’t know you were ‘Angel Investigations’ until Nevin told me your name. ‘Angel’? In tribute to broody dead guy? I never took you as a fan of Angel’s.”
“No, Cordelia.” Wesley hesitated. “It’s not a tribute. It’s Angel’s agency.”
“Angel? Here? A private investigator, too? What’s Buffy, his girl Friday? Better be careful, Wesley, you know how bosses and secretaries are. One minute of groiny joy after hours and wham- Angelus. Great and I’m in LA. They were supposed to stay in Sunnyhell with all the rest of the weirdness.”
“As far as I know, Buffy is still in Sunnydale as the slayer and Angel is in no condition to be getting joy from anyone.”
“Really? They broke up, again? How many times would this make it?”
“The last. Angel came to LA after graduation.”
“Wow, so did I. How come I didn’t know? Granted, I was barely talking to the Scoobies at the time while blowing up the school. Still, you’d think I would’ve heard the whole traumatic scene. Must have happened after I left.”
“I’m not aware of the exact timing. Cordelia, your stalker?”
“How’s Angel? I want to see him.” Cordelia said. Cordelia wasn’t sure why, but she thought seeing the vampire was some how important.
“Cordelia, Angel is not the same vampire you knew in Sunnydale.”
“What, he’s no longer the big jokester always the un-life of parties? Gee, how unusual.”
“Cordelia, Angel came to Los Angeles in pain, vulnerable- and when Doyle, his only friend died he just…retreated into himself.”
“His getting the visions didn’t help either.” Gunn added.
“Angel sees visions of people who are being attacked by demons, etc. And we go save them. Most of the time.” Wesley rubbed his face.
“Let me get this straight. Angel has visions about people who are going to die. He tells you, you go out and slay, and this is how you make a living? That’s got to be the suckiest job in the world.”
“Pays, the bills. Occasionally.” Gunn shrugged. “We do regular PI on the side to help with the whole living and eating thing.”
Cordelia nodded. “Which is what my case is- regular- no demons, no weirdness just a nut job writing crazy letters. So how much?”
“Excuse me.” Wesley rubbed his face again.
“Money, fee? How much?”
“Cordelia, we couldn’t’ charge you. You’re a friend in need of help.”
Cordelia rolled her eyes. “No wonder you can only pay the bills ‘occasionally’. That’s sweet, Wesley, but I’m a friend with money. Overcharge me. So, when do I get to see Angel? Guess not now is good, the whole daylight issue and stuff.”
“Cordelia, I really think that should wait. He recently had a vision and well…it takes a lot out of him. He’s not up for visitors. We’ll tell him hi for you. Now, back to your stalker. Please describe each instance.”
Cordelia scrunched up her face. She wanted to see Angel. Though why she did was a bit confusing. Cordelia shook her head. “It really isn’t a stalker. Just somebody writing crazy letters like I said. I get them sometimes. But these are weirder and have Nevin freaked. And my lawyers. This last one got me a impromptu visit from Lindsay.”
“Your lawyers?” Wesley repeated. “The firm?”
“Wolfram & Hart,” Cordelia shivered. “I don’t really like them. For the life of me, I can’t remember who recommended them. What? Why are you looking like that?”
“Wolfram & Hart. We’ve run across them. They seem to have a connection with many of the situations Angel’s vision portray.”
“As in a bad connection?”
“We have information that we believe indicates that Wolfram & Hart’s main cliental are of the demonic nature- evil. It is disturbing that they are your lawyers.”
“Disturbing? Disturbing? I’m being represented by Satan’s toadies- I say it was more than just disturbing. I told Nevin they gave me the heebie jeebies. Are you sure? Damn’t, I left the Hellmouth for more than just fame and fortune. Well, they’re fired.”