The Upper Hand. 6-10

Chapter 6

“I told you to lie down.”

Angelus said nothing but moved closer.

“Angel?” Cordelia moved back the mug jerking in her hand as the vampire pulled it from her tossing it to the ground.

“I don’t want it. I want you.”

Cordelia moved back her legs pressed against the small table. Her eyes widened at his tone. Words that once should’ve have made her stomach twirl with butterflies, made her intestines tighten in fear and shivers run down her spine.

“No, no, no.” She scrambled back trying to calm herself, trying to tell herself that she was imagining things. Her hand fell to the table searching for anything that could be used for a weapon.

Angelus moved quickly, he was aware that Cordelia had gotten better at her defensive moves and he didn’t want to have to fight her, not yet. He grabbed her arms, pulling her tight to his body, the steel bands of his arm allowing for no movement.

He plunged, his fangs piercing her neck and drinking. He forced his head up, not enough, but enough for now, he pressed his bloody lips onto her mouth as Cordelia’s body slumped into his. Cordelia tried to struggle but the sudden blood loss and shock made her dizzy. She tried to scream, but Angelus mouth cut off her voice.

“Two choices, Cordy.” Angelus pulled back his head, but kept her body firmly trapped to his. “I can hurt you really, really badly now, so much that you can do nothing but watch, watch while I kill Wesley, Gunn and sweet little Fred, or you can go with me now, and who knows maybe your brave ‘family’ will figure it out and save you. Which will it be? I’m game for either.”

Cordelia winced and wiped her lips against her shirt and spit. “You’re just going to kill us all anyway. So, no I won’t go willingly. Fuck you.” She brought up her knee and knocked him in the groin and pushed with all of her might.

Angelus grunted but maintained his hold, barely. “You’ve have been paying attention to your little training sessions, but I’m still stronger, I will always be stronger.” He pulled her in closer, yanking her hair in his fist.

“One more time, Cordelia. I’ve given you two choices. Granted, your individual fate is pretty much determined but the rest of the fang gang’s is up for grabs. If you fight me now and I have to do things that I’m not quite ready to do to you yet, you will be helpless and they will be clueless when they all walk back into their ‘home’ and I will take a lot of joy in killing them with quite of be of flair in front of you. But if you choose door number two, we go and they live for now. Do you really want to kill your family just because you’re a little pissed at me?”

“Why? Why, not just do it?”

“Because, my dear, the plans I’ve have for you will take some time. I can of course act quickly and that wouldn’t be fun for either of us, or rather not quite as much fun for me. But either away I will have fun. And aren’t you always the one saying that I should have more fun, so really choice number two is the best.”

Cordelia squeezed her eyes shut and wished herself anywhere but there, but no luck. She tried to think. She didn’t want to give into the vampire. She wanted Wesley and Gunn to come back and shoot him with a tranquilizer gun, chain him up and for Wesley too figure out how to bring Angel back.

But for that to happen, Wesley has to know that Angelus was here. And he wouldn’t not until it was too late. And Gunn would just stake and ask questions later.

And god forbid, Fred came back first. Cordelia slumped and nodded. Angelus held her body closer and smiled. Cordy was a brave one, full of spirit, but she was weak, too much heart.

“Smart choice.” He pressed his lips against her cheek, his fangs scrapping against her skin.

“Whatever,” she choked.


Chapter 7

Wesley skimmed through the book as he went to the counter. He looked again at the price. He was glad Angel Investigations had an account because there was no way he could pay its cost right now.

But, even if it wasn’t helpful in this particular incident it was definitely a book worth having. Why hadn’t he heard of it before? He was still chastising himself as a drawing and caption caught his eyes. Wesley stalled, his stomach dropped and perspiration broke out across his body.

He ignored the clerk’s questions as he read intently, his hand going for his cell phone. He waved the clerk away as he dialed the hotel frantically. No answer. No, he prayed. He dialed Gunn’s cell phone.

“What?”

“Go back to the hotel, now. Take a tranquilizer gun and I don’t care if Angel is unconscious or not- shoot him, then chain him, Cordelia knows where the chains are, tell her the black ooze eats away at a person’s soul. Tell her, she’ll know what to do. Gunn, I called the hotel. No answer. It may be too late, but try, I’m on my way.”

“FUCK” Gunn yelled, startling the other customers of the herbalist shop. He ran jumping into his truck tires squealing as he made a wild U-turn in the middle of the street.

***

Gunn raced through the hotel. It was empty. He ran back to the lobby and jumped as Wesley barged in.

The two men looked at each other. Gunn shook his head. “No vampire, Fred or Cordelia.”

Wesley slumped to the floor, his head resting in his hands.

“Guys, what’s wrong?”

Wesley jumped up. Both Gunn and Wesley ran to Fred grabbing her.

“Guys, the food.” She tried to pull back.

“You’re alright.” Wesley said with relief. He sighed. Maybe he was wrong. But … “Fred, where did you go? Where is Angel and Cordy?”

“Angel and Cordy?” Fred looked up puzzled at both men. “They were upstairs. Angel was all better. Cordy was going to get him some more blood. She was hungry, I was and I thought you’ll would be so I went to the Mexican restaurant, you know the one with the really great white sauce, you know…. Wesley what’s wrong?”

Wesley turned away from the young woman. “I’m afraid that wasn’t Angel, but Angelus, the book that I got identified the demon -it was an Incisoratic- an Aufreot, a soul eater. The black ooze penetrates the victim’s wounds and steals away their soul. It stole Angel’s soul and left Angelus. And Cordelia was left alone with him and now they’re both gone.”

Wesley slumped back down on the floor. “Oh god.”

Fred tightened her grip on the bags of food; she wouldn’t panic. “I saw him it was Angel, not some monster, not the monster described in the file. It was Angel.”

“I wish you were right, but then…where are they?” Wesley looked up to Gunn. “Did you find anything?”

“Not upstairs. I haven’t really had a chance to look around here” he waved around to the lobby. “I went upstairs as soon as I saw no one was down here.”

“Well, look now.” Wesley got up.

“Wesley, it was Angel.”

“I hope so.” Wesley nodded, not at all believing what he said.

“Wes, man.” Gunn called from the kitchen.

Wesley ran and stopped. Wesley looked at the fallen broken table, the broken mug of blood on the floor.

Wesley took a deep breath. “Okay, gather all the weapons, Fred get your lap top, I’ll get the books I’ll need. Gunn, Angel’s never been to your apartment correct.” Wesley nodded at Gunn’s nod. “We will go there. Fred pack as much stuff as you will need in five minutes. We need to get out of here now.”

“Wesley?”

“Angelus has free reign of this place, as he does with Cordelia’s, I’ve invited him in my apartment before, we need to go to Gunn’s now. We’ll call Lorne from there, if the sanctuary spell is finally up and running we may be able to use it a base of operations, but until then we need to get away from here, now.”

“What about Cordy?” Gunn asked.

Wesley closed his eyes. “We can only do her any good if we are safe and can plan without interruption from the mind games Angelus will start to play.”

“Wesley, he didn’t kill me or do anything. It was just Angel maybe they just went out.”

“Fred, if he didn’t show himself to you then it was only because he didn’t want any inference while he took Cordelia away.”

“I thought you said that Angelus was all obsessed about the Buffy chick, you know the love of Angel’s life.”

Wesley looked over at Gunn. “Angelus has been known to go after what Angel cares about the most. You’ve been with us for what almost two years- who would you say Angel cares the most about? Some blonde slayer that you’ve heard mention of or Cordy that he’s been stammering, stumbling over and jumping into any and all damn portals that could possibly save her.”

“Oh, the Kyerumption.” Fred blinked.

“Yes. Now, move.”


Chapter 8

“Darlin, I’m going to have to ask you to wait here.” Angelus smirked at Cordelia. “Okay, I won’t.” He hit her and laid her unconscious body against the wall along with the other unconscious woman.

He barged into the room, the vamps all jumped up. “Who the hell?”

“The name’s Angelus, and you have two choices follow or be dust.” Angelus strode into the lair.

“Yeah, right, it’s the soul guy, we heard about you.”

“Did you?” Angelus laughed, lunging and staking the vampire. He rushed the others breaking and pulling them apart until they were only a few vampires huddled in the corner.

“As I said, I’m Angelus and you have two choices, but let me make it easier,” he left the hidden room off the alley and brought in the unknown woman. “Take her, would the souled wimp give you this. Take it, enjoy, but if you do then you are accepting me as master, don’t and I will just kill you and find new followers. You’re choice.”

The few remaining vampires moved closer and sniffed at the woman. She was human, undrugged and healthy. They took her.

Angelus left and carried in Cordelia.

“Master, another?”

Angelus growled. “This is mine, if anyone touches her, they die, slowly, understand. I will be happy to help you increase your coffers of gain and blood, but this is mine. Remember that and we will all be happy and full.”

“Okay, okay.” The big blonde vampire went back to the others that were drinking off the fallen woman.

Angelus went up to the stairs of the old warehouse, he looked around. It would not do, the windows were covered but it would just not do. He set Cordelia down on the floor and went back downstairs.

“You,” he called to the blonde vampire.

The vampire looked up from the woman’s thigh. “Yes, Master?”

“I want you to get me some things.”

“Yes, Master.”

“Also, you all look a little peaked, take some advice go to the east side, activity has been lean there over the last three years.”

“Cuz of you, well, I mean cuz of..”

“Yes, well, I’m not there anymore now am I? I’m here. Go, eat, but only after you bring me what I need or I will make the whole city lean.”

“Yes, master.”

The blonde vampire tugged on the other vampires. “Finish her and let’s go.”

“Where?”

“Shopping and for take out.” The blonde vampire shrugged. “That’s Angelus.”

“I heard the soul thing was just temporary, you mean that’s true.” The blonde haired vampire raised her brows in contemplation.

“Get over it, Cassandra, the Master has a pet.” The blonde smacked the female vampire. “And I get the impression that he would be very angry, very angry if anyone came between him and his pet.”

“Wow.” Said a vampire that couldn’t be over twenty-five, with the face of a teenager. “Angelus, we’re with Angelus, that’s so cool. What does he want us to do?”

“He wants us to get a bed, some curtains, some clothes for his pet, some food for her, he wants us to go shopping, but he also said that the east side is ours, so lets go. I have his list.”

“Okay, she’s done.” The female vampire kicked at the dead woman.


Chapter 9

Cordelia tried to will herself back into unconsciousness, but her mind refused. She blinked and looked around.

She moved her arms; she wasn’t tied; that was good, right? She crawled up the wall, her back pressed against the cement. Where had Angelus taken her? She wasn’t even going to guess why. Cordelia was just surprised that he hadn’t killed her right away.

What game was he playing? She should be grateful that he hadn’t just stayed hidden killing all of them and then high tailing it back to Sunnydale. At least this way, hopefully, Wesley would have a chance to warn Buffy and the Scooby’s and maybe find away to fix it before Angelus did too much damage.

Cordelia clenched her fist until her fingernails cut into the flesh of her palms. What fuckin good were the visions if they didn’t show the true danger? The stupid horny teenage couple was alive, but now how many would die because the Powers didn’t show her the real evil of the demon.

Calm down. Cordelia looked around. She was in an abandoned warehouse. Debris, there was always junk in warehouse, some of it had to be wooden and sharp. She wouldn’t kill Angelus unless she absolutely had to but she needed to be ready. Cordelia started to search the ground.

“Looking for pointy things?”

Cordelia refused to let herself react. She straightened. “Yeah. The pointier the better.” God, she wanted to cry.

“You never give up do you? Don’t you ever just get tired? Angel did, and looked what happened. He slept with Darla. It was fun, but just not enough. I pushed him to acknowledge his feeling for you.” Angelus came up lifting Cordelia’s chin.

Her eyes remained shut refusing to look at his face. “Look at me Cordelia, you really won’t like it if you don’t.”

Cordelia glared at him. “That’s better. It wasn’t so hard, now was it?” Angelus smirked moving closer. “I had hoped that he would just acknowledge it, get you in bed and then I would be free with my arms locked around you, your body over mine, your life mine at whim, but no. Ensouled, I was a clueless, impotent bastard, but now, fates were looking out for me, I don’t even have to share with the souled wimp. You are mine, now.”

He brushed at her hair, fingering the puncture wounds on her throat. “That’s what those mean, in case you were wondering. You are mine” Angelus shrugged and smiled. “Until, I get bored of course. Then you’re just dead. Ooh, unless Cordy’s heroes come to rescue, but your most stalwart savior is long gone eaten by black ooze. This is rich.” Angelus laughed.

“What do you want?” Cordelia stepped back.

“It’s not obvious?”

“Actually, it’s not. Why am I here? Just kill me. Don’t you have blondes to go after? Darla’s still out there. Go, find her- make like vamp love bunnies away from here, go scourge Europe or something, go to Sunnydale, terrorize Buffy, just kill me and go. Leave Wesley, Gunn and Fred alone. Go.”

Angelus stepped back and laughed resting his chin in his hand. “You are so beautiful and dumb. I’ll get to Darla, when and if I feel like it, you never did understand did you, so hung up on the blonde factor.” Angelus laughed. “And as for Sunnydale, you that eager that I go and wipe out your high schools playmates?”

Cordelia rolled her eyes. “No, maybe this time, Buffy will lose the love goggles and send your ass to hell quicker than later.”

“Ooh, that’s right, Buffy’s the slayer. Scary. Cordy, love, I could give a shit about Sunnydale, that hellmouth lost it’s appeal when Angel found a home here in LA, when he found his little true love here,” Angelus curled his lip and whispered in a mocking tone.

“Oooh, who could the evil vamp be talking about,” Angelus eye’s twinkled. “Could it be the loud mouth, sexy seer, who’s as dim as a broken bulb? I think so.”

“You lying bastard.”

Angelus laugh became lower and came back upon her. “Oh, Cordelia, Cordy, me love, you are so stupid.” Whipping her round until her back was pressed tight against his chest. He leaned in licking at the puncture wounds on her throat, biting at them.

He growled, his fangs piercing the flesh making the wounds deeper, he held her closer as he drank, stopping again before he had too much. He twirled her around, Cordelia tripping at her dizziness. “Get the picture, darling.” Cordelia’s hand went to her throat as her body fell against the wall slumping to the ground.

“Um, excuse me, Master.”

Angelus turned. “What’s your name,” he growled to the blonde vampire.

“Um, Clyde. Um, we’ve gotten what you asked for.” He motioned to the bags he had in his hands and to the other vampires behind him, struggling with a mattress, bedsprings and other furnishings.

Angelus nodded, “Well done, Clyde. Did you find enough to eat?”

“Oh, yes.”

“Excellent, set it up. Come on, darling, let’s leave them alone while they make this place more homey for you.”

Cordelia scrunched back further into the wall as Angelus reached for her. “Not nice.” He jerked her up and swung her into his arms.

“Angelus, Master?”

Angelus turned to stare at the female blonde vampire. “Yes.”

“I…anything you want, anything.” She licked her lips.

Angelus considered. She was quite beautiful.

Cordelia lifted her head and stared. She struggled against Angelus’ hold. “Put me down. Figures. Put me down and go to the blonde dead bitch would you. If you won’t kill me, just leave and tie me up or whatever, just leave me…figures, blondes everywhere.”

Angelus looked down at the wriggling brunette in his arms. He laughed and tightened his arms. “Be still or I will make you.” He whispered into her hair. Cordelia just glared and moved even harder. Angelus sighed and squeezed even tighter and turned to the blonde vampire. “Your name?”

“Cassandra.”

“Pretty name, I’ll let you know, now just hang up the curtains, okay, that’s a dear.”

Angelus left the room with a still struggling Cordelia in his arms.


Chapter 10

“Why are we putting curtains up?”

“Because, Angelus said too.”

“But, don’t you find that weird?”

“Yeah, but Angelus is old, like really old from Europe old. They did weird things back then, but they were powerful. I say we listen and follow. This could be great for us.” Clyde said as he nailed the material up on the wall.

“I don’t know.” Said the other male vampire struggling with putting the four-poster bed together. “I mean, all this for a human pet.”

“They do that in Europe, it’s called class.” Clyde shook his head. “Don’t you’ll ever read? And, you have to admit, he did steer us right about that East side.”

“True and he did pretty much tear everyone else to dust. I couldn’t take him.”

“I could.” Cassandra laughed.

“Oh, keep your panties on, he ain’t interested. He’s got his hands full breaking his pet.”

“He’ll tire of her, quick. Puny human.” She rolled her eyes and straightened the curtains. “I like these.”

“I’m done, are you all done? I’m still hungry. There still some blood left in that delivery boy isn’t there?”

“Yeah, but help put these clothes in the dresser first.” Clyde called to another dark haired male vampire.

The vampire fingered the female lingerie. “I want a pet.”

“Stick with Angelus, you’ll get one, it’s the European way.” Clyde nodded.

Chapter 11

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