Lost Soul - A Slayer No More Interlude
by Philip S.
Summary: A lost soul finds a way to return from the void. Part of the “Slayer No More” series.
Disclaimer: All things Angel belong to Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy. Mine is but the plot.
His world ends in fire and shadow. For a year he played the game of the devils, doing his best to fight evil from the inside without the shadows creeping into his soul. When the endgame comes he is one step ahead of his enemies and the streets of his city run red with their blood.
The Circle of the Black Thorne is destroyed. What the unholy trinity of the Wolf, the Ram, and the Hart has built over the course of decades is destroyed in a single night, their foothold in the world of men wiped away. To exact vengeance they send their armies after him and his people.
The skies over Los Angeles rip open and monsters pour into the dark streets. And in a dirty alley, not far from the place that has once been his home, he reunites with his surviving friends for one last battle. None of them expect to survive.
They fight brilliantly, his friends. The fallen god that wears the flesh of a human, the fellow vampire with a soul, even the cocky street kid with no powers to speak of except for an unbending will. Together they stand, together they fight, and together they die. In the end he stands alone and before him is the portal through which his enemies send their troops.
Vowing to take the evil ones with him, he clutches his sword and dives into the reality tear.
Maybe the Wolf, the Ram, and the Heart panic when they see their enemy approach. Or maybe they simply see the perfect opportunity to get rid of him once and for all. That will never be known, for the thoughts of the entities called the Senior Partners are not for mortals to understand. Their deeds, though, those are easily observed. They cut off their connection as their enemy jumps, stranding their troops in the Earth dimension, and leaving a vampire with a soul trapped between worlds.
A lesser being would perish. The limbo between dimensions is not meant to preserve life. Even a creature such as he has once been, a mere vampire, would surely be destroyed here. He is no mere vampire, though.
He is Angel. Once the most sadistic vampire of them all, then cursed with a soul and human compassion. He is the focus of numerous prophecies, selected as a champion by the higher powers, and through his veins flows the demonic strength of the Wolf, the Ram, and the Hart, which he has taken from the veins of their human emissary.
And so he preserves, floating in nothingness for an untold number of days. Time has no meaning here in the void. His mind, his consciousness, spreads. Senses attuned to the physical world change and adapt, trying desperately to find any sort of solid point of reference, any sort of escape from his prison. And then, an indefinite time after his arrival, he finally senses something.
A presence passes through the void, crossing from one dimension to another. No, two presences. One is not familiar to him, though it feels malevolent and hostile. The other, though... his mind is hazy from the long period of complete sensory deprivation, but he is certain that he knows this other presence.
The memories are fragmented and difficult to access, but he knows this presence intimately. Yes, he remembers. They have shared minds and thoughts, not too long ago. There is a connection between them still. One that allows him to follow her. Her, yes. It is a her. Faith. Her name is Faith.
The portal closes before he can reach it, but now he knows where the way out is. He does not have the power of the Key to open dimensional portals wherever and whenever it is convenient, but the demonic energies flowing through his veins hold a power of their own. The Wolf, Ram, and Hart can open portals of their own. It is more difficult, more time consuming, but they can do it. Which means he can do it.
Finally the portal opens again and beyond he can see a solid world. Diving through, his ravaged form tumbles into a place of soft grass underneath a dark night sky. Stars twinkle overhead and the crescent moon sheds its light over the land.
His fingers dig deeply into the soft earth. Finally, after so long, there is dirt between his fingers, unneeded air streaming into his lungs, the sounds and smells of the night surround him. A ragged laugh escapes his throat. He is out. After so long, he is out.
Something is off, though. The smells around him, the ever-present feeling of magic that surrounds supernatural creatures such as himself, the very feel of the world under his fingers... something is not right about all that. For a moment he thought he was home, but now he gets the feelings that this is not home. Not exactly.
Rising to his feet, he almost stumbles. It’s been too long since he has fed. The power he took from the Wolf, Ram, and Hart is almost spent. He needs to regain his strength. And then he needs to figure out where he is and how to get home.
Faith is here, that much he knows. It’s a start.
Straightening, Angel walks off into the night towards the faint sounds of civilization he can hear in the distance. And all around him, unbeknownst to him, the new world he has fallen into recoils at the touch of something that has no business being here, that does not belong here.
Something that needs to be removed before the whole world is thrown out of order.