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This story is No. 2 in the series "The Vulnerability of Faith". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: Charles Gunn left L.A. in 2006 to get away from the Angel Investigations. Twenty-three years later his son shows up in L.A. to find Angel -- to let Angel and Company know what really happened to Charles Gunn. Sequel to "the vul. of faith"

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Highlander > Other BtVS/AtS Characters(Moderator)DemonaFR181227,997034,0102 Aug 032 Aug 03Yes

Chapter Two: The World Exists In Gray Not Black And White

For Disclaimer and Notes see first chapter.

Chapter Two: The World Exists In Gray Not Black And White

“What?” I asked and the redhead recovered first.

“I’m Willow…I didn’t work with your Dad but I knew him. Um…this is Giles, he owns the Magic Box chain. Um…that is Cassandra, his girlfriend, and the blue-haired guy is my boyfriend, Oz.

“I think that you should definitely sit down for this one Wesley. Your father obviously didn’t tell you a lot of what happened in his past. I think that you need to have all this explained to you before you decide whether or not you still want to get in touch with the woman or not,” Willow said to me and I just looked at her and sat down so not to disturb her talk.

“What is it that you are wanting to tell me?” I asked her and she just looked at me and then to Giles and Cassandra, they nodded for her to continue.

“You do know that your father was a very good and very passionate vampire hunter?” Willow asked me.

“He died at the hands of a master vampire in Chicago. I knew all about his lifestyle. He told me that he fought evil where he used to live. He taught me to defend myself against the things that bump in the night. I didn’t think that he was going to die hunting vampires. I just…I mean I didn’t think that my father was capable of dying. My mom died in a freak plane accident and I know that it was a completely natural occurrence. However, I didn’t think that I would ever have to bury my father with his neck ripped open and a stake shoved into his heart underneath of his burial outfit. I don’t know to this day whether or not he was turned and therefore dusted. All I know is that after he was buried I waited all night by his grave and he did not rise. I’m so thankful that I didn’t have to slay my own father.”

“Good…well…um…not good that Gunn is dead but good cause you just saved me like hours worth of back-story. Let me explain to you something Wesley. Your father hunted vampires for a very long time here in LA. A vampire turned his sister, who would have been your aunt, and he had to stake her. It was one of the hardest things I know that he has ever had to do in his life. During the time that he had to stake his sister he met a vampire named Angel who is probably the Angel that he meant when he left the name. Now before you get all crazy on me and yell about vampires are evil and how your father would never befriend a vampire, just listen to me. Some vampires have souls. Angel is one of those vampires. He was cursed with a soul back in 1898 by a gypsy tribe because he killed one of their daughters. Well to make a really long history lesson short he is a good guy and he and your father were good friends. Angel then introduced Gunn a few weeks later to a man named Wesley, who was once a Watcher for the Watcher’s Council in Great Britain. The Watcher’s Council is responsible for watching, training and guiding the Slayer as she kills the demons and darkness in the world, etc. Wes died in 2004 from a fatal car wreck, which almost killed Cordy also. Well, Gunn was introduced to him as well as a woman named Cordelia.
“Cordelia is the woman in the picture that you have in your possession. She was, at the time that Gunn met her, a link to the Powers That Be, she had visions of people in need and in trouble and she helped Angel fight evil. It took a little while but Gunn and Cordy finally hit it off and they started out as really good and really close friends, but then things got different and more involved as time progressed and as the missions became more and more dangerous. What I am getting at here basically is that Cordy and Gunn hit it off more than perfectly. They were like the super-couple and they were so happy together. I thought for sure from the way that Cordy talked on the telephone that they were going to get married or something of the sort. But things change; people change, and things are never the same after these changes.
“In 2005 the world was to end. Cordy saw a huge prophecy of the Slayer at the time, Buffy, dying and the Hellmouth being opened to attempt to bring on an Apocalypse and send the world into Hell. Everyone that was in the group in LA and the group in Sunnydale at the time got together and tried to help save the world. Well, although we were very much successful in stopping the world from ending and being sucked into Hell we were unable to keep everyone in our group alive and well, human. Cordelia died in that final fight that night. She died in Gunn’s arms and it was a really horrible thing. Well, although she technically died she didn’t stay dead for very long. She rose again and became yet another Immortal in the Game. Although Gunn and Cordy tried and tried to work things out he couldn’t deal with the fact that she was going to potentially live forever and he was going to die. I think there were some other ulterior motives behind it like he didn’t want to be used against her or something like that, but we never knew for sure. Gunn left LA and up until this point we had no idea what had happened to him. We still don’t know what happened. We only know that he died and that you are his son who came here to find Cordy. Ok…I know that you are going to have questions, so shoot!” Will said to me and I just sat there for a minute taking in everything she had just said. I couldn’t believe that this was the truth. My father had loved another woman and had never spoke of her. Better still he had named me after his dead friend.
“Wes?” Willow asked gently.

“Wesley, I go by Wesley,” I told her and then sighed. I buried my head in my hands with my elbows on my knees. I stayed like that for a few moments until I could regain my self-control. “So…why would I be sent to find her? Where is she? Is she still alive even?” I asked the questions immediately one after another. Willow looked up at the others in a little bit of confusion.

“You hungry? Thirsty?” Cassandra asked me and I looked up at her in confusion.

“Both actually,” I answered as I remembered that I hadn’t eaten anything yet.

“What don’t you eat?” She asked me and I smiled.

“I’ll eat anything at this point,” I told her honestly and she smiled.

“I’ll go cook up some hamburgers in the back. Anyone else?” She asked her employees.

“Yeah, I’m hungry,” Oz called from across the store, where I was sure that he couldn’t have heard her quiet voice ask that.

“Will? Rupert? Amanda?”

“Sure,” all three answered and I sat back in my chair staring at the picture in my hands.

“Is she still alive?” I asked in general.

“We’ll talk after you get something in you. But yes, she is alive,” Willow told me and patted my shoulder gently on the way by as she headed back in the back to help Cassandra make some food.

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

About twenty minutes later Cassandra and Willow came out of the back carrying a few plates of food and set them down on the table in front of me. A bottle of soda and a cup with ice appeared in front of me as well from Amanda’s hands.

“Thank you,” I managed to get out and then dug into the hamburger and fixings in front of me. It was the first meal I’d had in the last twenty-four hours and I didn’t fully realize how hungry I was until I had finished my second hamburger and still felt a little hungry.

“Hungry weren’t we?” Cassandra asked me from her seat behind the counter. The guests of the store didn’t seem fazed at all that I was eating in the middle of floor while they shopped around me. This place must be a comfortable environment for everyone involved.

“Yes, I’m sorry I ate so much…I just realized I hadn’t eaten in at least twenty-four hours,” I told them a little ashamed.

“No need to feel bad. Eat all you like. You are among friends here,” Giles told me and I nodded to him. Willow came back to sit down at the table across from me.

“I think that I’m going to get Oz to answer your questions ok? He spent the most time with her and knew her the best out of all of us here at the moment in the shop. If Faith or Angel were here then you would talk to them, but they are both unavailable at the moment,” she told me and Oz sat down next to me, in the seat in-between Willow and me. The minute he sat down the back of my neck began to tingle with that familiar feeling that let me know that something evil was near. It must have been evident because he caught my eye almost immediately.

“I won’t bite you,” he told me simply.

“You are a vampire?” I asked him as I tensed up ready for a fight.

“No, I’m a werewolf,” he answered simply.

“And you are saying that is ok?” I asked him as I stood up out of my chair.

“Sit down Wesley. I don’t know what your father taught you about things that are supernatural but he must have forgotten to tell you that some things aren’t evil. His friend here in LA happened to be a vampire who wasn’t evil. Oz was his friend as well…he isn’t evil either. Understand that or don’t bother sticking around here Wesley. Either you accept all of us and our quirks or don’t stick around!” Willow threatened me and I stood there looking at her for a moment. I could tell that she was very serious. I sat back down and looked at them.

“Sorry, I just – Dad didn’t exactly teach me to play nice with things that roamed at night. It will take a little getting used to that is all,” I told them carefully and they both nodded. “Please tell me about Cordelia,” I told them, Oz in particular.

“What exactly do you want to know about her Wesley?” Oz asked me simply. A simple question with more questions than could possibly ever be answered and yet I couldn’t think of one to save myself at the moment.

“Um…her and my father…did they have any children?”

“Immortals can’t have children. So no, no children,” Oz answered and I saw him and Willow reach for each other’s hands.

“You can’t have kids either Oz?” I asked him gently.

“No, I can’t. I’m Immortal, like Cordelia, like Cassandra, and like Amanda. As well as some of the others that are coming in later tonight before patrol,” Willow answered gently and I nodded, trying to take all this information in as fast as I could.

“So my next question is about Cordelia’s whereabouts. Clearly I was sent here to let Angel and Cordelia know about my father’s death, as well as let the rest of you know I’m assuming. I think that I need to see her and get some closure or something. I think that is what Dad wanted,” I suggested to them and Willow and Oz exchanged glances for a moment before Oz looked back at me.

“Cordelia isn’t in the United States either. She’s in Europe as well,” Oz answered simply.

“If I am understanding correctly, then Cordelia, the woman in the picture, is off in Europe for a month with Angel, the name of the person in the box. Are they dating? Together in some way?” I asked, very confused.

“No, um…you got the wrong idea totally. I came off with that statement completely wrong. She needed to get away from here. Angel took her to Europe to help her work through some issues. Angel needed time away from LA as well from his um…to get away from everything. Faith, Cordlelia’s um…girlfriend I suppose, is still here in the States, she is actually coming in a little later tonight after she gets back with Dawn…” Oz quickly corrected himself.

“So he took Cordelia? Why?”

“They are best friends Wesley. It was only them at the beginning of Angel Investigations, Angel, Cordelia and Doyle. Then Doyle died and Wesley replaced him, then Gunn came into the picture then Faith, myself, Kate and Lindsay who both died years ago, etc. Angel and Cordelia go way back, they know each other better than anyone else know either of them. She knows him better than everyone in our group with the exceptions of Faith and Adam,” Oz told me. I was slightly confused still.

“Kate?” I asked, perking up at a name that sounded familiar.

“She was one of the people who worked with your father. They were fairly decent friends.”

“My sister is named Kate…” I trailed off and the group all exchanged looks. They didn’t bother responding to my statement. “But Cordelia, I still don’t understand why she would go someone else to Europe and leave her girlfriend here. I mean she is taking another man to Europe and the girlfriend...Faith…she isn’t jealous?” I asked them, not believing this at all.

“No, she isn’t,” Amanda answered from her position leaning up against the counter. “Faith trusts Angel as well Cordy. I don’t think that either one of them would want to break that trust with Faith. Their relationship is a delicate thing, a very important delicate thing. The world rests in that relationship, breaking that trust would not be a good thing,” Amanda admitted to me.

“So when am I going to be able to meet Cordelia?” I asked, getting slightly angry. I felt like there was something they were hiding from me here.

“It is going to be difficult to get a hold of Angel and Cordelia. Um…they are headed to Angel’s homeland so there aren’t really that many ways to reach them quickly. Perhaps, given that this isn’t exactly a dire situation and the fact that the whole reason Cordelia went away was to rest and relax and forget about Gunn, perhaps its best to just confront this when she returns,” Giles suggested as he took off his glasses and cleaned them with the handkerchief in his front pocket on his shirt. After they were clean he replaced them on his head and the handkerchief back into the pocket.

“You want me to stay here for a fucking month? A month? I have finally found the person I am looking for and you want me to wait another month?” I yelled at him, standing up angrily.

“Exactly why you shouldn’t mind waiting for a *fucking* month! You have been searching a year for this woman. She is worth the extra wait. Whatever Gunn wanted you to give to Angel is worth the wait. I won’t call her and disturb her peace and serenity by telling her that Gunn’s son is here and demands to see her. None of us will ruin it for her!” Giles yelled back at me, as he too rose out of his chair behind the counter. I took a step back as I felt rather than heard the anger in his words. I looked around at the other people in the store. The employees all seemed to agree with him and the customers had momentarily paused but then resumed their shopping as if nothing was out of the ordinary.

“A month is a long time for someone like me. I could die before they finally come home,” I told him softly.

“Then we will make sure that you don’t, we will keep you alive and well until she does get back with Angel from Europe,” Cassandra gently told me and I looked around at the nodding heads of the people in the group.

“Fine, I give up, you win,” I told them and sat back down.
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