…Without a Paddle
Disclaimers: I am in no way affiliated with the WB or any of it's shows so any characters portrayed in this fic are absolutely not my own.
Authors Notes: For WC Assignment 3- A Buffy or Angel crossover with any Wednesday night show. God help us all. And by the way- no disrespect to the other show in this piece. I'm just having fun and fulfilling my assignment.
He blinked as he stepped outside of his car. The sun was just about down and he still felt a little uncomfortable, but he had a mission. Cordelia had had a vision that a kid in this town was about to commit suicide and he had to find him or her before it was too late. It being a small, coastal town, he went to the first place he could think of where kids would go to be alone and contemplate offing themselves- the docks.
As he walked slowly past the vast array of boats and Jet Ski's he looked for any sign of teens in distress. Immediately he saw a lanky blond with a frown standing near the edge of the wharf. "Hey, are you okay?" he called out, uncertain as to how to approach the young man.
The blond turned his head quickly. "No, no I'm not actually." Angel let out an exhausted breath- finally an easy case.
"Can I help you with something? Sometimes talking about things with someone who doesn't know you can help." Angel hoped that didn't sound too weird, but figured if the kid was about to jump into the water and drown himself, who cared how weird it sounded as long as he stopped him.
"Well, to start with, my girlfriend who's 21 but looks 30 just broke up with me because she says she needs to get on with her life. My best friend Joey just got dumped by my other friend Pacey and I think I might still be in love with her but she already slept with Pacey and now I'll never be her first. And my parents who got divorced and remarried again last year just had a baby who never stops crying and I feel like they just don't love me anymore." Angel looked at the guy, who had never even taken a breath while spurting out his problems and raised an eyebrow. Surely this couldn't be the teen he'd been sent to save?
Angel scratched his head. "Okay, well let me ask you this- were you thinking about killing yourself at all?"
The blond looked at the stranger, surprised. "God, no. I mean, that's something I'd never even contemplate. I have so much to live for, what with getting accepted to USC Film School and High School Graduation and a whole summer to bum around and do nothing."
Angel smiled. "Okay, that's good. I hope you figure things out really soon, buddy- have a great life." He walked away as quickly as possible, not wanting to hear anymore of the kid's sob story. What a whiner! He continued down the boardwalk and came upon a young blond girl, huddled in a ball on a bench. "Hi." He said quietly so as not to startle her.
She picked her head up and he noticed the tears running down her cheeks. "Are you okay? Can I help you with something? Do you want to talk about it?"
She took a deep breath and wiped at her face. "How can I possibly talk to you about something that you couldn't even possibly comprehend? I mean, do you know what it's like to be a poor little rich girl from New York City who got shipped to Capeside, Mass. by her parents after they caught her drinking and doing drugs and having sex in their bed when she was only 15? No, I bet you don't. And do you know what its like to have a best friend who's so hot and you really like him but he's gay and will only fool around with you when he's drunk? No- I don't think so! And that's not even getting into my issues with my father and the fact that I caught him having sex with some teenager when I was only 12 or the fact that my friend Abby drowned right here because she and I were drunk and she fell in and I couldn't save her or my Grams…"
Angel held up his hands in defeat. "Whoa! I'm sorry I asked. But let me ask you this- you're not thinking about suicide, are you?"
She looked at him with her impossibly weepy eyes. "How could I think about killing myself when I have so many other things to dwell on?"
"Right. Okay, then- try to cheer up. My advice- get some therapy, quick." He walked away, scared to death of the girl and her major psychological problems. If these weren't the ones he was supposed to save, he was dreading finding the right one. He walked on until he came to a brooding dark-haired guy mindlessly sipping a beer and kicking rocks. "Aren't you a little young to be drinking?" Angel asked as nicely as possible.
"What do you care, dude? No one cares about me. My dad thinks I'm a waste of space, my best friend and I barely even talk because I ran away with the girl he's still in love with last summer. My brother Doug hates me, I'm a big disappointment to my sister Gretchen, not to mention the fact that I just dumped my girlfriend because I love her too much. She deserves so much better than a worthless guy like me and I can't stand the fact that there is nothing I can ever do to be worthy of someone like her-"
"Hey, all I asked was if you should be drinking. What is it with you kids in this town spilling your guts to the first stranger that walks by? You're not thinking of killing yourself are you?"
The dark guy threw his empty beer can into the water and grabbed another. "And ruin the miserable existence I've worked so hard for? I don't think so."
"Great. Glad to hear it. Have fun wallowing." Damn these kids today! They all had enough problems to write a textbook about psychoses on. No wonder so many of them were out of their minds. He walked on, hoping against hope that the next person he found would be the one he was supposed to help because he needed to get the hell out of this place as fast as possible. He saw a thin dark-haired girl sitting on the end of the dock ahead of him and he walked toward her, praying that she was the one.
"Excuse me, I was just wondering if you were okay? You look a little sad."
"Sad? Why would I be sad? My boyfriend just dumped me because he says I make him feel like nothing- worthless just because I'm the smartest and most talented person in this town. I love him so much that I seem to have forgotten about the fact that I've been in love with my best friend Dawson since I was old enough to look at guys. I got into the college I've always dreamed of attending just to find out that I couldn't afford to go. Last week I thought I was pregnant, and…"
"Forget it! I don't care if you are going to commit suicide; I don't want to hear about it! What is wrong with you kids? Go have some friggin' fun and leave the brooding to the professionals!" He stalked off, back toward his car, not even caring that someone here really did need his help, and as he did, things started to blur.
He woke up screaming, and Cordelia came running into his room. "Angel, what is it?"
He sat up straight and took a deep breath. "I was dreaming that I was in hell again."
"What show was it this time? Dharma and Greg? WWF Smackdown?"
"Dawson's Creek," he sighed.
"Oh god, you poor thing. Are the powers that be ever going to stop torturing you?"
"I don't know. But if I never see that show again it will be too soon. Can you bring me a blood bag from the refrigerator? Maybe it will cut down on my urge to suck Kevin Williamson dry."
"Sure." She walked toward the door smiling, and as she was leaving, started singing quietly, "I don't wanna wait for my life to be over..."
Angel grabbed his pillow and threw it so hard at her retreating form that it exploded into a shower of feathers as it hit the door Cordelia closed behind her