Through the Looking Glass
Title: Through the Looking Glass
Author: Karen U
Disclaimer: All Angel characters belong to Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy. All Lord of the Ring characters were created by JRR Tolkien and belong to the Tolkien estate.
Distribution: ask first
Spoilers: Angel - through at least Conviction (season five premiere), possibly Just Rewards once it airs.
Summary: Fred finds herself in another time and place...
"The little brat has way too much power."
Eve paced the length of the office, her arms crossed over her chest. She swung her hips purposely in what she thought was a sexy walk. She worked very hard to be sexy. Unfortunately, she often fell short of that goal. The man in the room with her, however, was not stupid enough to remark on that, no matter how badly he wanted to.
"You think she has too much power? Hello? I'm the one that has to work with her. I have to kiss her ass on a pretty much constant basis. And thank goodness that I don't mean that literally," the man said. After a few seconds an utterly horrified look came to his face. "What if she thinks I'm attracted to her or something? What if she asks me out?"
"Then sue her for sexual harassment. She is your boss, you know. Can't use her position of power for something like that," Eve said cheekily, then sent a look back over her shoulder at him. "Actually, I don't think the senior partners would like that. Bad publicity for the firm."
"And of course, that's always the most important thing," Knox replied with a roll of his eyes, earning a droll look from Eve.
"Did you or did you not sign away your soul when you signed up for this? You knew what you were getting into. Everything is about the firm," the young woman - or at least, Knox thought Eve was a woman, as in, actual human woman - reminded him. As if he could actually forget something like that. He wasn't stupid. If he was, then Wolfram and Hart would have had him killed long ago. Instead, they continued to keep him around.
"I know that. I still don't understand this whole 'give the Los Angeles branch' to Angel and his friends crap, though. It's stupid. The vampire has proven time and again how dangerous he is to us, and now he runs the place. He's already killed Hauser-"
"Hauser was stupid. He didn't know how to play Angel. He tried to prove something to him. He had a pissing contest with him, and Angel won. You, on the other hand, well, you know how to play our dear Fred. You've got the little Texas hayseed eating out of the palm of your hand. She's easy."
"You've read the file on her, Eve, same as I have. There is nothing easy about Winifred Burkle," Knox argued, crossing his arms over his chest, affecting the same stance Eve currently had as he stared at his colleague. "Think about it, Eve. Just because she's skinny and got the whole vulnerable southern belle thing doesn't mean she's easy or a wimp. I mean, for God sakes', Eve, this is a woman that was willing to stand alone against Jasmine because she saw through the mask. She is not easily cowed."
A small smirk touched Eve's lips at the word 'cowed'. She had, of course, read the file on one Winifred Burkle, so she was well aware of the fragile-looking brunette's time in the land of Pylea. It was Lorne's home dimension, but it was also a place that Fred had been known to refer to as a hell dimension. Not all that surprising given the fact that in Pylea, humans were referred to as cows and treated as slaves. Yes, though Eve hated to admit it, Fred was actually rather tough, a surprising thing given the woman's slight appearance.
"Maybe we'll just turn her evil then."
Knox sighed. "Not sure how possible that is, either. Honestly, when it comes to ending up on our side... Gunn's the most vulnerable. He feels out of place here, and now that he has the lawyer abilities, he fits right in. Angel's had his own dark days, of course, and even though he doesn't remember it, Wesley kidnapped Connor once upon a time. Lorne is just thrilled that he's getting to work with real celebrities for a change."
"And Fred tried to kill a man."
"Her old professor? Come on... He's the one that sent her to Pylea. She was just sending him there. An eye for an eye and all of that. Gunn's the one that did the killing."
"She had the intent," Eve argued, and Knox sighed.
"So? He sent her to Pylea, which is basically trying to kill her. She was returning the favor. It's not like he was a good man," the Wolfram and Hart employee said, then shrugged. "He would have fit in well here. If, you know, Gunn hadn't broken his neck. And then thrown him through a portal. I don't think Fred's as corruptible as the senior partners like to think. And she's a pain in the ass. She's been working us around the clock to find an antidote for that stupid biological 'bomb' we created. I'm sick of her. She's going to have us saving the blasted world every day Eve. We've got to get rid of her."
"Angel would not be thrilled if Fred just showed up dead one day," Eve informed him, and Knox shrugged.
"Then make her be missing. He's already busy with Spike just showing up out of the blue... Or should I say out of the amulet. Add a missing Fred to the mix... And he'll be too busy to notice what the firm's really up to," the man told her, and Eve was silent for a long moment, as if considering his words. After a moment, she smiled.
"I have to admit, the skinny little bitch is annoying. And the senior partners might be interested in her brain, but they were never certain of their capacity to get her on our side."
Knox smiled. "Then let's get rid of her," he urged, and Eve let out a little laugh.
"I guess we will. And I know just the way to get her out of our hair," the woman said, the smile on her face growing almost sadistic. "Portal, anyone?"
**To Knox fans... Sorry about his characterization, but it was necessary to the fic. Plus, I read on some tag board where someone was saying Knox was acting too nice to not be really evil, so I thought it would be fun to play on that theory...**