for Angel S4 Finale: Home. For the Sentinel, none really.Warnings:
Do I own any of this? Nope, nada, nein, zip, no way Jose.Author's Notes:
This is an older fic that was originally written for the SentinelAngst Yahoo group. Just after the Angel season 4 finale one of my listsibs asked why Wolfram & Hart had Jim's spirit guide locked up. Well this little plot bunny popped into my head. Also it was written before anything on Joss's plans for season 5 were ever released some of my assumptions were incorrect.
@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@The White Room~What the Hell?~
James Ellison, ex-army ranger, police detective and for right now, one extremely
tense Sentinel thought to himself as he looked around at what appeared to be an endless white expanse.
The last thing he remembered doing was turning on the white noise generator before laying down to sleep. As soon as his eyes had closed beneath the sleeping mask he had found himself here.
Where ever here
was.~It's gotta be somekinda dream or vision...but those have always been of the blue jungle. Except for that time with the ghost.~
Carefully extending all his senses in a hope of detecting anything he discovers why the place has him so...freaked. Jim grimaces at himself, ~Grown men don't get freaked...well...except maybe Sandburg~
Jim turns slowly. ~It's a sensory void.~
There are no scents or sounds. No currents of air to brush and caress his skin. Not even shadows. None of the usual markers that define his world. Looking down he's somewhat relieved to be able to see himself, still dressed in the sweat pants he wore to bed. Staring at his bare feet he wriggles his toes. He must
be standing on something but whatever it is it must match his own body temperature exactly because he can't feel it.
Turning to complete a full circle he sees someone standing about fifteen yards away. ~At least I think it's about 15. Hard to tell here.~
A tall, twenty-something black man. With a shaven head and strong build he has the look of a street tough. ~And he's about as happy as I am to be here.~
Jim smiles with grim humor as the man starts talking and gesturing angrily. And he still can't smell, hear or feel anything. It's like watching a silent movie. Nothing but a flat image.
Continuing to watch the young man, the Sentinel's eyes narrow as he realizes there's an exasperated familiarity in the tough's behavior.~He's been here before.~
The young tough has stopped and is staring at something. Jim turns his head quickly in the same direction, shocked to see a black panther standing a short distance away from the kid.~Finally! Maybe I'll get some answers.~
Jim takes a step forward and nearly jumps out of his skin as he feels something brush his leg. Side stepping quickly he looks down into yellow eyes set in ebony fur. Eyes wide he looks back up to see the young man and panther who are standing very still and just staring at each other.
"That's not you, is it?" Jim says, turning back to his spirit guide, starting slightly to see him now wearing the form of a Chopec warrior.
"No" a deep voice replies. "But we are the same...brothers."
"Brothers..." Jim echoes before looking back at the silent pair. "The kid...he's a...sentinel isn't he."
Black eyes slide his way. "Yes, though that has been kept from him most of his life."
"Kept? How can that happen?" Jim glances sharply at the spirit guide. "I mean, I know that I did a good job of repressing the whole senses thing but I've got a feeling that's not what happened here."
"Well.." prompts the Sentinel.
"There are beings in this world that crave power and revel in the pain and anguish of the innocent. This one," the warrior nods his chin "came to their attention when he was just a child. And while they found they could not claim his power as their own they could block his
access to it."
"If they can't have it then no one can?" Jim frowns, "So what's going on." he waves a hand "I assume this is the cage or box they've kept it in. Why show this to him now after going to all that trouble?"
"This glimpse of his true self is the honeyed bait to a trap that wears the guise of a great opportunity." The warrior turns and fixes Jim with a black stare. "Though denied access to his power he still has a sentinel's instinct to protect his tribe and territory. And he and his companions have proven to be most formidable. They are being tempted as well."
"So what, you want me to warn him...them? What?" Jim asks.
"No, the one who leads them has already accepted on all their behalves." The warrior holds up a hand as Jim starts to speak. "It was a decision made out of love and necessity, with the full awareness of the inherent danger of the trap. And it is one the others were all prepared to make as well, confident in their ability to outwit their enemies."
Jim takes a deep breath then exhales slowly. "So what am I doing here? What am I supposed to do?"
"Free him. Teach him. Show him what he can be." The warrior turns to fix Jim with deep black eyes. "For the trials he and his companions face are soon to increase ten fold and they will need him to reach his full potential to even have a chance of, not only surviving, but winning".
"He'll need a guide." Jim says.
The warrior shifts his head slightly to stare over Jim's shoulder. The sentinel turns to look and the white room is gone. Instead they are now standing in a large, dark basement with row upon row of file cabinets and boxes stacked floor to ceiling. Standing at one cabinet thumbing through the files is a man. Tall and thin, but with a wiry hardness and sad weariness in his face.
"The Guide?" asks Jim.
The warrior nods. "Yes. As difficult as it will be to free my shackled brother this one may be harder still to help."
Jim frowns, "Huh, why?"
"Many of his inner demons mirror your own and like yours were, his shackles are of his own making. And as such they will be harder to break. These two already share a bond, but with the shackles they both wear it is just a shadow...a whisper in their spirits. Easily ignored when something becomes between them."
"Mirrors my own?" Jim wonders softly.
Again the warrior turns his head and Jim shuts his eyes before turning as well. ~I am getting real tired of this presto-change-o routine~
Taking a deep breath he slowly opens his eyes. And takes an involuntary step back.
Before him is a memory. Two young boys sitting at a table with their father eating breakfast, a petite Asian woman hovering in the background.
"While you have reached a measure of peace and understanding with your
father, he has not. And may never do so." the warrior turns and nods. "He has made mistakes because of this and had become alienated from his sentinel and the others of their small tribe. You and your guide will not find teaching him
an easy task."
A sideways glance, "Me and my
guide? So Sandburg's supposed to help to?"
"Of course. A Sentinel needs his guide and the Guide needs his sentinel. The Shaman will be able to help his fellow guide to face his demons as he has helped you face yours."
The Sentinel turns to face the warrior. "So where are these guys? If we're supposed to help we need to know where to find them?" And the warrior turns his head once again.~Damn. Had to ask, didn't I?~
Jim sighs and turn as well to find himself standing in front of a hi-rise office building. There's a work crew un-wrapping a new sign.
"Angel Investigations?" Jim muses. ~Why the hell would a place called Ange Investigations have a lobster for a logo?~
Shifting slightly he sees more of the crew taking down another sign.
"Wolfram & Hart, Attorney's at Law - Los Angeles Division...Los Angeles?" Jim turns to the warrior. "Sandburg and I have go to California?" ~Oh isn't Simon just gonna love this.~
The spirit guide nods. "And soon Sentinel, it must be soon. More than you know depends on the young one, his guide and his tribe."
"Yeah, alright. God knows how I'm going to explain this to Simon and Blair but first thing in the morning I'll give it a shot." Jim turns and he's back in his bedroom. Running a hand through his hair he suddenly feels very tired as he walks to his bed only stop short as the warrior speaks one last time.
"While freeing the young one you and your guide will see many things that will make you doubt both your senses and sanity. As terrible and wondrous these things will be They - Are - Real. If you do not accept that, than all
might be lost." the warrior steps forward and the Sentinel resists the urge to lean away from the intensity in those black eyes. "And I give you a warning. After freeing my brother and seeing what you will see you may be tempted to stay and join their fight. Do not. The war they fight is theirs. Only if they fail will the battle be taken up by others."
The warrior steps back, "Perhaps, perhaps not. If you are the best suited then you and your guide may be called. Or perhaps others will be."
Jim nods and steps back to sit on his bed. He takes one last look at his spirit guide. Again wearing the shape of the panther he nods, then fades away. Jim takes a deep breath, lays back and closes his eyes.
And with a gasp he sits up and jerks the facemask off. Looking around the dark loft he extends his senses and sighs in relief as a flood of familiar scents and sounds pour in. The left over Thai from dinner, whatever that brand of herbal tea Sandburg is currently drinking. And the steady, comforting beat of his guide's heart.
Laying back down he wonders if he should wake Blair. Raising an arm over his head he glances at the bedside clock to see that it's only 3:45am. ~Nah, better to let the kid sleep. Got a feeling neither one of us will be getting a lot of it in the near future. And I still have no idea how we're going to explain this Simon.~
Closing his eyes and breathing the way Blair has taught him the Sentinel relaxes and slips into a dreamless sleep.
~ The End ~
That's it folks. It's rough and I didn't and still don't have plans to take it anywhere but if, by some chance, this inspires a plot bunny or two for you all...go for it.
Thanks for reading.
Note: the lobster thing...for those who don't know AtS or don't remember, early in the show the character; Cordelia designed some business cards. But apparently her artistic ability wasn't quite up to par. ;)