SURPRISES II: FAMILIARITY
DANIELLE FRANCES DUCREST
characters and concepts belong to Davis/Panzer Productions, Gaumont Télèvision, and Rysher Entertainment. Angel
belongs to Joss Whedon, Warner Bros. Studios, Kuzui Enterprises, Sandollar Television, Mutant Enemy, and Greenwolf Corp. Any copyright infringements were not intended. This story was written for entertainment and not for profit.
Spoilers and timing: take places in the year 2014. Spoilers are up to the end of season four of Angel
because I haven't seen any of season five yet.
If you couldn't tell from the title, this is the sequel to "Surprises".
Summary: Mary Lindsay grows up without ever knowing her father, Wesley Wyndham-Pryce. That all changes when he shows up out of the blue at her high school graduation ceremony.
The time had finally come for the class of 2014 to graduate from high school, and Mary Lindsay was one of them. Her mother, along with her honorary "uncles" Duncan, Richie, and Joe and her honorary "aunt" Amanda had come to watch. Mary noticed during the ceremony that there was a man sitting next to her mother that Mary didn't recognize. All of her honorary family members kept giving him suspicious looks like they didn't trust him, which made Mary very curious. Whoever he was, Duncan and Richie especially looked like they wanted to reach across the seats and put as much distance as possible between him and Anne Lindsay, Mary's mother.
She gazed at him on and off during the ceremony. Their gazes caught more than once. She didn't see anything really scary about him. Sure, he could use a shave, and she thought he had one too many wrinkles for someone who looked as young as he did. She guessed that he was at least a decade younger than Mary's mother, which would make him at least twenty years older than Mary herself.
She did notice that he was aware of Duncan's, Richie's, and Amanda's stares, and he looked tense and ready for any sudden moves they pulled. Mary recognized it for what it was only because of the amount of time she'd spent in the company of her Immortal "uncles" and "aunt". Even Uncle Joe, who was mortal, was looking tense, although at the age of sixty-something there wasn't much Joe could have done if the mystery man tried anything.
She needn't have worried; whoever he was, he remained peaceful during the entire ceremony. After the ceremony ended and Mary and her classmates had tossed their caps into the air, Mary was feeling impatient to get over to the group and meet him. She couldn't help feeling that he looked familiar, although she didn't know from where.
"Is that your dad?" one of the guys in her class asked as he passed by her.
"Huh?" she asked him back.
The teen jerked his chin in the direction of the man standing next to Mary's mother. "Is he your dad? He looks like you."
With a start, Mary realized he was right. The mystery man did look like her. Mary wondered suddenly if he was her dad. Mary knew that her father was British, and that his name was Wesley Wyndham-Pryce, but she'd never met him before. Her mother hadn't known how to get in touch with him. If that was still true, though, how could this be her father? There was no way he'd even know she was graduating.
Feeling apprehensive, she made her way over to them. Her honorary relatives bid her congratulations, then her mother hugged her.
"Who's he, Mom?" Mary asked, nodding at the man standing behind Anne.
He stepped forward, offering a hand. When he spoke, he had a gravely British accent tainted with an American one. It wasn't quite what she'd been expecting.
"Wesley Wyndham-Pryce," he introduced himself.
Mary swallowed. "You're my father."
He nodded. He looked a little nervous himself. "Yes."
She gave him a shy smile before taking his hand and shaking it. "Nice to meet you."
A relieved smile slowly spread across his face. Mary grinned back.
Wesley Wyndham-Pryce came with them to Joe's
for Marie's graduation party.
He stayed the entire evening. He and Mary spent most of that time in the back room away from the loud noises of the blues bar, trying to catch up on old times.
She knew why he hadn't been there while she was growing up, and she didn't blame him for not being there. Anne had explained countless numbers of times that when she'd told Wesley about Mary, Anne hadn't known the man very well. They'd agreed that it was best for Anne to raise Mary on her own. Wesley did offer to house Mary and her mom, but Anne had refused. Wesley had agreed to pay child support, and every month for the past eighteen years a check had promptly arrived in the mail. None of the envelopes had contained return addresses, however.
Anne had been just as surprised as Mary to see Wesley there. How Wesley found out about her graduation ceremony, he wouldn't say. Every time Mary tried to ask him, he would blush a little and try to come up with a good excuse. She'd done that herself when friends had asked her about her "uncles" and "aunt". She knew Wesley was hiding something, but she didn't know what. She had a feeling it was important and maybe as big a secret as Immortality.
There were many similarities between the two of them that Mary found downright eerie. Certain movements that Mary had thought were hers alone she immediately noticed him doing. She couldn't help but noticing, either, that they had the same nose.
She told him about her life and about where she planned to go to college. She said she had enrolled to UCLA and had plans to become a doctor like her mother. That was when Wesley had surprised her and said that he lived part-time in Los Angeles. For half of the year, he lived in London, but the other half he lived in LA. He had a system similar to Uncle Duncan's, who would live in Seacouver half of the year and in Paris for the rest of the time.
Wesley gave her his number and gave her the address of his work place and told her to come see him whenever she got to LA. She couldn't believe her luck. All her life, she had wanted to meet her father, and she never could because she had no idea where to look. Now, suddenly, she knew exactly where to find him.
They hugged before saying goodbye. "I wish I'd come to visit sooner," Wesley admitted before he left. "I didn't know what an intelligent and beautiful young woman you'd become."
Mary couldn't help but smile at the compliment. She wished he'd come sooner, too.
"I'll see you in Los Angeles," Mary promised him.
Another brilliant smile lit up his face. "I'm looking forward to it already."
He'd never seen her before, but he recognized her immediately. She resembled his own mother so greatly that it was impossible not to recognize that she was the daughter of a Wyndham-Pryce.
So much time had passed. It was hard from him to believe that eighteen years had really gone by since Anne Lindsay, his date of only a couple of nights, had told Wesley that he had become a father, and that she was the mother. So much had happened in those eighteen years. Wesley had gotten the assignment to Sunnydale as Buffy and Faith's Watcher, only to be fired a few months later. He'd traveled half a year across the States as a demon hunter before winding back up in California and settling in LA and becoming one of Angel's employees. That was only the beginning.
He knew very little about his daughter beyond her name, but when he saw her step up and receive her diploma, he felt proud of her. He tried not to show too much pride, however; the three men sitting behind him, all closer family members by association if not by blood than Wesley had ever been to Mary, were still eyeing him with much-deserved mistrust. After all, Wesley had just shown up out of the blue after being absent for the entirety of his own daughter's life. He respected the three men and the bleach blonde woman sitting next to them for being so protective of Mary, even it that protectiveness was creating a boundary between Wesley and Mary. It was obvious that Mary was in safe hands.
Wesley hadn't intended to stay for long afterwards. He and Anne had exchanged a few words earlier, but Wesley hadn't expected for Mary to want anything to do with him. He underestimated her interest in him, although perhaps he shouldn't have. She possessed the same curiousness and cautiousness that he had depended on for many years. He also couldn't fail to notice, as the night went on, that she had his nose and his smile.
When the time came for him to leave, neither of them had wanted to stop talking. There was so much for them to talk about, so many things to discuss. He wanted to get to know this woman that shared his blood, and she obviously wanted to know more about him. It was that pleading look in her eyes that made him decide to give her his phone number and the address for the Hyperion. He hoped, almost desperately, that she would take him up on the offer of coming to see him, and soon. He wanted to get to know her and be the father he never was.