The Hard Way Out of Hell
A/N: I'm moving up the time line a bit between the two shows. Instead of roughly a year between the endings of Buffy and Angel, I'm making it three years, so it's about 2007. This is so the new council is much more established then it would have been in a years time.:^^^:BLIND SPOT:^^^:
"Come on Xander, you're smarter then this."
I leaned back in the library chair, giving a loud sigh. The wooden monstrosity was definitely not made to be leaned in. I couldn't understand how some of my fellow watchers spent hours at a time in these things.
"I never was really good with the whole school thing, I guess it hasn't changed."
In response Emma smacked me in the back of the head. That was something else I could never understand. Why did females always want to hit me?
It's pronounced Ta - sha - raf - na... You do realize if you pronounced it that way in Africa, you could be in deep shit, right?"
"I already know what I'm trying to teach you." She replied a smirk on her face.
I shook my head, this is what I got for introducing Emma to Faith. Faith had taken the girl under her wing, breaking her out of the culture-shock she was in. By the time she left to go back to the Boston school, Em was a whole new girl.
I couldn't really complain about it though. She wasn't so intimidated by the large amount of slayers anymore. And luckily, Faith hadn't passed on her love of leather pants or disturbing nicknames for me.
"Now come on, the more we work on this, the better you'll get." She said cheerfully.
I looked up at the clock, willing the minute hand to move faster. I had a basic combat class for some of the newer slayers in forty five minutes, at this point I preferred the threat of a possible concussion.:^^^:
Why was I looking forward to this again?
I was flat on my back staring up at the faces of a dozen pretty girls. Some people would have called it heaven, I called it painful.
"Are you okay Mister Harris?" One of the girls asked, concerned.
"Yeah Sonia, I'm fine." I assured her. "I'm just making sure none of my internal organs have been liquefied from that kick."
"I'm really sorry Mister Harris, I didn't mean to liquefy your organs." Petra, a twelve year old slayer from Sweden said tearfully.
Looking up at the girls trembling lip, I felt like crap. Sarcasm was a hard thing to see sometimes. "I'm fine, it's called-"
Suddenly, the door to the small gym was slammed open. Even from across the room, I could hear the doorknob smashing through the drywall. I closed my eyes and lay back on the floor, adding it to my mental to-do list.
"Hey gals!" A girls voice screeched by the door. "You've got to come see whats on the telly!"
"Is US5 on again!? They are so
"It bloody well isn't one of those rubbish boy bands!"
If I remembered right, if it wasn't something like The Sex Pistols, or The Circle Jerks, Susan wasn't interested.
"You can't say bloody! Mister Harris, Susan said bloody!"
The conversation quickly devolved from there. Was 'bloody' actually a bad word? Was US5 really a band, if they didn't play instruments? What was Susan actually talking about?
Finally, I'd had enough. "Girls!" My voice boomed in the small area.
Silence overtook the room, and thirteen sets of eyes now looked down on me.
"Why don't you go see what's on the news."
With that said, all the girls were out the door, happy to have any excuse to get out of class.
"Thank you Mister Harris."
I looked up to see Petra, just before she bolted out the door to follow the rest of the girls out into the hallway.
Finally getting to my feet, I started to pull off the protective gear I had on. I decided I might as well see what the big deal was.:^^^:
After changing into some work clothes, I entered the south-wing rec room. I could hear the screaming. Something really big must have happened to get the girls that excited.
"That's happening in Los Angeles right now?!"
"Oh my God!"
Hearing all of this, I was expecting to see that another Hollywood idiot overdosed on something. What I saw instead was the ultimate nightmare come true.=Once again, this is BBC World News special report. The United States is under an attack unlike we have ever seen before. Beings, some are calling aliens, others demons, have been rampaging through the city of Los Angeles for the past half hour.=
I stared in shock at the screen. Demons were running rampant through the city. They were attacking people, and destroying everything in their path.=Through one of our American affiliates, we are showing a live feed of downtown Los Angeles. Right now we have Joshua Briggs, reporting from the helicoptor, already in progress.==...can only be described as 'creatures' have come pouring out of the wreckage of what used to be the Los Angeles branch of Wolfram and Hart. A well known, multi-national law firm.==Some of these creatures are as tall as an office building. Estimates put them at around one hundred feet. Police and SWAT teams have tried in vain to evacuate the areas affected and hold these creatures at bay.=
I couldn't believe this had happened on Angel's watch, and we didn't get so much as a heads-up. He was running the freaking place after all.=What's that? No, we don't know what the cause is at this time. Rumors are circulating and this is being attributed to everything from a terrorist super-virus, to global warming, to the ever popular end of times.=
The girls were freaking out all around, some were looking to me for answers, as if I had any. Seeing I wasn't going to learn anything new, I went to see Giles to find out what the hell was really going on.:^^^:
I opened the outer doors to Giles' office and saw Sally, his secretary. She was sitting at her desk, and looking as harried as ever. She was in her early seventies, but took no crap from anyone. She could shut down even the rowdiest slayer with a single look.
Sally was actually a really sweet lady though, she provided every new arrival with a tin of homemade cookies. But when apocalypse season started, the poor woman was the one that had to reschedule all the meetings Giles had, I felt for her.
"He's already in conference room three, Mister Harris." She informed me, before I could even say a word.
"How bad is it?" I asked, taking a cookie from a plate she kept next to her desk.
"I've heard some of the girls refer to it as a 'kiss your ass goodbye' situation." Sally said darkly. "I'm wondering if I should go home to see my children."
"I don't think you'll have to worry too much." I said, trying to reassure her.
"The older I get, the worse things seem to be with these situations."
"You old? I just don't see it."
"Mister Harris, if I were several decades younger..."
"I'd be a lucky man." I told her. "You think I could get another batch of these," I held up the half-eaten cookie. "When this is all over?"
"I'll think about it." A peak of a smile on Sally's lips. "Now shoo, before they send out a search party."
"Got it Sally, thanks again.":^^^:
As I rounded the corner, I could see several slayers loitering near the door. It didn't take a genius to see what was on their minds.
"Ladies, as soon as we've got all the info, we'll let you all know what's going on."
A redhead I'd never seen before, looked me up and down. "Since when do we take orders from the janitor
?" She asked haughtily.
One of the other girls grabbed her arm, and started to frantically whisper in her ear. Once red's eyes went wide, I figured she was caught up.
"I must have left my mop and bucket in here." I told them with a grin, as I went into the conference room.:^^^:
I just stood there for a second, surrounded by complete chaos. Senior watchers and a bunch of junior one's were losing their minds as they paged through books, ran around with paperwork, or played and re-played what was on the news.
In the center of everything were Giles and Willow, seemingly immune to the craziness around them, as they continued to research. No surprise there, since we were always under the gun in Sunnydale, we quickly learned to block out the bullshit.
"Did we hear from Angel or Wes about what the hell happened?" I asked as I sat down across from them.
Willow gave me a confused look, before turning to Giles.
"What?" I turned to Giles, hoping I'd get some answers out of him.
"We haven't been in regular contact with Angel, or his people since they took over the Los Angeles branch of Wolfram and Hart."
"Wait a sec, you told me you guys were going to Cordy's funeral since I was in Africa..."
"Wolfram and Hart is extremely dangerous, Xander. Angel joining with them, made he, and his people untrustworthy. What you were doing in Africa was important, we didn't-"
I could feel my face redden. "You're telling me, not a single
person from Sunnydale showed up for Cordelia's funeral?" I hadn't been this angry at Giles since he had drugged Buffy for the Cruciamentum back in high school.
People nearby had overheard our conversation, and started paying attention. I didn't give a shit, I wanted answers.
"You-you have to understand," Giles sputtered. "We couldn't allow their influence to effect the slayers."
"The slayers weren't the ones that knew her!" I replied angrily. "Cordy was one of ours, she deserved better then that!"
Willow decided to get involved. "Xander, you're overreacting we-"
"The hell I am!" I got up, the chair falling over behind me. "She fought with us for three goddamn years, and you couldn't even send someone to her fucking funeral?!"
Everyone in the place stopped dead, watching the spectacle before them. Upon returning to London, I realized pretty quick, that any dirt on the 'original' Sunnydale people was big news, so they weren't going to miss a thing.
"This really isn't the time to have to have this conversation." Giles cut in, trying to settle things down.
"That's great Giles, since you never bothered to have it, we have no fucking clue what happened in LA." I went to leave, and saw Andrew standing there, blocking my way. I just knew the little suck-up was going to stick his nose where it didn't belong.
"You weren't there Xander. When I went to save Dana from their evil clutches, there was a confrontation. Luckily, I was able to free her with the help of six slayers. I-"
I glared at him. "Shut up Andrew." I turned back to Giles. "Was this before or after she died?"
"We're lucky they even told us at all." Shaking my head, I turned back to leave, only to run into Andrew again. "Move." I ordered him.
He stepped aside quickly and I reached the door. I needed to get out of here before things got nastier then they already were.:^^^:
Opening the door, I found the four slayers from earlier with their ears up to where the conference room door had been closed. No big surprise though, I'd learned real fast that this place would screech to a halt without rumors and gossip.
"You girls couldn't have been more obvious?"
They all looked over to me in shock, I could tell they were newer slayers. They were still cocky enough to believe they wouldn't get caught.
"We-we were just trying to find out what was going on..." One of the girls stammered out.
"Now you know as much as I do." I told them as I walked away.:^^^:
An hour later, I was in the cafeteria grabbing an early lunch. I sat alone, but all the people in there were staring. Who knew what crazy shit the rumor mill was churning out? Suddenly, two trays dropped down to the table on either side of me.
"We heard you got into a massive brawl in conference room three." Ann told me as she sat down. "Apparently, you took out six slayers before Andrew
was able to stop you with a single punch."
"Yeah Xan," Sabi said, joining us. "I'm surprised you got out of medical so fast, considering the beating you took."
"What can I say," I muttered, before taking a sip of my coffee. "I'm a fast healer."
"So what really happened then?"
"They cut off almost all contact with with the Angel and his crew after they hooked up with evil inc. That was bad enough, now that we have no info about what's happening. But what's worse, was that they wouldn't even send someone to my ex-girlfriends funeral."
"Was that the girl you were so worried about when we were in South Africa?" Ann asked gently.
"Yeah, we hadn't seen each other in a couple years, but I still cared about her. I was gonna get on a plane, but they told me they'd send someone. They wanted me to find that slayer, Patience, in Gabon. "
"That's bullshit." Sabi added. "Ann and I could have gone along with Miss Eyadéma to pick her up. It wasn't like she was that
hard to find."
"There's nothing we can do about it, they know how I feel about it now." I told them, trying to calm them down.
"And that thing with Andrew?"
"I only said two things to the guy. 'Shut up', and 'move'. He did both."
Ann giggled. "It's about time you put that idiot in his place. If he asks me one more time if I've ever been to Wakanda, I'm going to kick his ass
"Any word on what they're going to do about LA?"
"Rumor is they're bringing in the top girls from Europe to Heathrow. Then we're taking a jumbo jet over to Cleveland. I haven't heard anything about what's going to happen once we're there."
"That's because they don't know either Sabi."
"Well they better have some kind of plan, I'm not just gonna show up in LA and fight those giant things without a really big gun." Ann added.
"I'll see what I can do," I said, trying to reassure them both. "I've got most of them mad at me right now, but I'll deal.":^^^:
"Uh-Oh, you've got a more serious problem, check out the bull."
I looked up to see Kennedy heading right toward us. I was actually surprised it took her this long. Every slayer's eyes were on her, seeing what the number five slayer in the world was going to do.
She pulled the chair back angrily, before sitting down hard. "What did you think you were doing, upsetting Willow like that?"
"Can't you see I'm upset too?" I held my coffee cup at an angle so she could see inside. "I never drink my coffee black."
Her face turned red, and she balled her hands up into fists. This was too easy.
"Listen Harris, I don't have time for this crap, we've got to get ready to board a plane in three hours. Go apologize."
"For what exactly? Them lying to me, or them dropping the ball on what happened in LA?"
"I don't give a shit about your dead ex-girlfriend. I just don't want to see Willow-"
This was getting boring. "Annie, you play the violin, don't you?" I asked.
"Yeah, my dad was classically trained. Why?"
"I think Ken here could use the help, go get one."
The slayer stood up in a rage. "Fuck you Harris!" She screamed, and slapped at the food trays in front of us, sending two of them flying against a wall.
Sabi and Ann were about to stand up, but I stopped them. I didn't need saving these days.
I stood up, getting face to face with the angry slayer. "Just remember Kenny, you're always
going to be a replacement for Tara."¦Attention, all personnel.¦
Sally's voice came over the intercom. ¦Please report to the auditorium for an emergency meeting.¦
"This isn't over." Kennedy spat, before stalking off.
"You want us to kick her ass Boss?" Sabi asked.
I shook my head, I really hated that nickname. "No, I can handle her. Let's go see what they've got planned.":^^^:
As we made our way to the auditorium, we ran into Emma, who begged a piggy-back ride from Sabi. "Hey Xander, I heard Andrew beat your ass." She told me bluntly, as she rode her favorite slayer.
"Emma!" Her sister yelled, swatting her sister lightly across the back.
"It's okay, I'm used to all the rumors." I assured them. "Dawn always filled me in on all the crazy stuff that was supposedly happening in Africa."
"Like what?" Emma asked curiously.
"My personal favorite, was that we were smuggling blood diamonds. The best part though, was that I was using slayers as muscle to set myself up as the local warlord."
"Yeah right." Sabi said with a snort. "There weren't even any slayers in
Sierra Leone to find, why would we even go there?
"That's why they're rumors." I stopped to hold the door of the auditorium open, to let the girls through.
Once all of us were inside, we took seats toward the back, and waited to see what was going to happen with LA.:^^^:END