Doyle came into Angel's office, Drusilla in tow. Angel was mildly surprised to see that apparently Doyle hadn't been tortured or threatened at all. In fact, he just seemed rather annoyed.
"Hey boss. I've got a client for you. At least, I think she's a client. She's a little bit... unsettled, if you know what I mean." Doyle said, twisting a hand next to his head in the universal sign for crazy. "So, if you don't mind, I'll be off now." he said, and left. Although, if Angel knew Doyle, he'd be hiding around the corner to listen in, so he can weigh in with "Guidance".
"Hello, Daddy." Drusilla said, staring at the ceiling.
"I'm not your father, Dru." Angel said evenly "You know that."
"I know. You killed him. I heard him scream. You made me watch. I was so afraid. Then I wasn't. For a very long time. But now, I'm afraid, Daddy. Everyone's screaming, and I don't know why." Drusilla said in a quiet voice, still staring at the ceiling. Angel's eyes flicked up there to see what had gotten her attention, but there was nothing there. He looked back down and started when he saw Drusilla's eyes boring into him.
Angel wished Spike was here. Much as he hated to admit it, the younger vampire had usually been able to understand Drusilla's ravings. As Angelus, he had never had the patience. "Dru, will you try and be coherent." he said, gently. It would seem she was here for some kind of help, which was odd. He'd have thought he'd be the last person she would go to in this kind of circumstance.
"Coherence. Making sense. How can I make sense when the world is wrong? The little witch with the darkness inside changed me. Or was it the man with the scythe? I was him, and he was me, and now I'm not me anymore. Coherence. Yes, I can give coherence a go. She found me, Daddy, the little witch I nearly killed. She saved me, saved me from the monsters. She was so brutal. It was wonderful. Then she sent me here. And everyone's screaming and. They. Just. Won't. Stop." she said, breathing heavily and clutching at her ears.
Angel tried to piece it together. The little witch... Well, Angel knew only one witch, at least recently, that Drusilla had nearly killed, but he knew of no reason why Willow would save Drusilla. Or, for that matter, how the redhead had gained enough power to teleport Drusilla here in the first place. As for the man with the scythe - well, Angel had no clue about that part, or the screaming. But then, Drusilla was
So now Angel had to figure out what to do. He didn't want to kill the woman he had sired, not if he didn't have to, but Angel hadn't a clue what to do. And it wasn't as though he could keep a crazy vampire around. "Okay. Dru, I don't really know what you're saying. I don't know why you're here, or what you want me to do. I don't even know what I can do." he said, hoping that Drusilla might do or say something to help him know what path to take.
"It doesn't matter now." Drusilla said sadly. "He's coming. They'll be here at any moment." There was a thump outside Angel's office, and the characteristic sounds of Doyle having a vision.
A man materialized in the room in a burst of flame, dressed completely in black, even his face hidden. There wasn't even a hole for his eyes. He held an ornate dagger in one hand. Angel stood, moving to take out the man, but Drusilla was already there, seizing the man's knife arm, twisting and flicking a foot up to knock the dagger out of his hand, where it spiralled slowly in the air. Without even looking at the dagger, Drusilla shifted her grip on the assailant, moving him slightly so that the dagger, having completed its upward arc, plunged downwards into the man's neck. To Angel's surprise, the man combusted.
Drusilla shoved him aside, and Angel heard something whistle past where his throat would've been. He hit the ground, spun to see an identical assailant behind him, with an identical dagger. The man swept the dagger, feinting at Drusilla. It caught her lightly on the wrist, just hard enough to draw blood. The man disappeared in a burst of flame, and Doyle came rushing in.
"Boss! You're goin' to get attacked ... and it's goin' to end exactly like this." the Irishman said, surveying the scene. "Damnit. I might've been just a little late with that vision.
Drusilla looked at him scornfully. "You're not much cop as a seer, are you? In fact, you're not any cop. You're thief at being a seer."
Doyle, having seen that Angel was okay (or perhaps he knew he would be, from his vision) looked at Drusilla strangely. "What are you on about?"
"Don't worry about her, Doyle, she's insane. We should be worrying about whoever just attacked us - why, what he was after, who he was, that kind of thing."
Drusilla looked slightly to the left of Angel. "Why don't you ask the Red-Man yourself?" she said.
Before Angel had a chance to ask her what she meant, there was a whooshing noise and a sudden rush of heat, followed by a more flash of pain from his shoulder, then another whoosh and burst of heat. Angel sighed. "That thing just stabbed me, didn't it?"
"Well, more of a light slash." said Doyle in a conciliatory tone, while Drusilla burst out into peal after peal of hysterical laughter.
Lindsey sat waiting in Vail's mansion, idly flicking through one of the mage's many, many magical tomes as he waited for Vail to return. Which he promptly did, in a flash of fire.
Vail, entirely covered in black, stepped into a pentacle engraved on the floor, which contained his IV stand and medical supplies. It was a shame that he even he didn't have the power to use magic to completely banish the frailties that come with age. At least, not constantly. When he crossed into the pentacle, he sagged, fire radiating out from him without burning anything. He quickly and expertly attached himself to the IV drip, and took his medicines. Only then did he remove the protective black mask from his head, sighing with relief.
"Well, did you get it?" Lindsey asked impatiently.
Vail sighed, glancing at the lawyer in exasperation. "I don't think you grasp the difficulties of what I just did. It isn't every mage that can harness the power of a Fire Elemental, even for so short a time."
Lindsey sagged, and Vail smiled. "So, you didn't get it then." Lindsey said in despair. He had thought that using Vail was the most likely way he would succeed - and he would've had to use Vail's magical expertise soon anyway, so why not bring him in on the project earlier?
"I didn't say that." Vail said, wryly. He held out a hand, and an intricately gilded dagger appeared in it. But Lindsey wasn't interested in the dagger. He was interested in the blood on it.
Lindsey eagerly went to grab it, but it vanished before he had a chance to get close. "No no, don't forget. You were going to tell me what you wanted the dagger for. Weren't you?" Vail said, wagging a finger at Lindsey.
Lindsey gritted his teeth. He was going to, eventually, but not yet, not till everything was prepared. "That wasn't the deal." he snarled.
Vail cocked his head. "Wasn't it? Oh well, it is now. Tell me what you want the blood for, boy. Before your blood stains the blade too."
So Lindsey, feeling that he had no choice, rapidly explained Holland's plan to Vail, hoping that his boss wouldn't be too angry at him for telling the mage.
While Vail was listening to the plan, a smile spread across his face. Since he'd detected the witch who'd teleported into LA, he'd began to feel - not inadequate, that was too strong a word, but shaken. He was no longer sure that he was the most powerful magic user out there. But this, this plan would be a true test of his abilities. Even before Lindsey had fully revealed the plan, he'd already come up with a way to implement it.
"Well, why don't we get started then?" Vail said.
Lindsey blinked. "What, now? Don't you need time to prepare, of anything?"
Vail took pleasure in the young lawyer's shock. "No, boy. Opening a portal to another dimension is easy enough - the blood can take care of that. And a summoning spell is a simple affair. Anyway, it’s a spell. I'm Cyvus Vail. I can do it." he said cockily. He didn't add that controlling
what he summoned was a different matter entirely, but that would be Lindsey's problem.
If this worked, Lindsey thought, then perhaps the Senior Partners would take notice and promote him. "By all means, go ahead." Lindsey didn't add that, if it went wrong, Vail would be the one to blame.
So Vail went ahead. As he said, the two individual spells were simple, although combining them and working them simultaneously certainly wasn't. Several times, Vail's strength nearly failed him, and he began to think that maybe casting the spell immediately after temporarily bonding himself with a Fire Elemental and nearly getting killed wasn't the best of ideas.
But eventually, the spell worked. Or, at the very least, something was summoned. Whether or not it was what Lindsey wanted, Vail had no idea. It was a man in a suit, tallish, dark hair, well-muscled. He didn't seem surprised to find himself in an entirely different place.
"Who might you be?" he asked, seemingly unfazed by Vail's demonic appearance. If it wasn't for the man's nonchalance, Lindsey would've thought that the spell hadn't worked. The man just seemed so normal
. Well, Lindsey guessed they'd find out if he was the right man - or thing, he supposed - for the job soon enough.
Back in Angel's office, Angel and Doyle cleared up the mess that the brief fight had made in his office (Angel still wondering what to do with Drusilla, especially once Cordelia got back from her audition and saw the vampire, and Doyle wondering when Angel would tell him who the crazy woman was) and Drusilla sat playing with the wrist that the mysterious assailant had slashed.
Suddenly, Drusilla froze, staring at nothing. "Magic pouring into a bridge. So, so much. She can feel it. Why can she feel it, she isn't here, she's too far away. Here comes the hook, pulling up nothing. Why can't I see it? Why won't the stars show me? I'm blind, and everyone's screaming, screaming in my head. It hurts, Daddy, all their pain. I did it to them, so why do I hurt?" she said, sobbing, clutching herself as though to hold herself together.
It hit Angel then, why Drusilla was here. He couldn't believe he hadn't realised it before. "You have a soul."