Disclaimer: Not mine. Joss’s and the WB’s.
Summary: AU end to "Sleep Tight" (Angel S3). With Connor in tow, Wesley heads east to the last place Angel would suspect.
A/N: From Jinni’s "20 Minutes with Connor" challenge, but twisted. I always liked Connor more as a baby, and I just can’t seem to write from the baby’s POV with any success, so here it is... Wesley’s POV about baby Connor.
He had to abandon the car outside a small town in Kansas, when the second tire went flat. Maybe it was a sign, telling him he’d done the wrong thing – but he’d been travelling for days, and there was no going back. By now, they’d all know what he’d done, and they wouldn’t know why.
(I’m a dad. Me. Can you believe that? Vampire, cursed with a soul, proud father.)
Connor was fussing as he strapped him into the front carrier he’d bought at the Walmart outside of Reno. It was as though the little boy knew he’d never be seeing his father again. He pushed the pain aside – tried to forget what he’d had to do – and tossed a few diapers in the backpack he purchased with the carrier. A jacket for the baby; he hadn’t any idea where they’d be ending up, and December was a lot colder in most of the country than it had been in L.A.
(We should have Christmas this year. All of us! You, me, Cordy, Gunn, Fred, and Connor. It’s Connor’s first Christmas, we should have decorations...)
He swapped license plates with a BMW in Los Angeles, right near the city limits. He swapped them again with a pickup in Utah. He was just taking every road marked east, heading blindly for the other coast, and he had no sense of direction anymore.
Connor finally stuck his thumb in his mouth and stopped crying, after he locked the door and left the keys in his pocket. Maybe he’d be able to sell the car, trade it for some piece of junk he could hide in. They were detectives – they’d be after him soon enough, but until then he had a head start. He just needed a plan.
The Father will Kill the Son. That’s what the prophecy said, and there was no way he’d let the child gurgling in his carrier suffer that horrible fate. No matter what it would take...
(Look! I got him a teddy bear. Me. Getting MY kid a teddy bear.)
The road stretched on into the distance. He wasn’t hungry – they’d stopped outside of Metropolis for a diaper change, and Wesley warmed up some formula in a microwave at a truck stop for Connor’s dinner. How long had they been gone? A day? A week? The miles rolled together, just like the pavement was doing beneath Wesley’s feet, but he was sure, sure he’d made the right decision; he was sure taking Connor, killing Justine when she tried to take him away, fleeing L.A. and everything he knew... it was right. It had to be.
Around the bend, there was a farmhouse. Kansans were supposed to be kind, he’d read that somewhere, back when he was a Watcher and didn’t have any blood on his hands. There were farm animals. A tractor. All of the quaint little things that all of the Watcher journals on America said.
(Look, Connor, a cow! What does a cow say? I know he’s only a baby, Cordelia, but someday he’ll be able to answer.)
American as apple pie, as the the red barn, the pickup truck, and the two men out moving bales of hay in the yard. Father and son, he could see from their grins and the easy way they moved together. Angel would never have that chance, and it was his fault... But it was right, and it was the only way, and it had to be.
(He needs a stake. A baby sized stake. He’ll need to learn how to use it. Cause, you know, vampire... I’ll show him how to use it, just a soon as he can stand up.)
"Hello, there, stranger! Need a hand?" the older man yelled. He jogged to the edge of the field and his son followed. Wesley stopped dead in his tracks.
"I- my car broke down- I’m on my way... east..." He trailed off, trying to decide how to deflect questions when Connor started screaming. Frantically, Wesley pulled Connor from the carrier and rocked him. "Shhh... it’s alright, little one... Connor, shhh..."
"Connor, eh? Cute kid, there. Where’s your wife, back at the car?" He leaned up against the fence, the boy rocked on his heels.
Wesley hugged Connor to him. There was a façade to keep up, there would have to be... "She passed away," he lied, looking down at Connor’s wispy hair. "When he was born. She’s gone."
"I’m sorry," the man said. "We can help with the car, though... you can stay for a few days, if you need. Name’s Jonathan Kent. This is my boy, Clark."
Connor finally quieted, thumb in mouth once more. It couldn’t be good for the baby, but Wesley wasn’t one to look a gift horse in the mouth, not anymore, not when his friends were in L.A. hating him, and he left Justine with a bloody hole in her chest in a park... "Wesley... Summers," he said, grabbing the first name that came to mind, anything to shield him from Angel Investigations. "I’m pleased to meet you, Mr. Kent. Could you... could you tell me where I am?"
"Smallville, Kansas. And we’re pleased to have you. Clark, run and tell your mom we’re on our way up. She’s probably got a pie in the oven. Apple, likely." Mr. Kent patted his shoulder.
Smallville. It was the last place they’d suspect. It sounded safe, secure, boring. And never being found was just what Wesley wanted.