Title: The Myth and the Slayer
Author: Jo-Anne Storm
Summary: What happens when the oldest Immortal meddles in the affairs of another? He has a run-in with the oldest slayer.
Spoilers: Through “Girl in Question” for Angel.
Disclaimers: I don’t own anyone in the Buffyverse of in Highlander. Darn it.
Author’s Note: Written for Fic-a-Thon 2004. I think I covered all the basics. I added a slight Spike/Buffy ending because, well, I wanted to. Not beta’d, so please forgive any mistakes you might find.
Also note that the name Methos is never used in the story, and Adam Pierson only once. Methos changes his name with each life, unlike a few Scots we could name.
Requested By: Delwyn Cole
Requested Genre: Forever Knight, Highlander, or Smallville
Max Rating: R
Characters: FK-LaCroix, Highlander- Methos and/or Joe Dawson, Smallville -
Type: any of the following: gen, action, romance, slash, mystery
Want To See: The scoobies away from the Hellmouth
Not Want To See: Non-con
Marc Corbett studied the club in front of him. He had been told that it was a popular nightspot for rich tourists and foreign students, and the outside façade, at least, confirmed that. Bright neon lights shone from the brick wall, highlighting the crowd of people lined up to get in.
The people were all dressed in the latest fashions, Prada handbags and Versace shoes matched so carefully to Dolce and Gabbana dresses. Black leather was predominate, but displayed with tasteful dignity. These were people who knew what to wear and how to wear it.
Corbett leaned against the building across from the club and took it all in. He made no attempt to join the masses. While he could easily blend in with the idle rich, he much preferred a good beer to a 1982 Chateau Latour Pauillac, and the quiet bar on the other side of the city allowed him to both drink and think in peace.
Rome had changed since the last time he had been there. He tended to stay away from places where he had spent his “youth.” Too many memories were associated with places, despite the time that had passed. Both good and bad memories; the death of a wife, the adoption of a son. Not that there were a lot of places without memories now.
He stiffened as he saw two men approach the club. He recognized the taller of the two, had had dealings with him years ago. Dealings that included the man trying to kill him, unsuccessfully.
He had heard rumors that Angelus had turned over a new leaf and was helping out the slayer in America. He had dismissed the whispers of course, finding them utterly impossible to believe. It was as absurd as the latest bit of gossip he had heard from his underworld contacts about the infamous William the Bloody earning a soul. While he had never met that particular vampire, he had learned enough about vampire nature during his stint as a slayer’s Watcher to know vampiric nature. Either rumor was inconceivable.
Thinking of his time with the Council of Watchers drew his attention to his left wrist and the tattoo engraved there. The blue marking was the symbol of the Watcher’s Council, an entirely different organization than that of the Council, despite their similar names. Neither society knew the other existed, which was fine as far as he was concerned. There were just some spheres that should not merge.
He supposed he should have the stylized circle removed, if for no other reason than because it was an identifying mark. But, as long as there were still Watchers who didn’t know the face of new Immortal Adam Pierson, it came in useful. And since Adam was barely a blip on Watcher Radar compared to the likes of the MacLeods or Amanda, the chances were pretty good that the majority of the non-interfering mortals had no idea who he was.
Of course, if he kept getting caught in Duncan’s web of moral up-rightness and honorability, that would soon change. He had spent years, centuries even, losing his conscious. How the Highlander had managed to find it again was a true mystery. It was all Mac’s fault that he was now in Rome, looking for Paolo Gaetan, the Immortal.
He watched as a Goran demon entered the club, sticking to shadows to being seen by the humans. This was it, then. Gaetan’s plan coming to fruition.
If he had heard of Gaetan’s scheme years ago, before Duncan had crossed his path, he would have shrugged his shoulders and dismissed at as simple human nature, looking out for number one. His philosophy had long been to avoid asking questions, lest the queries be turned on himself. A simple plan to dispose of the Goran Capo di Famiglia in return for a tidy sum of money from the Capo’s rivals was nothing compared to the things Marc had done through the ages.
But the sticking point was that the Capo was human-tolerant. His rivals, not so much. The possibility of another demon clan attacking the human population was something his rusty conscious could not tolerate. So, Rome, watching the Goran demon make off with what Marc understood to be the Capo’s head.
He continued to watch as Angelus and his companion dashed out of the club, running after the demon, who make his escape in a little red convertible. The bleached-blonde with the vampire hopped on a scooter and taunted Angelus until he settled onto the back of the silly contraption, and the pair were off, pushing the motor as fast as it could go.
Marc was still chuckling when he felt the throb of another Immortal entering his sensory range. Gaetan stepped out of the club and looked around, ignoring the questions of the small blonde woman at his side. The two men easily made eye contact, and Gaetan spoke quietly to his companion before depositing her in the limo that drove up at the wave of his hand.
“Braeden,” Gaetan greeted, stopping just close enough to hold a conversation while remaining out of grabbing distance. “Or is it Shannon now?”
“Marc, then. She is beautiful, no?” he asked, indicating the limo, and presumably the girl inside, with his head.
“Enough. Who is she?” Marc asked idly, knowing Gaetan’s penchant for consorting with important women.
“You mean you do not know?”
Gaetan gave him a sad look and shook his head. “You need new demon contacts then, old friend. But, what brings you to my beautiful city?”
He repressed a snort at the pompous claim. Just because Gaetan had been born and died in Rome in the 1500s, he felt that the city itself was his to do whatever he pleased with. Marc wondered what the other Immortal would say upon hearing that he had been Caesar’s personal chef.
“Still using that moniker, are we?” He had warned him a century ago that using The Immortal as his title, even among the demon community, was foolish. Gaetan had laughed the warning aside, enjoying the mystique of the name.
“I am known throughout Italy, my old friend,” he laughed now. “Why would I drop that which I am known by?”
“To avoid Head Hunters.”
“Bah! I am more than a match for any of the children that come here. But, you did not answer my question. Why are you here?”
“The Goran Clan,” he said simply.
“Ah, you want a piece of the action, yes? I am sorry, but the deal has already been made. Even now my men are leading Angelus and his whipping boy on a merry chase. They will return to the States unsuccessful.”
“And a demon war will break out.”
Gaetan shrugged. “War is good for business, yes? You have used the same tactic, I remember.”
“That was a long time ago.”
“Not so long, heh?”
Marc sighed and grimaced. “I have to stop you, you know?”
Gaetan laughed and waved as he turned his back on Marc and walked back to the limo. “You can try, old friend. You can try.”
It only took him a couple of hours to track down Gaetan’s men, barely avoiding a run-in with Angelus and his companion as they received a ransomed bag of explosives. He had silently laughed as he listened to the two men snip over which Gaetan’s new girl actually belonged to, then left them to their fate as he followed the Goran servant to the actual head. From there it was a simple thing to retrieve it and take it to Wolfram and Hart. He trusted the evil law firm to deliver the package safely, if for no other reason than because he paid them an exorbitant retainer every year to follow his instructions to the letter. They hadn’t failed him once.
An hour after he left the offices found him strolling through the city, lost in his memories of Arabella and Donato, their adopted son. They both had been dead for centuries, but the memories induced by the sights and sounds of Rome brought the pain back as if the fire that had killed them had happened only a few years ago.
He never saw the small woman or the fist that had him sailing back thirty feet into an ornate fountain.
“Fuck,” he muttered in Sumerian as he climbed to his feet. Gaetan’s girl stood over him, sword clasped firmly in hand. “What did you do that for?” he asked in Italian. “And what the hell are you?”
“Me, Slayer; you, slayee,” she said brightly in English, bringing the sword up in preparation of attacking again.
Mentally, Marc started going through ever curse he had ever learned, even the physically impossible ones. How had the slayer gotten involved with the bastard, he wondered as he dodged the girl’s first swing.
“And I’m simply killing you before you can kill Paolo.”
“Kill Paolo? Why would I do that?”
“Because you’re an evil demon?” she asked sarcastically.
He ducked a blow aimed at his throat and danced away from the temperamental girl. “And let me guess, Gaetan told you the way to kill me was to cut off my head? Stop it, dam’it!” he snarled as the sword cut a glancing blow to one arm. He had no desire to fight the slayer, knowing that he stood no chance against her superior strength and speed, and silently cursed the Immortal for using the girl to accomplish his own ends.
“I’m not here to kill anyone,” he shouted as he once again danced out of range. “I was here to stop a demon clan war, and now that I’ve done that I’m heading back to my nice, not-so-peaceful life in Paris.”
The slayer pulled her swing and faced him, sword at ready but unthreatening. “Demon war?”
“Yes, the one your boyfriend was setting up within the Goran Clan.”
“Never heard of them,” she said, raising the sword once again.
“What about the Capo di Famiglia? Hear Gaetan mention him? Or seen him with talking to any funny little bluish guys with ears on their cheeks?”
The slayer stopped once again and cocked her head to one side as she studied him. “The ones with the noses?”
“The ones with the noses,” he confirmed, franticly searching for an escape route just in case she decided to attack again. She seemed to sense him wanting to rabbit and hefted the sword, eyeing him grimly.
“I don’t know much, really,” he said defensively. “He tried to overthrow the clan’s Capo, which would have created a power vacuum and paved the way for non-human-friendly sentiments to take precedence within the Famiglia.”
“Demon war bad, got it. So, what, the demons sent you to stop him?”
“No, associating with an overgrown boy scout brought me here.” He waved away her look of confusion. “They sent a vampire named Angelus to deal with the problem, but Gaetan had him and his companion chasing their tails when they weren’t arguing over you.”
“Angel was here and didn’t come see me?” she asked, the picture of outrage. Marc couldn’t help but wonder how the slayer could be so calm about one of the deadliest vampires in history being anywhere in her vicinity. She must have faced some nasty demons to be so blasé. Or she was plumb stupid.
“From the way he and the Billy Idol wannabe were arguing. I’m surprised they didn’t beat a path to your door,” he soothed, not wanting to upset the powerful woman with the sharp sword.
“Billy Idol stole the look from him,” she muttered as if she had said it a thousand times. Then her head jerked up and she fixed him with a fiery gaze. “Billy Idol?”
He regarded her carefully, not sure what this latest bit of temper was about.
“Bleached hair, leather duster, cheekbones that make models cry, and blue eyes?”
“I didn’t get close enough to see his eye color, but it sounds right.”
The blonde let out a loud scream and threw the sword, driving it deep into a wall a good fifty feet away. Marc slowly backed away from her, sure that she was about to lose it. He had seen a slayer have a nutty before, and it was not an experience he wanted to repeat.
“Ungh! I’m gonna kill him! Deader! Again! That asshole! I’ve been mourning him for months and he’s still walking around!” She released another scream and stalked to where her sword was still quivering. A quick yank pulled the blade free, and she stomped away, ignoring the confused Marc.
He listened to her rant as she left, shuddering as she promised the absent man that she was going to do something to him that Marc was pretty sure was physically impossible. One threat had him wincing and taking quick steps away from her retreating figure. He was pretty sure he wasn’t old enough to hear that kind of language, and he was the oldest man on Earth.