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Trick Or Treat

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Summary: COMPLETE: An escaped Goa'uld, and rather sadistic Powers to Be, bring Xander out of the dubious security of his quaint little demon filled world, and into a not so quaint alien filled star system.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Stargate > Xander-Centered > Theme: FriendshipKeiFR1547116,45636110481,154,73919 Jun 0431 Oct 06Yes

Penance

AN: A little bit of Wesley for a reader who requested him rather pleadingly many
weeks ago.

Due to the fact that I am now home and internet capable, I have FINALLY managed
to respond to reviews from the last section. Please feel free to leave questions for
clarification, etc. Thank you all so much once again!

And so ends the drama that is Kinsey. Next chapter, we actually get back to the POINT
of all this. LOL You know, the Stargate stuff.

Timeline reminder: In the Angel-verse Season Five never happened. The gang took over
Wolfram and Hart end of Season Four, and things progressed until now from there.



****************** Trick or Treat: Chapter Thirty-Four ********************



Riley made himself watch. It shouldn’t have been as hard as it was, to see Xander’s hand
deliver death. His own had done the same so often, had seen the younger man do so as
well, there should have been nothing particularly horrifying about the blade finally
reaching deep enough to grant Senator Robert Kinsey release.

And yet. Yet, it was horrible. Terrifying in a way that made Graham turn his face away,
mouth tight with unhappiness. But Riley watched. He had to. It was his penance. For
loving Sam blind to her weaknesses. For Ashley’s death. For having a hand in making
Xander Harris responsible for a human’s death.

The shaggy haired man’s face, when the moment came, was remote, neither cold with hate,
nor alive with the fierce, ruthless pleasure that had characterized the scene before
Ashley’s unexpected arrival and intervention. There was a peace there that Riley knew
the girl’s ghostly presence had imparted, an acceptance that had more to do about her
death, than the good Senator’s.

In the end, it had never really been ABOUT Kinsey.

As the knife descended the bloodied man found the strength to protest weakly. His hands,
red with his own blood, gripped Xander’s arms, tight with desperation. Riley could see,
from where he stood, that Senator Kinsey’s blood specked lips tried to form words… a
curse, a plea, in the end that didn’t matter either.

His last words might as well have been the ones that sealed Ashley to her death. His fate
had been sealed since that moment, when he had become a danger that could not be
ignored.

Xander stood, knife in hand, as the Senator gasped his last and lay in a pool of blood on
the white carpet, a rapidly stiffening form. Riley watched, stupefied, as Xander swayed
for a moment, and then strode to the bathroom. Muffled retching noises broke the near
paralysis that had held Riley and Graham both.

They had crouched by the body, preparing for cleanup, per the plan the three of them and
Buffy had originally come up with, when Xander reappeared, pale, white faced himself.
He wiped his mouth with the back of one newly scrubbed hand. “Leave it.”

Oh, that was unexpected, and not good. “Xander…”

The one eyed man shook his head sharply. “Leave it.” Riley started to protest again,
but Xander fixed him with a glare so fierce that Riley found himself stumbling back a
step, as if to avoid the sheer force of it. Xander hand flicked and the knife, the murder
weapon, embedded itself into the wet carpet near the dead man’s head. “That’s MY
penance.”

For taking another’s life. For claiming that death as HIS right. For enjoying it.

Riley flinched as his own thoughts were echoed so closely by Xander’s own and he knew,
in a moment’s epiphany, if it had been his own Haley gunned down, that he would be
standing in Xander’s scuffed shoes, a murderer because of duty, an avenger in the name of
love.

“You people make my head hurt.”

They both turned in unison to face Graham. The other man’s face was relaxed and more
open than it had been since they had left on this mission of heartache, despite the tone
of his voice. Riley knew that his teammate found Xander’s newly revealed humanity
reassuring. Knew suddenly why Graham was always so uneasy around Buffy, who could shut
off her humanity like a light switch.

“Let’s get out of here.” Xander said finally.

Riley watched silently as the younger man jumped off the bed and lifted himself up into
the ceiling. Watched as Graham, with a brow raised in his teammate’s direction, followed
suit. Waited a moment, lips pursed, before reaching out and pocketing the knife and
following as well, the newly clean blade resting coldly against the heat of his skin.

**********************************************************************************

“I don’t understand this, WHY are you going? What on earth do you believe this will
accomplish?”

Angel stuffed another black shirt into an already overflowing duffel bag and attempted,
somewhat unsuccessfully, to ignore the former Watcher. A former Watcher who, all together
used to being ignored, was having absolutely NONE of it.

“Angel!”

The souled Vampire let out a deep breath and sat on the edge of his bed as he let his eyes
stray out, to the sunrise. God, he loved the sun. Funny how much two hundred or so years
of deprivation could make something to precious. Wesley paced the lavish living quarters
that Angel had called his own since their takeover of Wolfram and Hart so many years, so
many battles, ago.

It seemed like lifetimes, even to him at times.

And despite the years, despite all the hours he had spent, pacing the same path along the
carpet that his human friends was wearing down, agonizing over decisions and the fact that
he was in charge of one of the most powerful, and evil corporations of all time, the room
was essentially bare. Unlived in.

It was hard to admit, even to himself, especially to himself sometimes, that despite his
friends, his work, he really wasn’t living. And not just in the biblical sense. There
was something more than the brood that held him back from calling LA home. More than
history. There was a lack in himself, some part, that had yet to be touched, filled.
Xander’s offer had promised to do what so many years of penance hadn’t.

Make him whole.

Let him live.

Wesley paused and met Angel’s determined eyes before sighing and running a hand through
hair that was already unruly from a night spent working late in the library on a demon
land dispute on the east side of Los Angeles. Their history was convoluted, a path of
ups and downs, honesty and broken trust. But sometimes that history stood in good stead,
such as now.

“I’m appointing you acting President and leader in my absence.”

Instead of seeming surprised Wesley merely nodded in weary acceptance, and of more than
his new title and responsibilities. Wesley clapped Angel’s shoulder awkwardly, but with
real compassion. “I hope…” the other man gathered himself, swallowed his arguments, his
reasonings, and continued, “I hope you find whatever it is that you are looking for.”

“Thanks Wes.”

Wesley removed his hand and coughed. “Yes, well,” he replied brusquely, “you had best say
your goodbyes to the others. I’m sure Fred will have worked herself into softly drawled
hysterics by now…”

Angel rose, and managed one of the first unburdened smiles he had felt in years. He
surprised his friend, yes friend, by embracing him briefly and laughed out loud when he
released him and Wesley pulled back, clearly flustered, though pleased by the show of
emotion. “I’ll visit,” Angel said simply.

“You better, if I have to deal with an Omlash uprising by myself, I will find out whatever
top secret location you’re at and hunt you down, a pack of eight foot salivating slugs in
tow. We still haven’t gotten the stains out of the foyer from last time.”

Angel snorted. “I look forward to it,” he replied wryly. And for the first time in a
long while he realized that he was. Looking forward to the future, and all that it
held.

**********************************************************************************

“Well?”

There was a distinctly unhappy silence on the other end of the phone he held. Not that
the President, frankly, gave a damn. His stomach, ulcer and all, hadn’t been happy since
he won his first Governor’s race, all those years ago. And finally Benjamin Locke
replied, voice stiff and formal.

“There will be no more incidences with the former residents of Sunnydale, California.”

The President closed his eyes, and sighed. Well damn. Despite the ambiguity of that
statement, he had little trouble imagining what could have prompted it. Swift revenge,
likely death and destruction. Noting less than what the government deserved, for sticking
its nose WHERE IT DIDN’T BELONG.

He was the most powerful man in the free world, true, but in the end, politics was pretty
much ALL he knew. Put him in charge of a farm, or a McDonald’s, or even, a bunch of
supernaturally teenagers who averted apocalypses on a regular basis with the help of a
school of WITCHES, and he’d fail spectacularly. It was good to know one’s limits, and
the NID had apparently forgotten theirs.

“I take it,” the President continued with a fierce firmness that was borne of the desire
to never, EVER, meet an avenging branch of the Council in person, “that no blame will
befall those who may have been… acting in their own wounded best interests?”

Because if they nailed whoever caused the aforementioned death and destruction, he might
as well crucify himself and the rest of his Presidency. It wasn’t fear, just a healthy
dose of respect, that motivated him in this regard. Personally, he was glad to leave
world saving to those who had been Destined for it.

If the NID took out Slayers and Company, it wouldn’t take long for things as they all
knew it to end because the individuals who ran that organization, no matter how powerful,
just didn’t understand the complexities of self sacrifice involved in averting
apocalypses. They’d fail, spectacularly.

“Yes, Mr. President.”

“Good.”

“Thank you Mr. President.”

“Mr. Locke? Let’s see if we can work extra hard at making sure that there is NO repeats
of such incidences in the future on behalf of the legitimate, or illegitimate, aspects of
your organization. Otherwise, well the Joint Chiefs may have to take a more active
interest in other certain clandestine activities.”

He could practically hear the other man swallow his tongue.

“Of course, sir.”

*********************************************************************

Senator Robert Kinsey’s tragic death by burglar made front page news across the nation.
Next Chapter
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