Title: Things that MatterAuthor: ArjenLength: 150.000+Summary: When Ames White finds a clue to the whereabouts of his son, he needs a distraction to keep Max unaware. Hiring an assassin to take her out seems like the thing to do.Pairings: Nothing that isn’t canon.Rating: This story contains graphic violence and might not be suitable for young children.Crossover: Buffy the Vampire Slayer/Noir/Dark AngelChronology:
The Day After
Dark, Darker, … (goes AU during third chapter)
Things that MatterDisclaimer: All characters and other recognizable things are property of Mutant Enemy, ADV films, Cameron/Eglee productions, Fox entertainment and whoever else wants to lay claim to them. Everything that I thought up is made using their property so I can’t really claim that either.Feedback: Preferably constructive criticism, tell me what I’ve done right and wrong and I’ll be happy. Flames I consider as written by five years old who according to that ridiculous rating system aren’t allowed to read this.Background: Dawn was created early and the monks weren’t stupid enough to lead Glory directly to her. During Halloween ’97 she was possessed by Kirika from Noir. Afterwards she retained the memories of this assassin and had gained knowledge of the supernatural. This story diverges from the main Black Sunrise storyline after the second chapter of Dark, Darker, …X.X.X indicates a change of POV….… is just a scene changePrologueOne event.
One decision.Sometimes, the small things do indeed matter most.
Sometimes, obeying the rules has the wrong consequence.
Sometimes, you wish things had gone differently.Somewhere they did.
Somewhere Dawn had followed the Scoobies when they went to that church.
Somewhere she had cut the assassin’s throat.But not here.Here the assassin had lived.
Here the assassin had wanted revenge.
Here the assassin had succeeded.Then there were two funerals.
Then there had been only a grieving daughter, a grieving sister.
Then a young girl had moved away from the Hellmouth.Two years later the girl still lived with her father.
Two years later a military experiment killed its creator.
Two years later the girl visited the memorial for the town that had been bombed.She had lost family.
She had lost friends.
She had lost everything, twice.Hatred, for the magic that had caused her to be what she was.
Hatred, for the military that had taken her friends.
Hatred, for the ones who had taken her family.Eventually her actions were noticed.
Eventually her actions inspired fear.
Eventually she once more became the best.Nobody knew who she was.
Nobody knew why she did it.
Nobody knew how she did it.But everybody knew what she was called.Noir had become real.
Noir was the maiden with black hands.
Noir governed death.In 2009 a woman moved to Paris.
In 2009 a genetically enhanced girl escaped from a military installation.
In 2009 terrorists detonated a nuclear instrument over the Atlantic Ocean.Twelve years later the escaped girl had grown up.
Twelve years later the girl had been recognized as a danger.
Twelve years later an international phone call was about to be made.
“Otto, have you found a way yet?”
“No sir. There is no way for us to get inside the barricade.” Ames White wasn’t happy with that comment, but realized he couldn’t let his anger show. He and his team had been busy cleaning up the abominations that had infested the city but the Conclave was pressing him to get rid of 452.
“There must be a way to get inside. If she’s gone the rest will probably try to disappear again. And then we can take them out as well.”
“Gone, sir? You mean to kill her?”
Actually Otto, eventually yes, but your primitive brain would never understand my reasoning for it. “Our job is to capture them Otto, everything after that is up to the courts.” And since they were in the pay of the Conclave he didn’t have to worry about that. None of the freaks would survive if it was up to him, but for that to work 452 needed to go first.
After the fiasco at Jam Pony, the Conclave had decided he should do it alone. The Phalanx had been recalled and had most likely suffered its own punishment, which was only more than fair, but left him to work with these lesser beings. How they expected him to achieve his goal without any decent help was a complete mystery to him, but it wasn’t his place to question.
Otto's voice then shook him out of his musings. “Of course sir, I never meant to imply anything else.”
“I know that, you’re a conscientious officer.” And that was part of the problem. Had Otto been someone with the desperate need to see every single one of the abominations dead, they might have been able to work something out. Unfortunately though, that wasn’t possible, and he’d just have to make sure his subordinate didn’t notice the less legal ways he sometimes used to achieve his goals.
Every time he thought of the abomination that had taken his son away from him he felt his blood boil. Killing her was one command from the Conclave he would execute with more than a little pleasure. The only problem he had with the order was that he had no intention of actually carrying it out until he knew where Ray was. After all, he knew of only two people that were aware of Ray’s whereabouts, and she was one of them.
Walking to his office Ames pondered plan after plan; there had to be a way to get the knowledge about his son’s location. The only other person than 452 who was aware of his son's location was that annoying Eyes Only.
And even there it was obvious who the greater danger was of the two, 452, and he longed for the day he could squeeze her throat shut and watch her suffocate. Would killing her convince Eyes Only to tell him?
No, he shook his head as he sat down. The terrorist had undoubtedly been informed by 452 of what was going to happen to humanity. So he must also know that she was the only thing left to stand between the Conclave and the total destruction of humanity. In that case the threat to kill the man was useless, as Eyes Only knew that surviving Ames would only cause greater suffering later.
There had to be another way, if only he’d be able to get his hands on the abomination. If he’d have the time he’d get her to talk within hours, her kind was after all still weak when it came to resisting pain. That had been proven during that short time she’d been his captive. But as she was holed up in Terminal City Ames knew he might never get that chance. On his own he was more than able to get in and out the territory of the freaks, but not while carrying her.
A simple assassination wouldn’t be that much of a problem if he’d really put in the effort, but he still had the same problem with that. Continuing to come up with, and dismiss, new possibilities, he looked up when a knock on his door broke the silence in his room.
The door opened to reveal Otto, carrying a packet. “This just arrived for you, sir.”
“Fine, put it on my desk.” Not paying any more attention to the departing man he opened the small parcel and was almost shocked when he saw what it contained.
At the top of the package was an envelope, but Ames put that aside as he noticed what lay beneath it. Photographs, photographs of Ray as he was going to a school, as he was playing with friends, and together with the woman he recognized as Wendy’s sister. Reverently he let his hands wander over the smooth surfaces depicting his son. “Ray.” It really was him; there was no doubt in his mind that this time he’d found his son.
Resisting the urge to look through the rest of the package, he instead opened the envelope and inside he found a small note simply saying Is this him?’ and the telephone number of one of the private detectives he had hired.
He had made sure they knew not to contact him directly, until they were absolutely certain they had found Ray, and this one clearly hadn’t wanted to risk his anger.
Taking out his cellphone he called the man.
“Yes?” The deep voice on the other side of the line answered him.
“It’s White. I just received your package.”
“Was I right? Is that the boy you were looking for?”
“Yes. Now tell me where he is and I’ll deal with it from there.”
“There was mention of a bonus I believe?” Primitives, always concerned about their stupid money. He’d used the funds of the Conclave to pay them, but it wasn’t as if taking a little more from them would enhance his current risk.
“You’ll get your money, now tell me, where is my son?”
It was minutes later, when he had finally received extensive directions to the place where his son was currently hidden from him, that he hung up the phone. He had made up his mind; he’d take a couple of days off while he’d go looking for his son. The NSA wouldn’t be bothered by it; in fact he had the sneaking suspicion that some of his subordinates would welcome the reprieve. The only problem might be the Conclave, but he was sure that could be worked around.
And then of course, there was still the matter of 452 and Eyes Only. If they’d get even a hint he had left to collect Ray they would warn his sister-in-law, and the bitch would go back to ground. That wouldn’t do. He needed to cause a distraction that would keep them away from him.
His previous musings about killing them came back but he dismissed the idea. He wouldn’t be able to get both of them at the same time and the survivor might send a warning just to spite him. No, he needed something else, or, Ames suddenly realized, he would have to do it in a way that wouldn’t lead them directly to him.
If only there was a way to actually do it in such a manner that they wouldn’t have any evidence linking him to it. But he had been set out as the sacrificial sheep. All the other Familiars were currently out of sight, even those who had previously made public appearances had pulled back to protect themselves from the fallout. Using a Familiar wouldn’t have ensured they didn’t find out about the connection anyway, but there was another way. There always was another way.
If he couldn’t use people like himself to get rid of 452, maybe there was another kind of people that he could use. Expendable and weak they might be, but he didn’t care about that. Once he had his son back he’d be able to finish the job these people would start. And as most of the freaks themselves were assassins it was almost poetic justice to use one in an attempt to kill them.
A smile broke out on his face as he realized this solution to all his problems. He’d get Ray back, there was a possibility the assassin would actually succeed, and there was no way anyone would actually be able to blame him for what would happen. He got up from his desk in order to lock the door before walking to the windows and closing them.
With everything closed, and no air-conditioning, he knew that the air inside the small office would quickly turn far too stale for his sensitive nose. But he didn’t dare take the risk that anyone might overhear the conversation he was about to have. The NSA would never approve of him hiring someone to kill 452, after all there was the risk it might end up as public knowledge, which would mean a Public Relations disaster. And if the Conclave found out he’d hired an outsider he would be lucky to walk away with all his limbs, let alone his life. Those were small risks however, especially compared to what he’d gain if the plan worked.
When he was finally satisfied that he had made the room as safe as possible for what he needed to do, he took out the address book that contained the telephone numbers for this sort of situation. He had collected them over the years and he was fairly certain a number of them wouldn’t work anymore, but that didn’t matter.
This job required the best and when it came to the best there was a very short list indeed. Picking up the telephone he started dialing a number in Paris. Despite the small amount of extra personal risks, it was always useful to hire someone that would be as driven to succeed in the mission as he himself would have been.Sometimes the world is a dark place.
Sometimes it’s the bad guys who make the rules.
Sometimes people should have known better.