The Truth behind a Summers
The truth behind a Summers
Lilah Morgan and Hank Summers belong to Joss Whedon. Tony Bree and Shuluth are mine.
“Look, Lilah, is you sure that this is a good idea? After all, this place does feel weird, and I am psychic…”
Lilah Morgan couldn’t help but roll her eyes. Anthony “Tony” Bree, her new young assistant may’ve held much promise (according to Menghiz, an epic figure in the Special department of W&H), but currently he was a nervous wreck. And over what? Some businessman, who hardly even registered on W&H’s scale of influence. Barely better than a bottom-feeder, in other words. But his daughters…
Buffy Summers. The oldest Slayer that had lived so far. Or not exactly lived according to the abovementioned Menghiz. But the ancient vampire shaman was growing increasingly cryptic and erratic ever since Lindsey got promoted (after the former Head had disappeared in the New England region without a trace), and this little commentary about the eldest Summers’ girl condition didn’t find much support in the W&H.
…At any rate, though, Buffy Summers was the oldest Slayer and that counted for something – a lot of something as a matter of fact! But compared to her younger sister, Dawn…
Or not. Not exactly sister. Dawn Summers, according to Menghiz, again, was actually the much-eluded Key to… let’s just say it was a lot of classified information and not even Menghiz, let alone Lilah and Tony, had clearance to any of it.
What they had clearance too, though, was that the Key was currently under the proverbial metaphysical noses of W&H, but the firm couldn’t do anything at all, but the Key was also under the protection of the most powerful Vampire Slayer in history (see above), and the firm’s hands were also tied by the Slayer’s ally in LA – Angel and his Investigations.
So… that was where Hank Summers came in, as a plan A. The head partners in W&H hoped that he’ll agree one way or another – the man, has, after all, shown no interest in either daughter of his for over five years now – it was unlikely that any sort of fatherly feelings were beating in his breast any more – in other words it was just what the W&H needed…
Abruptly, Lilah realized that Tony still hadn’t made any attempt of going after her, rather staying back at the car. “Tony, come on,” she said, her voice dangerously low. “My patience is wearing thin.” He may’ve been assigned to her by the Partners and told to be handled nicely but everything has its’ limits, including her patience. Especially her patience.
“Fine,” Tony replied but still looked miserable. “Remember though – if we’ll get eaten alive by a bear or something – it’s your fault.”
“I can handle that,” Lilah shrugged and knocked on the door.
After the first few knocks it slowly opened and a tall, gangly-looking man looked – almost loomed – at Lilah and Tony, saying nothing.
“As Diomedes, son of Tideus, used to say – you can’t die more than once so make it count!” muttered Tony and then spoke before Lilah could. “Mr. Summers? Can we come in?”
Once they came inside and walked through the rather sprawling house Tony’s apprehension grew, and the fact that Lilah stayed uncharacteristically silent didn’t make him feel any better either.
“So,” Hank Summers spoke when they came into the living room. “Why are you people here? Who is suing me?”
Still silent, Lilah nudged Tony to speak; the younger lawyer cleared his throat and began to speak.
“Sir, we represent the Wolfram and Hart law firm-“
“Never dealt with it; never dealt with those who dealt with it as well. Your rep makes me feel decisively uneasy; don’t see why it has to change.”
“Sir, you misunderstand: this isn’t a real business call,” Tony quickly back-pedaled. “We’re here to talk about your family.”
“And that’s not a business call?” Hank Summers said dryly. “Last time lawyers came knocking on my door was because my daughter had set the school gym aflame - supposedly, but I wouldn’t put past her-“
“And that brings me exactly to the point: sir, we terribly sorry to tell you that your wife, Joyce Summers, had passed away, leaving your daughters on your own, and frankly sir, we don’t believe that your elder daughter is such a good role model for your younger; her circle of friends-“
“Your point, sir?”
“Right,” Tony hastily said; for some unseen reason Hank Summers made him uneasy and so he didn’t want to make him mad. “The point sir is that we at Wolfram and Hart believe that you should sue for custody of your youngest daughter-“
“You told me your point, Mr. Lawyer, now hear mine: I don’t think that my youngest daughter is actually mine.”
“Mr. Lawyer, look at me. I am a brown-haired person just like my father and his father. My wife, on the other hand, is a blonde – dirty blonde due to all those failed dyed hair attempts – but blonde, just like her folks. So now tell me how it was possible that we had a completely black-haired baby?”
“Cheating, Mr. Lawyer. Pure cheating on my wife’s part. Too brutish I was to her, she said. Why that slutty bitch!..”
Hank Summers slammed his fist on the table. Hard. And violently – so violently, in fact that an edge of the sleeve of his sweater got twisted away and something peaked from it – something blue and tattoo-like… Tony didn’t notice it but Lilah did and her silence grew especially pronounced.
As abruptly as it came the rage ended and Hank Summers recomposed himself. “So, Mr. Lawyer, here’s my bottom line. I know that my eldest daughter is a piece of work – with her parentage I’d be surprised if it was otherwise. I also don’t doubt that her friends aren’t exactly of the model citizen material. But guess what – I do not give a damn about my so-called youngest daughter that looks neither like me nor my wife. As far as I am concerned she fits with her sister and her sister’s friends just fine so not a penny will I spend on her!”
“You realize, sir,” Lilah’s voice came in a harsh whisper, “that this doesn’t make you a good person either?”
“As I said before, I don’t deal with you or with your clients. Have a nice day!”
Without further ado, Lilah and Tony left.
“Well, that was a thoroughly unpleasant character,” Tony said to Lilah on the ride back to the airport. “And here I thought that after Hawaii I was sufficiently jaded!”
Hawaii… “You were one of Venters’ grunts, I presume?”
“I prefer the term paperboy, but yeah, I was.”
“So what happened there?”
“Failed negotiations. The sea devils proved to be too unreasonable… we barely made it out.”
“Right. Well, Tony, compared to Hank Summers the sea devils may soon seem as dangerous as sunflower seeds.”
“Good question. The answer lies in the archives.”
Tony pulled-out a cell phone. Lilah waved it away. “No,” she said, almost sadly. “This request will have to be done personally. Oh, and in secret from Manners – the stakes are too high.”
Tony nodded and wondered, just how, exactly, did Hank Summers manage to get Lilah so agitated…
Hank Summers hastily but quietly descended downstairs in the house basement which was even more sprawling than the house itself – “fiddling” with the fourth dimension does that to a space.
“Shuluth?” he called-out. “We need to talk.”
“What?” and Shuluth the savant moved into the view. “What happened upstairs?”
“Wolfram and Hart. They have seen us again. So far it’s just the peripheral vision, but you know what good is that. So, we need to speed up the schedule.”
“Not necessarily. Our Androphagos is awake and ready, ready to be released.”
“Then let’s do it,” Hank Summers smiled. “Cry havoc and release the cat of hate!”
And his and Shuluth’s laughter echoed off the basement’s wall. Part one of their plan was complete.