Quinton Travers entered the Magic Box with the air of someone on a mission. He would not take no for an answer. The Slayer Buffy Summers was dead...no longer did he have to follow the rules she had set. Behind him, two male and two female Watchers followed. After them, a fiery-red-haired girl no more than eleven years old walked warily into the shop.
Once inside the shop, Quinton took in his surroundings. In a corner, a girl of fourteen years was listening avidly to -- according to the descriptions he had received -- William the Bloody...killer of two Slayers, who now went under the name of Spike. In another corner a man who looked
in his mid-twenties to early thirties was sharpening a sword while reading a fairly ancient text. The man looked up, and Quinton was startled by the look of ancient wisdom within the green/gold eyes gazing at him. He realized that this must be the Immortal he had heard Rupert had been able to get. At the checkout counter -- which was littered with legal papers -- Giles and a tall dark-haired man dressed entirely in black with his back turned to them were talking in low tones.
Once he knew what was happening at the moment, Quinton cleared his throat loudly. Instantly, all but the man in black stopped what they were doing, and looked in his direction.
Putting down the legal paper he had been holding, Giles said quietly, "Quinton."
Quinton nodded his head slightly, and said, "Rupert, you no doubt are wondering why I am here. There are two reasons. The first reason is to bring to you the new Slayer that replaced yours, so that you may continue tr--"
He stopped suddenly as the man in black turned around. He was stunned by the fathomless dark brown eyes that gazed at him. There was such a level of pain and sorrow within them, that it shook him. He knew that face...but the eyes seemed different from what he knew...and he couldn't figure out the name.
Quinton -- in his need to know who this was -- asked, "Who are you?"
As the souled vampire was about to answer, his cell phone rang. Scowling, he took the phone out of his coat pocket, and answered it, saying, "Angel."
He was not surprised to hear Cordelia's voice.
"Well, my original purpose was to tell you what we found out about Faith...but just as I was about to pick up the phone, I had a vision."
With concern in his voice, Angel asked, "Are you all right, what did you find out, and what did you see?"
Cordelia's voice was filled with a faint smile of amusement that quickly left, as she said, "In the same order: I'm fine. Faith was killed by the Watchers in order to 'awaken' the new Slayer. And the vision is a warning for you about the red-haired Slayer that's in the room with ya. She's from your birthplace, and she knows about your demon persona, so watch out for her."
Angel looked out of the corner of his eye to see the one Cordelia mentioned. He could feel the power around her and knew she was a Slayer.... Hell, he knew a Slayer had entered the room before he even looked! He noticed that she, indeed, had the look of his homeland about her. Giles' plan would have to change, if this Slayer reacted the way he thought she would.
Quietly, he said into the phone, "Thanks, Cordelia. I'll keep that in mind. Talk to you later."
Quinton continued watching the man who called himself Angel put away the cell phone he held. The name sounded very familiar, but he still couldn't quite place the name with the face before him...but apparently, the new Slayer could. Her breath hissed in sharply as he turned around to look at her.
She was standing rigidly, emerald green eyes blazing with unveiled rage. She then sneered out -- in the way that the Irish had with swallowing certain sounds --, "Vampire. Angelus!" Then with what could only be a battle cry, she lunged towards the vampire, stake in hand. The next few moments seemed to slow down as the Slayer reached Angel.
Too swiftly for the human eye to see, Angel moved to the side, avoiding the stake intended for his heart. As the Slayer passed by him, he turned, grabbed her by the arms, and holding her tightly to him, turned back around until they were facing the Watchers. He growled darkly, vampiric face evident...while his mouth was only inches away from the Slayer's neck.
The room was absolutely still. No one said a word.
Then the moment was broken, as Spike said in numb shock, "Bloody 'Ell!"
Instantly, Angel released the Slayer, pushing her away from himself harshly as he returned to his human guise, saying sharply in anger, "I am no longer that demon. The Old One that resided within me is no more."
Quinton started, as the Watchers behind him murmured quietly at the mention of the Old Ones. He said stunned, "What?!"
Giles frowned, before saying in explanation to what Angel had said, "A spell was preformed recently that...combined
the essences of the demon and soul within Angel. Only the good qualities were kept, when this was done. Thus, there are only remnants of the demon left within him."
Quinton turned to him, and asked, "How can you be sure?"
Giles was startled by the question...but he soon realized that the Watcher had a good reason to ask that. Looking over at Angel, he said, "He does have a point.... What proof can
All watched silently with baited breath as Angel seemed to contemplate the answer. After a moment, he slowly reached for the gold chain around his neck, and pulled out a rounded object about the size of his palm. The object gleamed in the light of the room, as it spun lazily. It was another moment before any realized what it was.
"A Celtic Cross," whispered the red-haired Slayer in wonder.
The vampire looked at her, made eye contact, and nodded slowly in acknowledgement. She was mesmerized by his eyes. Never had she seen eyes that expressed so much! These were not the eyes of the cruel-hearted killer she had been told of. In that moment she knew she could trust him.
Stepping forward boldly, she extended her hand, and said in her Irish lilt, "I am Eve."
She watched as amusement touched the dark brown eyes before her for a moment. Slowly the vampire extended his hand and took hers within his. His touch was not as cold as she expected -- from her encounters with other vampires --. His voice was low and gentle -- a faint Irish lilt entering it for a moment -- as he said, "I am honored to meet a fellow Warrior, Eve."
Giles cleared his throat. When he had everyone's attention, he said, "Eve, I will be honored to continue your training." He then turned his gaze to the Watchers. "Quinton, you said there was a second reason for you and the others being here?"
After a pause, Quinton nodded his head, and said, "Yes. From what we have been able to tell...the new Slayer that would come after the Slayer Faith is here in Sunnydale. The problem is that we don't know who
. We are hoping that you may have been in contact with this person, or have an idea of who it might be."
Keeping his expression neutral, Giles said, "No. I am afraid not."
He watched as Quinton scowled in displeasure, then say, "Then I suppose we will be staying in town longer than I thought."
Giles was not surprised to see Quinton turn around and start to leave, before saying in an uncaring tone, "Eve, you will stay here with Rupert. We have more important things to take care of at the moment. (pause
) We will be seeing you when we have found the new Slayer, Rupert. Until then."
All watched in silence as the Watchers left. A moment later, one returned and tossed a duffel bag to Eve, then left again. No one seemed to be able to say anything. It was Methos who finally broke the spell of silence that had fallen by saying dryly, "I believe your plan is going to have to be revised, Giles."