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Fan Fiction: The New Seer
In the weeks following the disappearances of Angel and Cordelia, the remaining members of Angel Investigations had many problems to deal with and many decisions to make. It became obvious very quickly that neither the souled vampire nor the half-demon seer had made any plans to leave; this was a source of both hope and fear for the friends they'd left behind.
Charles Gunn had been a streetsmart vampire hunter before he joined the team, dirt-poor and angry. Winifred Burkle, who preferred the name Fred, was a slightly eccentric former graduate student with five years of captivity in her recent past. Angel Investigations had become their only world, and they could not easily let it go. The cases still trickled in, the bills kept coming due, and there was an important mystery to be solved. They were only two, but they could do nothing else save continue.
When rent came due at the end of the month, Gunn gave up his small apartment and moved his things over to Cordelia's. He wasn't really sleeping anywhere except the hotel, but he still needed the feeling of a "home base"; besides, it wasn't like Dennis would have let the place be re-rented. The forlorn ghost helped Gunn shift all of Cordy's things to the bedroom, and hovered anxiously in hopes of news every time Gunn visited.
Fred spent her time hovering over the Hyperion's phones and flitting uneasily in and out of Wesley's office. She could not think of it any other way, even with the man gone, any more than she could make heads or tails of Cordelia's filing system. She did manage to do some hacking in public records and replace Angel's fake name with hers and Gunn's, making sure the hotel and business would remain theirs, but there were so many other things beyond her abilities. Research, fighting, finding out where they needed to go -- those jobs had all belonged primarily to other people, and their abandoned shoes were a little too big for her uncertain feet.
As the weeks went by, the main recurring source of tension between Fred and Gunn was the question of whether they should call Wesley and ask him for help. He had been their boss, their friend, and their betrayer; with both Angel and Connor gone Fred felt that the friend part outweighed the crime, but Gunn refused to even consider it.
"We aren't gonna find them without Wesley," Fred would plead.
"We ain't goin' there, girl," Gunn would answer. "He said never again, and the dude meant it."
As it turned out, however, they could have saved themselves a great deal of angst; Wesley found out from another source entirely. As soon as Wolfram & Hart became aware of the absence of the main thorn in their side, they did a considerable amount of searching and reconnaisance of their own. When the outcome was certain, Lilah Morgan paid yet another visit to their favorite pending acquisition.
"Angel's gone, Wesley. Him and his seer both, gone where our sources and our psychics can't find them. In case you're wondering, that usually means dead. And look: surveillance crews have spotten Angel's son with an old friend of yours."
The gloating in Lilah's voice was unmistakable. So was the face of Justine in the photo she handed to Wesley, and the fresh wave of guilt he felt knowing that his well-meant actions were still reaping such bitter fruit. It was the fabled straw on the camel's back, one blow too many for a battered soul to easily absorb.
The contracts were unrolled once more on the coffee table; Lilah had brought them on her last several visits, but each time the ex-Watcher had found enough strength to resist their temptation. In Lilah he could find, for a few moments, oblivion; in her law firm, he knew he would find only Hell. On this day, however, he could feel the last shred of hope chasing redemption and forgiveness into a place he could never reach. Why fight it? He was surely going to end up in Hell, anyway.
Lilah handed Wesley the pen, and he made the requisite tiny cut on his finger. Contracts signed in blood were much more potent than the standard kind. He touched the tip of the pen to the wound, gathering a drop of that crucial fluid, and prepared to become what he had been labeled: Traitor. Betrayer. Evil.
In that very moment, with Wesley's life poised over a dotted line, the Powers That Be proved themselves as fond of poor timing as ever.
A sudden barrage of images swept through Wesley's mind, unlike anything he had experienced before. His eyes fluttered shut as a great darkness swept before them, dense and utterly cold, pressing down on him with the weight of ages. A voice, distorted but familiar, seemed to moan incoherently nearby. He could feel the grief, the loneliness, the overwhelming hunger that voice represented, and knew instinctively who it was.
"Angel," he whispered, opening his eyes once more, raising his hands to his temples with a wince of pain. The old seer was gone, but the champion lived. A new seer had been chosen.
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