|Welcome to the City of Angels
Author: fireworkfiasco PM
What happens when two of Los Angeles' heroes meet? Sydney is rescued by the mysterious Angel, page 47 is in play, and the end of the world seems inevitable. Yet again. [An AliasAngel crossover ON HIATUS.]Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Drama/Angst - Sydney B. - Chapters: 9 - Words: 40,168 - Reviews: 69 - Favs: 25 - Follows: 6 - Updated: 01-19-05 - Published: 07-05-04 - id: 1948018
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Welcome to the City of Angels
Blurb: An Alias/Angel crossover. Sydney is rescued by the mysterious Angel, Rambaldi makes a cameo, and relationships are set into motion. (Vaughn/Sydney, Angel/Buffy, and possible hints of Wesley/Cordelia)
Chapter 9: Demolition Derby
Citing the need to move on, Sydney held a small gathering as she ceremoniously deposited her wheelchair in the dumpster behind Angel Investigations. Candles were involved, along with a few more of Wesley's plants.
And then she went back to straightening the lobby with the rest of the crew. The majority of the damaged furniture had joined the wheelchair, while the undamaged furnishings had been piled in Angel's kitchen, awaiting Cordelia's signal that the lobby was clean.
But first, holes had to be plastered, the floor swept, – Cordelia was demanding waxing as well – the books repaired, and the walls repainted. It was an interesting scene, the main workings of Angel Investigations in complete chaos. As Cordelia put it, it was a good thing they didn't have any clients or they'd have lost them fast.
Sydney found herself laughing more than once as she encountered the new sides of her benefactors. She almost fell backwards, down the stairs, when she discovered a suit-less Wesley happily pounding nails into a new piece of drywall. He was in one of Angel's tanks, and the sight of the lean Brit looking so gritty was a sight she wasn't going to be forgetting soon.
Angel, meanwhile, had found a love of interior decorating, and would usually be bent over magazines with Cordelia as they planned color schemes and layout of their new lobby.
But Cordelia was the one who surprised them all, taking a crowbar to the demolished weapons cabinet and tearing it to scrap lumber before their eyes. Wesley had almost fainted, saved only when Cordelia threatened to take the crowbar to him if he didn't stop.
The room was coming along very nicely; it had already been painted and the floor waxed – twice – before everyone began to move back in. Wesley's bookshelf reclaimed its rightful place, as Cordelia's desk spawned and took over more than the usual corner.
They had all gone shopping for a cabinet for Angel to house his weapons in, finally convincing the brooding man to go for a particularly nice mahogany one. It may have been way out of their modest budget, but everyone felt the need to spoil the vamp just a tiny bit.
It was a bright morning; Sydney was still trying to decipher Cordelia's filing system – Cordelia had splurged on new filing cabinets – and Angel was categorizing his weapons. Wesley was rearranging his books, mourning slightly over the damage while gloating over the new selections purchased by Angel on a whim.
To the west hung overshadowing clouds, dark and foreboding. But in the east, the sun sat in the sky, bright and burning in the early stretches of the day.
"Okay, okay. The silence is getting to me."
Wesley adjusted his glasses, jumping like a startled deer. "What?"
Cordelia popped up from behind her desk, a handful of wires escaping from her hand. "I'm trying to network and the silence is unhealthy. Somebody find a radio and fast."
Angel and Wesley glanced at each other and simultaneously shook their heads. "No radio."
She sighed, blowing a wayward strand of hair out of her eyes. "Why not?"
"Two words; bubblegum pop. So, no," Wesley said, shooting a glare over his glasses.
With her idea rejected, Cordelia frowned and sank back beneath the desk. Sydney smiled to herself behind a handful of files.
Her frown faded when Vaughn's words came to her again, haunting as they always did, as she remembered his tone as he spoke of the prophecy. "It isn't something to be joked about, Syd. This is serious. The CIA is still looking for you, now with the FBI's help. They've alerted numerous countries. Syd, you've got a bounty on your head."
She hadn't mentioned Angel or his…being what he was. No, she had simply asked to hear everything Vaughn knew about the prophecy. She wouldn't let it come true.
Not if she could help it.
"So; what do you think of plants?" Cordelia's voice drifted out from behind her desk. Angel glanced up from a crossbow, the weapon held loosely in his hands.
"Plants; could I get one? You know, to talk to?"
Angel didn't answer, only turned back to his weapons with a shake of his head. Sydney settled back into the couch, pretending to organize the files, but really only watching her friends as they bent back to their tasks.
Cordelia was practically glowing; smiling to herself even as she managed to connect a cord to the computer wrong yet again. After arriving to work late for the fourth morning in a row, she had finally confided to Sydney that she was seeing someone. Someone, she was happy to inform, who wasn't allergic to the sun and didn't have demons birthing in his basement. Sydney wasn't clear as to why that made her so happy.
Wesley, meanwhile, was curiously somber. His face was sometimes twisted in thought, a frown appearing in between his eyes. His normal suit had taken a few days off while the office was in construction zone, and he looked – Sydney almost hated to admit it – dashing in a casual blue shirt. If Sydney hadn't thoughts of a beautiful pair of green eyes, Wesley might have very well been material for a lustful gaze or two. That thought almost scared her more than Angel had when she caught him whistling.
And Angel, busy bee that he was, had an almost smile twitching at his lips. He had definitely caused alarm over the last few days as he sang to himself. Long forgotten Irish drinking songs and several slow French ballads could be caught if you listened carefully enough at his office door. Cordelia was attributing it to the latest batch of blood – "Never can trust butchers, I tell ya," – while Wesley was only worried that Angel might be a little too happy.
Sydney didn't care. She was just glad to feel so at home. Phone calls to both Francie and Will had revealed both happy, and seemingly, very hooked-up. A drunken kiss had evolved into Will practically moving in. And there had been no messages from her 'crazy boss at the bank,' put in Francie's words.
Speaking of, Sloane had been ignoring her calls. While it pleased Sydney to know that she didn't have to abandon Angel Investigations in the near future, it also had her on high alert. When Sloane didn't take calls, it signaled something big on the horizon…
Cordelia brought out the prepared sandwiches, made at a deli down the street, shortly after noon. Angel disappeared downstairs, reappearing with a mug a short time later. Lunch together had become a daily ritual, with both Wesley and Cordelia hanging around to eat and talk before they returned to what ever they had been working on.
"So – tuna fish. Demon spawn? Or silly lunch meat?"
Wesley shot a reproachful glare over his glasses, unable to respond in words as his mouth was full of turkey and cheese. After swallowing, he spoke. "Tuna fish is in no way demon. It is merely the coincidental outcome of a number of unrelated and completely random events that shaped its evolution and created the creature we know today as the tuna."
Cordelia stared, her jaw hanging near the floor. "I didn't realize it was possible to shove that many syllables into one sentence. There should be a restriction."
Sydney and Angel ignored the sparring that had started across the room, paying the majority of their attentions to their respected meals. The agent was munching absentmindedly on half an apple; her appetite at an all time low with the antibiotics beginning to work their magic. The vampire was nursing a large mug of O positive, straight.
"Syd? Any lunch meats you interested in discovering origins for?" Cordelia asked, a forgotten peanut butter and jelly in one hand.
"Bologna," she called out, her voice distant.
Cordelia shrugged and turned her conversation back on Wesley, who looked slightly ill at ease at the discussion of processed sandwich meats.
Angel glanced up sharply, eyes locked on the door. Sydney was the only one to notice, and she glanced over as well only to find an unopened door flanked by unfinished moldings. She let out a long breath which drew a look from her host and went back to staring out the window.
The vampire, however, couldn't sit still and surged to his feet. Pacing in the front of the window, a crossbow bolt twitching in irritated hands, he looked tense, low growls escaping from his direction every time and again.
"Angel? What's got you all 'grr' this evening?" Cordelia finally asked, glancing past the pacing vampire, who was unknowingly striding in the window. No smoke or fireworks were present, however, because the clouds had finally swallowed the sun. The city was being smothered in the still and dark that foreshadowed a coming storm.
"I smell blood." All eyes turned to the abandoned mug still sitting on the new coffee table. "And no, it's not animal blood," he said without turning away from the window. "It's human. And it keeps getting closer... Damn it, it smells familiar."
Sydney groped for her crutches and finally joined him at the window, watching the street with wary eyes; scanning the rooftops and windows for snipers, glancing at the idling car just down the street, all in habit. A blonde caught her eye half a block down as she raced across the street; she looked like that detective Angel knew…
But then she spun, waving at someone she'd just passed and Sydney dismissed her. A dark haired man was waiting on the corner, a cigarette clutched in a thin hand. Yet another was huddled in a doorway across the street, head lolled to one side, a forgotten bottle tucked in one hand.
Everything looked normal to Sydney. Even the familiar lack of children racing after one another in the streets. She eased back into her chair, motioning Angel to follow her.
After one last lingering glance out the window, he retreated to his spot, reclaiming his mug and staring into the depths. Sydney could only guess what he was thinking, his face a mask of confusing and conflicting emotions.
He glanced up once more, eyes feral and alive.
Sydney half turned, glancing over at the window. What she found instead made her freeze, eyes wide. Cordelia and Wesley also froze, hands raised. Angel had risen, the wild look not absent but dutifully reared in and controlled.
It was Vaughn, leaning against the frame, one hand pressed to his shoulder, which was bleeding. Torrents of blood had already coated his coat and shirt, plastering it to his thin frame. Droplets were clustering on the floor, spattering loudly in the silent room.
"Hey," he said with a crooked smile, tottering where he stood. "I heard you help the helpless…"