Feedback: Pretty please with a cherry on top! Feedback and criticism (but only constructive) is welcomed and appreciated.
Disclaimer: None of it's mine except the storyline, Chuck and Lucille, Commissioner Newtown, Jonah, Ulrich, Doctor Muerte and Helena Daley. If it were, Angel wouldn't have left Buffy in the first place. This is therapy for me.
Rating:T, for violence
Pairing: B/A, minor use of other ships e.g. W/O, S/F
Summary: AU. The whole gang are werewolves.
The last chapter – finally here, I know many of you have despaired that this story should ever be finished but now it has come to an end. My thanks to all my wonderful reviewers and to everyone who read this story and enjoyed it. This last chapter is dedicated to you all.
Helena Daley walked out of the most skilled plastic surgery she could find in L.A, (which wasn't hard because hey, this was meant to be the land of the beautiful people and everyone needs help now and then) and unlocked her car door. She slid into the soft leather seat with a sigh of contentment.
She fished around in her bag for a compact, pulling it out from under her purse and keys and flicking it open to admire her newly reconstructed face. She gingerly touched the right side of her face, which felt strange and new under her fingertips and swept her fingers over the smooth skin that now lay over what had only a few weeks ago been a nonexistent cheek.
Her nose was once again all there and not the caved in mess it had been, and the surgeon had done excellent work with her lips - she now had a bigger, better pout than she could have managed before the explosion- and her chin was once again in its rightful place.
Applying a dab of lip-gloss she pushed her glasses up the bridge of her nose and fluffed the silky strands of red hair that made up the wig she was wearing. It was indistinguishable from what her real hair had once been like, and until her own stubble regrew to the length it had been on her right side she would be wearing the wig.
Turning on the engine she pulled out and onto the road, heading onto the freeway and back to her plans for revenge. Oh yes, there was no way she was going to let any hostile get the better of her –she wasn't her Aunt Maggie to be forgotten about and all knowledge of existence denied when everything went pear-shaped. Oh no, she was going to come out of this on top, and soon everyone was going to know it had been she who had created the world's first race of super soldiers.
And if America and its President refused to acknowledge that it had been her work then she would just take her business else where. She hadn't been stupid enough to trust Commissioner Newtown and had stored an extra batch of the soldier solution elsewhere, which needed her encrypted key code, handprint and eye scan to open. She could just take it and run she thought, sell it to the highest bidder and watch as the world fell apart. She grinned and imagined her name printed on all the military, scientific and medical journals in the world. She would be a phenomenon.
But business always came before pleasure, and so she watched for the next turning off of the freeway, to find her last few remaining 'business associates' and commandeer their services.
The tension was thick in the air in the crowded gym where the fight was to take place, as the packs assembled into a circle which would completely surround the combatants. Giles had volunteered to referee as the Pack Elder and no-one had objected; knowing his love for Buffy would never conflict with his duty towards the Clan. He would be a fair judge.
The buzz of the fight had everyone talking, and as everyone gossiped amongst themselves there was the sound of feet coming down the stairs. Heads turned to watch as Buffy came in with Angel, their fingers entwined and Buffy looking happier than she had in weeks. The circle parted to make room for them and Giles raised his hands for silence, which was duly granted and an anticipatory hush fell.
"I call for the Clan Chief to step forward and claim his right," called Giles, his voice echoing round the room.
Angel let go of Buffy's hand and stepped into the middle of the circle, his white linen shirt and black leather trousers covering his body but leaving nothing to the imagination. He stood, his fingers splayed slightly, head tall and shoulders straight, the muscles in his back rippling as in an instant he knelt in front of Giles before once again standing upright. It was quick enough that any human would only have seen a faint blur of motion as the air around him shifted. As he stood once again, after performing the ritual obeisance before the Elder, in that moment he looked every inch a formidable leader. Giles nodded his head in recognition of the mark of respect and motioned for Angel to speak.
"I, Angel, claim the right of Clan Chief and defy all those who dare to contest this to step forward and acknowledge their claim as Challenger."
Their was a sudden deep silence as everyone looked at Ethan, waiting and wondering what he would do – after all it had been he who had instigated the moving of the meeting forward, for the reason of taking the title from Angel. But after seeing how Angel had acted when Buffy had been taken, how he had led not only his own pack but also the clan into rescuing his mate, Ethan knew in his heart (which granted, wasn't very big or held much room for feelings) that Angel was and would always make a better leader than he would. He silently bared his throat towards Angel in respectful decline and recognition that Angel was Alpha. Angel smirked, his eyes flashing golden as his beast accepted that Ethan would no longer be a threat. Giles spoke once more.
"Since no challengers have stepped forward, we therefore acknowledge Angel as Clan Chief." He pressed his palms together and bowed. "May the Moon Mother bless you and guide you."
With the formalities over and done with, Angel melted once again back into the circle next to Buffy who smiled and squeezed his hand. Now it would be her turn and the real fun would soon begin.
"I call for the Clan Alpha female to step forward and claim her right."
Buffy took her cue and stepped into the circle and faced Giles, who smiled at her. She too followed the obligatory rituals and knelt but instead of standing up afterwards, she arched her back and flipped her legs over her head, her fingers barely grazing the floor to help lift her backwards. She landed, one leg sweeping out behind her, toes pointed, graceful as a ballet dancer.
"I, Buffy, claim the right of Clan Alpha female and defy all those who dare to contest this to step forward and acknowledge their claim as Challenger."
There was a pregnant pause and Kate stepped forward, her arms crossed and an eyebrow raised, clearly not impressed by the showy little piece that Buffy had put in. After a moment Gwen stepped forward too, though she was clearly not as eager to fight Buffy as Kate was. Buffy suspected that Kate was forcing her to fight, so that she would have to concentrate on more than one opponent. It wasn't cheating as such, but it was pretty underhand, and as Gwen was a decent fighter it would make the match all the more interesting. Interesting but not difficult. Buffy's eyes flashed golden as her beast duly noted her opponents; she refused to put them under 'threat' as her beast had little tolerance for anyone who thought themselves her fighting equal.
"Who challenges the claim?"
"I do," said Kate cockily, followed by Gwen's calm, if a little resigned assertion.
Giles nodded, "A bitches match has been declared. All participants have two minutes to prepare themselves."
The three werewolves nodded and left the circle to change. Buffy stripped off her jumper and jeans, changing into black linen shorts which gave more flexibility and a sports bra, pinning her hair up as she went. The fewer clothes one had on the easier it was to move, and there was less chance of anything getting ripped or caught. It also meant that your opponent had nothing to hold onto and it had been tradition since Roman times that all challenger matches had be fought naked with the combatants greased with oil, so that there was simply no handholds at all. When World War Two had hit, oil had become rationed and for practical purposes the rules were changed so that clothing, albeit very little, was allowed.
Buffy headed into the circle, pausing as Angel whispered in her ear, causing her to smirk. She kissed him once and then reached the centre, where Giles stood with Gwen and Kate who was frowning at the little display of affection that Angel had dared to show to her. Gwen simply rolled her eyes and offered Buffy a smile, who smiled back, noting that Gwen was dressed in dark blue shorts and a black sports bra, her long dark hair held back in a bun so that she would be able to see properly.
Kate was dressed in cream and Buffy was thankful the rules were changed so that combatants had to wear clothing that was coloured so that it was still able to be seen when someone was partly transformed, i.e. no-one was allowed to wear red or any colour that could not be seen in a wolf's spectrum. Therefore only shades of yellow, blue, black and white were allowed. It also meant that remembering a person's colour meant you knew who you were attacking without actually having to think. The beast could just take over.
Giles spoke, "The bitches match is about to begin. I call First Blood Drawn and Change up to Third Transformation. Anyone who breaks these rules is automatically disqualified from the proceedings. Are we agreed?"
Buffy nodded her head as did the other two women and as she moved to allow Giles past Gwen moved next to her, murmuring just low enough for her to hear.
"Just because I don't want to have your title, doesn't mean I won't make you earn it."
Buffy smirked. "I expected nothing less."
Taking up a position on the floor, she eyed Kate warily. The werewolf wasn't good with her feet, but she was excellent with her hands and when she reached Second Transformation she would have razor sharp claws on her fingers and toes - if they caused even the slightest scratch it could bleed and would be classed as First Blood. She would need to watch where her limbs were going.
Gwen on the other hand would keep herself low to the floor and use her powerful legs, but she also had a wickedly sharp bite and Buffy didn't fancy getting anywhere near her teeth to find out how much damage they could cause.
Giles was now standing as part of the circle, which was easier than standing in the middle and having to dodge out of the way. He raised his hand, and Buffy caught the motion out of the corner of her eye. When his hand dropped the fight would begin. Tense seconds past as she waited for the slightest hint of it dropping and her muscles strained, waiting…waiting…
Suddenly his hand fell and Kate leaped into the air, catching Buffy slightly by surprise, but not enough that she couldn't nimbly dodge her and kick upwards, hitting Kate in the stomach and causing her to land awkwardly on her wrist. She growled, but Buffy had no time to pay attention to her as Gwen had swept her leg out low, causing Buffy to flip backwards onto her hand, and kick out with her leg towards Gwen's jaw.
Unfortunately Gwen dodged back and her foot met thin air. Aware that she had now put herself in an awkward position, with an opponent behind her and in front, she danced on the balls of her feet, waiting for Kate to attack her from behind, but keeping her eyes on a wary Gwen. She felt the air shift as Kate leapt and then whirled round, grabbing her wrist and flinging her over her head, hearing the satisfying snap as it broke and Kate's growl of pain. Buffy shrugged and concentrated on an amused Gwen. It wasn't her fault that a broken wrist wouldn't draw blood, unless it was a compound fracture. Besides, with her advanced healing it would only take 10 minutes for the bone to knit back together.
Gwen cartwheeled forward, her longs legs splayed into a scissor kick which caught Buffy's chin, and would have sent her head snapping back if she hadn't used the momentum to flip backwards and land gracefully, before Gwen started to circle her again, her fangs elongating as they orbited around each other. Gwen went for the attack, literally, and barrelled into her, knocking them both to the floor.
Buffy used her elbow to knock into Gwen's temple who hastily rolled off her, but not before she managed to rake her elongating claws down Gwen's cheek.
"First Blood," called Giles and Gwen wiped at the blood, smearing it across her face and wiping it on her shorts.
"Be glad that ain't gonna scar my face," she said and Buffy laughed.
"Nah, wouldn't wanna mess up those pretty features of yours would we?"
"You just got lucky," muttered Gwen. "Two more seconds and I'd have had you."
"Yeah well," said Buffy as she turned to face a murderous Kate. "We all knew who was gonna win in the end."
Gwen chuckled and stepped to the side of the circle to change back into her more normal clothes. "Anytime you wanna have a rematch, give me a call."
Buffy focused back to the problem at hand. Kate's eyes flashed golden and Buffy smirked. The angrier she got, the more mistakes it was likely she would make. Time for a bit of old fashioned witty repartee. Oh boy, how she missed good 'ole Sunnydale fights, where if the vamps knew what was good for them they bantered back.
"Come on Kate, is that all you've got?" Said Buffy, who decided she couldn't even be bothered to pretend that Kate was a worthy adversary and casually folded her arms.
"I've barely worked up a sweat, or a racing heart beat or…anything in fact." Buffy smirked as Kate's expression grew darker and darker.
"You know what? I think the look on your face has got more chance of killing me than you have." She laughed. "Poor thing, you really thought you had a chance didn't you?"
With a scream of rage that sounded more animal than human, Kate launched herself at Buffy, who rolled to the side, swinging her leg out as she did so, catching Kate's legs and causing her to fall. But her rage had given her new strength and she leapt back up, before Buffy could draw blood and whipped around, striking out with her fists and sending a blow to her rival's head. Buffy staggered slightly and Kate pressed her advantage, kicking her legs out from underneath her and she fell, her head smacking off the wooden floor.
Seemingly stunned, she lay looking up at Kate, who smirked in triumph.
"And so Buffy's glorious reign comes to an end, what a pity," she sighed and tapped her chin as if in thought. "Shame you had to lose in such an embarrassing way."
Buffy raised an eyebrow. "You know Kate, you've really gotta learn when someone is really injured and when they're just faking."
She sat up before Kate could move and sank her claws into Kate's thigh, before ripping them out, watching as the blood began to pour out of the open wound.
"Otherwise, you could get seriously hurt."
She smirked and watched as Kate fell back to the floor, her expression one of anger and disbelief.
"First Blood," called Giles triumphantly, reaching a hand down to help Buffy off the floor. "All challengers have been defeated. I declare Buffy as the champion of the bitches match. We therefore acknowledge Buffy as Clan Alpha Female." He smiled and once more pressed his palms together before bowing. "May the Moon Mother bless you and guide you."
The whole room erupted in cheers as Buffy was swept up in a rush of hugs and congratulations, licks and kisses as everyone tried to touch their Alpha all at once. She was just hugging Doyle, when she felt Angel's arms around her and his voice whisper in her ear.
"Well done, Beloved." She smirked and without turning murmured low enough so that only they could hear what she was saying.
"Did you ever doubt me?"
"Never." She smiled softly as he kissed her neck.
"This is where you belong –here with me, with us."
"I know," she said, laughing as Xander tried to hit on Gwen and failed miserably. "It just took me a little while –and kicking Kate's ass - to figure that out."
Two weeks later…
Night had fallen, but still Helena watched from the building opposite the hotel.
Peering through her binoculars for any sign of movement within the hotel lobby, she spotted her chance as a red headed woman walked down the stairs and across the polished marbled floor towards the doors, accompanied by a scruffy young man with bright blue hair and a guitar slung across his back. She put the binoculars down and looked though the sight of the specially made tranquiliser gun she had positioned on the roof of the abandoned building.
Damn it, she thought, they'd stopped walking and were talking to a teenage girl in the middle of the lobby. She needed them outside, on the pavement where they were easy targets. She'd leaned on a few of her 'associates', those who owed her favours and had finally found what she was looking for. They worked in the same way that tranquilisers did, except that these contained a poison specially commissioned by her, which left no trace in the blood stream and to which there was no antidote. Sure, the tranquiliser dart would still be there, but they had no way of tracing it back to her and the hostiles couldn't stay cooped up in the hotel forever. Sooner or later they had to come out, and when they did she would be waiting for them.
She had been up here for the past week, noting their routines, who were werewolves, if any humans were present or went into the hotel and how many hostiles there were exactly present. Tonight was her first night up here with the gun though, the first night which she would finally shoot one of them and have some sort of revenge. She would get each and every last one of them if it was the last thing she did.
She never felt the vampire next to her until he spoke.
"Well Madame, we meet again."
Helena's face went white with fear as she recognised the creature, the one with the accusing, dark navy eyes which sometimes haunted her nightmares.
"Hostile 279." She was surprised her voice didn't shake, but Ulrich could smell her fear and hear her heart pounding in his ears.
"I'm afraid I cannot possibly allow you to harm my, well I would call them friends, but then they do have a tendency to dislike me, especially the dark broody one, so let's call them acquaintances. I suggest you give me the gun and then we can forget about this nasty little episode, can't we?"
Helena nodded dumbly and passed it over, her fingers trembling ever so slightly. He broke it in one swift, easy motion and dropped the pieces over the side of the roof onto the sidewalk.
"Now, there we go, that was easy wasn't it?"
Helena watched as her carefully orchestrated plan fell apart before her eyes, but all she could care about at that moment was one thing. "You're not going to kill me?" She said, incredulously.
Ulrich frowned at her. "I don't believe that violence solves everything."
Helena let out a sigh of relief and allowed herself to relax ever so slightly. That was her big mistake. Before she could utter another word, he reached over and twisted her head, snapping her neck as easily as he had broken the gun.
"Then again, it does solve somethings." He smiled and picked up the dead woman's hands, muttering to himself.
"Now, Luke has seen the keycode number, but he tells me I need one of your hands and one of your eyes to get that extra batch of soldier solution you've got tucked away somewhere." He reached into his coat pocket and produced a serrated saw.
"Funny, he never said whether we needed left or right." He shrugged. "Guess I'll take both."
Well that's it folks, that is the end of Werewolves of L.A .You have all been so wonderful, it's been a pleasure writing for you.
For the final time I ask you, please read and review!
P.S - The Prequel to this Story is called Sunnydale Beginnings. If you're interested in finding out how the pack started and how Buffy joined, it's a definate must to read!