Author: Meltha

Rating: PG

Feedback: Yes, thank you. Through Angel season 5.

Distribution: The Blackberry Patch and If you're interested, please let me know.

Summary: Fred is attempting to give Spike a corporeal body in season 5 of Angel, but things go extremely wrong… or is it extremely right?

Author's Note: Written for Eurydice 72's Williamficathon. The request was from tobywolf13 who requested Fred/William, no more than an R, a comedic/fluffy romance, time travel, Texas barbeque, and horseback riding Western style, with no character death, graphic sex, or slash. The fic sort of ran away from me and wound up being several short sections long.

Disclaimer: All characters are owned by Mutant Enemy (Joss Whedon), a wonderfully creative company whose characters I have borrowed for a completely profit-free flight of fancy. Kindly do not sue me, please, as I am terrified of you. Thank you.

Out of the Blue

Part 7

"Angel, I'm telling you, there isn't a sign of Fredikins anywhere in the building," Lorne said quickly. "I'm starting to get really panicky here."

"And Penn said he saw her just disappear in the middle of the lab," Angel said, walking at a fast clip down the hallway.

"Exactamundo, commander in chief," Lorne said. "Wes and Gunn are in there with him now, pouring over the room like… stuff that pours."

"Could Penn have done something to her?" Angel asked.

"Negative," Lorne said. "Until after the explosion, he still didn't even have a body."

"But he does now," Angel said. "I never liked that guy."

"He's got a soul now, Angel. Lighten up on the boy," Lorne said as they walked through the swinging doors of the laboratory. "He's sung for me. He's clean."

"Angel, man, there's nothing in here," Gunn said, concern written on his features.

"I'm afraid I must concur," Wesley said. "She's simply… disappeared."

"Penn?" Angel said, rounding on him. "What happened?"

"I already told them everything I know," Penn said, leaning against a lab table. "One minute she was here, the next, giant explosion, she's gone, and I've got a body back."

"If you're lying to me," Angel growled at him.

"I'm not lying," Penn snapped. "If I knew anything more, I'd tell you."

At that moment, a knock came on the laboratory door.

"Excuse me? Certified letter delivery for a Mr. Angel Aurelius from a Mr. Fred Burkle," said a timid-looking delivery girl.

The group all stared at each other, then Angel took a pen out of his coat pocket, signed for the letter, and looked at the envelope.

"This is dated 1885," Angel said, opening it

"That's not possible," Wesley said in confusion.

"'Dear Angel,'" Angel read aloud. "It's definitely her handwriting. 'I know you're probably all wondering where I've gone. I'm hoping this gets to you right after I left. It's going to be difficult to explain this, but I wound up going back in time to 1879. I want you to know that I'm happy here. I've fallen in love with a man named William, and we're married and very happy. This is where I want to spend the rest of my life. Please tell my mom and dad that I'm okay. Remember that I love all of you very much, Fred Burkle-Gordon.'"

Angel stared at the letter for a full minute before realizing that there was a photograph in the envelope as well. It showed Fred, dressed in a Victorian gown, standing beside a man with glasses and wavy hair. In front of them sat three small children. All five of them were beaming into the camera.

Wesley looked at the photograph, then walked to a computer in the lab and did a quick Internet search on the name Fred had given.

"It says here that Fred and William founded an entire set of schools throughout England, educating the children of the poor," Wesley said. "They were responsible for teaching students who eventually went on to make several important discoveries in the sciences, including being responsible for many major vaccines. William and Fred had nine children together, and both lived to be over ninety years old."

Angel stared at the picture for a good while longer, then sighed. "You know, I always had a bad feeling something terrible would have happened to her if she stayed around this place too long," he said finally. "She's happy. I'm glad."

"Hey, don't we have a Winifred Gordon working in one of the lab departments?" Gunn asked thoughtfully.

"Yes, I believe we do," Wesley said, still dumbfounded. With a click, he brought her personnel records up on the computer. At once, they were greeted by a picture of smiling face that looked surprisingly like their Fred, except for the blue eyes and slightly roguish smile.

"Anyone else feel like getting really drunk and trying to figure this whole mess out?" asked Penn.

Gunn, Lorne, Wesley, and Angel all silently raised their hands and walked out of the room to take a solar-powered, non-polluting, affordably-priced car to the local bar.

"Okay, everybody," Fred said, "smile big!"

"Cheese!" said Melinda, Peter, and Malcolm.

The flashbulb went off, capturing the perfect picture of their family to send to Wolfram & Hart over a hundred years from now. William wrapped his arms around his wife holding her close.

"Any regrets?" he whispered in her ear.

"Not even one," she said and kissed him.

"Ew!" said Malcolm the oldest of the lot, but I do hope the reader will disagree.