Pairings: None early, B/A ending
Feedback: Please. Constructive criticism is always welcomed and appreciated.
Disclaimer: I do not own anything associated with BtVS and AtS and no infringement is intended.
Distribution: Please ask and let me know where it's going.
Summary: What if Dawn isn't who, or what, everyone thinks she is? How is Wolfram and Hart involved and how does it impact the members of Angel Investigations?
A/N1: For the most part BtVS happened up to 'Empty Places' in season 7. Once Buffy is asked to leave the house, the story goes AU; also I added Maggie Walsh becoming chummy with Wolfram and Hart. AtS happened up thru 'Reunions' in season 2, everything else is AU so there is no Cordelia as a higher being, no Fred and no Connor. I fudged some of the time lines between BtVS and AtS to make events line up.
A/N2: Okay, I know I said that 'The Last Living Slayer' was the last of my 'Empty Places' therapy, but I just had to write this one. It doesn't really revolve around that episode, but the events are mentioned briefly.
A/N3: Thoughts are in single quotes ('').
Chapter 1 – Hank
A/N: Activities in this chapter happened four years prior to 'Empty Places'.
Hank Summers found out by accident that Wolfram and Hart had planned to kill Buffy, that they had created a package designated for Buffy whose contents were laced with a lethal poison and she would be dead minutes after she opened it, and that the package had been delivered to Christopher and LeeAnn Lelands, the couple that leased his house in Los Angeles.
Hank knew that he was doomed for crossing the law firm and this would be his last effort to help Buffy. He had worked for Wolfram and Hart for years and he knew how they operated, but there was no way he could just sit back and let them murder his daughter.
He was attending a scholarship fundraiser for local LA youths interested in becoming lawyers, his last required function before returning to his regular position in Spain, when he overheard a conversation that chilled him to the bone.
Lindsey MacDonald, one of the local Wolfram and Hart attorneys, was speaking to someone about a package that was supposed to be delivered.
"Don't worry, Mr. MacDonald, I delivered the package to the Lelands myself. Buffy Summers will be dead within minutes after she opens it. No human could breathe that stuff and live." The speaker, whose voice Hank did not recognize, gave a raspy sounding laugh. "Fortunately for me, I don't have to breathe."
"Keep your voice down." MacDonald's voice was cold and demeaning. "Do you want everyone to hear you? Hank Summers works for us; I don't know where he is right now, but he was required to attend this function. He could be anywhere."
Hank quickly moved away from the two speakers, but not before he was spotted by Lilah Morgan, one of MacDonald's associates.
When he looked into Lilah's face, he knew that he was in trouble.
Shaken to the core of his very being by what he had overheard, Hank left the function early and returned to his office. While the nighttime cleaning crew was still making its rounds, he searched the company's records looking for anything related to Buffy Summers.
The amount of data returned from Hank's first search was almost overwhelming. He already knew that the company kept data on all family members and friends of its employees, but this was far more than he expected to find.
He kept narrowing the search until he found what he was looking for – plans to kill the slayer Buffy Summers, but more important than that, perhaps, were the reasons. There was only one: to eliminate her influence on the vampire named Angel/Angelus, The Scourge of Europe.
Hank wanted to know more about this vampire, but he did not have time. He saw how his unsuspecting tenants, the Lelands, had been involved in the plot without their knowledge. He transmitted all of the information to his personal computer in his hotel room and eliminated all evidence of his searches from his work computer. The last action was a precaution, in case someone went looking.
Back at his hotel Hank studied the information he had retrieved from Wolfram and Hart regarding Buffy. It was extremely detailed, and extremely alarming.
The next morning the first thing he had to do was to get the package from the Lelands that was intended for Buffy. Based on the description of the package that he found, he created a replacement package and headed for his house that he had leased to the Lelands.
He found them to be cordial and agreeable to exchanging the package. Hank considered asking them not to report the exchange to Lindsey MacDonald, but thought better of the idea. It was his plan to contact Buffy before he left the country again, but just in case he couldn't, he had a backup plan.
Hank changed his travel plans by delaying them for one day so that he could accomplish all that he intended. He knew that if he didn't do all he could to protect his daughter now, he probably would not get another chance. He had seen the look on Lilah Morgan's face last night and he knew very well what she was capable of.
Unknown to Hank, Lilah had him followed back to the office the previous night.
She didn't know what he had overheard, but after receiving a call from the man she had following him, she knew that if it was significant enough to send him scurrying back to the office at one o'clock in the morning on the night before he was to return to Spain, it was significant enough for her to be concerned.
Something was up. She needed to have a talk with Lindsey right away; this could not wait until morning.
By noon the following day Hank had completed all except two of the tasks he had planned. All that was left to do was to try again to contact Buffy and to visit his vault at the bank. He did not want to alarm Joyce unless absolutely necessary. He had not been feeling well since breakfast and now he knew something was very wrong.
A visit to the local hospital emergency room revealed more than he wanted to know. The doctor at the emergency room wanted to admit Hank right away, but Hank refused. According to the doctor, his life depended on it. Hank still refused. He only had a little time left and there was one more thing he had to do.
Hank made one last trip to his bank. A limousine was waiting for him when he exited the bank and the driver, with what little force was needed, escorted him to the vehicle and helped him in. It came as no surprise to him when he looked up and saw Lilah and Lindsey waiting for him in the limo.
Hank's last thoughts were that he had done all he could to protect Buffy and he sent a quick prayer to whatever deity was listening asking for their protection for his daughter.