Title: The More Things Change
Feedback: Comments and email
Concrit: by email please
Disclaimer: The characters belong to Joss and a bunch of lawyers. I'm just playing with them. No disrespect intended. No reflection on real persons or places intended. I'm not making any profit from this. This is strictly for entertainment.
Warnings/Squicks: A little strong language so far
Summary: Xander goes to LA on a fact finding trip and finds Angelus instead. Scariness happens.
Previous chapters: Here
Notes: This doesn't strictly follow canon. Sooo if you don't like that sort of thing you might want to skip this. This is my first story so feedback is very welcome. Please send concrit by email.
Beta(s):The wonderful and gracious mwrgana Thank you and XOXOXOXO. All mistakes and looniness left are mine and mine alone.
Graphics: (size, and artist)Icon by moscow_watcher
*Need a hair cut* he thought as he looked around carefully for any kind of activity. He couldn't see or hear anything close by but that wasn't necessarily a good thing. He tucked the stake he always carried into the back of his pants as he stepped out of the car. He was prepared as well as he could be under the circumstances to face Deadboy and the Fang Gang. Whatever the weirdness was, he'd deal, just like he always did, until he got what he came for. Then he was so out of here.
Xander walked up to the Hyperion as slowly as possible. But found himself standing at the door sooner than he really wanted anyway. There were no lights visible from the outside. He took hold of the doorhandle in the way someone does when dealing with something noxious. He firmly pushed open the door and finally got his first look at the lobby of the old hotel.
He gazed around the darkened old-fashioned lobby as well as he could from the doorway and then cautiously took one step inside. The door shut behind him with a click that echoed in the quietness and cause him to jerk nervously and whirl around grabbing clumsily for the stake in his waistband. He explosively expelled a breath that he hadn't been aware he was holding, then gulped in several quick breaths and let his arm fall slowly to his side.
The lobby was empty. It felt like it had been empty for some time. The only thing he could hear was his heartbeat trip-hammering in his ears as he turned around and reluctantly moved further into the room. He swallowed nervously to wet his dry throat and croaked into the silence "Hello, anybody home? Dea.. errr...Angel? Yoohoo....your favorite Scooby is here. Cordelia..you here?"
No answer. He stood for a moment at a loss as to what to do next. He didn't know where Cordelia lived or any of the others for that matter and the conditions in the city at the moment weren't really good for running about willy nilly looking for people. The best thing to do he figured was wait right here. Eventually someone had to show up, right? Right.
With that grand plan of non-action decided, the exhaustion that follows an adrenaline rush crashed down on him leaving him feel limp as a wet noodle. His knees were shaky as he slowly walked up to the old check-in counter. He reached for the phone on the desk and picked up the handset with a trembling hand. He'd call Sunnyhell and tell them he had arrived safely. He wouldn't mention the other freaky stuff... not yet anyway.
He punched in the number for the Magic Box and put the handset to his ear, getting his goofy everything- is-just-dandy Xander voice ready. Silence. He pushed the disconnect button several times and listened, and got nothing but silence. Okay so he wouldn't call. "Faaanfuckingtaastic, and the famous super duper Xander luck strikes again," he drawled sarcastically into the uncaring silence.
"God, I really need a drink," he muttered. "Hey, maybe Deadboy kept a bottle of brandy around like Giles does at the Magic Box." He looked around the lobby again and then went around the end of the counter and searched the shelves underneath. He didn't find anything but a flashlight. A flshlight was a good thing, just really not what he was looking for right now. He straightened and turned around. There was another door there. He opened it cautiously and peered into the room, then flicked the flashlight on. The light was weak but good enough.
It was an office. The size of the desk almost guaranteed that it was Deadboy's office. Talk about compensating. Aha, desk drawers. That's the ticket. He rounded the desk and started pulling open drawers and rifling though them. He didn't feel the slightest bit of guilt. If Deadboy was going to ignore guests he didn't know he had, he deserved to get pilfered. He was just about to give up hope when he pulled open the last lowest drawer, and hit paydirt. He snatched a full bottle out of the drawer and held it aloft triumphantly. "Eureka, score one for the Xan man."
He looked about for a glass and didn't see one, but hey, he wasn't gonna sweat it, he had the most important thing. He slammed the drawer shut and exited the room closing the door behind him and flicked off the flashlight. The exit signs were on and provided some dim illlumination. He rounded the checkout desk shambling deeper into the lobby and searched the shadows for a comfortable waiting spot.
He found an old couch and fell onto it with a sigh of relief. There was even a blanket haphazardly thrown over the back, He grabbed the blanket and wrapped it around himself and held the bottle up to see what he had scored from Deadboy, not that it mattered, he was going to drink it anyway. He was just curious. Irish Whiskey not brandy. Oh well, good enough. He cracked the seal and took a sip. Fire, he had swallowed fire, his eyes watered and he coughed, the stuff burned a path all the way down into his belly and warmed him from the inside out.
He rubbed the back of his hand across his eyes and coughed again. He could feel the effects almost immediately. So, into the breach again. He held his nose this time and chugged two mouthfuls. Since his mouth was already numb, it didn't burn as much going down this time. A few more hefty swallows with a shudder, and damn almost a third of the bottle was gone.
His thoughts were pleasantly fuzzy and the freaky shit was at a more comfortable distance now. The shakes were gone and he was pleasantly relaxed. He yawned widely and stretched. *In for a penny in for a pound* he thought as he lifted the bottle with exaggerated care and took a couple more long swallows for good measure. He fumbled with the cap and it seemed to take a great deal of effort to get it back on right. He kept missing the top of the bottle. He leaned forward and let the bottle slip to the floor. His last thought as he lay down and fumbled the blanket up to his chin, and slid into darkness, was that he would just wait here for...anyone to show up and tell him about the weirdness.