DISCLAIMER: Angel the Series/Buffy the Vampire Slayer characters belong to Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy etc. Elizabeth Blaine and attendant characters belong to Wes Craven etc. I'm just playing. If, herein, other characters bear a certain resemblance to familiar faces, it's intentional and they, of course, belong to their various creators as well.
AUTHOR'S NOTES: 1. I write femslash. Therefore, there be f/f lovin' ahead. If you don't like it, find another 'ship. 2. Vampires and blood and stakes, oh my! This story is dark in places. Not all the time, and not forever, but there will be some points where things aren't pretty. If you are bothered by graphic descriptions of the evil that men do, you may wish to find something fluffy. 3. Some knowledge of the show, Angel and the movies Dracula II and III (Ascension and Legacy) are quite probably necessary, though not entirely so.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
Resurrection is for the Unbelievers
Kate was locked in the throes of nightmare. Weight pressed into her, forcing the air from her lungs. It grew heavier and heavier until she struggled to get tiny sips of air. Suddenly, she couldn't breathe at all.
Forcing herself awake, Kate sat up in bed. The sheets and blankets were tightly tangled about her and she was drenched in sweat. Running her hands through her hair, she groaned.
"Fuck that sucked."
Standing, she padded over to her kitchen sink and got a glass of water. Holding it to her forehead, she tried to leech some of the cold into her overheated flesh. She was shaking, and the sensation of suffocating was still a ghostly presence. Even as she calmed, she felt as though each breath came at a cost.
"Damn, what's wrong with me?"
Her apartment felt like she had left the heat on at full blast. She stumbled to the thermostat, but it was off. Flicking on a light, she hunted around until she found her first aid kit and pulled out a thermometer. The tiny beep moments later told her that she wasn't running a temperature.
She was sweating again, and her breath came in small, strangled gasps.
"Is this some kind of spell?" Her voice sounded harsh. She made her way back to the kitchenette and stuck her head into the freezer. Hoping that the extreme cold would clear her head, she laid her cheek against the frigid surface and closed her eyes.
The sound seemed both near and distant. She was certain she had imagined it. Sighing, she began to relax as the icy chill of the freezer cooled her.
Help me, please!
Startled, Kate slammed her head into the one shelf of the freezer. Cursing softly, she shut the door and stumbled into the living area of her studio.
"All right, 'm coming," she muttered as she hunted about for her jeans. Pulling them on while shoving her feet into her shoes, she grabbed her helmet and her keys and headed downstairs.
"Can't believe I'm following orders from the voices in my head," she murmured as she straddled her bike and turned the ignition.
She would have ignored the pleas, but with them came a fuzzy sense of direction. If there was one thing that Kate Lockley had learned from her association with all things weird and wacky, it was not to ignore a telepathic summons.
Because when you did, things usually went to shit.
The beacon drew Kate nearly four miles from her home. Cutting the engine, she pushed the bike into a shadow, dismounted and drew her gun with one hand and her flashlight with the other. Slowly, she edged into the alley from which the calling was the strongest. The sensation of not being able to breathe was getting stronger.
A large pile of crates stalled her while she tried to move through them without alerting any potential attackers. Tripping over debris, she cursed softly.
"Hello? Please help me. Hello is there someone there?" The voice was female and filled with fear.
Kate dove forward, shining her light ahead of her. When she broke through, the sight that awaited her made her stomach heave. Putting up her flashlight, she ran to the girl's side.
"Hey, it's okay. I'm a friend," she murmured softly as she pulled out a knife and began to cut the young woman's bonds. The girl was sobbing.
"It hurts, God, it hurts so much."
"I know I know, but it'll be okay now." She got her free. When the girl tried to move, Kate stilled her. "No, don't move. I don't know how badly you're hurt. Just stay there, okay?" Flashing her light around the alley, Kate looked for signs of the girl's attacker.
"What about the other one?" the girl said softly. "Is she okay?"
"I heard sounds of a fight. I think it was another woman she attacked the guy who was hurting me." It was then that Kate noticed that the girl was blind. The girl managed to smile as she added, "I think she was winning because he kept screaming some awful things something about her biting him and then it got real quiet."
Without a word, Kate pulled out her cell, punched speed dial and said, "It's me. I've got a situation. One down serial probably but there is possible involvement of an Angel-like nature."
Something was said that caused Kate to frown. "I know, Fred. I'm being careful. But I've got a victim who's been worked over by a real sick son of a bitch. Garlic and stakes are the last thing on my mind." She closed her eyes briefly. "Can you send someone? I've got to look around and I'm pretty sure that the locals aren't equipped to deal with this."
Fred's response must have been positive because Kate smiled tightly and hung up. Looking down at the girl she said, "What's your name?"
"Amy Amy Jennings. Are you some kind of cop?"
Kate almost smiled. "You could say that." She pulled off her jacket and laid it over the girl's shivering body. "Rest, Amy. It won't be long now." Standing, she began to search for the "other" that the victim mentioned.
At the back of the alley, against a wall, she found two more bodies. A man was slumped over the prone form of another victim. The man's head was turned at an unnatural angle and his face was twisted in a rictus of such horror that Kate had to look away.
"You must be the asshole," she said as she bent to check for life signs. He was cold. Pushing him off the other body, she gasped in shock when she saw who was revealed. "Elizabeth?"
When she pressed her fingers into the vampire's throat, she was shocked to discover the faintest trace of a pulse. As her fingers made contact with the vampire's flesh, Elizabeth moaned.
Her eyes fluttered open. Dazedly, she stared up at Kate and said, "Did you get the plate numbers of the Mack truck that crushed my skull?"
Elizabeth was a bloody mess. Coated top to bottom with muck, gore and grime, Kate couldn't tell what, if anything, was wrong with the vampire. She did, however, realize that she had to get the other woman out of there and someplace safe. Shortly, the alley would be crawling with Angel's people and Kate knew that an enigma like Elizabeth was the type of mystery about which the people at Wolfram and Hart would want to know more.
Biting her lip, Kate made a decision. She grabbed the vampire around the waist and dragged her to her feet. "Come on, Doc, get your butt up."
Opening one eye, Elizabeth looked at Kate. "Doc?"
Kate grimaced. "Med student doc?" Nodding her head toward the girl lying not more than five feet away, she gave Elizabeth a long look.
"Oh, yeah. Doc. Right," Elizabeth whispered. "Gotcha, Dick."
"Dick?" Kate hissed. "I am so going to get you."
Elizabeth managed to grin. "Gotta get outta here first, Dick."
Sighing, Kate helped the vampire stagger out of the alley.
"Where are you going? Are you leaving me? Help!" The girl on the ground started to struggle to her feet. "Don't leave!"
Looking over her shoulder, Kate called, "Stay there, Amy I'll be right back, I promise!"
Amy ceased her struggling and slumped to the ground once more.
Getting Elizabeth on the bike was harder than it looked. The vampire was drained almost to nothing, and had no strength of her own. Her body was like a lump of overworked clay. Every time Kate tried to prop her up, she would collapse upon herself.
Finally, she gave up and left the vampire slumped over the gas tank. As she turned to head back into the alley, Kate noticed the dagger sticking out of Elizabeth's back.
"Damn," she muttered. Louder, she said, "This is gonna hurt, Doc." Grasping the dagger's handle, she pulled.
Elizabeth grunted softly then let out a long hiss of pain. "Shit that burns."
Peeling off her flannel, Kate wadded the material up and pressed it into the freely bleeding wound. "Hold this, I need to check on Amy." Barely taking the time to make sure that Elizabeth had a good hold on the temporary bandage, she raced back down the alley.
Amy had fallen unconscious. Lifting her jacket away from the girl's body, Kate checked for a pulse, letting out a sigh of relief when she found the girl's heart beating strong and steady. All of the damage that the killer had done had been superficial he had been playing before committing his final atrocity.
Brushing the girl's hair away from her eyes, Kate sat with her until she heard the sounds of vehicles approaching. "I'm sorry you had to have this happen, Amy. But these guys will take good care of you." She stood slowly, looking around to be sure there were no other witnesses.
As the first of the silent EMTs trundled into the alley, she stepped aside. When a woman in a crisp business suit approached, she wordlessly handed her the dagger.
The woman nodded briskly. Softly, she said, "Vivienne Drake. Mr. Angel wishes to know how the Cradle Snatcher case is progressing."
Kate sighed. "Slowly, Vivienne. It's going slowly. If that changes, I'll call."
Drake sneered. "I'm sure you will, Miss Lockley. Please remember that you are being paid for your services. We at Wolfram and Hart are not accustomed to waiting for results."
One of Kate's eyebrows crept toward her hairline. "Are you threatening me, Vivienne? Because if you are, I'm sure that Angel can afford another investigator " She leaned toward the immaculately coiffed brunette. "Though I'm not sure he would understand why his hand picked detective was suddenly off the case."
Drake closed her eyes briefly. Really, she just hated working with freelancers. Firming her jaw, she said, "No, of course not, Miss Lockley. Please, do let us know if anything turns up." With that, she spun away from Kate and strode off toward the EMTs.
The detective shouldered her jacket and exited the alley.
When she returned to the bike, Kate discovered that Elizabeth had slipped over the side and was precariously clinging to the tank. Torn between laughter and concern, the detective quickly strode to the vampire's side. A steady drizzle of blood had striped the concrete in crimson slashes. All trace of humor vanished as she said, "Hey, come on. Let's get you out of here, Doc."
Wainright's book had given Kate a small amount of insight into Elizabeth's nature. If the vampire was Tos ki'Dren then she would honestly be no more evil than a gun. Under the wrong influence, Elizabeth could become a terrible weapon but given the benefit of trust, she might blossom into a powerful force for good.
The only hesitation Kate felt was knowing of the years that Elizabeth had spent as a true, murderous, blood-sucking vamp.
But she told me herself that she rarely, if ever fed from humans. Her guilt kept her focused on her 'kin' as she called them. Yes, she was indirectly responsible for the deaths of many, but if I can give tacit forgiveness to a man that knowingly committed some of the most heinous acts I've ever read about, then surely I can give her a chance? Kate sighed. It would be hard, because she knew that a part of her hated Angelus and would not be sorry to see Angel become dust in the wind.
Lifting Elizabeth, Kate dressed the redhead in her leather jacket, squeezed onto the bike and then wrapped the taller woman's arms around her waist. With a chuckle, the detective pulled out her cuffs and locked them around Elizabeth's wrists.
"Am I under arrest?" The words were slurred, but tinged with amusement.
"Wouldn't want you to fall off," Kate replied as she pulled her helmet on. "Hang on tight," she added.
"Mm, okay." Elizabeth squeezed up against the detective and rested her head on Kate's shoulder. "Like this?" she said.
The other woman's warmth was welcome as the night held a slight chill. Glancing to the side, Kate nodded. "Like that. You ever been on a motorcycle before?" She felt the pressure as Elizabeth nodded slowly. "Good. Just move with me. It's not far to my place."
"Mm-kay." Elizabeth felt consciousness begin to drift away. Kate smelled good. Like honey and mint, she was sweet and fresh. It was a scent that was both comforting and alluring to the exhausted woman.
By the grace of whatever god watched over fools, they made it back to Kate's in one piece.
As she parked the bike, Kate unlocked the cuffs holding Elizabeth in place.
"Doc? You still with me?"
Blearily, Elizabeth nodded.
"Good. I'm gonna get off the bike try not to fall when I do." Kate dismounted and caught the redhead just before she toppled over. Sighing, the detective smirked. "You're in shit shape, Doc. When was the last time you ate?"
Elizabeth looked up at Kate and mumbled, "Had me a serial killer earlier."
Surprisingly, Kate understood the reference. Frowning, she said, "Have you had anything real to eat?"
As she was helped from the bike, Elizabeth licked her lips and said, "I think I had some peanuts at work yesterday, but I don't remember right now." She wobbled on her feet. "Whoa. Someone please tell the world to slow down before I fall off."
Kate started cursing softly. Slowly, they worked their way inside where the detective got the redhead settled on the couch. She was about to offer to feed her, and then noticed that Elizabeth had passed out again.
"Damn." Her cell phone rang. "Double damn." Opening it, she barked, "Lockley."
It was Dersk and he had information. Good stuff a lead that could break her case wide open. "Shit," she mouthed as she looked at the sleeping form of the vampire. "All right, I'll be there as quickly as I can. Stay put and don't do anything stupid."
The laughter she heard on the other end of the line would have been ear splittingly loud if he had been in the room.
As quickly as she could, Kate changed into something more fitting for running around in the shadows. Under her leather jacket, she buckled on her Kevlar vest and she put several extra clips of ammo into a pair of camouflage BDU pants. The helmet she grabbed was as special as her gun the face mask was bullet proof and fitted with night vision. It was another gift from Wolfram and Hart, courtesy of Angel Inc and part of her pay for this job.
Just before she left, she scrawled out a quick note and left it on top of the book on the Tos ki'Dren on the coffee table.
Gone out. Be back ASAP. Read this. Raid the 'fridge. Don't leave, I want to talk to you later. K
Coffee. God please don't let me forget coffee next time. Kate was squatting over a broken skylight, looking down at what could have been anything from an illegal drug operation to a boring game of checkers. She just wasn't sure. Either way, the participants in the game were definitely not human and that was enough to keep her pinned in place.
For the last three hours, the detective had watched the same six demons play the same game of checkers. One would lose, another would take his place and the rounds would start all over again.
"You'd think they'd play something more interesting, like Parcheesi," grumbled Dersk from his position across from her.
"Shut up, snake boy," Kate whispered. Sighing, she shifted her legs to keep them from cramping.
Dersk spread his hands wide. "I'm just sayin'. Hey, I got a deck of cards you wanna play poker?"
"No. I'm not interested in losing my shirt again." The last time she had ended up owing him almost a hundred bucks.
The half-demon's grin was predatory. "Oh come on, I promise to let you deal at least twice."
"Not on your life, snake boy." She fished out a small camera and took a few quick shots as the demonic checker players traded partners.
Her mind was only half on the job. I hope she doesn't leave. I know what she's doing and it's going to get her killed faster than if she were Buffy-bait.
The odd image of the small, blonde slayer taking on the tall, ruddy haired woman gave Kate pause. Her heart actually skipped two beats when the inevitable end to that conflict presented itself in her head. As much as she hated vampires, she didn't want Elizabeth dead.
That confused her and made her even more irritable.
"Come on you rat bastard, show your damn face so I can go home and take a bath," she muttered darkly.
"Oo, can I wash your back, Boss?"
"Shut up, Dersk."
Consciousness stole into Elizabeth's brain like a recalcitrant child. Second by second ticked away as she first felt the tickling sensation of a fringed blanket that covered her shoulder to the last impending notice that her bladder was seriously considering springing a rather large leak.
Throwing the blanket off, the vampire leapt to her feet, wobbled for a second and then realized she had not one iota of a clue as to where she was, never mind where the nearest bathroom was. Since that was becoming something of a major necessity, Elizabeth spun in a slow circle, trying to devour her surroundings by osmosis.
Preternatural hearing, an enhanced sense of smell and the logical thought process to realize that she was in a loft apartment directed her to the half open door at the back of the room. Sure enough, there was a tiny lavatory hidden behind a door painted in a garish tone of pea soup green.
Relieved of one need, the vampire stumbled back into the main room. There was a single lamp on a table at one end of the couch, which she managed to turn on without falling over. Now that there was more than a smidgen of ambient light, she was able to determine that wherever she was, it was a friendly environment.
It smelled like Kate.
Closing her eyes, Elizabeth flopped onto the couch and pulled the afghan over her lap. The blanket was worn soft with use and was deeply impregnated with the detective's unique fragrance. It had the look of something made by unsteady hands, as the weave and twist of the yarn was loose, but it was obviously a treasured object.
She drifted for a while then came awake with a start. As she opened her eyes, she spotted the note and the book. Reaching for the note, she scanned its contents and smiled.
"Raid the 'fridge, huh? All right." Her stomach growled. "I think I'd rather take a shower first, though." Standing, she shucked the blanket and looked down at her clothes. "Damn. I hate washing blood out of denim."
Her shirt and pants were a bloody, torn mess. The wound in her back ached, but she knew from experience that it would heal over once it was cleaned. A shower was definitely first on her list. Afterward well, maybe she would just pop out and go mugger hunting.
Why put a dent in Kate's supplies when she could eat and do the city a favor?
The stakeout was an utter bust. Well, maybe not a complete loss. She had three more faces to fax Angel in the morning. Perhaps one of the W&H flunkies could find one among the trio that could be linked to Vitmar Caruso.
Muscles creaking in protest as she stood, Kate reached into her pocket and withdrew a small wad of bills. "Here," she said, handing them over to Dersk. "Call me if anything develops."
The cash vanished with a speed that only the greedy little informant could manage.
"Of course. Get some rest, Boss. You look like shit."
Kate made a face. "Thanks. You look like a snake with legs."
The half-demon smirked. "Well you know how women feel about snakes," he said as he wiggled his hips suggestively.
"I did not need to see that at six a.m. in the morning, Dersk. Chalk that up to one more reason why I stopped dating."
Dersk frowned. "Oh that's not good. Not good at all. Kate, you gotta get out more. Have fun. Live a little. Get a little something-somethin' if ya know what I mean." He sidled up to her and whispered, "I know just the place too."
Turning her head at a slight angle, Kate said, "Not if you were the last creature in the universe. I'd rather sleep with a vampire."
The half-demon shrugged laconically. "That can be arranged." He grinned. "You've got a neck built for nibbling."
"Shut up, Han."
Laughing, Dersk began the laborious process of climbing down from the top of the building. Kate was right on his heels and shortly, they were wading through ankle high debris that filled the alleyway next to the warehouse.
"If something in this mess moves, I swear I will scream like a girly man," Dersk muttered.
"And I'll laugh my ass off if you do," Kate replied with a smirk.
"You're so kind, Boss."
"Call it a bonus."
"Gee, thanks. I can finally get that cup of nothing I've been eyeing for at least a minute."
Showered, wrapped in one of Kate's fluffy pink towels, and leaning over the bathroom sink, Elizabeth creatively cursed her way through scrubbing bloodstains out of her jeans.
"May you be cursed with ingrown pubic hairs in your afterlife," she said exasperatedly as she rubbed at yet another crimson patch.
That she had killed the man who had been trying to kill that young girl didn't bother her nearly as much as the fact that he had gotten blood on her clothes. She wasn't even particularly fazed by the three inch deep stab wound that had wept a thin trail of blood down her leg as she had showered. No, what really ticked her off was the fact that she hadn't been able to feed fully and now her stomach and her backbone were in a wrestling match and her backbone was steadily losing.
She was also completely without a change of clothes, which made it damned impossible to go hunting.
I suppose I could borrow some of Kate's things, but The detective hadn't given her permission and it was a little bit like crossing a threshold. It just wasn't something she could do without an invitation. Well, I can cross thresholds, but I won't borrow someone else's things because that's just crass.
Sighing, she tossed her mostly clean jeans over the edge of the tub and started in on her t-shirt.
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