Gift From The Past

Chapter Ten

The door flies open and Jack looks up at the intruder.

Jack: Sorry, weíre closed. Come back at eleven.

The large male stalks defiantly across the floor and glares down at the barkeep.

Jack: I said weíre closed.

Riley: I heard you. I am not here for the beer. I want answers.

Jack: Answers? You need to go back to that fancy college. They have all the answers. Not me

Riley: All I want to know is how you fixed the beer?

Jack: Beer? I poor it in a glass.

Riley: Not serve. Fix. How did you fix the Black Frost Beer?

Jack moves back from the counter and the imposing male.

Jack: I am not sure what you mean.

Riley: Listen, I know what you did to those punks and I have to say some of them deserved it. All I want to know is who conjured the spell.

Jack: Hey, I donít want any more trouble. It was a joke. Nothing more.

Riley leans over the counter.

Riley: Who?

Jack: It was my brother-in-law. He helped me.

Riley: Heís a witch?

Jack: Warlock actually.

Riley: Call him. Tell him to get down here.

Jack: You donít want that. He wonít take kindly to threats.

Riley: Listen. I think you know who I work for and that we would be able to make both you and your brother-in-law disappear. And where would that leave your wives and children.

Jack: You canít.

Riley: You know I can.

Jack reaches for the phone and dials.

 

Giles Apartment

No one notices the platinum blonde standing at the door watching the activity in the bedroom. He smiles bemusedly. Cordy looks down at her handy work.

Cordy: There you go. Again.

Angel: Thanks.

Wes: Do you feel okay?

Angel: Not going anywhere.

Giles: Well that is good. We hope this will prove unnecessary.

Wes: But better to lean to the side of caution.

Spike: Angelus you never looked better. All trussed up like a thanksgiving turkey.

Angel cuts his eyes at the younger vampire.

Giles: I thought I told you to stay in the living room.

Spike: And miss all the fun?

Angel: I wonít be chained up forever.

Spike smirks once more before leaving. He saunters into the living room and turns on the TV.

Xander: Why are you here?

Spike: I donít know. Ask Giles.

Xander heads to the bedroom and stops in the doorway. He looks at the dark haired man dressed in a long sleeve black shirt and green silk boxers chained to the bed.

Xander: That is so not the sight I wanted to see.

Giles: Did you need something?

Xander: I was just wondering why we need chip head.

Giles: Willow asked that he be here.

Xander: And where is she?

Giles: She and Tara should be here soon. Why donít you go wait out front and let us know when they come.

Xander: Fine.

He turns to leave but looks back at the chained vampire.

Xander: Bondage. It is so you.

Giles: Good bye.

Xander leaves.

Angel: He is one thing in this town I have not missed.

Giles: I imagine not.

Cordy: He just wants what you have.

Wes: Buffy?

Cordy: No. A personality.

Angel chuckles.

Wes: I believe we are ready. We just need Willow and her little friend and we can proceed.

Cordy: Well I am going to go outside.

Giles: Angel, can I get you anything?

Angel: No, I am good.

He closes his eyes and tries to relax. Giles and Wesley slip out of the room and close the door.

Giles: I do not envy him.

Wes: Me either.

Giles makes a pot of tea while they wait. Spike sits staring at the flickering pictures on the TV.

Outside

Cordy is pacing back and forth.

Xander: What is your problem?

Cordy: What if this doesnít work? What if he loses his soul? What if they canít give it back? What will I do? Here I have these visions and no one to take care of them. No one to pay me. Iíll be out of work. I can not do that again. I need this job. Well at least until I am discovered. I have bills. I have rent. He canít go all evil again. It would be so unfair. I can not go back there.

Xander: Amazing.

Cordy: What?

Xander: You never cease to make everything about you.

Cordy: Huh? Come on. Wes can find another job and well Angel will be Angelus and Angelus will love it.

Xander: And Buffy? And the baby?

Cordy plops down on the brick planter.

Cordy: It just has to work. That is all there is to it. I hate this waiting.

Xander: Looks like timeís up.

He points to the two women approaching.

Cordy: So that is her girlfriend. Kinda big isnít she.

Xander: Tara is very nice. So you be nice.

Cordy: When am I not?

Xander: I do not have time to go through the list.

Willow and Tara walk up.

Willow: Is he here?

Xander: Here and all tied up.

Willow: And Spike?

Xander: Watching TV.

Willow: Good.

She heads in the door and the other three follow.

Giles: Hello. Are we ready?

Willow: We are. I have everything right here.

She pulls out a zip lock bag half full of a fine blue powder.

Wes: How does it work exactly?

Willow: When it makes contact with the human body it reacts and tells if there is a soul present.

Giles: And it works?

Willow: Well it worked on Tara.

Wes: But will it work on a someone without a soul?

Willow: Letís see.

Everyone turns and looks at Spike.

Willow: Spike?

Spike turns and sees everyone looking at him.

Spike: Oh bloody hell.

Willow: I need your help.

Spike: I know I am going to regret this but what do you need?

Willow: Just need to test this decloaking powder.

Spike: Magic. Forget it. I am not your man.

Cordy: Youíre not a man, if you forgot.

Willow: Quit being a baby. All it does is show if you have a soul or not.

Spike: I donít so you know.

Willow: Spike, do you really want to get on our bad side? After all we have done for you?

Spike: Done? Like tie me to chairs and to bathtubs.

Willow: Hmmm, well maybe Angel can convince you.

Spike: Ha, nancy boy is all chained up.

Cordy: Oh well we can unhook him if we need to.

She moves to the bedroom.

Spike: No donít.

He looks at Willow and sighs.

Spike: I better not end up a toad or something.

Willow: You wonít I promise. All the powder will do is react one way if there is a soul and another way if there isnít.

Giles: Why donít we take this to the bedroom. I assume Angel will want to see the test.

Willow: Okay.

Everyone moves toward the bedroom. Cordy, Xander and Tara watch from the doorway.

Willow: Hi Angel.

Angel: Hey Will. Are you ready?

Willow: I am. I just want to show you how it works.

Angel: Please do.

Willow sets her bag on the dresser and removes a foot long hollow reed. She pushes the tip into the bag and then places her thumb over the other end. She glances around.

Willow: Okay when this comes in contact with a body with a soul is will appear blue. Will someone let me demonstrate?

Wes: I will.

Willow: Thank you.

He walks in front of her and she tips the tube up.

Willow: You might want to close your eyes.

Wes closes his eyes and Willow blows the powder from the tube all over his face and neck. Everyone laughs and he opens his eyes. He looks at his reflection in the mirror above the dresser.

Willow: As you can see the powder is blue upon his skin. This shows he has a soul.

Cordy: Nice to finely know. Wondered sometimes.

Wes: Maybe we should check you next.

Cordy: Donít you start.

Wes: Me start. You started first.

Cordy: Puhlease. You are such a baby.

Angel: Enough! To your opposing corners. We donít have time.

Cordy: See you made him yell again.

Wes: Not me. It was you.

Angel: Cordelia. Wesley.

They both look at him and glare at each other before walking to opposite sides of the room. Wes pulls out his handkerchief and begins whipping his face

Willow: Okay then. Spike?

Spike: You want to make me into a big blue idiot too?

Willow: Actually you shouldnít turn blue if you donít have a soul. The powder should disappear.

Xander: Why are we wasting time? Just dose him already.

Spike: I bet if I did it quick I could tolerate the pain long enough to snap your neck.

Willow: Xander. You are not helping. Now Spike stand in front of me.

Spike saunters forward and glares. He shrugs off his coat and tosses it on the foot of the bed.

Spike: Go.

He closes his eyes and she blows the magical powder over him. The fine crystals hit his skin and burst and pop. They make little tiny burst of purple sparks over his face and neck. He jumps around swatting at the tiny embers.

Spike: Bloody hell. Get this shit off. You trying to burn me alive?

He stops and glares at Willow as the last of the crystals burn off. Everyone is fighting their laughter.

Spike: I hope you are all very happy. Bad enough I have this bloody chip but now you are devising ways to torture me.

Willow: Sorry. I knew it would disappear. I just never knew it would burn doing so.

Spike: I still can not believe this is the group that use to stop my every plan.

He heads to the door.

Spike: And after that there better be something to eat here.

Giles: In the refrigerator.

Spike stomps out of the room cursing under his breath.

Wes: Well it appears to be a success.

Giles: It does.

He turns to Angel.

Giles: Ready?

Angel nods.

Willow: I think I will wait in the living room while you men handle this part.

She walks out and Tara follows.

Angel: Cordy?

Cordy: I know.

She moves to leave but looks back and holds up her crossed fingers. He smiles and nods. As she leaves the three men look down at the bed. Giles lays the velvet bundle at the foot of the bed and unwraps the knife.

Giles: I know this will be painful but there is no other way.

Angel: Just do it.

Giles looks down at the blade and takes a deep breath.

Xander: Here, let me.

He picks up the knife and looks at the tip.

Giles: You know where it goes?

Xander: Yes.

Wes: Insert it slowly until you reach the bone. Then let it go and let it try and draw his soul.

Xander: Gotcha.

He raises the knife and looks down at the emerald green boxers.

Xander: Into the groin and down to the bone.

Wes: Correct.

Xander looks again and moves. He looks at Angelís face. Angel lays with his eyes closed waiting.

Xander: I canít. I thought I could. I just can not do that to a guy. Even Angel.

Angel watches him as he lays the knife down and walks away. He glances at Wes and Giles looking at each other.

Angel: Giles, can I talk to you?

Giles: Sure.

He leans over and Angel whispers.

Angel: You need to do the ritual in a pink tutu.

Giles face hardens upon the words and memories of intense pain flash through his brain. He nods at Angel and picks up the knife. Angel smiles and closes his eyes. Wes watches as a totally foreign and determined look steals over Giles face. Xander watches intensely.

Giles raises the blade and with a downward thrust sinks the blade into the tender flesh and down to the bone as Angel bellows in pain. Giles lets go and steps back. The crystals embedded in the pewter begin glowing. They get brighter and soon the knife it self appears to glow. It turns red hot and wisp of smoke float up.

In the living room the women hold hands as they listen to the scream from the bedroom.

Soon the blade goes dark. Giles steps forward and picks up the velvet. He wraps it over his hand and grips the still hot handle. He yanks it out and Angel lets out a lower cry.

Wes: Angel?

Angel turns his head and looks at the former watcher.

Wes: Are you you?

Angel nods.

Xander: You sure?

Angel: Yes.

Giles: Are you ready to prove it?

Angel nods. Giles lifts a small afghan of a chair and tosses it over the damaged boxers while Wes retrieves Willow.