The Case of the Misunderstood Immortal
A Shirley Holmes / Angel Crossover

by Boo Rogue Amazon
June 05, 2000         12,400 words



Disclaimer: Yet another disclaimer folks. Ok the short short version. These characters are not mine. They are Joss's and Creedo's. I am borrowing and will return them relatively unharmed to their respective universes. Thank you and have a nice day. This story is a Shirley Holmes/Angel crossover and continues the series started with my first two Buffy/Shirley crossovers. It takes place about midway in the first season of Angel. Opps'I almost forgot. This work of fiction does contain Buffy/Angel level violence the fact being that Angel is a vampire that fights evil. Kind of an Oxymoron isn't it?

Personal Disclaimer: All right I want to take this opportunity to claim my original characters created for this fic. The first being Marcus and the second Xavier. These boys are mine so please make supplication to the Goddess (AKA me) before using them. In other words ask me.

Special Thanks: I would like to thank Damon Ford for brainstorming with me in the creation of Marcus. Marcus wouldn't exist if not for Damon's observations and insight.

Cast of Characters

From Angel

Angel (Two hundred and forty plus vampire)
Cordiela Chase (The socialite with a heart'sometimes)

From The Adventures of Shirley Holmes

Shirley Holmes (Detective extrordinare)
Bo Sawchuck (Dr. Watson incarnate)
Molly Hardy (Giving Cordy a contender for Queen B)
Alicia Gianelli (Friend of Bo and Shirley)
Bart James (Can you say Agent Mulder)
Stink Paterson (A Gag in the hand is worth a lot of laughs)
Ms. Stratmann (Headmistress (or for us uncouth Americans) the principal of Sussex Academy).

Original Characters

Marcus Quinlan
Xavier


The Case of the Misunderstood Immortal: Chapter 1

North America
Delaware River
December 8th 1776

Snow, everywhere Marcus Quinlan looked there were mountains and mountains of snow piled high over the forests of what would one day be upstate New York. The bits of white ice encircled him drawing his attention to the bitter cold around him, but among the freezing temperature that had so often dishearten the troops lead by General George Washington, there was a feeling of anticipation. They were about to attack the British, in the dead of winter, a feat almost unheard of. Marcus watched as the poorly clad men started loading supplies into a small boat that would be one of many to cross this night. It was this sight that reminded him why he had gotten involved in this war in the first place. Freedom was still a noble concept even to one as cynical as he had become. With a rueful grin he turned away from the sight and sat down on a nearby log. He laid his musket across his lap and started to take it apart piece by piece, examining the well oiled and well cared for gun that had saved more lives than he could imagine. It was in the middle of this familiar task that a sizzle of energy traveled up his spine. With a narrowing of his dark blue eyes he turned toward the river. Marcus had experienced this feeling before; it meant that one of his race was near, someone powerful. Closing his eyes and stretching out his mind he followed the feeling to its origin somewhere on the other side of the River. He concentrated harder trying to find its source. Suddenly his eyes shot open, "Xavier," Marcus breathed softly on the chilled wind. Laying his rifle on the ground he stood up and walked to the edge of the river bank starring across the stretch of half frozen water, locks of his black hair blowing in the breeze. Marcus now knew that more than just the freedom of the former English colonies was at stake. Xavier had found him and it was time to put him to eternal rest.


Los Angeles, California
Present Day

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art rose tall and stately before the group of uniform clad teenagers milling around outside of the large silver tour bus that had just dropped them off at the steps. The looks on their collective faces ranged from comical, to excitement, to out right boredom. Bo Sawchuck and Stink Paterson were among those in the third group. Molly Hardy was in a class all her own as she stood off to the side looking for the entire world like the ruler of all she surveyed. Standing with her was Alicia Gianelli talking animatedly, probably about fashion which was her all time favorite subject. Bart James was among those who seem excited as him and his cronies from the supernatural society held a debate about the supposed supernatural objects that were on display, and amongst it all was Shirley Holmes, silently observing the people around her. Shirley, a pretty girl of now fifteen, since she had her birthday less than a week ago, was intrigued by this collection for a reason different then all the others around her. She was interested in the family behind the collection. With long brown hair and cute features she would never be considered beautiful but she was attractive. What really lent to Shirley's appeal were her eyes. They were that rare shade of brilliant blue that genetics only bestows once in a blue moon. Even more engaging than just the color was what was behind them. In those azure depths lay an intelligence and intensity that should have been well beyond her fifteen years. She was very much the great grandniece of Sherlock Holmes when she cast that gaze on the unsuspecting. It was this look that she had now as she continued to study the group of thirty or so Sussex students that had come to L. A. to view the Quinlan collection. This collection was infamous for it's mystery since it had never been seen by anyone outside of the Quinlan family. According to the brochure the junior detective held in her right hand the collection sported artifacts from around the world. Shirley paused in her study of her classmates to recall what she knew about the Quinlan family. Antony Quinlan was a renowned billionaire that no one had seen in thirty years. He was a recluse, whose past was as unknown as his facial features. He was also an eccentric, the Museum board had almost died from shear, unadulterated, shock when they found out that he wanted to display his collection, but there was a catch. The collection could only be displayed for two weeks. The teenager wondered why the two week time period. Before she could find an answer to that a hand on her shoulder interrupted her thought process.

"Hey Shirley," Bo Sawchuk said to his best friend. When she didn't reply he put his hand on her shoulder and gently nudge her. "This is Houston calling Shirley Holmes please acknowledge." It took the junior detective's eyes a minute to refocus. When they did she looked at Bo and smiled.

"Sorry, guess I blanked out there for awhile," she replied sheepishly. Bo snorted and said in a rueful voice.

"I wish I could blank out for awhile, might make this a little less boring than it is going to be." Shirley just scowled at him.

"Bo aren't you even the least bit curious to see this collection? I mean it hasn't been seen by anyone but the Quinlan family for almost thirty years, and even then it was only shown to a handful of trusted friends." At one time, thirty years ago the collection was to be reveled to the public but then Antony Quinlan went into seclusion. He took the largest collection of artifacts that the world had ever seen into seclusion with him. Bo leveled bored eyes on his best friend, but undaunted the junior detective made one last appeal. "He has the largest private collection of artifacts in the world. Some of them dating back to Julius Caesar's Rome." Bo frowned at Shirley and made the obvious reply.

"Aww come on Shirl. We are in L. A. and all we are doing is seeing a bunch of stuff that used to belong to some dead guys. Excuse me for wanting to go to Disneyland instead." Shirley tried not to glare, but it took considerable effort.

"You're right. What's the Eye of Bacchus compared to a cartoon mouse with his own chain of theme parks," she said sarcastically. Bo just grinned.

"Exactly my point." His grinned turned rueful. "And Shirl, no offense, but after our last little adventure with Buffy a full day in the same room with Molly Hardy would be preferable to a Amulet of any kind." The junior detective sighed. She had to concede that he did make a very good point. The teenager shivered a little thinking about the raw power that had coursed through her arm when she had put the amulet of Mao to Molly's demon possessed form. That had been almost three months ago and she really never wanted to repeat that experience again. She did, however, wonder how the Slayer was doing.

"I wonder how Buffy is doing," Bo said giving voice to Shirley's own thoughts. She opened her mouth about to reply when Bart James interrupted the conversation. Neither Shirley nor Bo had seen him come over.

"I can't believe you would rather go to Disneyland than see the Eye of Bacchus," Bart said to Bo almost scornfully. With untamed brown hair and glasses obscuring his blue eyes Bart kind of resembled Anthony Edwards character from Revenge of the Nerds. Especially in his Sussex uniform. Bo just looked at him as if he were crazy.

"Let's do the math Bart. The most popular theme park in the world, or some stuff that is valuable because some dead guy won it in a war nobody remembers, there is no contest, the mouse wins." Bart still looked unconvinced and a little disgusted.

"The Eye of Bacchus is every paranormal investigators dream come true." His voice had taken on that distinct lecturer's tone it tended to get when he was talking about his favorite subject. "Ancient Roman myth say that Bacchus, known to the Greeks as Dionysus, would die every winter and be reborn in the spring. That is way they believed that the Amulet could be used in a ritual to turn human beings into the undead. I don't necessarily believe in the power of the Amulet but evidence has been presented in favor of the existence of vampires. I myself have never seen one, but a number of society members have reported sightings." Bo and Shirley just exchanged knowing glances. Both of them would bet the other one whole month of slave labor that no one in Bart's paranormal society had ever seen a real vampire. Having been almost killed by some really nasty undead Americans, both detectives knew that anyone from Bart's society, Bart included, would wet themselves at the first sight of a real vampire, and then they would have been killed.

"That is a fascinating history Bart, but I doubt highly the validity of such a claim." Shirley was directing this skeptic remark at the history of the Eye, but Bart took it to mean the existence of vampires.

"Well I have already found strong proof for the existence of poltergeist, who is to say I will not find the same thing for the undead?" Before either Bo or Shirley could comment on that Ms. Strattmann called for everyone's attention. Bo just groaned at the prospect of spending the day inside a museum, and normally Shirley would have commented on his lack of enthusiasm, but right now she was just glad to end this particular conversation. She turned away from Bart in profound relief. It was because of her past associations with the Slayer that Shirley knew if Bart were ever to really meet a vampire it would be the last thing he would do in his life. For Anne Rice had it all wrong when it came to Vamps and Bart's innocent enthusiasm would end up getting him killed. She silently prayed that her friend never made his boast come true.

"Angel I can't believe you didn't charge your clients again. That is four times this month. You may be able to crawl into a coffin anytime you need a place to stay but us living people have to pay rent." In the darkened basement room Angel flinched awake as Cordiela Chase burst into his apartment. She was not at all pleased with him. It was mid morning and the two hundred and forty-year-old vampire was still recovering from last night's fight. The demon had left the vampire pretty banged up, but he still looked better than the other supernatural nasty did.

"Cordeila, could this wait until later?" he groaned and sat up. His chest was bare and he made sure to keep the covers strategically placed over his lower body.

"No this can't wait until later. I have an audition for a facial cleanser commercial, not that I need facial cleanser, and I have to have my rent paid before I go." Cordy had that distinct you had better listen to me tone she had perfected through her years of high school popularity. Still Angel was learning that there was a lot more to Cordiela Chase than even she could imagine, and he knew she could imagine a lot.

"Don't worry you can take the money from petty cash," her replied wanting to just go back to sleep. She just gave him an annoyed look.

"What petty cash!? Hello I all ready checked. I mean come on Angel would it kill you to charge ever once and awhile? I have'" Cordiela was suddenly cut off mid-sentence. Hot blinding pain flashed behind her eyes and she fell to her knees. The images flashed in her mind's eye. The first was a night club were a group of teenage girls were being carried off by demons, the second was a museum were she saw a blond girl scream and then rendered unconscious by a demon. The third and final image was even more disturbing. She saw a line of teenagers in a trance like state. They were standing in a circle around a large pentagram painted in red on the floor. Each held a ceremonial knife in their hands. There were twelve of them with a space for one more. Most of the teens were dressed in normal L. A. attire, primarily club wear, but four of them were dressed in some type of school uniform that sported tacky green jackets. The emblem of the school was embroidered on the right breast pocket. All of them had their knives poised to drive them into their hearts. As abruptly as the vision hit her it faded and Cordy slowly reoriented herself to the present. She hadn't even noticed Angel come to her side, but there he was crouching next to her in the black jeans that he had hastily thrown on.

"What did you see?" he asked softly. It still unnerved him when she had visions. Cordiela lifted tortured hazel eyes to his warm brown ones. "I saw kids Angel'they were going to kill themselves." The vampire felt a chill go down his spine that had little to do with his undead status and everything to do with his dawning sense of dread.


The Case of the Misunderstood Immortal: Chapter 2

The Quinlan collection was all it boasted to be and then some. Shirley had never seen so many well-preserved artifacts, and from so many different eras too. She wished her Gran could be here to see this, but her Gran had been called away to help an old friend whose husband had died unexpectedly. Her dad, Robert Holmes, was busy in New York with yet another political function. Needless to say Shirley was more than happy to be avoiding that particular form of torture. The junior detective was now wandering around the museum alone, having gotten to the part of the tour where everyone was encouraged to explore without the tour guide's running commentary. Bo, much to Shirley's extreme annoyance, had ditch her to go off with Stink to look at the vast array of ancient weapons the Quinlan collection sported. So she was left to her own devices, which now that she thought about it suited her just fine. After examining a small ancient statue of Shiva, the Hindu god of destruction, Shirley strolled on to the next case and stopped short. She was standing in front of the Eye of Bacchus and it was breath taking. The disk was about the size of an American half-dollar cast in a substance that appeared to be like platinum. The interacted designs were unlike anything Shirley had ever seen and the eye shaped stone in the middle was the blue-green color of the sea. It was, truly, a beautiful piece, she thought in admiration.

"It is stunning is it not," a cultured voice said from behind Shirley. She whirled around; surprised that someone had caught her off guard, and came face to face with the most handsome young man she had ever seen. She recovered quickly and schooled her face into the emotional mask she wore so well. With a detective's eye she studied him. He was undoubtable handsome, with deep set dark blue eyes the color of the ocean at night and blue-black hair that had a tendency to fall down onto his forehead. His nose was straight and aristocratic and he stood causally before her, his hands resting in his pants pockets. He was dressed in black Armani, but Shirley noticed that he wasn't quite comfortable in the expensive clothes, but he was tolerating them. He also appeared nervous. It was a nervousness that no one else would have picked up on due to the his iron control, but Shirley, being the observer that she was, noticed that his right hand was playing with the coins in his right pant's pocket. She had a feeling that this little clue to this teenager's emotional state was a lapse that did not happen often. What puzzled and intrigued Shirley the most was the fact that he wasn't smiling, just staring at her with intensity that she had never seen on the face of another teenager. He should have been acting like all the other, rich, sophisticated boys she had met, a pompous jerk. Shirley was certain that he had money, it was in the line of his body, the tilt of his head, and the sheer arrogance of his glance.

"Yes it is stunning, it also has an interesting history to it," she replied knowingly and turned back toward the case. He took a step forward to stand next to her. He had a slight smirk on his face, like her know-it-all tone amused him.

"Please do enlighten me," he said and now he was almost grinning. Shirley didn't like that smirk and decided to wipe it off of his smug aristocratic face.

"The Eye of Bacchus, also known as the Amulet of Dionysus, was first discovered in the tomb of an unknown Roman noble family in the late nineteen twenties. The tomb was unknown because all markings had been chiseled off of it, presumably by their enemies. The Eye was said to have been forged by Vulcan and have the mystical properties to make the dead into the living. This obviously came about because of the resurrection myth that surrounds both Bacchus and his Greek counter part Dionysus," Shirley finished with a triumphant smile curling her lips.

"Well Ms. Holmes you are very close but not quite correct. The Eye does not turn the dead into the living; it turns them in to the undead. A subtle but meaningful difference and the tomb belonged to the house of Talamus. The Eye was found in his daughter Serena's sarcophagus." His smile had faded and his eyes had taken on that intense look again.

"How do you know my name, and how would you know were the Eye was found?" she questioned softly and suspiciously. She was deciding quickly that she didn't like this guy.

"I know your name Shirley because I asked your headmistress, who is standing over there," he said this while gesturing with his chin, "to make sure you don't offend me. As to why I know where the eye was found it is because that is were my grandfather found it." This he said simply as if it were an obvious fact.

Shirley's eyes widened then narrowed. "You're a Quinlan," she said. She made it sound like an accusation.

"Yes, Marcus Quinlan at your service," he added a slight bow when he said this. This got Shirley's full attention and she turned to face him.

"You're Antony Quinlan's son, the one he sent to oversee the collection," she stated flatly. She wasn't sure how she felt about him now that she knew who he was. "I thought you would be older." For some reason this statement brought an ironic snort past his lips and the slight smile that seemed to be his trademark showed Shirley, that for some reason, he found her statement immensely funny.

"You're laughing at me," she said a little put out. She barely knew him and he was laughing at her. His face schooled back into the indifferent mask that he had worn when he first approached her.

"No, but you have amused me a little'which is something that hasn't happened in a long time." He said the last bit as if it shocked him and among the shock there was also a little sadness. He then added thoughtfully, "You're not what I expected Shirley Holmes, not at all." He smiled slightly again, but this time his smile was bittersweet. For one brief instant the mask of indifference fell away and what Shirley saw in his eyes cut her to the core. The junior detective had never seen such raw emotion displayed with such naked intensity. Then mask fell back into place causing Shirley to wonder if she had imagined it. He then turned and walked away. A small shiver ran down her spine and she felt'well she wasn't sure how she felt. Shaking off this foolish feeling in disgust the junior detective took a step in Marcus' direction with the intention of finding out exactly what he meant by that last remark but the appearance of Bo and Stink interrupted her. Her best friend ran up to her with a huge grin on his face.

"Hey Shirl you gotta see this sword, it's huge. The caption says in belong to Goliath of Gath."

"That's nice Bo," Shirley replied absentmindedly as she watch Marcus walk away. Bo followed her eyes and narrowed his own in suspicion.

"Who is that," he said gesturing with his chin. Shirley just turned to him and shivered a little. Wrapping her arms around herself she wondered at her reaction and replied. "He's nobody Bo, nobody at all." She then turned and walked away from him. Stink had been watching Bo and Shirley's exchange with a grin spreading across his features. As they watched her walk away Stink rested his elbow on Bo's shoulder, leaned on him, and turned his head to address him.

"Women," he said with a shrug of his shoulders. Bo just stared after his best friend completely dumbfounded.

Marcus Quinlan retreated to the next gallery and called himself every kind of fool imaginable. Then he cursed the appearance of the one person who could destroy everything. Why, now of all times, did she have to show up he thought and ran a frustrated hand through his hair causing it to become disheveled. The heir to the Quinlan fortune was so preoccupied that he didn't see the tall stately blond before it was too late. His shoulder brushed Molly Hardy and almost pushed her into the display case holding some Native American Art. Quick as lightening Marcus' arm shot around her waist and he steadied her.

"I'm sorry Miss I didn't see you there," he replied releasing her. The blond just had a gleam in her eye.

"Well Marcus it has been a long time," she responded with a smirked. He shot confused eyes at the girl.

"I'm sorry do we know each other?" There was a hit of suspicion in his voice when he asked this question. Molly just met his suspicious blue gaze with one of pure innocence.

"Of course I know you Marcus, or should I say I know about you. I wondered if I would have the pleasure of seeing you when it was announced that we were going to see the Quinlan collection, or should I say when Ms. Strattmann was persuaded to bring us to the Quinlan collection." Molly had that look in her eye. The one that said I want something and I intended to get it no matter who I have to crush on the way. Marcus in the mean time was not in the mood for her games he was about to give her a change of mind when all of a sudden the entrances to the gallery erupted in an array of really ugly demons. Molly screamed and before Marcus could react one of the Demons hit him over the head with a nearby solid silver tray. It connected with his head and he staggered back from the blow almost into unconsciousness. The one who had hit him threw some kind of green substance into Molly Hardy's face, which threw her into unconsciousness. He then grabbed the unconscious girl, threw her over his shoulder caveman style, and broke for the back door disappearing into the dawning night.


The Case of the Misunderstood Immortal: Chapter 3

Within ten minutes of Molly's disappearance all of the remaining Sussex students were rounded up and sent outside to wait by their tour bus with the chaperons. There was a lot of speculation being tossed around about what had exactly happened. The commotion had brought the museum rent-a-cops running past most of the assembled students. It wasn't long before everyone from Sussex had known why the guards had come running. The tension was high amongst the students as they all wondered what could have happened to Sussex Academy's most prized pupil. The museum security guards and Ms. Stratmann the head mistress had been searching for her for the past half-hour to no avail. Shirley, Bo, Bart, and Alicia were standing together in a circle talking about Molly's most recent disappearing act.

"Shirley they have to find her," Alicia whined melodramatically. "I mean what is something horrible happened to her, like being kidnapped by gangs or something."

Shirley just gave the little Italian a measured look. "I don't think that gang members hang out in museums Alicia," she replied calmly. She didn't dare look at Bo with the questioning look she was tempted to give him.

"Yeah Alicia I'm sure Molly will be fine," Bo reassured. "Especially since she specializes in attention getting 101." This last part was mumbled but Shirley heard him and tried not to smile.

"What was that Bo," Bart questioned of the rest of his explanation.

"I said Molly is smart. I'm sure she wouldn't have been caught off guard," Bo reworded for Bart and Alicia's benefit. This time Shirley had to put a hand over her mouth to cover her slight smile.

"You know she was talking to that Marcus Quinlan guy," Alicia said suddenly. "Did you see him Shirl. The really good-looking one with the clothes right out of GQ.

"Yeah we met," Shirley said cautiously. Her emotional mask slammed into place and her blue eyes took on a bland look. Bo caste her a curious glance, knowing that protective mask well.

"Well he and Molly seemed to be getting along well so maybe she just went off with him and lost track of time." Alicia seemed relieved to come up a banal reason for Molly's sudden disappearance. "You'll see, any minute now he will bring her back and apologize for keeping her." Shirley didn't say anything but retreated back into herself. For some reason she didn't like the fact that Molly and Marcus were talking together. She also decided she didn't want to examine her reasons too closely. Shirley was getting antsy; she had tried to sneak away when they were herding everyone outside but Ms. Sttratmann had cut her off, like a sheep dog herding her back in line. So she was now just awaiting her opportunity to get back into the museum. Suddenly the student's conversation was cut short as the roar of sirens filled the air. Five minutes later three police cars screeched to a halt, and six officers left their respective cars, running quickly into the Museum. All of the twenty-nine remaining Sussex students watched with curiosity and dread as the L. A. P. D. went through the entranceway. Five minutes later another car, this one unmarked, came to a halt outside of the building. A casually dressed woman exited the vehicle. Shirley watched her with interest and pegged her immediately as a detective. The blond haired blue eyed woman carried herself as one. It was the arrival of this woman that had Shirley really itching to get back in and she decided that she would never have a better opportunity than right now, what with everyone's attention focused on the police. The junior detective idled nonchalantly over to Bo and tugged on his arm. When he looked at her she inclined her head toward the detective she had just seen enter the museum and then she gestured with her chin toward the side entrance. Bo immediately shook his head no, but Shirley just gave him that look. With a sigh he followed her as she started sneaking away. He had a feeling that this was going to be a very, very bad idea.

The moment night descended on L. A. Angel was in his car speeding toward the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Cordelia would have been with him but after her vision she had suddenly taken ill. Angel didn't understand why and it scared him. He had already lost Doyle and to lose Cordy so soon after, well it wasn't an option. Her sudden illness couldn't be a coincidence either; Angel knew that at least. It had to have something to do with her latest vision. That is why he was heading toward the museum now. Even though it had been the second place to flash into her mind when the vision had taken place; Angel knew, via the day's paper, that he was already too late to save the teenagers from the clubs. The club kidnappings had taken place the night before, which made Angel wonder why Cordy got a vision from the past, it was the first time that it had ever happened. The vampire rounded yet another corner and then slowed at the sight he saw before him. Police cars were parked haphazardly out in front of the museum's entrance along with a tour bus and there were number of teenagers dressed in private school uniforms milling around. He also saw Kate's car. He knew that if Kate was here then he was too late to prevent the latest kidnapping. Parking his car across the street Angel got out and closed the door silently. The vampire then skirted the teenagers and the two officers guarding them to get to the side entrance of the place. He just hoped the mystical constraints were gone from this building like they were at the Bronze back in Sunnydale.

Shirley and Bo crept silently down the hall of the Ancient Egyptian exhibit trying to avoid the police officers that seemed to be popping up everywhere. Bo had managed to pick the rather complicated lock on the side entrance and they were now trying to get to the room where Molly's disappearance had taken place. Shirley wanted to look for clues. They were in the Ancient Egyptian wing and were trying to make it to the special gallery that was holding the Quinlan collection. Shirley and Bo reached the connecting doorway and peered around, the sight that met there eyes was a disheveled Marcus Quinlan holding his head in his hands while being questioned by the blonde detective that Shirley had seen enter the gallery earlier. She had obviously been questioning him for awhile.

"So your saying that she was just grabbed by a group of men and carried off," the woman said in an almost offhanded manner. Marcus just looked up at her and glared. He wasn't fooled by her tone one bit.

"Detective Lockley I have already repeated my statement twice, do you really need to hear it a third time," Marcus' was trying not to growl but he had had just about enough of Detective Lockley for one evening. She seemed inordinately suspicious when she arrived and the mood had not changed. The detective whirled around at his tone and stared at him with cold eyes.

"Yes I really need to here it again, because you know what Marcus? This is the ninth disappearance I have been called too this week and you know what four of those kids had in common? " She bent down almost inches from his face. "You" she added quietly. The heir to the Quinlan fortune glared. In a monotone voice he replied.

"I was having a pleasant conversation with the one you have called Ms. Hardy and these ruffians burst in through the back gallery rendering me unconscious, and carried her off." His expression just dared her to call him a lair again.

"Fine have it your way Quinlan," the detective said with an indifferent shrug. She then turned on him again. "But you can bet your ass that I will be find out what is going on." The detective was about to say more but a familiar voice stopped her.

"Kate?" Her name was said softly, almost hesitantly and she whirled around. Standing not ten feet away from her was someone she had been hoping to avoid forever. Her eyes narrowed as she took in Angel's tall, dark, and brooding form. The L. A. P. D. detective stalked over to him.

"What are you doing here?" Her voice was low and harsh. Angel just lifted his tortured brown eyes to hers.

"I have been investigating the disappearances." Kate Lockley just looked at him and released a heavy sigh.

"I don't think that reassures me considering what is usually involved when you are involved in one of my cases." Angel just managed to look more retched. He still wasn't sure what to say to her about what had happened to her father. The vampire had not killed the man, but others like him had, and it was enough to make Kate blame him. He could see the accusation every time her eyes met his.

"Kate I'm sorry, there was nothing I could do about your fath'"

"Don't," she said cutting him off. "Just don't." She then turned and walked away from him. Angel watched her go with a regret that was almost tangible. Shaking himself out of it he turned his attention to the boy that Kate had been questioning. It was better than thinking about Kate. Marcus didn't even flinch when the vampire met his gaze and Angel had been using his best intimidating look. He stared blandly back at him looking almost bored. The two hundred and forty plus vampire approached him cautiously. Angel didn't quite know why but there was something off about Marcus Quinlan.

"What did you really see?" the vampire questioned. Marcus's eyes gazed back at the vampire with the same intensity he had shown to Shirley.

"I can't tell you here." Marcus said and stood up. Angel started in surprise he hadn't expected an answer like that. The heir to the Quinlan fortune just smiled his mysterious half smile. "I'm going to need your help Angleus, which means that I will talk to you tomorrow morning about the little dilemma I am facing. At least you won't get killed trying to help me like others would." Angel's eyes narrowed.

"How do you know who I am," the vampire questioned menacingly and took a step forward coming eyeball to eyeball with Marcus. The heir just looked at the vampire with grave eyes well beyond his years.

"Tomorrow, your office," was all he said before turning on his heals and walked away. Angel just glared at his retreating back with deep suspicion.

Bo and Shirley had been crouched down behind a large statue, watching everything that had been transpiring in the Quinlan room. Bo's face looked grim and Shirley's was pale. It was starting to look like this wasn't another stunt of Molly's after all. The junior detective had also heard Detective Lockley's thinly veiled accusations against Marcus. It was obvious that this wasn't the first disappearance and she had a feeling that it wouldn't be the last. She also didn't like the fact that Marcus seemed to be involved somehow. It was obvious that he was the prime suspect. Shirley didn't examine why that information disappointed her so much. Instead she tugged on Bo's arm and indicated the hallway to the back door. Her best friend sent her a puzzled look until she pointed to the far corner. A small piece of cloth from Molly's uniform hung there. Shirley had noticed it when she had come in but wanted to hear what the detective had to say first. As silently as they could the two detectives crept over there. The junior detective then felt around in her pockets for something to collect this evidence with. She found the brochure that had been passed out amongst the students describing the collection. It wasn't an ideal evidence bag but it would do in a pinch. With a little maneuvering she managed to get the fabric free and folded it into the brochure. She then placed it in her pockets to examine later. Next she started walking the grid near the door as Bo watched her curiously. She stopped near the opposite corner, bent down, and scraped a strange green substance off of a sharp protruding hinge. She used the insert to the brochure for this, and pocketed it with the fabric. Shirley was just about to look around some more when a familiar voice stopped her.

"I thought you two were being suspicious." Shirley and Bo both jumped a mile, when their heart rates had finally slowed back down to normal the glared at the intruder.

"Bart what are you doing here?" Bo questioned softly. "No scratch that I don't want to know, but you need to leave."

"Hey it's not my fault. You two looked like you were up to something, which you obviously are. I just wanted to make sure that you weren't going to get us all into trouble." Bart replied and pushed his glasses up with his index finger.

"Bart we're'" Shirley started to say but was cut off.

"Going to get in a lot more trouble than you think you are," a familiar, cultured voice said from the shadows. A moment later a non-too pleased Marcus Quinlan stepped out of the darkened part of the hallway. Shirley just crossed her arms, stuck out her chin and glared at him.

"Is that a threat Marcus?" The junior detective questioned with a lift of her eyebrow. The heir to the Quinlan fortune just sighed and ran a hand through his hair.

"No it is not a threat. I assume by your belligerent attitude toward me that you over heard Detective Lockley's accusations." When she didn't answer he met her intense gaze with his own. "Shirley I'm not threatening you. I'm warning you to stay out of this. It is more complicated than you could possibly imagine." Bo had been watching this exchange with some confusion but after Marcus gave voice to those words he decided to put his nose into the middle of it.

"Ok Shirl who is the geek in the suit," Marcus just glared at the blonde teenager for that remark and Shirley sighed.

"Bo this is Marcus Quinlan, he is the'" she was cut off.

"The son of Antony Quinlan and heir to the Quinlan fortune," Bart said in awe. "His grandfather is also the most prominent occult expert in the world, at least he was before he died horrible and unexplainably." This last part was said in an offhanded manner that caused Marcus to flinch visible. Shirley and Bo both grimaced a little at Bart's usually lack of aplomb, but the sympathetic feelings they were both briefly feeling died in a wave of suspicion.

"Who was the man you were talking to in the black trench coat," the junior detective asked suddenly. Marcus just gazed back at her innocently. "He was no one at all," the Quinlan heir replied cryptically. Marcus then turned on his heels and walked away but before he was completely out of view he got in one last parting shot. "Stay out of this'all of you." He then disappeared into the darkened building. Shirley glared at his retreating back and turned back to Bo and Bart. Bart was looking a little bewildered for a moment and Bo was looking in Marcus's direction in suspicion.

"Come on," Shirley said to Bo and Bart dragging her best friends attention away from Marcus. "We need to get out of here and get back to the bus." The two boys nodded gratefully and then followed the junior detective opposite the way they had come and out the back door. Shirley was the last to come out and she had her back turned to close the door. When she turned back around to follow Bo and Bart she was greeted with a sight that sent her heart up into her throat. Standing before her were six of the most hideous looking creatures she had never wanted the pleasure of seeing. Two of them were holding Bo and Bart, with one slimy hand clamped firmly over the two boys' mouths. Shirley did what most people would do when encountering demons from the very depths of hell. She screamed in terror.


The Case of the Misunderstood Immortal: Chapter 4

Angel had been looking for Kate to try and talk to her again when he heard the scream. On pure instinct the two hundred and forty-year-old vampire turned and bolted for the back door intent on getting to the scene on time. He dodged ancient artifacts as he went weaving this way and that until finally he broke out into the back courtyard of the museum. The sight before would have froze his heart in terror if he weren't already dead. Three teenagers where struggling with Ralos demons. Being a vampire, Angel was familiar with many types of demons and Ralos were one of the worst kinds because they were big, mean, and stupid. Because of their lack of intelligent thought they were usually used as enforcers which meant that there was a controller around here somewhere. As this thought crossed the vampires mind he stopped his intended attack and started looking around for the leash holder that had to be there. He knew that these kids would be dead otherwise. His first instinct was to look for the boy, Marcus Quinlan but then a flash of red hair in the shadows caught his eye.

"It's dangerous to lurk in deserted alleys at night even for you Angelus." The two hundred and forty plus vampire whirled around in surprise, and his eyes widened in shock. They narrowed when he saw the red head behind him.

"Rena," he spat out in disgust. The two vampires stared at each other, but Angel was keeping the struggling teenagers in his peripheral vision.

"Oh so you remember me do ya Angleus," the female vampires voice had a slight Irish lit to it. "The devil with the Angel face, my mother had warned me about you all those years ago but did I listen?" This last part was said in derision. Angel's face took on a tortured look but then he steeled himself.

"If I remember correctly you were begging me to turn you," Angel replied thoughtfully. Rena had been one of those vampires that had been almost as evil alive as she was undead. It was no wonder that Angelus had thought she would be useful. Rena just flashed him a nasty smile designed to taunt him. Angel was about to make a snappy retort when he noticed the bandages around her hand. He smiled maliciously, a little of his demon nature peeking through. "Looks like your new master has to punish you like I use too. Tell me Rena. How long does he make you hold a cross for, my record for your punishment was what two, three days?"

"I'm going to enjoy watching you die Angel," she snarled in anger.

"What are you doing here Rena?" he asked suspiciously, tired of taunting her. Her anger faded and her full lips just curved into a nasty smile. In the next moment the beautiful young woman was gone and her face contorted into her true face, that of the demon inside her.

"Now wouldn't you like to know but I'm afraid that is only for the Laird to know. Now I will be taking those three behind you and be bidding you a goodnight." When Shirley, Bo and Bart heard this they started struggling against their captors vehemently. It was like trying to wrestle their way out of a steel cage. The three unburdened demons after receiving a small hand signal from Rena, attacked. The first two demons rushed Angelus. Just as quickly as they attacked Angel spun on his heels and ducked the first blow that was designed to take off his head. Still in motioned the vampire took out a long sword from the folds of his jacket and thrust it under his arm to run through the demon that had been flanking him. The monster gave a frightful cry and then fell into a heap. Angel then straightened and faced the other demon. Enraged at his comrade's demise the first Ralos demon knocked the sword from the vampire's hand with a powerful blow. If Angel were a normal person it would have broken his arm. The third demon came and joined his buddy in an attempt to rip the vampire's head from his shoulder blades. As far as originality went in a fight these things were sorely lacking, which would turn the battle in Angel's favor. The vampire saw them coming at him and prepared himself to act until the loud retorts of multiple gunshots echoed through the night. Angel watched as the remaining two demons fell to the ground dead. Surprise flickered across his handsome features until he looked beyond the two dead demons and saw Kate still aiming her service weapon in his general direction. The vampire nodded his thanks to the detective, who didn't look all that happy about helping him, and then morphed into his vampire face to fight the rest of the now fleeing demons. Rena had given the command to retreat and the vampire wasn't about to let these things take these kids away to face the fate Cordy saw in her vision. Running hard Angel reached the first demon, the one carrying Bart and pulled him to the ground. The enraged demon was forced to let the kid go so he could fight Angel off. The vampire ducked a punch aimed at his head and shot his leg out to catch the Ralos in the gut. The demon grunted and went down. Angel, however, had not seen the other demon drop the girl he was carrying and come to help his comrade. He came up on the vampire's left and got in a lucky punch that snapped Angel's head back. The ancient vampire growled in menace, pulled a knife from his jacket and stabbed his attacker in the chest. He then reversed the knife in his hand and ran through the demon that had been trying to carry Bart away. Green blood poured from their bodies as the fell to their knees clutching their respective wounds. The last demon he stabbed let out a pitiful cry like that of a wounded dog and then fell to the ground. All of a sudden Shirley screamed. Angel's deformed demonic face snapped around and he saw the remaining demon dragging the girl off by her leg with the other boy draped over his shoulder. Kate saw what was happening and leveled her gun at the back of the creature's head, only to have it knocked out of her hand by a now enraged Rena. The female vampire growled through her fangs and backhanded the detective into the nearby wall. Kate lost consciousness almost immediately. With a snarl Angel took a step to go after Rena , but then Shirley screamed again. He gave his sired one last look that promised she would pay, Rena just smiled and took off running in the opposite direction. Angel then spun on his heels. The demon wasn't getting very far very fast due to the fact that both the boy and girl were kicking and clawing at him for freedom. He took off after the last demon, but before he could get to it a dark haired blur emerged from the bushes and punched the demon hard in the face. It hollowed in pain and let go of the girl, but it still had its grip on Bo. Shirley whirled around, suddenly free, and met the deep ocean blue of Marcus' eyes with her own. Angel didn't have time to question the new comer, whom he recognized as Marcus Quinlan, because the boy was still in trouble. Bo was still struggling fiercely but without the added distraction of Shirley the demon was now getting away. Angel snarled in rage and was about to attack him when an unseen force suddenly threw him back. "That is quite enough Angelus," a voice bellowed in his head turning his mind to mush. His hands went to his ears and he held on for dear life. The vampire had never felt such intense pain, and on some deep down survival level he knew that if he didn't stop the intruder in his mind then he would be dead in a matter of minutes. Angel struggled shaking his head like a dog trying to shake off an irritating collar. He couldn't believe it but he could feel his mind breaking down into pieces, slowly being picked apart and destroyed. In the nest instance Angel felt another presence in his mind; it was fighting the invader, painfully fighting the invader. The two hundred and forty-year vampire felt the scream of agony tearing at his throat but he managed to keep it in. Finally Angel felt the second presence push back the first until he was free. He dropped to the ground and started to convulse in pain. When the convulsions finally stopped someone bent down and helped him to his feet. It was the teenager who had saved Shirley.

"He won't be able to get into you mind again," the boy answered cryptically. Marcus's intense stare met Angel's and the vampires eyes widened in sudden understanding, but before Angel could say anything the pretty brown haired girl ran up to them.

"Marcus are you all right," she asked the teenager. Marcus nodded.

"I'm fine Shirley, but they got Bo," he said gently. Shirley's blue eyes widened in horror and Angel could tell she was fighting back tears. It was a minute before she got herself under control enough to speak. While Marcus talked to Shirley, Angel went over to see how Kate was doing. He reached the blond detective, bent down, and gently lifted her head onto his knee. To his relief she was breathing steadily, she was just unconscious. Angel had been so preoccupied with Kate that he was unaware the others had come to stand near him.

"God more demons, where is Buffy when you need her," Shirley said softly almost to herself. Angel's head shot up at the mention of his Slayer's name. His eyes radiated surprise and shock, but before he could ask the girl how she knew Buffy, Bart came running up to them breathless with excitement.

"Shirley did you see that! I..we..they were demons." Bart wasn't sure if he should be scared or excited so he settled for a little of both. He then turned to Angel.

"And you. You're a vampire. No use trying to deny it. As an expert in the field of the paranormal I can see you have all the qualities. I can't wait to write this up for the paranormal society. I, Bartholomew James, will be the first ever to interview a vampire." The kid was looking at Angel like he was a specimen under a microscope. The two hundred and forty-year-old vampire shifted uncomfortably. He also noted that the girl Shirley wasn't near as surprised as his friend to find out he was a vampire. It made him wonder exactly what her connection to the Slayer could be. He was still speculating on that when Marcus brought Angel out of his reprieve.

"I suggest we all get out of here before more of the undead decide to try and kill us tonight." Angel stared at the teenager with narrowed eyes but finally nodded his consent. Marcus smiled his trademark half smile at that. Shirley, in the meantime, hadn't much of anything at all since the attack so he turned to the detective.

"Shirley?" He made her name a question. The junior detective looked from Marcus to Angel to Bart and then back to Marcus.

It was with a tired sigh and the realization that she was emotional and physical exhausted that she nodded her consent. Her exhaustion, however, still didn't prevent her form turning a curious eye on Angel. "I would like to know why you saved us," she asked puzzled. "In my experience vampires aren't known for their altruistic tendencies."

"Well Angel is different from most vampires," Marcus replied softly in answer to Shirley's question. Shirley turned to regard him with deep suspicion and distrust. Marcus didn't even flinch.

"How is he different GQ," she asked snidely. Marcus didn't rise to her baited tone; he just answered her calmly.

"He was cursed, he has a soul," Marcus replied. It was now Angel's turn to look at the boy in suspicion.

"That is not exactly common knowledge," Angel said to Marcus excepting him to explain himself. Marcus just met the vampire's eyes with a bland stare and shrugged his shoulders.

"Marcus how do you know Angel has a soul?" Shirley finally asked when it was clear that Marcus wasn't going to volunteer the information. Marcus just turned that bland blue eyed gaze on her, still refusing to answer. The two teenagers stared into each other's eyes. Both the junior detective and the heir to the Quinlan fortune could feel the tension building between them as if it were a live wire; both were gazing at each other trying to discern the other's darkest secrets. It was a battle of wills. The strained atmosphere was finally broken by Bart awkwardly clearing his throat.

"Um Shirley, I am getting the distinct impression that none of what is happened this evening surprises you. And what exactly do you mean by in your experience," Bart remarked casually. Angel smirked at what Bart said but covered it with his hand and pretended to cough. He couldn't help it. The boy was a miniature version of Westley with a little bit of Giles thrown in for good measure.

"Bart I'" Shirley started to explain but was cut off by the sound of voices coming their way. Marcus looked around urgently at the rest of the group.

"We need to go now," he replied. Angel nodded and gently let Kate's head rest back on the ground he then turned to the rest of the group. "Follow me," he said. Even though Shirley still wasn't sure if following Angel and Marcus was a good idea, she did know that they were probably her best link to finding Bo. Bart on the other hand would have followed Angel just about anywhere to satisfy his scientific curiosity about vampires. So it was that a reluctant Shirley, an excited Bart, and a very secretive Marcus followed the ancient vampire around to the front of the building and got into his restored black convertible. Angel stated the car and pulled away carrying them away into the night.


The Case of the Misunderstood Immortal: Chapter 5

"You idiots," a voice bellowed and echoed throughout the deserted warehouse in the inner city heart of Los Angeles. A small number of vampires and Ralos demons cringed and shrank back into the darkness. A minute later the handsome, well dressed, figure of a man stepped forward from the shadows leaving the left half of his face in the darkness. He would probably have been even more imposing if he were taller. The man, for lack of a better word, was somewhere in the five foot five range.

"My Lord," Rena said her voice trembling. "I'm sorry my lord, the eye, it was blessed," she said and held up her hand for his inspection. The intricate pattern that Shirley had so admired was brandied on the female vampire's hand. Her master just snorted in disgust.

"Of course it was blessed," he said and then in a fit of rage kicked her in the face. This maneuver served to bring him fully into the light and revealed the scared mess that covered the rest of his face. Rena flew back from the blow and then quickly scrambled to her feet again. "Marcus isn't a fool, he knows the importance of the eye, but more importantly he knows its secrets." The figure then smiled, a cruel, evil smile that revealed his elongated canines. "He knows the eye's secrets as well as I know his." The vampire laughed. It was a frightening laugh that made Rena and every other demon in the place shrink away from him. It was the sound of insanity. When his moment of mirth was over he caste his one good eye on a demon that happened to be standing next to Rena. The creature backed away shaking his head no in fear. The vampire just stared him down, and suddenly the large Ralos demon dropped to it's knees, held on to its head, and screamed in pain. Its cries of agony echoed throughout the deserted warehouse and every other creature in the room was now on their hand and knees cowering before their master. Finally the demon's shrieks stop and its lifeless body fell to the floor in a heap. A clear green fluid started leaking out of its ears. The master just smiled curving his lips slightly over his canines.

"Don't fail me again. Find Marcus and you will find the eye. I want them both or all here will suffer the same fate."

The dawning of the next morning brought with it even more problems than the small group had escaped from the night before. Angel had not slept the night being his domain and even if he would have tried to sleep the boy Bart would have kept him awake all night long anyway. Bart had asked the vampire a number of questions about his condition and how he came to be. Angel being less than talkative by nature had tried to dissuade the boy until finally much to the vampire's relief he fell asleep. The teenage girl had also tried to stay up but she had dropped off to sleep almost immediately. She was obviously exhausted. So it was that Marcus was left alone with Angel but before the vampire could ask the burning questions he had about the teenage heir, Cordiela screamed. Angel had spent the better part of the night trying to keep Cordy calm. What ever had befallen her was not natural, and could not shake the feeling that Marcus could tell him exactly what was wrong with her. Over all the situation was a bad one and it seemed to him that it would just get worse as time went by.

"Bloody hell." Marcus Quinlan cursed and threw the paper on the table next to Angel. The vampire started. He then gave the teenager an inquisitive look. Marcus sighed and sank into the kitchen chair across from him. When Marcus wasn't forthcoming with what had upset him the ancient vampire picked up the paper and started to read. The headline read, QUINLAN HEIR AND SUSSEX STUDENTS VANISH.

"Police are baffled by what had appeared to be a group of isolating kidnappings that have covered a four day span in the Los Angeles area. Now police suspect one person is involved. To date fifteen teenagers have vanished from the greater metropolitan area in the last four days. Among the missing are six students visiting from a prestigious private school located in Redington, Canada and the heir to the Quinlan family's vast empire, Marcus Quinlan. Although the L. A. P. D and the headmistress of Sussex have no comment on the matter a statement was made by one of the students who happened to see Alicia Gianelli and a boy unknown to her carried off by three men. When Detective Kate Lockley was asked to comment on the statement she refused to answer."

Angel stopped reading right there. He knew now why Marcus had cursed. Two more kids were missing and it had happened right under their noses while they had been fighting the Ralos demons.

"Do Shirley and Bart know yet?' the vampire questioned. "Know what?" a female voice asked. It was Shirley, still dressed in her Sussex uniform, which was a little worse for wear since she had slept in it. Angel knew he couldn't keep it from the teenager so he silently handed her the paper. When she was done reading she looked up calmly and tried to keep her face blank of emotion.

"They have all my friends now," she said almost woodenly and shank into a nearby chair. She then turned to Angel. "You saved Bart and I from being taken. Why?" Angel didn't want to answer but the look on her face said she wasn't going to let it go. Besides he had a few questions of his own and he wanted to ask her.

"My associate Cordeila has these'visions. I was at the museum to keep the latest one from coming true." He didn't add that he had failed but Shirley read it in his eyes. He turned away and faced the wall not wanting to look at her and asked the question that had been plaguing him all night.

"How do you know Buffy," he said almost softly. Shirley just started a little at the Slayer's name. Her eyes then narrowed in suspicion.

"She saved my life, and we have had a couple of encounters with the undead together." Angel just nodded in understanding but said no more. Shirley finally sighed in exasperation.

"And how do you know the vampire Slayer?" she questioned. He still didn't look at her.

"We were, are'friends," he said. He wasn't able to confide in the detective beyond that but even Shirley, who is usually oblivious to such things, picked up that they were more than just friends. Still she didn't pry, which showed remarkable restraint on her part. Instead she turned her suspicious gaze on Marcus. The heir to the Quinlan fortune had been silent the whole time but had been watching. He knew that it was only a matter of time before she got around to him.

"Ok GQ, your turn." she replied gazing at him steadily. "You already seem to know who and what Angel was. You also didn't seem surprised that those demons came after us. I want to know what you connection to all this is Quinlan." Marcus noticed the controlled anger blazing in her eyes and for some reason felt some answering anger of is own. It almost scared him the way Shirley could tap his emotions like she did. God knows he had had a lot of practice keeping them under iron control.

"I'm a Quinlan Shirley. Do you honestly think we have owned the Eye of Bacchus for three generations without knowing about those it has spawned?" His statement should have satisfied her but Shirley had a feeling that he was not telling her something. There had to be more to his knowledge of the supernatural than just owning a mystical object.

"So it creates the undead like the legends say," she replied puzzled. "But how? Buffy told me that only another vampire could turn a person into a vampire."

"Then where do you think the first vampires came from,' Marcus replied ominously. This struck Shirley speechless for a moment. Then threw the detective into brief contemplation.

"That still doesn't answer how you know about me, specifically," Angel said. The vampire was wondering what Marcus would say to that statement.

"No it doesn't," the teenager replied flippantly. He was obviously going to say no more so Angel just flashed him a knowing smile. Marcus' didn't even flinch. Shirley looked from vampire to the heir to the Quinlan fortune. The distinct feeling that they were hiding something from her was turning into certainty. "Hell," she thought in disgust, "these two have turned evasion into a bloody art form."

"What is you are not telling me?" Shirley asked annoyed. Marcus sighed and shook his head. He had decided he wasn't going to say anymore. The junior detective glared at him in extreme annoyance. "The detective said this all leads back to you Marcus. Tell me how?" She said changing tactics. The heir to the Quinlan fortune just sighed, reached into his pocket, and pulled out the eye of Bacchus. Shirley lifted her eyes in surprise.

"The Quinlan family over the years has accumulated its share of enemies. At first when the teenagers started disappearing I didn't pay much attention to any of it. Kidnapping was something that happened everyday, but then the four that detective Lockley was questioning me about disappeared. Their families had, all at one time or another worked for my father so I of course knew them all. Then the note came."

"Note? What note?" she asked.

"The one that someone sent me to announce his or her presence. It was the note that led me to put the collection up for exhibit. I was using the eye as bait. Because of the nature of many of my family's enemies I knew that whoever it was would not be able to resist an artifact that would allow them to create an army of fanatical loyal undead," Marcus explained. He was mentally kicking himself for how backwards it had all gone.

"Fanatically Loyal?" Angel questioned. In his experience vampires were not loyal by nature, they were ruled by fear. Angel knew this because at one time he had been a master and used fear to control those lesser than he was. It was a power struggle, were one master could one day have overthrown him, or maybe one of his more powerful sired, like Spike. To Angel's surprise Marcus seemed to understand why he was questioning such a development.

"Yes fanatical loyalty. I know that the nature of a vampire is power and fear but the eye works as sort of a trance like device. To be created by the eye, means to serve your creator. The only way to truly be free is for someone to kill the person who created you or to kill the creator yourself." Marcus answered without batting an eye. Angel had heard that their were people who could seem to be giving you information freely but at the same time be keeping secrets that can not even be fathomed. He had even been accused of being one, but he had never met anyone as good at it as Marcus seemed to be. Angel tried staring down the teenager, almost willing him to tell him the whole truth. It was to no avail.

"Do you have the note?" Angel asked deciding to let the subject of the eye go for a moment.

"No," he said not looking at either of them. "I threw it into the fire." Marcus' innocent gaze was not winning any brownie points with Shirley who knew he was lying. Her eyes narrowed again.

"What did the note say," Angel asked the Quinlan heir.

"All that is done, will be undone. All that lives will exist no more. All that lives, but does not live will rein supreme. All that was will be. The soul will bow to evil and the prince will return to the darkness." Marcus said cryptically.

"Do you know what it means Marcus?" Shirley questioned not really expecting a truthfully answer. The heir to the Quinlan fortune didn't disappoint her.

"I haven't the slightest idea," he said blandly. It was the finally frustrated draw for Shirley. In a rare show of emotion the junior detective stood up abruptly, and slapped Marcus Quinlan across the cheek before stalking away. Marcus, who was also as good as, if not better than Shirley, at controlling his emotions got up out of his chair and went after her. Angel just sighed and was about to go follow them to break it up when a very wide-awake Bart walked into the kitchen with a small pad of paper.

"Oh good you awake, I thought since it was daylight you would be sleeping, which means that there is one myth of vampirism that is now proven untrue. Tell me are there others," Bart asked enthusiastically and sat down across from Angel. The vampire sighed and looked desperately for a way out.

"Um, I have to go look in on Cordiela," he said and got up to make a haste retreat. Bart tried to stop him.

"But wait I haven't even gotten to the questions on feeding habits," his voice echoed as he went after the vampire down the hall.


The Case of the Misunderstood Immortal: Chapter 6

Marcus' eyes were hard and a muscle in his jaw started to twitch violently as he followed Shirley. With a lot less than his usually grace he caught up to her, grabbed her arm and spun her around to face him. She glared at him red faced and thoroughly pissed. Realizing that he could be hurting her he let go of her so abruptly that she stumbled.

"What the hell is your problem?" he bit out harshly. The junior detective just gave him an incredulous stare. Then before she could stop them the tears that she had been fighting since the demon had carried off her best friend started to flow.

"What's my problem? What about you Mr. I own the world. You are a first class bastard Marcus. My friends, and a number of other defenseless people have been captured by demons and here you are playing cryptic boy when you should be telling us everything you know so we can find them." If Shirley weren't so mad then the cryptic boy comment would have probably brought a rueful grin to her lips. It was such a Buffy thing to say. Marcus' eyes, where they had been storm tossed, were now tortured.

"Shirley you don't understand," he said. Blue lightening flashed from her eyes as she turned on him.

"How dare you," she said almost snottily drawing herself up and looking at him as if he were something that crawled out from under a rock. "I understand perfectly. You have something you are hiding from the world. Well, that's great Marcus but while your lying to both me and Angel my friends could be dying." Shirley was usually very even tempered and hid her strong emotions well behind and impenetrable mask of faked indifference, but now she was just so outraged at the way Marcus was continually lying to her that years of repressed emotion were clawing there way to the surface. Most normal people would have run, terrified and screaming, from the building storm. It was a good think Marcus wasn't like most normal people.

"You better give me a damn good reason why you were lying to us back there or else I leave right now and go find them on my own." She threatened. Marcus raked a hand through his hair.

"I can't tell you what you want to hear Shirley," he said softly. The tears had stopped and the junior detective just gave him a determined look.

"Then I guess I will see you around." She turned to start walking away from her again. Marcus was having none of that and grabbed her again.

"Damn you Homleses, always have to go butting into things that you don't understand." Marcus was not yelling but his voice was deadly low and measured. Shirley shrank back from him. Where at first she had just been angry with him she was now starting to get a little frightened. Then it registered what he had said.

"And exactly how many of us Holmes have you known Marcus," she questioned snidely with the lift of her eyebrow. Marcus just leveled that intense blue gaze on her.

"I've known enough of them to not want to see another one die," he said cryptically. This took the wind out of her sails.

"Marcus, please tell me something. I can't leave this alone, they are my friends," she was pleading with him now. The heir to the Quinlan fortune just sighed.

"I think I know where they are being held. I was going to go get them back without you Shirley because I can't watch another Holmes lose their life because of something from my past, but I should know by now that you are a stubborn lot," he said and grinned. Shirley felt an answering grin tug at her lips, but the question about who in her family he could have seen die was on the tip of her tongue. That is until her mind started to get a little fuzzy. The junior detective put a hand to her head and tried to think strait. Finally her mind cleared and she tried to remember what she was going to ask. For the life of her she couldn't. Then she noticed that Marcus and grabbed her hand lightly and was pulling her back toward the kitchen. She tried not to blush.

"Come on Shirley, let's go save you friends."

Do to Angel's condition they had to wait until dark had settled to get started. Marcus was driving Angel's convertible and seemed to know were he was going. Still he didn't quite trust the heir to the Quinlan fortune. Unfortunately the vampire didn't have much of a choice. Marcus was the one who knew where the teenagers were, even if Angel still didn't completely buy the explanation on how he knew. His thoughts drifted to this afternoon when the heir to the Quinlan fortune had come in to his room to see Cordy.

"She's been cursed," he had said calmly but not without compassion. Angel noticed that Marcus seemed to carry even more guilt than Angel himself did. The vampire had just looked steadily at teenager.

"Are you going to tell me what this all has to do with you?" he had asked. Marcus sighed. A small stream of sunlight had entered the room and Angel was making sure to avoid it, but Marcus was standing right in the middle of it, looking for all the world like he belonged, but even now the vampire couldn't shake the feeling that he didn't. The teenager just seemed to strike Angel as belonging to the darkness, like he did. Marcus had then told Angel about his past. Apparently Marcus' grandfather had been a vampire hunter, using the eye of Bacchus to trap some of the world's most powerful vampires. It seemed that the old man could sense them, like a slayer could. Marcus had confessed that is how he had known what Angel was when he first encountered him. He also told Angel that it was because of this sixth sense that he now knew where the kidnapped teens were. The reason he couldn't pinpoint the location before was because whoever this master vampire was, he had grown weak, but his power had been steadily increasing, which was the reason for the trap. Angel then remembered asking him what this master had done to Cordiela, and the boy showed him. Standing close to the immobile brunette he gently placed a hand on her forehead. Angel had watched mesmerized as the painful contortions of her facial features had ceased and she appeared to be in a calm serene sleep. Marcus then told the vampire that he had done all he could to help her, the rest was up to how fast they destroyed master that had entered her mind. After showing Angel his ability to enter people's minds the boy had asked him to please not to tell Shirley. The vampire hadn't promised anything, but he seemed to sense the importance of keeping Marcus' secret. Angel was shaken out of his flashback when he heard Marcus tell him to stop the car. They were in the seedier side of L. A. standing in front of a long deserted warehouse. Shirley, Bart, Marcus and Angel all exited the car as silently as they could, that is until Bart stumbled and landed on some metal trashcans. Shirley winced and shook her head. She and Bart had had an argument about him coming for just this reason. The other reason the junior detective had for wanting to keep her friend out of this is because she didn't want to see him get killed. Shirley stiffened when she noticed that because of the noise Marcus and Angel had suddenly gone on alert. They didn't have to wait long for the first attack to begin. Six figures emerged from the shadows all sporting demonic faces. It was then that Shirley heard Bart scream and found her worst fear becoming a reality.

"Shirley help me," She whirled around and saw her friend being carried away by a Ralos demon. Bart's face that had always held fascination was now contorted in stark terror. The things that went bump in the night had now become too real to him.

"Bart!" she screamed and bolted after him. Marcus had tried to stop her but his fingers had closed over air. "Shirley!" he yelled in anguish but she didn't stop. The next thing Marcus knew was the feeling of one of the undead kicking him in the stomach. The blow barely even fazed him and he turned to the vampire with cold eyes. The totally inhuman mask that descended over the boy's face even gave Angel the willies. Angel watched in stunned fascination as the boy's face contorted into the yellow eyes and the plans and ridges of a vampire. The vampire couldn't have been more stunned than if someone had rammed a stake through his heart.

"That was a very stupid thing to do." Marcus remarked casually and delivered a blow that sent the other vampire into a nearby crate, dusting him. Angel didn't have time to question this new development as two vamps attacked him. Ducking a kick, Angel's face contorted, and he came up launching two stakes into his hands from the mechanism under his coat sleeves. They were in a position on either side of him and he stabbed both of them with the hidden stakes, they vaporized into dust. That left three more all of which were attacking Marcus. The teenage vampire ducked a punch and delivered a backhand blow of his own. The vampire on his left went flying; this gave a chance for one of his cronies to flank Marcus. The vampire heir didn't see the other vamp flanking him until it latched strong arms around his neck. The Quinlan heir flipped the male vampire over his head and called to Angel to throw him a stake. The two hundred and forty-year-old vampire didn't hesitate and tossed one of his stakes to him. The vampire caught in deftly and then rammed it through his struggling captive's heart. The last vampire looked first to Marcus, then to Angel and ran away. He decided the odds were just not in his favor, but Marcus was having none of that and he gave chase to the fleeing minion. Angel was hot on his heels.

Shirley, in the meantime, had been following the Ralos demon from a discrete distance. She could still see Bart but he was now unconscious. The junior detective had followed the demon well into a disserted back alley when suddenly both demon and teenager vanished before her eyes. Stunned she threw caution to the wind and came out of hiding but all the junior detective saw around her were concrete walls and broken beer bottles. She was at a dead end. With determination the detective started methodically feeling the surrounding walls for a trap door or secret entryway. Finding nothing she cursed low under her breath, and started looking for something less logical. What she found was an ancient Rune that was hidden amongst a large stack of trash. The symbol was one that she was unfamiliar with but she did notice that the middle was not level with the rest of the ancient symbol. Touching the elevated surface lightly caused a flash of green light to appear around her and in an instant she was gone.

Angel and Marcus where right behind the vampire they were chasing when the demon veered suddenly and ducked into an alley. They stopped and turned getting ready to follow, when a flash of green light surged from the alleyway, causing both vampires to shield there eyes in pain. Both Quinlan heir and ancient vampire morphed back into their human faces and cautiously went down the alley. They ran into a dead end.

"Where could he have gone?" Angel asked the teenager, but Marcus wasn't listening he was too busy feeling all the walls, looking for a lever of some kind. He knew that even vampires could not materialize through stone walls. That is when he found the rune and drew back in shock.

"It can't be" he said looking at the symbol like it was going to bite him. Angel wasted no time, in coming over. A quick examination of the Marcus face told him all he needed to know about the symbol. The vampire's look of horror side it all.

"It's the mark of one of your sired isn't it," the vampire questioned harshly. Marcus just turned to him with guilt riddled eyes and nodded. Angel just shook his head in disgust and then, being familiar with Runes and what some of them could do, he touched the middle. Both vampires were immediately enveloped in green light and vanished.

Angel and Marcus materialized in a dark building that had a number of torches burning in a semi circle, casting unearthly, gray shadows on the blood red pentagram drawn on the floor. Right there in front of them were the missing teenagers, just as Cordiela had envisioned them with one change, Bart was now part of the circle and it was complete. Thirteen teenagers with ceremonial knives raised to plunge into their hearts. Marcus felt his bold run cold. He recognized the ritual and knew that there was only one of his sired powerful enough to pull it off.

"Well Marcus and Angelus, how nice of you to join my little party," a sinister voice said softly from the shadows. Marcus' head whipped around, standing there before him was the sight the he had feared most. A demon that he had thought destroyed long ago. The teenage heir's eyes widened in horror. "No it can't be," he said in denial, "it is not possible." Angel just looked at the other vampire in puzzlement. Where Marcus' reaction had been abject horror Angel's was almost comical. The vampire before him didn't look powerful enough to last three seconds in a fight with Buffy. Except for the scars on the left side of his face the guy looked like a benevolent schoolteacher. His crisp white dress shirt was pressed to the point of perfection. No wrinkle would dare alight on such a shirt, and his pants were equally as well pressed with perfect creases. Angel noticed that his paten leather shoes were polished to such a shine that Angel would have been able to see his reflection in them, if he would have had one. It was, however, the vampire's eyes that negated Angel's initial reaction to the master before him. His eyes held nothing, and nothing as the two hundred and forty-year-old vampire had found out was perhaps the most frightening thing of all.


The Case of the Misunderstood Immortal: Chapter 7

Marcus hadn't said anything, but his shock still registered on his face. Locking eyes with Xavier it all came rushing back to him. It had been the American Revolution. Marcus had caught Xavier doing much the same kind of ritual he was performing now. Only the last time he had shoved a ice encrusted stake into his sired's heart and sealed him for, what was suppose to be, all eternity in an underground ice cave. The only thing that had gone wrong that time is that the sacrifices had been sealed in with his sired. Something which pained the heir to the Quinlan fortune to this very day. Marcus watched in slow motion as Xavier smiled at him. Angel still not quite sure about what was going on had decided to chance a whispered question to the teenage vampire beside him, that is until he noticed the new expression to cross Marcus' features. Where there had been shock there was now anger blazing in his blue depths. Angel, who had been watching all with interest, followed his gaze and suddenly knew why. The master was not alone on the platform in front of them. He had a hypnotized Shirley at his side. The junior detective's eyes were blank and had a glazed look about them. Marcus growled low in his throat, a sound that no human could ever have made. Xavier noted his reaction with much interest and moved closer to Shirley.

"Why Marcus you seem surprised to see me. I assume it is because you thought I was dead did you not. Well live and learn, you should never use an ice encrusted stake on ones as old as you and I are." Marcus was barely listening, all his attention was focused on Shirley.

"I should have guessed it was you Xavier. You always did have a flair for the dramatic." He replied his eyes never leaving the junior detective. Angel was reaming silent, keeping a watchful eye on the vampires that were surrounding them in the shadows.

Xavier moved even closer to Shirley, and the teenager's features intensified. He had not felt like torturing someone for a very long time, but he knew that if Xavier so much as looked at Shirley wrong then he would die the slowest most horrible death Marcus could think of. The consequences be damned. "What's the matter Marcus, you don't like that I have put the lass under my spell do you." He started circling Shirley and examining her like she was a horse he was considering purchasing. The vampire was talking causally as if to old friends. "I can't say I blame you, she is rather attractive, but most importantly is her astonishing resemblance to Serena." Marcus said nothing, but his gaze promised he was going to rip Xavier limb form limb. Angel on the other hand was silent, waiting to see where this confrontation would lead. He had a feeling that he was about to find out exactly why Marcus hid his identity. As if reading Angel's intent Xavier turned to the two hundred and forty-year-old vampire.

"But dear Marcus how rude of you. I see from Angelus' thoughts that he does not know who you are? Should we enlighten him? Yes I think we shall. Did you know Angel that you, who were once consider the devil with the Angel face, are in the presence of one who makes your sins pale in comparison." Xavier said smiling. Marcus said nothing, just turned away from Angel's questioning look in shame.

"Who are you Marcus?" the vampire asked demanding an answer. Marcus sighed and looked Angel in the eye.

"I was the heir. The first of the anointed ones," he side softly throwing a dark look at Xavier. Angel's eyes widened in shock and he took a step away from the teenager. The anointed ones where said to be humans that volunteered to be vampires. The biggest mystery had been how they were created; remembering Marcus' comments on the eye of Bacchus Angel suddenly had a pretty good idea how they were made. The vampire looked at the boy like he was seeing him for the first time. Where Angel had only been suspicious there was now fear. Marcus could feel it and cursed. He couldn't blame Angel. Marcus knew that he was well known among the demon community as a something to be feared by the living and the dead. He had once been considered death itself.

"You're the Prince," Angel replied in shock. Of course, the note," he added as if to himself. This information put a whole new light on things, and it explained even more. Like Marcus' immunity to sunlight.

"Well, I believe you have kept up on your lore Angel, probably a byproduct of playing bed buddies with the Slayer." Xavier said and then sent Angel a cruel smile. "By the way Angelus did I mention that Buffy and her little band of misguided heroes are next on my list of things to do. I'm afraid that now that I am free the Slayer has just been allowed to live for far too long. She is going to have to die," he said almost thoughtfully. Angel growled and tried to rush Xavier but Marcus grabbed him and held him back.

"You touch one hair on Buffy's head and I swear'" he growled trailing off. Xavier laughed and then looked down at Angel and Marcus in disgust. "I was one of Marcus' first sired Angelus. I can crush you like a bug, but that would not be near as much fun as letting her do it." He said this gesturing behind them. While they had been talking Rena and a number of vampires and demons had been surrounding them.

"This is not good." Angel said just before the first few baddies attacked.

Both vampires were back to back; blocking punches, ducking kicks, and returning a few of their own. If they had been human the shear tide of enemies would have tired them out and they would both be dead. As it was Marcus knew that Xavier was just toying with them. A Ralos demon attacked Marcus and tried to take his head off with a very large ax. The vampire deflected the blow and drew a knife from the small of his back. He then slammed it through the demons leathery skin with so much force that the monster went flying back into some nearby crates. Angel was doing much the same flinging vampires left and right.

"Marcus you can stop them," Angel called over his shoulder while flinging a demon away from him. The teenage vampire knew what Angel meant. Knew that the two hundred and forty-year-old vampire now knew exactly how old he was and exactly what that meant about his ability to turn minds into piles of mush. What Angel didn't know was that when he was enraged he couldn't control it unless his rage was focused on one being. If he used the power now them everyone near him would become babbling idiots confined forever to a vast array of mental institutions.

"I can't," Marcus said while coming up to stake an attacking vampire. "I can't control it right now Angel. I could destroy everyone." Angel was busy with another demon so he didn't answer right away. Pushing the monster off the two hundred and forty plus vampire used a small sword and cut the demon's head off. It rolled around on the floor near the entranced teens before coming to a stop. That was when out of the corner of his eye he saw Xavier rise. "Enough," Angel heard screaming in his head and fell to his knees, but before the ancient vampire could destroy his mind, another voice pushed him back again. When his head cleared he saw Marcus kneeling next to him glaring at his sired in hate. The master vampire didn't even flinch he just went over to Shirley, tilted her head to expose her neck, and morphed into his demon face. His canines were inches away from the detective's neck.

"Xavier No!" Marcus screamed and took a step forward. The other vampire just brought his teeth closer. His face then morphed back into that of a human being and he took a step away from the junior detective without biting her.

"Well at least I now know what she means to you," he said smiling. Rena was in the corner pouting now; upset that her and the others were called off by the master, but the master was fond of his games. Marcus knew that Xavier had been toying with them and that made him uneasy. It meant that his sired had something up his sleeve. Angel must have sensed it too that is why the two hundred and forty-year-old vampire decided to call him on his little game.

"Why don't you just kill us Xavier, and get it over with," Angel challenged. "I mean, if Marcus is what, over two thousand then that would make you at least a thousand or more. Even I knew not to play games with my sire," he said smirking. The vampire's taunting had its desired effect.

"Marcus Quinlan is not my sire," he said eyes blazing. It was the first emotion Angel had seen enter Xavier's eyes "Look at him Angelus. Weak, pathetic, souled. Just like you. He was the scourge of the human world. I called him master and would have followed him to the gates of heaven to take on God himself. Then he turned on me. He trapped me in ice for over two hundred years, did this to my face," he said gesturing to the scars. So I'm going to get my revenge." He was laughing now and it was then that Angel realized his mistake. Xavier wasn't just evil, he was crazy.

"If you kill me that only makes you my best friend," Marcus said quietly with deep sincerity. Xavier only smiled. I was not a nice smile.

"I know my dear Marcus," he said and then pulled a metal disk out of his pocket. It was a replica of the eye of Bacchus made from Rena's hand. Marcus said nothing, just regarding Xavier with a strange clam.

"You know Marcus I have plotted for over two hundred years what kind of revenge to bestow upon you. I thought of killing you with my bare hands for one hundred of them, and then I thought of killing someone you care about," this he said with a gesture to Shirley. "But then inspiration hit me. I decided to take the one thing you hold dearer than anything in heaven or hell. I have decided to take your soul." With those words the master vampire shouted a command and thirteen teenagers raised their knives high.

"No!" Angel screamed as their arms started to descend. They suddenly stopped however, and Angel turned his head to see why. On the ground next to him he saw Marcus, with his eyes fixed on Xavier. They were shooting blue flame and Angel could tell the boy was fighting a battle of minds with his sired. That is when he heard Rena yell "No!" and saw her charging Marcus. Angel spun into her path and confronted her. She attacked him wildly, like an animal. Her deflected her first blow and threw her into a nearby wall. Undeterred she went after her sire again. This time her nails caught him across the face, drawing blood down his cheeks. He delivered a roundhouse kick to her head that snapped her back into one of her demons. She got up once more, and rushed him but in one motion Angel knelt down, picked up a dropped stake, and backhand dusted her. Her feral yellow gaze met his in shock right before she crumbled into a pile of dust. He then turned to Marcus who was still straining against Xavier. Angel knew he had to do something so he took out a weapon that resembled a boomerang. With practiced ease he threw it and if flew in a circle knocking the ceremonial knives from the teenagers hands.

"Let him go," Angel shouted and Marcus broke his concretion. The circled group brought down their hands into their chests, but without the knives they did no damage to themselves. Xavier was furious and in a fit of lashing out, his face vamped, his fangs protruded and he went to sink his teeth into Shirley's unprotected throat. That is until rage hit him and like physical threw him back. It was at that moment that Shirley came out of her trance, and saw a furious Marcus stalking toward her. Having been out of it she screamed. The vampire, with his human face, stopped abruptly and looked at her in surprise. He then heard other exclamations of fright and turned to see the rest of the teenagers coming out of their trances. His expression softened and the rage left him, but his eyes were hard when he turned back toward Xavier. Too bad Xavier wasn't there to appreciate the affect. His sired had taken advantage of the distraction and beat a haste and unobtrusive exit. Marcus turned back to Angel with grave eyes. Both vampires knew that Xavier would be back.


The Case of the Misunderstood Immortal: Chapter 8

Later that evening Marcus and Angel watched from the shadows as a cops and news crew hovered over the missing teenagers. Apparently a concerned citizen had heard the sounds of fighting and called the cops. The reporters, as always, weren't far behind. All of them had no memory of what had happened, even Bart who Marcus had preformed a little of his mind magic on to make him conveniently forget the existence of vampires. The only one who remembered part of the ordeal was Shirley Holmes. Angel and Marcus both decided that she need to keep at least part of her knowledge since Xavier might come after her. Marcus had also taken care of Cordiela's little curse problem and she was now back to her charming, egocentric, self. She was also happy that Angel had stopped the mass suicide of a group of teenagers. Angel looked at the vampire, studying him, he still couldn't believe who Marcus was. One thing for sure he would never think of Marcus as a boy again since Marcus was old enough to be his ancestor's ancestor.

"How much of that story you told me before is true?" Angel questioned out of the blue, suddenly wondering. He had felt the heir's difference on their first meeting but he had still been surprised to find out he was a vampire. Angel watched as a half smile curved the ancient vampire's lips.

"About fifty percent of it was true. My grandfather, Alexander Quinlan, was indeed a vampire hunter. He at one time hunted me, until he found out exactly who and what I was, then he adopted me to help him fight other masters, many of whom where my creations." Angel just nodded in understanding and then asked the question that had truly been plaguing him.

"How could one of the first anointed ones ever be cursed with a soul. Everything written about you says that you are too powerful for that." Marcus just smiled his mysterious half smile.

"I'm afraid that is one question I can not answer for you Angelus." Angel nodded again, this time in acceptance. "Are there others?" he asked softly with a hint of dread. Marcus didn't have to ask him who he meant. Angel wanted to know if there were other anointed ones still alive.

"Yes," Marcus replied, "Although fewer of them then they would like," he said and the first hint of cruelty crossed the ancient vampire's features. Angel didn't have to ask why there were fewer anointed ones than before. Marcus' face said it all.

"You could have destroyed Xavier with just the power of your mind?" It was a question. Angel had heard that many of the anceints had such a power but he had never seen it in action until today.

"Yes," Marcus' answered looking down at the ground. He then turned to Angel with grave eyes. "It is one of the powers you develop when you are over two thousand years old." The two hundred and forty-year-old vampire just nodded. He was about to ask Marcus what other abilities he possessed when he noticed that the ancient vampire was not longer listening to him. Angel then noted the direction of the vampire's gaze. It was centered on Shirley Holmes. Angel's smile was a knowing one that also held a deep sadness. He knew that look of longing; he also knew the consequences. Angel looked at Shirley and thought of Buffy.

"Are you going to tell her?" he asked him softly, already knowing the answer. Marcus' didn't ask if Angel meant telling her he was a two thousand-year-old vampire or that he was more than a little bit in love with her. He knew that Angel was asking about both.

"No." Marcus answered back not looking at him. Angel shot him a sympathetic look. In that instant Shirley's gaze lifted to the shadows, as if she had sensed them there. Brushing off a reporter the junior detective worked her way through the crowd of people to the place where Marcus stood.

"Are you going to tell me what happened in that warehouse Quinlan," she questioned. Marcus looked at her and grinned at her bossy tone, he then sent a pointed look toward Angel who got the message and beat a hasty retreat.

"I'm afraid Ms Holmes that this one mystery that is going to have to remained unanswered for you." He smiled and Shirley frowned.

"But what about Xavier'"she started to question. Marcus didn't want to discuss Xavier so he shut her up one of the only ways he could think of. He wrapped an arm around her waist, pulled her close to him, and kissed her. The ancient vampire let his mouth move over her soft lips gently. It was one of the most exquisite feelings of his immortal life. When he pulled away she was struck utterly speechless. "See you around Holmes," he said gently brushing her cheek with his hand. He then turned on his heels and disappeared with Angel into the night.

Shirley Holmes looked out the small, round plan window, of the 747 that was flying her and her fellow Academy students back to Redington. This had turned into one of the strangest mysteries of her entire life and to and add insult to the injury she couldn't even discuss it with Bo. The junior detective had tried only to find that Bo didn't have any memory at all of what had happened. It was as frustrating as the holes in her own memory. The only thing she could remember clearly was the events leading up to her capture by Xavier. Everything after that was a blur. A blur she intended to fill next time she saw Marcus Quinlan. Shirley's hand strayed to her lips and she ran her forefinger over them, remembering the brush of his lips over hers. Oh yes, she would be seeing Marcus Quinlan again, it was almost as if it was foretold in stars above.

The End or is it?