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07 August 2013 @ 03:14 pm
Postcards across America  
Characters: Kinda Everyone
Time: Over the course of a few months [Non-canon; takes place during season seven of Buffy]
Location: Angel's apartment, then Wolfram and Hart
Thread Status: Kind of a free for all.

Things were messy for awhile. Things still were pretty messy; and Barbara is still pretty sure that Angels new little family is having trouble accepting her. Worse than that, Angel has to put them first, all the time, because that’s his job. She gets along okay with Fred, and therefore Wesley tolerates her presence but she can feel the total weight of their untrustworthiness. She gets drunk with Lorne alot after hours and tends to hang with him when shes not doing the secretary thing.

The lack of trust around her is weighty, and she has trouble trying to convince people that shes not that girl anymore. Well, she is, but she’s trying, and she signed a contract and everything. Still...her blood oath not to harm anyone doesn’t seem to convince anyone. She swears sometimes when she goes out at night Angel sends lackeys after her to keep on eye on her. She’s soulless and she gets the distrust, really, but it sucks when not even Angel trusts her to obey him. I mean, why would she be here unless she was doing it for him? She’s not Darla. Not everything is about her, her, her.

She starts to sing for Lorne, because she’s afraid that maybe she can’t do this, she can’t stay straight. No one else thinks she can, so she drinks and she sings for him and tells him to tell her if shes going to slip anytime soon. She always reads clean, and she hasn’t ingested human blood in over four months... She thinks Lorne is telling her drunken secrets to the crew because they seem to start easing up on her, little by little. Suddenly shes involved in the gossip and the water cooler conversations and even included in on some of the missions... One day, she takes off out of no where, Angel finds her on the outskirts of Sunnydale, checking in..unable to help herself..

Angel follows her, helps her snoop without being seen because she doesn't want Sam to know she's there, keeping an eye on her. He comes through for her with a girl that she doesn't reconigse. Someone on the inside. She actually smells quite a bit less vile than Buffy does and when she off-off-handedly uses this as a compliment Angel stares at her like she just said the worst thing possible. Then the girl called Faith cracks up and tells Angel that she likes her. She tells them everything, how Sam has been invited into the slayers inner circle, how much its caused everyone to trust Spike a hell of a lot more. “She’s good for you man,” she hears Faith say when Barbara steps out to give them some solo conversation time. "You should probably let her know that, every once in awhile."

Angel doesn't ask about Buffy, at least not while Barbara's around. He respects her enough to keep that part seperate, although she knews he asks. It's who he is.

Then it happens, a week later Angel announces suddenly to his group that he needs to take a vacation. Nothing big really, he just needs some time off. A few weeks, and he’ll be back...He has some personal stuff he needs to work out. He leaves Wesley in charge. Barbara tries not to seem hurt and surprised that Angels taking off without her, tries even harder not to care when she drives home alone that night to find that suitcases on the bed they shared.

Its only then she notices that her things are packed today. “Didn’t really think I was gonna leave you here did you kitten?” He purrs from behind her, scaring her and making tears rise in her eyes.

“Where are we going?” She whispers, voice choked with emotion.

Angel simply shrugs. “I’ve been everywhere..”

Barbara agrees, “Every continent....At some point or another.”

Angel smiles again, "Never been anywhere with you....sides Europe..." He comes closer, touches her hair, makes her skin flush, "Rome..." His voice - like velvet. "Ireland was especially nice..."

Barbara looked up at him, "You tied me up and forgot about me before running off to England, if I'm not mistaken." Her expression softens, she giggles despite herself. “Was paticularly nice, burning down that hostel and pinning it on you.”

So here they are, never been anywhere together. Traveling across country, sometimes they fight evil when they come across it, sometimes Wesley sends them in the direction of something and they take care of it. In the meantime Barbara fills her iphone up with photos and uploads them to instagram. They take turns sending postcards to their loved ones...and they received them from their friends along the way.

Below are some of those postcards.
 
 
 
Barbara O'Connorchaoticxbarbara on August 7th, 2013 07:18 pm (UTC)
Postcard: From Barbara to Samantha ::

My dearest Samantha -

Hope you and our dear William haven't slaughtered eachother yet (Although Angel says it'd be really funny if you ended of killing him.)

Anyway..Greetings! (God that’s corny! Sorry!) from (I think) Wyoming. Sorry I cut off out of LA without much of a notice...it wasn’t really planned (at least by me!) Guess you heard I’m with Angel, because I’ve gotten at least fifteen voicemails forwarded from Wesley saying you’re going to tear out of Sunny-D and track us down. I’m okay though, really! Don't wreck whatever progress you've made with the Slayer on a count of me.

We're on this trip or something. Life’s weird, huh? Wolfram and Hart has some cherry cars man, we’re cruising in something Angel refers to as a 1957 Chevy Bel Air 4-door Hardtop which apparently is “vintage” and “a classic,” but really I’d prefer to be cruising on a Harley, the feel of it vibrating between my legs...the air in my hair....Ah....

The little things eh?

We did this job in Santa Cruz, then we weren’t sure what to do and – well, there’s this book Angel gave me for my birthday – yeah, a book, but don’t laugh – it was cool with guns & stuff. And in this book the guy talks about all these dogs in bars all over America. So we decided to drive around and see as many as we could, but apparently (oh God! Hear me starting to sound like W?) it’s not the seventies anymore and they have health codes and shit. *Eyeroll* So we didn’t find many dogs, but lots of bars. And the last one in Wyoming (maybe Sheridan?) we started doing shots of JD & straight fireball so we just staggered across the street to this hotel. Where we are now. (Angel is sleeping; I’m writing – told you life’s weird.)

We woke up this morning - well, afternoon and we both swore we’d never drink again EVER! And I think we mean it, but just in case, Angel emptied out a mini-bar and marched it up to the front desk. He looked like hell, but even hellish Angel is still sexy as fuck Angel, like on TV, and said he was insulted by all the filthy alcohol being in the room. He did it with a totally straight face, and was super intimidating and the poor receptionists were all half apologizing and half turned on and flustered. So I put my hand on his shoulder, and said, “Thanks for being strong, Dad!” And he cracked up. Then I looked at the clerk and said, “Another thing! We need more Bibles!” It was funny, but then they cut off our porn channels, so now I can only watch cartoons.
Barbara O'Connorchaoticxbarbara on August 12th, 2013 12:28 am (UTC)
Post-card from Barbara to Wesley ::

You asked for updates, so here’s one: Your boss or whatever is a fucking dork! Sorry I’m the one to tell you, but, man – we’re in this truck stop, see, in “historical” Lexington, Virginia, I’m a PART of history and I can tell you, not much happened in Virginia. Not anything exciting anyway.

Anyway He has spent like twenty minutes playing this “game” where he’s trying to knock quarters off a shelf in this machine, and I guess then you win ‘em or whatever? It’s such a scam because I’ll tell you, I worked this carnival for a while back in the nineties and we had that, only not a machine. It’s impossible to win and there’s not even a carnie here to talk him into it. So I’m pretending I don’t know him, because even though he’s wearing leather and all sexy scruffy-like (yeah, really, I can send pics), he’s so intense with the stupid game like he’s planning how to take out a demon nest or something. You can lead a dork to fashion, but you can’t make him cool. Funny. Kind of cute, too, honest, would you believe I have a secret thing for dorks? Don’t tell.

- Barbara
Barbara O'Connor: fly burn fallchaoticxbarbara on August 12th, 2013 12:28 am (UTC)
They visit alot of underground stores, Angel buys Barbara presents so she doesn't mind, and she begins picking out things that she can send back.

She gets Wesley a monthly membership to this really expensive ‘tea of the month’ thats offered by a natural and amazing tea-shop she drags Angel into one night while they’re both plastered. Angel finds a black-market book store and Barbara uses his credit card and sends Sam a first edition of a very rare book of shadows from a well renown wicca coven. She sends an ancient relic treasure box thats no bigger than a shoe-box to Fred, no ones been able to open it for centuries. Shes excited to hear back about it.

She sends Spike a very aged bottle of scotch that she steals when Angels not looking and sends Faith cartons of cigarettes and freshly baked goods that hold up well in tins because she can't get very much variety in snack form being all locked up like she is.

They have a very strict phone-call schedule they have to keep up to maintain trust in all parties involved. Barbara seems to think it takes the magic out of things and they can't get lost in what they're doing but Angel is super responsible guy now and makes sure they always call. They call Los Angelos on Tuesdays, they call Sunny-dale on Wednesdays. Sometimes it can be a bit stressful if the wrong person wants to talk. Like Buffy to Angel, or Gunn to Barbara. There's jealousy and barely formed relationships budding into new things...Barbara and Sam try to get Spike and Angel to talk to one another.

Most of the time, that goes down horribly. Every once in awhile, they surprise one another.

Angels conversations are usually logical. He always goes first and the conversation is very professional. Comparing notes on what they’ve killed or thwarted this week, anything the other should be on the lookout for. Sometimes Wesley steers them in the direction of a contact. He’s also careful not to say, “You could help us HERE.” Angel senses this, because he is equally careful not to say “Is there anything I can do?” Gunn and Angel talk about the car a lot. Alot - lot, and weapons, which leads them back to all those seedy underground shops.

She starts talking to Wesley on the phone more, and she laughs alot. Angel always gets a little peeved about this. “Why are you always laughing?" He asks one day, “I've known Wesley for YEARS and I've heard him tell one, maybe two good jokes."

“Oh Master," She whispers, the words natural and comfortable between the two of them now. “Wesley doesn't KNOW hes funny, that's what makes him funny!"

She crawls into bed next to Angel, and lays her head against his chest. “It’s all right to miss them, you know,” she says.

“I know.” He cradles his arm across her chest, and kisses her forehead, and they lie there in the dark.
Faithleathercladslay on August 12th, 2013 12:19 am (UTC)
Postcard from Faith to Angel (and Barbara) ::

She found out, but I'm sure you already know this.

The 'she' is plural here guys.

Sam is good at keeping her secret dark places just that - secret. But she found out that Barbara isn't in Los Angelos again and she almost high-tailed it over to LA before Buffy put a stopper on it. It came out during a meeting, and it was the first time both of them were hearing it.

I could see the hurt on Bs face (Sorry Barbara, I need to say this part) but she came through with flying colors. "What we are doing is too important for pety feelings to get in the way," She said, "You ethier have your head in the game or you don't. Go after her Sam, but don't come back. I don't have time with worrying about where my ex is taking his vacation..This is bigger than that."

Sam quieted down after that, speechless.

I wasn't sure what to say about it, they don't know I met up with you and I'm plannin' on keeping it that way. Writing this against the public mailbox as I speak just so there's no chance of B finding out.

In other news....Buffy and I have been spending alot of time together. Redemption is funny...sometimes it takes us to places we never thought we'd be again in our lives... Maybe its destiny or fate or whatever, or maybe life is what we make of it..

Hope you're doing well Angel...really.

- Have Faith (get it?)


Edited at 2013-08-12 12:20 am (UTC)
Buffy Summersthegoodslayer on August 12th, 2013 12:22 am (UTC)
Post-card from Buffy to Angel ::

I don't really know what to write, I mean, what do you say in a situation like this? I've made some headway with our friendly neighborhood meditating ...meditator Oz (so weird that hes back huh! But I guess you know all about joyful reunions don’t you? Okay, cheap shot, sorry, still working on this) though and he says this would be good for me to write to you.

When we talk it usually leads to loud talking and then yelling and hanging up, and...yeah. So not gonna go there.I've been watching Sam, your...girls, pet, whatever (bondage fun by the way? Angel I never knew, well kind of...) better half as it were. She's.....she's worked out quite well here. Proving herself to be an adequate part of the team, the human blood tester you were so kind as to forward our way has certainly been a big help in the trust department. At least my team can rest easy knowing shes not making happy meals of our local residents.

This is just hard for me you know? Not in a I'm the slayer and vampires are bad kind of way, but in a more confusing two vampire girls show up and snatch my two vampires away from me in one vampy moment. Not that...you and Spike were my vampires or that I had any vampires in anyway way I don't even want to get into right now. These are emotions I need to face and get over, Oz is helping with that. Forgiveness is a big thing with him...and with Willow apparently. We've been doing the meditating thing. Who knew you actually weren't crazy when you were being all monk like back in the day?

Something big is coming. I don't know the details of it all yet, but something big is coming...and...I just want to know that all my ends are tied up before I go in this. I want you and I to be good...

But that might not happen, because it’s you, and it’s me and being good with one another at this point means accepting things that we can never accept. Like not being in love anymore. Like me being with someone else, like you being with someone else... Was this what it was like when I was with Riley? ...Don’t answer that.

But I'm trying...Keep in touch Angel but not too much.

- Buffy
Barbara O'Connor: after all this timechaoticxbarbara on August 12th, 2013 12:50 am (UTC)
Postcard from Barbara to Spike ::

Salutations! (urgh openers suck) from somewhere a little but outside of the mexican border. Can you believe that the big guy actually let himself relax enough to take a trip across country? I’ve been trying to talk him into visiting Vegas, having a little bit of real fun, but he keeps avoiding the subject and talking about roulette games that steal your destiny and how much gambling turns people into zombies. I don’t know what he’s on about, but it’s totally not in the fun region. Speaking of fun...

Heard you’ve just been basking in it with my one and only. Not that I mind of course, she’s been in love with you since the first time she saw a picture of you and learned the name William the Bloody. She was never mine. Not really. I don’t get to have things that are mine, but I got something just as good. I get to belong to someone...and that’s really, honestly, just as beautiful.. It turns out, soul or no soul, I’ll always be Angel’s, not just in his eyes, but in mine too. I’m just destined to have him in my life, a century trying to run and I was always just running right toward him. Shoulda seen it years ago; I was never really cut out for the big villian master vampire act.

I just wanna follow him, and trust that where-ever he’s goin’ he’s got my best interest at heart...Only thing is, I need that beaten into me, every now and then. If you can look at me as anything it’s predictable...just a little rough touch and I melt like butter. Angelus would find me a work of art...Angel just finds me art...

I’m his dark place...I wonder when he’s gonna realise that at the end of the day he’s really both of them. Angelus and Angel. Light and Dark. One can’t exist without the other. I’d never love Angelus if Angel wasn’t in there somewhere, and I’d never love Angel if it wasn’t for Angelus being inside of him. I love him, for what he was, and for who he is now. I love all of it...

I always have.

But I also love someone else, and that’s what’s keeping me from being here 100%. I’ve felt rumblings in the ground Spike, and not so poetically, I heard Wesley talking to Angel while he thought I was in the shower. Something big is comin’ and it’s comin’ for your turf. I need to know you can hold your own, and right now something that belongs to you also belongs to me. You better watch her back Spike, and by watch I mean protect, not watch while you hit it from the back. This is serious Spike, I need to know I can trust you. You haven’t given me a reason not too so I’m going to be fair here. I have one request :

Tell me you can keep her safe, even if you have to lie.

- B
Barbara O'Connor: foreverchaoticxbarbara on August 12th, 2013 12:50 am (UTC)
Just past Santa Cruz, the sun is set enough that they can roll down the windows without being afraid of catching ablaze in the seat of their roomy ‘classic’ car. Barbara pulls herself half out of the car and sits on the sill as Angel drives at blazingly fast speeds. She holds onto the car with only her legs and leans back as the wind catches her, whipping around her body. The music and the sound of wind against her ears are deafening, and instead of scowling and yanking her back in, Angel picks up speed, and when he drives as close to the edge of the road as he possibly can, and theres nothing but air and canyons and frightening heights beneath her.

So she might go off the cliff and be dead any minute, but at least right now, with the wind biting her face, the brilliant sky above and the ocean below, the solid weight of the car humming underneath her, she has no doubts that she is, at this moment, alive; she can’t remember the last time she was so sure of it.

The wind hits her, and so does a scent and she yanks herself back into the safety of the car, landing with a soft bounce against the plush, leather interior, they pull off the edges of cliffs into meadows and stretching horizons and she grabs the wheel, yanking it to the side. She crawls half into his lap and takes ahold of the steering wheel, pulls off the highway, through an artichoke field to an old wooden barn. They scare some cows, but the vamps never see them coming. After the death-daring ride, the fight is embarrassingly fast. Barbara senses just a little of what young Cassius Clay must have felt, decking Sonny Liston with that phantom punch in ‘65. Thrilled with the victory, but almost sorry it could be that easy; weeping, like Alexander, that there are no more worlds to conquer.

The highlight reel: Angel nails five Fyarls with three shots. All of Barbara’s stakes find home, and she tosses him an extra, just so he’ll have something to do. Every motion clicks like the choreography of a ballet or a daydream; her mind moves back past her fighting style the past couple of years – preparation preparation preparation and tests under controlled circumstances, careful to keep Sam safe, careful to make it back home in the morning – to her child-like imaginings. Before she tried to train all the blood lust out of herself, when she was a wild animal and a ballet dancer, all at once. Her moves aren’t planned, but she moves like liquid.

But now, when they are finished, when the last vampire swirls into dust, Barbara lets out a war cry and jumps onto Angel, arms around his neck, and legs around his waist. At first she thinks the hardness against her hip is his gun; then realizes it isn’t; then she laughs and jumps down and runs into the moon kissed meadows. She guns the engine, yells, “Come on, you slow old man!” and bounces in the drivers seat of the car.

They veer west again toward the coast, and just before sunrise (thank God for special glass installed on cars and air conditioning) They stop at an old light house on a promontory north of Half Moon Bay. A sign identifies it as a “Youth Hostel,” and Angel whose all about silk robes and Luxury linens is less than pleased. Barbara pulls him along and pays the minimal fee – he decides not to think about where she got the cash since he took away her allowance since shes with him all the time lately -- and signs them in as Mr. & Mrs. Smith. Barbara wonders if Angel looks like a man transporting a minor across state lines for immoral purposes, but no one seems to question or care.
Barbara O'Connor: lets use this chancechaoticxbarbara on August 12th, 2013 12:51 am (UTC)
The beds all stand together, in a dorm, with a couple large communal bathrooms. Angel goes to sponge the ash and smog off his body and change into the extra shirt from the car. They still hasn’t eaten, so she asks him to get her a beef jerky and a snickers bar from the vending machine. When he comes back, She’s making small talk with some hikers. She nods at him, but says nothing. He hangs in the background, as he usually does when she tries to be social.

When her companions start to make a move to start their day, He asks if she’s thought about sleeping arrangements. He’s not to keen on sleeping in a flea-bitten lice farm that shes rented out for the day, night. Whatever.

“Sleep?” Barbara raises an eyebrow, “Don’t be a pussy. Race you to the beach.”

Barbara scrambles down the rocky hillside. When she finally stops to let him catch her, they’re underneath the peer, safe from the harmful sun. Angel asks, “Why did you want to stop here if we’re not going to sleep?”

She reaches in the pocket of her jacket and slips out a small glass pipe and a bag of green flaky leaves. “What these wanna-be hippie hitchhiker kids lack in loss-prevention skills, they make up in weed.”

“Barbara,” he says, the negotiator voice again. All control and power, too bad he hasn't got ethier as of lately. “I am not going to sit on the beach and smoke stolen marijuana with you.” Except that in a few minutes, that’s exactly what he’s doing. And soon after that, she lies on her back, in the sand, and her hair is dirty with seaweed, and his knee digs into gravel. They open their jeans just enough for him to push into her, for her to take him. And all that thinking she meant to do, about what she wants and what he wants? She still hasn’t gotten around to the thinking; now, they are only doing. Part of her feels very wrong and much of her feels very right, but mostly it is enough that she feels.

When they are done, she says, “Sir,” and he says, “Kitten,” and he rolls off her, onto the sand and rocks and starfish, and they lie together, looking at the people walking along the peer above them.

“Man,” she says, “This beach kind of reeks, huh?” They both laugh and they say they want to smoke another bowl. But then they fall asleep, right there, limbs jumbled together, under the peer, prey for any human or demon predator that comes along. They wake up in the evening to the rays of another sunset. And they climb the hill. And they keep riding north.
William Pratt: with beerrailroadxspike on August 28th, 2013 09:53 pm (UTC)
Post-card from Spike to Barbara ::

I was happy to hear the great Pounce actually came down off his high horse to take some time to live. Figuratively speaking o’ corse. All the guilt that hits holds onto cannot be good for the soul (As if we’d know, right?) It’s good to know he still knows how to have a god time. Hes always been all butterflies and hearts over girls that make him feel ashamed of who he is.

sometimes you just have to get in touch with your inner animal. You seem to bring that out in him. keep it up its been a blast to watch you make him squirm.

your girl is safe. shes got two slayers, a bad-ass wicca, about 30 slayerettes and a pack of wolves at her side at anytime. Not to mention me. I’d be dust before I let anything get close enough to hurt her.

- WTB

PS: that wasn’t a lie. If I lied Id tell ya.

PPS: thanks for the booze, I uesd it to take advantage of our girl. Did you know shes very easy to convince when shes hammered? Man I wish I knew this sooner!
Barbara O'Connor: find my placechaoticxbarbara on August 28th, 2013 09:58 pm (UTC)
Postcard to Barbara to Samantha ::

Hey! We're in your home-land. The great land of maple syrup (MAPLE SYRUP DOES NOT MAKE GOOD LUBE) not really sure how it happened. We just kept heading North one day and blamo. We ran into a moose. A MOOSE.

YOU DIDN'T TELL ME HOW BIG THEY WERE UP CLOSE. Unbelievable!

I'm gonna try to ride one, thought you'd like to know.

Expect presents in the mail! (Not a moose, Angel said the shipping would cost too much and then that Slayers are deathly allergic to Mooses...Meeses? Plural of Moose. That sucks huh! Does she sneeze when shes around you?

- With love,
Barbara <3.
xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxxoxoxoxoxoxoxo
thexscoobies: fredthexscoobies on August 28th, 2013 10:06 pm (UTC)
Postcard to Fred to Angel ::

I’m taking a chance that this will find you, you’re not the easiest person in this world to get ahold of lately! Not that we need to get ahold of you - or or that we don’t miss you like crazy!. Uhm. Oh. I’m rambling. Sorry!

Things are going okay here. Wesley is doing well as leader, but I guess its natural for him because he used to lead Angel Investigations and everything....

I hope you're happy - BUT NOT TOO HAPPY!!

We still need our champion :). tell Barbara thank you from everyone here for the great gifts shes been sending. Oh wait. you knew about those right? I mean you pd for them I'm sure you did! Its not like she'd steal your credit card.

Come home soon...but not too soon.

- All the love in the world (this and next),
Fred