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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'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.