Have a Little Faith, Chapter 34

Chapter 34

“Are you sure we weren’t to mean to her?” Lindsey asked.  They were in the car heading home.  They had just dropped Doyle off.

“No,” Cordelia said and smiled.  She kissed his cheek.  “That was a very funny practical joke you two pulled on her, my little snugglebrat.”

“She doesn’t have any power over you,” Lindsey said and put his arm around her.  “You can be your own person now.”

"I love you,” she said.  “Did you know that?”

Lindsey leaned over and kissed her.  “Yep, I do.”

“And you do know I’m helping Faith not just because I love you.”

“I know.”

“You’ve humbled me, Lindsey,” she said looking straight ahead.

“That’s why I love you.”

“By the way-- I talked to my parents earlier today, right before Harmony came.  They were pretty pissed.”

“I knew we should have told them.  I feel like we’re a couple of teenagers sneaking around.”
Cordelia gave him a sharp look.

“You still their daughter?”

“For now.  But they are really suspicious of an older man marrying a 18 year old.”

“I’m not exactly an old man.”

“They said they want to come out after they’ve saved up some money.  I was thinking we could go out there in a few weeks.  I’d rather have them stay put.  And it would be nice to see my friends in Sunnydale.”

“I’ll make arrangements,” he said and smiled.

“Isn’t it beautiful,” Angel said, holding up the light green gem.  “Isn’t it the most perfect thing you have ever seen?”

Lee nodded.

“So very pretty,” Drusilla said, touching the gem.  “But so very wrong—very very wrong.  A blond lady as pretty as this gem put it there.”

“What?” Angelus asked, confused.

“Sister,” Alonna said and smiled.  “You gotta stop being so cryptic.  It’s a cool gem boss.”

“It’s a perfect gem,” Angelus said.  “It is unbreakable.” He threw the gem on the desk with all his strength.

It broke in half.

“Told you it was wrong,” Drusilla said, smugly.  “But everyone thinks I insanely ramble.”

“This is a fake,” Angelus said, picking up the two pieces.

“No shit,” Alonna said.

“Christ,” Lee said.  Penn just giggled.  Angelus hit him with the back of his hand.

“How could this have happened?” Angelus asked, getting enraged.  He threw the two pieces hard about against the window that it left a hole the size of a quarter in the window.

Lee shrugged his shoulders.  “Calm the fuck down. This actually happens a lot.  In fact Wolfram and Hart have several magickal items and documents that are supposed to on display.”

“So who the hell has my gem?” Angelus said, staying enraged.

“The Slayer?” Alonna suggested.

“Lindsey never knew about our plans,” Lee explained.  “Otherwise he would know about the book.  Angelus, I know this may be hard to believe, but the gem is valuable both for money and magickal properties.  Anyone could have stolen it.  As Dru here said, a blond woman could have taken it.”

“You mean any vampire could have it now?” Penn asked.  He touched his head where Angelus had hit him.

“It’s useless without the book which means someone stole it for money,” Angelus replied.  “Which means that we need to buy it from whoever has it.  Lee, I need you to find that gem.”

Lee nodded.  “I think it might have been stolen on the tour.  I can have my contacts to ask around for it.  Hopefully whoever stole it just wants to sell it privately.”

“Dru, what did you say before about a blond woman?”

“She puts the gem into place,” Drusilla explained.  “But perhaps I shouldn’t be saying these things, since you think I’m so naughty for seeing them.”  Drusilla touched Angelus’ arm.  “Tell me it’s okay to be naughty.”

Angelus smiled, then grabbed her hard.  “I like you naughty, but first tell me about this blond woman.”

“I don’t know who she is,” she explained.  “I’ve never seen her before.  But she was sad, very sad and she did not steal it.”

Lindsey’s work was disturbed by the blasting of ‘Sheena is a Punk Rocker’ playing from downstairs.  Sometimes Wesley let Faith listen to the music that she liked during training, but it was usually never this loud.  Lindsey guessed Wesley had not yet arrived.  Wesley had called Faith’s music as painful as a Trollop novel.  Lindsey who was closer to Faith’s age loved her music, but not while he was trying to work.

Lindsey sighed, then got up and walked to the door that led downstairs.  The door to the apartment was next to it.  He had been putting off finding a new apartment.   He wanted a place he and Cordelia could have away from the office.  He was trying to convince Faith to take the apartment.  Only Lindsey knew that she was going to turn 18 next week.  It was about time Faith had her own life outside Wesley.  Lindsey liked Wesley, and he did not seem as strict as when Lindsey first started talking to Faith, but still she needed to lead her life without an authority figure.

He opened the door and headed downstairs.

The Ramones were still playing just as loud, but the song had changed to Something to Believe in.

Nothing makes any sense,
But I still try my hardest.

Faith was alone and beating the crap out of a punching bag.  She did not look mad, just determined.  The music was so loud that she did not notice Lindsey entering.  Lindsey went over to radio and turned it down but did not turn it off.

“Hey, what gives?” she said, a little mad, but when she saw it was Lindsey, she calmed down.

Lindsey laughed to show his request was light hearted.  “Some of us are trying to work upstairs.”

“Sorry,” she said.  “It’s just that Wesley’s running late and told me to start without him.  I can put the radio on when he’s here, but it’s gotta be so low that I can’t even hear what song is playing.  And he keeps bothering me to play some guy named Cat Stevens.”

“You look happy.”

“Yeah,” she said, chipper.  “I went out last night and got laid.”

“What?” Lindsey said, shocked.  He took a step back.  For a moment he felt a little angry.  He did not know why.  Faith was a grown woman.  She could do what she wanted.

“You gotta know how long it’s been.  Ridiculously long.  Slaying, it releases a lot of energy.  I gotta do something.  Doyle covered for me last night.  It’s been ages since I hit the club.  But don’t worry.  I used protection.”

"Oh,” Lindsey said, a little red.

“Oh, come on, Shortcake.  You and Cordelia like have sex every night.  Everyone knows.  Why am I supposed to go without a sex life?  Just cause I’m the slayer?  I think Buffy got laid more this year than I have.”

Lindsey got even redder. “It isn’t that—it’s just you.”

“Kind of ruins that kid sister image.”

This got Lindsey to laugh. Faith smiled. She looked at her taped up hands. “You wanna learn how to fight?” she said to stop embarrassing him.

“I’m a lawyer,” Lindsey said.  “We never fight on our own except with our words.”

“Come on, it ain’t hard.  I’ll show you a few moves.  It will be cool.”

“I happen to know a few moves.”

“Well, let me show you a few more,” she said, coaxing him.

Lindsey sighed.  “Okay.”

“So here,” she said, grabbing him by his chest from behind.  She loved the feel of his body near hers.  She was smart enough to avoid his neck because she knew he was very sensitive about it.  “Use what every you have available, arms, legs, pelvis, head.  Come on, hit me with something.”

Lindsey elbowed Faith in the ribs.

“Ow,” she screamed out.  She clutched on to her stomach.

“Oh my god, Faith,” he said, concerned.  He turned around to aid her.  Instead, Faith knocked Lindsey to the ground, then regained herself and pulled herself on top of him. She looked over Lindsey for a moment before speaking. “Don’t underestimate the enemy, ever.  Knock him out if you don’t wanna kill him.”  She helped Lindsey up who looked a little frazzled.

“You sure you’re all right?” he said, concerned.

“Come on, shortcake, lighten up.  Regular humans really can’t do much damage to me.  I could be stabbed and fall off a building and survive.  That was still pretty good.”

“I’m not as weak as you think,” he retorted.

“I never said you were.  Wanna try again?”

They were interrupted by his cell phone ringing.  Faith let him go and he picked it up.

“Hello—hello—oh, is that you Lina.  Hey—hey—stop crying and tell me what happened?”

“I didn’t even know he was inside,” Lina said, while she sat there with Lindsey and a brown haired female detective.  Lina had been arrested in a precinct far from Kate’s.  “Lindsey, you gotta believe me.  I’m not a murderer.”

“I know you’re not.”  He looked at the detective, but the detective stayed focus on Lina.  “She found the body, didn’t she?”

“That’s true—” Lina said, teary eyed.  “I didn’t do anything to the guy.  I was just trying to steal the car.“

“Lina,” Lindsey said, sharply.

“Come on,” he said to the detective.  “She’s scared.  She didn’t mean to say that.”

“You saw who did it?” the female detective said, deadpan.  She was white and had mousy brown hair.  Lindsey did not know what eye color she had because she only looked at Lina never at him.

“I didn’t, honest.  I was stealing the car.”

“Lina,” Lindsey said, sharply again.  He raised his eyebrows as to tell her to stop saying that.

“You saw who did it,” the detective said.   “When we came on the scene, the guy was still alive, you called 911 from his cell phone and stayed with him.”

“I didn’t see who it was,” she said.  “I was going to steal the car, and I saw the guy all bleeding and-- I’m not a monster.”

“Detective,” Lindsey said. “Can I see you alone please?”

The detective snorted.  “I don’t think there is anything we have to say.”

“Come on,” he said.  “Let’s talk terms.”

The detective sighed, then nodded.

“So what the hell is this?” Lindsey said.  He did not like that the detective refused to make eye contact.

“It was a hit,” the detective said, defensively and looking away.

“Mafia hit?” Lindsey asked.

“Maybe,” the detective said and finally looked at him.  But there was a look of utter hatred in her eyes. Lindsey did not like the hostile feelings he was getting from her.  What kind of problem did she have with Lina or him for that matter?

“Who was the guy?”

“All I need is the girl to tell me what she saw otherwise I’m going to book her for car theft.”

“You’re kidding.  You can’t,” Lindsey pleaded.  “She’s scared.  She’s a good kid.  You know she wasn’t stealing a car.  She was just saying that because she doesn’t want to tell you what she saw.”

“Watch me,” the detective said, coldly.  Lindsey did not know what the deal with.  Did this detective really think Lina was some kind of delinquent or was she having a bad day?

“Come on, she’s a scared kid.  She did the right thing.  She called the police.”

“I want to hear what she saw or I swear I will book her to the full extend of the law.”

“Listen, you can’t do this.  I have a friend—“

“I know what kind of friends you have,” the detective snapped.  “And your pretend care for this girl.
So how were they involved in this killing?  Will she have a tragic accident or something?”

Lindsey sighed. He paused for a minute to keep his anger in.  “I don’t work for Wolfram and Hart anymore,” he said. Now he understood. It was not Lina the detective had a problem with, it was him.  He was stupid in thinking the world would be as forgiving as Faith.

“Yeah, I’m sure you don’t.  Girl tells me what she saw or I prosecute.”

“Whatever you have against me,” Lindsey said. “Don’t take it out on her.”

“Oh, you are so sincere.  You should take up violin lessons.”

“It’s okay, I’m a juvie,” Lina explained when Lindsey came back without the detective.  “I know the drill.”

“The detective is talking to the DA.  Not the assistant DA, but the DA.  Look—I’m sorry. This is my fault.  You probably would have been in less trouble if you asked for a public defender.”

“What?” Lina asked, confused.

Lindsey paused.  “I used to work for a law firm called Wolfram and Hart,” he explained and sighed.  He felt a tight pain in his chest.

“Easy,” Lina said, sensing his pain.  She touched his shoulder.  “They were bad people weren’t they?  That’s why you were so upset the night I met you.”

Lindsey had nearly forgotten that Lina was slightly psychic.

“The police despised them and still do.  So despite that I’ve left them, they still assume I work for them.  That’s why the detective is being a pr—jerk.”

“It’s not your fault.  They might have still done this whether you were here or not.”

“Did you actually see anything?”

“You think the cops are going to believe that I saw a bunch of demons kill this guy?”

“No, but you’re going to have to tell her something.”

“You mean lie?”

“Let me see what I can do at your bail hearing.  Can you tell me what happened?”

“It looked like they were having some kind of deal,” she explained.  “Or trying to.  The guy ran away from them and I saw he was all bloodied.  The cops came by and the thugs ran off.  The cops didn’t see anything, so I stayed with the guy and called 911.  He died while I was there.  Nothing happened.  He just cried.  He didn’t say anything to me.”

“This girl,” the assistant DA said, motioning to Lina,  “has been arrested numerous times for theft, including a recent car theft, a felony in this state.  If she were adult, she would have been in jail several times.  I am suggesting she be tried as an adult.  She confessed twice to Detective Aronson that she was trying to steal Mr. Davison’s car.  I suggest she be remanded to juvenile hall until her case comes up.”

“Alright defense—“ the judge paused and looked over Lindsey.  He seemed surprised to see him.  Lindsey understood.  He had seen this judge in court before.  He hoped that this would not hurt their case.

“Your honor?” the bailiff said when the judge did not say anything for a long time.

“Mr. McDonald, what do you have to say?” the judge said with a little condescending in his voice.  He did not like it when Wolfram and Hart were in his courtroom.  Particularly this one, he was cocky.

“The defendant is 15 years old,” Lindsey explained.  “She’s has not been arrested for violent behavior.  She was scared because she found Mr. Davison dying and tried to save him.  That was the reason she kept telling them she wanted to steal his car.  She was afraid they would think she tried to hurt him.”

The judge looked over the papers then over Lindsey.  “Mr. McDonald, may I please ask what interest Wolfram and Hart have in this girl?  I thought you dealt in um—contracts mostly?”

Lindsey got a little upset.  Would anyone ever give him a break?  “Sir, I no longer work for Wolfram and Hart and would appreciate that now and in the future I not be associated with them.”

The judge seemed surprised again, but the prosecutor looked more angry. The judge, however, smiled to release the tension.  “Good for you, Mr. McDonald.”  Lindsey smiled in return.

“Sir,” the ADA said and she could not conceal the anger in her voice.  Lindsey had met up with her several times.  One was on the famous case with Kate Lockely.  “We have been unable to contact her legal guardian, her grandmother.  She has no where to go.  I recommend that she be placed in foster care or juvenile hall.”

“She can stay with me,” Lindsey said.

“What?” the ADA said, shocked.  “Your honor.  You cannot seriously consider she be placed in the custody of someone of questionable character.”

“Mr. McDonald, you are a single man, having a 15 year old girl can be a handful,” the judge said.

“Sir, I was married five weeks ago.  I have a spare room where Lina can stay.  I live upstairs from my office.  I work steadily for a private investigator named Alexandria Taylor.  She rarely meets her clients there.” He looked at the ADA and smiled.  “Ms. Taylor is of very good character and has many ties to the police department.   I don’t have long hours and I can pick her up and drop her off at school.  Also Detective Kate Lockely can personally vouch for my character if need be.”

The judge smiled again.  “Well, you are filled with surprises today, Mr. McDonald.  But far better ones than you have in the past.  The girl can remain in your custody until the trial or until her legal guardian can be found.  She will be tried as a juvenile if the state plans to prosecute.  I am serious hoping that the state would use it’s time more wisely than to prosecute a 15 year old with no history of violence.”

“Judge,” the ADA protested.

“This case is over,” the judge said.  “And Mr. McDonald?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Keep up the good work.”

Lindsey smiled.  “Thank you, sir.”

“You really think you’ve won this one,” said the ADA, as they were leaving the courtroom.

“What?” Lindsey said.  He was feeling a little better after the judge’s decision.  He was wrong before.  It was going to be different for everyone.  Some would forgive him right away, some would take time and others would never forgive him at all.  He planned not to be judgmental of any of them.  He did give them reason in the past to hate him.

“Wolfram and Hart.  Girl has some kind of special gifts or does she know someone?”

“I don’t work for Wolfram and Hart anymore.  Come on, Lina.”

“A tiger doesn’t change his stripes,” the woman said.  “I don’t know what kind of spell you put on Kate.”

“Ask her about me.  She’s changed her mind about me.”

“Lina, you don’t have to go with him.  He’s a bad person.”

“No he’s not,” Lina said.

“Ask him,” she said.  “Ask him about Little Tony Paparzian and how many other people have died when Wolfram and Hart get involved.  Ask him about the police reports about all the unsolved murders--”

“So what was that all about?” Lina asked. While they were in car on the way to Lindsey’s apartment.

“Lina, I going to tell you something about myself that I’m not too proud about,” he said, not looking ahead.

“Come on,” she retorted. “I’m a car thief.”

“It’s worse than that,” he explained.  “Far worse. Wolfram and Hart was a bad place and I used to be a very bad person.  This is one of the reasons why the detective and the lawyer were so nasty to me.”

“But you aren’t now?”

“No,” he said, still looking straight ahead.   “But that case she was talking about.  I got a Mafia guy to go free and he killed several people.  He was not the only one.  I’ve gotten a lot of people killed.  I still feel very guilty about all the pain I’ve caused--” he paused.  “Angelus—the vampire that we need the curse for.  He was dead and gone.  I helped bring him back.”

“Oh,” Lina said and looked straight ahead.

“There’s a lot of wrongs I need to make right,” he explained.

“You aren’t as bad as you think.”

“Thanks,” he replied.

“So what do we do now?” Lina asked, anxious to change the subject.

“You stay with me until we can contact your grandmother.  I’ll do what I can to get you a light sentence or the charges dropped.  I’ll talk to Kate.  Looks you have to stop doing this.”

“I don’t do it often,” Lina said.  “Just when we’re in a bind.”


“Listen, my grandmother, she’s old.  She’s taking care of me, my younger brother and my cousin.  She has some money my grandfather left and gets social security and some welfare for us.  But it ain’t enough. She’s gotta work cleaning hotels and that ain’t fair. So once in a while I just gotta steal enough so we can get by until the next check comes.  I don’t want to do it.”

Lindsey did not respond.  Lina was just like he was at her age.  He had stolen a few times when he was young.  Not because he wanted stuff, but so his family could eat that day.  It was this desperation that led him not to question the actions of Wolfram and Hart for so long.

“Listen, I’ll think of some way to help your family.”

“You’re doing this so you can find out about the curse.”

“No I’m not,” he replied.  “For all I know you will never discover anything.  You’re young, Lina, you shouldn’t have to worry about stealing.  You should be going to school.”

“I did pretty good at school.  Me, Charlie, that’s my brother and Gennie, my cousin.  We had to draw lots on who wouldn’t go to school that day if my grandmother was sick or needs help around the house.”

“Maybe you can work around the office, after school.”

“Can you afford it?”

“Probably not, but I don’t care about the expense.  I need an assistant.  It’s difficult to make my wife do secretarial work.”

“Wife—so you did married that really pretty girl?”

Lindsey nodded.

“She’s cool that girl—I knew the moment I met Faith I knew that she was great.”

“No,” Lindsey said, a little embarrassed.  “I didn’t marry Faith. I married a very wonderful woman named Cordelia.”

“Oh,” she said, just as embarrassed.  She did not mention anything more.  She felt that when she first met Faith that she loved Lindsey and from what he said when they met in jail, she thought he loved her too.

Chapter 35


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