BBC Robin Hood/BtvS/AngelCharacters:
Guy of Gisborne/SpikeRating:
Guy and Spike get their eternal rewards. Notes:
I wrote this for an exchange on CAPSLOCK_HOOD back in 2009 but never kept a copy for some reason. Dug it up today- it still expresses my opinion on the end of both TV series perfectly!'Redemption' on AO3 here
High ornate arches framed darkness outside. Flaming torches between each lit the gilded rafters far above the cream and black tiled floor. Tables covered with cloth of gold held crystal goblets of amber liquid.
The men, and the sprinkling of women and creatures who stood chatting in the great hall seldom managed to look quite as impressive as their surroundings. There was a lot of black, and a fair amount of silver, a bit of crimson and unfortunately some distinctly drab outfits.
Jorune (silver and black silks, 23rd Century dictator) had taken it upon himself to greet new arrivals. Consider it one more good deed to post to the right side of the ledger. But he’d been in the middle of a fascinating discussion about the relative merits of mercy and good looks so by the time he noticed the two men they were already getting to their feet.
Black leather, both. In the right place then. Not much else to link the two men; clearly more than a few centuries had separated them. The smaller fair haired man was fast on his feet, scanning the room. He looked more annoyed than disorientated. The other man had pulled himself upright slowly, an entirely functional sword in his hand. Surprise and bewilderment there, all right, but the kind that promised trouble for whoever was responsible.
The swordsman spoke first, addressing the other newcomer. “Is this hell?”
The blond man grinned, showing sharp canines, and Jorune came to a sudden stop, Only one vampire here, ever, and he’d gone onward just a short time before.
The vampire growled back, “It’s a bloody cocktail party. Looks a lot like hell to me,”
Jorune glanced around the glorious scene. Admittedly Hell was what newcomers always expected but still most of them weren’t quite this slow on the uptake. “Welcome!” he declaimed, “Redeemed Villains! Or should I say Heroes!”
The men exchanged fast glances then looked back at him. One couldn’t, he’d always though, come to harm here. Still, it was a little unnerving.
“This,” he explained, a little faster than he usually did, “Is Valhalla, or Heaven if you prefer. The Heaven set aside especially for men who have done dreadful things but have found a heroic redemption. This,” he waved an expansive hand, “is your reward.”
Some men thanked him at this point. Some men cried. Most proclaimed their unworthiness, a few demanded punishment for their crimes. No-one had ever produced an unimpressed snort, so when he heard two simultaneous ones he was rather at a loss as to how to proceed.
The vampire walked over to the nearest table, sniffed at the ambrosia. “If this is Heaven, where’s the damn whiskey?”
The swordsman was turning slowly, examining the hall. “Where’s the door?”
A tiny flicker of the rage that had led Jorune, long ago, to lay waste to three metropolitan boroughs fluttered across his normally serene features. He had, of course, been redeemed since then. Even so…
“There is no door. This is heaven. Eventually you will be called to higher things. Until then you stay here. There is no whiskey. Ambrosia is the food of heroes and of the gods themselves.”
The swordsman looked at him, raised an eyebrow. “I suggest,” he said coldly, “that you find me a door.”
“Find us a door.” The blond vampire dropped the goblet deliberately and it shattered with a heavenly tinkling sound.
“Us.” The dark haired man curled a lip. “It seems,” he said formally, “that we may, temporarily at least, be allies.” He wasn’t talking to Jorune.
Jorune was beginning to wonder if someone had made a terrible mistake. Except that this was Heaven where such things didn't happen.
"You are," he said carefully to a space somewhere between the two men, "redeemed?"
The vampire grinned. "You could say that, yes. Doesn't mean I like parties with no decent booze."
"And you? "
The swordsman glowered." That's between me and her. And, I suppose, him. None of your damn business anyway. "
"So, " Jorune said, rather more confidently. " You have been saved. Forgiven. Your crimes paid for, your sins wiped clean. You're good guys now, like everyone else here. Let me show you around introduce you to a few people. You'll love it here.
The fighter raised a sceptical eyebrow at the vampire. "You're a good guy?"
The vampire laughed. "Depends on the company I'm in. Right now," his sharp teeth glinted, "if this lot are all the good guys I think maybe it's time to redress the cosmic balance a little."
The leatherclad swordsman nodded briefly. "Find us the way out," he said to Jorune, "or there is going to be trouble."
Jorune counted to ten, backwards, slowly, pushing away images of flames and chains and laser guns. "You cannot," he said helplessly, "leave."
There had not been a fight in this part of Heaven for as long as anyone could remember. Stories of fights, yes; wars, battles, murder, duels, bar fights, ambushes ... If there was one thing heroes could do it was reminisce. But no one quarreled. Jorune had heard rumours that it was something to do with the ambrosia. He however liked to think that they were just all past that sort of thing, being redeemed.
So it was with a great deal of surprise and some discomfort that he felt the sword severing his head from his body and after a brief flicker of unconsciousness found himself sitting on the floor where the newcomers had appeared a short time before. He decided to stay there for the moment. It had not been an experience that he wanted to repeat. The men turned and saw him. He didn't like either of their smiles.
Their method of operation started simply enough. They world walk up to someone, speak to them, wait for their reply then the swordsman would kill them and the bewildered hero would turn up next to Jorune, complaining indignantly.
Eventually even the peaceful denizens of Valhalla (Redeemed Branch ) had worked out that something was wrong. The newcomers were fast and efficient; they could take down a small group of gently remonstrating ex villains in seconds. Finally, so late that Jorune was beginning to think there was something in the ambrosia thing after all, the beleaguered good guys began to fight back. Then the new boys stepped up a gear or two and things got really messy.
Blood covered the tiles, splashed the walls, soaked the gold cloth. The two shouldn’t have had a hope with half a hundred heroes ranged against them but somehow everyone who had been killed had elected, like Jorune, to stay down and watch.
So, sooner than Jorune could quite believe, the two men in black were catching their breath, looking at each other, and fifty men, women and creatures were sitting on the floor watching them.
“What now?” The swordsman wiped his blade clean on the priceless tablecloth.
The vampire shrugged, looking slightly at a loss, “We could do it again, I suppose.” There was a collective shudder from the floor.
A deep voice said “No, you couldn’t.” A figure approached through one of the windows as if through a door of ineffable light. The vampire stepped back a couple of paces, shaking his head.
“Might have known you’d be somewhere behind this little game.” He sounded disgusted.
Jorune started in surprise. They never came back, the ones who’d gone on, but here was the vampire with a soul. Not quite the serene, wise figure that he remembered. Angel looked positively bad tempered.
“It is not a game, and you have made a hell of a mess as usual, Spike.”
Spike shrugged. “I didn’t ask to be dumped here.”
“It’s meant to be a reward, you idiot!” Angel was unangelically exasperated. “Not a killing field! And who’s your bloodthirsty companion?”
Spike glanced over to the wary swordsman. “A friend.” The man looked both surprised and oddly pleased at the description,
Angel shook his head. “For God’s sake, I really can’t take you anywhere. Very well.”
He waved a hand and the two men disappeared. Another wave and the hall was restored. Jorune climbed to his feet hurriedly before the vampire could disappear. For the first time in however long he’d been here he found that he had questions to ask. About ambrosia, and exits, and why there was no whiskey. This was Heaven. It was meant to be perfect. They’d earned that. That was, after all what redemption was all about.