Xander learns some secrets he would rather have stayed that way.
Disclaimer: I don't own the characters. I'm just borrowing them for a little while.
I have to say I am nervous. My dad has never called me since I moved out. I've called him, but never the other way around. But he did and it sounded serious. Not the usual drunken slurs. That fact alone would have been enough to get my mind racing.
It got me here though. I actually have to suppress the urge to knock. It would be pointless anyways. My parents always just ignored it.
As the door opened I got my first indication that something really was different. It looked like someone had actually tidied up. The place wasn't clean by any standards, but it was better than I had ever seen it.
I searched the house for my father after coming out of my shock. It took me awhile because he wasn't in any of the usual spots. Like anywhere liquor was easily accessible. It was the attic I found him in. He was rummaging through an old trunk that I had never seen open before. It was one of those things you didn't ask about. Trust me.
"Dad." I stated simply. If he was surprised about me being behind him he didn't show it. He just sat down on an old wooden stool and gestured for me to take another. Don't ask me why we were storing stools; he probably wanted to open a bar at some point.
Sitting across from him I finally got a good long look. He looked clean for a change. And sober. I can't remember the last time I saw him and he wasn't drunk or hung over. I'm not exaggerating either, I really can't. Makes me realize that he really does have something serious to say.
"I don't really know where to start Xander." He says honestly. Honesty, that's new too.
"Your sober." I hear myself say.
"That's new." Normally that would get me a stone cold glare, or worse on a bad day, but he manages to surprise me again.
"Yeah, I am."
Finally I decided to get down to the chance. I try to tell myself I'm not curious. That it's the house, too many bad memories. I just won't to get out of here as fast as I can, but I know that's wrong. "What's this about Dad."
He just sighs then looks me straight in the eye for perhaps the first time in years. "I know Xander."
Nope, can't be what I think. Can't be. "Know what?"
"What you do at night. What you and your friends fight. I want you to know how proud I am of you."
I can't help it. Despite all this man has put me through over the years, hearing that word come from him makes my spirits raise. The word I thought I would never hear from him. He's proud. Proud of me!
"How'd you find out?"
He takes his gaze away from my eyes. I can tell it's taking all his willpower to just look in my direction. "I... there are things you don't know Xander. Things you need to know."
He reaches into the trunk and pulls out a thick folder and presses it into my hands. I open it and get man is this a shock. They're files. Files from a law firm called Wolfram & Hart. I know who they are. They're the evil law firm (is that an oxymoron) that are giving Angel and his crew in LA such a hard time.
That's not the most surprising part though. Most are on my father. But not my father. Says here his name is Holtz.
"I don't understand what's...?"
"It's me Xander." He tells me before I can even finish the sentence.
"But this guy would have been dead for over a hundred years!"
"Magic Xander. A demon offered me the chance for vengeance and I took it."
My head is spinning right now, but one word sticks out from the rest. "Vengeance?"
His gaze meets mine again, this time with an intensity I have never seen in my father. "I had another family once. A wife and children. They were killed by vampires. My little girl was turned. I have to kill my daughter!"
I couldn't help but drop my gaze. I had a hard enough time dealing with staking my best friend. And that was an accident.
"I hunted the vampires responsible across Europe and beyond. I was never able to kill them though. When a demon said I could have vengeance, well... what's over a century to someone with nothing left to lose?"
The bitterness in his voice was unmistakable. It was the next part that drew my head back up though. "The vampires I hunted were called Darla and Angelus."
I started to speak, but he stopped me before I could. "Yes, the same ones you've known." He was silent for a moment after that. To let it sink in I guess. I'll admit I needed it. My dad hates Angel more than I do!
"When I was awoken in modern LA and continued to seek revenge. I viewed Angel just as guilty as Angelus. When I learned of the son he had with Darla I took him. I wanted him to know the pain of losing a child. I took him and fled through a portal that sent me to the 80's."
Now nobody will accuse me of being an overly bright guy. Really, I can admit that. Even I can see where this was going though. I just didn't have to like it.
"No. No way!"
"I'm sorry Xander. I really am. I raised you as my own son. And I know I may not have been the best father, but I do love you. I want you to know that. But you also deserve to know the truth." He sounds almost pleading as he says it. Like that will change anything.
I want to scream it was a lie. That none of this had a shred of truth to it. That I'm not the son of the two vampires I hate most. I couldn't though. The proof was in my hands... and his face.
So without another word I stood up and left. Before I knew it I found myself in my car driving. I always thought better when driving, and I had a lot of thinking to do. Angel's son. No good can come of this.