Author: Notmanos
E-mail: notmanos at yahoo dot com
Rating: R
Disclaimer:  The characters of Angel are owned by 20th Century Fox and Mutant Enemy; the
character of Wolverine is also owned by 20th Century Fox and Marvel Comics.  No copyright
infringement intended. I'm not making any money off of this, but if you'd like to be a patron of the
arts, I won't object. ;-)  Oh, and Bob is *my* character - keep your hands off!   
Notes: Takes place shortly after the "X Men" movie and during "Angel" season two. Follows
Dust & Ashes.  Apologies to William Styron for nicking his great title. (It's a great book. Read it.)


It was an odd sensation,and one he could not immediately reconcile.

He felt detached from himself,a passenger in his own body,gazing out the distant windows of his own eyes as he moved through the dark maze of corridors,senses hyper alert and yet muffled somehow;filtering into his consciousness as if through a thick and smothering gauze.

He heard the footsteps ahead and paused,flattening himself against the wall as he waited beside the door for them to come in,an inexplicable anger suddenly filling him as his thoughts took on a strange,almost hallucinatory quality:"They-can't-kill-me-they-can't-keep-me-they-can't-change me-they-can't-kill-me-no-one-can-kill-me-they're-all-going-to-die".

The silver door slid open with a pneumatic gasp,and two of Them came through,weapons held at the ready,and the one closest to him saw him out of the corner of his eye.But before he could even take a breath to tell his buddy,Wolverine lashed out with his claws,slicing both his automatic rifle and his throat in half.As he fell aside,trying to scream but unable to make anything more than a wet gurgling noise as blood gushed from the gash in his neck,Wolverine kicked out and got the second man hard in the gut,doubling him over and sending him stumbling back.Before he could straighten up and use his weapon,Wolverine stabbed his claws in the young man's abdomen and ripped upwards,disemboweling him instantaneously.The man had time to look down at his own intestines as they fell out onto the shiny silver metal floor,and then glanced up at Wolverine's smiling face before his eyes rolled up inside his head and he fell backwards,dead before the rest of his body hit the floor.

An alarm screamed through the complex,wailing like a banshee and bouncing off the metal walls at every conceivable point,but the deafening noise only made Wolverine's grin insanely wide as he continued forward,assured of encountering far more guards before he got out of here.That was just what he wanted.

His hate was pure,a white hot light that filled his veins and made him inexplicably whole;everything suddenly made sense,and he felt good.He was a supernova of rage,and it was ecstasy.He never wanted to stop feeling like this.There was no reason here,no pity,no mercy...no pain.He knew only two things,and they were enough:he was Wolverine;and everyone who got in his way was going to die.

He swiped an electrical box as he passed it,sparks shooting from it and burning his skin, electricity tingling down his claws and through his metal skeleton briefly before the overhead lights died as violently as the men he'd left behind him,with only strips of yellow emergency lights illuminating the way.But he didn't need those lights.Even through the gauze of his perceptions,the rage inside him seemed to light his way,bringing the scents of people to him as they quickly assembled for attack,and Wolverine began to laugh,stopping in his tracks and waiting for them to amass behind the chrome door ahead.Ah,the stupid fucks thought they could take him.He was willing to let them try-it was the last dumb ass mistake any of them would ever make.

As soon as his patience reached its limit he charged ahead,not even bothering to open the door.Since it was simply steel with a miniscule amount of adamantium coating,he easily tore it open with his claws,and the dozen men,not expecting that kind of entrance,were surprised and thrown briefly off whatever game plan they had.

They swarmed him en masse like angry ants,and he swatted them down just as easily.He laughed again as his claws tore through their fragile flesh,their warm blood splattering his face,every blow or bullet they managed to land only succeeding in making Wolverine angrier and that much happier.He wanted them to bring it on;he wanted more.

He wasn't leaving this place until it was ankle deep in blood.

Logan awoke with a gasp,his stomach twisting with nausea as he tried to shake the lingering, gleeful feeling of the nightmare.

Assuming it was a nightmare.He was no longer sure.

He sat up in bed,not at all reassured by the sunlight streaming in through a gap in the loosely pulled curtains.This had to be lingering false memories planted by Shrike,right?They had to be-that bastard enjoyed fucking with his mind,making him believe he was a cold blooded killer.Not that he hadn't ever had the urge...but he controlled it.And he was certainly not some sort of cheerfully psychotic killer who reveled in the misery of others.That sounded like Shrike,or the men he worked for.

But what a weird detail for Shrike to add:the idea of pain stopping if he killed.What pain?Trying to recall the nightmare/implanted memory/whatever the hell,he didn't remember if the so called pain even existed.In fact,the more he tried to recall what happened,the more evanescent the 'memory' seemed to become,falling through his fingers like sand.Just like every other memory he had.

He forced himself to stop thinking about the bullshit Shrike must have planted in his mind,as it would only serve whatever sick purpose he had.He wished he could ask Naomi or Scorpion if they had any lingering or 'new' false memories,but Scorpion was long gone,and Naomi-Electra-was newly gone.And he knew he should get gone too;he'd been too long in the wasteland of the Hyperion Hotel,and he wasn't sure why.

Well,Electra.But she was no longer here,and he had no reason to stay.

Except the Brit,Wesley,he had had his mind taken over by Shrike briefly,at least long enough for him to turn the rifle he was carrying on Logan and put a bowling ball sized hole in his right lung.Was he having any after effects?Or would he not simply because he was only controlled,and Shrike never fucked with his memories?He thought about asking,but honestly he couldn't.If Wesley brought it up as he was leaving,fine,but if not,no matter.

He showered and got dressed,weighing the odds of Shrike still being alive.He did have an extraordinarily rapid healing ability,just like him,except Logan seemed to heal at about five hundred times the rate Shrike had,which is why Logan became 'their chosen' (or whatever the hell he said-Shrike was a fucking loon) and Shrike had been passed over and-in his mind-cast aside like so much garbage.Which is why he hated him as much as he did,because Shrike,for some stupid ass reason,wanted to be their guinea pig.Who in their right mind wanted to volunteer to be flayed alive and mutilated?

But that was it:Shrike wasn't in his right mind.He wasn't sure he was in his mind at all.He'd been brainwashed and mindfucked into a parody of himself-a 'Stepford Shrike'.And while Logan knew he'd been mindfucked too-Shrike told him as much-at least they only took his memories away.As bad as it was,at least they didn't strip mine his personality or his mind like they did Shrike.

And he had to be dead;Electra fried him like a chicken.Virtually his only recollection of Angel dragging him through the front hallway was the stomach churning stink of Shrike's burnt flesh.Logan had serious doubts he'd ever survive an Electra blast at half power;at full power,Shrike had no goddamn hope at all.It really didn't pay to piss off the wrong woman.

But as he left his more or less regular room in the Hyperion (he had been here too goddamn long),he wondered how he knew they didn't fuck with his head as badly as they had Shrike.Maybe it just didn't take...or take for long...

"Logan,good,I was hoping to speak with you,"Wesley's voice said as Logan came down the stairs and entered the front lobby.

He shook off his dark thoughts and noticed the Englishman behind the front desk,perusing the usual huge old tomes he always seemed to be perusing in one form or another.Logan wondered if that was Wesley's mutant ability:the ability to read thick,smelly old books without sneezing.The idea was briefly amusing."Look,I've already told you stop apologizing,"Logan warned him,not in the mood for it.Wesley had been apologizing incessantly since he shot him under Shrike's mind control,and it was starting to piss him off.

"I'm not going to apologize,unless you'd like me to,"he replied.At Logan's evil look,he went on,straightening his perfectly straight wire rimmed glasses,his blue eyes only occasionally meeting his. He seemed to prefer the general safety of the staircase visible over Logan's shoulder."There's a woman who owes me a favor,named Icara,and I think she can help you regain your memories."

Logan shifted his small rucksack to his left shoulder,and said,"How do you figure?She a hypnotist?"

"No,she's a Kassendar demon.They're telepathic,and highly sensitive to psychic...well, wavelengths,if you will.She should be able to sense any false,implanted psychic memories and remove them."

Logan shook his head,frowning at the idea."I've had enough people fucking with my head lately. Thanks but no thanks."

"But they are bothering you,"Wesley replied,and Logan did a slight double take.

"What's that supposed to mean?"He snapped anxiously,wondering if he made some noise while he dreamed/remembered/whatever the hell he did.

Wesley looked puzzled."Aren't they?I thought they were.I'm still bothered by the fact that he somehow controlled me,even if it was only for a minute.It's all rather embarrassing,you know."

"I wouldn't know.He never controlled me."As soon as that was out of his mouth,he regretted it:it sounded like he was blaming him for 'allowing' Shrike to take him over.

Wesley looked down at his big book,clearly ashamed.Obviously,he'd been blaming himself,even though he of all people had to know there was nothing he could do to stop him.Logan wanted to apologize,he really did,but he found himself at a loss for words.He finally forced himself to say,"I didn't mean it like that."

"I know,"he replied automatically.Either he honestly didn't believe him,or he didn't care,because he felt bad enough about it as it was.

With a heavy sigh,Logan went up to the front desk,and said,"Icara,huh?Where is she?"

Wesley picked up a small piece of paper and handed it to him,finally daring to look up at him once more."She has a place just off Mulholland Drive.She camouflages it well,so don't be surprised if you don't find it at first."

"Camouflages it?What's she hiding from?"

"The world.As I said,Kassendar demons are highly sensitive.The world-our world-is often overwhelming for them."

Logan kept several sarcastic demon comments to himself.He wasn't sure he completely bought it,but whatever-it seemed to make Angel,Wesley,and Cordelia happy if he just went along with it.
Not that he cared if they were happy,he was just bored with the arguments.

He stared at the scrap of yellow paper,with Wesley's achingly neat,precise handwriting on it,and wondered what he had to lose.He did want to know what had happened to him,where his memories had gone and what they were.And if they ever did the things to him that they had done to Shrike.

But did he want someone-some stranger;some 'thing'-in his head?Too many people had rooted around in there like it was some sort of gold depository.

Perhaps taking his hesitancy for doubt,Wesley said,"I can vouch for her.She's one of the good guys.And her kind is gentle;she would never try to harm you in any fashion."

"She can try all she wants,but she won't do it,"he replied,shoving the paper in the front pocket of his jeans."Maybe I'll stop by on way."

"On your way where?"

"Out of here,"Logan said,turning and walking away towards the front doors of the Hyperion.The sunlight streaming through the glass seemed unnaturally bright,so much so that he had to squint until his eyes adjusted.Once outside the heat seemed to slam up against him like a physical entity,radiating from the ground and permeating the still,smog choked air;he felt like he had stepped into an oven.

He hated the cold more than anything,but Los Angeles was starting to make him hate the heat as well.He never thought of himself as a man happy with tepid,yet what was left?

He shook his head at his own thoughts as he straddled his motorcycle.He was turning into a curmudgeonly old man:from here on out it was a downhill slide towards shuffleboard and loud pants pulled up to his armpits.

Logan figured if he wasn't dead by then,he'd kill himself.


Icara lived in a quaint little bungalow style house that seemed to exist inside a heat shimmer.When he was able to see it,it was obliquely,not looking directly at it,and even then the image wavered like a cheap,failing hologram.He wasn't sure it really existed until he went up to the house,and within five feet of it he seemed to pass through an invisible field that made the hair on his arms and neck stand on end,and suddenly he found himself on the tiny,barren porch.

Well,that was weird.

He knocked on the whitewashed wooden door,feeling both foolish and suspicious,and after a moment he heard stirring inside and tensed,ready for anything.

There was a scrape of locks being undone,and the door opened a crack,a single cloudy blue eye looking out at him from the gap."Who are you and what do you want?"A man's hushed,slightly cracked voice asked.

Hadn't he said Icara was a her?Could he be at the wrong place?"I'm here to see Icara.Wesley sent me."

"Wesley?"The man repeated,sounding skeptical."Wesley Wyndham-Price?"

Logan shrugged."Yeah.He said she could help me."Actually,he couldn't remember Wesley's last name,although he thought he had two of them,and they sounded so pretentious and stereotypically British the very sound of them brought to mind sipping tea and colonizing tiny countries.

The eye studied him warily,seemingly sizing him up,and then the door opened wide.He found himself face to face with a slender knife blade of a man with slicked back black hair and wide,staring blue eyes that didn't look right somehow,although he couldn't pinpoint exactly what was wrong with them.He was wearing clothes so dark and pseudo-formal,Logan thought he might be a butler,but he didn't give off a 'servant' vibe.Maybe he was her weird ass son or something. "This way,please,"he said,sounding annoyed,and headed down the hall without bothering to see if Logan was following.Logan did,of course,if only out of a sense of morbid curiosity.Also,he'd gone this far;there was no sense in copping out now.

Entering the house was like entering a tomb:it was cool,and,beyond the well lit foyer,it suddenly became dark and gloomy,shadows painting the walls and pooling on the floor like oil.There was an odd smell too;leather and aged paper,a smell like damp cotton,and a dry,faint spice scent,like old cinnamon or some sort of tree bark.He sincerely hoped it didn't belong to a person.

Lurch Junior led him into the dark parlor,which was lit solely by multicolored candles that lined the room.There were maybe three dozen tapers in all,on every shelf and flat surface,while the front window was drowned by heavy blue velvet drapes that didn't let any sunlight escape,not even at its edges.It smelled heavily of burned carbon and wax,and dust from the musty books lining a pair of bookcases.So much so that it took him a moment to realize there was someone else in the room.

After sneezing several times,he saw what he assumed was a pile of scarves on the lumpy blue sofa move. It got to its feet (?) and rose to a height of five feet at best,and he felt eyes,although he didn't see them."You are a friend of Wesley's?"It was a female voice,as light as air,and seemed to drift from the heap of hovering cloth.

Of course it was a person,hidden in an enveloping shroud of gauzy,dark veils.His first thought was she was fanatically Muslim or something,but when her hands emerged briefly from the panels of lightweight cloth,he noticed they were gloved,and he suddenly wondered if maybe she was allergic to sunlight or something.He'd heard of such things,even if he'd never encountered it before,and even Angel had an aversion to daylight (he doubted he'd 'burst into flame',like he claimed...but admittedly,he had started smoking that one time,which was really weird.It smelled like smoldering flesh too,but maybe it was some kind of trick...).Of course,judging from the candles,maybe it wasn't just daylight-maybe it was all bright lights.

And she didn't smell human either;neither did the tall glass of poison standing off to his right, frowning at Logan as he continued to size him up."I wouldn't say friend,exactly,"Logan said,with a diffident shrug.

"Shall I toss him out?"Lurch asked her.

The small tower of veils seemed to sway,as if caught in a sudden but undetectable breeze.
"No,Armand,you may leave us."

Lurch,a/k/a Armand,continued to frown violently at him,but Logan raised an eyebrow and shot him a small,superior smirk as he left the parlor.Like Armand could have really tossed him out.Maybe with a catapult and the entire Australian Army,but short of that,no fucking way.

As soon as he was out of earshot,she said,her voice as frail as a crust of ice on the snow,"You've been violated."

He snapped his head back violently,staring at the veils where he assumed her face would be. "What?"

"I can feel it from here;your mind is clouded with shadows.Shadows that don't feel like yours,"she said.Icara's voice remained hushed,and he decided it was her normal voice;a ghostly whisper like a voice from another room."Come sit,Logan."

"How-"he stopped himself from finishing the question,as it was obvious how she knew.If she knew someone had fucked with his brain,she'd know his name.

He perched self consciously on the edge of a chair little more than an arm's reach across from the sofa,where she sat back down and rested her hands primly on what he assumed were her knees.It was amazing how utterly shapeless she was beneath the veils.

"I think false memories were implanted too,"he admitted,not really knowing where to start."I was pretty sure they'd fall away when my real memories surfaced,but I don't know anymore."

"How were the memories implanted?"

"He was a telepath,a pretty powerful one,I guess.But I don't know what they did to erase the rest of my memories."

"They have not been erased;they have been buried,hidden,blocked,but they are still there.
Sometimes they surface,yes?"

He had to repress a sudden shudder.Did he really want to know,honestly?If he did remember everything,could he handle it?

What if being vivisected alive wasn't the worst of what had happened to him?

No.He had to know what happened to him,and what they had done to him,no matter what.His mind would never be whole until he knew everything that had occurred."Yes."

She paused."They are not pleasant."

He snorted an aborted,sarcastic laugh."That's an understatement."

The veils seemed to bob (he guessed she was nodding),and she held up her hands,palms towards him."I need you to relax.Do not fight me;I need to see into your mind."

He closed his eyes and forced himself to remain calm,even as he thought he felt...something,like fingertips brushing over the surface of his mind,and his first,instinctive reaction was to lash out.That seemed to be his first instinctive response to everything.

Suddenly he felt something stab through his brain like a knife,violent enough to make him grab his head and swallow back a cry of pain as Icara herself screamed,a horrible,high pitched sound of pain as he fought back a wave of dizziness that threatened to swamp his consciousness.He opened his eyes in time to see Icara pitch forward and collapse in a heap on the floor.

Armand rushed in and knelt down beside her,picking up her frail frame in his arms."Icara?"He asked,visibly distressed."Mistress?"

Logan stared at them,feeling strangely disconnected from himself.What the hell had just happened?

Armand looked at him,murder in his glare."Get out of here."

"What happened?I don't understand-"

"Leave,now!"Armand roared,rage coloring his pale face."Do you want to kill her?!"

Logan stared back,part of him reacting in anger as the rest of him felt sick and bewildered.He hadn't the slightest idea what had happened,but he somehow knew something in him had just tried to kill Icara.And may have succeeded.

Logan ran out of the house,genuinely terrified for the first time in what felt like an eternity.

Shrike was right:he had been made to kill.

It was all he was good for.


Vancouver,British Columbia,Canada-1969

Angel could smell the fear in its blood as he cornered it,and while disgusted by his own feeling of triumph,he eagerly snatched up his prey and sank his fangs into it. The plump black rat,which squealed and raked its claws desperately against his face,tearing his skin as he drained it of its blood.

On one level,he remained disgusted that he was drinking rat's blood,but he hadn't eaten for so long.The warm blood gushed down his throat and brought on a feeling of near ecstasy;god,he was so hungry.

He leaned against the brick wall of the dead end alley and sighed in fulfillment as he tossed the empty rat aside,wondering where another one might be.He should probably head for the docks;he had learned that piers always had a ton of rats,both human and animal.But he was new to the city and he wasn't sure exactly where they were.Still,all he had to do was follow the salt smell of the ocean.Right now it was just a faint undertone of saline beneath the scent of garbage,car exhaust,and humans...the smell of people and the blood rushing beneath thin layers of skin...

He shook off the thoughts and wiped the blood from his mouth as the claw marks on his face healed,and he morphed back into his human visage.No matter how hungry he was-and no matter how despicable humans generally were-he couldn't feed off of them.He couldn't live with the extra guilt,even if they deserved worse.

As he made his way to the mouth of the alley,past the overflowing garbage cans that Angel knew would attract the rats,he peered out warily at the pedestrians sauntering down the sidewalk tonight,few of them noticing him enough to look back with an equal amount of paranoia.

He heard the screech of a car coming around the corner way too fast,and as he emerged from the alley,he heard a woman scream,and saw the speeding red coupe crash into a man at the crosswalk,sending him flying twenty feet before he landed in a crumpled,broken heap in the center of the street.

The red car didn't even stop;it simply swerved around the body and sped onward,although a car pulled out from the curb and accelerated after it,presumably in chase,while other cars stopped and people gathered around the body.As he wandered down the sidewalk,he heard people asking if there was a doctor around while others suggested ways to help the man as yet another reported they had called the cops.Angel glanced at the gathering,bitterly amused at the futility of it all.The guy was dead.No human could survive being hit by a car going at least a hundred miles an hour,nonetheless survive being tossed like a bag of garbage.Besides,it wasn't like any of them actually cared;people sometimes pretended to care,but they never meant it.He had learned that the hard way.

Angel turned away,only to have his attention caught once again by a woman's gasp from the small circle of so called 'concerned' bystanders around Mister Skidmark,another woman suggesting that someone remain still.

"I'm fine,"he heard a man's voice,and to more startled gasps,the man hit and presumably killed by the car stood up.People continued to advise him to stay still,to not get up,but the man wiped blood from his face with the sleeve of his leather jacket...revealing no lacerations at all.

Angel stared at the man.He looked young-late twenties?Early thirties?-good looking for a human,with high cheekbones and intense bluish green eyes,framed by stylish but unstyled dark brown hair.But Angel knew he wasn't human-no human could get up and walk away from a high velocity impact like that.

Sirens were approaching and growing louder,making the young man (or whatever he was-Belial demon?) seemingly nervous as he pushed through the shocked crowd,stepping up on the sidewalk across the street and all but running on previously broken legs as he disappeared around the corner.

The people continued to mill around,beyond shock,and Angel had to fight back the urge to yell at them that demons existed and they'd just have to deal with.He did,and moved on himself,before the police and unnecessary ambulance arrived.He had a dock to find.

Angel woke up,disoriented and slightly confused.The walls around him confirmed he was in the Hyperion,and he knew then where and when he was,but why did he suddenly remember that?

He sat up,still groggy,the answer suddenly obvious and crystal clear.That was Logan,wasn't it?

Logan,pre-'Wolverine',before they (whoever they were-government of some sort,according to Logan) did whatever it was they did to him.He tried to imagine him without facial hair,without the sideburns and whatever the hell had been done to the hair on his head,trying to match it up with the face of the man hit by the car who survived without a scratch.It could have been.

It was funny:the faces of people he killed two hundred years ago were achingly clear in his mind,yet the face of the man mowed down thirty two years ago was a blur now that he was awake.

It was Logan.It didn't matter that he couldn't precisely remember the details of the face;he knew it was.There were mutants who healed fast,but Logan's Lazarus like ability to spontaneously heal from the most devastating injuries made him special even among mutants.And he knew the man's eyes hadn't been blue enough to be Belial demon (overlooking the fact that Belials didn't actually heal fast,either).

The orange slivers of light seeping from beneath the drawn curtains told him it was sundown,as did the feeling in his bones.After a while,you could sense the waxing and waning of the sun,not just smell it.As he got dressed,he wondered if he should tell Logan about their...well,not encounter.Path crossing was probably more precise.

But why tell him?He could offer no insight into the man he used to be;he could only tell him he was in Vancouver in the spring of 1969,that his hair hadn't always been like that...and that he hadn't aged a day.

Crap-how old was he?Angel was sure he couldn't be as old as he was.Could he?

Well,if anyone should know anything was possible,it was Angel.

He had guessed Logan was no longer in the hotel by the time he reached the stairs,but he sensed the pall that had filled the lobby like a bad omen even before he glimpsed the frowning Wesley hanging up the phone behind the front desk,a concerned looking Cordelia staring at him from her position beside the coffee machine."Any luck?"She asked,either not noticing Angel yet or not really caring.

Wesley shook his head,pushing his dislodged glasses up from the bridge of his nose."No,not at all."
Wes glanced up and saw him."Angel,I'm glad you're awake."

"What's going on?"He needed coffee before he tackled any problems,but he had a feeling he'd be out of luck as well.

"Do you want the short version or the long one?"Cordy asked,holding out a mug of coffee towards him.Now he knew it was bad.But he went over to her and took the coffee with a grateful nod.

"Is there a short version?"

"Well,not really,"Wesley granted hesitantly.

Leave it to Cordelia to figure out a way to boil things down to a series of bullet points."Wes sent Logan to a mind reading chick friend of his,in hopes of helping him with his memory problem.Logan goes,and she ends up in a coma,while Logan has done an 'invisible man' and disappeared."

"In a coma?"Angel repeated."Logan didn't hurt her?"

"Not intentionally,no,"Wesley said,and Angel knew he was hedging."Armand-her avatar-isn't completely sure what happened.He didn't care for Logan,but he knows he didn't make any hostile moves against her."

"Her avatar?"Angel repeated.

"She's a Kassendar demon,"he explained,and Angel nodded in understanding.Kassendars were extremely sensitive,not only to psychic energy but to light as well-any light.So they often operated through 'avatars',Kassendar demon hybrids that were usually a part of the person they were avatars for,as well as part parasitic Chronai demon,who fed off negative psychic energy.It was a combination of cloning and symbiosis that was difficult to explain and unappetizing to watch.And since Angel knew of only one Kassendar demon in the area,he must have been talking about Icara.

"Does he know if she was able to open Logan's mind at all?"Angel wondered if the force and type of memories had shocked them both so deeply it rendered Icara comatose and sent Logan into hiding.

Wesley shook his head,running a hand nervously through his short black hair."He doesn't think so.The process had just begun when Icara fell into a coma.Logan seemed stunned,though,and he thought he may have been in pain too,for a moment."

"In pain?"Angel repeated,starting to feel like a parrot.But all of this felt like something;a pattern he could almost see,but he didn't have enough pieces to even start putting the puzzle together. "Could something have attacked them psychically?"

"Armand would have sensed another psychic presence-he confirmed there was just him,Logan,and Icara."Wesley grimaced slightly and turned away,back towards the front desk."I was trying to help him,and I've just made things worse."

"You couldn't have known this would happen,Wesley.Don't blame yourself,"Angel commiserated, feeling bad for everyone involved.It wasn't like they all hadn't been through enough lately.

"Maybe the kindest thing would have been to erase all his memories,at least of that place," Cordelia said quietly,gaining their attention.

Angel stared at her,curious."What has he told you?"

Logan never talked about that 'place'-Alkali Lake-with anyone,although he had had indicated it was something like a torture chamber.But he seemed to be closest to Cordy,whom he thought of as a mutant in spite of her protestations,and Cordy did seem to have a soft spot for Logan,although she was the only one who seemed able to keep him and his voluminous temper in check.

Cordelia's hazel eyes met his defiantly."I can't tell you.But think of something bad,and then imagine it a thousand times worse."

"Cordy,it may help us find him."

"I doubt it."

Wesley turned back towards her."Are you afraid how he'd react?"

That was the right tack to take.She harrumphed and crossed her arms over chest,giving Wesley a harsh glare."Oh please,I'm not afraid of him.Logan would never hurt me."

"Cordelia,please,"Angel interjected,adding,"I hear the nightmares he has.Sometimes he wakes up screaming,did you know that?I can hear it even upstairs.What did they do to him?"