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!   

She winced at that information,apparently unaware of it before now.For a minute,she didn't think she'd say,but with a sigh,she relented."If you even hint that you know he'll probably kick your asses.He told me...he told me that when they performed the surgery on him,the one that gave him his claws and metal skeleton...he was conscious.He remembers it,what it felt like..."

"Good lord,"Wesley gasped,horrified."How is that even possible?"

"Drugs,"Angel guessed,wishing he was surprised,but he wasn't.People could be extremely creative in their cruelty,and to a certain type of person,Logan's ability to heal may have been seen as a challenge-how much devastation could he recover from?No wonder Logan wanted to kill them all.If he had any sanity left,Angel might do the same thing in his position.Maybe the very idea of revenge was the only thing that kept Logan sane and going for however many days,months,and years he was altered and held captive by his tormentors.

"Who would do such a thing?"

Angel had no answer for that.

But it brought to mind a question that had always bothered him.How had they managed to keep Logan against his will for any length of time?If he wanted to leave,he left;nothing short of pure adamantium walls and a large supply of drugs could keep him somewhere he didn't want to be.
That was either another puzzle,or an answer he just couldn't interpret yet.

"I don't see how this helps us figure out where Logan is,"Cordelia pointed out crossly,her eyes narrowing in skepticism.

"If I were him,I'd never be sober,"Angel said,putting his mug of untouched coffee down on the front desk and grabbing his coat off the rack.

"Okay,good point.But weren't you always drunk when you were human?"Cordy asked,eyeing him curiously.

"I was not always drunk,"Angel snapped defensively,shrugging on his duster."I just...I wasn't always drunk."He wasn't ready to admit she had a point.She wasn't there.

She gave him a skeptical look,but retrieved her own coat from the back of her desk chair. "Okay,fine.Let's assume he's drowning his sorrows somewhere.Where?There's only a million bars in L.A. alone."

Angel thought about that for a moment,trying to put himself in Logan's shoes and see things from his perspective.On one level it was easy,because he knew what it was like to distrust people and to desire nothing but to be left alone;but on another,he couldn't quite imagine the type of pain and rootlessness he had to live with.Angel couldn't claim he'd never woken up screaming,but he didn't do it on a nightly basis."Somewhere dark,where people generally leave each other alone.He'd want to be anonymous."

"Anonymous?With that hair?"She said,with a snort of disbelief.

Just then the door of the Hyperion opened,and Gunn came in,although he stopped as soon as he saw they looked ready to go.

"We rolling already?"

Angel simply nodded,letting Wesley and Cordelia lead the way towards the doors.

"What's the gig?"The young man asked,his bright hazel eyes showing a certain eagerness to fight.

"We're looking for Logan.We believe he may be hurt,"Wesley explained.

Gunn held the door open by leaning against it,letting them pass by, and he scoffed in disbelief. "Wolf boy?Shit,why?Even hurt,he can take care of himself better than a squadron of Marines."

"Wolverine,not wolf boy,"Cordelia corrected him."Believe me,I used to know a werewolf,and the difference is night and day.No pun intended."

He raised an eyebrow at that,obviously curious,and said,"Ooh,sounds like a story to tell in the car."

Well,it would kill the time.Maybe by the end of it,they'd know where Logan was hiding.


Logan looked at his watch,and was sure it was wrong.

He glanced around,not surprised (considering the smell) that he was in a seedy bar,feeling warm from several glasses of bad but high alcohol beer,another of which was sitting on the table before him.Half empty and somewhat warm,the dim,smoke clouded lights made the beer the color of urine.He felt strange and disconnected-not drunk;dazed,like he'd just woken up from an unrestful sleep.

Where had the last two hours gone?

He remembered coming here,he remembered the need for alcohol to drown his guilt and hopefully whatever it was in his head that nearly killed that woman (it belatedly occurred to him that that could have happened to Jean. Christ,he had a fucking time bomb in his head);he remembered swilling down the hideous beer,and then...what?

That feeling of disconnection had not left him,and he remembered staring in the glass of beer,wondering if there was any point to his continued existence since all he seemed to do was cause pain,when...what?He couldn't have blacked out after a beer and a half,no fucking way.Unless it wasn't only beer.

He glared at the bartender across the haze,wondering if he was working with them,or at least on their payroll.Since Shrike had led him-unsuccessfully-into a trap,he was sure some of their other agents or whatever had been notified that he was in the area,and they had to know,since the base exploded,that he might have escaped.

The bartender looked like nothing;a normal man of slightly above average height,with thinning black hair,a small pot belly, and a generally doughy physique that suggested he wouldn't honestly last five minutes with any of his customers (meaning he probably had a weapon under the bar-like that would do any good).As Logan got up,he took a good look around at the dozen or so patrons in this pathetic place,the reek of sawdust,old beer,and cigarette smoke stinging his nose like mace,and wondered how many of them were aligned with them.No matter-he could take them all on,and still have an entire night to kill.

He was so intent on his target as he approached the bar,he didn't notice the big,drunken idiot lurching across the dimly lit place until he slammed right into him.

The drunk glared at him like the collision was his fault."Watch where you're going,motherfucker!"

"Why don't you,fuckface?"He shot back,immediately aware that he wanted to fight.It didn't matter who or what,he just wanted to hurt someone.

The drunk's rheumy grey eyes grew wide,although it was hard to tell if his face was flushed from anger or booze:he smelled like a beer truck had overturned on him."What did you just call me?!"He demanded,balling his hands into fists at his side.

The guy was tall and thick,an equal split between muscle and fat,and Logan felt himself grinning;kicking this guy's ass would be a breeze.Best of all,he seemed to think he could wipe up the bar with Logan-he obviously thought he was a big bad ass,and from the way people at near by stools and tables got up and moved far away,everyone else did too."Too many syllables?Should I spell it out for you,dipshit?"

The stupid dick took a telegraphed swing at him that Logan easily ducked as the bartender shouted,"Hey Gary,take it outside!" but Gary was unable to respond,as Logan had just buried his fist in his ample gut.

All of the air in Gary's lungs seemed to leave him in a beery gust of wind as his eyes bulged from his face and he stumbled back,his ass bumping against a wisely abandoned table."What,Gar?Never had a little adamantium before?"Logan moved in and hit him with an upper cut that instantly broke his jaw with a crack as loud as a gunshot,and the drunk's eyes rolled up inside his head as he fell off the table and hit the floor like the tub of lard he was.

He noticed movement out of the corner of his eye,so Logan was not surprised to feel a beer bottle slam into the back of his skull,but it shattered instantly and Logan hardly felt it at all.He turned to face the bastard who did it with a leering grin,the adrenaline rush of anger making him feel almost high;he was giddy with rage,and it felt like ecstasy."Is that all you got,little man?"He asked,before slamming his forehead into his.There was a satisfying thunk,so hollow Logan wondered if the man had a brain at all,and he went down hard as some other chump came in swinging a wooden chair.

He didn't bother to reveal his claws;he didn't need to.Logan simply grabbed the chair and yanked it out of the man's hands,bringing it down on his raised knee and instantly smashing it into kindling,throwing wood bits aside as he approached the young man menacingly."Where's your cajones,boy?Afraid to take me on without a weapon?"

There was the familiar click of a gun being cocked,and he looked up to see the bartender was aiming a rather large handgun-a Magnum,if he wasn't mistaken-at him,and the boy took advantage of the momentary distraction by running out of the bar.Probably the smartest thing he had ever done."I thought I said take it outside,"the bartender said,trying to sound tough,but there was a tremor in his voice,and as Logan neared the bar he could smell the stink of fear overwhelming the man's cheap aftershave.

The man's hands shook slightly,but he kept the long,gaping barrel of the gun trained on Logan as  he reached the bar."That's far enough,"the bartender said,the tremble in his voice more pronounced as he stepped back as far as the narrow area behind the bar would allow him to.

Logan laughed,the feeling of disconnection and ecstatic rush colliding inside him,making him feel stranger than he had ever felt;he wasn't honestly sure if it was good or bad."Come on,bub,shoot me!You won't kill me,although sometimes I wish pricks like you would.But I can't die.I'll live longer than you,your snot nosed brats,and their snot nosed brats.I'll live until the fucking sun explodes and swallows the goddamn Earth."He lashed out then,popping his claws and slicing the gun in half. The man gasped in horror and tried to back away,but he hit the shelves behind him.

Logan vaulted over the bar,and stared at the cowering man,who seemed rapt in terror,staring at his claws."Do you really think your puny little gun could scare me?Do you think anything can scare me?I'm the most dangerous man on this entire fucked up planet,because I don't give a shit about anything."He felt it coiling inside him,tension and the need for release,his anger steaming in his veins like lava and making him feel incredibly powerful,almost god like.He could almost taste the blood in his mouth;this bastard was going to die,and it tasted so sweet.He felt a nearly orgasmic thrill shoot through his body as he lifted his arm,claws aimed like a spear,and...

What the fuck was he doing?!

Logan suddenly snapped back into himself,the disconnection easing as he stared bewildered at his own claws and at the terrified man he had pinned against the wall. Could he blame this on the drugs,if he was drugged?He didn't know anymore;he didn't know anything anymore.What the hell was he doing?

He was going to kill this man.And,worst of all,he was going to enjoy it.

Logan retracted his claws."I-I'm sorry,"he stammered,leaping back over the bar. He stared at the broken bodies and furniture scattered upon the sawdust strewn floor as he backed out the door.
More than ever,he was convinced Shrike had done something to him,but he had no idea what.And he didn't know if it could cured.

But until he figured it out,he shouldn't be around people.


Angel drove while everyone kept an eye out for Logan's distinctive motorcycle,which necessitated having the top down,much to Cordelia's vocal dislike.

"You have to aim us straight for the worst part of town,"Cordy complained.Again."If the smell isn't bad enough,there's a very good chance we'll get our heads blown off in a drive by.Thanks very much,Angel.I always wondered what it would be like to have my brains scraped off your upholstery."

"What do you mean the worst part of town?"Gunn,who was sitting beside her in the back seat,asked."This is my old stomping grounds.The worst part is about two miles East."

"Gee,I'll write that down,"she shot back,unimpressed and unconvinced."Couldn't Logan have gone somewhere nice to drink his troubles away?"

"He strikes you as the type we'll find in the Sky Bar or the Viper Room?"Angel asked,casting the barest glance over his shoulder.

Cordy was quiet for a few long seconds before she admitted,"Well,okay,no."

Gunn let out a heavy sigh,and said,"This night is going to get long fast.What if he parked his bike out of view?"

That had occurred to Angel,and frankly it fit Logan's profile.He wasn't the type to duck a fight-in fact,the opposite seemed to be true-but if he didn't want to be found,Cordy was absolutely right;he became the invisible man.And he had a feeling Logan was hiding now,and he couldn't blame him,even though it was better if he holed up with the only people he could trust.Of course,he didn't know if Logan was willing to acknowledge that fact.

Cordy suddenly cursed very loudly,and he glanced back in time to see her grab her head and lean forward,as Gunn reached out and grabbed her arm.

"What is it?"Wesley asked,turning around in the passenger seat to look at her."What do you see?"

"Claws,"she gasped."Angel,turn around.Somebody's being killed two blocks back,in the alley beside that butcher's shop we passed."

Angel pulled an illegal u-turn in the middle of the street,making a Chevy swerve and blare its horn at him as he hit the gas and sped back to the spot Cordy mentioned while Wesley said,"Claws?Is it Logan?"

"No,I don't think so,"she said,still panting from the pain."Oh god,Angel,I think we're too late."

Angel pulled his convertible into the mouth of the alley,throwing the car into park before standing up and jumping over the windshield and onto the hood,letting the headlights show him what was there.Cordelia was right.

The lights bounced off a dented dumpster,besides which was the body of a man (?) who had been decapitated and eviscerated like a fish,his body appearing to be no more than a pile of shredded, bloody meat beside the pile of his own spilt viscera.

"Oh god,"Wesley breathed in horror,looking away as Angel jumped off the hood,careful not to step in anything that was left of the man.

Angel crouched beside the fresh remains,and it was obvious something with big,strong claws had torn him apart like a pinata.Logan could have done this-so could a bear or a tiger,honestly-but he didn't think either was responsible."What did you see exactly,Cordy?You said you saw claws,but what else?What kind of claws?"

Cordy wisely remained with the car,not wanting to see in person what she saw in her head."It was dark,I don't know...there was some pain,but it was quick..."

"Yeah,people usually don't live long after losing their head,"Gunn said,coming to crouch beside Angel.He grimaced at the body,and then looked at him."Haven't we seen a guy torn up like this before?About a year ago?"

Angel didn't have to think long."The Berserker demon."

"Oh no,not those fugly Alien rejects again,"Cordy groused,daring to raise her head from her hands.She still looked liked she was in pain,and was careful not to glance at the body-or what was left of it."I thought they were like the Unabombers of demonkind."

Angel glanced at Gunn,who raised his eyebrows and shrugged;he didn't know either.Thankfully, Wesley spared him from having to ask by saying a simple,"What?"

"You know,crazed,stinky loner types,who don't play well with others,"she elaborated."I didn't think they were much for coming above ground and mixing it up."

"They will if they want something,"Wesley noted,sounding weary.It was probably the sight of the torn up body,on top of the disappointment the day had thrown at his feet.

"Or they're pissed off,"Angel interjected,standing up.It disgusted him,but the smell of fresh blood made him feel hungry."This person wasn't human."

Gunn stood up,studying the remains clinically."How can you tell?"

"The blood smells different,"he said,ignoring his own thought of 'But it still smells good'."It's bitter.Maybe Belial demon,full or part,or Brachen demon."

"Brachens are peaceful,"Wesley replied.

"So are Belials,for the most part,"Angel countered."Usually they have others do their dirty work for them."

"Like a Berserker?"Gunn suggested,looking at him curiously.

Angel nodded-a damn good point."This could have been something gone wrong,a deal,a scam."

"Well,that was a short case,"Cordy noted sarcastically.

"Not really,"Angel replied,turning back towards the car.There was no real point in sticking around since the Berserker was gone,and this man-well,he thought it was a man-was beyond saving.He considered trying to find some identification on him,but he wasn't really in the mood for sifting through someone's entrails right now."We have another Berserker loose in the city,and that's never a good thing."

There was a loud roar from the road,and a motorcycle sped by so fast it was not only desperately illegal but seemingly a violation of the law of physics;no more than a momentary blur of velocity and then gone,leaving noise in its wake.

"Speaking of Berserkers,"Cordy said,turning to see,but the bike was long gone."Was that Logan?"

"It sounded like it."Angel said,jumping back up onto the hood of the car and climbing back into the driver's seat.Gunn immediately went the saner way,around the car,and jumped into the back seat as Angel threw the car out of park and backed up,out onto the street.

Realistically,there was no way in hell they'd ever catch up with Logan,but maybe he'd stop somewhere,and then they'd have a chance.And,if not,at least they'd have some idea of where he had gone,and maybe that was better than nothing.

It would probably have to be.


It usually felt good;the power beneath him,the speed reducing the world around him to a colorful,indistinct blur,the roar of the wind and the engine combining to create a wall of sound that seemed to buffer him from reality.But it wasn't working tonight.

The anger burned in him like acid,it felt like it was eating him alive,and he wasn't sure where it was coming from,or what it meant,or who he was angry at.Logically,he'd be angry at himself,but for some reason he wasn't,not really.Part of him was,a very small part,but it seemed lost in the disconnect between himself and his body;he was seriously beginning to believe he was no longer himself,literally.

He could almost feel himself slipping away,clawing against a cliff face as smooth as ice and as hard as neutronium as his personality-what there was of it-slid inexorably downward,toward a chasm of nothingness,and something moved in to take its place.But he didn't know what it was,or who,or why,except it was something Shrike had done,and he couldn't seem to fight against it,not for long.

Was it possible some part of Shrike had taken up residence in his mind?

He dismissed the idea as soon as it occurred to him-it was insane,and impossible,especially considering he was dead,burned to a fucking bacony crisp by Electra.But what if he had someone buried a part of himself in his mind...what was a person's mind but the sum of their memories,their experiences...memories that Logan no longer had.

But Icara said they were still in there somewhere,buried,not erased...and that bastard Shrike had attacked her;the part of Shrike in him had lashed out to protect its domain.

He had to get it out of him.Before he was lost for good he had to purge the remnants of mad Shrike from his mind,but he didn't even know how or where to start.

And part of him was afraid it was too late.

Lost in his own internal battle,Logan became aware of the truck turning onto the road in front of him a little too late,and tried to swerve around it,but drove straight into a tree at the side of the road.

The last thing he thought,before he lost consciousness in a bright explosion of pain,was maybe he had just solved his problem.

Angel was ready to give up and turn back around,start the search for the Berserker demon before he tore up another person like fresh bread,but he knew he'd rather go back and sift through that guy's entrails than fight a Berserker right now.Of his two total encounters with Berserkers,he'd been nearly killed twice,and he didn't know if any of the weapons in his trunk
would be enough to take one.He tried to console himself with the knowledge that even Buffy would have a hard time with a Berserker,due to their size,muscularity,and all around general bad temper,but that just reminded him Berserkers had killed several Slayers-hell,they'd killed entire villages,and at least one species of demon.If devastation could be personified,the Berserkers (or Berks,as Spike sneeringly called them) had a lock on that title.

They turned onto yet another winding road lined with greenery and trees,headed towards one of the nicer suburbs of L.A.-Angel knew if he kept on going,they'd hit Laurel Canyon in a few
minutes-which more or less proved Logan was simply driving,with no conscious thought given to where he was going.

"Where could he be going?"Wesley asked,echoing Angel's thoughts."Are you sure he went this way?"

"No,"Angel admitted,with a sheepish shrug."I'm guessing."

Angel noticed,on the right side of the road ahead of them,a poplar tree snapped in half in the middle of its trunk,its top portion laying partially in the roadway.

"Do you hear that?"Cordy asked,and he felt her grab the back of his seat and pull herself forward.

"Hear what?"Gunn repeated.

But Angel heard it,probably better than Cordy:an engine sputtering,still running but just barely, and the lack of Doppler effect suggested it wasn't moving.In fact,it wasn't too far beyond the tree,was it?

And then suddenly it hit him-what could snap a tree in half better than a high velocity impact?

"Oh shit,"Angel cursed,immediately pulling off to the side of the road beside the broken tree.

"What?"Wesley replied,sounding vaguely alarmed as he began looking around frantically.

But he heard Cordy gasp,and she jumped out of the car."Logan,"she said,not quite calling out to him.It was more like a combination of a curse and a prayer.

As soon as Angel killed the engine and stood up,he could see the motorcycle laying more or less on its side,about ten feet away from the tree,partially submerged in a mound of thorny
blackberry bushes.He could see the back wheel still turning,although slowly,the engine sputtering and refusing to die.

The front wheel of the bike was warped,violently wrenched from impact,but the bike must have had some of the same metal as Logan did,as it still wasn't enough to keep it from running.

And as soon as he stepped onto the grass,he smelled the blood.

Logan was almost twenty five feet further on,thrown much more violently on impact,face down in the grass beneath the overhanging branches of a pine tree,as still as a corpse in its overwhelming shadow.But even this couldn't kill Logan...could it?

He was the first to reach him,Cordelia close behind, and quickly knelt next to him,turning him over carefully (but in retrospect why did he bother?Logan claimed he couldn't get broken bones,thanks to his metal skeleton).Blood caked his face,as it appeared much of his scalp had been ripped off from his forehead to the top of his skull,although most of it had healed now,and all that remained was a deep,mostly horizontal gash across his brow,through which a glimpse of silver-his adamantium skeleton-could be viewed.Logan's right eye was discolored and starting to swell,while his lower lip was exceedingly bloody although healed over now,but still swollen as if beestung,and his shirt ripped to bloody tatters.He was complete dead weight,as loose limbed as a rag doll,and Angel wondered if Logan could suffer head injuries like any normal,unindestructable being.

"You stupid idiot,what were you doing driving that fast?"Cordy told him,kneeling on the opposite side of Logan."This is L.A. for Christ's sakes!It's known for smog,bad sitcoms,and even worse traffic."She glanced at Angel,the concern evident in her eyes and the twist of her lips."He's going to be all right,right?"

Angel shrugged,which made her grimace more violently,so he added,"He usually is."But he didn't even sound convincing to himself.

"Should we risk taking him to a hospital?"Wesley asked,joining them.He remained standing on the periphery,subtle in his misery.He probably thought this was his fault too.

Angel didn't consider that for long.Logan's mutation would be as obvious in a hospital setting as his vampirism at sunrise,and Logan had made it clear he wanted to avoid people as much as possible.Besides,with the type and quantity of people after him-and Angel had to assume they were hunting their lost soldier/guinea pig/experiment as much as Logan obviously did-taking him to a hospital might be as good as putting up a huge flashing neon sign reading "Come and get him-he's here and incapacitated".

The sputter of the engine died as Gunn righted the bike and shut it off,studying the front end damage with a certain awe."Shit,he must have hit that tree like a rocket.How could anyone be in one piece after that?"When Gunn glanced at them and saw the anguish on their faces,especially Cordy's,he quickly added,"I mean normal human.Logan'll be fine-he always is."

Angel added a mental "I hope so" as he said,"Hide the bike.We'll come back for it later.Right now,I want to get him back to the Hyperion."He stood and hefted the dead weight of Logan,nearly three hundred pounds of it thanks to his supplementary skeleton,and Angel was glad the car wasn't far,or he'd have to do something undignified like drag him.Or worse,ask the others for help.

"If you die,I'll kill you,"Cordy warned Logan,blinking back tears.

Angel knew for a fact things like that had happened before.


Cordelia knew something was wrong,but she didn't know what.

The gash on Logan's head had taken a better part of an hour to close up:impossible for a normal human,extraordinary for Angel,and way below average for Logan by far.The swelling had gone down,the bruises all but disappeared,but he was still out cold,and she was beginning to fear he was actually comatose.

Angel had put Logan in his first floor room-the room with the curiously missing mirror in the bathroom (if this was Angel's room,she'd know why-he didn't like not seeing his own reflection.But what happened with Logan?Did his hair piss him off one day and he decided he couldn't take it anymore?)-and he been laying in the exact same position Angel had left him in on his bed since then,not even twitching a finger.

He was on his back,hands positioned at his side in just such a way that he instantly brought to mind one of the dozen or hundred corpses she had seen in her eventful high school life,and that was just not a mental image she needed right now.He was breathing,although slowly,and at least his torn shirt made that fairly easy to see.But he went through the shirts,didn't he?Almost more than Angel,which was saying something.At least Angel seemed prepared for that,and had shirts to spare.But Logan's jeans had earned a few holes from road rash of some variety,but he was just going to have to live with the grunge look for now,as Angel and he were obviously not compatible in that department.Also, Angel was strangely proprietary about his pants.

For herself more than him,she had decided to clean the dried blood off his face,and dimly hoped the feeling of water would help rouse him.But as she finished wiping the wet washcloth across his newly healed brow,he remained as still and lifeless as the pickled corpse of Lenin (or whatever dead Russian guy) on display in the Kremlin.

"You can't do this to us,"she told him,getting up and storming to the bathroom,even though he couldn't appreciate it."It's not fair."She tossed the wet and bloody washcloth in the sink,figuring someone else could clean it up later;she had done her part."We busted our asses to help you,and...okay,you saved our asses too,but it doesn't mean you can die on us or turn into some hairy vegetable - "She walked back into the room,continuing her rant,and when she looked back at the bed,she gasped in shock,stopping in her tracks.

Logan was sitting up,staring at her with hollow eyes.

"Logan...are you okay?"She asked,relief mixing with annoyance.He could have said something rather than just scare her like that.

He continued to stare at her with empty,shadowed eyes."That's not my name,"he said coldly, getting up from the bed and watching her like she was little more than an insect.

"What?Of course that's your name,"she replied,suddenly feeling unnerved and taking a step back as he slowly stalked towards her,holding his hands loosely at his sides.Was he preparing to unleash his claws?Could he have amnesia or something?She always thought soap operas made that up.

"My name is Wolverine,"he growled."Who are you?What is this place?"

He wasn't kidding.He was deadly serious,and she was backed up against the wall.There was a chance she could sprint for the door,but he'd catch her before she took three steps. "Logan,you're hurt.Please,I'm on your side.You know me - I'm Cordelia,this is the Hyperion Hotel,you've been here for a while.Think about it.It'll come back to you."

Logan stopped,just beyond claw's reach,and she hoped he now knew what was going on;otherwise she was in deep shit."Hyperion.Where is that?"

"Los Angeles."She thought maybe if the knock on the head was still making him this nuts,she could kick him in the groin and escape,but would it actually stop him for a second?He couldn't possibly have adamantium in his crotch,could he?Oh,there was something she never wanted to think about.

His brow furrowed in thought,and when his cool eyes scoured her face,she felt like she was being sized up as a target.She wondered if this was what a rabbit felt like before the cougar pounced.And that's when it really hit her:this wasn't Logan.There was something different behind his eyes,cold,as calculating and clinical as a robot,save for an obvious,chilling flare of dark, aimless rage."I'm not supposed to be in Los Angeles.Where's Enigma?Vector?"

"What?What are you talking about?"She asked,trying to keep the fear out of her voice and failing miserably.Normally,she'd be pissed off,but she knew what he could do with those claws.She remembered telling Angel and Wesley earlier that Logan would never hurt her,and wondered if the irony gods were punishing her for her hubris."Where are you supposed to be?"

He snorted derisively,and pivoted towards the door so suddenly she gasped again,bringing a hand up to her throat as her heart seemed to start running a marathon in her chest.Logan she felt safe with,beyond a doubt.This guy scared the shit out of her."If you needed to know,you wouldn't have to ask,"he grumbled,heading out the door.His voice even sounded slightly different,rougher, filled with lethal rage,but she wasn't sure if that was due to the accident or the sudden shift in his personality.

Although relieved he was gone-it was nice to breathe again-she realized he had to be headed down to the lobby...where an unsuspecting Angel,Wesley,and Gunn were.Oh Christ;just the idea of it sounded like an accident waiting to happen.

She trailed after him reluctantly,but darted to the staircase as soon as she heard Wesley exclaim,"Logan.Should you be up?"

Logan-or Wolverine,or whoever the hell he was-stopped midway down the stairs and glared at the three men gathered around the front desk,telling them exactly what he had told her:"That's not my name."