wesleynotponcy: (neg: earnest)
[personal profile] wesleynotponcy

The walk from Holtz's apartment back to the Hyperion was not a long one, and in broad daylight on the quiet streets that Wes had to navigate, it was remarkably easy to hear the footsteps behind him, paced very similarly to his own but with even more rustling.

"Oh, for god's sake," he said, stopping. Then he called, "I know you're better at following people than this."

He turned, and sure enough, there was Justine poking her head out of the trees lining the road.

"So," he said, very dryly. "What's the play?"

Was she going to dupe him into trusting her? Or perhaps simply try to stab him again? The latter seemed the rather more likely outcome, given the skills she seemed to have, but he wasn't putting it out of the question that she might try the former.

"I just..." Justine swung her arms. The discomfort suggested that this wasn't a very typical gesture of hers; Wesley suspected she was likely putting it on just for him. "I need to talk to you. I'm alone. He doesn't know that I'm... I wanna talk to you about him."

"Holtz," Wesley said, to clarify.
When Justine didn't reply, he reminded her, "Great guy, not overly tall? Is this where you offer to help me behind his back?"

Still no reply. Frustrated, he turned away from her and continued walking. He didn't have time for this.

"Do you believe in anything?" Justine called out after him, hurrying to keep up. "Or is it all just a big scam to you?"

Wesley stopped once again, this time to meet her eyes. "You're a soldier," he said. "I respect that. The fight-to-the-death kind." Like a Slayer he wouldn't have objected to being assigned to, back in the day. "You work for a man who you think is noble and good. I respect that as well. The trouble is, he's not."

"You work for a vampire," Justine snapped.

Wesley had been expecting that retort. "Who in fact is noble and good," he replied smoothly. "Quirky, but there it is. Holtz talks about 'justice,' and it's quite stirring, but what he's really after is revenge. He's driven by it, blinded by it, and if you, I, or anyone else gets in his way, he'll kill for it."

"You're wrong," Justine snarled. "You don't know him. Everything that he's done for me, for all of us..."

"Sounds like a nice cult," Wesley said mildly.

He would never have trusted Holtz, no matter how young or insecure he might have been at the time; he didn't know how to get through to her when she was so clearly ignoring the obvious signs, and it frustrated him.

"He gave you his word," Justine said. "He'll keep it. You're the one who's blind."

"How so?"

He didn't know what he was expecting her to say in reply, but it certainly wasn't what she actually said.

"That thing you're about to do to your friend?" she said. "I imagine it's easier to hate Holtz than yourself."

That stung.

But she was the blind one if she thought Wesley had ever done anything to spare himself self-loathing.

"There's enough hatred in the world for both him and me," he said, without so much as flinching. "Be careful, Justine."

With that, he left.

[[nfb/nfi, ooc-good, angel 3x16 "sleep tight."]]
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