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 Angel's Secrets

Fanfiction Archive

Heartbeat

By Monica V. Martinez

Page 3 of 3
Summary: Third and final part of "That's Miss Shansu to You." This trilogy of stories (the second part being "Memories") is how I would end the show. In this final chapter Angel has an other worldly visit and is left with the biggest choice of his life.
Part of The Miss Shansu Series
Disclaimer: I own nothing, the characters aren't mine, blah, blah, blah. Please don't sue.
Feedback: please write to me and tell me what you think. SparklinGlitr822ATaol.com

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Angel reluctantly left Lorne alone with Eva. He wanted to be there if she woke up but left anyway, "I'll just be gone a few minuets at the most ok?"

Lorne nodded as Angel closed the door behind him. The green demon looked down at the girl, "you really do only look like your sleeping. I guess you were right, no pain for you. But look at all of us Eva, we're in pain and you aren't even gone all the way... yet."

"You can't tell him!" Eva screamed.

"I have to tell him," Lorne argued, "I just read in your singing that if Angel is ever to become human, if he ever Shansu's you have to die."

"Lorne," she pleaded.

"Eva, honey-bun he needs to know," Lorne said.

She looked at Lorne, "If you tell him that I have to die for him to become a human, he'll never allow himself to reach Shansu. That could throw the whole world out of wack. You are messing with not just mine and Angel's relationship but the delicate balance of life for all. Besides, if it were reversed Angel would never allow anyone to tell me that he was going to die for me. So I won't let anyone tell him that I'm dying for him."

Lorne sighed, "what am I supposed to do... Let him watch you die, all the while knowing why and never telling him? Never telling him that he could have stopped it?"

"He can't stop it. The wheels have already been set in motion. Besides, how many times," Eva said, "how many times has Angel saved the world? How many people's lives has he saved? This is my life, my destiny and my choice. I get to save him, by my love and my life I get to give him the life he deserves. Let me do this Lorne. Let me grant him Shansu."

"I just want to know one thing pumpkin," Lorne said giving in.

"Anything?"

"Will you suffer? When we lost Fred, she withered and suffered. Death is death and it's hard for all those who are left behind but if you suffer I don't think any of us, let alone Angel, could handle seeing one more person we love wither and die."

"As far as I know, I slip into a coma and die peacefully, just like dying in ones sleep. And I'm not afraid. That should make it easier."

Lorne hugged Eva then, "I won't tell."

Eva let out a sigh of relief, "Thank you."

Lorne reached out and touched Eva as he remembered the promise he had every intention of keeping.

"Any change?" Spike asked from the door.

Spike had a tryst with Eva, while she was still married to the asshole that framed her for his murder. Back then she was known as Maria Alejandra Texada or Alex for short. Her husband, Alex, showed up alive and Alex (Eva) sent him to jail, got a divorce and got a new name.

Since then she'd been Angel's girl but Spike still had a soft spot for her. Not sexually, at least not anymore, this soft spot was more to the fact that he saw her as something invaluable, something to protect, something like a family.

"None," Lorne answered. Spike eyed Lorne suspiciously.

Angel appeared behind Spike, "Spike."

"Yes," Spike said. No wise cracks, no quips, just 'yes.'

"What are you doing here?" Angel asked not angry just curious.

"I'm getting my green skin out of harms way. You two tend get violent when you talk," Lorne said. He kissed Eva's hand and left without another word.

"He knows something," Spike said. Angel rolled his eyes and Spike went on, "He's read her before. He knows her fate better than anyone. He's got to know."

"Spike, you're grasping," Angel said taking Lorne's place by Eva's side.

Spike walked over and sat at the window looking over LA, "I'd rather grasp then have no theories at all."

"What do you mean by that," Angel said angered at the hint that he wasn't doing anything.

"Don't get your panties in a bunch mate. I simply meant that I care about Matty, I mean, Maria, I mean Eva. I care about Eva, too. I still can't get used to the name change," Spike laughed a weak laugh. The kind that you laugh when it's not really funny but you don't know what else to do.

"She hated her old name. Alex reminders her of her ex. She just wanted a new start," Angel explained eyes never leaving Eva.

Spike stared at the woman, "She liked being called Matty though. She only let her family call her that but she liked it."

"She let you call her Matty didn't she?" Angel asked. He didn't wait for an answer, "I forget sometimes that you've known her longer than I have."

"Hey, man, look, she loves you. She never loved me. She was destined for you, not for me," Spike comforted.

"We have similar taste in women don't we?" Angel teased.

"Yeah... " Spike smiled in recollection, "we like the ones that turn our world upside down, the ones that change our lives."

"Pleeeeaaasseee," Eva begged Spike.

"No," Spike growled.

"You owe me."

"For what?"

"For giving me your wrong name, for seducing me, for using me, for... "

"Ok Ok I get the picture. But this? Anything but this."

Eva smiled, "Spike, please, I know you hate him and he hates you. And now both of you don't know what the hell to do with me. I'll tell you what to do... "

"Matty, I mean Eva."

"Matty... wow, you know you are the only person that still calls me by the old name."

"Sorry, babe, didn't mean to drudge up the past," Spike apologized.

"Hey, don't apologize, the past is a part of me. I can erase the names but the past is there. You remind me of that."

"Guess I'm not one of your favorite persons then?" Spike joked.

"Actually that's why you are one of my favorite persons. You remind me that no matter what happened I couldn't be who I am today without who I was then."

"Let me guess, this is where you seg way into Angel being a part of my past and how I need to embrace my past and therefore embrace Angel."

"No, embracing Angel is my job," Eva joked. Spiked didn't laugh. She cleared her throat and went on, "I'm not saying to become his friend. All I want for my last birthday is to sit down with you and him and all my friends. That means you and him being civil. Try, for me, for your Matty?"

"For Matty, it is then," Spike gave in. Eva walked away and was out of view when Spike realized what she'd said. She had said 'last birthday.'

"I still can't believe she bloody conned me into being civil with you," Spike remembered with a smile.

"I know. After all these centuries who would ever think that this one little Hispanic woman would bring me and you closer together," Angel said then sighed, "I can't lose her."

"I won't let that happen," Spike promised.

"We won't let that happen," Wesley said appearing at the door along with Gunn and Lorne.

"Did you find something," Angel asked hopefully.

"No," Wesley said solemnly.

A weak voice from the bed spoke up, "No need to find anything. I've been granted a pass to tell you what is coming."

All the men in the room turned and stared at Eva. She looked weak. "I don't have much time or strength. Let me talk and if they haven't taken me back then you can ask questions," Eva ordered. The men gathered around the bed showing they'd comply with her every wish.

"In order for Angel to reach Shansu there must be some sort of payback. The other worldly forces at hand say that since they are to give life to the lifeless champion a life must be paid in return."

"Yours?" Angel asked.

"Yes."

"Why yours?" Spike asked.

"Because that is my destiny. I was sent here by fate, circumstance, chance, by God, by whatever you want to believe sent me, to bring life to Angel."

"No!" Angel screamed, "I won't let them take you in payment for me."

"It's not up to you Angel, love. It's up to me and I said I'll go. That's why they put me in a coma. If I agree to go peacefully, they'll take me peacefully. If I fight it... " Eva trailed off.

Wesley, always the voice of reason, spoke what they couldn't, "they'll take you by force."

"The time has come, Angel, love. I just came to say goodbye to you all and to explain."

"Explain to me how it's fair that fate bring the greatest love of my life and then take her away before we get the chance for life?"

"We had our chance Angel, love and we lived and loved to the fullest in the time they gave us. There is no shame in that."

"Don't leave me. Don't leave us. We all love you and need you. Stay," Angel pleaded.

Eva smiled and looked from one man to the next as she spoke, "Wesley, when Fred left us, you loved her. You still love her and because of that I'm not afraid to leave you all, because I know that love follows. Don't feel anger at losing her, feel the remains of the love that she filled the world with. Love for you.

"Gunn, you are strong, of mind and body and not because W&H filled your head. No, you're smart because that's you. That's Gunn. Don't ever doubt that you're needed.

"Lorne, you are a great friend. I don't know anyone else in the world who would have done for me what you have done.

"And Spike, lover, what can I say. If I'd never met you I'd be happily married and not dying," Eva commented and Spike looked hurt. She laughed a bit and then went on, "Jesus, William, I was joking. It's true if it weren't for you I wouldn't be here but the truth is there is nowhere I'd rather be. You are the one person who led me to where I belong. Because of that I'll always love you my dear William."

"And I'll always love you Matty, doll," Spike said with a hint of tears in his eyes. "Bloody 'ell, girl you've got some power over me. First you make me befriend Angel and now you've got me crying," Spike said and left the room.

All that was left for Eva to talk to was Angel, "hey boys why don't you all go check on the crying vampire while I take care of this vamp." The men shuffled out of the room, all of them knowing that the next time they saw her she'd be dead.

"What is there left to say Angel, love?" she asked.

"How do we save you?"

"You can't."

"I won't say goodbye," Angel stubbornly announced.

"The whole point of this little exercise is for us to say goodbye. If you don't tell me what you have to say then you'll regret it for the rest of your human life."

"I won't say goodbye, but I'll tell you this... I love you and I'll spend the rest of my life loving you. Not just for you but for what you're giving up so that I can live."

Tears streamed down Eva's eyes with a steady flow, "Go look in the mirror Angel, love."

He did as he was told and saw his reflection. He smiled and turned back to Eva. She looked weakened and was having trouble breathing. "Let me touch your heart," she said between labored breaths.

Angel unbuttoned his shirt and exposed his chest. She weakly lifted her hand. Angel met it halfway and place it over his heart. He intertwined his fingers with her as she smiled and said, "I love you." Eva Camilla Shansu slipped into her coma again. A few seconds later the machine monitoring her heartbeat flat lined.

The guys entered without a word when they heard the heart monitor. They stared at Angel and then at Eva. Angel spoke as they all went back to where they were standing before she'd asked them to leave, "She got to feel my heartbeat."

All the men in the room smiled at the thought that Eva's last moments on earth had been feeling her one true love's heart beat for the first time in nearly three centuries. A heartbeat that she made happen.

Then, suddenly time froze and a familiar feminine voice filled the air, "Did you know that her middle name, Camilla, means self sacrificing. That's why she chose it, she knew she'd have to give of herself so that you could live."

"Cordy?" Angel, being the only one not frozen in time, asked.

"Yup, and I brought a friend."

"Hey Angel," she said with her normal country twang.

"Fred?"

Cordy and Fred materialized from a glimmering smoke into the women that Angel remembered them as. Fred said, "we came to comfort you Angel. To help you."

"Comfort? There is no comfort now that she's gone. Help? You want to help me? Bring her back," Angel almost yelled.

"Angel," Cordelia was going to start lecturing him but Angel cut her off.

"You want to help, save yourselves. Come back to us. Make all the pain and loss and grief go away. Before Eva, I was lost without you Cordy. Maybe, in some ways I was lost without you even after she came. And Fred, God, Wesley misses you. Your love was so new to him and he lost it so quickly. And... And... EVA!"

"What would you give to have her back Angel," Cordelia asked.

"I'd give anything you asked of me as long as she didn't have to die for me," Angel said, crying.

"Give us your soul," Fred said matter of factly.

"What?" Angel asked in disbelief.

Cordy stepped in to explain, "Your soul is the thing that enables you to become human again. So it's logical. Give up your soul and she lives because she doesn't have to die to restore your human life to your soul because you won't have one."

"Take it! It's yours," Angel said firmly.

In unison both of the women said, "DONE!" They vaporized into a shimmering mist and then there was nothing. After they were gone the world unfroze, the other men came alive. Angel looked around the room trying to find Cordy and Fred, but he knew they weren't there.

Angel let go of Eva's hand and walked over to the mirror. He could still see his reflection. He checked his own pulse. He stalked around the room angry. He screamed, "Dammit" and kicked over a metal trash can.

Lorne, Gunn, Wesley and Spike watched puzzled. "Angel man are you... " Gunn began but Angel cut him off.

"Cordy told me that if I gave up my soul, and any chance for gaining a human life Eva would be ok. She'd live. I agreed so she should be alive and I... I should be... "

"You should get your ass over here and hold my hand while I wake up out of my coma," Eva said miraculously awake.

"Eva," all the men shouted in unison. Angel ran to her bedside as she sat up. She looked as if she had never been sick.

"I have a message for you Angel, love," Eva began, "Cordelia told me to tell you that both of our selfless attitudes and the overwhelming power of love that we share has left The Powers That Be with only one choice... They grant you your human life and me."

Angel embraced the Eva. Her cross spilled out of her hospital gown and touched his bare skin. She looked up from the cross to meet his eyes. "I love you" they said in unison.

The End

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