Summary: Riley's a double agent who's infiltrated the Twilight organization to help Buffy save the world. Secret aaaaaaagent man!
Timeline: Set during Season 8: Time of Your Life. Spoilers for Season 8's Riley one-shot.
A/N: Unbeta'd and written on the fly so all mistakes are mine. This is for flake_sake who had a very interesting visual of how Twilight and Riley's secret agent relationship works.
"Riley Finn," Twilight intones, his deep otherworldly voice drifting across the office and shooting an electric warning down Riley's spine.
"Ah!" Riley yelps and spins around to find the big man himself floating behind him. Damn, he probably shouldn't have yelped. Quick, better come up with an explanation. "Oh hey, I, uh..." Riley glances down to avoid eye contact. "I was, uh, just looking for..." He turns around and picks up a stapler off the desk behind him. "Mind if I borrow this?"
Twilight stares at him--well, Riley assumes he's staring at him because the indentations of his mask where his eyes would be are aimed right at him--then he nods. "Take what you need." Turning to leave the office, Twilight tosses over his shoulder: "If that stapler doesn't work, you might try looking for... paperclips in the bottom left drawer."
Riley watches the boss man's cape billow behind him as he stalks down the hallway and disappears out of sight. Breathing a sigh of relief, Riley slumps against the desk, puts the stapler down and hurries out of the office.
An hour later, Riley's set up on a secure line and waits for the click to signal his call's been answered.
"What happened? Are you okay?"
The urgency in Buffy's voice makes Riley wince. "I'm fine. I'm okay," he reassures, then falls silent.
"And? Riley, what happened? What'd you find out?"
His mouth twists into a frown. "My cover almost got blown. I've got nothing. I was about to search Twilight's office when he caught me snooping. He probably came back when he realized he'd left it unlocked. Good thing he trusts me. I don't think he suspects anything, but... We need a new plan, Buffy."
"Okay, okay. It's okay. We'll just... look, I'm leaving for New York in a few. Willow's got a source who might be able to help. Can you meet me? We'll talk strategy. Figure out how to make this work. Just... be careful. I don't want anything happening to you."
"Don't worry. The last thing I'm planning on is taking unnecessary risks."
"You better not. Your wife would tear me a new one if you went and got yourself killed."
Riley chuckles. "You actually scared of her?"
"Your too-perfect-to-be-real wife?" Buffy teases. "I'm not taking any chances."
Flying through the clouds, Twilight spies a mountain in the distance and aims towards it. He slows to a halt and glides down to land at the entrance to a cave at the base of the mountain. He walks through the darkness, finally turning a corner to enter a cavern where a candle lies on a wooden table. He strikes a match against the wood and lights the wick.
"So, how'd it go?" Whistler drawls. He's leaning against one craggy wall with a bored look on his face.
Ripping off his mask, Angel turns around and glowers. "How do you think it went?"
Nonchalant, Whistler examines his nails and blows at a speck of dirt. "Judging by the scowl and the tension in the shoulders, I'm gonna go with subpar."
Angel punches a hole in the wall, causing the ground to shake and forcing rocks loose to fall from the ceiling of the cavern.
"Whoa, calm down, big guy. Use your words. Let it out in a nonviolent, not-mountain-destroying style. 'Cause I can do without being crushed under a couple hundred tons of rock. Been there, done that. It wasn't exactly my most favorite century."
"What's it take? For the love of!" Jaw clenched, Angel continues in a angry voice, "I left him a note! A note! I left him a string of neon flashing lights all pointing to the note that revealed all my supersecret plans he was supposed to share with Buffy and he still couldn't find it! I even 'accidentally' found him searching my office and pointed him in the right direction and he still didn't.... Arrgh!" His angry fist pounds the wall again.
Dodging the debris falling from above, Whistler shakes his head and dusts off his shoulders, before straightening the collar of his brightly patterned shirt. "Give him a chance. You know this is the only way. The fate of the world..."
"I know." Angel tosses his head back and sighs. "You ever get the feeling you're surrounded by morons?"
Whistler smirks. "All the time, buddy."