“May I help you?”
The man who appeared at the library desk would have seemed like a parody of a librarian-- tweed suit, glasses, British accent—if it hadn’t been for the hint of menace under his question.
“Yes. Principal Snyder said you might be able to help me,” Adam said. Actually, the man’s words had been more along the lines of, ”If anyone can track down that juvenile delinquent, it’d be Mister Giles,” but Adam saw no reason to start off insulting anyone. There would be time for that later, once he’d gotten what he came for.
“Did he?” The librarian, who must be Mr. Giles, seemed to realize that was unlikely. “How can I be of assistance?”
“I’m looking for a student here. Buffy Summers.”
“Buffy.” Giles walked slowly around the desk. Adam recognized the violence in the way he moved: not just a librarian, then. Interesting. “And you would be?”
“My name is Adam Monroe.” He extended his hand, and Giles shook it without looking away from his face. “Is Ms. Summers in class? The principal said you might know.”
“No, I don’t believe she’s in class today,” Giles said. “You’re welcome to leave a message for her here.”
“I’d rather speak to her in person.” Adam turned his back on Giles and began a slow circuit of the library. He noted the subject matter of the books stacked on the main table--demons, witches, creatures of the night—and his mouth tightened. He’d seen adults faced with special children go down that road before, and it never ended well. He leaned back against the table and looked again at Mr. Giles, trying to gauge if he would be the type to hurt a young woman who he thought was possessed. “Do you know how I can get in touch?”
“Beg your pardon,” Giles said, though Adam very much doubted the man had ever truly begged in his life. “Why did you say you needed to speak with her?”
“I didn’t.” Adam smiled at him, just to see Giles’ frown deepen, then said, “I’m with a company that recruits promising young people. Ms. Summers’ test scores were brought to my attention recently.” And by test scores, he meant scads of fishy-sounding newspaper articles, and by brought to his attention, he meant a dream Angela Petrelli had mentioned in passing. “I wanted to find out more about her… aptitudes.”
Giles moved to stand between Adam and the door. It looked deceptively like a casual stroll, but Adam knew a man gearing up for a fight when he saw one. “I happen to know that Ms. Summers has already made plans for her future after graduation. She won’t be needing the services of your company. If you’d like to leave your card, I’ll be certain to tell her you stopped by.”
“Well.” Adam lifted his wallet from his jacket pocket and pulled out an embossed business card. “Sometimes destiny has a funny way of changing people’s plans.” He held out his card, and for a moment Giles stared at him so intently that Adam began to think he might actually hit him.
Then Giles snatched the card out of Adam’s hand. “Yes it does,” he said. He held the card gingerly by two fingers, as if it might contaminate him. “Good day, Mr. Monroe.” He turned his back on Adam and removed himself to the office behind the circulation desk, closing the door with a precise click.
Adam smiled at the closed door and slipped his hands into his pockets. As he strolled out of the library, he felt certain that visiting Sunnydale would turn out to be worth his time.