Buffy sat at the breakfast bar with her chin in her hands, not really listening as her mother and Giles chatted together over coffee. Her mom had been pretty cool about the basement being turned into a workout area, and had taken to keeping Buffy and her watcher supplied with drinks and cookies during their training sessions.
“What’s the matter honey?” Joyce asked, noticing her daughter’s distraction.
“Nothing Mom.” Buffy replied. “I’m okay.”
“Angel leaves for LA today doesn’t he?” Giles said, as usual seeing right through his slayer’s attempts to avoid her emotional troubles.
Buffy nodded glumly. “Yes. I can’t believe he’s really leaving. I thought he’d be by my side forever.”
Joyce reached out and tucked her daughter’s blond hair behind her ear. “It’s for the best, Buffy. I know you loved him, but you need to move on. Angel has by all accounts – didn’t Xander say something about him dating Cordelia Chase a few days ago?”
“They’re living together, Mom.” Buffy replied, her blue eyes filling involuntarily with tears. “She’s going to LA with him.” Two tears escaped to run down her cheeks. “Why didn’t he want me?”
Joyce got down from her stool and hugged her daughter close. “It’s just the way love goes, honey. As you get older you’ll realise that. You’ll get over it in time, I promise. You’ve got college to concentrate on in the fall, that should help.”
“I hope so.” Buffy sniffled, snuggling into her mother’s comforting embrace. “I don’t even know if he’s going to come and say goodbye.”
Giles got up as the doorbell sounded. “I’ll answer that.”
The watcher went into the hall and opened the front door to reveal Buffy’s two best friends standing on the doorstep.
“Can Buffy come out to play?” Xander quipped as he stepped over the threshold.
Buffy pulled away from her mom, wiped her tears and went to greet her friends. “Hey!”
“Hey Buffy.” Willow said, then glanced at Xander before continuing. “We – uh – me, Xan and Oz, that is – we’re going over the mansion later, to say goodbye to Angel and Cordelia. Do you want to come?”
The blond slayer nodded. “All right. I need to see him, talk to him one more time.” she said, her voice quavering slightly with the effort to keep her feelings under control.
“Are those your mom’s freshly baked cookies I smell?” Xander’s eyes lit up as the chocolatey aroma wafted in from the other room.
Buffy couldn’t help laughing at his enthusiasm. “Yeah – go help yourself.”
“Don’t mind if I do.” Xander vanished into the kitchen in search of food.
Willow looked at her friend’s tear-streaked face in sympathy. “You okay?”
“Not really.” Buffy replied. “But I’ll be fine – eventually.”
“Will you stop that?” Cordelia exclaimed in irritation.
“What?” Angel asked as he continued to drum his fingers on the arm of the chair, his eyes lost in thought.
Cordelia moved to kneel down besides the chair and slammed her hand down on top of his, halting his finger’s rhythmic tapping. “That.” she replied exasperated.
Her eyes softened as she took in the conflicted expression on his face. “It’s all right. I don’t mind.”
“Huh?” Angel turned his brown-eyed gaze on his girlfriend.
“You can go and say goodbye to Buffy.” Cordelia said with a wry smile. “It’s only right that you do.”
Angel looked at her gratefully. “You sure you don’t mind?”
Cordelia climbed onto his lap, sighing contentedly as she settled into the circle of his arms. “Yeah, I’m sure. I trust you.”
Once comfortable, Cordelia tilted her head back to look up into the handsome face of her boyfriend. Angel curled a finger under her chin and bent down to cover her lips with his. When she opened her lips under the pressure of his kiss, he slipped his exploring tongue into her mouth, stroking it slowly along hers.
Cordelia moaned quietly and ran her fingers through his dark spiky hair, holding him to her. Her breasts grew full and heavy, and moisture began to gather between her legs, causing her to shift restlessly on Angel’s lap. Her bottom dropped into the cradle of his thighs and she moaned again at the sensation of his erection pressing urgently against her soft buttocks.
Angel ran a cool hand up her inner thigh, under her skirt, and began to stroke her, with two fingers, through the cotton of her panties as they continued their passionate embrace.
“Ahem!” Angel and Cordelia sprang guiltily apart as the sound of someone deliberately clearing their throat broke through the haze of their arousal. Cordelia twisted in Angel’s arms to see Buffy, Xander, Willow, Oz and Giles standing near the door with shocked expressions on their faces.
“You might consider shutting and locking the door before you indulge in those kind of activities.” Giles commented, a note of disapproval evident in his voice.
“Haven’t you ever heard of knocking?” Angel shot back at the watcher testily, annoyed at the interruption. “It’s customary when you enter someone else’s home.”
“Angel.” Cordelia placed a calming hand on his arm. “Just let it go; this is not the time to get into an argument – we’re leaving tonight.” She got up and turned to their visitors. “Anyone want a drink? We’ve got tea, coffee, coke and orange juice.”
Drinks order taken, Cordelia disappeared into the safety of the kitchen, leaving an awkward silence in her wake.
“Uhh – I might go and see if Cordelia wants any help.” Willow said, shooting a pointed look at Oz and Xander. The two teenage boys immediately took the hint and offered their help too, following the red-haired witch into the kitchen.
“I brought these back.” Giles said, holding up two books he’d borrowed from the vampire several months ago. “Where do you want them?”
“There’s a crate with some books in downstairs.” Angel replied as he stood up. “There’s half a bookshelf full that I’m leaving behind, if you want to have a look – you’re welcome to any of them.”
The watcher nodded and disappeared down the stairs into the basement, leaving Buffy and Angel alone together in the lounge area.
Buffy was still a bit stunned; she knew that Angel and Cordelia were sleeping together, but to be faced with the reality of it was a bit too much to take. The image of Angel’s hand moving under the former cheerleader’s skirt kept replaying in her mind, no matter how hard she tried to shake it.
Angel could see the hurt look on the slayer’s face, but refused to feel ashamed for his and Cordy’s behaviour – they’d been in the privacy of their own home after all.
Buffy looked around the room, taking in the boxes and suitcases stacked against one wall. “So you really are leaving.” she said, breaking the silence and stating the obvious.
“Yes.” Angel replied. “It’s for the best.” he added, echoing her mother’s earlier comment.
Buffy lifted her blue eyes to his face. “Are you sure about Cordelia?”
“Buffy.” Angel chastised her gently.
“I know. I’m sorry – I was just checking.” The slayer gave him a watery smile. “It’s going to be weird without you.”
“You’ll be okay. You’ve still got Giles and the others to help you, and there’s college in a couple of months time. You’ve got a whole new life ahead of you.”
“I liked my old one.” Buffy replied, her eyes downcast. “Well most of the time I did anyway; there were parts that weren’t all that fun.”
“Like your boyfriend going all psychotic on you.” Angel suggested with a slight grin.
Buffy nodded returning his smile. “Yeah – that and having to send him to hell.” The slayer’s blue eyes darkened at the memory.
Angel reached out and took her hands in his. “Thank you.”
“For what?” Buffy looked up into his face, her expression puzzled.
“If it hadn’t been for you, then I wouldn’t be where I am now.” Angel explained. “After almost a century of solitude, I was so dead inside. You were the one who made me feel alive again after so long, and I will be eternally grateful to you for that.”
The vampire reached out and cupped her cheek in his palm. “Be happy Buffy.” he told her softly. “And call if you ever need our help.”
Buffy nodded, her eyes full but the tears not overflowing. “I’ll try.” she whispered, then flung herself into Angel’s arms, sobbing uncontrollably.
“Do you reckon we’ve left them alone long enough yet?” Xander asked, sipping at his glass of coke.
“A few more minutes.” Willow decided, throwing an anxious look at Cordelia.
“Don’t worry Will. I can handle it.” Cordelia said with a smile. “Angel cares a lot about Buffy, but I know he loves me.” She looked around at her former classmates. “I guess this is it, huh?”
“Guess so.” Oz replied, never one for many words.
Xander got up from his perch and leaned over to give his ex-girlfriend a brief hug. “It was fun Cordy.”
“Yeah it was – I’ll never be able to look in a broom closet without thinking of you again.” Cordelia said with a laugh as she affectionately returned his hug. She was surprised at how nostalgic she felt over their relationship; it seemed so long ago now.
When Xander released her, Willow reached out to hug Cordelia as well. “Stay in touch okay? And I’m sorry about what happened with Xander.” the witch whispered in her ear before stepping away from the pretty brunette.
Cordelia smiled at Willow in reply, respecting her unspoken wish not to raise the subject within earshot of Oz and Xander. Those relationships were now healed, so there was no sense in reopening old wounds.
“I think we’ve probably been ‘making the drinks’ for long enough, don’t you?” Cordelia said and watched as the others nodded in agreement.
The four of them returned to the other room to be greeted by the sight of Angel and Buffy hugging each other. Cordelia tamped down her immediate jealousy at the image; she could give Buffy this at least.
Sensing their presence, Angel gently disentangled himself from a sniffling Buffy. He shot a concerned look at Cordy, but relaxed when he saw the trust shining in her hazel-eyed gaze.
Giles chose that moment to reappear from the basement, carrying an armload of tomes. “Uhh – I might have got a bit carried away.” he said, glancing down at his burden of books.
Angel laughed. “Watchers – they’re all the same.” he said, shaking his head as he crossed the room towards the Englishman. “Goodbye Giles.”
Buffy’s watcher set the books to one side, then reached out to shake the vampire’s offered hand. “Goodbye Angel.”
Angel turned to Oz. “Oz.”
“Angel” was the laconic reply.
“Deadboy.” Xander acknowledged with a slight nod. “Take care of her okay?” The teenager rushed on, inclining his head towards Cordelia.
“Always.” Angel promised sincerely, then turned towards Willow. “Be well Willow.”
“You too, Angel.” The young witch replied and leaned in to give him an affectionate hug.
“And thanks for the permanent soul.” The vampire added as they drew apart.
“No problem.” Willow replied with a sunny smile.
Angel’s gaze fell on Buffy again and a wave of sadness overwhelmed him; she was his first love and he would never forget her. “Goodbye Buffy.”
Buffy didn’t reply, just met his gaze in farewell, as she turned with her friends towards the front door. Angel felt Cordelia come up behind him as the door closed behind the departing Scooby Gang. She placed a warm hand on his back. “I’m going to clear up in the kitchen.” she said, then left him alone with his melancholy thoughts.
After a few minutes, Angel followed her through into the other room and moved to stand behind her, placing his hands on her waist as she washed out the mugs and glasses in the sink. He bent to nuzzle her neck, and froze. “You smell like Xander.” he grated out angrily, his fingers digging into her flesh.
“Do not start with that, broody boy.” Cordelia snapped back. “He just gave me a goodbye hug – it was a lot more platonic than your snuggles with Little Miss Likes-To-Fight, that’s for sure.”
Angel knew he was being stupid, but the smell of the Harris boy on his girl drove him wild with jealousy; Cordelia was his, nobody else had the right to touch her. He pulled the young woman away from the sink and trapped her against the counter, pressing his hips against her backside as he suckled on her neck, drawing the blood to the surface of her skin.
Cordelia gasped at his aggressiveness, but pushed her bottom back into his groin nonetheless. She lifted one hand to clutch at his hair as he passionately attacked her neck. Angel’s fingers made short work of the buttons on her blouse, then he cupped her full breasts in his palms as he ground his burgeoning erection against the softness of her ass.
“You are mine.” he growled possessively in her ear when he lifted his mouth from her neck. Angel span her round to face him, and reached down to undo the front clasp of her bra allowing her heavy breasts to spill out. He pressed his face between the twin mounds of voluptuous flesh as he roughly tugged her skirt up so that it bunched around her waist.
The vampire ripped off her panties, then lifted Cordelia onto the counter, separated her thighs and buried his face between her legs. His talented tongue darted out to sweep enthusiastically over the wet pink folds of her centre, provoking soft cries of pleasure from the writhing girl beneath him. He drew her red and swollen clit between his lips and suckled hard, coaxing her quickly to the brink of climax.
Leaving her teetering on the edge of orgasm, Angel pulled her down from the counter, carried her over to the kitchen table and pushed her face down onto the wooden surface. He quickly freed himself from his pants and boxers, then moved to enter her, but stopped as a horrible thought struck him. “Are you okay?” he asked softly; he’d never been so rough and forceful with her before and the last thing he wanted was to frighten or hurt her.
Cordelia began to giggle hysterically at his concerned question. Was she okay? Her whole body was on fire. “Yes Angel, I’m fine. Just get on with it all ready.”
Angel relaxed at her words, and positioned himself at her quivering entrance. “You’re mine.” he said again as he took her hips in his hands and entered her body with one hard thrust.
“Oh God!” Cordelia gasped at the angle of penetration and clutched at the tabletop in reaction. He felt so big and deep inside her core and, with his hard rhythmic thrusts, was stimulating a part of her that she’d assumed was a myth. A few strokes later, she exploded in orgasm, crying out her overwhelming pleasure as her inner muscles contracted tightly around him. “Oh yes Angel – I’m yours!”
Angel roared and vamped out, his throbbing sex becoming painfully hard at her passionate declaration. He followed her over the edge, his hips jerking uncontrollably as he ejaculated repeatedly into her body with a yell of pure ecstasy. “Oh baby! Yes! Ahh! Oh Fuck!”
Wesley sat quietly in the chair by the bed, Faith’s hand in his, as he listened to the soft beeping of the various machines monitoring her vital functions. She’d been taken off the ventilator and was breathing with the aid of oxygen, but still showed no signs of coming out of her coma.
The watcher had been with her all day, his packed suitcase standing in the corner of the room. He glanced at his watch – Angel and Cordelia would be here to pick him up soon; it was nearly time to leave.
Wesley looked up at Faith’s pale face, observing the deep hollows beneath her eyes; his quest to help her would all come to nought if she remained in her coma. Unconscious was the best thing for her to be at present though; awake she would be at the orb’s mercy and he was nowhere near finding a way to rid his slayer of its evil infection. He hoped that the council’s resources would provide him with a lead once he got back to England.
Wesley turned at the quiet knock on the door, nodding at his friends in greeting, as they entered the dimly lit room. “It’s time to go, isn’t it?”
Angel reached out and squeezed the watcher’s shoulder sympathetically. “I’m afraid so; you’ll miss your flight if we don’t leave for the airport soon.”
Wesley sighed heavily as he got to his feet. He leaned over, brushed Faith’s hair back off her face and pressed a gentle kiss to her forehead. “I’ll be back as soon as I can, I promise.” he vowed to her, his voice cracking slightly as the emotions overwhelmed him.
A single tear dropped onto the pale skin of Faith’s cheek before Wesley composed himself and turned abruptly away from the bed. “You’ll take care of her.” he said to Angel and a tearful Cordelia. It was not a request.
“You know we will – she’s our friend too.” Angel answered for the two of them. “The staff here have got Cordy’s cell phone number, and we’ll make sure they know our address and number when we get settled in LA.”
The watcher nodded and went to retrieve his suitcase. “Okay – Let’s go then.”
Wesley cast one glance back over his shoulder as the door closed behind the three of them; he drank in Faith’s familiar form, storing it away in his memory to recall during the weeks or possibly months of separation that lay ahead.
Flight BA542 to London will be boarding in ten minutes. Will all passengers please proceed to the Departure Lounge immediately.
“That’s me.” Wesley said, standing up and turning to face his two friends. “I guess this is goodbye then.”
Cordelia shook her head. “No, it isn’t; you’re coming back – you promised.” she said, wrapping her arms tightly around the watcher. “You call and email as often as possible okay?”
Wesley drew back from her and smiled. “I will, I promise. Be good.” He turned to Angel. “You look after her.”
“That’s a given. Goodbye Wes.” Angel hesitated, then stepped forward to give the watcher a brief manly hug.
Wesley turned and moved towards the gates. “Good luck in LA.” he called out, giving them a small wave as he disappeared out of sight.
Angel reached down and laced his fingers through Cordelia’s. “We should go – we need to get to LA and find somewhere to stay before dawn.” he said, raising their joined hands to his lips and kissing the backs of her fingers.
Cordelia nodded and the two of them walked, hand in hand, out of the airport, heading away from Sunnydale towards their new life in LA.
In a hospital room several miles away, the machines bleeped for a brief moment as the long arduous task of healing the broken body that the Orb of Ravaclesh inhabited began …..