Title: The Memory Remains
Summary: Dru finds Angel. So does Cordelia.
Disclaimer: *checks contracts* Nope. Still not mine.
Notes: Based on some musings of mine. Not sure if this is what was expected but it’s what happened. *shrugs*
Spoilers: What? I wanted a new subject line. Picture this a week or two after Waiting in the Wings – Angel’s still trying not to let the Groo problem drag him down, but he’s failing. Dru shows up and grabs him for a little family reunion. Unbeta’d and written during commercials. All mistakes and unintentional crack are mine.
He was distracted; didn’t see the threat coming.
He knows the beats and tempos of her madness, set the rhythms himself during long afternoons while the sun blazed outside, blood and pain that turns to joy the songs he taught her.
Chained to a bed, she shows him everything she’s learned at his own hand, and there’s no Spike to interrupt, no ritual to observe except the one in her fractured mind.
Rivulets of holy water make his skin a canvas to her devotion, burning and hissing amidst her whispers of pretty colors. He gives her his cries because that’s what she wants and it’s what he owes her, the very least of what he owes her.
Dark hair falls over his face and he closes his eyes against the pain, evoking another dark haired woman from the depths of his misery.
She’s a seer as well, but she’s not his. Kisses and touches and whispers in a haunted dressing room don’t mean anything, and there’s always another demon waiting to take a place that was never his, never would be.
Dru and Cordelia twist in his mind, the past and present mixing together.
“Remember the notes to the song, papa? How you whispered them in grandmummy’s ear and I felt them like spiders along my skin?” Her fingers creep up against the side of his jaw, gripping hard with her nails, turning his head as the blessed water hisses and burns between them, a sacrament of scars from father to child. “Where did grandmummy go? Why can’t I hear her anymore?”
She knows. Of course she knows. She saw it in her mad mind. Blond hair ragged in the rain, body racked with useless pain before turning to dust finally, leaving him his miracle.
She draws his blood beneath her nails and glares up into his face, eyes gone yellow, teeth gone sharp.
“That beast is what came from her, and you forgot all about your Drusilla.” Tears fall from her demon’s gaze, mouth a moue against her teeth. “Even my Spike has forgotten his Dru.” Her body is soft and cold against his, and he remembers the delight of breaking her, his body reacting when he shouldn’t be, shame filling him for the broken girl lost in shattered, fragmented insanity and loneliness.
“Drusilla, I –“
She cuts him off with a sudden and clear rage.
“Always sorry, aren’t you, daddy? But never enough to hurt me again.”
She turns his head and bends, biting deeply into his neck and he roars, spiraling into the past, forgotten in over a hundred years of penitence and filthy atonement, the joy of blood, the release of pleasure in pain, and he arches his neck, his back, his body, eyes wide on the plain ceiling.
The pull of her jaw, the pressure of his blood leaving his body, makes him tremble with longing, and he vamps uncontrollably. One hand she keeps on the side of his jaw and the other runs down over his ruined chest, down his belly to beneath his belt buckle. She claws at it, shredding the material, and even as she continues to drink him down and the black begins to bleed over the edges of his vision, he allows himself to sink into an ocean of drowning memories, hungry for feeling, for contact, for something besides the endless misery of his existence.
The chains holding his arms give under the pressure of his stranglehold and begin to crack apart like dry flint.
Angel pulls his lips back from his teeth, preparing to take the blood back from her, focusing on the exposed side of her neck as she arches down into his body.
Then another, familiar scent rushes him, and he jerks his head over to the door, eyes like lasers, trying to see beyond the door.
Dru’s head comes up, his blood dripping at her mouth, and turns to glare as well. Her body tenses and Angel gathers up the strength he has left, breaking the headboard apart even as the door bursts open and Cordelia rushes through.
Her eyes do not connect with Dru’s, knowing their power, as she aims the crossbow in her grip directly at Dru’s rib cage, letting the first arrow fly with a squeeze of her manicured finger.
Between one blink of his eyes and the next, his childe explodes into dust, and the grief and regret that tears at his chest is equal to the relief of knowing that she’ll finally have the peace he’s denied her for so long.
He tries to sit up, some of Dru’s dust mixing with the burning wetness on his chest and belly, his eyes still bleeding with blackness. Cordelia rushes over to him, dropping the crossbow, and he drowns in her scent, so familiar but so new. He knows what she tastes like, the warmth of her skin, a curse of the unfailing accuracy of his memory, the same way he knows what makes her laugh and the kind of fashion she finds disdainfully short of her standards.
Soft, perfumed Cordelia put her hands on him, on the bared flesh of his shoulder and leans down into his face, assessing Dru’s damage. The punctures at the side of his neck, an inch or so from his Adam’s apple, glare red and angry, unfinished. Unfulfilled.
Words like bad and wrong and mistake have no meaning, not when feelings like desire and want and blood and woman and Cordelia throb in his body.
And he gives in like a whore in Henry’s court, one hand cupping the back of her head, pulling her down as he eyes the side of her neck, searching where he can put his mouth on her throat.
If her body tenses, he doesn’t feel it, if she protests with words, he doesn’t hear. All those things are like a hummingbird’s wings beating at a pane of glass two inches thick – distant and forgettable.
What he feels is her body fitting to his as he rolls her under him, the scent of her shower soap rising with the heat of her skin, how her vein pops in her neck, inviting him.
He hardens to a diamond point and rubs against her pelvis with his, hears her gasp like a blessing of joy and acceptance, and arches her head back with a hand to the back of her neck. He nuzzles into the side of her neck like coming home, rubbing his nose against that hard little vein that’s begging for a touch and a kiss.
His teeth pulse and ache with a need that’s always been there and he wants to show her the joy of giving in, giving up and riding that wave of surrender.
“It’ll feel so good,” he whispers through his teeth and she shudders in broken waves, their last dance still so freshly remembered.
“It already does,” she replies with a slight moan, trying to push him away.
His hand comes down, mimicking Dru, and pulls her shirt from her jeans, pulling it up as far as it can go, and he palms the skin of her belly, feeling it jump under his touch.
“Angel, this isn’t real, it’s just blood loss and – and –“her protests ends in another breathy moan and he wonders how many times he can draw that sound from her mouth. His teeth ache so much and she’s so close, closer than she’s ever allowed herself to be. He rubs his fangs into her throat with longing and need, harder and harder, not feeling her hands curl into fists to beat at him. He’s too busy drowning, breaking her skin as his hand tries to pull her jeans apart.
It’s been weeks since the one and only time he was allowed inside of her. He wants to bury himself deep inside that furnace he remembers, drown all the way, let her light him up until there’s nothing left while he holds her to him, gripping hard enough to break mere flesh and bone.
He goes under the waves and his teeth penetrate with a cry from her throat and a moan from his. Blood hits his tongue, sweet and hot, and he opens his jaws wider.
“Angel! No!” She pushes at his shoulders, surging under him. “Don’t!”
Dimly, through the sweetness of her blood in his mouth and his hands on her body, he hears her, finally hears her.
Lifting his head, blinking like an addict in the middle of his high, he tries to focus on her face.
It’s beautiful, so full of fear, so precious for its life. He can take the light from her, break her like he broke Dru and have her forever.
It’s what he does.
But he couldn’t bear the loathing that would precede it, the revulsion for what he was and what he’d make of her.
Not from Cordelia.
“Cordelia?” He whispers, lifting his hand to trace her jaw.
She grabs his hand and pulls it from her face, pushing him so that he’ll move. She slips from the bed and wavers on her feet, clothes twisted and hair mussed, turning to reach down for him again, hand open.
He takes it and lets her pull him up, away from the decaying stink of Dru’s bed, her grip so strong and soft at the same time. He eyes her like a child, weak and confused, and leans on her narrow shoulders, like he’s done before, his head lolling against her.
She begins to lead him from the room, one arm secured at his waist, and he knows she’ll keep holding him up, even when the dead weight of him eventually takes her down.
“Why don’t you want me?” He whispers against her ear, pain lacing the words. She pauses and he can hear her heartbeat leaping in her chest, her blood still lingering in his mouth.
It’ll take a long time to wash the taste away.
“I do want you.”
She whispers so softly he almost doesn’t hear her, for all his vampire senses.
He leans down into her, catching the expulsions of her breath.
“That’s the problem.”
She tightens her hold on him and they walk out of the room together, nothing left to say.