Title: Obsession vs Denial Stage I: Denial
Posted: November 14, 2006
Category: darkness, suspense
Content: C/A UST
Summary: Cordelia is in denial about many things, most of all a certain vampire. That she is lead back to the hotel night after night isn’t helping things either.
Spoilers: Season 2 after the firing
Disclaimer: The characters in the Angelverse were created by Joss Whedon & David Greenwalt. No infringement is intended, no profit is made.
Distribution: TIO, GTC/A. Anywhere else, please ask first.
Stage I: Denial
It was another night full of fighting a horde of particularly dangerous and smelly demons from one of her bone-cracking visions.
Cordelia felt more than just whacked when she finally slumped down on her couch sipping a cup of steaming hot chocolate at half past three in the morning. What she would do without Dennis, she didn’t know at all. Then again short time ago she also couldn’t imagine life without another male and now she had to. If she wanted or not.
It was exactly eight days, five hours and twenty minutes after they’d been fired so unceremoniously by that vampire whose name she wouldn’t mention again in the next… ever.
She was doing fine without him hovering around. Perfectly fine. The memory of him was already fading. Or so she liked to pretend. Her dreams were speaking a whole other language, however. They told her truths she didn’t want to acknowledge, didn’t want to think about consciously. It wouldn’t do any good.
Still there were so many things reminding her of him. Ordinary things like his black sweater he’d left here or the cup which was reserved for his bloody meal. It was so hard to repress the onslaught of memories every time they came to haunt her. More and more difficult.
Ever since she had found herself on the pavement in front of the hotel, she’d taken up residence in the centre of Denialville. She liked living there; it made things much less complicated. Life itself had been hard enough but now… it was even harder to cope. The vampire had provided some kind of safety net, a feeling of security – a false one as it seemed.
Sighing at the hopelessness of her current situation she got up to bring her empty cup into the kitchen before going to bed. Although there wasn’t a real reason to lay down. Sleep eluded her once again, as in all the previous nights since that fateful day.
Those nightly hours were usually spend tossing and turning around now, unable to find the much-needed rest for her tired body. Only at dawn she was finally exhausted enough to close her eyes for a while but she didn’t find any new energy. Dreams – dangerous and forbidden – came and with them the deceitful vampire she wanted to forget so much.
She wasn’t ready for that yet. Tonight’s fight had left deep traces. It would’ve been so much easier with him there. He had experience and power. They were doing great without him, though. After all, they were still alive.
As in the nights before when she started to think about the vampire, Cordelia got lost in some kind of trance. She was hardly aware of grabbing car keys and leaving her home. Driving through the city at this time was easy, traffic was light.
Only minutes later she found herself opposite a certain hotel. Yet again. Gaining control over her body and mind once more, she hated herself for letting this happen. Then she blamed her insomnia and the familiarity of the place. It was much easier than admitting it was someone drawing here her like a moth to the flame.
Almost an hour later she was still sitting in the same spot staring at the darkly looming Hyperion. Like she didn’t have anything better to do. Sleeping for example. Her mind apparently seemed to have other ideas.
Not for the first time she noticed the building’s similarity with its currently only inhabitant. Tall, big, dark, mysterious, unpredictable, disappointing, evil… “So not going there,” she reminded herself when her thoughts kept returning to him who shall not be mentioned. Judging by the fact that no lights were on, he wasn’t at home. Then again, who knew what that untrustworthy vampire was currently up to?
And what the hell was she still doing here anyway? Something had to keep her here and she seriously hated her inability to resist the pull.
She wouldn’t give up, though. Fuming she was about to start her car and drive away finally, when all of a sudden the passenger door was opened. She knew who it was before she’d even seen more than a leather coat. Angel.
“Missed me?” he asked casually as if he didn’t have a care in the world.
That devilish smirk on his face reminded her way too much of Angelus. It only took back to that not so ordinary encounter in a Sunnydale cemetery. “Ring my bell, honey,“ she now heard echoing in her brain whenever she thought of the up, close and personal meeting with the evil vampire.
She wanted to shout at him, hit him over the head, anything. All she did was stare at that angelic face unable to get a single word out. An extraordinary event in fact, Cordelia Chase always had a sharp reply ready on the tip of her tongue. Not so much now. What was it that this guy did to her?
Paralyzed. She was too shocked about the sheer audacity of him, the surreality of the event, seeing him again all of a sudden when she thought he was out of her life forever. Most of all, though, she was shocked about the fact that she found this different side of him incredibly attractive and sexy.
“Get out!” she finally managed to say after several minutes, never taking her eyes off of his. It sounded more like a husky whisper than a determined demand.
The evil grin on those sinful lips only got wider. He definitely knew which buttons to push and she hated him for knowing her so well. And what did that tell about her? Was she easy, any resistance was futile or, God forbid, did she have feelings for the stupid vampire?
There was definitely something. Cordy had never seen this side of him – playful, untamed, more mysterious than ever, unpredictable and oh so dangerous. A mix that was bound to magnetise and seduce. It wasn’t evil wearing the face of an angel, it was simply his true nature unrestricted by the former ever- present iron hold on control.
She was drowning from it.
Still, with all she knew she never would’ve seen his next move coming.
All of a sudden the devil with the angel eyes leaned in closer. Almost too close. She was afraid then. Feared – despite the knowledge that Angel would never hurt her – that this was the end. He was aiming straight for her slender neck.
Strands of her hair were pushed aside. One long index finger gently traced her jugular vein. A hand gripped the back of her neck tightly.
Then, one… two… three… four seconds of stillness. There was that trance again.
She felt like she would burst any moment but all she did was wait for it to happen. Why, she didn’t know. It was as if she wanted to be here – with him. Angel’s closeness and full attention made her blood boil inside her veins, burn her from the inside out.
And then the culmination of it all, the desert of a six-course meal. The tip of his tongue touched her jawline and licked upwards over her cheek. Left a wet and tingling path. A hurricane of feelings was hitting her totally unprepared nearly making her heart stop with excitement.
She was lost.
“I’ll be back,” he promised her with a voice so deep and sultry it made her shiver.
Then he was gone before she could even turn her head to the passenger side of the car. The door shut without a sound, as if it had been infected by the vampire’s stealthy, almost silent movements. She was left sitting there stiff as a poker not moving, not thinking. Two full hours.
The sky’s color turned from black to grey to a glowing mix of red, yellow and orange. Angel’s world turned into a normal human’s one. Not hers any more.
When the sun peaked over the horizon, everything fell into place. Cordy knew without a doubt where she belonged, what and who was important in her life but most of all she knew what her next steps would be. There was, however, one truth she wasn’t ready to face yet; it all ended and began with one vampire. She needed to let go of romantic dreams and unfilled desires, first.
It was time to move out of her comfortable apartment in that pretty town called Denialville now. She’d spent way too much time and energy there already, creating a perfect would that would never come true. Beware world, Queen C will be back soon!
She never listened to that nagging thought in the back of her brain. It was not as easy as that.