The End of the World…Again? 10

Part 10

Angel was disappointed when he woke up alone. He extended his senses expecting Cordy to be in the bathroom. She wasn’t. He felt the spot she’d slept in. It was cold. He glanced at the clock already knowing it to be late morning.

Figuring she went downstairs for breakfast, he went to the bathroom for a quick shower. He was eager for his morning kiss. *I need to tell her I want to wake up with her in my arms every morning. She should have woke me up. I would have convinced her to stay in bed.*


The first person Angel spotted was Xander. He was in the lobby playing Gunn’s gameboy. “Xander”


Angel gritted his teeth. “Have you seen Cordy? She wasn’t in bed when I woke up.”

“Look Soulboy! I am struggling to stay in denial and I would appreciate it if you didn’t mention Cordy and your bed in the same sentence.”

“What’s your problem?”

“My problem? Well let’s see. I came here to help Buff stop an apocalypse. What could be more normal than that? Before I know what hit me, I’m actually starting to miss the hellmouth. My ex-girlfriend is now part demon ’cause of you. You have a kid with the same vampire you dusted after she framed you for biting Mrs. Summers. Cordy is a mother figure to your kid. I got to listen to a drunk Buffy talk about her sexcapades with Deadboy Jr. Giles, my Yoda, slept with my Cordy.

But she’ll never be mine again ’cause she’s in love with the vampire who’s tried to kill both of us. My best friend almost gave into the dark side..again. Fortunately Cordy is now supergirl with glowy powers.” Xander took a few deep breaths.

“But I was dealing. Buffy and Cordy’s argument about who Willow should fantasize about helped. Then this morning I get to listen to Buffy and Spike arguing ’cause he decided to follow in your glorious footsteps and get himself a soul. Only he decided not to tell us. He did however have no problem telling Cordy.

As if all this isn’t enough to make denial impossible, Cordy asks ME to wake YOU up and let you know she and Buffy went shopping. Apparently they’ve decided to be friends. They couldn’t do it when we were dating, no matter how many times I asked them to. No it took their shared passion for the undead to bond.” He glared at Angel.

“You never deserved Buffy and you sure as hell don’t deserve Cordy.”

“And you do?”

He looked away. “I didn’t say that I did. I know I’ve only been here a few days but I’ve seen enough to know that she deserves the best. Someone like…Giles.”

“Aren’t you trying to deny that happened?”

“Yes, but for them I can learn to accept it. I’d insist on being best man of course.”

Angel growled. He wanted to rip the boy’s arms off and beat him to death with them. It bothered him that he partially agreed. He knew he didn’t deserve Cordy, but he’d kill before he’d lose her. He tried to push his thoughts away. “Where’s everyone?”

Xander considered ignoring Angel’s question. It really upset him that Angel was the one who got to watch Cordelia grow from a spoiled selfish bitch into a caring generous woman. He sighed. The worst part was how happy she looked sitting on his lap eating her Chinese food.

*Did I ever make her happy?*

“Buffy and Cordy went shopping. Gunn, Fred and Connor went out to eat. Giles is up in his room rereading tonight’s prophesy. Willow is still upstairs sleeping. Spike is downstairs in the basement. I decided to stick around in case Willow needs me.”

“Thanks. I think I’ll check on Spike.”


Angel clenched his fists. *Where the fuck does he get off. Cordy has a scar because of him!* He slammed the basement door behind him.

Spike glanced up at his agitated grandsire. “What’s wrong with you?”

Angel scowled. “I woke up alone and I just got reminded that I don’t deserve Cordy by the loser in the lobby.”

“Don’t sugar coat it Peaches. Tell me how you really feel.”

Angel’s face twisted into an evil smirk. “I want to wear Xander’s intestines as a belt.”

“That’s sweet. The cheerleader didn’t mention anything about givin’ you the big happy last night. She did say something about you poutin’ ’cause she wouldn’t let you give her one.”

Angel’s jaw dropped. “She said that to you?”

“We were havin’ a frank discussion about our love lives this mornin’.”

Angel stepped closer. “So you’re the reason I woke up alone!”

Spike held his hands out as he backed up. “She was hungry. I happened to be in the kitchen. I was tryin’ to use the bloody microwave. What did you do? Search until you found the most complicated one out there.”

“Cordy picked it. I think she chose it so I’d be more dependent on her. I usually use the small one in the office. I push how long and the start button. The one in the kitchen is a reminder of just how old I really am. Between that and the VCR, I feel lost. Don’t even get me started on cell phones!”

“Modern technology is supposed to make life easier. It usually makes me feel stupid.”

“How pathetic are we?”

“Pretty pathetic. One twenty-something chit has us wrapped around her finger. I’m the worst though. I’ve only really known her a few days and I already jump when she snaps her fingers. At least it took her years to train you. Plus I’m so slayer-whipped, I went and got myself a soul so I’d never hurt her again. Mission failed.” He sent a few vicious blows to the punching bag.

“What happened this morning?”

Spike hugged the bag. “You didn’t see her face. She was so hurt that I didn’t confide in her. The fact that I talked to Cordy was like rubbing salt in the wound. I told her Cordy knew by lookin’ at me, magic powers and all. No matter what I do I seem to hurt her.” He slumped to the floor.

“Do you remember what you told me? To kill this slayer you had to love her. It sickens me how right you were. All the times I’ve tried to kill her haven’t scarred her half as much as my loving her has.”

Angel felt a shudder go through him at Spike’s defeated tone. Being reminded of his soulless time in Sunnydale wasn’t helping. “Buffy was just shocked at the news. She doesn’t really like surprises. Cordy will help her deal. I know how Buffy can lash out when she’s hurting. You guys can work things out.”

“I’d be happy if we could be friends. Our relationship, if you could call it that, became destructive when sex came into it. Literally. The first time we had sex, we actually demolished an entire building. We made you and Darla seem gentle.”

“Okay, I didn’t need to know that. Friends is a good goal. Cordy was my best friend long before we fell in love. I’ve never felt so connected to anyone. It scares me sometimes.”

“‘Cause of the curse?”

“No. Can I trust you with something?”


“I loved Buffy. She was the first girl I ever loved and that includes before I was turned. I cared for Darla. She was my demon’s kindred and sire. We shared a passion for each other and destruction. Both of them owned a side of me. My soul loved Buffy so much it found bliss in her arms, but my demon only reveled in her pain. My soul wanted to help Darla but it was the darkness, the demon, that was drawn to her. It recognized her as its companion.

With Cordy I’ve found love and acceptance that I never dreamed possible. My soul fears the bliss it finds in her smile. What frightens me is so does my demon. I never really thought my demon was capable of love. I always figured it was because I was an evil soulless demon. I dismissed the fact that other vampires could love. If my demon could, it would love Darla but it never did.” He ran his fingers through his hair.

“Whenever Buffy was in danger, I would use my demon to help her. When Cordelia is in danger, my soul has to hold my demon back from killing everyone in sight until the danger is gone. That night I spent with Buffy, it never crossed my mind to mark her. I figured it was because I knew it was wrong. Do you know how many times I’ve had to stop myself from marking Cordy?”

“That explains it.”

“What explains what?”

“I wondered about Buffy’s scar. I knew it was yours. It struck me as odd that it was a scar from feeding. I was surprised you didn’t claim her as your mate. I figured it was ’cause you were delirious at the time.”

“No. I refused to bite her so she hit me to draw out my demon. It just wanted to drain her. It was hard to fight the impulse. How come you never marked her as yours?”

“You know how seriously I take that. Choosing a mate is a commitment. I would never do that with Buffy unless she wanted it too. She didn’t even want to tell her friends. I was her dirty little secret.”

“Sounds like you both did your share of hurting each other.”

Spike had his hands around Angel’s throat in an instant. “Don’t ever say that. Nothing she did compares to what I did to her!” He backed away when he saw the shock on Angel’s face. He hung his head. “You know my demon doesn’t take rejection very well.”

“I don’t want to hear the rest of this, do I?”

Spike went back to punishing the punching bag. He started pounding. “No. You don’t.” He could feel his tears start to flow.

Angel stood there unsure what to do. He knew what a soulless Spike was capable of when he felt rejected. “I don’t get it. She seems to miss having sex with you, so it couldn’t be that bad.”

“It was. I don’t know why she said what she did. I promised never to touch her again. It’s best I keep it.”

“Whatever you did, you aren’t the same anymore. Just try to be friends and let her decide if she wants you to touch her again.”

Spike stopped his assault. “Have you ever thought about what your demon would do to Cordelia if you lost your soul again?”

Angel fidgeted. “Of course. It’s what keeps me from burying myself inside her.”

“Exactly and if that were to happen, what would you do?”

“Did I ever tell you there’s a drug that simulates bliss?” Spike shook his head. “An actress who wanted me to turn her slipped me a happy pill. It released Angelus for a few hours.”

“What did you do?”

“Terrorized the actress, taunted Wesley, and made fun of Cordy’s acting.” He gave a harsh laugh. “She’s a good actress when her life is on the line. She tricked me into thinking her cup of water was holy water. It distracted me long enough for Wes to knock me down the elevator shaft. Then they chained me up ’til it wore off.”

“Is there a point to your happy little story?”

“I still have an occasional nightmare about what I planned to do to her and this was before I fell in love.” He began his own punishment of the bag. “She forgave me then and she’d forgive me now. Cordy has a greater capacity for forgiveness then anyone I’ve ever known. Hell we’ve both tried to kill her and right now she’d sacrafice herself for either one of us. She has already sacraficed so much for me.

I once tried to face the sunrise because I felt overwhelmed with guilt. Buffy stood there begging me to fight for us. I couldn’t..wouldn’t do it. A freak snowstorm stopped me from being dust. What would I do? I would do anything Cordelia asked me to. Anything. Whether she wanted me to face another sunrise, remove an appendage of her choice or stay and make it better, I would do it. Hopefully someone would stake me before I managed to hurt her.”

“I’d do it. I don’t want to see her in pain.” He held the bag for him. “She wouldn’t want me to. She’d fight for you. That woman would probably have Angelus wrapped around her finger.”

“That’s a possibility. Like I said, my demon is in love with her too. She’d definitely be my mate for the rest of her life.”

“Bloody hell! If these women had any sense, they’d get as far away from us as they could.”

“I know but I don’t think I could let her walk away from me again. It almost killed me the last time. This family tends to self destruct without her. I couldn’t leave her either. I don’t think I have any selflessness left in me when it comes to her. Hell, I wanted to kick Willow’s ass for fantasizing about my Cordy!”

Spike couldn’t help it. He started laughing. “Peaches, you really have lost it.”


Angel was still in the basement when Cordelia returned. “How’s Buffy?”

“A little better. She’s pretty confused. She wants to hate him for all the things he’s done, but she can’t seem to. A part of her still wanted him and now that he has a soul, it’s even more confusing for her. She’s gone to talk to him.”

“Spike is pretty freaked. What did he do to her?”

“That’s between them. I just gave her the best advice I could.”

“Which was?” He noticed her hesitation. “What’s wrong?”

She took a deep breath and sat next to him. “I told her that they need to deal with this together if they want to be friends. Deciding he isn’t responsible for his actions now that he has a soul isn’t a solution. She did that with you.” She felt him try to pull away so she grabbed his hand.

“Not because it isn’t a valid point but because Spike will never feel that way. He blames himself, soul or no soul. They need to face it. The two of you never dealt with what happened. It’s no wonder trying to be just friends failed.”

“I know.”

“Angel, you know I forgive you, don’t you? I mean I can’t give you absolution for all your past deeds. It isn’t my place. For that I can only offer you my understanding and support. I can and do forgive you for the times you hurt me..” She gave him a small smile “and the times you tried to kill me.”

“How can you forgive me?”

She giggled. “‘Cause I’m a saint.” She released his hand and knelt in front of him. “Because I love you. Plus I kinda had a lot of practice. I forgave Connor. I forgave Spike. I forgave Lindsey the moment I heard him sing.” She laughed when he growled. “I’m still pretty pissed at Lilah though. Disfigurement is so not acceptable!”

“I don’t deserve you.”

She slipped her hands around his neck. “How about I let you make it up to me with another new wardrobe.”

He smiled. “That could be arranged.”

She pulled him down for a kiss. “Actually you did it this afternoon. I used your credit card when I went shopping.” She squealed as he pressed her against the wall.

“I didn’t like waking up alone this morning.” He planted kisses along her jaw as he unbuttoned her shirt.

Cordelia, desperate to touch skin, slipped both hands under his shirt. “Well I guess you’re gonna have to visit me a lot when I go back to my apartment.”

He stopped his kisses. She moaned at the loss of his mouth and hands. “What do you mean?”

“Angel, I agreed to stay so Connor would feel comfortable living here. He’s bonded with Fred and Gunn. Plus he’s no longer hostile with you. He’s not gonna leave just ’cause I sleep in my apartment. I still plan to wait and see how he deals with Lorne.

He’ll be home tomorrow night. They got off on the wrong foot. What with the ‘filthy demon’ comment and all. He seems okay with Spike so there’s hope. I don’t think Connor wants to be alone anymore. He’s ready to accept all of us as his family.”

“And that makes me happy. It really does but I want you to stay here with me for us.”

She pushed him away and began buttoning her shirt. “Angel, I think it’s a little early in our relationship to discuss living together. Besides I couldn’t abandon Dennis.”

He smacked her hands away and unbuttoned her shirt again. He retraced his earlier path of kisses. “I want you in my bed every night.”

She lost her ability to think when his lips descended on her breasts. She felt a hand drop to her pants. He just unzipped them, when they heard someone descend the stairs.

“Sorry Peaches. Vamp detective is needed upstairs.” Angel vamped and turned to Spike. Spike laughed. “Stop! You’re scaring me. Now get your sorry ass upstairs.” He winked at Cordy. “Pet, you might want to button up.” He could still hear Angel growling as he hurried up the stairs.

“Soul or not, I’m gonna stake him.” He smacked her hands away again. “I’m the boss. They can wait.” He bent down for a kiss but Cordelia ducked and slid away.

“Since when are you the boss?”

“Since Wesley stole my son.”

“And that makes you the boss how? We let you come back to work for us in case you forgot. So you aren’t the next in line. Besides Angel Investigations was my idea in the first place. You just wanted to hide in your bat cave and brood. Starting a business was all me. If anyone should be boss it’s me and this boss is telling you to get your cute ass upstairs. We have an apocalypse to avert.”

By the time she stopped for a breath, her shirt and pants were buttoned. When she looked up at Angel, he was smiling. “What?”

“I love you.”

“That’s so not gonna work. Don’t even try the puppy eyes. I’m still the boss.” She giggled when he scooped her up in his arms. “What are you doing?”

“The boss shouldn’t have to walk up all these stairs. I’ll just have to carry you.” He kissed her forehead and headed to the lobby.


Angel was surprised to find Spike and Buffy sharing a couch. He sat down still cradling Cordy. He grabbed her hips when she wiggled to make herself more comfortable on his lap. He slipped his hand in the back of her shirt to trace her tattoo.

Buffy rolled her eyes at their display. “So Giles, who are we fighting tonight? Mustard Demons?”

Xander tore his eyes from Cordy’s smiling face. “No ketchup demons.”

Buffy giggled. “Evil condiments. Whatever shall we do?”

“I say we barbeque. That ought to put the fear of God into them.”

“Uh oh! Deadboy made with the funny. The world is definitely ending.”

“If you’re all quite finished, perhaps we can start. The Kaat Suup demons will perform the ritual tonight. We cannot let them finish however we must let them begin.”


“I’ll see Buffy’s what and raise you a huh?” Cordelia continued at Giles’ exasperated look. “That’s what you get for playing poker without me.”

“Aww baby. I didn’t know you wanted to play.”

“Well Mr-I-got-a-3 I wouldn’t have wanted to play that night but next time I’m in.”

A subdued Willow perked up. “We did have fun.”

Fred agreed. “Yeah. I never had so much fun at a club before. I think every guy in the place bought us a drink.”

Willow started giggling. “What about those two guys who kept following Buffy and Cordy?” The red head oblivious to her friends’ pleading looks continued. “What is it with you two and vampires?”

Fred started nodding. “It was nice of them to dance with them before they staked ’em.”

Cordelia felt Angel’s grip on her knee tighten with every word. “You danced with strange vampires?”

Cordy shrugged. “What? So I danced with a vampire. If a certain manpire of mine danced with me, I might have said no.”

Buffy looked over at a growling Spike. “And if a certain other vampire had told me about his soul, I might have said no too.”

Willow rolled her eyes. “Who are you two kidding? You still would have danced with them.”

Buffy and Cordy tried to fight it but both failed. The two girls started laughing hysterically.

“What’s so bloody funny?”

Buffy struggled for breath. “They were like eighty. Who the hell turns senior citizens?”

Cordy wiped her tears away. “Yeah I was surprised they had teeth let alone fangs. We felt sorry for them.”

“Yeah! They deserved a final dance before we dusted them.”

“We do make a killer tag team, Buff.”

“That we do.”

Spike and Angel were debating if they should be angry or not. Their internal struggles were halted by Giles.

“Would you please focus!” Everyone gave him a sheepish look. “As I was saying, we need to allow the demons to start the ritual.” He glared at anyone who appeared like they might interrupt him.

“The particular demons have an amazing regenerative ability. It renders them almost impossible to kill. However when they perform rituals, they combine their life essences. Once they’re joined they become extremely vunerable. Decapitating one should kill all of them. We will need to burn the bodies afterward.”

“Does that mean you don’t need all of us? ‘Cause Cordy and I want..” His question died on his lips at Giles’ menacing look. “Nevermind.”

Cordelia cleared her throat. “Okay. So we hang back until they start and then Buffy decapitates the nearest Ketchup demon. Sounds too easy. What’s the catch?”

“Hey! How come short and deadly gets to do the decapitating?”


“What?” Gunn whined. “I could use that new axe I got.”

Xander gave him a strange look. “Buff’s the chosen one.”

“Not by us she wasn’t. This is LA and we do the killin’ around here.”

Connor nodded. “It isn’t a woman’s place to do battle.”

Cordelia arched a brow. “Excuse me? What chauvanist thing just came out of your mouth young man?”

Connor mumbled an apology as he stepped behind Fred.

“Who cares who does the killin’, as long as it gets done. Don’t be such a baby Charles. You got to kill vampires just last night.”

Giles fixed his glasses. “Quite right. Whoever has the best opportunity once the ritual begins can take the fatal blow.”

Buffy leaned over to Spike. “I kinda like havin’ someone want to do the killing for me.”

“That’s interesting Pet. Especially considering how mad you got at me everytime I tried to help before you asked for it.”

“True but that was ’cause I hated being grateful to you.” She smiled at his dejected look. “It made me want to express my graditude.”

Spike gave her a small smile. “Don’t tease me, Luv. You’re gonna make me want to save the world.”

Xander groaned at their exchange. He noticed the two seem awfully cozy on the couch. “So when do we leave?”

“The location is just south of LA. It will take about an hour to reach it. Fred was kind enough to get the directions off the computer. I suggest we arrive an hour early. We’ll need to find a place to hide.”

Xander rolled his eyes. “So when do we leave?”

Giles blew out a frustrated breath. “We leave in two and a half hours. We should gather some weapons. We have no way of knowing if other types of demons will be attending the ritual. It would certainly be in the best interests of the demon world to ensure the ritual succeeds.”

“See Charles. Even if you don’t get to do the decapitating, you still might get to kill something.”

The Sunnydale group gave the couple an odd look. Angel was too busy whispering in Cordy’s ear to notice anyone else. He wanted to take advantage of the time left.

“Angel, why don’t you, Gunn and Connor gather the weapons. Xander and Spike can bring both cars around back so they can be loaded.” She noticed their hesitation. “I meant now.” They all grumbled as they did as they were told.

Giles sat down next to Cordelia. “You have to teach me how you do that.”

“Do what?”

“Make them do what you say. Xander didn’t even make a single sarcastic remark. Just did as he was told.”

“It’s easy. Arguing with me brings out the bitch.” She gave him a wink. “And nobody wants that.”


Xander slumped down on the red couch. “That was by far the lamest apocalypse ever.”

Gunn threw his new axe in the weapons’ cabinet. “Ya got that right.”

“I liked it. It was definitely my favorite.” Cordelia noticed the strange looks she was receiving. “What? I wasn’t even slimed. My outfit wasn’t ruined.” She gave everyone her best smile.

Angel grumbled as he pulled Cordy down on his lap. “That was a complete waste of time. We could have been doing something romantic.” He slipped his hand in the back of her shirt to rub her tattoo. “I blame Giles.”

“I beg your pardon. We did stop the world from ending.”

“English, I hardly call 3 demons standing around a fire an apocalypse. Loading the car took longer than the actual battle.”

“What bloody battle? The slayer walked up to the short one, tapped him on the shoulder and chopped his bleedin’ head off. It was over before I could even come out from my hidin’ space.”

Buffy sat down next to Xander. “It was pretty lame.”

“I’m so sorry it was such a disappointment. I’m sure the next one will be more dangerous. Perhaps we might all be killed.”

Xander glared at Angel. “The next one better be in Sunnydale otherwise I’m sitting it out.”

Angel rolled his eyes. “Oh no! The world will be doomed if Xander isn’t there to save it.”

“Perhaps we should all turn in. It is rather late.”

Angel considered taunting Xander some more until Cordy shifted in his lap. “Giles is right. All that…standing around has tired me out.”

Xander continued to glare at Angel as he watched him go upstairs with Cordelia. “Shouldn’t we be worried about Angelus? He could be the one who tries to end the world next.”


Angel had stripped down to his boxers before Cordelia managed to take off her shoes. He decided she needed help. “You have really horrible taste in men.”

“Excuse me?” She smacked his hands away and undressed herself.

“Would you get mad if I ripped Xander’s arms off and beat him to death with them?”

“Eww and yes.” When she was down to her bra and panties, she grabbed her bag and walked into the bathroom.

Angel started to follow her until he heard the lock click. *First thing tomorrow I’m taking that lock off!* He growled and went back to the bed. She came out a few minutes later dressed in a tank top and boxers. “What the hell are you wearing?”

“They’re called pajamas dumbass.” She climbed into bed and pulled the covers up.

“I know what they are. Why are you wearing them?”

“‘Cause I’m going to bed and I wear pajamas when I sleep.”

He nuzzled her neck as one hand slipped under her shirt. “I’m not sleepy yet.”

She pushed his hand away. “I’ve been thinking.” He groaned as he rolled onto his back. “I think we should do some research before…fool around anymore. I don’t want to endanger our family by getting too happy.”

“Cor, I can still give you a happy.”

“Yes but as you pointed out before it’s a slippery slope. We might slide.”

“I only said that because I didn’t want that Slug to touch you.”

“You should have been honest about your feelings.”

“I tried to tell you how I felt. You practically shoved me out of your way so you could swallow the Slug’s tongue.”

“If you hadn’t been acting like kissing me was horrible, I might have stayed to listen and stop calling Groo the Slug.”

“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to insult your wonderful boytoy.”

Cordelia threw the covers off. “That’s it. I’m sleeping somewhere else.”

Angel grabbed her wrist and tugged her back into bed. He climbed onto her and pinned her hands above her head. “Where do you think you’re going?”

“Away from you. Now get your fat ass off me!”

He leaned down and began kissing a path from her chin to her ear. “I’m sorry baby. Please don’t leave.”

Cordelia moaned. His lips sent shivers down her spine. When he released her hands, she pulled him in for a kiss. She nipped his bottom lip before opening up to battle his tongue. She felt his hand slip under her shirt again. This time she allowed him to cup her breast.

“Promise me you won’t get too happy.”


The next morning Cordelia walked down the stairs smiling. She was surprised to find everyone except Angel gathered in the lobby. Luggage was stacked by the door. “You guys aren’t leaving already are you?”

“Yeah. I can’t leave the hellmouth unguarded for too long. The vampire population starts to feel neglected. They’re a high maintenance group.”

“I remember. I was usually the one they wanted to sacrifice. How I don’t miss that. ‘Course that pretty much happens here too.” She pulled Buffy into a hug. “Thank you for every single time you saved me. Maybe I can return the favor some time.”

Buffy looked at Willow and Spike. “I think we’re even.”

“Giles, it was really good to see you again. Call me sometime and I’ll tell you all about the higher realms.”

“I will. I’d like us to stay in better touch.”

“I’d like that.” She kissed his cheek. Cordelia grabbed Willow into a hug. “You take care of yourself. I expect a progress report from time to time.”

“I promise.”

Cordelia hugged Xander next. She whispered into his ear. “I’m sorry we didn’t get to spend more time together. I just want you to know that you are ten times the man your father is on his best day. Don’t let your fears dictate your actions.” She kissed his cheek before releasing him.

“Can I call you sometime. I’d like us to be friends.”

“Absolutely and we are friends.” She gave him a wink. “So Spike, you do know the sun is shining?”

“Yeah Pet. The van windows are tinted and I have my trusty blanket. I’ll be fine.”

“You know you’re welcome here any time.”

“I know.”

“Call first!”

“Thanks Peaches. I’m feeling the love.”

“I’m kidding.” To the shock of everyone, Angel gave Spike a hug. “What? Excuse me for being friendly.” He hugged Willow next.

Cordelia laughed at Willow’s expression. Her laughter dimmed a bit as he pulled Buffy into his arms. She resisted growling. She really didn’t want to hear an ‘I told you so’.

Angel approached Giles next. The watcher offered his hand before he could be hugged. He winced slightly at Angel’s grip.

Xander glared at him. “Don’t even think about it.”

Cordelia laughed as she linked her arm with Xander. “You know he grows on you if you give him a chance.” She walked them out to their van. She stopped when Angel followed. “I don’t think they need your burning corpse to light the way.”

Xander smiled as he walked into the sun with Cordy still on his arm. Angel watched from the shadows. A blanket covered Spike ran by him and leaped into the van. Cordy gave everyone except a covered Spike another hug before they drove off.

“Don’t take this the wrong way but I’m glad they’re gone.”

Angel turned to Gunn. “Don’t tell Cordy but so am I.” They walked back into the hotel. Angel sat on the red couch and waited for Cordy to come in.”

“Hey broody boy! What happened to my smiling champion?”

“He watched the woman he loves walk into the sun.”

She put her hands on her hips. “You promised no more you deserve the sun crap!”

“I want you to be happy.”

She straddled his lap. “You make me happy.” She peppered his face with kisses. “You made me very happy last night.”

He smiled. “What can I do to make you happy right now? Anything you want.”


“Yup. Anything.”

“I miss Wesley.”



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