Cordelia burst through the doors of Wesley’s office, just in time to see Angel grabbing Gunn by the feet and pulling him off his chair. Gunn landed hard on his ass.
“What the…?! Angel!” Gunn jerked up, grabbing his backside in pain. The vampire had a terrifyingly determined look on his face and Gunn only had a moment to glare at him, before Angel grabbed him once again, this time by the trousers and yanked hard. Gunn cursed loudly.
“Angel! What the bloody hell are you doing?” Wesley tried to intervene, grabbing Angel by the arm and pulling him away but the vampire was far too strong for the watcher. Not once did he release his hold on Gunn’s trousers.
“Wes! What the fuck is he doing?” Gunn’s eyes were wide and he had a look of sheer panic on his face.
“Lorne! Cordelia!” Wesley shouted out at the two shocked, still figures, standing in the room. “A little help?”
The two seemed to snap out of their daze then and rushed forward to help Wesley. Seizing Angel by the arm, the three of them were able to pull him far enough so that Gunn could crawl backwards, away from the vampire’s deadly grip.
“Jesus! What the hell is wrong with you man?” Gunn bellowed, his loud voice echoing off the Wesley’s walls.
“Take off your pants.” Angel said, simply and coolly.
Cordelia slapped her forehead. Wesley’s jaw dropped. Lorne looked at Angel, gaping slightly, a puzzled look forming on his face before he made a rather unhelpful contribution to the already tense situation.
“Yeah okay, I’m up for the Full Monty. Strut your stuff Gunny!”
Gunn gave Lorne a look that could have killed him, making the green demon duck his head in embarrassment and then chuckle.
“Gunn, take off your pants!” Angel shouted this time.
“Why the hell would I take off my pants? And since when do you get off on that anyway? I thought you was straight. ” Gunn shouted back, agitated and more than a little freaked out.
“Cos I want proof.” Angel answered breezily, like it was the most normal thing in the world to waltz into a room, grab a man by the trousers and yank off his pants. Gunn’s mouth dropped open, as did Wesley and Lorne’s. Cordelia just put her head in her hands.
Again. What an ass…
“Proof? Proof of what?” Angel stalked towards Gunn, dragging Wesley and Cordy who were still firmly attached to his arm. Gunn yelped and ran behind Wesley’s desk, placing an obstacle in between him and the vampire. Angel rolled his eyes.
“Gunn, I’m not attracted to you. I don’t bend that way.”
“Then why on earth do you want him to take off his pants?” Wesley was unable to get over his shock.
“I told you, I want proof.” Angel stood firmly in front of the desk, hands on his hips, eyeing Gunn’s trousers.
“And you’re expecting to find this so called evidence in his pants?” Wesley asked, cautiously.
Angel shook his head. “No, he needs to take the pants off, I need to see his…” the vampire hesitated, and for the first time since he had entered the office, Angel seemed to realise what he was doing. He looked slightly shocked for a second, before he shook his head and continued. “his uh,…thing.”
Gunn looked at Angel in disbelief. Angel looked slightly disbelieving himself. He mumbled something to himself, as if trying to work out his bearings. Lorne, who had a terrified yet excited look on his face at the prospect of Gunn taking off his trousers, glanced over at Cordy, who was still shaking her head, securely planted in her hands.
Jeez, why do I date all the weirdos?
Angel immediately turned around, the subsided anger once again taking hold of his emotions, and glared at Cordy. “Well why don’t you dump me and date Mr Meat Truncheon over there?”
“You told him!!!” Gunn screamed, making everyone in the room flinch. Cordelia rubbed her forehead before turning to look at Gunn.
“Gunn, I was thinking about it. He heard me. I didn’t mean for him to hear me.”
Gunn’s eyes, if it was possible, widened even more. “What the hell is wrong with the two of y’all? Why were you thinking about my thing? There will be no thinking about my thing! One of you is thinking about it, the other one wants to see it! What the hell is goin’ on? You people are sick! It’s my thing! Stop thinking about my thing!”
Wesley momentarily put aside his shock to produce an undignified snort, causing Gunn to turn his irate glare unto the Englishman. Wesley tried to bite back his grin. “Sorry. It’s just, you used the word ‘thing’ four times to describe…” he giggled. Gunn raised an extremely pissed off eyebrow. Wesley shut up.
“Gunn would you just take off your pants?” Angel said, tiredly. He just wanted to check the size of Gunn’s stupid penis and then go to bed. He was exhausted.
“Angel, get your ass outta here before I put my foot up it.” Gunn said angrily, Angel smiled sweetly, and answered just as firmly, “Gunn, take your pants off before I do it for you.”
Gunn shook his head stubbornly, which he had every right to do. “I am not taking off my pants! What the hell do you wanna see anyway? Proof of what? Take my word for it Angel, it’s there. You don’t need to see it to believe it, man. And it ain’t nuthin special. Every brother’s got one! I’m normal. Leave me and my thing alone!”
Cordelia, finally, decided to intercede into the conversation and moved so that she stood in between Angel and Gunn, facing the vampire.
“Angel. Stop it. I explained this to you outside, I’m not gonna do it again. It’s not a big deal. Please, let it go? Why must you always be so freakin’ anal about every little thing?”
Angel looked at her for a long second before glancing up at Gunn, who backed away, again, as the vampire’s eyes locked with his own. Angel picked Cordelia up by the shoulders and put her down, about a foot to the right, unblocking his way to Gunn. Cordelia let out a short, appalled gasp.
“Fred!” Gunn’s loud shout jerked Cordy out of her thoughts. “Fred’s here!” Gunn said again, pointing at the quiet girl who appeared in the doorway, obviously arriving upon hearing the racket. She smiled slightly before taking in Cordelia’s shocked face, Gunn’s defensive pose, Angel’s resolute visage, Wesley’s smiling yet confused one and Lorne’s fascination with Gunn’s…crotch???
“You can’t do this to me in front of Fred! She’s a lady!” Gunn said, shaking his head up and down vigorously, as though it were his only hope for survival.
Wha??? “I’m a lady!” Cordelia cried out, outraged by Gunn’s ignorance.
Gunn wrenched his head back to face the seer, swallowed once before replying, “Oh yeah…whoops?”
Angel could have sworn the noise that came from Cordy was a growl, before she said, “Y’know what? Screw you and your meat truncheon. Angel, take off his pants! See if I care!” She plopped herself down on Wesley’s couch, arms crossed stubbornly over her chest.
“Cordy!” Gunn cried out like a betrayed man, then jerked his head to the approaching vampire. “Wes! He’s gonna freakin’ assault my ass, do something!”
Wesley’s amusement had disappeared and he had gone completely still, realisation at what was happening hitting him full force at Cordelia’s last comment. The Englishman blinked once before whispering, “Oh bloody hell, it’s begun.”
Lorne and Fred both glanced at him, a cold fear rushing up their spine at his whispered words. Gunn grabbed a crossbow off Wesley’s shelf and aimed it at the vampire. “Get the hell away from me! Don’t make me dust your fat ass!”
Angel growled loudly. “Okay, for the last fucking time, my ass is not fat!”
Cordelia pffted. “Whatever…”
Angel spared her a cold glare before turning his attention back to the trembling man in front of him.
“Angel man, I mean it. I will shoot you. I don’t wanna have to tell people that I staked you cos you tried to grope me!” Gunn said warningly. Angel chuckled, a sadistic laugh that made everyone in the room, apart from Cordy, feel a deep fear prickle at the back of their necks.
“Gunn.” Angel said smoothly, “what’s with the hostility? All I wanna do, is see the size of your…axe.”
“Then go to the damn weapon’s cabinet! Ain’t nothin’ for you to see here!” Gunn yelled. Angel grinned again, a grin so reminiscent of Angelus that Gunn tightened his hold on the crossbow.
“Hey Wes, you wanna help me out here?” Gunn asked quickly.
Wesley snapped out whatever thought he was caught up in, speaking quickly, “It’s affecting them. We have to find a cure immediately.” Wesley edged forward slowly. “Angel and Cordelia. Both of you, listen to me. The demon’s curse is influencing you to act in a rather peculiar way. Just calm down, take a deep breath, focus on controlling yourself…”
“And stay the hell away from my pants.” Gunn interrupted.
Wesley glared. “Yes, thanks you for that Gunn. Angel? Do you understand?”
Angel looked at Wes, eyes squinting and bewildered. Cordelia just looked at him as though he had lost it.
“Angel?” Wes asked, cautiously. The vampire in question scratched his head, before turning to face Gunn, his eyes widening.
“I was…I was gonna…Oh my God!” Angel knew that if he could blush, he would be a furious shade of red by now. Fred, who was watching him closely, had time to notice every single emotion that went flying across his face. Embarrassment, confusion, insecurity, anger, jealousy and finally, disgrace. Her heart went out to him in that moment, seconds before Angel turned around, tearing out of the room, muttering an apology to Gunn but refusing to look at him.
“That went well.” Lorne said sarcastically, uncrossing his arms and sitting down on a chair. Wesley and Fred blew out a breath at the same time as Gunn lowered the crossbow. All of them glanced over at Cordelia who was watching the door that Angel had just gone through. She looked up at Wesley.
“Well, that was interesting.” She raised an eyebrow, pushing herself up using her hands. “I’m gonna go see if he’s okay. Gunn, I’m sorry about your meat truncheon. Not just for letting it slip but for almost allowing him to…y’know.” She smiled seductively at him. “We really wouldn’t wanna see any harm come to it, now would we?” she winked, making Gunn colour slightly.
Just as she reached the door, Cordelia spun around and looked Wesley straight in the eye, all traces of humour gone from her gaze. “Wesley?” The Englishman looked up. “Find a goddamn cure.” She slammed the door behind her.
Wesley stood silent for a moment, as did the other occupants of the room. Lorne was the first to speak.
“Well? Come on people, you heard the lady! Pick up a book and find a prescription!”
Wesley gave the demon an annoyed look before removing his glasses and cleaning them. “Right. Gunn grab that book.” He pointed to a large tome on top of his desk. “Let’s go seat ourselves in the lobby and see if we can work out how to bloody fight this curse.”
He walked out of his office, swiftly followed by Lorne. Fred trailed behind them, but stopped suddenly to turn around and curiously raise both eyebrows at Gunn.
Cordelia slowly made her way up the Hyperion stairs, thoughts flying rapidly through her mind. Whatever it was that had Angel acting so weird, wasn’t just as a result of the demon’s curse. She was also partly responsible.
It wasn’t that she felt bad for thinking about Gunn that way, hell she was only human. But she felt bad for thinking of Gunn that way when Angel could hear her. She couldn’t help it, no one really possessed the ability to control their thoughts or the way they think. But even then, she felt guilty.
It may have been because she knew her vampire. He’d get all pissy about the fact that Gunn was better equipped and he’d bitch and moan and never let it go. Every time he got the chance, he’d make her remember the incident.
He’d drive her crazy with insecure and annoying questions and then drive himself crazy with guilt, feeling remorseful for making her feel uncomfortable. And then he’d apologize and she’d apologize and everything would go back to normal, well, as normal as the life of a vampire and his seer could be…until something or someone would remind him of it and he’d start his stupid rampage all over again.
Cordelia half smiled, half frowned as she approached the door of Angel’s suite. After one hundred years of suffering for crimes and brutalities that he was trying to atone for, Angel always found yet another way to make himself feel guilty.
Whether it was the fact that she was bound to him, which meant that everyday, she was pulled further and further into the darkness and away from the light, or whether it was the infliction of detrimental and painful visions on her mortal form, body unable to cope with them, heart accepting and enduing them for everything it was worth, he made himself believe that it was all his fault.
Cordelia let out a harsh breath. The visions were slowly killing her. She knew it. And despite loving the night, she missed the sunshine. She still saw it, of course she did, but not nearly as much as an L.A superstar with a pad on Hollywood hills and a balcony with a breathtaking view would have. She let out a choked laugh. Well that dream went down the drain…
But surprisingly and yet no so much, she found that she didn’t care. Because she didn’t want it. She came to L.A to find fame and a glamorous career and found a vampire instead. One with a heart so beautiful that she couldn’t help but love him, want him, hold him. And the external appearance wasn’t bad either. One whose eyes had drawn her to him, who had fought for her life and made her treasure his friendship as though it were the most precious gold.
One who had hurt her, broken her heart and abandoned her, leaving her feeling angry, hurt, betrayed and disappointed towards him. One who had wanted her forgiveness so desperately that he had done almost anything to regain her trust. Including shopping. One who had jumped through dimensional portals to rescue her, like a knight in shining armour but in a long black coat, with a batmobile rather than a valiant stallion and far less cheesy.
One who had loved her.
Cordelia let a small smile grace her lips. They really did love each other. And whatever it was that this crappy demon had cursed them with, they’d get through it together. She just hoped Wes found a cure soon enough to save their sanity. The smile disappeared. She didn’t want to be dying and crazy.
She took a deep breath, pushed open Angel’s door, and walked through it.
Wesley Windham Price had always known the consequences of falling in love. He had watched from the stands as love and the burning intensity with which it was put into action, destroyed those who exercised it. Angel, Buffy, Xander, Cordelia…so many people had been bruised and burnt because of one emotion that had the power to crush you if it went bad.
But you couldn’t help it. You couldn’t decide who you fell in love with. You couldn’t control your heart from being won over, no matter how hard you tried. You just couldn’t. Sure, he’d never experienced a true mutual love with another person, but he could imagine that if somehow that bond was broken, it would hurt like a bitch. But unrequited love? That was a different kind of pain. And he knew it.
It was a deep ache in your heart. A blunt pain that refused to subside because as much as you tried to deny it to make yourself feel better, you were longing something, craving it with such an intensity that it consumed you and made something deep inside of you pull, every time the person who held your heart in their hands laughed or smiled or cried or stared at you in fear as you stalked them with a murderous intentions through the hallways they once considered safe.
Wesley took off his glasses and cleaned them, coughing once. He glanced over at Fred who was looking through a large book, an intrigued look on her face, one elbow resting on the counter of the Hyperion, the arm attached to it supporting her head. He swallowed, looking down at his own book, replacing his glasses upon his face.
He couldn’t believe that the events of one evening had changed the way that someone, so beautiful in his eyes, looked at him. She wanted to forget it, wanted him to forget it, but something restricted him from doing that. The look of horror on her face then, the trust in her eyes now, the depth of the emotions that he was feeling at this very minute…he just couldn’t forget somehow.
The guilt and the self hatred was too strong. He wanted to forget, to put it all behind him, but just the memory of her terrified face haunted him. He was really beginning to understand how Angel felt every day of his undead life.
“Hey Wes? I hate to break you outta La La land, but can you explain what the hell just happened?” Gunn’s voice stirred Wesley out of his daydream, and he focussed on the man in front of him.
“I beg your pardon?”
Gunn rolled his eyes. “Wesley! What happened in there? Y’know? The whole bit where the vamp tried to take off my pants? Or were you dreaming through that too?”
Wesley spared his friend an annoyed look before clearing his throat and stating his theory. “Gunn, it’s in Angel’s nature to act impulsively. He’s a vampire.”
“With a soul. And a HOT girlfriend.” Gunn said , eyebrows raised.
“Ssh!” Lorne gestured to Gunn, a panicked look taking over his face, “If Angel hears you saying that, God knows what he’ll do next. The first time he just wanted to see it. He hears you saying that about Cordy and who knows what he’ll wanna do to it. The words maim and pain come to mind.”
Gunn rolled his eyes again and turned back to Wesley. “That still doesn’t explain why he pulled down my pants.”
“Charles, he said he wanted proof right? Maybe Cordy told him something he had a hard time believing and he just wanted to make sure it was…true.” Fred suggested, wondering to herself what exactly Angel would want to check in Gunn’s pants…well, there was a limited selection of choices.
“Yes. That’s very likely. But, I feel his erratic behaviour was out of his control. You see, Angel walks a thin line every day, the line between the soul and the demon. And what Cordelia said to him about your…”
Wesley coughed, “was probably what made him so angry. Then of course the demon’s curse implies that slowly but surely they will undergo lunacy. I believe Angel was suffering from a slight and early case of that. So his initial anger mixed with the effects of the curse caused him to behave so irrationally and attempt to remove your trousers. I still have to investigate how fast this curse kicks in, in which case I suggest we keep them in separate rooms until we find a cure.”
“Of course, I hate to treat them as though they’re prisoners. No one wants to be kept apart from the one they love…”
“But, unfortunately, we don’t really have a choice. We don’t want them to go crazy so I’m sure they’ll understand that this is what’s best for them. Unless…”
Wesley spun around to face the physicist, giving her a curious look. She sucked in a breath and gestured him over with her hands. The ex-watcher hesitated before moving behind her and leaning over her shoulder to study the text she was examining.
“It says here that the demon curses it’s killer with the power to hear the thoughts of the one that person holds most dear, yada yada…” she trailed her finger down the page until it came to rest on a small paragraph. “According to my translations, if I’m not wrong, and I’m not saying for sure that I’m not obviously, I could be because y’know I’m not used to translating…”
“Fred!” All three men interrupted, causing the girl in question to abruptly stop and smile. She blushed and apologized before continuing. “It says that the only way to remove the curse is to destroy whatever it is that the demon holds most dear.” she paused to consider that. “Huh. Tit for tat.” Fred finished, pushing her glasses up on her nose.
“So we have to go cut off its meat truncheon?” Lorne asked innocently.
“Lorne, I swear to God I’m gonna hurt you!” Gunn snarled, glaring at the green demon. Lorne just smirked.
“Destroy whatever it is that the demon holds most dear…” Wesley wondered out loud. “Gunn, do you remember anything that the demon was overly possessive of? Anything at all?”
Gunn shrugged. “Nope.”
Wesley pinned him with an angry look that mad the black man bite his lip and think harder. But he couldn’t think of anything. Similarly, neither could Wes.
“Well, we’ll just have to go back there and look around and see if there’s anything we can find that may have been of even remote importance to the demon. Then we destroy it.”
“So basically, we just trash the whole place?”
“Cool.” Gunn jumped off his stool and headed for the weapon’s cabinet. Wesley stopped him.
“We better tell Angel and Cordy where we’re going and what we’re doing. In fact, they might even remember if the demon showed a particular interest in keeping something protected.” Wesley paused. “Where are they?”
Fred, Lorne and Gunn pointed heavenwards.
Wesley swallowed. “Right, well…I uh, I have to go fetch something from my office so…Gunn! You go get them.”
Gunn shook his head. “I ain’t walking in on those two. Don’t want Angel thinking I want a peep show just as much as he does.”
Wesley rolled his eyes. “Fine. We’ll wait for them to come down.”
“But they could takes years!” Gunn whined. Wesley gave him an even stare. Gunn pouted slightly and then backed down. Of course, then another thought entered his shiny, bald head.
“Lorne, why the hell are you so interested in my doing the Full Monty?”
Cordelia was hit with the full awareness that something was very wrong when she entered Angel’s suite. The vampire sat on his bed, facing the door, glaring at her with an acidity in his gaze that burnt her to the very core.
You really piss me off Cordelia…
“Why? Why didn’t you tell me?” Angel ground out, anger and an immense sense of fear overwhelming his senses. Cordelia just looked confused.
“Tell you what?”
Angel sprung of the bed, so quickly that it made Cordy jump. The next thing she knew was that she had been grabbed by the shoulders and she was looking into a pair of terrifyingly furious, golden eyes. She grabbed onto his arms for balance, far more confused than she was sacred.
“Angel you’re hurting me…” the vampire ignored her, his hands digging deeply into her shoulders, gaze scalding her.
“Why didn’t you tell me?” he asked again, “I could have helped you. I could have done something.” He released her abruptly and Cordelia stumbled back into the wall, taking a second to regain her balance. Angel turned his back to her, running his hands through his hair.
“You’re dying?” he almost whimpered, turning back to face her. Cordelia felt her heart burst at the fact that his eyes were shimmering in the light, with unshed tears. “You’re dying and you didn’t feel the need to TELL ME??!!” he raised his voice, making Cordy wince.
“How did you…?”
“Find out? Maybe cos you think loudly Cor. Or maybe cos in a few months or so, I’ll never see you again. And considering the fact that my entire fucking world revolves around you, I think I’d notice if you were gone.”
“God Cordelia, you just don’t get it do you? You come into my life, knock me flat on my ass with all your caring and sharing, the one person who makes me open out, who makes me feel remotely human because I feel like I can talk to you about any goddamn thing! And you don’t feel you can do the same with me?” he was shouting but Cordelia could hear the catches in his voice.
Despite the raised volume, he sounded so unbelievably small. Cordelia’s eyes welled up, a vast anguish running through her veins.
“Angel, I…I didn’t want you to feel guilty.”
Angel spun around, the initially shocked expression on his face, quickly returning to red, hot anger. “You…you…you didn’t want me to feel guilty? So what were you planning on doing Cordy? Hiding this until I finally found out the hard way when you just collapse and die one day? Not telling me so that I don’t feel fucking guilty and then suddenly just leaving me and making me die inside instead? Was that your oh so brilliant plan?”
Tears were openly streaming down her face now and from what she could make out, he was close to breaking down too. But that could have just been her blurry vision.
“You have enough to worry about…”
“Oh, I see. So you thought it was for the best huh? Yeah, that’s great. Don’t tell me that you’re dying because I have enough to worry about. Just wait and wait until it all piles up and I have some sort of breakdown because I wake up one day and realise I don’t have you in my life anymore. Just because I had too much on my plate to deal with? And because you didn’t want to weigh me down with the news that you’re dying?!” he bellowed, sarcasm dripping from his tone.
Cordelia took in a deep breath, eyes closing.
“Yeah, good, I’m glad you’ve established that because you neglected to tell me something so damn important, both of us are going to be in complete shit!”
“I just didn’t want you to hurt anymore Angel. What, with Buffy’s death…”
“Which you knew nearly killed me. But I survived through it Cordy. Because a part of me will always love her, she taught me how to love someone. And I treasure that and thank her for it. But what we had is over. And what you and I have…we still have it. I still want it Cordy. I can’t lose you. Do you have any idea what losing you would do to me? I’d drown Cordelia. I wouldn’t get through it. The pain would be too much.”
“I didn’t mean to hurt you. I just, I just didn’t want to drag you down with my problems…” she choked on a sob that came out of her throat.
“Your problems? You get these visions because of me Cordelia! Because I’m the damn champion and you’re the seer of the powers that be, whose visions tell me who to save so that I can reach my stupid redemption! This whole thing is my problem! YOU are my problem!”
Angel took a deep breath, realisation of what he had just said hitting him. He slowly raised his eyes to the woman opposite him. Her eyes flashed angrily. Cordelia swiped at her tears and stood up as straight as she could, despite the fact that her legs felt like jelly.
“I’m…your problem?” she asked coldly, a glare reminiscent of queen C sweeping over her features.
Angel opened his mouth.
“No. You’ve had your say. Now it’s my turn.” She raised her hand, silencing him. “I didn’t ask to be your seer Angel. I didn’t ask to get mind splitting visions. I didn’t ask to feel the fear and the pain of every goddamn victim in L.A. I didn’t ask to help the helpless. I didn’t ask to die young. I didn’t ask for anything that I have today. The only thing that I ever asked for was your redemption. For the idea that some day, I’ll be able to see you walk into the sunshine, holding my hand, wearing a colourful shirt, with this amazing life running through your veins.”
Cordelia sucked in a breath before continuing. “And you just condemned that. You just completely threw that in my face.” The vampire in question, lowered his eyes to the ground. The anger was still rushing through him, but he understood her point.
He had a vague idea of everything that she had sacrificed for him. He had a vague idea of how powerful her heart was, how determined her spirit was, how amazing she was. Hell, he had experienced it first hand.
But Cordelia never bitched about the visions. The pain was a given but no one knew about the graphic agony and violence she witnessed behind her closed eyelids, the brutal images that were forever burned into her brain, the nightmares she lived and put up with.
But she wanted it. Not the pain, not the visuals, but the idea that she was helping people. That she was actually desperately needed for something. Not just for the visions, but as a person, as a woman.
Angel finally raised his eyes to meet hers. When he spoke, his voice was far more gentle, more soft. “Cordy, you should have told me.”
Cordelia’s gaze softened slighty. “I know. But you don’t tell me a lot of things. Sure, they don’t involve you dying but it’s kinda hard to kill you off…vampire an’ all…” she tried to add some humour into the depressing situation but failed. Especially since Angel seemed to be struggling with something.
Angel tried, he tried so hard, not to think about it. That dreadful night of perfect despair, when he had given himself over so completely to the creature that made him what he was today. But you don’t tell me a lot of things. He never told Cordy the truth about Darla.
He lied to her, made her believe that he would never sleep with a dangerous vampire like Darla, risking his soul, risking all their lives with the return of Angelus. He tried desperately to switch his trail of thought, but he couldn’t help it. The image kept playing back in his mind, as did his words to Cordelia. You know I’d never do that…he was such a bastard.
He was scared to look up. Because he knew Cordelia. The beauty had brains. And she would put two and two together. He prayed for some miracle, where she didn’t hear his thoughts, where she was too busy dreaming to have heard him thinking, something that would ensure that she missed his deceitful revelation.
But the sharp intake of breath, the sudden quickening heartbeat, the way the air in the atmosphere shifted angrily in outrage, signalled him to the truth. She knew. And when he finally got the courage to look up seconds later, the fury in Cordelia’s eyes was back, as were the tears, brimming over the surface and spilling hurriedly down her cheeks.
She stumbled slightly, parted lips releasing heavy breaths, eyes staring at him in horror and hurt as she fumbled for the door handle.
He wanted to say something to stop her from leaving, from walking away, to remove that heartbroken look from her face, to rush up to her and hold her and tell her that it didn’t mean anything and that he loved her and that he was sorry. But his feet wouldn’t move. And his throat was dry.
Cordy wait…I love you…I’m sorry…
But she ignored him. And then with a simple twist of the handle and a slight shift of wind, she was gone.