Part 27: The Anti-Joss Whedon (a.k.a. “Happy”) Ending
When Cordy and Buffy walked back into the hotel, Willow was once again staring at the closed door to the basement. Only this time, Fred, Gunn, and Lorne were standing there with her. Xander was still eating and Dawn was rocking Connor.
When the two women got closer, they could hear more crashing noises coming from the basement.
“Geez,” Cordy huffed. “Who’s down there banging now?”
Buffy smirked. I know who was banging down there twenty minutes ago!
“It’s Angel and Spike,” Gunn told them. Both girls made faces.
“Uh, Spike came upstairs a little after you two went outside,” Willow explained. “And I guess Angel, he, um, smelled something.”
Cordy laughed. “I thought he already knew about Spike and Buffy and the hot monkey sex.”
“Hey,” Buffy cried out. “It is not monkey sex.”
“He did know,” Fred told her. “He was mad about it happening in the basement.” Buffy and Cordelia started to giggle. Fred continued with the story. “He started yelling about how if he couldn’t have sex in the basement like he’d wanted to for the past six months, than there better damn well not be other people having sex down there.” Giggles turned into full blown laughter. Because let’s face it, a frustrated Angel is a funny Angel.
“And then he went downstairs and saw the mess you two had made,” Gunn told Buffy.
Suddenly more bad sounds emerged from below, along with some yelling they couldn’t really make out.
“Should we go down there and break it up?” Willow asked.
“No, no, it’s good for Angel to work off some of his ‘tension,” she told the group as she walked over to Dawn and took the baby from her. “It’s not like I can help him with that one.” When she turned back around, the group near the stairs was staring at her. They all had huge dorky smiles on their faces. “What?” she asked, even though she knew.
“So, it’s official,” Fred asked. She looked like she was going to hyperventilate.
“Official? Well, I didn’t sign any papers,” Cordy said, stalling. You can take the Drama Queen out of Sunnydale…but she’ll just move to LA and become a bigger Drama Queen.
Willow sighed, frustrated. “She means, did you both finally admit the mutual crushage?”
Cordy smiled in what she thought was an enigmatic way. The group didn’t have much trouble figuring out what she meant.
“Oh yeah girl,” Gunn drawled.
Fred clapped her hands. “Kyerumption conquers all!”
Xander walked over with a carton of Moo Shoo Chicken. “Kye-what?” he asked Fred.
“It’s when two great heroes meet on a field of battle and recognize their mutual fate,” Fred told him.
“It’s also a grog made out of ox dung,” Willow informed the group. “But I believe that definition is considered slightly archaic.” Willow picked up on the fact that most of the room was staring at her. “What? Look, I’ve been researching for six years. You pick a lot of stuff up in six years.”
Shifting Connor so she held him with one hand, Cordelia reached over and started picking at Xander’s Chinese food. “This is pretty good. Who paid for all this?” Cordy inquired.
“Wesley. OR at least Wesley’s company credit card,” Gunn said.
Speaking of Wesley… “Where is Wes by the way?” Cordy said. “I haven’t seen him since yesterday afternoon.”
Fred gulped and her eyes darted nervously around the room. “He got a lead on something he was researching. He had to drive to San Francisco to meet with some shamen in order to verify it.”
Cordy was confused. “What was he researching? We don’t even have a case right now?” Fred just gave a tense smile and shrugged.
Spike sat down on the basement stairs. He was breathing hard (it was a force of habit rather than necessity). Every bone in his body was aching. God he’d missed quality time with his sire. The first couple punches had been fun. Family bonding. But enough was enough.
“Christ man, are we done yet?” Spike whined, mopping up the blood dripping from a cut over his eye. “You know you’re not really mad.”
Angel leaned against the wall. “Spike,” he stated matter-of-factly as he tried to asses his own injuries, “you fucked my ex-girlfriend in my basement.”
“Twice mate,” Spike corrected. “Twice in your basement. And you know you’re not mad.”
Angel glared at Spike for a moment before slumping to the floor. Spotting a scrunchie of Cordy’s, he picked it up and fingered it. “Fine, I’m not mad,” he admitted. I guess I just needed to…”
“Work off some of the cheerleader?”
Angel grimaced at the way Spike had phrased it. “Yeah,” he agreed, because Spike, while crude, was right. None of his anger had been about Spike, or Buffy, or Spike and Buffy. IT had been coming back from Cordy’s and realizing the very strict physical limits their relationship would have. It was going to be very hard. I’m going to be very hard.
Spike cleared his throat to get Angel’s attention. “So I’m guessing all your newfound tension means you two crazy kids worked things out?”
“Not the way that you and Buffy got to work stuff out,” Angel said petulantly, gesturing around at his destroyed training room.
“And what a work out it was,” said Spike, who wasn’t above rubbing a little salt in Angel’s wounds.
Instead of getting annoyed, Angel just looked at Spike with a half smile on his face. “She loves me,” he told his childe in what could only be described as a shy voice.
Spike rolled his eyes. “To quote our favorite half-demon, ‘Well duh.”
The two sat in comfortable silence. Spike watched as Angel’s face subtlely grew darker and darker. He knew something wasn’t right. He didn’t look like the guy who’d just gotten the girl.
“So, if you love her and she loves you, why aren’t you happier? I mean, I know why you aren’t perfectly happy. But still, shouldn’t you be more, I don’t know, cheerful? I know if I just had that woman licking on my neck, I wouldn’t be wasting time beating the crap out of a dear old chum and sulking in the basement.”
Angel looked down at his hands. “I am happy. I was happy. But now that I’ve had more time to think, to realize…I don’t deserve this. I don’t deserve her.”
“This is another time where I could use the chit’s ‘well duh,’ but since I love you, I won’t.”
The faint scent of Cordy drifted up from the hair band in Angel’s hand and his throat got tight. “I’m not just a vampire, I’m a cursed vampire Spike. I can never really show her how I feel. I can’t give her sunlight or picnics. Or babies. Or anything.”
“Well by that theory, I don’t deserve Buffy either,” Spike said indignantly.
“I’m not arguing with that one,” Angel said, looking back up and raising his eyebrow.
Spike leaned over, resting his elbows on his knees. “Angel. Do you know how many times Buffy has left me bleeding and broken—and I don’t mean in a good way, the way she has recently? That girl, she put me in a wheelchair. She brought your alter ego back into my and Dru’s life. She broke my robot and never gave her back.” Spike stood up. “I don’t just deserve that woman. I’ve earned her.” Walking over to his sire, Spike added, “And you’ve earned Cordelia.”
Angel met his childe’s eyes. His expression was thoughtful, as he recounted all the trials and tribulations he had faced for the woman he loved. “Well, I did go shopping for her. And I went to another dimension. Twice.”
“Now see,” Spike said in a firm voice, offering Angel a hand and pulling him up off the floor. “You’ve put your time in. You’ve more than earned the right to a smart, bossy, incredibly flexible brunette—err, blond.” Spike frowned at the thought of the sad turn Cordelia’s hair had taken. “By the way, you should really talk to her about her hair—but be careful. The last time I mentioned Buffy’s hair she went and chopped it all off,” Spike warned.
Angel smiled. I never dreamed Spike would prove so helpful in the advice department. He went back over what Spike had just said. Then he frowned.
“How do you know that Cordy is incredibly flexible? I’m in love with her and *I* didn’t know she was flexible, let alone INCREDIBLY flexible. And what exactly constitutes being ‘incredibly flexible’? I don’t think you…..
On the stairs, eavesdropping, a slayer and a seer giggled into their hands as the two vampires they loved started pushing each other again.
“My hair isn’t that bad, is it?” Cordy whispered to Buffy.
Ignoring the question, Buffy whispered back, “Cordelia, how does Spike know you’re so flexible?”
“Cordelia?” Angel called, walking out into the courtyard. The Scoobies had taken off around nine and the whole hotel seemed calmer now. IT was the perfect opportunity for a little one on one time with his…my girlfriend. Cordy, Cordelia Chase is my girlfriend. Okay, a vampire with over two centuries doesn’t need to be running around giggling about having a girlfriend. I’ve got to stop acting like this. “Cor?” Angel called again. He scanned around the garden, he knew she was out here, he could smell her when he had opened the door. “Fred said you wanted to talk to me?”
“Over here,” she cried out.
And there she was. Lying on her back on a blanket in the grass, propped up on her elbows. She wasn’t exactly dressed for seduction—she wore the blue jeans and tee shirt she had changed into at her place—and yet nothing had ever been more inviting.
There was a basket with a bottle of wine sticking out of it and there was his son, also lying on his back, sucking noisily on his bottle. His entire world lay there on that blanket. Angel prayed the happiness clause didn’t kick in right there.
“What’s all this?” he asked quietly. Scooping Connor up, he placed him in the baby carrier next to the basket and took his son’s place on the blanket next to Cordelia.
“Isn’t this nice?” Cordy gushed. “This night is perfect, don’t you think? You can see the stars. You can hardly ever see the stars in this city. Wine?” she asked.
Angel nodded absently. It was nice. But he didn’t get it. “Seriously Cordelia, what is all this?” Not that I mind being wined and dined by a beautiful woman.
Cordy studied the man before her. He looked pleasantly surprised, but more than a little wary. She could tell he had spent way too much of the time thinking since they had returned to the hotel. Not thinking. Brooding. Brooding and creating reasons to not enjoy this.
“I heard you with Spike today,” she told him. She sat up and reached for the wine glasses. “I heard you, when you said how you couldn’t give me sunlight or picnics or babies. That you couldn’t give me anything.” She said all this calmly, handing Angel a glass of wine.
He didn’t bother taking a sip, instead placing the glass on the ground next to him. He waited until Cordy had poured a glass for herself before taking her cup and putting it down too.
“Well, it’s true Cordy,” he said, reaching for both her hands. He loved her hands. They were soft and feminine, manicured perfection. And yet, underneath the parrifan wax treatments and the pink polish and the lotions, there was strength. Strength often overlooked by beauty, but strength just the same. That’s how it was with Cordelia. That’s why he cherished her. That’s why he respected her. And because he respected her, he felt he owed her the truth. “There’s so much you’ll be missing out on, giving up, to be with me. I’m not sure it’s worth all t—”
“Angel, look around.”
He quickly whirled his around, making sure there were no intruders in the courtyard.
“No silly,” Cordy said, unsuccessfully trying to hold back a snort of laughter. “Here. What do you see here?” Angel gave a blank look, and Cordy realized she would have to fill in those blanks. “Picnic,” she said, tapping the basket. “The best baby in the whole entire world,” she told him, reaching over his body to tickle Connor’s foot.
“No sunlight though,” Angel stated, almost automatically looking up at the night sky.
“Ughhh,” Cordy groaned in frustration. “Okay Mr. I’m President of Pessimists Anonymous.” She reached for him, placing her hand on his cheek and pulling him back to meet her gaze. “I’ll have you know that moonlight is ten times more romantic than the sun.”
“Yes, it’s nice Cordelia, but there’s so much I can’t give y—”
“Angel!” Cordy moved to sit on her knees in front of him. “Look at me. Who I am? You gave that to me. You gave me the chance to become the woman you could fall in love with. You do love me right?” she teased.
“You know I do.” There was no joking in his tone.
“Well, most of me, the best parts of me, are you. What you’ve taught me, how you’ve changed me. You don’t need to worry about giving me anything. Because you’ve already given me everything.” She brushed a soft dry kiss on his lips before leaning back. “Well, except for the boat. And you never did come though with the ski condo.”
His expression never changed and Cordelia was slightly disheartened. Maybe he just wasn’t going to get it. Maybe her assurances wouldn’t be enough, would never be enough.
All of the sudden he yanked her into his lap and kissed her breathless. Kissed her beyond breathless. Kissed her until she was mindless.
Angel hoped it would always be like this. That even if they were together for the next 70 years, it would always be like this. That his whole life would be divided into “kissing Cordy” and “everything else.”
He heard his name being called. Good, I’m glad one of us is still functioning because speech is pretty much beyond me. He caressed the soft exposed skin of her lower back, between where her shirt ended and her jeans began, and felt her shake. Feeling that, feeling what he could make her feel, made him even hungrier. In the distance he heard his name again. Wait a sec. Cordy’s voice is not that deep.
He pulled away slightly and shook his head, trying to gain focus. Cordy buried her face in his neck, panting, trying to catch her breath.
“Angel, Come ON! Get your ass in here.” It was Gunn. Yelling from inside the hotel.
Cordelia started to pull away and Angel growled, pulling her back into his arms. “I don’t think so. It can’t be that important. You would have had a vision,” he told her, his lips preparing to descend again.
“Dawg, it’s important,” Gunn called. “You get your ass in here too Barbie.”
“Arrhhh,” Cordy groaned, putting both hands on Angel’s chest and pushing him away.
“Seriously you two. Wesley just got home. He really needs to talk to you about what he’s been researching,” Fred added.
Cordy staggered and stood up. Her legs still felt weak. To calm her heart, she reached for Connor, bouncing him in her arms and kissed his head, letting the perfect baby smell combat the frustration that was racing through her brain. She turned to Angel.
“You know, I’m happy we finally found each other. Overjoyed. Floating in air. Well not literally. But, really, very happy. At the same time, you have to admit, we have incredibly bad timing,” she told the vampire, who was standing up rather…cautiously.
Suddenly, Fred’s voice cut through the quiet night sky. “You guys, Wesley says it’s about Angel’s curse.”
“I don’t know Cordelia,” Angel drawled, unable to hide the excitement shining in his eyes. “Sounds like pretty good timing if you ask me.” They both turned and raced inside.
Neither one aware, that as Wesley explained what he had learned, as perfect happiness seemed more and more likely for Angel and Cordelia, a plane was landing at LAX. Neither aware as they climbed into bed that night, cradling Connor between them and dreaming about all that would soon be possible, a message was being left on Cordelia’s answering machine.
“Cordelia, honey. Guess who!!! It’s Mommy and Daddy. We have business on the west coast and thought we’d pop in to see our little baby. It’s been too too long darling. We’re staying with friends in Brentwood. I heard the strangest little tale from Aura’s mother, about you working in a hotel. I guess we’ll just run by there tomorrow morning. See you then!”
Talk about bad timing.