Part 7 – Caught With Pants Down
Turning her face to the left, Cordelia peeked through one hazel eye to see both Doyle and Buffy standing in the entrance to the bedroom area. From the look on the blonde’s face, she was most definitely less than impressed with what she had walked in on. Doyle, on the other hand, seemed to have a glazed look in his eyes as he tilted his head just a little more to the right.
Slowly sitting up, Angel’s humorous gaze landed on his ex-girlfriend and seer, Buffy was stood with her arms crossed defensively and obviously waiting for an expected explanation as to what he was doing while Doyle was enjoying something. Catching on, the vampire pulled Cordelia’s pants back up to cover her exposed ass and bit his lip not to start cracking up again. It felt like he’d just been caught by his parents. He could feel the girl over his lap shaking lightly and barely noticeable snorts of laughter hitching her breath in her throat.
“Having fun?” Doyle asked with a little smirk decorating his face as he scratched his nose and nudged his head slightly, silently damning Angel for ruining his viewing pleasure.
Cordelia pushed up on her hands and got off the lap she had been thrown over, “We were just…” she tried to explain with a tight, restrained smile.
“I was just showing her how not to defend herself” Angel spoke up, cutting her off with a blatant lie. Clearing his throat and swallowing back the sniggers of laughter, he stood up and rubbed his hands together as if to psyche himself up for something. “Buffy good to see you, Doyle can you take her up to the office and we’ll be up in a minute”
“Why? Much more fun down here” Doyle pointed out, loving every minute of this scenario.
“I agree” Buffy stated evenly, “Who knows what might happen if we leave. The how not to defend yourself lesson might get rough”
Covering her mouth with a closed fist, Cordelia bit on her knuckles as her eyes glazed over with the struggle to not laugh hysterically. Angel sucked on his tongue for a second before answering, “Just go up to the office with Doyle while Cor and I finish up in here. There’s still one more thing we have to go over before the lesson’s finished”
“What would that be?” Buffy asked in a deceptively calm and light manner, “Role playing? Cordelia as Lois Lane and you as Superman? S&M? Whips and chains?” her eyebrows rose with the questioning.
“Good Cop punishes Bad Girl” the words were out before he could stop them, Cordelia’s face flamed even as a smothered cackle of giggles got coughed away. Angel pursed his lips, placing his hands behind his back and waited for Buffy to leave his bedroom with Doyle.
Buffy’s blue eyes locked with twinkling brown ones, hers showing defiance and his showing something unreadable to her. The blue orbs simmering with growing fury drifted over to the silently cackling brunette sitting on the bed just behind her Angel.
“What did the Bad Girl do that required you to show her how not to defend herself?”
The judgmental expression and the accusing tone in her voice was starting to really get on his nerves.
“She did the laundry” Angel replied abruptly, his good mood rapidly leaving. So what if he was playing with his girl, she was his so he had a right to do whatever he pleased with her. This was his home, his bedroom and she was the one who just walked in without knocking. “Did anybody think of knocking?” he asked, suddenly changing the subject away from his spanking of his girl.
“I told her you’d be up when you were ready” Doyle provided honestly while peering at Cordelia’s ass as much as he could. Looking up at Angel seeing the warning flicker through the chocolate stare, the Irishman shrugged and grinned sheepishly, “Sorry man didn’t know she was off the track!”
“She has a name” Cordelia snapped at both Angel and Doyle. It didn’t take a genius to figure out this situation was only going to go down hill from here on out. Deciding to try to take some kind of charge, she pushed back her sniggers and went into ex-girlfriend territory. “So. You’re here. In L.A. Not that I’m not happy to see you but why are you here?” she asked with a blush and smile. Standing up, she placed her hands on the small of her back and elbowed Angel lightly.
Ignoring the question posed to her by the brunette, the blonde Slayer gave her a haughty glance which told her exactly what she thought of her olive branch.
“I want to talk to Angel” Buffy stated, glancing at Cordelia and Doyle, expecting them to just simply leave.
Copying her defensive stance, Angel crossed his arms over his chest and stared at the blonde slayer who had just walked in on something very private.
“So you just walked into my bedroom without knocking just to talk to me?” he asked, cutting off whatever his Seer or secretary were about to say.
“Am I not welcome?” Buffy asked, raising her furious glare back to the vampire.
“You walked into my bedroom Buffy, either me or Cor could have been naked” the vampire pointed out truthfully, he didn’t want her seeing either him or Cordelia naked. He didn’t particularly like the idea of Doyle seeing him naked for that matter.
“Doyle don’t even think it!” Cordelia warned knowingly when a smirk started to flicker at his lips. In reply, the Irishman gave her an all too innocent shrug with an equally all too innocent ‘Who? Me?’ look. “Yes you! And don’t give me that look, it doesn’t work I know you too well”
“So do I” Angel turned a hard stare to the half demon grinning helplessly at them both, he had this irresistible urge to drag Cordelia into a room by her hair yelling ‘Mine’ but he doubted he’d get away with messing her hair up. Maybe he could carry her…
Shaking off the images now invading his brain, Angel returned his gaze to the Slayer standing in quiet fury next to his seer and repeated his earlier words. “Go upstairs with Doyle, Cor and I will be up when we’re done with her lessons”
“Again I say I want to talk to Angel” Buffy responded, once again ignoring his request and giving both Doyle and Cordelia a pointed stare.
“You can talk to me upstairs in my office” Angel told her, his voice lilting with annoyance.
Her mouth parted just slightly, her blue eyes wide as she glanced up at his unwavering expression and her fingers dug into her arms. “I’d like to talk to you alone and not upstairs. You have a problem with that?”
“I have a problem with that,” Cordelia spoke up seeing what this situation could easily turn into.
Blue eyes traveled from the vampire to brunette as Buffy flourished a hand in an inviting gesture, “Let’s hear what your ‘problem’ is”
“You came into Angel’s place, without knocking and uninvited I might add, and you’re acting as though you have every right to do that” Cordelia had always spoke her thoughts and she would never change. She believed in total honesty, lying only led to more hurtful deception and in turn, that led to bitterness and anger.
“That’s because I do have every right” the Slayer bit out, “You’re the one in here being… Being spanked by Angel! You have a problem with my wanting to talk with him well I have a problem with the game you’re playing. You think that I actually believe the lie about him giving you lessons? I’m not stupid; my name is not Cordelia Chase”
A large, powerful hand covered Cordelia’s mouth as soon as she opened it to reply, Angel glared long and hard at Buffy before speaking to her. “Fine” he growled, “If you won’t wait upstairs for Cordy and I, then we’ll come with you” he caught the raised elegantly raised eyebrow on the heart-shaped face of his girl and removed his hand before she could bite him.
Standing opposite the relaxed vampire in his office, Buffy waited with dissipating patience for Angel to tell her what the hell was going on. He would have noticed what she wanted if he’d bothered to look at her and not at the brunette outside laughing with the other man who worked for him. Melting cocoa orbs were solely focused on the window to her left, a tiny smile making the corners of his mouth flicker up and his fingers made unconscious slow circles on the back of his hand.
Turning her gaze to see what was so interesting about seeing Cordelia flirt with the man outside, Buffy saw nothing special about her at all. In her eyes, the other girl would always be stereotypical cheerleader whose only goal in life was to flirt, date, bitch and be popular. She was the one with the normal life, she was the one with the life she used to have and the life she wanted back. It made her sick sometimes, seeing people who took the life they had for granted while people like her weren’t able to do that.
“Are you going to tell what you were doing with her?” Buffy asked crossing her arms over her chest and giving him a questioning stare. Though she was speaking, he didn’t look at her, only kept his gaze on the window and the brunette outside.
Raising an eyebrow the vampire finally tore his gaze from Cordelia to the angry Slayer in front of him. Returning her stare and question with one of his own.
“Why are you in Los Angeles?” Angel asked.
She couldn’t remember the last time he’d been so direct with her, recovering from her slight surprise Buffy answered him. “I’m visiting my father for a couple of days and thought I’d stop by. If only I’d known I wasn’t welcome” sarcasm dripped from her tongue and sizzled in the air.
“You are welcome to come say hi Buffy but you aren’t welcome to walk into my bedroom without knocking” Angel told her honestly, if there was one thing he had always hated and that was people disrespecting his privacy, it was just annoying.
“I didn’t think I would have to knock because I didn’t think there’d be anything to walk in on” she bit at him. “You were spanking her Angel, how do you think I felt seeing you doing that?”
“I don’t know, but what I do know is you don’t have any right to walk into our bedroom the way you did” the vampire responded, entwining his fingers and waited for her to speak.
Buffy’s jaw dropped a little, “Our bedroom? Don’t tell me you and her are…are…” she couldn’t even finish the sentence.
“Living together?” Angel supplied, his eyes drifting back towards the window and Cordelia giving Doyle what looked to be a shocked glance. “Yeah, but it’s only been for a few days now, it’s perfectly… Innocent” his voice lowered and sounded like sandpaper scraping across smooth wood.
“Innocent” she repeated with a nod of her head, “Right. So innocent you feel like you can spank her! I can see how that would be innocent” more sarcasm dripped from her every word and fell like acid, making him bristle.
Regarding Buffy, Angel pursed his lips thoughtfully and sat back in his chair. “I don’t understand what I do in the privacy of my apartment has to do with you or why you’re so upset by this. Am I not allowed to move on? Do I have to spend all my life pining over you?”
Before the blonde could reply, the window to the office was smashed inwards and a demon hurled itself into the room, bellowing out in rage. Wasting no time, Angel jumped up and moved to kill it. The demon dodged a powerful blow by the vampire, ducked and brought its fist crashing into Angel’s face and sent him stumbling back a little.
Instincts took over Buffy; she pulled her stake out of her belt she yelled to the vampire fighting with her. “Angel, how do I kill it?” blonde hair flying in all directions as she launched an assault on the demon. Her stake got thrown to one side, leaving her punching the crap out of it. The demon escaped from Buffy’s hold and went to attack the vampire again.
“I don’t know, I’ve never seen it before” Angel yelled back and dodged another blow to his face. He picked up the nearest weapon to him, a letter opener, and sliced deeply into the demon’s arm, making the blood rush down his hand.
Cordelia and Doyle weren’t far behind the violent fray, both running into the office and diving in. The brunette squealed when the demon turned on her, ducking behind Doyle and making Angel choke back a laugh at her movement. Buffy was the first to run after the demon, dodging the half demon and cowering girl, the Slayer pelted out of the office growling in annoyance at missing it.
Angel watched as the demon ran off into the daylight where he couldn’t follow, a frown formed on his face as he looked down at his hand where he had also gotten cut from the letter opener. The demon’s blood felt funny but he couldn’t describe it, just that he felt a little weird.
Peeking over Doyle’s shoulder, Cordelia looked at Angel and bit her lip sheepishly; “Are you okay?” she asked, her hazel eyes blinking.
“I’m fine Princess” the seer responded sarcastically, “No thanks to you using me as a human shield!”
“I wasn’t talking to you dumbass” she snapped and scooted over to where the vampire was still examining his hand. She took Angel’s injured hand in hers, turning it over and studying the small scratch critically. “You okay?” her fingers lightly stroked the already healing wound.
Smiling softly at her, Angel stroked the stray wisps of hair away from her cheek and ran his thumb over her pouting lower lip. “I am now, you?”
Rolling his eyes and shrugging helplessly, Doyle coughed loudly and gained their attention to him being in the room. “She used me as a human shield and you’re asking her if she’s okay. Nice to know you love me!” though his sarcasm was exceptional, his typical humor shone through the words.
Standing just outside of the little group, Buffy crossed her arms and watched Angel slide his arm around Cordelia, using his hand to push her head onto his chest. “I’m okay too” there was no underlying humor in her words, only caustic acid. “It got away, since its daylight I’ll go after it”
“No you won’t” Angel countered easily, “Its on my turf, it attacked me and I want a shot at killing it”
“In case you hadn’t noticed, the sun’s up so how are you going to go after it?”
Ignoring the attack on his being, the vampire simply smiled sweetly at the blonde. “We’ll take the tunnels. No sunlight which means Angel kill” he replied.
Buffy walked alongside Angel, years of practice had her easily ignoring the disgusting squelching noise of her shoes stepping in God knows what. She had her stake ready and aimed, her blue eyes traveling over every inch of the tunnels they were walking through and all her instincts tuned into listening out for anything that screamed demonic. Anything except Angel that is.
Scratching his hand for the umpteenth time since the attack in his office, Angel frowned also for the umpteenth time. “Why did you bring that?” he nudged his head towards her poised stake.
“Because I know how to use it” Buffy replied abruptly, not wanting to talk to him at all unless it revolved around them without the mention of a certain brunette. She wished long and hard that the certain brunette was a demon, it would give her a good excuse to smack her hard in the face for stealing her vampire.
“Don’t” Angel growled lightly, it didn’t take someone supernatural to feel the waves of scorn flowing off the girl beside him. He could see them bouncing off the tunnel walls and he figured who was the cause of Buffy’s scorn. “Don’t blame her because we did nothing wrong”
“Of course not” the blonde supplied, she was not going to get into it with him just yet. He had to come to his senses first and then they’d talk about it. Well, she’d talk and he’d listen and they’d be just like how they were before. Shaking her head, Buffy ignored the voice in her head that told her what they’d been like before. Forbidden touches, disallowed glances and stolen kisses in the dead of night. None of that mattered, all that mattered was that they were meant to be together and one day they would be together. She knew that and though she moved on, those boys never compared to her Angel.
Letting that topic of conversation go for now, there was more important matters to sort out before he told her not to expect him to give up love just to make her happy. His frown deepened and he stopped walking, “I feel funny” Angel said quietly.
At last Buffy thought. “I know what you mean” she stopped and turned to face him, “Being here with me and fighting together like we used to, its making me feel funny too. I understand about Cordelia, I really do” she insisted to him, not giving him a chance to respond. “Its sex, I get that and no perfect happiness. I know you didn’t want to hurt her feelings by not saying that to me in front of her but…”
“There isn’t sex between Cor and I, I am in love with her but that wasn’t what I meant Buffy” Angel said quietly and looking at her with an apologetic expression. “I was talking about the demon blood. It’s making me feel funny, like weird kind of funny”
“Don’t I just feel stupid?” her question came out on a sea of more sarcastic words, “Why don’t you call your crack staff and have them look up the demon?”
“I’m getting the feeling you don’t like Doyle and Cordy too much” he growled at her, his temperament suddenly switching from attack mode to angry-at-ex-girlfriend mode in an instant. “Cordelia, yes I can understand the resentment because of what you walked in on but you don’t have any reason to insult my seer”
Shaking her head at him, Buffy pursed her lips before replying; so what if he was right in what he said but that wasn’t the point at all. “You don’t understand at all, you don’t know what it was like for me seeing you like that with her”
“Maybe I don’t but I won’t let you insult my girlfriend or my seer just like you wouldn’t let me insult Xander or Willow” Angel countered. Stopping the conversation again, he started walking but after a few feet he came to a dead end where the only way out was up a ladder. Looking upward helplessly, he thought of any possible way he could go after the demon who attacked him in his office but couldn’t come up with anything.
“I’ll go” Buffy told him and walked past him to go up the ladder, “I’ll come back after it’s done”
Nodding, Angel told her a few places where an injured demon would go to heal and watched as the blonde climbed up and into the daylight. He dreaded the conversation that would come when she got back to the office, it was a conversation that was long overdue. Turning back the way he came, the vampire only managed to walk a few steps before collapsing to the ground gasping for breath he shouldn’t need.