Title: R & R
Rating: PG 13
Summary: Angel pisses off Wesley and Gunn when he spends all his time obsessing over getting Cordelia the perfect gift.
Disclaimer: Unfortunately Angel belongs to another.
Distribute: Please archive anywhere you’d like.
Looking very haggard, Wesley Wyndham-Pryce and Charles Gunn discussed the behavioral patterns of a Ventra demon, arguing at certain points, and agreeing even less on others. Both men were dead tired. Both were hurting from a hard fight the night before. Both were frustrated.
Neither men were even sure they were hunting a Ventra demon. And this led to more frustration. The last thing they needed was to be interrupted with something frivolous.
“I’m not sure,” Wesley sighed heavily, flipping another page in his demon encyclopaedia.
“But it can’t just be some regular demon dude out there,” Gunn insisted. “It’s got to be a newbie in town, making all this mess. And as far as I know there ain’t no Ventra demons in town. People don’t usually mess up where they live, if you know what I mean.”
“No, people usually don’t, but a demon is not a person,”
Both men looked up to see Angel enter the room.
“Hey, Angel,” Gunn greeted him.
“Hey,” Wesley sighed.
“I wanted to ask you a question,”
“Shoot.” Gunn sat down roughly in his chair.
“What is it? Is it something serious?” Wesley raised his head from the book and adjusted his glasses. Angel stared at them apprehensively, and Wesley felt a small spit of dread begin to turn in his stomach.
All the demon problems they’ve been having lately, he wasn’t sure if he could take one more. As it was, the office was strewn with pin marked maps, books, books, and more books, piles of research materials printed off of the internet, and half empty cups of cold coffee left lying carelessly about from their attempts at surviving all-nighters.
Staying up for days at a time wasn’t the healthiest way to live. Living. Huh. As tired as they were, they hadn’t been doing too well in that department. For weeks, their lives hadn’t extended outside of this office. All of them were in need of some serious R&R.
“It’s about Cordelia,” Angel said sounding slightly troubled.
“Well, what is it?” Wesley asked, alarmed. This also got Gunn’s complete and full attention, and the two humans leaned forward in anticipation. Angel sighed a heavy, unneeded breath and shook his head.
“She’s had it so rough lately,”
“Yes, yes, we know.” Wesley agreed.
“And I feel so sorry for her. The headaches, and all… Well, I just thought, I’d, you know, do something to cheer her up. Make her feel appreciated. Like, I don’t know. Buy her a present, and I wanted to know what you thought I should get her.”
Wesley and Gunn slowly looked at each other and then leaned back in their chairs.
“Is that all?”
“Is that all?” Angel repeated, slightly taken aback at their lack of enthusiasm. “Guys! This is Cordy! I thought…”
“Well, Angel,” Wesley said gruffly, flippantly turning away and going back to his book and research. “We’ve got a lot of serious issues on our hands at the moment, and Cordelia’s appreciation isn’t exactly one of them,”
“Dude,” Gunn sighed, shaking his head at Angel.
Angel stared at them not understanding. This was Cordelia! This was their Cordy! And they didn’t think she should be given a little something to make her feel better; even after all she has gone through, what with the visions and all? Why wouldn’t they want to help him make her feel better? And what was more important that it could take precedence over Cordy???
Angel couldn’t get it, so he asked again.
“Guys, I want it to be something that she really likes,”
“Angel!” Wesley snapped, giving him a harsh look. Gunn scowled and looked away. “Angel! Really! We are very busy here! We don’t have time to discuss gifts!”
“Angel, man, this is not the time,”
“But Gunn, she hasn’t really been herself lately,”
“None of us have been feeling very chipper lately,” Wesley said. “Perhaps its because not a one of us has gotten any sleep!”
“Angel, I don’t really care what you get her,” Gunn heaved, then raising a brow added in a mumble, “Cordy likes anything, as long as it’s for her,”
“But I want to get her something special, something she wouldn’t get for herself,”
“For gods sakes, Angel!” Wesley finally snapped. He turned at the vampire, gesturing wildly with his hands. Angel just stared at him in quiet contemplation. “I don’t care if you send her on a five star cruise or buy her a five day supply of chewing gum! All I care about at this point is getting this bloody demon, solving this case, and then relaxing for about, oh I don’t know, maybe five minutes would be nice! We’re tired, Angel! And we’re hungry! And we don’t have time for this nonsense!”
Gunn nodded his head in agreement.
Angel folded his arms and peered at the two men. “So …you’re not going to help me pick something out?”
“NO” Both snapped.
Angel nodded his head, still not understanding where all of this hostility was coming from. It was just a gift! Nothing to get angry about…
He fingered one of the leather bound books on the table, and sighed.
“Well, alright, I’ll think of something on my own, I guess…”
“I’m sure you will,” Wesley went back to his book. Gunn opened another, and started to read from a fresh page.
“Maybe something for her apartment?” Angel thought aloud.
“That’s it!” Wesley cursed, slamming the book closed. He glanced at Gunn and rose from his chair. “Gunn, I think it’s time to get a bite to eat. What do you say we eat out of the office today?”
“Agreed, English,” Gunn also rose from his chair, tugging on his jacket.
“Where are you going?” Angel asked curiously. “If you’re hungry, I could make you some lunch,”
“No, no,” Wesley said with forced niceness. “I think I also need some air…we’d invite you along,” Wesley looked at the illuminated windows in slight relief. “But it’s still daylight out, and I don’t think you’d want to go.”
Angel glanced at the windows.
“Ah, that’s okay…I need to figure out an idea for this gift anyway,”
Wesley almost flew into a fit of rage at that point, but then thought better of it. He looked at Gunn, and very shortly said, “Let’s go.”
The two men left the office of the Hotel, the front door in the lobby swinging closed after them. Angel watched them go, and then turned back to the mess on the desk, thoughts rolling slowly in and out.
Relax. Wesley had said relax. That seemed to be the key word here. Angel wanted Cordelia to relax…
He grimaced down at the books, and remembered Wesley’s bad attitude.
Wesley and Gunn needed to relax. If there was one thing Angel had learned in the past few months it was to not get so wound up over everything. Some immediate things you just couldn’t control, and so it was better to roll with the punches and take it easy than trying to avoid them all together. Trying to avoid the inevitable was just frustrating.
Angel thought to himself that the guys should try to be more like him.
He paused, getting a kick at how enlightened he’d become. Must be Cordelia’s influence, he guessed fondly. She was always so logical about these kinds of things…
Then he started obsessing about her gift idea again. Eventually he’d get the idea he was looking for.
Wesley and Gunn entered the Hyperion hotel an hour later, feeling a bit better after they’d eaten. As soon as they walked in the door, though, a disturbingly excited Angel assaulted them. Wes and Gunn eyed him wearily and crossed the floor towards their workstation while Angel followed them, sporting some catalog in his hand and waiving it around enthusiastically.
“I GOT IT!” He beamed, opening the catalog to a particular page. “Look at this! I got it!”
Gunn and Wesley exchanged the same disgusted expression and then turned to glare at Angel.
“Look! Look!” He said like a kid pointing out a new toy. “It’s perfect! She’s going to love it! I’m having it delivered this afternoon! I paid extra for priority shipping—” He shoved the magazine into Wesley and Gunn’s faces and both of them shoved it away.
“Man, Angel!” Gunn snapped.
“Guys!” Angel frowned, slightly taken aback at their annoyance. “It’s great. She’s going to be thrilled, don’t you want to know what it is?”
“Not really,” Gunn smirked.
“NO,” Wesley smiled sarcastically. “No, we really don’t.”
Angel’s face fell.
“Look, Angel,” Wesley said more gently, rising from his chair, and patting the vamp on the shoulder. “We don’t mean to be less than enthusiastic or cruel even, but we really don’t want to hear it,”
“Yeah,” Gunn interjected. “You buying Cordy a gift, what’s there for us to be excited about? We work just as hard as she does,”
“We understand you want to make her feel appreciated…” Wesley tried. “It’s just that… Well. We don’t mean to sound so negative here, but…we feel just as stressed out as she does, as I’m sure you do, so it’s not really the right time to be rubbing it in our faces about how happy she’s going to be with YOU when YOU get her a gift because YOU feel like she deserves it. Really, Angel, it all sounds petty to us,”
“Guys!” Angel gawked, slightly hurt. “Come on!”
“Forget about it, it’s fine,” Wesley started grabbing up books and supplies, and looked over to Gunn. “Gunn, let’s take this stuff somewhere where we can get something done,”
“You’re apartment or mine?” Gunn said caustically.
“It doesn’t matter, as long as it’s not here,”
They gathered their things and headed out the door past Angel. He watched them, puzzled, still clutching the catalog in his fingers.
“But guys! I think you’re going to really like this!” He tried. All he got was the back of Wesley’s head as he exited and a look of disdain from Gunn as he followed. Angel stood alone in the hotel, silent for a moment or two, before he opened the page again and grinned at the picture. He let out a little chuckle; it just made him so giddy!