Title: Thought That Counts
Posted: Oct 8 2003
Summary: Just a lil something to kick off the fic postage!
Disclaimer: The characters in the Angelverse were created by Joss Whedon & David Greenwalt. No infringement is intended, no profit is made.
Distribution: AO, Cal’s place and Lily’s pad!
Angel peered at the bright blue sky from a safely shadowed corner, the large orange-yellow ball set fire to the horizon it kissed. Melting into the buildings on the ground, making everything shine like liquid gold and the heat creating little visible waves that drifted up off the rooftops.
The vampire let out an unneeded sigh as he continued to watch the slowly setting sun, his enemy, and waited until it was safe for him to leave the confines of the mansion. Inside, the light was barely existent, cold concrete grey in colour, dark because of the lack of shining sun. Unused candles held in antique holders sat upon a chest of drawers, carvings finely etched in the old oak.
“Hurry up” Angel ordered the sun weakly, knowing full well that the sun would take it’s time in disappearing. He wanted to get out of the dark place he lived in, or un-lived in as the case maybe, and do what he did every night. Fight, kill others of his kind, redeem his past sins and then come home. Come back to the mansion and sit in the darkened silence and let the ocean of guilt taken him under again.
He was so sick of doing the same thing night after night, he was tired of the fighting because he wasn’t sure if there was anything to fight for anymore. You kill one vampire, another comes; you stop an apocalypse and another one happens. It seemed that his life, his existence, revolved around fighting. Revolved around killing and death, but to him it was fitting considering he was dead.
Finally, after torturous hours of waiting in near silence, the sun went down; went to light up the other side of the world as this side went to sleep. People would be settling down to do people stuff like watch T.V with their families, eat their dinner at the kitchen table or they would be getting ready to go out with friends.
But him? He got ready to go out and fight for something, fight for life and fight to rid the world of evil. He wasn’t even sure what evil meant these days, everybody committed evil in one way or another. Whether it was by simply having an affair or by killing another person, no matter what somebody got hurt somewhere along the line. It was hurt that was evil to some people and not the crime.
Angel left the shadowed corner, powerful strides took him to the door where he grabbed his usual leather duster and left, the door sliding shut with a clang. He moved with the grace and silence of a well-educated predator in the direction of the graveyard where he would fight alongside a Slayer.
Oh the irony wasn’t lost on him at all, a vampire aiding a Slayer in her duties towards mankind, it was like a tragic romance novel come to life and decorated with blonde hair and two sparkling, big blue eyes. An amused smile flirted at the corners of naturally pale, pink lips as he walked at a more leisurely pace when the sounds of voices brought him out of his somber thoughts.
“Xander!” Buffy yelped in shock at Xander’s slightly crude meaning towards the body of his girlfriend. “I doubt Cordy would appreciate you talking like that about her”
“What she doesn’t know won’t hurt me” Xander replied with his usual cheeky, little grin accompanied by him stuffing his hands into his pockets. The twist of the old saying didn’t go unnoticed by Buffy and Willow who shared looks.
“Hi” Angel greeted quietly, popping up as if he’d just sprouted from the ground in an instant.
“Angel” Buffy greeted in return with a tiny smile as she looked at her vampire boyfriend. He looked like he always did, black leather jacket, black pants and black sweatshirt. She could say he was the hottest guy she knew, if he was a guy but he wasn’t. He was a vampire, something she was born to kill at all costs but yet she was attracted to him like a magnet was to metal.
“Buffy” Angel spoke back, his voice lowering to a gruff and husky pitch that sent shivers down her spine, sometimes those shivers were good and sometimes they were bad.
“Willow” Xander remarked, biting down on his sarcasm or at least trying to anyway. He couldn’t help it, he was sarcastic so sue him! Besides, Cordelia would do that if she were here… Maybe not in such a lame way but she’d say something!
“Xander!” Willow went to chastise him but his name came out as though she were joining in with his teasing. Her face flushed a little with a pink hue at the way her chastising came out and barely manages to stifle a giggle at the way they all sounded.
“Willow, Xander” Angel greeted after a moment of glaring at Xander, this was how it was pretty much every night. He’d turn up, say hello to Buffy, Xander would tease and Willow would chastise… Where was Cordelia’s comment that was supposed to follow? “Just you three tonight?” he asked, a subtle way of asking where the brunette was.
“Cordy’s coffee girl tonight” Buffy explained with an affirming nod, “So the vampires have some peace and quiet for a while at least”
“Are you sure? Xander’s still here” Willow piped up with a shy shrug in her friend’s direction. Her green eyes lighting up in a rare show of gentle teasing.
“Oh come on Will…” Xander went to shoot back at her but got cut off by the sound of a loud but feminine voice.
“I got the coffee, can someone please get them off of me? My hands are hot and I don’t want my skin runined with a 3rd degree burn” Cordelia spoke up as she practically jogged over to the gravestone where they were perched. Her heels dug in the soft ground, getting covered in mud that showed up on the pink suede. “Look at my heels” she exasperated, attempting a huffed shrug while carrying a tray holding five coffees. “You would think vampires would find a less messy place to hang out, don’t they have any decency anymore? I mean hello?! There are other people on this planet besides them, why can’t they be more considerate of others?”
“And she’s back ladies, gents and vampire” Xander cried out, “Just when you thought it was safe to stand in a graveyard…!” he rolled his eyes and reached out to take a styrofoam cup off the tray, noticing the fifth cup. “I think one cup’s enough for you sweetie, you’re dangerous enough as it is”
“Thanks Xander, nice to know you’re so fully aware of my talents” Cordelia shot back, unfazed by her boyfriend’s affectionate jibe. “Hi Angel I didn’t see you there because you so good at blending in with the background” she greeted half-heartedly.
“Cordelia” Angel greeted back, it was the first time someone had spoken to him since Buffy had greeted him on his arrival. He watched as the brunette dished out the cups of coffee, long chestnut hair tied back in a hair band that coincidentally matched her shoes. Pink material scrunched in on itself stood out brightly from the dark tresses that hung from it in waves of velvet.
“Here ya go, a tall full-fat mochachino just for you. Say thank you Cordy” Cordelia passed him a cup, and went back to her own.
“Cordy, he’s a vampire I don’t think mochachino is on his to-drink list” Xander told her gently as he shared looks with Willow and Buffy.
“Who says? Just cause the vampire rulebook states vampires drink O-posmopolitan doesn’t mean they can’t drink mochachinos” Cordelia snapped at him, frowning when he dissed her good deed for the day. “Besides, it also says that vampires don’t have souls and look!” her voice went high pitched, “Angel has one and if he has a soul then he can drink mochachinos”
Angel was barely listening as he was too busy staring at the steaming cup of coffee thrust into his hand. He felt an overwhelming urge to hug the girl who had just effectively changed his morbid outlook and changed his nightly routine. “Thank you Cordelia” he thanked softly and earned himself a huge radiant smile from her. He had an answer as to why he fought night after night.
“Wow, you must be in a good mood Cordy” Buffy commented after she swallowed her coffee in one single gulp. What was it about hazelnut syrup? It was so sweet and delicious and it made her lips all sticky and why were her friends looking at her as though she was talking out loud? “Sorry!”
“You’re welcome Angel, though I don’t understand why you don’t just ask for one cus I’m not a mind reader and if you don’t like it tough cus you got it now” Cordelia grumbled at him and trying not to let his thanks had meant much to her.
“No, i-it’s, uh, it’s fine. It’s the thought that counts” Angel replied and that’s why he fought. Not for redemption, not to help the Slayer and not because he had nothing better to do. But because it was the thought that counted and with just a simple offer of coffee, a girl had just saved him from himself.
He must have been smiling a little because Cordelia gave him a shy smile before turning away from him. Angel bit his lip, to keep his smile from getting bigger when she fanned her face slightly. Yep, it was definitely the thought that counted and right now, he was getting a lot of them from her!