Filling In The Blanks

Part Two

if flesh could crawl my skin would fall from off my bones and run away from here
as far from god, as heaven is wide, as far from god, as angels can fly

Every inch of Buffy's body was crying out in anguish as she stumbled out of the mall, trailing behind her friends. She wasn't sure what force was propelling her feet to continue moving. On auto pilot, her motions mirrored those of her friends - only, having killed the bad guy, they were full of jubilant energy.

Giles stumbled along just feet ahead of her, missing out on the joy that the others felt as well. Jenny had betrayed him. Had she never felt anything for him? Was he just a way to get close to The Slayer and to Angel? He cursed himself for being so stupid, and yet...he was sure he saw real emotion in her dark eyes. She couldn't have been pretending. He thought back to her arms around him, her husky voice telling him he was a "sexy fuddy duddy." He sighed as he opened his squeaky car door for Buffy. Maybe if he just talked to Jenny she could explain everything and make him believe...make him believe that everything he felt wasn't a lie.

No, he scolded himself, as he settled behind the wheel of the Citron. He had to back up his charge. His loyalty lay with Buffy, not with a woman who couldn't be trusted. He patiently waited for his engine to turn over and the coughing engine was the only sound to drown out the deafening, sorrowful quiet that hung heavy in the air around them. Sadness and regret was so thick on Buffy that she seemed to be shrinking beneath it.

The drive to her house contained no words, just disconnected emotions floating around the heartbroken pair. How could that monster have been Angel? Her Angel. The exquisite, gentle soul that had made love to her had become the evil fiend that she had fought tonight. Being a person whose life was drenched in the supernatural and immersed in darkness, it shouldn't have been so hard for Buffy to wrap her mind around the concept that the vampire she fought tonight was not Angel but a demon who wore his face, but she couldn't seem to get past the part where her lover was dead. She couldn't just skip over the part where the one person who understood her life, who she could be weak and vulnerable with, the one person she loved with her whole soul, no longer had one.

Giles pulled up to the front of her house. Squealing to a stop, he turned off the engine and looked over at Buffy's grief stricken face.

"It's not over," Giles said gently, "I supposed you know that."

Buffy nodded slightly, looking down at her hands, unable to meet the eyes of her Watcher.

"He'll come after you particularly," Giles continued, taking a deep breath before stumbling over his words, "His profile...oh he - he's likely to strike out at the things that made him the most human."

Buffy looked ahead out of the windshield, new tears forming in her eyes. She whispered, "You must be so disappointed in me."

Giles looked over at her with surprise.

"No," he said, meeting her eyes when she finally turned to face him, "No, no I'm not."

"But this is all my fault."

"I don't believe it is," Giles said, his eyes holding love and compassion in them, "Do you want me to wag my finger at you and tell you that you acted rashly? You did a-and I can. But I know you that loved him... and he has proven more than once that he loved you. You couldn't have know what would happen. The coming months a-are g-going to be hard, I suspect, on all of us. But if it's guilt you're looking for Buffy, I'm not your man. All you'll get from me is my support and my respect."

Buffy could barely see Giles' face through her blurry tears but she knew that she was a part of the kind of unconditional love that was so rare in the world. Everything they had gone through and everything they were to conquer in the future didn't matter at that very second, when Buffy felt a kind of loyalty coming from Giles that had nothing to do with a Slayer-Watcher relationship. Giles was the man her father could never be. For the first time, she didn't feel regret that her father was so far away and so distant from her life. She hadn't lost all the love in her life when she lost Angel. She had to remember that somehow because this memory would be needed to take her past the hell that was galloping towards her.


what drives you on can drive you mad

Soaking wet and cursing The Slayer, Angelus walked out of the mall, trying to overcome the continued ache that ran through his groin.

That fucking bitch, he thought with disgust. Okay, so The Judge's plan failed. That was fine with him. He wasn't quite ready for the world to end. Soon, but not quite. He had a few things to accomplish first. Ending the world, causing an apocalypse - fun stuff, but The Slayer had to suffer before she was tormented in an endless hell. He wanted her to burn from the inside, crumble around him before he allowed her the easy journey to the underworld...and he planned to destroy so much of her soul between now and then that Hell would seem like a release.

He found Dru quickly, not far from the mall, sobbing and frightened from the Judge's demise. She was leaning against the concrete wall, wracked in uncontrollable tears, holding her hands over her face.

He flipped an arm over her, "Shhh, Dru. It's alright, baby."

"Angel," she said, turning into his arms to nuzzle him. She ran her hands over his broad chest, taking in the vibrations of the true Angelus, "She hurt you."

"Yeah, baby," he said, letting his hands run over her hard body. She leaned into his arms as he explored the curves he had been without for so long. Drusilla was amazing to him in a similar way that Buffy was - they both looked so weak, frail and feminine, but when the world attacked both delicate beauties turned on their foe with a whirlwind of force.

"Did you miss me?" He asked in a husky whisper, allowing his traveling hands more freedom. She nodded smiling brightly, looking up at him with her crazed innocent eyes. He pushed her roughly against the wall, raising the hem of her red dress. He smiled coldly as he felt her bare pussy. Dru never wore panties. God, he loved that. He abraded his fingers into her wetness, plunging his fingers inside her. She moaned, rubbing her body between the rough concrete and him.

"My Angel..." she moaned as he rubbed her with one hand and pulled the front of her dress down with the other. His mouth watered for her full, pale breasts and he sucked her right nipple roughly into his mouth, biting down with his blunt teeth, issuing a pain-pleasure scream her throat.

"Take me, Angel," she cried as her claw-like fingernails tore into his shirt, creating lines of blood on his back. Dru couldn't spread quick enough for her long lost Sire and lover and Angelus couldn't wait to get inside her. Dru would wash away the stain The Slayer had left on him. He would wipe away the memory of The Slayer from himself and Spike from his Childe at the same time.

He easily slid into her and smiled as he smelled the blood forming on her bare shoulders pressing against the hard wall behind her. He began moving faster and harder as he thought about Spike's anger when he smelled his Grande Sire's scent on his woman. For decades, his favorite pastime was taking Dru and torturing Spike with the fact. He loved fucking Dru, loved how she bent to his every whim, but he found himself longing for The Slayer's steaming heat. He couldn't help but remember how his former self melted inside her, how she blazed around him, against him, through him. He shook his head with disgust and focused on the beautiful woman with him now, a woman who wasn't tainted with a soul and didn't carry the stench of humanity on her. He grabbed hold of Dru's silky dark hair, clutching it between his fists as though it were his anchor to the side of the team he belonged on.


hide inside your head, the blindest of the blind, the deadest of the dead
you're hungry `cause you starve while holding back the tears
choking on your smile, a fake behind the fear

Xander's spell to put the love whammy on Cordelia didn't melt the heart of the May Queen but it melted Buffy's. The spell propelled her toward the feelings she used to feel for Angel, only more lunatic-y, but still she felt soft and sexy. She felt wanted. Lately, she hadn't felt wanted or attractive or anything else that a normal girl feels from time to time. She felt like every day she took another step into the darkness that she wasn't sure she was coming back from.

Angel - no, not Angel - Angelus had already killed one person in her life. Sure, she wasn't close friends with Teresa, but Angelus knew that it would effect her. And it definitely did. But when the dead roses arrived on Valentine's Day, Buffy felt an undescribable panic rise up inside of her. The flowers weren't the only cause of panic. It was the neat, white note with his clear printed letters in tidy black script, "SOON," that took her into a tempest of frenzy.

'Soon' what? She didn't want to speculate. She wanted to run as far away from him as humanly possible and keep running. She knew she couldn't kill him. She couldn't kill the body of the man she loved even if his soul was no longer there. It wasn't that she couldn't kill him that bothered her as much as the fact that he knew she couldn't kill him. And that little detail turned the tables, gave him unspeakable power and he grew stronger with that knowledge as she began to whither away inside herself.

Several days passed and she had heard nothing of Angelus, Spike or Drusilla. The streets were strangely quiet and her patrols were fruitless. Tonight she had actually dressed up and went to The Bronze with her friends in a weak attempt to sate their worries. Wearing her form fitting maroon dress, she felt semi attractive, but she didn't want to dance and she didn't want to laugh with her friends, she wanted to resume her most recent favorite pastime - moping. She always wondered how Angel could brood so much but now she was beginning to understand.

Right, I'm not thinking about Angel, she reminded herself as she walked out for a final round of the empty streets before heading home to another night of barely sleeping. Just a little over a month ago, she was patrolling with Angel, feeling his hands on her body, his lips on hers. Instead of being disappointed about boring patrols, she had hoped they were uneventful so she wouldn't have to break away from his passionate kisses.

She thought about the first time he brought her to an orgasm, how he accomplished it without even touching her skin, then the next night when he drove her into wave after wave of earthshattering pleasure.

Where would we be now if he hadn't lost his soul? She thought as she walked around, half heartedly looking around the cemetery. Would we be making love every night after patrol? Would I be thinking about him caressing my body as much as I do now that he's gone?

She was so busy thinking about him being gone that she nearly collided into the part of him that was still there. She sucked in her breath at the sight of him, forgetting for an instant that he was the enemy. He was striking. A more than sexy vision, leaning casually on a gravestone with his leather pants hugging his lower half. His silk shirt fluttered around him as he stood. She took a step back and instinctively fell into fighting stance as he stared at her unmoving.

"Yum," he said huskily looking her over.

"Yum?" She said irritably. One thing had not changed. He just loved the cryptic.

"Your smell," he said, stepping closer. She was so fucking beautiful. And the smell of her fear along with her arousal was causing his leather pants to become more binding than they were before. He wanted to drive her crazy, sure. And of course, he wanted to kill her. But right now, he could think of nothing more enticing than sliding into her hot depths.

"My smell is yummy?" She was pissed and couldn't believe his pre-fighting tactics. What the hell was he talking about? "Is this how you start all your fights?"

"I don't want to fight you," he said hoarsely, his voice coated with sex, "I wanna fuck you."

"What?!" She said, stepping back. He rushed up and grabbed her arms, pulling her against the wall of his chest roughly.

"I. Want. To. Fuck. You," He repeated, over enunciating each word.

"Get the hell away from me," she said, trying to jerk free but he held her tightly, digging his fingers into the soft flesh of her upper arms. He backed her into the tall gravestone behind her and pressed his groin against her.

"I don't think you want to get away," he said, sniffing her, "You're wet for me Slayer. I can smell it. You want it."

He reached between her trembling thighs and tore her panties away, tossing them to the side before gliding his fingers around the edges of her heat.

"I want Angel," she said, struggling half heartedly against him, "I don't want you. You're not the man I love."

"I think your body disagrees," he said, pushing a long finger inside of her, moving his thumb over her clit in slow circles. She moaned despite herself and opened wider for him, even though she meant to push him away and run.

"Stop," she whimpered, unable to force her body to go along with her words.

This isn't Angel, she told herself, This isn't Angel. But it looked like Angel and...God, it sure as hell felt like Angel.

Angelus pushed another finger inside her, relishing in her responses. He sucked her tongue into his mouth to hide the cold smile that covered his emotionless face.

you come on like a drug, i just can't get enough
i'm like an addict coming at you for a little more.
and there's so much at stake, i can't afford to waste
i never needed anybody like this before

She can't stop herself, he thought as he pinched her nipple lightly, trying to keep her with him, convincing her she was making love to Angel. He needed to keep up the ruse until he could slip himself inside the tight little cunt he had began dreaming about since he had changed. And truthfully, he dreamed about it before he was changed, but he hated to leave such an indistinguishing line between his true self and the bastard with the soul. He tried not to think about her. He screwed Drusilla almost incessantly, even in front of Spike, but he couldn't shake the memory of The Slayer's hot body from his head. His weaker half loved this woman. He didn't. But they both wanted her...ached for her.

He continued kissing her as he quickly freed his cock from its leather binding. He sheathed himself inside her urgently with a hiss. He felt like steam should be rising between them as his body temperature sky rocketed to hers. Having successfully penetrated her, he knew that there was no longer a need for the gentle Angel routine. He rammed into her and she felt like home. He was torn in between wanting to mock her, to make her feel used, and needing to leave a pathway to come back again.

It wasn't a conscious decision as he reached between them to manipulate her swollen clit. He only knew that he would do almost anything to feel her coming around him. He watched her chest rise and fall with her heavy breaths and he was almost annoyed that her dress so efficiently covered her breasts.

Buffy closed her eyes and let the feel of Angel's body take her over. Her mind disconnected and her body moved with him, giving in to his need. She still could deny him nothing and the thought was terrifying. A soulless demon was moving inside her and her Slayer instinct had yet to kick in. The woman in her was too powerful and the love for this beast was uncontrollable. Tears made of terror, love and hate streamed down her cheeks as she orgasmed around him, arching against her lover.

Her rising emotions made her smell better and better to Angelus and he licked the tears off her face, wanting to digest her weakness. He moved against her harder as if her sorrow gave him more domination, the sheer force of her heartache energizing him. He grabbed a handful of her firm ass beneath her dress to anchor her against him, tilting her pelvis so that he slapped her clit with each thrust. She moved into a second climax and he released his dead seed into her with a animalistic roar.

Buffy watched him stroll away, listening to his soft whistle. She still leaned against the headstone, disheveled, still quivering. She wanted to feel disgusted but she was still a step away from that shame because her body cried out for his arms, screamed for the lover that no longer existed.


now i want it too much, now I want it to stop

Angelus stormed back to the factory to find Drusilla riding Spike. Her giving his Grande Childe sympathy access didn't bother him. What bothered him was that goddamn Slayer. How could he have let himself sleep with her? The question tumbling around in his brain was in vain. He knew why. His whole body was still humming from hers as he sat down and listened to his children moaning in the other room.

He stood with a cold smile. He just needed another washing away of her. Torture and mind games would be the perfect cure, he thought as he headed for the bedroom. The excruciating howls of mercy from his children would strip away the sensations that bitch had lacquered on him.


make a whole new religion a falling star that you cannot live without
and i'll feed your obsession. there'll be nothing but this thing that you'll never doubt

Buffy tried to forget him but couldn't, she tried to convince herself that Angelus wasn't Angel, that he would kill her the first chance he got. But she knew from the tenderness he tried to hide from her, that he couldn't resist just as much as she couldn't. They were reciprocals. Even without a soul, his body needed hers and hers ached for his. Mates for life.

It was wrong. It was sick and depraved. And it was truth - the kind of incarnate truth that her innocence and naivety had been blessed with the absence of before he came into her life. His darkness had manifested itself around her like a second skin, pulling her into the abyss of life's ugly truths. She knew it instinctively, even though she repeatedly reminded herself that there was a morality inside herself that she could control.

But the horrible truth kept coming back around: The morality was there but somehow the control wasn't.

Since he had been changed, she had been watching for him anytime the sun went down. Now she was downright jumpy. The things that went bump in the night all could be Angelus and she became more and more worried that each battle might be with him. She had to wait for several days until he came to her again, which was exactly the amount of time Angelus needed to battle the urge before he gave in. A Sire could only torture his children so much until it became tiresome and mundane.

Finally, much to the relief of Spike, he went out in search of her. He moved silkily among the shadows until he spotted her taking out one of his newer minions. He knew that idiot's days were numbered from the second he turned him. He found her body extremely enticing when she was fighting. He watched her surefooted movements, her powerful punches and kicks and soon found himself stepping through the dust of his wasted childe.

"Angel," she whispered and stayed in fighting stance, a stake clutched in her fist, still raised and ready. Angel laughed. He easily kicked the stake from her hand, ducked her punch and yanked her into his arms.

"You don't wanna stake me, baby," he said with a slow, easy smile and he moved his lips over hers, "You wish you wanted to, but you don't."

"Y-yes, I do," she lied, trying to move away from him but was trapped in arms that she really didn't wish to leave.

He inhaled overtly and slipped his hand over her round behind, pulling her in closer, "No, you don't."

With vampiric speed, he twisted them to the ground and placed her on his lap. He laid back with his arms behind his head, keeping his smile in place. She sat there, straddling his leather clad hips, pausing in confusion.

"Take off your clothes," he whispered, arching up slightly to press his arousal against her.

"I-I don't w-want this," she whispered back.

"Don't make me do it for you," he said, feeling safe there even though he knew she had a stake hidden in the waistband of her jeans. He bored into her eyes with his, showing her his passion without moving a muscle. She waited for a long time, trapped in his gaze but finally, she removed her shirt. Angelus watched as his lover's perky breasts bounced free and braless before him. It took all of his self control not to touch them but he waited. He needed proof of his control over her and she was going to give that to him tonight.

"Keep going," he uttered hoarsely, salivating even though his throat was painfully dry. She stood and continued undressing as he watched. Each movement seemed painfully slow as he tried not to concentrate on the raging erection pressing against his tight pants. Finally, unable to lie back during the show, he stood. He felt like screaming as he watched her tantalizing movements. Chances were high that she didn't know just how tantalizing she was.

Three eternities later she was naked and she couldn't make herself move toward him or run away. She looked at the ground trying to make herself move. She could scarcely believe that she was nude and standing out in the open. Looking up she saw that he had removed his clothes as well. Naked and shining like liquid mercury in the moonlight, he stood before her. His sculpted body flexed as he moved towards her and she shrank back in fear. Not because she thought he would hurt her, but because she was sure that she would be unable to resist him.

i know what's good for you. i know you're dying to.
i know what's good for you. i bet you're dying to.
you can touch me if you want, you can touch me if you want.
you can touch me, you can touch me, but you can't stop...

He pulled her back onto his lap again, lying once more in the casual position with his hands behind his head. He was seated fully inside her but she didn't move.

He waited.

Finally she began moving, rising all the way up before sliding back down again. He snarled in frustration as he waited for her to fill herself completely with his hardness but she was riding shallowly, her eyes closed as she let the sensations wash over her. She pretended behind her closed eyes that the soul she loved was inside the body she was making love to.

He didn't let her reverie last long before he grabbed her hips and pressed her down, completely burying himself inside her heat. Her eyes flew open in surprise at his movement.

"I'm not your fucking precious Angel," he snarled, "Quit making love to me. Fuck. Me."

He emphasized his point by sitting up, then pulling her down on his lap with as much force as he could without hurting one of them in process. She gasped loudly but didn't protest as she moved gracefully with him. He pulled her closer so that each movement caused them to rub together. He needed her heat against him, needed the friction to burn against his flesh. He needed her.


a hit is hard to resist and i never miss. i can take you out with just a flick of my wrist.

It was the picture in her bedroom that forced the pretending away. She couldn't pretend that this was her Angel when she woke to find his drawing on her pillow. How could she have forgotten that he could stroll into her house anytime he wanted? She wasn't safe and more importantly, her mother wasn't safe. Full blown icy terror etched it's way over her body as she hurried to school. This was so much more than out of control.

Buffy stormed into the library, "He was in my room."

"Who?" Giles asked, looking up.

"Angel," she answered, worried and scared, "He was in my room last night."

"Are you sure?" Giles asked, stepping closer.

"Positive. When I woke up I found a picture he had left me on my pillow."

"A visit from the pointed tooth fairy," Xander smirked from the corner.

Buffy thought about it all day, unable to think of anything else but what Angelus was doing in her room. Actually what he was doing to her while he was there. He could have killed her but he didn't. Giles said it was a fighting tactic to disarm her and while she was certain that was at least partially true, she knew it wasn't all of it. And now, while Giles was trying to find the no shoes, no pulse, no service barrier spell to bar him from her house, Angelus had an all access pass to her house.

Explaining it to her mom that night at dinner, without actually explaining it was not easy. Her mother, in her sweet motherly ignorance, thought Angel was the "college boy" who was tutoring her in history. Little did she know, that he knew far more about history than most college boys, since he witnessed more than two centuries of it. But her mom was right on about one thing, he did change. He definitely wasn't the same person she fell for.

Buffy mulled it over, thought about what actions she should take, how she could make Angel stop this mental tirade of torture on her. She had to make him stop somehow. But how?

"It's so weird," Buffy said to Willow after the soon to be fledgling witch found a stringer full of her tropical fish in an envelope on her bed and decided to spend the night with The Slayer, "Every time something like this happens, my first instinct is still to run to Angel. I can't believe it's the same person. He's completely different from the guy that I knew."

"Well sort of," Willow said, "Except..."

"Except what?" Buffy said. What could Willow possibly have to say about her boyfriend turned serial killer soulless vampire?

"You're still the only thing he thinks about."

Sometimes Willow was so naive, Buffy forgot how smart she was. The redhead was absolutely right. Ever since Angel had lost his soul, he made himself a part of her life in every way he could. She was ashamed that she had played into his hands time and time again, that she had allowed him to manipulate her so completely, even after she knew who he really was and what he was capable of.

She waited for Willow to fall asleep, which, because of her fear, was an awfully long time. But finally her best friend fell into an exhausted slumber, giving Buffy the cue to slip on shoes and a sweatshirt, before climbing out of her window. It wasn't hard for her to find Angelus, after all they hadn't slept together for several days, which is why she thought he left the picture. Part mental torture, part to remind her that he was still there, that he could touch her, that he wanted to touch her.

Angel watched her approach with a smile. He knew she would come to him. He looked over her angry face and smiled more brightly. His little games had worked. She was pissed and full of the fire he loved so much about her.

you thought i was a little girl. you thought i was a little mouse
you thought you'd take me by surprise.

"Hello lover," he said antagonizingly.

"Stay the hell away from me, my mother and my friends!" She yelled, her tiny hands balled into fists at her sides.

"What?" He asked, feigning innocence. She swung hard, connecting with his mouth and drawing blood.

"I mean it," she said, an unspoken vow in her words. He continued to smile as blood leaked from the corner of his mouth. She was ashamed of him and of sleeping with him. He was seeing it up close and was gleeful at the thought that it was possible to touch her shame and mold it in his hands.

"Come on, Buff," he said, stepping closer and grabbing her shoulders, "It was just a little prank. It's not like I killed them."

"Don't touch me," she said, yanking away and stepping back, "Never touch me again."

"It doesn't work that way, lover," he said, grabbing her again and pulling her against him.

She can't stop it now, he thought, she won't be able to walk away from me.

But she could and she did. She pushed him back, kicking him solidly in the chest, causing him to land on the ground.

"Stay the hell away or I will kill you," she said with a pinch more determination in her eyes than he thought she could muster. She turned to walk away but stopped at the sound of his voice.

"Don't walk away from me," he said, standing and dusting himself off, "Or I will make you regret it."

"Screw you," she said, her blonde hair flipping in the air and she turned and headed back towards her house, "You're nothing to me. You're not Angel. You're a monster."

hey boy, take a look at me, let me dirty up your mind
i'll strip away your hard veneer and see what i can find

Angelus was beside himself with anger as she walked away from him. She actually walked away from him like he was nothing! He headed to Willow's house. When she found her little redheaded friend dead in a pool of blood, she would change her mind. When he found her bedroom empty, he pulsated with rage. He reached in his pocket and took out the picture of Buffy's mother he had sketched the night before and laid it on the girl's pillow. Tomorrow night he would pay a special visit to the Summers' household. He'd see what Buffy thought of him then.

A monster, huh? She had no idea what a real fiend could do and he couldn't wait to show her.


nothing that you say will release you, nothing that you pray would forgive you
nothing's what your words mean to me. something that you did will destroy you,
something that you said will stay with me long after you're dead and gone

As Angelus made his way towards Buffy's house, Drusilla's words echoed in his mind, "The air. It worries. Someone, an old enemy is seeking to destroy our happy home."

This day was going to be more eventful than he thought. He watched Joyce Summers pull up in her Jeep and plastered a friendly, desperate look on his face. First he would torment Buffy through her mother and then he would stop that damn gypsy bitch from recursing him. He could wait to see the look on Buffy's face when she heard of Jenny's murder. The plan was beautiful because so much pain would be caused with such a small effort on his part.

"Mrs. Summers, I have to talk to you," he said, leaning into her open window.

"You're Angel," she said, clutching her groceries to her chest.

"Did Buffy tell you about us?" Angel asked with a smile. This was better than he thought. Buffy had warned her off already. The fear wafting to him from the mother of The Slayer was encrusted with sugary sweetness.

"She told me she wants you to leave her alone."

"I can't," Angel admitted truthfully, "I can't do that."

"You're scaring her," Joyce said.

Good, he thought but he said, "You have to help me. Joyce, I need to be with her. You can convince her. You have to convince her."

He continuing speaking, plastering his most pathetic look on his face. He didn't even think his souled half could have looked this damn guilt stricken. He helped Joyce juggle the oranges that flew from her bags and inhaled her fear deeply. This was almost more fun than just killing her. How he loved to torment. Causing foundations to fall and wreckage to commence was what the life of a vampire should be about. Just killing for food was a process. It made a demon a part of the circle of life, added them to the cyclical balance of life. The hell with that. When damage was done for fun, when it became more than digestion but art, then a life was remembered and revered - both the killer and the killed.

He tried to teach Spike that very thing and he was learning...but the boy always was a bit thick so it was taking longer than it should have. But he did have the most potential except for Penn, who was his shining golden novice. Spike always hated Penn. Called him the "bloody pansy" just because he outshone Spike's talent. He wondered what happened to his apprentice. He would have to look him up after all this mess with The Slayer was resolved. In the meantime, he had hearts to break.

He leaned against he doorway, laying one last blow to the heart of a mother, while she hurriedly tried to get her key in the lock, "I haven't been able to sleep since the night we made love. I need her. I know you understand."

The look that crossed her face was priceless and Angelus would barely stop himself from laughing out loud. Joyce swung the door open and he determinedly started inside but was forced to stop as the invisible barrier came up in front of him. He looked up and saw his lover walking down the stairs, followed by Willow, who was reading the final line of the Latin incantation.

"Sorry Angel," Buffy said, before slamming the door in his face, "Changed the locks."

say one word, i'll laugh and bury you and leave you in the place where you left me

The look of contempt that flashed in her green eyes was all Angelus could see as he headed to the high school. Did she really think that she could keep him away by throwing up some barriers? He would show her that he could do anything to anyone. Hate filled his heart with more fervor than before. Once again she had made him want her. Every step he took sent him further into a swirling abhorrence - both of her and of himself. He wanted to kill everyone she loved and everyone who loved them until there was no longer a reminder of the woman who destroyed his peace of mind.

He looked up at the Latin inscription in front of the school, "Enter all ye who seek knowledge." Speaking of peace of mind, he had other bothersome details to tend to. He walked inside silently, clicking from trickster to predator in a step.

Jenny Calendar reminded him of the girl he had killed so long ago. Both were dark and lovely, part of an ancient magickal tribe, which prided themselves on heritage and tradition. But Jenny was smarter than that girl and he wagered she might be a shade prettier. Could have been the intelligent spark in her eyes or maybe the deviousness that attracted him to her. He wanted to sink his teeth into her inner thigh, just as he had taken the other, but she wasn't good enough for that. He needed all her Romani clan to know just what he thought of them and their vengeance on him. The Ritual of Restoration would die with her and he would be free. As he snapped the Romani teacher's frail neck, he felt the calm return to him.

"I never get tired of doing that," he said aloud, enjoying the sound of his voice as much as he enjoyed the sound of her neck snapping.


here comes the cold again, i feel it closing in
it's falling down and all around me, falling

When it came right down to it, there was nothing that Buffy needed more than Giles to be okay. After Jenny died, Giles snapped. His attempted revenge on Angelus was so much more than just reverting to Ripper, it was the howling cry of a torn soul. Buffy knew that sound. It was the sound her soul made when Angel lost his. It was the sound that echoed in her mind every day since she lost him.

Giles' utter lack of concern for his life, forced Buffy into a painful realization - she needed him and there was a strong chance that he could be killed in some fight that she could have prevented. By killing Angel, she would take away the quotient. She realized finally, with the cruel, cold-blooded murder (suddenly understanding where that term came from) that Angel was gone. He was dead and nothing was going to bring him back. She had to protect the people in her life, even if it meant killing the empty shell of her soul mate.

She prepared herself a little more every day and every night, she was sure she could kill him and reclaim her life, her sanity. Love was a state of mind, just like Slaying was. All she had to do when get there. Any doubt she might have had was chased away with attack on the library. The death of Kendra was crippling, that was for sure. To see a Slayer die, brought her own mortality clearer in her mind than even her own death had. Willow and Xander were hurt and Giles was missing. The lives of her friends were a thousand times more important than the empty remainder of what her beloved used to be.

Spike's "Hello Cutie" was more than an antagonizing statement. It was the undead answer to her prayers, even though it took her a while to realize it. When she stopped punching him in the face long enough to listen to him, she understood that even though Spike's misguided intentions of getting his "hoe" of a girlfriend back and allowing the "happy meals with legs" to continue providing daily meals were the key to her success. With an insider of the crypt to aid her, she could take Angel out and stop Acathala. The world would be saved and she would be free of the daily nightmare that her life had become. She would lose everything, but at least Angelus would no longer be a threat. At least she could have that one little piece of mind.

She almost lost her two best friends, Giles was being tortured by her ex-lover, she had been expelled by Snyder and her mother had turned against her. She knew there was nothing left to lose. So she headed off to the mansion to seal the fate of the world - one way or another.

crashing silent, broken down, fallen into night
who gave up and who gave in? i'll go without a fight
cut me down or cut me dead, cut me in or out
kiss me blind time after time take away my doubt

When she slashed his arm, disarming him and causing his sword to fly out of his hand, she was wrapped in the momentum and volition she needed to carry out the deed. She kicked him in the face and forced him to his knees in front of her. Bringing her sword back, she paused for just a fraction of a second, poising to swing and he gasped a loud, wheezing gulp of air. She observed his eyes blaze with an ethereal orange incandescence. She was frozen in mid-swing as he looked around in confusion and slowly looked up at Buffy, with tears in his eyes.

"What's going on?" he asked. She started to lower her sword, almost involuntarily, as she recognized the soul inside the deep brown eyes of her attacker. She found herself filled with a hope that crushed her insides. The voice, the demeanor, the movements were Angel. Weren't they?

"Where are we? I don't remember," he asked and she lowered her sword the rest of the way, staring, awestruck.

Another trick, she thought, He's trying to destroy me and it's working.

She felt a choking sob rise up in her throat and she gulped it down as he looked down at her left arm, "You're hurt."

The touch was so gentle. A simple caress that she had waited for more bewildered days that she could count. He pulled her into his arms, clinging to her with a love that she had nearly forgotten. She released a breath, exhaling over his shoulder. He was back. Angel.

"Oh, Buffy," he said, gasping like a broken prisoner, forlorn and lost, "God, I feel like I haven't seen you in months. Ohmygod, Everything's so muddled. I.."

He kissed her shoulder, unwilling to pull back from her embrace. She squeezed her eyes shut. A dream, a nightmare was manifesting before her. Warmth and radiance made her open her eyes to see the portal inside the mouth of Acathala opening. Her eyes widened as she took a second to assess the situation. Slayer instinct rising to the surface, she realized what she needed to do and she pulled slowly back from the one person she loved more than anything else.

"What's happening?" He asked, not knowing that his innocence would cost him his life, that his demon had taken every dream of the future from his cold hands.

"Shhh...don't worry about it," she whispered, running her fingers over his smooth lips. She caressed his face, looking in his questioning eyes for a second before she kissed him.

Angel kissed her with the desperate kiss of someone who missed his love, who was rejoicing being back in her arms. Buffy was kissing him goodbye. Equally as passionate in their movements, they clung to their other half, needing The Powers That Be and all of eternity to be on their side.

"I love you," she whispered, tears already filling her eyes as the vortex open wider behind them.

"I love you," he said back, his eyes betraying the truth and far beyond it.

"Close your eyes," she whispered, speaking again, thankful she had the strength to make the words come out. He looked at her questioningly, still confused and unsure what was going on, why he felt so hazy and strange. She nodded, urging him and with absolute trust of the only woman he had ever loved, he closed them and waited.

You can do this, she told herself, as she placed a final, gentle kiss on his trusting lips, You have to do this.

She reared back and ran him through with the sacred sword, forcing his eyes to snap open in disbelief. He reached out for his love, even though he knew that she was the one who had hurt him. He reached out for the only stronghold in his life and she stepped away as cracking, golden waves of energy circled around him.

"Buffy," he whispered, pleading for her to save him, help him. Her name, once again, the final word on his dying lips, he was sucked into the vortex, closing the portal between hell and earth. Buffy stepped back in the now empty room, looking at the stone face of Acathala a final time as the loss hit her. She crumpled into sobs and brought her hands to her face, backing away.

She crumpled to the floor, allowing the loss to overtake her completely. Everything was gone. With Angel finally and completely dead, her heart outpoured a tremendous sorrow, a devitalizing heartache that she could not seem to understand.

When her tears dried, her body went numb. She was sure that hell took with it every ounce of love and life that she would ever have. There was no reason to stay here. She headed back to her house and packed a bag, discarding the clothes she wore, not willing to take his smell with her.

For the first time in her life, she was certain, completely convinced that there was nothing left.

send me an angel to love. i need to feel a little piece of heaven.
send me an angel to love. i'm afraid i'll never get to heaven.