Disclaimer: All the characters are based on the television shows, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel. I do not own them, get money for writing about them and have no permission from Joss Whedon or anyone else who might care. Alrighty? Also, if you want to put this story on your site, that's fine with me but please send me an email and let me know. Thanks!
This fiction is rated NC-17, so anyone who is too young, impressionable
or otherwise easily offended, please read no further.
Spoiler: A spell sends Angel to Sunnydale to protect Buffy.
And here we go. . . .
Anya: So this is Angel. He's large and glowery, isn't he?
Oh God, Angel groaned inwardly, the pain. . .what. . .they are taking my. . .soul.
But then he focused on the pain for a moment. No, they weren't taking his soul. They weren't able to take it. The magick in the air was pressing against the walls, forcing his body to stand rigid and he struggled to open his eyes. He couldn't remember how he was taken or how he got there but he was chained to a hard, marble wall.
Some kind of monk demons were chanting over him and in the back of the room, impeccably dressed with arms crossed, stood Lilah and Lindsay overlooking the ceremony and spell casting. Their faces were contorted in cold smiles and the sinister pleasure in their eyes made him shiver. He found his center of being, focused on remaining intact but he was no match to the magick. He felt weaker and with each passing moment he was more unable to focus on remaining calm. All he could feel was the pain, streaking, white laced pain. He pulled against his chains, screaming for release and the chanting continued for one more full minute.
Having finished their spell, the crimson hooded monks closed their ancient books and shuffled from the room, closely followed by Lilah and Lindsay. Two guards strode over and calmly unlocked his shackles. Set free from his bondage, he wanted to fight but he fell to the floor.
"You are free to go, sir," one of the guards said and they strutted out of the room, having no fear for the vampire who was once known as the "Scourge of Europe." Angel stood on shaky legs and stumbled out of the room and searched for the exit. The building seemed to be a labyrinth of hallways and doors but he made his way to the door that led out into the world.
He checked his pocket. His cell phone was still there. He dialed the number to the office. The phone rang once, twice, three times. Damn it, Cordy, answer the phone. As if on cue, he heard her curt voice, "Angel Investigations. We help the hopeless."
"Cordy," Angel gasped.
"Angel! Where the hell have you been? We've been looking for you for two days!"
"Look, can you just come and get me? I'll explain later. I'm two blocks east of Wolfram & Hart and I'm pretty sure I'm going to collapse in a few minutes."
After hanging up the phone, Angel leaned against the brick wall behind him. Struggling for control of his body, he began taking unnecessary chi-like breaths. Something wasn't right. He felt as if his mind was wandering, shifting. He needed to talk to Cordy & Wesley. If he could just tell them what happened...
Patrol was beat. There wasn't even the slightest whisper of evil on the streets as Buffy and Riley patrolled, holding hands. Buffy was unusually quiet. She was usually a chatterbox on patrol, breaking Riley's much needed concentration. At first Riley appreciated the silence but tonight he was thrown off by it.
"You're so quiet," he said in a low voice as he methodically scanned the perimeter and then glanced at her blank expression, "Something wrong?"
"Um...well, I don't think so. I guess I'm just tired," Buffy lied. She felt queasy and strange. She knew it was Angel. Something was very wrong with Angel and her body was humming with the knowledge of his pain.
"Are you sure cause you seem kinda distracted?" Riley pressed.
"No, I'm alright. I think I'm going to go home though, if it's alright with you. I think I just need some sleep."
"You don't want to stay at my place tonight?"
"Sorry, honey. I think I need to sleep in my own bed tonight. I'm exhausted," She croaked with the lies thick in her throat. She was almost certain she would be unable to sleep. Riley nodded and steered them toward her house in silence. He knew something definitely was not right. He worried all the way to her house, worried through the gentle kiss he placed on her lips and worried all the way home. He wouldn't be getting much sleep that night either.
Buffy walked up to her room in a tranced march and sat on the side of her bed, gazing out of the window. Under her skin, Angel's off-balance force was crawling around. She perched there, tense and staring at nothing, waiting for something to happen. The only thing that happened was sunrise.
Back at the office, Angel was explaining what he remembered of the ritual to Cordelia and Wesley. Taking notes, Cordelia fired off questions as Angel's voice started to waver. He was shaking and soon was unable to keep his eyes open. He fell into a deep sleep behind his desk in mid-sentence, still trembling, the tremors starting somewhere deep inside his undead body and traveling out to his cold skin.
Cordelia and Wesley retired to the outer office and began researching the ritual. Angel hadn't stirred at all for over four hours and then just as suddenly as he had fallen asleep, he awoke and jumped from his desk chair.
"Angel! Freak out much? God!" Cordelia said as she jumped from her own chair, startled.
"Gotta go," Angel said grabbing his coat and flung it on as he started toward the door.
"Angel, where are you going? We haven't yet found out what magicks were performed on you," Wesley said to his rapidly retreating figure.
"Sorry. I have to go," Angel said and went out of the door, leaving his two employees with open mouthed gapes.
Buffy and Riley went on patrol together again the next night. She really wanted to be alone with whatever demons jumped out at her. She could feel Angel's intense panic inside her veins. She felt like running or screaming and wished that something would jump out at her, so at least she could fight. Riley kept asking her what was wrong and she knew she couldn't answer him. Partially because it was about Angel and partially because she didn't know. She wasn't sure how to explain her connection with Angel to Riley and she wasn't sure she wanted to... ever. Angel wasn't in pain anymore, she knew that much, but he was panicked and he was still itching inside her. He was coming to Sunnydale. She knew he was coming tonight.
The full moon was huge in the sky and threatened to tip over and spill out over campus. Shadows full of moon drenched edges skipped over the trees and grass and carved stone headstones. The lunar power washed over all of Sunnydale and Buffy looked up wondering where Oz was right then and if Willow was thinking the same thing. Probably not. Willow spent most her time with Tara these days and rarely mentioned Oz any more. She let her eyes drifted around the cemetery, noncommittally. She liked Tara but somehow she still felt loyalty to Oz. She looked over at Riley, carefully scanning the perimeter, concentrating his surroundings, unaware of her musings.
I wonder if they ever feel the same way about Angel? Do they feel loyalty to him for me like I do to Oz for Willow? She thought. Probably not. Angel didn't cohere with the group the same way that Oz - although he was just as monosyllabic. She shrugged off her thoughts and then shrugged over her guilt. She thought Riley was unaware that she was far away in her thoughts but he stopped in the middle of the cemetery and for the third time that night asked her what was wrong.
"Nothing. Really, I'm fine," Buffy replied, pretending to be focused on whatever imaginary demons could be lurking behind the next head stone.
"You're not fine, Buffy. I realize I'm pushing here, but you aren't talking. You've hardly said a word to me since last night when we were on patrol," Riley said, protesting.
"Look, I'm sorry, okay? I just feel...I don't know...funny. Like something is happening, something's coming."
"Buffy, you know you can talk to me. You don't have to keep these things to yourself," he said, facing her and grabbing her hand.
"I know," she said, looking into his eyes.
"Good," he said, leaning in to kiss her. Wrapping his arms around the woman he loved, Riley Finn kissed her, letting his hands roam over her narrow, muscular back.
"Mmmmm," she said into his lips, smiling for a moment as he kissed her. He felt so...gone. Suddenly Riley was ripped from her arms and Buffy opened her eyes to see him careening against a large oak ten feet away.
"Riley," she screamed, turning to run from him, but Angel stopped her in her tracks before she had gone two steps. She felt him walking towards her and she stopped, turned and whispered, "Angel." Caught in a moment of confusion, Buffy found herself looking from Angel to Riley and back again, unable to decide how to handle this situation. Angel gave her no time to react, however, and rushed to her side. Claiming her shoulders in his hands, he looked intently into her eyes, "Are you alright, baby? Did he hurt you?" he asked in an overly concerned voice.
"What the hell is going on?" she demanded, angrily. Even as she spoke, she noticed that there was a slight trembling in his fingertips and he had a light sheen of sweat over his cold, marble skin.
"I'm so sorry love, I would have gotten here sooner but-" his sentence was cut off, when he turned to slam his boot into Riley's angry face. Riley flew back again and scrambled to get to his feet once more. Buffy stood there in confusion a moment longer. Angel was in pain and he was definitely confused as well. She pulled Angel away as he struck Riley again.
Stop! Look at me," she said, struggling with his broad frame, finally
getting him to turn towards her. Riley had made it to his unsteady feet
and was already charging towards them. Buffy held her hand out to him
to stop and he screeched to a halt- now also very confused. She slowly
lowered her hand and turned back to Angel. Riley started to say her
"Angel, what's going on?" She said, looking up at his anxious eyes.
you're in danger. Someone is trying to take you from me," He pulling
her into his
your hands off of my girlfriend," Riley shouted, starting towards
the couple. Buffy heard the almost inaudible low growl that came from
Angel as he turned to face the
Angel looked over the man walking towards him: blonde and wholesome looking, about an inch taller than himself and angry. Had he just used the word "girlfriend" for Buffy? His Buffy? How could this stranger attempt to claim his mate? He felt the involuntary growl travel up his throat before he heard it. Anger swept over his body. No, it wasn't anger. It was fury. He morphed into his "game" face and growled again.
girlfriend? You think you can lay claim on a woman that belongs to me?
She's mine!" Angel asked, his rage almost uncontrollable. A stranger
who first thought he could touch her and kiss her, then was angry when
he defended the honor of his beloved and now demands that she belonged
to him? As if she could belong to anyone else! Who the hell did he think
"What the hell? She doesn't belong to you. She doesn't belong to anyone," Riley said, "But she's dating me. She's with me not you."
"You're treading, boy. You really think she could love someone like you? What do you have to offer The Slayer?" Angel turned back toward Buffy, lapsing back into his human face, "Someone is trying to hurt us. Someone wants to take you away from me. I've got to get you somewhere safe where we can figure out what's going on," he explained, looking unusually alarmed, his eyes scanning the area every few seconds. Buffy reached out and touched his face.
She could feel him trembling.
"Angel," she said, using her hand to turn his face back towards her, "I don't understand." Riley took a step forward as she touched him and Angel let out a low growl, allowing his face to morph into his vampire visage for a second and then returned to his human features as he turned back to Buffy.
"Someone is trying to kill you, Buffy. I can't explain how I know but I do. You are in danger because someone is trying to hurt me by hurting you. They want to take you away from me and I can't lose you." Buffy looked at him in confusion and looked back over at Riley, who started to yell, "Buffy, what are you doing? He's a vampire! Get away from him!"
"I'm the damn Slayer, Riley. I know a vampire when I see one."
"Just walk away from him and come to me. Better yet, stake him!" Riley called again, stepping closer.
"Keep your distance if you want to live," Angel growled, showing his demon visage again. He started shaking more violently than before and she was sure that his rage had something to do with it.
"If you hurt her, I'll kill you," Riley screamed, across the five feet that now separated them.
"I would never hurt her," Angel said, his voice calm but his face still revealing his demon, "and I will make damn sure no one else does either."
"Angel," Buffy said, placing her hands gently on either side of his ridged face and pulling him closer to her, much to Riley's shock. Riley was struck dumb actually. She was touching him, like she knew him, like she loved him and he was a vampire.
"You are not well. Something is wrong with you," She said softly.
"The only thing that is wrong with me is that I know you aren't safe. I'm sorry, love. I didn't mean to hurt- what's his name - Riley- but I saw him forcing a kiss on you and...I can't stand to see another man touch you."
"Angel, we should go to Giles right now and see if he can figure this out." Angel nodded in agreement.
"I'm going with you," Riley said over the sound of Angel's menacing growl.
"I don't think that's a good idea," Buffy said with her eyes downcast.
not leaving you alone with that lunatic vampire," Riley announced.
Buffy nodded and
*He doesn't normally kill humans? What?*
The walk to Giles' flat was short in steps but felt long to the three walking. Angel spent each second letting his eyes flirt from Buffy to Riley to the surrounding area and back again. Buffy spent most of her time scrutinizing Angel and once in awhile, she checked back to Riley, shooting a glance at him over her shoulder, as if she were saying I'm sorry but I have to help him and there's nothing I can do about the situation to make you feel better.
Riley walked several feet behind Buffy & Angel, looking more angry and upset as they went. Angel clutched Buffy's hand, still trembling lightly and scanning the darkness ahead of them. His supernatural vision allowed for further sight than the two humans but they all saw nothing out of the ordinary as they made their way towards Giles' house. Riley spent most of his time watching Angel. Who was he and how did Buffy know him? Why was he so worried about protecting her and why was she going along with it? If he didn't know better, he would think that she loved this vampire. Even more unbelievable was that this vampire seemed to have affection for the Slayer.
When Giles answered the door, wearing his white and blue stripped robe, he gasped in surprise to see the three of them standing there, Buffy was visibly shaken, Riley was bruised and bleeding and Angel was shaking like a drug addict.
"Oh dear God," he said, stepping out of the way and opening the door further, "Come in."
Buffy told her side of the story and with that part of the explanation out on the table, everyone was still very confused. No light was shed on the issue. The only one who seemed convinced was Angel and he couldn't explain his fears.
"But Angel, nothing I have read or heard as of late suggests that Buffy is in any danger from anything at this time. Did anything odd or unusual happen that would make you think that Buffy is in any more danger than she is normally?" Giles asked as he prepared tea, which, of course, was after he changed into suitable attire for his guests.
"I woke up in an office in LA for one," Angel replied.
"What was unusual about that?" Buffy asked.
"Well, don't you think it's strange that I would wake up in LA? How did I get there? When did I get there? Why was I there and why were Cordelia & Wesley there? I was in such a panic to leave that I left them there in that office. I hope that they have a way to get home. We need to get Buffy somewhere safe. Somewhere that I can see the danger coming," Angel said. Buffy & Giles looked exchanged concerned looks. He didn't remember anything and he was babbling.
"Giles, can I talk to you for a second, in private?" Buffy asked and steered Giles into the hallway by the bathroom.
seems to be suffering from some sort of amnesia," Giles said.
"Well that explains the Riley's current state."
"We have to do something, Giles. He's really afraid and he won't let me out of his sight. How am I supposed to explain this to Riley? He doesn't know anything about my relationship with Angel. What am I going to do?"
"I suggest you try not to agitate Angel further. He seems to be...um..slipping. I suggest you stay with him while I call the others here, as well as Wesley & Cordelia in LA and try to figure out just what is going on. Try to tell him as little as possible until we figure out what has caused his memory loss. We also need to find out if his fear of your being in danger is unfounded or not."
"I'm gonna have to think of something to tell Riley," she said, looking at her hands as if somehow the answer could be found there.
"I'm not sure I can help you in that area," he said with his best fatherly look attached while he cleaned his glasses for the second time since she arrived. Nodding, she turned around and faced her current and ex-boyfriend, waiting anxiously in Giles' living room. Neither of them were sitting. Both were looming tall and large in the room, which made it seem very claustrophobic to Buffy. Looking from Angel to Riley and back again, she sighed into her sentence, "Riley, can I speak to you outside for a second? Angel, I'll be right back, ok?"
"I don't like the idea of-" he started, but she immediately interrupted.
"I'll just be a minute." She grabbed Riley's hand and led him with her out the front door. She led them a healthy distance away from the door, knowing Angel's keen hearing would be able to eavesdrop part of the conversation if they were too close and she was very sure that she did not, under any circumstances, want him to hear what she was about to say.
"Riley, A-Angel is my ex-boyfriend," she started.
"That vampire - that demon in there is your ex? Please tell me he was human when you were dating him," he pleaded. By the look on his face, she could almost swear that he wanted her to lie but they both knew she wasn't going to.
"No, he was a vampire when I dated him. He's different, Riley. He has a soul. Anyway, it is a long story but it seems like something has happened to make him lose his memory. He doesn't remember that we aren't together and until we know what's going on, Giles & I have agreed that we aren't going to tell him."
"Why the hell not?" He demanded, "Sorry but the last time I checked you were my girlfriend. Now I'm supposed to pretend you're not and get beat on and growled at and threatened by your ex-demon every time I even look at you?"
sorry, Riley. I really am. I know it's not fair but something is really
wrong with him. He's very unstable right now and he won't listen to
reason. He will do whatever it takes to keep me safe if he thinks I'm
"Riley, I can't explain my relationship to Angel with you. You just have to trust me. It's as simple as that."
"Your relationship? That sure sounds present tense to me."
"Riley, please," she said, her hazel eyes beginning to well with tears that Riley knew he wouldn't be able to stand.
"Okay, Buffy. I don't feel good about this at all but I'll stand down for now," Riley said, obviously very angry, "I trust you but I don't - for the record - trust him."
"Thank you. Why don't you go ahead and go and I will call you with an update tomorrow." Riley walked away feeling certain that he had lost some very important footing and made a very foolish mistake by leaving her with her ex. With each step he took, he felt more and more like he just lost the love of his life. He told himself that he was being foolish that Buffy felt just as strongly for him as he did for her, but a person can only lie to themselves so much. And that damn vampire just got the upper hand. She didn't kiss me goodbye, he thought with worry as he headed back to campus, In fact, she hasn't touched me since he got here. He stopped on the sidewalk and thought. I don't think I just lost a battle, I might have lost the whole damn war. He turned around and headed back to Giles' flat. He was going to have to do something or he was going to lose her.
Back inside Giles' apartment, Angel jumped back from the window as Buffy came in, trying to look as if he hadn't just been spying on her and that blonde farm boy. He felt uneasy. That boy looked at her like he was in love with her and she definitely knew him. He had assumed that he had just kissed her without her permission but the more he thought about it, the more he thought that she had been kissing him back. He was angry and hurt as she walked in the door and by the time she made it across the room, he was enraged. He balled his hands in tight fists and took several unnecessary breaths as he struggled to control his anger. The thought of Buffy in another man's arms; another man kissing her and holding her was enough to make him start an Angelus-esue killing spree.
No, you don't know what's going on with her and him. You don't know that she is being unfaithful. Give her the benefit of the doubt. She loves you. She loves you. She loves you. It became his short lived mantra until she made her way to him.
"Who was he?" Angel asked, struggling to keep his voice calm and even.
"Riley," she answered, not volunteering any information.
"What is he to you?"
"He's my..." she looked at the floor and tried to think of a way to say something that wasn't a lie and that was not the truth.
"He's your what!? What?!"
let's go somewhere else to talk and let Giles go back to bed,"
she said glancing across the room into the kitchen where Giles was pretending
not to overhear the conversation. He nodded and escorted her to the
door and out into the night. He held tightly onto her hand, still trembling
slightly as they walked.
"Are you going to leave me? You don't...have...feelings for him, do you?" he said, as if he realized for the first time that he might lose her.
can I leave you, Angel?" she whispered, "You already left
me." The whole plan not to share anything with him, not tell him
what was going on, the whole safe, lying route flew out the window with
one look into his eyes. She couldn't lie. She tried that before and
it tore away at her insides. She wanted nothing more to crawl inside
him and hide there forever where it was safe
"What are you talking about? I would never leave you. Never. I love you. Don't you know that?" She couldn't believe how much he believed what he just said. The incredulous look on his face was almost laughable. Did he really not know himself that much? She stopped and turned to him.
"Angel, you have some sort of amnesia. You left me almost a year ago. You live in LA where you run a demon hunting PI business called Angel Investigations. Cordelia & Wesley work for you and that is where you were when you woke up to come here. That is why you were in LA. Riley, the guy you saw me kissing and promptly beat the shit out of today, is my boyfriend," She searched his face for recognition as she spoke but she just found disbelief and love and confusion written across his brow.
"Listen Buffy, I knew something was wrong. I think that you're confused. I would never leave you. I don't know who Riley is, but I'm telling you that he doesn't love you. Not the way that I do. You are in danger and right now I don't care where you've been or where I've been. All I care about is your safety. I need to protect you and I won't let you out of my sight until I am sure that the peril is gone." His voice was calm but she knew he wasn't. He was panicking. Still.
She didn't know what to say or how to react so she turned slowly, taking his hand and she began to walk again. They walked in slow silence toward the long abandoned mansion on Crawford Street. Buffy and Angel had almost arrived at the mansion when Riley snuck up closer behind them, daring to close the gap between the vampire and the slayer. Angel had heard him the whole way but assumed the boy would be smart enough to leave them alone. He was wrong. Before they entered the mansion, Angel turned around to face him.
"I suggest you go home," Angel said, his voice strident with rage.
"You don't really think I'm going to let you take my girlfriend in there and let her stay with you all night, do you?" Riley asked, his expression incredulous.
"Yes, I do," Angel said, struggling to keep his voice even and calm. Buffy looked from her human boyfriend to her vampire ex-boyfriend and breathed a deep sigh. She didn't want them to make her choose. She knew that Riley would lose and she was afraid that Riley already knew that too. She squeezed Angel's arm with a silent message, Please don't do this to me right now. If she turned away from Riley for Angel, who was to say that Angel wouldn't leave her again when he got his memory back?
"Buffy, you aren't going to stay with him, are you? Come with me. I'll keep you safe," he said, reaching his hand out to her and taking a step closer. Angel growled and Buffy looked up at his ridged face. He shook with anger beneath her fingertips.
"Buffy," Angel said between clenched fangs, "I can't keep you safe if you aren't with me. I will not let you go anywhere without me until I know you are safe and I will kill anything in my path that tries to stop me." He was not yelling but his voice cut through her skin. She felt like she was bleeding already. She turned to face Angel and when she reached up and caressed his ridged face, Riley let out a gasp. He saw the love between them that he was denying the last time she touched his horrible face.
"Calm down, Angel. It's ok. You're freaking, here," she said, smoothing her little hand over his face again and again.
"Have. To. Keep. You. Safe," He said, struggling to get the words out through his spell induced rage, "Can't let anything happen to you. Can't allow you to be hurt. Not again." Riley stared in awe at his supposed girlfriend and her ex-demon lover. She was touching his demon face and seemed unaware of his features. She was caressing him and speaking soothing words as if she were trying to tame a wild beast.
"Angel, it's okay, baby. I'll stay. We'll figure this out. Ok? Nothing is going to happen to me," She whispered but he was so angry, she saw that he wasn't hearing her anymore. The demon was beating against the invisible cage of his soul, "Angel. ANGEL. Listen to me. I'll stay with you until we figure this out, okay? Baby, it's ok. It's ok," she whispered and Riley shook the fog away from his head when Angel's face returned to human form. Did she just call him baby'? Did she just lull him into pushing his demon half aside?
Angel nodded at Buffy's words and turned to walk away, forgetting for a moment that Riley was there. Angel whipped around to face Riley, his face vamping out again, "You come near us while she's still in danger and I'll rip your throat out." He turned and walked Buffy into the mansion.
She stopped at the door to look back at Riley, "We can talk about this later. This is something I have to take care of." And then she was gone. Riley was left to stand there deliberating on what to do. Uncertain about anything, he walked slowly away. Slaughtered in another battle.
They walked inside, leading each other there, down the stairs, through the atrium and inside to where the furniture remained, covered with white sheets. Angel reached down and pulled the white sheets off of his sectional couch and set down, pulling Buffy down with him and tucking her into his side. They sat there for a long while, breathing each other in. Buffy rested her head on his shoulder and curled her feet underneath her. She was awash in his smell. If asked to explain it, she probably wouldn't be able to. He smelled like home and leather and incense and soap and shampoo and a million other things that constituted all that he was.
Giles looked out of the window as Angel and Buffy began to walk away. He started to turn away but glanced back when he saw some movement in the shadows. He watched as Riley crept behind them.
"Dear lord," he muttered as he picked up the phone and called Willow and Xander to come for immediate research. Hanging up the phone, he dialed the number to Angel Investigations.
"Wesley. Good. Glad to catch you," Giles said in his most brisk British voice, the one he always used when speaking to Wesley, "Were you aware of Angel's arrival in Sunnydale?"
"Thank God he's with you. We've been looking for him and calling him on his cell phone. We've been worried. Something is definitely amiss," Wesley said with Cordelia close by his side.
"Did something happen because he seems to be suffering from an amnesia of sorts and well, a sort of overprotective rage."
"He disappeared for two days," Wesley started, "He called us and we went to pick him up where Wolfram & Hart had held him captive. Apparently they performed a sort of spell on him and after completing the ritual, simply let him go."
"Perhaps they meant for him to come here. To get to Buffy," Giles replied.
"It appears to be the most logical idea. We have been researching here but perhaps we ought to compare notes."
"Yes, I think that's a grand idea. Will the two of you accompany us here?"
"Of course. We'll be on our way shortly."
Inside the mansion Angel pulled her against him on the couch, "I'm sorry, love," he whispered into her hair becoming almost faint from her intoxicating smell, "I can't keep you safe if other people are here. I don't know why he thinks you belong to him but I don't trust him."
Buffy said nothing as tears started to well up in her eyes and Angel spoke again, "I know it's only been a few days since I held you. I know it. I remember it but my soul aches like I have been missing you for a much longer time." He pulled her in closer, "I love you so much. I can't be without you." He pulled her tighter in his embrace and held her there, neither of them speaking.
Finally, he stood, and she looked up at him questioningly as he held out his hand and pulled her to her feet. He led her into the bedroom where he laid down and waited for her to join him. He had to wait several minutes before she lowered herself to the bed and into his arms. He snuggled against her back and held her very tightly in his arms. She felt him go slack with exhaustion and she laid her head back against his chest as she began to sob. Her sobs turned into torrents of tears as she released the pain she had bottled up since he left her. The only place she had ever felt that she could truly let go was in his arms. He woke from the sound of her crying and the motion of her body shaking violently against his.
"Buffy," he whispered, "It's okay, love. Everything is alright." She turned towards him and sobbed against his black silk shirt, cleansing his pain with her tears. He gently smoothed his hands over her back as she cried. He couldn't ask her what was wrong and she couldn't answer. They both knew that no words expressed would explain these raging emotions inside them both. Silent tears slipped from his eyes as well as he pulled her closer. They both feel asleep in pure exhaustion. Calm settling over them, they knew in their slumber that they were finally in the arms of their soul mate.
"Do we really think it was the best plan to leave those two alone with Angel all crazy?" Xander exclaimed pacing the hardwood floor.
"He wasn't exactly in a state where I could make him stay here, Xander. And yes, I think that Buffy is perfectly capable of taking care of herself. He is a danger to people who get near her. I don't think Buffy herself is in any danger from Angel."
"Except for the pelvic kind of danger that leads to pure happiness," Xander shouted.
"Maybe someone should check on them in morning and see if anyone is you know...dead," Willow suggested.
"Yes, I think that is capitol plan. Willow perhaps you should take Xander along at sunrise and see if everything is ok there."
"I don't think that Xander should go," Anya pipped, "I don't want him to be in danger."
"I don't want Buffy to be there either," Riley said as he walked back in Giles' apartment.
"I saw you follow them," Giles said, pulling his glasses off and waving them about, "Buffy told you that she did not want to aggravate the issue further. That is why she asked you to leave. Why did you go?"
"Why did I go? Well let's see, Angel is her ex, for one. Two, he's a demon. And three, I've seen lots of sub-Ts who were not as much of big ticking time bombs as he was tonight. He threatened to kill me twice," Riley said, holding two fingers up for emphasis.
"Only twice?" Spike said, as he casually sauntered in the front door, "Peaches must be losing his touch."
"Don't know why I even have a door. No one knocks on it," Giles said.
"Don't get in a bunch, Watcher. I came over because I saw the little rumble the great Poof caused earlier and wanted to see what the fuss was all about. Him and slayer looked like they were back making googly eyes at each other. Made me want to heave."
"So I guess everybody knows him here?" Riley said with a huff.
"Not really," Anya said, "I just saw him kill a few people once. Well, not really people. They were the spirits of Indians -"
"Native Americans," Willow added.
"Yes, Native Americans who gave Xander syphilis and some other horrible diseases."
"What are we going to do?" Xander asked, plopping down on the couch next to Anya.
"I suggest that Willow and Xander check on Buffy and Angel in the morning. Riley, I would also suggest that you keep your distance until we are able to resolve this further. Wesley and Cordelia are on their way now."
"Great," Xander snorted.
"And," Giles said, giving Xander a look for interrupting him, "They will most likely aide us in resolving this issue. In the meantime, I suggest we start the research."
was early morning when Buffy woke with a start. "Oh shit,"
she whispered when last night's events settled over her. She spurned
Riley over Angel, had a nervous breakdown and now she was missing class.
Correction, she had missed class. She tried to slip away but Angel's
grip on her was like steel even in his sleep. She scooted a little bit
away and began to inch away. Angel growled in his sleep and pulled her
against him again. It was obvious that he wasn't going to let her out
of his sight or out of his embrace. She fell back asleep, resigned to
be still in his arms.
Angel woke up a little bit later and looked at his love. Kissing her cheek, he moved down and kissed the smooth line of her jaw. He inched further down leaving a trail of kisses on her slender neck. She woke with his kisses and half asleep, didn't remember where she was. All she knew was that this was one of her favorite dreams.
Angel kissed her lips and she arched in his arms, kissing him back and opening her mouth to a deeper kiss. Laying fully on top of her, Buffy relished in the feel of his weight on her tiny frame and his hands sliding down her arms and sides. She looped one of her legs around his back and he pressed his arousal into the piercing heat between her thighs. He groaned kissing her harder and slid his hand up to cup her breast through her flimsy top. She was braless underneath and Angel moaned into her mouth and moved down to lift her shirt and capture one perfect breast between his lips. She was pooling with arousal for him as he nipped at her rosy nipple. He ground his arousal harder between her legs as he moved to the other breast.
"Angel," she gasped as he pinched her nipple and began to kiss down her lean stomach. He pulled her pants down and off and Buffy was soon laying naked before her long ached for lover. She realized that he had forgotten more than the fact that they had broken up. He had forgotten the curse. She would stop him in just a minute, she thought, just a few more minutes.
"So beautiful," he whispered as he kissed her inner thighs, "Been so long," he whispered against her wet center. He dipped in to taste her sweetness and Buffy arched against him, forgetting her train of thought. She tried to focus on what she had been thinking but the feel of him was heaven and she reached down to clutch his shoulders as he tasted her sweet core, lapping up the juices there. "Love you," he whispered again as he continued his ministrations. She began bucking and shaking beneath him as she climaxed and he was relentless, not allowing her a moment's escape of him until she collapsed violently trembling. He kissed his way back up her body and caught her lips again, tasting her taste herself. She was delicious and he couldn't wait to feel her again, couldn't wait to be inside her. He shucked off his clothes and settled against her again, poised at her entrance.
Finally and with much effort, she gasped, "Angel, we can't."
"No?" He said, rubbing his hardness against her dripping folds. Capturing her nipple between his lips once more, he sucked gently, "Why not, love? You don't want me?" He asked while he kissed the valley between her breasts and moved to her other nipple.
"The curse," she gasped, holding onto his back tightly, "The curse," she gasped again. She was burning for him. She was about to lose her soul if he didn't stop or keep going or both.
"No curse," he said, moving up to her neck again, licking the mark he left there and pausing to suck on the scar.
"What the hell do you mean, no curse?" She yelled.
"Soul's permanent. Happened last time Willow cursed me," he said preparing to enter her again, "Can I make love to you now?" She nodded with her eyes full of tears. What if he was wrong? But he was already filling her, his coldness searing her insides, fitting perfectly. She had forgotten how perfect he fit her, how he filled her and inflamed her like no one else could. She forgot about the curse and the past and her current boyfriend. She forgot everything but the feel of him moving inside her again.
Buffy knew she was being stupid even as she was moving against him, even as she wrapped her legs around his waist and pulled him closer. She had no way of knowing what he remembered and what he knew of his life. The only thing she was sure of was that her love was in her arms again and she melted into him. Gasping loudly and calling each other's names, they reached orgasm together. Clinging to one another in the aftermath of sex, Buffy rested her head on his broad shoulder and waited. She began thinking of her clothes on the floor next to the bed and the stake that was in her jacket pocket. Would she have to kill him... again?
Riley wouldn't have noticed but Angel did. Not seeing her face or hearing her speak, he knew. "Don't worry, I'm not leaving," he said into her hair and pulling her in tighter, "Angelus can't ever come back"
Willow and Xander crept in the mansion and looked around. There didn't appear to be any signs of struggle. They both headed toward the bedroom, wearing twin expressions of fear. Creeping toward the door, they edged closer listening for any sounds at all. There were none. It was silent and they both hoped that didn't mean it was dead silent.
They looked in and found them asleep on the bed. They had a sheet over them but it was obvious that they were unclothed and that they had already made love. There was nothing left to do but wait. They walked back out to the atrium and began to whisper. It was decided that they would both stay and if Angelus was there, they could at least escape into the day.
Buffy was asleep and Angel was aching for a shower but there was no way he was leaving that bed. Buffy was sleeping soundly again. As hard as she had been sleeping, he began to suspect that she hadn't been sleeping well for some time. He knew if he got up, she wouldn't wake right away but he couldn't risk the chance of not being there when she opened her eyes. He knew her fears of Angelus' return and if she woke without him there, she would think he had turned. He waited awhile longer before he shook her gently. He wanted to shower so that he could patrol tonight and he was sure that Buffy would want to check in with Giles and the Scoobies. He had the nagging feeling that she would want to talk to that guy, Riley. He shrugged off his jealousy. Buffy was his. He would worry about the boy later.
"Buffy," he said, placing a tiny kiss on the end of her nose,"Wake up, love." She whined and snuggled into the covers.
"Come on sleepy, time to face the world," he said with a smile. Her eyes fluttered open and she smiled at him. He was still there, she realized as the quickly blinked the sleep away.
"You're still here," she said sitting up and touching him to make sure he was real.
"Yes," he said with a calm smile.
"You're still Angel," she said, touching his face and looking intently in his eyes.
"I love you!" she yelled throwing her naked body on top of his.
"I love you, too," he said laughing.
"I think Willow did it when she restored my soul before I went to Hell."
"When did you find out?"
"I don't know. I guess I just realized it," he said thinking back to the time that had passed, "well...yesterday. It just hit me while I had you in my arms that my soul was intact. I mean, how could I lost my soul with you when you are my soul?" With that she kissed him and he leaned back on the bed with her in his arms. Sitting astride him, she took him inside of her and for the first time since her 17th birthday, she left complete.
Willow and Xander ran silently to the bedroom when they heard voices and stood outside eavesdropping on the conversation. Willow smiled brightly when she found out that she had saved Angel's soul. She pulled Xander away as they heard sounds of them beginning to make love again. Willow was still smiling. Xander was not.
"Looks like Dead Boy's soul is intact," Xander said, strolling in Giles' apartment with Willow in tow.
"Yes, Angel thinks that it happened when I recursed him," the redheaded witch announced brightly.
"So you spoke with them? Did Angel seem better?" Giles asked.
"Wait, his soul is permanent?" Cordelia asked, "Like they already humped like bunnies?" Everyone except Cordelia stared at Riley who slumped down in his chair and looked down.
"They had sex?" Riley asked, looking up at Willow and Xander who could not answer him.
"Well, what did ya think, soldier boy?" Spike said, jumping off the counter with his novelty mug of blood, "Did you really think that the Slayer would find out that Peaches had his soul all permanent-like and wouldn't shag him? And, hell, the Slayer is one hot little ticket - of course, Angelus wasn't gonna let that pass by."
"Forbidden love of all time," Cordelia added.
"Sorry, Riley," Willow said, looking guilty as if she had been the person to brashly announce that they had slept together.
"Right then," Wesley said loudly, clearing his throat.
"Right then," Giles' agreed, "Let's discuss the plan. Seems that the law firm set about this ritual to rid Angel of his soul yet again."
"People never think of anything new," Cordelia stated.
"Yes, quite," Wesley, "It is getting rather old. They performed a spell called Primal Force."
"Oh, I know this one!" Willow said gleefully, "It's a spell where they take the greatest love or possession and make them think they will lose it."
"That's right, Willow," said Giles, "and the person who is affected has a primal protectiveness over the possession or person, in this case."
"Angel's greatest love is Buffy," Riley said staring at his boots.
"Yes and for some reason, it normally causes selective memory loss and rage. Normally if the person is at fault at all for having lost that love, they forget that they have jeopardized it."
"Right, so Dead Boy forgot that he left Buffy," Xander said.
"Precisely," Wesley chirped in, "Apparently Wolfram and Hart did not know that Angel's soul was permanently ensconced and so they believed that he would come here and lose it again."
"Great thwarted plan. Now what?" said Cordelia.
"Willow and Tara," Giles' said nodding at Tara who had remained quietly in the corner for the whole meeting, "can prepare the potion. It's fairly simple, really. Angel will drink it and his memory will return. Buffy will certainly check in this evening and when she does, we will give Angel the potion."
"Then what?" Riley said looking around. Everyone kept silent. No one was sure of the answer but they all thought they pretty much knew.
"I hate having to put on those dirty clothes when I just got out of the shower," Buffy said wrapped up in a towel and looking down at her discarded pile of clothes from the previous night.
"Then don't get dressed," Angel said seductively with a towel around his waist as he began kissing her neck, "I think we should go take another shower. I might have missed a spot."
"Get dressed, you sex crazed beast," Buffy said sitting on the end of the bed and picking up her clothes.
"Got a lot of time to make up for," he said with a wink.
They dressed quickly and stepped out into the dusky night air. The sun had just set and they both smiled at the colors still whipping around the horizon. Holding hands and nearly skipping with giddy happiness they headed for Giles' flat. Buffy stopped suddenly a block before they reached it.
"What?" Angel said, searching her eyes intently.
"Riley," she said with a look of guilt and shock.
"You're going to break up with him, right?" Angel asked.
"He'll probably break up with me once he finds out what happened," she said staring at the ground. Lifting her chin, Angel looked in her eyes again, "But that's okay with you, right?"
"I don't know, Angel," she said honestly.
"What don't you know? I thought you loved me."
"I do, it's just..."
"It's just what?" Angel said, wanting to shake her, wanting to scream, wanting to kill the competition.
"Once you regain your memory, you're going to remember that you don't want to be with me anymore. You're going to remember that you don't love me," she said as the involuntary tears began erupting from her eyes.
"Buffy, I may have some missing memories but I'm sure of one thing. I love you. Nothing would ever change that. I know that you are my soul mate. I know that I will always love you. Always." She took the hand he offered her and they walked the block to Giles' house. Outside of the door, he kissed her and she clung to him with the desperation of someone who knew she was about to die.
Inside, they looked around in amazement at everyone standing there waiting for their arrival. They felt like everyone was about to yell "surprise" or something.
"Angel," Willow said, looking up at the towering vampire.
"Hi, Willow," Angel said with a smile.
"Could you drink this? It'll bring back your memory." He took the cup and looked at Buffy. She nodded, trying not to notice that Riley was burning holes in her with his stare.
"Go ahead, Angel," she said.
"I love you," he said before gingerly taking the first sip. As he drank down the contents of the glass, everyone stared waiting for his reaction. "I don't think I feel-" he said and just as he had before when the spell started, he passed out in mid sentence. Buffy caught him and dragged him to the couch. She watched him closely for any signs of distress and held his head in her lap as he slept.
"How long until he wakes up?" Buffy asked Willow.
"I'm not sure," she answered.
"Well, last time he slept for like 4 fours or so," Cordy answered.
Angel slept for 3. After the first hour, Buffy stood up and keeping close to Angel's sleeping form, she began milling around and talking to her friends. Riley tried to talk to her several times but she brushed him off. Finally, he touched her arm, "Buffy, I really think we need to talk."
"I really agree," Buffy said, "But I can't right now. Not until I know that Angel is okay," she said and in her mind, silently added and whether he still loves me when he wakes up.
When he began to stir she ran over and knelt at his side, anxious and afraid. Would he even remember what happened. Angel's eyes opened and groggily he looked into the nervous face of Buffy.
"Buffy," he said, sitting up with her help.
"Angel," she whispered, terrified of his reaction. He sat there shaking his head for a moment, "Just need to gather my thoughts," he said. Long silent minutes passed as he looked around the room.
"Are you okay, Angel?" Buffy asked.
"Yeah, I think so. I was just thinking, if Cordy keeps getting visions, maybe I should only live in Sunnydale half of the time," he said with a grin. She looked up shocked and he pulled her into his arms, kissing her deeply.
"I told you I loved you, baby. Why didn't you believe me?" Angel said once they'd broke the kiss.
"I-I don't know," she said, tears filling her eyes again. Angel stood up and faced Riley.
"I owe you an apology, Riley," Angel said, looking at his lover's boyfriend, "I'm sorry for treating you the way I did. But I have to be truthful. I'm not sure I would have acted a whole lot less differently if I hadn't been under a spell. I'm am sorry though for hitting you and treating you like an enemy. I appreciate the kindness you have shown Buffy. I'm also sorry that I am going to take her away from you."
"Riley, I think we need to have that talk now," Buffy said, taking a step away from Angel toward Riley.
"No, I think that your demon said all there is to say," he said and slammed the door as he left.