INNOCENT THOUGH EXPERIENCED
Set after the final episode of Angel The Series.
Angel gets a surprise visitor and a suggestion.
An established relationship story.
Written: August 2009. Word count: 500.
From their temporary office he watches the sun set, sliding down beyond the horizon, heralding the beginning of the night; the beginning of the time he can venture outside.
He still doesn't know how.
But the costs were high. Too high.
Wesley and Gunn; both dead.
Lorne: hopefully alive, but he knows Lorne'll never be seen again.
Connor: lost to him, but thankfully safe.
And Fred: Dead? Alive? Both. Neither. Illyria lives, and somewhere within her is Fred. Was Fred. Angel has seen nothing of Fred, not even a hint, since the moment she told them of Wes's death.
It's just him, Spike and Illyria. Friends? Enemies? Both. Neither. Just them. Just the three of them. But they survived; against all the odds, they survived. For now. As he stares out of the window, he watches the final fingers of the sun disappear, plunging the city that never sleeps into a darkness that is never dark.
He hears a noise and turns, ready for action. He stops and just stares at her. She's lost weight, she looks tired, she looks years older than the last time he saw her. "Buffy?" He whispers her name, hardly daring to believe she really is there.
And then she smiles; the smile he knows she's never bestowed on anyone else. "Angel." Even her voice sounds different; hesitant, older, wearier.
And then under his eyes, the years fade, the tiredness vanishes, and she's crossing the room and he's sweeping her up in his arms, holding her, kissing her, drinking in her scent. He never stopped loving her; he never will.
Finally, he puts her back on the ground and she takes his hand. "I'm sorry," she says. "About Wesley, Gunn, Fred, Cordy. Everyone."
He can't acknowledge it. Instead he asks, "What are you doing here? I thought you were -"
"I've come home." She speaks quietly. "I've come home to you. You need me, Angel, and I need you. We'll be together now."
He shakes his head. "Buffy, you know -"
But she puts her finger to his lips. "It'll be all right. We'll work it out. We don't have make love. Lots of couples don't. As long as we have each other, that's all we need." And she smiles.
He looks down at her. He looks down and sees the sixteen year old girl and the young woman she turned into and the woman so much older than her years, all rolled into one. She's still so innocent. Despite everything she has done, she's still so innocent.
And maybe it will be enough. Maybe she's right. Maybe her innocence can wrap itself around him and save him; absolve him. Together they are stronger than apart. They always were.
He wants to believe her.
He really does.
He pulls her back into his arms and buries his head in her hair. Tomorrow will bring what it will bring, for now, he has her back. He has Buffy. He'll believe.
Until The End is the sequel to this story.
Feedback is always appreciated
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