Title: All They Ever Wanted
Rating: Child friendly PG I think.
Feedback: mmm better than chocolate, so yes please.
Authors Note: this is the result of too much caffeine and a very lazy Sunday afternoon. Please be gentle with me.
Disclaimer:These are not mine, they belong to Joss and Mutant Enemy, sigh, how I wish they were mine. please don't sue, am but a poor art student.
For the first time in a long while Angel felt like a normal man, he was a father, a friend, part of a family. He had everything he had ever wanted. Well almost everything, sure he couldn't go outside and bask in the glorious sunlight without ending up as a tiny pile of dust but nobody's perfect. Yet sunlight wasn't what Angel was missing as he watched his little son fidget in his crib. There was a large Cordelia shaped whole in his unlife at the moment and it was his own fault. He had told her to go be with Groo, he had watched her walk out of the Hotel, for godsake he gave them money! When all he had really wanted to do was hold her and love her and never let her go.
"Connor, your Daddy is a dumbarse." Angel told his now sleeping child.
"Have to agree with you there." Lorne said from the doorway. "I get that your trying to be all noble and hero like, letting Cordy go off in to the sunlight with tall dark and brainless, and its admirable, really, but stupid as hell."
"Thanks for the support." Angel muttered as he switched on the baby monitor and moved past the prescient demon. He lumbered into the kitchen, feeling exhausted and drained, wanting nothing more than to slip into a comforting broodfest. As he collapsed into a chair and opened a beer Angel watched his green friend make himself at home on the opposite end of the table.
"Any idea when you might be moving back to your place?" Angel grumbled, he really just wanted to be alone so he could replay the events of the last few days over and over again in his head.
"My aren't we surly tonight, I hope your girl comes back soon or we could be looking at another beige period for everyone round here."
"Cordelia's not my girl, and she's only been gone a few days, she won't be back for weeks. And I'm happy for her." Angel lied.
"Pfft, yeah sure big guy, I believe you." Lorne rolled his eyes and grabbed himself a drink.
"She made her decision." The vampire muttered.
"What decision, you never let her know she had a choice, you practically ran them outta town."
"He's the one she wants." Angel threw back his beer and opened another.
"Good lord man, she's made Groo into a carbon copy of you, hair, clothes, granted he's missing the deep soul penetrating eyes and overhanging brow, but in every other respect he's you, just taller. And not as complicated and emotionally inaccessible." Lorne shook his head at the vampire.
"He's not taller......." Angel trailed off.
"Yeah hun, that's what you need to focus on." Lorne rolled his eyes and drank his beer.
Cordelia Chase sat alone in her apartment, staring at her beeper, willing it to buzz. But no, she wasn't needed. They had everything under control, hell they all thought she was off sunning herself with her man anyway, of course they wouldn't beep her. She sighed. Sunless, manless, friendless, Angeless.
"Hello I'm Cordelia Chase and I'm the most pathetic person in the world." She said to the empty room. A scrap of paper fluttered down on to the table in front of her.'Go to him' was written roughly on it.
"I can't Dennis, I .....he.....Angel doesn't want me." Cordelia sighed. "Maybe I should have just gone with Groo, I mean he's sweet and caring, even if he is lacking.....something......and Angel quite clearly wanted me gone." She stared at the bundle of notes in front of her. Dennis' scribbled advice floated in front of her face making the young woman smile sadly at her ghost.
"Things used to be so much more simpler, Cordy Doyle and Angel against the world. But now, there are others to consider, we work together, little Connor,' She was running out of excuses quickly, 'plus Angel only sees me as a friend. I can't change that. I'm just going to have to live with it." Cordelia slumped and held her head in her hands. "I need a drink."
"Well as exciting as this is I'm going to bed." Lorne sighed, Angel had done the impossible, depressed the hell out of him.
"Hmm." Angel grunted and opened another beer.
"You may wanna stop at that one sugar." Lorne said over his shoulder as he left the room to check on Connor before he went to his room.
"Yeah, yeah." Angel stood up and stretched, feeling a little light-headed from the alcohol and made his way to the lobby, suddenly full of nervous energy. What was he doing? Never ever fall in love with your best friend, he thought to himself, it will only ever end in pain and booze. He tried to remember when he stopped seeing Cordelia as just an annoyance buzzing around the office. It had crept up on him like the warm heat of flushed skin. He had started to dream about her, he began to noticed how she rubbed the back of her head when she was tired from research, he saw how she worried about each of them more than she worried about herself. He started to find reasons to touch her, stand next to her and breathe in her soft perfume, he acted like a dork just to see her smile. That wonderful Cordelia smile. But that smile wasn't his anymore, she'd given it to another, with his permission.
Cordelia stood on the street opposite the hotel. Everything she wanted was inside. She wasn't really sure how she ended up here, she had just started walking. It was like a homing beacon to her, she could have been on the other side of the world but somehow she would have ended up back at this place. When she told Groo that she wasn't ready to have relationship she was lying, she was ready but not for him. Never for him. He might have been convenient but he wasn't the one she wanted, the one she dreamed of, the one she longed for. That title went to Angel. She had kept how she felt hidden for so long, at first she thought it was just a stupid crush carried over from Sunnydale, but it didn't go away, she'd tried to rationalise it, ignore it, repress and deny it, but there was nothing she could do. Cordelia was stuck with being in love with her vampire best friend and she was tired of having to deal with it. She didn't care if he didn't feel the same way anymore, she just needed to tell him before it ate her whole. She needed to be free of this.
When Cordelia walked into the dimly lit lobby Angel was sitting behind her desk staring at the blank computer screen with another beer in his hand. Angel had smelt her perfume but figured it was just his senses playing a cruel trick on him, so when he saw her he nearly fell off his chair.
"Hey." Cordelia raised an eyebrow at his dishevelled state.
"Cordy, your back, where's Groo?" Angel straightened himself up and walked over to her, his dead heart full at the sight of her.
"Groo is......Groo is gone." She said as she sat down on the steps. "We didn't....we didn't go away, as you can tell because I'm here." She finished uncharacteristically nervously.
"Is that all you have to say? 'Oh'?"
"What happened?" Angel sat down next to her.
"He wanted something I couldn't give him." Cordelia sighed.
"But I got you that potion thingy......." Angel cringed, he really didn't want to be thinking about this.
"It wasn't about sex Angel, geez, men, always with the sex." Cordelia rolled her eyes and fiddled with the cuff of her sleeve. "I.....it just didn't happen is all." She clammed up, her earlier confidence disappearing quickly.
The pair sat in silence for a while, both wanting to say so much but terrified of the others reaction.
"Angel, why did you want me to go?" Cordelia blurted out when she couldn't stand the silence any longer.
"I....I want you to be happy." Angel shrugged.
"Do you not think I'm happy here?"
"You're a beautiful young woman, you shouldn't be kept in the darkness." Angel said without looking at the woman he loved.
"Crap." Cordelia said plainly making Angel raise his eyebrows. "That's the same bull you fed Buffy, I know the circumstances where different but you used the same excuse."
"Cordy...?" Angel started only to be interrupted straight away.
"Ssh, I came here to tell you something and if you interrupt I'll lose my nerve and go crazy." Cordelia paused and took a deep breath, "Right...ok... I didn't go with Groo because everything I want, everything I need, is right here in this hotel. I never tell people how I feel about them, not how I really feel. But that stops now. I know you probably don't want to here this but I'm going to say it anyway, I love you. And not in a friend way. In a love way. Your annoying and dense and beautiful and kind. I can't imagine my life without you. I don't want alife without you. And now I'm going to go home and hide under my duvet and never ever show my face around here again." Cordelia got up to leave, her cheeks burning with embarrassment, this didn't seem like such a good idea anymore. Angel caught her arm and stilled her, trying to understand everything Cordelia had just said.
"Cordy..." But he was interrupted again, this time by his baby boy screaming for him as though the world was coming to an end.
"You need to go to your boy." She smiled at him, that child has amazing timing she thought to herself.
"Come with me." He held on to her hand, giving her little choice in the matter.
Angel picked up his son instantly realising he needed to be changed.
"How so much ick can come out of such a little cutie is beyond me." Cordelia smiled at the baby as Angel went about the business of being a parent. She picked up his teddy and held it, inhaling the baby scent, a soft smile played at her lips. Everything I want is in this room, she said to herself again.
"He's missed you, he's missed his mama." Angel said when he laid Connor back in the crib.
"I.....I've missed him too." Cordelia said, a little taken aback by Angel letting her know he thought of her as Connor's mother. Cordelia sat down in his leather chair and waited for the 'I love you but as a friend' speech. Angel knelt down in front of her and took her hands in his. She held her breath in anticipation. When Angel smiled at her Cordelia's world began to spin the wrong way.
"Cordy, that night when Groo turned up, after we....well you know, I was going to tell you what you meant to me. But things got kinda difficult and I , well I just didn't. But then you and Groo left, it was too late. I didn't want you to go but I thought it was what you wanted, I want you to be happy. You are all I think about. You and Connor are everything." Angel smiled again, he brushed her hair behind her ear and ran his thumb across her cheek. Cordelia's heart was beating so fast she thought she was going to pass out. "I love you. Sometimes you infuriate me, but I do love you."
"Oh." Cordelia hadn't expected this.
"Is that all you have to say, 'oh'?" Angel grinned at her.
"You are such a dork." Cordelia laughed at him, relief flooding her body. Angel leant forward and kissed her softly, silencing her laughter. When he pulled away Cordelia still had her eyes closed, a dreamy grin on her face.
"Mmmm?" Cordelia came to, a familiar flush tingling her skin.
"So you and me huh?"
"That works for me." Cordelia smiled, tears welling in her eyes.
"Well its about damn time." Angel said as he kissed her once again.