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tales from a fangirl
Fic Post 
28th-Oct-2007 05:08 pm
ca
Title: Nothing Worth Having (Was Ever Easy).
Pairing: C/A
Summary: Angel goes to see Cordelia after seeing Buffy in Forever.
Rating: R
Genre: Angst
Disclaimer: not mine, Fox, ME, Whedon. Those are the guys with the pink slip.
Notes: not sure where this came from, but I can say that about a lof of my fic. There may be more, but for now this is it. Short ficlet.

~~


She’s packing up the last of the office furniture when the front door jingles musically.

She looks up as Angel walks through, the cold air sweeping in with him. His face is neutral, careful not to reveal anything.

“Hi.” He says, hands clasped like a monk on his way to evening prayers. Contrition surrounds him like an aura, and he wears it like he wears everything else. So well.

She’s not buying though.

Putting the box back down on the desk, she straightens and faces him.

“How’s Buffy?”

It’s not a dig, not a way of making him feel like shit for leaving right after he asked to be let back in, but it is a way of keeping things in perspective.

And she’s Perspective Girl these days.

His mouth pulls down, like it always does when the B word comes up.

“She’s holding it together.”

“I’m glad.” She replies, and means it.

He nods and she watches him search for something else to say.

“Well. Good night.” She turns back to her packing.

The silence behind her makes a shiver snake up her spine. She can literally feel his eyes boring holes into her back. She picks up the box and turns to find him stepping up to her, invading her space.

“Cordy. I thought –“He begins to reach for the box in her hands but stops himself when she moves it out of his reach. His hand curls into a fist. “I thought we were past this?”

She arches an eyebrow.

“Past what?”

He glares at her; beginning to get angry at the wall she won’t stop building.

“This.” He replies, gesturing between them. “This attitude of yours. I thought you had forgiven me. I thought we were – that we were…” It’s clear he’s lost, angry, not sure why he’s not getting all his toys back when he wants them.

But she’s in no mood to help him out of the woods.

“Is that what you thought?” She drops the box again and wraps her arms across her abdomen. “You say ‘I’m sorry, I was wrong’ and we throw open the doors and invite you back inside?”

He looks like that’s exactly what he thought.

“No! I know it’s not that easy –“

“You’re damned right it’s not that easy, Mr. I’m-So-Sorry-I-Was-An-Asshole-For-Months” Suddenly she’s as pissed off as she’s making him. “We took you back because we needed you, not because any of us are ready to forgive and forget. If you wanted that, if you wanted the star treatment, you should have stayed in Sunnydale with Buffy.”

She swallows hard, feeling her heart beating painfully behind her rib cage, her hands shaking. She’s never talked to him like this before, resentment coming out of her like water out of a sponge

She blinks away the hurt and watches as he takes a step back, staggered, it seems, by the realization that home isn’t where he left it. He presses his lips together as his eyes drill her where she stands.

“That’s just great Cordy, just wonderful, because - funny enough - I could’ve stayed. In Sunnydale. She wanted me to.” He blurts it out and she inhales sharply, feeling like he’s just stuck a knife in her chest. “I offered to.”

His confession is obviously meant to make her aware of his choices, and she wonders why she cares so much it’s suddenly hard to breathe.

“Maybe you should have Angel.” She says it quietly, feeling so tired of the raging pain he culls from her so easily. “Maybe she’s got a better offer for you than we do.”

He looks at her.

“She wanted forever.” He replies quietly.

She blinks past the burn of salty acid behind her eyelids.

“Sounds like a good offer.” She turns away and busies herself with bubble wrap.

She can hear the way his clothes shift against his skin as he steps closer.

“It felt good, Cordy.”

stab, stab

The ice pick goes deeper into her soft belly.

“To be needed, just to be needed. It was so simple. To hold her, to comfort her with my arms, my mouth. It was tempting. I even kissed her.” His words are quiet, rhythmic, and she doesn’t hear anything else until -

The loud breathing in the room.

She realizes it’s her.

The walls are blurring, her nose is suddenly running.

“She didn’t need anything else, just for me to be there.”

His voice is closer and she grips the roll of butcher paper, unable to speak up, to tell him to shut up and shove off.

“But….” He trails off as she feels his fingers gripping her arm slightly, pressuring her to turn around. She resists, shrugging off his hold.

“I wanted to come back.” His voice is so soft, so much closer. “I kept thinking ‘Cordy might need me’, ‘she might have a vision, or just need help packing’.” She feels his face in her shoulder, nuzzling her skin with soft lips that drag over her flesh.

She closes her eyes against the need that piles up on top of the hurt, until she can’t tell the difference between the two anymore.

And that scares her worse than anything.

“I don’t need you, not even to help me pack.” Goosebumps trawl along her skin leisurely, making her shiver.

His hands come to rest on her hips as he steps right up against her back.

And the shivers turn to trembles.

“I know. I think that’s why I came back.” He raises his head and his mouth hovers so close to hers, she can almost taste him. “Because you don’t need me.” He whispers against her lips. “But I need you.”

She lets him kiss her, allows this seduction because she’s always wondered.

To be wanted by Angel.

It’s not such a bad thing.

She allows the kiss, returns it, and when he pulls away, she takes a step back, and touches her fingers to her damp lips.

“It’s nice.” More than nice. “But it doesn’t change anything between us - you and me, you and this agency. You’re going to have to work for it.” She blinks, focusing on him. “All of it.”

He nods, licking the dampness from his lips.

“I know. And I’m willing to play things your way.” He turns to walk back out into the LA night, but she watches as he pauses and twists around. “For now.”

The bell jingles musically as he exists and she stands staring at the empty space where he stood for a long time.

~
end
~



+
Comments 
29th-Oct-2007 12:37 am (UTC)
Guh. That is a scene that REALLY needed to be in the episode. The tug-of-war between Buffy and Cordelia, and he knows where he's supposed to be- I love it!
29th-Oct-2007 03:29 am (UTC)
Thank you. I think a part of him was tempted to stay with Buffy but I also think he knew where he wanted to be, really and truly. At least, that's what I wanted to convey.
29th-Oct-2007 04:57 am (UTC)
It came across really well, and your fic ties the two storylines so seamlessly. I love Angel, who is so used to people needing him to come to their rescue, recognizing that Cordelia is there for him because she wants to be, not because she needs to be.
29th-Oct-2007 12:53 am (UTC)
I love that he wants someone who doesn't need him. *wibble* Lovely!

Cordy should've given him a much harder time on the show.
29th-Oct-2007 03:38 am (UTC)
Yes, she totally should have. Angel had a rough unlife, but sometimes things were a bit too easy for him - like the room full of lawyers who would have died with or without his involvement....or Cordelia forgiving him too fast.

And I love that if Angel had never had his epiphany and come back, Cordelia would have been just fine. She had such a strong center, and she really wouldn't let anything beat her down for long. It makes it hard to write dark fic about her, my favorite kind, but I love that my OTC has such balls on her. :D
29th-Oct-2007 04:58 am (UTC)
I hate how shallow they made her look that she forgave Angel just because he bought her clothes.
29th-Oct-2007 01:30 am (UTC)
You changed it a bit. I like it. And I love that he came back because he needed her and she'll make him work for it. As it should be. :D
29th-Oct-2007 03:45 am (UTC)
Thanks :D

I always loved that Angel seemed to need Cordelia more than she needed him. When he said he was lost without her, that sort of clinched it for me.
29th-Oct-2007 09:20 am (UTC)
I like how you write Cordelia - she doesn't forgive easily, meaning that she's not shallow (the "giving clothes so I forgive him" thing). She's strong and she doesn't need him, doesn't need to have him by her side to carry on the mission.

It's also nice to see that, even Buffy needed him, Angel came back to Cordelia - just because he needs her.
30th-Oct-2007 03:05 am (UTC)
Cordelia's always been his touchstone, since s1, I find it hard to imagine that he could go on without her in his life, but I think she gave him her strength too, because everything Cordelia did was for Angel.

Unfortunately, that's what killed her. But that's another rant.
29th-Oct-2007 09:38 am (UTC)
Oh ma guh.

I just spewed on about this in a video I made - about how Angel always seemed to NEED Cordelia more than she needed him. Hell, the poor boy fell apart without her.

I love that you captured here what the show pretty much skimmed over. You and I have reached our own discussed conclusions about the infamous clothes scene ;o) but this *is* what I saw in Cordelia, deep, deep down. The desire to forgive, even the attempt to, but not *quite* being able to let go. Atleast not until he barrelled into Pylea headfirst trying to rescue her. We saw it in Dead End and Belonging when she snapped his head off, and then consoled him for his efforts.

This entire piece echoes just that - and stunningly, might I add. ;o) I love that they hurt each other, and *try* to hurt each other, but in the end, simply want to make it better.

Perfect.
30th-Oct-2007 03:10 am (UTC)
That's exactly what it means to be in love, to be married. The tug of war between being right, sometimes self-righteously so, and the desire to make peace with your mate. Because both parties bleed when they're fighting, and I think that as hurt and as pissed off as Cordelia was by Angel's failure to see beyond himself, she also wanted him back, in the end, because she was bleeding without him.

Dude. They were so married. lol
29th-Oct-2007 01:50 pm (UTC)
Great ficlet!

Girl, you have me feeling all of these emotions, with your fics. It's a good thing! You put us right there, in the moment. The dialogue fits Angel and Cordy. These are words they would say.

I like that it's angst, with hope ♥
30th-Oct-2007 03:11 am (UTC)
That was them right then, angst, but hopeful.

29th-Oct-2007 03:29 pm (UTC)
Awesome!

This really how it would fit between this episode and the next. Just perfectly.

And I can't really think right now anymore. Sorry.:)
30th-Oct-2007 03:13 am (UTC)
That's fine, babe, that's enough for me.

I wanted a bridge between Forever and Disharmony and I wanted to explore Angel's torn feelings for Buffy and Cordelia.

But you know, being a c/a whore and all, I'm gonna heavily slant it in Cordelia's favor. lol
29th-Oct-2007 04:01 pm (UTC)
Oh my guh! That gave me chills right there. Fabulous fic..it captured just how much Angel always needed cordelia..and how she refused to see his desire or hid it really well.

The true Cordelia would never have forgiven Angel easily. beautiful fic my dear. :)
30th-Oct-2007 03:17 am (UTC)
I thought it was incredibly mature of Cordelia to step back from her hurt and forgive him. I think the clothes were an excuse, becaus she'd forgiven him by that point, she just needed a prompt to cross that threshold. The clothes gave them to her.

Plus, how awesome is it that Angel knows her body enough to buy her clothes. I know some like to wank it that Lorne bought them, but if you believe those people, Angel never did anything for Cordelia that wasn't forced out of him. Not to mention, Angel does not need anyone to buy women's clothes for him, not after having spent 150 years with Darla, the clotheshorse.

I know. Preaching to the choir. Sorry.
30th-Oct-2007 03:03 pm (UTC)
oh pish posh. I love when you preach. *bats eyelashes*

"Plus, how awesome is it that Angel knows her body enough to buy her clothes."
you just have this natural talent of taking the most simplest thing and turning it into a sexual seduction of guh. ;) whatever the hell that means. lol
(Deleted comment)
30th-Oct-2007 03:19 am (UTC)
Thank you, dear. ;)

I love my ship, and if I can make someone cry, even a little, over them, then awesome!
30th-Oct-2007 01:43 am (UTC)
So, so great. Your voices were just perfect. I never thought that Cordy would have forgiven him just for a new wardrobe--this is a great missing scene to rectify that. :)
30th-Oct-2007 03:21 am (UTC)
Thanks. I think I've written four different versions of "Cordy gives Angel a hard time before forgiving him", including this one.

I just know one day I'm gonna move on and write something else.

But I don't think I'm there yet. *props chin in hand*
30th-Oct-2007 12:15 pm (UTC)
I just know one day I'm gonna move on and write something else.

Hee! I thought I was the only one who wrote different variations around the same theme, although mine revolve around Spangel. ;)
30th-Oct-2007 09:21 pm (UTC)
Wow, this is just such an amazingly powerful scene between Cordy and Angel. I love the interaction and dialogue between them. You did a fantastic job of really getting the tension between them across. And I love the ending!
6th-Nov-2007 02:56 am (UTC)
I'm a bad LJer. I can't believe I forgot to respond to this. *hangs head*

Thank you. I'm glad my piddling thoughts about what Angel might have been feeling/thinking coalesced into something that spoke to so many. I love that you got what i was trying to say, to convey. :D
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