Angel’s Sigh


by Saber ShadowKitten


Part One




"Angel, you have to snap out of it," his best friend of over three years said.

Willow looked at him with her hands on her hips. "I know it was hard for you to find that Buffy no longer loved you, but it's time to move on."

Angel snorted softly. "Yeah, hard for me that Buffy chose that demon..."

"Angel!" Willow said with exasperation. "Enough! You were the one who always said that it was wrong for the two of you to be together. So deal."

Angel looked at his best friend and cringed. "Sorry."

"You should be. Now, come on, you promised we'd go see that new musician at The Center."

Angel sighed and stood up, rubbing a hand through his thick hair. He looked down at the young woman in front of him. "Ok. Get your coat."

Willow grinned and jumped up and down in a little dance. "Are we going to take your bike?"

Angel smiled at her enthusiasm. "Yes, Willow, we will."

She made her trademark sound of geeker joy and ran into the hallway, sliding on her jacket and pulling her helmet out of the closet. Angel had gotten her one when she had started to want to ride his bike everywhere.

As they sat listening to the music, Angel thought back to how he became close to the red head beside him.

It was with her help that Giles was able to rescue him from hell. He had woken up from his nightmare to find himself on the floor of the library, covered by a scratchy blanket, a worried Willow looking down into his face.

"Angel?" she had said with a small voice.

"Wh-what happened?"

"You were in hell. We got you back," she replied.

He had laid there silently for a few moments, bloody tears streaming down his face. Then he looked up at his rescuers. "Thank you."

Giles had nodded and went back into his own office, probably to compose himself, seeing as how Angelus had killed his love, Jenny Calendar.

Willow had stayed by his side, wiping the tear tracks from his cheeks. "C'mon, let's get you home."

Angel smiled as he remembered how Willow took charge of his life those first few months out of hell. She never blamed him for what Angelus did and, after time, made him believe it, too. They became fast friends, and stayed up nights talking about the past, the present and the future.

Willow had gone to a nearby college, getting her degree in computer science. She had graduated in two years through the accellerated program and was currently working on designing anti-theft software for large corporations. She had also kept the Bronze up and running while he was gone. She said that the place had too many good memories for it to be bought by some large conglomerate.

"...earth to Angel? Anyone home?" Willow said, waving her hand in front of his eyes.

Angel grinned sheepishly. "Sorry. I was thinking."

"That was obvious." Willow rolled her eyes. "About what?"

"About our friendship," Angel said. He reached over and grabbed her hand. "I'm so glad we're friends."

"Me, too," Willow said. The stood up and left The Center, hand in hand.



Part Two



"Ut-oh," Willow said as she looked at the mail in her hand.

"Ut-oh, what-o?" Angel asked from his seat at the kitchen table. Angel had asked Willow to move into his apartment with him three months before and there were still boxes piled up everywhere. She had only agreed when he had mentioned that it would give her more time to work on her computer programs without having to worry about things like rent.

Taking over the apartment behind his, they had knocked down the separating wall, creating a large, two bedroom, two bath home. Willow had teased him that they also had two kitchens, and only one of them needed to eat.

Angel liked the soft touches Willow had brought with her when she moved. Gone was some of his "so-called art," as Willow put it. Gone was the sparseness. Plants and flowers practically grew from every surface. Colorful throw pillows littered the new couch they had picked out together. "Not leather," Willow had insisted on their furniture shopping spree.

Willow had found his drawings and insisted on framing them. She also insisted that he get a small portrait of himself done. "I want a picture of you," she had said. "And don't think you're not going to do it. See my resolve face?"

"It's an invitation," Willow said, opening up the envelope forwarded to her from her old address. "Oh, boy," she said as she read the contents.

"If you don't tell me, I'll die from the suspense," Angel said jokingly.

"It...it's a wedding invitation. F-for Buffy," Willow stuttered, unsure of how her best friend would take the news.

Angel stared dumbfounded at Willow. His mouth opened and closed several times, but nothing came out.

"I don't have to go," Willow said.

That broke him out of it. "No, no, no. You have to go. Buffy one of your friends, she'd want you to be there." He took the invitation from her. The wedding was to be next month in Los Angeles.

"But, you were her friend, too..." Willow began.

Angel cut her off. "But not anymore. She made her choice and I left, simple as that."

"But Angel..."

"No 'buts', Willow. You're going. I'm not. That's final."


*****


"I can't believe you talked me into this," Angel said, pulling at his tie.

Willow swatted his hands away and fixed the cumbersome object once again.

Angel sighed, which, in Willow's opinion, he was becoming way to good at for someone who didn't have to breathe.

"Hold still," she said. "And stop sighing."

"Yes, mom," he said teasingly.

Willow tightened the tie around his throat, giving him a dirty look. Angel threw up his hands in defense. "Sorry, sorry."

Willow giggled. "You better be. There, all fixed. Now, stop pulling on it and let's go in. We want to be able to get good seats."

Angel rolled his eyes at her attempted humor. She knew that he had wanted to sit as far away from the holy objects in the church as possible.

It was ironic, to him at least, that a demon without a soul was getting married in a church. It wasn't a Catholic Church, but still, something was really wrong with the world for this to be able to happen.

They took a seat in the last pew, away from the doorway. Willow, however, would not sit down. She was craning her neck to see who else was at the church.

"I think I see Xander up near the front. It looks like Cordelia is with him," Willow said. Xander, Cordelia and the rest of the group had all gone their separate ways after high school. Willow exchanged e-mail and phone calls, but not very often. They knew that Angel was back, but not that they were best friends, nor that they were living together.

"Do you want to go and say hello?" Angel asked.

Willow shook her head. "No. We'll see them at the reception."

Angel sighed again.

The church filled up quickly. It was a small church, but Buffy had made other friends in Los Angeles over the years she was there. The music started and hush fell over the church.

Angel saw Spike walk out of a side door, followed by the minister. He chuckled under his breath when he saw Spike pull at his tuxedo collar. It wasn't often you saw a vampire dressed in one.

The Wedding March began to play, and everyone stood, facing the doors. Buffy and Giles walked in, arm in arm, and proceeded down the aisle.

Angel felt his heart catch at the site of Buffy. She was beautiful. The dress she had bought with Willow's help fell across her body as if it were cut only for her. The half veil on a crown of flowers sat nestled in her hair, a few tendrils had been curled around her face.

Angel didn't know whether to laugh or to cry. He hadn't seen Buffy in so long, not since he left her on the street with an injured Spike. He looked down at the sudden pressure in his hand. Willow had taken it and squeezed, knowing what her best friend was feeling.

Angel was glad Willow was there.



Part Three



The reception was in full swing.

Contrary to popular belief, vampires can get drunk if they so desire. It took quite a bit of alcohol to do so, but it was possible. And Angel was trying quite hard.

"Angel, if you keep drinking like that, I'm not going to be able to get you home," Willow said with exasperation.

They had been seated at a table with Xander, Cordelia, Oz and Giles. After catching up on old times during dinner, which Angel didn't touch of course, the group had gone off to dance.

Angel glared at Willow, then swallowed his drink. The brandy left a fiery trail down to his belly.

Willow sighed and shook her head sadly. "Angel, can't you just be happy that Buffy is happy?"

"I'm happy," Angel said defensively.

Willow snorted.

"What?"

"If you get any more happy, you're going to pass out."

"Vampires don't pass out."

Willow looked around furtively. "Shh! Announce that you're a vampire to the whole world, why don't you."

Angel had enough sense to look remorseful. "Sorry."

"Ok. Now enough drinking. Let's go dance," Willow said.

"I don't dance," Angel said.

"Well, tonight you do," Willow responded. She took his hand and dragged him to the dance floor.

"But, Willow..." Angel whined.

"Stop whining, you big baby," Willow said as she forced him into the traditional dancing position. Luckily, she had been practicing. "Now, DANCE."

Angel's eyes widened at her forcefulness, and he began to lead her in an old fashioned step from his youth. He stumbled a few times, from the amount of alcohol he consumed, but Willow held him up and continued to dance.

During one of his stumbles, however, they bumped into Buffy and Spike.

"Buffy!" "Angel!"

The two couples looked at each other. Willow swore she saw steam coming from under Angel's collar as he glared at Spike.

"Hey, guys, congratulations again," Willow said, breaking the tension. She hugged Buffy, then Spike, to his surprise. Willow turned to Angel expectantly. "Angel?"

Angel looked at Willow blankly. "What?" She kicked him. "Ow....wow, you look great, Buffy. Congratulations, you two. I mean it."

Buffy's eyes widened. "You do?"

Angel sighed once again. Willow rolled her eyes at hearing this. "Of course he does, now why don't you two go dance." She pushed Angel into Buffy's arms, then grabbed Spike and forced him to dance away.

Angel watched his best friend move off with Spike. Buffy looked up into Angel's face and laughed at the panic she saw there. "Relax, Angel. I don't bite."

Hearing this, Angel looked at Buffy and saw her smile. He relaxed visibly. "But maybe I do."

Buffy laughed and hugged her old love. "Thank you for coming. It means a lot to me."

"Yeah, well, you're welcome," Angel said.

"How did you know about the wedding? I tried to find out where you were living from Giles, but he wouldn't say."

"Willow brought me. She's very persuasive," Angel replied with a smile.

"Willow, huh?" Buffy saw his fond smile at the mention of her. "I saw you dancing with her. I didn't know you were friends."

Angel's smile changed into a sad one. "I'm sorry about that. It's my fault. I shouldn't have broken off all contact with you after you...decided to stay with Spike."

"Very tactful. I'm impressed," Buffy said with a smile. "Don't worry about it, water under the bridge...or over it...or, well, you know what I mean."

Angel looked surprised for a moment, then hugged Buffy to him. "You are marvelous."

Spike and Willow danced back to Angel and Buffy. Spike growled a warning at seeing Angel hugging his wife. Angel growled back.

Both Buffy and Willow burst out laughing.

"You two, enough with the one upmanship," Willow said. "Now, make nice."

Spike and Angel glared at Willow, who just smiled innocently at them.

Angel sighed, which caused Willow to snicker under her breath. He closed his eyes in a fake show of pain, then looked Spike. "Congratulations, Spike." He held out his hand, which the other vampire took at Buffy's urging.

They shook hands, but Angel pulled Spike close enough to whisper menacingly in his ear. "Take care of her, my childe. Or you'll die."


*****


Angel downed another brandy. He held up the empty glass and stared into it.

"Are you trying to see your reflection? Cuz if you are, you could be looking for awhile," Willow said, wrapping her arms around his shoulders and speaking in his ear.

Angel growled softly under his breath at her and Willow laughed lightly.

"C'mon. It's time to go home."

Angel felt embarrassed to be riding behind Willow on his motorcycle. But Willow had insisted that he was drunk.

They arrived home and Angel poured himself another drink as Willow went to change out of her dress. He downed it quickly, then refilled the glass before collapsing onto the couch, tossing his tie onto the floor. He closed his eyes and leaned his head back.

"Angel!" Willow yelled as she entered their living room.

"What?"

"Stop drinking already!" Willow said. She marched over and snatched the glass from his hand.

Angel opened his eyes and looked at her in surprise. "Willow?"

"Don't you 'Willow' me! Enough is enough!"

Angel looked at his best friend in amazement. He'd never seen her this mad before. Willow's eyes blazed in anger, her red hair framed her flushed face. She was wearing an old t-shirt of his and nothing else.

She never looked more beautiful.

Angel always knew Willow was beautiful, but he had been too hung up over Buffy to really notice.

Willow stomped into the kitchen and dumped the drink down the drain. Then she grabbed a bag of blood from the refrigerator and threw it at him. "Feed," she ordered as she stood at the side of the couch.

Angel immediately complied, not wanting to infuriate her further. When he was done, she snatched the empty packed, tossed it in the sink, then pointed down the hall. "March!"

Obeying without question, Angel went to his room, Willow following close behind. She pulled off his jacket as he walked, leaving it where it fell on the floor. Upon entering the room, Willow grabbed Angel by the belt and spun him around.

"I cannot believe you," Willow said through gritted teeth as she unbuttoned his white dress shirt. She pushed it off his shoulders, then started to unbuckle his belt.

"Of all the pig-headed, rude, obnoxious people I know," Willow fumed as Angel's pants fell to the floor. She pushed him onto the bed. "You are the worst! Why couldn't you just be happy for her!"

Willow threw his socks and shoes across the room and finished removing his pants. "I heard what you said to Spike! It was uncalled for and unnecessary!" Willow pulled him up by his undershirt collar, then removed that as well, mumbling obscenities under her breath as she did.

Angel sat on the bed in only his boxers, a pale, terrified look on his face. But it was not from fear of Willow's wrath. It was from fear that she would look down and notice his reaction to her tirade. His very evident reaction.

Willow looked down.

"Oh! I…er…um…oh!" she said, her face blushing.

"Willow?"

She quickly left the room.

Angel laid back onto the bed and closed his eyes. *Great. Just great. Now I ruined the best thing that had ever happened to me,* he thought. *Willow is never going to speak with me again. Or friendship is going to be so awkward.*

Angel was so caught up in his thoughts he didn’t know Willow had re-entered the room until he felt her.

On top of him.

Kissing him.

Naked.




Part Four




Angel became so excited at what Willow was doing to him, his face morphed into it’s demonic visage.

Flipping over, he pinned her arms above her head and began to kiss and nip Willow all over her body. Willow moaned in pleasure and wiggled under him.

Quickly shedding his boxers, Angel pressed his body against Willow’s, kissing her passionately, cutting her lips with his fangs. Tasting the blood, his erection jerked against her body.

Willow loosed her hand from Angel’s grasp and brought it between them, leading him into her.

They both cried out when Angel entered her. So heated was there coupling, sweat glistened on their bodies and soaked the sheets.

"Angel!" Willow yelled as she climaxed. She bucked her hips against his wildly as the orgasm wracked her body.

"My sweet, sweet Willow," Angel said through his fangs as he went over the edge as well.

They lay on top of one another, spent, and drifted off to sleep.


*****


*What is that infernal racket?* Angel thought as he slowly opened his eyes. He immediately shut them again when the banging continued. "Go way," he mumbled into the pillow. It was several weeks after he and Willow consummated their friendship.

When the noise didn’t stop, he got out of bed, slid his robe on and stormed out of the bedroom. "What the hell is all the noise?" he practically bellowed.

He stopped when he saw his living room filled with people.

"Oh, hi Angel," Willow said, blushing. She hurried up to him and took his hand.

Angel looked at the various faces in his home, then looked down at Willow. *She’s so beautiful,* he thought as he brought his hand up to brush a piece of hair from her face. "Hi back," he said quietly.

Willow blushed even brighter red, then pulled him back down the hall to the bedroom. "I’m sorry about all the noise…" she began.

Angel swept her up into his arms and kissed her soundly.

"Angel!" Willow said, giggling. "We have guests."

Angel growled, then seeing her roll her eyes, set her down onto his lap on the bed. "And here I was thinking I could have a repeat of last nights performance," he said as he nuzzled her ear.

"Angel," Willow sighed, snuggling up against him. "I’d love nothing more, but they just showed up and I couldn’t not let them in, having traveled all the way from Los Angeles."

Angel sighed.

"You sigh too much for a dead man," Willow said with a grin. She wiggled on his lap, trying to get closer.

"Um, Willow. You’d better cut that out if you want to see your friends anytime today," Angel said huskily.

"What? Oh!" Willow said, jumping off his lap. She blushed once again. "Get dressed. I’ll see you out there."

She walked to the door and was about to leave when she turned and said, "And best behavior!"

"Yes, mom," Angel said with a petulant whine.

Angel dressed and joined the group in the living room after stopping to pour himself a glass of blood from one of the packages in the refrigerator.

"Hello Buffy, Spike," he said, nodding to the pair seated on the couch.

"Hi Angel!" Buffy said, jumping up to hug him. "How goes it?"

Angel hugged her back, waiting for the familiar pang in his heart. It didn’t happen.

"Pretty good. Did Willow fill you in on her selling her software program?"

"Yeah. I think that’s great! But that’s not why we’re here. We…I wanted to see where my best friend lived and found out it was here - with you!" Buffy said with a large grin on her face.

Angel actually blushed. He quickly took a sip of blood, almost choking.

"Wrong pipe, mate?" Spike asked with a devilish twinkle in his eye. Angel glowered at him.

"All right you two, cut it out," Willow said. She pulled Angel onto the floor with her. "So, Buff, how was the honeymoon?"

"Great! We went to Las Vegas. The city that never sleeps. And believe me, we didn’t sleep," Buffy said.

This time Spike blushed.

The foursome sat and chatted for a few hours before Buffy and Willow went into the kitchen to make themselves something to eat.

"So, tell," Buffy asked when they were alone. "What’s up with you and Angel?"

"We’re…uh…friends," Willow stammered, turning the color of her hair.

"Yeah, right, friends," Buffy said. "And how good of a friendship is it?"

Willow smiled shyly and continued to blush.

"You go, girl!" Buffy enveloped her friend in a hug. "Is it love?"

"On my end, yeah. I’m not sure about him, yet."

"Well, I’ll grill Spike later. I told him to pump Angel for info when I found out you two were living together."

"Buffy!"


*****


"So, mate," Spike said. "What’s up with you and Willow?"

"Like I’d tell you," Angel replied.

"Oh, so that’s how it is." Spike grinned.

"What are you talking about?"

"You’re in love with her."

Angel looked at him sharply. "Why do you say that?"

"It’s obvious, you bloody dolt. First, you let her lead you around like a puppy. Second, you didn’t try to tear off my head when you came in the room. And third, you’ve been staring at her all night."

"And this is love, why?"

"Because that’s how I act with Buffy," Spike admitted with a faint blush.

Angel looked at Spike in a new light. He really did love Buffy. *And I no longer do,* Angel thought to himself. *Not romantically.*

"Are you going to tell her?" Spike asked, breaking Angel out of his reverie.

Angel nodded. "Soon."

"The sooner the better, mate. You never know when you may lose her," Spike said. Sadness tinged his voice.

Angel looked at his childe in surprise and concern. "What’s wrong?"

This time it was Spike who sighed. He rubbed a weary hand over his face. His eyes reflected all two hundred plus years of experience, knowledge and sadness.

"We didn’t just come up to Sunnydale to see Willow," Spike said. "Although, she plays a major role in what we need to do." Spike nervously fiddled with the hem of his shirt. He looked up at Angel, eyes filled with bloody tears. "She’s dying."

Angel’s face paled. "What?"

"She has cancer. It’s too far advanced for the doctor’s to operate and she doesn’t want chemotherapy. Says it will ruin her hair," Spike laughed hollowly.

"What are you going to do?"

"Try to convince her to let me bring her across and then have Willow and Giles put the curse on her," Spike said.

Angel didn’t know what to say.



Part Five



After Buffy and Spike left for the day, Angel hugged Willow to him tightly.

"What was that for?" she asked when he released her.

Angel tilted her head up so he could look into her eyes. "I love you, Willow Ann Rosenburg."

Willow’s face lit up in joy. "You do?"

"Yes. With all my soul."

"Oh, Angel," Willow exclaimed as she threw herself back into his arms. "I love you, too. So much!"

Angel chuckled at her response, and held her closer. He wanted to have a perfect day with her.


*****


The following evening, Angel broke the news of Buffy’s cancer to Willow.

"No!" Willow said, shaking her head violently. "Not after all she’s been through!"

Angel held her to him. "I know, sweetheart. I don’t want it to happen either. That’s what I need to talk to you about."

He set her away from him so he could see her face. "Spike wants to turn her into a vampire, then put the curse on her."

"Oh," Willow said, her mind racing. "I don’t think Buffy would agree."

"What do you think?"

"Actually, I think it’s a good idea. That way, Buffy can live. I mean, she just got married! It’s so unfair that after all this time, a disease would take her!"

Angel nodded. "At first, I wanted to disagree, me being the one with the curse and all. But, after thinking about it, I think it’s a good idea, too. It’s not like she’d be killing anyone. We’d all be there to place the curse on her as soon as possible."

Willow agreed.

"I…uh…also want to do it for Spike," Angel said quietly.

"What? Why?"

"Because I want him to be able to love."


*****


Convincing Buffy was one of the hardest things they ever had to do.

Willow, Angel and Spike took Buffy to an expensive restaurant. They figured that way Buffy couldn’t make too much of a scene. Between the salad and the main course is when they struck.

"Um…Buffy?" Willow said, looking at the others seated at the table. Angel and Spike nodded their heads, ready to start.

"Yeah, Will?" Buffy asked, forking a mouthful of salad.

"We know," Willow said quietly, pain and sadness in her eyes.

"We know what?"

"That you have cancer, Buffy," Angel said. "That you’re dying."

Buffy dropped her fork to the platter with a clang. She turned on Spike. "You told them?!"

Spike nodded.

"But why? That was between us! It was suppose to be a secret!"

"Slayer, I told them for a specific reason," Spike said. He looked at Angel for support, and, at his nod, continued. "I want to turn you into a vampire," he said softly.

"WHAT?"

"Buffy, please keep your voice down," Willow said, gesturing to the other patrons.

"You want to turn me into a vampire!" Buffy said in a harsh whisper. She glared at Angel, then Willow. "And you agree with him?!"

"Buffy, we don’t want you to die," Angel said, reaching out and taking Buffy’s hand.

Buffy snatched it back. "So you’d rather I be a blood sucking demon and kill all my friends? Oh, thanks much!"

Spike turned to his wife with hurt eyes. "Thanks a lot."

Buffy had the sense to look ashamed. "I’m sorry, Spike. It’s just…I’ve been trained to avoid becoming a vampire at all costs, even my own death."

"But we can curse you, like Angel," Willow said. "Then you wouldn’t have to worry about killing anyone."

"No, guys. I’ll pass."

"BUT I DON’T WANT YOU TO DIE!" Spike yelled as he stood up suddenly. He grabbed his coat off the back of the chair and stormed out of the restaurant.

Patrons at the establishment stared at the three sitting with their heads down. Buffy looked up at her friends with tears in her eyes. "I should go after him."

"Buffy, we all love you. And somehow, by some strange twist of fate, Spike, the vampire without a soul, loves you even more," Angel said.

Buffy stood, slipped on her coat and left to go after Spike.

"Do you think she’ll change her mind?" Willow asked, watching Buffy run out the door.

"We can hope," Angel said, taking her hand. "We can only hope."


*****


"Spike," Buffy said as she came upon her husband sitting on a park bench.

Spike raised his head and met her worried gaze, bloody tear stains on his cheeks.

"Oh, Spike," Buffy cried, sitting next to him and embracing him.

"Why, Buffy? Why won’t you let me?" Spike asked with a choked up voice.

"I’m afraid," she whispered.

"I won’t let anything happen to you. Angel, Willow and even Giles wouldn’t either."

"Giles knows, too?"

"Well, he’s your Watcher. And he’s like a father to you." Spike kissed the top of her head. "He thinks that it would be ok."

"Really?"

"Yes, Pet, really."

They sat on the bench until close to dawn, holding each other and talking softly. In the end, the final thing that convinced her was the soul-less vampire’s love.



Part Six



The ceremony went off without a hitch. Performed at the library, one moment Buffy was the human slayer dying of cancer, then next she was a vampire with a soul.

"Thanks guys," Buffy said, hugging her friends.

"It’s the least we could do, after all you have been through," Giles said, rubbing the tears from his eyes. "You deserve to live happily ever after."

"And that’s going to be for a very long time," she joked.


*****


Walking to Angel and Willow’s house from the library, Buffy was experimenting with her new vampiric abilities. Granted, there wasn’t too much difference in strength, but the sights, sounds and smells we super amplified.

"This is so cool! I can smell the fresh dirt in the cemetery!" Buffy said, dancing around. The two much older vampires laughed.

They were so busy enjoying Buffy’s theatrics that they didn’t notice that Willow was missing from their group.

"Wait, where’s Willow?" Angel asked, looking around. "She was right here a second ago, tying her shoe."

"Willow!" Buffy called.

Nothing.

Angel started to panic. "I’ll go back the way we just came. You two spread out."

Nodded in agreement, the three vampires started searching for their missing mortal friend.

"NOOOOOO!" Buffy and Spike turned towards the unearthly wail and started running.

Angel sat on the ground, cradling Willow against his chest when they ran up. Angel had his game face on and was sobbing, rocking her inert form.

Buffy knelt down to look closer. Willow’s throat was cut, blood covering the entire front of her shirt and overalls, pooling onto the ground. She check for a pulse. It was there, but very faint and thready.

"Angel, quickly, before it’s too late," Buffy said to her old love.

But Angel didn’t hear her, so deep was he in grief.

"Spike, do something!" Buffy said to her husband.

Spike nodded and grabbed Angel’s wrist, biting into is with his fangs. Angel didn’t react. Holding his sire’s bleeding wrist to Willow’s mouth, he silently prayed to whoever would listen to save his father’s love.

The four figures sitting on the ground in the middle of the street may have looked funny to anyone passing in a distance. If they came any closer, they ran screaming from three demons looking down on a young woman covered in blood.

"We have to go," Spike said, looking at his Lost Boys watch. "It’s getting close to dawn."

Buffy nodded, and the married couple struggled to make Angel stand and carry Willow to the apartment.

Minutes before dawn, the weary vampires stumbled into the apartment. Angel went directly into his bedroom, carrying Willow. He laid her on the bed, then climbed in next to her, holding her close.

Spike and Buffy took Willow’s old room, careful to cover the window with heavy blankets, before falling into a deep sleep.


*****


"Angel?" a voice asked with trepidation. "Angel?"

Angel sat bolt upright in bed, not believing his ears. He looked down at the figure next to him, still covered in blood. "Willow?"

Willow, the demon, looked up at her love and smiled through her fangs. "I’m hungry."

Angel laughed and cried at the same time, scooping Willow up into his arms. "C’mon, baby. Let’s get something in you."

Raiding his refrigerator, Angel gave Willow several packets of blood, taking one for himself as well. "I’m going to call Giles, you sit here and down as many of these as you can."

"Oh, good. Giles. I always wondered what tweed tasted like," she said as she started to feed, greedily. Her mind began to think of what they were going to do with Giles.

Angel rolled his eyes and sighed, causing Willow to snort blood out of her nose. "Angel! You sigh more than a date-less virgin male on prom night!"


*****


The evil thoughts about Giles from the new vampire never panned out as her soul returned to her body. "Ugh! That hurt!"

"Yeah, Will. Agree with you there," Buffy said. She turned to Spike, a devilish gleam in her eye. "Hey, Spikey," she purred. "There’s a deal on souls today. Buy two get one free."

Spike blanched and held out his hands in a protective gesture, shaking his head vigorously. "No, no, no. That’s quite alright. I’m quite happy without one, thank you."

"But, Spiiiike…"

Spike turned tail and ran out of the room.

Buffy, Angel and Willow burst out laughing.

Giles just shook his head. "You three have a very twisted sense of humor."



Epilogue



"Are you nervous?"

"Not really," Willow said, but her twisting hands gave her away. "Ok. Maybe a little."

"Well, I know I was nervous when I got married," Buffy said, straitening Willow’s dress behind her. "But then again, I was marrying a soul-less demon."

Willow and Buffy giggled.

"Buffy, I have a question for you." She turned to her friend and watched as Buffy fussed with her bridesmaid dress.

"Shoot."

"How do I keep from laughing when the officiant says ‘As long as you both shall live’?"



The End