By Albertina Maria
Summary: Buffy loses Angel - or does she?
Disclaimer: These characters as well as the scene itself belongs to Joss Whedon and whoever else owns Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
She was still in shock. She couldn't move. She only saw the look on his face as she plunged the stake into his chest. His face contorted into an evil grimace, and then, in the course of a second, he was her Angel again. He looked at her with sorrow and love, silently forgiving her, his eyes reassuring that this was the only way. She didn't realize that she was crying until she felt the Crystal drops running through her face. As she looked, Angel's body collapsed to the floor and lay there motionless. With a wail of despair she sank to her knees besides him and hugged his lifeless body close to hers, her head under his chin. She stayed in that position for a long time, and as the hours passed the moon slowly disappeared into the horizon and the sun rose with it's warming rays and all its shining glory. She stood up and gazed towards it, letting the warmth overtake her and trying to defrost her heart.
She saw how the sun was reflected in the ebony darkness of his hair and smiled sadly:
"You always wanted to see the sun again, and now you finally will, my sweet Angel." She said tenderly as she softly stroked his face.
In the sunlight she saw how his pale skin was in deep contrast with his deep brown eyes and dark strokes of his eyebrows. Once outside she cradled him in her arms as they lay in the splendorous grass, damp from the morning dew. She pillowed his head in her chest, all the while singing a mellow lullaby her mother had sung to her before going to sleep. The sun came up to all its glory and while it rose the field around them started springing to life. A bird sung a slow tune, a cricket intoned its chirping melody and all around them little being moved about. An ant, a spider and near the tree a squirrel scrammed about looking for food. It struck her as odd that death and life could go together in such a way, that while her heart was broken all did not stop and grieved with her.
Suddenly, without any warning, a leaf rustled at her side. Then another, and another, until a tornado of leaves swirled around the stop where Angel and her lay together. A dark black cloud covered the sun and the morning turned to night. The leaves finally settled and Buffy relaxed the iron-grip she had Angel in. All her senses told her that she was in the presence of a powerful force, stronger that any evil she had encountered before. She stood alert, still hanging on to her beloved.
Then, as suddenly as the sun darkened, all around her figures started to appear before her. Every enemy she had fought materialized around her. The master, the witch, the child, Dalton, the Judge, Spike and Drucilla. The latter was in front of the procession, holding a long, sharp stake with her both hands. Buffy hugged Angel tighter, thinking that it was her time to meet her lover in the other world. She didn't care at all. The minute the stake had entered Angel's heart and killed it, her heart had died with him as well. She was genuinely glad she was going to leave this earth and be with Angel forever.
The all stopped just two feet in front of her and Drucilla took a step towards Buffy.
"Do you want to end your suffering Slayer?" She mocked her in a sarcastic tone of voice "Are you grieving for the death of a monster, an animal with no feelings?"
Buffy sprang to her feet and shouted at Drucilla with hate in her eyes, voice and in her heart,"He was not a monster! He loved me and I love him! He was sweet, and gentle and caring."
Drucilla laughed evily, "Yet you killed him, you put a stake though his heart and murdered him. And you say you love him! How terribly touching." she spat at her sarcastically.
The realization of what she had done hit Buffy at full force when she listened to Drucilla's words. She had killed him. Angel, her love, her life, a part of her being. She had loved him, made love with him and then ended his life in cold blood. She crumpled to the ground as heart-wrenching sobs tore from deep within her heart.
Drucilla looked down at her with contempt. With incredible strength she grabbed Buffy's face and pulled her up.
"Stand, Slayer! You, the murderess, deserve to die. You committed a terrible wrong and only your death can right it. Do it! Plunge the stake into your heart as you did to your loved one." She roughly put the long piece of wood into Buffy's hands "Do it!" she screamed hysterically, the strong wind magnifying her shout and swirling it around and around.
Around her the other specters closed in on her chanting what had become an evil prayer, "Do it. Do it. Do it." Their monotone vices repeated the words over and over again, and Buffy felt like a heavy darkness was covering her like a blanket, suffocating her. It ultimately reached to the point where she would have done anything to stop it. She looked at the stake before her, its shape hypnotizing her, compelling her towards it. So many killings, so many deaths and so much pain. Oh, to end it, to be free from consciousness and to let go of everything that pained her. The temptation was enormous. She slowly raised her hand, and reached for the stake. She took it loosely, letting it hang from her limp hands. She stared intently at it, wishing with all her might that things had been different, that somehow history could be changed. What she wouldn't give for Angel to be alive, she would cease being the Slayer, she would even give her life. If only it were possible.
She looked at Angel's face, at peace at last, freed from its demons and guilt. She had had to kill him to give him his pardon and to set him free from the evil that was possessing. Death had been the only solution. But it hurt. It hurt so much that she did not have the strength to go on with her life without him. No one had meant so much to her like Angel. Not even her family or her friends. Only him. Only Angel. Without him, life just did not make sense anymore.
Haltingly she took the stake and pointed it to her heart. Drucilla watched in anticipation, which grew to an almost unbearable point as the stake came closer to Buffy's heart. The specter's chant grew into a crescendo that turned into wails and shouts. The sky grew darker, and the only thing that could be seen was the faint glow of the demon's eyes. Buffy grew more anxious as the stake covered the short path to her chest.
At the last moment, she turned to Angel's still body lying in the grass and reached down to touch his face gently for the last time, "Good-bye my sweet Angel, we shall be reunited soon. Wait for me. I love you, I always will. I'm sorry." She turned back to face Drucilla who was by now practically salivating. She looked at the stake with resignation and aimed it to her heart. Yet just as the stake was reaching the stake a hand reached out and stopped her. Startled she followed the arm that connected to a body. Angel's body. Shocked, she saw that his eye's were still closed, yet that his body was still filled with some kind of energy, and she could sense it almost as if she was hearing it. Angel's voice talked in her head, "Don't do it Buffy, they're not real, they live only in your subconscious. Exorcise you Demons, Slayer, the one you killed are still alive inside you. KILL THEM NOW"
She got to her feet, smiled at Drucilla and said, "Sorry babe, show's over. It's waaaaay past you crypt-time" She turned round with the stake and slammed it into Drucilla's amazed face. The look of surprise in her face almost made Buffy laugh, but she still had work to do. Five demons, one kid and one Master later she stood with the stake in her hand, the same one that just moments ago she was ready to take her life with. She turned to Angel, wanting to say good-bye. The sun was completely up now, and she wanted to bury him in a beautiful place where the sun could always warm him. To her outmost surprise, Angel was gone. No body, nothing. She whirled around, looking for him. He was gone. He was totally and irrevocably gone from her. She would never see him again. Never touch him, talk to him, smell his unique smell, tell him that she loved him or hear him say the same words. Grief enveloped her until she couldn't stand it. Tears overcame her, and she fell to the ground in a heap, sobbing. Some minutes had passed when she felt a shadow block the sun beside her. She wasn't feeling like talking to anyone, so she decided to ignore the person, thinking he or she would go away after some time. Angry when that didn't happen she started to look up when a voice stopped her.
"I thought Slayers didn't cry" said an amused male voice.
Stunned, she slowly raised her eyes, which met with a pair of dark brown ones. "Angel?!" she cried incredulously, not quite believing her eyes.
He grinned down at her, "the one and only, in the flesh and blood. REALLY!" Having said that he gathered her in his arms and spun her around and around in circles. She was laughing and crying at the same time. She hugged him tight, never wanting to let go, ever. He kissed her passionately and whispered in her ear, "Thank you." She looked up at him, " Why?". He looked at her so sweetly it made her heart ache to think she thought him lost. "Because you saved me, my sweet darling" he said giving her a long, slow kiss. Secure now that he was not going to disappear on her, she asked anxiously," How did I do that?".
"You killed me and all my demons disappeared. I should have gone, but when you wished to give your life to save me, that wish was granted by your own inner evils. All those vampires and monsters you had killed came back in your head, and when you decided to get rid of them, it was as if you had gotten rid of me too. My evil side, Angelus, who was the part of me you killed. I, Angel, remain. As a human. You saved from death and from a life as a vampire and immortality. And I will never leave you again, never. I love you Buffy, don't you ever leave me" He said that with his eyes suspiciously wet, and Buffy was touched. Her Angel had come back to her, and he occupied a special part in her heart that nobody could fill but him.
With him she was safe and happy. He loved her, and when he kissed her again she could feel his sweet, warm breath.
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