Double Take


DoubleTake


When Angel finds a way to separate himself from Angelus in order to be with Buffy, he never suspects that his evil alter ego will become obsessed with Cordelia Chase. As the C/Aus relationship develops, Angel’s romance with Buffy begins a downward spiral. This starts off as a parody of my fic ‘Double or Nothing’ and then takes its own threesome-ish twist with C/A/Aus working out their relationship issues. 

  • CONTENTS: C/Aus, C/A, and A/C/Aus in BtVS
  • CATEGORY: Parody (Different Fic with same Challenge Criteria)
  • RATING: NC17
  • LENGTH: Novella / 31,400 words
  • STATUS: Completed
  • AWARDS:  Wicked Awards – Round 1 (June 2009) – Best NC17 – Winner
  • CHALLENGE CREDIT: Scorch
  • FICPIC CREDIT: Lysa
  • WARNINGS: Explicit Sexual Content / Threesome

Chapter 1

Buffy Summers flipped her smooth perfectly coifed golden hair over her shoulder after staking her opponent. The misty cloud separated as she passed through it as if not daring to settle on her clothes. Watching eagerly as Angel outmaneuvered the last vampire, she applauded as he snapped its neck dropping it to the ground where it burst into a haze of dust along the packed dirt of the graveyard.

“Oh, Angel,” sounded her deep sigh as Buffy darted across to his side. “You looked so hot making that move.”

With a knowing smirk, Angel simply agreed, “I know.”

Grabbing his hand, Buffy pulled it close to her beating heart, ensuring that he was able to get in a little grope at the same time. “Now that patrol is over, I just feel… you know… so hot and horny and hungry.”

Angel knew the feeling, but he was keen to help out where he could. “I’ll buy you dinner.”

“But I’ll still be hot and horny,” she wanted to ensure he understood the important part of her comment.

Angel quipped, “How about a portable fan?”

As Buffy’s lower lip plumped and extended out into a pout, her expressive eyes grew large and tearful. “That won’t help— and don’t suggest anything else with batteries for my other problem or you’ll be a dust pile.”

Horny slayers were not to be trifled with. Angel knew from experience that there was nothing to be done but try to escape before she jumped him right here in the cemetery.

Oops! Too late. Angel found himself face down in the dirt with Buffy straddling his hips. “We shouldn’t do this here, Buffy. Besides, it’s dangerous. I could lose my soul.”

“It’s past midnight. It’s a cemetery. We’ve just dusted tonight’s quota of vamps, so who’s gonna interrupt us?” Buffy grabbed the collar of Angel’s coat and pulled it down over his shoulders effectively restraining him and partially stripping him at the same time.

“Hi Buffy!” chirped Willow as she strolled up with Cordelia and Xander.

Cordelia eyed the pair on the ground, “What’s this? Practice?”

Xander coughed, “Sparring no doubt, a move or two to scare off any other demons in the area.”

Willow considered the idea as Buffy and Angel scrambled to their feet. They brushed the cemetery dirt from their clothes, straightening them hastily. “I dunno. It looks like Buffy was practicing something else to me. It’s not like they can do the real thing.”

“What are you three doing here?” Angel inquired completely ignoring that last comment. He was too pleased by the interruption to complain.

“We were at the Bronze,” Cordelia explained then added in a sarcastic tone, “but we felt like cutting through the dark and scary cemetery on the way home even if it was slightly out of our way just so we could find you two on patrol…and here you are.”

“Yes,” Buffy scowled. “Here we are.”

When Angel pointed out that patrol was over, Cordelia told him the real reason they were there. “My car broke down and this was the shortest route back to civilization.”

As they left the cemetery, Buffy and Angel trailed behind the other three. Muttering in frustration, the slayer couldn’t understand why fate could be so cruel as to let this trio show up when they did. “Unfair! I want you now, Angel.”

“I’m a no-bone,” Angel prompted. Lately, Buffy always seemed to have sex on the brain after patrol and it was getting more difficult to talk her out of endangering everyone just for a few hours of pleasure. “That’s how Cordelia thinks of me. Isn’t that right, Cor?”

Cordelia glanced back at the vampire who had somehow become her friend even after the wicked, lustful, fiendish things his soulless self vowed to accomplish the night Angelus tackled her in the cemetery. Upon Angel’s return from the prison of Acathla’s hell dimension, he had been so apologetic that Cordelia decided to forgive him. Besides, who could resist his deep brown puppy dog eyes even if he was a vampire?

She didn’t miss the fact that he knew she was listening. Calling out, “No bones about it.”

Xander snorted in response, doing a little eavesdropping of his own, but kept on moving down the street.

Darting a look at her boyfriend, Buffy wondered if Angel really thought that was true. It was not as if they had avoided doing things. They’d been careful. Lately, though, it was not so easy to hold back. “Do you love me, Angel?”

“Yes,” he told her after a thoughtful pause, sensing a trick question.

“Do you want me, Angel?”

“Yes.” What was he supposed to say in front of her friends?

“Then you need to find a way to fix this little problem of yours,” she whispered a little too loudly. The others made no effort to hide their laughter as they continued on their way down the sidewalk.

“You know I’d do whatever you want, Buffy. Within reason. This is my soul we’re talking about, not a limp—,” Angel broke off as he rammed right into Cordelia who had stopped directly in front of him.

He grabbed the curvaceous brunette around the waist, automatically pulling her close to stop her from falling. Inadvertently, Angel pressed his hips into the rounded flesh of her silk-covered bottom.

“Something doesn’t feel very limp,” Cordelia commented just before Angel lurched away, automatically issuing an apology. It might have been the rough and tumble action that Buffy had initiated, but Angel instantly recognized the fact that his hands had itched to pull Cordelia even closer to slowly map out her curves.

Angel watched a slight flush rise high on Cordelia’s cheeks even as a mischievous light brightened her gorgeous hazel eyes. Their gazes held for a moment longer than necessary until Buffy’s hand tugged at his jacket.

“Angel, find a way to secure your soul, or—”

“Or what, Buffy,” huffed Cordelia on Angel’s behalf. “You’ll hold out on him? Kinda hard when you’re denying him what you want and he can’t give you. Hello! Impotent vampire here.”

“Am not.” Angel pointed out the obvious tent in his pants.

With a growl, he turned back to Cordelia irrationally incensed that she was going with her eunuch comments again. They’d had an entire argument about this one night after one of her classes. It had included a discussion on Greek myth and she’d come up with a ridiculous theory about Buffy latching onto a eunuch hero just so she could play the role of the virgin slayer.

Cordelia had rolled her eyes at her own theory, “Like it’s not too late for that.”

Angel often found a strange enjoyment in the snippy comments Buffy and Cordelia made to and about each other. Maybe that was wrong, but part of him loved it. No doubt it was his demon driving him to wicked enjoyment of a subject he should otherwise be trying to suppress. However, Cordelia making derisive remarks about his ability to perform would not be tolerated, even if she meant them in jest, which he doubted.

Acting before the consequences even formed into thought, Angel reached out one large hand with superhuman speed, wrapped the fingers around Cordelia’s wrist and brought her hand into contact with the bulge in his pants. His fingers pushed her palm flat against him bringing her hand down the entire length of his considerable erection.

The move happened in the blink of an eye leaving Cordelia staring at Angel in shock at what he’d done. The vampire looked just as surprised, except that a hint of satisfaction showed in the deep well of his eyes. Cordelia roared in fury, “Are you deranged?”

“I am not.” Buffy thought the cheerleader was still talking to her. Defiantly crossing her arms over her chest, she issued her ultimatum, “Stupid gypsy curse. Angel finds a way to secure his soul or there will be no more graveyard walks, no more midnight kisses and all those other things he knows about that I’m not gonna mention cos you’re here.”

Angel was a little irritated that Buffy wasn’t even telling him this directly. She was still arguing with Cordelia. Maybe that was a good thing. It distracted Cor from plans which no doubt included her knee and his groin.

Cordelia slapped her hands down on her hips. “You think I can’t guess what you do when you’re alone together, Buffy? Maybe he’s a hottie and clearly not a eunuch, but— eew!— undead guy.”

Angel considered it progress that Cordelia verbally admitted he was not a eunuch. A hint of a smirk appeared at the corner of his mouth. Then he shoved both hands into his pants pockets to make the tenting less apparent as he considered the method by which Cordelia defended him against Buffy’s unrealistic ultimatum. It was a good thing that she was his friend, because having that tongue turned against him would be devastating.

“What do you expect?” Cordelia demanded of Buffy. “That Angel will go home and find some misplaced ancient relic in his sock drawer?”


Chapter 2

“Cordelia, my soul is secure.” Angel, expecting some excitement on his behalf, spun her around in a circle in the middle of the library. She looked stunned by the news and then flashed that brilliant smile that always made him feel like a tight fist gripped at his dead heart. Then he watched it fade a bit as he added, “I thought Buffy might be here.”

“Congratulations. I guess we won’t be seeing you two for a few days,” Cordelia realized there was likely to be a lot of making up for lost time. “How did you manage it? That was fast. Maybe Buffy should’ve dealt out the ultimatums a lot sooner. Did Willow find a spell?”

“No,” Angel answered with a smile that reached his eyes and left her staring in wonder as his already handsome face doubled its appeal. “Cordy, it was actually something you said the other night.”

“The part where I called you impotent?” Cordelia was reminded that she hadn’t told him off for what he’d done. One eyebrow arched and her plush lips pursed in preparation for correcting that oversight.

“No!” Angel was quick to hold up his hands in surrender seeing clearly what was about to happen. Quickly, he attempted to steer her back to his important break-through. “You said something to Buffy about a relic in my sock drawer.”

Cordelia gave him a hard stare. “You’ve got to be kidding me!”

Shrugging, Angel admitted, “It was actually in a trunk packed up in the basement, but I’d forgotten that I had it. I put it away almost fifty years ago.”

“You’ve had the cure for your curse for fifty years and you forgot about it?”

Angel told her, “The amulet had nothing to do with my curse, but it gave me a way to contact those who could fix the problem. There’s just one hitch.”

That didn’t sound good. Cordelia let out a long sigh. “I’ll bite. So what’s the deal?”

“That would be me,” sounded Angel’s voice from the library doors causing her a moment of confusion. Obviously, it was not Angel since he was standing next to her, but for some reason that voice caused Cordelia’s heart rate to skyrocket.

Cordelia turned to find Angel’s exact double striding across the room with a swagger that could not be mistaken. Dressed in snug leather pants and a silk shirt of crimson red, this vampire’s style was all too familiar. A confident leer curled the corner of his mouth as he let his dark gaze travel over Cordelia taking in the exposed length of her supple legs beneath the short cheerleading skirt, the stretch of her thin sweater across her full breasts and the surprised circle of her soft lips.

“A-Angelus?” Cordelia managed to get out the name, but automatically moved closer into Angel’s protective reach. Then she made the connection. The things the souled vampire had been telling her had everything to do with this impossible phenomenon.

“What’s wrong, baby?” Angelus stopped short of coming too close, catching his double’s silent threat against doing so. “Aren’t you happy to see me?”

Ignoring the question, Cordelia whirled to face Angel. “What the hell have you done?”


Chapter 3

“Actually, it’s like having a huge weight off of my shoulders,” Angel admitted leaning casually against the edge of the table.

He could tell Cordelia was tense and frankly, he couldn’t blame her for it. Trying to look like this part of the deal didn’t bother him was the only thing he could think of to calm this potentially hostile situation down. “Or having a pain in the ass removed.”

Cordelia glanced back and forth between Angel and Angelus. Pointing at the soulless vamp, she commented, “Angelus is a little more than a boil on your butt, dorkula. He’s a psychopathic serial killer who enjoys every second of torture before he drains his victims dry.”

“You know me so well,” Angelus didn’t bother trying to look innocent. “Not that I would have denied you equal amounts of pleasure before I turned you.”

“Shut your mouth, Angelus,” growled his double. “I won’t have you threatening Cordelia or anyone for that matter.”

“Like that little warning will stop him when your back is turned.” Cordelia scooted closer to Angel’s side even as she moved her pom-poms in front of her like a barrier against his double’s piercing gaze. The way he stared, you would think the vamp had x-ray vision. Make that X-rated vision. “Can’t you just stake him?”

“Unfortunately not,” Angel quickly informed her that was part of the deal. “Actually, it’s not even necessary.”

“Says the already dead guy,” Cordelia huffed. “It’s not your neck that’s on the line.”

“The spell that separated us and anchored my soul also prevents Angelus from harming humans,” Angel told her drawing a scowl from his double. “He has to fight the Good Fight and live under my supervision or else he loses any chance at his own existence separate from mine.”

Hearing that Angelus had no power to harm her suddenly gave Cordelia her confidence back. Despite the fact that she had forgiven Angel for the deeds of his soulless self there were other things not so easily forgotten. They were all internal remnants of her own response to the encounter with Angelus in the graveyard. Take away the fear factor and it was too easy to recall the flash of excitement underlying those harsh emotions as Angelus whispered his promises.

Cordelia’s failure to return a snarky comeback caused Angel to focus in on his other senses to gauge her response to the news. The anger he recognized and expected. Her heart marked a heavy beat accompanied by huffs of indrawn air released slow and deep. That reaction did not surprise him in the least, but the sweet scent of her arousal left his head swimming.

He was so bewildered by it that Angel didn’t see Angelus move. Before Cordelia had any suspicion of the vampire’s intentions, he had already hauled her into his arms to claim her mouth with his own. Cordelia felt a heady rush as his cool lips covered hers in a kiss of savage passion.

Just as suddenly as it started, Cordelia found herself standing alone as Angel and Angelus grappled on the floor. Her friend growled in fury, “Keep your hands off Cordelia.”

“It wasn’t just my hands,” Angelus commented with a grin as he tossed Angel head over heels across the floor.

“Enough with the vampire wrestling,” ordered Cordelia who dropped her pom-poms to the floor as she rushed over to stop them. “Are you in kindergarten or what!”

Angelus punched his double in the gut and took the second or two offered by Angel’s distraction to look directly up Cordelia’s skirt. “Great view, baby.”

His head cracked against the hard floor as Angel threw a punch connecting with his jaw. “Shut up, you bastard. Keep your fucking eyes to yourself.”

Laughing, Angelus used his leg to flip Angel onto his back, “It’s not my eyes that will be fucking her soon enough.”

Cordelia knew he meant it. The thought scared her because she knew what Angelus was capable of in doling out pain, but something deep inside her recognized a sliver of desire at the thought of his touch. What it might be like to have someone totally in control of your pleasure.

Not that Cordelia had much experience with that, but it was enough to know that the overeager fumbling of high school boys was not for her.

Jumping into the fray, Cordelia grabbed the first vampire. “Get off of him, Angelus.”

Just as she curled her hands around his bicep attempting to pull Angelus away from Angel, he released another forward punch. The move swung her body downward unintentionally sending her crashing directly on top of Angel.

“Oof!”

Cordelia let out a whoosh of air as she connected with the hard body beneath her. Out of breath, she couldn’t speak for a moment as both of the vampires called out her name in obvious concern as the fight came to a sudden end. Gasping for air, Cordelia stared into Angel’s concerned eyes. For a moment, all she could do was react to the sensations strumming through her body as Cordelia realized she was sandwiched between the two of them.

Her one free hand moved to brush her fingers over the dark swelling bruise that marred Angel’s cheek. Then she glared over her shoulder at Angelus, “Would you get your big hulking body off of me?”

Sensing the quickening of her heartbeat, Angelus bent his mouth to her ear. “Are you sure that’s what you want?”

The vampire’s hand traced a path from her hip up to her rounded breast giving it a squeeze. Cordelia released an outraged gasp and squirmed only to realize that her awkward position left her pressed up against their loins.

The cotton panties of her cheerleader uniform provided only a thin covering as they stretched over her plump mound. Now feeling the stirring of Angel’s flesh beneath the zipper of his pants, she also felt the ever-growing iron rod against her buttocks as Angelus purposefully held her to him.

“Just feel what you do to me,” Angelus’ voice sounded as a soft growl.

Cordelia sucked in a deep breath of air, glancing down at Angel with sheer surprise registering on her face. He was just as stunned by their present predicament and for a moment could think of nothing else except the sensation of having her on top of him. Hell, if he closed his eyes, Angelus’ words would be nothing more than hearing his voice back in his head urging him to thoughts and behaviors better left ignored.

Angelus moved his free hand to cup the other breast, taking full advantage of every second of time the pair below him remained too dumbstruck to react. “You make me so hard, baby.”

Her mind made note of the words, but Cordelia couldn’t seem to react to them. To tell him to move. Part of her was freaking out. This was Angelus. Evil Angelus. He might be planning to rip her throat out even as he copped a feel and omigod didn’t his hands know just how to touch her. Obviously, he had other plans considering the huge boner pressing against her ass.

It wasn’t just him she was feeling. Angel’s excitement distracted her from Angelus’ potentially murderous intensions. His eyes pulled her in like a blackhole tugging on her attention. Full of astonishment, they were also filled with desire. Just in case his hard-on wasn’t enough to clue her in that Angel wanted her, his eyes certainly gave it away.

“You should learn to take advantage of situations that arise,” Angelus purred against her ear, but he was looking at Angel who still had not removed his gaze from Cordy. “Don’t deny that you haven’t wanted this, wanted her on top of you, beneath you, in any of a hundred positions you’ve imagined.”

Angel’s chest rumbled with anger as he realized just what secrets his evil double was revealing. The fact that he fantasized about his friend was something Cordelia didn’t need to hear. The other vampire was only speaking the truth. In spite of loving Buffy Summers, Angel had often thought of the brunette.

He was grateful for her friendship and enjoyed her company, but their time alone was rare. So Angel sometimes imagined them alone together and most of those imaginings ended up with them both naked and engaged in the sultriest sex his imagination could devise. It bothered him that he so often took himself in hand to ease his many frustrations using Cordelia as his fantasy lover, but the constant encouragement of his demon countered his doubts within seconds.

Now Angelus sounded out those secrets, his words coming out in throaty whispers against Cordelia’s ear, asking her, “You knew we wanted you.”

“No,” Cordelia’s voice sounded in hushed tones as if speaking too loudly might break the spell she was under. Staring down into Angel’s eyes, Cordelia thought that it was clear to her that Angelus had wanted her. For his evil purposes, of course, but he had certainly wanted her. Why had it never occurred to her that Angel wanted her too?

Before Cordelia could think about the consequences of her actions, she leaned down to kiss him. At first, her soft lips simply plumped over the contours of his cool male flesh, the sensation leaving her tingling. Her eyes darted to his noting the flash of midnight fire in his gaze just before Angel’s hands curled into her hair and pulled her back down to him. Angel all but devoured her with his kiss, tasting her lips, opening her up to the wet intrusion of his tongue. Rasping against the roof of her mouth and moaning deeply so that the sound waves resonated inside her.

Lost in the kiss, Cordelia barely noticed that Angelus was there. Until one hand slipped between her legs and his fingers started to stimulate her through the cotton material of her panties. Until his long, thick fingers slipped inside the elastic to rub along her soaked folds.

Cordelia squeezed her legs as her hips reflexively ground against Angel’s hard shaft as it pressed upward through the barrier of his pants. The fingers teasing her thrust inside the tight core guarded by those silken folds and Cordelia sounded out a moan against Angel’s mouth. Her eyes flashed open in panic, instantly realizing whose fingers were moving inside her.

Feels so good, she acknowledged a second before pushing up on her hands to put some distance between herself and Angel so that she could tell Angelus just what she thought of his unwanted attention. “Get the hell off of me.”

Snapping out of the haze that he’d allowed himself to get caught up in, Angel saw what his double was doing and growled, “Move.”

Seeing that the game had ended, Angelus moved to a standing position leaving Cordelia straddled across his double’s lap. They both watched him with frustrated and angry expressions as he slowly lifted his moist fingers to his mouth and licked off every sticky drop of Cordelia’s tangy essence.

“You taste devine,” Angelus smirked as Cordelia stared at him with her lush mouth gaping. “You two gonna sit there all day or is Cor planning to give you a lapdance?”

Angel realized his hands had moved down to her hips keeping her in place over his erection. Seeing the flash of red infuse Cordelia’s cheeks, he knew that he had to get them out of this situation without causing her any further embarrassment. Moving apart was awkward enough as they scrambled to their feet.

He grabbed her pom-poms from the floor and held them in front of his pants just to make his arousal less obvious and hoped that the situation itself would soon deflate the issue.

Extremely apologetic, Angel couldn’t say enough to make her understand that he was sorry for literally putting her in the middle of this situation. “I should have called ahead with the news before springing Angelus on you.”

“Duh!” Cordelia let the anger return. Anger was far safer than feeling any of those other shocking emotions that confused her brain.

“Cor,” he whined a little. “How was I supposed to predict this?”

“First off, I can’t believe that you would make a deal that gives Angelus his freedom just so you ca—,” breaking off, Cordelia realized this deal meant that Angel no longer had to worry the loss of his soul during moments of bliss. “I’m no warm up act for Buffy Summers, so you can just save all of your…excitement…for her.”

Angelus chuckled behind her causing Cordelia to whirl to face him. Once he had her attention, the vamp smoothed a hand down the crimson surface of his shirt, across his torso and further to hook his thumb under the waistband of his belted leather pants. The move caused Cordelia’s eyes to follow along the same path and by the time she saw the clearly defined outline of his arousal they appeared as concentric circles of black and hazel in a sea of white.

“I have no plans for the slayer,” Angelus told her. None that involved anything except her torture and death, which was apparently no longer an option. “Come take me if you want it, baby. I’m all yours.”

“Shut up, Angelus,” ordered his double. “You have no right to touch Cordelia in any way.”

“You do?” Angelus countered drawing a sneer in return. “I have every right to touch what’s mine.”

Cordelia snapped, “What!”

“That’s right, baby,” the vampire gave her a look of pure possession. “If the slayer and her little band of do-gooders hadn’t come along, I would have claimed you in the graveyard that night. In every way there is to claim you.”

She didn’t doubt it. After all, Angelus had told her as much that night.

“I made my intentions perfectly clear,” Angelus pointed out. “Time and this current little predicament may have changed my plans to make you a vampire, but there is nothing and no one who will stop me from claiming you as mine.”

“I’ll stop you,” Angel growled out barely controlling the urge to wipe Angelus off the face of the earth despite the deadly consequences to himself. “You can’t bite Cordelia and I won’t let you touch her. Dammit, there’ll be no biting or claiming done unless it’s by me.”

Giving Angel a harsh stare, Cordelia couldn’t believe he’d just said that. Apparently, neither could he because the vampire backpedaled so quickly that he sounded tongue-tied. “I-I…that wasn’t what I—dammit! I was just trying to defend you. J-Just making a point, not that I…that I…had any intentions of do—”

Holding up a hand, Cordelia snapped, “I don’t wanna hear it. This is just too damn crazy and I wanna wake up now.”

“You dream about me?” Angelus asked interestedly. “Bet those are fun dreams. We certainly had fun in mine.”

Infuriated, Angel made to move forward only to be stopped by Cordelia who ordered, “No fighting. That’s what started this in the first place. Besides, if anyone is gonna kick his ass, it will be me.”

“C’mon, then,” Angelus practically purred at the notion. Before he could add more than a smirk, Cordelia was in front of him and about to knee him in the groin. Even though he’d spurred her onto it, warned, “Don’t try that again.”

With a lightning fast move, Angelus had Cordelia off-balance. He hauled her against him twisting her arms behind her back as she attempted to claw his face. Angel vamped out and made ready to attack again, holding back only because his double held Cordelia with her crossed wrists in one hand and tugging her hair back to expose her throat with the other. Only Angelus didn’t move to bite her, he just lapped his tongue along the path of her jugular vein.

“I bet you taste good,” Angelus sighed longingly. “As good as the rest of you.”

He released her suddenly, a growl of frustration on his lips as he walked across to the library counter and shoved a stack of books with one swipe of his arm.

“What the hell is his problem?” Cordelia asked as he rubbed at her sore wrists.

Angel let his game face disappear behind his human features and stepped over to examine Cordelia for bruises. “He’s frustrated.”

“Aren’t we all,” muttered Cordelia almost imperceptibly.

“The spell that separated us came with conditions,” Angel explained. “Angelus can’t bite, kill or act with an intent to harm humans. What’s more, he has to join the fight against evil.”

“Fight the Good Fight,” Cordelia snorted. “Angelus? What’s to stop him from hiring a bunch of vampire thugs to do his evil work for him?”

Angel told her, “All part of the deal. If he wants his own existence, Angelus has a fine line to walk or he’ll be gone forever.”

She wondered what other conditions were set. “And you?”

“My soul is secure, but I get to play watchdog on my evil twin,” Angel gave the other vampire a scornful look. “He has to live under my roof.”

Cordelia found herself intrigued with this deal. Despite her fury that Angel had done something so irrational just so he could bone Buffy, she found herself thinking that it left her with twice the eye candy. Not that she should think of evil Angelus as being anything but a demon. Certainly not about the way he filled out those leather pants.

“I can’t believe you did this!” Cordelia pushed at Angel’s hard chest giving him a look of pure petulance.

Angel captured her hand and pulled Cordelia behind him into the adjoining section where the majority of the library books were stacked in long rows, putting some distance between them and the other vampire. Watching them go, Angelus glared at their backs thinking that Cordelia Chase was not going to get away from him. That she would be his before long no matter what it took to claim her.

“This was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up, Cor,” Angel told her softly.

Her answer came without any attempt at whispering. “So you want to screw your girlfriend. I get that, Angel, but you brought back your evil half who seems to have some crazy fixation on me.”

“I didn’t…this wasn’t…dammit, Cordelia, this wasn’t just about Buffy,” he told her.

Looking doubtful, she put her hands on her hips and tapped her foot as she waited for an explanation. “Tick tock, Carebear. I have places to go that aren’t in this library and I don’t seem to be getting there with you stuttering over every syllable.”

The dreaded nickname irked Angel, but he could never tell her that because it also gave him a little thrill every time she said it. “I saw an opportunity to ensure that Angelus would never be a threat to…anyone. This restrains him.”

“Not his tongue,” Cordelia commented and then felt a little dizzy as her brain took a happy detour imagining Angelus’ unrestrained tongue tasting what his fingers had dipped into.

Angel held out a hand to steady Cordelia who suddenly looked to be wavering on her feet. “You okay?”

“Yes!” She snapped out of her little fantasy. “Fine. I’m fine.”

“This…does this…hurt our friendship, Cordelia?” He was ready to beg if necessary. It was something Angel didn’t really have with anyone else. Something he hadn’t had since his human days and even then it had never been with a woman.

Cordelia blinked in surprise. “No, dumbass. I’m still your friend. Even if you are an idiot for bringing Angelus back.”

“Not that,” Angel could see this was not going to be pleasant. “I didn’t mean my decision to give Angelus his own existence.”

She looked puzzled and Angel found his fingers smoothing her chestnut hair away from her face. Cupping the nape of her neck his thumb edged along the line of her jaw as he clarified, “Kissing you. I meant kissing you.”

He felt the gulp against his hand as Cordelia swallowed down her nerves. It was the only sign she gave that told him she’d been equally affected by that kiss. Hell, after all the things Angelus had said, it wasn’t only the kiss he had to fear. Angelus had all but told Cordelia that they got off on fantasies starring her.

“It was a mistake,” Cordelia answered flippantly rolling her eyes. “Just a momentary thing. Two identical hotties in close quarters. What’s a girl to do?”

She was letting him off easy, Angel realized. Taking all the blame herself. He allowed himself a moment of self-directed anger just before taking the easy way out. “Guess I can’t blame you. Buffy finds it hard to keep her hands off me too, lately.”

“Pfft! Egomaniac!”

When Cordelia moved out of arms reach, Angel let her go. Then they heard a ruckus coming from the main part of the library and turned just in time to see the slayer sprawled across the floor with Angelus towering over her. Giles, Xander and Willow were standing agape having just watched Buffy greet the vampire with a rousing kiss only to have him push her away in disgust.

“Oh, crap!” Cordelia knew this was going to be bad.

Angel grabbed her by the hand and they ran back into the main part of the library. “Buffy! Are you okay?”

Still reeling with confusion at her boyfriend’s rejection of her kiss, Buffy Summers turned to see an identical albeit differently dressed version of Angel coming from the other room with Cordelia in tow. Her reaction was automatic. Buffy let out an ear-piercing scream and scrambled to her feet drawing her stake faster than any of the others could react.

“Holy hell, Batman,” Xander screeched. “There’s two of them.”

Buffy’s lower lip quivered as she looked back and forth from vampire to vampire. She had no idea what was going on here. “A-Angel?”

“Wh-wh-wh—,” Willow couldn’t even manage to get out more than a few little whiffs of air.

“Dear God!” Giles pulled Willow to a safe distance. “One of you…explanations now.”

Xander barked at Angel, not knowing if it was safe, “Get away from Cordelia.”

“I’m fine, Xander,” she told her former boyfriend. “Relax. This is Angel. You’re the one standing next to Angelus.”

The teenager slowly glanced at the smirking vampire standing beside him. Angelus did nothing more than quirk his eyebrows and Xander let out a yelp before running behind Buffy.

“Angelus!” Buffy gasped her eyes popping into wide circles. “I kissed Angelus?”

The vampire in questions swiped the back of his hand across his mouth. “Who did you think I was…Santa Claus?”

“It was an honest mistake,” Cordelia commented. Then, changing her mind, pointed out, “They may have the same face, but…hello! Look at the way he’s dressed. Red silk and black leather. Obvious giveaway that something’s not quite right in the state of Denmark. Besides the clothes, they’re still nothing alike. Sheesh!”

Buffy glanced at the leather pants and red shirt. She hadn’t really been looking at the pants themselves. Just the way they fit. Fashion queen Cordelia could tell the difference between the two of them and now that she’d pointed the obvious clothing preference of Angelus compared to Angel’s dark layers, she figured that she could keep them straight.

“I’m still waiting for an explanation,” Giles whipped off his glasses to nibble on the ear tip. “This is obviously a mystical event. Both of you here in physical form at the same time.”

Xander glanced at Giles giving him the high signal now that he was positioned by the weapons locker. The watcher tossed him the keys and cautioned everyone to stay behind Buffy who was armed with her stake. Angelus laughed at their pitiful efforts to defend themselves against him.

“If I wanted you dead, Rup,” he told the Englishman, “I’d already be staring down at a pile of dead bodies.”

Angel walked forward putting himself between Angelus and the path of Buffy’s stake just in case she got any wild ideas about throwing it. Cordelia, knowing that killing Angelus would only result in doing the same to Angel, also moved into a protective stance in front of the evil vampire.

“Put the weapons away,” Angel held up his hands in the universal sign of surrender, trying to caution them against any sudden moves, but Xander had already pulled out several stakes and had armed Giles with his crossbow. “There is a reason Angelus is here, but there is no reason to fear him.”

Angelus stepped out from behind the pair guarding him, unwilling to be protected from those who would do him harm when he could still fight them with the only weapon he had left. “There is every reason to fear me. Buffy remembers why.”

“The last time I laid eyes on you, I sent you to hell,” she gripped the stake a little more tightly.

“That was Angel,” reminded Angelus. “You fought me, but it was your precious soul boy whose heart you pierced with that blade.”

“Shut up!” Buffy snapped. That wasn’t how she wanted to remember it. Angel was here now and in no way killed by her or sent to any hell dimensions for a hundred years.

“Am I lying? It was Willow, here, who managed to bring back that cursed soul,” he edged around the redhead who let out a little gleep of nervousness at his approach.

Buffy yanked Willow behind her. “Get away from Willow.”

“I’ve no interest in the little witch,” Angelus shrugged, “but there is one person here I have a question for.”

“And whom might that be,” inquired Giles coldly.

With a slow smile of satisfaction, Angelus answered, “That would be you, Rup. How did you like the champagne and roses?”

The reference to the night of last February 14th brought an instinctive reaction as Giles pointed the crossbow in Angelus’ direction and let the bolt fly. Only he hadn’t predicted the vampire moving so quickly and the arrow flew right by lodging deeply in Xander’s left buttocks as he bent over to pick up the stake he had dropped.

“Bullseye,” Angelus grinned as Xander screeched in pain.

“Xander!” Giles called out not quite believing that he had injured the boy. “Are you okay?”

“Other than having an extremely sharp object piercing my body?” Xander hopped over on one leg to bend over the table. “Nah! It’s just a little pain in the butt.”

Cordelia walked over to Angelus who was having a roaring time chuckling to himself next to the main counter. She slapped his arm, “Don’t you ever do anything like that again.”

“What did I do?” Angelus tried to look innocent, but wasn’t managing it.

“You know,” Cordelia gritted her teeth and turned on her heel to see how Xander was doing.

Buffy pulled out the straight bolt which was accompanied by a loud yelp of pain. “Off with the pants, Xander. Someone’s gotta check out the wound.”

“Eew!” Cordelia grimaced as Xander struggled with his pants. “Why are you looking at me?”

“You’re the former girlfriend,” Buffy commented. “Haven’t you seen Xander’s bare butt before?”

“I repeat…eew!”

Angel wasn’t certain what kind of answer that was, but he certainly wasn’t about to volunteer for the task. It was only when Xander whined, reminding them, “Bleeding to death over here,” that Willow finally jumped in to hold some pressure on the wound with Giles’s clean handkerchief.

The room fell into a deep silence as Willow tended to the injured teen. Somberly, the group looked upon their fallen comrade until Cordelia could no longer hold back any longer. A giggle escaped under her breath followed quickly by a louder snort. Then Buffy gave her a hard stare, but broke down into a series of chuckles that she tried to smother with her hand. Willow started in after that, the laughter now becoming contagious. Even Giles offered the occasional grin. Angel managed to somehow restrain himself, though it might have taken biting down on his cheeks to stop from laughing.

Cordelia didn’t think she had ever seen Angel laugh over anything, but paused in her own amusement to watch the smile spread across Angelus’ face as the other vampire threw back his head in raucous laughter.

Geez, but he’s sure gorgeous when he smiles. Bad Cordy. Down girl.

“Do you people mind not laughing while staring at my butt,” Xander complained with his usual jovial tone despite his own pain. “You’re giving me a complex.”

With the tension in the room severely lightened, Angel was able to explain that he had found a way to secure his soul by giving Angelus his own existence. Buffy was naturally delighted and threw herself into Angel’s arms looking like she wanted to take his soul for a test drive right then and there. No one was quite as pleased over the Angelus factor.

Finally, Angel had most of the group convinced that Angelus was no longer a threat. “Tell that to my injured behind,” Xander moaned. “Do I need stitches?”

“I’m afraid so,” Willow told him assessing the injury.

Buffy stalked over to Angelus, still holding her stake. “Don’t ever be the cause of an injury to any of my friends ever again. Because if you hurt them, I’ll make sure you regret it.”

“Killing me will kill your precious soulmate,” Angelus reminded her with a sour tone.

That left Buffy frowning. “It will?”

Angel nodded when she looked to him for confirmation. “Unfortunately, yes.”

“Well that sucks!”

Giles called out to the slayer as he helped Xander toward the door, “Buffy, a little assistance, please. We’ve got to take Xander to the Emergency Room.”

Willow was holding open the door for them. “C’mon, Buffy.”

“I gotta go, Angel,” she told him, but there was a sparkle in her eyes. “Meet you later for patrol?”

Angelus had joined them and was now standing behind Cordelia. He did not touch her, but his voice was soft in her ear as he pointed out, “He’ll meet her. They’ll patrol and then they’ll get down to business.”

“Crude, much?”

“Does that bother you, baby?” Angelus ran a fingertip along the back of her arm.

It shouldn’t, Cordelia thought. She should be happy that her friend finally had what he wanted. That he could make love to his girlfriend without worrying about a stray moment of bliss.

As she watched Angel walking with Buffy as far as the door, Cordelia softly admitted, “Yes.”


Chapter 4

The first month of Angelus’ involvement with the Scooby Gang came with uneasy feelings, suspicions and visible anger. Giles had every reason to hate Angelus and though he worked with the vampire and started to relax in his presence, they were never in danger of becoming friends.

The fact that Angelus had killed Jenny Calendar was one that could not be forgiven. Angelus had more success with Xander, Willow and Oz simply because the wily vampire’s sense of humor kept them amused, but while the vampire worked hard to ingratiate himself with the gang, they remained fearful of him.

Not that he cared a whit about them. It was all about Cordelia. Make the nice-nice with her friends and then pull out the big guns. Angelus had a plan and it was all about the slow seduction of Cordelia Chase. He’d told her that she belonged to him and he certainly believed that. Every word. One day soon, he’d prove it.

Cordelia remained terrified of the vampire for the first couple of weeks until she started to see his advances as being a skilled version of what she was already used to. Whenever the group was together, Angel was always around to prevent Angelus from coming on too strong. Then Angelus had stepped back and seemed to focus on building up a friendship, something Cordelia found highly suspicious.

It was the second half of the month that confounded her. Angelus saved Cordelia from an attack one night she had been acting as Bait Girl. The others were all in their places, but Angelus had somehow been close and keeping an eye on her. Something she later found out he did a lot. Cordelia expected the vampire to demand some kind of reward, probably of a sexual nature, but Angelus reacted only with concern over her wellbeing.

After that, Cordelia started to feel a little guilty for always riding the vamp for his behavior when it appeared that he was attempting to be nice. Angel had warned her not to trust his brother, as Cordelia had taken to calling him that. The two of them were like twins and it appeared more and more that Angelus was a lot like Angel, only funnier. Certainly just as sexy and he wasn’t attached at the lips to a certain slayer, which was always a plus in her book.

She would have almost been convinced that Angelus had forgotten his vow to make her his if it wasn’t for overhearing the two vampires arguing one night when she had dared to come over to the mansion under the pretence of needing to ask them both a question about her history homework. It never failed that Angel and Angelus had differing opinions and viewpoints of situations and Cordelia liked to listen to them both argue over things, even stuff as boring as history.

“I saw you sniffing after Cordelia again tonight,” Angel commented as his brother lounged on the stone bench in the mansion’s huge garden. He’d come out here just to have another chat and make sure Angelus knew to keep his paws off.

Cordelia heard him chuckle in response. She’d cut through the garden because she loved the walk through the park, all moonlight and shadows. The rustling trees and the direction of the wind kept her hidden, apparently, because neither vampire had a clue she was there listening.

“Was not.” Angelus denied. “It was that boy I was trailing. The one who thought he had the right to touch her.”

“The football player?” Now Angel sounded incensed. “I hope you corrected his way of thinking.”

Angelus, his head resting in the palm of his hand as he stretched out on the bench, gave a wide grin. His teeth flashed white in the moonlight. “Absofuckinlutely. Bastard won’t go near her now.”

Knowing that he could only be speaking of Larry who had been bothering her lately, trying to convince her to go out with him, Cordelia found it extremely funny. Larry was obviously not playing on the right team and she wasn’t talking football. Though a good football player, Cordelia wasn’t about to go out with him just to give the guy a front. Nobody used Cordelia Chase and got away with it.

“He’s obviously alive and well,” Angel assumed knowing that Angelus’ only real weapon against the human population was his caustic tongue.

“Unfortunately so, the little prick. Too bad I couldn’t have carved him up a little just as a reminder not to touch what’s mine,” sighed Angelus. He missed the torturing.

Angel’s shoulders stiffened at the words. Not the mention of torture. That was not exactly a shocking surprise. “Stop referring to Cordelia as being yours, dammit! She’s not ever going to grace your bed, so forget it. I know you only want her for one thing and the only way I’d ever let her get near you is if she’s begging for it.”

Sitting up, Angelus glared at Angel for trying to deny him the pleasure of imagining Cordelia where she belonged— in his arms. “Pretend to ignore my feelings, Angel. I know what I want and you know as well as I do what Cordelia Chase means to us. Maybe I don’t have a bleeding heart or soul, but I do know passion and desire. I know what I want even when I can’t have it.”

“What exactly do you want, Angelus?” came the question. Angel figured he knew the answer, but wanted to hear it straight from his brother’s mouth.

“Cordelia would have been my queen,” Angelus’ face took on a far away look as if he imagined himself in a Sunnydale ripe for the picking and completely under his thumb as he ruled over the squabbling rabble. “Beautiful, sensuous and deadly. A killer like us. A vampire with the instincts born of the night.”

In the shadows, Cordelia cringed. That’s what he had promised her that night in the graveyard as he pinned her to the ground. It was something she feared. Something she never wanted to happen no matter how poetically Angelus phrased it, because she knew that it would not really be her afterward.

“It will never happen,” Angel vowed. “Never. Cordelia won’t be turned. Certainly not by you since you can’t even sink your fangs into her.”

“You can,” Angelus pointed out.

“Never,” Angel shuddered at the thought, but not in disgust at the idea. The thought of feeling his fangs in the buttery softness of Cordelia’s flesh and tasting the coppery tint of her blood made his mouth water. Biting Cordelia was a concept that made him hard. Fantasies numbered one, two and three.

Angelus laughed at his reaction. “Wuss. Ignore your instincts and sit around and jack off all day if that’s what it takes.”

“Don’t have too,” Angel reminded him with a smirk.

“I’m sure the slayer loves being used,” Angelus returned drolly. “Blonde bitch might not care as long as you keep putting it to her so often.”

“Don’t talk about Buffy that way,” warned Angel very seriously. He wasn’t happy with the way his relationship with the slayer was going these days. What little friendship they had had become all about sex, but she was still his girlfriend.

“What? Not mention the fact that you have to shut up and take it like a man when she comes in demanding your attention?” That always gave Angelus a good laugh. The tiny powerhouse liked it rough, but she preferred to be on top. Constantly. He’d often listened in just for the hell of it. Better than cable.

That was interesting, Cordelia’s eyes widened. Buffy hadn’t said much about the sex, except that they’d all gotten the impression that she was certainly satisfied by it. The slayer took to humming during patrols. At least for the first few weeks, but lately the pair had seemed to get into little snits even in public and either Buffy or Angel would walk off angry. Cordelia wasn’t certain what to make of that.

“My relationship with Buffy is none of your business,” Angel barked and it seemed to Cordelia that he might as well have been talking to her as to Angelus.

“What about Cordelia?”

Yeah, thought Cordy wondering where Angelus was taking this. What about me?

Angel remained silent, which only caused Cordelia to glare at him from the shadows. Stupid broody vamp. Had to keep stuff close to his chest. It was a good thing that Angelus was nothing like him because he filled up the silence with words that left Cordelia thrumming in response and fuming with anger in a way that Angel would soon learn was not an emotion he wanted to be on the receiving end of.

“I know you want her, Angel,” his brother commented. “Can’t hide it from me. I was you for a while, remember?”

“Shut up, Angelus.”

“Why? So you can go off somewhere dark and brood about wanting what you don’t have the balls to take?” Angelus growled. “Not that you’ll have her before I do. She’s mine. Maybe I can’t turn her, bite her, torture her, but there are many other things I can do to Cordelia Chase.”

Angel wasn’t about to let it happen. “In your dreams, maybe,”

“Gotta face reality sometime,” Angelus told him. “It’s gonna happen. Sooner rather than later. The path of blood, pain and death may be denied me, but I can get off just as easily with pleasure, too. That’s what I’ll give her.”

“Not if I stop you.”

Reminding him of his comment that he would allow it if Cordelia admitted to wanting him, Angelus felt certain he could get her to that point. “I want her beneath me, her hair spread out on black…no, red silk sheets; nude in all her golden skinned glory and open to me. I want to taste every inch of her on my tongue and drink in that tangy honey.”

Angel swallowed reflexively as he pictured himself in place of Angelus in that fantasy. He’d take her slowly, fill her up and let her muscles squeeze him like a hand in a too tight glove.

“Then I’d give it to her hard, banging that sweet pussy until she couldn’t stand for a week. That would be starters,” leered Angelus as he let his hand fall to his thigh so close to his stirring sex. “Bet she gives good head. Cheerleaders usually do.”

“You ought to know,” Angel commented knowing that his brother had been working off some of his tension with Cordelia’s teammates. “She’ll find out soon enough. The girls may not worship at Cor’s feet like they used to, but she still has their ear.”

“Counting on it. A little word of mouth is always a good thing.” Then Angelus said, “Speaking of mouths…”

Cordelia listened as Angelus went on to describe the way he imagined she might use her mouth on him. When was he gonna start beating the crap out of his brother for saying such things, she wondered. Even if they sounded really, really hot and Cordy was just as caught up in the description.

Then suddenly she realized that he had Angel talking. Apparently, she’d hit on Angel fantasy number four.

“How many times have you imagined Cordelia’s mouth on you?”

Angel answered, “Too many.”

Hidden away, Cordelia gaped at the answer. More confirmation of what Angelus had hinted at that first day in the library. She wondered just how long Angel had feelings for her and if they were only sexual or if their friendship was somehow tied into them as well.

“You kissed her too,” Angelus reminded him. “Those lips were so soft, so full.”

“Pliant and warm,” nodded Angel. “Her mouth is wide…just look at that smile. Large enough to—”

Urging him for an answer, “To what?”

“To open up and take me in,” answered Angel caught up in the simple thought of it, “surround me and taste me with that hot tongue.”

Licking her lips, Cordelia’s thoughts were turned precisely in that direction imagining herself on her knees with Angel’s hands buried in her hair. She’d felt him with her hand and knew exactly why Angel would say what he did. The vamp was hung in a way that made her knees quake just thinking about it.

“Looks like we’ll both have to hit the showers,” growled Angelus irritated. “I am so fucking tired of silly blond twits. Oops! I forgot about yours.”

“Buffy’s not a twit,” Angel defended his girlfriend. Quite used to sharing his thoughts with Angelus, saying them aloud had become something of a habit between the two of them because it was basically like talking to himself. Angel crudely added, “The girl has control of muscles you wouldn’t believe.”

Outraged, Cordelia barely controlled the urge to reveal her presence. Not only had Angel openly fantasized about her using her mouth to pleasure him, he apparently found it easy to switch gears and talk about Buffy within two breaths of imagining her. That really, really pissed her off.

At least Angelus was honest about what he wanted. Angel had seemed to want it all and that was one thing that wasn’t going to happen. The vamp was gonna be lucky if she didn’t stake his ass the next time she saw him.

Cordelia waited until the two vampires returned to the mansion before moving out of the trees. A little friendly game of revenge was in order. “Just you wait, Angel. We’ll see how you like looking at something you can’t have.”


Chapter 5

It was Friday night and as per usual the gang was at the Bronze. Cordelia nearly gagged on the sugary sweetness that was Buffy and Angel until their sweet nothings turned into snips and snarls. Always about nothing that Cordelia could make heads or tails of, but they were at it again. She left them there with Angelus, Willow and Xander deciding that if this was the Bronze and the Dingoes Ate My Baby were playing her favorite song, then she was going to dance to it.

Cordelia started moving to the music. It didn’t matter that she started out alone, because it didn’t take long before there were three guys buzzing around her, feeding off her energy and doing their best to keep up. Her body moved in a sensual rhythm, dancing with seductive charm and a natural allure.

The teenagers were within touching distance and Cordelia let them, giving herself permission to lean into their fumbling hands while occasionally stealing glances toward the table. Buffy and Angel were alone now, she noticed, wondering where the others had gone. Probably tired of the arguing. Buffy was still turned to Angel, her mouth going at a hundred miles an hour, but Cordelia noted with satisfaction that Angel’s eyes were focused on the dance floor.

“See something you want?” Cordelia muttered the question as she moved against the torso of the male body behind her. The question wasn’t for him, but he answered anyway with a question of his own.

“Playing with fire, baby?”

Cordelia stopped dancing and glanced over her shoulder to find Angelus glaring down at her. She was about to whirl around when he gripped her arms and held her tight against him. The boys made some attempt at complaining, but Angelus scared them off with nothing more than a dark scowl.

“Maybe I am,” Cordelia answered as the song ended. The next one was a ballad and Devon’s voice and the soft beat of the music had her leaning into the strong frame behind her. She wanted those arms around her, even if they were his. “Dance with me.”

A moment later, Cordelia found herself laughing as Angelus held her in a very formal position for slow dancing. “What are you? A graduate of the Arthur Murray School of Dance?”

“If I was, you probably wouldn’t be laughing,” Angelus commented. “What’s wrong with this?”

“No spaghetti arms here,” snorted Cordelia. “You’ve got your dance space and I’ve got mine.”

Angelus saw no problem with that. It was proper form. “Spaghetti arms?”

“Hello! ‘Dirty Dancing’,” Cordelia prompted drawing a blank from the vampire. “Pfft! You’ve got to be kidding me. How socially inept can you get.”

“It’s his fault,” Angelus nodded in Angel’s direction. “Dirty Dancing sounds like something I’d actually enjoy.”

“No doubt,” she answered dryly. “That may be a little advanced for you. Why don’t you just try to make me feel like I’m dancing with someone other than my grandpa.”

Glancing around at the other couples, Angelus quickly got the hint. Wrapping her up in his arms, he pulled her back into his hard frame and felt Cordelia wrap her arms around his neck. She smelled so good up close and Angelus buried his face against her head as Cordelia nuzzled against him.

Angelus smoothed his hand down her spine, up to her shoulders and down to her hips again drawing out a little purr from Cordelia. Damn, but it felt good to have her in his arms. All those firm curves and soft surfaces pressing against him.

With a sigh, Cordelia shifted her head so that she could look up at Angelus. He was gazing at her with a look of wonder on his face. His fingers trailed across her cheek and then moved so that his thumb pressed across her lower lip exposing the tender pink flesh inside to his gaze.

“Go ahead,” the dare sounded on her lips. “Kiss me. Think he’ll let you?”

The corner of his mouth twisted up into a knowing grin. “What’s this, vixen? Trying to get me in trouble or to make him jealous?”

Cordelia’s eyes sparkled with mischief even as they continued to sway slowly around the dance floor. “What makes you think that?”

“Because I know you, Cordelia Chase,” he reminded her. “I know you just as well as Angel does. Better than that because I don’t bullshit my way into pretending that I can’t read your body language or the beat of your heart when you’re near.”

“Tell me you can’t do that,” she gasped in horror figuring a vampire with a couple of centuries of experience probably had that art down cold. “Tell me he can’t.”

Angelus merely smirked in return. Answer enough, perhaps, but he added, “Why don’t I just tell you that you’re nervous in my arms, but you like being here. That you’re dancing with me, but thinking of him. That you dare me to kiss you thinking I won’t, but wanting it anyway.”

“Do not,” Cordelia huffed.

“I don’t lie to you,” he said with a hint of anger. “I expect the truth when you talk to me.”

“Fine. I’m mad at Angel. I overheard something he said about me and I’m a little tickled off,” she revealed while glancing daggers in his direction. He was talking to Buffy again; this time it appeared they were back into snuggle mode. Making a little sound of disgust, it was easily picked up by Angelus.

He realized quickly, “You’re jealous.”

“Am not,” was her automatic response. Upon hearing his growl of complaint at the obvious lie, correcting herself, “Maybe a little, but if you tell him that I’ll make you pay for it.”

“Might be worth it,” Angelus grinned. Suddenly, he saw a way to get them both what they wanted. “You should take advantage of this, Cor.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“Use me.”

“Use you?” Cordelia snorted. “Don’t think I can’t tell what you’re after. Pfft! Like I’d give you an inch.”

Angelus twirled her around a couple of times and then off to the far side of the dance floor where he settled her against a column, placing his hands on either side of her shoulders. “I think you’re missing out on an opportunity. Who else can rile my brother up better than me? Only you and me…together.”

The idea had its merits, Cordelia considered, even though she’d be making a deal with the devil just to get back at Angel for hiding his feelings from her. He was over there now, she knew. Cordelia didn’t have to look; she knew Angel was watching. He had been ever since they two of them left the dance floor.

Before Cordelia could talk herself out of it, she reached up taking Angelus’ face in her hands and kissed him until her ears started ringing. Halfway through the kiss, he took over, making a growling moan into her mouth, taking her wrists and pushing her hands up over her head while pinning Cordelia’s lush body against the pillar with his own. She gasped as his tongue teased her. His mouth crushed her lips and then softened in the next moment to capture her lower lip with a tender nibble.

Cordelia felt him hard against her and her hips naturally gravitated closer thrusting forward to meet his. Her right foot lifted and moved outward at the nudge of his knee against her thigh. Bending her knee, she ran it along the outside of Angelus’ leg.

Their game of revenge led so quickly to actual arousal that both were caught up in each other neither one seeing the approach of the furious vampire. Angel grabbed Angelus and threw him off Cordelia. Facing her with rage darkening his features, he demanded, “What do you think you’re doing?”

His eyes raked over her taking in her mussed hair, barely there lipstick smudged on her lower lip, flushed skin, the wrinkled blouse with her nipples poking up at him like wanton targets. The sharp scent of her arousal clung to the air.

“Isn’t it obvious?” Cordelia asked while smoothing down her miniskirt.

“It looks like you’re planning to get laid, sweetheart,” he growled out, “but it’s not going to happen. Not with Angelus.”

“Maybe she wants it,” Angelus cut in oblivious of the curious gazes that focused on them as they cornered off against each other. “It’s none of your business what we do. Cordelia knows I’m not out to hurt her.”

Angel told her point blank, “He can’t hurt you, Cordelia, but Angelus can’t love you, either. Is that what you want?”

“Is love so wonderful?” Cordelia asked him. “After seeing you and Buffy, I’m not sure I need it.”

“Leave Buffy out of it,” pleaded Angel. He didn’t want to drag her into this. Mainly because it would mean facing up to the reasons they had been arguing every time they came within two feet of each other.

Cordelia countered with, “Love to. I’d love to leave her out of it, but I can’t, Angel. She’s right over there looking like she’s gonna stake the two of you and rip my hair out by the roots.”

Angel didn’t bother to glance over his shoulder. He knew Cordelia was telling the truth. That wasn’t his main concern at the moment. “Whatever you’ve got going on here stops now.”

“Why do you care?” snapped Cordelia wanting to hear him admit the truth.

“Because I’m your friend and I don’t want you hurt by me…my brother,” Angel caught the error and fixed it, but not before Cordelia and Angelus heard the original intent of his words.

“Angelus won’t hurt me,” Cordelia reminded him of his own words. “Physically, he can’t hurt anyone. I know he wants me. What’s so bad about that?”

Glancing at his double, Angel saw that Angelus had assumed a relaxed pose against the column next to Cordelia. He wore that knowing smirk and it was all Angel could do not to punch it off his brother’s face. The reason it wasn’t okay was simple, but one he couldn’t reveal.

I want you for myself, but I can’t have you because I already have a girlfriend, he played out the scenario in his mind. The selfish nature of his desires plagued him. It wasn’t right. It wasn’t fair. Angel couldn’t act on his attraction to Cordelia because it would not only hurt Buffy, but mainly because it would put his valued friendship with Cordelia at risk.

If it wasn’t already in danger now that Angelus was free to say and do whatever he pleased. The fact that Angel knew exactly what his double wanted made it worse because he wanted all that and more.

“I don’t care if you have a sudden urge to live dangerously,” Angel told Cordelia. “I won’t let this happen. You will stay away from Angelus or I swear you’ll regret it, Cor.”

Cordelia wasn’t much for threats, especially coming from Angel. Hands on her hips, she stepped close, tilting her face up to him and glared hotly, “Whatcha planning to do to stop me? Put me under house arrest? Tie me up somewhere?”

“Don’t tempt me,” Angel answered imagining tying her to the posts on his bed, nude and spread-eagled awaiting him. The idea obviously affected Cordelia as well making her heart rate kick up another notch. Damn, he didn’t need to know that excited her. “I get the feeling you might like that, sweetheart. There won’t be any silk scarves involved, just the palm of my hand tanning your ass.”

“You wouldn’t!” Gasping, Cordelia was outraged he would suggest it and ignored the rush of heat curling low in her belly.

Angel returned, “I will if that’s what it takes to make you understand Angelus isn’t someone you should be involved with.”

“First off, buddy, I will be involved with anyone I damn please,” Cordelia poked him in the chest with her finger. “Angelus may not have a soul, but he does have a leash. Maybe I just want to give it a little tug. Ever think of that?”

There were definite rumblings of discontent to be heard…from both vampires. Angel wanted no talk of Cordelia tugging on anything belonging to his brother. Angelus was not very keen on the idea of having a leash, much less the idea of being led by it.

“No doubt you’d enjoy it at first,” Angel admitted through clenched teeth as blunt as she’d taught him to be. “I know precisely what Angelus is capable of when it comes to pleasuring a woman. He’d have you screaming his name and coming six different ways before sunrise.”

Just the thought made Cordelia’s toes curl, because she knew Angelus wasn’t the only vampire standing here that could do so. Then Angel asked her, “Is that all you want?”

“No,” Cordelia answered truthfully.

Nearly sighing in relief, Angel added, “Please think about this before you jump in with both feet. Once you let Angelus have you, I guarantee having a relationship with a human won’t ever be the same.”

Angelus revolted at that idea. “Like that will ever happen. You think I’d let her go?”

“Exactly,” Angel nodded. “You wouldn’t. That’s what I’m saying, Cordelia. Once you take that step, there’s no going back.”

Cordelia tried to keep in mind that she hadn’t intended to take that step in the first place. She was just trying to get Angel to admit that he wanted her. The way he acted and the things he said went beyond the big brother act he was trying to maintain. Cordelia knew that, but she realized that Angel wasn’t about to voice any admission of feeling other than concern and friendship as long as he and Buffy were together.

That wasn’t something she was going to get in the middle of simply because Cordelia didn’t want to feel second best. If Angel wanted her, then he’d have to find the balls to make a decision and come get her for himself.

“Okay,” she decided on a different gameplan. “I won’t rush into things with Angelus.”

“Good,” Angel nodded with a relieved smile while his brother scowled at the news.

“That doesn’t mean I can’t do whatever I want,” Cordelia pointed out.

Angel was about to protest when she cut back in, “Maybe Angelus is like your evil pervert of a brother, but he’s still a person…kinda.”

“Am not!” Angelus protested.

“Which part?” asked his double drolly.

Cordelia rolled her eyes, “Okay, so you’re a vampire. I get that, trust me. That doesn’t mean you can’t try to live the leashed undead life you’ve been given.”

He couldn’t disagree with that. “Right.”

“What’s to say you can’t have fun?”

Angelus had a feeling his definition of fun was a lot different than the cheerleader’s. “Does this fun involve you?”

Considering what she was trying to say, Cordelia shrugged. “Maybe.”

That idea didn’t sit well with Angel. “What are you getting at?”

“Just that Angelus needs to get out and do things besides tag after you everywhere. What fun is it if Angel the Bloodhound is watching every second?”

“That’s the point, Cordelia,” Angel reminded her. “He gets a life, but I make sure he doesn’t get out of line.”

“Pfft! You just don’t trust him,” she poked his chest again.

Angel grabbed her hand. “Damn right I don’t. Especially with you.”

“What’s the problem? That you know Angelus wants me or that you can’t stand the idea of me being his friend?”

“You’re my friend,” Angel actually tugged her closer.

Cordelia laughed at him. “Possessive, much?”

“Angelus doesn’t want your friendship, Cordelia,” Angel’s voice deepened into harsh tones, “he wants to fuck you.”

The crude words shocked her, but Cordelia snapped back the first thing that popped into her head. Challenging him, “And you don’t?”

They stared at each other in a silent face-off. Angelus stood next to them eating up the tension in the atmosphere. Geez, he loved this. He wondered if Cordelia would haul off and slap Angel silly or if the other vampire would just throw her up against the column and take her where she stood. Hell, that’s what he’d do if it wouldn’t set off the severely debilitating pain-inducing spell that moderated his behavior.

“Don’t go there,” Angel shook his head, his eyes dropping to the fullness of her lips as they formed a tempting circle. Lifting his gaze back to hers, he said, “This is about you putting too much trust in Angelus, not about us.”

“What ‘us’, Angel?” Cordelia demanded an answer. “We’re friends and beyond th—”

Angel stopped her with a growl, “There can’t be anything beyond that. There’s Buffy.”

“I know,” Cordelia shrugged as if the fact didn’t bother her and found herself under the scrutinizing stares of both vampires. “Being my friend doesn’t mean you have exclusive rights to my friendship. I can give it to anyone I choose.”

“To him?” Angel made it sound like the other vampire had crawled out from under a rock. “To Angelus?”

Cordelia glanced at the vampire over her shoulder. “Somebody needs to. He’s kinda pathetic. Nobody likes him.”

“Cor-de-lia,” intoned Angelus trying to get her to shut up without using his hands to strangle her. Something that would only cause him pain and in the end would not get him what he wanted.

“Puh-lease,” Cordelia ignored the threatening tone. “Giles and Buffy can’t stand you. The Scoobies are afraid of you. Other vampires aren’t exactly flocking to your banner now that you’re fighting the Good Fight and your own brother doesn’t trust you.”

Angelus frowned to the point of pouting. “I don’t give a crap about them.”

“See,” Cordelia told Angel. “He obviously needs to get a life. How can we expect him to be one of the good guys if he doesn’t even have a friend among us?”

“Let Xander be his friend,” barked Angel unwilling to concede that Cordelia could be anything to his evil alter-ego.

“Pfft! Yeah, right,” she shared a chuckle with Angelus who found the concept equally amusing.

Cordelia strummed her fingers against her hips thoughtfully. “Since your free time is full these days with all the Buffy boinking, I’ll just have to spend mine with Angelus. I need a new project, anyway.”

“Project?” Both of them questioned.

“Y’know, easing the former serial killer back into society,” she told them.

Angelus looked offended, “Former?”

“Face it, Bad Boy,” Cordelia’s mouth curled into a grin, “the only thing you can kill these days are demons, so flash your pearly fangs all you want. You don’t scare me anymore.”

That pissed Angelus off, but there was not much he could do about it if he wanted to get into those closely guarded panties. What with guard dog Angel around, Cordelia hardly needed to bother with a chastity belt. Not that it wasn’t too late to bother with one now. He felt certain the cheerleader was no longer virgin territory, but he was oh so willing to find out just how much experience she did have.

Angel wasn’t certain what brought on this crazy idea of Cordelia’s. Taking on Angelus as a ‘project’ or as a friend was ridiculous. He told her so and managed to draw her ire. Not a fun place to be, Angel decided and eventually they came to a standoff.

“You’re going to do this, aren’t you?” Angel glared down at Cordelia. “No matter my opinion.”

She remained silent, simply raising an eyebrow.

Then grabbing his brother’s shirt front, Angel hauled him closer too. Angelus didn’t protest because he knew this was all going in the direction he wanted. “Cordelia’s misguided notion that you are redeemable in any way better not come back to bite her on the ass. Understood?”

“No biting,” Angelus nodded trying to keep a straight face. “Got it.”

Releasing him, Angel further warned, “I’ll be watching. If you even attempt to touch Cordelia in any way that displeases her, you better prepare for the consequences.”

“Big Brother is watching,” Cordelia snorted just as Angel had turned to go back to Buffy and the gang who were once again gathered at the table.

Pausing, Angel moved his head just enough to let her know his words had an impact. Though the music continued to belt out its heady rhythm, she heard him speak, “I’m no one’s big brother, Cordelia. Not his and certainly not yours.”

“That went well,” commented Angelus conspiratorially once Angel departed.

Cordelia gave him a look of disgust. “Are you kidding? That sucked. All it did was make me feel sorry for your pathetic existence. I didn’t get anything out of it except confirmation that…big surprise here…Buffy is Angel’s priority.”

“What’d you expect? That he’d dump her for you?” Angelus gave her a look that said she should be a little realistic. “Soul boy is too much of a gentleman to do something like that.”

She found herself smiling in spite of herself, “I know.”

“And I’m the pathetic one?” Angelus guffawed. Then considered the possibilities as he queried, “So…am I pathetic enough for a pity fuck?”

“Eew! Angelus!” She whacked him on the chest with her hand. Then rolling her eyes, added, “As if!”

Angelus watched Cordelia stalk off in the direction of the Scooby Gang’s table. “What did I say? Who says friends can’t be fuck buddies?” he asked, trailing after her.


Chapter 6

“What’s the suspicious look for?” asked Cordelia as Angel met her at the door of the mansion.

“You’re here.”

Cordelia looked around the empty foyer. “I don’t see any ‘No Tresspassing’ signs and it’s not like I haven’t been over before.”

Angel closed the door behind her noticing that she carried a Blockbuster video tape in her hand. “We’re watching a movie?”

“No,” Cordelia answered. “Angelus and I are watching a movie. What? No Buffy lovin’ tonight?”

“You…shouldn’t say things like that, Cor,” he admonished and would have blushed if it was possible. The blunt talk only went as far as making a point rather than hearing hers.

“Hmph. The answer must be a big fat no,” she smirked.

Admitting, “Buffy and Giles have some training thing tonight. We’re supposed to patrol later.”

Patting his cheek condescendingly, she cooed, “Poor widdle vampire. You can join us if you think you can stand having a little fun.”

Thinking about it, Angel declined. It had been almost three weeks since the fiasco at the Bronze when he’d said far too much and Cordelia had somehow managed to get him to agree to letting her try to domesticate Angelus under the bonds of friendship. Anything to stop her from going down that self-destructive path of letting herself get too close.

The only problem was that while Angel had accepted the limitations of those ties, his brother only took it as a challenge.

Angel sat back watching as Angelus worked his charm over Cordelia and the entire Scooby Gang. The evil vampire laughed when things were funny. He beat down demons and defended them from danger. He played the gentleman to Cordelia’s lady even when she snorted in his face and told him to make it a little less obvious next time.

So he did. If Angel had called him on it, he would have looked like a jealous fool for saying Angelus had an agenda. That he didn’t want his brother spending time with his people. Buffy started to encourage Angelus’ Scooby Time. It kept the gang occupied allowing them to be alone.

Only their alone time seemed to be less and less romantic. Angel wasn’t certain what it was, but ever since they were able to be together consistently, Buffy became more and more aggressive. Not that Angel didn’t like it rough, but he wanted to give her tenderness as well and that was something the blond slayer no longer craved. It was as if she wanted to control the demon in him and so their lovemaking became more and more about pure, raw sex.

“I’ll be in the study,” Angel told Cordelia as if to assure her that he wasn’t far away in case Angelus got out of line.

“Whatever.”

Just then, Angelus came bounding down the stairs with a grin on his face. “Cordy!”

And she claims I’m Buffy’s lapdog? Lucky I have no gag reflex. Angel watched with a stony expression as his double enveloped Cordelia in a tight hug which was readily returned by the brunette.

“I brought Dirty Dancing,” Cordelia sing-songed.

Angel’s eyes widened at her words. Sounding clipped, “What?”

“The movie, dorkula,” she thrust out the video tape and waved it under his nose. “I wasn’t planning any lap dances.”

“Damn!” Angelus gave a mock look of disappointment. “I thought for sure that was on the agenda.”

“Don’t push your luck,” Cordelia laughed good-naturedly.

Angelus gave her the puppy dog eyes. “Not even a little bump and grind?”

Cordelia wiggled her hips as she moved toward the living room, laughing as she went. “That’s as close as you’ll get, buddy.”

“See ya later, bro,” Angelus quirked his eyebrows at Angel and dashed after Cordy.

This is intolerable, thought Angel as he headed into the study not bothering to turn on the light.

The really bad part was that he knew there were feelings involved. Cordelia might be completely aware that Angelus was incapable of truly loving her, but the vampire seemed to be out to prove her wrong. Maybe it was just an obsession, but Angelus treated her with a tenderness Angel thought him incapable of producing.

In the dark, Angel listened to the sounds of the movie, its music and the character voices blending into a fusion of background noise. Interspersed were the familiar tones of Cordelia as she squealed with laughter or talked to Angelus during the movie. His brother was less talkative and Angel imagined that it was because all of his attention was on her.

Cordelia. Just the thought of her caused his body to tense up. Even from here he could pick up her scent, that mix of floral body wash and woman. Closing his eyes, Angel could see her here with him. She’d be sitting on his desk talking about some nonsensical poll from a magazine expecting him to answer the questions and have it mean something.

Then she’d smile at him with that brilliant flash of teeth and Angel knew he wouldn’t be sitting very long. Taking the magazine out of her hand, he’d get rid of it pronto. Make sure her hands were occupied by touching him. He’d pull her hair down since for some reason she wore it up and let it cascade through his fingers.

Cordelia’s nimble fingers would start to undo the buttons on his shirt as they kissed, their mouths blending into a series of soft, butterfly caresses almost too tender by nature. The brush of her lush mouth against his, the plump silk of her lower lip as it caught between his and the warm rush of her sweet breath as it whispered against his mouth all came to him with the vivid memory of her taste from their one and only actual kiss.

Now her hands bunched into the loose material pulling out the shirttails from Angel’s belted pants. Hazel eyes burning with need, she moved her hands up the contours of his chest pushing the shirt from his shoulders. Taking her hand, Angel pressed a kiss into its center before guiding it back down his torso to the buckle of his belt.

While her hands were occupied, Angel dropped his to her thighs uncrossing them and opening her up as he stepped closer between her bare thighs. The miniskirt she wore provided easy access to the smooth skin underneath and his thumbs circled there as she whipped the belt from its loops tossing it to the floor.

Before Cordelia could return to unfasten the button on his pants, Angel peeled her top over her head taking a moment to enjoy the view of her full breasts cupped so temptingly in her lacy…turquoise bra. Yes, tonight it was turquoise. He’d have to touch, just to trail the back of his fingers across her soft curves for now. Maybe just a little more indulgence allowing himself the pleasure of testing the weight of one firm breast in his palm, brushing his thumb over the nipple until it poked up through its silky barrier begging for his mouth.

Angel tasted her through the silk, nipping at her erect flesh and laving it with his tongue until her moaning need sounded in his ears. Her hands were busy again as he kissed his way up to her throat. Not so steady now, Cordelia’s hands fumbled with the button and zipper of his pants until finally, finally she reached in to grasp his straining flesh.

“Touch me, Cordy,” Angel moaned aloud allowing himself that much and knowing that the sounds in the other room would drown out his own voice.

As his hand wrapped around his erection, Angel imagined it was her. Cordelia licked her lips, whispering to him about the way he felt in her hand, giving due praise to his size and telling him how much she wanted him inside her.

“Make love to me,” she pleaded with that honeyed voice as her fingers danced along his shaft teasingly.

Covering her mouth with his, distracting her with deep kisses, Angel divested her of her silky bra letting it flutter to the floor atop his shirt and belt. She’d be beautiful, of course. He’d imagined seeing her a thousand times bare to his gaze, only for him. He knew the curve of her breasts, the shadow of her generous cleavage, the golden silk of her skin and the shape of her puckered nipples just large enough for his tongue to curl around.

His mind worshiped at her luscious curves for a while as he stroked himself, his hand tightening its grip while his fingers and thumb rubbed against the sensitive crown of his cock. Angel scooted lower on his chair reaching a better angle to spread his legs wider, cupping his sac with his free hand. It was Cordelia who did it, stroking him there and making his body jerk with building pleasure.

“Angel,” her name whispered across his skin in a husky tremor, “I want you so much.”

He eased her back onto the desk watching as her hair spread across the mahogany surface, her skin glowing against the dark wood. The skirt had to go and so it did, instantly through the convenience of his lustful imaginings leaving Cordelia dressed only in a tiny scrap of turquoise silk.

Pulling her hips to the edge of the desk, Angel spread her legs and flexing them so that her toes hugged the edge. Cordelia’s eyes blazed with need as she gazed down the length of her bare body watching as Angel stroked her through the thin barrier of her panties, moisture gathering there, her hips writhing in an effort to create more friction as he teased her swollen bud.

“Angel,” she sounded more insistent now. Ready. He ripped away the scrap of silk and stepped close rubbing the tip of his cock against her wet folds.

“Angel!” The feminine voice finally snapped him out of his fantasy as Angel tumbled off the chair onto the wooden surface below. “What are you doing here in the dark?”

Quickly tucking himself back in his pants and fumbling with his zipper, Angel peeked over the edge of the desk as he knelt on the floor. “Hi, Buffy. How’d you get in?”

“Through the door,” Buffy thumbed in that direction. She never knocked, so she was surprised that he was asking.

“Oh,” he cleared his throat while climbing back into his chair pulling himself as far in to the desk as possible.

“So what are you doing in here? I thought I heard moaning,” she commented with a frown.

“That’s probably the movie,” Angel told her. “Cordy and Angelus are next door in the living room.”

“Yeah, I found them first. Dirty Dancing lessons,” Buffy let out a sound of disgust. “I know Cordelia hasn’t had a boyfriend since Xander, but does she have to pick one that looks like mine?”

“Boyfriend?” Angel sat up straight in his chair, the swift move not exactly pain-free. “What lessons are you talking about? They’re watching a movie.”

Giggling, Buffy commented, “Acting parts of it out, maybe. Cordy said she was trying to show Angelus how to move his hips.”

“What th—?” Angel was out of his chair in less than a second, barging past Buffy and leaving her standing in the doorway.

Rounding the corner, he found Cordelia and Angelus standing in the middle of the living room, their bodies pressed together and moving in a manner that in no way looked like a simple lesson. Cordelia was grinning and laughing as Angelus tried to follow along with the music chanting along in his off-key voice. Hearing Angel’s shout demanding an explanation, they broke apart like a pair of guilty children caught with their sticky hands in the cookie jar.

“Dancing,” Cordelia huffed, refusing to blush at being caught doing something Angel obviously thought crossed the line of friendship that her project allowed. “What did it look like?”

“You know what the hell it looked like, Cordelia,” he scowled and glanced at Angelus accusingly. “I told you to keep your hands to yourself.”

“Is that what you’ve been doing?” asked Angelus cryptically having heard more than enough through the connecting wall to discern the truth. “Keeping your hands to yourself?”

Then his grin spread a little wider as he saw the petite figure sidle up to Angel’s tall form. “Hello again, Buffy.”

“Hi,” Buffy sounded bored. She tugged on Angel’s sleeve to get his attention. “Can we go now? I was hoping to patrol with you tonight.”

Angel knew what that meant. A short sweep of the cemeteries followed by a long screw in the Walker Family Crypt. While a certain part of him wanted nothing more than to finish what he’d started, there was no way Angel was leaving Cordelia alone with Angelus. Especially after finding them wrapped up in each others arms with their hips bumping and grinding together in a dance that was more about sex than it was about music.

“I’m not leaving the mansion tonight,” he told Buffy firmly never taking his eyes off the pair under his scrutiny.

“Why not?” whined Buffy with a pout. It was ineffective unlike most times because Angel wasn’t even looking at her. “Don’t you want to patrol?”

He didn’t miss the extra hint as she enunciated that last word. Angel’s answer was simple and frankly he didn’t care if it came out too bluntly, “No.”

“Have it your way,” Buffy’s lips tightened up into a small circle of anger. She turned on her heel and stalked back across the foyer slamming the front door behind her.

“Way to go, dumbass,” Cordelia rolled her eyes. “You’ll have some making up to do tomorrow.”

Angel wasn’t certain he wanted to make the effort. He was tired of being at Buffy’s beck and call all the time. He was tired of pretending that he only wanted Cordelia’s friendship and very tired of putting up with seeing his brother’s hands on her.

Shoving his hands in his pockets, he walked into the room. “So what’s this movie about other than the obvious?”

Cordelia’s mouth fell open in surprise. “Since when are you a movie aficionado?”

“I like movies,” Angel answered looking hurt. “I’m a vampire, not totally culturally deprived.”

Even Angelus looked doubtful knowing precisely the extent of his brother’s movie know-how. He kept his mouth shut not wanting Cordelia to think otherwise.

“Riiight!” Cordelia held out her hand waggling her fingers at him until he put his hand in hers. She led him to the couch. “Sit down. You’re about to be culturally aware of just how hot I find Patrick Swayze.”

Angelus snorted having already experienced the drooling episode as Cordelia zoned out at the bare-chested actor. The little buzz put her in the mood for some fun, so he wasn’t about to complain. His brother, on the other hand, wasn’t so pleased with the idea of Cordelia finding any man hot, even if he was just on the television screen.

They spent the rest of the evening sitting together on the couch, Cordelia in the middle, with their legs stretched out and feet resting on the coffee table in front of them. Cordelia was surprised that Angel wasn’t complaining about scuff marks on his table, but the vamp was too distracted to think about it. He spent most of the movie stealing glances at her.


Chapter 7

“What’s that you’re reading?” Willow glanced at the card in Cordelia’s hand as she walked up to her locker. “I know it’s not your birthday.”

“Mmm? No. Not my birthday,” Cordelia answered with a far away glint in her eye. She shoved the card into one of her text books. “It’s nothing. Just something from a guy.”

Willow gave her a wry look. “That narrows it down a bit.”

The card was only the first surprise, Willow discovered. Every day for a week there was something new in Cordelia’s locker. Flowers one day, candy the next, sweets to go along with the sweet poetic words written out in calligraphic form and a portrait detailed with a skill that no one at Sunnydale High could match. None Willow knew about, but it didn’t take a genius to guess the identity of Cordelia’s secret admirer.

“It’s Angelus, isn’t it?” she asked Cordelia one day, a worried tone in her voice.

Nodding, Cordelia found herself telling Willow that the vampire had been courting her as if they had some old-timey romance going on, mostly without Angel’s knowledge. “I think I’m falling for him. Is that crazy?”

Willow nodded excessively, “Yes. Crazy. Definitely. Uh-huh!”

“I think so too,” Cordelia admitted with a puzzled look. “This is Angelus we’re talking about. Evil Angelus. Only he hasn’t been evil. Not to me. He’s incapable of harming me and I know he wants me.”

“D-Do you want him?” Willow’s eyes were wide saucers.

Cordelia leant into the lockers. “Mmm, definitely.”

“Eep!” The sound squeaked out of Willow’s throat, the only response she could muster at the news.

“Don’t you dare tell anyone, Willow Rosenberg,” said Cordelia firmly. “Nobody hears about this.”

Willow wasn’t exactly good at keeping secrets, especially when they involved friends of hers falling in love with vampires. After all, she did have some experience in this area and knew that nothing but trouble lay ahead. “Cor, I think you should think this over before you do something you might regret.”

“The only thing I regret is wasting my time on certain guys who don’t know a good thing when they see it,” Cordelia snapped. “Guys who won’t fight for what they want and settle for something easier.”

Frowning, Willow wondered just what Cordelia was getting at. “What guys?”

Cordelia blinked as the question brought her out of her little rant. The bell rang just then distracting Willow who was suddenly commenting on her upcoming exam. “I’ve gotta go, Cordelia. Trig test. Just remember to think about what I said.”

It didn’t take long for Cordelia to think about it. She hadn’t even made it to class when she made up her mind. The trick would be finding a way to make this happen without Angel blowing a gasket. Not that she expected to be so lucky.


Once again, it was Friday night at the Bronze. This time an out-of-town band held the stage. The Dingoes had the weekend off for once and so Willow and Oz were dancing amidst the crowd. Xander had convinced Buffy to dance with him since Angel continued to refuse to do so and that left Cordelia at the table with the two vampires.

Rising to her feet, Cordelia told Angel, “I’m going to dance with Angelus now. I expect your butt to stay glued to the seat.”

He looked a little suspicious. “Why wouldn’t it?”

Angelus had an idea, but he wasn’t about to spoil the fun. He took Cordelia by the hand and led her to the dance floor without allowing time for her to answer.

Watching, Angel found his anger growing by leaps and bounds. He rose from the chair twice, sitting back down each time after convincing himself that he didn’t need to make a scene. Apparently, Angelus had watched the damn video a few too many times.

“I could dance like that if I wanted too,” Angel muttered under his breath reaching for his whiskey. Gulping it down, he hoped the song would end soon and Cordelia would come back to the table where Angelus wouldn’t dare to let his hands rove over her bared skin.

The red dress Cordelia wore only hinted at her cleavage, but left her elegant back almost bare as two spaghetti-thin straps crisscrossed to support the skirt that left her long legs exposed to his view. A pair of high-heeled sandals finished the outfit and Angel imagined removing those shoes and kissing her toes one by one before working his way up to taste the rest of her.

This has to stop, Angel told himself. Before I do something we’ll all regret.

When the music ended, Angel watched Oz and Willow making their way back to the table. They were laughing and obviously having fun. He managed a weak smile as they greeted him. Buffy and Xander stopped at the bar for sodas before returning, but there was no sign of Angelus nor Cordelia on the dance floor.

“Where are they?” Angel asked sounding panicked as he scanned the room. “Never mind.”

Spotting them back at the shadowy corner where the column blocked them from most of the room, he sat back down. It looked like they were just talking, he realized as he relaxed back into his chair. Angel found the others gaping at him.

“What’s with you tonight?” Buffy grumbled. “You won’t dance with me and all you do is stare at Angelus like you expect him to pounce on Cordelia. She’s a big girl, Angel. Let her make her own decisions.”

“That is Angelus,” he stressed as if that was all he needed to say.

Xander had to agree. “Just because the vamp has a sense of humor doesn’t mean I think he should date Cordelia.”

“Date?” Angel’s voice cracked as he spoke.

“Well…whatever they’re doing,” shrugged Xander as he took a swig of his soda.

Angel looked furious at the boy’s suggestion. “They’re doing nothing. Absolutely nothing.”

“If you say so,” Buffy commented as she looked over Angel’s shoulder to see the pair in question making out in the corner, “but that doesn’t look like nothing to me.”

“What’s going on?” asked Angel, at first not wanting to turn to face that direction as if he knew what he would see.

Buffy considered for a moment and then told him, “Mutual pouncing?”

Slowly, Angel turned back around to gaze across the dance floor. He was out of his chair and moving when he felt a hand holding him back. Buffy noted the look of fury on his handsome face while hers was filled with hurt and confusion. “Why can’t you just leave them alone, Angel? It’s none of your business.”

“Cordelia is my business,” he answered abruptly shocking Buffy who thought he would suggest that his brother’s behavior was what he was concerned with.

She whispered the name, “Cordelia?”

“Let go, Buffy,” Angel’s tight jaw indicated he wanted no arguments. “Just drop it. I don’t have time to deal with you right now.”

“Deal with me,” repeated Buffy as she let go of her firm hold on his arm. “You think you deal with me?”

“Go back to the others,” he nodded toward the table of gaping onlookers. “We’ll talk later.”

Buffy watched him stalk across the dance floor, not bothering to issue apologies to anyone he bumped into on the way there. “Talk? You’re not kidding. We certainly will.”

Reaching Angelus and Cordelia in a matter of moments, Angel stood by with his arms crossed over his chest and clearing his throat loudly. “Déjà vu anyone?” he inquired just before grabbing Angelus by the shoulder and pulling him away from Cordelia.

“What do you think you’re doing, Angel?” Cordelia snapped angrily. “Don’t bother with the excuses. Just give me an explanation.”

His answer came as Angelus stepped back up and put an arm around Cordelia. “I don’t want his hands on you.”

“I happen to like his hands on me,” she told him point blank. “So start getting used to it, buddy.”

Flashing a glare at his brother, he asked, “What the hell does that mean?”

“It means,” answered Angelus with a triumphant smirk, “Cordelia has accepted my claim.”

“The hell she has,” Angel growled, his eyes yellowing to a deep topaz. “Cor—”

She poked at his chest, “My decision, Angel. I want this and you won’t change my mind about it.”

Oh, how he wanted to argue. Angel also wanted to beat Angelus until he was a pulp of bruised flesh on the floor. Only, he did neither.

Angel brushed his fingertips across Cordelia’s flushed cheek. “Don’t do this.”

The plea came on a bare whisper, but it sounded clearly despite the music and noise of the crowd. Sucking in a shaky breath, Cordelia released it slowly, “Give me one good reason why I shouldn’t.”

“I don’t like it,” Angel answered.

Cordelia countered with, “Not good enough.”

“He’s a killer.”

“Former. Just like you. Next?”

“He can’t love you.”

“Does a good impression, if you ask me,” Cordelia had to admit. “Besides, you told me yourself he knows how to make up for deficiencies in the true love department by— how did you phrase that again? Oh, yeah. Making me come six different ways by sunrise.”

That brought a growl to his throat. “It’s just sex, Cordelia.”

“No, it’s not,” she told him. “Not for me.”

Angel looked thunderstruck, almost heartbroken. “It’s not?”

“I think I could love him, Angel. Really,” Cordelia decided to tell him. There’d be no hiding it anyway with the two of them having to live under the same roof. “I want to explore that.”

“I-I…see,” he managed to get out the words.

Angelus did his best to keep a straight face through it all. Damn, Angel certainly had it bad. What was that saying? Lucky at cards, unlucky in love. Hmm. Angel wasn’t that lucky at cards, come to think of it. Speaking of luck, Angelus figured he’d push his a little.

“Bro, can I borrow the Plymouth?”

Angel actually blinked at the question. He hadn’t let him touch his car before now. “Why?”

“Cordy didn’t bring her car tonight,” Angelus explained. “I don’t want her to have to walk all the way back to the mansion.”

Refusing wouldn’t stop them from getting there, Angel realized. It would only cause a wider rift between him and Cordelia. He’d already put their friendship at risk with his behavior to date. Silently, he removed his car keys from his pocket tossing them to Angelus.

Taking it as a sign of consent, Cordelia flashed her megawatt smile, and jumped up and down a couple of times before grabbing Angel for a hug. He selfishly held onto her a moment longer than necessary and felt her warm lips press against his cheek.

“C’mon, Bad Boy,” Cordelia threaded her fingers through Angelus’ clasping his hand. “I wanna see those moves you promised to show me in private.”

Angel stood as still as a statue as the pair walked away. He watched them until the red flash of Cordelia’s dress disappeared through the door. Turning, he found Buffy standing directly behind him.


Chapter 8

Tossing the car keys on the circular table in the foyer, Angelus decided he’d better not push things too fast. He didn’t want to scare Cordelia off or have her change her mind. “Want a tour of the mansion?”

“I’ve seen it,” Cordelia reminded with a slow smile.

“We could narrow it down,” Angelus suggested. “I could just take you right upstairs and show you our bed.”

Cordelia’s breath caught in her throat at the look of passion darkening his eyes. “Our bed?”

“As of now, it also belongs to you,” Angelus told her. He wasn’t planning to tell her more about the claim just yet. Without being able to bite her, he’d have to find some other way of making it official. He did say, “I want you here as often as you can be.”

“My parents are still in Europe,” Cordelia commented distractedly. She was too busy thinking about stretching out beneath Angelus in their bed. That was scary in a totally exciting way. “No idea if or when they’re returning.”

Angelus looked thrilled by the idea. “So you’ll stay here?”

Nodding, Cordelia glanced around the foyer with its impressive stairs leading to the upper floors. As if he read her mind, Angelus told her, “Do what you want with the mansion. Make it yours, Cordy. I want you to feel at home here.”

A little confused, “I thought the mansion belonged to Angel.”

“That’s debatable,” Angelus shrugged. It was something they really hadn’t hashed out yet. “Technically, we’re equals and the rights to the titular holdings of the D’Aurelius Clan belong to both of us. Don’t let it bother you, baby. I know Angel will give you anything you want.”

“Oh,” Cordelia answered, a little overwhelmed by it all. She hadn’t just accepted a boyfriend, but a whole way of life. She’d known that just from the hints both he and Angel had given her.

Angelus cupped her bare shoulder, moving his thumb in a circle there as he asked her softly, “Are you ready to go upstairs.”

“Yes,” she grinned confidently.

Then a mischievous look came over the vampire’s face. Before Cordelia had time to question him, he swooped her up over his shoulder in a fireman’s hold and started up the stairs. Cordelia let out a screech of surprise and laughed most of the way up. The little stinging slap on her bottom left her tingling and was apparently not enough to set off any pain receptors since the vampire intended no harm.

“I’ll get you for that,” she warned him merrily. If she hadn’t been so busy holding on for dear life as Angelus barreled up the stairs, Cordelia would certainly done a little playful slapping of her own. She had a great view of his muscular, leather panted ass from this angle.

Angelus pushed open the bedroom door, carried her over to the huge four poster bed and let her bounce onto the mattress. Her long chestnut hair tossed in unruly waves around her nearly bare shoulders and her hazel eyes sparkled in anticipation of what was to come.

If she had bothered to look around, Cordelia might have noticed the quality of the furniture or the lush bed coverings. Perhaps even items like the vanity dresser and mirror that were already in place and waiting for her, but Cordelia’s eyes saw none of it for they were focused entirely on the vampire in front of her. She leaned back on her elbows greedily watching as Angelus divested himself of his clothes. Maybe soon she’d have the nerve to reach up and unbutton those leather pants, but not today. It was all a little shocking and totally thrilling.

Angelus simply ripped his shirt open, the buttons popping everywhere as he bared his smooth, contoured chest to her view. Her tongue peeked out, sweeping across her lips as nervous butterflies started to swirl in her belly spreading heat deep in her womb.

The shoes and socks went next and Cordelia threw back her head, laughing as the overly enthusiastic vampire hopped around on one foot. Geez, he makes even that look sexy, she thought as her eyes settled back on him now standing bare-chested and bare-footed in front of her with only the supple leather spread over his powerful legs.

Cordelia suddenly found the nerve she thought she couldn’t manage, sitting up on the edge of the bed and reaching out to stroke his thighs. She placed a kiss on his washboard belly drawing a sound from Angelus that was something between a growl and a moan. His hands fell to his sides as he watched Cordelia move to unbutton his pants.

“Go ahead,” Angelus encouraged as Cordelia’s fingers paused on their upward sweep along his thighs. “Touch me. See what it is you do to me.”

Letting her fingers travel slowly over the obvious bulge, she took her time testing the size and shape of him trapped beneath the leather. Not that his double’s hasty move back in the Old Sunnydale Cemetery that night or the sensation of being pressed up between them on the library floor hadn’t imprinted their matching measurements in her brain.

This was up close and personal creating a naughty thrill knowing in a moment or two she would be unwrapping the impressive package. Angelus’ heavy-lidded eyes looked on her with open desire and the sounds coming from his throat as she stroked him only made her more confident.

Cordelia slowly unbuttoned the fly of Angelus’ leather pants, slipping her fingers inside and watching the anticipation light his dark eyes. Peeling back the two sides, it was clear that he wore nothing beneath and Cordelia’s widening gaze followed the path of tiny dark hairs leading from his navel to the dark bush of springy hair nestled above his sex.

Though his hands itched to shove the pants to the floor, Angelus practiced patience as he allowed Cordelia to take things at her own pace— for now. He planned to ease her into this, but after that Angelus made no promises to himself. He wasn’t certain where the threshold to his behavioral limits actually existed when it came to sex, but he certain planned to find out.

Tugging, Cordelia eased the supple black leather pants downward. They loosened as they moved over his hips. Slowly, his rigid shaft came into view and Cordelia darted a look at Angelus’ eyes. A smile curled the corners of her mouth as she understood the very male thoughts showing in his eyes.

Egomaniac. She licked at her lips thinking it was hardly exaggeration. Knows what he’s got and can’t wait for me to see it.

Mischief danced in her hazel eyes as Cordelia kept her gaze focused on his while inching the pants lower and lower across his thighs. Determined not to look until his pants hit the floor, Cordelia hadn’t counted on Angelus’ body reacting to draw her attention.

Her hands were mid-thigh when his stiff cock sprung free from its confines lurching upward and bouncing under her chin. Cordelia jerked back with a yelp of surprise, falling back onto her elbows on the soft duvet. That trademark smirk appeared on Angelus’ face again as he commented, “You should watch what you’re playing with. Some toys can be dangerous.”

Cordelia never saw his expression. She was too busy gaping at the massive erection, a pale weapon of velvet steel eager for her attention. None of her other boyfriends had been in the puny department, but comparing them to Angelus…no comparisons were necessary. The vampire was more than generously endowed and she wasn’t quite ready for the sight of it.

“Omigod!” Cordelia gasped thinking it would never fit. “I may be limber, but…geez!”

Chuckling at her reaction, Angelus pumped his left hand along his cock making the veins stand out against its pale surface as she watched his every move with rapt fascination. “Feel free to worship at my feet anytime, baby, preferably with your mouth. For now, just come back here and touch me.”

Scooting back to the edge of the bed, Cordelia looked to him for a little reassurance. She was more nervous than afraid, mainly due to her somewhat limited experience with sex that involved actual penetration. Kissing and other oral games were more familiar; his soft demand for her touch put her back in familiar territory.

Angelus took a handful of her hair, tugging just enough to tilt her head back, kissing her until Cordelia moaned with escalating need. Electric fire shot down to her womb, drenching her as the ache settled deep inside. Taking her hand, Angelus guided it onto his cool flesh moving her fingers up and down along the shaft until Cordelia curled them around his girth. Her fingertips did not quite meet around him and that caused her to flash another look of mixed awe and nervous excitement.

The combination only increased Angelus’ arousal as he anticipated thrusting inside her. Soon, he told himself. He’d let her play a little more and then he would make certain she knew which vampire she had chosen.

“Like that?” Cordelia questioned as her hand picked up the pace.

“Harder,” instructed Angelus on a gruff note. “Be careful with your fingernails, but let me feel them.”

Raising an eyebrow, she queried, “Vampire thing?”

Angelus nodded speechlessly, gold rimming his eyes as Cordelia followed instructions applying a tighter grip and employing the use of her nails along his rigid flesh. He scented her arousal knowing she would be wet and ready, but he wanted to wait just a little longer. There would be no tossing her back on the bed, no ripping away her dress and no fucking her until he had everything he wanted.

No matter that his instincts craved just that.

A single grunt sounded as Angelus fought to maintain control when Cordelia’s lips softly kissed the crown of his cock as it stretched above his foreskin. The whispered touch preceded the tentative lap of her tongue as she tasted the bead of fluidic sex that appeared. His eyes nearly crossed in overt pleasure as Cordelia’s mouth opened wide to take him into that warm, wet cavern.

“Fuck, that’s good,” Angelus’s brain was at a disconnect as she moved her tongue over his sensitive flesh and closed her mouth around him. The trail of crudities on his lips only suggested to Cordelia that she was definitely doing something right. “Suck me, baby. That’s it.”

Barely resisting the urge to thrust his hips, Angelus’ verbal encouragements quickly descended into a series of animalistic rumblings. His hands tangled in her hair and then suddenly he found his voice again as she brought him closer to the edge, saying things that stirred her own lust as he told her what was coming next.

“Finish it. I want to see you swallow me,” Angelus admitted with a throaty demand. “Then it’s my turn to play.”

Her nerves zinged at the thought even before Angelus got into the details. Cordelia ached; she could already feel her own excitement with the dampness of her inner thighs. “I’ll taste every inch of you,” he said. “All that golden skin under my tongue; that delicious scent just reminds me how good you taste, baby. You’re already wet for me; that sweet pussy is just soaked with nectar and I plan to drink every drop.”

Cordelia moaned at the thought, the sound opening up her throat and slipping him just a bit further into her mouth. She took him deeper, her crimson-tipped fingers curling around the thick base of his sex. Her noisy enjoyment of the act clear to him as Angelus listened lustfully to her wanton moans, soft slurps and the louder pops of air as she focused on his swollen tip and its super-sensitive ridge.

With a sudden change of mind, Angelus yanked at Cordelia’s hair, pulling her off his cock that bounded between them slick with moisture. She gasped in surprise, but only registered the passion blazing in his eyes as he did precisely what he planned not to do. Tossing her back on the bed, Angelus climbed on one knee at a time until he looked down at the fully clothed female now waiting for his next move.

“Say goodbye to the dress,” Angelus was not about to wait for her to take it off. He split it down the middle with a single tear.

If he expected Cordelia to scream and shout that he’d done something bad, Angelus would have been disappointed. She threw back her head laughing at his overeager behavior. Then all amusement fell away as his hands connected with her skin. She was braless as the dress prohibited such an item and so was left in only a lacy pair of red silk panties.

Angelus’ hands mapped her curves as he delivered long drugging kisses. Her hands fisted into the short spikes of his hair as she savored the smoldering sensations brought on by his lips. Reaching up, he tilted her head, plying wet caresses along her neck and moaning in want of something more that was denied him. While Cordelia wrapped her arms around his chest holding him close, his blunt teeth scraped over her jugular and nipped only firmly enough to leave a bruise.

Lifting his head, Angelus met her questioning gaze and told her, “It’s okay, baby. I can’t bite you.”

She cupped his cheek, feeling strangely sorry that he couldn’t. As if allowing it would cement their relationship at an entirely new level. Leaning forward, Cordelia pressed a soft velvet kiss upon his throat then moaned into his ear, “I want you so much. Do it now.”

“Not yet,” Angelus somehow ignored the plea knowing he would likely hurt her if he entered her without further preparation. Normally, that wouldn’t be a concern, but strangely enough he found that it mattered. “You’re not ready.”

“Yes, I am,” Cordelia snapped petulantly as her body writhed against his.

Angelus kissed her into silence as his hands moved down to her breasts. He heard her moan as his thumbs teased her nipples and the sound only made him want to hear it more. Moving, Angelus cupped one breast until its rigid peak brushed against his chin. Lathing it with his tongue, he sucked sharply for an instant before flicking his tongue across the sensitive bud. Then plying equal attention to the other breast, he drew soft cries from Cordelia’s throat as she pleaded for more.

“What do you want, baby?” His throaty question dropped his voice an octave or two as he kissed his way down to her concave navel and rimmed it with his tongue.

She pushed on his shoulders, hinting at where she wanted him to go. Angelus only pressed his mouth in a series of smooches across the top edge of the red lace. “Let me hear it, Cor. Say it. What is it you want?”

“Take off my panties,” Cordelia moved her hands to do it herself only to have him grasp her wrists and pin them to the bed.

“Not yet,” he growled. “Not until you tell me what you want me to do once they’re gone.”

“Touch me. Touch me there. I want your fingers… your mouth on me,” Cordelia met his sinful eyes with a determined plea. “Like you said. Taste me like you said you would.”

Instead of ripping her panties away, Angelus shifted on the bed and slowly slipped them over her hips and down her legs prolonging it purposefully, the slide of silk leaving tingle across her skin. Starting at her mouth again, he kissed his way across her smooth skin until he reached the soft muff of hair curling at her loins. Her legs opened wide seeking his attention, not hiding what she wanted in the least.

Drawing her scent deeply into his nostrils, Angelus gazed at the pink petaled flesh for a moment before lowering his mouth and tasting her with his tongue. Cordelia called out his name moving against his mouth, already aroused. He entered her with two fingers, thrusting rhythmically until she bucked up against them and begged him to forget her plea and just take her.

Angelus didn’t stop, his mouth teasing at the swollen bud as Cordelia neared her climax. A third finger joined the others in opening up her tight passage to their rhythmic intrusion, brushing against the spot that drove her wild. Only after she flew apart, sounding out her orgasm, did Angelus move to enter her.

Kneeling above her, the vampire held his engorged sex rubbing the tip against her and slowly pushing his way inside. Angelus and Cordelia moaned together at the sensation of his entry. Even though he took it inch by inch at a careful pace, the increasing pressure had Cordelia gripping the bulky muscles of his arms and panting with more than a little shock at the way he filled her.

“Just relax,” Angelus distracted her with a kiss of pure hunger, their tongues tangling in wanton expression of what their bodies did below. Holding her hips, Angelus pulled back a little, thrusting deeper the next time, following suit until he was completely sheathed within her.

“Angelus,” she breathed his name accompanied by a whisper of exotic sound that filled his ears, her arms and legs wrapping around him instinctively bringing him closer.

Rocking within her, Angelus felt her tight muscles clamping down on his flesh and he let out a little growl of pleasure at the way Cordelia moved against him. Their bodies entwined, Angelus bent over and cupped her breasts close to form those tempting peaks and took turns with each of them as his hips maintained a steady rhythm.

It was all Cordelia could do to grasp onto his broad shoulders and hold on as Angelus brought her closer and closer to another climax. Angelus lifted his head staring down into eyes with pure passion spread across his features; he stormed her mouth with another heated kiss.

“Enough games,” he took her arms from around his neck and threaded his fingers through hers before pinning her hands against the mattress. “Time for you to get fucked, baby. Come for me.”

Cordelia soon discovered the difference between Angelus’ sensual game of thrust and parry and the rocket ride he was taking her on now. Their hips ground together as he banged into her thrusting deep so that his balls slapped up against her swollen folds each time. She moaned for more as he angled his thrusts to stimulate the engorged bud of her sex with every move and her head thrashed against the mattress as she closed her eyes losing herself in the sensations.

With a burst of colored light flashing from the darkness, Cordelia screamed out his name as she came, her velvet sheath fluttering around the hard shaft buried inside her. Angelus grunted in triumph as she reached her peak continuing to fuck her through the waves of her orgasm until he could no longer stave off the building pressure, his fingers gripping hers tightly as his back arched and a shout of ecstasy sounded on his lips.

Coming down from the heights of their pleasure, Angelus released her hands taking a moment to tuck the damp strands of Cordelia’s hair away from her face. Her skin glowed with life, her body thrumming with it. “You’re so beautiful,” his voice sounded throaty, rumbling in his chest like a purr of pure contentment.

Reaching for his face, she held him long enough to press her kiss-swollen lips against his mouth before dropping back on the bed. She touched her hand to his chest, her eyes clearly admiring him in the afterglow of their love making. “So are you, Bad Boy.”

“Tired?” Angelus asked curiously.

Cordelia flashed him a grin and gave an experimental wiggle of her hips, “Nope. Only a little, really. Wanna do it again?”

“Hell, yes, baby,” Angelus purred against her neck as he felt himself hardening inside her. Instantaneous recovery had its own rewards. “Let me introduce you to another vampire thing.”


Chapter 9

Buffy trudged up the brick path to the front door of the mansion even though the sun had already made its appearance in the sky. No doubt Angel would be asleep, but this just couldn’t wait. Not one minute more.

Turning the doorknob, she marveled at the fact that the vampires still left their door unlocked. It wasn’t as if they didn’t have enemies in the demon underworld even if the human population of Sunnydale was too scared of the Crawford Street Mansion to bother. Walking right in, Buffy shut the door behind her and headed directly for the stairs.

Angel’s room was on the second floor, a place she had been quite frequently over the past couple of months. After today—

“Open up already,” a muttered voice could be heard in the distance.

Buffy paused on the steps, hearing sounds coming from the kitchen. Thinking it a little strange that one of the vampires would be up at this hour of the morning, she decided that maybe the unlocked door had been too much of a temptation for some idiot burglar who thought to steal the family silver.

The closer she got, Buffy realized that she could smell the aroma of toasted bread accompanied by the sound of the coffee pot as it dripped into its glass container. The burglar was making himself right at home, apparently. Sticking to that story, Buffy stopped in the doorway to spot Cordelia Chase, damp hair and shower fresh standing on the other side of the kitchen trying to open up a jar of strawberry jam.

“Is that Angel’s robe?” Buffy immediately noticed the oversized navy robe swallowing up Cordelia’s feminine curves. She should know, after all, having seen it before.

Letting out a screech of surprise, Cordelia nearly dropped the jam jar. “Buffy! Looks like you need a bell just as much as the vamps do.”

Stalking further into the kitchen, the blond slayer was not about to let Cordy ignore her question. “What are you doing in Angel’s robe? Why are you here? As if it’s not obvious that you’re sleeping with my boyfriend.”

“Am not,” Cordelia answered. “Are you blind? I left with Angelus last night, not your precious tried and true, halo-wearing Angel.”

Did that sound bitter? Cordelia asked herself. Pfft! Nah. It’s just the truth.

Actually, Buffy had been too distracted by Angel’s behavior to notice whether Cordy left the club with Angelus or the whole Sunnydale football team. While she experienced a moment of relief that Angel hadn’t slept with Cordelia last night, it altered nothing. The circumstances that brought her here hadn’t changed.

Then the slayer realized the fact that Cordelia’s presence meant something else. Her mouth fell open in shock as she realized, “You slept with Angelus? Cor, that’s really…insane.”

“Maybe,” admitted Cordelia holding out the stubborn jam jar to Buffy who popped the lid with one easy motion. “Gotta tell you, I don’t regret a second of it. Angelus is very…well, you know.”

Buffy scowled as she realized Cordelia might as well have slept with Angel because the two vampires were identical. Except for the missing soul and the bad manners. “I suppose that I do know. What is this, Cor? You couldn’t seduce Angel, so you move onto his evil brother?”

That was too close to the truth for Cordelia’s liking. Not that she was using Angelus as a substitute. That would be way wrong. She genuinely had feelings for the vampire, but she couldn’t deny that thoughts of Angel stirred something within her that no one else could provide.

Looking busy, Cordelia spread jam on her toast, pausing long enough to take a bite and gather her thoughts. “Angel is my friend.”

The hesitation wasn’t lost on Buffy. Her choice of words resonated with irony echoing Angel’s many excuses during their argument last night at the Bronze. They had gone out back to the alley behind the club in order to hash things out. Frankly furious at all of the attention Angel had been paying Cordelia lately, even if it was under the guise of keeping his friend safe from his brother, Buffy had enough.

Ultimatums weren’t exactly pleasant things in hindsight. She’d issued Angel one only two months ago that got them into this mess with Angelus just because she wanted some ‘attention’ after patrols now and then. Well…mostly now and again.

Words turned ugly and even though the vampire lashed back verbally, it was Buffy who threw the first blow. Circling like hunter and prey, they walked a dangerous path around each other. Buffy wasn’t certain from one moment to the next which role she filled in their relationship, but it had become that. Little more than the give and take between a slayer and a vampire instead of friends and lovers.

Have we ever been friends? It was his question, not hers, but the words might have been a physical slap across her face for all the impact it made. Buffy knew the answer and it wasn’t pretty.

Whatever they had, it was something, and that something was what she wanted. No matter Angel’s opinion on the subject. At that moment, even Buffy wasn’t aware of the aggressive fever running through her in reaction to the presence of what was basically her natural enemy facing her with minimal control. Angel was in no mood to play games or soothe Buffy’s ruffled feathers.

No matter that Angelus had his own existence, Angel was still part demon. He was still a vampire and the instincts that guided him, though usually in check, were close to the surface as Buffy faced off with him in the alley. Though Angel hadn’t made a move toward her, the anger Buffy felt welled to the surface and even though she had been yelling, it wasn’t enough.

She curled her fist and set Angel back on his feet, his speed the only thing allowing him to avoid the worst of the blow. Grabbing her by the shoulders, he pushed her away demanding to know what the hell she was thinking. Belligerence guided her at that moment and Buffy said nothing. Her only response was to kick his legs out from under him and leap forward as he fell to the ground.

As usual when aggression and hyper-stimulation of her instinctual drive to fight came into play with Angel around, Buffy felt turned on by it. Straddling his hips, Buffy attempted to make up for her previous screaming accusations with an attempt at seduction, or in her case, simply reaching for his zipper.

Angel protested and when Buffy refused to stop, he tossed her off of him using a strength she didn’t know he possessed. “Grow up Buffy!” he’d growled, angrier than she’d ever seen him.

Then he’d walked away, leaving her on the cold asphalt of the alley as he vanished into the shadows. Seeing Cordelia here, she’d felt certain that Angel had sought her out after the fight. That the brunette had taken advantage of the situation and her friendship with Angel to wile her way into his bed. Only, it wasn’t true, so she said.

Angelus! Buffy was still reeling at the thought. Major wiggins.

The slayer had spent the rest of the night working off her aggression and frustration with the demon population of Sunnydale. She’d had a lot of time to think in between the fisticuffs, stakings and roundhouse kicks. Her conclusion wasn’t pleasant. Some part of her had known it for months; long before Angelus returned.

There was something different between herself and Angel. She’d first noticed it when he came back from Acathla’s hell dimension, but had quickly blown it off as adjusting to Sunnydale again. Really, it was Angel having to adjust to her again. It showed in their every interaction and his growing friendship with Cordelia was just one more sign.

The way Angelus seemed obsessed with Cordy should have bought her a clue long ago. One vamp didn’t just develop those kind of thoughts overnight without the other having similar feelings. Maybe it wasn’t love on Angelus’ part, but Buffy knew that Angel’s behavior and by his dauntless defense of their friendship that what he felt for Cordelia had become more precious to him than anything they’d experienced.

Precious enough to give it up, Buffy knew now, realizing that Angel had to suspect what was going on between Cordelia and his double. So it wasn’t just friendship, she figured. All that energy, jealousy and fury he showed last night meant one thing; so simple, really, and even obvious with hindsight.

Angel was in love with Cordelia Chase.

As Buffy seemed lost in thought, Cordelia tightened the belt of the robe. It was too loose and being completely naked underneath left her at a little bit of a disadvantage when it came to facing her rival. Determined not to sound as awkward as she felt, Cordelia put on a perky smile and offered Buffy breakfast.

“Toast?” She held up her spare slice; the one she hadn’t yet smothered in strawberry jam. “There’s orange juice in the fridge if you want some. The coffee is nearly done.”

Blinking as she came out of her daze, Buffy refused with a shake of her blonde head. “No thanks.”

Then realizing that it was strange to find coffee, orange juice and fresh bread at the home of two pig’s blood-drinking vampires, Buffy had to comment, “Angelus must’ve been planning for you to have a sleepover if he stocked the kitchen.”

Cordelia decided not to tell her that it was Angel who bought the food. Ever since she started spending more time with both vampires as part of her Angelus Project, Cordy had often come over before patrols and during dinnertime. She liked breakfast foods at any time of the day and Angel cooked a mean omelet. Not that he’d cared much for her attempt to reciprocate by enhancing his blood with cinnamon and Tabasco.

When Cordelia took another bite of her toast, Buffy took it correctly as a sign that the conversation was wearing thin. “I’m going to see Angel now.”

Cordelia continued to munch on her toast, waggling her fingers at Buffy in the form of goodbye. As soon as the blonde left the kitchen, she dropped the remaining crust of bread onto the plate, her appetite vanishing as she realize that Buffy had to be here for an early morning boinkfest with Angel. Even after spending an exhausting night of passion with Angelus, she felt a twinge of jealousy and that bothered her immensely.

Setting the dishes into the sink, Cordelia made her way toward the stairs. It was Saturday, so who said she had to be up at this time of morning anyway? Angelus was asleep, but that didn’t mean she couldn’t crawl into bed again. “Wonder if he’ll wake up,” she mused as she padded barefoot up the stairs.

By the time she got to the top, Buffy had already emerged from Angel’s room and was descending to the main floor. Cordelia looked at her, completely puzzled by her sudden appearance. “That was certainly a quickie,” she drolled.

Buffy glared in response, commenting, “Angel’s not there. His bed hasn’t been slept in.”

The worry in her voice was automatic despite what had happened last night. Buffy expected to hear equal concern from Cordelia. If he hadn’t come back after the scene at the Bronze, maybe something had happened.

“Well, he’s here somewhere,” Cordelia shrugged. “His jacket was in the kitchen and we both know he doesn’t set foot outside without it.”

Having not noticed, Buffy remembered, “He had it on last night.”

“Like I said,” Cordelia took another two steps up to put her at the landing, “doesn’t leave home without it.”

Wondering where the vampire could be and considering that had he been on the ground floor Angel would have heard her entry and made his presence known, or at least come to see what Cordelia was up to in the kitchen, Buffy had no clue where to begin looking for him. The only room she was really familiar with was his bedroom.

A pensive look appeared on Buffy’s face as she saw Cordelia’s anxious expression. It seemed clear that she wanted to escape upstairs. Back to Angelus. Then glancing in the direction of Angel’s empty bedroom and then toward the steps to the third floor, her eyes opened wide.

“Cordelia,” she set her hands on her hips and demanded an answer, “exactly where is Angel?”

Rolling her eyes, Cordelia huffed, “Sheesh, Buffy! Can’t you keep track of your own vampire? Try the training room in the basement.”

Angel had a training room in the basement? The fact that she didn’t know that fact irked Buffy and she added it to the lengthening list of items that were wrong about their relationship. “He’s n—,” she faltered and tried again. “I thought that you and he and… never mind.”

Watching the bright flash of color flooding Buffy’s cheeks, Cordelia snapped, “Spit it out.”

Psyching herself up, Buffy asked, “Is Angel upstairs?”

“Hello! That’s Angelus’ room. I told y—,” now Cordelia’s jaw dropped as she realized just what the blonde was suggesting. Sputtering, “Wh-what? That’s…you can’t…Angel isn’t…I would—”

“You would what?” Buffy thought the answer to her question was a negative, but the confused jumble of words coming from Cordelia’s usually sharp and agile tongue left her to wonder.

Cordelia stomped up three stairs on the way up the next flight before barking, “NO!”

“Guess I’ll try the basement,” Buffy shrugged. Stupid thought, anyway. Cordy and Angel and Angelus in some kind of threesome? Nah. Not even in somebody’s smutty imagination. Oops! Except mine, apparently.


Chapter 10

Angel watched as the front door of the mansion closed behind Buffy, probably for the last time. He couldn’t see her coming back. This changed everything and nothing. As timing went, it sucked and not in any good way a vampire might associate with that term.

The decision to end his relationship with Buffy had been on Angel’s mind for a long time now, but it had been something he couldn’t do. Not after all the pain he caused; even if it had been Angelus at the time that did most of the damage. Whatever they had was lost with her innocence and if he had a shred of anything akin to it even that was gone too as that moment of bliss ripped away his soul.

If he wanted someone to blame, all Angel had to do was look upstairs, but it wasn’t that simple. Coming back, he’d known what he wanted, but his guilt got in the way and then it was all convenience. That and selfishness.

He had them both…Cordelia and Buffy. One who mystified him even as she made him laugh. A friend who made him feel more like a man than a demon. The other who cost him his soul and sent him to hell, the slayer whose instincts finally saw past her denial and saw not a man, but a demon; with her that’s what he had become.

Only now did he see the irony. Buffy’s ultimatum to find a way to secure his soul cost him far more than their relationship and even more than a missed opportunity with Cordelia. It cost him a part of himself.

Angel gripped the wooden banister as he gazed toward the third level of the mansion easily imagining Cordelia’s supple form stretched out on the bed. Only it was Angelus there instead of him, the part of himself he had let go. She was up there, no doubt exhausted from their marathon lovemaking. Not that he knew that for a fact, but it was what he would have done if the situation was reversed.

No, Angel had quite a different night. He’d gone to Willie’s bar after the fight with Buffy to drown himself in a bottle of Irish whiskey, but he couldn’t seem to get drunk on it. Even that was denied him. Coming home, he’d heard muffled sounds coming from above and tried to ignore them. Tossing his jacket in the kitchen, careless that it was not perfectly placed on the back of the chair, he’d finished off a pint of blood before heading into the study.

That was no escape since he convinced himself he could hear Cordelia’s moans as she begged Angelus for more. Even with vampire hearing that would have been a stretch with two floors separating them, but after ripping the book he’d attempted to read in two Angel decided to head down to the basement.

It was peaceful, silent and dark. Cordelia would have accused him of brooding, but he figured he had a reason. Hours passed and the sunrise came; he could sense it even down in the basement. He had just convinced himself that he needed to quit the self-directed pity party and go back upstairs when the basement door opened in a wash of light from above and a familiar silhouette appeared.

Buffy.

He was only relieved that it was over. Angel let out a growl as he made his way up the steps wondering again why fate could be so cruel with the timing. If this had happened a week ago or even a day ago, there might have been a chance for him to salvage something. He knew all too well that fate wasn’t just a sweet young thing looking out for his interests; fate was a haggard old bitch who clipped hope as easily as she did lives.

Angel meant that literally for the ones who had spun the mystic spells securing his soul and bestowing upon Angelus his own existence were the Moirae, personifications of fate and destiny.

Was this the price for answering Buffy’s ultimatum? A life tied to his double, unable to exist apart because of the mystical threads still binding them together though in separate forms. Forced to exist under the same roof as his soulless self claimed the one Angel loved.

Yes, Angel finally understood the depths of that love and the well of misery to which he had sunk. Whatever path fate had chosen remained hidden leaving the future as dark and gloomy as a starless night. Now walking slowly toward his bedroom, Angel determined that he would stay alert and never allow an opportunity to pass him by again.

“Carpe diem,” Angel issued his marching orders. Seize the day. That’s what he would do and somehow fate would show him the way.

Angel was halfway to his bedroom when a scream sounded from upstairs. There was no denying he’d heard it. Pure panic echoed in Cordelia’s voice as she let out another screech. Turning, Angel took the stairs to the third floor two at a time, conscious of the fact that Angelus remained soulless and had all of his evil tendencies intact even if he was restrained by the limitations of the spell.

“Get away!” Cordelia called out and Angel heard the sound of her feet running across the floor. She slid to a stop and the sounds of a struggle followed, “No. Take that! I said—”

Not bothering with the handle, Angel kicked the door off its hinges with one powerful thrust. He barged into the bedroom ready to do battle with Angelus only to react in shock and confusion at the sight before him.

“Angel!” gasped Cordelia as she realized the vampire was staring at her very nude body. She yanked the pillow she’d been using to bash Angelus over the head in front of her managing to cover herself from breasts to thighs. “What is your damage?”

“I-I heard…screaming?”

Completely naked and semi-erect, Angelus tossed his own pillow back onto the bed. He had to admit that chasing Cordelia around the bedroom during a pillow fight was loads of fun, especially since he had anticipated fucking her senseless after claiming victory. The sneaky wench had got away from him and just when he’d caught up, Soul Boy decided to play the hero.

Angelus walked up behind Cordelia, putting his hand on her shoulder, a hint that was not missed by Angel. Now that he was here, Angel decided he wasn’t leaving until he assured himself that Cordelia was okay. That she’d been treated with all the love and tenderness she deserved.

“What happened?” Angel caught sight of the bruise on her throat and he knew the answer to the question before the last syllable was uttered.

“Pillow fight,” Cordelia explained still thinking he was asking about the noise.

Shaking his head, Angel stepped closer brushing her hair aside and gently rubbing his thumb over the temporary mark. “You’re bruised.”

Should he be pissed that Angelus left a bruise or relieved that he couldn’t officially claim her by leaving a permanent mark?

“Just a little love bite,” Angelus commented with a grin noting every flicker of pain that showed in his double’s eyes.

Still caressing her neck, Angel found himself saying, “It’s wrong.”

Cordelia automatically reached up to the spot, her fingers brushing against his. “I’m okay with it. I left a few of my own only they’ve disappeared already.”

“That’s not what I meant,” Angel lowered his hand and shoved them both into his pockets. “Y-You’re a….”

“What?” Cordelia asked still clutching her pillow.

Angelus rubbed his face along the top of her head, simultaneously telling her what his brother couldn’t seem to get out. “You’re a vampire’s mate, Cordelia. We mark each other with permanent signs representing our claim.”

The fact that even Angel seemed upset that she hadn’t been claimed properly made Cordelia a little sad. Obviously there was a lot more to it than going to bed together. Thinking quickly, she suggested, “How about tattoos?”

Chuckling at her ingenuity, Angelus ran a hand down the gentle curve of her spine settling it at the small of her back. “I know where I want yours, baby. Right there.”

As Angel’s gaze was automatically drawn to the move, Cordelia sucked in a shaky gasp of air. The heartbeat that had finally slowed after the romp of the pillow fight and the initial surprise of Angel crashing through the door started to pick up again. He was standing there fully dressed while she wore only a pillow and yet somehow neither she nor Angelus bothered to kick him out of the room.

“It’s not enough, though, is it?” Angelus sounded out his own frustration with the lack of a mark on her throat. “Not the same.”

In agreement, Angel shook his head, “No.”

Cordelia didn’t see that there was anything to be done about it and said so. Only Angelus had other unconventional ideas. The fact that he was willing to suggest it proved just how important the demon’s mark was to him. “Angel could start it; he could bite you, make the mark.”

Angel was so startled that he could only stare in silence.

“This is my neck we’re talking about like it’s the happy snacking ground,” Cordelia protested. “All of this biting and claiming and marking…is it really so important to you?”

“Yes,” Angelus’ chest rumbled with emphasis.

Though she wondered if the scars would force her to start a new fashion trend with scarves, Cordelia found herself saying, “Okay.”

Visibly shaken by Angelus’ suggestion and Cordelia’s ready acceptance, Angel started breathing hard even though breath wasn’t necessary. It eased the ache that filled his chest. Glaring at his brother for even suggesting it, Angel told Cordelia, “It’s not that simple, sweetheart. Claiming you…that bite will make you mine.”

“Oh. Guess Buffy won’t care for that,” she managed to emit a weak laugh. “Aren’t you two supposed to be rolling around on the training room mats by now?”

“Buffy’s gone,” Angel told her not bothering to hide the harsh tone creeping into his voice. How much more could he take today? First the slayer and now Angelus coming up with insane ideas to tempt him. “We broke up.”

Cordelia’s knees nearly buckled at the news and it was only the fact that Angelus was there to support her that she didn’t fall to the floor with shock. “You what?”

“You heard me. It’s over,” Angel said gruffly. That was all he planned to say about it right now, though he had no doubts Cordelia would grill him over the subject later on. At the moment, he had more pressing concerns.

“Forget the slayer,” the soft urgings of Angelus filled Cordelia’s ears. “She’s gone and you can have what you want, baby.”

“I—,” tears pricked at Cordelia’s eyes, their saltiness burning. “What do you mean?”

Angelus half turned her to face him and though Cordelia continued to hold the pillow against her, the fact that the rest of her curves were exposed never registered. Even as Angel softly sounded out her name in trying to prevent her from listening further, but he could no more stop it than he could force himself to leave the room.

With a nod toward his double, Angelus answered, “Angel. You’re in love with him. It’s really pathetic the way the two of you stare at each other.”

Cordelia couldn’t look in Angel’s direction. How could she agree even if it was true? It would be impossible to lie about it, but there was one thing she could say. “Angelus, I know that I have feelings for you. I love you…too.”

“Then do what I want, baby,” Angelus cupped her cheek. “I want my mark on you and there’s only one right way to put it there.”

“Letting Angel bite me, how does that make me yours?” was her honest query.

Angel pointed out, “It doesn’t,” though the idea of participating in a claiming ritual with Cordelia in a shared capacity or otherwise left his gaze locked on her slender neck.

“Anxious, much?” Angelus quipped in Cordy-speak. The soulless vampire could get around the feelings shared between Angel and Cordelia. He wasn’t without feelings himself, but doubted himself capable of the depth of the love they had been fighting against and ignoring for so long. “Make the mark, Angel, and I’ll do the rest. Let me finish it.”

Quivering at the idea, Cordelia glanced nervously at Angel. The idea scared her. It seemed wrong, but as her body reacted in strokes of heat that licked at her insides, Cordelia couldn’t deny that it also excited her.

Fighting the suggestion, Angel found himself tongue-tied. He couldn’t say anything because he knew that Angelus wasn’t just giving him an opportunity to sink his fangs into human flesh. This went beyond the bite itself because it was tied up in rituals as old as the vampire culture itself.

“Would you let him do it, Cor?” Angelus kept stroking her back and the sensation along with his words just inflamed her all the more. “You’d belong to us both.”

“B-Both of you?”

“He’s the only one who’ll ever touch you besides me,” Angelus told Cordelia. “Though Angel likes to deny it, we’re the same. He is me. I am him. There are two of us separated by the thin thread of what he likes to pretend makes a difference.”

Cordelia was still stuck on the comment that echoed in her mind. “Touch me?”

Her words acted like a stimulant dragging Angel out of his deep thoughts. Like a moth to a flame, he reached out to pull the pillow away dropping it to the floor.

“You’re so beautiful,” the deep timbre of his voice rumbled as he spoke. He made no other move to touch her even though Angel wanted nothing more than to follow his instincts and the lustful thoughts stemming from Angelus’ words to let his hands map out every curve. “I’d do it, Cordelia, if it means something to you. If you want it badly enough.”

Glancing at Angelus, she saw the determined expression on his face even as his cock pressed up against her thigh as a constant reminder of her own commitment to him. “It’s important to Angelus.”

“This isn’t just about Angelus,” he stressed. “This is about us, about giving me the right to touch you, to have you.”

She knew the answer even before she asked it, but Cordelia needed to hear Angel say the words. “Do you want that right, Angel? Do you want me?”

Those butterflies were back and doing somersaults. Her mouth felt dry and Cordelia licked at her lips to moisten them, drawing his attention there. Angel unconsciously mimicked the move as his tongue swept across his sculpted male lips and Cordelia reacted with an instinctive jerk toward him only stopping herself at the last second from actually taking a step.

“More than anything,” he told her honestly, “but your friendship means so much to me, Cordy. I don’t want to risk losing that. I can’t lose that.”

This wasn’t what Angel would have picked for them. Not what he’d imagined any of a hundred times. With Angelus in the picture, that was a path denied them and Angel knew if he wanted Cordelia as anything other than a friend, this would be the only way. Hadn’t he just promised himself not to ignore opportunities?

Cordelia’s hand came up to touch his chest moving in a slow soothing circle over his heart as if subconsciously sending out a message that heartache was something she didn’t want him to feel. Touching him only lit a fire of want in her eyes, even though her words were still mired by confusion.

“Neither can I,” she told him. Risking the loss of their friendship was something she already came close to doing when Angelus first agreed to her jealousy-inducing ploy at the Bronze. That was before she developed feelings for the soulless vamp.

Angelus let out an impatient growl of discontent. “Look at you two. Dancing denial and trying to lie to yourselves about what you want. Accept the fact that if there was still only one of me in existence, this wouldn’t even be an issue. You’d be on the bed, the floor or holding up the nearest wall fucking yourselves blind because you can’t get enough of each other.”

“That doesn’t bother you?” Angel asked bluntly. Cordelia felt a rush of heat flood her face and neck at the suggestion; it was one she honestly couldn’t deny.

“You need to ask?” Angelus laughed gruffly.

With a wry look, Angel admitted, “No.”

“I’m asking,” Cordelia wasn’t about to let it go. “My…being with Angel wouldn’t be a problem to you?”

“Baby, if I didn’t have my own body, I’d still be him,” Angelus commented while patting his washboard stomach. “I want my mark on you, Cordelia. Make no mistake that you’re mine and I want the world to know it. Letting Angel in on it is not that big of a deal. Not to me.”

That should bother her, Cordelia figured. Realistically, her new lover was lacking in the moralistic department even if other traits seemed to make up for that by far. He wasn’t just agreeing to let Angel sink his fangs into her throat just to create a lasting mark, but giving him the right to be equal in a relationship with her where anything goes.

Angelus added, “Belonging to both of us— it’s the reward you get for having to put up with His Broodiness. Double the pleasure, double the fun.”

“Don’t frighten her,” cautioned Angel with a frown. “This isn’t a situation to be taken lightly, either. Don’t make jokes about it.”

Cordelia didn’t want to be coddled. She’d rather have it all thrown out there for her consideration. Geez, it was like someone offering her Manolo Blahniks and asking if she wanted the left shoe or the right one when it was obvious she needed both.

It was Angelus’ willingness to share that confused Cordelia. Letting Angel touch her seemed like it would be a major not-gonna-happen scenario considering his vampire possessiveness. The soulless vamp kept insisting that they were basically the same being and so her reservations didn’t count. Technically, she supposed it was true, but the differences between them gave both Angel and Angelus an individuality that could not be denied.

“My reward,” she mused with a hint of a smile tugging at her lips. It was so damned tempting just thinking about it. That she could have them both. Still, this was more than just a fleeting moment; it was an expectance of commitment. No doubt even the simple things would have complications.

Seeing the doubt flitter across her face, Angel pushed his way past the urge to yank her into his arms and convince her that way. Despite his own desires, he counseled her, “Don’t do this if you feel pressured.”

Angel felt certain he would go to just about any lengths to ensure that Cordy stayed in his life. He wanted intimacy, but if it had to be only friendship…he’d have to deal. Somehow.

“Once this happens, there is no turning back,” Angel told her, “no changing your mind. Angelus wasn’t kidding when he said no one else would ever touch you except me. You know what that means.”

“Pretty much,” Cordelia pursed her lips in wry response. “You’d do the butt-kicking, head-crunching vampire thing with any guy that had the nerve to try. Got it.”

Angel stressed, “It’s forever. As forever as it gets for a human and two vampires who deal in the occasional apocalypse.”

“Maybe I want forever,” Cordelia pointed out. “You sound like you’re trying to talk me out of this.”

Not giving Angel the chance to answer, Angelus had to agree with her assessment. There was a hint of anger in his voice as he told his double, “Deny me this and you know what will happen. You’ll get broody and bitter; she’ll get weepy and whiny. Then I will have to put up with you both. Somewhere down the line, you’ll forget about resisting the temptation and just take what you’ve wanted all along. Finding you cheating would only serve to piss me off.”

Mutual understanding filled their eyes as Cordelia and Angel realized he spoke the truth. Living together, loving and wanting each other would only lead to trouble if it wasn’t sanctioned by Angelus.

“Cordy,” began Angel as he took her by the shoulders squaring her off to face him, “this is all up to you. We’re a family whether you agree or not. I’ll be whatever you want me to be, but I hope you’ll let me be your lover. I want you as my mate.”

Angelus sensed Cordelia’s answer, but big mouth soul boy had to keep talking. He explained, “Vampires have a different outlook on relationships than most humans. I can’t deny that. There are unique nuances to a triad and not all of them make living with it easy.”

“You’ve done this before,” Cordelia came to realize as she remembered Angelus’ past history. Angel’s too, since they shared the same memories, soul or no soul.

At opposite ends of the spectrum, the vampires reacted to her comment with smirk and frown. Angelus considered thoughts of Darla, Spike and Dru fond memories of his glory days. To Angel, those memories brought only a flood of negative emotions, reminders of pain, death and suffering. Though he had to admit, he’d enjoyed it at the time.

As for his trio of vampire companions, most of the time Spike & Dru and Darla & he kept to themselves as couples, but there were countless occasions where all of them shared a bed or where two of them would join him. Comparing that to what Angelus was proposing was completely different.

“Not like this,” Angel told her. “Cordy, this goes far beyond sex. You’ll be my mate— and his. Even Angelus knows that’s more than just a ménage a trios. I’d rather this just be you and me, but it’s too late for that. It’s not an option.”

Cordelia sensed Angelus gearing up behind her. All this talking was not for him. He probably wanted to throw her onto the bed and convince her by example. Was it wrong to wonder what that would be like? Still, she had to acknowledge Angel’s words, “I know.”

Tired of all the yakking, Angelus issued his ultimatum. “Double or nothing, baby. You agree to take us both now or the deal is off. You won’t get him at all.”

Having already warned them of the potential outcomes of that scenario, Cordelia saw that Angelus was getting impatient if he was backtracking on his own arguments. It was enough to make her head spin. The vampire who should be protesting the idea seemed to be all for it while the one who might benefit most from the arrangement was only concerned with letting her make a choice.

“Sheesh! Make up your mind,” Cordelia rolled her eyes at Angelus, laughing at his scowl as she did so. “I’ve already decided what my answer will be.”

Both vampires stared at her in silent speculation, full of hope and lust and promise sparkling from the depths of two pairs of dark brown eyes. The smile tugging at her lips opened up into a bright grin, “Guess I’ll have to get used to seeing double every morning.”

Moving simultaneously, both vampires attempted to give Cordelia a celebratory hug only to have her jump out of the way at the last second. Only their fast reflexes gave them an escape from ending up hugging each other. They each took a long step back noting that Cordelia seemed to be amused at their scowling reactions.

“Don’t get all mushy on me just yet, guys,” Cordelia crossed her arms in front of her unconscious now of the fact that she remained nude and that the move propped her breasts up in an eye-catching way. At least she had their attention. “There will be no having of anyone and certainly no biting of me until I have my say.”

Angel nodded, “I’m listening.”

“Am I the only one here who wants to fuck?” Angelus growled petulantly. He turned on his heel and pounced onto the bed stretching out, moving his hand low on his belly.

Cordelia paused as she waited to see if he would actually touch himself, but Angelus seemed content to tease them with his flagrant words and aroused body. Though Angel did not avoid looking at his double, he looked almost embarrassed by the blunt question and behavior. Cordy knew that Angelus liked to get a rise out of people just by saying whatever he thought he could get away with.

“I’m not your fuckety-fuck toy, Angelus,” Cordelia raised a brow censuring him. “This isn’t something I’m doing for the hell of it. You both want me, but if I didn’t love you two like mad, I’d tell you to get staked.”

Angelus held out his hand, silently calling her to his side. She moved closer, Angel edging further into the room as she did so.

“Baby, you know you’re more than just a lover,” Angelus took her hand, his thumb running a circle in her palm. “I want everything you have to give and I’ll always give you anything you want. Anything.”

Cordelia felt Angel’s fingers in her hair, curling slowly around a chestnut tress before dropping down to follow the path of her spine. She had a feeling Angelus was talking about his brother whose hands suddenly seemed to be wandering across her skin at will.

Angel’s hands curled around her slim waist pressing flat. One held steady while the other wandered a slow path along her ribs to trail the tip of his thumb along the soft curve of her breast. Cordelia leaned back against the muscled wall of his chest and grasped Angelus’ hand a little tighter.

“Just tell me,” she said on a soft moan, “there won’t be fighting over who gets to sleep with me every night.”

It seemed Angel was too distracted with letting his lips blaze a path across her shoulder to answer. Angelus’ eyes sparkled as he watched, anticipating more. It was like watching his mirror image if he had one and it was one helluva turn-on from his perspective.

Cordelia’s naiveté amused him. “Baby, chances are we’ll all be in the same bed.”

“Oh,” she sounded out a gasp, but in reaction to Angel’s fingers teasing the curling forest of hair nestled at the apex of her thighs. He skimmed through the soft hairs and returned to the plane of her abdomen running a path around her navel that sent shocks of heat shooting to her core.

“Tonight is all about you,” Angel promised as he pressed a kiss to her ear uncertain if she feared what might take place in a bed she shared with two vampires.

Cordelia automatically tilted her head, exposing her neck for his attention. Knowing that this had all started with Angelus’ talk of sealing the claim with their mark, she asked on a slightly nervous note, “When do you biteme?”

“No more worries, sweetheart,” Angel’s hands were now on her thighs moving up and down stimulating sensations left her wet and wanting. She could feel through the layer of his clothing separating them that Angel was far from unmoved. “Let us handle the technicalities. Just let me love you.”

Chapter 11
Turning in his arms, Cordelia wanted Angel’s mouth on hers, an escalating hunger driving her to act first. Angel smiled at the move, his lips curling at the corners even as hers connected with his. He held her close, purposefully letting her take the first lead in exploring what was only their second kiss. Smoothing his hands across her back, he molded their frames together feeling the soft press of her breasts against his chest

Cordelia kept her eyes open for a moment, gazing into his as she pressed a series of soft kisses along his mouth. Then closing those hazel orbs leaned in as Angel’s lips came down to tease hers barely making contact with a whisper of a kiss that left hers plump and pursed looking for more. A hand softly caressed her cheek as Angel’s mouth moved along her temple, over to the spot between her eyes and then down to the beauty mark that graced her cheek.

A sigh sounding on her lips, Cordelia tilted her face toward his roving mouth wanting it on hers. Finally, he kissed her again, this time contacting her lips with a soft touch that felt like a caress in itself. His hands never stopping in their exploration of her skin, Angel’s fingertips grazed the curve of her bottom while the fingers of his other hand tangled in her hair.

Feeling certain that she could simply kiss Angel all night and be perfectly content to let him do so, Cordelia wound her arms around his neck opening her mouth as his tongue licked at her bottom lip seeking entry. After that, the slow seduction of her mouth became heated; Cordelia’s fingers curled into Angel’s short spiky hair, her body leaning hard into his and legs parting to the press of his muscled thigh.

A hiss sounded as her clit rubbed along the fabric covering Angel’s leg and the hand gently increasing the pressure on her hips suggested he’d done than on purpose. As her eyes flew open, Cordelia saw the lights dancing in his dark eyes as he elicited each reaction from her aroused body.

On the bed behind them, Angelus watched as Angel slowly seduced Cordelia. He was certain she did a little seducing of her own, but the vampire definitely had the edge in experience. Those two were hot together, Angelus decided, almost as hot as him and Cordelia.

Teasing himself as he observed the kissing couple, Angelus lay on his side running a hand up and down his torso, fingers grazing his taut belly and going lower to follow the path of hair leading to his cock. It lay long and erect across his thigh, the veins bulging and the tip swollen in angry recognition of its currently untouched state. He purposefully did nothing more than grip the base in a tight hold choking off his need for a quick release.

That didn’t mean he planned to wait all night for it or simply play spectator. Clearing his throat, Angelus reminded them he was still in the room. “Not that I don’t enjoy a little tonsil hockey, but it’s hard to join the game if you two don’t get the hell into bed.”

Cordelia buried her face into Angel’s shirt laughing at the sounds of amused irritation mixing in Angelus’ voice. She peeked over her shoulder to see his rampant erection straining for attention. Feeling a hot flush, Cordelia thought about Angelus having watched her kissing Angel, hearing her moans and seeing the way the other vampire touched her all the while touching himself. She wanted to reach out and take hold of him, using her fingers to bring those deep rumbling purrs to his chest, but there was one thing Cordelia had to do first.

“Angel,” she turned back finding him gazing intently at her curves. His hands moved up to palm her breasts and sweep across her pointed nipples with his thumbs.

Lust warred with Angel’s desire to bring Cordelia gently into this arrangement. While his head counseled him to take it slowly, to seduce and arouse her by small measure with the skilled use of his hands, mouth and words that spoke of her beauty, Angel’s body had a more insistent view. As usual, his vaunted control threatened to pull its usual disappearing act when it came to dreaming of Cordelia only finding the reality more exotic than the fantasy.

Her scent surrounded him, the taste of her still on his tongue and adding to his need as Angel drank her in with his eyes. The sudden need to feel her skin sliding across his made him realize, “I’m a little overdressed.”

Cordelia’s hands were still on his shoulders and a mischievous look twinkled in her gaze as Angel commented on his clothed state. Grabbing two fistfuls of material, she tugged planning to rip the shirt open to expose the hard planes of his chest beneath.

Only…she tugged again, this time a little harder. To no avail, Cordelia grumped with disappointment as the buttons refused to break free. “What the— did they use steel thread or what?”

While Angelus roared with laughter, Cordelia didn’t find it quite as amusing. “You did the shirt ripping the last time,” she pointed out to the vampire on the bed. “I wanted a turn.”

“Just do it slow and steady, sweetheart,” Angel’s suggestion came accompanied with the gentle nibbling of her earlobe and then the soft sucking sensation of his mouth at a sensitive spot behind her ear, “one button at a time.”

Angelus would have protested if he wasn’t completely aware that Cordelia’s state of excitement was only escalating. He could tell in the flush of her skin, the pattern of her racing heart and the increasing scent of her honeyed response in the air. There was a purpose here tonight beyond his pleasure and that kept him focused. Intent upon the idea of Cordelia bearing his mark…their mark, Angelus forced himself to hold his tongue.

Just tear the fucking shirt off yourself, he thought about it instead sending out mental vibes that went ignored by the oblivious pair standing just a few feet away.

One by one, Cordelia slipped her fingers along the front of Angel’s shirt, pushing the buttons through their tight loops. With each inch of chest revealed, her eyes darted back to his face as her hand swept lower across the newly exposed skin at the ever deepening vee. Halfway down, as she glanced up again, Cordelia saw the indulgent gleam had left his eyes.

“That’s far enough,” he said sweeping her off the floor and into his arms. Carrying her over to the bed, Angel set her down next to Angelus who immediately moved in to touch her. Claiming her mouth with one brief, scorching kiss, Angel took one step back from the bed and began to expediently remove his clothing.

“You’re so turned on, baby,” Angelus purred in her ear as he pulled her back to lay against his chest, his cock still hard between them. He reached around to caress her breasts, cupping them, tweaking her nipples until her hands came up to cover his.

With her eyes still on Angel she squirmed restlessly against Angelus, the slight shift of her hips causing little pleasure shocks. Following the taut slope of her belly, his hands moved down to her legs opening them wide and exposing the pink folds that guarded her sex to Angel’s view.

The souled vampire continued to remove his clothes and now stood shirtless, his belt hanging loose and his hands on the button of his pants. Pausing for a moment, he watched Angelus’ fingers trailing back up to the apex of her thighs delving into he soft brown curls, two of them running in an upside down vee along her outer lips.

Angelus continued to caress her, teasing Cordelia with his skilled touch as he spoke to her of pleasures to come. Grasping onto his thighs, she leaned back into his chest as he grazed her clit, gathering moisture with his fingers and moving with a knowing rhythm that left her bucking into his hand.

Hooking the other hand beneath her thigh, Angelus brought those fingers into play. Cordelia cried out in relief at their entry, turning her head and shoulders just enough to gaze hotly into his eyes and palm his face in her raised hand. He bent his head to take her lips almost savagely, pressing hard even as his fingers kept up the action below.

Having dropped his clothes to the floor and not bothering to fold or put it on the bedside chair, Angel listened to the lusty little moue repeatedly sounding out from Cordelia’s throat. He took a moment longer just to look as she lay against the edge of the bed with Angelus behind her, open and aroused, climbing that long ladder of shooting sensation that led the way to ecstasy.

Edging up to the bed, he ran his fingers across Cordelia’s shoulder, letting her know by touch that he was there. Parting from the steamy kiss she shared with Angelus, she turned her heavy-lidded eyes toward Angel who looked deep into her lust-laden gaze as he said, “I want to kiss you.”

Cordelia lifted her already kiss-swollen mouth only to find that Angel was smiling. It suddenly occurred to her that wasn’t the kind of kiss he meant. Her mouth formed a perfect circle of surprise soon followed by another soft moan as the weight of Angel’s upper body came down on the mattress with the press of his hands as he leaned in to trail kisses down the cord of her neck, nuzzling there just a fraction longer before using that agile tongue on her breasts.

“Is that where you want his mouth?” Angelus purred the question into her ear even though he knew his double had no intention of stopping there. He wanted to hear her say it, demand it with one of those throaty pleas that revved him up.

“Yes,” Cordelia liked the feel of his mouth there, but she couldn’t deny wanting even more. Changing her song as she smoothed a hand up and down the nape of Angel’s neck, “No, no, I want it there.”

His long fingers worked her from the inside and out, still avoiding the swollen nub of her clit for anything except a quick flyby caress. “Here?”

“Mmm. Uh-huh!” Cordelia managed to moan as her head lolled back against his shoulder. Angel continued to stroke her breasts, giving equal attention to both, his ears burning at the lustful plea that finally sounded on Cordelia’s lips at Angelus’ prompting. “Lick my clit, Angel. Put your mouth on me. Oh god, yes, keep touching me, Angelus.”

Angel’s cock jerked in reaction and he reached down to give it a long stroke before lowering himself to his knees at the side of the bed. He glanced up at them both, the lust in their eyes as apparent as his own. Angelus slipped his right hand up to his mouth while keeping the fingers of his left busy with their slow thrusts; he sucked at his sticky fingers lapping up every drop of liquid sex.

Drinking in her exotic scent, Angel nuzzled her soft curls before pressing one soft kiss just where she wanted it. Then using his fingers, he took up where Angelus left off, moistening them along her folds and lowering his mouth to lick at her exposed pink sex. Cordelia curled her nails into Angelus’ thighs.

“Just…more,” she gave a gasp. “Almost there, almost there.”

Hooking two of his fingers, Angel slipped inside filling her, his long digits moving in sync with his brother’s, the angle allowing him to hit her sweet spot. His lips teased her petaled folds, lapping up the creamy nectar clinging to their fingers and when Cordelia’s needy moans escalated, Angel moved his mouth back up to her clit and gave it one strong suck before working it with his tongue.

Reaching her peak, Cordelia heard Angelus whispering crude little expressions in her ear. The soulless vampire certainly had a way with words as he promised to fuck her senseless. Lifting his fingers away as Angel’s tongue delved in, his mouth ravenous as he ate out every drop, his hands now clutching the soft globes of her ass as her hips bucked up against his face.

“Taste yourself, baby,” Angelus smoothed his fingers across her lips until she opened up to lick at the tips. Then taking them further, sucked on them, enjoying the feel of them in her mouth. The way she moved her mouth and tongue reminded Angelus of the blowjob she’d given him last night and the fact that Angel fantasized about it.

Getting impatient, his own cock nearly painful in its excited state, Angelus let out a little growl, “Quit playing around down there and get the fuck up on the bed.”

Cordelia laughed even as her body shuddered with another mini-orgasm. As Angel rose to his feet in one smooth move of muscular balance drawing Cordelia’s eyes down the long frame of his aroused body, he saw her focus on his tumescent sex. Reaching out with her fingertips, she darted her eyes back up to him, “Now it’s my turn.”

With a groan of anticipation, Angel climbed into the bed, the mattress shifting with his weight and bouncing a little as Angelus and Cordelia maneuvered. On their knees in the center of the bed, Angel faced Cordelia, tilting her jaw with one finger tucked under her chin. He kissed her softly, the taste of her still clinging to their lips as he did so, and then moving his head to her ear whispered words of reassurance.

“I love you,” echoed Cordelia and with a naughty grin glanced over her shoulder at Angelus making certain that he knew the sentiment was also meant for him too.

The vampire simply smirked, taking hold of her hips and pulling her back so that his hard cock rubbed along tight line of her buttocks. When Angelus ran a hand along her spine gently applying pressure, Cordelia instinctively knew what he wanted and positioned herself on her hands and knees. Angel’s hands wandered again, touching with purposeful measures from the gentle massage of her scalp to a soothing hand circling between her shoulder blades.

He watched intently, a mix of arousal and possessiveness lighting his dark gaze as Angelus slowly entered Cordelia. Instinct had him wanting to throw his double off of the bed and show Cordelia just who she belonged to, but knowing that he was really the third party here, Angel kept a tight reign on those urges.

Angelus inched his way forward through a series of short thrusts, looking down at the point where his body penetrated her, surrounded by those soft pink folds. With a lusty groan, he playfully slapped her ass as it tilted higher in the air. Cordelia let out a little yelp of surprise before turning back to Angel who was now lying down on the bed propped up by his elbows and the pillows behind him, slowly pumping his cock.

“Someone’s been neglected,” she angled down on her elbows, freeing her hands to touch him.

“Cor,” Angel moaned loudly as her mouth opened up to tease him. She moved her mouth along the underside of his thick shaft, making gentle sucking motions all the way up to the tip where the action had his hips thrusting off the bed. “Oh, fuck, do that again.”

A smile played across her lips as she licked at him before repeating the move. She moaned as Angelus’ thrusts picked up speed and his hands cradled her breasts. The double stimulation combined with the hard cock in her hand made Cordelia nearly crazy with lust. Her mouth moved over Angel with a frenzy, her cheeks hollowing as she sucked on the tip, and then opened up to take him in, her tongue flattening out to shape itself around the sensitive crown.

Guttural tones sounding from Angel’s throat mixed with Cordelia’s moans and the intermittent grunt of encouragement from their partner as they fell into a rhythm of forward and backward motions. Cordelia’s eyes closed as she pleasured Angel, just feeling the sensation of him deep in her mouth as her tongue swept around him and as his tip butted against the roof of her mouth. The sensation of Angelus’ cock deep inside her, thrusting as her body clenched and released as they rocked together in harmony, brought Cordelia crashing to another climax.

Shuddering around Angelus, she released Angel from her mouth and cried out as it overcame her ability to focus. Glancing up at Angel with a look of hazy pleasure, she met his tiger-eyed gaze realizing how close he had been to his own release when she stopped to concentrate on her own. Then taking him again, she renewed her pattern until Angel released a growl at the moment of his climax thrusting his hips with bare measures of control into her mouth as she swallowed each drop of his essence.

The moment Cordelia released him from her mouth, Angelus curled his hands around her shoulders and yanked her back against his chest positioning her on his thighs as he continued to thrust inside her. Angel’s hand curled in her hair, tilting her head aside as he nuzzled her neck, scenting her and running the tip of his tongue along her throat.

Cordelia was so caught up in the sensations thrumming through her body, she held onto Angel as he leaned close, the tips of her flushed breasts poking into the smooth muscle of his chest. She felt the bones of Angel’s face shifting just an instant before his fangs sank into her throat and a startled cry of pain sounded on her lips even as his free hand swept down the length of her body to jiggle her clit, the penetration and the stimulation combining with the gentle sucking and lapping motions of Angel’s mouth and tongue to draw her back to that precipice that dropped Cordelia instantly into a whirlpool of pleasure.

The bite went deep and true as Angel put pressure along the holes with an instinctive move of his head ensuring a distinctive mark would be left in its place. Wrapping his arms around them both, he held his body close to Cordelia as he let the copper taste of her blood coat his tongue. Slowly, reluctantly, he pulled back to allow Angelus to complete the claim he had begun.

With the first taste of Cordelia’s blood, Angelus started to come. He thrust deep and continued to fuck her through his climax, using Angel to support her body. Combined together, Angelus felt more than the familiar rush of pleasure as he sucked down one last sip of blood before sealing the wounds. He had his mate in his arms.

Angel cupped her face, pressing gentle kisses along her mouth which she returned, a smile playing across her features. “Does this make me yours?” she asked him.

“Yes,” his human features had returned and his dark brown eyes were bright with satisfaction at the idea of it even if it came under the bounds of a shared bonding with Angelus. “You’re my mate and his.”

Turning, Cordelia kissed Angelus, telling him that she loved the way he made her come, knowing that words of passion went much further with the soulless vampire than talk of love. He responded by purring in her ear and pressing his lips to the mark on her throat.

A sudden yawn startled Cordelia into realizing that she’d been up all night and a significant part of the morning. Though the vampires could do without much sleep, even they had to be affected and she suggested that they all catch some shut-eye, “Before I turn into a bag-eyed hag and you don’t want me.”

Angel laughed, “That won’t happen. We didn’t take much blood, but it’s enough to make you drowsy.”

They curled up on the bed with arms and legs entwined, shifting until they found a comfortable position. Cordelia asked, her eyes already closed, “What happens next?”

“That’s up to fate to decide,” Angel nuzzled her hair whispering his answer. After all, if he hadn’t come charging into the bedroom by pure accident upon hearing Cordelia screaming, none of this might have happened. Was it just timing, or did the Moirae and their twisting turns of fate have something to do with it all? The opportunity was here and he’d claimed it…and Cordelia.

“Pfft!” Cordelia huffed softly. “Let’s just leave the future to us.”

Angelus preferred Cordelia’s plan. “If I promise that we’ll live happily fucking ever after, will you two shut up so I can sleep?”

Soft laughter sounded, soon followed by Cordelia’s rhythmic breathing as she fell asleep satisfied, secure and surrounded by the two vampires who held her heart.

The End.


The Challenge by Scorch:

1) Buffy & Angel find a way around the curse by separating him from Angelus.
2) Angelus must agree to ‘fight the good fight’ and is monitored by the PTB.
3) Scooby Gang freaks out with Angelus running around.
4) Angelus doesn’t care about the ‘good fight’, but ends up saving Cordy one night. She’s scared witless of the vamp.
5) Angelus goes after Cordy in a big way…cards & flowers no less…in addition to doing anything he can to impress her.
6) Hot, steamy C/Aus results.
7) B/A starts to deteriorate despite sex no longer being an issue d/t mistrust and the slayer/vampire dynamic.
8) The following scenes have to be included:
a.) Buffy and Cordelia meeting in the mansion kitchen. Buffy is fully dressed, but Cordy is only in Angelus’ robe.
b.) Angel runs into the bedroom after hearing Cordelia screaming.
c.) Angel & Angelus walking in the library together, Buffy running up to Angelus thinking he’s Angel. He pushes her away in disgust. Cordy can tell them apart, but Buffy can’t. 9)The rest is up to you.


 

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