Title: An Unexpected Meeting
Author: Maeve Bran
Summary: Buffy and Angel meet in New York after "Not Fade Away".
Disclaimer: I do not own Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Angel the Series. I'm just taking some characters out for a little fun.
Spoilers: This is set post "Chosen" and post "Not Fade Away" so eveything is fair game.
Notes: Written for theantijoss in the Fluff-a-thon. Ducks wanted Buffy/Angel witha bottle of Scotch, a puppy, and a New York Museum. (Sorry, I couldn't work in the puppy without it being too cheesy.)
Buffy looked around the Egyptian Art display at the New York Museum of Art scanning for a familiar face. She wasn't sure who she was meeting as the message Dawn took down only said, "Buff- meet at NYMA Egypt exhibit. 6pm Thur." Apparently someone Dawn approved of wanted to meet her here, so here Buffy was. She ran down the list. Dawn wouldn't need to leave that kind of note. Giles, Andrew and Xander would just call her cell phone and talk to her in person. Willow would just drop by the house. So it had to be someone who got out before the collapse.
As she continued trying to figure out who it might be, she caught sight of a familiar wool overcoat swirling around a man as he rounded the corner of the standing tomb in the center of the exhibit. It couldn't be, she thought. Hadn't he died a few months ago in LA? But even as she thought that, the man came into view. It was Angel.
Angel spied Buffy a few seconds before she spotted him, so he was able to watch her face as realization swept over it. The emotions played so quickly-- disbelief, wonder, and finally joy-- that Angel almost missed them. He walked up to her.
"Hello, Buffy," Angel said softly, his voice thick with emotion.
"Angel," was all that Buffy managed to say before she threw her arms around him in a desperate hug. "I thought you were dead."
"The rumors of my dusting have been greatly exaggerated," Angel answered as Buffy released him. “I’ll tell you all about it if you want to go some place to grab a bite to eat."
"Sure," Buffy quickly agreed as she casually looped her arm through his. "So why did we meet here?"
"I wasn't sure how you'd react and thought it best to meet someplace public that would still have crowds of people after dark," Angel reasoned.
"Oh, so you're still..." Buffy began, but didn't want to finish in so public a place.
"Yeah. Why wouldn't I be?" Angel asked.
"I thought I remembered Willow saying something about a prophecy that would cure that," Buffy explained.
"Shanshu. Yeah, there was a prophecy but in order to take down the Senior Partners I had to sign it away," Angel answered matter-of-factly.
"Oh," was all Buffy could say to that. "So... where to?"
"I know this great little spot where no one will ask questions, that is, if you will brave my place," Angel said, unsure what Buffy might think.
"I'll brave it. Lead the way," Buffy quickly agreed.
Angel led her through the early November snow to his apartment some ten blocks away.
"When I took over Wolfram and Hart in LA and then took down the Senior Partners, much of the firm's assets became mine. I sold off most of it and found ways to make reparations to the survivors of Sunnydale. I did however keep this apartment, another in LA and one in London," Angel said as he showed her into the spacious penthouse apartment.
Buffy took in the size and number of windows and asked, “Do you have a death wish?"
"No. Why?" he asked, puzzled.
"Look at all the windows. How do you avoid the sunlight?" Buffy queried.
"I don't. It's necro-tempered glass. I got a taste for the sunlight after living with the ability to sit in a sunny office this last year, so when the property came into my possession I wasn't about to let it be sold to some other vampire." Angel chuckled at the thought. "Truth be told, if I had sold it I would have had to stake the buyer, and that would end the prospect of getting any money for the place."
Buffy joined in the laugh. "What else could you do but keep it?"
Her tummy chose that moment to remind her, audibly, that it had been hours since she had last eaten.
"I have a pot of Irish stew simmering in the kitchen and a couple of loaves of soda bread warming in the oven, if you'll come this way," Angel said as he led her into the warm and bright kitchen.
"Wow, that smells great, but it looks like you made enough to feed a small army," Buffy mock complained.
"Or a couple of really hungry Slayers," Angel retorted.
"Are you expecting more company?" Buffy asked, surprised.
"No. But I thought you might like to take the leftovers home. It's really easy to reheat and I know how busy you must be. Dawn mentioned that you work as a guidance counselor at the Slayer school," Angel said as he dished up the food and set the table. He grabbed a bottle of wine and poured two glasses, then set his beside the opaque coffee mug containing his evening meal of pig's blood.
"I don't think I've seen you healthy and drinking blood before," Buffy said, thoughtfully.
'I'm sorry. If it bothers you, I can wait till later to drink it," Angel said as he moved to put it away.
"No, don't. It doesn't bother me, but I remember a time when it did you, is all," she explained.
"Well, over the last five years the humans in my life made me see it was nothing to be ashamed of. In fact, there were times that if I didn't drink in front of them I'd have starved and lost some of my higher brain functions," Angel answered, reminiscing. He held Buffy's chair for her and scooted it in after she was seated before taking his own seat.
Dinner was a pleasant affair, as they caught up on what had actually been happening in the last year and a half since the collapse of Sunnydale. They didn't discuss their individual fights against the darkness. Instead, they talked of the various social lives of the people they knew. Angel almost had Buffy rolling on the floor with laughter when he told her about being turned in to a puppet. Buffy in turn told funny stories of her and Dawn trying to fit in in Italy.
A couple of hours later, Angel ushered her into the living room where he lit a fire in the fireplace. Then he brought out a bottle of scotch and poured two rather sizable glasses. He handed one to Buffy, who had settled on the floor in front of the fire with some cushions, and set his glass down as he took his place beside her. They each quietly sipped the scotch, just enjoying being with the other.
After awhile, Buffy's head came to rest on Angel's shoulder, and she sighed.
"What was that for?" Angel asked, concerned.
"It was a sigh of contentment. We never had a chance to just be with each other. There was always some fight that only I could fight just around the corner, and that made everything desperate," Buffy replied.
"I know," Angel said. He leaned down to kiss her forehead, but Buffy turned her head at the last moment and his lips met hers. Before he could move away, she responded and deepened the kiss. Soon, their arms were wrapped around each other and tongues were entwining.
Buffy moaned softly when Angel pulled back a little.
"Buffy, we have to talk," he tried to reason with her.
"Don't wanna talk," Buffy whispered as she brought her lips to almost touch his again. "But you're right." She pulled back, but kept her head on his shoulder.
"I'm still cursed," Angel said, quietly.
"Angel, I don't care. I think so much has happened since the day you lost your soul, I doubt either one of us could be perfectly happy ever again. I am, however, willing to settle for a moment of pretty good happiness," Buffy said playfully.
"Just as long as you're sure," Angel said.
"I am sure," Buffy said as she stretched up to kiss him again.
Neither could speak for a time after that. Their mouths had better things to do. Their hands explored territory that had once been familiar but then almost forgotten. When hands were no longer enough, clothes started flying and eyes and lips joined in the exploration.
Some time later, Buffy laid atop Angel, tracing patterns on his chest as fire light flickered over their spent bodies. She smiled happily, musing that her meeting had turned out far better than she had expected.