Timeline: After the episode Lie To Me
I guess sometimes everybody lies. I have. Sometimes you have to. But it really stinks being on the other end of a lie. It's something to keep in mind, I guess.
So, Giles lied to me about growing up, because I asked him to, and then he went home and I was going to walk him but I got this feeling and I took the long way around the cemetery. I was glad I did, because Angel was there.
He was waiting for me. He was standing in the shadows of the trees and he walked out so I could see him. I realized that if he never wanted me to see him I never would. Unless I was hunting him. Thank God that will never happen. He'd be hard to kill. For more than one reason.
"Hey," he said.
"I'm sorry about Ford," he said.
"It's OK. He-he was dying, and he scared of was dying."
"There's scarier things," he said.
He had his hands in his pockets. His eyes were searching in mine for something. I know he was worried about telling me what he told me, about Drucilla.
"I know why you lied," I interrupted him, "And it wasn't great to hear. But I wish I knew how often you lied to me. It made me wonder if everything was a lie,"
He looked at ground.
"That was the first time,"
Somehow, I knew it. I knew that was the truth. But I was still hurting.
"Do you still-are you still-obsessed with her, at all?"
His head jerked up. His eyes were sharp, but sad. "No," he said, and he almost seemed shocked that I had even asked him.
I moved a little closer to him, because we were standing pretty far apart, and I had to look at him up close. We just looked at each other for a while. My heart started to pull at me. He can seem so vulnerable sometimes, but he doesn't do self-pity. He just opens up and gets ready to take whatever's coming. In that way, he's an incredible fighter. Like when we took on the Three. He's practically fearless.
"It really hurt," I said, "It really hurt to see you with her and it really hurt that you lied about it,"
"Did she kiss you?"
"No," he said, "You thought she kissed me?"
"I don't know. It looked like it,"
He looked right into me, like he does. "No," he said.
"I wish you had just told me about it,"
"I know," he said, "I shouldn't have lied to you. There's things that-that I did," he swallowed and looked down, "So many things I wish I hadn't done,"
"Well," I took another step closer, "Technically, I mean, really, it wasn't you. It was the demon,"
He shrugged. "I've got the memories," He pulled his hands from his pockets and looked at them, "These were the hands that did it,"
I hesitated, but I couldn't help it and I took his hands in mine. "But it's what these hands do now, right?" I asked him.
He does this amazing thing when he looks at me a certain way: he starts something inside me. It's heat or something, it's a warm rush upwards, it starts somewhere under my ribs and spreads, it's almost like wrapping a hot towel around yourself.
"Yeah. That's right," he almost smiled, and his fingers curled around mine. It's the warmest touch I've ever felt, even though his hands are cold. It's hard to explain. There's no hesitation in his touch at all, no eserve. He doesn't hold back, and until I'd touched him I never realized how much most people do. Most people keep something to themselves, even when they hug you. He doesn't. He isn't grabby, that's not what I mean. I just mean that it's very deliberate, it's very sure. He must be afraid of some things, but he's not afraid of touching me. He acts like it's a treasure, every time, he acts like it's precious. He was looking at my hands like they were rubies or something.
"That's a lot of what you do, now, isn't it?" I asked him, "Do the right things? Fight vampires...help me?"
His thumbs were stroking the inside of my palms. It's amazing how sexy that feels. He was smiling now, a soft little smile. I had the feeling that he wasn't even listening to me. He was massaging my fingertips, one by one, very gently. He held my right hand up to his mouth and pushed my fingertips across his lips, back and forth, his eyes closed. His lips were silky and cool. He brushed my fingers across his cheek, moving his head like a cat does, upward, wanting more. He kissed my fingertips and let go of my hand.
"Yes," he said, answering my question.
I was breathing harder now. He always manages to do that to me. It's almost irritating. Ever since Halloween night I'd been feeling a little self-conscious and he gave me all the room I needed without being distant. He's so good at all of that. Two hundred years of dating, I guess. Which made me think of something else, and I tried not to ask it but it came out anyway. He was still holding my other hand, still rubbing his thumb in my palm, and it was starting to get to me.
He was gazing at me with that little smile, his eyes were so warm, they were full of me.
"Do you-" I suddenly felt so stupid, "Do you-like brunettes?"
He laughed. It was one of his soft little snorts. "Buffy, what are you talking about?"
"Well, I mean-"
"I like you," he said.
"Obsession...it doesn't just end-"
He released my hand and looked away. He took a step toward the trees, looking up. He stood there for a minute.
"I was obsessed with her because she was pure and I was a demon, Buffy. She was so delicate, she was perfect, because I knew I could destroy her completely. In those days the one thing I wanted was misery. I was addicted to other people's misery, to making them miserable, to degrading them, to destroying the spirit in them. Some people, though, you can't take down. No matter what you do to them they still believe in themselves and they still have the courage to love. I wasn't interested in those people, people like you. I kept away from them," he looked back at me, "The tastiest kills are the ones that give over more than the body. You can drink someone's pride, their self-respect, their terror, their helplessness. Make somebody feel worthless and it's a complete victory," his eyes were cold now, glinting with the memories. It chilled me.
"It hurts, doesn't it?" I asked him.
His upper lip curled bitterly. "No more than it should," he said.
"You can't change that,"
"But you've changed other things. You've saved my life...how many times now? You've helped my friends. You-you," I stumbled over saying it but I said it anyway, "You mean a lot to me,"
"I don't know if that's the right thing or not,"
"You'd better be sure,"
"Nothing's for sure," I said, "Except the way we feel now," I stood there thinking about what I'd just said, and he was thinking about it, and suddenly his arms were around me and my arms were around him. His hand moved up and down my back, sweetly, he was resting his cheek on top of my head. We stood there for a while and I thought how dark it made me feel inside, the things he did to Drucilla, and I wondered what it would be like to be him, to have evil take you over and then have to deal with everything you'd done, forever. I held him tight, and we swayed under the trees. I thought about last night, when he asked me if I loved him, the way he'd looked almost like a little boy for a minute, the way his voice went up when he asked, "Do ya?"
"I'm sure," I said, "That I want you to kiss me,"
He looked down at me. His hand moved over my cheek. He's got huge hands. He can hide one of my hands in his fist. I pulled his face down and kissed him, and it was like relief. Kissing him is like falling into cool water when you have a sunburn, all of the bad things in the world just fade away, it's just him and me and I don't know how I'll ever climb out of that relief again, I want it to last forever. We were kissing and I took his hands again, and I stepped back.
"Hey," I said, I was feeling all warm, my jacket seemed like overkill suddenly, "Do what you were doing, before?" It just shocks me sometimes, the things I say and do around him. I don't know where it comes from.
"What?" his eyes sparkled. He was playing with me.
"You know what,"
"This?" he took my hand and put my fingers to his lips again, but this time he moved his head back and forth, stroking them against his mouth.
The breath went out of me, "Yeah,"