"Angel, stop!" Cordy was exasperated. He had been fussing over her for every little hurt, every little bump. From the day she started working with him (and not for him as neither made a pretense of...), he'd been attentive and fussy.
Okay, this was another scrap, and truth be told she was happy with the attention. So much so, that in every bathroom of the building you could find aloe cream to soothe her skin, arnica gel for bruises, lavender scented candles she could have going on at a moments notice. The man definitively knew how to make her feel like a princess!
Anyway, that wasn't the point. The issue at hand is that he never, ever, let her take care of him. And… We are not even talking about basic patching up job here; we are talking about full blown nursing love.
"And why don't you lay down on the sofa close to my desk, Angel?"..."Would you like some more blood to drink, Angel?"..."Let me change your dressing Angel"..."Let's slow down on practice for today, Angel" type of care.
The man was a pain!
So, a new dawn has come. Angel had promised Cordy that she could play. And she knows it will be her way rather than the highway. It's role play time, buster! She had sent Wesley on an errand all the way to Santa Monica. The poor guy would be gone for the rest of the day. Lorne wasn't scheduled to stop by until the early evening and Fred couldn't wait to get to the Mexican cooking class that she'd signed her up for. She will be gone for at least two full hours. Since the stars are aligned in her favor, who was she to argue? Here she was, waking up her boss in the middle of the afternoon, ready to play pretend.
“Cor?" His voice was husky from sleep.
“It’s okay, Angel. I just wanna play a game.”
“Now?” He dropped his foot on the floor and while still seated moved to brush his hand through his bed hair in an attempt to feel and look almost decent. “Give me a minute and I’ll come check on you.”
The poor man still thought he was getting up at the ungodly time of 4AM for him just to help out, well as surprises go, why not?
He found Cordelia seating on the small sofa in Wesley office. For a moment he just stopped and looked at the beautiful woman that was the heart of this office. It’s never been about beauty. That had grown old centuries ago, but one needed to have an inner glow, that special little something. Dru had it, Buffy had it, Cordy had it. Like a moth to the flame, he couldn’t stop himself from going to them, making them suffer. He had sworn to himself, he wouldn’t repeat the pattern, he would be vigilant to Cordelia's well being and make sure nothing bad ever happened to his friends. Not under his watch; not anymore.
“Cordy?” his broken voice needed practice. It'd been ages, if one was to count, that he did not need to be up so early. She turned and gave him quite the thorough once over. He felt his skin prickle, something was odd and he was hard pressed to figure out what the problem was.
“Come here Angel and promise me something.” He felt even more at odds, hearing the sweet voice his seer was using. “Anything, Cordelia, what is it?” He couldn’t be more forward but he wanted to make sure, she’d know he was there for her.
“I want you. No. I need you to understand one simple thing.” She paused, as much for effect than for a slight need to regroup. “When you get hurt, I know you can recover quickly. I know the marvels of a good cup of O pos. I know that resting in the dark gives you the boost that you need, but none of those things makes me feel better.”
“But, shouldn’t you be happy, knowing I am getting better?” Angel was lost and a little bit hurt.
“No, doofus. I mean that I feel useless when you get hurt and I want to fuss around you, feel like I can make a small difference in your comfort, be there for you… The way, you’ve always been there for me.” She whispered, almost more for herself, a little unsure about why she needed this as much as the air she breathes. It’s not like Cordelia Chase puts that much value in other’s quality of life… Still, if Doyle’s sacrifice had taught her anything, it was definitively to seize the day, make a difference, care about others and most of all being aware of the needs of her family, mind their well being, mind his comfort.
Angel pulled his seer by the shoulders so she’d be flush to him and looked down at his right hand still fidgeting on his lap. He wasn’t sure what to say. He’d never been that good with words anyway, he could try though to hold things together.
“You want me to?” His voice croaked a bit. “… to slow my rate of recovery?”
She rolled her eyes as she punched his arm. Honestly, the man really was a doofus; Reason enough to slug him when he asked stupid questions! “Nooooo. I just want to savor the moments we have together, take my time to make sure you are alright, take more than a moment to make sure you know how much I care about you.” Cordelia turned slowly around and ducked a bit to see Angel’s perplexing expression. “You know… I want to help; I want to feel useful; I want you to appreciate me…”
The smile that spread across the vampire's face was a sight! “Are you fishing for compliments Cordy?” the snicker rumbled from his chest and blossomed into a full belly laugh. “Cor, I crave your attention! That is one thing you do not have to ask for. I’d stay in your arms for however long it takes to make me feel at home. I just didn’t know…”
“Well, I didn't know either, I just felt like I needed something, and couldn’t explain what.” She sighed. “You can stop laughing now, Mister. It's stopped being funny already!”
“C’me here” he said, reeling the seer to his side, trying as much as possible to melt her into his broad chest. “I promise to be the best patient you’ll ever have. No matter what.” And with a slow smile he deposited a small kiss on her forehead, following the brow below, until a similar smile brightened the face of his best friend. “And, I promise, I’ll be there for you!”
“Thank you.” and this time, she was the one leaving a chaste kiss on his temple.
Thank you for reading!