It wasn’t working, this halfway thing, not for Angel, and he suspected, not really for Buffy either. They could see each other, patrol together, hold hands, train together, even kiss, as long as they didn’t let themselves get carried away, but that was it and it wasn’t enough.
They both wanted more, to experience the heights of passion they’d briefly known on that fateful night so many months ago, but it just wasn’t possible. They could hardly have Willow waiting in the wings every time to curse him again, and nothing short of that would ensure he didn’t revert to the soulless Angelus. One instant of pure happiness… It wasn’t fair, yet he couldn’t honestly say it was unjust. He didn’t deserve that depth of happiness; he deserved to suffer.
But Buffy didn’t.
She’d done nothing wrong, unless you counted falling in love with a vampire, which although not the wisest thing she’d ever done, was still hardly a crime deserving of punishment.
No, if they couldn’t have everything they wanted from each other, best they should have nothing. It would hurt them both less in the long run if they made a clean break and ended this bittersweet torture.