Author: Spike’s Heart
Setting: All Roads Lead To Rome
Disclaimer: If they were mine, I’d treat them nicer than Joss ever did.
Feedback: Yes, please!
Archive: Ask me, nicely.
Warning: Less than a handful of naughty words.
A/N: It’s my therapy session, my issues.
Summary: Angel always strives to do the right thing.
“Always do the right thing.” This was the motto he’d tried to live by for the past nine years; from the moment Whistler had shown him the next Slayer to be called, a sixteen year old innocent named Buffy Anne Summers.
He’d tried to lead her and protect her and train her in ways to protect her life. In doing so, he’d put that very life at risk by falling in love with the girl. A seventeen year old nymphet with fists that could take down a building had given him a perfect moment of happiness, and Angelus was back on the scene.
The world got lucky, no thanks to him, but in part due to his erstwhile childe, Spike. That soulless bastard had conspired with Buffy to take Angelus out of the picture, and consigned him to the very hell he’d tried to bring on Earth through Acathla.
He’d walked out on a heartbroken eighteen year old Buffy and Sunnydale, telling himself that he’d left her for her own good – that she needed a normal boyfriend to keep her in the sunshine, to possibly marry and have children with. He’d not left her for the likes of Spike. Hell, if he’d wanted her to wind up with a vampire, he’d have stayed in Sunnydale, himself.
It’s not that he ever expected to be truly happy. He’d left behind the woman he loved, for one thing. He’d kept tabs on her for the next few years, until her death. Of course, he’d also heard that Spike was still around, but couldn’t hurt humans so he’d just written him off as useless.
Apparently, upon her resurrection, Buffy did not. True enough, she’d fucked him and fucked with him until Spike had broken, but the anger over their physical relationship had left its jealous mark. It wasn’t what he wanted for her.
He, Angel, was the vampire with a soul. That’s the way it had been for over a hundred years. Prophesied to become human. Surrounded by and supported by a stalwart band of supportive friends turned family.
Until he fucked it all up by first sleeping with Darla, and leaving her with child. The highest and lowest moments in his lifetime all wrapped up in a pretty pink package; a son, Connor. Ripped from his arms when his past stepped up to bite him on the ass.
He’d returned, of course – as a sullen, snarling teenager, twisted into a parody of hatred and devotion, nicknamed The Destroyer. And he lived up to his name with a vengeance.
The only way to save his life was to end it, he’d felt. The deal he made with Wolfram & Hart allowed Connor a new life, happy with normal human parents. It was the right thing to do, to wipe his son from the minds of the world, folding time and space and changing things forever. Except for him. Once again, he alone would remember and suffer.
The quick trip to Sunnydale with the amulet provided by W&H was also the right thing to do. He’d intended on wearing it in the final battle with the First, once more Buffy’s champion. When he’d gotten there, he found the world had shifted on him, as well.
He’d found a tired twenty 23 year old woman with the weight of the world on her shoulders and an ensouled Spike in her heart. She’d refused his help, taking the amulet and giving it to that William-come-lately. Foisting him off with some sad analogy of unbaked cookies and maybe laters.
Delighted when Buffy and company showed up at his office, battered and aching but alive – finding out that Spike had dusted in saving their lives and the world was… a bonus. So he wasn’t perfect, just happy to have the bleached menace out of Buffy’s life and out of his hair.
The arrival by amulet of the now you see him, now you don’t ghost Spike drove him to distraction. Doesn’t anyone stay dead? The anger he felt at Spike’s immediate desire to find out about the Sunnydale crew and Buffy led him to withhold that information out of spite. No way was he going to be responsible for bringing those two back together again.
“Do the right thing” had become a whole new grey experience.
Gods, he should have drained Andrew dry when he’d shown up as the new Council’s emissary and expert. This was all his fault. If he’d only kept his fool mouth shut, Buffy would never have found out that Spike was unliving once more. She’d never have come to his office, and she would never have been seduced away by that smooth bastard.
He’s got his corporate spies everywhere these days. Found out that Xander-fucking-Harris had jumped aboard the Spike loving train, and the three of them had the audacity to set up a copy-cat investigations company. Phoenix Investigations, indeed. How damned pretentious could they be?
With all the resources he had at his disposal, did they think they could do a better job of things than him? He could crush them like a bug under his thumb and not give them a second thought.
But he won’t. Not now, not today. He still cares for Buffy; it would break her to lose Spike again, and she’s always been attached to the boy.
He sits isolated in his office, signing papers and delegating tasks to his staff. He takes cases based on monetary value to the company and not necessarily on need, and he wonders…
Why they don’t ask him to join them?