A/N Buffy and Angel are forced to work together in order to save reality.
Set sometime after the middle of Angel Season 5.
Buffy sighed. She really, really didn't want to have anything to do with
Angel and his Wolfram and Hart deal, but she needed his help. The world
needed their help. At the moment, the Slayer was on a plane landing at
LAX. Giles had sent her with a file of what exactly was happening that
they needed Angel's help on. Buffy was by herself too. Dawn had been left
in Italy with Xander so she could finish school. No one really knew how
long this mission would take. That is if Angel chose to accept the
Giles had set up an appointment with Angel and had kept her identity a
secret so it would catch Angel off guard. He figured a little jolt would
force Angel to help. Buffy knew him better than that. At least, she
thought she did. The two had spent so much time apart, Buffy couldn't
figure out her feelings when it came to Angel any more. With Spike gone,
it should have been easy, but even dead Spike complicated things. Despite
her internal conflict, Buffy found herself checking her hair, makeup, and
clothes in the bathroom in the lobby before she headed to Angel's office.
No one was around. The place was obviously closed. Giles had made sure
that it was like that.
With a sigh, Buffy knocked on the door. "Come on in." Angel called. With
another dramatic sigh, Buffy opened the door and walked in. Angel didn't
look up at first, so she turned around and shut the door. "You must be my
late night appointment."
"Yeah." Buffy turned around. "I am. Sorry."
"Buffy? What are you doing here?"
"I keep asking myself that question, but Giles wrote it down." She handed
Angel the file. "We need your help."
Angel glanced at the file in his hands, but chose to ignore it. "I thought
you don't trust me."
"Angel...." She looked at his hurt eyes. "It's this place.... After everything
you told me about it before and everything I learned all on my own.... I just
don't understand why you would take this place."
"It always is." There was an uncomfortable silence between them. Buffy
couldn't stand it. "At least you're looking.... Like you always have."
"And how's that?"
"Pretty decent.... Timeless even."
"You're looking pretty decent yourself."
"You get dressed up a lot?"
"This is dressed up? Look at you! You're in a suit."
"I'm C.E.O. of a law firm."
"An evil law firm that corrupts. For all I know, I could be talking to
"You're not and you know it."
"Ok, maybe I was grasping, but I can never be too sure with you anymore."
"What's that supposed to mean?"
"It means that you've changed so much...."
"So have you."
"For the better."
"How's your cookie dough self working out?"
"Still baking and regretting ever using that analogy."
"She's good. Still in Italy."
"You like it there?"
"It's ok. I miss Sunnydale."
"Bet you never thought you'd say that in your lifetime."
"Uh.... Why don't you....Here, have a seat." Angel held out his hand to the
conference table and pulled out a chair for Buffy.
"Thanks." She looked around. "You've always been one for swank. You
decorate this place yourself?"
"Sorta. Most of its mine from things I've collected, but for the most part
it was designed for me." Buffy nodded. "So, what have you got here?"
"Giles said the coven in England was picking up on some serious mojo
happenings over here in the desert near LA."
"Did they say what kind?"
"They weren't sure exactly. The fabric of reality is being torn down
apparently. The details are in that file...."
"I want to hear them from you."
"Are you trying to get on my nerves with all this lawyer crap?"
"Then read the file. That's why I brought it. I was hoping you could make
some sense of it because I sure as hell can't."
"No, I'm sorry." Buffy waved her hand nonchalantly. "Jet lag."
Angel skimmed the file a couple of times and then looked back up. "Wesley
said that the psychics here were picking up something weird, but they
couldn't figure out what either. It's out in the desert."
"They get a specific location? The seers in the coven had a hard time
pinning the place down."
"So did the psychics. But they finally got a general location." Angel
walked over to his desk and picked up one of his remotes. He pushed a
button and the wall moved away revealing a large plasma screen TV.
Buffy smiled. "I never thought you were one for the hi-tech stuff."
Angel smiled back. "It's.... interesting." He pushed another button and a big
blue screen came up asking what Angel wanted to do. "Show me the location
of the magicks in the desert the psychics found." Within seconds, the
screen was showing a blank area in the desert.
"There's nothing there."
"Nothing you can see with the naked eye."
"And I suppose that your vamp eyes can see something we measly humans
"Actually, no. I can't see anything either, but there's something there.
It's being hidden by powerful magicks."
"So I figure. They missed a spot."
Buffy pointed at tiny footprints in the sand. They just stopped as if the
sand had eaten the person up except there was half of a footprint in front
of the last one. "There."
"I've gotten better."
"I can see that." Angel looked Buffy directly in her eyes and held her
gaze. She became flushed and looked away.
"Ahem.... So, I guess we take a field trip, huh?"
"So, should we gather the troops?"
"No. I'll leave a message with Harmony and...."
"Harmony? As in Harmony from my high school days that tortured me along
with her other Cordettes and then Harmony the vampire that tried to kill my
"She's your secretary?"
"She's actually really good at it."
"Maybe you are Angelus and I should walk away now."
"Buffy, I'm not.... Wesley thought it'd be good to have a familiar face
around, so when he found Harmony in the job applicants.... I wasn't too happy
with it myself."
"But she's still here."
"Harmony? Handy? Only Spike would say that." A look flashed across
Buffy's face. "She hasn't.... Has she?"
"No! God no!" Angel shuddered. "Never."
"Is there anyone?"
The question caught Angel off guard. He sat down across from her. "Uh....
Buffy smiled slightly. "I'm kidding. I don't really care."
"Ok, maybe a little, but we don't work. I've.... Accepted. I'm sure you've
accepted too. Right?"
Angel paused. "Yeah. We don't work."
"Now that we've got that out of the way, lead me to the car."
"Twelve. I'll let you choose which one we take."
"What about the sun?"
"The windows are all necrotempered glass. The UV rays don't touch me."
"Oh.... Neat." Buffy started to head out to the lobby, but Angel stopped her.
"We'll take my private elevator."
"Yeah." Buffy followed Angel over to his elevator and looked at him. He
didn't make a move to push a button, so Buffy figured it was on her side
and he didn't want to intrude on her space. She started to search when
Angel gently grabbed her hand. "There isn't one." The doors opened all on
"Well, don't I feel like a blonde?"
"You only look it." He smiled and ushered her into the elevator. He pushed
the down button and when the doors opened again, Buffy stood in front of a
long line of really, really nice cars.
Buffy smiled and walked over to the Silver Camaro. Angel chuckled. "What?"
"That's my favorite too."
"Guess we still have the same tastes, huh? You should see my caza in Rome.
It looks.... Well, it looks like your old apartment in Sunnydale."
"Yeah. The only thing hip and modern about it is Dawn's room. I just
don't have the money and I don't much care for stuff like that anymore."
Buffy looked around at the other cars. "Of course I could get back into it
if I hang out with you too long."
"I wouldn't complain." Angel held open the door for Buffy to slide into the
The whole way over, the two talked about what they had each been up to.
Buffy loved being a teacher to the young Slayers. She finally shared her
burden with hundreds of other girls in the world. It wasn't all on her
anymore. Angel thought she even looked older and a hell of a lot more
beautiful. She had put in some high contrasting brown streaks and cut her
hair with layers and fringe bangs. She was a flashback to the 70s.
Angel didn't know if he could keep himself under control around her. The
last time they had seen each other, Buffy had been fighting Caleb and Angel
just couldn't help himself. Her fighting had always been a big turn on for
him and when she had approached him, their lips had met simultaneously and
they had kissed for what seemed like forever. Of course they had fought
over whether Spike was Buffy's boyfriend afterwards and then talked
despondently about what they wished they could have in the future. Things
with them were always complicated.
It suddenly occurred to Angel that Spike was back and Buffy didn't know it.
Then, just as suddenly, Angel wanted Buffy back. Mostly because he still
loved her and wanted to make it work and partly because it would piss Spike
off that Angel had won Buffy's heart back. He had to figure out a way to
tell her that he did want her back. Then again, there was Nina he had to
deal with also. He would have to let her down gently and then win Buffy's
trust back. Angel assumed that having just him and Buffy go on this little
field trip would be a great opportunity to show her that he was still her
Angel and she could always trust him no matter what.
"No, listen.... Dawn...." Buffy sighed and leaned heavily against the hood of
the car. She gave Angel a look of exasperation. "I'm ok. I'm here so I
have to go. I'll check in as often as possible. No, tell Delilah and
Casey to keep working on those roundhouses. They need improvement there.
Of course you're going to help them. No, you've been training with me and
I know you can help those two out. Ok. Tell Xander to make sure you eat
right and don't stay up too late tonight. You have school in the morning.
I know you hate having school on the weekends, but you wanted to live in
Italy. I know I did too, but it was mainly you. I would've been fine in
New York. Listen, Dawn I have to go. I love you too. I'll tell him. Ok.
Bye Dawnie. Bye" Buffy hung up her cell and put it back in her inside
pocket of her long leather jacket. "She says hi."
Angel nodded. "Is everything ok?"
"Yeah. She's just worried."
"I don't blame her."
"Neither do I." Buffy looked around. "So, do we just start walking or....
What do we do?"
"I guess just try to find a rift or something weird."
"I found two somethings that are weird."
"Other than us."
"We need to hurry. The sun'll be up in a couple of hours."
The two started to walk. After about fifteen minutes and still nothing,
they were about to give up and head back to the car, but Buffy ran smack
dead into something fell to the sand. "Ow."
Angel walked over and helped her up. "Are you ok?"
"Giles keeps warning me about running into thin air like that, but do I
listen to him?"
The vampire put his hand on something warm and invisible. "There's a
"Really, Einstein? I didn't notice." Buffy was rubbing her forehead
"We need to find a door...."
"I've got one." Buffy pulled out a piece of paper and held it up to her
cell phone. She made the light on her phone come on and then read the
Latin words written in Willow's handwriting. While she spoke, Buffy made a
door on the barrier with her finger. When she finished, she simply pushed
the glowing door open. "Thank you Willow!"
"Willow gave you that?"
"Yeah. She said it was a 'just-in-case kinda thing.' And this qualifies
as a just-in-case, I'd say."
"Oh gee.... Thanks." Buffy walked in the doorway and found herself standing
in a lush green meadow lit up by the suddenly beautiful, crisp moon. "The
hills are alive, huh?"
"Talk about your floating oasis."
"Yeah, tell me about it." Buffy looked off into the distance and saw a
medieval castle far off on the horizon. "Well, I guess that's our
destination. Should we continue or turn back and get back up?"
Angel turned and found the door gone. "Well, I guess we should continue
"Right.... Since we're already here and all."
"Right. Let's go."