Cordelia was wrong. It is his fault. He wasn't there, but he should have been. If he had been strong enough, he wouldn't have had to leave, wouldn't have left her alone with the people she called friends, who let her kill herself for a girl who shouldn't have existed. For Christsake, they all knew it should have been her. All knew of the fake memories. It should have been the whiney little brat who was standing in the back at the burial, with the cold eyes, glairing at him like he had intruded on a moment that he wasn't welcome to, while leaning into SPIKE of all creatures. Comforting him. Saying that she knew he had loved her, and that was why she had trusted him enough to take care of her. Fucking child should have been the one who took the dive off the tower to stop the hellbitch, not Buffy. They all know it, too. The look in Willow's eyes when she told Angel who the hell the kid was told him that. But they humor her because Buffy would have wanted that. So he didn't go up and beat her within an inch of her life, telling what a waste of space she was. Because Buffy wouldn't have wanted that. Because Dawn was her only family left.

So he played nice, said how sorry he was to her, told the girl that if she ever needed anything she could call, could even drop by with Spike if she needed to. Because that is what *she* would have wanted.

But deep in his heart he knows that if she ever crossed the line, Angel wouldn't be there helping her repent like he had with Faith. He'd be the one putting her in the ground.