With Arms Wide Open

Disclaimers: Any character that you recognize does not belong to me, but belong to Joss Wheadon, Mutant Enemy, and who ever else owns Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel the Series.

Rating: Same as show in most places, NC-17 (written by Tani) places are clearly marked and can be skipped and everything will still make since.

WARNINGS: In my season 3 rewrite, there will be rape (not NC-17 graphic) and graphic torture. While the season 3 rewrite deals with other stuff, it mainly deals with the rape and the after effects of it. The only reason Season 3 is mentioned at all is because of this. I had a real hard time with Season 3 and skipped a lot of it. Therefore, the rewrite of season 3 is short and is written more as an epilogue or summery. If this bothers you, you really don't have to read the part about the rape to fully understand what is going on. It will be mentioned later, but I think in the context that it is mentioned you will understand it without having read it. I will clearly mark the parts about the rape so you can skip them. Chapter 1 has 4,448 words or 13 pages long in MSWord with out the disclaimers and Author Notes. The Disclaimers and Author Notes alone have 843 words or 3 pages in MSWord.

Characters: mainly Buffy/Angel But the other characters are also in this.

Distribution: Any message boards that I post this on may archive it, Any mailing lists that I post this on may archive it, and if anyone else wants it, I'd be honored, just let me know where it is, so that I can book mark your site.

Author's Notes: There are some parts where I took right from a transcript of one or more of the episodes. These are clearly marked in /red/. Also the title comes from a song by Creed. Although the subject of the story is different from the subject of the song, the title fit Angel's feelings in this story. And I would like to say Thanks to Ducks. Her Something Old series is where I first I read about Buffy and Angel talking to each other telepathically so that idea came from her and she gave me permission to use it. Thanks, Ducks! Thanks to Tani who has written some of the NC-17 scenes and has helped (taught me) to write some of them. Also Tani has helped with the general plot. Letting me know when something made more since than others and coming up with some names for demons and such for me. Thanks Tani!

Thanks and Betas: Thank you to my betas who have helped me out My betas are Katie, Robyn, and Karen Any typos, grammar mistakes, or characterization errors are mine . A special thank you to Jewels who thought up this Challenge which gave me a starting place. A very special thank you to Tani who wrote some of the NC-17 scenes and who is teaching me how to write them.

Summery: Based on a Challenge by Jewles. Here is the challenge. Not all requirements are in Chapter 1 but they are all in the Season 2 rewrite.

After Surprise Challenge By Jewles

I want a story about what would have happened the morning and next few days or even weeks after Buffy and Angel's first time if there had been no curse.

Also including:

-Buffy not wanting to go to school , but Angel 'convincing' her to go

-Buffy wearing angel's clothes to school the next morning to school

-Buffy and Angel getting caught in a compromising position in the book

-A night at the Bronze

-Xander barging in on Buffy and Angel

-A pool table

-A game of Truth or Dare (Note by Mac: I know the Truth or Dare Game is lame, but hey it's been 15 years or so since I've played and I was never any good at coming up with the questions or dares.)

-Buffy spending more than that one night at Angel's

-Angel showing up at Buffy's school, during the day

-Total Buffy and Angel Happiness

Feedback: Please send feedback to (without the spaces) or click the button at the bottom of the page and leave feeedback that way.

Book 1: New Beginnings

A rewrite of BTVS Season 2 from Innocence to Becoming Part 2

Author's Note: Some of this chapter is a direct quote from the transcript Innocence (Buffy: The Vampire Slayer Season 2 episode 14) written by Joss Whedon himself. To make the Transcript fit into this universe, I had to change some of the dialogue. The parts that are in red, are from the transcript that Joss Whedon wrote that was transcribed by AleXander Thompson Transcript Provided By twiztv.com Copyright © 1998 Alexander Thompson and checked by the script that was an extra on the BtVS Season Two DVD Boxed Set for the episode Innocence. That is once I found it on the DVD. LOL When I started this story I didn't know that it was on there! The spelling of magic as majick is from the script that was on the DVD. It's how Joss spelled it so it's how I'm spelling it.

Irish Gaelic Translations email me for the link to the English to Gaelic dictionary that I used. This site won't let me post it.

Muirnín definition... beloved m4; n darling m4; n sweetheart m4

Chapter 1

As Buffy drifted into consciousness, she noticed a hard, cool body that seemed to be half next to her and half under her. She also felt the cool arms wrapped firmly around her waist that held her to said body. Before opening her eyes, while still in between sleep and consciousness, she panicky thought Oh, God, and then the events of the night before came back to her. She and Angel were almost killed by a fully assembled Judge. When they were escaping from The Judge, they were caught in the rain. After they got to the safety of Angel's apartment, they made love several times before drifting off to sleep. Buffy smiled and pleasantly thought, Oh, God. Did she dare to open her eyes only to find out making love to Angel was just a wonderful dream? She never knew that her body could feel such pleasures. She took a chance and opened her eyes to find Angel looking down at her.

Buffy smiled when Angel greeted her with "Morning, Muirnín."

"Morning," Then she asked, "How long have you been awake?"

"Just a few minutes. I didn't want to wake you."

"You didn't," Buffy smiled.

Angel leaned down to kissed her. After a very passionate good morning kiss, she glanced over at the clock and to see that it was 5 A.M. Normally she got up at 6:30 to get ready for school. Well, I have an hour and a half before I have to get ready to go to school. "I really don't want to go to school."

"You need to go. School's important."

"I know. I just wish I could stay here in your arms all day. I could definitely get used to this – waking up in your arms."

Angel smiled, "I know, I could get used to waking up with you in my arms."

"I hate to say this but, I think I better get home before my mom wakes up and notices that I'm not home."She sadly said, not really making any effort to leave the safety of his arms or his bed.

Angel gave her another passionate kiss. "Before you go, let me give you something to think of while you're gone." He kissed her again, this time the kiss led to a repeat performance of the night before.

Needless to say Buffy did not make it back to her house to get ready for school. After a shower, Buffy checked out the clock again and saw that it was now 7:30. "Oh, no! I'm late; I've got thirty minutes to be at school. I don't have time to go home and my shirt is still damp." Buffy complained, then smiled and said, "Guess that means that I have to stay here."

"You're not getting out of going to school. Here you can wear this," Angel said handing her one of his silk shirts.

"Thanks," Buffy sarcastically said as she finished getting dressed. "I wish I could stay," Buffy sadly stated while in Angel's embrace.

Angel smiled and gave her a chaste kiss on her lips. "I know. I wish you could stay, too. But you need to go to school. Besides, you need to report to Giles about The Judge."

Buffy's eyes went wide, "Oh gosh! We forgot to check in with them. I'd better jet."

/Buffy walked into the library. "Buffy!" Willow exclaimed.

"We were just going to rescue you," Xander explained.

Willow threw Giles a look, "Well, some of us were."

"Well, I-I would have," Giles stammered.

Jenny asked, "Where's Angel?"/

Buffy looked around the room, held back a smile as the memories of the previous night and that morning at Angel's apartment came flooding back, and said, "He's at his apartment."

/Cordelia, who was sitting on the counter, slid off the counter and asked, "What happened?"

"The Judge, i-is he..." Giles inquired.

"No assembly required. He's active."/ Buffy worriedly informed her Watcher, as she looked into his eyes.

/"Oh, damn it." Giles whispered as he removed his glasses.

"He nearly killed us. Angel got us out,"/ she glanced around the room, hoping that no one would ask her something that would force her to tell what had happened between her and Angel.

/"Why didn't you call? We, we, we thought..."/ Giles couldn't even say what he had thought. He didn't want to think it anymore. Just the thought of loosing his Slayer was painful enough.

/"Well, we, we had to hide. Uh, we got stuck in the sewer tunnels, and with the hiding, we went back to his apartment and fell asleep." God, I hope he doesn't ask about the sleeping arrangements last night, she thought as she looked down and then back up glancing around the room not meeting anyone in the eye.

Willow noticed that Buffy was wearing one of Angel's shirts and suspected that Buffy was leaving something out, but knew that this wasn't the time to bring it up.

/"Buffy, The Judge, we, we must stop him." Giles stated.

"I know."

"What can you tell us?" Giles inquired.

"Not much. I, um... I kicked him. It was just like a sudden fever. If he'd got his hands on me..."

"In time, he won't need to. The stronger he gets, he'll be able to reduce us to charcoal with a look." Giles solemnly said.

"Also, not the prettiest man in town."

"I'll just have to keep researching, look for a weak spot. The rest of you should get to your classes." Giles declared.

"Yeah, I better go, too." Jenny said.

Buffy was the first one out the door as they all started into the hall.

"Yeah, yeah, yeah." Xander said as he held the door open.

"Buffy, wait up!"/ Willow called out, following behind her best friend.

/Jenny stopped on the way out and said to Giles, "I'll, uh, go on the 'Net and search for anything on The Judge."/

Giles lovingly looked into Jenny's eyes and said, /"Thank you."

"After classes I'll come back and help you research." Xander offered seriously.

Cordelia gave him a pat on the shoulder as she walked out, "Yeah, you might find something useful if it's in an 'I Can Read' book."

Xander shot her a look like he was ready to kill her./

Buffy was about to go up the hallway stairs when Willow caught up to her and stopped her. Willow informed Buffy, "I called your mom last night and told her that you were spending the night with me. So, you're covered."

"Thanks, Will," Buffy smiled at her best friend as she started to head off to class.

"Oh and Buffy," Willow grabbed Buffy's attention again. "Angel's shirt looks good on you."

Buffy blushed and grinned, "Well, my shirt was still damp…from the rain last night."

"Uh huh." Willow grunted with a wide grin on her face.

"It was!" Buffy said, but couldn't keep the grin off of her face.

"Then why are you blushing?" Willow asked still grinning. "Does this have anything to do with the 'I like seeing you at bedtime' conversation yesterday?

Buffy didn't have an answer for her and just said, "Willow." Buffy really didn't want to talk about this with anyone. Sure it was Willow and she had no problems with Angel being Buffy's boyfriend, and yesterday when they were talking, she seemed to be ok with the thought of Buffy taking her relationship with Angel to the next step. But this was something she wanted to keep between her and Angel for a while.

/They started up the stairs as Jenny looked around the corner and watched them go up./

That night in the library, everyone was supposed to be researching a way to find a way to kill The Judge. Buffy and Angel were in the stacks making out, Buffy not knowing that Xander and Cordelia were a few rows down from them also making out. When Willow got up to go put a book back on the shelf, she noticed that she, Jenny and Giles were the only ones on the main floor. Thinking that Xander, Cordelia, Buffy and Angel were looking for more books, she went in search of another book herself. She unknowingly turned down the aisle where Buffy and Angel were. Although, by the time Willow got to them, Angel had his hand up Buffy's shirt—well his shirt that she was wearing. Neither of them noticed that she was there, so she cleared her throat. "Um, guys, I think you better cool it a bit before Giles comes up here," she whispered as she put her book up. "I just think he might be a little upset that you're not researching is all," she quickly added as Angel jerked his hand out of Buffy's shirt—well his shirt that she was wearing.

"Uh…Right…Research…"Buffy stuttered as she blushed.

Willow left the aisle and went in search of another book. As she turned down another aisle, /she saw Xander and Cordelia kissing. After a few moments, Cordelia giggled and smiled and they pulled apart. Cordy and Xander saw that Willow was standing behind them, completely confused and upset.

Xander, not knowing just what to say about being caught with Cordelia grunted, "Uh..."

Willow darted off, and ran out of the library, while Xander ran after her, trying to explain, "We were just... Willow! Willow. Willow, come on!"/

Buffy grabbed a book off of the shelf and she and Angel went back to the tables on the main floor of the library. Buffy could hear Xander trying to explain something, but she didn't know what. When Xander came back into the library alone, Buffy asked, "What happened? Where's Willow?"

"Uh…," Xander stalled looking over at Cordelia who gave a nod of approval. "She saw Cordelia and I kissing and ran off."

"Wow." Buffy said. "You and Cordelia kissing." Buffy took a deep breath. "Wow."

"Uh, yes, well, as disturbing as that may be, we still have to find out how to destroy The Judge." Giles said.

"Giles, I haven't been able to find anything either." Angel started to say, then paused and said, "I think I might have another book at home that may be of some help, I'll go get it."

"I'll go with you." Buffy said.

"No, I think you should stay here and help go through these books" Angel said, knowing that if Buffy went with him, they would probably end up making love and not come back to continue the research . "I won't be long."

When Angel got to his apartment, he could feel that someone there. "Hello, Angel. Long time no see."

"Devlin. What are doing here?"

"Heard you killed Darla." Devlin commented.

"Why are you here?" Angel asked tensely as he watched Devlin who was sitting casually in Angel's favorite chair.

"Because, I wanted to know if it was true, after all you did spend 150 years at her side, then you kill her? Soul or not, you don't just kill your Sire, especially one that you were lovers with for a century and a half!" Devlin said angrily.

"She was going to kill someone I care about, Devlin. I had no choice."

"You know you were her favorite." Devlin said quietly.

Angel just looked at him.

"I've always been jealous of you. Even when we were kids back in Galway, you always were better at everything than I was. You were able to get out of marrying some flimsy girl when I couldn't. And then Darla came along and turned us. I thought that for once, I would be better at something than you were. But she chose you over me. She thought you were a better lover, tortured the humans better than I did. No matter what I did, you were better. Then you were cursed with a soul. I thought I had finally gotten my chance to prove I was better than you. Still she kept comparing me to you! Again, nothing I did was up to the standards you set. Until now. At least I didn't kill her. No matter how many times I wanted to, I didn't kill my Sire! You did. You killed her! Well, we'll just see who is the master of torture is now." Devlin said as he walked passed Angel and out of the door.

He wasn't in the mood to play games and he knew that Devlin was about to start a game that could get everyone close to him killed. Angel grabbed the book he had come for from the book shelf and ran out of the door. He raced back to the school, but Devlin had beaten him there.

As Angel entered the school hallway he heard Devlin saying, /"I've got a message for Buffy/ and Angel."

/Buffy appeared behind him, "Why don't you give it to me yourself?"/

As Devlin /spun around with Willow to face Buffy, she saw that he had one hand engulfing Willow's neck. Devlin furiously said, "Well, it's not really the kind of message you tell. It sort of involves finding the bodies of all your friends."

He tightened his grip on Willow even more and she lets out a pained yelp./

"Devlin, leave them alone. You're fight is with me." Angel snarled as he stepped out of the shadows.

"Even though I was always in your shadow, don't think I didn't learn from you, Angelus. I did. And you will be the last one to die." Devlin challenged as he shoved Willow away from him and ran back out of the door.

"Who was that?" Buffy asked Angel.

"An old friend." Angel said ashamed and Buffy could see the conflict etched on his face. "After Darla turned me, I convinced her to turn my best friend as well. And well, that was Devlin. He found out that I killed Darla and is out for revenge. But first he's going to try to prove that he can torture people better than I could." Angel said darkly. Then he told the group of people who was listing to him, "Right now, as long as everyone is with either Buffy or myself, then you'll be safe. We'll worry about Devlin after we take care of The Judge."

They went to the library and told Giles what had happened with Devlin. Giles had remembered reading about Devlin and said that the only vampire worse than Devlin was Angelus.

/"I have a plan," Xander announced. "I think I may have a way to deal with this Judge guy." He sat on the table by Cordelia.

"What do we do?" Willow asked.

"I think, um...I think I may need Cordelia for this one." Xander said as he looked back and forth from Willow to Cordelia. Willow lowered her eyes for just an instant and Xander continued. "And we may need wheels."

"Well, my car is..." Cordelia started to volunteer.

"It might have to be bigger." Xander interrupted.

"No problem. I'll get Oz. He has a van." Willow offered.

"Good." Xander said and then looked at Cordelia, "Okay."

"Care to let me in on the plan I'm a part of?" Cordelia inquired.


"Why not?" Cordelia stood up with her hands on her hips.

"Because if I tell you, then you won't do it. Just meet me at Willow's house in half an hour. And wear something trashy...er." Xander said as he walked off.

Cordelia was furious but followed him./

After hearing Angel tell everyone about Devlin, Jenny decided it was time to come clean and tell everyone what she knew. Jenny looked up at the group and began to speak, "I think my uncle might have called Devlin here." Giles, Angel, and Buffy were stunned at Jenny's comments. "I was sent here to watch Angel; and to keep you two apart. I didn't know what would happen if I failed. Until just a few hours ago. My uncle said that Angel was meant to suffer for what he did to our people. When he found out that I had failed in making sure that Angel was suffering, he had to call in someone else, another vampire, who would make sure he would suffer."

"My God, does he know what he's done?" Angel asked.

"Yes, he does. He told me that it's vengeance that we serve, not justice. And for us to have vengeance, then we have to make sure that Angel never experiences happiness again." Jenny said as she looked at the floor. Finally after a few moments of complete silence she looked back up at Angel and said, "I'm sorry. /If there is anything that…."/

"Curse Devlin like you did Angel." Buffy said, trying to find a way not to kill the love of her life's childhood friend.

/"I can't. I mean, those majicks are long lost even to my people."

"Then take me to someone who can." Buffy said.

Jenny took Giles/ Angel /and Buffy the only nice hotel in Sunnydale. Her uncle's room was on the second floor./ The room was spacious and the only thing that seemed out of place was the blood on the bed and the wall above the bed. / "Oh, my God." Jenny said.

She rushed in to her uncle. He was laid out on the bed, dead and covered with blood. Buffy/ and Angel /looked up at the wall behind him. A message was written there in blood/ 'Remember Elizabeth?'

Giles, Angel, and Buffy were sitting in Giles' office when Buffy asked, "Who was Elizabeth?"

Angel wasn't ready to tell Buffy everything about Elizabeth, especially not in front of Giles, so he gave an evasive answer, "She was a good friend of mine growing up. I…uh…helped her get out a…uh…sticky situation."

/Xander and Oz walked in placing a long box on Giles' desk/ saving Angel from having to explain further.

/"Happy Birthday, Buffy. I hope you like the color." Xander said as he stepped back.

She looked down at the box and Giles positioned a crowbar on the lock.

"Giles, we'll hit the factory first, but they might not be there. If they're on the offensive. We need to figure out where they'd go."

Giles lifted on the crowbar and broke the clasp. "Agreed," he said as he opened the box.

Buffy looked into the box and said, "This is good."

Jenny who was in the doorway asked, "Do you, uh...Is there something I can do?"

"Get out." Buffy said feeling the teacher behind her had betrayed her and Angel both.

"I-I just want to help." Jenny insisted.

Giles looked away from her/ took a deep breath, /and said, "She said 'get out.'"/ He still couldn't believe that Jenny…his Jenny, had been spying on them . That she was trying to keep someone miserable. How could she spy on them? He loved her. And she had been spying on them. Was it all an act? Did she feel for him like he did her? At this point it didn't matter. He couldn't believe that she had feelings for him if she had been spying on them.

/Buffy looked up at Giles as he looked sadly into the crate. Jenny turned around and left.

Xander stepped up and asked, "Do you want me to show you how to use it?"

"Yes, I do." Buffy affirmed.

Spike's warehouse was deserted. Buffy walked up to the table, "I knew it."

Giles looked up and around, "We haven't a bead on where they would go?"

Buffy exhaled, "I don't know, uh... somewhere crowded, I guess. I mean, The Judge needs bodies, right?"

"The Bronze?" Willow suggested.

"It's closed tonight." Xander reminded her.

Cordelia remarked, "There's not a lot of choices in Sunnydale. It's not like people are gonna line up to get massacred."

Oz found his voice and said, "Uh, guys? If I were gonna line up, I know where I'd go."

At the Sunnydale Mall, the doors opened, and the Judge/ Devlin /and Drusilla walked in flanked by their troops. They closed the doors behind them. As a man was coming up the stairs, the Judge reached out with his hand, and an arc of energy emanated from it to the man. The man froze with a look of surprise on his face and he quickly began to combust. He disappeared in a puff of flame and smoke./

Devlin /commanded, "Lock the exits, boys." The vampires hurry down the stairs to do/ Devlin's /bidding. "It's all yours."/ Devlin /said to the Judge, who smiled.

An Elevator door opened and Buffy strolled out with Giles and Xander following and carrying the crate on their shoulders. The others brought up the rear as Buffy said, "Everybody keep back. Damage control only. Take out any lesser vamps if you can. I'll handle the Smurf."

The Judge took a couple of steps down. A customer squeezed by/ Devlin /and headed down the stairs branching to the left. A young couple came up on the right. The Judge extended his arms, and his energy arced out to and through them. Then the Judge's energy arced through everyone in the area. They were all frozen where they stood. The Judge smiled widely./ Devlin /and Drusilla also grinned as they enjoyed the show.

Drusilla, bouncing with glee, said, "Oh, goody!"

Suddenly a crossbow bolt hit The Judge in the chest breaking his concentration. The arcs of energy disappear, and the people were all dazed. The Judge grabbed at the bolt and pulled it from his chest.

"Who dares?" The Judge demanded./

Devlin /and Drusilla looked over at the refreshment stand and saw Buffy standing on top of it, holding the crossbow and Xander opening a crate.

"I think I got his attention." Buffy/ sharply /quipped./ She knew that she would possibly have to kill her lover's best friend tonight and she was not looking forward to it. Hopefully this would work, and the Judge would be dead in just a few seconds.

/Judge arrogantly said, "You're a fool. No weapon forged can stop me."

Buffy lowered the bow and said, "That was then." Xander handed her the weapon from the box, and she raised an anti-tank rocket launcher to her shoulder. "This is now."

She powered it on./ Devlin /and Drusilla exchanged a look. Buffy set her sights and opened the trigger guard. The rest of the team took cover behind the snack counter./ Devlin /and Drusilla began to run. Buffy took aim as The Judge looked at her. Buffy was ready when The Judge asked, "What's that do?"

Buffy pulled the trigger and the rocket flew straight into The Judge's chest as/ Devlin /and Drusilla flew over the railing. The Judge disappeared in an explosion of flame and smoke. The people in the mall screamed and started to panic and run./ Devlin /and Drusilla hit the floor below. Bits of charred Judge fall all around them. Buffy looked up from the rocket launcher's sights and looked over at them in satisfaction./ Devlin /got up and ran off. Drusilla whined and ran the other way. The team looked over the counter at what's left of The Judge. The smoke cloud from the explosion billowed its way up to the ceiling.

"Best present ever," Buffy said as she handed the weapon down to Xander.

"Knew you'd like it." Xander commented.

Willow asked, "Do you think he's dead?"

"We can't be sure. Pick up the pieces and keep them separate." Buffy said.

They all started over to collect what was left of The Judge as Cordelia complained, "Pieces? We get the pieces. Our job sucks!" Parts of The Judge were lying everywhere and some were still burning. The smoke reached the sprinklers and they turned on everywhere./

Devlin /went in a side area of the mall and looked up at/ Angel. /Frightened customers were running every which way./ Angel /saw him and started to give chase./ Devlin /struggled past some people and ran./

Devlin /was headed to one of the side areas. He kept looking behind him to see if/ Angel /was following him./ Angel /had started the chase as soon as/ Devlin /recovered after the explosion of the Judge./

Angel was so focused on catching up with Devlin, he didn't notice that Buffy was behind him, but Devlin did. Staring at Angel he began to taunt him, "Did you tell you her about your first love? Tell me, is The Slayer just as good as Elizabeth was?" Angel didn't say anything as Buffy bolted past him and kicked Devlin in the stomach and the fight began. Angel stood there stunned. Why was he bringing Elizabeth into this? And while Buffy knew that there had been many women before her, he didn't want Devlin distorting the facts. Sure he cared about Elizabeth, but he was never in love with her. He only hoped that Buffy knew that. He watched as the love of his life fought and knew that whatever Buffy thought about what Devlin said, it wasn't distracting her from her calling as Slayer.

Buffy slammed Devlin through a display case and Devlin picked up a metal pipe from a broken display case that was laying on the ground and hit Buffy over the head with it, knocking her out. Angel came up with a stake in his hand and kicked the pipe out of Devlin's hand. As Angel looked into Devlin's eyes, he saw the Devlin that had saved his little sister, Kathy, from drowning when she had fallen in the lake over 200 years. Devlin looked up with a smirk on his face,"You can't kill your oldest friend." Angel dropped the stake and punched him knocking him to the ground. Angel turned around scooping Buffy into his arms and left.

Angel walked Buffy home after she returned to consciousness. It seemed as though she had a slight concussion, but with her Slayer healing, she would be fine in a couple hours. However, Angel wasn't going to take any chances. When they made it to her house, she found a note on her refrigerator door from her mother.


I've been called out of town for a few days on business. I will call and let you know where you can reach me if you need to. There are leftovers in the fridge. And I left some money for pizza, burgers, or whatever else you may want to eat. Happy Birthday. When I get home, I'll take you shopping for your birthday.



"Mom's out of town for a few days." Buffy called out. "At least we don't have to worry about getting caught for a few days. But I can't go out to patrol until she calls."

"What about food? Did she leave you enough food or do you need to go grocery shopping?"

"There's leftovers and plenty of food and I know how to cook, I just don't ever have the time with Slaying, plus she left me some money for take-out."

Just then the phone rang. Buffy picked up the phone, "Hello."



"I'm sorry I had to leave on such short notice. The Jones Springs gallery in Idaho called us and they were willing to sell us a few pieces that we have been trying to buy, so I had to leave immediately. I'll be home in five days. I'm at the Holiday Inn Room 337. The phone number is 1-208-271-1727."

"OK Thanks."

"Oh you might want to eat the rest of the casserole tonight. If you don't it will go bad. You found the money I left right?"

"Yes, I did."

"I'm really sorry, Hon. I'll make it up to you this weekend when I get home. I'll take you shopping for your birthday, ok?"

"Oh. It's alright, really I understand."

"Did you have fun at Willow's last night?"

"Yeah, I did." Buffy said as she smiled at Angel who was standing in front of her.

"Ok. Get your homework done and be good."

"I will, Mom."

"I'll call you every night to see how you're doing."

"I might stay with Willow a couple of nights."

"If you do, call and let me know, so I won't worry when you don't answer the phone."

"I will, Mom."

"Happy Birthday, Sweetie."


"Bye. I love you."

"Love you too. Bye Mom." Buffy hung up the phone and said, "She's in Idaho until Saturday."

"Uh huh." Angel grunted as he bent down and kissed her.

As the kiss ended, Buffy was dazed and as she tried to get her thoughts together, she said, "So, um, I'm going to heat up the rest of the casserole and eat it and then patrol."

"You're not going to patrol tonight. You have a concussion." Angel said sternly as she started to get the casserole out of the refrigerator. He was still worried about her.

"Angel, we have to find Devlin. If you come across him tonight, do you really think you kill him?"

Angel looked down. He wasn't sure if he could. Oh physically he could easily. But emotionally, he wasn't sure. His soul still remembered all the good times and mischief that they got into before they were turned. Angel wasn't sure he could kill Devlin. If Devlin was going to kill Buffy, he would kill Devlin in a heartbeat – just like he did Darla, otherwise he just didn't think he could do it. He looked back up and with resolve said, "We'll find him another night. Tonight, you're going to eat and relax."

"Ok." Buffy decided to change the subject, "Sorry I don't have any blood in the fridge."

"It's ok. I didn't expect you to." Angel said. He had fed before he went to the school to help with research so he didn't need any more blood until the next night.

"So, do you want to stay the night, since Mom's not home?"

Angel just gave her a wicked smiled.