Belated News

Belated News

Angel walked into the Hyperion.  Fred was nestled happily under his arm, head cocked to one side, staring up at him adoringly.

"Spike is waiting in your office," Wesley said to Angel.

"Thanks Wes," Angel said.  He kissed Fred softly on the forehead.  "I'll see you later, beloved."

Angel found Spike slumped dejectedly on the couch in his office.  "Will, what's happened?" Angel asked gently.

Spike slowly looked up to meet Angel's eyes.   "Buffy's alive," he said.  "She misses you."

Angel collapsed onto the couch beside his grand-childe like a puppet whose strings had been cut.  "Buffy… how… I tried, but I couldn't...  Is she okay?  Is she right?  Please tell me she's right.  I couldn't bare it if she weren't Buffy."

Spike licked his lips nervously.  "You need to ask when.  She's Buffy and you did bring her back.  The PTB brought her back because you passed their trials."

"They said they couldn't," Angel replied frowning.

"It was a test," Spike said.  "And a lie.  They wanted to see if you'd keep being their warrior without her to bind you.  Ask me when they brought her back."

"Is she okay?  How is everyone in Sunnydale coping?  Has Giles been notified?"

"Everyone's okay.  Angel ask me when."

"Buffy missed me?  Oh God, Fred.  Does Buffy know about Fred?  I swear I wouldn't have let myself fall in love with anyone else if I'd known Buffy was coming back… But I didn't know… I do love Fred… Is Buffy going to be mad at me?"

"She's not mad, she understands," Spike sighed.  "Angel, Buffy's been alive for sixteen months."

Angel's mouth opened, he blinked a couple times and then fell into stillness.

"Angel?" Spike asked with concern, after several minutes.  "Say something."

"Months?" Angel asked.

Spike nodded.

"And you just now got around to telling me?"

"You were doing okay, Buffy didn't want to rock the boat," Spike explained.

"Buffy was alive and no one bothered to tell me?" Angel demanded.

"It wasn't like that," Spike argued.  "She saw you and Fred, she didn't want to mess that up."

"So she has you tell me now?" Angel asked angrily.  "Better than a year later, once Fred and I have that much more of a relationship?"

"Buffy doesn't know I'm here," Spike replied.  "But she never got over you.  You're still the one she wants, even after all this time.  I just thought you should know that."

Spike turned and walked out of the office, leaving an utterly stunned Angel behind him.

Fifteen minutes later Angel ran to the Hyperion's garage and took off, driving toward the freeway at speeds well in excess of the posted limit.