Flirting With Disaster
A Re-write of Asking For Trouble
Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters… Of course, unless they aren't part of the Buffy/Angelverse… Then they are mine.
They walked into the apartment that they shared in New York. It was a small but decent apartment located on the Upper East Side, the greatest perk was the rent control. Parker was always about appearance, it didn't matter that they used almost all their money to just pay the rent, all he really cared about was that they had the show. But still, even to her, it was home, and it was something she hadn't had since her mother passed away while she was in her sophomore year of college. Thankfully, her uncle took in her younger sister, and as soon as she graduated from UC Sunnydale, she found herself following the boyfriend that she had been dating since her junior year to New York City.
So it didn't surprise her when a year ago, while dining at Mesa Grill, he got down on one knee and popped the question. Four years of dating, she figured that it was about time, and thinking that he was the only one for her, she said yes. It seemed natural, they loved each other, it was the obvious next step. So after a year of preparing, it was getting down to the wire, and the closer it came to the date, three months to be exact, the more nervous she became about it. The more she began to question her feelings towards the man who shared her bed with her at night. Surely it was only cold feet?
They had just come from dinner with his friends, colleagues who, for the most part, she liked. That is, all of them except for Brenda. Buffy had always been unsure of her overly groomed body, her size three, five foot, eight inch frame. And for god sakes, why would anyone that tall still insist on wearing four-inch heels? She had noticed the way Brenda flirted with her fiancée, the simple flick of the hair, the head tilted to the side as he spoke, the way she sometimes rested her hand on his while he spoke. She was brazen, that was certain. Though she always thought her fiancée to be ignorant of this; she had often asked him and he seemed to be unaware of it.
"Buffy, we need to talk." Parked said as she put the teakettle on the stove. She was still a bit tipsy from the alcohol that had been consumed and figured that she should drink something before going to bed. She turned to face him, her eyes scanning his face, noting for the first time that night, the concern and apprehension that seemed to wash over him as he sat down at the kitchen table.
"What's wrong?" She felt her heart drop from her chest to her stomach as she walked to the table and sat down beside him, his leg wedging itself between hers as he took her small hand into his larger one.
"I just don't think this is working." He said simply, his eyes not looking up from their hands. She could feel her heart almost stop in her chest. And, although it had been something she had been thinking about for a while, it was something that she thought would pass, moreover, she had no idea that the same things had been going through his head and it broke her heart, almost.
"What do you mean?" She choked, not sure,if what he said was what she heard.
"I think we should call of the wedding… Break up, it just doesn't feel like it use to be. We aren't the same people anymore and I think you know that too." She could feel her eyes fill with tears as she heard him talk.
"So you're telling me this now? Three months before the wedding? This is the right time? Why Parker?" She was gasping for air as she tears streamed down her face. She wanted to yell, to hit him, throw things at him.
"I just… I didn't want to drag this out any longer." He tried to stay calm, to be strong as he watched her fall apart. There was more, more that he wanted to tell her but he wasn't sure if he should, afraid that if he told her that he was seeing someone else that it might tear her apart.
"Well perfect timing Parker…" She responded, wiping the tears away as quickly as she could but finding that it just wasn't fast enough because they were quickly replaced. She looked up at him, their eyes meeting for the first time and something told her that he wasn't telling her everything, that there was still something that he was hiding from her, she knew him well enough to know that. "What else?"
"What? Nothing…" He said, his eyes again glancing down, he knew she could tell that he wasn't telling her everything, that was one of the downfalls of knowing someone for four years and living with them for two.
"Don't lie to me Parker." She stood up and made her way to the kettle which was now whistling as the water boiled.
"There's someone else."
"Who is it?" She was angry now, it was fine if it hadn't been working, she could have forgiven that, but infidelity…
"Brenda." He said, standing up, reaching out to her.
"No. You don't get to comfort me, I want you out." She yelled, finally finding her voice as she quit crying. He wasn't worth crying over anymore, no, as soon as he said that there was someone else, that was enough, she had had enough.
"I said get out." She stood her ground walking over to the door and standing there was she watched him pack some things in his overnight bag. As she watched him she began to wonder where they had gone wrong, what had happened that had led them down this path. They had been friends before, she had been able to confide in him, to trust him and now, as she looked at him, she had no idea who he was anymore.
He stopped to touch her arm as he left but she shrugged it off, almost pushing him out the door and slamming it behind him. As she looked around, she realized that she couldn't stay there, she couldn't stay in that apartment, there were too many memories, memories that would keep her from ever moving forward in life, and that was something that she didn't want to happen.
She reached for the phone and glanced at the clock, midnight; it would be nine in California. She dialed the familiar number and listened as to the ring, and she found herself smiling as she heard her best friend speak.
"Hello?" Willow asked, wondering who was calling her at that time, that hour.
"Will?" Buffy choked again, the tears beginning to form again as everything settled into place.
"Buffy? What's wrong?"
"Parker…" She stuttered.
"Is he okay? Buffy what's wrong?" There was concern in her voice and it only made Buffy cry harder.
"He left…" She finally managed to get out. It was quiet for a long time as she cried, the only sound coming from Willow gentle whispers telling her that it was okay, that everything was going to be okay. It was after ten minutes that she was ready to finish. "He was having an affair…"
"Oh Buffy… I'm so sorry…" Willow said, trying to mask her anger with the man who took her best friend to the other side of the country.
"It's okay…" She sighed, looking around the empty apartment, she felt so alone. In a city as large as New York, she had never felt more alone. All her friends had been his friends, and now she was left with nothing. "It's just…"
"It's lonely here now. It's been twenty minutes and I feel so out of place."
"Come back home to California."
"Will, I have a job here…"
"So quit. Come back here. You can stay with me and I know Dawn would be so happy to see you and you know Giles could find you a job. I mean you've been doing PR stuff out there, it's the same thing here. Maybe the firm you're with will even just put in a transfer for you. Come back here… There are plenty of people who love and miss you and would rather you were here instead of in New York."
Buffy sighed, she knew Willow was right. "I'll see what I can do… I'll ask them tomorrow."
"Call me as soon as possible. The room is already ready for you."
"Are you saying you expected this?"
"You told me a few months ago that you weren't sure about Parker anymore… I know you well enough to know that if it wasn't true you never would have said anything. I just wanted to be prepared, at the very least it would be a place for you to stay if you ever came to visit." Willow responded, hoping that it didn't change Buffy's mind. "Come back to California Buffy…"
Buffy felt the tears brimming at her eyes again, the compassion that her friend was giving her was phenomenal, and it was overwhelming, and it was exactly what she needed. "I'll be there by the end of the week…"
Hey guys! So this is my attempt at fixing Asking for Trouble... It's going to be a bit different, but I think this is the way that I should have written it from the beginning... Let me know what you think! I hope you like it!