"Maybe I'd be better off dead," Buffy whispered.
She returned to her seat on the bed, her fingers intertwined and resting on her lap to prevent her from fidgeting. The concept of death had often brought her peace. Even though the majority of people feared the end of their lives, Buffy welcomed it as she thought of it as an escape from the overpowering responsibilities that life held for her.
Angel glanced at her pitifully. "Why do you say that?"
Shrugging her shoulders, Buffy averted her gaze to the photograph that stood firmly on top of her television.
"You want to be re-united with your Mother?"
She nodded softly.
Silence fell upon the two, leaving them to dwell in their own thoughts as the seconds ticked by. The sun was slowly rising, though neither Buffy nor Angel acknowledged this. It wasn't until Buffy's stomach growled hungrily for food that the silence was finally broken by Angel's amused laughter. It wasn't long before Buffy began to giggle lightly herself.
As his laughter slowly died down, he took Buffy's hand and heaved her up from the bed.
"Where are we going?" she asked curiously.
"I'm taking you to breakfast," Angel smirked.
Buffy's mouth open and closed then opened again, reminding Angel slightly of a goldfish. There seemed to be a hint of panic in her eyes, much to Angel's confusion, and her mouth remained agape for some time.
Eventually she asked "Can vampires even eat?" to which Angel chuckled at as he steered her out of the room by her elbow. As they descended the stairs, Buffy found that her blossoming friendship with Angel was something she could have never predicted. She had always classed creatures like him as the enemy, the one that needed to be destroyed, so becoming friends with a vampire had never been on her agenda, let alone teaming up with one to save the human race. Buffy smirked as she wondered if there would be a movie based on her life one day.
"It was a couple of months ago," Angel said, breaking the comfortable silence between them, "when I was requested to find you and inform you about everything I know."
"Why now though? Why, after twelve years, was now the right time to let me in on this?" Buffy questioned as her brows furrowed.
"I don't know anything solid; however there have been various rumours in the supernatural world that has caused some alarm."
"Apparently The Master is attempting to break the Curse of the Sun-"
"Hang on... there is a curse on the sun?" Confusion washing over Buffy's face.
"No. If the Curse of the Sun was broken, it would allow all vampires to walk in the sunlight-"
"Like your ring does?" Buffy asked.
"Yes. The Master is also supposed to be, with the help of a powerful dark warlock, trying to conjure up the power of Osiris. He wants to be able to control life and death, to have power over who dies and who doesn't," Angel answered, rolling his eyes.
"You don't seem really bothered about that."
"Because he can't. There is already an Angel of Death and only one thing would ever be able to vanquish the Angel of Death," Angel informed, opening the door of the little cafe and allowing Buffy through.
"Which would be what...?"
"The end of time and space."
The two took a seat at a table tucked away in the corner of the cafe, allowing them to talk freely without being fearful of someone overhearing. The conversation was put on hold as they gave their orders to a tired looking woman, who looked as if she could use a few coffees herself, and waited until their beverages and food had arrived to continue.
"This little adventure sounds like a lot of work," Buffy stated, shovelling bacon into her mouth.
"It's no picnic," agreed Angel.
Buffy watched in fascination as Angel ate his food. Angel must have noticed her gawking at him as he swallowed and answered her questioning eyes.
"I can eat but it doesn't make a difference... the only thing that could ever satisfy my hunger is blood," he explained.
"Lovely," commented Buffy, devouring the rest of her breakfast.
When their plates were cleared, they left the small cafe and returned to Buffy's flat. They walked in silence along the bustling roads, both preoccupied with their own thoughts to even contemplate starting up a conversation. Buffy was slowly coming to terms with the fact that she was about to embark on her most dangerous journey yet. She realised that she would have to pack up her belongings when she arrived home – who knows when she'd next return to the unflattering place that she had called home for many years. She was surprised when the thought of leaving saddened her.
"How are we going to find The Master?" she questioned as they arrived at her apartment.
"He changes his location often; we'll have to get some help from some supernatural beings."
"Which means we'll being living out of a suitcase and in motels for god knows how long."
Angel nodded. He knew she wouldn't be impressed with having to constantly change locations, moving from motel to motel, and living out of her suitcase, leaving behind the familiar lifestyle she had led for so long, but he'd be lying if he told her that this would be a glamorous experience. Angel knew that this could possibly end with their deaths... but he wasn't going to voice his pessimistic expectations aloud.
"I've always wanted to travel," laughed Buffy, pulling a suitcase out from under her bed.
Angel smiled. He admired the fact that she always seemed to find humour in a situation instead of dwelling on the negative side. Often he wondered whether the death of her Mother had been the cause behind her strong character, if the loss had provided the motivation she needed to go on with life and fighting against evil, but then he'd look into her eyes and realise she was just a natural fighter.
"What are you looking at?"
"Nothing," Angel replied, a smile playing on his lips.
Buffy cocked her eyebrow, staring at him uncertainly. "Honestly, don't let my politeness fool you... Just because I have been brought up with manners doesn't mean I won't kill you in your sleep."
Angel shifted awkwardly from foot to foot.
"I'm joking," added Buffy, snorting in amusement at Angel's reaction.
She had detested vampires since she could remember, even to the point where she had made it her responsibility to rid the world of the evil creatures, but yet here she was with one, laughing and joking like it was as natural as breathing. Buffy didn't understand what had changed, though she decided to shrug it off for the time being.
Slowly she began to pack her suitcase. Deciding to only pack various items of clothing, she left her fancier clothes to one side, aware that they would be useless for where she was heading. When her suitcase was reasonably full, she turned her attention to other necessities. Her toothbrush, toothpaste, shower gel, shampoo and conditioner were thrown into a plastic bag, followed by her brush and hair dryer. As she bustled around her apartment, throwing bits and bobs into the plastic bag, Angel watched from his position in the corner.
"You'll have to carry this to the car, wait... do you even own a car?" Buffy questioned, realising she had only ever seen Angel on foot.
Angel smirked. "Of course, did you expect me to turn into a bat and fly around?"
"Pretty much, yeah."
"Sorry to disappoint. But I do have a car, I just prefer walking," informed Angel.
"Weirdo," muttered Buffy.
Finally, almost an hour later, she had managed to pack everything she deemed as important. She decided to leave everything else behind, hoping that eventually someone would throw it out or give it away. As she looked around her apartment, a tiny part of her didn't want to leave. She didn't know if she'd ever see this place again, if she'd even come back to her hometown, because nothing about the supernatural was predictable. A wave of nausea hit her strongly in the stomach as she wondered if she'd even survive this. Surely she was strong enough to kill one power hungry vampire, wasn't she?
"Are you ready to go?" Angel asked, softly.
Buffy hesitated for a moment, considering his question in depth. Was she ready? Then she thought about her Mother – she was lying dead in a coffin, buried beneath the ground, forever. Her fists curled by her side, anger washing over her in waves. She had to do this, whether she was scared or not, because she owed it to her Mother to kill the monster who had drank the life out of her. Buffy would make her proud.
AN UPDATE! FINALLY!
I'm so sorry it has taken so long! Forgive me.
I hope you haven't lost interest or hope in this story! Please, please, review to keep it alive!