Disclaimer: 'Angel' and its characters are the property of Mutant Enemy Productions, 20th Century Fox, Joss Whedon, David Greenwalt etc. I'm writing this story for entertainment purpose only. No copyright infringement is intended.
Author's note: I've only seen a few episodes of the first and (the beginning of) the second season. If I've got something wrong, please remember that.
English is not my native/first language. If you find an annoying writing error in this story, please email me (instead of mentioning it in a review) and I will correct it immediately. Thank you!
As I flip the pages of my diary and run my eyes over the lines I have written before, I can't help but smile. I smile at the innocence with which I saw the world. And sometimes I long for that time. Everything was a whole lot easier back at Sunnydale High. I was Queen Cordelia: cheerleader and the most popular girl at school. Guys were always surrounding me, wanting to be seen with me. I didn't care that in fact they were using me; I liked the attention. I loved their hungry eyes, their efforts to win my affection and their devotion. And the girls, all suspicious and jealous, because they knew I could easily win their boyfriends. But at the same time they all wanted to belong to my group.
Now everything is different and I feel…I don't know. It's not just my life that has changed; I guess I have changed as well. I have grown up, become more mature. I'm not the same Cordelia I was two years ago. Back then the only thing on my mind when I went to sleep was: what should I wear tomorrow? Now I wonder: will I survive the next day without getting killed?
I care less about the things that used to occupy my mind every minute of the day. Once I craved for attention, I loved to be the centre of it. Yes of course, I still like to be seen, and I've recently bought a smashing dress that will certainly catch everyone's eye, but it's not the most important part of my life anymore. Not when you have to deal with demons, vampires and the other scum of the world.
Maybe that's why my friends are so worried about me. I can see it in the way they look at me when they leave my apartment or when I leave the hotel to go home. They wonder why I don't go out anymore, why I stay at home all the time, why I retire to my own room when once I did not care about anything else than stealing the show.
I don't mind that they worry. Actually it feels good to have someone worrying about me. I can't remember the last time that someone actually cared enough for me to be concerned. My parents didn't care; they were always busy with more important things than their own daughter. My so-called friends didn't care either. As soon as they found out about the IRS taking away all our money, they immediately dumped me.
I don't think I want to go back to that life anymore, to the hypocrisy and indifference, but I do sometimes still act the way the old Cordelia would act, shallowly and lightheartedly. Especially when things get tough. The reason? It's the only way I know how to keep some control of my own life. Everything else has slipped away, has been taken away from me. I didn't ask for certain things to happen to me, but they have. I've seen so many horrific things, so much evil, and have been in so many life-threatening situations that I would have gone crazy if I'd taken everything that seriously.
But when everyone is gone and I'm alone, I can't pretend anymore. It is only a disguise. Just an attempt to hide my insecurity. Yes, I am insecure. As insecure about myself as a person could be. And why wouldn't I be? I have no idea what's happening to me and why. I don't even know who I am anymore.
Once I was Cordelia Chase, the rich and popular girl. I got everything I wanted and more. Then suddenly my life changed course. I became Cordelia Chase, the poor girl that had to leave Sunnydale to find work and a new future in LA. And it was there that a dark and mysterious man, or rather said vampire, reappeared in my life and literally turned it upside down. Now I am Cordelia Chase, a seer of the Powers That Be, fighting against evil forces with Angel.
Angel. I've tried not to mention his name, tried to push away the confused feelings his name brings about in me. However, it is in vain. He is a part of me, knowing me better than anyone else, maybe even better than I know myself. Compared with the past a lot has changed. Angel knows that and it troubles him. He doesn't say anything, and he doesn't have to, because it's clearly written in his dark eyes, in the way his face set. Angel is afraid that I will withdraw into myself, just like he did. Maybe his fear is justified. I don't know. There were times I thought about giving up and I think I would have (although it's so not like me) if I didn't have such a friend as Angel.
He cares for me. I know he does. Maybe not in the way I sometimes wish he would, but at least he does. And I need that sense of security right now. Especially now with the visions. My visions. The Legacy of Doyle. If only he'd given me something else to remember him by. Something less painful.
I have no control over these visions whatsoever. They come and go when they please, putting me inside the heads of people in distress, so I do not only see what people have to go through, I feel it as well. The agony, terror, despair, sorrow… Emotions that hit me like lightning, making me endure the utter evil that inhabits the world. I wish I could block the visions, prevent them from entering my head, because I don't want to see all the violence anymore. I don't want to be reminded of how dark the world can be. I already know. It's so depressing, and there is nothing I can do. I'm totally helpless.
Fortunately I have my friends to stand by me. Angel is always there for me, catching me before I can fall and holding me in his strong arms, while Wesley and Gunn get me an aspirin and water. He often tries to reassure me that everything is going to be okay, but he's so wrong. Everything is not going to be okay. I will never get rid of the visions, never be released of the pain and despair.
Afterwards, when the aspirin starts to work and I can release my hands from my head and open my eyes again, I feel completely shaken. My mind, still full of the horrible images, goes at full speed and I'm exhausted, both mentally as physically. The visions make such an indelible impression that I can't forget them. I carry every image I've seen with me, committed to memory as a reminder of what someone or something is capable of.
And often those dark and violent images are more intense than I can bear. The visions weigh down heavily on me, and Angel is concerned that they demand too much of me, especially since it takes me longer nowadays to recover from them. He's right, but what can I do? As if there's another way. The visions have become a part of me. They are who I am, whether I like it or not.
I can't change my life anymore. And I don't think I want to. Everything that's happened so far has led me to where I am now. Who knows what the future has in store for me? If I'll still be around and survive tomorrow without getting killed.
I hope you enjoyed my story. Let me know what you think of it. Just remember that this is my first Angel fanfic, so please be kind. I can take criticism, as long as it's serious and well founded. Thanks! - Karin -