Series: Is It Really So?

Buffy and Angel have given up on each other. What can Dawn do?

Part 1 of 3: What a Fool I Am

Author: Nitrowugs

Rating: PG

Pairings: B/A hinted at

Feedback: Please. Constructive criticism is always welcome.

Disclaimer: I do not own anything associated with BtVS and AtS. (Characters, plots, and dialogue from the shows are borrowed with no infringement intent whatsoever.)

Distribution: Please ask and let me know where it's going.

Written: 09/18/2010

Summary: Buffy's thoughts of Angel as she reads her journals covering her years as a slayer.

Warning: Not a happy story.

A/N: Happens sometime after NFA; Angel, Cordelia, Gunn and Fred are still alive.

I have known pain and heartache many times in my life, some times more severe than others. When I consider how many times my heart has been broken, how much pain I have suffered, sometimes I wonder how I am still standing, still alive. I am 27 years old and as I read my journals I wonder whether this is actually my life I am reading about. How could I have suffered so much in such a short period of time?

Beginning with my parent's fighting which started when I was thirteen or fourteen years old and ending with the information that I just received from Willow regarding the relationship between Angel and Cordelia, information that she has known since February 2003 when they asked her to come to Los Angeles. She told me that they needed her help with a spell; what she didn't tell me was that the spell was to restore Angel's soul and the fact that Angel was in love with Cordelia.

Her words were like a knife in my heart. All this time while I have been holding out hope against hope that someday he and I would have our happy ever after, he was in LA falling in love with Cordelia. Why I am so hurt by this I can't say, after all he never promised me anything when he broke up with me in that sewer, he never gave me anything to hope for after he turned back the clock and erased our perfect day, even when he met me at the cabin after I was brought back, all he said was that he had to see for himself that I was alive. He never once looked me in the eyes or asked how I really was. He asked about everyone else, Dawn, Willow, Giles, even Xander, but he didn't really want to know how I was, couldn't see that I had not been retrieved from hell and that being back on earth was hell to me.

I was so happy to see him that it wasn't until later, after I had time to think about it, that I noticed his reserve, his reluctance to be near me, the friendly pat on the back when he hugged me, or the kiss on the forehead instead of on the lips. I did notice the fact that we had been at the cabin less than half an hour when he first said that he had to get back, then after saying it again a few minutes later he seemed actually relieved when I said that I had to get back as well.

Less than 3 hrs after I left home to meet him I was pulling into my driveway and the trip to the cabin takes 65 to 70 minutes, which means that he had spent less than an hour with me. I guess I have to be hit over the head with Olaf's troll hammer before I get the 'I don't want you any more' message that Angel had been trying to send me all along.

As I think of the many times that he hurt me I wonder why I still hold onto the fantasy hope that he will come back to me, that he will love me forever as he once promised. He has punched me in the face to protect someone else, fallen in love with someone else, had a son by someone else and still I hope. What is the matter with me? When will I ever wake up and try to move on with my life? Where he is concerned, there is nothing left for me to hold on to; yet I still hope.

What a fool I am.

Companion piece from Angel's point of view is 'I've lost Everything'