Disclaimer: I don't own Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Angel or any of the characters mentioned in either cannon.

Author's Note: This story is AU. Angel is still a vampire, but Buffy is only a potential slayer. For now! It's short because I'm a little nervous about it. Let me know what you think. Special thanks to nutz4lutz for being my Beta for this fan-fiction. (: Please review. It encourages me to write more.

Chapter One

Huddled in the alley, Buffy pulled her knees up to her chest so she could hide her face in her knees. Her teeth chattered so loudly they drowned out the sound of the rain falling on the trash can nearby. The rain was cold, the alley dark, but Buffy was completely against going back home. She would never go back. Buffy was in the same position when he found her.

The footsteps were silent, his breathing nonexistent, but Buffy did not notice either because she never saw or heard him until he was crouching down in front of her. The hand on her arm was cold, far colder than the rain, but she assumed that the ran had chilled his skin just as it had her own.

"Are you okay?"

The silence would have worried him if it had not been for the sound of her heart beat reaching his ears.

Pulling her face out of her knees, she finally looked up at the man who stopped to check on her. His voice had sounded like velvet and she could not help but to seek out the owner of the voice. The image that greeted her surprised her.

The soft gasp and the faint smell of her arousal caused him to chuckle. He felt drawn to her, those sad emerald eyes pulled at his heart-strings.

"I'm Angel." He would do anything to convince her to get out of the rain and out of the alley. Extending his hand he waited for her to take it, and the moment she did he swiftly moved them to their feet. Even when they were standing, Angel kept a hold on Buffy's hand.

Smiling up at him tiredly, she pushed her matted and soaked locks out of her face with her free hand. "Buffy." It was whispered meekly. Even in the dark, he could see the faint blush rise in her cheeks.

His eyes scanned over her features, finding her emerald eyes to be breath-taking, her button nose to be cute, and her pouty lips to be seductive in their own way. Within seconds he noticed the bruises peaking out from beneath the blush.

Growling, Angel released her hand and tipped her chin up so he could get a proper look at her face. What he saw pained him, angered him. Buffy's face was badly bruised and he noticed the cut on her lip and the black eye that both were healing slowly. Someone had beaten her, and it didn't look like it had been the first time. The raw pain in her eyes gave that much away. Buffy had been the victim for quite sometime.

"Who did this to you?" Angel automatically assumed some thugs had beaten her and that was how she ended up in the alley, but he couldn't know for sure without confirmation.

Buffy looked away, her eyes welling up with tears. She pulled out of Angel's hold. "I need to go." Buffy just didn't know where to go. "I can't do this."

Her whispers pulled at his heart again and he reached out to stop her. "Buffy wait … let's get you cleaned up and I'll take you wherever you need to go."

Looking up into soulful brown eyes, Buffy knew for some reason she could trust Angel. "Okay." Nodding her head, she wrapped her arms around herself. She knew she'd end up back on the street, but at least she could find some relief from the harsh reality and conditions of the streets.

Receiving the answer the he both wanted and preferred, Angel took a hold of her hand and started leading her back to the car. What he didn't expect, but should have, was for her to change her mind. It took some convincing, a lot of convincing, but he had managed to get her to head to the Hyperion Hotel with him.

Luckily for them both, everyone was already asleep so neither would face any questions. It was not the first time he brought back someone to tend to, but he didn't want to overwhelm Buffy. She needed rooms of the Hyperion Hotel had been fixed up years priors to house runaways, victims of demon attacks, coworkers, and himself. Angel had every intention of allowing Buffy to stay in one of the rooms, but the way she clung to his arms as they climbed the stairs had him going against his own plan. Remaining quietly he led her to his room where he opened the door and allowed her to walk inside.

Buffy's eyes strained to see the contents of the room, but didn't have to long because soon the room flooded with light when Angel flicked on the light switch. He didn't need it to see, but he knew Buffy did. Angel stepped inside, keeping his distance so she wouldn't feel uncomfortable.

The young girl before him scanned the room eagerly, her eyes taking in everything. It was beautiful, but dark. Rich. Elegant. Her hand smoothed over the surface of things before she turned to face him. "Is this your room?"

Staring at her as she stood in the middle of his room, Angel really looked at her in the light. She could not be no older than fifteen, sixteen maybe. The attraction he had to her worried him. She was far too young and clearly had been through so much. Pushing his attraction to her down deep, Angel looked away from her.

Turning his back on her, Angel walked to his closet and pulled out one of his shirts and then a pair of his boxers. It's all he had for the night. He avoided her gaze as he handed them to her. "Everything you need is in the bathroom." Without another word he left his bedroom, leaving Buffy staring after him.

Looking down at the clothes, she swallowed. What had she done wrong? Eyes tearing again, she entered the bathroom, locking the door behind her.

The two shared the same thought as Buffy pushed away from the bathroom door to strip out of her clothes and Angel took the stairs to put physical distance between them both.

It was going to be a very long night. Both doubted they actually make it through it.