Chapter 16 Two

A/N: Pallet cleansing chapter, enjoy.

The month of February went without innocents of Angelus. New York searched for him and Winifred but nothing. Buffy was under constant watched by the Federal Marshals and with Angel it just tied in the gaps. March was here and it was time to prep for Connor's second birthday party.

Last year was just a party and Connor wasn't sure what was going on. He ate lots of cake though. This time Connor could enjoy it more. So Buffy decided to have a kids' party and would invite the kids from the daycare center. This was needed to help get her mind off of Angelus and the people always checking in on her day and night.

But this weekend Buffy was dreading it. It was a Friday afternoon like any other Friday afternoon but Angel was at work. He doesn't work Fridays and Saturdays and Sundays were usually half days if that. He's been working overtime this week. For Buffy by the weekend she was ready to have Angel to help with everything. But she might not get it; Angel might have to go in the office again. Buffy sat outside in the backyard with Connor. Today though Connor was full of energy. He was up at the crack of dawn and during the day at the daycare Connor was like the energizer bunny, he just kept going and going.

Connor was running through the sprinklers outside and Buffy hoped that could help him sleep before dinner. Buffy sat outside with Cordelia and they talked. Cordelia enjoyed watching Connor and she fantasied about her child doing something similar.

"Ok, Connor," Buffy stood up and Connor looked to his mom. "Let's try to nap for an hour ok?" She asked Connor came running in and Cordelia got up smiling watching him. Buffy grabbed a towel and dried him off and he ran into the house. He was screaming and laughing and Buffy was just tired. A week with five year olds all day wears you out and then to have one almost two year old it added. She always looked forwards to the weekends. Connor went upstairs as Buffy followed him and put him down for a nap or at least quiet time. After he went into bed Buffy left and had to get dinner ready. This weekend well tomorrow if Angel didn't go to work then the three would go to Lake Arrow Head and relax.

So in preparation Buffy was going to make food for the day. And if they didn't go then she had food they could eat it over the weekend. Cordelia stayed to help and keep her company.

"Angel doesn't work many Fridays or all day on Saturdays either. So hopefully they will give him a day off." Buffy said meaning she missed Angel. Cordelia smiled knowing they were getting closer.

"So if Angel does work then what?" Cordelia asked as she started to help Buffy.

"Take Connor to the park for an all day picnic and ice cream for dinner." Buffy answered and Cordelia smiled. "Going to try and entertain Connor so the day doesn't seem so long without his buddy."

"Connor calls Angel his buddy?" Cordelia asked with a smile.

"Yes he does." Buffy answered also with a smile.

"You two are so right for each other." Cordelia commented and Buffy kept her smile. Buffy finished mixing the brownie mix and poured it into the pan. She then started to lick the bowl. And Cordelia watched her.

"What?" Buffy asked. "You always lick the bowl it says so in the direction." Buffy defended herself as Cordelia went onto another project.

"Mashing pretzels," Cordelia announced. She was helping Buffy get food ready for Lake Arrow Head and cook dinner at the same time. Doyle was coming over and it was going to be a family dinner. Lately Friday nights Cordelia and Doyle would come over for dinner, which was nice. Later on Willow was going to stop by and help Buffy plan out Connor's birthday party.

About half way getting her list of to do Buffy heard Connor coming down the stairs. He probably got half an hour to forty-five minutes of sleep but it was better than nothing. But once he was downstairs he started his usually daily ritual and went crazy. For one child it was loud and pretty soon Cordelia will add to the noise.

"Mommy, mommy," Connor came up to Buffy as she was cooking and Cordelia was cutting the brownies. "I, I want emon aide." Connor said.

"Please?" Buffy asked.

"Yeah," Connor responded but that wasn't the correct response and Buffy waited.

"Please?" She asked again.

"Pease." Connor said and Buffy nodded and went to get his cup and gave him some lemonade and gave it to him. "Tank you." He said and started to run around and the door knocked. "Someone here! Someone here!" Who needs an alarm system when Buffy had Connor; he was louder than an alarm. Buffy went to answer it and it was Doyle.

"Someone's here let me sing you the song of my people." Doyle joked to Buffy and she smiled as she walked away.

"Doyle!" Connor screamed and ran to him and Doyle picked him up. He felt that this was training for the things to come with him and Cordelia. And if things kept the way they were going maybe Connor would become Doyle's nephew someday. Doyle could see Buffy was tired so he took Connor to the living room to help him burn some energy. Buffy was now counting down to when Angel walks through the door. She missed all the time and when he came home it was the best. She knew in her heart that the life she has now would not be what she would have had back in New York with Angelus. She couldn't explain it but she would not be having as much fun.

"Angel!" Connor yelled seeing Angel's SUV pulling up in the driveway. "Angel! Angel!" Connor was always excited to see Angel. Angel could never get tired of it. Connor greeted him like he's been gone for three years and he loved it. Angel came in and within moments Connor was at his feet and held his leg. Angel leaned over and picked him up and walked to the kitchen starving.

"So?" Buffy asked and the look on his face wasn't a pleased look.

"Lake Arrow Head trip off, work on." Angel answered and Buffy shrugged.

"Well, at least you'll be home Sunday right?" Buffy asked trying to see the bright side. She hasn't seen Angel all week just in the mornings before school and after when he gets home and three times this week he came home after Connor was put to bed. She was looking forward to having him all weekend but not this time. Then Cordelia leaned in to Buffy as the brothers talked.

"Don't worry, abstinence makes the heart grow fonder." Cordelia whispered and Buffy nudged her with a smile knowing what Cordelia meant. "Alright boys time to eat."

"Yes starving." Doyle commented as they all went to sit.

After dinner everyone was out in the backyard as Willow came over. Buffy, Cordelia and Willow were planning Connor's party while Angel and Doyle tossed a football around and Connor watched and then wanted to try and catch.

"Connor, go long." Angel said and Connor ran and Angel threw the ball. Connor didn't catch it as it bounced on the ground but he bent down picked it up and Doyle ran after him. Connor laughed and ran away. "Run Connor run." Angel said smiling and Connor with the ball. Buffy couldn't help but watch them while Cordelia and Willow talked. Just watching Angel and Connor it completed everything. Angelus was out there wanting to find Connor but as the months went on and seeing Angel and Connor together she saw more than just buddies. Could Angel really be Connor's father?

Their friends left and Angel was upstairs giving Connor a bath well more like making a mess. Connor started to splash and Angel encouraged it and when Buffy came in to hand Angel clothes it looked like a flood had occurred.

"I thought Connor was getting the bath?" Buffy asked and Angel smiled as Connor was in his monkey towel. After Connor was dressed all three were in Angel and Buffy's room well Buffy was in the shower as Angel and Connor watched TV. Buffy came out toweling her hair and looked to see what the boys were watching.

"What's this?" Buffy asked and Angel looked up and Connor was still watching. Buffy recognized the movie but couldn't put a name to it.

"The Dark Crystal." Angel answered and then Buffy gave Angel a small disapproving look. "It's…puppets…Oh come on its Frank Oz the guy who plays Yoda and Jim Hensen, Kermit the Frog." Angel explained and Buffy smiled a little. "It's PG, nothing bad besides he seems to like it." Angel looked down as Connor was in his lap looking intrigued by the movie as it was all puppets. "You've seen it?"

"Gelfling, yes hmm." Buffy said and Angel smiled meaning yes she's seen it. "Dad loved this movie." She answered as she crawled into bed with her boys.

"Mommy look, look," Connor pointed. "That bird him ugly." Angel smiled at the comment and Buffy rested her head on Angel's shoulder getting comfortable.

Morning came and Angel was helping Buffy packed for her and Connor's all day picnic and it sucked he wanted to go too. At least they had a little time in the morning before he was off.

"Angel, Angel," Connor came into the kitchen and Angel looked to him. "I, I get ice cream." He said.

"Aren't you lucky." Angel commented and Connor nodded.

"For dinna," Connor added and then he walked up Angel and hugged his leg. "Why, why you no go?" Connor asked. Connor knew the routine of the day and when Angel has his slacks on with a nice shirt and a tie it meant work. Connor doesn't have a sense of time but he had an idea when Angel was supposed to work and not and lately Angel's been working too much for the little boy.

"Have to work buddy," Angel answered and Connor nodded.

"Why?" Connor asked and Angel smiled a little.

"It's what I do." Angel answered.

"I go too?" Connor asked and Angel thought about it. That would be fun to have Connor with him at work. It would make the day better. Then Buffy came downstairs and Connor smiled at her as he sat at Angel's feet like he always does. Buffy looked to Angel and he knew she wanted him to just stay home. But the office has been so short staffed this week and they needed him. At least he'll get a nice paycheck and then to make up for lost time he'll spoil Buffy and Connor somehow.

After breakfast Angel and Buffy were going to part ways for the day and Connor was put in Buffy's car as Angel was packing up his SUV and the little boy didn't like it. Buffy strapped Connor in and saw Angel out the window shutting the SUV door and he started to tear up.

"I want Angel," Connor started to cry. "I want Angel."

"I know I want Angel too." Buffy agreed with Connor as he did small wining. "But he needs to go to work."

"I want Angel," Connor said and Buffy looked up.

"Angel, Connor wants you." Buffy said and Angel came over and reached in the car and hugged Connor. "I want a hug too." Buffy stated and once Connor was done hugging Angel, Angel hugged Buffy.

"I'll see you two tonight." Angel said and Buffy nodded. "Love you." He kissed Buffy and she smiled and kissed him back.

"Love you too." Buffy responded and Angel waved at Connor.

"Be good." He told Connor and the little boy waved and nodded.

Angel was work thinking about Buffy and Connor while they were enjoying a warm sunny day at the park. Cordelia and Willow joined Buffy along with Doyle and Xander. Doyle and Xander were with Connor out on the playground while the girls hung back and talked mostly finalizing the party details. The party would be here so the kids could play all day until they had no energy left. But as the planning went on Buffy drifted off thinking about Angelus and what he was doing. There was no news of him and that could be good or bad. Angel kept in touch with Rick and so far it was the same thing, nothing. Angel has told Buffy several times he doesn't like waiting for Angelus to make the first move but they might have too.

"Buffy?" Willow asked and Buffy came out of her thoughts and looked to Willow. "You ok? You seem distracted lately." Willow commented and Buffy looked around and found Connor was safe with Doyle and Xander as they were playing on the monkey bars. Well, Doyle and Xander were on the monkey bars while Connor smiled and watched.

"Yeah, yeah I'm good." Buffy answered but Cordelia and Willow knew something was up.

"What's bothering you?" Cordelia asked and Buffy shrugged.

"Nothing, a little tired but I'm ok. So anyways the cake," Buffy brushed it off and Cordelia and Willow glanced at each other knowing something wasn't right but they had to let it go. If she wanted to talk about it then she will. Buffy wanted to tell them about Angelus but she was afraid it would do more harm than good right now.

Connor's birthday fell on a Saturday this year which was great for Buffy and Angel and everyone. Connor woke up on his birthday and ran out of his room and knew it was his party day. Buffy has told him all week and now he was two years old. Buffy was asleep when she felt someone tapping her. She opened her eyes and it was Connor and she smiled.

"I two." He said and she smiled but also wanted to cry. He was two and time was moving too fast. She smiled and sat up as he tried to crawl into bed and she helped him.

"Happy birthday," She said and he smiled and hugged her. He was two and really in two years, the two years that have gone by have been a rollercoaster. So much has happened to them and one day he'll understand. But another year had gone by meant another year that her life in New York was becoming more of a memory to her. Buffy then looked to Connor and laughed a little at his bed hair and she tried to fix it a little. Connor was the only good thing Angelus did and the only good thing that came from their relationship.

Buffy and Connor headed downstairs. Connor got to the foot of the steps and laid down on his stomach and let himself slide down the stairs and Buffy smiled. Angel heard the laughing and smiled to himself. Once downstairs Connor ran to Angel telling him that he was two. Angel was making breakfast for the birthday boy. Today was going to be a long day but fun. Buffy started to pack for the all day park party. Connor ate all his pancakes and more. Angel had no idea where Connor put all the food he ate. After breakfast Connor was running around while Angel and Buffy got everything ready.

Connor was half wrestling with Angel as he was going upstairs to dress Connor. Angel really liked this age as Connor could play and be tossed around. They both had wrestling matches on a daily bases. Connor would run into him and laugh and run away and then come back. Angel started upstairs with Connor following him. Angel then stopped and turned facing down the stairs.

"Buffy?" Angel called as Connor finished climbing the stairs and ran to his room as Buffy came over to the foot of the stairs looking up. "What is he wearing today?"

"Uh, comfortable clothes," Buffy answered and Angel nodded. "Shorts with a polo and bring a jacket just in case."

"A Polo?" Angel asked.

"Yeah, why?" Buffy asked back.

"He's going to be playing the dirt." Angel answered and then Connor could be seen running up and down the hall not screaming but being loud.

"But he looks so cute in Polos." Buffy defended. "With nice kakas," Buffy had it in her head how Connor was going to look.

"Babe, he's going to be out in the sun, in the dirt and sand; shorts, t-shirt and play shoes." Angel explained and Buffy gave that sigh. "Here, take this," Angel picked up something and tossed it down to her and she caught.

"Angel, that's nasty," Buffy told him as she held a small garbage bag of Connor's diapers and Angel laughed as she rolled her eyes and walked away. Next week though the diaper days were going to end, Buffy had plans to potty train Connor. He has given up bottles and drinks from a sippy cup now and one in a while wants a big boy up. His crib was gone and this week his new bed was in, he was getting big. Angel walked into Connor's room and the little boy followed him in and Angel picked him up and placed him on the changing table and changed him. After that Angel took his pajamas off and put his day clothes on.

Buffy came upstairs as Angel was combing out Connor's hair because it was a little unruly this morning. As Angel did that Buffy watched Connor as he was making noises and twisting his hands around and Angel smiled and looked to Buffy.

"He's off in his own world." Buffy said and Angel smiled and then Connor looked up at Angel smiling and gave a little laugh. Connor was something else and Buffy couldn't believe someone like Angelus could make something like Connor that was a total one eighty from his father.

Angel then went to change into his clothes too and made sure he was comfortable. Buffy came in to change and Angel smiled at her as he left. He may only be in jeans and t-shirt but he was wearing his cologne and Buffy smiled. He looked so relaxed and that made her giddy. Once she was dressed it was time to get going. Connor was out in the front yard with Angel and somehow Buffy was going to pack Connor's gift into the back of the SUV. She and Angel got him a car that was big enough for him to sit in and drive. And somehow last night they wrapped it up in the big box.

To make sure Connor couldn't see it Angel had Buffy occupy him as he stuffed in the back and with the cooler and other things hid it. Connor was still a little young to really get it but it was still fun to make it a secret. Angel got it in and then Connor came running over knowing he was going for a car ride. Angel picked him up and put him in his car seat.

"Hands up," Angel said and Connor put his hands up as Angel buckled him in. "Ready?"

"Yeah!" Connor said and Angel smiled as Angel got out and shut the door and got back in on the driver's side and Buffy got in the passenger's side and looked behind her seeing Connor.

"Ready for your party?" Buffy asked and he nodded and she smiled. "How old are you?"

"I two." Connor answered.

"Show me the number two," Buffy asked and Connor held up his hand and held up two fingers and Buffy smiled. "Yup that's how old you are."

The park was infested with little kids playing. To them it was just a day at the park with cake and ice cream to come soon. Connor was playing with all the kids as the parents conversed among each other. Angel sat at a table talking to Spike as they ate some food. Spike got up to grab more chips and Connor came over to Angel. Angel reached out and picked him up and he sat there for a moment. Buffy wasn't far away talking and out of the corner of her eye saw Angel and Connor together. Connor was talking to Angel briefly before going back to playing with the others.

"Who did you invite?" Angel asked Connor and he looked up and handed him a chip and Connor ate it quickly.

"Julie." Connor replied and Angel nodded and then looked to him with a curious look.

"Wait you invited a girl?" Angel asked and he nodded. Angel then gave a bit of a concerned look to the boy. "You're too young to have a girlfriend."

"She's, she not girlfriend." Connor insisted. "She friend." He made it clear and not far away Buffy was in earshot and smiled and then watched them. "She buddy." Connor climbed into Angel's lap explaining himself and Angel smiled a little.

"Oh ok well you don't hug her do you?" Angel asked and the little boy shook his head.

"No," Connor said and Angel smiled. "I don't, don't hug girls." He said and Angel nodded.

"What about mommy you hug mommy right?" Angel asked.

"She not girl." Connor stated with a smile. "She mommy." Connor stated like 'don't you know anything' look and Angel nodded understanding. "I, I no hug girls. Or, or friends. I no hug no kiss 'em." Connor said and Angel smiled a little he was something else. "I only hug and kiss my parents." Connor insisted but Angel tried to think real fast did he just say parents? Not parent but parents. Buffy heard it too and stood still. Connor got closer to Angel and then hugged him. "I love mommy. And love you." Angel's heart sank; Connor just said he loved him. Buffy watched as Connor ran off to play some more and smiled.

Angel was about to go back to eating when he looked up and saw a man across the way standing on the other side of the street. He ignored it but made sure to remember what the man looked like. Angel got up and saw Connor playing and he didn't break eye contact until he found Buffy. Angel looked up to see the man again but he was gone. Something wasn't right but then he felt Buffy wrap her arms around his waist. She then felt him pull her closer and knew either he was just wanting to hold her or something was up.

Angel and Buffy watched Connor sleep as he was out completely out from the events of today. He had no nap, lots of food and cake and now he was done.

"Two," Buffy said softly and Angel nodded. It was surreal that he was two now. They quietly left the room and went to theirs for the night. They both wanted to talk about something but neither one realized it was the same thing.

"Connor," They said at the same time and smiled.

"You first," Angel said to Buffy.

"I heard what he said to you today." Buffy began but where could she start? "Connor," She paused trying to gather all her thoughts. "You're the closes thing he has to a father." Angel looked to her. "If I have my way he'll never know his real father. Angelus isn't in his life I just knew if I stayed Connor's life would be nothing like this. Connor wouldn't be happy because of the life we would have." Angel sat there listening. "You love him and I see it and he loves you right back. And today just proved that anyone can be a father but it takes a real man to be dad." Angel got up from the bed and walked over to her and embraced her. "Connor's yours, it feels right and it feels like he belongs to you." They pulled away and Angel looked down to her.

"What are you trying to say?" Angel asked to make sure he understood everything. Buffy then looked up to him.

"He's yours." She answered meaning she wanted Angel to be Connor's father. By blood no but by choice. Angel smiled a little and leaned in for a kiss meaning yes, yes he will do it. Buffy wrapped her arms around his neck as he pulled her closer. After a short but deep kiss they pulled away mostly to breathe a little. Angel rested his forehead to hers and ran his fingers through her hair. He leaned in for another kiss and then looked to her. She saw something in his eyes and he pulled away. "What?" Buffy asked.

He smiled and it meant nothing just happy type of smile and they kissed again this time not pulling away and getting comfortable on the bed. It was a good day Angel thought to himself as he kissed except the one man he saw. He pushed that out of his mind as he removed Buffy's shirt and tossed it away, she won't be needing it anymore. Buffy leaned in for another passionate kiss and Angel rolled on top of her and took a moment just to gaze at her and smiled again. He had everything now. Buffy took his shirt off and he kissed up and down her neck and unclasped her bra getting rid of it.

Buffy reached down to get Angel's pants off wanting him. Angel kept kissing her as she managed to get his pants down a little. At the same time Angel worked to get her pants off too. Finally they were free of their clothes and once Angel advanced in Buffy responded with a bite to his shoulder which only heated things up. It did hit him after finding out about Angelus that he was having sex and sleeping with a mob bosses ex-wife that he still loved, a sick and an obsessed loved though. It was somewhat a slap to Angelus' face and saying that he could give Buffy what he could only dream of giving. It just wasn't about the sex but love, a home and a family.

Angel rocked and gazed down at Buffy as she looked into his eyes that smoldered with love and lust. Coming to Sunnydale was the best choice, she was happy here despite her ex-husband escaping. Angel could protect her and she knew it. Connor was in love with Angel which made things ten times better. Every time she and Angel made love which was quite often she could feel it and see it, a completely new life with him, marriage, children all of it.

Angel could see himself with Buffy. He's dated in the past but not once could he honestly and truly say he could see himself with those women. It never lasted but with Buffy he could see it all, they could have it all. For once in his life Angel could say he had everything his heart desired, it was right there in front of him and just down the hall sleeping peacefully. He had everything and nothing and no one would take it from him.

Just a sweet chapter to make everyone happy. Connor's two and now we see the beginnings of a father son relationship as Connor is seeing Angel as a father not just a friend. And things are very steamy between Angel and Buffy.

So more will come as Angelus is on the hunt. Also more on this chapter in the forum TheBuffyAngelWhedonVerse if you're interested with little teaser to another chapter, only if you're interested.

More soon thanks for reading, comments and reviews are welcomed.