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Doyle kissed me passionately, and while I was thinking dreamily, "Wow…", he said, "Too bad we'll never know" - his face transformed, revealing his half-demon heritage - "if this is a face you could learn to love."
By the time I realised what was happening, it was too late, and I watched with Angel as Doyle leapt onto the machine that would destroy any creature with human blood in it, and disabled it. But by the time he had completed his task, it was too late for him.
I woke up feeling on the verge of tears, as usual. I say 'as usual' because I dreamt about this almost every night, and I had since Doyle had been killed. One year ago, tomorrow - well, today, seeing as it was four in the morning.
I still missed him so much, that I wondered was it normal. Oh sure, you couldn't tell on the outside. Most of the time I acted as if everything was OK. I made friends, even went out with a few guys. But inside - well, that was a different story.
And the worst part was, that no one understood how I felt. Angel had, at first. He'd gone through a hard enough time, and not just with all that remorse after being given a soul after a century of vicious killings. He still loved Buffy, but he couldn't be around her - and let's not forget that day when he became mortal and they spent an amazing day together, which was swallowed up as if it never happened, with only Angel carrying the memories of that day. If they'd continued on like that, Buffy would have been killed, so Angel offered up his life in place of hers. So basically he was having a really tough time, and it was only a few days later that Doyle was killed.
We'd helped each other out at first, but as time went by we'd stopped talking. And I missed it.
I wondered if he'd even remember what today was. Whether he would say anything, or just brood in that intense way he had.
I gradually fell asleep, Doyle's face remaining in my mind.
When I woke up it was hot and sunny, a typical day in LA, or anywhere in California for that matter.
I got dressed, said goodbye to Dennis, my ghostly flat-mate (yes, that was how weird my life had become. I'd grown up on a Hellmouth, now I worked for a vampire with a soul and lived with a phantom) and headed off to work.
It was just Angel in the office.
"Hi," I said.
"Hi," he greeted me. "Are you okay?"
The look in his eyes told me he'd remembered.
"Yeah, I guess," I tried to shrug it off. Was I okay? No way. Absolutely not.
"Really?" Angel asked. Damn it, he knew me too well.
I shook my head sadly. I could feel the tears welling up in my eyes.
He held me. At first I tried to hold back the tears, but then I realised I'd been doing that for far too long. I sobbed my heart out.
We went and sat down, carefully avoiding direct sunlight of course. (Amazing how you start to consider these things when you spend so much time with a vampire.)
"Angel, I miss him so much," I said quietly. "I should have gotten over this by now, I know I should. But I still dream about him, every night."
"I miss him too," he admitted. "And I still feel guilty."
"Because you feel you should have gotten there first - that if you'd jumped before he punched you, he'd still be here today?" I asked.
He nodded. "Yeah."
"But then you wouldn't be," I pointed out. "And think of all the people you've helped, all the people you've saved this last year." I looked at him. "That doesn't help much, does it?"
"I didn't think so," I sighed. "Well, I'd miss you. If that counts for anything."
"Yeah, it does," he said. "A tiny little bit," he added.
I made a face at him. "Gee, thanks," I said, but I knew he was only kidding.
You know, it was weird. We weren't even talking about Doyle anymore, but it made me feel so much better just talking to Angel.
We sat in silence for a while and then I asked, "Do you miss Buffy?"
For a moment I wasn't sure whether he was going to answer or not - I mean, he wasn't exactly the greatest at sharing his feelings.
"Yeah," he said. "I mean - she's something special, you know? I love her."
Unconditional love. Wow. She'd thrown the guy into hell and he still loved her. Now that's what I call amazing.
"You haven't heard from Xander or Willow or anyone?" he wanted to know. Translation: Any new info on Buffy?
"No," I had to admit. "Sorry."
More silence, but it was comfortable.
Then Angel said, "Cordelia?"
"Mmm?" I said, turning towards him.
And then, I don't know exactly how it happened, but we were kissing. Passionately. Madly.
It was amazing.
And then things just went from there. At that moment, I wanted him so much that it hurt. I was totally overcome with physical desire.
But we forced ourselves to stop. You know, Angel's 'true-moment-of-happiness-and-he-turns-evil' thing.
I acted like I understood, of course. And logically, I did.
But damn! I wanted him!
I set about putting my clothes back on. So did Angel.
God, what a body, I thought admiringly.
But no! I had to get over this.
It was only as we got up and prepared to discuss exactly what just had happened between us, that we realised something.
Where was Wesley?
It was then that the Powers That Be chose to give me another one of those wonderful visions, accompanied by their trademark splitting headache.
Thank you very much, Doyle.
Some guys give their girlfriends jewellery or flowers or chocolates. I got visions.
To get back to the point, the vision was of a demon. After a year of having them, I'd learnt to pick up as much information as possible from these visions. I noted the location and was pretty sure I knew where it was.
Angel and I set off to find Wesley.
Wesley had been captured by a demon. God (or should that be Satan?) knows why. It wasn't like he had much to offer.
It was pretty simple and routine. Angel killed the demon, I untied Wesley, and off we went. Just another day in my life.
"Cordelia, we need to talk," Angel said later that day. Wesley had just gone home.
"Really, you think?" I said. I have a habit of turning to sarcasm occasionally.
"Earlier on, what happened -"
"It was a mistake," I finished for him.
He nodded, looking relieved.
"We just got caught up in the moment, I know, I know," I said.
"Maybe we should just forget it ever happened," he suggested.
"That'd probably be a good idea," I agreed.
"Yeah. Best friends."
I went home. What a day! I had fallen for and gotten over Angel in the space of a few hours, and come so close to actually sleeping with him.
I still, however, maintain my opinion about that body.
After watching TV for a while, I went to bed.
And slept peacefully.