The gown seemed to gleam in the mirrors and Buffy marveled over her friend’s blushing beauty. Cordelia was genuinely
happy and Buffy was incredibly jealous of her marriage. Everything had fallen into place for the Prom Queen, and even though
she could never begrudge Cordy’s happiness, it wasn’t fair. Cordelia and David had never had to prove their love
for one another. They’d never been forbidden and they’d never had to suffer for one another.
She’d killed Angel,
and died (or almost died, been willing to die) at his hands, for him. She’d lost him and he’d lost his humanity.
They’d fought and made up and she’d raised their son, alone, when he’d wanted more than anything to be a
part of Connor’s life. And their only saving grace was that he would no longer become a monster if they made love.
And our son, Buffy reminded herself, Connor. You never even expected that
But he was still dead.
His skin was still cold, would still burn to ash with just a touch of the sun or a cross. They could still never marry, or
have a second baby. They would never have what Cordy and David could expect without question.
Still, the love Buffy and
Angel shared was stronger than any other she’d seen and she would never trade their passion for the Nabbits’ (or
the couple soon to be the Nabbits’), easy companionship. Her love for Angel was different from everything she had ever
known; it had given her the wings to soar above everything in the world. It had given her her son.
Harmony was standing next to her, both in their bridesmaids gowns as Fred pinned Cordy’s hair in place.
Buffy smiled at the blond
and nodded. “Just thinking,” she responded softly.
“He loves you
too,” Harmony assured her. “Even when he’s grumpy.”
He was about to be walking
down the aisle at her side. Granted, it wasn’t their aisle – they weren’t
even together - but it was an aisle and that was enough for him at that moment.
He still hoped for Shanshu and a very different aisle and a honeymoon in the sun, but for now, a possibility was enough.
Fred, with Wesley at her
side, and Harmony, with one of David’s friends, stepped through the doors, and it was their turn. Just before they started
to move he felt a soft flutter against his cheek, and realized she’d kissed him. They exchanged smiles, secretly thinking
to themself that this was maybe all they would have.
Cordelia watched from David’s
arms as her two friends sat to the side of the dance floor, playing happily with their miracle son, and hoped she would find
that happiness soon as well. “Connor’s going to be spoiled rotten,” David muttered in her ear, seeing who
she was watching, “Buffy, too, when they get back together.”
“She deserves it,”
Cordelia answered, turning to face her husband. Husband, wow, she thought before
returning her mind to the subject at hand. “She made him who he is. She made me who I am. As long as I’ve known
her she’s been fighting for someone else and she’s never asked for anything but him. They should have each other.
She deserves him twenty times more than I do you.”
David kissed her gently,
but soundly on the lips, and Cordelia melted into him. “Don’t sell yourself short,” he whispered into her
ear. “I happen to think you deserve more than me.”
Cordelia flashed him a
blinding grin and murmured “You bet your life I do.”
“Are you my Daddy?”
Connor asked Angel solemnly. Angel looked down at him in surprise, and the young boy stared back. “Well? Are you?”
“Uh, yes, I am,”
Angel nodded dumbly, unsure of what else he should or could say. He couldn’t explain their situation to himself, let
alone a five year old.
And of course, Buffy had
chosen that minute to go off and speak with her friends.
“Are you gonna take
me away from my Mommy?” Connor continued, oblivious to Angel’s dilemma. “’Cause I don’t wanna
Angel promised with certainty. How could he? Buffy was Connor’s mother; even if they never reunited, he would always
be in love with her and she had lost too much for him to take Connor. Not to mention the damn prophecy. “I’ll
never take you from your mother. But I would like to know you both better.”
shrugged. “I like trucks,” he offered with a smile. “And Mommy likes to cry.”
“I doubt your mother
likes to cry,” Angel managed to say; Connor looked doubtful.
“She does it on her
birthday every year,” he told his father. “And when it’s raining. Uncle Spike said it’s ‘cause
she likes to.”
Angel frowned a little,
but he didn’t let Connor see that he was worried. Instead, he continued to ask about his family’s lives. “What
else does your Mommy like?”
made a disgusted face. “We always hafta have salad. And raspberry ice cream.”
Cookie dough fudge mint chip…
“Salad is good for
you,” Angel told Connor. “You should eat all your vegetables,” he paused in thought, trying to remember
what modern medicine had to say about children. In his day, salad hadn’t even been a factor. “And drink lots of
milk,” he added, realizing that was what the posters meant. “And an apple a day…”
“You really are a
Daddy,” Connor cooed, crawling into his lap. “Are you gonna sleep on Mommy’s couch? And buy her chocolates?
And make her dinner?’ The boy was staring up at him seriously. “That’s what Shelley says her Daddy does.”
“Ah, the ex-girlfriend,”
Buffy smirked as she walked back over, Willow and Fred at her side. “We still have to talk more about that, Connor.”
Connor looked down at his hands. “Am I gonna be in trouble?”
Buffy knelt down and took
his small hands in hers. “There are some things worth fighting for,” she told him firmly, exchanging a glance
with Angel over Connor’s head before looking back to her son. “But words, even mean words, aren’t, baby.”
“How do I know what
“You will when you’re
older,” Angel told him firmly. “Right now you shouldn’t fight at all.”
mouthed as she took the seat beside him; Connor immediately shifted so that he
was on both his parents’ laps, staring adoringly up at them.
“Mommy, I like Daddy,”
Connor announced, throwing his arms around both their necks and kissing each in turn.
“You guys are so
cute,” Fred cooed. “My family’s not that cute.”
echoed. “My family.”
Connor’s voice was so much like Buffy in that moment that Angel couldn’t doubt his parentage.
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