SPOILERS: Becoming 2
CONTENT: Um...Buffy/Angel kissing...angst
SUMMARY: This is the companion piece to Heart. It is the last Buffy/Angel scene in Becoming as told from Angel's POV.
DISCLAIMER: I don't own the characters. Joss Whedon, the WB and Fox do. Good for them.
NOTES: I think that our Angel is not responsible for what the demon has done but he remembers it all as if he had done it so he does blame himself...that's my theory.
Last thing...Thank you to everyone who sent me feedback on Heart. I am answeirng it but there was so much that I am WAY behind.
"From the heart of hell, I stab at thee" Captain Ahab, Moby Dick
I didn't know how it happened. I sent her flying backwards over the stone table. I had her in the corner, unarmed. What a feeling to have the Slayer cower before me. She was completely helpless, or so I thought. And then somehow before I could even blink, my sword was stopped by her hand; and then it was flying back at me. As she beat me back, I remember thinking that I needed to find some way to take her with me. Or at the very least, buy some time so that even if she killed me, she would find herself in hell.
I wanted her dead. But I couldn't stop her. She was too quick, too strong. And suddenly I was on my knees, and her arm was drawn back prepared to strike my death blow.
And then all thought of my imminent death, or my desire for hers, were swept away under a wave of pain tingling throughout my body. It filled my body up and emptied my mind.
Confusion took over as I looked at the floor between my hands. Where was I? What was going on? I had no idea, and that scared me. But when I looked up through the tears that filled my eyes, I was filled with calm. Seeing her always filled me with a sense of peace. She was, is, the most beautiful thing I have seen or ever will see. Her name. I said it without even realizing it.
Buffy stood before me and I knew that things would be all right. Together we could get through anything. She was holding a sword. Something important must have been going on. I thought I had been knocked out in the battle. That would explain my muddled thoughts.
I asked her where we were, what was going on. But she looked at me like she had seen a ghost. Then she spoke my name, so softly. It was almost as if she couldn't believe it was me. My eyes drank her in. My anchor in a sea of confusion.
I noticed the cut on her arm, and concern replaced the confusion. I held her in my arms, assuring myself that she was real, that she was ok. It was the strangest feeling. Her body felt almost unfamiliar in my arms, as if I hadn't held her in the longest time. Then she relaxed, sighing softly into my ear. Suddenly it felt right. It felt perfect. It was her, of course it was perfect.
She shifted in my arms, and I could tell that something was wrong. I tried to remember. Something must be happening. I needed to remember; I needed to protect her. I tried to ask her again. I thought it might help to jog my memory. But she silenced me. Then she kissed me, hungrily, desperately.
I returned her kiss gladly. Maybe I had been imagining things, I thought. Being there in her arms, I felt content. My anxiety disappeared. She had her arm around me, and I held her close. She has always been my comfort.
*I love you.* She spoke those words, whispered them into my ear. My heart pounds a little harder when I think of it, even now. I love her so much. Those words mean more than anyone could imagine. To hear her say them is the most amazing gift that I could ever be given. My answer was immediate, a given. I loved her. I still love her. I will always love her. There is no doubt, there never has been. I knew that the minute I first saw her, and each second I have spent with her, or watching her, since then has deepened my love for her.
She told me to close my eyes. I didn't understand. There was so much I didn't see...I couldn't see. But she knew what I didn't. I believed that. She knew what to do. It didn't matter what she was planning. I am hers to command. I always have been. I closed my eyes.
The feel of her lips on mine, of her tears touching my face is the thing I remember more than the pain of the steel as it entered my body. Then the energy surrounded me, coursed through me. It was like being struck by lightening twenty times all at once. Pain. My body was electrified by the pain. But I've never cared about my body hurting. What truly hurt was seeing that sword sticking out of my body and knowing that she was the one to strike the blow.
I wanted to be angry. But I couldn't muster the energy. I was exhausted by sorrow. I was betrayed. I felt small and stupid. How could I have believed that she would love me? I am a monster, the most hideous of all creatures. She is the most beautiful, the most good. How could she ever love a thing of evil? I felt I should have known, but I believed her. I thought she spoke the truth when she told me she loved me. It hurt more than a million swords to stretch out my hand to her and see her back away, watching my destruction wide-eyed. I spoke her name. It was a question. Why? She didn't answer, the fear in her eyes didn't tell me what I needed to know.
I tried to remember. There had to be a reason.
Then the pain stopped, and I was surrounded by darkness. There was nothing. Nothing but the memories. Yes, my memory returned. Too late, just as my soul was returned to me too late.
I understand it all now. It hurts worse now, than it did to think I had been betrayed.
It hurts because now I am alone in the blackness with nothing but my memories. Memories of hurting people. Hurting my friends. Hurting her.
I would give my life a hundred times over to take it all back. If only I had known that the curse could be broken. Things would have been different. I would never have approached her in that dark alley, never would have given her the cross, never would have kissed her that first time. I had no right.
I know this. I feel this. I should have done the right thing and stayed in the shadows.
But I was selfish. I wanted to hear her say my name. I wanted to feel her small hand in mine. I wanted to know what it felt like to hold her close. I wanted to know what her lips tasted like. More than anything I wanted to know what it felt like to hear her say she loved me, and mean it.
I'm so sorry, Buffy.
I don't deserve you. I never have. I had no right to enter your life. No right to think that my love made me worthy. Look what's come of it. Death and destruction.
I can't even think of my crimes, the killing, the pain. I have an eternity to think on it. It is too much to bear. I ignore it, suppress it as much as I can until I can grow strong enough to face it. Oh God...Jenny...poor Giles. Hide the guilt, and the pain. Don't think.
So many I have killed. They run together in my mind. But I can't think about that now.
I hurt Buffy. I can't supress that. I don't want to. That is the worst thing of all. I love her more than anything. She was the only person that could make me happy. And I hurt her. When I close my eyes I still see the pain in her eyes, the tightness of her lips as she listened to the taunts from my mouth, as she took the blows from my fists. I see the changes in her that are my fault, my responsibility.
Guilt isn't enough. My pain is nothing.
She sent me to hell. I know now why. It was my own fault. I opened the portal; my blood had to close it. She did her duty. She is the Slayer first and foremost. I am proud of her. She is stronger than I will ever be. I can only hope that my punishment will bring her some relief. I can only hope that it will allow the others to think of me a little more kindly. I pray that she will find it in her heart to think of me with something less than hatred.
I am so sorry. Because when I think back with the knowledge that I have now...I realize even in dying, or in leaving her, I have hurt her. The way she held me so tightly, not wanting to let me go. The look in her eyes as she drove the sword home. I saw the pain in her eyes. She blames herself.
My greatest crime was making her love me. I could not help myself, could not keep myself from loving her. But if I had not been so selfish, she never would have loved me. She would have been spared the pain.
It's a testament to my selfishness that I can't let her go, even now. Behind my words, the truth is if I had it to do again I would probably do it all the same. Those moments with her... They are worth everything to me. Every second was worth a million years of solitude, a million years of pain...but only my pain. They are not worth causing her pain. I should have done more...done something. But how do you tell someone that they are everything? How do you express the fact that without them you are truly nothing? I love you isn't enough. It doesn't begin to express how much I need her, love her, want her, miss her.
I loved her with every particle of my being, and it wasn't enough. Nothing I could give her would ever be enough to express the depths of my feeling. All I had to give her was my love, my self. She deserves so much more. And the pain I caused her outweighs any happiness I might have given her. I hope I did give her a little happiness.
Ever selfish. I hope that she knows how much I love her. I hope she still loves me...even just a little. Though I cannot imagine why she would. I hope she knows that I don't blame her for doing what she had to. I hope she doesn't blame herself. I hope she knows that I deserve to be in hell...for the atrocities I have committed...and most of all for the hurt I have caused her.
I hope she knows that she could kill me over and over and I would still love her. I hope she knows that without her I am nothing.
I hope that she misses me...just a little. I miss her so much. And in this I am selfish again. It does my heart good to think that she might miss me, that she might still love me. At the same time I wish that she could forget all about me. Missing me just adds to her pain, and heaven knows she has had too much pain at my hands.
I would give anything to be with her. To hold her again. To hear her speak to me of the little things, the way her day went, the latest vampire she had killed. Just to hear her voice, look into her eyes, touch her skin. I don't deserve it. I know that. But I can't stop myself from wanting to be with her.
I can't stop my heart from leaping when I think about the fact that she did love me.
I am a liar and a hypocrite, because while I say that I would give anything to take away her pain, I wouldn't give up a single moment of the time that I spent with her. I can't let go of her. I can't let go of the memories. I'm so weak, and I need her so much. I hate myself for wanting her love when I know it hurts her. I hate myself, but I am too weak to act on that hatred. I am too weak to give her up.
Oh, Buffy, forgive me for the pain I've caused you. Forgive me for ever showing my face to you, for giving in to the love I felt. I should have known better. I should have protected you.
Instead I find myself in hell...and there can be no truer hell than this one. I am separated from you. My only one...my reason for living. I am completely alone. Alone with my thoughts, my memories. My guilt. I deserve all of it. I do, and I can almost revel in the pain because it is no more punishment that I should receive.
I would cry if I thought it would help. I would scream and rage. I would kill myself again and again if it could take back all the death and pain I have caused. I swear to you, Buffy, that my intentions were honorable. I wanted to help you, protect you. I never dreamed that this would be the result. I loved you, truly and more deeply, than I have ever loved anyone in my life. You are, were, my life.
You don't know this about me. I never told you. But I was truly nothing before I saw you. I was pathetic, hungry, dirty, weak. I was on death's doorstep, and I would have welcomed death at that point. But then I saw you. Beautiful you, as you met your first Watcher. There was something about you that mesmerized me.
And then I stood outside your window and peeked in, watching you look at yourself in the mirror. I watched your eyes as you listened to your parents fight, as you fought the knowledge of what you were. As I watched, the most remarkable thing happened. I had not cared for anything in years. But seeing you there. I cared. I wanted to take the pain away; I wanted to wipe the tears from your eyes.
I fell in love at that moment. Emotion, so sweet and alien filled me. I cared so much it brought tears to my eyes. From that moment I have tried to always be there, to protect you, to watch your back in a fight, to be shoulder to cry on. It was hard in the beginning. I know what I am, and I knew that I shouldn't get you involved with me. But I wanted to much to speak to you, to touch you.
Slowly I gave in. It was wonderful, those months we had together. Every moment we shared was precious. Every time we kissed or touched, every time I heard your voice, I was reminded of how lucky I was. Any man that has your love is the luckiest man alive. I was that man for a while and no matter what else happens, I am so grateful for that gift. Your love.
I want so much to come back to you. I want to find some way out of here. There has to be a way. I tell myself that. I don't know if it's a lie or not. And I don't know what would happen if did find a way out. Would you want me back, after all I've done to you?
Part of me hopes that you would find it in your heart to love me. The less selfish part of me knows that the best thing would be for you to move on.
I will understand if you do move on. I will be proud of your strength again. But while I know it would be best for you, it would kill me to know that you no longer love me.
I hope you know that I will always love you. That I have never blamed you for any of this. I hope you know that I will never love another the way I love you. I know I never will. I wouldn't even want to.
"Will we burn in heaven like we do down here?" Sarah McLachlan...Witness
Read the companion piece...Heart
feedback would be appreciated