after.midnight // v.naked TITLE: One Little Moment
AUTHOR: Tamara
RATING: R- just to be safe
FEEDBACK: Send it along, I could use it.
DISCLAIMER: Characters belong to Joss.
SPOILERS: Everything in S2 Angel, including "Redefinition", and a tiny mention of S1 BtVS ep "Angel"
SUMMARY: Try as she might, Darla just can't forget. Darla POV
IMPROV #7 -- silver, wander, hollow, fitting

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There are a thousand memories of Angelus floating around in my mind, a century and a half worth of death and destruction, blood and pain. I can remember everytime he ever touched me, his strong, smooth hands sliding over my skin with gentle tenderness only to grip me so tightly I'd be wearing the imprint of his fingers on my skin for days afterward. I don't think there's any part of my body that Angelus hasn't marked, no inch of my self that Angelus hasn't claimed as his own. Even when I happily sacrificed his existance to insure my own survival, I always knew who I belonged to, always knew that no matter what, he'd come back to me and we'd always be together.

And then he got his soul back, and I pushed him away. And while I carried on as if the lack of him didn't affect me, eternity just wasn't the same without him by my side.

I've met up with Angel a dozen different times since he went away almost a century ago, and he was always the same. Living amongst the humans, trying to pretend he wasn't what he was, one of the most vicious, most celebrated vampires the world had ever seen. Such a wonderful legacy for one so very young and he was mine, my creation, my childe, my lover, my mate. And every time we met, he chose his miserable existance, wandering the streets without a home, feeding off rats in darkened alleys, barely surviving because of the guilt that plagued him, over me and what we could have had if we were together again. In the end, he chose his Slayer and sentenced me to death.

Maybe it's fitting that now, after I spent a century wanting him, needing him, his mind is full of nothing but me. Maybe I should be happy that he's sacrificed everything, his duty, his friends, maybe even his soul, all for me. I'm the first thing he thinks about when his day begins, the last face he sees when he closes his eyes and sleeps take him. I haunt him, awake and sleeping, and his dreams remind him of the times we shared. I should be happy, using his distraction to ultimately destroy him, to end things between us once and for all.

I'm not.

My memories of Angel are few and far between, and none of them are particularly enjoyable. Whether you're sixteen or pushing five hundred, rejection always hurts, your feelings or your pride. Even when you pretend it doesn't. But no matter how hard I try, I just can't forget that, for a time, while I was human once again, we were together. And it's that little moment in time that I can't make myself forget. It is the memory of those nights that haunt me.

I can still remember his touch on my skin, so different from the way Angelus used to touch me long ago. The chill of his fingertips on my skin made me shiver, and the feel of his lips against mine still had the ability to make me smile. He tasted different, like sadness and pain, all for me, and I remember wanting to make it all go away so that he could understand what I felt every time his eyes met mine. When I close my eyes, I can still feel his arms around me, holding me while I cried, whispering words of comfort and love in my ear, promising that he'd never leave me, that I'd never be lonely again. Even now, there are times when I wish I was still back there in the seedy little motel room, and Angel was holding me in his arms, making all the pain go away.

I hate that I can't forget the peace I felt then, how his caring washed over me like a tide, banishing the hollow feeling in my soul. I hate how much I wanted to be human, if only for a moment, if it meant that he would be with me. I hate that, of all the memories I have of him, those last few moments, before Drusilla came and gave me the eternal life I no longer wanted, are the ones I cherish most. I hate that it is those memories that have me looking over my shoulder, waiting for him to emerge from the shadows and hold me in his arms again. I hate that Angel, with his tortured soul and his sacred duty and his single-minded determination to save my soul, is the one I miss.

I wonder if I'll ever find the strength to let him go.