Secret Slasha — The Buffy the Vampire Slayer & Angel Slash Fanfiction Secret Santa Project
Secret Slasha — The Buffy the Vampire Slayer & Angel Slash Fanfiction Secret Santa Project

Sign of the Apocalypse
By Julia
For Croupier

There was no doubt about it: Cordelia Chase was having a very bad year. In fact, it surpassed 'very bad', flew all the way past 'terrible' and went all the way to 'apocalyptic', and that was without counting whatever actual end-of-the-world stuff happened to be going on at the time. Not only had she suffered the indignity of falling for a member of the Scooby Gang, but she'd also suffered the double indignity of having him cheat on her with another Scooby, of all people. Life didn't get much worse than that, or so she had thought before she found herself falling for the second Scooby herself.

Cordelia's life was truly tragic in a way she could barely even comprehend.

But there was one upside to having lost all sense of taste and decency, and that was that it really put the whole apocalypse thing into perspective. After all, it's hard to feel bad about the end of the world when you've got your tongue down Willow Rosenberg's throat and you're actually enjoying it -- and lately, that was a position that Cordelia had found herself in with worrying regularity.

Imminent death is definitely preferable to that particular flavour of trauma, Cordelia thought, and just as she was pondering that she was snapped out of her reverie by a soft voice.

"What's up?"

"Huh, what?" She spied Willow sitting opposite her, her eyes all adorably -- no, horribly -- squinty against the sun. "Oh, you're still here. What do you want?"

"You were getting all thinky. I was concerned. Thinky Cordelia is even more scary than regular Cordelia."

"The only thing scary around here is your outfit."

A corner of Willow's mouth quirked into a smile. "Also the Mayor's upcoming ascension."

"Shut up, Rosenberg. I don't have time for this." And she gathered up her things and began to stalk away.

"Oh, look at you, all bad-ass with your last-naming and your storming off," Willow shot back before Cordelia was far enough away to pretend she couldn't hear. "Don't you want to go do some, er, research?"

Cordelia turned on her heel, glancing around to check that nobody had noticed that she was actually talking to Willow. The lack of a public uproar alerted her to the fact that apparently no one had.

"I hate you," she said, and then she brightened. "Sure."

With Willow, it was hard to know when 'research' meant 'making out in the depths of the library' and when it meant 'actual research' but Willow had a sense of urgency about her which suggested that this time, it meant the good thing.

And that was why Cordelia followed her. It was also why Cordelia was convinced that she was actually, clinically insane, because what kind of remotely normal person would voluntarily chase after the queen of all nerds into a secluded space in order to make out with her?

But the voice in her head, the one that kept telling her she was crazy, only spoke softly, and the closer she was to Willow, the easier it was to ignore it. She followed Willow into the library, always a few paces behind to save face even if no one blinked an eye at her anymore. They slipped through the library doors, Willow stuttering excuses to Giles about research -- the school kind, not the demon kind, because otherwise he'd want to get involved and oh, that was a mental picture Cordelia didn't need -- and they hurried up the stairs to get lost amongst the stacks.

The Geography section was abandoned, as always; the library was nearly always empty, but the Geography section was one place she'd never seen anyone at all in all her years at Sunnydale High. Not that she made a habit of hanging out at the library, of course.

Well, she never used to, anyway. Now things were different, and Cordelia had no idea how she'd got to this point. It had just... happened. One day Willow had simply stopped being the regular, boring Willow that was so lame it was physically painful, and she'd suddenly become inexplicably kissable.

It was kind of like what had happened with Xander, except that it was totally different. They didn't talk except to trade insults, and that was the same, but all the rest of it -- that was new. Better. Willow knew what to do; she would curl her fingers in Cordelia's hair, and then she'd pull away and trace her features with gentle fingers, her green eyes full of wonder, and then she'd kiss her again and make Cordelia moan in a way that nobody had ever made her before.

Willow pushed Cordelia up against the stupid Geography books that nobody ever read and Cordelia's breath caught in her throat, the voice in her head drowned out by the other one that could only say yes. Their lips met, parted, and met again, and that now familiar thrill ran through Cordelia's body just like it had every time since the very first. She'd mistaken it for disgust before, and then fear; now she knew exactly what it was, and exactly what it meant -- that she was crazy, the voice piped up before the rest of her succeeded in quelling it -- and like always, she would pretend it wasn't happening, she would pretend that she was crazy, she would pretend it meant that the world was going to end, but somewhere within her she knew what it was really about.

She would never admit it to herself, but she'd always known.