Elemental, My Dear Angel
Wesley entered the darkened apartment and he took care to be quiet, not wanting to unduly disturb his new roommate. As he stepped in, Wesley realized the living room was empty. Further investigation showed Angel standing in the kitchen, backlit by the light coming from the open refrigerator. Wesley watched silently as the vampire raised a plastic container to his lips, quaffing blood as Wes would an ale.
Some extranormal sense must have warned Angel he had an audience. He looked up to find Wesley standing a few steps from the entrance to the kitchen. Lowering the container, guilt and shame mixed equally in his expression, Angel turned away.
Wesley entered the kitchen, his long legs quickly closing the short distance between them. Still, he made no comment. Willing himself to remain calm, he ignored his friend's choice of libation. Wes reached past Angel, over the open door of the appliance, and nonchalantly snagged a bottle of ale. Angel followed his movements, unnervingly akin to a predator's vigilance, but he remained silent as well. Twisting off the top, Wes tipped an imaginary cap to his partner with the neck of the bottle.
After a long moment, Angel returned the salute, and both men drank to their mutual success and health. The two men stood physically separated by the refrigerator door, but they had never been closer in spirit. This trust and acceptance meant everything to Angel, but he had been taciturn for so many years that expressing his feelings came hard. In an attempt to cover up the alien emotions, he asked evenly, "Cordy get off okay?"
Wes wasn't at all fooled, but he replied just as casually, "Yes, indeed. I was not sanguine about letting her drive home unescorted, but the old Cordelia emerged and I count myself lucky to have escaped her wrath unscathed," Wes recounted, half in jest. "I told her to ring us as soon as she arrives home." Taking note of Angel's slightly bemused expression, Wes translated into American, "She's one tough cookie, but call anyway."
Angel nodded, then took another careful sip of blood. Wes mirrored his action, raising the bottle to his lips. "Nice work tonight, Wes."
Wes allowed himself to bask in the pride this time around. With a cocky grin, he replied, "Elemental, my dear Angel."
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