Disclaimer: The characters, I'm very sorry to say, don't belong to me. Joss Whedon is their mean owner, along with the Master who tortures them when the camera's not rolling and the WB who doesn't show their season finale until July. And shows Earshot when school is back in session...yeah, um, that makes sense. I do own Katrina and the sexy moving guys. Why? Because I can.
Author's Notes: Third story in my fluff series, which is set in my own
little happy universe where no one is sad and the Hellmouth is being good for
once. Amazing, isn't it? Read my trilogy (it's not a shameless plug, I
swear) and the first two stories of the series and you'll actually understand
everything that's going on. I promise!! I'm gonna dedicate this to the Sears
guy, he shows up in my story. I love feedback, let me know what you think!!
Buffy yawned and stretched, careful not to wake her sleeping boyfriend as she climbed out of bed and headed for the shower. It was finally Tuesday, their new furniture was arriving. She had spent Saturday at the beach with her friends (she had worn her bikini anyway) and Sunday and Monday packing and moving some boxes the whole ten feet into their house. She couldn't believe that she and Angel had bought a house and furniture. Okay, so Angel had bought it all, but she had helped pick it out.
The shower warmed and she stepped in gingerly, the hot water washing away the last of her sleepiness. It was only seven thirty but the stuff was coming at nine and she wanted to look her best in case the guys were really hot. Not that she was looking or anything, she just wanted to make a good impression.
The curtain was pulled away as she was about to shampoo her hair and she started. She grabbed the closest weapon--a bottle of Herbal Essences--before realizing it was just Angel.
"Angel, what're you doing?" she hissed, wary of her mother and Katrina.
"Taking a shower with the woman I love," he answered as he stepped into the tub and sighed as the warm water hit.
"Um, do you *want* my mom to castrate you? She'll kill you if she finds us in here together," Buffy said, trying to not get distracted by his gorgeous body. It wasnıt working...
"She went to the gallery and Katrina went with her. There's a note downstairs, they won't be back until lunch time," he said slyly, reaching for the shampoo. He poured some into his hands and massaged it gently into her hair. She sighed and let him work.
Forty minutes later, two smiling people climbed out of the shower. Angel handed Buffy a towel and proceeded to dry himself off. Buffy secured the towel around her chest and looked closely at her hands.
"I'm all pruny," she complained as Angel wrapped his arms around her.
"Yeah, but it was worth it," he whispered in her ear. She nodded.
"Definitely," she said, catching his lips in a kiss before heading back to her room. "We need to get you some new clothes, Angel," she said as she eyed the few pairs of pants and shirts he had. He pulled on a pair of boxers and khakis, with a plain white t-shirt to top it off. She turned to her dresser and began pulling on the clothes she had laid out the day before. She knew that she'd have to help move stuff, her Slayer strength would see to that. She had opted for comfy yet classy, a pair of flairs and a strappy black tank top that had a *very* low cut front. She saw Angel staring at her and gave him an innocent look.
"What?" she asked, looking down at her shirt and knowing exactly what was wrong. She wasn't about to admit it or anything, she was enjoying Angel's reaction *way* too much. He just stared. "Is there a problem with my shirt, Angel?"
He nodded, coming over to fix it. The way it was, it showed off way too much of her body for his tastes. He didn't mind it, but he knew the workers from the store would be drooling over her all day. He pulled it up a tad so her bra wasn't showing and she was more covered. He let his hands linger for an extra moment and she moaned softly.
"You are *so* turning me into a nympho," she whined.
"And the bad part of that is..." he said with a sexy smile. She returned it.
"Oh, no bad part, only good parts. Lots of them," she returned slyly as she stepped away from him and pulled on her Adidas sandals and put on her makeup in record time. Angel put on his shoes and they made their way downstairs. They were startled to see Katrina sitting at the kitchen table, sipping orange juice and reading the paper. She looked up with a secretive smile.
"Good morning," she said knowingly. Angel and Buffy exchanged glances.
"Hey, Kat. Been here long?" Buffy asked nervously as she pulled the bread out of the bread box and popped a piece into the toaster.
"Long enough," she replied, her eyes once again on the paper. "Your secret's safe with me."
"You heard?" Buffy squeaked. Katrina tried to keep a straight face.
"Yes, I did. I can totally understand you taking advantage of the empty house," she replied, sipping her juice again.
Angel expelled the breath he had been holding. He was rather surprised Katrina was being as cool about it as she was. He pulled out two glasses and poured some orange juice for himself and Buffy. He handed her the glass and they made eye contact, laughing silently. Buffy couldn't help herself and she burst out laughing. Katrina's lips turned up in a small smile.
"I'm really sorry, Kat," Buffy said as her toast popped. She smeared butter and strawberry jelly on it and carried it and her juice to the table. "I--we--didn't know anyone was home."
"Obviously. Be glad it was me and not your mother who came home to check the answering machine," Katrina replied as she stood and walked over to the sink, rinsing her glass out and putting it in the drying rack. Buffy's face paled at the thought and she ate her toast in relative silence.
The doorbell rang and Katrina went to answer it. She let Willow, Oz, Xander, and Cordelia in and called back to Buffy. "I'm going back, I'll tell your mother everything's under control," she laughed as she closed the door behind her. The Slayerettes, standing in the kitchen door, had no clue what she meant and watched as Buffy and Angel exchanged small smiles and glances.
"Do we have to play twenty questions or will you just tell us and get it over with?" Cordelia asked.
"It's nothing," they said at the same time.
"Nope, not good enough. If you don't tell me I'll just have to figure it out," she said, waiting for a reply. Only silence followed, so Cordelia decided to go for it. "Let's see...both have wet hair, both have very wrinkled hands--that's torture for your skin, Buffy, you should know better--I'd say they were caught taking a shower together," Cordelia said proudly. Buffy choked on her juice and Angel turned bright red. "Wow, I'm good."
"So, how're you guys this morning?" Buffy asked, changing the subject. She propped her elbows on the table as she nibbled at her toast, and Angel paled when he saw what she was doing. It was gonna be a *long* day...
The gang sat outside on the porch, waiting for the people from Sears and the Sunnydale Furniture Outlet to arrive. Buffy looked at her watch impatiently, they were already both twenty minutes late.
"You'd think that on the Hellmouth they'd feel the need to rush or something," she said from her spot atop Angel's lap. She was leaning against him as he gently stroked her back, his fingers tickling through the thin material. Cordy and Xander had parked themselves on the swing and Willow and Oz sat on the ground on huge pillows they had found in the hallway closet.
"So, does Giles know why the Hellmouth has been really quiet lately?" Willow asked.
"Nope, he's been researching it nonstop. Weird, you'd think he'd take the time off and actually enjoy himself. No, wait. This is Giles we're talking about, never mind," Buffy replied.
"It's odd, we haven't had to research anything in forever. I almost miss it," Willow said. The others looked at her as if she was crazy. "I said almost," she said meekly.
"Romania was *more* than enough action for me. I just hope the Hellmouth actually behaves for a while," Buffy said, idly running her index finger over Angelıs face.
An hour and a half later the furniture van pulled up. Actually, there were two vans. Three guys climbed out of each.
"Ooh, college boys. Yum," Cordelia said, checking out the buff guys. They started to rise and Angel gave Buffy a lingering kiss when he saw one of the guys checking her out.
"Which one of you is Angel?" the hottest one asked as he strolled forward with a clipboard. Angel stepped forward and shook the guy's hand. "I'm Ben. You sure did buy a lot," Ben said as he checked over his clipboard. "We were told to tell you that our service will be free today, since you practically bought out the store."
"Thanks. Do you want to come inside and see what goes where?" Angel asked, gesturing towards the door. Ben nodded and he and his workers followed Angel and Buffy inside. The others stayed outside, not wanting to add to the crowd. Buffy and Angel led them through the dining room, kitchen, and living room before taking them upstairs.
"I saw the bed set you ordered. Sweet," a guy who'd introduced himself as Gary said as they entered the room. It was big, about three times the size of her old room.
"We want the bed here," she said, pointing to the wall opposite the door. The room was going to be set up like her old room was, bed opposite of door. The house wasn't too much different from Buffy's mom's house, the only major difference was the upstairs. At the top of the stairs, opposite the top step, was a bathroom. Turning right would bring you to the two guest rooms, two doors facing each other. The master bedroom was the one door on the left. There was a huge window facing the back of the house and two small ones on the side, leaving the perfect space for the bed. A huge closet was next to the door and the bathroom was opposite the huge window.
The guys whistled as they saw the huge room, freshly painted but bare. "You guys won't want to leave," Ben said. Buffy giggled.
"That's the idea," she said as she gazed up at Angel, who was giving one of the guys an evil look. He'd been *very* interested in the necklace Buffy was wearing...
"Well, let's get to work, boys," Ben said as he led them back downstairs. Buffy and Angel followed them down and stood on the porch with their friends as the men began to unload furniture.
The bedroom stuff came first. Boxes of things needing to be assembled were lugged up the stairs. Buffy pitched in once or twice when a box was exceptionally heavy.
"Jeez, what are you Superwoman or something?" Gary asked as he watched her lift a box with ease and grace.
"Or something," she said secretively, mentally thanking her Slayer strength. She walked into the room and placed the box down before turning and walking out of the room again.
It took about a half hour to move everything upstairs. Angel had arranged for them to put everything together, avoiding a major headache. They brought in the kitchen table and chairs next, deciding to wait for the appliances to come before setting them up. The day was hot and Cordelia eyed the guys as they stripped down to tank tops.
"Hey Cor, wanna go christen Buffy and Angel's closet?" Xander asked, hoping to draw her attention back to him.
"Well, not really...yeah, sure. Okay," she said with a shrug. Xander took her by the hand and led her upstairs for a heated make out session.
"Major ick-fest," Buffy mumbled as she watched the two in amazement.
Lunch time arrived and the Sears guys still hadn't shown up. Angel had called to make sure the date was right and had been told rather rudely that they were very busy and would get there when they could.
Ben, Gary, and all the other guys sat on the front porch, eating sandwiches Buffy had made and sipping iced tea that Buffy had offered. She and her friends--minus Xander and Cordelia--were munching on sandwiches also.
"These sandwiches are delicious," Tom said, giving Buffy a look that Angel didn't like. He tightened his hold of Buffy's waist and she gave him a secret smile.
"Yeah, well it's kinda hard to screw up peanut butter and jelly. Slop them on bread and put them together," Buffy replied. She stood and offered cookies that she had made the night before.
"Do you think you can come over and cook for me on a regular basis?" Tom asked as he took a bite of the chocolate chip cookie, continuing to flirt even after Angel's disapproving look.
"I kinda think Angel will have a *little* problem with that," she smiled.
Xander and Cordelia stumbled outside, Cordelia's lipstick reapplied and her hair fixed. They blushed slightly and plopped down on the railing, grabbing sandwiches for themselves.
"If there's anything of major grossness in my closet..." she threatened menacingly.
"Chill, Buffy, we didn't do anything that would require major cleaning up. Unlike you, little Miss Nympho..." Cordelia trailed off, leaving a rosy cheeked Buffy.
"Gee, and the Hellmouth never swallows you up when you want it to," she muttered. Angel smiled, amused by the two girls' banter.
They finished lunch and the next three hours passed quickly. Buffy had brought over her radio and music blared from it. The living room had been set up, as had the dining room. They were just finishing with the last chair as the Sears van pulled up. A geeky man with glasses and moppy hair strolled up the walkway.
"Sorry I'm late, had a lot of deliveries today," he said in a squeaky voice.
"Where's everyone else?" Angel asked, looking over to the van. He knew the puny man could never carry all the things they had bought.
"They've been detained, it's just me," he said. "My name's Ed."
Angel shook his eager hand as the hot furniture guys walked over. "Do you need some more help?" Ben asked.
"Well, I doubt we'll be able to move all this ourselves, do you guys wanna make some extra cash?" Angel replied. They all nodded and got to work. The refrigerator was pulled and pushed up the porch stairs and wedged through the door before ending up in the kitchen. The stove and dishwasher didn't take as much effort and were plugged in and working as the guys began with the TV and its stand.
At six oıclock everything was assembled and working. The workers had all left, leaving the Scooby Gang behind to hook up the phones and set up the lamps and do all the small stuff. The girls put up everything in the bathroom as the guys dragged the old trunk and the other antiques that had been sitting in the Summers' dining room.
They walked from room to room, checking everything out. They had to admit the house looked great, the rooms were cheerful and light and the furniture looked cozy. Even Cordelia couldn't find anything wrong with the house. They sat in the living room, flipping channels and talking. Buffy and Angel cuddled in the recliner and Willow and Oz sat on the couch. The love seat, which attached to the couch to make it an L, was occupied by Cordelia and Xander. The room was open and the kitchen could be seen from it. The couch sat in front of the front window, with the love seat snug in the corner. The recliner was between the end table and the short wall that split the room from the foyer.
"What're you gonna put downstairs?" Cordelia asked.
"We were thinking of buying all old, comfy furniture and sticking it down there. You know, from like yard sales and stuff," Buffy replied.
"Be careful, the stuff could have fleas and stuff," she warned. They gave her dubious looks. "What? Hello, skanky people usually hold yard sales. Bugs love skanks."
"We'll keep that in mind," Angel said, glancing up at Buffy. She shrugged.
"We got you guys gifts," Willow announced as they watched Scream. Buffy and Angel looked up, surprised.
"You guys didn't have to--"
"Tradition called," Oz said, silencing Buffy. Xander stood first, walking over to the foyer and pulling his present out before offering it up.
"A plunger?" Angel asked, eyebrow raised. Xander nodded, grinning proudly.
"I bet you guys forgot to get one, so I saved you the trip," he said as he sat down. Cordelia passed her gift over. Inside the white envelope was a gift certificate to Pier One.
"It's *the* place to shop for house stuff, you guys definitely need to go," she said. They thanked her. Oz and Willow stood and went into the dining room before returning with a beautiful framed photograph. It had been taken at the beach at sunset, the colors were soft and filled the sky.
"We found it at a yard sale," she said proudly.
"Wow, Will, this is amazing," Buffy squealed. "It's going over the fireplace."
"Can I ask a question? Who puts a fireplace in a home in Southern California? Do they actually expect people to use it when it's ninety degrees outside?" Angel asked. The others shrugged.
"Hellmouth-y creatures. They like it extra hot," Buffy suggested.
They left shortly afterwards. Buffy and Angel sat in their new home, gazing around in wonder.
"We should go get the rest of your stuff," Angel suggested. They stood and went to the door, opening it to find Joyce and Katrina. Joyce had her hand poised, ready to knock and she jumped slightly when the door opened.
"May we come in?" she asked. Buffy and Angel smiled and invited them in. They gave them a quick tour and let them stay as they walked over and began transporting the rest of Buffy's boxes, plus the things like dishes, silverware, and glasses into their house. Everything else that they had bought was in the basement and would be unpacked tomorrow. Joyce offered to run to the store to pick them up bread and milk and other essential while they unpacked the many boxes containing Buffy's things. Buffy took up about three fourths of the closet space for her clothes and many shoes. Her shampoo and lotions were put in the bathroom, and Mr. Gordo was placed on the bed. He looked slightly out of place in the red and black silk, but neither one cared.
They curled up in bed together late that night. "We're in our house, Angel. Living together. We are now officially of the together-ness," she said as she yawned. Angel nodded.
"Our house," he agreed as he fell asleep, clutching his Slayer in his arms on the Mouth of Hell.
On to the next story, Meow
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