"This Is Our Lovely Day…"



Summary: Cicelyverse tale…As the battle in LA rolls to its inevitable conclusion, William remembers the long-forgotten best day of his existence…



Disclaimer: Not mine but thine...Oh, Joss!

It's all yours and ME's...



Spoilers for Angel to the bitter end...Flee at once!...



Adult (18+) rating (one slightly "adult" scene)...

***



(From the Vivian Ellis song…)

"This is My Lovely Day..." (Vivian Ellis)...



"This is my lovely day...

This is the day I shall remember the day I'm dying...

They can't take this away...

It will be always mine...

The sun and the wine...

The [shore] birds crying...

All happiness must pay...

And who can tell if Fate means well or the sky is lying...

Just look at me and say...

You will remember too that this was a lovely day..."



"This is our lovely day...

This is the day I shall remember the day I'm dying...



They can't take this away...

It will be always mine...

[Despite the gloom...My heart is flying...]

All happiness must pay...

And if our ship goes down, she'll go with the flags still flying...

Just look at me and say...

You will remember too that this was a lovely day..."



"I'll remember...I'll remember...

When the time has come for happiness to pay...

So when that day comes...

That I'm dying...

I'll remember that we loved our lovely day..."

***



The warm sun on his face revived him…He pulled up to a sitting position and looked around…A beach, he realized, feeling the sand under him…And at the same time, uggh…His water-logged garments…

So much for my new suit…he sighed…Trying to clear his head a moment…

The seaside?...He stared out…No, he could see the opposite shore…A lake…

Yes, the lake…The Lake District…She brought me here, today…He looked round…My God!...

The boat…he thought…The boat overturned…And she…He started to turn over…Argghh…

Arrggh…William groaned, the bright sky suddenly gone…Darkness, lit by numerous scattered fires all about…Screams and harsh cries filling the night…

LA…he thought, trying to look round…I'm still in LA…

Not deader yet…

"Will!..." A booming cry…He turned to where Angel stood…And felt himself lifted off his feet by some overwhelming force…

Divided, he realized as he looked down…Into about five or more reasonably-whelming hefty-sized demons…Who were bearing him off…

Ah, he sighted their obvious destination…A burning debris pile…Flames coursing up various flammable bits of wreckage…

"Ooooga!!...OOOOGA!!..." his bearers cheered…Hurrying along…Then stopping with a sudden, violent lurch as several were felled by a flying metal pole…He fell from their loose grip and found himself on the street…Managing to scramble to his feet, he spied the way that had been somewhat cleared on one side by the pole…A couple of the fallen screaming in agony as he raced lightly over them…



" 'Bout time you stopped foolin' around…" Angel noted laconically as Will stumbled over to him…Thanks…

"Yeah, yeah…Just lets get to it…Illyria's gotta have time to get Charlie out…" he swung a street light pole uprooted from the ground like a club at a charging host, all of whom stopped suddenly at contact and then collapsed, some seized by their comrades to the rear who began to feast…

"They keep this up and all we'll have to do is stand back and let 'em kill each other…You ok?..."

"Right as rain…" Will nodded…Trying to keep erect…Not even the superblood passed on by Angel would keep either of them going much longer, he realized…

He looked to the sky…The first approach of daylight still an hour or so away…A quick glance round the battlefield…

Nope, not a blonde hair but his…Hmmn…And that one furry fellow over there…In sight…Nor any swish of stake…Well, a little disappointing but not her problem after all…Never expected it, he reminded himself…

Just perhaps a tad…Just a twinge…I mean it woulda been nice…

But heck, no reason not to go out with a bang…

Just wonder why I suddenly dreamt of...Hell, more than a dream...I was there...

"You need more of that superblood?..." Angel eyed him…As they both smashed back a huge mass of claws and fur…Was that one fellow or many?...Will stared…Ah, one set of eyes…

"Fraid not, boss…" he grinned… "Sorry to disappoint but one dive toward the poof side with you was more than enough…"

"Shut up…Jesus…Some of these guys might live to repeat that…" Angel noted…

"Then we'd best kill 'em all…" Will grinned…Then turned…

The boat, still upturned, floated in the shallow lake water next to him…He ran to it, looking round…Where…

"Cicely!..." he cried… "Cicely!!..." screaming now...Damn, where are my...? Ah, he patted a waistcoat pocket and sighed...Double damn...Feeling the broken chards of his spectacle lenses... He prepared to dive down, try looking under the boat…Despite his complete inability in swimming…Then…

On the shore…Just above where he'd come to…Yes…Where I laid her after carrying her out…He squinted desperately...Yes...Thank God...

My God, was I swimming?...he thought, somewhat pleased as he splashed over to the shore and ran up to her unconscious form…Not bad for a city boy…

"Cicely, Cicely?!!.." he pulled at her…Lifting her gently…She tensed then blinked hurriedly, eyes rolling as she began coughing and sputtering up about half the lake, by his judgment…

Her hat still barely hanging on by a single tight hatpin…Lucky one of the others didn't skewer me while I dragged her up…He patted her back as she coughed, vomiting a bit now…

A divine shape now apparent, he couldn't help noticing, thanks to her thoroughly-soaked blouse and skirt, clinging to said form…

She rolled on her back and surprised him by sitting up…Staring round…

"Will..William?…Mr. Walthrop?..." a hasty and decorous change of address…

"We capsized, Miss Addams…" he smiled at her…Removing his hand from her back…

His cheek feeling a bit flushed…Never knew a woman's back could be so…Warm…

"Burrrrghh…." she vomited again, more forcefully, in reply…



Sorry…she eyed his left pants leg and shoes… "Quite all right, I'll just wash them off in the lake…" he waved a hand… "Are you all right?...Shall I go see if I can find a doctor?..."

"No…" she gasped a bit…Eyeing him carefully now…A smile forming…

"Nicely done, sir…" she grinned… "I thought you said you'd never been out on the water before…"

"Necessity…Mother of you know…" he smiled back…Then turned serious again, seeing her looking a bit pale…

"Are you sure you don't want a doctor?..."

Hmmn?…She looked at him…Looking apprehensively at the stake floating near the boat…Damn why did I bring 'Dickens' along today…?

And equally apprehensively at her revealed legs and arms…Guessing quickly that if they were now well-outlined by her sodden garments…Then so the rest might be…

"Lets get to the cottage…" she started to rise…He with her… "Miss Addams…I don't think you're ready to…Mmmn…" he winced as his bruised or worse side caught at him as she clung to him for support…

"Will?...Are you hurt?..." she pulled back, standing now…

"Just a bruise I think…I must've struck the boat when I came up…" he grimaced a bit…

"Sit down…" "I think I'm better off in one position, Miss…" he smiled wanly…She feeling his side…

"I don't think any ribs are broken…" she noted… "Nursing class…" she responded to his puzzled look… "I am not so utterly insipid and useless as you would like to think, sir…"

"Glad to hear it…" he replied…Eyeing her…Both chuckling after a second…

Damn…The involuntary thought surfaced…I could keep him here a week, maybe two, with a broken rib…

Well, no…Danger of pneumonia and all, doctors, train home, newspapers, severe scandal, Father in murderous rage...A sprain or severe bruise will suffice…

"You'd better lean on me…We'll make for the cottage…" she took his arm… "Unless you prefer to crawl?..." as she sensed his hesitation…

"Not exactly…I just don't know if I can make it…"

"I just said I'd help you…" she frowned…"Unless you're too proudly male to …Will?..." she blanched a little as he groaned… "Oh, darling, I'm sorry…Sit…" she tried to get him down…

"Don't think so…" he grimaced…Darling?...The word forced its way through the pain rather easily… "Guess the cottage was the best idea…" he gasped…Taking her arm…

Right…she nodded…Looking round…Great, no one snooping about…She lifted him in her arms with an easy sweep…

Cicely?...he stared as he experienced that rising sensation…

"Just sit tight, sir…" she smiled… "I think I can manage…"

Hmmn…He nodded wanly…

Well, not so surprising after that time she pounded me right out of my shoes and across her townhouse's back garden after my clever "Out…for…a…walk…b-…" riposte to her "Where are you going, sir?...In five words or less…" query when I wouldn't stay for my friend her cousin Henry's return…



"I can manage, Will…" she nodded back…A gentle smile...

"I can manage…" he repeated aloud… "What?..." Angel eyed him…

Hmmn…?...

"If you've got an idea, lets hear it…" Angel pointed to the mass forming round them…"They seem to finally be getting organized…"

"What a day that was…How could I have ever…"

"Spike?...Hope you're not getting bored by all the gore and violence…" Angel frowned…

"But what happened…?" he sighed… "They've got a little organization, like I said…" Angel repeated…

"No, not this nonsense…" Will waved a hand… "Why did she…?" he paused, trying to focus...Remember...Like moving tons of dirt to get at the precious metal beneath...

Angel sighed… "Look, this is really so not the time…But Buffy probably just doesn't know about you…And probably doesn't even know what she wants yet…She's still just a kid, Will…"

"I'm a full year older than you, William...And quite of age..." Cicely smiled at him as they sat in what passed for the parlor of the little cottage...Both now in what he took to be robes of his friend her cousin Henry's...Hers far too large... "You don't have to feel responsible for me..." He having suggested it might be best for him to seek a night's lodging in town...

Though...She hastily added... "I would think it would be far worse to leave me here all alone tonight..."

Hmmn...Well, considering how she just carried me in from the lake like a newborn child...And the puglistic abilities I've been an upclose and personal witness to...I'd say this lady doesn't need a male protector...

However...He scanned her somewhat nervous face...She looking away after a moment to the fire he'd managed to start...

"No one knows we're here but Henry...And he doesn't know we're spending the night..." she eyed him...

Out of necessity, of course...she hurriedly added...

Well, I didn't deliberately turn the boat over...she thought...

"My reputation will be unstained, I assure you, sir..." she smiled...

"People love to make something from nothing, Cic...Miss Addams..." Will sighed...Rubbing the bridge of his nose as if to push up his no longer existent spectacles...

"You look well without the glasses..." she noted...Then looked away again...

"You look well...Ummn..." he paused...Fortunately choking up on what would have been the 'without anything...'

"In a robe...I mean...Despite the water and all...I mean..."

"Well, well?...Or really well?..." she grinned...

Her eyes do sparkle when she smiles...he thought...Not just a fantasy of novels...

"Incredibly well..." he smiled...

"Good..." she beamed... "Not having a lady's maid about to handle my toilet and dress, a mindless ninny like me..."



"I never said you were mindless, Cicely..."

Though perhaps a ninny...At times...

"And a bitch?..." she eyed him...Ummn...she gulped a bit...

"I am sorry for that..." he sighed...

"My God...The inflexible Mr. Walthrop apologizes...The world just turned over...Thank you, sir...Apology accepted..." she nodded...

Oh...The thought occurred to her... "Will?...I didn't hurt you the other day?...You weren't hurt again on the same side?..."

"Oh yes, fatally..." he smiled...

"Don't joke about that!..." she snapped...Sorry...he stared...

"I'm sorry, William...I shouldn't get upset so easily..." her eyes twinkling... "You, sir...Have a profound ability to..." she blinked at his intent eyes...

Upset me...she finished, lamely...

"Cicely..."

"Here is the arrangement I propose, Mr. Walthrop...You will remain here and demonstrate that your injury is not, in fact, a mortal one...I will move onto dear Henry's kitchen and see if he's left anything worth the trouble of my burning or otherwise destroying..."

And then...We'll see where today's wind blows us...she smiled, blushing just a little...

"And on that note I shall remove to the kitchen...And see what I can scramble together for dinner..." she rose...

The robe falling back from her shoulders...Just revealing the start of her cleveage...Ummn...Sorry...She pulled and pushed a bit...Brushing back her long, loose hair...

"I'll...Hmmn..." he winced at a slight stab in his side as he rose... "help..." he managed to stand erect...

Hmmn...Something else standing erect...he thought...Glancing surreptiously down...Phew, robe and underclothes secure...

Though not entirely displeased...he glanced back at Cicely who was staring at him...

Ummn...She blinked...And smiled, a bit nervously...

Nah...She wasn't?...Certainly not...Just looking to see if I was alright...

Down there...And elsewhere...

Fortunately I'd risen to the occasion...he thought...Ummn...A slight blush...

"I'll be fine...You're still sore...And tender..." she noted...

"I'm fine...Best to stretch the muscles...Ummn...The leg I mean...I...I really think I should help...I know my way about a kitchen...Please..."

"Come along then..." she smiled...Reaching a hand to his... "I'm utterly inept..."

I doubt that, he thought...

"I'm sure though Buf would've come if she knew what was up here…Angel continued firmly… "Whatever nonsense Chairman Giles has been decreeing about me and my shady dealings, she'd come…Even just for me, let alone you…"



Cicely, why...Why?...There was a reason...Tell me...

Hmmn?...he stared at Angel...

Oh, yeah...Buffy...

I shoulda called her I suppose…Angel sighed again… "Told her about you myself…I'm sorry, Will…If we make it…"

"She knows, mate…" Will shook his head… "Ole Wells said she loved us but she'd moved on…And I doubt very much Andrew could've kept the lil' secret of my resurrection from her more than thirty seconds…"

But I'm not talking about her just now…he looked at the raging mass around them…Fortunately delayed in their final assembly by their propensity for instinctually turning on and massacring anything within five feet…Including each other...

"Your mother has taught you well..." Cicely eyed Will as he carefully whipped the eggs she'd just made an attempt to mix for a souffle... "With skills like that and poetry to boot, no sane woman could resist you...I don't understand why..." she stopped abruptly...

"You haven't tasted it yet...Wait for the finale..." he raised a hand... "And the answer is...Too shy, busy with my degree...And of no family and so-so means, only thanks to whoever 'Mr. Walthrop' was...At that only a recent development, thanks to the ole bugger's death...Hardly the most desirable match..."

And watch the flame on those string beans...he noted... "Oui, mon captaine..." she saluted...

"You're the real mystery, girl..." he smiled at her...She giving a mock innocent look...Sir?...Followed by a somewhat wicked grin... "Why do you still let those fools hang around your place?...Only one or two...That barrister, Levinson...Are worth a damn...Why haven't you dropped that nonsense and found some worthwhile fellow?...Or taken some adoring clod with a fat account who'll leave you to your pursuits, including human?..."

Hmmn?...She blinked at the 'pursuits, including...'...He couldn't possibly know...No...He means...Hmmn...she frowned...

"We are getting personal, Mr. Walthrop...Though thank you for your remark about Jonathan...He is a fine man and a good friend...As for the rest..." she shrugged... "Father wants his home to live up to Society's expectations...They...And I...Provide the scenery...And yes, I'm just vain enough to enjoy it..." she frowned at his look...Then smiled...The smile widening as his face took on a startled expression...

"But mainly...I've been waiting for you, Will..."

"Angel…It's time you got out of here…" Slamming a burning mass of debris into an overeager group of rat-faced, toothy creatures on two legs who'd tried a charge ahead of the rest…

"Eh…We can keep them on their toes till dawn…Then they'll hafta head back…"

"C'mon boss…A good CEO doesn't lie to his people…That way leads to the Dark Side…And congressional investigation…" Will smiled… "Angel, you have a boy and a nice girl waiting breathlessly for you…Though in the girl's case I haven't the foggiest notion why…It's time for you to start acting responsibly, Dad…You've smashed the Black Thorns and given the Partners a kick in the side tonight they'll never get over…It's time for you to display some brains and the better part of valor…"

"Oh, please…" Angel glared… "Again with the phony heroics like at Sunnydale…Then you resurrect again, right in front of Buffy in Rome this time and…"

"That's the plan…" Will grinned… "You object, family man?...Nina sure would be relieved…"

"Will…"

"I have no one on Earth since Winifred, Angel…Excepting you and poor Lyri…My family's in Heaven, such as they are…And God-willing, maybe it's time I took a chance, let go, and tried to join them…"

"Illyria needs you…And you have a kid, now…"

"Lyri's the widow of one Wyndham-Price, hoping that if she's real good, Fred will consent to let her essence merge with her in the afterlife…No…As for the kid, just tell him 'Uncle' Will would be pleased if he embarked on a literary career and perhaps churned out a panegyric or two on his heroic adoptive unk…"

"I'm not going anywhere…"

"If you die here, Wolfram-Hart regenerates in a matter of months, weeks maybe…If you make it, their human team and I'd bet half the sentient demonic will follow you in the hopes of getting steady paychecks…And you can link up with Buffy and her Slayers to finish off the rest of the bunch…Besides, I've earned my wings and I'm going to that happy land with or without you…If you go now, while I can still keep them busy, it can be without you…It's your decision…"

"We get out together…Or dust trying…And Buffy isn't…" he paused…

"She is worth dying for, mate…You know that well as I do…But I'm not dying for her today…She wasn't the only girl on my dance card you know…"

"I don't think Dru would…"

"No, not Dru…Though it would be nice if you did something for her, poor lamb…If you make it out, that's my dying charge to you, Liam…" a mock solemn tone…

"Suddenly we're on a first-name basis…?"

"Give a man a grossly undeserved promotion and see how it goes to his head…Liam…The question is not 'Is Buffy worth dying for?'…Are your Nina and your boy worth living for?…"

Or whatever reasonable facsimile thereof we enjoy…

"I won't go without you…And there's no time to argue…"

"Liam…I've no desire to hang round this globe alone for another thousand years or more…And I have someone, I think now…No…"

I know now…

"Waiting for me…Somewhere out there…"

"Bad song mouthed by a bad poet…Forget it, lets go…" Angel turned to scan the ranks in front… "We might be able to scatter them on the side…The Empi in front are pain-insensitive but brainless but the Hoth clan on the left is just sentient enough to panic…"

"Great…You go and I'll keep them busy here…"

"Christ…I just told you…"

"Nah, you're the Christ in this outfit, boss…I'm just Peter…Meaning I get it upside down…" A chuckle…

"Who the hell is she?..." Angel eyed him… "Not that girl you wrote that crap for?...The one you were running from when Dru got you?...You're dumping Buffy for her?..."

Hell at least Buffy gave you a feeble I love you…

"Didn't that girl tell you to get lost or go to Dru and get killed and become a homicidal maniac or something…?"

"No…" Will shook his head…Well, yeah…Though not the go to Dru stuff, I just made that up when I told you about her…

"But she didn't mean it…Angel, she loved me…Whatever frightened her or turned her away from me at the end…Bad poetry, my family background, whatever…She loved me…I'd just forgotten until tonight…"

That day, if only for a moment or two, she loved me… Will thought, beaming…

"Tonight?...Why, tonight?..."



"Because it's my dying day, Angel...And on your dying day, if you're lucky...You remember the best day of your life...er, existence...Like in the old Ellis song...Remember how Dru loved his work back in Britain in the forties?...Used to drag me to every show...There was this one song..."

"I wasn't there in the forties...You're hallucinating...We'll try the left…" Angel insisted…

"We won't make it unless one stays and ties them up a bit…" Will shook his head… "Look, if I can make it out later, I'll do it…"

"Crap…And Buffy would never forgive me…"

"To hell with her…She's not here…She doesn't get a say…Just tell her I…"

Well…he sighed...

"Tell her I loved her and wish it coulda been different…But in the end, I think it…"

"Oh…God…William!..." a breathless cry of ecstasy…He looked up…

At Cicely's sweat-soaked, rosy face…Hair loose about her…And nothing much else covering her…The small bed beneath them shaking to a dangerous extent...

Must remember never to tell Henry I know the bed here's wobbly...

Two magnificent breasts, with firm, rosebud nipples, one currently in his mouth, the other pressed against his chest, then pulling back as she slammed down on him like a drill press…Ohhh…God…he gasped in turn…

I'm beneath her, he thought…Hmmn…

"One…One…Moment…" she gasped…Ummn…

"Go…God…Go ahead…" she wagged her beautiful head at his face… "Say it…" her eyes big, staring down…

Ummn…?

"… 'My heart…Expands…'…" she quoted… "Oh, please…God, William…Hurry…"

"…Tis grown a bulge in it…" he hastily continued her lead… "Inspired by…"

"Ohhhh….Goood…God!…Myyy…Lovvve!…" she cried… "William!!...William!!!...Your beauty's what's effulgent!!!...Oh, my beautiful, beautiful darling!!...I love you...I love you..." she choked off…

Uh…Uh…he gasped… "Cicely...Cicely..."

Darling again...And that I love you...Has that meaningful sound...he thought...

"Are you all right?...I didn't hurt your side again?..."

"I don't care if every rib's bust…" he whispered… "Oh, Lord I do not care…"

"Ah…" she grinned… "Well…If you're not too damaged…And if your side will allow it…"

Let me be beneath you…she smiled…

"Spike?..." Angel tried again...

My dear God...She liked the damned thing...She actually liked it...

Now if that's not true love...



Hmmn...he looked at Angel...Oh, right...

But then, why the hell...?...Her father, did he twist the screws?...Was that it?...he looked around...Not much longer till dawn now...

I'd say I'll be able to ask her directly soon...

And tell her that at last...I do remember that day...Our lovely day...

"Lets go, Angel…No more time to argue…Look…" Will indicated the first streaks of dawn in the distance to the east… "They're gonna go for it now or hafta give it up…And there's no UV-safe place here for two vamps to wait things out in any case…"

The mass of demons was eyeing them…Opening their ranks to reveal a rather sharper-looking bunch, these armed with crossbows and other weapons…

"All right…Lets go…" Angel nodded, moving to the left… "Will?!..." he called…As William charged for the front ranks…Several of the elite group moving in now firing at him, he grabbed a large, rather slow and clueless fellow in the front line and lifted him above his head…

And vanished into the mass…The one benefit being that the elite squad of armed creatures couldn't get a clear shot…Screams and howls coming from the horde…As Angel leaped off to the left, the Hoth demons panicking as expected as he slammed at them…A small gap in the line opening…

***

Still here…What is with the PTBs?...Will sighed, tossing his screaming, bloodied shield off as he found himself breaking into a clear space…Though deep in the heart of the mass of the Partners' army…

Ah…He looked to where the armed demons of the elite group were hurrying after him, some shouting to the demons about to fall back…They're opening up to get a clear shot…Well…May as well make it easy for them…

No great desire to burn to death out here…he looked to the east…The clouds coloring fast now…Something slammed at him…

Christ, mate…No need to be so eager-beaver…He frowned at the rather average-looking horned fellow who'd just made a bid for glory…

Will she be there?...Will I finally get the answer?...Is there any answer she can make that I don't already know…he thought…Shoving back the would be demonic hero…

Speakin' of which…he looked in the distance to where he could see some of the host running about…Eh, Angel'll make it…It's his big chance for happiness…

And this…He thought, contentedly…Is mine…

"William!!..." a cry penetrating his reverie…Harsh and yet…He looked as his opponent hurled him across the street and into a building…

He struggled to his feet, grabbing a downed street lamp pole, blood from his head wounds, along with mud, demon gore, and sweat obscuring his vision…

Buffy…Cutting her desperate way through, three Slayers fighting in her wake to keep the way open…

"William!!...I'm here…" she cried…Two of the other women down now, the third forced to fall back, the horde closing off any retreat…She battered a line back and staggered on through, trampling over two foolishly resolute opponents and fell on one knee in front of him, covered herself in blood…A bit too much of it her own for comfort, he noted…

"Hey…" she smiled at him… "I'm here…"

Uh, boy…he sighed…

The briefly stunned demon lines now reforming about them…Smelling victory now…

Well, at least smelling something tasty…



"Buffy…" he gasped, trying to raise his pole and somehow frighten back the mass now surrounding them, give her a moment's exit… "What the hell are you doing here, girl?..."

"Well…" she took a defensive stance, barely able to stay on her feet herself, he saw… "I got tired of waiting for you to come to Rome…So…" she grinned…

"You've gotta…Get out…"

Great...A day ago I had no one...Now...he thought...

"You heard I was with the Immortal..." she eyed him... "It was just work, Will...Well...Ok...He was nice...Till I found out he was one of your Senior Partners...And trying to keep me pinned down in Rome, away from Angel...And you..."

"That's fine, girl...I understand...We part square...Now, get the hell out of here..." he pointed...

"And I've been having the oddest dreams these last few months…" she continued, ignoring his feeble efforts to shoo her away… "Especially one I had again the other night…You and me on a lake beach…Me in the strangest old-fashioned getup you ever saw…And brunette to boot…"

He stared at her…The demon lines closing cautiously, well aware of who their opponents were…She shrugged, wincing a bit at the pain resultant…

"I just suddenly knew it wouldn't ever be right for me unless you were with me…And when Giles told me about Angel tackling the Partners, I knew you'd be here…So I had to be here…"

"Cicely…" he whispered…

"That's the name…" she grinned back… "The name you called me by…So I did get it right at last…" she put out a hand which he took as the elite group in position now took aim and the horde launched its final charge…

"I remember Will…I do.." she smiled…

***

"We'll remember that this was our lovely day…"

***