Written: February 15, 2010
Disclaimer: I do not own all of these characters and make no profit writing this.
Note on the Timeline: About a year and a half Post-Chosen, but different from the comic books. In Angel, there is no Connor, no working for Wolfram & Heart, etc. It's just the Fang-Gang working day to day to solve cases.
Summary: Cordelia realizes it's time to move on at a Scooby wedding and it just so happens that Gunn has his dancing shoes on.
It was another stupid party in another stupidly decorated banquet hall and Cordelia had to ask herself again why she'd even bothered to send in the stupid reply card. Honestly, would anyone have even noticed if she'd never showed up in the first place? Judging by the way she was standing alone at the bar for the last hour in her new Gucci strapless dress with barely anyone speaking more than two words to her the whole time, she assumed that she probably could've stayed at home and had better conversations with Phantom Dennis.
And she wouldn't have had to spend almost six hundred dollars on the dress and shoes to impress Dennis either!
The bartender slid a fresh glass of Cabernet Sauvignon over to her and smiled politely before wiping the bar down with his rag. She graciously accepted the wine - which she hadn't even had to ask for that time - and took a big sip before looking back out into the room. She saw a few familiar faces but it was mostly a room full of strangers with a random demon here or there.
She'd always known that Xander was a demon magnet, but really . . . inviting them to his wedding? That seemed weird, especially seeing as his bride was a slayer and lacking any demon relatives. He sure did have an interesting group of friends these days.
Seeking out the man in question, her gaze shifted to the head table at the foot of the dance floor where Xander and his new bride Renee were sitting and enjoying dessert with their wedding party. He still had traces of cake icing on the side of his face and in his hair but he was absolutely beaming. She hadn't seen a smile on his face like that in, well, ever really, and she couldn't help but feel a sudden sense of happiness for him.
He was madly in love and newly married to a person who loved him like crazy. They were disgustingly sweet together. It made her kinda sick.
It was the life she wanted.
Thinking of that, however, brought a scowl to her face as she looked across the room to find the reason for her bad mood. Angel was lurking around near the corner across the dance floor where the dim lights wouldn't illuminate his stricken face. He'd been sulking since they'd arrived in Cleveland the night before and Cordelia had had enough of it.
Honestly, she wasn't even sure why she was trying with him anymore. One day it seemed like he was ready to take the next step but the next day he was back to being a moody, evasive weirdo. She'd had enough of the back and forth, hot and cold behavior. Still, she'd hoped that this trip they were taking with the gang from LA might be a nice little getaway for them, but from the moment they'd arrived at the rehearsal dinner and he'd caught his first glimpse of Buffy and Faith together and in love, she knew that her plans for a romantic weekend were shot to shit.
Seriously, if he was so into her like he'd told her he was, then why was he so upset that his ex was boning his murder-rehab protege? It wasn't like it was news either. Buffy and Faith had been shacked up together since they'd shut down the hellmouth, so why was it suddenly some kind of problem for him almost a year and a half later?
Well, whatever his reasons were, Cordelia didn't care. She took another big sip of her wine and basked in the warmth that spread down her throat and into her stomach. There would be no more playing second fiddle to Angel's psychoses and exes; no more being put on the back burner and waiting for him to notice what a good catch she was.
She was Cordelia Chase. She had a hot bod with legs that went on forever and a killer rack that didn't need any help keeping that new dress up.
Speaking of which, was it asking too fucking much for someone to compliment her damn dress already?
"Damn Cordy, what's a girl as fine as you doin' standing over here all alone?" Came a voice from off to the side and Cordelia smiled when she turned to see Gunn cruising over in his Valentino suit.
"You can ask your fearless leader about that one," she replied sarcastically as she looked in Angel's direction and took another sip of wine.
"He still broodin'?"
Gunn turned around and rested his back against the bar with his elbows perched against it so that he could look over at Angel. He followed his gaze over to the head table where Buffy and Faith were sitting next to each other in matching scarlet-colored bridesmaid dresses, looking every bit as happy and in love as the bride and groom just down the table from them. Faith had her arm around Buffy's lower back and Buffy looked like she was laughing at something the girl had just said. A moment later she leaned up and gave Faith a small kiss on the lips and Gunn couldn't help but laugh aloud at the face that Angel made in response.
"Was that answer enough?" Cordelia asked, smirking at Gunn's laughter.
"Want me to go and smack some sense into him?"
And that definitely gave Cordelia one of her first laughs of the night. She looked up at Gunn with a grateful smile and said, "And they say chivalry's dead."
"Hey, I wouldn't have offered if I didn't think he deserved it. Boy's been stringin' you along for how long now? I mean, I've got a lot of respect for Angel and what he does, but if he's not gonna balls up and take his shot with you, he needs to let you down so that you can move on to bigger and better things," Gunn shrugged, "give someone else a shot."
All Cordelia could do was stand there and look at him while trying to keep her mouth from hanging open. Was it possible that someone in the world beside herself saw her plight? She actually had someone on her side and not on Team Angel?
There were words that needed to be said and thanks that needed to be given but instead she took another sip of her wine and did her best not to spill it on her new . . .
"And damn Cordy, but the new dress? Smokin' hot. Can't believe he's sitting over there like a chump while you're over here lookin' so nice just for him," Gunn said in disbelief and looked over at Angel again, shaking his head.
"Well," Cordelia finally began after a moment, "to be fair, I didn't buy this dress just for him. I do have other friends to impress, but you're the first one who's noticed my effort so that wins you some points."
"Points?" Gunn asked, looking over at her with a smirk. "What do I get to trade them in for?"
Cordelia raised her eyebrows in typical Cordelia fashion. "No getting ahead of yourself, bub. Compliments will get you far but not that far."
Gunn couldn't help but laugh then and he turned so that he could fully face her, bracing only his left elbow on the bar. "Wasn't tryin' to get anywhere. You looked like you could use a friend so here I am. And hey, I can't help admiring. You've got taste, Miss Chase."
He gave her an appreciative once over and Cordelia couldn't help but bask in the appreciation. She hadn't worked for two hours on her hair and makeup for nothing after all.
"Besides," he continued, pulling her from her thoughts, "I'm not your kind of guy and that's cool."
Cordelia should have had some kind of quick comeback but instead she laughed in a self-deprecating manner and pointed towards Xander, then towards Angel. "I'm at the wedding of ex-boyfriend number one, and quasi-ex-boyfriend number two is pining over his ex-girlfriend number one. I'd hardly say that my 'types' have ever been a safe bet."
Suddenly Gunn held out his right hand to her and she looked down at it in question before looking up at his gently smiling face.
"So stop betting," he said. "Have fun for one night without thinking about the future. My dance card's empty and I've got some moves that would make Michael Jackson jealous. I'm pretty sure that we can make at least one of the exes jealous with them."
"I don't think you've met Angel. He's dance-phobic and rhythm impaired. The only way he'll notice me on that dance floor is if I spontaneously morph into Buffy."
Gunn shrugged with his hand still held out to her, the friendly smile never leaving his face.
"So then let's just have some fun. I didn't drive across the country in a necrotempered SUV with five other people just to stand here and look pretty with you."
Cordelia was hesitant. She knew Gunn's offer was purely platonic and done under the banner of friendship, but the last thing she needed was everyone thinking that she was looking for attention. Still, it was a wedding and people were commonly known to let loose and dance. Heck, drink and dance were two major aspects of weddings.
And Gunn was right; they didn't drive across the country just to be wallflowers. They looked too damn good in their Gucci and Valentino to brood in the corner.
Nobody put Cordy in a corner.
Slipping her hand into Gunn's, Cordelia smiled and gave him a quick nod. She took one last sip of her wine, placed the empty glass on the bar and watched as he downed the last of the amber liquid in the crystal tumbler in his other hand before placing it beside hers. His smile turned to a grin as he led her over to the dance floor and Cordelia couldn't help but grin too. This night certainly was about to get interesting.
A new song started up and Cordelia had to stop herself from rolling her eyes. Grand Funk Railroad? Xander had obviously had a hand in the music selection. He'd made her listen to the song 'Some Kind of Wonderful' at least a hundred times when they were together. She'd mostly just found it some kind of annoying and totally not her type of music. Still, she kept her attitude in check and followed Gunn past the head table and onto the dance floor.
They weren't the only people there but they were the only ones who were dancing as a couple. As soon as they'd found a good place, Gunn had pulled her close and wrapped an arm around her lower back. She wrapped one of her arms over his shoulder and was pleasantly surprised when he started up a rhythm without expecting her to lead.
Suddenly the song didn't seem so bad anymore.
He laughed at the impressed look on her face and leaned in to say over the music, "I know you didn't think I was about to come out here and start doin' the cabbage patch."
"I wasn't expecting much," she said honestly. "But in my defense, your image doesn't exactly scream 'dancer'."
Suddenly Gunn's hand was holding hers tightly and he spun her away from him, then quickly pulled her back so that her back was against his chest. A few strands of her long dark hair fell in front of her face as she looked at him over her shoulder, a huge smile on her face now.
"Then you obviously don't know me that well," he said with a wink.
"Apparently not," she said in small wonder.
"You ready to show them how it's done?"
She couldn't help but laugh almost nervously when she saw the mischievous smile on his face. They were about to put on quite a show but she couldn't seem to care; she was looking forward to relaxing and finally having some fun! When she rested her hand over his on her stomach, he took that as all the go-ahead he needed.
He started swaying his hips side to side and she mimicked his movements perfectly. When he slid his hands down to her hips and gently held them there, she let him guide her hips to the music as he put a few inches of distance between them. She wondered why but then he spun her around so that she was facing him again and the hands on her hips tugged her forward. Her hands instinctively went to his biceps and held on gently, preparing to be spun again. It seemed that Gunn really was leading the dance, though, because instead of doing exactly what she'd expected and prepared herself for, he ran his hand from her hips and over her sides as they headed upwards. For a brief moment she was worried that he was going to cop a feel but he was a perfect gentleman and completely bypassed her goodies. Instead he ran his hands up to her shoulders and down her arms, which he lifted until they were wrapped over his shoulders.
Cordelia smiled even bigger when she saw that Angel had miraculously pulled his gaze away from Buffy for a minute to look in their direction. His mouth fell slightly open for just a second before he snapped it shut and clenched his jaw tight to keep it happening again. He watched for a moment longer before flicking his gaze back to Buffy and Faith who were now also watching the dance floor like nearly everyone else in the room.
"When she wraps her lovin' arms around me, it 'bout drives me outta my mind," Gunn sang along quietly under his breath as they continued to sway to the music.
Cordelia looked up at Gunn and smirked. "And he sings," she said, impressed.
Gunn didn't reply immediately. Instead he lifted his hands up and pulled hers down from around his neck, then quickly pushed her away again while holding onto her hands. Cordelia laughed as he pulled her back in quickly but ducked under one of her arms so that it was behind his head. He slid away from her with his hips swaying to the music, sliding his fingertips down her bicep and forearm until he reached her hand and again pulled until she spun into his arms. Her back was against his chest again and they immediately fell into step, swaying to the beat.
He finally leaned in, resting his chin on her shoulder so that he could say into her ear, "I'm multi-talented, girl. Stick with me and we'll blow 'em all away."
Pretty much everyone was watching them dance now as the other dancers had evacuated the dance floor to give them some room. The ring bearer and flower girl were the only other ones dancing and they were trying to copy Gunn and Cordelia's dance, much to their parent's dismay and embarrassment.
Cordelia looked over to where Angel had been standing and noticed that he'd disappeared. She felt bad for a split second until she looked over toward the head table. He was busy talking to Buffy while Faith stood on the edge of the dance floor and cheered her and Gunn on.
Oh yeah. She was definitely over him and his whole bad 'case of the ex' syndrome.
They finished off the dance with a few spins and twists that Cordelia hadn't been expecting but managed to pull off anyhow. Everyone clapped and cheered and even the DJ gave them a shout-out as the King and Queen of the dance floor.
Cordelia smiled. She wasn't called Queen C back in the day for nothing.
Instead of sticking around for another tune to come on, Gunn grabbed Cordelia's hand and led her over to the bar. As soon as they were there and people were back to paying attention to whoever was on the dance floor now, he lifted Cordelia in the air and gave her a big hug. She had no choice but to hug back which she did so with enthusiasm.
"God, you weren't kidding about your moves," she said as he set her back down on the ground.
"I'd never kid about my moves," he laughed and flagged over the bartender. He held up two fingers and the bartender poured them two small glasses of amber liquid.
Cordelia raised an eyebrow when Gunn passed her one of the crystal shot glasses. She didn't do hard liquor. Then again, she also never usually made a spectacle of herself in a room full of mostly strangers. Smiling, she took the glass and tipped it back, grimacing when the liquid burned its way down her throat.
"That's horrible!" she said as she handed the glass back to him.
Gunn signaled two more shots to the bartender and looked back to Cordelia while he waited for them.
"The more you have, the less bad it tastes."
"Ugh. I'm gonna need a dozen. And some tic-tacs."
"Charley boy, love the moves," came a voice from the side and both Cordelia and Gunn looked over to see Faith approaching.
"What can I say? I'm blessed," Gunn joked as he and Faith clasped hands, then pulled in for a one-shouldered hug.
"S'up Queen C, lookin' foxy as ever," Faith said appreciatively, earning an almost bashful smile from Cordelia. "Mind if I steal your partner for a spin around the dance floor?"
"By all means," Cordelia replied, then looked over to Gunn. "Save me one more?"
"I'll save you the rest after this one," he said with a wink, then let Faith steal him away.
Cordelia watched them with a smile from her spot at the bar, laughing when both he and Faith fought to take the lead. She was about to head closer to the dance floor to join everyone else in the fun when she sensed someone standing just to her side. She looked over to see Angel standing there, facing away from the dance floor with his elbows on the bar.
"It's nice to see you're having fun," he said, his voice quiet and sounding pretty bitter.
"Yeah, I am," Cordelia said nonchalantly. "It's too bad that it took someone else to show me a good time."
She watched his face as he tried to come up with a good reply but seemed to come up empty and instead settled for slouching his shoulders even more.
"You know, Angel, I understand that you lead a complicated love life. I've been patient, and hey - I've been impatient too. But you're still not over Buffy and I won't keep playing second fiddle to an ex who's moved on while you haven't."
"I've moved on . . ." he began but stopped when Cordelia shook her head sadly.
"No, you haven't." She kept watching him as he looked straight ahead behind the bar, avoiding her gaze. That right there confirmed everything she'd already suspected. "So it's time for me to."
She rested her hand on his shoulder for a moment, then turned and began to walk toward the dance floor to join the others. She stopped when she heard him mutter,
The way he'd said the name made Cordelia's blood boil. It was as if he hadn't been able to get the name out, or like it had left a bad taste in his mouth. She turned on her heel and raised both of her eyebrows, arms crossed over her chest.
"He's a friend, Angel. While you were brooding over Buffy, he paid me attention and tried to make me feel better. He noticed my dress."
"Who wouldn't? You're practically busting out of it."
Cordelia narrowed her eyes and clenched her jaw. This wasn't how she wanted this to go. She didn't want to fight. There was no point, and they'd only both end up hurt. They needed to cool down.
Walking back to the bar where the bartender had left the two additional shots he'd poured for her and Gunn, she picked one of them up and quickly knocked it back, appreciating the burn. She grabbed the second shot and splashed it into Angel's face, making him splutter as it dripped onto his suit jacket and tie.
There. That oughta cool him off plenty.
Smiling, she turned back to the dance floor to find her dance partner. She had some stress to burn off.
It was nearly three hours later when the DJ was playing the second to last song of the night. Cordelia had lost track somewhere along the way of how many songs they'd danced to but she didn't care. They'd had more fun than she thought possible, especially when the old Scooby Gang joined them on the dance floor with drinks in hand. She'd consumed more alcohol than she'd normally allow but it was a special occasion, and not just because of the wedding.
She was finally able to move on. It felt so freeing.
Feeling tipsy, she let Gunn lead all of their dances, not even trying to get the upper hand on him anymore. He'd laughed when she finally gave in and let him fully lead, and that's when they busted out some of their most impressive moves. They were now doing some kind of funked out, half-drunk tango to Debelah Morgan's song Dance With Me.
They'd danced a little bit closer with every song that passed and between the heat and the music and the booze, they were both getting a little bit bolder. Gunn dipped Cordelia backwards and let his hands brush over the sides of her breasts as he pulled her upright. She smiled a little bit flirtier and shimmied a little bit closer, ignoring the grins and smiles they were getting from the few remaining people in the banquet hall.
Faith and Buffy had been doing their own version of dirty dancing but tried their best to restrain themselves in front of the guests. Now that it was down to mostly Scooby and Fang Gang, they were full on making out as they danced, attracting the attention of almost everyone in the room.
The only person not watching them was Angel, who had been glaring at Cordelia and Gunn for the last hour. Cordelia had lost herself to the fun hours ago and was no longer paying him attention, so she failed to see how much more miserable he looked every time he saw them dance closer and closer.
She was mid-twirl when Gunn caught her around the waist and pulled her back against him, making them both laugh. They began to sway slowly - too slowly - to the beat, her eyes closed to stop the room from spinning and his eyes closed as he basked in her heat. In her smell.
"You smell like pears and honey," he mumbled against her hair.
His arms were still around her waist it didn't seem like he was going to execute a big dance move at any point so Cordelia relaxed against him and covered his arms with hers.
"I think what you mean is sweat and bottom-shelf booze," she said, her eyes still closed and that silly little tipsy smile still on her face. She tilted her head to the side without realizing it and Gunn leaned in, brushing his nose softly against her exposed shoulder.
"Well, whatever it is, it smells good," he replied.
Neither of them was quite prepared for it but between the music and the subtle flirting brought on by the drinking, he softly brushed his lips over her skin and hummed lightly. Cordelia knew she shouldn't have let it happen or that she should have at least felt weird about it but she didn't. The attention felt nice. The whole evening felt nice, in fact. Someone had spent the entire night making sure she'd had fun. She couldn't remember the last time something like that had happened.
So instead of fighting the feeling, she went with it.
She reached one hand up behind her and wrapped it around the back of his neck, keeping him in place with his lips on her shoulder. She closed her eyes again and a soft sigh escaped her slightly parted lips when Gunn's lips traveled up along her shoulder to the side of her neck. There was the sound of a metal chair scraping on the floor from across the room, followed by the slamming of a French door, but neither Cordy nor Gunn seemed to notice it.
The hands still on her stomach were caressing her gently yet more insistently and just as Cordelia was about to spin around in Gunn's arms, she felt someone tap her on the shoulder. They both looked up to see Lorne before them, Seabreeze in hand and a slightly apprehensive look on his smiling face.
"Hey kiddles, I don't want to be the bruise on a giant peach of a night, but the only sober one of us just walked out with the car keys. I think that's our cue to skedaddle."
Both Cordelia and Gunn looked over Lorne's shoulder to where Angel had been sitting earlier and saw only the empty metal chair tipped over on its side. As much as they both wanted to stay and keep having fun - and whatever else was happening, Lorne was right. Not only did they not think they'd find a taxi at this late at night, but they also had no idea where their hotel was or even what the name of it was.
Gunn regretfully loosened his arms from around Cordelia and stood up straight a step or two away from her. When he looked over at her, Cordelia smiled and swiped a few loose strands of hair from her face. Whoa. Cordelia Chase did not do shy.
"So . . . thanks and everything," she said quickly. She was trying to push down the feelings of desire that had pulsed through her when he'd been kissing her neck. The pink flush to her skin was a bit of a tell though.
"It was my pleasure," he replied.
He looked back toward the fallen chair and then at the floor before him, chuckling and shaking his head a little. Work was sure going to be interesting when they all got back to LA.
Lorne was already collecting Fred and Wes from their drunken dancing by the time Gunn had located his previously discarded suit jacket. It had been warm during the day but the night had become cool and Cordelia was beginning to wish that she'd brought a jacket like Angel had suggested.
As if he'd been reading her mind, Gunn came up behind her and draped his jacket over her shoulders. She looked back at him, a grateful smile on her face. She opened her mouth to speak but Buffy and Faith stumbled their way over to them and nearly knocked her over on the way.
"Think we can catch a ride with you guys?" Faith asked. "Giles bailed an hour ago so we lost ours."
"I'm sure we can fit you little love-dumplings in," Lorne said, his hands on their lower backs and ushering them towards the door.
They'd all made it outside in one piece and were completely relieved to see the SUV still there in the parking lot. Angel was in the driver's seat and didn't spare anyone a single look as they opened the doors and attempted to squeeze in. They'd rearranged three times before they'd finally managed to fit. Fred and Wes were in the front with Angel while Buffy, Faith, Lorne, Cordelia and Gunn packed into the back. There was still luggage and bags in the very back so the five of them were squeezed into the middle seat with Buffy on Faith's lap on one side, Lorne in the middle, and Cordelia and Gunn on the other side. She'd copied Buffy's position on Gunn's lap after a bit of finagling but didn't dare to look up at Angel's eyes in the rearview mirror. She didn't want to see the glare he was likely giving her, especially not after having such a great night.
The SUV took off at a steady pace and the car was completely quiet, everyone very aware of the awkwardness of the situation. Angel wasn't making the situation any easier with the sighing that he couldn't seem to stop doing. He was a vampire; he didn't need to breathe! The sighing was getting a bit old.
The road curved before them and the front tire dipped into a large pothole, shaking the SUV. Angel quickly recovered and set them on a smooth course again but they'd all been jostled and both Buffy and Cordelia had hit their heads on the ceiling. Gunn had immediately placed his hand on Cordelia's knee to steady her and hadn't bothered to remove it yet. They looked over at the private joke that Buffy and Faith seemed to be having as they shared a giggle together. Buffy looked toward the front and when it seemed that Angel's gaze was firmly on the road, she looked back to Faith and leaned in, giving her a soft but lingering kiss on her lips.
Cordelia chuckled and shook her head in amused disbelief. If anyone had told her that those two were going to end up with each other, she would have pointed out the obvious back in Sunnydale when they'd fought it so hard the first time around.
The fingertips on her naked thigh gently flexed and her thoughts were pulled back to the present. She wasn't sure if Gunn had meant to flex his fingers or if it had been an accident so she stole a look over at his face in the darkened vehicle. There's wasn't much room to move in the squished back seat but she could see that he was looking up at her, the tiniest of a smile on his face. She smiled back, the polite thing to do, but then her mouth fell open just the tiniest of a fraction when his fingertips flexed again. The small movement sent a spark through her body, re-igniting the feeling she'd had when they were dancing together.
Her breathing picked up slightly when his thumb started to move softly against her skin, tracing small circles on the inside of her knee. It sent a wave of goosebumps over her body that made her skin prickle in a tickly yet nice kind of way. She could feel his breath warm on the side of her neck when his nose nudged her jaw, making her tilt her head softly to the side yet again.
The hand on her knee very slowly slid up an inch or two and thank god that it was dark in the SUV. Lorne cleared his throat gently which made her realize that maybe it wasn't as dark as she thought, but instead of stopping Gunn's wandering hand, she grabbed the hem of her dress and tugged it down so that it wasn't obvious what was going on.
And hey, if she was being perfectly honest, she didn't really know what was going on either but it felt too good to stop.
Gunn's lips brushed over her jaw and she fought with everything she had to stop a little moan from slipping out. His thumb was tracing circles on her inner thigh now and between his touch and the booze and the feeling of quasi-euphoria from earlier, she was starting to feel a little bit unhinged. She let out a shaky breath when he closed his lips on her jaw and noticed too late that Angel had glanced back in the rearview mirror and had seen her with heavily lidded eyes.
Lorne must have caught it too because he suddenly clapped his hands together and sat forward, effectively blocking Angel's view.
"Won't you look at that? Here we are at our hotel already. Isn't it funny how a ride always seems longer on the way to someplace than on the way back?"
His little outburst effectively worked to perk up everyone in the vehicle, including Cordelia and Gunn who seemed to jump apart a little. His hand was back at his side and she adjusted her dress again, hoping that she didn't look too disheveled. Lorne muttered something under his breath as he sat back against the seat and Cordelia gave him a grateful smile. He took her hand and gave it a quick squeeze, then winked at her playfully. Well, at least she wasn't getting a lecture.
They pulled into a parking space near the side door of the hotel and it seemed as though Angel had jumped out of the vehicle before he was even done parking it. Everyone else piled out one by one and headed toward the large glass door of the hotel which Angel had disappeared through moments before. Cordelia dug around in her sparkly little silver purse for her keycard which she'd stashed there earlier.
She had been mad when Angel had suggested that they get separate rooms, but now she was more grateful than she could imagine. God, that would have been all kinds of awkward and unfortunate.
Their rooms were scattered on both sides of the short hallway and all giggled as they tried to figure out who was in what room. Fred and Wesley found theirs first and bade everyone goodnight before disappearing behind the painted white door. Buffy and Faith found theirs a bit further down the hall where the rest of the visiting guests were. They were staying in Cleveland for another week before heading back to Rome where Dawn was enrolled in school. Lorne quietly slipped into his room, offering Cordelia and Gunn a quick smile before disappearing for the night.
And then it was just Cordelia and Gunn in the hallway, awkwardly standing opposite one another seeing as that they discovered that their rooms were right across the hall from one another. They smiled and shared an awkward laugh or two, both of them seemingly waiting for a sign or signal from the other.
This was a lot harder without music!
"So, this is me," Cordelia finally said, hitching her thumb over her shoulder to indicate the door to her room.
"Yeah, I kind of figured," Gunn said, looking up from the keycard in his hands that he was anxiously fiddling with.
"Thanks again, for . . . everything. I really had a great time."
"I did too. You're a great dancer, Cordy. Think we definitely earned our title, King and Queen of the dance floor."
Cordelia smiled and looked down at her purse, then up at Gunn again. "Well . . . goodnight."
And after all he'd done for her, she couldn't just turn around and walk away. Instead, she walked over to him and leaned up on her tiptoes to give him a soft kiss on his cheek. He smelled like cologne and cinnamon gum and she found that her lips lingered there for longer than she'd planned.
Just as she began to pull away, he turned his head so that their lips were only a breath apart. Neither of them was sure who moved first but their lips met in a soft kiss which quickly grew from slow to whoa in only a few seconds. Suddenly Cordelia felt herself walking backwards and Gunn walking along with her until her back bumped into the door moulding. She reached behind her back and awkwardly fumbled with the keycard, trying to jimmy it into the electronic slot.
She nearly jumped for joy when she heard the telltale beep but instead pushed the metal handle down until the door winced open and the room sighed as it sucked in the air from the hallway.
"So about those multi-talents that you have . . ." she began and Gunn grinned against her lips as he subtly maneuvered them into the room.
"Girl, you haven't even begun to see my moves yet," he said as he used his foot to close the door behind them.
Sometimes the dancing didn't end when the music stopped.
Angel groaned from the next room over and put a pillow over his head.