Author: Dark Star
Written for B/A Rosebuds
Word Count: 478
Night time and the shops are closed. But whether they’re open or closed, Buffy is drawn to them. She’s always loved shopping; clothes and accessories can always hold her attention. Angel has no interest in the clothes shops, but he is content to wander by her side and be mesmerised by her cheerful chatter.
She peers in the illuminated windows and marvels at this season’s new shoes, or the colour of that beautiful dress.
They stop in front of Tomkins’ Antiques and embrace in the cool air. The road is quiet, and they want to enjoy each others’ company before they break for the night and return home. When the kiss ends, they stand together in silence. Buffy starts to speak but Angel’s shoulders tense up. Instantly alert, she looks along the road but can see nothing.
“What?” She asks.
“Nothing,” Angel says quickly. “We should get you home, it’s getting late.”
Buffy frowns, but doesn’t move. She looks into the shop window and scans the display of antiques but sees only the usual assortment of pictures, vases, and other old paraphernalia.
She gazes at him sternly and says again, “What’s wrong?”
His eyes dart to where a white shawl drapes over a small wooden table, and she’s not sure whether he’s looking at the shawl or the piece of furniture.
“It’s…. pretty…?” she tries.
Angel glances at her, and says meaningfully, “It’s Irish.”
She waits for more, but he says nothing else and she feels incredibly stupid because she doesn’t understand what he is hinting at. “Uh…. It reminds you of home?”
His eyes darken, and when he speaks, his voice is harsh. “My mother used to make those.”
“Well,” she says, attempting to break him out of his growing funk, “I should imagine a lot of women made them back then.”
Angel shakes his head, “You don’t understand, Buffy. Back in the day, the designs of Irish lace were prized, and patterns were a closely guarded secret.” He pauses, and looks her straight in the eye. “They passed down through the generations and usually stayed in the family.”
“Oh.” Suddenly understanding, she gasps, “That design was from your family?”
The set of his jaw says it all. “Yes.”
And then she remembers that he’d told her he’d killed his family and her eyes widen. “Angel… did your mother make that?”
He doesn’t answer, but he doesn’t need to.
“Do you still miss her?” she whispers.
His eyes say it all, and she hugs him tightly against her.
When they start to walk away she glances back at the window display. Tomorrow she will come back and see if she could afford to buy the beautifully intricate shawl. She isn’t sure if Angel himself would want it, but it’s a family heirloom - a piece of his history – how could she not want to have it?
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