Fighting for Attention
Summary: Cordy and Xander do what they do best.
Disclaimer: I don't own any of the BtVS characters. They belong to Joss Whedon, WB, etc. I'm not making any money, so please don't sue.
Author's Notes: Someone pointed out that in "Killed by Death", Xander was actually acting jealous 'cause Cordy was flirting with someone else, and Cordy was actually acting like part of the team and like a normal girlfriend bringing coffee and food. This is what I think caused these interesting changes of attitude.
Feedback: I live for feedback, so send it to lalaland(at)3n.net
Special Thanks: Special thanks to my beta-readers Rachelle & Jenn C.
The Bronze was busy as usual and a live band was playing. Xander sat by himself at a table watching Willow and Oz dancing. Cordy was flirting with the bartender, glancing over at him frequently. The more she looked in Xander's direction, the more she flirted with the bartender and the angrier she seemed to get. Xander continued to stare at the happy Willow and Oz on the dance floor. Finally, Cordy picked up her drink and stormed back over to Xander, leaving behind a very confused bartender. "Xander!!" she yelled as she slammed her drink down onto the table.
"What?" he replied absently, still staring at Willow and Oz.
"Earth to Xander," Cordy said, trying to get his attention. She followed his gaze out to the dance floor and saw exactly who she knew she would. Angrier than ever, she grabbed him by the collar and dragged him out into the back alley.
"Hey, what the ...? Cordy what's the big idea?" Xander complained, as he was dragged out of the Bronze.
"Well, I wasn't going to get your attention in there, so I figured this was the only way."
"What'd you mean?" Xander asked brushing himself off, and taking a step back.
"You are so obsessed with Willow and Buffy!! If one of them was on the dance floor, you wouldn't even notice a vampire feeding off of the people around you! As long as it wasn't Buffy or Willow, that is." Xander opened and closed his mouth helplessly, unable to come up with a response and looking honestly surprised. "You don't know do you. God, Xander I was totally flirting with the bartender and you didn't even notice. Why do I put myself through this?!?"
"You were flirting with the bartender?!? That is so like the Queen of Snob. You can't keep your eyes off another guy for a second!!" Xander said angrily, "No wonder you're still barely considered a part of the Slayerettes. Wolf boy's becoming part of the group faster than you are!"
"What?!?" Cordelia said, lost by the sudden change in subject.
"You heard me. All you do is worry about yourself and wonder how the apocalypse is going to ruin *your* day. You never worry that Buffy and Giles lives are hell."
"Oh, don't start on the poor Buffy tangent!!" Cordelia said, as she started advancing towards him. "You're the one who keeps going 'Yae kill Angel', not even thinking what that could do to her mentally and emotionally!! When she finally kills him, she may crack and turn as crazy as Dru. But nooo, all you care about is getting rid of a rival for her affections. You just can't stand that she would rather hold on to her memories than go out with you. If you're so hot for her, go! Grovel at her feet! It's obvious you would rather make a fool of yourself over a girl who will NEVER be interested in you in that way, than go out with me! SO GO!!" Cordy cried, on the verge of breaking into tears and pointing back at the Bronze.
"You are so wrong!! She needs to kill Angel to move on. And she could be interested in me, when she does. But-"
"If you honestly think she could fall for you, you are soooo delusional," Cordy said cruelly.
Xander's jaw tightened, before he replied, "But I do agree with you on one thing. I should go. After all, I won't be leaving much. You were never much of a girl friend or a Slayerette."
"And what is that supposed to mean??"
"Think about it. You never help when there's a problem. You just care about whether or not you're in danger. It doesn't matter if anyone else is in danger, as long as you aren't. You're never much more than an annoyance. And you didn't do anything a girlfriend does, either. You barely even acknowledged you were going out with me until recently!"
"Maybe that was my subconscious telling me how stupid it was to even THINK of going out with you!" Cordy was so close to tears she couldn't stand it anymore. She turned around and ran off towards the parking lot, so he wouldn't see her breakdown. Xander watched her for a moment before turning back to walk into the Bronze. Before he had taken even a few steps, he heard Cordy scream. He turned and ran in the direction of the scream, hoping he wouldn't get there too late. He was coming to a corner when he heard a familiar voice.
"Poor Cordelia. Did you and Xander have a fight?" Angelus asked mockingly. Xander stopped at the corner and stood out of sight listening. He heard a loud growl and a cross came skittering from around the corner. It was followed by a muffled squeak. "Tsk, tsk. Now won't it be devastating for Xander to find your dead body here and know he sent you running straight into my arms. Or maybe I should bring you just to the brink of death and send you through that beautiful glass wall. It's amazing how fast they fixed that after Buffy's birthday. By the time Xander gets to you, he'll have just enough time to see you die in his arms. Which do you prefer?" Xander hands were balled into fists, but he smiled as he heard Cordelia answer.
"I would say you'd need plastic surgery and 3 years of therapy before I'd take anything you offered. So why don't you let me go and I'll set you up an appointment with Buffy. I here she can do wonders with a scalpel," Cordy replied.
"Ah, famous Cordelia wit. Well I guess I'll just have to decide for you. I think I'll just kill you. That way Xander will have a guilty conscience. Besides, your blood always looked like it would taste wonderfully. I wouldn't want to waste any by leaving it in you." Angelus leaned down for the bite and Cordy stomped on his foot with her high heel, as Xander came careening around the corner. Angelus let go of Cordy, when she stomped on his foot and Xander toppled him over. Cordy took off for the parking lot expecting Xander to follow, but Xander approached Angelus angrily. Angelus had been stunned, but no more. When Xander approached, Angelus punched him in the jaw. Xander stumbled backwards as Angelus rose to his feet. Cordy, hearing the sounds of a scuffle instead of the sounds of running feet behind her, stopped and turned around. When she saw an angry Angelus approaching Xander, she started back towards the duo. As she ran, she grabbed a lid off of one of the trash cans in the alley. Angelus grabbed Xander by the shirt and was pulling him in for the bite, when Cordelia hit him in the back with the trash can lid. Angelus let go of Xander for a moment and Cordy hit him over the head with the lid. Xander took the opportunity to kick Angelus, while he was stunned. He was going to go in for a punch, when Cordelia took Xander by the arm and started dragging him towards the parking lot.
"COME ON!!!" she yelled as she started off towards her car again. Xander hesitated only a moment, before doing just that. They ran to her car as fast as they could. They jumped in her car and squealed off, as Angelus came running towards them. Cordelia drove straight to her house, which unfortunately was only about 4 blocks away. Cordelia jumped out and ran for the house with Xander hot on her heels. They knew it didn't take a vampire long to run four blocks. Cordelia fumbled with her keys for a moment before opening the door and slamming it behind them. They stood there panting for a moment. Cordelia had her head leaned against the door. She had been about to break down, when she ran away from Xander the first time, it was taking all her strength to keep her from breaking down in front of him now.
"Cordy, you okay?" Xander asked once he'd caught his breath. Cordelia nodded, not wanting to say anything for fear her voice would betray her. "Where are your parents?"
"Daddy never gets home before midnight. Mom's out of town with one of her groups," Cordy replied shakily.
"You came back for me," Xander said in half wonder.
"Of course I did. I wasn't done being mad at you yet," Cordy said crisply. Xander stiffened at the reminder of the argument they had had but minutes ago. It's strange how it seemed so long ago to him. Hearing talk of her death was still in the front of his mind. "Besides, you saved me. I had to return the favor," Cordelia said softly, her head still resting on the door.
"Well I couldn't let him kill you."
"Why not? Who'd miss me?" Cordy asked bitterly.
"I would. ... I - I mean the whole gang would miss you."
"You wouldn't miss me. You hardly even notice me, as more than an annoyance. You'd just keep drooling over Buffy and Willow and not even notice."
"I would too notice," Xander objected.
"You didn't notice when I was flirting with that guy. What kind of a boyfriend are you?" she said, turning to face him, suddenly angry.
"Me?? What kind of a girlfriend are you? You don't want to give anything up for this relationship. I risked my friendships for this and my reputation. You can't even give up enough time to bring snacks or coffee to one of the all night study sessions at the library," he shot back.
"I risked my reputation too. I gave up my friends for you."
"Would you honestly go back to those girls if you could?"
"Then you didn't give up much, did you?"
"I gave up everything, because they were all I had. When I gave them up, the only thing I had was the hope that your group might take me in and that you might stop looking at Buffy and Willow long enough to notice me," Cordelia told him, as she tried to hold back the tears that were beginning to run down her face.
"Well let's make a deal, since we both seem to be doing something wrong."
"What am I doing wrong?!?"
"You don't know how to act like a good girlfriend!"
"What get you coffee and doughnuts, like a maid or a catering service?"
"Once in a while. And maybe listen to my problems instead of telling me to shut up and kiss you."
"Well, you don't act like a good boyfriend!"
"What be jealous, when you're flirting with the bartender?"
"Yeah! Besides I was only doing that to try and get your attention!"
"I thought girls hate it, when guys are jealous!"
"We hate it when they act like jealous fools and don't listen when we tell them they have no reason to be jealous. Being jealous, simply means you care and don't want to lose me!"
"How can you doubt the fact that I don't want to lose you!! I tried to put a love spell on you to keep you from leaving."
"Well sometimes a girl likes to be reminded!"
"Fine! I'll try to be more attentive and jealous!"
"You don't have to be jealous, just don't act like you'd rather be dating Willow or Buffy!"
"Fine! What about you?!"
"I'll listen to you and be your catering service and bring you coffee and snacks!"
"You don't have to bring food, just listen to me, when I'm talking to you!"
"Fine! ... So, does this mean we're back together?"
"Of course, you idiot!"
"Well excuse me, Ms. Queen of Bitchiness."
"Is that the best you can do?"
"It's been a rough night! I had to save your butt!"
"I saved you!!"
"Yeah and then I had to save you, because you had to go play vengeful hero!"
"Yeah well you look pretty good, when you're coming to the rescue!"
"Yeah well you looked pretty good, when you were coming to my rescue too!"
"In fact you look great any time your angry!"
"Why would I be angry?? All Angelus was doing was about to kill my boyfriend!"
"Ex at the time!"
"Well what makes you think I was coming to your rescue! Just because it scared me to death to hear him talk about killing you, doesn't mean anything!"
"Well I think it does!"
"Well I think that you might actually have feeling, Ms. Icicle!!"
"Yeah well, I think that you actually noticed my scream!"
"I did not! I just happened to be walking in that direction. I didn't notice anything!"
"Oh yeah! Well since you said you'd start trying to notice things, the first thing you'd have to do is come back from outer space or wherever it is you live!"
"And how are you going to do that?? I can daydream through anything," he boasted.
"Like this!" Cordy said as she grabbed him by the shirt and kissed him. Xander's eyes widen for a moment, but he was used to this. He almost immediately wrapped his arms around her and started kissing her back. The kissing/groping session went on for a while before Xander actually tried to talk.
"So ..." Xander interrupted. Cordy sighed, but was quiet, although she kept her arms firmly locked about his neck.
"We're back together. And it's agreed," Xander said," I'll try to pay more attention to you and you'll try to listen more." Cordelia nodded, but said nothing. "What's the matter?" Xander asked suspicious of Cordelia's lack of sound.
"I'm listening," Cordy said with a smile.
Xander laughed, "I didn't mean you can't say anything. Sometimes real words actually come out and not just ranting." Cordy hit him in the shoulder and Xander laughed all the harder.
"You better go. My father will be home soon and he still thinks I'm in bed by nine and have only had two boyfriends."
"Only two boyfriends. How'd he find out about those?" Xander asked shocked by the small number.
"They picked me up for school dances. Come on I'll drive you home," Cordy said opening the door. Cordy drove Xander home and returned home without any sign of Angelus. When she went to take off her make-up before bed, she realized the she had cried in front of Xander and forgotten to fix her make-up afterwards. She smiled as she looked as her tear streaked face and remembered the last thing Xander had said to her tonight. As he was getting out of the car, he'd took her hand and had softly said, "You really are beautiful Cordy." He'd then kissed the back of her hand gallantly and gone inside. He had called her beautiful for the first time. Tear streaked face and all.
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