Author: Tonya (email@example.com)
Disclaimer: No own, no sue. Stop looking at me like that!
Distribution: SU, Acts of Fate, Precious Moments. Just ask and ye shall receive.
Feedback: I am feedback's whore and damn proud of it...
Summary: Chance meetings can change everything...
A/N: This story is AU. I’ve mixed up timelines and ignored things. Basics-- Angel is still in his dark period, Lindsey has his new hand is no longer at W &H and was never hung up on Darla….
Dedication: For Toppie, who waited patiently for this fic! (and who also threatened to kill me if I didn't post it here.... *whispers* send help!)
When she first strolled in, he had to take a double take to make sure he wasn't seeing things. He had sat back and watched her as she walked up to the bar, her head held high as if she belonged there in one of the fanciest bars in LA. Only when he heard her order a Cosmopolitan, did he recognize the voice.
"Imagine seeing you here," he said as he stepped up to her, his glass of vodka in his hand.
She turned to him, and he smiled at the way her lips twitched into a smirk. "What are you doing here? Shouldn't you be worshipping Satan or something right about now?"
He laughed quietly, sitting on the stool beside hers. Enemy’s Gal Friday or not, he had always admired that about Cordelia the few times he had had the pleasure to be in the same room with her. She wasn't afraid to speak her mind-- even if it meant making an enemy in the process.
"No, worshipping was at the last meeting. Besides, I'm not working for them anymore. Seen enough of the inner workings of the place. I'm done."
The bartender returned with her drink, and Cordelia reached for her purse to retrieve the money. "Add it to my tab please," Lindsey told the bartender before Cordelia could even get the twenty dollar bill from her purse.
She looked up at him in time to see him smile in acknowledgement at the bartender, who left to do as ordered. "I think I can pay for my own drink."
"Trying to be courteous. Seemed like the chivalrous thing to do."
Cordelia raised a perfectly arched eyebrow at him. "Chivalry? That died out with the knights and the white horses," she replied before sipping from her drink.
They sat in silence for a moment, he watching her and she focusing intently on her drink as she swirled it in her glass.
"So, can I ask what you're doing here? I thought Caritas was more your style?"
"My style?" she asked, turning to him quickly. "My *style*?! I'll have you know, mister, that I could have owned this little place a few years ago! Well, my *dad* could have owned it but still.... So before you go assuming what my *style* is, don't. You don't know."
Lindsey nodded as she turned back to her drink, sipping angrily. "Looks like I've touched a sensitive subject here."
"You're still here?" she replied quietly, not even looking to acknowledge him.
Lindsey smiled. Had to love her spunk.
"So how does Angel feel about your little trip out alone?"
"First of all, I'm a big girl. I can handle my own," she frowned. "And secondly, I don't work for Angel anymore. You of all people should know that. You're the reason he went all Dark Avenger and decided he didn't need his friends anymore."
"I was doing my job," he stated matter-a-factly.
"Well, congrats," she replied, lifting her glass to him in a mock toast. "For once, Wolfram and Hart actually succeeded at something."
"So Angel Investigations is...?"
Cordelia shrugged her slender shoulders. "Just Investigations. We don't have Angel anymore, and you know what? We don't need him. None of us," she frowned angrily. She glanced up at him. "Not that you care."
"I might surprise you," he replied.
"Highly unlikely, pal," she replied with a roll of her eyes and sipped from her drink.
"Aren't you the woman who just accused me of assuming things about people?" he smirked.
"That’s different. I'm not evil so the same rules don't apply...."
"I'm not evil."
Cordelia looked at him and raised an eyebrow again.
"Well, anymore," he admitted with a slight smile.
"As long as *you* believe it."
"So you think you know everything about me, huh?"
"What's there to know? Evil lawyer... mortal enemy of my former best friend..." She looked him over. "Nice taste in clothes. I think that covers it."
"You like?" he asked, tugging at the cuff of his button-down. "It's from the new Evil Spring line."
Before she could stop herself, Cordelia smiled.
Seeing this, Lindsey could only smile wider. He leaned closer to her as he asked, "Was that a smile I just saw?"
Her glass close to her lips, Cordelia scoffed. "No, that was a face spasm. Happens when I'm annoyed."
Lindsey chuckled quietly to himself as she sipped from her drink.
He could see why the vampire had fallen for the girl. She had to be one of the most gorgeous women Lindsey had set his eyes on in LA. And not the superficial bought-from-the-best-doctors-in-town beauty. The kind of beauty he had been fixated by in the girls he had admired when he was just a high school kid with dreams of being some hot shot lawyer. Beauty that wouldn't have given him the time of day back then, but would kick and claw their way to be at his feet now.
But those girls had just had the looks. No personality.
Cordelia Chase on the other hand? She had personality to spare, and it intrigued him. Made him want to know more. More about what made her tick, what made her laugh. More than just what color panties she wore or how'd she feel underneath him.
Lindsey snapped from his thoughts to see Cordelia staring right back at him, her eyes locked with his.
"Sorry. I'm sure you're used to it."
Cordelia smirked, Lindsey glancing at her glossy pink lips before turning his eyes to hers again. "Are you hitting on me?"
"Why would I do that?"
"Why are we even still talking?" she sighed.
"Maybe because I intrigue you...."
"Maybe because you *annoy* me."
"Really? Because I'm thinking more along the lines of intrigued," he smiled, leaning closer to her again. "If I'm not mistaken, you're not tied to that chair. You could have left a *long* time ago."
She returned the gesture, leaning towards him with a frown. "I was here first."
Lindsey shrugged. "Okay, I'll give you that. Just say the words, and I'll leave. It's that simple."
Cordelia's frown changed to a soft smile as she leaned in even closer. So close that Lindsey could smell her raspberry shampoo. "Lindsey?" she said gently. She waited a moment, her eyes locking onto his. "Leave." She pulled away quickly, sipping at the last of her drink.
Lindsey chuckled and stood. "I'm a man of my word. It's been nice chatting with you, Cordelia."
She glanced at him as she swirled the lime slice around the rim of her glass. "Wish I could say the same."
He nodded and turned to leave. He stepped away, but then returned over her shoulder. He leaned in close as he replied quietly, "So you're not the least bit intrigued?"
Cordelia held her breath, and her cell phone rang, breaking the moment. Lindsey took a step away and watched as she fished her cell phone from her purse.
"Cordelia," she sighed into the phone, glancing out her periphery vision at Lindsey.
"Cordy, where are you?"
"Um, just out. What's up, Wes?"
"Angel just left a message on the office machine. He wants to speak with us."
"So, he just decides that he wants to speak now? What about all the times we wanted to speak with him? What about the time when you were shot, Wes? Where was he then? Hey, here's one... How about all the talking he did when he barged into our office and threatened to *move me* for some stupid book? Where was he and all his *talking* then?"
"I know you're upset, Cordy. With good reason, but we should see what he wants."
"You can go ahead, Wes. I'll let you and Gunn handle this one. Just pass along a message for me, please? Tell Angel that *I'm* not ready to speak to *him*."
With that, she hung up her phone.
She turned to Lindsey who continued to stand back, his hands in the pockets of his slacks. She smiled at him as she replied, "Now what was this about being intrigued?"
Lindsey smiled and held out his hand for her to take, and she slipped her hand into his without hesitation.
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