We Might Not Make It Home Tonight


Title: We Might Not Make It Home Tonight
Fandom: Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Author: Dralf
Wordcount: 1,231
Setting: Post-NFA
Characters/Pairings: Buffy/Angel
Rating: PG
Disclaimer: These are Joss Whedon's toys. I'm just playing with them.
Summary: During Ragnarok, an apocalypse unlike any other, the two champions take a brief break.
Notes: I wrote this for The Four Horsemen Challenge at writers_toybox. As soon as I read the challenge, I knew that I wanted to write something to do with Ragnarok, the end-of-world scenario envisioned by the Norse.
The title was a struggle to come up with. I had a list of possibilities including some in Old Norse. However, then I heard the song "Get Up" by Barcelona. One of the lines "we might not make it home tonight" stood out as the perfect title for this piece. I recommend listening to the song. It's beautiful. Now on with the piece...



Angel entered the abandoned gas station, carrying Buffy. The shelves had been knocked over by the frequent earthquakes, but there was enough open space once he’d kicked aside some candy bars to lay Buffy down. He set the scythe down beside her and briefly walked around the mart to check it out.

Once he had finished securing the entrance, Angel returned to her. He looked down, concern radiating in his brown eyes. “Are you okay?”

“Fine,” she winced, pain shooting through her body.

He knelt beside her. “Let me see.”

She pushed her torn shirt up to reveal the wounds. Three gashes, each a deep furrow, marred her stomach. Blood coated her skin, drying in patches. Numerous other scratches and bruises covered her skin, but they were negligible compared to these wounds.

Seeing Angel’s worry, she reassured him, “The puppy got the worse end of the bargain. I’m still breathing.”

Angel’s frown didn’t lessen. He stood up and walked around the counter. “There should be something to cover that up. Stay still.”

“Wasn’t planning on moving.”

Earlier, in the heat of the battle, she’d ignored the pain. She’d brought her scythe around and cleaved the wolf’s skull through. Then she’d fallen, adrenaline failing her, and Angel had had to carry her all the way to safety. Not that she’d minded. The Angel-carrying part, that is.

Angel returned with a first-aid kit and a damp towel. He pulled out the gauze and disinfectant cream. His eyes resettled on her stomach, at the sheer amount of blood around the scratches.
The bleeding had stopped, Slayer healing to the rescue, but that didn’t assuage Angel’s worry.

He ran the towel across her skin, wiping away the blood with smooth motions while ignoring the thirst brought about by the presence of her blood.

When Buffy spoke, her voice trembled slightly. “This is just our average, everyday apocalypse.”

It was a lie. This wasn’t their run-of-the-mill doomsday, both of them knew that. It was something different. Something worse. Before they’d gone off to fight, Giles had warned them that a battle unlike any other was on the horizon.

Admitting that this was something horrible didn’t seem like such a good idea yet. So Angel played along.

“Complete with sun blotting and everything.”

She smiled weakly at him. “They’re losing their originality.”

“There’s only so many ways to end the world before you have to start recycling ideas.” Angel glanced out the window at the black sky. “Though… the moon and stars disappearing is a new one.”

They quieted again as Angel finished cleaning the wounds. He squeezed out some disinfectant cream and began massaging it into her skin.

“I wonder what’s next... We faced a horde of demons and the Big Bad Wolf. What’s next?”

“Jormungand, the Midgard Serpent.” Angel recited, recalling the books he’d read on the topic.

“Well, it’s not like we haven’t killed giant snakes before.”

“He’s not just a giant snake. He’ll rise from the sea and stain the earth with his poison.”

Angel tossed the ointment to the side. He started wrapping the gauze around her stomach. She craned her back to help him.

“And we’ll meet him with everything we’ve got…” Wistfully she added, “Too bad we don’t have any explosives.”

Angel agreed, “A bomb would’ve been nice.”

Angel secured the gauze with tape. He stared at the white swath covering her stomach, lost in his thoughts. Could they really fight this? She was already so injured and the worst was yet to come. How would they stand against giants? Gods?

Of course, they’d already killed Fenrir. That counted for something. If there was one thing he’d learned from his time saving the world, it was that defying fate and prophecy was second nature to them.

“A kiss for your thoughts?” Buffy asked, breaking Angel’s concentration.

Angel sighed. There was no use dancing around the subject any more. “This isn’t our normal brand of apocalypse.” When she opened her mouth to argue, he stopped her with a quick kiss.

Seeing her scowl, he shrugged, “You did say a kiss for my thoughts. It’s not my fault I took it when you were about to speak.”

“Cheat,” Buffy muttered, smiling nonetheless.

Then he continued, “It doesn’t end with the snake. There’s a battle on the horizon. Demons, giants, gods – they’ll all be fighting to kill the other side without caring about the casualties the earth takes in the process.”

Again, Buffy opened her mouth to speak before being cut off. But this time rather than the welcome touch of Angel’s lips, it was the ground trembling beneath them. They waited, watching as the last bits of glass in the window frame shattered and dropped to the ground.

“So what? We give up because the enemy is bigger? Because the world’s already broken and it’s only going to get more broken when Your-money-gone arrives?”

His eyes narrowed. “I didn’t say we give up. We’ll fight.”

“But…” When he looked over at her, she rolled her eyes. “There’s a but coming here, isn’t there?”

He nodded his head. “This is big stuff, larger than anything we’ve ever faced. I don’t know if both of us will make it, let alone if one of us will.” Though if only of them was making it through, then he’d make sure it was Buffy returning to her home and family.

“Don’t say that! We’ll make it. Both of us.”

His eyes, without meaning to, drifted back to her bandaged abdomen. She followed his gaze and sighed.

“I’m fine, Angel. This’ll heal quickly.”

He sighed. “I know. I know you can take care of yourself and I know it’ll heal… I’m just worried.”

She smiled softly at him and reached out, taking his hand in hers. Gently, her thumb massaged his skin. They sat together in harmonic silence – neither were certain for how long except that it was quite a while – until Angel’s body went rigid and he turned towards the door. His grip on her hand tightened.

“What’d you hear?”

“Something large… slithering.”


At his nod, Buffy sat up, smoothing her shirt over her bandaged midsection. Angel stood up, his eyes scanning her for any signs of weakness as she got up.

“You’re still hurt.”

“We fight together or we don’t fight at all.” Angel looked tempted to agree to the latter option, but Buffy quickly added, “I was joking about the second part. We have to fight.”

“I know.” He smiled, “I love you.”

Buffy smiled back at him, teasing, “Don’t tell me we’re going to do the whole ‘end-of-days romantic good-bye before we die’ speech. I’d rather save it for when we win. The romance, not the good-bye.”

Angel’s eyes twinkled with amusement. “Think of it as a sneak-peek, not a farewell.”

“I like that. A sneak-peek for our after-apocalypse celebrating.” Buffy nodded and then leaned into him, passing the scythe to one hand where it wouldn’t get in the way. Their lips met, gentle at first, and then passionate and hungry and scared and loving. Finally they drew apart. “I love you too.”

Angel handed her the scythe and then grabbed his sword. They were ready, for better or worse.

Buffy turned to the door, determination and confidence in her voice, “Now let’s go and kick its scaly ass.”

Together, they walked out of the gas station to meet the Midgard Serpent.