**Part Three**

Buffy felt like she was being watched. Of course, that was because she was. Last night she had been somewhat shy while watching the game. The Dodgers had won versus Anaheim. Evidently, that was a big deal. Buffy didn't quite get what it was all about. Tonight, they were playing them again. She wore the hat and T-shirt Lindsey had bought her the night before. He had laughed when he picked her up earlier.

Last night there were a few others, but there was enough room that no one bothered them. Tonight, they had the suite to themselves. The game had just started, so she supposed that could change. She dipped a tortilla chip in cheese and ate it just as one of the Angels hit a ball to right field. She just about dropped the plate when she saw that the ball made it all the way to right field. On the ground.

"Oh, they're going to score," she said with a pout.

She glanced at Lindsey, who seemed focused on her more than the game. He was a good teacher. He had answered her questions last night. It had taken her a while to get used to right and left field being the batter's right and left. It didn't seem logical that way, but she'd gotten the hang of it eventually.

"Enjoying yourself?"

"I am," she said. "The food is great. It's like they knew exactly what we'd want."

He nodded and smiled. God, he was cute. And nice. When she saw they weren't alone last night she almost expected him to either turn around and leave or treat her like a kid sister or something. He didn't do either. He introduced her as a friend and she supposed let the others there draw their conclusions.

She dipped a chip into the cheese and held it out for him. His eyes widened and she couldn't help but smile as he took a bite.

"Thanks," he said once he'd eaten the whole chip.

"Sure. Want another one?"


She fed him another one. Her eyes grew wide when he kissed her fingertip before taking a bite of the chip. It was the last thing she should have been doing. Feeding him. It crossed a line. She tried not to be overly obvious about letting her hand drop.

"Sorry, I couldn't resist. You had some cheese sauce," he picked up her hand, grazing the pad of his thumb along the spot he'd just kissed, "right there."

"Oh. Thanks." Her voice sounded incredibly shaky to her. Oh God. She was so out of her league here. She had kissed Tyler, sure, but only enough to keep him interested. And Angel, well, the attraction was there but neither of them seemed willing to do anything about it.

"You're welcome."

"I, uh," she darted her eyes from the plate of nachos to the ballgame. "The next batter's up."

"So he is." He let her turn her attentions back to the game, but she sensed he was still watching her. He didn't release her hand either. It felt kind of nice, warm and comfortable to hold hands with him. Oh boy.

The next batter walked and the one after that struck out to end the inning. It was kind of neat watching the teams switch places. One coming in from the field, the other going out. And still he held her hand, which made eating nachos kind of hard unless she let the plate rest in her lap. Was he expecting her to do it again?

The bottom of the fourth inning found the Dodgers still behind by 0-2 and she and Lindsey still had the suite to themselves. She was tempted to ask him if he'd somehow arranged it, but she wasn't sure she wanted to know the answer.

Buffy returned from the bathroom. She knew the suites gave her the privilege of basically private bathrooms, and she had to admit that was a definite perk. She'd been to enough public events to know that bathroom lines sucked. She grabbed a soda just as she heard the crack of the bat making contact with the ball. It was a good solid sounding crack, too. She was learning to tell the difference a little.

"Oh he got a hit!"

She made her way to the window, setting her soda down as the ball went deep to center-left field. The crowd below them went nuts and she clapped her hands. "That was a pretty good hit, right?"

"It was a nice one. It got out of the ballpark anyway."

She regarded him as he stated the obvious. "This must be completely boring to you."

"Why do you think that?"

"You've probably seen a million games and here I am at my second one acting like it's the best thing since," she shrugged. "I don't know what, something really good."

"It's fun to watch you enjoy yourself. Most of the people I bring to games don't even really care what's going on down the field. They want to strategize or make a deal. That's one of the reasons I don't come very often. What's the fun of coming to a ballgame to discuss business?"

"You're sure you don't hate this?"

He stood then and she wasn't sure what to look at. The mini-celebration going on after the two-run homerun or the good-looking man walking toward her. The field seemed safer somehow. He reached for her, brushing some hair away from her face before cupping her cheek. Her eyes met his, there was no choice for her now but to look at him. She wanted to, she just wasn't sure she should.

"I'm positive, Buffy."

"Well, good, because I'm having fun."

"Fun enough to do it again?"

"Sure. Maybe we could even get tickets to real seats and sit down there."

"You'd do that?"

"Yeah. It'd be fun, don't you think?"

"I think if you were with me it would be."

"Oh well."

"I'll get tickets. We'll do it."

"I go home in August."

"I remember."

"Good. Okay."

She was running out of things to say. His hand felt so nice against her cheek. He was looking at her deeply. She had to force herself not to look away. She wasn't used to that type of look. Angel tried so hard to hide his feelings. Lindsey seemed a little confused maybe, but he wasn't trying to hide anything from her.

She sucked in her lower lip, nervously chewing on it. A soft groan from him made her pause. Had she done something wrong? She was just standing here. So then what? She was sure there was something going on down on the field, but everything faded away as he lowered his mouth to hers. She knew what he was going to do. She wanted him to do it. In the worst possible way. Her palms grew sticky and her heart raced.

She didn't have to wait long. When his mouth finally found hers she wasn't disappointed either. His thumb feathered along her cheek as she tilted her face up, granting him better access. She sighed softly, her lips parting, inviting him to deepen the kiss. It was positively dreamlike. The last time she'd been kissed like this was in her bedroom months ago.

She couldn't help but laugh, realizing that had been the night she found out Angel was a vampire. Lindsey wasn't as obvious about losing control as Angel was, but she could tell by the haggard breath he took when he drew away that kissing her had affected him, too.

"I'm not sure I should ask why you're laughing."

"Nothing. Sorry. Um, let's just say the last guy I kissed," she shrugged. How to phrase it? "He kind of freaked out on me."

"I can understand that," he whispered, brushing his mouth over her lower lip.

"You can?"



He stepped away then, letting his hand fall from her face. He took her hand, though, so he didn't completely stop touching her.

"I shouldn't have done that."

"Why not?"

"I, you're sixteen."

"Kissing me isn't illegal."

"No, but Buffy you're a good kisser."

"I am?"


"But you don't want to?"

He brought her hand to his mouth and kissed each fingertip. Her eyes fell closed and she let out a soft sigh when he grazed the skin between her thumb and index finger with his tongue.

"I'm just afraid if I start kissing you."

"Uh huh," she said, not really hearing what he was saying. He kissed the palm of her hand before placing it against his cheek. She felt the warmth of his face, the roughness that was his five o'clock shadow. Eyes still closed, her thumb found his mouth and traced his lips.

"God, Buffy, we have to stop."

"Okay," she whispered, though she really didn't want to.

"I'm sorry. I didn't mean to. You just look so pretty in your hat and shirt."

"Yes, what a fashion statement."

"No, it's cute."

She rolled her eyes.

"I didn't mean it like that either."


Lindsey tried to stop his heart from racing. This was way more than he'd anticipated happening. He was attracted to her, sure, but he assumed he could keep his hormones in check for a while. Certainly, longer than the second date. He was the adult here.

She looked at him with such trust in her eyes just then. It was nearly his undoing. At that moment, it wasn't the law that stopped him. He knew his firm could get him off on just about any charge brought up against him. No, it was the fact that he really liked her. It would be easy to give in to the attraction they evidently both felt and go on his merry way. He didn't want to do that, though.

She didn't talk about a past boyfriend, beyond mentioning the guy who'd gone psycho on her or whatever. He knew, though, she'd been hurt and that her heart was fragile. Her mind was likely right behind it, too. He could be a jerk and take what he wanted, leaving her damaged and bruised to the point she would never look at someone with trust in her eyes again. No one would know. She'd probably be too embarrassed to have fallen for a guy's smooth lines and moves to do or say anything.

He'd had girlfriends, but had been so focused on getting out of his hometown and then getting through college and law school that none was serious. What time he had to socialize he spent boning up on extra reading. Every little bit helped, and it had in the long run. Wolfram & Hart had recruited him, passionately.

"I don't know what this is. We've been out twice now, three times if you count the bonfire. I like you, and I think you like me."

"I do, Lindsey, I." He silenced her, placing a fingertip at her lips.

"I'd like to keep it that way. We can't do anything here anyway. Even if we could, I wouldn't do that to you."

She blushed then and he realized he probably took his thoughts further than she had.

"There's nothing wrong with kissing me, Lindsey."

"I suppose not."

"You do want to, right?"

"How can you even ask me that?"

"Just making sure."


"Okay then. I guess I wasn't sure until a few minutes ago. I mean, I don't mind your age. The last guy I liked was way older than me, too, but I could see where you might mind mine."

"It's not your age so much. Really, it's not. I like spending time with you. I had fun last night, am having fun tonight. I've been so busy becoming a lawyer and now that I am one trying to make junior partner that I very rarely take time for a social life."

"Why me?"

"Good question. I don't know. I mean, you're pretty, nice, smart, can smack a volleyball around, and I saw how you handled yourself swimming. So you're fit. And pretty. Did I mention pretty?"

"Yeah, you did."

"Okay, just making sure. And I saw the way you bucked up when that guy was trying to rub it in your face with the other girl."


"Huh?" What did cherries have to do with anything?

"That's her name, Cherry. With an i."

He laughed, it was kind of fitting. "I like you. I'd like to find out what that means."

"All right."

"So, I guess I'm saying I just want to ease into things. That's not to say I won't kiss you again or anything."

"Well, that's good."

"I think so, too. It's just, I'm busy, you know, and I guess I worry."

"Worry about what?"

"That if I don't call for a few days, a week, or whatever after something like a kiss happens between us you'll get upset."

"No, I understand you're busy."

"You say that now."

"You're right. I have no way of knowing how I'd react."

"And then there's you going back to your mom's in a couple of months."

"You're really thinking ahead."

"Well, I'm a planner, a plotter. How often do you visit your dad?"

"Not often."


"You could come to Sunnydale. I could visit him more. I just didn't because I was trying to settle in Sunnydale."

"That has possibilities, but if I'm busy preparing for a trial."

"Yeah, I know. We're getting ahead of ourselves, though. That's two months from now. You may not want to see me anyway."

He doubted that. He knew himself well enough to know that there was something about her that was special. He wasn't the type of guy to pick up random girls at the beach, no matter how good looking they might be. It left him wondering, somewhat frequently, why he had made an exception with her.

"I just want to make sure you know that's not why I asked you to these games. I'm not like that."

"No, I get it."


He wasn't sure how it had happened, but somehow the game had gone from between a 2-2 tie to a 4-4 tie at the top of the seventh inning. He wasn't sure what if anything they'd settled, but he felt a little better when they took their seats again to watch the rest of the game.

He didn't know why no one else was there tonight. Usually the suite was hopping. Maybe word had spread he had brought a date and not a client and the others at the firm were giving him space to make a move. He'd have preferred a crowd at the moment. He placed his hand over hers, settling them together at his thigh.

He could still taste her, feel her. God, she knew how to kiss. He had to wonder what the twerp he'd seen the night of the bonfire had been thinking letting a girl like her go. Her move had probably been the reason. That guy's loss was Lindsey's gain. He had to wonder about the guy in Sunnydale, though.

She didn't talk much about herself. She mentioned two friends regularly and the school librarian in addition to her mom. Otherwise, though, she didn't prattle on about herself like so many women he knew did. For all he knew, she could have a serious guy back home and was just looking for a summer fling. He didn't get that vibe off her, though.

The Dodgers managed to pull out their second straight victory in the short two-game series against Anaheim. After losing a couple in a row before last night's game he could tell the crowd was relieved to see the victories. One nice thing about the suites, parking was right there so they didn't have far too walk. Or long to wait getting out of the lot.

He pulled up in front of Buffy's home for the summer a short while later. He'd debated about offering to take her to dinner, but he really did need to get an early start tomorrow. And he wasn't sure he could trust himself to do the right thing with that kiss still fresh on his mind.

He shut the car down before lacing his fingers through hers. They were both quiet. Her dad had left the porch lights on for her, but there didn't seem to be any evidence he was waiting up for her. He wondered who she told him was taking her to the game.

"What are your plans for tomorrow?"

"Well, I should go to the Y."

"The what?"

"The YMCA."


"To work out."

"You don't need to work out."

"Sure I do."

She sounded so adamant about it. Hell, he couldn't see a damned thing wrong with her. Certainly nothing she needed to work on.

"If you say so."

"I do. I try to time it when there aren't so many people there, which is difficult to do in the summer."

"What do you do?"

"Swim. Life weights. Aerobics. I wish I could find an actual gym that has like boxing and stuff."

"You box?"

Now that surprised him.

"Well, I like to spar, yeah."

"You're so."

"Little. I know. I've heard it all before. Believe it or not, I pack a pretty good punch, though."

"I'll take your word for it."

"So, since there's no boxing ring at the Y, I settle for the basics to keep myself in shape."

"Anything else on the agenda?"

"Nope. I'm agendaless for pretty much the next two months."

"I'll try and call you."

"Call when you can, Lindsey. I really do understand you have a job and stuff."

"I'm glad you do. You can call me, too, you know."

"I know, but I don't want to bother you. I'd be afraid I was calling during a verdict or something."

"I wouldn't answer then."


He chuckled. "You can call anytime. I think I'd welcome the few minutes of relaxation."

"Talking to me is relaxing? My mom and dad sure don't think so."

"I think so."

"Oh well, in that case. I'll think about it."

He was hoping for more than that, but maybe she didn't call guys. Some girls were like that. He hadn't met many of them, but he knew they existed.

He opened his door, glad she waited for him to come around to her side and open her door. He enjoyed treating a woman nicely, with respect. It had been ingrained in him from childhood. His mama was the only good thing he could think upon about his life in Oklahoma. No one could say she hadn't raised him right. He walked her to the door. He noticed she had her key out and ready.

"I had a really nice time again. Thank you."

"Thanks for coming. It was fun. I'm glad you got to see two winning games."

"I'm not sure it would have mattered."

"Maybe not, but the atmosphere is a lot more fun when they're winning."

"I suppose so."

"I'll look into getting those tickets."


She glanced at her feet and did that thing with her lower lip she'd done earlier that had just about driven him over the edge. It was very appealing. She had this look in her eye when she did it, too, that just blew him out of the water.

He leaned in then, tilting her face up slightly with the edge of his hand and kissed her. This one wasn't unexpected like the first one was, but it was just as nice. Even if it didn't last as long. Her hands found his upper arms and she drew herself against him, deepening the kiss. They broke the kiss at the same time, she seemed to need to breathe as much as he did.

"I should go in now."

"You should."

"And you should go home."

"I should."

"Where is home anyway?"

"Ask me again some night when you're willing to see it."

Her eyes widened. She was surprised but not insulted. Good.

"Is it a secret?"

"No. Maybe I just like being mysterious."

"Oh well, in that case, I'll be sure to keep asking until you get so sick of me that you break down and tell me."

"Won't happen."

She laughed then and he noticed what a nice smile she had. It brightened up her whole face. He kissed her again, just the faintest brush of his lips against hers.

"Good night, Buffy."

"Good night, Lindsey. Thanks again."

"You're welcome."

He walked to his car, waited until she was inside and the porch light went out before getting in and driving away.

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