Title: To Mend the Rift
Timeline: S4, AU. Riley is mentioned, but he’s a non-issue.
Synopsis: Giles realizes what the problem is between himself and Buffy. But, can he do anything to fix it?
Author’s Note: Thank you to wyvernwolf for another round of beta work!
Giles had a choice.
He could either stand still and watch her walk away and then slowly allow depression to overcome him, or he could put a stop to it here and now. Technically, he could put a stop to it later that night when she’d come by with her patrol report.
Glancing at the clock, he realized that he had a little less than an hour to make his choice. He’d made life or death decisions in less time…but, somehow those didn’t seem nearly as important as the one he was faced with now.
He knew that he’d been wrong a few weeks ago when he’d told her that it was time for her to stand on her own two feet. She was ready and capable, he knew that in his heart. But, she wasn’t confident…and that had been his mistake.
She had been steadily pulling away from him since. Even though he had recognized his error and gone after her, she had lost even more confidence…but was determined to prove otherwise.
The further she pulled away, the more anxious he felt. Their bond had formed quickly within their first year together, but with each passing day he felt it lessen just a tad bit more. He had no one but himself to blame.
There was also no one but him to fix it…if he so chose.
This was where the choice was dipping into a grey area. Would it do her more harm? Would it make her pull even further away emotionally if he decided to do everything he could to right what he’d done wrong? Because if it would, then he’d simply stand still and watch her walk away…and hope that she’d eventually return to him.
He couldn’t let his own emotions get in the way this time. That would do neither of them any good.
With that thought in mind, he pushed himself up from the couch and made his way into the kitchen. She had been turning down his offers of tea for the past few weeks, but it hadn’t stopped him from having it ready for her…just in case.
* * *
Buffy blew out a deep breath as she walked down the pathway that led to Giles’ apartment.
Not that long ago she would’ve basically skipped down that very same path. But that was before he’d thrown her out of his apartment. She sighed and ran her fingers through her slightly tangled hair.
Okay, so he hadn’t exactly thrown her out. But, he had told her that he couldn’t always be there for her and that she needed to start doing things on her own again. She wasn’t sure what had broken her heart more…the original statement or the heartfelt apology he gave to her when he came after her later that night. Seeing the tears in his eyes as he pulled her to the side, away from their friends, to admit that he’d been wrong…she had nearly forgiven him at that moment for any transgression he’d ever made in his entire life.
But she hadn’t…nor had she been able to forget what he’d said. And now she was more determined than ever to show him that she didn’t really need a Watcher. Besides, neither of them even worked for the Council anymore.
Did that mean that they didn’t need each other anymore?
As much as Buffy wanted to say yes, that was what it meant…she couldn’t. Because she did still need him…and she was fairly certain that he still needed her. But her stubborn nature wouldn’t let her admit that to him…not now…not after that night.
So she steeled her nerves, plastered a fake smile on her face, and gripped the doorknob. Taking a deep breath, she twisted the knob and pushed the door open.
“Hey, Giles…” She called out in a sickly cheery voice.
Giles sighed to himself…she wasn’t going to make this easy for him at all. “Good evening, Buffy. Tea?”
Buffy shook her head as he walked into the living room carrying a tray laden with tea things. “No. Thanks. Listen, there were a couple of vamps talking about the Bringer of Destruction or something. Other than that…it was a pretty quiet night.”
“The Bringer of Destruction?” Giles asked as he placed the tray on the coffee table. “That sounds rather ominous.”
“Or lame.” Buffy stated nonchalantly.
He smiled softly. “Or lame.”
His smile faltered as he watched her avert her eyes from him. Realizing that she was getting ready to leave, he made his final decision.
“We need to talk, Buffy.”
Her shoulders slumped, but she still didn’t look at him. “About?”
Reaching up, he pulled his glasses off and dropped them onto the coffee table as he sat down on the couch. “We’re damaging our relationship.”
Buffy’s eyes snapped towards him, obviously not expecting those words. “Interesting choice of words. We…relationship.”
“We’re both to blame.” Giles stated, his eyes narrowing slightly. “And would you prefer me to call it something else?”
She shrugged a shoulder and flopped down in the chair. “You normally call it ‘the bond’ or something.”
“Yes, well…the bond is lessening. And I need to know…do you truly need me here? Or am I just making things more difficult for you?”
Anger flashed in her eyes for a brief moment. “You’re the one who told me that you couldn’t be there at every turn any longer…that I should be able to do this on my own now.”
“I’m also the one who came running after you to tell you I was wrong.” Giles countered, his own anger rearing its head. “I’m doing all I can, but if you keep pulling away because of your stubbornness…our bond will be damaged beyond repair.”
She opened her mouth to retort, then closed it as he continued softly.
“If it hasn’t been already.”
Those five words, and the emotion she could hear in them, nearly brought Buffy to tears. And suddenly…she wanted nothing more than to mend the rift between herself and her Watcher.
“What do we do?” She asked after a moment’s pause.
“I don’t know.” He answered honestly, touched by the emotion in her voice. “If you’re serious about attempting to rectify the situation, I’ll do some research. This is going to take more than offering and accepting a few apologies, you understand.”
“Yeah…we’re damaged on a mystical level instead of an emotional level, aren’t we?” She sighed as he nodded. “Research it. I’ll help if you want…after all, we’re both to blame, right?”
“We are…but, this is something I’ll need to research on my own.” He poured a cup of tea and picked his glasses back up. “Get some rest…come back in the morning. Hopefully, I’ll have something figured out.”
Buffy nodded, knowing that he was planning to start researching as soon as she left. Pushing herself out of the chair, she felt the urge to give him a hug. It wasn’t the first time she’d felt that urge, but for the first time in many months she gave in.
He jumped slightly as she leaned down and wrapped her arms around him. After a moment’s hesitation, he returned the hug…closing his eyes as he heard her soft whisper.
“For what it’s worth…I am sorry, Giles.”
He swallowed and gently patted her back before the hug ended on its own. “It’s worth a great deal, Buffy. And I’m sorry as well.”
She smiled as she took a step away from him, the first real smile she’d given him in weeks. “Happy researching…”
He chuckled softly. “I’ll see you in the morning?”
“Bright and early. Oh…the Bringer of Destruction?”
“It sounded lame because it was one of the vamps’ nicknames apparently.” She smiled as Giles’ eyes sparkled in amusement. “Goodnight, Giles.”
He watched her as she walked to the door and gave him a small wave before stepping outside. As the door closed behind her, he glanced at the bookshelf closest to him. He had an idea of where to start, but he also suspected that it wasn’t going to be a clear cut-and-dry solution.
He took a sip of his tea and rubbed the back of his neck. The night wasn’t getting any younger, so he might as well get started.
* * *
Willow hid her yawn behind her hand, causing Buffy to glance at the clock.
“Oh…God, I’m sorry, Will! I didn’t realize it was that late…”
Willow waved her hand and smiled. “Don’t be silly. Tell me what happened next.”
Buffy paused for a moment and then picked up her coffee cup. “We hugged…said we were sorry…and he told me to come back in the morning.”
“That’s sweet.” Willow sighed as she rested her head in her hand. “He’s a sweet guy, Giles.”
“Yeah…” Buffy agreed, staring into her mug.
“And I know he’s been worried about what’s going on between you two.”
Buffy looked up, furrowing her brow. “You do?”
Willow nodded and smiled. “Yeah…he’s been all quiet. Quieter than usual. And…he gets this sad look in his eyes when someone mentions your name…”
“I make him sad?”
Willow’s eyes widened as she sat up straight. “No! The situation makes him sad. You make him proud. He’s so proud of everything you do…but, he seems sad that it’s taking you away from him…” Willow shook her head slowly. “That made more sense in my head…”
“No, it makes sense.” Buffy whispered, running her finger around the rim of the mug. “It’s the bond…we’ve done a lot of damage to it the past few weeks. And he doesn’t know how to fix it…and he wasn’t sure until tonight whether I even wanted to have it fixed or not.”
She continued, oblivious to the smile on Willow’s face.
“Put two emotionally challenged people in charge of their own emotions concerning each other and what happens? This. This is what happens. They push and ignore and argue…when they should be talking and working and…hugging. Hugging is good. Do you reckon he doesn’t hug more than he does because he’s British?”
Willow chuckled softly. “Maybe. You do want it to be fixed, right?”
“Yeah, I do.” Buffy stated sincerely. “I don’t like where we’ve ended up. And…I don’t feel as strong or as confident as I used to. At first I thought it was because I was starting this new chapter in my life…you know, college and all that? But…now when I really think about it…”
“It has to do more with Slayer stuff?” Willow suggested as Buffy trailed off.
Buffy shook her head and met Willow’s eyes. “No, not Slayer stuff. Watcher/Slayer stuff. I can’t do this without him…as much as I’ve been trying to prove to him that I can. Just because he’s not my official Watcher anymore doesn’t mean that our bond isn’t real.”
“He doesn’t work for the Council anymore, so that means he’s not an official Watcher anymore.” Willow babbled absently. “You don’t work for the Council anymore either…so does that mean you’re not the official Slayer anymore?”
“No.” Buffy grumbled. “His was a job…mine is a birthright.”
“I think it was more than a job to him, Buffy.” Willow regarded her carefully. “I did a lot of reading last year and…well, Bonding doesn’t happen all the time. And even if it does, it’s rarely as strong as yours seemed to have been…or happens as quickly as yours did.”
“I know…that’s not what I meant.” Buffy sighed. “The Council can stop paying him, can block his access to certain things…they can take his title. They can, on paper, stop him from being a Watcher. The Council can’t change the fact that I’m the Slayer. So even though I don’t work for the Council…I’m still the Slayer. At least…until I die.”
Buffy shrugged a shoulder. “I’m full of cheer these days.”
“What are you going to do about the bonding thing?” Willow asked, steering their discussion back to its original track.
“I’m going to go over to Giles’ place in the morning…and agree to do whatever it is that he’s found to fix it.”
“What if it’s something really gross? Like…you have to exchange blood or something?”
Buffy stared at her best friend. “We’re not becoming blood-siblings, Will. This isn’t about blood…this is about a mystical connection that has been…dislodged or something. But…if we had to exchange blood…I’d do it.”
Willow nodded, her smile returning as she gestured to Buffy’s now-empty mug. “Want another?”
“No…” She offered Willow a smile and gestured to the other side of their shared dorm room. “Should probably get some sleep. I told Giles I’d be over bright and early in the morning...”
Willow yawned again, this time not bothering to try to hide it, as she stumbled over to her bed. “Sounds like a good start to the plan.”
Buffy chuckled and stood up from the small table. “Goodnight, Will…”
“G’night, Buff.” Willow mumbled, her eyes already closed.
Giles had researched for most of the night. He took a break only when his eyes finally rebelled against him, refusing to focus on anything…much less the small printed text of an ancient language that needed to be translated.
At 4:22 in the morning, he stretched out on the sofa and closed his eyes…intending to rest for twenty minutes or so just to give the muscles in his eyes a chance to relax.
At 7:57, Buffy walked through the front door and opened her mouth to call out Giles’ name. She stopped herself when she saw a pair of large, bare feet hanging over the arm of the couch. With a smile, she walked around the couch and knelt next to Giles’ head.
She watched him for a few moments. He didn’t look completely at ease, but he did look more relaxed than she’d seen him in months. Glancing at the pile of books on the table, she sighed and wondered what he’d been able to find…if he’d been able to find anything.
And if he had found anything…could they fix their problem? Or had their bond been irrevocably damaged? She felt a lump form in her throat at that thought and shook her head. No…no, if he had found nothing or if what he’d found was bad news…he wouldn’t be asleep right now.
“Giles?” She whispered, smiling as his eyes instantly opened. “Hey…”
Confusion shone in his eyes for a brief moment as his mind processed the situation. It was light, Buffy was here, he was on the sofa. It didn’t take a genius to realize that he’d fallen asleep instead of just resting his eyes.
“Buffy, hello.” He responded sleepily after a couple of seconds. “What time is it?”
“About eight. Needed a break, huh?”
He yawned as he sat up, stretching his neck as he rubbed his eyes. “Mm…but, I think I might have found something before my eyes gave out.”
Buffy sighed softly. “Slow down…how about I make some coffee, you have a shower, and we’ll talk about what you might or might not have found once you’re fully awake, okay?”
“If I’m right, we’ll need to leave in the next few hours.”
Buffy raised an eyebrow as she moved to sit on the coffee table. “Leave? Why? Is Sunnydale going to implode or something if we stay?”
Giles stared at her in confusion. “What?”
She waved a hand and shook her head. “Nothing…what do you mean?”
“We’d need to go on a short trip.” He continued quickly when he noticed her eyes widen slightly. “It…it would only be twenty-four hours or so, but…we’d need to leave quickly. It involves a spell and the waxing gibbous moon.”
“What’s a gibbous moon and why do we have to wax it?”
Giles paused, a gentle smile appearing on his lips after a moment. “It’s a phase of the moon…preceding the full moon. The spell needs to be performed during the waxing gibbous moon for optimum effect…or any effect, really.”
“Oh.” Buffy stated, not feeling the least bit embarrassed about her earlier question. “And tonight is the waxing gibbous?”
At his slow nod, she took a deep breath and exhaled deeply. “So…field trip for us, then. What time do we need to leave?”
“Buffy – ”
“I made a promise to myself that I would do whatever I could to try to fix this…because I need you, Giles. And if that means me packing a bag and heading out of Sunnydale with you and doing a spell under the light of the not so full moon…then that’s what I’ll do.”
“It might not work.” He stated sadly, lowering his eyes.
“But, it might?” She asked, reaching over and covering his hand with hers.
“It might.” He confirmed, glancing at their hands.
“So…where are we going?”
He looked up quickly, surprised to see her smiling softly at him. “Mountain Mesa.”
Buffy furrowed her brow as she tried to place the name. Eventually she shrugged her shoulders. “Where’s that?”
“Approximately three and a half hours from here…in the Sequoia National Forest.”
“You need sequoias?”
Giles smiled and shook his head. “I need elevation and a man-made source of water. Mountain Mesa is on Lake Isabella.”
“And I’m guessing this lake was made by man?”
“Well, a dam actually. It’s one of the largest reservoirs in the state of California and it’s at twenty-five hundred feet, so…” He hesitated as he watched a bright grin appear on her face. “Um…it seems, by all that I’ve found, to be the best…and closest…locale for our needs.”
Buffy pulled her hand away from his and stood up, gesturing towards the hall. “Okay…so, I’ll make coffee while you’re in the shower and then we can head out.”
Giles started to stand, pausing in mid-motion at her next question.
“Do you need to pick up any magic weed before we leave?”
Buffy furrowed her brow and then blushed heavily when she realized what she’d said. “Oh! No, not that kind of magic weed…you know, herbs and stuff for spell-making…”
“Oh.” He whispered in relief, pushing himself up and shaking his head. “No. I have everything we need, so there’s no need to stop at the Magic Box on our way out of town.”
And then he smiled, causing her to tilt her head questioningly.
Buffy rolled her eyes and gently pushed him towards the hall. “Just…go get in the shower already.”
Giles did as he was told…chuckling the entire way. Buffy found herself chuckling as well as she made her way into the kitchen and turned the coffee maker on. She glanced at the books on the table and thought briefly about going through them.
She shook her head and pulled the large thermos out from under the sink. She trusted him…she had to trust him…or none of this would work.
If it was going to work anyway.
Not wanting to think about what would happen to them if it didn’t work, she busied herself with the coffee…and cookies…and then made a variety of sandwiches for the trip. After all, there probably wasn’t a McDonald’s in Mountain Mesa.
* * *
It was nearly eleven o’clock before they left Sunnydale…and for once it hadn’t been Buffy who’d slowed them down. She had teased Giles mercilessly as he’d inspected his pile of supplies for the third time. He had rolled his eyes when she’d asked him if he’d been a Boy Scout…and then merely replied that there was nothing wrong in making sure that you’re prepared for a trip.
Especially when there wasn’t a camping store or a magic supplies shop in the near vicinity of where they were heading.
And so, she had taken the list from him and checked off the supplies as he called them out. Finally convinced that he had everything that they’d needed, they had carried the items to the car.
Now it was almost three in the afternoon and, try as she might, she couldn’t help but remember the warm feeling she had experienced as they’d worked together in the simple task of sorting and loading supplies. She glanced at him as he navigated the rented SUV up a sharp incline and smiled.
He was chattering on about the trees, the air pressure, the warmth of the day…anything to keep from discussing the spell at the moment. The fact that he was trying to make this as normal of an outing as he possibly could made her smile grow even larger.
When she failed to respond with her usual ‘huh…really?’ to one of his more interesting anecdotes about the National Forest, he looked over at her. He was more than surprised to find her smiling broadly at him. He turned his eyes back to the road and blushed lightly.
“I do apologize. I realize that I’m prattling at the moment.”
“It’s okay…I like your prattling.” Buffy replied, reaching over to gently pat his shoulder. “So…where’s this lake? And why didn’t I bring my bathing suit?”
Giles shot her a quick glance. “Bathing suit?”
“Yeah, you know…for swimming? Lakes are good for swimming…”
Giles did his best to rid his mind of the image of her in a bikini and cleared his throat. “Um…not so much in September…in Mountain Mesa.”
“Oh…yeah.” She chuckled and looked out at the scenery passing them by. “Probably wouldn’t have time for swimming anyway, would we? I mean, we’re here on business…not pleasure.”
Before Giles could answer, the lake finally came into view. Buffy gasped softly as her eyes widened.
Giles nodded in silent agreement and carefully eased the car off the side of the road. “This should do quite nicely.”
Buffy was quiet for a moment, not moving when Giles killed the ignition. Realizing that he hadn’t moved either, she took a deep breath and turned her head towards him.
“You nervous too?”
He nodded slowly, lowering his head and staring at the steering wheel. “If this doesn’t work – ”
“Then we’ll find something that does work.” Buffy interrupted quickly, her eyes glistening as he met her gaze. “Okay?”
Seeing the resolve in her eyes, he nodded again and exhaled deeply. “Okay.”
After a brief mutual smile, they both climbed out of the SUV and got to work. There was a lot to do between now and when the moon was up.
* * *
Buffy sat on a log and watched Giles systematically build a fire. She knew that the fire was a major part of the spell, but she couldn’t deny the fact that she was looking forward to the extra warmth it would provide. Who knew it would get so cold up here after the sun went down?
A small smile played on her lips as Giles placed a piece of wood on the pyre in a very precise manner. Giles, that’s who knew. He had even told her to make sure she brought a heavy jacket…and she had pshawed him. She shivered again and wished that she had listened to him and brought something heavier than the denim jacket she was wearing.
“So…fire, chanting…and a bit of oil, right?”
“Hm?” He murmured as he placed the last piece of wood. “Oh…oh, yes.”
She looked up at the sky and sighed heavily. “I think it’s going to rain.”
“It seems as such.” Giles nodded, turning around to look at her. He narrowed his eyes in concern when he noticed her arms wrapped tightly around herself. “You’re cold.”
Her eyes darted to his. She opened her mouth to deny the claim, but stopped herself as he shrugged out of his own jacket and moved over to drape it around her shoulders.
“You’ll get cold.” She stated quietly, even as she pulled the jacket tighter around her.
Giles smiled softly and shook his head. “The fire…and the magic will warm me. You should’ve said something, Buffy.”
“What? And admit you were right? Again?” She grinned and looked up, easily finding the moon. “So that’s a waxing gibbous, huh?”
“It is.” He answered, his fingers reaching to carefully pull her hair out from under the collar of the jacket. “Are you ready?”
“Yeah…I am.” She looked into his eyes, easily recognizing his anxiety over the entire situation. “You sure I don’t have to do anything except sit here?”
“Well, there is the ritual of coating your palms in oil as permission to proceed…”
Smiling warmly, she held her hands out towards him…palms up. “Permission granted…”
He gave her a nervous smile in return and reached behind him for the leather bag resting on the ground. His smile faded as he pulled out a small bottle and uncorked it. Swallowing thickly, he lifted his eyes to hers and blew out a breath.
“It’s, uh…well, you can still…if you’re not sure, I mean.”
She pushed the arms of the jacket up as he stammered and then leaned forward to sniff the contents of the bottle. “Smells different than I was expecting.”
“It’s…cinnamon-based.” He stated with a gentle shrug. “It’s what I think of when I think of you.”
She started to question him, but then remembered that he’d been giving her a way out just a few seconds earlier. “So…you gonna oil me up or what?”
His eyes widened, her choice of words conjuring up an image in his mind that simultaneously embarrassed and aroused him. “Um…you’re sure?”
She tilted her head slightly and stared at him. “This has to be done before the sun rises, right?”
When he hesitated, she wiggled her fingers and slanted her palms towards him. “I’m positive, Giles. If this is how I tell you and the higher powers that this is what I want, then…do it. Because, I’m telling you that this is what I want. Okay?”
He stared at her for a few more seconds and then, after giving her a subtle nod, whispered a few words in Aramaic. The oil glowed briefly before Giles carefully poured a fair amount in the middle of each of her palms.
Buffy had no idea what he was saying as he used his thumbs to slowly spread the oil out until her palms were completely covered. It didn’t really matter though…she trusted him and the richness of his voice immediately put her at ease. When she heard him say ‘we’re ready to continue’, she knew that the rest was up to him.
“Good luck.” She whispered, earning her a genuine smile from him.
“Thank you.” He replied before moving over to the pyre.
Buffy gasped as he waved his hand and a flame blazed brightly. Watching him perform magic always amazed her…especially when it looked as effortless as what she’d just seen. She looked down at her hands when they began to tingle.
The spell had begun.
Nearly two hours later, Buffy gave a pained gasp as the bond snapped back into place. Hearing Buffy’s gasp and feeling a sudden stab of despair flow from her, Giles lowered his sweat-drenched head and sighed.
The spell had obviously been a success, but he hadn’t expected for her to feel his emotional pain. However, considering the depth of despair he had felt and the sadness he’d heard in her gasp, he knew that she had felt every ounce of pain he’d been in for the past few months.
She shook her head as her eyes filled with tears. “Oh God, Giles…I’m so sorry. I…I didn’t know…”
Hearing her sob, he turned around to console her…only to find that she was running towards the car. He jumped up quickly, ignoring the exhaustion he felt from the two hours spent kneeling in front of the fire and chanting, and chased after her.
He caught up to her just as she reached out to grasp the door handle. Wrapping his arms around her, he pulled her back against his chest. She struggled for a moment, her words muffled by her sobbing.
“Shh, Buffy…it’s alright.” He whispered, tightening his hold on her as he pressed a kiss to the top of her head. “It’s alright…”
“I wasn’t trying to hurt you!” She cried, covering his arms with hers.
“I know. That was what kept the pain from turning to anger.” He admitted softly, slowly turning her in his arms. “But it was stopping us from being where we need to be. Please…don’t upset yourself further over this.”
“How can…how can you even still care? I hurt you…over and over…”
“Because you are Buffy.” He wiped her tears away with his thumbs, gently tilting her face upwards. “Please look at me…”
She did as he asked and, for the first time since their bond had been mended, their eyes met. She swallowed hard as his thumbs continued to brush lightly against her cheeks.
“I’m so sorry, Giles.”
“As am I.” He responded, offering her an understanding smile. “Buffy, we both did things…said things…that unintentionally caused pain. We need to move ahead…and leave the pain behind. We can do that now…we can…”
He paused as his eyes darted to her lips. He moved his left hand until his thumb was resting at the corner of her mouth. He cleared his throat and looked into her eyes once more.
“We can…what?” Buffy asked, resting her hand against his chest.
“Move ahead.” He answered, glancing at her lips again. “We can move forward…”
“Giles?” She licked her lips as her fingers traced a button on his shirt. “What’s happening?”
“I’m…not sure.” He whispered in a surprised voice.
“Is it the spell?”
“I don’t know.” He replied honestly, dropping his right hand to her shoulder.
“But, you feel – ”
Her question died in her throat as he covered her mouth with his.
He expected her to push him away. When he felt both of her hands on his chest, he prepared himself as best he could, sure that he’d feel the hard ground against his back in mere seconds. Instead, he gasped in surprise when he felt her tongue slide against his and her fingers curl against his chest.
He responded in kind, pushing his tongue into her mouth as he took a step forward. She grunted softly as her back hit the side of the SUV, sliding her right hand to the back of his head before he could pull from the kiss.
A groan rumbled in his chest as he picked her up with ease and held her against the car. Her nails lightly scratched at his scalp as she wrapped her legs around him. Just as his left hand moved underneath the jacket she was still wearing to cup her breast, the rain moved in…pelting them with large, cold drops of water.
Giles broke the kiss quickly and glanced at the sky, muttering a soft curse as he reached for the handle on the car door. He pulled it open and gently pushed her onto the back seat before climbing in after her. He closed the door and ran his hand through his hair, sighing as droplets of water ran underneath his shirt collar.
Buffy shrugged out of the jacket and bit her bottom lip as she watched him try to make sense of what had just happened.
He lowered his head and stared at his hands. “I don’t know.”
“Huh?” She asked, thoroughly confused.
“Why I kissed you…I don’t know.” He took a deep breath and slowly turned his head to look at her. “But…Christ, I don’t want to stop.”
Buffy wasn’t sure where the sudden rush of arousal came from, but she didn’t question it. Instead, she lifted her hand to the side of his face and stared into his darkened eyes.
“This could very well be a side-effect of the spell.” Giles murmured, even as he moved closer to her.
“Maybe…” She mumbled, pulling his shirttails out of his jeans. “Maybe not.”
This time, she interrupted him with a kiss.
Thunder rolled, lightning flashed, and the downpour continued. Neither of them seemed to notice…each of them too busy taking turns gaining and relinquishing control of the heated kiss as their hands roamed over and underneath their clothing.
Buffy carefully pushed him back against the seat and climbed on top of him, moving her mouth to his throat as he tilted his head back and groaned. He allowed her to kiss and lick his sensitive skin for a few moments before recapturing her mouth.
The kiss grew out of control, teeth scraping against tongues and lips as their passion increased. Giles pushed her shirt up and slid his hand underneath Buffy’s bra. As he cupped her firm breast, Buffy slipped her hand into Giles’ jeans that she had been able to unbutton and unzip without his knowledge.
As her fingers curled around his hard cock, Giles’ rationality resurfaced. He pulled his mouth from hers and wrapped his arms around her, holding her tightly as he rested his forehead against her chest and fought for his breath.
“Giles?” She whispered breathlessly as he reached between them and carefully pulled her hand from his erection.
“Not here…not now…not like this.” He choked out, looking up at her as a flash of lightning lit up the car. “Magic can do…strange things…to people. And if this is merely a reaction to the spell…”
He reached up and gingerly brushed her hair back from her face. “We could tear apart everything we’ve accomplished tonight if we continue.”
“But…you…we…” Buffy started, stopping only when Giles softly asked a question.
“Did you want this before?”
When she hesitated in her answer, he heaved a heavy sigh and carefully moved her off of him. “We, uh…we should head back to Sunnydale.”
“We’ll be alright, Buffy. We just need some time. Let the magic die down and we can discuss this further…if you want.”
Without giving her a chance to protest, he climbed out of the backseat and into the pouring rain. He rebuttoned and rezipped his jeans as he slowly made his way around to the other side of the car. By the time he opened the driver’s door, he was completely drenched…but found that he didn’t really care.
He glanced at her through the review mirror and felt a sense of sadness as he watched her stare out the side window. What she didn’t know was how hard it had been for him to stop. She would’ve known had she understood how to use their bond…how to tap into his emotions.
But, she didn’t. And for that, at this moment, he was eternally grateful.
“Are you alright?” He asked as he started the car.
She nodded, glancing at him quickly before staring down at her hands. “I think I just want to go home.”
He wanted to climb over the seat and pull her into his arms.
Instead, he whispered an ‘okay’ and put the car into gear…and began the journey down the mountain.
* * *
He pulled into a hotel parking lot just outside of Bakersfield. She didn’t question him…in fact, she was more surprised that he hadn’t stopped sooner. She could barely see the road through the rain and she had perfect vision. She couldn’t imagine what it had looked like through his eyes.
She followed him into the lobby, her eyes taking in her surroundings as he checked them in. When he requested two rooms instead of one, she felt a flash of anger. The credit card dropped from his hand and landed on the counter.
The check-in clerk smiled, obviously mistaking Giles’ surprise for clumsiness. Giles muttered an apology and pushed the card across the counter.
Giles looked down at Buffy, wondering why she’d been so angry. But, she’d tamped down her anger quickly, taking a deep breath as she accepted the key to her room from the clerk. Giles watched her make her way to the stairs as he signed the registration form.
By the time he’d retrieved his credit card and had been given his key, she was gone. He sighed sadly and made his way to the elevator.
She may have the energy to climb the stairs to the fifth floor, but he certainly did not.
Giles paced in his room, occasionally glancing at the door to the adjoining room.
Her anger had confused him. The timing of her anger confused him even more. He thought that if she was going to be upset with him, it would’ve been earlier…when he brought their passion to an abrupt, unfulfilling end. But, she hadn’t been angry then…she’d been sad, but understanding.
She wasn’t asleep, he could sense her restlessness. In fact, he could tell that she was wide awake…her mind was racing. Just like his.
He paused at the door once more, this time placing his hand on the knob. He considered his options for a moment and then took a deep breath.
“Petu.” He whispered, a brief smile appearing on his lips as he heard the lock slide open.
His smile faded as he opened the door to find her glaring at him.
“What are you doing?” She demanded, glancing pointedly at the doorknob. “That was locked.”
“We should talk.”
Her brow furrowed. “We should talk? That gives you the right to break into my room?”
And that was when he felt it. The anger was just a mask for a profound sadness that threatened to drop him to his knees. Knowing that he couldn’t immediately ask her about the sadness, he put his hands on her shoulders and looked into her eyes.
“Please…don’t be angry with me.”
Those six words, and the desperate tone in which they were said, broke through her defenses. Tears filled her eyes as she shook her head.
“I’m…I’m not angry, Giles.”
“Talk to me.” He whispered, fighting the urge to pull her into his arms.
“Why won’t you hold me?” She whispered in return. “You want to…don’t you?”
He nodded slowly, sliding his hands down her arms. “Very much so.”
“I don’t think that what happened in the car had anything to do with a magic hangover.” Buffy blurted, continuing as his eyes widened in surprise. “I think you’ve wanted to do that for a while…but, there’s always been something in the way.”
“Buffy, I – ”
“I can feel you.” She interrupted. “I don’t know what it all means…I don’t remember being able to feel you before.”
“Nor do I.” He sighed, dropping his hands and walking across the room to sit at the table. “At least…not to this degree.”
“I don’t think you wanted to stop.”
He gazed at her for a few moments, silently scrambling to bury his emotions even deeper…just in case she had managed to teach herself how to tap into the bond. When he felt that the truth was safe, he cleared his throat.
“I didn’t…but, I thought it was best that I should.”
“And now?” She sat down on the edge of the bed and watched him as his jaw clenched and then released. “Because I’ll be very honest and say…I want to finish what we started.”
He looked away quickly, his hand curling into a fist on his thigh.
“It was best that you stopped it then. It wasn’t the right time, or the right place. I mean…it could’ve been the magic. Still could be the magic…at least partly, anyway.” She stood up and walked the few steps needed to stand at his side. “Not completely though.”
He looked up at her as she ran her fingers through his still damp hair. She smiled nervously as he swallowed hard.
“You turned me on, Giles…you’re the one who needs to turn me off.”
Her wording may have needed work, but he knew exactly what she meant. He’d left them both in a state of sexual frustration…and nothing was going to ease his frustration except for release. And he was certain that she felt the same.
His hand trembled lightly as he reached out and touched her side. “This could be a huge mistake.”
“Could be.” She agreed, leaning down to brush her lips across his. “But, I think it would be worse if we didn’t do something about it.”
He knew her logic was flawed, but…for the life of him, he couldn’t come up with the flaw itself. When her tongue slipped between his lips, he began to seriously question whether there was a flaw or not.
With a groan, he began to return the kiss as he pushed himself out of the chair and backed her towards the bed. Before the backs of her legs touched the bed, she had unbuttoned his shirt and pushed it open. He broke the kiss and gently pushed her onto the mattress before shrugging his shirt off and placing his left knee on the bed between her legs.
“You’re sure?” He asked in a gravelled voice, his hand resting on her thigh as he stared down at her.
She answered by sitting up enough to pull her shirt over her head, nodding as she tossed it to the floor. “I’m sure.”
“Christ…” He murmured as his eyes dropped to her lace-clad breasts.
Buffy opened her mouth to tease him, but he lowered his mouth to her left breast and gently bit her nipple through the lace…causing a moan to escape her lips instead. Reaching between their bodies, she unbuttoned her jeans before working on his…allowing her fingers to caress his erection as she lowered his zipper.
He lifted his head when she slipped her hand into his boxers and wrapped her fingers around his thickened shaft. Sure that he was going to stop her like he had earlier in the night, she tightened her grip and gave his cock a long, hard stroke. He groaned loudly, pushing his hips against her hand as he tugged at the open waistband of her jeans.
Smiling shyly, she lifted her hips as he held himself above her with his right hand next to her head. “You’re not going to stop us again, are you?”
He pushed himself up into a kneeling position and carefully removed her hand from him. He shook his head as he hooked his fingers into her belt loops and slid her jeans down her thighs.
“I’m fairly certain that I can’t stop again…” He licked his lips, shifting enough to give himself the room needed to pull her jeans completely off. “I’m only so strong, Buffy.”
As he roamed his eyes over her nearly nude body, she realized that he was far more dressed than he needed to be. Moving quickly, she sat up and grabbed his upper arms…easily flipping him onto his back and smiling down at him.
Before he could really process what was happening, she had rid him of his jeans…placing a warm, open-mouthed kiss on his inner thigh before slipping her fingers under the waistband of his boxers. Their eyes met as she slid them off and threw them over her shoulder.
“I’m only so strong too, you know…”
“Bloody hell…” He grumbled, reaching for her when she glided her lips along the length of his erection.
She arched an eyebrow as he pulled her up. “Um…I was getting ready to – ”
“Not now.” He whispered gruffly, positioning her so that she was straddling his hips. “I’d love to feel your mouth on me, but…I’d prefer to be inside of you. And, right now…I can’t do both.”
“Oh…” She grinned, rocking her hips against him. “Later then?”
“Mm…perhaps.” He pushed the remaining flicker of doubt from his mind and moved his hands to her hips.
His eyes darkened as he easily ripped the sides of her silk underwear and pulled the scrap of material away. Instantly feeling her wet heat against his hard flesh, he groaned and tightened his hold on her hips to stop her movement.
“Giles…” She whimpered, placing her left hand on his chest.
Licking his lips, he glanced at her chest. “That should come off now.”
“And then what?”
A grin played at his lips. “Take it off and we’ll find out, yes?”
She chuckled softly and reached behind her, freeing the clasp and letting the lace bra fall from her shoulders. Giles inhaled sharply and lifted his upper body enough to run his tongue across her left nipple.
“Oh God…” She cried in pleasure, cradling the back of his head in her left hand. “Don’t stop…”
In response to her request, he held the nipple between his teeth…gently biting as his tongue flicked against it. When he felt her nails scratch at his scalp, he smiled inwardly and sucked as hard as he could.
Throwing her head back, she moaned his name and successfully broke his hold on her hips. Instead of trying to stop her again when she started rubbing her wet core along his erection, he moved with her…biding his time until he felt it was the right time.
When he heard her soft curse and felt her fingers curl in his hair, he knew the time had come. Quickly rolling their bodies, he pulled his mouth from her breast, delighting in her groan of protest. Kneeling between her thighs, he tenderly rubbed his right hand over her abdomen.
“Buffy? Open your eyes…please…”
She did as he asked, though it took some effort, and lifted her legs over his hips when she saw the unspoken question in his eyes. She gave him a nod and lowered her gaze as he shifted closer. For a brief moment, he was concerned…and then he realized that she was watching.
And that aroused him even further.
He grasped his cock with his left hand and guided it through her wet folds, groaning softly as he eased the head into her. Her legs tightened around him and she met his eyes once more. They stared at one another for long seconds, neither of them daring to move further. Then she swallowed and whispered one word.
“God, yes…” He muttered, leaning over her to kiss her as he pushed his entire length into her.
Any thoughts of taking it slow, taking his time…completely dissipated when she moved her hands to his back, gently raking her nails over his skin as he thrust into her time and time again. His mouth found her neck, teeth scraping against her skin before giving a quick, sharp nip. He smiled against her flesh as she screamed his name and bucked her hips against him.
As much as he’d wanted to make love to her over the past few months, he couldn’t deny the ecstasy he was feeling from pounding his cock into her…and feeling her give as much as she was taking. He’d made love to quite a few women before…and he’d fucked even more…he was sure of it. But right now, at this moment, he couldn’t remember any of them.
In fact, he’d be hard-pressed to remember anything…the names of their friends, the town in which they lived…he knew they had a duty, a bigger purpose in life. But, right now all he cared about was the fact that she was crying his name in ecstasy…begging him for more and not caring how wet the sheets underneath them became.
And then he felt her dig her nails into his sides as her inner walls convulsed around him. She bit his shoulder to muffle her screams as she came hard, flooding his thrusting cock with her hot juices. He cried her name as he pulled out suddenly, leaning over her as he wrapped his hand around his wet flesh.
She came again when she felt his come, hot and thick, land on her stomach as he uttered a low curse. He rubbed the head of his cock through the fluid on her skin as he fought to catch his breath.
He looked down at her when he heard her whisper his name, her body drenched in sweat and come and thought he had never seen her look as beautiful. And then he collapsed at her side, pulling her into his arms and kissing her softly.
Words of love were not uttered…something that they both noticed as exhaustion overtook them. Giles felt a pang of guilt as his eyes closed, but couldn’t be sure if it belonged to him or Buffy. Try as he might, he couldn’t find the strength to form the words to ask.
And so he held her, hoping that would be enough for now.
Giles woke slowly, opening his eyes when he reached for Buffy and only found cool, still-damp sheets. He sat up and winced as his muscles screamed at him.
“Buffy?” He called softly, tilting his head as he listened for any reply.
Thinking she was probably in the shower, he climbed out of bed and yawned. He glanced down at his shoulder and smiled at the faint bruise surrounding a bite mark. As he passed the table on his way to the bathroom, something caught his eye. He paused, realizing it was the hotel stationery pad.
He exhaled sadly when he recognized Buffy’s handwriting scrawled across the top page. Getting the distinct feeling that he wasn’t going to be happy with what was written, he picked up his discarded boxers and slipped them on.
* * *
Buffy watched the scenery pass her by, the morning sun casting a warm glow on everything.
Except for her.
* * *
I woke up this morning and you looked so peaceful, so…adorable. And then I got really sad because the last thought I had last night before I fell asleep was one of yours.
‘This shouldn’t have happened.’
I figured that you would try to make it all about the magic. And even if it did happen only because of the magic, I don’t want to hear that. Because then that would mean that what happened was wrong.
And nothing that felt that wonderful could possibly be wrong.
And then if you couldn’t convince me that way, you’d probably start in on the age difference. And I really don’t want to hear that…especially considering I gave my virginity to a 243 year old vampire. I know what our age difference is, and I may be only 19, but…any issues we have have nothing to do with our ages.
So, I laid there in bed and watched you sleep. The more I watched you, the sadder I got…so, I figured that the best thing I could do would be to catch a bus back to Sunnydale.
Please don’t think that I’m avoiding you. I’m not, I promise. I just couldn’t listen to the things I know you were going to say. Not right now and definitely not here.
I’ll come by tonight after patrol, unless you don’t want me to. If you don’t, just…I don’t know…call Willow and ask her to tell me that you found something about some demon and that it’s harmless so there’s no need to come over or something.
If I don’t hear anything, I’ll come over. And we’ll talk. Because I think we really need to talk.
Please don’t be angry with me.
Giles sighed and folded the letter as he looked at the alarm clock next to the bed.
He wanted to be angry with her. But, he knew that she was right. He would have tried to justify their actions last night with magic or age. And if neither of those worked, he was sure he would’ve come up with something else that made perfect sense in his head.
Maybe what happened last night shouldn’t have happened. But, it had…and there was nothing that either of them could say or do that would change it.
And he wasn’t at all sure that he would change it if he could.
He glanced at the folded letter and smiled softly, placing it on the table as he stood up. She very well may only be nineteen in years, but she had grown so much since the day he met her. As much as he wanted to argue with her over it, he knew in his heart that she had done the right thing by leaving before he awoke.
He’d take a quick shower and then head home…and try to find something to keep him busy until Buffy stopped by after her patrol. He had no intentions of calling Willow and making up some demon as a coded request for Buffy not to come.
He wanted Buffy to come.
And he was more than a little surprised that that particular thought didn’t stir up a guilty one in response.
With a slight nervous chuckle, he made his way to the bathroom. The quicker he had a shower, the quicker he could get back to Sunnydale.
* * *
After wandering around each of the local cemeteries three times and finding absolutely nothing, Buffy decided to call an end to the evening’s patrol. She gave a wave to the TA from her psychology class as she passed the Espresso Pump and headed for the nearest payphone.
Her fingers trembled slightly as she dialed the number. She curled the cord around her finger and watched a mass group of teenagers come out of the cinema as she waited for Willow to answer.
“Hi, Buffy…is anything wrong?”
Buffy smiled at the concern in her best friend’s voice. “No, boring night. I was getting ready to head over to Giles’ to give him my non-report, but wanted to see if maybe he’d called while I’ve been out…”
“No…why would he call? I mean, he’d know that you’d go over after patrol…” Willow paused. “Unless something was wrong…is something wrong?”
“No.” Buffy chuckled softly. “There was this demon that I ran into last night…Giles said that he’d give me a call if he found anything out.”
“Oh…okay. Well, no…he hasn’t called. What about the bonding thing? Has he figured out something about that?”
“Oh yeah…” Buffy grimaced, realizing that she hadn’t seen Willow all day…and that, unlike her not seeing Giles, was more avoidance than anything else. “Um…we’re all bonded again…better than Super Glue.”
“Really? How? When? And…why am I just finding out now?”
“I’ll tell you all about it tomorrow, I promise. Okay?” Buffy bit her lip as Willow huffed impatiently. “It’s just…Giles and I have to talk a few things through…just to make sure everything’s okay. You know?”
“No, I don’t know…but, I get that you want to make sure it’s all a hundred percent better before you start talking about it.”
Buffy gave a small sigh and smiled. “Thanks, Will. I really have to go, but…I promise, we’ll talk tomorrow.”
“Okay. Tell Giles I said ‘hi’.”
“Will do. G’night, Will.”
Buffy’s smile faded slightly as she hung up the phone. It should’ve made her feel better that Giles hadn’t left a message with Willow. But, all it did was stir up the butterflies that had been resting quietly.
She swallowed hard and started walking towards Giles’ apartment.
* * *
Giles was in the middle of polishing the swords in his arsenal for the second time that evening. The yataghan fell from his grasp when he felt her approach. He watched the door, waiting for it to open.
He waited for a few seconds, furrowing his brow in concern. She was there…on the other side of the door…he was certain of it. He concentrated on her presence for a moment, needing to make sure that she wasn’t injured.
He gave a sigh of relief when he felt no pain, just…an intense wave of nervous energy.
He picked up the yataghan and walked over to the stairs. He sat on the third step, the tip of the sword resting lightly on the floor as he stared at the door.
Five minutes later, the door slowly opened and Buffy walked in. Giles’ grip tightened on the hilt of the sword. Buffy smiled and closed the door, gesturing at the weapon with a small wave of her hand.
“Expecting the worst?”
“I’m sorry?” He asked, confusion seeping into his tone.
“The sword.” She licked her lips nervously and took a step closer. “Plan on using that on me? Beheading or…something?”
Giles shook his head as he stood and made his way over to the weapons cabinet to return the yataghan to its home. “No…not at all. I was…cleaning them.”
Buffy followed him, her eyes widening at the sight of the sparkling blades. “Wow…all shiny and everything…”
“Yes, well…I polished them a couple of times…” He cleared his throat and turned to look at her. “Would you care for something to drink?”
She arched an eyebrow at him as he walked into the kitchen. “What? No asking how patrol went?”
“You did three rounds, no vampires…no demons…” At her look of surprise, he shrugged a shoulder and offered a shy smile. “I could feel your arrival…but became concerned. I just wanted to make sure you weren’t injured.”
“Oh…” She replied absently. “I’ll have whatever you’re having.”
Giles nodded and poured her a cup of tea. By the time he had added a sufficient amount of milk and sugar to hers and made his way back into the living room, she was sitting on the couch and staring at the open book on the coffee table.
“Here you are.” He stated softly, handing her a mug of steaming tea as he sat down next to her. “How are you?”
“You’re not upset with me.” She whispered, glancing up at him as she cradled the mug in both of her hands.
“No, I’m not.” Giles replied, taking a sip of his own tea before placing his cup on the table. “I wanted to be, but…you were right.”
“You think that we shouldn’t have…”
He smiled as she trailed off. “I thought we shouldn’t have. But, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking today…and I’ve discovered that I was possibly wrong in that thought.”
Reaching over, he pulled the mug from her hands and set it next to his. He took a deep breath and exhaled slowly before turning towards her.
“That thought occurred because I was hiding something from you. I buried something so deeply for fear that you would be able to tap into it. And I worried that it would…frighten you.” He swallowed nervously and took her right hand into both of his. “But, then…reading your letter made me realize what a grave mistake I made.”
“This bond thingy doesn’t make you less confusing, does it?”
“No. I’m inherently confusing.”
“Giles…” She sighed at his gentle teasing and then looked into his eyes.
Suddenly she was glad that she wasn’t still holding a mug of tea, certain that if she had been it would’ve spilled all over his very expensive wool and silk rug.
“Oh my God…” She gasped, her eyes widening in shock. “Oh my God!”
He cleared his throat and gently tucked a strand of her hair behind her ear with trembling fingers. “It wasn’t the magic, it wasn’t the age difference…and it wasn’t just sex, Buffy.”
“Oh my God…” She whispered again. “You…Giles, you…”
Seeing that she was seemingly lost for words, he continued as his thumb tenderly stroked her cheek.
“I was hiding my love for you…and I’m so very sorry that you thought that I thought it was a mistake.”
“But…you thought it shouldn’t have happened…” She blurted out.
“As it did. I wanted you so desperately…and Christ, I wanted to make love to you. But, instead I…we…” He swallowed and lowered his eyes for a brief moment. “I wanted to make love with you. And that’s what I meant by what I thought. I should’ve made love with you…not…it should’ve been more than it was, Buffy.”
When she was quiet for longer than he was comfortable with, he looked up at her. “Please say something.”
She licked her dry lips and exhaled a deep breath. “I need you to say it. You’ve skirted your way around it, but…I need to hear you say it, Giles.”
His eyes misted lightly as she slowly lowered her own barriers.
“I love you, Buffy.” He whispered, running his fingers through her hair. “I’m in love with you. And have been for months.”
“That’s why you stopped us in the car…” She whispered back, resting her palm against his neck as he gave her a slow nod. “I didn’t know I love you, Giles…not until last night.”
It was his turn to look surprised at her admission. Before he could question her, she leaned up and pressed a tender kiss to his lips.
“I do love you though. And I think I have for a while now, but just didn’t recognize it through the whole ‘stand on your two feet’ thing.” She reached up and traced the contour of his ear with the tip of her index finger. “And I really think that’s why last night felt so wonderful to me. Because I love you.”
“Are you hungry?”
Buffy looked amused at his seemingly oddly-timed question. “No, not really. Mom fed me a twenty course meal when I was over there this afternoon. Why?”
He glanced over at the clock on the wall and, to her surprise, laughed. “I was going to ask you to dinner, however…at this time of night, there’d be no restaurants open.”
She grinned and moved closer to him, draping her right arm over his shoulder. “Well, there’s always breakfast.”
“You’d like me to take you to breakfast?”
“No…” She chuckled, sliding her left hand up his chest. “I’d like you to make me breakfast…when we wake up in the morning.”
His eyes lit up as he suddenly understood what she was saying. “Who says we’ll actually go to sleep?”
“Are you asking me to stay?” She countered, placing a warm kiss on his chin.
“I rather think I am.” He lightly fingered the hem of her shirt. “Will you? Stay, that is…”
“Depends. What was the deal with you coming on my stomach last night?” She grinned as he blushed heavily, pulling at a button on his shirt. “Not that I really minded…obviously.”
“I, uh…well, I wasn’t expecting…um…I didn’t have a condom.”
“I’m on the pill.” She pulled the button free and pressed a kiss to his throat. “So, you could come inside of me…if you want…”
“Oh, Christ, I want.” He groaned, pushing her shirt up slightly. “But…”
“After last night I don’t think anything is too soon, Giles.” Buffy stated in between kisses along his neck. “There’s love here…major love…on top of the whole ‘you really turn me on’ thing.”
“I do?” He whispered, sliding his left hand around to her back as she climbed on top of him.
“You know you do.” She grinned, taking his other hand and holding it against her chest. “You can feel it…and you know it’s real.”
“I…should probably still research it. The spell – ”
She placed two fingers over his lips and shook her head. “You go anywhere near a book right now and…well, you’ll rue the day…”
He stared at her for a moment and then snorted a soft laugh. “Rue?”
“Rue.” She confirmed, grinning even as she nodded dramatically. “Totally rue.”
He glanced at her lips as he moved his right hand to cover her left breast. “Well, I certainly wouldn’t want that…”
“No…you certainly wouldn’t.” She whispered as she leaned into him.
“I love you.” He whispered, gazing into her eyes as he slid his hand down to her bare hip. “I should’ve said it last night…or at least allowed you to sense it…”
She smiled and lovingly caressed his cheek. “Would either of us believed it last night?”
“Probably not.” He replied, gently pushing her onto her back. “I’m having a hard enough time believing it now.”
She gasped as he lowered his mouth to her stomach. “Hard time believing you love me or that I love you?”
He smiled against her skin, and then lifted his head to look up at her as he moved to lie between her legs. “Neither. I’m having a hard time believing I am where I am…at this very moment.”
“Where? In bed with me?”
He shook his head and lowered his mouth until he was sure that she could feel his warm breath against her damp curls. “No…five seconds away from burying my tongue within you.”
“Oh…” She gasped, which turned into a moan when he did just that. “Oh, God…Giles…”
He moved slowly, thrusting his tongue into her a few times before relocating his mouth to cover her clitoris. He pushed two fingers into her as he sucked and licked at her clit. Her hips bucked against him, her hands moving to the back of his head holding him in place.
He trained his eyes on her face, smiling inwardly as she moaned and whimpered and writhed. He continued his slow pace, groaning against her aching flesh when he felt her inner muscles contract around his fingers.
Her right hand fell from his head, reaching above her to wrap around one of the spindles in the headboard as her body began to tremble. “Oh…my…God…”
He briefly considered pulling his mouth from her and replacing his fingers with his cock…but, then decided against it. Not only was her left hand holding him where he was, he had the sudden desire…need…to make her come with his mouth.
So, instead of pulling away, he slowed the thrusting of his fingers and sucked harder at her clit. He was rewarded with a loud scream and hot juices flowing over his fingers. He continued sucking until she gasped his name.
At that point, he pushed himself up her body and shoved his tongue into her mouth. She sucked at his tongue greedily, marveling at the taste of her in his mouth. She vaguely registered the sensation of wet fingers gripping her thigh as he guided her leg over his hip.
She threw her head back, effectively breaking the kiss, and moaned in ecstasy as he slowly pushed his hard cock into her still-quivering core. He lowered his mouth to her neck, tenderly licking the sweat from her skin as he slowly thrust his hips against her.
His movements seemed to be a work of precision…and simultaneously random. She tried to follow him, to figure out the pattern of his thrusts, and then she realized that there was no pattern. This had nothing to do with a routine, a design for pleasure…and everything to do with his desire to keep her aroused for as long as possible.
She raked her nails down his back, leaving thin red welts in their wake, and allowed her body to move of its own volition. She was only mildly surprised when she suddenly matched his rhythm. Slipping her left hand into his sweat-drenched hair, she moved her mouth to his ear and whispered her love for him and gently nipped at his earlobe.
He growled adorably and rolled onto his back, holding her tightly and taking her with him. Squeezing her hips as she resumed their lazy pace, he smiled up at her.
“This is how it should’ve been…” Seeing the tears in her eyes, he pushed himself up and wrapped his arms around her. “I love you, Buffy. This is what it should’ve been…”
“Ssh, love…” He whispered, peppering soft kisses along her jaw. “Just…Christ, don’t stop.”
With her arms around his neck, she quickened her pace and captured his lips in a passionate kiss. She broke the kiss slowly after a few moments and rested her forehead against his.
“I love you too, Giles. God...I love you so much…” She panted, feeling her second orgasm rapidly approaching. “So…so…much…”
Sensing how close she really was, he kissed the tip of her nose and slid his hands back to her hips. “Do you want to…to come like this?”
She thought for a moment and then shook her head. “Not this time.”
Before he could question her, she leaned to her right…silently answering the question that he hadn’t asked. He groaned softly and followed her as she rolled onto her back and wrapped her legs around him.
“Oh, God…Buffy…” He murmured, burying his face in the crook of her neck.
“Mm-hm…” He pushed himself up slightly and looked down at her. “Beautiful.”
“Come…with…me…” She panted as she felt her orgasm nearing the crest. “Giles…Ru…GOD!”
He watched her writhe beneath him, felt her hands gripping his shoulders before scratching her nails down his chest. And then he felt her inner walls convulse around him as she screamed his name…or a version of his name, at any rate. He wanted to smile at her near-use of ‘Rupert’…but, instead he cried her name and emptied himself deep within her.
As her legs fell to the mattress, he carefully pulled his softening cock from her and rolled onto his side next to her. She shifted so that she was facing him and smiled as they both fought to catch their breath.
“Wow…that was…um…indescribable.” She stated between breaths.
“I must say…that was a much more, um…pleasurable…outcome.”
Buffy snorted and placed her palm on his sweat-slicked chest. “Pleasurable? That’s one word for it…”
“Yes, well…” He murmured absently, licking his dry lips and pulling her closer to him.
She paused nervously and looked into his eyes. “Would we be here now if the spell hadn’t been done?”
“No.” He answered softly, tightening his grip on her hip to keep her from pulling away from him. “But, only because I never would have told you how I feel. And that would have been the biggest mistake…of my entire life.”
Seeing the confusion in her eyes, he offered her a gentle smile and continued.
“The spell didn’t cause me to fall in love with you, Buffy.” He leaned into her and tenderly brushed his lips across hers. “You were able to accomplish that on your own…quite well, I might add.”
He chuckled and ran his fingers through her hair. “Mm-hm.”
She opened her mouth to ask him how long he’d been in love with her. What came out was a different question altogether...and obviously not one that Giles was expecting.
“So, what does this bond thingy do…and how does it work?”
“Um…well, it…it bonds us…mystically, not physically. Obviously not physically because…” He hesitated when he saw the amusement dance in her eyes. “And well…you can feel some of my emotions…much as I can feel certain ones of yours. And…”
“You have no idea, do you?” Buffy asked as he trailed off helplessly.
“No, not really.” Giles admitted on a soft sigh. “I do know that we were always stronger when the bond was in effect though. But, as for what its main purpose is…and how it works…I’m afraid that will require some research.”
She sighed heavily, watching as he drifted into thought. “I’m getting ready to lose you to books for the night, aren’t I?”
“What? Um…no. No, I was just…well, it needs to be researched.” His eyes drifted down her body as her hand brushed over her breast. “But…I’m sure it’ll be fine to wait until…later.”
Buffy grinned as she pushed him onto his back. “Good answer, Giles. Very good answer.”
Just as she started to reward him for his brilliant choice of answers, the front door opened forcefully and Willow’s frantic voice called Giles’ name. Giles cursed and jumped out of the bed, reaching for any article of clothing within his reach.
“Yes? What is it, Willow?” He called out as he tried, unsuccessfully, to slip his arms into Buffy’s t-shirt.
He shot Buffy a warning glare as she huffed a quick laugh. Hearing footsteps rapidly ascending his stairs, he turned back around with the intentions of telling Willow that he’d be right down.
“There’s another werewolf in town…and this one’s a girl and trying to make baby wolves with – ” Willow ran into the room and stopped suddenly, eyes widening as she stared at Giles. “Ohmygod! You’re naked! Um…oh…oh…God, I’m sorry, I didn’t…”
Despite the announcement of another werewolf, Buffy couldn’t help but laugh…which attracted Willow’s attention.
“OH MY GOD! You’re naked too! With Giles! And…holy shit! Is this what you meant by Super Glue?”
Giles furrowed his brow even as he scrambled to find at least a pair of boxers. “Super Glue?”
“Bonding.” Buffy stated as an explanation, tucking the sheets around her. “No…well, maybe, but…no. This is so not how I wanted you to find out…”
Willow shook her head, studiously not looking in Giles’ direction. “No, I’m happy for you…no big surprise here, but…HEY a wolflady is trying to turn Oz to the dark side of the moon.”
Giles quickly dressed and then tossed Buffy’s clothes onto the bed before looking at Willow. “Alright…go downstairs and load the tranquilizer guns…and call Xander. Tell him to get over here as soon as humanly possible.”
Willow nodded and bolted back down the stairs. Giles glanced at the bed and arched an eyebrow.
“You might want to get dressed, love. The last person we need asking questions is Xander.”
Buffy snorted and slipped out from under the sheets. “No, I think the last person we need asking questions is Anya. Because her questions are going to be more embarrassing than Xander’s continual ‘what? how? when? huh?’ questions would be.”
Giles watched her dress, wanting nothing more than to stop her…but knowing that was an impossibility at the moment. “Very true.”
Hearing his almost wistful tone, she looked over at him. “Are you okay with this? I mean…with Willow knowing?”
His brow furrowed. “Of course, I am. I had no intentions of hiding our relationship from anyone. I may have preferred to make the announcement ourselves…and clothed…but, I’m okay with her knowing.”
Buffy’s eyes widened as she buttoned her jeans. Giles tilted his head slightly, silently questioning her.
She smiled and slipped into her shoes, shrugging a shoulder as she did so. “You said ‘our relationship’. It kinda surprised me.”
Seeing a flicker of doubt in his eyes, she continued quickly. “A good surprise, babe.”
“Guys! Come on! Xander’s going to meet us on campus!” Willow called out, standing at the bottom of the stairs.
Buffy gave Giles a wink and rushed past him, bounding down the stairs. Giles smiled, mouthing the word ‘babe’ before following her down. His smile faded when he saw the worried look in Willow’s brown eyes.
“It’ll be alright, Willow…we’ll find him.”
Willow thrust a tranquilizer gun at him as she fought back her tears. He leaned down and placed a tender kiss on her forehead as he smoothed his hand down the short length of her red hair.
“I promise you, we’ll find him.” He insisted, not moving until she turned her watery eyes up to him and nodded slowly.
As he moved towards the door and grabbed his keys from the hook on the wall, Willow looked into her best friend’s eyes.
“I think Oz is cheating on me with Veruca.” She whispered quickly. “And I’m really worried about what WolfOz is doing out of his cage. But…you and Giles? That’s a good thing. And we’ll talk more about it when this crisis calms down, okay?”
Before Buffy could reply to anything that Willow had said, the redhead had sprinted out the front door and headed towards the car. Buffy watched for a split-second as Giles ran after her. She felt his concern for Willow and his fear for Oz. And that made her love him even more.
And once they got this under control, she’d help him research. They really needed to know what this meant…and how they could use it to their advantage…because she had no doubt that Willow was right.
This was a good thing.
And with that thought, she ran out of the apartment and closed the door behind her. She glanced up at the moon and sighed at its fullness. The good things would still be there after they took care of the bad things.
Giles looked back at Buffy and smiled softly at the wave of love that had just rushed through her.
The good things would definitely still be there later…