Timeline: Directly after the end of Believe. If you haven’t read that one, this one’s probably not going to make much sense.
Synopsis: Buffy and Giles face the demon that she’s been having prophetic death dreams about.
Giles and Buffy slowly made their way to his car, hand in hand. As they reached the red convertible, Giles took a deep breath and looked down at her. She gently squeezed his hand as she met his eyes, hers glistening with unshed tears.
He lifted his free hand and lovingly stroked her cheek with his thumb. “No tears.”
She swallowed and leaned into his touch. “I’m scared, Giles.”
“So am I.” He offered her a reassuring smile. “But, I believe that we can stop this. I refuse to believe otherwise.”
“So do we.”
Buffy and Giles turned towards the voice to find Willow and Xander standing on the sidewalk. Willow had been the one to speak. Xander smiled warmly as he glanced at the couple’s joined hands.
“Get things worked out?”
“Yeah.” Buffy answered softly and looked back up at Giles. “All worked out, right?”
He nodded slowly and reached up to run his fingers through her hair. “So long as we both keep our promises, yes.”
Willow furrowed her brow. “Promises?”
Buffy smiled shyly. “Mainly me making promises. Like not hiding important things…even if I’m trying to protect people.”
“Good.” Xander shoved his hand in his pocket. “Because I really don’t want to walk in on a drunk and depressed Watcher again. That’s not on my ‘fun things to do’ list.”
Giles met the young man’s eyes and sighed. “I apologize for that, Xander.”
Xander shrugged. “Hey, I understand. ‘Cause…well, I’d feel the same if Anya broke up with me. Just because I understand doesn’t mean that I enjoyed it.”
Before the discussion became more serious, Willow cleared her throat. “Yeah, so…um…the reason we’re here is because we want to help. I mean, the book said this demon is of a peaceful variety. Which is really weird…”
Buffy and Giles exchanged a quick glance and a nod. Buffy smiled at their two friends and gestured to the car.
“I call shotgun because it’s my boyfriend’s car.”
Giles rolled his eyes in an exasperated manner. “I’m forty-five years old, Buffy. I’m not sure I qualify as a ‘boyfriend’.”
Buffy shrugged her shoulders and smiled. “Well, maybe after we come home I’ll be able to call you something else. Until then…you’re my boyfriend.”
He grumbled under his breath and opened the car door for her. Willow and Xander grinned at one another and clambered into the back seat.
* * *
“You sure this is the right place, Buff?” Xander asked uncertainly.
“Yeah.” She scanned the area closely.
“Be careful, there’s a hole next – ” She rolled her eyes as Xander promptly stepped into the hole and fell to the ground. “ – to that tree.”
He scrambled to his feet and brushed the dirt from his jeans. “Thanks for the warning.”
Buffy opened her mouth to respond, closing it when Giles quickly grabbed her shoulder, halting her movement. She looked up and followed his line of vision, inhaling deeply as the demon came into view.
Willow grimaced as she looked at the demon. “Jeez, it’s even uglier in person than it was in the book…”
Giles swallowed, speaking softly as he kept his eyes trained on the Torjada. “In your dream, you approached the demon and it attacked with no warning, yes?”
“Uh-huh. Big fight, then the not-so-fun ripping out of the heart part of the dream.”
“Gross!” Xander whispered as he watched the demon rip a dead squirrel in half.
Buffy’s eyes widened as the demon pulled the heart out of the squirrel and popped it into his mouth. “Yeah, I agree with the gross and I’ll add a full body shudder while I’m at it.”
Giles glanced at Xander and Willow. “Both of you stay there.”
Xander nodded quickly. “No problem. Staying right here.”
Willow looked at the demon and then back at Giles. “But – ”
Giles shook his head. “No buts. Stay here.”
Before Willow could argue, Giles wrapped his hand around Buffy’s arm and gently tugged her towards the smaller clearing that the demon was stalking towards. When he stopped behind a small cluster of trees, Buffy took a deep breath.
“So…this is it.”
Seeing that the demon was preoccupied with scavenging, Giles looked down at her and gently tilted her face upwards. “No, this is not it.”
She gestured towards the clearing and swallowed hard. “Yeah…it happened over there.”
“You said that you approached the demon as soon as you saw it.”
She nodded, darting her eyes back to the clearing. “Well, yeah…kinda my job.”
“It’s scavenging, Buffy. It’s searching for food.”
“It’s eating hearts of dead animals.” Buffy whispered in disgust.
“Yes…that is the main food source for a Torjada.” Giles explained softly.
Buffy narrowed her eyes. “I wasn’t a dead animal. Well, not until he ripped my heart out.”
“One thing you didn’t mention. Did it say anything?”
Buffy nodded. “Yeah…but I don’t speak Torjada.”
Giles couldn’t stop the smile from appearing on his face. “Neither do they. They speak numerous languages, one of them being ancient Greek.”
She stared at him incredulously. “Well that’s great. Problem is, I’m Buffy. I don’t speak ancient Greek.”
“I do.” His hand brushed over her abdomen. “Stay here.”
As he took a step towards the clearing, she grabbed his arm. “What the hell do you think you’re doing?”
“I’m going to talk to it.”
“Have you lost your mind? It’ll rip your heart out!”
He lifted his hand and cradled the side of her face. “Hopefully not. Remember, it’s a peaceful race.”
“Giles…” Tears welled in her eyes as she shook her head. “Please...I can’t lose you…”
He leaned down and placed a soft kiss on her lips before handing her the crossbow. “Should the demon attack, aim for the spot directly behind its ear.”
“But – ”
“I love you, Buffy. I have no intentions of allowing him to rip my heart out. But, I do intend to engage it in conversation in an attempt to determine why it’s here.” He offered her a warm smile. “Don’t shoot unless it attacks.”
He glanced over her shoulder and motioned for Xander and Willow to come over. They moved quietly, but quickly.
“What’s going on?” Willow whispered as she darted her eyes towards the clearing.
“Giles is going to go talk to it.” Buffy stated, her tone not hiding the fact that she was not happy with the plan.
“Um, Giles? You do remember the part where it ripped Buffy’s heart out, right?” Xander asked, his eyes wide with fear.
“Apparently that wouldn’t have happened if I could speak ancient Greek.” Buffy grumbled.
“Huh?” Willow’s eyes narrowed in confusion.
“Nothing.” Buffy sighed heavily and met Giles’ eyes. “Be careful.”
He tapped the crossbow with his finger. “Remember, right behind its ear. And only if it attacks.”
He had taken only one step before she grabbed him and spun him to face her. Before he could question her, her hand wrapped around the back of his neck and dragged him down. She covered his mouth with hers, sweeping her tongue inside as he groaned.
His arm instantly wrapped around her, pulling her tightly against his body as he hungrily returned the kiss. Xander immediately lowered his eyes and stared at his feet. Willow grinned happily, then reddened when she saw Buffy’s hand wander down Giles’ chest and come to a rest near his belt.
Giles ended the kiss slowly, nipping her bottom lip with his teeth before pulling away. Buffy gazed into his eyes and sighed softly.
“Come back to me.”
He smiled lovingly, stroking her cheek with two fingers. “I love you.”
She watched him back away from her, a tear escaping down her cheek as he stepped into the clearing.
“I love you too.” She whispered softly as Willow wrapped a comforting arm around her shoulders.
* * *
Giles cautiously made his way into the clearing and took a deep breath. The demon turned towards him, dropping the carcass it held to the ground. Giles spoke softly, hoping his ancient Greek wasn’t too rusty.
The demon stared at him through sapphire eyes. “Who are you?”
“Rupert Giles. I mean you no harm, I’m just curious as to why you are here.”
When the demon emitted a low growl and took a step towards him, Buffy raised the crossbow and took aim. Giles raised his hand quickly in an unspoken command for her not to shoot. The demon turned its head and stared at Buffy as it spoke to Giles.
“You mean no harm, yet someone is pointing a weapon at me.”
“Just a precaution, I assure you.” Giles answered softly, moving his body between the demon and Buffy.
* * *
“Damn it!” Buffy cursed and took a step to her left.
Xander’s eyes widened in confusion. “What’s he doing?”
“Blocking her shot.” Willow responded quietly.
“Being an idiot if you ask me.” Buffy retorted angrily. “If it attacks, I can’t do anything.”
Willow placed her hand on Buffy’s arm, not surprised to feel her tremble in a combination of fear and anger. “He knows what he’s doing, Buffy.”
Buffy lowered the crossbow, the scowl etched on her face as she scanned the area in search of another place to stand that would give her a clear shot at the demon.
* * *
“I know that you are a member of a peaceful race. The issue is that she…” He tilted his head in Buffy’s direction. “…is the Slayer.”
The demon darted its eyes back to Giles. “The Slayer? And you?”
Giles exhaled slowly. “I’m her Watcher.”
“Why are you here?”
Giles thought for a moment, choosing his next words carefully. He decided it would be best to simply tell the truth.
“Slayers often have dreams…prophetic dreams. She had one recently involving you. Specifically, it involved you ripping her heart out. I’m here to stop that from happening.”
The demon’s eyes flickered lightly. “What if I decide to take yours instead?”
“I’d prefer that not to happen.” Giles said with a soft smile. His smile faded as he continued. “But, if it’s a human heart you need…I’d prefer it to be mine rather than hers.”
The demon’s eyes narrowed. “You’d give your life for her? I’ve never heard of a Watcher willingly taking a Slayer’s place in death.”
Giles shrugged a shoulder. “Buffy and I have a different relationship than most of the previous Slayers had with their Watchers.”
The demon regarded him curiously for a moment and then gave him a brief nod. “My name is Klahnsht. I do not want your heart, nor that of your Slayer.”
Giles smiled. “It’s a pleasure to meet you, Klahnsht. May I ask why you’re here?”
“I followed my spawn through a portal. Our energy levels were depleted. We must forage and wait until our strength has returned before we can attempt to re-enter the portal.”
Giles furrowed his brow. “Spawn?”
Klahnsht turned his head towards the hedge to his right. “Grasht?”
Giles’ eyes widened as a young Torjadan stepped into the clearing. “I think I understand now.”
Klahnsht placed his clawed hand on the youngster’s head in a loving gesture. “What do you mean?”
Giles tilted his head and looked into the demon’s eyes. “If someone were to approach you quickly, not knowing of your race or your spawn…what would be your first reaction?”
“My main priority is the safety of my spawn. I will do what needs to be done to ensure his safety.”
“She didn’t know.” Giles said softly, mainly to himself.
Giles shook his head and smiled. “Buffy is trained to protect humanity from demonic activity.”
Klahnsht’s eyes narrowed. “Even if the demons are not posing a threat?”
“She was unaware. What she saw, she took literally. She saw you consuming an animal’s heart…she saw you as a threat. When she approached you, you saw her as a threat…and reacted accordingly.”
Before the demon could reply, the sound of a twig snapping was heard. Giles turned slowly to find Buffy standing in the clearing, the crossbow raised as her eyes darted between the two demons.
“Buffy, lower the weapon.”
Reluctantly taking her gaze off the two demons, she looked into Giles' eyes before lowering the crossbow. “What’s going on?”
“I’ll explain later. For now, just know that he is no threat to anyone.” He turned back to the demon and smiled, easily falling back into the ancient language. “We will not detain you any further. I wish you a safe journey home.”
Klahnsht nodded slowly. “Thank you.” He glanced at Buffy, a soft smile appearing on his blood stained lips when his eyes returned to Giles. “She’s very lovely. For a human.”
Giles looked at Buffy, sighing softly. “That she is.”
Buffy stared at him curiously, wondering what he had just said to the demon. A soft rustle was the only sound they heard as the two demons scurried back through the hedge.
“What did he say?”
He moved to stand in front of her, gently pulling the crossbow from her hand. “He said you were lovely.”
He lifted his free hand and combed his fingers through her hair. “And I agreed.”
“I’m pissed off at you, you know.” She whispered, even as she leaned into his touch and lifted her hand to touch his chest.
“Whatever for?” His tongue darted out and wet his lips as his hand moved to her neck.
“You stood between us. If he had attacked you…”
He leaned down and kissed her softly. “He had no intention of waging an attack. The weapon frightened him. It was an act of trust.”
“It scared me, Giles.” Her eyes glistened as she took a deep breath.
“I’m sorry.” He whispered sincerely.
She stared into his eyes for a moment before sliding her hand around the back of his neck and drawing him down. “I love you.”
The crossbow fell from his hand, landing with a heavy thud on the grass as he wrapped both arms around her. He paused his motion when his lips were mere millimetres from hers.
“I love you, Buffy.”
As their lips met and parted, Xander sighed heavily in near-exasperation. He gestured towards the couple and looked down at Willow. “And you say Anya and I are bad!”
Willow chuckled softly and nudged him in the ribs. “Shut up, Xand.”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
They had barely been able to make it back into the apartment before he pulled her into his arms. He kicked the door shut as she pushed her tongue into his mouth again. He sucked hungrily at the muscle, moving his hands to the button on her jeans.
It had taken him less than five minutes to have her completely nude and laying spread-eagled on the soft bed of cushions he had quickly thrown on the floor for her in front of the fireplace. It had taken him even less time to rid himself of his own clothes and drop to the cushions between her legs, burying his face between her thighs.
She reached down, twining her fingers in his hair as she lifted her legs over his shoulders. He groaned as she dug her heels into his back as he lapped at her sensitive flesh. He lifted his eyes and looked up at her as he pulled her clitoris into his mouth.
Smiling inwardly, he eased his middle finger into her slick channel. Her hips bucked against him as he stroked her inner walls, looking for that one spot that always made her scream in pleasure.
It didn’t take him long to find it, and he was rewarded with a loud moan as she scraped her nails against his scalp. He looked up at her, relishing the sight of her thrashing her head against the cushions. Knowing he was dangerously close to his own orgasm, he moved up her body and smiled as she curled her legs around his hips.
“You stopped…” She whimpered as his fingers brushed over her nipple.
“Had to, love.” He whispered, pinching the nipple between his fingers.
Her back arched, pushing her breast harder against his hand. “Why?”
He licked his lips, moving his hand from her breast and grasping his erection. He sighed heavily as he guided the head of his cock into her waiting depths.
“I think you know why…”
She raked her nails down his sides, lifting her hips to meet his, and stared into his eyes. “I love you.”
He smiled and lowered his mouth to hers, whispering his love for her as he increased his thrusts.
* * *
Giles glanced at the fireplace, smiling as an exhausted Buffy circled his left nipple with her fingertip, the fingers of his right hand idly tracing indistinct patterns over her spine.
“I meant to start a fire…”
“Mm…you did.” Buffy murmured, sliding her leg between his. “A hot and sweaty fire…”
Giles chuckled, pulling her hand from his chest and lacing their fingers together. “I meant a literal fire. In the fireplace…”
“Oh.” She lifted her head and smiled lazily at him. “Next time.”
“Next time.” He agreed softly.
Buffy shifted and then grimaced. “Oh…um…yeah, I’ll be back.”
He laughed softly as she stood up and ran towards the hall, his eyes drifting to her bare ass as he pushed himself up on the cushions. He rolled his eyes when his spent cock attempted a twitch.
“I’d be astounded if you were able to make another reappearance.” He mumbled in amusement as he stood up and grabbed his boxers.
He slipped them on quickly and made his way into the kitchen. He had just filled the kettle and put it on the stove when Buffy returned. He looked at her and smiled, not surprised to find her dressed in his robe. His smile faded when he saw the sadness in her hazel eyes.
“Buffy?” He asked urgently, lifting his hand to her cheek. “What’s wrong, darling?”
“I…” She sniffled and lowered her eyes before continuing on a whisper. “I’m not pregnant, Giles.”
His brow furrowed before understanding suddenly struck him. He swallowed and brushed away a tear on her cheek with his thumb.
She sniffled again and moved into his arms, wrapping hers around his waist and burying her face in his chest.
“I’m sorry.” She whispered through her tears.
Her sadness cut into him, nearly as bad as his own sadness upon hearing the news. Hearing that she wasn’t pregnant just confirmed to him how much he truly wanted to have a child with her.
“There’s nothing to be sorry for, Buffy. We’ll have children…”
She lifted her head quickly and looked at him through watery eyes. “You…you really want to have a baby with me?”
He offered her a warm smile, his thumb rhythmically stroking her cheek. “Marry me, Buffy.”
Buffy’s eyes widened. “I’m not pregnant…you don’t – ”
“It wasn’t my intention to ask you because we thought you might be pregnant.” He interrupted gently. “I asked you because I’m in love with you…and I want to spend the rest of my life with you.”
“And I want to have children with you, Buffy.” He glanced around the small apartment and swallowed. “I want to buy us a house…and fill it with children. And I’ll be more than happy to do all of those things in any order you choose.”
Buffy furrowed her brow. “Huh?”
“We don’t have to get married right away. We can if you want, but we don’t have to. We also don’t have to try for a baby right away. However…we can if you want.” He combed his fingers through her hair and smiled. “I just want to be with you…and I want you to be with me. Just say yes, Buffy. We can work out the details later, but…please, just say you’ll marry me.”
Buffy was quiet for a long moment, searching his eyes. Taking a deep breath, she raised her hand and placed it on his chest…directly over his heart.
“Yes.” She whispered, smiling as happiness shone in his eyes. She nodded and then repeated her answer again, loving the sensation of his heart pounding beneath her hand. “Yes, Giles…I’ll marry you.”
His smile grew as he lowered his mouth to hers. It had been an extremely emotional night, but he wouldn’t have ended it any other way.