Title:     Life on a Hellmouth

Author:  Froxyn

Rating:  FRAO

Pairing:  Buffy/Giles

Synopsis:  A glimpse into the lives of Buffy, Giles, and the rest of the Scoobies.  Mainly focusing on Buffy and Giles.




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The ice rattled lightly in his glass as he raised it to his lips.  Taking a sip of the amber liquid, he relished the slight burn as the scotch slid down his throat.  He wasn’t drinking to get drunk, and he was very much sober.  Sitting on his couch, the room dimly lit, and...silence.


He cherished moments like this. 


He glanced at the clock.  His Slayer was on patrol, would be for at least another hour before she would walk into his home unannounced and proceed to tell give him her nightly report.  He wasn’t sure where Willow and Xander were, but he was quite happy that they weren’t in his home at the moment.


He needed this.  He needed...silence.  He needed to relax.  The week had been very hectic, an unusual amount of demons and vampires...luckily there hadn’t been an apocalypse to divert.


His eyes swept the living room, coming to rest on an object hidden away in the corner behind a lamp.  He sighed lightly as he leaned forward, placing his glass on the coffee table before standing up and walking across the room.


His hand reached around the lamp, grasping the neck of the guitar and pulling it out of its resting place.  He gently wiped the thin layer of dust from its surface as he returned to his seat on the couch.


He didn’t really play much anymore, but it was a part of his past that he had been very reluctant to give up.  His ‘Ripper’ days were over.  He wasn’t the same person that he once was.  He was eternally grateful for that fact.  But, music...that was one thing that the Watcher had in common with Ripper.  It was the one thing that he couldn’t let go of.


He carefully tuned the strings before pouring another drink.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Buffy was still pulling dead grass from her hair as she walked up to her Watcher’s front door.  It had been a busy evening.  She quit counting after dusting the seventh vampire.  She frowned slightly, knowing that she shouldn’t have quit counting.  Giles would want an exact number.


Her hand paused on the doorknob, her head tilting as she heard soft music emanating from the other side of the door.  Quietly, she pushed open the door to find Giles sitting on his couch with a guitar in his hands.  His fingers strumming a gentle tune, his voice softly singing the words of a song she’d never heard before.


She closed the door, careful not to make any noise that would alert him to her entry.  She leaned back against the door, folding her arms in front of her.  She smiled softly, perfectly content to just listen to him sing.


She knew that he could play the guitar, he had mentioned it in passing.  She had a feeling that he had a nice singing voice as well, having heard him more than once hum a familiar tune when he worked in the library.  She had asked him numerous times to hear him play.  Each request was quickly denied with a simple “I’m no longer that person, Buffy.”


Standing here, quietly listening to him without his knowledge...his talent amazed her.  His voice was...


Her mind struggled to find the right word.  A small smile tugged at her lips as the word rushed into her head. 




~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


He knew that his Slayer had returned as soon as she turned the doorknob.  He could feel her presence as strongly as he could feel his heart pound in his chest. 


He briefly considered stopping when she walked into his home, but decided against it when she closed the door silently behind her.  He fumbled the lyrics slightly, losing his concentration momentarily.


He quickly regained his composure as he heard a soft sigh from across the room.  His fingers easily moved along the strings, up and down the frets.  He continued the song to completion, clearing his throat softly as the last note resonated in the room.


“How was patrol?”  He asked quietly, not turning around.


Startled by the question, Buffy pushed herself from the door and slowly walked towards the couch.  “It was...uh...I didn’t know that...uh...you knew...”


Giles chuckled softly, placing the guitar down, leaning it against the lamp table beside of him.  “I always know when you’re here, Buffy.”


He turned his eyes towards her as she fell onto the chair.  Taking in her appearance, he smiled.  “Rough night?”


“Huh?”  Her eyes showing her confusion before her hand reached up to her hair.  “Oh.  Yeah, it was a busy night.”


He nodded slowly, rising to retrieve his Watcher’s Diary from the bookshelf.  Pen in hand, he sat back down and looked at her, silently requesting for her to continue.


“Um...a little more than seven vamps.  Dusted and gone.  No demons, but there was a mention of something...”  She narrowed her eyes, forcing herself to remember the term that was used.  She shook her head slightly and looked at him, her shoulders shrugging.  “Raisin bread?”


His brow furrowed as his mind attempted to translate ‘raisin bread’ into something useful.  His eyes lit up suddenly and he leaned forward.  “Risenbridt?” 


“Yeah!  That’s it!”  She offered her Watcher an embarrassed smile.  “It’s kinda like raisin bread, yes?”


He jumped up and practically ran to the bookshelf.  “Well, no.  It’s not.”  He pulled a book down, quickly flipping through the pages.  He sat down on the coffee table in front of her, turning the book towards her so that she could see.  He spoke quickly, his voice racing with excitement.  “Risenbridt is an ancient ritual used to raise a particular demon from another dimension to be born unto an unsuspecting vessel.”


Buffy lifted her gaze from the book, meeting his brightly lit eyes.  “Could you be any more excited, Giles?”


“Well, I...”  He cleared his throat, seeing the amusement in her eyes.  “I’ve only read about Risenbridt.  Many people seem to think it’s only legend.  What exactly did you hear?”


“Just two vamps talking about getting this log back in time for raisin...uh, Risenbridt?”  She glanced back down at the page, thinking aloud.  “I guess that explains why they didn’t get my joke about banana bread...”


The confusion made itself known in Giles’ eyes as he stared at her.  “Pardon?”


Buffy quickly waved her hand, a motion that stated ‘nevermind’.  “Bad joke, didn’t think it was that bad though.”


Giles was completely perplexed.  “There is a joke about banana bread?”


Buffy rolled her eyes as she stood.  “So, this log?”


“Oh, yes.”  Giles grabbed the book, flipping over a couple of pages.  “It’s a sacred log.  The disciples of Ristos fill the log with the blood of their sacrifice and...”


Buffy interrupted him with a thought.  “How can you fill a log with blood?  Wouldn’t it just run right through?”


Giles sighed in exasperation.  “Buffy, please.”


“What?  It doesn’t make sense.  Logs are hollow, a hole on each end...”


Giles took his turn at interrupting her.  “Not all logs are hollow, Buffy.  It’s a solid piece of wood that has been blessed with the essence of Ristos.  The disciples then drill a hole on top of the log, and carefully hollow a part of it out.  Just enough to make a compartment for the blood of the sacrifice.”


Buffy blushed slightly.  “Oh.”


Giles’ eyes suddenly turned serious.  “Buffy, did these two vampires...did they have such a piece of wood with them at the time?”


Buffy nodded slowly. 


Giles dropped the book, reaching for his car keys.  “We must destroy it.  Do you remember where you saw it?”


“The west end of Restedge Cemetery.”  She ran after him as he raced to the car.  “Giles, what does this demon do after it’s been raised?”


He turned to her quickly as he turned the ignition.  “It destroys the world.”


Buffy sighed, buckling her seatbelt as Giles sped off.  “Of course it does...”


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


He followed her through the maze of tombstones, a crossbow in his hands.  His eyes kept a firm grasp on their surroundings as she rambled non-stop about...apparently, anything that entered her mind.


“You’re very talented, Giles.”


His eyes darted to her quickly.  “Excuse me?”


She shrugged lightly, twirling her stake in her hand.  “All of those times I asked to listen to you play.  It took me sneaking into your house to hear how talented you are.”


“As you may have noticed earlier, I knew you were there.”


She stopped suddenly, turning around to stare at her Watcher.  “So, why did you keep playing if you never wanted me to hear you?”


He halted his movement quickly, narrowly avoiding running into her.  “As I recall, I’ve never said that I didn’t want you to hear me play.  I merely stated that that person was no longer who I am.”


She studied him closely for a moment.  “I’ve never heard that song before.”


He blushed lightly, thankful that she wouldn’t be able to see it in the darkness.  “I dare say that you haven’t.  I...I wrote it.”


Buffy’s eyes widened in amazement.  “You wrote it?  Giles...”  Her eyes darted to a point over his left shoulder.  “DUCK!”


Without hesitation, he dropped to the ground.  He felt the air rush over his head as she hurled her stake over him.  Hearing a scream, he turned just in time to see a cloud of ash fall to the ground.


“Well, then...your aim is spot on.”


Buffy smiled as she extended her hand to help him up.  She felt...something...as he placed his hand in hers and stood up.  She held onto his hand longer than she needed to, feeling an emptiness as she let him go.


“Well, I have a good teacher who is a bit of a stickler for good aim...”  She smiled at him, reaching out to brush the dirt off of his shirt.


He returned her smile, shifting the crossbow to his right hand and using his left to brush his pant leg.  “You do listen after all.”


“Yep.  I’m your star pupil!”


He laughed lightly, scanning the area around them.  “You’re my only pupil.”


“So, that makes me your star.”  She smiled brightly, and then turned to retrieve her stake.


He kept a close eye on her, his crossbow at the ready.  He exhaled only after her stake was in her hand.  “That you are...”  He whispered to himself.


Her smile was still intact when she returned to his side.  She pointed to the left, past a small monument.  “The raisin log was over there.”


He chuckled softly and followed her to a small clearing. 


Giles breathed a sigh of relief when they found a very ornate log resting on the edge of the clearing.  They knelt on either side of it, Buffy’s nose wrinkling as her knee touched the ground.


“So, the essence of Ristos isn’t a very appealing aroma.”


Giles looked up at her, his fingers tracing the intricate carvings on the side of the log.  “That would be brustrakh.”


“Yeah, I always like a little brew with my raisin bread.”


He pushed his glasses up on the bridge of his nose, staring at her.  “Brustrakh.  It’s a preservation oil used in this ritual.”


“What’s it preserving?”  She reached up and rubbed the back of her hand across her nose.


He pointed towards the intricate carvings along the length of the log.  “These.  Without the preservation oil, the symbols hold no power.”


“What, they couldn’t call it ‘energy goo’?”  She made a face as she wiped the oil from her fingers onto the ground.  “Because...if it gives energy, and it’s definitely not oily...”


“The ancient ones obviously weren’t as technical as you.”  He ran his hand along the top of the log, giving it a quick knock in various places with his knuckles.  “It hasn’t been hollowed out yet.  Which means that the sacrifice has not taken place.  Which means...  He glanced up at her, giving her the briefest of smiles.  “I think we got here in time.  All we need to do is to destroy it.”


“Uh-huh.  And...what will stop them from grabbing another log, goo-ing it up, and having another party?”


He motioned towards the end of the log, silently requesting her help to carry it back to the car.  “It takes many years...possibly hundreds...for a log to become mature enough to use in a ritual.”


“Logs...mature?”  Buffy laughed lightly, easily lifting her end of the log.


“You know what I mean, Buffy.”  He picked up his end and they began walking back towards the car.


“Scarily enough...I do.”  She flashed him a bright smile.  “So, how do we destroy this thing?”


He carefully stepped across an overturned headstone.  “Watch your step.  We must perform a ritual to release the essence of Ristos.  After we’ve successfully completed the ritual, we burn the log until only ashes remain.  Then we place the ashes into an Urn of Jacark.  After that, the Urn is encased in concrete fortified with magicks, and buried in consecrated earth.”


“Okay.  So we chant, then have a bonfire, then bury a cool box in magic cement in demon-proof ground?”


Giles tilted his head thoughtfully.  “Precisely.”


Buffy grinned at him.  “Has anyone ever told you that you use way too many words?”


Giles returned her grin.  “Quite frequently, in fact.”


Chapter Two


Four hours later, their mission was completed.  Once again, they had diverted an apocalypse.  Giles opened his front door for his Slayer and followed her in, dropping the crossbow onto the table.


Willow and Xander will be upset that they missed such a cool bonfire.”


Giles smirked as he closed the door behind him.  “Yes, well.  I’m sure that Xander would have been terribly disappointed at the lack of...weenies and marshmallows.”


Buffy turned around and stared at him as the laughter built in her throat.  “Did you just say...weenies’?”


“We shan’t speak of this again, Buffy.”  His eyes lit up as he softly laughed with her.


Suddenly, Buffy sniffed the air.  “I...jeez, I reek!”


Giles lifted his hand, his finger gently touching her hair.  “You, uh...you have brustrakh in your hair.”


“Great.  Energy goo.”  A look of horror passed over her features.  “Will it...”


He smiled understandingly at her as he shook his head.  “No.  You’ll be fine.  It just...smells rather unpleasant.”


“Like I said.  I reek.  Would you mind if I took a quick shower?”


“A shower?  No, no...of course.  I...uh...I’ll get you a towel.”  He went to the linen closet and pulled out a fresh towel and handed it to her.  “Clothes?  I can...you can wear something of mine if you...or I can stop by your house and...”


She took the towel out of his hand and pointed towards a bag sitting in the corner.  “I have my special ‘something happened while I was on patrol and now I need to change my clothes’ bag over there.”


He blushed lightly and quickly retrieved the bag.  “Oh yes.  I...I forgot about this.”


“A Slayer is always prepared.”   She grinned as he handed her the bag, and then turned and headed into the bathroom.


Giles waited until he heard the water running and then sat down on the couch.  He sighed lightly as he leaned forward, his hand slowly opening the bottle of scotch.  His eyes glanced towards the hallway as he poured himself another drink.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


She smiled softly as she leaned against the hallway wall, watching as he documented the events of the evening into the diary.  “A Watcher’s work is never done...”


He looked up at her, his breath hitching slightly as he took in her appearance.  There was nothing unusual about her attire, but her hair...towel-dried and hanging loosely around her face.  He cleared his throat and smiled back at her.  “Documentation is imperative.”


Pushing herself from the wall, she made her way to the chair and plopped down, a heavy sigh escaping her lips.  His eyes showed concern for her. 


“Are you okay?”


She nodded quickly, easing his concern.  “Yeah, just...who would’ve thought?  An apocalypse beginning in Sunnydale.”


“Yes.  We have had our fair share, haven’t we?”  He leaned back, the tip of the pen held lightly between his teeth as he diverted his gaze from her. 


Her eyes fell to the bottle and the half-empty glass on the coffee table in front of him.  “Are you okay, Giles?”


“Hm?”  He looked back at her, then followed her line of vision.  “Oh.  Yes, I’m fine.  Just a drink to relax with is all.”


She met his eyes then, a smile flickering in her hazel irises.  “So, no ‘drunken stupor Giles’?”


An embarrassed smirk crossed his lips.  “No.”


They were quiet for a few moments.  Each going over the day’s events in their minds.  His fingers were absently twirling the pen when she broke the silence.


“Will you...can I hear you again?”


“What?”  He turned his head, finding her eyes focused on the guitar that was still leaning against his lamp table.  “Oh.  Well, I...”


“Am not that person any longer.  I know, Giles.  I’ve heard it time and time again.  But...I’d really enjoy...”  She allowed the sentence to remain unfinished, as she didn’t know how to end it anyway.


He thought about it for a few seconds, and after taking another sip of his drink, picked the guitar up with his slightly trembling hand.


He merely sat there with the guitar at the ready and a battle being waged in his head.  With a deep breath, his fingers began coaxing a tune out of the strings.  She sat forward, intently watching him, listening to the music, and painfully noticing that he was not looking at her.  She held in her deep sigh as his voice softly came into play.


It lasts for a heartbeat

But it’s such a feeling of being one

When we talk on the phone

You make me complete

You make me feel connected

To the earth beneath my feet


She tilted her head in wonderment as his eyes closed.  He picked the tempo up slightly, the words easily slipping from his tongue.


You make me laugh

And you’ve helped me to cry

You’ve shared all of yourself with me

You’ve shown me life

You’ve taught me, you let me see

What’s real


She caught herself staring at his lips as he sang.  She was mesmerized by the emotion in his voice.


Whatever would I be without you in my life

Without the warmth of you in my heart?

Wherever would I be without the light you give me

Without the thought of you in my arms?


She stifled a gasp as his eyes opened and briefly made contact with hers.  Just as quickly, he turned his eyes downward as the melody changed once again…back into the softer beginning.


And all I can do

Is wait until the next time

That I hear your sweet voice on the line

And I’ll feel whole again

You’ll bring me home again

All that I am…

Is for you


She didn’t move.  She couldn’t move.  She sat still, his words echoing in her head.  She stared at him as he licked his lips nervously and placed the guitar next to him.  He cleared his throat, his hand reaching for his drink.  He let the liquid burn his throat for a moment before he spoke.


“Now…uh…now you’ve heard me play.”  He stole a quick glance in her direction and immediately recognized shock in her expression.  “Buffy?”


She shook her head lightly, as if she was shaking cobwebs from her mind.  “That…was beautiful.”


“Thank you.”  The words were spoken so softly that Buffy wasn’t sure he had even actually said them.


“Did you…is that one your’s too?”


He nodded slowly, his fingers lightly caressing the body of the guitar. 


“Why did you stop?”  Her eyes were inquisitive as he looked at her.  “I mean, you obviously still play…”


A sad chuckle escaped his lips.  “Not often.”


“Why not?  Giles, you’re…”  Her eyes suddenly glistened with tears.  “You’re amazing.”


His jaw tightened for a split second, his eyes staring at a point on the wall.  “Too many memories, Buffy.”


Her brow furrowed with confusion.  “How could something so beautiful bring back bad memories?”


He took a deep breath and pushed himself up from the couch, drink in hand.  He walked over to the window, leaning against the frame as he stared into nothingness.


“You know about my past.”  He paused, bringing the glass to his lips.  “At one time, music was my weapon.”


“Weapon?”  The one word question was a mere whisper.


“And I used it to great advantage.”  His jaw clenched and released, his fingers drummed nervously on the glass in his hand.  “It was my outlet.  In a way, I imagine it still is, though the ends have changed since then.”


Buffy stood and took a few steps towards her Watcher.  “English would be good right about now.”


He lifted his glass again, his eyes focused on the blackness outside.  “Ripper’s outlet led to sex.  Mine…well, it leads to somewhere else.”


She carefully studied him, worry building inside of her.  She had seen Ripper on a few occasions, and though he didn’t scare her, she much preferred her Giles.


“Somewhere else?”


He gave a slight nod of his head, his eyes still unmoving.  “More painful.  More…”  He finally turned to her, his eyes slightly darker than they once were.  “Frightening.”


“Ripper?”  The word came out in a breath, barely audible.


He turned away from her quickly, the glass falling from his hand and shattering on the floor.  “It was so much easier when it was only about sex.”


Her hand trembled as she reached out to him, gently placing her palm on his lower back.  She felt him instantly stiffen, though he didn’t move away from her.


“Talk to me.”


His short laugh was deep.  If she hadn’t known him, she would have almost called it menacing.  “There is nothing to talk about, Buffy.”


“I think there is…”


She recoiled as he whirled towards her, his eyes showing a spark of anger.  “I beg to differ.”  He saw the fear in her eyes for the half of a second it was there.  He forced himself to calm, his eyes softening immediately.  “Buffy…I beg of you…”


“Giles, what’s wrong?”  Her voice was anxious, her tone one of concern.


“I’m sorry.  I’m so sorry.”  His eyes glistened with unshed tears as he backed away from her.


She matched each of his backwards steps with a forward one of her own.  “Don’t be sorry.  Just tell me what’s going on.”  When he turned his back to her, she spoke in what she hoped was a comforting tone.  “Is this why you didn’t let me hear you before?  Does Ripper come out when you play?”


He shook his head slowly, his hand rising up to support himself against the wall.  “That part of me is always here, Buffy.  And that part of me is dormant except in cases of extreme distress.”


“I distress you?”


He turned around, resting his back against the wall as he exhaled deeply.  “No.  You don’t distress me.”


“But, I saw…”

He shook his head slowly, catching her eye before dropping his head.  “That was me…Rupert Giles.  Not…not Ripper.”  He winced as he spoke the name that once referred to him.


Buffy was utterly confused and he heard it clearly in her voice.  “The anger…I saw it.”


He ran his hand through his hair.  He refused to allow himself to look at her.  “You push too hard sometimes, Buffy.  Some things are well and truly better left alone.”


She straightened her stance, determined to not let him push this under the carpet.  “If it’s not about sex, then what is more painful?”


“Dear Lord, Buffy.”  His voice took on a tone of dejection.  “Please, let it lie.”


She crossed her arms over her chest and stared at him.  “No.  Tell me.”


He took a chance and raised his eyes.  Seeing that she was indeed not going to let it go, he dropped his hands by his sides and tilted his head towards the ceiling.


“The unattainable.”


“And that means?”


He could hear the frustration in her voice. Giving up, he took a deep breath.


“Wanting.  Needing.  Aching.  So far beyond sex.  Wanting so badly that you can taste it, yet knowing you’ll never have it.  Never being able to partake in the life you can see, because your fingers can’t grasp it.  Can’t hold on to it because it’s out of your reach.  Knowing that everything you need in your life is there.  Right there.  Yet, completely unattainable.”  He licked his dry lips and swallowed before continuing.


“Sex is simple.  You feel it, you do it, and it’s over.  Ripper understood that.  That’s how the life was led.  And it was a simple, albeit dangerous, life. I am not that man.  The music I write now…it’s emotion.  It’s my release.  The ways of my past are no longer an option.”


She tilted her head and gazed at him.  “No longer an option?  What, are you impotent these days?”


The question elicited a small laugh.  “Hardly.”  He blushed lightly, realizing he had spoken aloud.


“So, what’s the problem?”


He stood a bit straighter, more resigned to the conversation taking place.  “The simplicity of sex is not what I want, or need.  I want more.  I need more.”


For the first time in what felt like an eternity, he stared into her eyes.  He saw understanding in her eyes.  Unable to control his emotions, he took the step needed to stand directly in front of her. 


His hand reached up, fingers sliding through her damp hair as he bent his head and captured her lips in a scorching kiss.


Chapter Three


She hesitated briefly, but made no effort to back away from him.  She opened her mouth to him, moaning lowly into his mouth as his tongue touched hers.  She returned his kiss, as hungry for it as he was. 


He broke the kiss as suddenly as he had initiated it.  He took a step back, his breath heavy with want and need. 


She scanned his eyes, quickly reading his next words.  “Don’t say it.  Please…”


He silently questioned her, a tear forming as she answered him. 


“Don’t say you’re sorry.”




Her name fell from his lips in a whisper as she took a step forward, reached up and pulled his head down to her waiting lips.  His heart raced as she put everything she had into the kiss.  He groaned as she broke the kiss and moved her lips to his ear.


Her tongue traced his earlobe suggestively before she whispered into his ear.


“Take me.”


It wasn’t a question.  He closed his eyes as he shook his head softly, hoping that he wasn’t making a huge mistake.


“Buffy, this isn’t…this isn’t about sex.”


Buffy sighed, placing her head against his chest.  “I know.  I was listening.”  He gasped as she gently nuzzled against him.  “But, it doesn’t mean that you have to take a vow of celibacy.”


She smiled as she heard a soft chuckle rumble in his chest. 


“I…uh…I don’t want to merely fall into bed with you.”  He smiled down at her as she raised her head to look at him.  “I’m also not opposed to making love to you.  But, I want it to be more.  It’s not the sex I want, Buffy.  I want…you.  All of you.  I want you to want me, because all I am is for you.”


She sighed softly and returned his smile, the words he sang earlier ringing in her ears.  She leaned up and placed a kiss on his lips. 


“So…the sex is just a bonus?”


He grinned at her, returning her kiss.  He became so lost in the kiss that he didn’t realize that she was guiding him elsewhere until she pulled him down onto the couch with her.  His eyes snapped open in surprise.


She smiled as she pulled back from him, allowing her fingers to lightly trace down his neck.  Her smile widened as his skin quivered beneath her touch.




Her eyes offered him reassurance as she leaned forward, allowing her hand to slide around to the back of his neck.  “Relax.  Believe it or not, I do understand what you were saying about what you want.”  Her lips brushed across his jaw.  “I just want to kiss you.”


With that, her mouth closed over his, her tongue making its way into his mouth in exploration.  She grinned inwardly as he groaned, caressing her tongue with his.  He was vaguely aware of the fact that he was slowly pushing her into a horizontal position on the couch.  He became very aware of the position they were in when he felt himself settle between her open thighs.


He broke the kiss suddenly and stared into her eyes.  She offered him an understanding smile as her hand gently moved in circles across his back. 


“We’re just kissing.”


His eyes drifted to her lips.  “For some reason, I’m not completely sure of that.”


He moved to rekindle the kiss, their lips almost meeting again as his phone began to ring.


“Damn!”  His head dropped to Buffy’s shoulder in frustration.


She laughed quietly.  “You can just not answer it...”


“Who would call at...  He quickly glanced at the clock.  “...two in the morning?”


A sudden rush of fear raced through him, no one called at this hour unless there was trouble.  Extreme trouble.  He reached over Buffy’s head to grab the phone.  She gasped as his erection pressed against her as he leaned over her.  He groaned at the contact just as he picked up the phone.


“Giles?  Are you okay?”


He sat up straight, looking like a kid caught with his hand in the cookie jar, much to Buffy’s amusement.


Willow.  I...uh...yes.  I’m fine.  I was just...”  He took a deep breath and attempted to compose himself.  “...resting.  It’s after two, is everything alright?”


“Oh...”  Willow said quickly, remembering the reason for her call.  “Vampires.”


Giles ran his hand across the back of his neck, his eyes finding Buffy silently questioning him as she sat up.  “Vampires?  Where?  How many?”


Buffy stood up quickly, grabbed her shoes, and sat down on the coffee table. 


“We counted four.  And they were going into Restedge Cemetery.  Do you know where Buffy is?”


His face reddened as he looked at Buffy.  “Yes.  Yes, she’s here.  Willow, what were you doing out there at this hour?”


“Double date at the double feature.  We were walking back to Oz’s van, and there they were.”  She paused, her curiosity clear in her voice.  “Giles, why is Buffy there?”


Buffy smiled as she watched the redness deepen on Giles’ face.  He met her eyes, feeling a warmth in his heart.


“There was an issue with a few vampires attempting to perform an ancient ritual.”  His eyes narrowed slightly.  Willow, where are you now?”


“A block down from the cemetery. I...”


Giles stood up quickly, alarming Buffy.  “Find somewhere safe.  We’ll be there in a few minutes.”


He ended the call, tossing the phone onto the coffee table.  “Vampires at Restedge Cemetery.  Seems as though they may be searching for what is no longer there.”


Buffy followed him to the door, grabbing her bag of weapons as she walked by it.  “And the guys?”


“Waiting for us there.”  He locked the door behind them, quickly ushering Buffy to the car.  “I’m rather sure that we shall require their assistance in this.”


Buffy grinned as Giles started the car and sped off.  “My Watcher’s back.”


Giles narrowed his eyes, though he didn’t risk taking his eyes off the road to look at her.  “Pardon?”


Buffy gazed at him as he navigated the roads as quickly as he safely could.  “’Watcher Giles’ speaks differently than ‘Kiss You Until You Can’t Breathe Giles’.”


He allowed his hand to rest briefly on her knee.  “I’m sorry, but ‘Watcher Giles’ is who I must be at the moment.  The...the other Giles...would be of little use to you and wouldn’t be able to help you as much as I can.”  He swerved around the corner, slamming the Citroen to a halt behind Oz’s van.  “Providing that no one knocks me unconscious.”


Buffy quickly unbuckled her seatbelt, offering him a warm smile as she opened the door.  “I’ve got your back.”


He looked at her, his eyes very serious.  “Buffy, you must be careful and not worry about me.  If your concentration is distracted by your concern for my well-being, things could become extremely dire in a very short period of time.”


“Again, so many words to say...”


He interrupted her with a gentle squeeze to her knee.  “Promise me.”


She placed her hand on his and nodded.  “I promise.”


Satisfied that she understood what he was saying, he opened the car door to find Willow, Xander, Oz, and Anya standing on the sidewalk.  He followed their eyes to the edge of the cemetery to find four vampires angrily ripping apart the clearing where the sacred log once was.


He took a deep breath and readied himself for the impending fight.  “Okay, everyone follow Buffy and I’ll take the rear.  Keep your eyes open and...”  He offered each one of them a smile of affection.  “Try not to get injured.  You know what to do if things become out of control?”


Xander stepped onto the street and fell in line behind Buffy.  “Turn, run like hell, and...”


“Scream like a girl if your name is Xander Harris.”  Anya finished for him.


Giles followed them into the cemetery, his eyes scanning the surroundings as they had earlier in the night.  “Yes, well.  Do try not to scream.”


Oz chuckled lightly and pulled a stake out of the inside pocket of his jacket.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Giles was slumped against a mausoleum wall when Buffy knelt beside of him.


“Hey, you okay?”


He smiled up at her, his breathing heavy.  “Completely conscious.  And you?”


She returned his smile, her fingers lightly tracing across the small cut on his forehead.  “Better now.”


“So, do you guys think it’s over now?  I don’t know that I could handle another vampire jumping at me from out of nowhere.”  Xander looked around cautiously.


Anya rolled her eyes, handing her unused stake to Willow.  “I hope so.  If I hear you scream one more time, I’m going to scream.”


Xander’s eyes narrowed in annoyance.  “So, how much dust on your stake?”


Anya glared at him, making it obvious to everyone that there were underlying issues at work that no one wanted to get into at the moment.  “Giles took care of my vampire for me, because he’s a gentleman, unlike you.”


Giles pushed himself up, taking Buffy’s hand when she offered it.  “Did we have assigned vampires this time?”


Buffy giggled at the annoyed tone in Giles’ voice, letting her fingers linger on his palm.


Oz wrapped his arm around Willow and smirked.  “The important thing.  Ten vamps, six of us.  We won.”


Xander nodded his head, his left hand shoved in his pocket.  “Simple words.  This is of the good.”


They made their way out of the cemetery, pausing to look back only when they were standing near the cars.


Willow stifled a yawn.  “Do you want a ride home, Buffy?”


Giles stiffened, then immediately relaxed and hoped that no one noticed.


Buffy took a step closer to her Watcher and shook her head.  “No thanks, Will.  I need to stop back at Giles’ place.  We left in such a hurry that I forgot my house keys.”  She looked up at Giles innocently.  “Is that okay?  I mean...do you mind dropping me back to my house after I get my keys?  ‘Cause, I can get...”


Giles interrupted her with a reassuring tone.  “That’s quite alright, Buffy.”


“Are you sure?  ‘Cause...”


“It’s fine.”


“Okay.”  She tilted her head in a childish way and looked at Willow.  “See you guys tomorrow?”


Xander yawned as he nodded.  “Late tomorrow.  Very late.”


Giles smiled at the group and sincerely thanked them for their help.  After a few goodbyes, he climbed into the driver’s seat and watched the van pull away from the curb.


Buffy closed the door and buckled her seatbelt.  “Are you sure you don’t mind?”


Giles turned to her, his eyes darkened as he leaned over.  “I’m very sure.” 


She grinned at him, leaning towards him and capturing his lips once again.  He broke the kiss after a moment, his eyes never leaving hers as his hand fumbled for the ignition. 


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Few words were spoken on the way back to Giles’ apartment.  He smiled as he saw, out of the corner of his eye, Buffy stifle a yawn.  Pulling into his car space, he switched off the engine and turned his head to look at her.


“Are you alright?”


She nodded in the slow fashion that Giles easily recognized as exhaustion.


“Okay, let’s go find your keys, shall we?”


She followed him slowly to his front door, willing herself to be more alert.  He unlocked the door and held it open for her, waiting to follow her inside.


As he closed the door behind them, he spoke softly.  “Do you remember where you put your...”


His question ended abruptly as she covered his mouth with hers.  A moan rumbled in his chest as her tongue sought entry.  He returned her kiss, the passion building rapidly.  Something clicked in his head and he broke the kiss, pulling away and leaving them both panting heavily with desire.


The room was silent except for the sounds of their breathing for a few moments before Giles spoke.


“We...uh...should find your keys.  And...”  He paused, hoping he had the strength to finish his thought.  Finding it, he took a deep breath and continued.  “And get you home.”


Buffy placed her hand on his chest and gazed into his eyes.  “Giles...will you sleep with me?”


His mouth dropped open in shock.  “Buffy, I...we...”


She silenced him with a gentle laugh.  “I mean that in the literal sense.  To be very honest, I’m too tired for anything else.  And...with Mom still out of town, I just don’t want to go home to an empty house.”  She leaned forward, laying her head against his chest.  “I ask again...will you sleep with me?”


He swallowed nervously, his heart pounding in his chest.  “Of course.”


She moved back and took his hand, glancing towards the stairs.  He led her up to the loft, sighing heavily as she sat down on the edge of his bed.


“I, uh...”  He turned and pulled open a dresser drawer.  He brought out one of his pajama tops and turned back to face her.  “It will be rather large on you.  But...it would have to be more...comfortable than your current attire.”


She smiled as she took the top from his hand.  “Thank you.”


After they had both gotten changed, Giles found himself not quite believing that he was actually slipping under the sheet and blanket with her.  He shuddered lightly as she snuggled up against him and placed a soft kiss on his lips.


“Are you sure you’re okay with this?”  She smiled as he nodded wordlessly.  “Will you hold me?”


“Of course I will.”  He inhaled deeply as she turned her back to him and pressed against his chest, pulling his arm over her.  “I’ll hold you all night, Buffy.”


Five minutes later, he placed a kiss on the back of her head as he felt her breathing change as she fell asleep.  He held her tighter as she fell deeper into slumber.  Convinced that there was no way he’d be able to fall asleep, he contented himself by listening to her breathe and feeling her warmth.


Less than ten minutes later, his exhaustion overtook him.


Chapter Four


Five hours later, he woke to sunlight filling the room.  He smiled when he realized that they were lying in the same position that they fell asleep in.  He kissed her shoulder before gently sliding his arm out from under her head and slipping out of the bed.  He watched her intently as she shifted in her sleep before resettling.  Assuring himself that he hadn’t woken her, he made his way to the bathroom.


He turned the water on, allowing it to heat up as he shed his pajamas.  Stepping into the shower, he winced as the warm spray hit the darkening bruises on his chest.


He leaned forward, resting his forehead against the tiles and allowed the spray to cascade down his back.  Reaching over, he increased the hot water and sighed as the knots in his back loosened slightly.


He picked up the soap, quickly lathering himself up as his mind raced through his thoughts. An unexpected rush of emotion flooded over him, evidenced by his sudden tears mixing with the water.  Never before had he felt so complete.  Yet, there was an emptiness that he couldn’t put his finger on.


His tears cleared as he rinsed his body.  He inhaled deeply and then realized what was missing.  Though he knew how his Slayer felt about him and he was sure that she knew the sentiments were reciprocated, the words had yet to be spoken.


He smiled lightly and turned the water off.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


He made his way back to the bedroom, his towel wrapped around his waist.  His intention was to simply slip on a pair of boxers, crawl back into bed, and wrap his arms around her.


He walked into the room to find her sitting up, her back pressed against the headboard and staring at her hands, which were folded in her lap on top of the blanket.


“Hello.”  His voice was soft and concerned.  “Are you okay, Buffy?”


She nodded, a faint smile on her lips.  “Yeah, I was just think...”


Her voice halted as she looked up, the smile fading from her lips as her eyes fell to the dark mass of bruises covering the left side of his chest.


“Oh my God!”  She scrambled out of the bed and ran to him, her eyes full of worry.  “Giles...”


He smiled softly.  “This isn’t an unusual appearance for me after a heavy night of fighting.  I tend to bruise fairly easily.”


Her trembling hand reached up, her fingers lightly touching the purple-black skin.  “Are you sure?  It looks painful...”  She met his eyes.  “Are you in pain?”


His jaw tightened slightly, the warmth of her touch radiating throughout his body.  “I...feel nothing right now...”


He continued to stare at her as her eyes darted down towards his groin before immediately returning to his gaze.  “You obviously feel...something.”


He licked his lips, his eyes darkening quickly.  “Obviously.  Yes...”


He swiftly picked her up and carried her to the bed.  Gently placing her onto the mattress, he leaned in and captured her lips.  He slowly pushed her down, covering her body with his as their passion grew.


She moaned softly as his lips moved to her neck.  As his tongue tasted the flesh there, his fingers slowly unbuttoned the pajama top she was still wearing.


She reached between them, her fingers deftly removing his towel.  His groan vibrated against her neck as his hardened flesh came into contact with the soft skin of her thigh.


He lifted his head, his eyes glazed as he pushed the top from her shoulders.  His eyes closed as he felt her hand encircle his erection and squeeze gently.


“Buffy...”  His voice was husky with want and need.




He opened his eyes, inhaling sharply as he saw the reflection of his desires mirrored in her hazel irises.


As much as he wanted to taste every inch of her body, the look in her eyes told him that foreplay would not be needed...nor tolerated at this moment.


He moved between her thighs, sighing heavily as his erection pressed against her moist centre.  He leaned down and kissed her tenderly before gazing into her eyes.


“Buffy...if you aren’t one hundred percent sure...you have to tell me now.  There is no coming back from this for me...”


She smiled warmly, placing her hand on the side of her neck.  “There was no coming back for me after you kissed me.”


His heart fluttered at her words.  After another gentle kiss, he shifted his hips and slowly entered her.  Their eyes were locked together as he paused, allowing her muscles to relax around him.


After giving him a slight nod, he began to move his hips slowly.  She moaned in pleasure, eyes closing and her hands resting on his shoulders.  He kept his slow pace, his eyes studying her face.  Her eyes fluttered open, causing a groan to escape his lips as he read the emotions in them.


His voice was a mere whisper when he found his voice to speak.


“I am so in love with you.”


Her eyes filled with tears as her hands slid down his ribs.  When she only smiled, he realized that she was unable to form any words.  He returned her smile as he kissed her.


His thrusts began picking up in speed and his tongue traced across her lips.  She sucked his tongue into her mouth and bucked her hips against him, urging him to push harder.  He complied obediently as he returned her hungry kiss. 


It wasn’t long before he felt her inner walls begin to contract around him as she neared orgasm.  He reluctantly broke the kiss and pulled his head back enough to watch her face.  She bit her lip, desperately trying to hold on.


He smiled and thrust harder.  “Let it go, Buffy.”


Her eyes clinched tight as she bit harder.  “Come on, darling.”  His voice was gentle, yet filled with a desperate tone.  “Please let it go.  I...I’m not sure how...how much longer...I can...oh, God...hold on...please...”


Her eyes snapped open, her fingers gripping his sides with such force that he knew there would be bruises later.  He found that he didn’t care how bruised he became.


They stared into each other’s eyes.  He continued his thrusts, knowing she was on the brink.  The muscles in his arms quivered as he quietly uttered three words.


“Come with me.”


That’s all it took.  He felt her juices flow over him, a scream forcing past her lips.  His loud groan of ecstasy matched hers in intensity as he followed her over, flooding her violently convulsing walls.


He caught himself before he collapsed on top of her, his entire body shuddering as they both struggled to breathe.  He rolled onto his side, pulling her with him so that she was facing him, his softening flesh still buried inside of her.


“Dear Lord...”  He offered her a smile full of adoration as his trembling fingers brushed through her hair and then traced across her cheek.


“My sentiments...”  She returned his smile, her voice shaking with emotion.


He pulled her against his chest, wrapping her in his embrace.  The sounds of their heavily laboured breathing filled the room.


She whimpered as he shifted his lower body, slowly dislodging himself from her.  He placed feather light kisses across her face as his hands gently caressed her back.




“Hm?”  He grinned at her breathless tone.


“I’m in love with you too.”


His grin broadened.  “Thank God.  I’d hate to think that my neighbours possibly heard our...displays of affection if you didn’t love me.”


She giggled softly, allowing her fingers to touch his bruised chest once more.  When he sucked in a sharp breath, she looked up at him in concern.




He nodded slightly.  “Beginning to.”  He smiled as his hand covered hers.  “Help me forget about the pain for a while longer?”


She grinned as she felt his waking erection twitch against her thigh.  She pushed him onto his back gently and climbed on top of him. 


“Would you prefer quick relief or time-lapsed?”


He gasped lightly as she bent down and placed a warm kiss on his chest.  “I...would much prefer to take our time...if that’s okay with you.”


Her lips trailed hot kisses down his torso.  “Whatever you desire...”


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Two hours later they finally found their way out of the bed.  After a hot shower together, they got dressed and made their way downstairs.  Buffy headed for the kitchen as Giles went to the front door and, out of habit, unlocked it.


Walking into the kitchen, he found her in front of the open refrigerator.  “Hungry?”


“Starving.”  She looked up at him.  “Much physical exertion, little sustenance...not good for a Slayer, you know?”


He chuckled, reaching for the bowl of fresh fruit resting on the counter.  “Nor a Watcher.”


Leaning against the counter, she watched him as he began slicing different fruits and placing them into a larger bowl.  He moved past her, reaching into the refrigerator and grabbing the remaining half of a honeydew melon.  She noticed that he didn’t bring the cantaloupe with him as well.


“No cantaloupe?” 


He smiled softly as he glanced at her.  “You don’t like cantaloupe.”


She felt a warmth in her heart as she looked into his eyes.  “What makes you say that?”


He chuckled, dropping the chunks of honeydew into the bowl with the other fruit.  “The fact that you always push it to the side.  I’ve never seen a piece of cantaloupe enter your mouth.”


She grinned as she reached into the bowl and pulled out a piece of banana.  “Very perceptive of you.”


“I am a Watcher.”  He plucked another slice of banana out of the bowl and held it to her lips.  “And you should eat more banana.”


His eyes twinkled as she leaned forward and took the fruit from his fingers with her lips.  He glanced towards the back patio.  “It’s a beautiful day.  Would you like to eat outside?”


Her answer was to pick up the bowl and head in the very direction he had been looking at.  He watched her, his heart filling with more love than he thought possible.  He placed the teapot and two cups onto a tray, his smile growing as he lifted it and followed her outside.


Chapter Five


They took turns feeding each other pieces of fruit between sips of tea.  She sighed happily, leaning her head against his shoulder.




“Yes?”  He took another sip of tea and looked down at her as she sat back up.


“Has this ever happened before?”  She read the silent question in his eyes.  “You know, between a Watcher and a Slayer.”


“Oh.”  He placed his cup onto the table in front of them.  “It has happened in the past.  Mainly because once a Slayer was called, the Watcher took over her care.  They would live together, the secret remaining between them.”  A smile shone in his eyes as he looked at her.  “Most Slayers do not have the social activities as you.  And, I suppose that with just the two of them, it could possibly lead to a more physical relationship.”


“Huh.  So, what we have is almost expected?  Like...a supernatural thing?”


“I suppose there are supernatural qualities in our bond.”  He sensed her stiffen slightly and placed his hand on her thigh.  “Supernatural as in we never would have met if not for the fact that I am a Watcher and you are my Slayer.”  He felt her relax under his touch.  “I assure you, Buffy, my emotions are very real and...very human.”


“What if there wasn’t the Watcher/Slayer aspect?  I mean...and we met anyway?”


He smiled as he leaned down, brushing his lips across hers.  “I daresay I would be in the same predicament.  In love with a beautiful, strong-willed woman.”


She blushed lightly as he pulled back quickly, hearing the front door swing open with a loud thud.




“Why did I unlock the door?”  He muttered softly before calling out.  “Out here, Willow.”


Buffy laughed softly and moved her chair a little further away from him.  She was chewing on another piece of fruit as Willow bounded out onto the patio.


“Oh, hey Buffy.  I was looking for you.”


Buffy smiled warmly at her friend.  “Came over early to help Giles with details of last night’s events for his diary.  Want some fruit?”


She pushed the bowl towards Willow as the redhead pulled up a chair and sat down.  She popped a grape into her mouth before she started talking.  “Xander’s parking the car.  We just thought we’d come over and help you with any research that needs to be...researched.”


“That’s very kind of you Willow.”  He smiled affectionately at the girl, briefly wondering why he still thought of Willow as a girl and obviously thought of Buffy as a woman.  He shook his head slightly to rid himself of the thought as Xander walked outside and plopped down in the fourth chair.  “Good morning, Xander.”


“Hey Giles!  Ooh, fruit!  Can I have some?”


Giles chuckled softly and motioned towards the bowl.  “Help yourself.  Tea, anyone?”


With a resounding ‘yes’ from his visitors, he made his way inside.  He listened to the three of them laugh and joke as he prepared the tea.  On his way back out, he stopped by his desk and pulled a nearly forgotten pack of cigarettes from the top drawer.  He shook one out and, after grabbing a lighter, picked up the tray and headed towards the laughter.


As soon as he had settled the tray on the table, he sat back down and offered a glance at Buffy.  Noticing the cigarette held carefully in his fingers, she silently questioned him.  She blushed briefly at the twinkle in his eye telling her the reason for it and gave him a quick nod.


Willow’s mouth dropped open as she watched Giles light the cigarette and take a deep puff.  “Giles?!  You smoke?”


He laughed at her surprise as he exhaled slowly, feeling the sudden head rush from the nicotine.  “Very occasionally.”  He studied the cigarette between his fingers, musing to himself aloud.  “I wonder how old these are?


Xander shoved another piece of melon into his mouth.  “My dad smokes occasionally.  He says he only smokes after sex, so...yeah, occasionally might be a term that doesn’t really define one or two a year...”


Buffy and Giles shared a quick glance before looking away.  Xander didn’t catch it, as he was too caught up in his rambling thought.  However, Willow noticed...her eyes darting quickly between the two.  Catching Buffy’s eye, Willow’s eyes widened as she watched her friend redden slightly.


Giles noticed the exchange and choked on the smoke as fear rushed into his chest.  Xander looked up, wagging his finger gently at him.


“This is why we don’t smoke, Giles.”


Giles dropped the cigarette, pushed his chair back, and stood.  “I, uh...I should...that is...”  He was aware that Xander and Willow were staring at his sudden stammering outburst, but couldn’t trust himself to look at Buffy.  He inhaled quickly and motioned inside.  “There’s something...”


He stopped himself before he made a bigger fool of himself and simply rushed through the door.  Xander shrugged his shoulders and picked up a strawberry.  “I think we need to find him some decaf tea.”


Buffy tore her eyes away from the door and looked at Willow.  Seeing the knowing questions in her friend’s eyes, Buffy shook her head slowly.  “Not now, Will.”


“Buffy, you ...”


Buffy stood up and quickly interrupted her before she could utter another word that would clue Xander in.  “Not now, okay?  Later...but...not now.”


She turned and walked through the doorway, leaving her two friends outside.  Xander looked at Willow, confusion shining brightly in his dark eyes.  “Decaf all around then?”


Willow smiled at Xander and popped another grape into her mouth.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Buffy found him leaning against the hallway wall, breathing heavily.  She smiled, understanding his panic, as she stepped in front of him.


“Hey...”  Her voice was soft as she lifted her hand to the side of his face.  “It’s okay.”


He leaned into her touch for a brief moment before the color drained from his face.  “Buffy, she...she knows.”


She leant up, pressing a soft kiss on his jawline.  “Yeah, I caught that.  She’s perceptive...she could possibly make a good Watcher one day.”  She frowned when he didn’t give her as much as a smile, and realized that her effort to lighten the situation had failed.  “Giles?”


His eyes darted to hers, the panic beginning to ease as he saw the calmness in her eyes.  “Buffy?”


Her fingers brushed through the hair above his ear and she smiled lovingly.  “I’ll talk to her later.  Everything is going to be fine.”


He licked his dry lips.  “Her reaction...”


She interrupted him quickly before he fell back into panic mode.  “Was one of shock.  Not one of disappointment, disgust, or disapprovement.”


His fingers brushed against her hip as he thought about her words.  “’Disapprovement’ isn’t a word. Disparagement.”


She laughed lightly, relaxing as he chuckled with her.  She kissed him lightly before taking a step back and holding her hand out to him.  “Wanna come back outside?”


He took her hand and gently squeezed before releasing it.  “I’d really rather not, but I suppose it would look more suspicious if I didn’t.”


She gave him a wink and then walked towards the door.  She heard him take a deep breath and felt him follow her back to their friends.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


A few hours later, Buffy glanced up from her untouched cup of coffee to find her best friend smiling brightly at her. 


“So, tell me!  How long have you and he been, you know?  What was it like?  Do you love him?  Does he love you?”


Buffy grinned as she held up her hand in a silent request for Willow to slow down.  She took a deep breath and leaned forward slightly in her chair.


“This morning was the first time.  It was absolutely, mind-blowingly wonderful.  I love him.  And yes, he loves me.”


“This morning?  How early did you...”  Willow’s eyes lit up.  “You spent the night?  When did you start dating?  And...how come you didn’t tell me?”


“Whoa...slow down, girl!”  Buffy laughed at her friend’s excitement.  “I did spend the night.  We...well, we actually haven’t been on a date.  And, I didn’t tell you because I didn’t know it was going on.”


Willow’s eyes narrowed in confusion.  “What do you mean?”


Buffy sighed and shifted nervously in her chair.  “Well...I knew Giles was cute...”


“Beyond cute!”


Buffy grinned in agreement.  “Very!  But...I didn’t know how he felt until last night when I went by to give him a patrol report.”


“Hold on...there was nothing going on one day, and the next morning you’re sleeping together?”


There was no malice in Willow’s tone, just her inquisitive nature showing through.  Buffy nodded, not diverting her eyes from Willow’s. 


“Wow, that’s...uh...fast.”


Buffy laughed quietly.  “It actually felt like a lifetime from the time he kissed me until we made love.”  She watched as Willow leaned forward, obviously wanting to hear the entire story.  “Okay, Will.  I got to his place a little before nine last night...and he was playing his guitar and singing.  God, his voice is just beautiful.”  She sighed heavily, remembering each detail.  “Anyway...”


Willow’s grin grew larger as the story was unfolded in front of her.  By the time Buffy said “and then you walked in...and you know the rest” Willow was barely able to contain her happiness for her friend.


“It may have been fast, but...Buffy, it’s so romantic!”


Buffy tilted her head thoughtfully.  “Actually, yeah...it really was.”


“Is he going to start going on patrols with you every night now?”


Buffy shook her head, smiling at the memory of the answer that Giles had given her to that very question.  “No.  He’s worried that I’ll get too distracted if he’s there.  You know, worrying too much about him getting hurt?  He’s afraid that if I lose my concentration...”


Willow nodded in understanding.  “He makes a good point.  Are you seeing him tonight?”


Buffy swallowed a mouthful of lukewarm coffee before she answered.  “After patrol.  We thought it would be best if I spent the afternoon with you, since you figured it out in like, 30 seconds.  He was so wigged, Will.”


“Giles?  Wigged?” 


“Majorly.  He was afraid that you’d see him as a dirty old man or something.”


Willow laughed heartily.  “A dirty old man?  No, not Giles!  I was just surprised, you know?”  Her eyes turned serious.  “I’m happy for you, Buffy.  For both of you.  But, if he hurts you...or turns evil...or anything bad, he has to deal with me.”


They shared a genuine laugh, though Buffy knew that Willow was very serious in her statement.


Chapter Six


She opened his front door to find him stretched out on the couch and reading a book.  He offered her a warm smile as he sat up, closed the book, and removed his glasses.


“How did it go?”


She sat down beside of him and kicked her shoes off.  “Slow night.  I think the vamps are laying low since we stopped the Risenbridt.”  She leaned against him, sighing softly as he wrapped his arm around her.  “What were you reading?”


“The Rituals of Ancient Jashara.”


She snuggled closer to him.  “Fun.” 


He chuckled and allowed his hand to roam up and down her arm.  “I’m relieved that patrol went well, however...that isn’t exactly what I was referring to.”


She tilted her head up to look at him.  “Huh?”


He smiled, his other hand coming up to brush an errant strand of hair away from her face.  “When I asked you how it went.  I was referring to Willow.”


“Oh.”  She sat back up and returned his smile.  “She’s happy for us.  But, if you hurt me or turn evil...you have to deal with her.”


He laughed as he leaned in for a kiss.  “I have no plans to hurt you in any fashion.  And...even fewer plans for turning evil.”


She sighed as their lips met in a brief but loving kiss.  “Then you’re safe.”  Her fingers traced the small cut on his forehead that he received in the previous night’s fight.  “We’re having dinner tomorrow night with Will, Oz, Xander, and Anya.”


He sighed softly as she leaned forward and placed a tender kiss next the cut.  “Fun.”


Her hand trailed to his chest, pausing as he inhaled sharply.  “How is it?”


His eyes began to darken as she shifted her body and straddled his lap.  “I could probably use some pain relief...”


She began to unbutton his shirt, smiling as she felt his immediate reaction.  She bent down, running her tongue across his chest and grinning at his gasp when she flicked her tongue over his nipple.  His hands slid under her top and up her back, pulling the light silk up with them.  She reluctantly paused her assault on his chest as she leaned back and allowed him to pull her top off and toss it to the floor.


His hands moved to her torso, his thumbs rubbing gently against the front of her ribcage. 


“So beautiful.”


She bit back a moan as her mind registered the tone of his voice.  He leaned forward, pressing soft kisses onto her chest as his hands slid behind her and unclasped her bra.  A second moan escaped her lips as he dropped the bra to the floor and pulled her nipple into his mouth, gently suckling the hardening nub.


Her fingers gripped the material of his shirt, pushing the offending garment off his shoulders.  He moved his mouth to her other nipple and leaned forward, assisting her with the removal of his shirt. 


Before she knew what was happening, he shifted sideways on the couch and dropped her body onto the soft cushions.  He leaned over her, nipping lightly at her ribs as his hands quickly unfastened her pants and pushed them down, along with the silk underwear she had been wearing.  He lifted his head as he dropped the clothing on top of the small pile of clothes on the floor, sighing heavily as he gazed at her nude body.


He licked his lips as he took her hand and pulled her to a sitting position as he knelt on the floor in front of her.  She shuddered lightly as he bent his head, sliding his tongue along her thigh.  He looked up at her and gently pushed her thighs apart.


Her trembling hand ran through his hair as he kissed his way up her inner thigh.  He groaned huskily, smelling her arousal.  His fingers parted her lips as he turned his head slightly, nipping the sensitive flesh of her inner thigh as she placed her legs over his shoulders. 


He heard her whisper his name and smiled, turning his head back to its destination and allowing his tongue to flick her clitoris.  She said his name again, this time a bit louder, and he pulled the hardened nub into his mouth, sucking hungrily on it.


Her fingers tightened in his hair, effectively pushing his mouth over her hot core.  She groaned loudly as she felt him slide two fingers into her.  He began a steady rhythm with his fingers as he continued to suck and lap at her clitoris. 


He felt her walls tighten around his fingers and he promptly stopped, causing her to cry out in frustration.  He lifted his head and smiled, his green eyes sparkling. 


“I’m not stopping, Buffy.  I just want my tongue inside of you when you come.”


Her nails lightly scratched at his scalp as he quickly slid his tongue inside.  His tongue began to thrust inside of her, his fingers gently rolling her clitoris.  She felt his groan against her sensitive flesh as she came suddenly and quite loudly, flooding his mouth with her juices.


He felt her leg move on his shoulder, and then heard the distinct sound of his coffee table sliding across the room.  He lifted his head to find her lust-glazed eyes gazing into his.  Her legs slid from his shoulders and she moved forward.  With one hand on his right shoulder, she gently pushed him back until he was lying on the floor.


She moved over him, kissing him desperately as her hands worked on getting him out of his pants.  Surprisingly, she found the taste of herself in his mouth extremely erotic.  Pulling his pants off, she tossed them to the side.  He watched as her hand encircled his engorged flesh, her head bending down and flicking her tongue against the tip. 


She looked up, their eyes meeting as she allowed her mouth to slide down the length of his hardened shaft.  He groaned and involuntarily bucked his hips as her tongue caressed his flesh.


She placed her hands on his hips, holding him down as she began to slide her mouth up and down his length.  She felt him grow harder and thicker as she tilted her head slightly, giving him the needed room to slip into her throat.  His fingers clutched at the rug he was laying on as she increased her suction.  It was his turn to moan in frustration when she let him slip from her lips.


“What do you want, Giles?”  Her voice was lust-laden, though unbelievably calm.


“I...uh...oh, I...”  He bit his lip, causing a smile to form on her lips.


“Tell me...”  She coaxed him gently.  Her hand tightened on his shaft, slowly moving up and down the length. 


“Oh, God...Buffy...I...”  His eyes closed, the sensation becoming too much.


She placed a tender kiss on the head of his erection, before speaking softly.


“Do you want to come in my mouth?”


His eyes snapped open, instantly finding her gaze.  “Buffy...”


She grinned at him, her thumb rubbing across the sensitive glans.  “Do you?”


“I...oh, God, yes...” 


Another loud groan escaped him as she quickly engulfed him once more.  She moved her mouth up, sucking on the glans as her hand tightly pumped the shaft. 




She sucked him even harder and felt him expand in her mouth.  She felt his body shudder underneath her.  Her name fell from his lips on a moan of ecstasy as he exploded into her mouth.  She drank from him greedily, her tongue caressing him until his trembling fingers in her hair told her that he couldn’t handle anymore.


She moved up his body, plunging her tongue into his mouth.  Their tastes mingled with one another as they kissed passionately.  His body was still quivering when the kiss ended and she looked down at him with a smile.


“I...wasn’t...wasn’t quite expecting...that...”  The words came out between gasps. 


She lay down beside of him, sighing happily as he pulled her into his arms.  “Surprised?”


He chuckled and placed a kiss on her temple.  “Very.”


Her fingers were playing with the soft hair on his chest when she looked at his face after a few moments of silence.  She could sense a question, but couldn’t read it.  She kissed his shoulder, prompting him to turn his questioning eyes to her.


She lifted her finger from his chest and touched his temple.  “What’s going on in there?”


He smiled sheepishly.  “I’m afraid to ask.  And to be quite honest, I’m not even sure that I should.”


Her finger lightly traced across his face.  “You can ask me anything.”


He took a deep breath and bit his lip nervously, an action that made her smile.  “I, uh...where did you...well, uh...”


Her smile widened when she realized what he was trying to ask.  Willow isn’t the only one of us who is internet savvy.”


He breathed a sigh of relief.  “Oh...good, yes...”


She laughed lightly.  “You know, I could ask you the same thing.  With fewer ‘uh’s, of course.”


His face reddened as he pulled her closer.  “You could, this is true.  However, I am quite a few years older than you.”


“There’s definitely something to be said about seeing an older, more experienced man.”


The redness in his face darkened as he cleared his throat.  “Yes, well...”  He pushed himself up, much to her dismay.  “Um, dinner tomorrow night, you said earlier?”


She sat up, grabbing his discarded shirt and slipping it on.  “Nice segue...”


He pulled his boxers on and sat on the sofa, smiling at the image of her in his shirt.  “As much as the thought of having dinner with them is terrifying, the path that our conversation was taking was even more so.”


She grinned brightly as she pushed herself up from the floor and stretched her back.  “Yes, dinner with the guys tomorrow.  Are you okay with that?”


He shrugged his shoulders lightly as she plopped down beside of him.  “I’m...fairly nervous about it.”


She laid her hand on his thigh.  “I know.  But, seriously they’re happy for us.  Xander was a little confused at first and Anya was...well, Anya.”


He grimaced as a thought entered his head.  “Yes, I can only imagine what Anya had to say about the situation.”


“She got out ‘hot monkey sex’ before Xander was able to stop her.”  The amusement clearly shone in her eyes as Giles stared at her before dropping his head in embarrassment.  “But, really...all they care about is our happiness.”


When he didn’t look back up, her smile faded a little.  “You...are happy, aren’t you?”


Hearing the sudden sadness in her voice, he quickly met her eyes.  “I’m very happy, Buffy.”  He smiled lovingly and placed his hand over hers.  “I don’t believe you shall ever know the depth of my happiness at this very moment.”


She snorted softly.  “You’re so British sometimes.”


His expression changed to one of mock-annoyance.  “I’m so British all of the time.  I am British.”


“Didn’t sound so British earlier.”


He tilted his head at the sound of her slight amusement and waited for her to continue.


She rolled her eyes and exhaled deeply.  “You know, mister ‘I want my tongue inside...’”


He cut her off quickly with a kiss.  They kissed with the need shared by two new lovers, pulling apart only when they finally needed to breathe.


“Can you stay tonight?”  His eyes were full of hope as he waited for her reply.


“I can.  Do you want me to?”


He ran his hand through her hair, curling a strand around his finger.  “I very much do.”


She leaned forward touching her lips to his briefly.  “Can we have hot monkey sex?”


He shuddered.  “You have no idea how glad I am that I wasn’t there.”


“But, you’re so cute when you’re all red and stammering.”


He chuckled deeply as he pulled her into his arms.  His eyes shifted towards the diary in the bookshelf.  “Was there anything I needed to record about your patrol tonight?”


He felt her smile against his chest.  “You’ll always be my Watcher, won’t you?”


Chapter Seven


She was putting on the last touches of her makeup when she heard him swear softly.  She smiled as she glanced into the bedroom to find him pacing back and forth.


“You okay in there?”


Out of her line of vision, he stopped pacing and looked towards the bathroom.  “What?  Oh, yes...yes, I’m okay.  This blasted tie, on the other hand...”  He sighed heavily and sat down on the bed.  “I’ve tied my own ties for well over twenty years.”


“So, what would be the problem then?”  She closed the mascara and dropped it into her makeup bag as she picked up a lipstick and studied the shade.


“New ties annoy me, that would be the problem.”


She laughed softly.  “So, wear an older one...”


“No...”  He stood up and began pacing again, resuming his attempt of tying the material properly around his neck.  “I bought this one especially for...”  He paused for a moment and then smiled as the knot slid nicely up to his neck.  “There we go.”


Buffy stepped into the bedroom.  “Especially for...”  Her voice trailed off as her eyes took in his appearance.


“Hm?”  He turned his eyes towards her, realizing she hadn’t finished what she was saying.  His mouth dropped open slightly, his eyes sparkling as they gazed at her body.  “You look beautiful.”


She blushed lightly and made her way to him.  Leaning up on her tiptoes, she placed a gentle kiss on his lips.  “You look quite handsome yourself.”  Her fingers played with the material of his tie.  “Nice tie, too.  It brings out the green of your eyes.”


“I...I thought you might like it.  That’s why I bought it.  I assumed that you would want me out of tweed for dinner.”  He closed his eyes, not believing he had actually said that.  “I mean...I wanted to wear this suit, but all of my ties seem to go better with tweed...and...I thought you might like the color.”


“Good choice.”  She eyed him appreciatively, her hand lingering on his chest.  With a heavy sigh, she looked up at him.  “Are you ready to go?”


“As ready as I’m going to be, I suppose.”  He picked up his suit jacket and slipped it on.


She offered him a reassuring smile and led him down the stairs.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


“They’re late.”  Anya sat back in chair.  “I hate it when people are late.”


“An, honey...” 


She quickly interrupted her boyfriend.  “I’m always on time.  People should be on time.  That’s why there is a time!”


Willow giggled as Oz took hold of her hand.  “Buffy’s not exactly known for her punctuality.”


Anya crossed her arms and grunted.  “But, Giles is.”


Xander sighed and pulled her hand into his.  “It’s a big night for them, Anya.  I’m sure they’ll be here soon.”


Anya rolled her eyes.  “They’re probably having hot monkey sex again and that’s why they’re late.  That’s why you wouldn’t have sex with me before...”


“Anya!”  Xander looked mortified, but wasn’t sure why he should be surprised at anything coming out of his girlfriend’s mouth anymore.  “We talked about this.  No mentioning of monkeys or sex in the same sentence in front of Buffy and Giles.”


She tilted her head thoughtfully.  “What about mice?”


Everyone stared at her in confusion.


“What?  Mice have sex all the time.”


Willow shook her head slowly and glanced towards the door.  “They’re here!”


Xander leaned over, whispering quietly in Anya’s ear.  “No monkeys, no mice, no sex.  I’ll make it up to you later, okay?”


Anya’s grin grew as she sat up straight.  “Okay.”


Giles cleared his throat as they approached the table.  It felt like all of them were staring at him...probably because they were.  He swallowed nervously and pulled the chair out for Buffy. 


“Oh, that’s so sweet.  You really are a gentleman, Giles.”  Willow beamed brightly.


His face flushed as he took his seat next to Buffy.  “Good evening.  I hope that we haven’t kept you waiting for very long.”


“Actually...”  Anya began before Xander nudged her with his elbow.  “We, uh...we just got here.”


Giles looked at the four of them, trying to relax.  He found that he had the hardest time looking at Willow, who he was quite sure would not stop smiling for the entire evening.


“So...”  Xander began, but then found he didn’t know what else to say.


Buffy laughed lightly.  “Look guys, this doesn’t have to be as awkward as we’re all making it.”


Oz smirked.  “Not all of us.”  He held Giles’ eyes for a moment before speaking again.  “Congratulations, Giles.”


Giles felt the sincerity in the boy’s words, he also felt Buffy’s hand give his knee a reassuring squeeze.  He smiled, relaxing slightly.  “Thank you, Oz.  I do appreciate that.”


Oz merely nodded before looking back down at the menu.  “The chicken sounds good.”


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Giles had just put a forkful of mashed potatoes into his mouth when Anya piped up.


“So, Buffy, what does your mother think?”


Giles promptly choked on the potato, gasping for breath as he reached for his glass of water.  Buffy gently thumped him on the back and as they looked at each other, they paled.


Watching their reaction, Anya shook her head.  “I’m guessing you haven’t told her the wonderful news.”


“I, uh...we...well, we...”  He took another sip of water.


Anya waved her hand in the air nonchalantly.  “I’m sure she’ll be fine.  She probably doesn’t even think about having sex with you again.”


Water spluttered out of Giles’ mouth and onto the tablecloth in front of him. 


“Anya!”  Four voices spoke her name in unison, in identical tones of bewilderment.


“What?”  She looked at the group, confused.


Giles cleared his throat and dabbed the linen napkin at his mouth.  “I...I’m rather sure that Buffy’s mother no longer thinks about it.”


Anya smiled brightly.  “See?”  She glanced at the other members of the dinner party.  “Besides, she’d be too busy thinking about you having sex with her daughter to worry...”


“Anya!”  Their voices were louder this time. 


Xander grabbed her by the arm and pulled her from the table.  He glanced at his friends and smiled weakly.  “You’ll excuse us for a minute?”


Giles’ eyes were wide as he nodded.  “Of...of course.”


Buffy’s hand rested on Giles’ thigh in an attempt to soothe him.  Oz bit his lip, deep in thought.  Willow pushed the remainder of her food around on her plate.  Giles’ mind was racing.


Willow was the first to speak.  “You know she didn’t mean anything by it.”


Giles nodded numbly as he stared at the table.  “That’s the wonderment of Anya.  Her social innocence versus tact...”  He looked up and smiled gently.  “Though, she does give one something to think about.”


“We’ll figure it out, Giles.  It’ll be weird, but...we’ll figure something out.”


He nodded at her as he inhaled deeply.  He looked across the table as Anya and Xander sat back down. Xander’s face was slightly red and Anya looked even more confused than she did a few minutes earlier.


She huffed softly and met Giles’ eyes.  “I’m sorry if I caused you any discomfort.  It wasn’t my intention.”


Giles smiled warmly at her.  “It’s quite alright.  Through your tactlessness, you did make a valid point.”


She nudged Xander in the ribs.  “See?  I made a point.”


Xander nodded, chewing on a piece of steak.  “You normally do.  It’s your presentation that leaves much to be desired.”


Giles pushed his chair back and stood.  He looked down at Buffy, aching to touch her.  “I, uh...I’ll be right back.”


Buffy sighed heavily as she watched him walk towards the restroom.  She was lost in thought when Anya’s voice caught her attention.


“Do you look at me like that when I walk away?”


Xander chuckled softly.  “More or less.”


Buffy snapped her eyes back to her friends to find them smiling brightly at her, and felt herself flush under their scrutiny.  “What?” 


Willow sighed happily and giggled.  “It’s just so adorable watching you watch him...him watching you...”


Buffy smiled back at them.  “Look, before he comes back...I just want to thank you all.  He was so worried that you would think differently about him...”


“Oh, I do.”  Anya stated as she swallowed a mouthful of salmon.  She looked up, finding everyone staring at her.  “But, not in a bad way.”


Willow shook her head in frustration and looked at Xander.  “Can’t you teach her to think before she speaks?”


Xander shrugged his shoulders.  “She’s a work in progress, Will.”


Anya smiled at Buffy.  “I’m really happy for you Buffy.  Both of you.”


Buffy smiled back at her, opening her mouth to thank her.  She shut it as Anya continued.


“It’s nice to find someone who is more than an orgasm friend.  And it’s obvious that he is.”


Giles placed his hand on Buffy’s shoulder briefly as he pulled his chair out and began to sit down.  “Obvious that I am what?” 


“More than an orgasm friend.”


Giles stopped in mid motion and stared at her over the top of his glasses.  He finally sat down and took a deep breath. 


“Does this mean that we have to knock before we walk into your apartment now?”


Giles tilted his head slightly.  “Why would you start now?”


Buffy chuckled and reached up to pick a piece of lint off of his lapel.


“Well, what if we just walk in like we normally do and there you two are, having sex or something?”




She slumped back in her chair and frowned.  “Jeez, it was just a question.”


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Giles loosened his tie as he walked into the kitchen and put the kettle on.  He smiled when he felt her walk up behind him and slip her arms around his torso.


“Was it as bad as you imagined?”


“I have to admit that it wasn’t.”  He turned in her arms and pushed the hair back from her face.  “A few interesting moments, but when isn’t there when Anya is around?”


She leaned forward, placing her head on his chest.  “Giles?”


“Hm?”  He kissed the top of her head as he held her tighter against him.


“How am I supposed to tell Mom?”


He rubbed her back gently.  “We’ll tell her together.”


“And that won’t be at all awkward, will it?”  She smiled as he chuckled softly.  “Do you ever think about it?”  She pulled back slightly to look up at him.  “You know, the band candy stuff?”


“Not in the way you’re asking.  I was more ashamed than anything else.  I still am to a degree.”  He paused in thought.  “Do you?  Think about it, that is?”


“No.  I mean it seriously freaked me out when I found out about it.  Especially when she called you a stevedore, which I had to look up because she wouldn’t tell me what it was.  Come to think of it, neither would you.  And, by the way, she was right...you totally are.”  She smiled as his face reddened.  “But, I know it was the spell.  If you didn’t like chocolate, you wouldn’t have eaten it, and you wouldn’t have had sex with my mother.”


“It took me months before I’d eat chocolate again.”


Buffy laughed.  “I don’t think Mom has eaten it at all since then.”    Her face turned serious.  “I just hope she understands.  It would probably be a bit easier if she didn’t know what you’re like in bed.”


“She doesn’t.”


Buffy narrowed her eyes slightly and then it hit her.  “Oh.  That’s right, it was on the hood of a police car.”  Her thoughts turned some more.  “She really has no idea, does she?  I mean...she wasn’t with you, she was with Ripper.”


He nodded slowly.  Which could make it even more difficult for her to understand.


Buffy sighed softly.  Recognizing sadness in the sound, Giles tilted his head.  “What’s wrong?”


She shrugged her shoulders and then let them slump.  “She’ll be home tomorrow.”


His hand cupped her cheek, his fingers caressing her skin.  “Then we make the most of tonight.” 


Her heart raced as he leaned down and kissed her, putting all of the passion he had into it.  Her knees buckled underneath her.  He quickly picked her up, took a step forward, and sat her on the counter top.  He moved in between her thighs, groaning into her mouth as his quickly hardening manhood pressed against her warm core.


She slid forward, wrapping her legs around him and pulling him tighter against her body.  Her fingers pulled the tie from around his neck before moving to the buttons on his shirt.  He pushed her back gently with his body, sensually rocking his hips into her.  She whimpered lightly when he pulled her blouse off and nipped at her breast.


She reached down and fumbled with his belt.  He held his hips still long enough for her to unbuckle it and unfasten his trousers.  His lips moved to her neck, his teeth gently nipping the sensitive skin before whispering into her ear.


“Oh, God...Buffy, I want you.”


She looked into his eyes as she began unfastening her own slacks.  “I want you just as much.”


Just as he began tugging her pants down, the kettle began to whistle.  He growled in frustration, much to Buffy’s delight.


“Tea?”  She asked softly.


His eyes were dark with desire when he looked at her and gruffly shook his head.  “Bed.”


He reached behind him and turned off the stove before picking her up.  She grinned and bent her head to nibble on his earlobe.


“Are you carrying me to bed?”


There was a deep rumble in his chest when she sucked the lobe into her mouth.  “I am indeed.”


The next thing she knew he had dropped her onto the bed, covering her body with his.  Her hands slid down his sides until they reached the waistband of his open trousers.  He lifted his hips slightly, allowing her to push them down.


When she had gotten them down as far as she possibly could, he lifted himself off of her intending to rid them both of their remaining clothes.  His mission quickly accomplished, he gently pushed her to the centre of the bed.


As he moved over her, she smiled.  “I love you so much, Giles.”


He settled between her thighs, leaning down to claim her mouth once more.  “I love you too, Buffy.”


He read her eyes as he slowly entered her.  He grinned at what he saw in those hazel irises and slid his hands underneath her, lifting her hips up.  She wrapped her legs around him, locking her ankles together on his lower back.


He began thrusting slowly, but it wasn’t long before she was screaming for him to take her harder and faster.  His fingers kneaded her firm cheeks as he complied.


He wanted to slow down, to take his time, to make it last as long as humanly possible.  But his desire to give her everything she wanted, and however she wanted it, was far too strong.  Her nails raked down his chest as she bucked her hips against him, matching him thrust for thrust.  She could feel him expand inside of her and knew he was close.


Without warning, her orgasm suddenly crashed over her.  Their names fell from each other’s lips as they came violently together.


His sweat-slick body collapsed next to hers.  He pulled her into his embrace as they both fought to catch their breath.


“Probably...shouldn’t tell Mom...about that...huh?”


He grunted a laugh, his trembling hands stroking her back.  “I doubt it...would be very...prudent.”


She laid her head on his chest as he rolled onto his back, content to just lie there and listen to his heart.  “It’ll be okay, won’t it?”


He placed a kiss on top of her head and inhaled deeply.  “Maybe not at first, but eventually, yes.”


“It’s only been a few days, but how am I supposed to sleep without you beside of me?”


He chuckled softly, enjoying the feel of her skin against his.  “You’ll probably actually get more sleep.”


They remained quiet for a few moments and then she realized that he had fallen into deep thought.  She lifted her head and looked at him, her silent question burning in her eyes.


“You do realize that this...us...it’s more than sex to me.  I know that my actions over the past few days haven’t necessarily corresponded with that statement, but...”


She gave him a reassuring smile as she nodded. 


“I am going to miss you lying next to me.  Being able to hold you, to touch you.”  He sighed heavily, his eyes misting lightly.  “We should probably talk to your mother sooner rather than later.”


“I’m...kinda scared about it.”


He nodded in agreement.  “You think you’re scared?”


“But...we’ll be together, right?”


He smiled lovingly at her.  “Yes, we will.”


“Are you busy Friday night?”


Chapter Eight


The week was hard on both of them.  A few moments here and there, after patrol before she headed home.  His heart felt as though it would shatter that first night when he watched her walk out of his apartment.  It didn’t help that it took her four attempts before she was successfully able to go home.  Each time she walked out, she’d turn right back around and fall into his arms.


The late nights/early mornings were equally hard for them.  He found that he’d toss and turn, growing more frustrated as sleep refused to come.  She found herself lying on her bed and staring at the ceiling.  Hoping that she wouldn’t wake him, she picked up the phone.  He answered on the first ring, knowing in his heart who would be on the other end of the line.




“I miss you.”


He smiled at the sound of her voice.  “I miss you too.”


“I didn’t wake you, did I?  I know it’s late...or early, depending on how you look at it.”


His light chuckle brought a smile to her face.  “No, I’m wide awake.  I find that I’m having a horrible time getting comfortable without someone here to steal the blankets.”


“I so don’t steal blankets!”


They laughed together for a few seconds.  As they quietened down, his voice took on a concerned tone. 


“Are you alright?”


She shook her head as she wiped a tear from her eye.


“Buffy?  Shaking your head isn’t speaking.  I can’t see you, so you have to talk.”

She laughed softly.  “Then how did you know I shook my head?”


“Because I know you.”  He paused until he felt her smile.  “Talk to me.”


She sniffled.  “I love you so much.”


“Is this why you’re crying?”


She wiped the back of her hand across her eyes.  “No, the loving part is wonderful.  It’s the missing part that’s killing me.”


He wanted nothing more than to tell her he’d be right over, but doubted that Joyce would take too kindly to that...unless there was an emergency of the Hellmouth variety.  He shook his head as he dismissed the thought. 


Instead, he replied quietly.  “I know what you mean.”  He forced a semi-cheery tone into his voice.  “Would you care to come over for some training in the morning?  You can take out your frustrations by pummelling me.”


That coerced a small laugh out of her.  “I could use a good workout.”  She glanced at the clock.  “It’s after 3, I should...I should let you get some sleep.”


“You should sleep as well, my dear.  Thank you for calling, it has helped quite tremendously.”


“I love you, Giles.”


“I love you too.  Sleep well.”


It took them ages to disconnect the line.  But when they finally did, they were both able to finally rest.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Hearing the doorbell ring, she sprinted to the door.  “I’ve got it, Mom!”


She swung the door open and grinned.  “Hi there.”


He smiled back at her, his eyes darting inside.  “Hello.”


She stepped closer to him and whispered.  “Mom’s finishing up dinner if you want a quick kiss.”


He bent his head and touched his lips to hers.  “I love you.”


She grinned up at him and then took a step back, allowing him to enter.  She turned her head towards the kitchen, Giles winced before she even opened her mouth.


“Mom!  Giles is here!”


“Must you yell?”  He asked with a smile on his face.


Joyce walked into the living room with her hands on her hips.  “You don’t have to yell, Buffy.”  She looked at Giles and smiled warmly.  “Hello, Rupert.  It’s nice to see you again.”


Giles swallowed, suddenly nervous knowing that she wouldn’t be thinking that in a little while.  “Thank you, Joyce.  It’s nice to see you, too.”


“Dinner will be ready in a couple of minutes, would you like a drink?”


“Ah, yes.  That would be lovely.”


Buffy motioned her mother away.  “I’ll get it Mom.”  She rolled her eyes as Joyce gave her the ‘are you sure?’ look.  “I’m perfectly capable of pouring a scotch for my...Watcher.”


Giles noticed the hesitation and hoped like hell that Joyce hadn’t.  She obviously missed it as she smiled, uttered an ‘okay’, and made her way back to the kitchen.  Giles exhaled softly and walked over to stand beside of her.


“You look beautiful.”


She snorted and handed him his drink.  “Yeah, right...jeans and a t-shirt, very sexy.”


His fingers lightly caressed hers as he took the glass from her.  “I think so.”


She grinned at him.  “If Mom wasn’t in the next room...”


He nodded, understanding her perfectly.  “I know.”


He took a step back from her mere seconds before Joyce walked back into the room to announce dinner was ready.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Joyce dropped her fork onto her dessert plate, her eyes wide with shock.  “What did you just say?”


Giles cleared his throat and glanced at Buffy.  They had agreed to tell her mother tonight, but he hadn’t really expected her to just blurt out ‘Giles and I are seeing each other’.


Buffy took a deep breath.  “I’m sorry Mom, I didn’t mean for it to come out that way.  But, there just wasn’t a good way to tell you.”


Joyce’s eyes darted between her daughter and the Watcher.  “You...you’re...”  She shook her head in confusion.  “You’re dating?  Is that what you’re telling me?”


Buffy looked at Giles and smiled softly.  “That’s exactly what I’m telling you.”


Joyce turned her stare onto Giles.  “Are you drugging her again?”




Giles glanced at Buffy, silently requesting her to calm down.  “Joyce, I assure you that is not the case.”


“A spell?”  The rage was beginning to show in her eyes.  “Cursed chocolate?”


Giles blushed lightly at the mention of chocolate and diverted his eyes from the woman.  He licked his lips nervously and slowly shifted his eyes back to her. 


“No.  There is nothing mystical here, Joyce.  I know this is hard to...”


“Hard?  You know?  She’s only twenty years old!  And you’re...”


“Over 200 years younger than my last boyfriend.”  Buffy interjected quickly.


Joyce snapped her eyes to her daughter.  “That was very different, Buffy.”


“Yeah, he was a vampire. Giles is human.”


Joyce’s fingers clenched and then released.  “You know exactly what I mean.”


Buffy inhaled deeply, willing herself to calm down.  When she spoke again, her voice was softer in hopes of diffusing the situation as best she could.


“Mom, we love each other.  I know you don’t understand it, and I know you’re very angry, but...we’re in love.”


Joyce returned her glare to Giles.  “Are you having sex with my daughter?”


“I...uh...we, well...I...”  Giles stammered, his face turning red. 


“Oh my God.”  Joyce whispered.  Her gaze dropped to the table, refusing to look at him again.




“I think you should leave now, Rupert.”  Joyce’s voice was calm.  Eerily calm. 


“Joyce, I’m sorry for any distress...”


“Please leave, Rupert.”  She looked up at her daughter.  “Buffy and I need to talk.”


Giles pushed his chair back and stood.  He looked at Buffy, his heart breaking at the tears in her eyes.  He mouthed the words ‘I love you’ to her, turned, and walked to the door without another word.


“Mom, I can’t let him go.”  The tears were beginning to roll down her cheeks.


“This isn’t happening.”  Joyce spoke the words mainly to herself and stood, making her way to the window.


Buffy jumped out of her chair when she heard the front door close.  She ran to it, swinging it open, and running towards his car.  “Giles!”


He stopped and turned in time to catch her as she threw herself into his arms.  She sobbed as he held her in his tight embrace.  She lifted her head and captured his lips in a smouldering kiss.  He began to return the kiss quickly, not caring that they were standing outside under a streetlamp. 


His heart ached as he ended the kiss and pulled back to look at her face.  “I’m not leaving you, Buffy.”


She gazed up at him, trying to catch her breath as he reached up and gently wiped away her tears.  “Promise?”


He smiled affectionately at her and allowed his fingers to run through her hair.  “I spent four years on the outside, waiting for you to...well, for you to grow up.  I refuse to give up now.”


He bent his head and kissed her tenderly.  Pulling her into a hug, he whispered softly.  “Go speak with your mother now.”


She nodded and gently eased out of his arms. 


Neither of them noticed her mother standing in the window, her arms wrapped around herself as she watched the two under the light.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Two and a half hours later there was a knock on his front door.  He glanced up curiously as he closed the book he had been unsuccessfully attempting to read.  He cautiously approached the door as another knock sounded.


He took a deep breath and opened the door, somewhat surprised when he saw his visitor.  “Hello, Joyce.”


He took a step back, silently inviting her in.  She stepped through the door and noticed him glance outside.  “She went on patrol after we talked.”


He gave her a nod and closed the door behind them.  “Would you…would you care for a cup of tea?”


She shook her head softly.  “No thank you, Rupert.  I just came over to talk.”


He swallowed nervously and gestured towards the couch.  He winced lightly as she sat down when he remembered certain events that had taken place on those cushions with this woman’s daughter.  He sat down on a chair, and while the chair was actually quite comfortable, he was anything but.


They sat in silence for a few minutes, each waiting for the other to begin.  Joyce sighed heavily and broke the silence.


“Buffy and I had a talk.  Well, it turned into a screaming match for a while.”  She paused as she collected her thoughts.  “I have to know something, Rupert.  Are…Are you playing a game with her?”


“I assure you, this is no game to me, Joyce.”


“Because, she’s definitely in love with you.  And, if you’re using her for your own needs or wants…it’s going to break her heart. I am definitely not okay with this.  Do not misinterpret me.  I am not giving you my blessing right now.  If you intend to continue seeing my daughter, that’s something you’re going to have to earn.”  Her jaw clenched and then released. 


Giles cleared his throat softly.  “I am indeed very much in love with Buffy.  I am most certainly not using her in any way. And I very much intend to keep seeing her.  I do understand your reservations about our relationship, and I sincerely hope that one day you shall see that I am being honest.”


“You two have always spent so much time together.”


“Buffy is the Slayer, I am her Watcher.  Until recently, that was the basis of our time spent together.  Training, patrolling, educating…”


“But you’ve been in love with her for some time, according to her.”


He nodded slowly, wanting to look away.  “But my emotions weren’t acted upon.”


“Is this something that normally happens?”  She watched him as he tilted his head slightly.  “Watchers, Slayers, relationships?”


“Oh.”  He seemed lost in thought for a moment, as if he were deciding the best route to take.  Finally, he shrugged his shoulders and sighed.  “Traditionally, Watchers were to take over the care of their Slayer.  They alone, as well as the Council, knew the secret.  Slayers had no friends, no familial network.  It was just she and her Watcher.  A few times in history, it has happened that the Watcher and Slayer turned to one another for comfort because there was no one else.” 


He took a deep breath and looked into Joyce’s eyes.  “Buffy is a unique exception to that rule.  Her friends, her family, you…give her the fuel to feed her strength.  I had no intentions of pulling her away from that.  If I had, it would serve no one.  And chances are, she would most likely have already been defeated and another would have taken her place.”


“This isn’t some power trip thing?  Something inside of you that thinks it deserves it, so it takes it?”


“Positively not.”  He stared into her eyes until she looked away.


“How far are you wanting this to go?”  She looked back at him, her eyes boring into him.


“I…”  His back stiffened and he sat straight up, eyes snapping towards the door.


Joyce narrowed her eyes in confusion.  “Rupert?”


“Buffy.”  He jumped up and ran to the door, swinging it open just in time for her to run through and into his arms.  He held her tight, feeling her rapid heartbeat against his chest.  “What happened?  Are you alright?”


“Big demony thing.  Greeny-blue, big curly horns…and fast.”  She kicked the door closed and looked up at him, smiling gently.  “But, I’m faster.”


He returned her smile and then stepped back.  “I’ll get tea started and then we’ll…”


“Consult your books.”  She finished for him.  She saw a movement out of the corner of her eye and turned her head.  “Mom?”


Joyce’s eyes were full of concern for her daughter.  “Are you sure you’re okay?”


Buffy nodded slowly.  “What are you doing here?”


Joyce turned towards Giles who had just put the kettle on and was heading to the bookshelf.  “Wouldn’t she be safer if you patrolled with her?  I mean, if you love her as much as you say you do…”


He pulled a book from the shelf and looked into Joyce’s eyes.  “That is precisely why I don’t patrol with her.” 


“What?”  Joyce’s voice was full of confusion.


“Buffy is much safer without me there.  If she were to lose her concentration by worrying about what’s happening to me…”  He sat heavily onto the chair.  “Well, I can’t bring myself to put her into jeopardy.  As much as I want to go with her, to protect her from…”  He glanced at Buffy, a smile in his eyes.  “…big greeny-blue demony things with big curly horns…my presence could quite possibly be detrimental to the task.”


Buffy took the book from his hands as the tea kettle whistled and he stood.  “In other words, if he goes with me, I might get killed because I’m paying more attention to him than what I’m doing.”


His face paled when she mentioned the word ‘killed’.  Joyce couldn’t help but notice his reaction.    He shook his head slightly to shake the image out of his head. 


“Yes, well.  Joyce, would you care for tea now?”


Joyce glanced at Buffy, who had flipped open the book in search of the demon she had encountered.  She nodded, looking back to him and offering him an understanding smile.


“Yes, thank you, Rupert.”


He turned and made his way into the kitchen, efficiently preparing three cups of tea.  He had just returned the milk to the refrigerator when Buffy called out.


“I found him!”


“What’s it called?”  He walked into the room and placed the tray on the coffee table.


Buffy’s brow furrowed.  “Can I buy a vowel?”


Giles chuckled as he handed a cup to Joyce and then turned his attention to the picture that Buffy was pointing at.  “Hm.  Interesting.”


“God, I hate it when you say that.”  She looked at her mother, who was watching their interaction quite closely.  “Normally when he says that, the world is going to end…again.”


Giles pursed his lips in mock-annoyance and raised his eyes to Buffy’s.  “Not this time.  Vrindskh’m.”


“What?”  Joyce leaned forward.


Giles looked at her and removed his glasses.  “Vrindskh’m.  It’s the demon that Buffy encountered.  Very unusual for one to be in this dimension.  It’s rather quite interesting.”


Hearing the smile in his voice, Buffy rolled her eyes and muttered.  “Such a geek sometimes.” 


She continued reading the description of the demon.  “Hey…”


“Hm?”  Giles turned his attention back to his Slayer.


“This Vrin…uh…vrin…”


“Vrindskh’m.”  Giles helped her softly.


“Yeah…it says that Vinny has never been known to attack humans.  Or anything else.”  She looked up at Giles.  “So, why did it chase me?”


Giles smiled and gently rested his hand on her shoulder.  “Keep reading.”


“Once every fourscore, Vrin…Vinny makes his way unto Earth through an interdimensional portal for one sole purpose.  The atmospheric pressures of the F’raja Dimension are too great for successful procreation.  After a period of thirteen shiktas, the Vinny returns to F’raja through the same portal, taking with it no less than 500 Vinny-mites.”  She looked up as Giles chuckled.  “What?  It’s that word with ‘mites’ added to it.”


To her own surprise, Joyce found herself smiling at the interaction between the two. 


“In actuality, the Vrindskh’m more than likely wasn’t chasing you to harm you.  It was protecting the Vrindskh’mites.”  Without thinking, he raised his hand and allowed his fingers to brush a stray lock of hair away from her forehead.  “Think about it as a bear protecting her cubs.”


Her face flushed lightly as she looked into his eyes.  Suddenly remembering that her mother was still sitting on the couch and watching them, she looked back down.  “So how long is a shikta?”


Giles cleared his throat, realizing why she had broken their contact.  “Thirteen shiktas is the equivalent of two months and three days.”


“So, nothing to worry about.”


He smiled at her, fighting the urge to lean down and kiss her.  “Nothing at all.”


At the sound of the door latch clicking into place, they both looked up to find Joyce gone.  Buffy smiled when she heard the sound of her mother’s Cherokee start up and drive away.


“I…I think it’s going to be okay.”  She said quietly.


“Given time, yes.  It will take your mother some time to fully trust me with you, however.”


She placed her hand on his chest, relishing the feel of his heart pounding under her touch.  “Show me that you love me?”


Giles gave into his urge, leaning down and claiming her mouth passionately.


Chapter Nine


They were lying on their backs, her head resting on his right arm.  Their breathing was still erratic when she spoke.






“Why was my mother here?”


He opened his eyes and turned his head towards her.  “She wanted to talk.”


“About what?”


He smiled softly.  “Us.”


She turned her eyes towards him.  He could clearly see her frustration building.  “Could you be more evasive?”


He took a deep breath, exhaling slowly.  “She, uh…she wanted to know if I was playing a game with you.”


She bolted upright, anger replacing the frustration he had seen.  “What?!”


He lifted his hand and placed it on her back.  “Buffy…”


“How could she do that?  When I get home, I’m so…”


He shook his head slowly.  “Buffy, I would have done the same thing.”  He pushed himself up and leaned back against the headboard.  “If you were my daughter, I would have done exactly what she did…if not more.  She loves you so very much.  She just wants to protect you.  Please don’t be angry with her.”


She was quiet for a few moments.  “What else did she say?”


He shrugged his shoulders lightly.  “That I would have to earn her trust in our relationship.  And that she couldn’t give us her blessing right now.  Again, it’s completely understandable.”


Buffy then smiled and leaned against him.  She took another deep breath.  “Is it the age difference, you think?”


He kissed her temple softly.  “I’m quite sure that’s part of it.  I’m equally sure that it’s not the only issue.”


“What else is there?”  She looked at him, a myriad of emotions flowing through her eyes.  “Wait.  Is it because you and her…”


He interrupted her with a quick shake of his head.  “I honestly don’t think that is playing a part here.”




He tilted his head, a thoughtful expression on his face.  “Well, I am somewhat of an authority figure for you.  Quite possibly, she’s worried that I’m taking advantage of that.”




“We know differently.  Your mother needs it proven to her.  It’s quite a normal, and expected, reaction for her to have.”  He gently eased their bodies back down to the mattress and wrapped his arms around her.  “And I shall do everything in my power to prove my true intentions to her.”


She smiled and kissed his lips softly.  “And just what exactly are your intentions?”


He inhaled deeply and looked into her eyes.  “To love you unconditionally.  To protect you, with my very life if need be.  To make you laugh.  To hold you when you cry.  To…make you happy.”  He licked his lips, a tear glistening in his eye.  “All of this, and most probably more, for the rest of your life.”


A tear rolled across the bridge of her nose and dropped onto the pillow under her head.  “That is undoubtedly the most beautiful thing anyone has ever said to me.”  Her breath hitched as another tear followed.  “You really are a romantic, aren’t you?”


He raised his hand, his thumb gently brushing away her tears.  “That I am.”  He glanced at the clock and sighed.  “I should take you home.”


“But I want to stay here.”  Her voice was soft, tinged with sadness.


He swallowed the lump forming in his throat.  “I want you to as well, but…”  He exhaled slowly.  “I’m not sure Joyce would appreciate it.”


She thought about it for a few seconds, and then nodded her head sadly.  “You’re probably right.”


They lay there for a few more minutes and then slowly got up and dressed.  She stopped him at the door and kissed him passionately.  When she withdrew, they were both left breathless once again.


He tilted his head, silently asking a question.  She grinned up at him as she handed him his car keys.  “My intentions?  The same as yours.”


He smiled brightly as she opened the door.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


She laughed softly, her fingers laced with his as they walked up the front steps to her house.  “You know, you didn’t have to walk me to the door.”


He climbed the stairs with her, coming to a stop underneath the porch light.  He smiled adoringly at her.  “A gentleman always sees his lady home safely.”  His fingers caressed the side of her face as he leant down.  “Especially in Sunnydale.”


Her hand rested on his chest as she leant up, meeting him halfway.  Their lips met and quickly parted for each other.  Her hand slid around his neck, her fingers playing with the soft hair at the nape.  He reluctantly pulled away from her, sighing heavily as their kiss ended.


“I…I should go home now.”


She pouted at him, bringing a smile to his face.  His finger traced her lower lip.  “It’s not going to work this time, Buffy.”  He chuckled as she increased the intensity of her pout.  “Training tomorrow afternoon?”


She sighed and nodded.  “Yeah, I’ll be there.”


“Dinner before patrol?”


A smile touched her lips.  “Are you asking me for a date?”


He laughed softly.  “Yes, I rather think I am.”


He bent his head, capturing her lips quickly before easing away from her.  He backed down the steps, his eyes not breaking contact with hers.  She leaned her back against the door. 


“So, where are we going?”


His eyes sparkled.  “It’s a surprise.  Does that mean you’ll have dinner with me?”


She nodded, her smile growing.  “What time?”


He gave her a wink and reached into his pocket for his keys.  “After training.  Before patrol.”  He busied his hands with his keys to keep himself from running back to her.  “Sleep well, Buffy.”


She opened her front door and stepped inside.  She watched him drive away before she closed the door and made her way up the stairs to her room.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


He dropped his hands in exasperation, staring at her.  “Buffy, this is training.”


She narrowed her eyes in confusion.  “Yeah, and that’s what we’re doing…training.”


He pulled the padded gloves off of his hands and threw them onto the table.  “Is that what you call it?  Because after an hour of catching your punches and kicks, I shouldn’t be physically able to hold my arms up.”  Anger flashed in his green eyes.  “You’re holding back.”


She smiled softly, hoping to diffuse his anger.  “Maybe a little.”


Her admission did nothing but anger him further.  “Damn it, Buffy!  You can’t hold back…at all.  You need to be at the top of your game, not somewhere in the middle because you’re afraid to hit me.”  He pulled off his chest protector and angrily threw it in the general direction of the table.  He glared at her.  “You’ve never held back with me before.  And…you can’t afford to start now.”


She allowed her gaze to drop to the floor.  “I’m sorry, Giles.”


He felt his anger begin to melt.  “I don’t want you to be sorry, Buffy.  I want you to be alive.  In order for that to continue, you need to train properly.”  He sighed heavily and walked towards her.  “This is precisely why I won’t patrol with you.  You worry too much about me and that clouds your judgement.  I need you to not hold back.”  She looked up at him and nodded.  “Shall we try this again?”


“No holding back this time, I promise.”


He gave her a quick nod and put his protective gear back on.  “Let’s go.”


Forty-five minutes later, he was drenched in sweat and kneeling on the floor breathing heavily.  Buffy crouched beside of him, a sly grin on her face.




He nodded slowly and looked into her eyes.  “Quite.  Never hold back again, Buffy.  I always recover from our training sessions and I’m never in danger.  Understand?”


“Understood.”  She stood up, reaching down to grasp his hand in order to help him up.  “I didn’t mean to make you angry, but…”


He stood up beside her, tilting his head when her voice trailed off.  “But, what?”


“Do you have any idea how sexy you are when you’re angry?”


His face reddened as he removed the protective equipment.  “Well, I…uh…I am?”


“Definitely.”  She moved closer to him, her hands reaching for the buttons on his shirt.  “Dinner in tonight?”


He closed his hands over hers and shook his head.  “Showers for us, preferably separate if I’m intending to actually take you out.  You can have the shower first.”


“Can we come back here for dessert?”


He nodded wordlessly as she released his shirt and made her way to the bathroom.  She turned back around suddenly, desire showing clearly in her eyes.  “You sure you don’t want to join me?”


He cleared his throat softly.  “I’m quite sure I do.  But, if I allow that to happen, we won’t be leaving this apartment anytime soon.”


She leaned against the wall as she pulled her shoes off.  “And where’s the bad in that?”


He groaned softly as she pulled her shirt over her head and dropped it to the floor.  “I…want to take you out for dinner.”


She smiled as she pulled her pants off, dropping them on top of her shirt.  “There’s always take-out, Giles.  And we’ll have plenty of time in the future to go out for dinner.”  She reached behind herself and unclasped her bra.  She watched his eyes darken as the garment fell to the floor.  “We could have a shower together, order in some Chinese, make love…and not necessarily in that order.”


He took a deep breath and picked up the phone, quickly dialling a number.  His eyes never left hers as he spoke into the receiver. 


“Yes, this is Rupert Giles.  I need to cancel a reservation please.”


Chapter Ten


She arched her back against him as he sensuously ran the washcloth over her abdomen.  His head was bent, his lips gliding across her shoulder.  He moved his lips over her wet skin, up her neck to her ear.  His tongue lightly traced her cartilage as he held her body tight against him.  He smiled inwardly when he heard her soft moan as he pulled her lobe into his mouth.


His left hand gently massaged her breasts, his right hand dipped lower.  She gasped when the cloth in his hand covered her pubic mound.  He washed her gently as the fingers on his left hand rolled her nipple.  She arched her hips against his hand as his mouth released her earlobe and attached itself to the tender flesh on her neck.


He felt her groan rumble against his chest when he slowly pushed his finger into her.  He thrust slowly, allowing his left arm to slide down and wrap around her waist in an attempt to hold her still.  Her left hand reached up above her, her fingers running through his wet hair, effectively holding his head in place at her neck.


He nipped the skin, sucking lightly as he continued the slow thrust with his finger.  Her right hand flew up to the tiled wall, bracing her as he slipped a second finger into her folds.  He groaned as she arched against him, the feel of her wet skin against his erection surprisingly intense.


He felt her knees buckle slightly and removed his lips from her neck.


“Are you okay?”


Her nails raked along his scalp as she thrust her hips against his hand.  “Giles…”


He rocked his hips gently, allowing his erection to slide across her lower back.  His thumb pressed against her clitoris as he increased the pace of his thrusting fingers.  He felt her walls beginning to tighten around his digits.


Suddenly, he turned her around in his arms.  He claimed her mouth, his tongue thrusting against hers, as he let his fingers slip from her.  Her cry of frustration was replaced with a moan as he lifted her and slid his hardened flesh into her.  Her nails scraped across his shoulder blades, the hot water cascading over them making it difficult to grip onto him.


He pulled from the kiss, leaning his head back slightly to look at her.  The water flowed down her body, her skin flushed from the heat of both the water and her reaction to him.  He thrust into her, groaning loudly as he felt her climax beginning again.


She leaned forward, latching her mouth onto his collarbone as her orgasm crashed over her, sending her hot juices flowing over him.  The sensation was too much for him to handle and his orgasm followed quickly. 


He leaned forward, wedging her between his body and the tiled wall so she wouldn’t slip.  She held onto him tightly, gasping as his softening flesh slid out of her.  They stayed under the spray for a few more minutes, allowing the water to rinse their bodies.  His lips found hers again, kissing her passionately as he blindly reached for the shower tap and turned the water off.


She sighed heavily when he ended the kiss and took a tentative step backwards, still holding her for support.  He just wasn’t sure if he was supporting her or himself.  She grinned lazily and laid her head against his chest.


“Mm…I like showers.”


He chuckled softly.  “Very…relaxing, aren’t they?” 


“Mm-hm.”  She shivered suddenly and he wrapped his arms around her.  “The only bad part is it cools off too quickly.”


He helped her out of the shower and wrapped a warm towel around her body.  He dried off quickly, wrapping the towel around his waist, and handed her his bathrobe.


“What about you?”


His eyes gleamed as she slid into his robe.  “It, uh…it looks better on you.”


She grinned as she followed him into the bedroom.  She sat down on the edge of the bed, sighing heavily when he pulled a pair of sweatpants and a t-shirt out of a drawer.  He turned around at the soft sound.


“What’s wrong?”


Her eyes narrowed in a pout as she watched him pull the sweatpants on.  “I don’t want to get dressed.”


He chuckled as he slid into the shirt.  “Don’t then.  You look just fine in the robe.”


“And you looked just fine in the towel.”


He grinned at her.  “Ah, but one of us has to answer the door when dinner arrives.”  He took her hand and pulled her off the bed.  “Can’t do that with just a towel on.”


“You can, you just won’t.”


He laughed as he led her downstairs.  She went to the couch and grabbed the television remote as he put the kettle on to boil.  She glanced into the kitchen as she hit the power button on the remote.


“You know you’re addicted to tea?”


He looked at her and smiled.  “It’s not an addiction.  It’s an appreciation.”


She tossed the remote onto the coffee table and turned sideways to face him.  “And what am I?”


His eyes twinkled as he walked into the living room and sat down beside of her.  “Incredibly intoxicating, often infuriating, terribly amusing.”  He tilted his head thoughtfully and pulled her to him.  “And the only person I’ve ever completely trusted with my heart.”


“That was beautiful.”  She turned, leaning her back against his chest.  “And completely corny.”


He chuckled, feeling her warmth as she settled against him.  “Perhaps.  But also very true.”


They were quiet for a few minutes, content to just be with each other.  She found a documentary on ancient ruins that she thought he might enjoy.  She waited until the commercial break before she spoke.


“Will you patrol with me tonight?”


He looked down at the top of her head, his eyes narrowing.  “We’ve discussed this, Buffy.”


Her fingers fidgeted with the cloth belt on the robe.  “I promise to concentrate.”


He snorted.  “You wouldn’t even hit me in training a couple of hours ago…until I became irate with you.”


“Lesson learned.”  She turned her head and looked up at him.  “Please?”


He opened his mouth to reply when a knock sounded at the door.  He gently pushed her off of him and stood.  “Dinner’s here.”


She sat up and watched him as he walked to the door.  He opened the door, his eyes immediately narrowing. 


“You’re not dinner.”


Xander grinned at him as he shook his head.  “Nah, I’m too gristly.”


“We knocked in case you were having sex.”  Anya piped up brightly.


“How very thoughtful of you.”


Buffy stifled a laugh as Xander, Anya, and Willow walked past Giles and into the apartment. 


Giles rolled his eyes in frustration, muttering softly.  “Yes, do come in.”


Buffy smiled brightly at her friends.  “Hey guys, what’s up?”


Xander sat down in a chair, his eyebrow raising as he took in Buffy’s current attire.  “Anya and I are patrolling with you tonight, remember?”


Buffy looked at him, mildly confused.  “Yeah, at 7:30.”


Anya sat on Xander’s lap as Willow took the other chair.  “It’s 7:27 now.  Should we come back in three minutes?”


Buffy glanced at the clock, her eyes widening.  “Oh…we must’ve lost track of the time.”


“That happens to me and Xander when we’re having sex.”


Giles stared at the ex-demon as he sat down beside of Buffy and shook his head in disbelief.  “Yes, well.  Dinner should be here soon.  I’m sure we’ve ordered more than enough if you lot are hungry.”


“You ordered after sex, didn’t you?”


Xander stared at his girlfriend.  “Anya, what did we discuss on the way over here?”


Willow smiled brightly at Giles.  “I thought I’d research with you tonight.  If you need help, that is.  Oz has a gig.”


He smiled warmly at the girl.  “I appreciate that Willow.”  He glanced down at Buffy, suddenly realizing that they weren’t exactly dressed for visitors.  He lightly tapped her on her thigh.  “We, uh…should probably get dressed.”


Buffy looked down at the robe and shrugged her shoulders.  “I thought I’d just wear this.”


Xander chuckled.  “Using the element of surprise tonight, Buff?”


Buffy looked up at Giles, laughing when she saw his shocked expression.  “Just joking, Giles.”  She stood up and raised an eyebrow.  “Coming?”


He cleared his throat and nodded.  He glanced at the three, hoping he wasn’t blushing.  “We’ll be right down.”


No sooner were they upstairs, there was a knock on the door.  Giles groaned softly as Buffy dropped the robe to the floor.  His groan gave way to a smile as Xander announced that he’d get it.  He took a step towards Buffy as he pulled off his t-shirt.


His eyes darkened, his hands pulling her to him.  He bent his head to kiss her, growling when Xander’s voice calling up to him that dinner had arrived interrupted him.


“My wallet is on the desk.  We’ll be right down.”


Buffy smiled at the gruffness in his voice.  She kissed him quickly, and then backed away.  “Later.”


He nodded and then turned to his closet.


Xander grinned as he opened the Watcher’s wallet, finding a picture of Buffy smiling at him as he pulled out two twenty-dollar bills.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Giles stood at the bottom of the stairs waiting for Buffy to come back down.  Xander and Anya stood in front of the open door, a bag of weapons hanging from Xander’s shoulder.  Buffy bounded down the stairs, stopping on the second from the bottom, which left her at eye level with Giles.


She smiled warmly at him.  “I’ll be back in a few hours.”


He nodded, returning her smile.  “Do be careful.”


She leaned forward and kissed him lightly.  “I will.”


He took a step back, watching her until she closed the door behind them.  He sighed and turned around to find Willow smiling shyly at him.


“It really is nice to see the both of you happy.  Especially happy together.”


He reddened slightly.  “Thank you, Willow.”


“Is it hard?  I mean, not patrolling with her?”


He nodded sadly, walking to the bookshelf and pulling out a couple of ancient volumes.  “Quite.  Though I must say, it’s more difficult watching her leave for patrol.”


Instinctively knowing that he was talking about the possibility of Buffy not returning, Willow decided to change the subject.  “Are we researching anything in particular or just general stuff?”


He sat down at the table and handed her a book.  “Well, there are some legends surrounding the Risenbridt that Buffy and I recently diverted that I’d like to look further into.”


Willow smiled broadly.  “Interesting stuff!”


Giles chuckled softly.  “Quite.”


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


An hour and a half later, Willow looked up in alarm as Giles slammed his hand onto the table.


“Oh dear Lord!”


“What’s wrong?”


He turned the book towards her as he jumped up and grabbed his longsword from the weapons cabinet.  He picked up his car keys and turned to find Willow behind him with a crossbow.


He gave her a quick nod and opened the door.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


It had been a fairly busy night.  Within two hours they had dusted seven vampires and were currently tracking a large yellow demon.


“Where is it?  And…what is it?”  Xander whispered.


Buffy took a look at the stake in her hand and shrugged her shoulders.  “I don’t know, but I don’t think this is going to work.”  She shoved the stake in her pocket.  “Hand me the crossbow.”


“I want to go home.”


Xander sighed.  “If you didn’t want to come, you could’ve stayed with Willow and Giles.”


“But they’re reading.”


Buffy glared at her as she loaded a bolt in the crossbow.  Just as she opened her mouth to speak, she heard the distinct sound of a twig snapping to their left.


“It’s gone back into the cemetery.”  She glanced at the two standing there.  “You can stay here if you want.”


With that, she took off towards the sound.  She reached the clearing and raised her weapon.  The demon turned and growled.  It rushed her with surprising speed and knocked the crossbow from her hands.


She easily ducked his clumsy punch and spun around him.  She kicked him squarely in the back.  He grunted and turned, throwing another punch.  She blocked it with her left arm and started a punch with her right hand.


“Buffy!  STOP!”


She stopped the punch instantly at the sound of her Watcher’s voice and dropped to the ground, narrowly avoiding the claw that reached for her.  She looked up in time to see Giles swing the sword, neatly decapitating the demon.  It dissolved as soon as the body hit the ground, scorching the earth beneath it.


She stood up as Giles ran to her.  She could see the worry and fear on his face clearly.




“Did it touch you?”




His fear came out in his voice.  “Did it touch you?”


She shook her head quickly.  “Only when I blocked a punch.”


He glanced at her arm and quickly pulled her jacket off and threw it onto the burnt ground.


“Hey…”  She started to protest.


He pulled a can of lighter fluid out of his pocket, dousing her jacket.  He lit a Zippo and threw it onto the small heap, breathing a sigh of relief as the clothing caught fire.


“That was my favourite jacket!”  She complained loudly.


He walked over to her and gathered her into his arms.  “I’ll buy you a new one.”


Xander and Anya made their way to Willow, obviously confused.  Xander leaned towards her and whispered quietly.  “What’s going on, Will?”


“Bad demon.  It was a close call.  We’ll explain when we get back to Giles’, okay?”


Buffy pulled back and looked up at Giles.  She spoke softly when she saw a tear roll down his cheek.


“Hey, what’s wrong?”


“It could have killed you.  If…if you had touched it, it would have killed you.”  He shuddered as he touched her face gently.  “I…I almost lost you.”


“I’m okay, Giles.”  She pulled his head down and tenderly kissed his lips.  “I’m okay.”


To her surprise, he kissed her back, quickly deepening the kiss with passion.  Anya smiled wryly.


“I guess he’s gotten over his fear of public displays of affection.”


Part Two


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