Title: Invite Me In
Author: Froxyn
Pairing: Buffy/Giles
Rating: FRT
Synopsis: Giles is on his way back to Sunnydale, trusting in light within the darkness.
Timeline: AU, S6
Author’s Note: As always, thank you A.

Giles looked up from his book when he saw someone sit down at his table.  He sighed softly as he met the concerned eyes of his Slayer.


“Buffy – ”


“I’m so sorry, Giles.”  She interrupted, her voice trembling.


“You’ve nothing to be sorry for.”  He replied gently, hoping to set her mind at ease.


Her eyes drifted to the fresh bruise coloring his cheekbone.  “I really do.  That shouldn’t have happened.”


“A lot of things in life shouldn’t happen, love.  Doesn’t mean they don’t.  And this?”  He gestured towards his cheek.  “This is merely one of the many perils of being an active Watcher.”


“Are you okay?”


He nodded slowly, closing the book.  “Are you?”


“I don’t think so.”  She answered, narrowing her eyes in confusion.  “I’m not, am I?”


“I’m not sure, that’s why I’m here.”


She sat back in her chair and stared at him.  “But, you’re not.  You’re not here.  You left me.”


“I left Sunnydale, Buffy.”  He said softly.  “I did not leave you.”


“I’ve really fucked things up, Giles.  Like…really fucked things up.”


“We all fuck things up once in a while.  I did my fair share when I was younger…and then again as an adult.  It’s what we do afterwards that matters most.”


“I’ve been sleeping with Spike.”  She admitted, biting her lip nervously.


His eyes darkened momentarily and then he took a deep breath, releasing it slowly.  “And how has that worked out for you?”


Buffy looked at him for a moment, rolling her eyes when he gave her a smile.  “You already knew.”


“I checked in once at a very inopportune moment.”  He cleared his throat, his smile fading.  “I checked back out nearly instantaneously.”


“I missed you.”  She whispered emotionally.


She expected a retort such as ‘so you fucked him?’ or something similar.  What she didn’t expect to hear was…


“I missed you too.”  He whispered back.


Her eyes widened, her head tilting slightly.  “What?”


“I understand, Buffy.  I don’t like it…in fact, I’m fairly certain I hate it.  And I’m even more certain that I’ll happily slam a stake into his heart the next I see him.  But, I understand.”




“Because my heart aches too.”


Confusion shone brightly in her eyes.  “Okay, you’re obviously in my head…why are you still confusing?  Shouldn’t I be translating and interpreting in a way that I’ll actually fucking understand?”


“Because you are obstinate.”  He answered, his eyes glistening lightly.  “I’m on my way, Buffy.  Please let me in.”


She looked around, her brow furrowing.  “Let you in?  You are in…”


Giles shook his head slowly.  “No, I’m still on the outside…waiting.  You’ve come to me.  This is a very good sign and a huge step for you.  But, I need you to take a larger one…and I need you to invite me in.”


“Invite you in?  That doesn’t sound at all ominous.”


“Do you care for me?”


“You know I do, Giles.  I care so much about you.  I didn’t want you to go.”


He licked his lips and folded his hands on top of the book.  “No…I know you care about me.  Do you care for me?”


She looked at him closely for a long moment and then gave him a slow nod.  He smiled warmly.


“Then, please…invite me in, love.”


“That’s twice.”  She whispered, leaning forward and placing her arms on the table.  “You’ve called me ‘love’ twice.  What does it mean?”


“What does love mean?”  The corner of his mouth twitched slightly.  “Love is relative.”


“Jesus Christ, Giles…”


He unfolded his hands and reached out, covering her left with his right.  “Invite me in.”


“I’m scared.  Because if I invite you in…you’re going to see everything.  Everything that I’ve kept hidden from everyone…from you.  And…”




“I don’t want to disappoint you again.”


“You make me proud, Buffy.  Don’t you understand?  This isn’t about me trying to see the ‘bad’.  This is about you trusting me to see you.”


“Can I see you too?”


He nodded again, his fingers lightly stroking her skin.  “It’s a two way street…but neither can enter until both have been invited.”


“I’m so confused…”


“Would it help you to know that I care for you too?  That I…more than care for you?”


“More than care?  Giles, there is no way that you could – ”


“Love you?  There are many ways that I could…and do…love you.”  He looked around and sighed.  “But, this darkness is slowly snuffing your light.  Am I too late?”


She stared into his eyes, looking for any sign of insincerity.  All she saw was warmth, compassion, and…truth.  She inhaled deeply, then exhaled slowly.


“Please come in.”


He closed his eyes and a blinding light filled the room.


* *


Buffy gasped as her eyes snapped open.  She looked around quickly, willing her eyes to focus even more quickly. 


“What the hell was that?”  She whispered to no one, alone as she were in her room. 


And then she felt it – that familiar pull in the centre of her chest.  She’d ignored it so many times in the past few months, but it was persistent.  Annoyingly persistent.


She sat up in her bed, placing her hand over the dull ache in her chest.  “Giles…”


And then she threw back the covers and jumped out of bed.  She didn’t even bother to step into her slippers before opening the door and running down the stairs. 


She paused at the bottom of the stairs.  The house was dark, quiet.  She was alone -  Dawn was at Janice’s house for the night.  Normally, these were the nights that Spike would slink into the house…watch her sleep, slide into bed with her.


She shuddered at the thought and blew out a quick breath.  Spike wasn’t there – she didn’t know where he was, but he wasn’t there…and that’s all that mattered.  But, that pull lingered…grew stronger.


She looked at the front door and swallowed nervously.  And then she opened the door and sighed in relief.


Giles looked up at her, sitting on the porch step with a stake in his hand.  He offered her a gentle smile.


“Hello, Buffy.”


“Hey, Giles.”  She whispered, glancing at his hand.  “What’s with the stake?”


“It’s Sunnydale, vampires abound.”  He looked directly into her eyes.  “One less tonight.”


It was then she noticed the remnants of a pile of ash on the walkway that led to the porch.  “Spike?”


“Fairly certain I said that I’d stake him the next I saw him.”  Giles replied calmly.  “If that distresses you…well, I can’t apologise for ridding the world of him.  Especially after…”


Buffy tilted her head slightly as he trailed off.  “You knew about that?”


“Mm. Anya called.”


She glanced at his cheek, the bruise clearly visible in the moonlight.  “How did you get the bruise?”


“Another story for another time.  It’s not as bad as it looks, you know I bruise easily.”


“Giles, why are you here?”


He stood up slowly, slipping the stake into his jacket pocket before sliding his hands into the pockets of his jeans.  “There is a darkness brewing…and you’re going to need my assistance.”


Buffy’s shoulders dropped as she sighed.  “You’re here because of an impending apocalypse.  Of course…”


“That is a minor reason, love.”  He whispered, smiling as her eyes snapped back to his.  “I meant what I said.”




He took a step towards her, pulling his left hand from his pocket and lifting it to the side of her face.  “I more than care.  And it took me leaving to understand how deeply that actually ran.”


“Oh…”  She breathed, leaning into his touch.


“Problem is…I’m not really sure where you stand in this.”  His thumb gently stroked her cheek.  “As a result, my reasons for being here lie with you.  Am I here only to help with darkness?  Or am I here for…more?”


“How can you love me?”


“It’s really not that hard.”  He answered, his smile showing in his eyes.


“I…haven’t said it back, have I?  That I…more than care?”


“No, but I wasn’t expecting you to.  I just felt that you needed to know that I do.”  He lowered his hand and slipped it back into his pocket, glancing at the door before meeting her eyes again.  “If, at some point, you feel that you can say the same…I’ll be here.  For now, let’s deal with this impending darkness, yes?”






“Will you please come inside?”


He smiled brightly, easily reading the emotion in her eyes.  “Ah…there it is.”


“There what is?”  She asked, furrowing her brow.  “God, am I still asleep and this is still part of the same confusing dream?”


He chuckled softly, shaking his head.  “No, this is real-life confusion.  I’m good at that, remember?”


She stared at him and then rolled her eyes.  “Want to explain what the hell’s going on then?”


“The past few months haven’t been easy for you.  You lost your trust in yourself, in me…”  He paused for a moment before continuing softly.  “But, you want to trust yourself, me…”


“Us.”  She corrected.  “I want to trust us, Giles.”


“Then let’s go inside and talk, hm?”


She nodded and placed her hand on his arm.  “I’m pretty sure I more than care too.”


“All in time, love.”  He whispered.  “When you’re certain, either way, let me know…and we’ll walk through it together, okay?”


“Jesus, you’re like a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma…”


He grinned, somewhat surprised at her words.  “But, perhaps there is a key.”


She grinned back, not surprised that he recognised the origin of her words.  “That key is inside, I think.  So…please come in.”


He looked down at her hand still on his arm and then nodded.  “Lead the way.”


She took a step back towards the door, smiling as he took a step forwards.  “Thank you.”


“For what?”


“Not leaving me.  Coming back to Sunnydale.  Believing that there’s still light.”


“Ah…that.”  His smile brightened.  “I think we both have much to be thankful for.”


“Yeah, we do.”  She agreed, curling her fingers into the sleeve of his jacket and pulling him inside.


He closed the door behind him, ready to stand at her side and fight the darkness that was on the way.  And perhaps bask in the light that was beginning to re-emerge within her. 


When she pulled his hand out of his pocket and curled her fingers around his, he did his best to calm his heart.  When she looked up at him and smiled, he realised there was no way to calm his heart.  Instead, he returned her smile and gently squeezed her hand in a silent promise that he’d wait for as long as it would take.


She squeezed back, in a silent promise that it wouldn’t take long.

~ End

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