Alternate Universe: Unexpected
Story Title: Kooks
Chapter Title:




Time line:

May 25th, 2004


Joshua "JJ" Harris was born on April 21st, 2004

The twins (Danielle and William) were born on February 12th, 2004

Annie turned five on February 14th.

Spike and Buffy have been married five years in February. (seems longer, doesn't it?)

Buffy turned 23 on January 19th.


All the Potentials were endowed with full Slayer power in February 2003.

Buffy and Spike learned of the other dimensions in May, 2003.



Buffy’s feeling frisky and wakes Spike up in the best possible way, starting the day off right.  But will Buffy’s happy mood be shattered by the evil forces that always seem to want to rain on her parade?



Notes: Heartfelt thanks to my "ET", PaganBaby, for her wonderful suggestions, corrections and encouragement!!  What would I do without you?

Pop Culture Reference:

"Sit On My Face (and tell me that you love me)", Monty Python



Fahrenheit to Celsius conversion: 106.5° F = 41.39°C


Rating / Warnings:

NC17. Content is only suitable for mature adults. Contains explicit language, sex, adult themes and other adult situations that some people may find objectionable. If you are under the age of 17 or find any of these themes objectionable – GO AWAY. Parents, it is up to YOU to control what your children are reading.

May 25th, 2004:


Buffy woke from her foggy, happy sleep in Spike’s arms the next morning – she’d been up only twice during the night with the twins – moving their cribs next to each other really did seem to be the key to solving the constant screaming fits they’d had since they’d come home. 


Buffy sighed and snuggled closer to Spike – she hadn’t felt this well-rested and happy since she didn’t know when. Fuck! That’s bad . . .  that’s very bad!  Bad Buffy! ‘Buffy’ and ‘happy’ are totally un-mixy! she admonished herself silently – ‘happy Buffy’ always seemed to bring out the karmic forces of evil to thwart her good mood.  Buffy sighed. Oh well, might as well enjoy it while it lasts, she thought as she slid her hand down Spike’s chest and abs until she reached his ‘naughty bits’ and began stroking his rod slowly with her hand.


Spike moaned in his sleep and Buffy smiled wondering how long she could do that . . . how much could she could do to him, before he woke up.  A devious smile came to her lips as she began moving her hand a little faster up and down Spike’s hardening cock as she watched his face.  He was still sleeping, but seemed to be having a wonderful dream if you went by the happy look he had on his face.


Buffy bit her bottom lip, let go of his cock and slid slowly out of Spike’s arms and down the bed.  Spike moaned lightly and Buffy stopped moving for a moment. When he didn’t wake up, she continued moving down the bed and then carefully climbed over one leg, nudging it slightly to give herself room to get between them.  She suppressed a giggle when he actually moved his leg and still didn’t wake up. 


I wonder what else I could get him to do in his sleep . . . hmmmm . . . clean the bathroom, do laundry, vacuum, dust, pick up his wet towels off the floor . . .  she thought with a smile as she lowered herself down and took his cock back in her hand.  Buffy watched Spike’s face as she pulled his now hard cock to her and licked the pre-cum from the tip.


“Bloody hell . . .” Spike muttered dreamily and Buffy stopped, but when he didn’t open his eyes or say anything more, she started again; licking slow circles around the head before flicking the tip of her tongue in and out like a snake all the way down the hard length of him.


When she reached his jewels, she circled them with her tongue before sucking first one, then the other, into her mouth with a low, involuntary “mmmm”.  Buffy felt the muscles in Spike’s thighs flex and his hips raise up slightly as she did that and was sure he’d woken up, but when she raised her eyes to look, he still looked the same – happy, but asleep.


Buffy released his jewels and began licking small circles up the length of his cock while caressing his balls lightly with one hand.  When she got to the head, Buffy flicked her tongue over and around the sensitive glans while she began stroking up and down on his shaft with her hand, eliciting another moan from Spike.


Buffy raised her eyes to Spike’s face, but he still looked just the same, so she sucked down on the swollen mushroom head of his cock, pulling it into her mouth and hollowing her cheeks as she went.


“Bloody Christ . . .” Spike muttered as she took more of his cock into her mouth.  Spike’s hips were reacting to her as well, rising and falling slightly in a reaction to her mouth engulfing him.


Buffy raised her eyes up to his, but his eyes were still closed, so she continued bobbing her head up and down on him, swirling her tongue around his hard shaft as she went and still stroking what wouldn’t fit into her mouth with her hand.


“Ahhhh, yeah, pet . . .” Spike muttered but otherwise didn’t move or open his eyes.


Talk about a wet dream . . . Buffy thought as she moved her mouth faster up and down on his hard cock until the head was slamming against the back of her throat.


“Yeah . . . ahhh . . .” Spike muttered sleepily. “Gotta hurry, pet . . . wife’ll be back soon . . .”  Buffy gasped and let go of his rod, letting it spring back against his abs with a wet slap as she sat back on her heels and glared at him. 


Spike opened one eye and quickly closed it again. “Don’ stop now, pet . . .” he muttered as if still asleep but the small smile that had been on his face had turned into more of a devilish grin.


Buffy crawled up his body, trailing her hair along his skin all the way from his hips to his shoulders. Straddling his hips with hers, she leaned down next to his ear and whispered, “You want more, baby?”


“Mmmhmm . . .  so bloody good,” Spike answered in a sleepy voice, keeping his eyes closed.


Buffy pressed down with her hips against his pelvis then suddenly grabbed his sides with her hands and began tickling him mercilessly.


“AHHHHH!” Spike shrieked as his eyes flew open and he tried to grab her hands.  “STOP! NO! AHHHHH!” he screamed at her through bouts of laughter. “PLEASE! STOP!” he yelled as he squirmed and wriggled under her, trying to get away or still her hands.


“Who’s your goddess?” Buffy asked him as she continued to hold his hips down with hers and poke and tickle his sides.


“YOU!” Spike screamed at her as he squirmed and tried to roll them off the bed.


“Are you sure, pet?” Buffy asked calmly as she continued torturing him with her hands and holding him firmly down to the mattress with her hips.




“Really, really sure?”


“YES! FUCK! AHHHH! Bloody well sure!”


“I don’t know . .  .” Buffy laughed as she continued her assault on his rib cage.


“FUCK! Buffy – you . . . ARGH! Only you! PLEASE!”


Buffy laughed as she stilled her hands and sat back. Spike rubbed at his sides, trying to get the tickling sensation to stop. 


“I think you need some punishment . . .” Buffy started.


“Bloody hell, woman! I think I just got enough soddin’ punishment for the next ten years!”


“Not even close . . .” Buffy told him with a laugh.


“What did you have in mind, luv?”


“Hmmm, well, let’s see . . . there’s the vacuuming, dusting, laundry, wet towel duty . . .”


“I got a better idea . . . why don’ you come up here and sit on my face?” Spike offered, running his tongue suggestively along his top teeth.


Buffy cocked a brow at him and tilted her head. “Will you tell me you love me, if I do?”


Spike smirked. “Even better, I’ll show you what a goddess you are . . .”


“Yeah?” Buffy asked, raising her eyebrows as she turned around atop him and positioned her hips over Spike’s face.


“God, Buffy . . . so wet already . . .” Spike murmured as he pulled her hips down and began darting his tongue between her pussylips.  Buffy’s hips jerked and her back arched when he hit her clit with the tip of his tongue and she pushed her pussy down harder on his inscrutable mouth.


Spike spread her open to him with one hand and began teasing her hole with his tongue as Buffy sat up straight above him and began to circle her nipples lightly with her fingers and let her head loll back.  Spike moaned as he tasted the manna she offered him, slowly circling the sensitive skin around her slit with the tip of his tongue before sliding up and flicking lightly at her clit.


“You are a goddess, Buffy . . .” Spike told her as he sucked hard on her sensitive nub causing Buffy’s whole body to jerk and eliciting an “Oh God!” from her.


“No need to be so formal, pet . . . you can just call me ‘Spike’,” he smirked.


“I’ll have Willow call you a rat pretty soon if you don’t stop with the talk and get on with the ‘walk’ . . .” Buffy informed him, pressing down even harder against his face.


Spike chuckled before driving his tongue deep into her dripping hole while using his thumb to lightly tease her clit.


“OH! Yes! . . . God! Fuck, yes! Spike . . . Aggghhh!” Buffy exclaimed as she lost the ability to hold herself upright above him and came down onto all fours over his body as he fucked her furiously with his devilish, heavenly tongue. When she fell, Spike pressed down hard on her clit as he continued thrusting his tongue deep into her channel, causing Buffy’s body to spasm, her back to arch, and a scream to escape her lips as she came.


Spike continued fucking her with his tongue as she came, driving deep within her heat and fingering her clit all the while. Buffy’s cum flowed out of her hot hole and flooded his mouth with her burning essence. He moaned against her pussy, relishing the taste of her, the heat of her, the passion of her, as her channel throbbed and her body trembled above him.


As Buffy came back down from floating among the stars in heaven, she dove back down on Spike’s cock with her mouth, sucking down on him deep and hard.  Spike gasped against her dripping pussy as she slammed down on him and his aching glans hit the back of her throat.


“Fuck! Agggh! Yes!” Spike exclaimed as Buffy began pumping him hard with her hand and her mouth and flicking her tongue along the length of his rod as she moved quickly up and down on him. 


“God! Buffy . . . Jesus, yes!  Aghhhhh . . . Bloody Christ! FUCK! Aghhhh . . . So fucking hot . . . yes! Buffy, God!”


Spike’s hips reacted to her fervor and rose from the mattress of their own accord as Buffy continued sucking his hard shaft. She loved how she made him scream and moan and cuss and call her name.  She wanted nothing more at that moment than to taste him, to feel his cum in her mouth, to make him lose all control – to take him to heaven.


Spike pressed first two fingers, then three into her hot channel and began pumping in and out of her in rhythm to her feverish stroking and sucking of his cock.  Buffy gasped around his shaft as he entered her and her mind seemed to float away. She resumed her task with renewed force . . . her body, her primal need, taking over as her mind floated in the stratosphere above them.


Her hips pressed back against Spike’s fingers just as his pressed up against her mouth.  When Spike felt his cum begin to boil up from his balls into his cock, he pressed a thumb against Buffy’s ass and pushed into her puckered hole, sending her plummeting over the edge of ecstasy.


Her body joined her mind in the stratosphere as she came with Spike’s cock filling her mouth and his fingers fucking her ass and pussy. Her whole body tensed and jerked and her legs trembled as she orgasmed around his fingers and cock. Her mouth and pussy shackled Spike as they tightened around him – his only possible escape was in the clouds with her, so he let his mind go and allowed his body to follow her.


Spike’s body tensed, his balls tightened and seemed to be on fire as he came screaming Buffy’s name. Buffy sucked fervently on his rod as his jizz exploded into her hot, hungry mouth and every cell in her body seemed to burst with pleasure. His cream filled her mouth and he felt her suck harder and swallow all that he shot into her, which only made him scream her name louder and press his cock harder against her burning, wet mouth.


As Buffy swallowed the last of Spike’s nectar, she licked and sucked up the length of his softening cock as she pulled her mouth slowly off him before collapsing against his body and gasping for breath.  Spike pulled his fingers out of her, licking her cum from his digits like it truly was manna from heaven and reveling in the feeling of her body now laying atop his.


“I love you, Buffy,” Spike told her as he ran his hands down from her round ass along the back of her thighs and back up again.


“Mmmmm, I love you too, pet,” Buffy replied dreamily, a wry smile playing on her lips.



**~**  Later that morning **~**



“Yes, Giles . . . yes . . . yes, I know . . . I’m trying!” Buffy said into the phone as she rocked the double stroller that held Billy and Dani gently.


“Mama  . . .” Annie said, standing next to her and looking up at Buffy with big blue eyes, her dark hair falling in waves and curls halfway down her back.


“Everyone’s coming to the grand opening . . . yes – trust me, we’ll be there!” Buffy assured Giles.


“Mama . . .”


“Yes, I know you want us there early for the tour . . .”


“Mama . . .” Annie repeated, tugging on Buffy’s shirt.


“Giles, honestly – trying to make all these people go in the same direction at the same time is like trying to round up . . . cats! I’m working on it!”  Buffy continued talking into the phone.


“Mama . . .” Annie said again, still tugging on Buffy’s shirt.


“Yes, I’ll tell Spike to wipe the crud off his shoes down in the basement before tracking into the store . . . yes – he understands,” Buffy said, looking at Spike who was sitting on the couch not far away watching TV. He rolled his eyes and nodded his head.




“Giles, if you don’t let me off this phone, I can guarantee you that we’ll be late…er than we already are . . .” Buffy said, looking at the clock.  They were supposed to have left fifteen minutes ago.




“Why don’t you call Xander . . . make sure they’re on their way, ok?” Buffy asked Giles, trying to give him someone to talk to other than her.




“Ok – ok –yes, we’re all coming . . . ok. Bye,” Buffy said into the phone with an eye roll.


“MAMA!” Annie yelled, now tugging on Buffy’s arm.


“ANNIE! I’m not deaf - yet! What!?” Buffy asked her daughter as she hung up the phone.


“I wanna go with Papa!”


Spike smirked but kept his eyes glued on the TV.


“No,” Buffy told her. “You come with us.”


“WHY!!?? I wanna go with Papa!!  He said I could!” Annie told her with a pout, folding her arms across her chest.


Buffy raised her eyebrows and looked at Spike, who kept his eyes riveted to the TV.  “Well, he was wrong – you’ll get all dirty – plus, that’s no place for little girls,” Buffy told her, as she shot a death glare at Spike.


“BUT MAMA! I won’t! I promise I won’t get dirty! Papa said I could ride piggyback! PLLLEAASSEEE! PRETTY PLEASE!!” Annie begged, folding her hands in front of her as if in prayer.


“Annie, honey . . .  Papa’s going through the sewers – it’s nasty down there – trust me – you really don’t want to go that way.  You can walk with us and help me with Dani and Billy – I thought you were gonna be the best big sister ever . . .” Buffy tried the guilt trip on her daughter . . . it had usually worked on her when she was little.


“I wanna go with Papa,” Annie said, reverting back to the pout tactic, adding some tears to the battle plan, since the screaming and begging weren’t working.


Buffy sighed – she really didn’t have time for this.  The whole group was supposed to have left for the grand opening of “The Magic Box”, what Giles had re-named the old Magic Shop when he purchased it. He, with some help from Xander, had been working on getting it ready for weeks, and today was the unveiling.  He wanted everyone there early for the grand tour – before the customers started scavenging through the goods and messing everything up.  He’d even installed sewer access in the basement so Spike could come and go anytime of the day without any problem.


“William Weckerly,” Buffy said in her best ‘Mom’ voice.


Spike looked up from the TV with wide eyes, like he was ten years old and had been caught looking at pictures of native women with no shirts on in National Geographic magazine.  “If she has one speck of sewer muck on her, I will stake you faster than you can say ‘Bloody Hell’,” Buffy told him with a stern look and narrow eyes.


Spike gulped slightly and nodded. “No worries, luv.”


“YAY!!” Annie screamed, jumping up and down and running to her father.  “LET’S GO!!”


Spike tried to hide a smirk – he knew if anyone could convince Buffy that Annie should go with him, it would be Annie herself.  She was big enough and smart enough now to start learning her way around the sewers. Learning the way to the Magic Box was a perfect way to start. 


Annie climbed up on the couch behind Spike and wrapped her arms around his neck and her legs around his ribs like a monkey.  “Giddy up!!” she yelled and Spike laughed as he stood up and grabbed her legs, making sure she was secure. 


“Off we go,” Spike told Buffy, leaning in to give her a kiss. “See you there . . .” he said as he turned and headed down to the basement with Annie clinging to his back.


“Not one speck!” Buffy called after them with a small smile and a shake of her head.


“OK everybody!  Let’s get this freak show on the road! WE’RE LATE! Giles is going to kill us all!” Buffy yelled.  When no one appeared, she screamed, “NOW PEOPLE!” and suddenly Willow and Tara came trotting down the stairs with Lorne not far behind.


“God, I feel like Jack Nicholson in Cuckoo’s nest – trying to round all the crazy people up to go on the fishing trip . . .” Buffy muttered to herself as her co-inhabitants made it down the stairs.


“We’re late,” Buffy informed them as she started pushing the stroller towards the front door, since going up the stairs to the street through the garden entrance was practically impossible with the stroller – she’d been forced to start using the front door, which was at street level.


“Where’s Annie?” Tara asked.


“She went with Spike,” Buffy told her as they stepped outside.


“In the sewers?!  She’s gonna be covered in muck!” Willow informed her.


“Not one speck . . .” Buffy told her with a smile as they started down the road towards downtown Sunnydale and the Magic Box.




 Buffy and her troupe of kooks walked into the Magic Box to find Giles standing in the center of the floor awaiting them impatiently – and wearing a wizard’s hat and robe.


Buffy stopped and looked at him for a moment without a word before saying, “Harry Potter, you’re not.”


Giles rolled his eyes and took the hat off. “So glad you could make it for the tour . . . five minutes before I must open the doors,” Giles told her sarcastically as he walked over to look at the twins in the stroller and give them each little, soft pinches on their cheeks.


“Hey – you try getting three kids, a vampire, two witches and a jolly green giant ready and out the door on time,” Buffy told him as she wheeled the stroller over to one side of the room and began absentmindedly rocking it again.


“Presumably, at least four of those people are capable of getting themselves out the door . . . where’s Annie?” Giles asked looking behind Willow, Tara and Lorne.


“She’s coming with Spike . . .” Buffy told him.


“Dear Lord, she’ll be covered in sewer muck!” Giles told her.


Buffy laughed and said, “Not if Spike knows what’s good for him.”  Buffy paused a moment and looked around the shop as Willow, Tara and Lorne began wandering around, examining the various artifacts and supplies Giles had procured.


“It looks really good, Giles – much better than how the last owner had it – who is dead, by the way . . . as is the owner before that and the one . . .” Buffy started.


“Yes, Buffy, I’m well aware of the history!” Giles interrupted her. “Which is why I had Lorne put me in touch with the Furies and they were able to put a demon non-violence spell on the entire shop.  This is now perhaps the safest, most violence-proof place in all of Sunnydale,” Giles informed her.


“Huh!” Buffy said, impressed. “What about just normal people with guns?”


“Well . . . there’s always that,” Giles admitted. “But, Willow and Tara cast a special protection spell on the back room – so, if by some chance just a normal person with a gun comes in, all I have to do is go back there . . . come, let me show you . . .” Giles said, turning and moving towards a door at the back of the shop. 


Giles opened the door to the back room and let Buffy push the stroller in ahead of him. 


“Cool . . .” Buffy said, looking around.  It was like a big playroom on one side, with colorful floor mats and toys for the kids, even a computer and a TV with a VCR and a Play Station hooked up to it.  The other side was a workout area with a punching bag and weapons all locked up in thick Plexiglas fronted cabinets which were up high enough from the ground to keep small hands from reaching them.


“I thought . . . well, perhaps if you wanted to spend some time away from the mansion . . . well – you would be welcome here, Buffy – as well as Annie and the twins . . . I could help you and Spike train . . . watch the children for you sometimes . . . They’d be safe here,” Giles started.  Giles really had missed his role as Watcher for Buffy . . . he missed seeing her and the gang everyday and hoped that he could get more involved in their lives again, now that things had settled down a bit.  He’d also noticed that the demon population of Sunnydale was starting a slow increase again . . . the Turok-Han dust that clogged the Hellmouth was most likely starting to dissipate, so perhaps there would be more need for his expertise in the future.


Buffy smiled at him. “Sounds wonderful,” she told him as she gave him a hug.


Suddenly, Annie came running into the room. “Uncle Giles!” she screamed as she latched onto his leg.


“Annie!” Giles exclaimed releasing Buffy and bending down to pick Annie up, but only got her a foot off the ground before setting her back down. “Good Lord, child . . . what have they been feeding you? You’re growing like a weed!”


Annie giggled. “I weigh thirty-seven!” she announced proudly.  Buffy laughed and wondered at what age girls stopped announcing their weight to the world . . .


“Bloody Hell!” Spike exclaimed as he picked himself up off the floor outside the door of the play/training room, rubbing his nose and checking to make sure it wasn’t broken.


“Oh dear . . . Spike . . . I do apologize – I forgot to warn you! The protection spell included a type of cloaking spell as well, making this room operate like a home . . .” Giles started as he moved towards the open door where Spike was now standing and glaring at him with his hands on his hips.


“Uh . . . Please come in, Spike,” Giles told him. “You are invited . . . as long as your shoes are clean.”


Spike rolled his eyes and stepped through the invisible barrier.  “You’re bloody dangerous, Watcher!” Spike informed him as he walked past Giles and into the room. 


Annie had started looking around at all the toys and games with wide eyes and excitement, exclaiming, “OH! Look!” every few seconds as she found something new.


When she got to the computer she clicked it on and sat down in front of it.


“Annie – that’s not a toy,” Buffy told her as she moved forward to get her daughter away from the expensive equipment.


“No – it is for her, Buffy,” Giles said, stopping her. “She can play games on it – there’s ummm . . . . programs on there for her – educational games – Willow and Tara assisted me . . . well – they set it up, actually.”


Annie seemed to be at ease with the computer – Willow and Tara had often shown her how to do things on their computers, how to work the mouse and click things – and she also had one in her pre-school that the kids took turns on.


“Great, my five year old is better at a computer than I am . . .” Buffy said with a sigh and an eye roll.


“I’m sure she could teach you . . .” Giles told her with a smile.




Despite a slow start, the grand opening at the Magic Box was a huge success. In fact, it was almost too much of a success; Giles hadn’t been prepared for the deluge of magic-supply-deprived people and enlisted all the Scoobies for help keeping up with the demand.


Since Anya was the only one with any retail sales experience, she ran the cash register, while the others helped customers choose the right items and bagged the purchases.


“Thank you! Please come back again when they raise your credit limit!” Anya told the last customer as she closed and locked the door behind them.


Everyone had helped with the store, taking turns in the back watching Dani, Billy, JJ, and Annie throughout the day, and they were all exhausted now.  Well, everyone except Anya, who seemed to be just as chipper as she was when she arrived – maybe more so.


“Look at all the money we got today Giles!” Anya said, holding up handfuls of bills.


“Indeed . . .” was all Giles could say as he slumped in his chair. “I never knew retail was so bloody arduous.”


Buffy raised her eyebrows. “You’ve been hanging around Spike too much . . .” she told him. “Too bloody much.”


“OI! Don’t be blamin’ me for your Watcher’s bad mouth – he’s always talked that way – just hides it well . . . ain’t that right, Ripper?”


Giles didn’t have the energy to argue with Spike. “Quite . . .” was all he could say.


Anya was nearly dancing as she counted down the till with a huge smile on her face.  “Oh, and Giles, here’s a list of the things you’re out of – you better get them reordered right away – don’t want to lose those sales!” Anya said, waving a piece of paper in the air.


“Indeed . . .” Giles muttered tiredly.


Then Giles got an idea. “Would you like a job, Anya?”


Anya looked at him and scrunched her face up in thought.


“How much will you pay me?”


“Whatever you’re making now at the Video Hut . . .” Giles offered.


“How much vacation time do I get?”


“Ummm . . . two weeks?” Giles guessed.


“Do you pay overtime or would it be a straight salary? What about maternity leave, if I ever allow Xander to talk me into that again . . . or daycare?  Do you have a healthcare package? Prescription coverage? Well care? Dental? Eye care? What about a profit sharing plan? You know, one day I would like to be able to actually retire like a normal person and sit in a rocking chair and complain about the neighbor’s dog . . . and what about sick leave and . . .”


Giles sighed, shook his head and stood up wearily. “Anya, stop.”


Anya stopped talking and looked at him.


“I hereby pronounce you Store Manager,” Giles said, picking up a ruler from the counter and tapping her on each shoulder, as if knighting her. “You make up your salary and benefits package and, if you don’t bankrupt me with it, I’ll approve it.  Would that be satisfactory?”


Anya smiled triumphantly. “I have to give two weeks notice at the Video Hut, just in case you turn out to be a horrible shopkeeper and go out of business or some guy with a gun shoots you and I have to go there begging for my job back . . . but, I accept.”


“Wonderful . . .” Giles said rolling his eyes and plopping back down in a chair.  “Perhaps as you first official assignment, you could re-order the inventory items that we’re out of . . .”



**~** Later That Night **~**


Buffy rolled sleepily out of bed and turned the baby monitor off as she pulled on shorts and a t-shirt.  She was exhausted from the day spent helping Giles at the Magic Box, but the twins were crying and it was her turn – Spike had gone last time.


Buffy walked slowly down the hall, her eyes still closed – she knew her way to the nursery by heart – even in her sleep she had no doubt she could find it without any problem.


Buffy began “shushing” the babies softly as she walked into the nursery. It wasn’t time for feeding – she wasn’t sure why they were crying – maybe they needed changing.  Buffy picked Billy up first, but he seemed fine, he actually wasn’t the one crying.  She laid him back down gently, her eyes drooping closed again as she reached for Dani.


Buffy’s eyes flew open as she touched Dani. “Oh God!” Buffy exclaimed, laying a hand on Dani’s forehead – she was burning up with fever!  Buffy grabbed the thermometer from the dresser and placed it in Dani’s ear. 106.5° it read when she pulled it back. “OH GOD!” Buffy exclaimed again, picking Dani up and heading out of the nursery with her.


Buffy banged on Willow and Tara’s door, which was right across the hall from the bathroom.  Taking Dani in the bathroom, Buffy ran some cool water on a washcloth and began lightly pressing it against her daughter’s hot skin.


When Buffy saw Tara open the door to their room she yelled, “Get Spike – we have to go to the hospital!”


Tara didn’t hesitate, she ran down the hall and banged quickly on Buffy and Spike’s door – when she got no response, she just went in and got Spike up – startling him fully awake as she passed on Buffy’s message.


In a moment Spike was there, his jeans mostly zipped but not buttoned, his belt hanging loose and no shirt or shoes on. “What?! What’s wrong?” he asked, reaching a hand out towards Dani.


“I don’t know – she’s got a fever . . .” Buffy told him as she continued pressing the cool cloth to her daughter’s skin. Dani continued to cry and she screamed each time the coolness touched her. “We have to go . . .”


Buffy got the washcloth wet one more time and brushed past Spike, heading quickly for the stairs.  Willow was in the hallway now along with Tara, both looking very concerned. “Watch Billy and Annie for us . . .” Buffy said as she hurried by and both Willow and Tara nodded.


Spike sprinted past her, down the stairs and was waiting with the car running and the garage open when Buffy got there with Dani.  He squealed tires as he left the driveway and turned onto Crawford Street, heading towards the hospital. 


He looked at the clock on the bank building as they passed . . . 3:40am. He frowned – what kind of wanker doctor would be working at 3:40am in Sunnydale he wondered anxiously. Spike sped up on the deserted street and flew through the red lights that seemed to be mocking them, making it to the hospital in record time.


It was a slow night in the ER and a nurse came out immediately when Spike ran in ahead of Buffy, still in bare feet and no shirt, calling for a doctor.  Buffy told the nurse what the thermometer said and the nurse led them quickly back to the triage area without hesitation or even asking for their insurance card.


After confirming the extremely high temperature, the nurses immediately rubbed Dani down with alcohol to cool her off quickly before they moved her up to the pediatric ICU (which was nothing more than a couple of rooms in the regular ICU, since the hospital wasn’t big enough to warrant a full pediatric wing).  


The nurses had Buffy fill out all kinds of forms then started asking Buffy and Spike questions – had Dani been sick? Yes, she had a little cold about a week ago, but was fine – it was no big deal, Buffy told them. Has she been out of the country? No. Has she been in contact with anyone that has been out of the country? No. Has she been in contact with any livestock – like a petting zoo? No. Is she on formula or breast milk? Formula.  Any blood transfusions? No. Has she been diagnosed with HIV? No. Have either of you? No. And the questions went on and on . . .


The nurse drew some blood for testing, as well as took some swabs from Dani’s throat. They also took Dani down to Radiology and took x-rays of her lungs and brain and drew out some spinal fluid to try and diagnose what was causing the fever. Then they started Dani on Acetaminophen as well as an IV with antibiotics and fluids to keep her from getting dehydrated, while they waited for a pediatrician to arrive.


“It’ll be alright, luv,” Spike assured Buffy, wrapping his arms around her as they waited next to Dani’s crib in the small ICU room. Buffy leaned against his chest and wrapped her arms around him as tears threatened her eyes. Spike wondered how Dani’s fever could have gotten so high so fast . . . he wondered if he had missed it earlier in the night when he checked on the twins.  He was really tired and barely awake . . . God, what if he had missed it and it ended up costing Dani . . .


STOP! Just stop! he admonished himself, refusing to think about what that high a fever could be doing to their daughter . . . It’ll be alright, it’ll be alright, it’ll be alright . . . he repeated over and over in his mind.


Spike held Buffy in his arms as he silently repeated his mantra, looking down as his baby daughter. Just three months old, she’d only just started this life and that life was already being threatened – not by demons or mortal enemies, but by unseen attackers – attackers that Spike had any way to fight, no way to protect her from. He felt completely helpless.


Spike laid one hand on Dani’s forehead, still holding Buffy to him with his other arm. Her fever was still high and it felt like fire against his cool fingers; Spike closed his eyes to keep back the tears that threatened him. He’d promised himself that he’d protect his family . . . had he already failed?


 It’ll be alright, it’ll be alright . . . God, please let it be alright . . .

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