Alternate Universe: Unexpected
Story Title: I Run to You
Chapter Title:


Sugar and Spice


Time line:

July, 2004



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

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

Annie turned five on February 14th (she was born in 1999)

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.



The ups and downs of daily life … it’s not all ‘Sugar and Spice and all things nice’ …


Notes: Heartfelt thanks to my "ET" and wonderful Beta, PaganBaby, for her wonderful suggestions, much needed corrections and always appreciated encouragement!!  


Music Referenced:

Sugar and Spice, The Searchers


ScreenCaps courtesy of ScreenCap Paradise:


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.

  Sugar and spice and all things nice
Kisses sweeter than wine
Sugar and spice and all things nice
You know that little girl is mine

Everybody stops and stares at my baby
When she's walkin' down the street
People passin' by just look at my baby
'cause my baby looks so sweet
You know she's..

Sugar and spice and all things nice
Kisses sweeter than wine
Sugar and spice and all things nice
You know that little girl is mine

Every time we kiss I get that feelin'
Every time we simply meet
When I see her smile I get that feelin'
'cause my baby looks so sweet
You know she's..

Sugar and spice and all things nice
Kisses sweeter than wine
Sugar and spice and all things nice
You know that little girl is mine
Never ever known a girl so lovely
Sweet enough to want to eat
Everybody's crazy 'bout my baby
'cause my baby looks so sweet
You know she's..

Sugar and spice and all things nice
Kisses sweeter than wine
Sugar and spice and all things nice
You know that little girl is mine



Wednesday, July 21st, 2004


“What’s all this?” Buffy asked Spike as she walked down the stairs into the basement of the mansion.


“Just some stuff …” Spike hedged as he turned away from what he was doing and stepped in front of her to keep her from advancing off the stairs.


Buffy looked over his shoulder at the video game equipment he had been setting up when she came in … complete with the special ‘gaming’ chairs and a big screen TV.


“Just some stuff, huh?” Buffy asked, cocking a brow at him. “Some stuff for you and Annie to play video games on, maybe?”


“Maaaybe …” Spike acquiesced with an eye roll as he moved out of her way.


Buffy looked around the corner of the basement that he’d set up.  He had a thick, soft rug on the floor, along with two of those gaming chairs that the kids like, plus a sofa, a small refrigerator for drinks and snacks, and all kinds of different equipment for the games which was beyond Buffy’s grasp …


Buffy reached down and picked up a shopping bag from BestBuy and dumped out at least twenty different video games …


“They’re very educational …” Spike defended. “Look, this one can be done in five languages … you have to answer questions and riddles in the proper language to get points …” he told her, picking one of the games up.


Buffy pursed her lips together and nodded slowly as she surveyed the area.  He must have spent a fortune on this stuff …


Finally, she looked back at him and smiled softly. “Spike, Annie loves you – you’re her father.  You’re not going to lose her love ‘cause you can’t go to her T-ball games and beat the shit out of Mr. Anderson …”


Spike rolled his head back and sighed before meeting her eyes again. “I know that, Buffy … I just … it’s just that … well …” Spike stopped and took a deep breath before starting again. “You get to do everythin’ with her outside, I just wanted something for us to do together that she likes, too. And I can do this … I’m bloody good at it, and so is she.”


“Why don’t you teach her how to spar? Do something active with her instead of this couch potato stuff,” Buffy questioned, waving her arm at the video game equipment.  She had serious doubts about the validity of any educational premise of these games … or the hand-eye coordination thing that Spike kept on about.


“She don’t like that stuff … you know that! She likes dancin’ and tumbling and playing dress up with her dolls. This is the only thing we both like to do inside,” Spike defended, his hands going to his hips.


Buffy sighed and looked around the area Spike had made. Spike was right. Annie really had no interest in learning how to fight … even watching ‘The Karate Kid’ or ‘Dragon Ball’ didn’t peak her interest in learning karate, or even prompt her into kicking some furniture, as it seemed to with other kids.


Annie loved gymnastics and ballet class, stories, books, and computer games, and playing dress-up…mostly girly stuff, and Spike could only take having his fingernails painted “Bubblegum Pink” or “Apple Passion Red” so many times without some serious fights at Willy’s.


Buffy shook her head and looked back at Spike. “I know you won’t let her play any of those really violent games, right?”


“Oh, like the ones ‘bout vampires, witches, demons, or werewolves? Nothin’ realistic, then,” Spike quipped.


Buffy looked at him and rolled her eyes again…how in the world would their kids ever be able to fit into polite society and live a normal life?  It’ll be a wonder if they aren’t all hauled off to the asylum for doing nothing more than talking about their home life.


“Right … nothing too realistic … and no bunnies! If Anya saw any bunny games, she’d never let JJ in the house again …” Buffy informed him as she leaned in and kissed him on the cheek.


“You’re a good father, Spike … Annie loves you, we all love you. You don’t have to buy out the whole store …”


“Unless it’s Jimmy Choo’s … or Ghirardelli’s?” Spike asked with a smirk.


“Of course … shoes and chocolate are in a totally different category …” Buffy agreed as she headed back towards the stairs. “Feel free to buy out either of those stores if the urge strikes you …”




“Mama! Mama!” Annie squealed as she ran into the kitchen later that night lugging a gallon of milk with both hands. “Guess what! Guess what! You’ll never guess what!”


“What!?” Buffy asked her, grabbing the milk from her hands before it hit the floor.  She’d sent Spike and Annie to the store before dinner to pick up a few things, like the milk, that they were out of.


“Papa let me drive!” Annie exclaimed, jumping up and down with a huge grin on her face.


“WHAT!? Drive … the shopping buggy?” Buffy asked Annie, her eyes going wide in fear that her daughter wouldn’t be that excited about driving the shopping buggy.


“NO! The car!” Annie squealed, twirling in circles in front of Buffy. “I drove the car!”


“The CAR!? SPIKE! Where the fu… SPIKE! Where are you!?” Buffy called, walking out of the kitchen to find him.


“SPIKE! What the fu… what … drive the car?! You let her drive the car!? She can’t touch the pedals!” Buffy exclaimed, her hands on her hips, when she saw him sauntering in from the garage loaded down with the rest of the groceries she’d sent them for.


“Relax, Slayer …” Spike answered her with a smirk. “I worked the pedals … she sat on my lap and worked the wheel.  It was only two blocks right ‘ere by the house, not in bloody traffic.”


Annie ran back out of the kitchen and grabbed one of the bags from Spike’s hands. “Can we do it again!?? It was fun!” she gushed as she ran the bag into the kitchen.


“You let a five year old drive the DeSoto … do you know how many laws that breaks? Not to mention the fact that you don’t even let me drive the DeSoto!” The last part was what really hurt Buffy’s feelings the most.


“I’m an excellent driver!” Annie exclaimed as she came back to where they were in the great room and grabbed another bag from Spike.


Buffy cocked a brow at Spike but Spike just shrugged. “’S true …” he told her sheepishly. "She obviously got 'er drivin' skills from her old man."


Buffy rolled her eyes and shook her head. Spike wrapped his free arm around her waist and pulled her against him. “I’ll let you sit in m’ lap and drive anytime, Slayer …” he whispered against her ear and Buffy had to fight to keep the smile off her face.


“You’re such a goof,” Buffy told him before dropping a kiss on his lips. “I’m gonna hold you to that, ya’ know.”


“I’m lookin’ forward to it …” Spike waggled his eyebrows suggestively before giving her a hard squeeze and releasing her so he could take the last bag of the ‘few things’ that Buffy had sent them to the store for into the kitchen.  There may have been some additional things added to the list once they were there …


“Ok, Rainman … go wash up for dinner,” Buffy called to Annie as she followed Spike into the kitchen to put everything away.




As Spike and Buffy were putting the last of the groceries away, they heard shrieking coming from upstairs – it was Annie. They both raced out of the kitchen and up the stairs following Annie’s screams of distress to her room.


They got there at the same time Willow and Tara did, who had heard her from down the hall, and the four of them nearly collided at Annie’s door, but Spike won the battle for the doorway and reached Annie first, grabbing her up and looking around the room for an attacker.


“WHAT! What is it?!” Buffy asked her daughter as she, Tara, and Willow finally made it into the room and began looking around, as well.


Annie pointed a shaky finger towards the corner of the room where Hallie-rat’s cage was. “Minnie! Minnie’s gone!” Annie screamed through tears as she clung to her father.  The adults had let Annie name Hallie-rat and she’d named her “Minnie Mouse”.


Buffy walked over to the cage where ‘Minnie’ had been, the door was open … it looked like Annie had forgotten to latch it securely after feeding her that morning.  Buffy hated rats and the thought of one running around the house made her skin crawl, even one that used to be a human. She took a deep breath and got down on her hands and knees and looked under the bed, but there were no beady eyes staring back at her from there.


“Check the closet …” Buffy said to no one in particular and Tara and Willow both opened the closet door slowly and starting poking around with a baton into the corners and behind things, but Minnie wasn’t there, either.


Buffy looked at Miss Kitty Fantastico, who was curled up snuggly at the foot of Annie’s bed, seemingly oblivious to the hoopla going on around her.  “You don’t think …” Buffy started, looking from the cat up to Spike and back down again.


“No … no, no! Miss Kitty loves Minnie!” Annie screamed as she buried her face against Spike’s neck and shoulder.  Spike ran his hand down from her head, smoothing her hair, all the way down her back then started patting her softly like she was a baby. 


“It’s ok, Niblett … I’m sure Minnie’s just out for a bit of a walk and she’ll be back soon,” Spike assured her. “Calm down now … you’re gonna have yourself sick. It’s ok … shhhhh,” he murmured against her ear as he continued to pat her back and held her to him.


Buffy looked at Willow and Tara. “Maybe you could do a locator spell?” she asked them, hopefully.


Willow and Tara both made faces that didn’t look encouraging, but agreed to try … they’d never tried to locate an animal before, even one that had formerly been a person.


After half an hour of trying, the witches finally gave up – Hallie-rat, aka: Minnie Mouse, was either not here anymore, or their locator spell wouldn’t work for non-humans. 


Annie sagged against Spike’s chest as the witches apologized, gathered their supplies, and put them back up. Buffy put a hand on Annie’s back and looked into Spike’s eyes; he shook his head slightly and Buffy dropped a kiss on Annie’s head then headed back to the kitchen to get dinner for them, leaving Spike and Annie alone at the research table.


It had been such a wonderful day up to that point.  All new video game equipment and games right here at home, then getting to drive the car ‘all by herself’ and then this. Minnie Mouse was gone …


“Ok, Niblett … that don’t mean nuthin’,” Spike assured her as he smoothed her hair back from her tear streaked face. “You know that twaddle don’ always work.


“Minnie mighta’ run off to Disneyland … you know, Mickey’s there waitin’ for her, yeah? And they’ll live in the castle and make lots of baby mouses and have lots a’ fun riding the rides and scaring the tourists …” Spike tried to assure her.


Annie frowned and picked her head up to look in his eyes. “She wasn’t the real Minnie … I don’t think she knows about Disneyland or how to get there,” Annie informed him sadly.


Spike mentally rolled his eyes … of course Annie wouldn’t buy that cock-n-bull story. Spike pulled Annie back against his shoulder and kissed the top of her head.


“Sometimes things happen, Niblett … we don’t mean them to, we don’t want them to, but they just do anyway. I’m sorry about Minnie … I’m sorry you’re sad. I’d do anything in the world to keep you from ever bein’ sad, but that’s not how this bloody world works …” he told her.  “It’s not all sugar and spice … sometimes things don’t go our way and we lose things that we love.”


Annie nodded against his shoulder as she drew in a ragged breath and wrapped her arms tighter around his neck. 


“Did you ever lose anything you loved?” Annie asked him, her face still against his shoulder.


“Sure, baby girl, we all do…” Spike assured her. “Like your grandmums when they passed …”


“What do you do to make the sad go away?” she asked him, lifting her face up to look into his eyes.


“Ahhhh, well, you just keep goin’, pet, you put one foot in front of the other and day by day the hurtin’ is less. Then a day will come that it only hurts when you really think about it … then one day you finally stop thinkin’ ‘bout it all the time,” Spike advised her. “And, after a while, you can think about the fun things and, you’ll still feel a little sad, but you can be happy for the good times that you shared, too.


“C’mon, sweet girl, let’s go get the littlebits and see what your mum’s cooked up for dinner … whaddya say?” Spike asked her. When she didn’t respond he added, “And then we can have some of those Oreo cookies and milk that we got earlier.”


Annie brightened slightly at the mention of the Oreos and nodded, released her hold around his neck, and then crawled down off his lap. 


It broke Spike’s heart to see her sad like this, but wasn’t that part of growing up?  He really would do anything to keep her from hurting, but it was something every child went through – usually more than once. He vowed to protect her, but learning these hard life lessons was something he couldn’t protect her from no matter how hard he tried …




“Once upon a time,” Spike started as he and Buffy tucked Annie into bed later.


“There was a beautiful girl with long, dark hair that fell in curls around her angelic face,” Buffy picked up.


“And she lived in a castle with strange creatures, like kitties and mice and crabs, and she loved the strange creatures very much,” Spike continued.


“Until one day, one of the creatures went away, and the beautiful girl was …” Buffy added before looking to Annie for her to add to the story.


“Very sad because she missed Minnie Mouse very much … and she looked everywhere but couldn’t find her,” Annie contributed to the story.


“But the beautiful girl knew that it was possible that Minnie just wanted to go on holiday and that she might just now be hopping on a boat to India …” Spike filled in. “And when she arrived in the faraway land, she’d go to the Karni Mata Temple and be treated like royalty.”


“She’d be well fed and worshiped by all the people and live happily for the rest of her days,” Buffy added. “And the beautiful girl will …”


Annie twisted her mouth around and scrunched her nose up as she thought before finally saying, “… miss her bunches. But will put one foot in front of the other and try to not be sad that she left – but it won’t be easy.”


“And soon the beautiful girl won’t be sad anymore and she’ll live happily ever after … ‘cause her family loves her very much,” Spike finished.


“I love you, too,” Annie told them.


Spike dropped a kiss on her forehead and stood up and Buffy did the same.


“Good night, sweet girl,” Buffy whispered to her as they left her room and closed the door behind them.


“Where do you really think Minnie …err, Hallie is?” Buffy asked Spike as they headed down the hallway.


Spike shrugged. “Could be ‘round here anywhere … beady little eyes watchin’ us …” Spike told her, looking up and down the hallway.


“Do you think Miss Kitty might’ve, you know … eaten her?” Buffy asked him, scrunching up her nose.


“Pfffttt,” Spike snorted. “The poor cat would’ve been sick for a week if it ate that bloody bitch.”


Buffy laughed and rolled her eyes. “Well, if she runs across my foot in the middle of the night, I can’t guarantee her safety … I can handle lots of things, but rats aren’t one of them.”




Buffy and Spike entered the front door of the Magic Box just after closing time.  They had made plans to meet Giles there and do some training with him before heading out on patrol.


“Ahhhh … there you are,” Giles started as Buffy and Spike suddenly took off running through the shop, through the back room and towards the back door. Spike flung the back door open and they both ran back out of the shop into the alley.


“Hello, Giles … How are you today?” Giles mocked in the empty store as he walked to the back and closed the door behind them. “Fine … and you? Oh, good – good to hear.  So glad we could have this visit … next time don’t stay so long … you’re wearing out your bloody welcome…”


Before Giles could get back into the front room of the shop, the bell on the front door clattered loudly and he heard Spike yelling at someone. “You bloody well better start talkin’, Percy!”


Giles came up to the front room to find Spike holding a very frightened looking man by the back of his collar. The man wasn’t very big … about as tall as Spike, but not nearly as well muscled, perhaps thirty years old with sandy brown hair and wire rimmed glasses.  He wore a gray tweed suit over a white shirt and a gray tie.  No doubt about it … he was from the Council of Watchers.


About the time Giles got close to Spike and the Watcher, Buffy entered the shop out of breath.  “Oh, good – you got him,” she panted, trying to catch her breath.


“What is the meaning of this?” Giles asked looking at the trio.


“This git’s been following us for days,” Spike asserted.  Spike started to shake the Watcher when suddenly he was thrown back away from him.  Spike hit the wall behind him, knocking countless magical do-dads down off the shelves as he hit.


“Bloody hell,” he murmured as he picked himself back up. “Must be a soddin’ witch too …”


“No, Spike … it’s the demon anti-violence spell on the shop,” Giles informed him. 


Buffy grabbed the man’s arm as he tried to make his way back towards the door of the shop. “No need to leave so soon … we haven’t been properly introduced,” she told him. 


“I’m Buffy and this is Spike … and this is Giles,” she continued, waving her free hand at Spike and Giles as she spoke. “And your name is?”


When the man just looked at her with frightened eyes, Buffy started to twist his arm up behind him, but she was also tossed back away from him and against the same wall that Spike had hit, knocking even more inventory off the shelves. 


“Fuck! This spell sucks, Giles!” Buffy exclaimed as she started to get back up.


Spike started for the man again but Giles stopped him. “If you two keep on, there will be no inventory left for me to sell,” he informed them as he grabbed the man’s arm and finished what Buffy had started, twisting his arm up behind him.


“Now then, shall we start over?” Giles began. “Who are you?”


When the man didn’t answer, Giles twisted harder and nearly lifted the man up by his arm behind his back. The man screamed out in pain and tried to pull free, but Giles’ hold was solid.


“Not mute, anyway …” Spike observed. “We know you’re a Watcher … can smell the bloody bangers ‘n mash and musty old books on ya from here!”


“What’s your name and what are you doing here?” Giles asked again.


“Horatio …” the man started through grit teeth. “Horatio Faraday.”


Giles eased up on his arm slightly. “Very good … now, what are you doing here?”


“Nothing! On holiday. Let me go!” Horatio demanded, pulling against Giles.


“Don’t think you’re in any position to be makin’ demands, Hornblower,” Spike informed him, moving closer to the Watcher.


“Let me take him out back … betchya I can get some answers right quick,” Spike offered as he brought his demon face up and leaned in close to the Watcher’s neck.  “Haven’t had any decent bangers ‘n mash in a bloody decade …” Spike told him, sniffing lightly at the man’s skin.


“N-noo,” Horatio stammered, pushing back against Giles to try and get away from Spike, but Giles stood firm and wouldn’t let him move away from Spike’s threat.


“What are you doing here?” Giles repeated his question as Spike’s fangs got within millimeters of the Watcher’s skin.  Spike was careful to not actually touch him, lest he be knocked on his ass again by the anti-violence spell.


When the Watcher still didn’t answer, Giles jerked his arm up again hard.  “Do you know what happens when a vampire and a Slayer join forces?” Giles asked him and the Watcher jerked his head quickly from side to side.


“Well, I believe you’re about to find out …” Giles informed him as he yanked the man backwards towards the back room of the shop with Buffy and Spike following at their heels.


“No! Fine! Don’t!” Horatio yelled, pulling against Giles and trying to grab onto anything … furniture, walls, countertops – anything to keep from being dragged out of the shop and away from the protection of the spell.


Giles had made it halfway through the back room with the Watcher when he took him and tossed him against the padded wall on the training side of the room.


“Start talking …” Giles demanded as he stood with Buffy and Spike on either side of him and stared down the frightened man.


Horatio stood back up and held his hands up in surrender. “I am from the Council of Watchers …” he started.


“Tell us sumthin’ we don’t know,” Spike interjected.


“I am not on holiday …”


“Well, duh!” Buffy said, rolling her eyes. “No one comes to Sunnydale for a vacation … except vampires and mentally deficient Watchers …”


“I was … well, as it turns out, I would like to have a word with the Slayer,” Horatio told them as he smoothed his clothes out and straightened his collar.


Buffy folded her arms across her chest and tilted her head. “You came all this way to have a ‘word’ with me?  I hate to tell you, but there’s a new fangled invention called the telephone … you should look into it.”


“Been following us for a bloody week, you have,” Spike informed him. “Coulda ‘had a word’ anytime …”


“Alone … need to have a word with the Slayer, alone,” Horatio told them, looking at Buffy. “Some things simply can’t be discussed properly on the telephone.”


“If you want to talk, I suggest you start soon, ‘cause you’re really starting to annoy me,” Buffy informed him, her arms still folded across her chest.


“Please … if we could just, ummm ….” the Watcher started, looking at the back door, then thinking better of that and looking at the door that led into the shop. “Perhaps we could have a private word in the shop …” he suggested, sweeping his arm towards the door.


Buffy looked at Giles. “Where do they get these dumbasses from? Do they have a special test they have to fail in order to become Watchers these days?”


“I say I just eat ‘im and be done with it …” Spike intoned, taking a step closer to Horatio.


Giles looked at the Watcher, who was starting to look nervous again. “I suggest you speak your peace now, Faraday … Slayers have notoriously short attention spans … you do not want her to get bored with you.”


Horatio gulped and nodded nervously, running a finger under his suddenly too tight collar. “Yes, well … ummm, you see, the thing is,  I was sent by the Council to observe your children … particularly the eldest girl … the Council holds a special interest in her, you see.”


Spike started to growl involuntarily at the mention of their children, his hands balled into fists at his side as the Watcher talked. He'd just been playing with the ponce until then ... but his anger was building higher and higher the longer the Watcher talked.


“It is quite probable that the girl called Anne Joyce will be a Slayer herself, one day … and with the magical coupling of a vampire and a Slayer … it’s well … ummm,” the Watcher could see that his message wasn’t being taken well by any of the others in the room.


“Well, it’s likely that she’d be the most powerful Slayer ever known … and with the added benefit of her ability to open portals with her blood …”


The Watcher didn’t get another word out before Spike sprung on him. He knew what was coming next … ‘we need to study her’ or ‘we would like to take her back to England for testing’ or ‘we’d like to make her into a bloody lab rat’.  Spike got in one good punch before the anti-violence spell flung him off the Watcher, but he was back up in a second and advancing again.


Giles beat Spike to the Watcher and shoved him against the wall at his back. “Please do go on …” Giles told him as he wrapped the man’s tie around his hand until it tightened like a noose around the Watcher’s neck.


The Watcher struggled to breathe and scratched at Giles’ arm to try and get free.  When his face began turning purple, Giles loosened his grip slightly and the Watcher gulped in a deep breath of air.


When the Watcher could finally speak again he said, “This is why I was told to talk to you alone, Ms. Summers…”


Giles tightened his grip again and twisted the tie tighter around the Watcher’s throat. “Her name is Weckerly … perhaps someone at the Council should make a note of that … W-E-C-K-E-R-L-Y … it’s an old English name … it shouldn’t be too hard to remember.”


The Watcher started turning purple again and began pulling on Giles’ arm to get loose, but Giles’ grip was firm.  “Have I made myself clear?” Giles asked him.  When the Watcher nodded vigorously, Giles loosened his hold again slightly.


“You think that I would, what? Let you take my daughter with you?  Let you make a super-Slayer out of her or something?” Buffy asked him indignantly.


“You’re a Slayer … you understand the calling – the importance of the mission … you understand the need to serve the greater good,” the Watcher intoned. “Your daughter could make a real difference … and if she were to have a daughter …”


Buffy laughed humorlessly. “You’re out of your fucking mind!” she exclaimed, dropping her arms to her sides and coming closer to him so her face was within inches of his. Giles continued to hold him by his necktie, not allowing Horatio to move away from her.


“You go back and tell Quentin that if he so much as sneezes on any of my children, he’ll regret it for the rest of his life … which will be dreadfully short and will meet a very violent end.


“Don’t fuck with us … I swear on everything I hold dear that I will not let you turn my children into lab rats and I most certainly will not allow any of them to serve your greater good!”


“But, Ms. S..,” the Watcher started before trying to cover and correct himself, “..isus Weckerly, if she becomes a Slayer…”


“FUCK THAT!” Buffy exclaimed, pointing a finger at his chest. “That will NOT happen! I refuse to let that happen! We’ve given all we can give to the greater good; I’ve died for it more than once! We will not give our daughter, too!”


“You can’t stop it if it’s meant to be …” Horatio pointed out.


“You’re a Watcher … you can just watch me,” Buffy told him, her voice low and threatening.


“Get him out of my sight before I forget my manners and kill the messenger …” Buffy told Giles as she backed up away from them and pushed Spike back, too.


Giles pulled the Watcher by his necktie towards the back door. Spike started to follow, but Buffy held him firm.


“You’re just gonna let ‘im go?” Spike questioned, waving his free arm at the pair making their way towards the door.


“He needs to be alive to deliver the message …” Buffy told him.


“Sod that! I can deliver the bloody message to the wankers in person and tie it up with a bow …” Spike told her, pulling against her hold.


“Let him go, Spike … we don’t need to start a war with the Council … they have hundreds of Slayers now … more than we can fight,” Buffy pointed out. “Let him deliver the message …”


After a few minutes Giles came back in the back door, wiping blood off his knuckles with a handkerchief.


“What happened?” Buffy asked, moving towards him and taking his hand in hers to survey the damage.


“He attempted to attack my fist with his face,” Giles told Buffy, pulling his hand back. “Don’t worry…I’m fine.”


Buffy rolled her eyes and shook her head but Spike smirked and nodded. “Bloody wanker…”


“Buffy,” Giles started in a serious tone as he stuffed his handkerchief back into his pocket. “What he said about Annie … it may be true – she may be a Potential.”


“I know that, Giles,” Buffy said, dropping her hands down to her sides. “Don’t you think I’ve thought of that, myself?”


“And?” Giles prompted.


“And … and there has to be a way to stop it, to block it. I figured I had time to find a way – she’s only five!”


“Do you think that’s wise?” Giles asked her.


“I think it’s wiser than letting her become a Slayer. I have to be a mother first … and as a mother, I would never want my daughter to be a Slayer.  It’s … it’s dangerous and stressful and full of secrets. Your nights are spent in cemeteries instead of out on dates, your days are spent training instead of cheerleading or goofing off and hanging out with your friends.


“It’s impossible to have a normal life when you’re a Slayer.  The one thing I wish for my children is they have happy, healthy, normal lives …”


“That may not be possible,” Giles advised her.


“Maybe, maybe not … we’ll just have to see, won’t we?” Buffy told him with a shrug.


Giles frowned but nodded his agreement, although he couldn’t see any way to stop Annie from becoming a Slayer if it was her destiny. Perhaps if things were as they had always been … with just one Slayer at any given time, even if it was in Annie’s blood, it’s possible that she would’ve never been called. But as it stood now, all Potentials became full-fledged Slayers in their teens.




Thursday, July 22nd, 2004


The next night, Buffy walked with Spike to Willy’s for his weekly poker game with Clem and the boys.  Buffy liked Clem … despite Spike’s accusations that he cheated at cards, he’d always been nice to her, so she stopped in to say ‘hi’ before she headed off for a short patrol before she headed back home.


The patrons of the bar had gotten used to seeing Buffy in there and, for the most part, paid her no heed.  The kind of demons that hung out in Willy’s were generally non-violent, except maybe with each other after having a few … but they posed no threat to the general populace, so Buffy (and Spike) left them alone.


“Oh hey, Spike! Buffy!” Clem called when they entered the back room of the bar where the card games were held.


“Hi, Clem!” Buffy replied with a smile. “How’s it been goin’?”


“Can’t complain! Well, I could, but no one ever listens, so why bother?” Clem told her.  “Bugle?” he asked, offering her a bowl of Bugle snacks.


“Uh, no … I’m trying to cut down on my intake of musical instruments,” Buffy smiled.


“Yeah … I should, too … it seems to go right to my skin,” Clem agreed, setting the bowl down on the table.


“Sorry to hear about Annie’s rat runnin’ off …” Clem offered. “You know – there’s lots of them nasty critters down by the docks … I could get you one – you could put it in the cage and say hers came back.”


“I appreciate that, Clem, but, you know that one was kinda special – I’m not sure a wild wharf rat would really work out …” Buffy told him. 


Buffy leaned in and whispered, “To tell you the truth, I’m kinda glad it’s gone … rats give me the wiggins.”


Clem scrunched up his face, nodded, and whispered back, “Me too … I much prefer kittens … rats taste … ratty.”


Buffy laughed and pulled back. “Don’t you hate it when that happens? Like fish tasting all fishy?”


“Oh, don’t get me started!” Clem agreed, rolling his eyes.


“Ok, it was great to see you, Clem … please don’t take all of Spike’s money … he’s saving up to buy out the Ghirardelli store for me,” Buffy told him with a smile as she started back towards the door.


“Oh … ok, well, I’ll be sure to leave him a tabby or two.”


“It’s you that’ll be fundin’ that chocolate store takeover, mate. You and the rest of you unlucky losers …” Spike informed Clem and the rest of the demons gathered for the game.


“See you later, baby,” Buffy said to Spike as she passed and started out the door.


Spike grabbed her arm and pulled her back against him. “What? No good luck kiss?”


“Didn’t think you needed luck … ‘it’s a game of skill’ I believe is what you said before,” Buffy told him with a smile.


“Well, a little luck never hurt,” Spike informed her as he took her lips in a soft kiss, which she deepened by pulling his head down, pressing her body against his and devouring his lips with hers.


When she pulled away to breathe, Spike whispered, “With that kinda luck, I won’t need any bloody skill.”


Buffy laughed and dropped another quick peck on his lips before turning and leaving the room.


“I still don’t know how you do that, Spike … I mean, she’s nice enough, but her skin’s so tight and those lips…they’re so pink and all…ugh!” Clem declared, shaking his head in disgust, as Spike sat down at the table.


Spike smirked. “Well, we all have to make sacrifices in life.”




It had been a slow night on patrol for Buffy. She’d already done a sweep of Lakeside Cemetery and Restfield and hadn’t met one vampire.  She was taking a quick run through Shady Hill when that same feeling of being watched came over her. It tingled up her spine and for a moment she thought it was a vampire near, but then decided it felt just like earlier when Faraday was watching them.


“Fucking Watcher …” Buffy muttered under her breath as she continued to walk slowly through the cemetery and tried to pinpoint where the idiot was. Apparently, their little talk with him … and his attempt to pummel Giles’ fist with his face, hadn’t made the impression that they’d hoped.


After Buffy circled the perimeter of the cemetery twice, she concluded that he was circling one of the larger crypts in the center … mirroring her movements and staying just out of sight.


Buffy took off running, heading towards the front of the crypt, then suddenly changed direction at the last moment and went around the other way.  Sure enough, she ran right into her stalker who had started moving around the crypt away from her original path.


When Buffy ran into him, they both tumbled to the ground, but Buffy was back up in an instant and moving towards him, her hands balled into fists as she prepared to make a deeper impression on him and send him back to the Council with an even stronger message – one written in black and blue. 


“God damn it, Faraday! What do I have to do to get you to leave us alone?!” she demanded as she rounded the edge of a tombstone that he had crawled behind.


When Buffy got to the back of the tombstone, she stopped short … her lungs suddenly stopped working and her eyes went wide with shock …  


“Oh my God!!  Angel?!”



Feedback: Email me feedback, I'd love to hear from you! passionate@passion4

Go back to:          The Main Home Page             The 'Teach Your Children Well' Home Page