Also, I've been busy and I have the next chapter of Somewhere in Time ready to post. I think I'll have the next chapter of Watching Atlantis tomorrow. Woo Hoo!!
Somewhere in Time - Chapter 8 - Forging a New Future
Fan rating FRM - not really anything in this chapter, just one sota naughty word.
Note: Just a reminder, if you want to go back and refresh your memory, the story is on my lj in the memories section under Somewhere In Time. And if someone could explain 'tags' to me maybe I could learn to make them work.
Title: Somewhere In Time
Pairing: Buffy/Giles (Duh)
Rating: FRM - Mature
Disclaimer: I do not own the characters, nor am I making a profit. This story is for the enjoyment of those of us who believe this couple belongs together.
Summary: Take Giles from season one or two and Buffy from season five or later. They are from different dimensions, but they are both the only survivors from their timeline after a big disaster and somehow manage to escape. The are both sent to a dimension where Buffy and Giles have died. How does an older Buffy and younger Giles deal with being thrown together?
Forging a New Future
Long after Buffy had finished speaking Rupert sat, staring ahead blankly. His mind was spinning with the things she had told him. Foremost in his thoughts was the fact that she had died. Had died and been buried for three months. He shuddered. In his mind’s eye he again saw his Buffy, her neck snapped, dead on the floor of the Master’s crypt. Another shudder ripped through his body.
He turned to Buffy and pulled her close. “Oh, damn. Bloody hell.” He held her tighter, his voice murmuring words that Buffy had never heard before; though she was sure they must be curse words of some sort. His hands moved restlessly over her back as he rocked her in his arms. He pulled back.
“How could she do that to you? She was your best friend. And him? How could he leave you under those circumstances?”
“Willow thought she was rescuing me. I died closing the doorway to a Hell dimension, so they thought my soul had been pulled there. And Giles,” her voice broke and she looked away. “I was using him as a barrier against the world and he blamed himself. He thought the only way I could get strong again was if he wasn’t there for me to lean on.”
“In normal circumstances, yes, I would have done the same thing, but those weren’t normal circumstances. You had died. You had been pulled from your reward. That was the most traumatic thing that could possibly happen to someone.” He looked angry. “There is no excuse for his abandonment.”
Buffy pulled away. “I thought that too, until a couple of days ago.” She walked over to the window and looked at the late afternoon sun. “After I read this Giles’ diaries I realized how much I had hurt him. How casually I had disregarded his feelings.” She turned around, wiping at the tears falling from her eyes.
“I think I’ve cried more in the last four days than in my entire life. God, I was so selfish, childish. I always expected him to be there whenever I needed him for something and to disappear when I didn’t. We all treated him that way, me, Willow and Xander.”
“You were children. Children are often thoughtless.”
“No! Don’t make excuses. We were all 19 years old; adults, not children. Not that you would know it from our actions.” Buffy lowered her head, her voice becoming almost inaudible. “I did something that Angelus couldn’t do. I broke Giles. He started drinking. He was so lonely that when Ethan came to town he went out to a bar with him. Ethan, being Ethan, couldn’t resist making mischief and turned him into a Faryal demon. I almost killed him.”
Rupert crossed the room and lifted her chin. “Your Giles was a grown man. It was his choice to drink, his choice to trust Ethan. There were other things he could have done. The Giles in this dimension didn’t sit around waiting for his Buffy to visit. He got a job and became active in the community. Yes, you were wrong in the way you treated him, but he was wrong as well.”
Buffy shrugged and gave him a watery smile. “I guess.” She glanced at the clock. “They’re late.”
Rupert frowned, taking a minute to understand the segue. He also looked at the clock. 5:30. He sighed. “I supposed I had best get this over with.” As he reached for the phone there was a knock on the door.
“I’ll get it.” Buffy opened the door to see a disheveled Oz standing on the other side. “What happened?”
“I was outside Tara’s apartment building, trying to work up the courage to go in, when this group of guys in uniforms pulled up in a truck. I thought they had followed me somehow, and I hid in the alley, but they went into the building and a few minutes later I saw them bringing Willow and Tara out. I tried to stop them, but there were too many of them." He looked at Buffy with desperation. "Let them take me tonight. I'll try to get them out after I change back."
Before Buffy could answer, Riley came running up the steps and across the patio. "Professor Walsh had a team grab Willow."
"Why? What could they want with her?"
Riley looked away from her. Buffy grabbed his arm and turned him back. "Why, Riley. What does Professor Walsh want with Willow?"
"I told her what you said. About Willow being able to do magic. She wants to run some tests."
White hot rage flared through her. Buffy swung, knocking Riley to the ground. “You bastard!”
Riley lay on the floor, looking up at her. “I’m sorry. I had no idea she would do something like this. She’s gone crazy.” He struggled to his feet, leaning weakly against the wall.
Buffy grabbed the front of his shirt and pulled his face close to hers. “Don’t give me that. You had a pretty good idea what she would do, that’s why you told her. You wanted to placate her for not bringing back Oz last night. Give her another toy to play with and to prove your loyalty to her.” She shoved him away. “I’m telling you right now, anything she does to either of those girls, I will do to you.”
Buffy turned her back on Riley’s stammering response and stalked across the room. She grabbed the trank gun from Rupert’s desk and spun around, shooting Riley. He blinked at her, surprised, and collapsed. Buffy turned to Oz. “Duct tape. Drawer next to the stove.”
Oz nodded and went into the kitchen. He returned moments later and quickly taped Riley’s legs and hands together. The last piece he placed over Riley’s mouth, listening for a few seconds to make sure that Riley was breathing through his nose without difficulty.
For the first time Buffy paid attention to Rupert’s telephone conversation. It didn’t seem to be going very well. He had pulled his glasses off and was standing ram rod straight. “Listen, you bloody minded old fool, Buffy is not your property….we are not your puppets!” He drew in another breath, put before he could continue Buffy took the phone from his hand.
“Listen up, this is what I want you to do.”
There was silence on the other end of the line, then an annoyed voice said, “Who is this.”
“I’m the reason for your existence. I’m the Slayer.”
“Are you deaf? If Travers didn’t tell you, I’m sure that Rupert did. The name is Mrs. Giles, but you can just call me Boss.”
There was a brief sputtering then the voice began, “My dear young lady.”
Buffy cut him off again. “Who is this?”
A loud exhalation was followed by, “I am Lord Alistair Dennison, chairman of the Council of Watchers.”
“Well, Al, like I said, I’m the Slayer, the reason for your existence. And I think it’s time that you understand who is really in charge here. Without me you people are just a waste of time and space. So here is how things are going to go from now on. Rupert and I will stay here on the Hellmouth and continue to risk our lives every night to keep the world safe from vampires and demons, while you will give us whatever we need. Agreed?”
Buffy pulled the phone away from her ear and Rupert heard loud squawking noises. After a few minutes she cut in. “And the first thing we need is a wet works team, and we need them here now.”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“Please, I’m not an idiot. You have to have at least one team in Los Angles. One you can send here to handle the Hellmouth if something happens to me. We need them here as soon as possible. We have a paramilitary group running an experimental lab using the demon population as guinea pigs. The woman in charge has gone over the edge and is grabbing humans now.”
“Bloody hell! Experimenting on demons? Is she mad?”
“I believe I said that. She’s trying to build the perfect commando, totally ignoring the fact that she wouldn’t be able to control it. She has to be stopped before she goes too far. Now, when will the team be here?” Buffy heard muffled voices, then Lord Dennison came back on the line.
“The team is on its way. They will report to you at your flat.” There was a brief silence. “We will discuss this further after this crisis has been averted.”
Buffy smiled. “I’ll be looking forward to your call, but, Al, it won’t change anything. Rupert and I are in charge now. Remember that and we’ll get along just fine.” She hung up the phone.
Buffy looked at Rupert then threw herself into his arms, burrowing her face against his chest. Rupert blinked in surprise. His arms automatically went around her, tightening when he felt her body trembling. His left hand cupped her head and his right hand moved soothingly up and down her back. They stayed that way for several minutes, until Buffy pulled away with a sigh.
“I really hate being the bad guy.”
“Nonsense. You were more polite than I would have been.”
She grimaced, “Not them.” She waved her hand towards the unconscious solider.
“When did he get here?”
“You were busy with his lordship at the time.” Buffy frowned slightly. "His lordship didn't seem to be expecting our call, at least it didn't seem that way to me."
Giles tilted his head, considering. "You're right. He was surprised by my call. I went on the defensive so quickly that I didn't realize that he might not know what I was talking about." He gave Buffy a puzzled look. "Travers didn't tell them. How did he expect to cover up our marriage? Did he think that I was bluffing, that I really wouldn't call the Council?" Giles shook his head. "We can deal with that later. Why did you knock Riley out? What did he do to upset you?”
“He told Walsh that Willow and Tara could do magic. She had a team grab them so she could do some tests.”
“That was what she told Riley, but I’d be willing to bet that part of the reason is because she knows that Willow is my best friend. She’s using her as bait to capture me for study.”
Rupert’s eyes flashed in anger. “I think you were easy on him.” He frowned. “That’s why you wanted the wet works team.” He gave Buffy a speculative look. “How did you know about them?”
“I asked Giles about the retrieval team that the Council sent after Faith. He explained all about special Council teams, and what they were used for.”
“The Council sent a retrieval team after Faith?”
“Another long story, and another thing that I hope to avoid. Short answer is that Angel and Wesley protected her.” Buffy suddenly gave a little laugh. “After my little display the Council is going to think that I’ve got you whipped.”
Rupert shrugged. “A good Watcher should be subordinate to his Slayer in matters pertaining to combat.” A spark of mischief lit Rupert’s eyes. He leaned forward and whispered, “But whipped? That might be interesting to try some time.”
Buffy blinked, frozen in shock as her brain refused to process what she had just heard. Across the room, Oz, whose werewolf enhanced hearing had allowed him to hear, chuckled. The sound broke the spell and she blushed. “Rupert!” She smacked him lightly on his arm.
In London, Lord Dennison placed the telephone handset back in its cradle. Frowning, he turned to the other men in the room. “Have we received any telephone calls from Mr. Travers today?”
“No, no calls.”
“Did he approach any of you for permission to travel to Sunnydale?”
Two of the men exchanged looks. The first replied. “The reason he gave for traveling to the United States was a trip to Los Angeles to retrieve a newly discovered Potential.”
Lord Dennison turned to his assistant. “He took one of the Council jets?”
“Yes, sir, Markham is the pilot.”
“Call him at once.” The man nodded and quickly tapped a number on the phone keypad. After a few minutes he handed the received to Lord Dennison.
“Markam, this is Lord Dennison.”
“I am ordering you to file a flight plan and leave Sunnydale at once.”
There was a slight pause. “Sir, I have already filed a flight plan. Mr. Travers called earlier and said that they would be leaving for London at 5 o'clock. I was a little worried since they are late…." he paused, then continued "I believe I see them in the terminal now, Sir."
“I want you to leave immediately. Do not, I repeat, do not allow Mr. Travers or any member of his party to board the plane. I am coming to Sunnydale to deal with them there. Do you understand?”
In the background Lord Dennison heard engine noises. “Understood, sir. I am leaving now.”
“After you land come directly to Council headquarters and report in to Mr. Evans.” He hung up the phone. “Evans, you will question Markham when he returns. Record any details that he overheard Travers or any member of his team discussing during the flight.” Evans nodded.
Lord Dennison turned back to his assistant. “Call the airport and have another Council jet prepared for immediate travel to Sunnydale. I want copies of all of Travers’ reports on Rupert Giles and Miss Summers waiting for me on the plane.” The assistant nodded. Lord Dennison continued. "I also want you call Travers and tell him that the Council is on it's way and that he and his men are to go back to the hotel and wait for us there."
The man looked up. "I don't believe that Mr. Travers carries a cell phone, Sir."
Lord Dennison frowned. "That's against protocol when in the field. Some member of his team should have a phone on them. Find out which one and have him pass the message on." The assistant nodded and left the room.
Lord Dennison glanced around at the other members of the ruling council. “Gentlemen, I think it’s time for us to meet this Slayer. I’ll see you at the airport in one hour.”