Summery: Buffy talks with Joyce and Lorelai.
Notes: I know it has been longer than promised but my computer slowly died over the new year and by the end of January it had joined other beloved computers in cyber heaven then there was all the problems of buying a new one and getting my head around Windows 7. So sorry.
This part is going out unbetad.
Back at the house
“She hates me,” sniffled Joyce as she dabbed her eyes with a tissue.
“Buffy doesn’t hate you, Joyce,” said Lorelai her arm around her wife’s shoulders as they sat on the couch, Giles still squat in front of them. “Like Rupert said, she just needs time to get use to us being a couple.”
“We still haven’t told her about Rory?” sighed Joyce.
“Rory?” frowned Giles.
“My daughter. She just finished her first year at Yale,” explained Lorelai. “She’s in Europe with her grandmother at the moment.”
“You have a daughter in college?” said Giles an eyebrow rising.
Lorelai smirked at the surprise on the man’s face, “Yes. I got pregnant at sixteen.”
“Sorry, it’s none of my business,” blushed Giles.
“No it’s okay,” said Lorelai. “I’m just hoping she reacts a little less dramatically to the news than Buffy. I’m not sure either Joyce or I could go through this with both our daughters angry with us,” she laughed a little.
“I’m sure she won’t,” smiled Joyce as she patted her wife’s thigh.
“And I’m sure Buffy won’t stay angry with you,” added Lorelai. “Ohh coffee,” she finished as Tara and Anya re-entered with a tray of drinks and some cakes the former demon had found in a tin.
It was several hours after dark that Buffy re-entered the house trailed by Xander. Willow had returned about an hour earlier but there was no sign of Riley? The silence lingered for several moments as she faced her mother and Lorelai, who had stood together as the Slayer had entered. “Ah sorry,” she finally mumbled an apology.
Joyce enveloped her daughter in an embrace, “I’m sorry too, dear. I didn’t do this to ruin your life. There’s nothing more important to me than you.”
Giles looked a little embarrassed at the show of emotion. He cleared his throat, “I think we should allow Buffy time to get to know Lorelai better without an audience! Maybe everyone can get together again tomorrow?”
“Yes. Why don’t you all come to dinner tomorrow night?” suggested Joyce.
“That would be delightful,” agreed Giles.
“Thanks Giles,” Buffy glancing at her Watcher smiled weakly. “Could you see Willow and Tara get home safely?” she asked. Tara was staying with Willow at her parents’ house, much to the consternation of the redhead as her mother had declared that she should get to know her daughter’s girlfriend.
“Of course, Buffy,” nodded Giles.
“We’ll head out as well,” added Xander taking Anya’s hand.
As they all started heading towards the door, Buffy stopped Xander. “Thanks for earlier Xand. I... I might do as you suggested earlier, about visiting Faith to clear the air I mean.”
“Good. I’ll see you tomorrow after work. Bye Mrs Su... Ah are you still gonna be Mrs Summers?” frowned Xander.
Joyce smiled at the young man. “Lorelai and I have decided on Summers-Gilmore as our name but I think you are all old enough to start calling me, Joyce. Okay?”
“Okay then,” smirked Xander. “‘Night, Joyce. It was real nice to meet you Lorelai.”
“You too, Xander,” smiled Lorelai. “Bye Anya,” she added as the couple headed for their car.
As the three women re-entered the living room there was another heavy silence.
“Did you want some coffee, Buffy?” Joyce finally said.
“Lorelai?” queried Joyce.
“For future reference honey, I can never turn down the opportunity of coffee,” Lorelai laughed lightly as they all made there way to the kitchen after gathering the various cups and plates.
Buffy sat opposite Lorelai as her mother busied herself making the coffee. “So you own an Inn?” the blonde figured it would be better to start off with safe topics.
“Yeah. It’s something I’ve wanted to do since I was seventeen. The Independence Inn that I managed burnt down early last year. Although it was very traumatic time for Sookie and me, Sookie was the chef at the Independence Inn and now the Dragonfly and my business partner. It did give us the push we needed to open our own Inn.”
“Dragonfly? That’s kind of a weird name,” pointed out Buffy.
“Well yeah I guess,” agreed Lorelai. “But the property was called that, years ago. It was falling down, been derelict for years. We decided to keep the name partly because we felt guilty that Fran died and we chased after her lawyer at the funeral to make an offer. Rory says we’re all going to hell because of it.”
Both Joyce and Lorelai stopped and looked at each other. Joyce came over to stand next to her wife. “Rory is Lorelai’s daughter, she’s in Europe with her grandmother at the moment,” she explained. “I’m sorry that all this is coming so fast.”
They both held their breath, fearful of another outburst as Buffy remained silent. “I guess it might be nice not being an only child. I could take her out, show her things... What?” frowned Buffy as her mother and stepmother began to laugh.
“Buffy, Rory goes to Yale, she’s nineteen,” explained Joyce.
“Oh,” Buffy looked closely at Lorelai, “Ah...”
“I got pregnant when I was sixteen,” explained Lorelai.
“Oh. Ah... okay then,” said Buffy not sure what else to say on the subject. “So have you told her about you?” she asked looking back and forth between her mother and stepmother.
“No. And to be honest with you, I’m not looking forward to that conversation,” sighed Lorelai.
“Right, I guess I can understand how she might react,” mused Buffy.
“I’m sure you can, Buffy. Temper tantrums, pouting, running out of the house,” smirked Joyce.
“Yeah okay mum, I get it,” smiled Buffy. “So tell me about my new step sister.”
“Well as I said, Rory goes to Yale, majoring in journalism. She’s nineteen... ah she has my addiction to coffee as well as my taste in movies and music...”
“Rory actually went to Chilton with Madeline,” interrupted Joyce placing the coffee in front of each of them and taking the seat next to her wife.
“She’s that Rory,” smiled Buffy. At the frowns on the others faces she explained, “Maddie still emails me all the time. She mentioned a Rory quite often before leaving high school.” She hesitated for a moment before broaching the subject she really wanted to know, “Ah when will you be moving back east?” she asked in a quiet voice.
Joyce reached over and took her daughter’s hand. “Buffy, I never wanted to hurt you. If there was any way to avoid upsetting anyone, we would. Anyway, Rupert suggested not selling the house yet and that we... Lorelai and I should take you with us when we go to Stars Hollow. So you can see where we’ll be living and maybe in the holidays you could come to visit?”
“We could always look at you transferring to a closer collage,” suggested Lorelai.
“I can’t, I need to be in Sunnydale,” replied Buffy rather sharply.
“Oh okay,” frowned Lorelai not wanting to push things.
“Sorry,” apologised Buffy really wishing that it would be possible to move away from the Hellmouth. “It’s just that everyone I know is here... Let’s just say I have unbreakable commitments and leave it at that!”
“Okay,” nodded Lorelai. “Well anyway, Rory, and I guess myself, grew up in Stars Hollow. I ran away from my parents’ home in Hartford when Rory was a year old and got a job as a maid at the Independence Inn. If it hadn’t been for many of my friends in Stars Hollow, I wouldn’t have made it...”
Over the next hour, Lorelai told them of her life in Stars Hollow and the many characters that lived there.
Joyce placed the cocoa in front of Lorelai and Buffy before curling up with her wife as Lorelai picked up the phone and began to dial.
Buffy and Joyce sat sipping their drinks and listening as Lorelai spoke to someone in Stars Hollow. “Hey Luke, it’s me ... I haven’t been gone that long, Luke ... Right, Lorelai,” she rolled her eyes as the other two laughed. “No one you know, Luke ... Anyway, Luke, have you agreed to let Taylor have the space next door yet? ... Wanna really annoy him? ... Well someone I know is very interested in opening a gallery in town ... Well her names Joyce and she’s been living in California for twenty four years and is planning on coming back to live in Connecticut ... I resent that, Luke, she isn’t as flaky as me ... Well we’ll be back in town in a couple of weeks ... Yeah I’m in California ... No I don’t plan on seeing Christopher... Okay, thanks Luke. I’ll see you soon. ‘Bye.” She hung up and looked at her wife. “You’ll have your new premises when we get to Stars Hollow.”
“Thanks honey,” smiled Joyce as she leaned over and kissed Lorelai.
“Eew mum,” cried Buffy looking away. “Could you not do that in front of me?”
“But it was only a little kiss,” sighed Joyce as mischief came into her eyes. “I didn’t even use any tongue.”
“Eew mother,” Buffy did a full body shudder. “I’m going to bed before I hafta floss my brain,” she said jumping up and running out of the room to the laughter of her mother and stepmother.