Buffy ignored the chime as she continued her kata. The fight on the hive ship had left her wired and, although she had held it in check when she had first returned to the planet, it had made itself known during her confrontation with Elizabeth over attacking the hive ship without the backup of Sheppard’s team. It surfaced with a vengeance when they arrived back at Atlantis. The scattering of Wraith genes in the Athosians grated on her Slayer instincts, which demanded that she destroy the threat that was so close to her and so close to those she loved and protected.
The chime rang out again, and again she ignored it.
On top of all that, the adrenaline rush from the fight with the Wraith was fading and, although she had never admitted to it when Faith had asked her so long ago, she did, like all other Slayers, suffer from the ‘Double H’s’ after such an intense life and death battle. In the past, she did what worked for her on the Hellmouth. She ignored it until it overwhelmed her, then she discreetly took care of it. Although she had never had strong feelings for anyone other than Angel and Spike, she had long ago admitted to herself that she was bi-sexual, like her Slayer sister, just not as blatantly obvious.
The chime rang for a third time just as she finished the long, complicated kata. With a growl of irritation, she went to answer the door. Her frustration derailed when the door slid aside to reveal Elizabeth Weir. Her breathing froze when all of her Slayer instincts suddenly flared and focused sharply as their eyes met and Elizabeth’s scent swamped her senses.
“You left so abruptly that I wanted to be sure that you were all right.” Elizabeth said. When Buffy simply stared at her without responding, Elizabeth became concerned. “Buffy?”
Buffy shook her head to clear it. “Oh, uh, sorry. Kinda zoned out for a second. What did you say?”
“I wanted to see if you were all right.” Elizabeth repeated. “You left rather suddenly.”
Buffy nodded and waved her in. She grabbed a towel to wipe off the sweat as she explained. “I’m still a bit jazzed from the fight. A lot of the Athosians have latent Wraith genes, like we have Ancient genes, and it’s setting of my instincts, making me want to take out the threat.”
“You didn’t react that way to them before.” Elizabeth commented, a little confused. “When you entered the Gateroom after you first woke up.”
“Actually, they were the reason I was heading for the Gateroom in the first place.” Buffy told her. “The Wraith genes in Teyla are stronger, and not quite so dormant, so when she flew in with Sheppard, the Slayer focused on her as the most immediate threat.”
Buffy had moved further into the room and sat down on the bed. Her senses still felt swamped by Elizabeth’s presence, and it was a struggle to respond normally to the woman. The need to destroy her enemy transformed into a need to take. It was flooding her body, washing coherent thought from her mind. Mate,
the word floated through her mind as she breathed in Elizabeth’s scent. Take her,
her Slayer side urged. Take our mate
. A deep, familiar throbbing began low in her abdomen, and it took all of Buffy’s control not to jump the woman looking at her with worry clear in her eyes.
“Buffy, are you all right?” Elizabeth asked, worriedly. Buffy had trailed off and started staring at her with unnerving intensity. Her heart began to pound as she saw the Slayer’s pupils dilate and her expression shift to pure lust. Elizabeth swallowed nervously. “Buffy?”
“Hmm?” Buffy responded, her voice a rough, rumbling purr. Her nostrils flared as Elizabeth’s scent changed. She could detect the other woman’s nervousness and a twinge of fear, but underneath it was arousal. Buffy licked her lips as the scents began to get stronger, not realizing that she had risen from the bed and was slowing making her way across the room.
“Buffy, where are you?” Xander’s voice suddenly boomed over the comm. “You’re missing the party.”
It was enough to bring Buffy back to her senses. She focused through the haze in her mind to find herself mere inches from the other woman, and every muscle in her body felt coiled to strike.
The Atlantis Commander was nearly gasping with relief as she saw the Slayer’s eyes focus on her clearly. She didn’t know what had just happened, but she knew one thing with frightening clarity. She now knew what it felt like to be stalked, like a predator stalks its prey. Her heart was pounding in her chest so hard she was surprised that the other woman couldn’t hear it, but it wasn’t from fear, she realized. At least, not completely. It wasn’t a threat of harm on Buffy’s features as she approached, but something much more dangerous in Elizabeth’s mind. She had seen that look directed at her one time before. In college, on a rare night when she had ignored her studies to party with her boyfriend and their friends. They had gone out to a bar and gotten drunk, and ended up in a bar brawl that was interrupted by approaching sirens. The college students had made their escape and returned to campus without incident. The moment Elizabeth and her boyfriend were alone in her dorm room, her boyfriend had turned to her with that exact same expression and a minute later, Elizabeth had found herself being thoroughly, almost roughly, taken against the door, and enjoying every moment. Even now, years later, thoughts of that night brought a low ache.
“Buffy, you there?” Xander commed again.
“I think I’d better rejoin the others before someone comes looking.” Elizabeth said quietly. She watched Buffy shake her head, obviously trying to clear it. “Would you like me to send Carson to take a look at you? I believe he wants to talk to you about your medical records anyway.”
“N-no, he can’t help.” Buffy answered after a moment. “S-send Willow.”
Elizabeth nodded and moved to the door, keeping her movements slow and calm. “Dawn and Xander as well?”
With Elizabeth gone, Buffy managed to regain control of herself by the time Willow arrived. The witch took one look at her friend and hurried over to her side. “Buffy, what’s wrong?”
Buffy glanced at her friend, then looked away. “Nothing’s wrong, unless you count nearly ripping Elizabeth's clothes off and taking her right against the door.”
Willow’s eyes widened in surprise, not expecting that. “Okay, you’re going to have to explain that one.”
Taking a deep breath, Buffy tried to explain what she could recall of the earlier incident. As she listened to the stumbling explanation, Willow began to piece together what had happened. Her mouth almost dropped open in shock when she realized that Buffy had almost attacked the Atlantis Commander in the heat of Slayer Lust. It was only the instinctive knowledge that Buffy was barely holding on to her composure that allowed the witch to hide the depth of her surprise.
Willow looked at her friend closely. Buffy was nearly vibrating with barely suppressed energy, pacing around the room as if she was unable to remain still. With sudden insight, she realized that she had seen Buffy like this before. So often, if fact, that when she was told about slayer lust, or the ‘Double H’s’ as Faith had called it, that she simply never associated it with her best friend, not questioning the brush off Buffy had muttered when Faith had confronted her about it. And if she hadn’t realized it, she was sure that Xander and Giles hadn’t either. Suddenly, she wondered how Buffy had managed to hide it from it so successfully, why she hid it at all, and how she had managed to take care of it without them knowing.
Those were questions that would have to wait until later, however, as she realized that Buffy had finished speaking and her own continued silence was causing the Slayer to fidget nervously.
“I’m sorry, Buffy.” Willow apologized, forcing herself to refocus as she grinned crookedly. “I was just having a Xander moment.”
It was Buffy’s turn for wide-eyed surprise. Then, with a sharp exhale, she rolled her eyes and relaxed. A little. Finally, Buffy sat down next to the witch. “What am I going to do, Will?”
“It’s just slayer lust, Buffy.” Willow said. “How did you take care of it in the past. What’s the big deal this time? Is it because she’s the Leader of this Facility, or because she’s a woman?”
“Uhh… it’s definitely not because she’s a woman.” Buffy assured her friend. “The problem is that this isn’t a simple case of slayer lust. That, I can handle. I’ve never felt anything like this before. This feels wild and really out of control.”
“But isn’t slayer lust always wild and out of control?” Willow asked.
“In a way,” Buffy acknowledged. “But not like this. Slayer lust is a need to be satisfied, and if it was just that, then I’d still be feeling the intensity. This almost feels like a compulsion. It feels deeper, kind of like some buried instinct making it’s way to the surface. When Elizabeth walked in here, all I could concentrate on was her scent.”
The slayer nodded as she relaxed and stretched out on the bed. “Everyone has a scent, Will, and a taste that’s just their own. It’s a type of animal recognition, and it changes with the person’s emotions. Fear, anger, love or hate.” Suddenly she looked right at into the witch’s eyes. “Even arousal.”
Suddenly, Willow flushed slightly and smiled weakly. Buffy grinned and broke the eye contact to give her friend a moment to compose herself. Just the thought of that delicious scent had a trickle of arousal snaking through her and her voice turned low and husky as she continued. “Anyway, her scent kinda filled all my senses, and it was like my Slayer side was just urging me to take her. To make her mine and put my scent on her as well. It was the most intense thing I’ve ever felt, and if Xander hadn’t called, I honestly don’t know what would have happened.”
Willow pushed away the thoughts brought on by her words spoken in that voice. She mentally slapped herself for an obviously missed opportunity with the blonde, then she forced herself to concentrate on the problem at hand. “Do you think this might have something to do with that mating thing in your files?”
Buffy sighed and nodded. “That’s what I was thinking. This isn’t good, Will. I have no experience with this, so I have no control. I could hurt Elizabeth.”
“What do you want to do?”
“I don’t know. It’s not like there’s a whole lot I can
do. My senses are so strong now that anywhere I go in the city, that scent will haunt me. Goddess, Willow, that scent makes my mouth water. I do
know that I need to stay away from her until I get a handle on this so I don’t attack her in front of her people. That would be bad on so many levels.”
“Do you want me to talk to her?” Willow offered. “You know, give her a heads up.”
“Would you?” Buffy looked so grateful that Willow laughed as she nodded. “Thanks, Will. You’re the best.”