Disclaimer: I do not own any of the recognized characters. I receive no profits from this. It is just for fun.
Archiving: Please ask.
Feedback: Constructive Criticism desired.
Summary: Maggie wants something and Buffy is going to get it for her.
Ten years later.
The day is bright and pleasant, as it should be despite the solemn occasion. He’s been there since just after dawn as he has been every year since that day.
She allows him this alone time even though she still feels a twinge of jealousy for the piece of his heart that will never be hers. Of course her jealousy is tempered by knowing that she owns a piece of his heart that no one else will ever claim or diminish.
Despite the shining Sun, she makes sure to make enough noise during her approach so as not to startle him. They’ve both learned over the years that not all monsters only come out at night.
“Lunch is almost ready,” she says as she moves next to him.
“Who’d you leave in charge of the grill?”
“Then I guess we’d better hurry back so I can rescue some of the steaks while they’re still edible.”
“He’s not that bad.”
“True. Last time they only tasted like new shoe leather instead of old.”
“Exactly how would you know what shoe leather tastes like anyway? Old or new?”
“I’ve eaten the mystery meat in the Sunnydale High cafeteria. Shoe leather is the closest they came to serving something even related to a cow.”
“You know, there was no right or wrong decision to make? You had no way of knowing what would happen.” she says changing the subject and looking at the same stone marker he has been looking at.
BELOVED DAUGHTER SISTER FRIEND
SAVIOR OF THE WORLD
“So you keep telling me.”
“Final recap then we head out,” said Xander.
“You,” he said looking into the soulful eyes of the woman who owned a piece of him for all eternity, “are to keep Glory distracted. Do whatever you have to to keep her mind off Dawn.”
“You,” he continued, turning his attention to the other one who had a claim on him, “are to get to Dawn. Anyone or anything that gets in your way, you are to go around, go over or go through, whichever is quicker. Once you get to her, you are to defend her against everybody, and I mean everybody. If it is safe to do so, get her away from where they need to sacrifice her.”
“As for the rest of us, we are to keep Glory’s minions busy so Buffy and Faith can do their parts. If we happen to neutralize the minions, then we can provide support to whoever needs help.”
There were none.
“Let’s move out!”
The choice had been made. The prophecy would play out and Death would make an appearance. There just was no way for him to know who the Reaper would come for so he had no idea on how to thwart what was going to happen.
They won of course.
Dawn was saved and Glory gone for good.
But a price was exacted.
The Piper paid.
Sorrow tempering the joy.
A light removed from their lives.
Oh how he hated prophecies.
“As we were both told by Cordelia from one of her visions sent by the Annoying Ones That Be,” she reminded him emphatically. “Death was going to claim one of us. You assigned us to the tasks each of us was best suited for. If you had changed them, we all might have died.”
“There should have been another way,” he said quietly.
“You just wanted to live every man’s dream and have two women to make love to,” she replied with a slight chuckle. “That’s probably why the PTB didn’t provide for any leeway when they set up the circumstances to avoid the badness that would have resulted had you been able to pull that off.”
“I still say they made up the story about Slayers being so territorial that you both would eventually fight each other to the death over me, in addition to asserting who was the Alpha.”
“Then how do you explain how Chloe and I can only stand to be around each other for a couple of weeks at a time before we begin to grate on each others’ nerves?”
“Coastal big city girl versus small town Midwesterner,” he replied with certainty. “I even have trouble relating to her boyfriend, Mark.”
“It’s Clark,” she corrects him. “I think it’s lucky that Chao Ahn never leaves China.”
With a sigh she continues, “Besides, they did arrange for you ‘to have your cake and eat it too’ in a way. Granted it is a bit odd but it is also an interesting solution that can be counted as a win for everyone.”
“Still,” he replied. “Having one of you die wasn’t exactly fair.”
“I know,” she acknowledges sadly. “But she does get a second chance to have things turn out better for her and with both of us to guide her, it only improves her chances.”
“But she’s still a Potential and I’ll bet good money that there is no way the PTB don’t arrange for her to be called,” he states somewhat angrily.
“Considering it was her choice to return it’s inevitable,” she replies. “Her memories may have been erased when she was reincarnated, but I know you have seen evidence that she still has the same instincts and basic personality from before. She can be an even greater Slayer than she was before. Which will help her face whatever is coming that prompted her to agree to be reincarnated.”
“Still, she’s our little girl and I don’t like the thought of her having to fight the Darkness like we did,” he says.
“That was going to be a possibility even if she wasn’t who she is,” she says. “That worried me all through my pregnancy. I’m just glad we didn’t find out about her identity until after I gave birth. I’m not sure I would have handled the additional stress of knowing how much more precious the life I was carrying was going to be.”
“You’ve got that right,” says Xander with a grin. “We’d have ended up driving each other crazy with worry over every little thing that might have affected yours and the baby’s health instead of just every other thing.”
“We’re doing the right thing by keeping this between us and Cordy, aren’t we?”
“Yes,” he replies resignedly. “It’s hard enough for us to have to deal with the knowledge on a daily basis. The others don’t need that type of pressure. Besides, it wouldn’t make them love her any more than they already do and that’s what’s important. Of course it would give her name more meaning to them knowing that it was actually her and not just honoring her.”
“I’m just glad we decided on the name before Cordy told us who she was. It helps with the illusion that we came up with it on our own and were not manipulated by the PTB any more than we have been.”
“Well, the fact that Whistler hasn’t shown his face around any of the gang since before you knew you were pregnant and Cordy hasn’t had a vision that directly concerned us, other than the One, since then either, I believe the PTB have gone to a very hands off mode where we’re concerned,” said Xander. “Of course the fairly colorful descriptions you spout out at random intervals about what you will do if they do try to interfere with something you have planned might have something to do with that decision.”
“‘An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’,” she replied saucily.
They had been walking back to the house and just came within sight of it when a petite figure streaked out the front door and rushed over to them.
“Mommy! Daddy!” she gushed out as she stopped in front of them. “Grandma says to hurry up or all you’ll get to eat is a charcoal briquette.”
“Those are $20 a pound steaks!” yelped Xander as he ran off towards the house.
Noticing the glint in her daughter’s eye, she squatted down and asked, “Grandma didn’t say that did she?”
Squirming a bit under the stare of her mother, the little girl replied sheepishly, “Grandpa told me to say that.”
“I thought so,” she replied smiling as she stood up and extended her hand.
“Am I in trouble?”
“No. Grandpa might be for pulling Daddy’s leg with that joke,” she replied chuckling. “Just be sure to tell the truth about important things and don’t make a habit of doing jokes like that or you may end up like the ‘Boy Who Cried Wolf’.”
“Would that be a were-wolf like Uncle Oz?”
“Could be,” she quipped looking into her daughter’s eyes.
Even without Cordelia’s vision, she would know whose eyes those were anywhere.
“Faith! Buffy!” shouted Joyce from the porch. “Hurry up. Your food’s getting cold.”
Mother and daughter grabbed each other’s hand and sprinted towards the house, laughing all the way.
AN1: I freely admit that I am EVIL! Also, while my muse for this story, which is one of my oldest on the site, gave me this chapter, she refuses to provide me with the events between the previous chapter and this one. So I am ending the story here. If I’m inspired in the future I will start a new story and make it part of a series with this one.
AN2: Anyone wishing to fill in the blanks themselves may do so. Just give me a heads up so I can provide you with an email containing specific permission that I know some sites require to avoid accusations of plagiarism.