Buffy Summers watched in amusement as Ripley drilled Dawn. She was worse than Giles when it came to training, and it made her want to laugh. The smirk never left Buffy’s face as Dawn ran laps, did push ups the whole nine yards and then some.
She’d objected at first, letting Dawn learn how to fight. Ripley however, had convinced her that it was the best for Dawn. After weeks of the woman living with them, she still didn’t know what to think of Ripley. Her mother seemed like her though, and Ripley seemed to want to help so Buffy had allowed Ripley to move in and take care of them.
She’d asked her mother about Ripley, but she always avoided the question. The only thing she ever got out of Joyce was that Ripley had saved her hundreds of times and that she was the best mother anyone could have asked for.
‘Mother huh?’ Buffy thought as she watched Ripley yell at Dawn for being weak without actually meaning it. It motivated Dawn, made her work harder and faster than Buffy had ever seen her work before. She liked what it was doing to her sister. Plus, when Ripley was done with Dawn, Buffy figured that she wouldn’t have to worry about Dawn getting hurt.
“Guess that makes you Grandma.” She thought, without realizing she said it aloud.
Ripley looked at her and smiled, “Only if you want me to be.”
“We never had one before.” Buffy said, smiling.
“I won’t be like other grandmas.” Ripley warned her.
“Well, we are a pretty unusual family already. Having a strange Grandma would just complete the picture.”
Ripley grinned, “Guess your right about that.” She paused, “I’ve never had a real family before.” The grin was gone, and she was more somber now.
“You may not be blood, but you are family.” Buffy replied, meaning what she said.
“You know, from what I saw you don’t usually accept people this easily.”
“Yeah well, mom likes you. Granted, mom liked Dracula too, but that’s sooo not the point. The point is, you protected my mother when you didn’t have too. You helped me and Dawn more than anyone has before. And for that, you’re family no matter what anyone says.”
Ripley seemed to think about it for a moment, then grinned at Buffy, “Yeah, we’re family.” She stiffened slightly, when Buffy gave her a hug but relaxed and returned it.
“Now go join your sister, soldier. Just because your family doesn’t mean you get any slack!”
Buffy mumbled something about Ripley being here. She didn’t mean it though, Ripley could tell as the smile on her face was there while she ran laps catching up with her sister easily.
They may not be blood, but Buffy, Joyce and Dawn were her family. Nothing in the world could change that.