You're not allowed to tease, Faith!
“He what?” Faith wondered if Buffy had gone crazy during the night. If she had, Faith wouldn’t have blamed her. The kind of responsibility Buffy had accumulated, even while sharing it, was bound to cause anyone to take a trip around the bend, as far as Faith was concerned.
“Xander got married last night,” Buffy said calmly. The three of them, Buffy, Vi and Faith, were sitting at a diner eating breakfast. “He’s coming here as soon as he can. His wife’s hotel isn’t all that far from here.”
“He bringing the wife?” Vi asked. She was sitting next to Faith in a booth, and Buffy was seated across the table.
“I don’t know. He didn’t say, and you heard me not ask, so…”
“Well, hell.” Faith leaned back in her seat. “The Xan-man married. In Vegas.”
“You’re not allowed to tease, Faith.”
“Why not, B? It seems appropriate given the circumstances. And he sure as hell would’ve done it, if the position was reversed. Not that they ever will be.”
“From what I got on the phone, he feels badly enough already. No need to rub salt into the wound.”
“Just a teensy, tiny bit of salt?”
“Spoil my fun.”
“Xander. Married,” mused Vi. “It seems strange.”
“You don’t think this is some sort of post-traumatic stress reaction after,” Buffy glanced at the passing waitress. “The situation
last night. I mean, it was fairly similar to the time Anya died.”
They paused for a bit, and thought about it.
“So we shouldn’t comment at all?” Vi asked. “Won’t that be weird?”
“Sure,” Faith held her coffee cup to her mouth, and took a sip before replying. “But what, in our line of work, isn’t weird?”
A while later, Xander slid into the booth next to Buffy. A blonde followed suit, after a short hesitation. Faith figured that she wanted to sit next to someone familiar. “Hey guys, this is Izzie. Izzie, Buffy, Faith and Vi.”
“Nice to meet you,” Buffy smiled. Faith could have been the one to say that, except for the fact that Buffy and Vi were the peppy ones. And true to form, Vi chipped in with a similar greeting.
“So… you got married, huh? How much did you drink, Xan?”
“Faith, you promised.”
“No, I didn’t, B. You just said I shouldn’t tease. And I didn’t. It was a legitimate question. I don’t ever want to get that drunk, so I need to know.”
Buffy blinked, as if remembering something. “Hey, did you two meet at that bar last night?”
Izzie smiled timidly. “Probably. I can’t remember much of it. Why?”
“Well, from what I remember, Xander came over all flushed and said he’d spilled his beer on some girl’s shoes, and had to go make reparations.”
Faith looked at Izzie. “She doesn’t drink much. Her memory is sketchy at best, but it isn’t clouded with alcohol.”
“So, we have to tell our grandkids that we met as he spilled beer on me?” Izzie was appalled.
“Pregnant?” Vi queried. “Quick work, Xander.”
Xander flushed. “It would be too soon to tell, wouldn’t it?”
“I don’t know,” Faith teased. “I heard a story on how Cordy could tell the next day after.”
“There were circumstances, then,” Buffy pointed out, dryly. “Cordy was Xander’s ex. She, uh, passed away.”
“No, that was Anya,” Faith decided to be helpful. “Come to think of it, a divorce might be to your best advantage. I’m about the only girl Xander’s been with who lived to tell the tale.”
“And boy does she tell it,” Buffy muttered.
“We’ve decided to ix-nay on the divorce for now,” Xander said. “Take a bit of time before we decide. There are all those unfortunate connotations regarding a quickie Vegas marriage and annulment that I’m not ready to face yet.”
“You do look a bit like Ross, “ Vi volunteered. “But so far you’ve only been married once.”
“I think we’re scaring the wife.” Faith looked over the table.
Izzie paused for a second. “I’ve had worse. Seriously. And as for the pregnancy… It would be too soon to tell. With pregnancy tests, I think.”
“How would you know? You a doctor?” Faith challenged.
“Actually, I was going to be. I was an intern at Seattle Grace Hospital, when my fiancée… died. I originally quit the programme, but because of extenuating circumstances, they gave me a hiatus instead. So, I decided to come to Vegas. Oh, shit.”
Izzie winced. “My friends. I’ve got to tell my friends. I thought of them earlier, but I forgot to call.” She groaned. “Seriously. They’ll never let me hear the end of it.”
“She lives in Seattle, and you live in Cleveland,” Buffy mused to Xander. “I suppose we could set up a field office in Seattle, if you want to, while the two of you’re figuring it out? Interning at a hospital is probably less movable than our business. Seattle has an airport, don’t they? Of course, Giles will probably make me do scenario-planning, and long-term predictions and all that… guh. You’re so going to owe me.”
Faith stabbed her pancakes with her fork, and took a bite. “’S what you gwet for bweing miff refponfible.”
“Chew. Swallow. Then talk. She’s a work in progress,” Buffy told Izzie. “Some days, you can take her out to dinner, and others…”
Vi giggled, as Faith shot Buffy a dirty look.
“Uh,” Izzie smiled nervously. “I think I should tell my friends.”
“That we can’t bring Faith out?” Buffy asked with a grin. “No need. They’ll find that out for themselves after a while. Besides, it’s infinitely much more fun to tell these kind of things in person. Believe me, I know.”
“Whatever you say,” Izzie said. “I’ve got a flight home tomorrow.”
“We’re supposed to leave today,” Faith said. “But now that I’ve got all this fascinating shit going on somewhere else, there’s no way I’m returning to Cleveland. Second-hand reports is just not going to cut it this time, B.”
Izzie looked at Xander. “Uh, what?”
“Two minutes,” Buffy held up a finger instructing them to be silent. “I’ve gotta let Giles know.”
“Joy,” Xander muttered. “This is gonna be one of those stories that gets told at the Yuletide office party every year, isn’t it?”