Disclaimer: when I didn't get Edward in my stocking I was extremely... relieved! I'd much rather get Rafael! Neither Joss's brains, nor Laurell's imaginings belong to me, more's the pity.
A'N: This is sort of
what Jennifer requested. To be honest it takes a bit of ramping up for me to go in the direction that she asked for, so this shall be an on-going drabble series about the lives of Buffy and Edward and an unlikely partnership...▬▬x▬▬
"Rogue ursine, in Mississippi."
She didn't even glance up, continuing to peruse her catalog as if it was the most interesting thing in the world. Usually his toneless (read: cryptic
) greeting would have warranted a response - most likely a caustic
response - but today her mind was on other matters.
"I've booked us a flight out of Newark Airport. We leave at four."
At this she did look up, frowning a bit. "It's the twenty-third."
His eyebrows lifted just the slightest of increments.
She huffed out a breath, mildly frustrated, "It's almost Christmas! I promised Dawn - "
"Is your promise to your sister more important than saving lives?"
"Well no, but - "
"Would she, in fact, want
you choose your annual Christmas party over the destruction of a... 'baddie'?" He shifted his weight minutely, slight impatience coloring his words, "Is your presence required at every
per se," Buffy struggled, "But I haven't seen her in almost... I mean it's Christmas
for pete's..." She flushed under his stare as she tried to find the right words, finally settling with a lame, "She wouldn't mind me postponing
the hunt for a little while..."
His tone was as blank and impersonal as the voice-over in a commercial, the kind that listed side-effects and the like quickly so as not to perturb the potential customer. Even so, his censure was clear, "Postponing a legally sanctioned Execution just so you can fly off to Rome for the holidays instead of doing your duty?"
Well, when he put it that
way... Buffy 'hmmed' quietly and went back to her browsing, flipping a page every minute or so but not really registering the various hot deals now being offered by Victoria's Secret
. This sort of thing had been happening all-too-often in the last few months. Days or events she would normally have set aside to spend with the gang were being eaten up by her job.
Especially now that she'd picked up a partner.
They'd met in a club, a vampire
club to be precise. He was in town visiting a friend, she was in town to dust - ok, behead
- some fang-happy Dracula-wannabe. Somehow their paths had crossed outside when his
friend had pulled some sort of metaphysical shit and killed her
baddie. They hadn't been instant friends, but it had led to drinks, which led to comparing of battle scars, which led to life stories, which had somehow led to the strange relationship they were currently enjoying.
was enjoying it, she wasn't sure how he felt about it. Buffy wasn't really sure how he felt about anything at all really. He took the term 'poker-face' to an almost absurd degree. The one time she could recall him actually emoting
was when they'd been drunk. Even that recollection was iffy, as she'd been a tad bleary-eyed at the time. It took a lot to get a Slayer drunk, but he'd matched her drink for drink until closing time. She'd hobbled off to her hotel room, only to be wakened at an ungodly hour to discover that at some point she'd had the coherency to offer him her cell number.
More surprisingly, he'd
been sober enough to take it.
Since then, they'd been on a whirl-wind tour of some of America's less-respectable, or just less-well policed, areas. There were places without an Executioner, and Buffy was one of the few given carte-blanche by the President to exercise her duties (as Executioner and Slayer) as she saw fit. Faith and Kennedy had also received similar honors, but the former preferred to slay in places where her quarry was still illegal and the latter still stuck like a burr to her redheaded lover.
That left the whole of America for Buffy, at least until this next crop of slayerettes was trained. Giles - in a state of deep disgust for his colonial brethren - had declared that 'the American's had made their bed, they can bloody well rot in it!' Most of the Slayers were thus stationed around the world, with bases of operations strategically placed in zones of dense populace. America was a vast country, it was difficult to keep track of preternatural events all by her lonesome.
Alright, she did
have a Watcher but honestly, he was worse than Andrew with the wide-eyes and the 'OMG you really
did all that
before you were twenty!?' He made her feel.. old. Which was ridiculous, she wasn't yet thirty, and she didn't even look her age! For god's sake she still got carded every time she ordered a drink! Still, there was that nagging discomfort. A sense that her Watcher was one of the innocents that she needed to protect.
And so she used Denny - really, was that the sort of name to inspire fear in the hearts of the evil undead? - to keep in touch with her family and Edward was her link to the preternatural. He found things for her to kill and off they went to off 'em. His style was more long-range than hers as she had yet to break him of his silly dependency on guns, but somehow they worked together.
The first time they'd tag-teamed it had been perfect, like fighting with Faith in one of her I'm-neither-crazy-nor-trying-to-kill-you-B phases. Since then it had been almost... natural to just travel together, hunt together, kill together - they still kept separate bedrooms of course but, well... That whole hungry and horny thing wasn't just a Faith-thing and lately lowfat yogurt just hadn't been cutting it.
Coming out of her musings, Buffy found that he was still regarding her, patiently waiting for her decision. She rolled one shoulder idly. It was just Christmas after all, she'd just have to send Dawnie something extra-nice (ie: expensive) to make up for it. "When do we leave again?"
Her eyes firmly fixed on the latest fashion fads, Buffy didn't see the small satisfied
smile that graced Death's face for the barest of instants - and completely missed the triumph that echoed through his cold blue eyes.▬▬x▬▬