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It's Not Him

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This story is No. 1 in the series "Hyena Blues". You may wish to read the series introduction first.

Summary: Buffy hesitates - non-consensual/rape warning

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
DC Universe > Surprise CrossovercmdruhuraFR214669,7364100102,41216 Jul 0813 Apr 14No

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Musings

Rating: R - Violent imagery
Disclaimer: I do not own any of the recognizable characters. I receive no profits from this. It is just for fun.
Archiving: Please ask.
Feedback: Constructive Criticism desired.
Beta: None.
Summary: Buffy hesitates.

AN – Thoughts \\I am thinking.//

AN – Mental communication *Who are you?*

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The Master was troubled.

Darla had disappeared.

Also, The Slayer had apparently been killed.

Since both incidents occurred on the same night, it was logical to assume they were related.

His sources had informed him that the Slayer had died after being shot but little else. Since Darla tended to refrain from prolonged physical confrontations, it was a good guess that she would resort to using firearms to attack the Slayer from a distance. It was quite possible that they had ended up dispatching each other if Darla failed to kill the Slayer outright.

Losing Darla after having lost Luke meant his was without any of his most loyal childer. Excluding Collin, of course. Since Angelus hadn’t returned to the fold, Darla’s plan to force a confrontation between him and The Slayer had also failed.

The Slayer being dead, even though that was the plan, however, meant he would have to orchestrate his next series of moves very carefully, unless the accursed Council decided to send the next Slayer to guard the Hellmouth, immediately. He knew that such a decision would depend on where in the world the next Slayer Called lived and whether there was a strong enough reason to leave her there or not. Even if they moved her, she might be sent to other areas of concern. Of course, having the Slayer away from the Hellmouth until such time as he needed her to be there wasn’t a bad thing either.

He heaved an unneeded sigh and mused, \\As with all grand schemes it comes down to choosing the minutia around which they will pivot. Maybe the next Slayer won’t be such a nuisance and can wait to be killed at the proper time.//

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Giles sat in his darkened living room, nursing a glass of Scotch.

Willow was up in the guest room, hopefully asleep and not having nightmares like she had every other night.

Angel had stopped by earlier to inform him that Darla’s punishment had been carried out. Dismemberment and an eternity of solitary confinement and starvation didn’t seem nearly enough of a punishment to him. Ripper would have had her awake for the dismemberment portion of her punishment and it would have taken weeks with dull blades not just a few minutes to complete.

Buffy was still alive but just as lost to him as if she were dead. Taking his frustrations out on the vampire harpy would have been good therapy for him.

But that was not why he was drinking.

He was in a quandary about how to deal with Willow. And not just her current state of depression.

He, Angel, and Aura knew that Buffy was not dead. If Willow were allowed to continue to assist in protecting the Hellmouth, it would create a very awkward situation unless she was told the truth. However, Angel had told him that the Powers didn’t want her to know because it would endanger Buffy’s new destiny. How it might do that was not explained and the ensouled vampire’s tone conveying his own annoyance with the directive, as well as his own frustration with the lack of reasoning provided for it.

Then there was the fact that Aura wouldn’t always have Slayer Powers that would have to be kept secret from Willow as well. She would ask too many questions that couldn’t be answered without revealing Buffy’s true status.

While Jenny’s suggestion of having Willow take over her computer class had merit if Willow was to stay in Sunnydale, he believed it might be better all round if he was able to convince her parents, who were finally arriving in two more days, to move her to another town where she wouldn’t be constantly reminded of the friends she’d lost. As she didn’t have any other close friends her own age that might provide her with the support she would need to work through her grief and get on with her life, and it would not be appropriate, both professionally and personally, for him to try and fill that role if he had to keep lying to her.

The lack of any close comrades still in Sunnydale would make suggesting to her parents, and to her, that she move elsewhere a reasonable option.

There was also the fact that getting her ‘off the front lines of the mystical war’ might just give her a longer life expectancy. He was sure Buffy would approve of that sentiment if asked.

True, with both her and Jenny gone, he might actually have to learn how to cope with cyberspace as the infernal machine had proved its usefulness several times already. Then again, maybe Aura had some skills at getting it to provide information needed for the Hellmouth’s protection.

Having reached the end of his musings, Giles gulped down the remaining contents of his glass. Relishing the heat of it, though it only momentarily blotted out the pain in his heart. If he wasn’t responsible for Willow, he’d have gotten blind drunk. As it was, he’d limited himself to just two fingers worth.

\\At least having her here has kept me from totally wallowing in self pity and turning into an alcoholic,// he thought as he made his way to the kitchen to wash the glass before heading to bed.

He needed to get some rest so he could carry on a lucid conversation with Aura about her training and how much to tell Angel about her semi-Slayer status. As the one ally most able to help her directly with the actual Slaying, per direction of the Powers, there should be as few secrets between them as possible. She needed to build a good working relationship with Angel if she was to survive, especially during the early stages of her training where Angel would have to take on the brunt of the fighting while she built up her skills.

While he would never send her out without some training, he knew he couldn’t take too much time or the Council might get suspicious if supernatural activity in the area rose suddenly after it had been in somewhat of a decline since Buffy had been doing nightly patrols. A small jump could be explained away since even a decline didn’t run smoothly. A prolonged climb would point to ineffectiveness in either tactics or the Slayer herself. Letting the Council think either of those thoughts would mean disaster.

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Xander hovered outside Aura’s bedroom window. Unlike Buffy’s, there was no easy access from the second story to the ground. However, that bit of information was only subconsciously noted as he studied the young woman sitting cross-legged on her bed.

From some of her memories that he’d picked up during their meld, he knew she was meditating in order to get a good night’s rest. She’d always been a bit restless at bedtime as a child and her mother hadn’t wanted to resort to prescription drugs so she taught her some yoga meditation techniques. It always seemed to work whenever she had trouble getting to sleep, like when she had a stressful day.

Unfortunately, today had been very, very stressful and even the meditation didn’t seem to help her relax and she’d been at it for over an hour.

She had begged off going clubbing with Cordelia and the rest of the sheep, thus following Giles’ suggestion that she stay in at night and rest that evening. Though she really wasn’t doing much resting even though she was sitting still. He could tell her mind was going full speed as it probably dealt with the sudden revelations she’d received that day.

Xander wondered if he should meld with her again to help her get some sleep even though she hadn’t summoned him.

Still he hesitated. He’d respected her privacy ever since separating from her in Giles’ office. Therefore, he had not followed her into the girl’s locker room or her bathroom at her house when she changed into her night wear, a short teddy that was more transparent than it was opaque. Either she didn’t know that her conduit to the Slayer Essence was male or she knew and was tormenting him.

He was about to turn away from looking at her, out of respect for her privacy of course and not from the frustration of looking at a beautiful young woman without being able to NOT think like a teenage male, when he felt a tugging sensation. This was followed by his sliding through the closed window and funneling into her forehead.

Finding himself once more in Aura’s mental landscape, he was standing face-to-face with Aura’s avatar, still dressed as he’d last seen her. Since he had to look slightly down at her face, he found he had to consciously avoid lowering his gaze just a bit more to take in her cleavage.

*We need to talk.* she stated, surprisingly sounding a lot more in control than his last visit.

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AN – I have not yet made up my mind whether Willow stays or goes yet. Even just having her in Sunnydale without being active with Slaying causes complications. I hope to have reached a decision by the next chapter.

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