Disclaimer: See chapter 1 and review. Why else do you think we Post stories?
Author note: Just wanted to thank the few who are still reviewing our stories. Though I am wandering were the rest of you went who wanted us to continue. Do you like it? Is it bad? Please give us something! You would not want us to quit now, do you?
At the Art Gallery:
A tall strong looking man walks into the building. Joyce glances at him sharply, noticing that she cannot sense his chakra, meaning either he is some sort of weird demon or he is suppressing it somehow. He strolls over to her and introduces himself as Ted. Joyce smiles pleasantly and introduces herself. He says amiably, “I am looking for something for my house. It could use some art to liven it up. A woman’s touch would help considerably, I think,” he says smoothly.
Joyce pretends to be impressed at his flattery and runs a brief medical scan with a chakra burst, but he does not notice. She frowns when she cannot find any chakra emanating from him at all, suppressed or otherwise. He flatters her more and makes subtle suggestions of a second meeting. The powerful blonde agrees to have dinner with him the next night to examine him further without his noticing.
She goes home that night and passes Dawn’s room. Joyce backpedals and inquires, “Dawn, would you like to go out to dinner with me tomorrow night?”
“What’s the occasion?” Dawn asks in return, her eyes never leaving her book as she lays sprawled out on her bed.
“Oh nothing major,” Joyce says casually, “I am just having dinner with a man who puts out no chakra whatsoever.”
Dawn sits up quickly and states, “You want me to check out the guy you’re going on a date with?”
“It’s not a date! It’s an investigation!” Joyce protests.
Dawn smirks, “Over dinner?”
“It’s a cover!” Joyce insists.
Dawn rolls her eyes and goes back to her book, “Sure it is, mom. You keep telling yourself that. I’ll go so that you can introduce ‘your youngest daughter’ to the guy you are ‘investigating’.”
Joyce grumbles under her breath about needing something to drink and stalks to her room. Dawn smirks wider when she hears the door slam.
The Next Night:
Buffy whines into her headset, “Why do you get dinner and I have to sit in uncomfortable bushes watching you? These have thorns, you know!”
Joyce slowly approaches the table where Ted is waiting for them and mutters into her hidden microphone, “Not now!” She smiles and sits down with Dawn. “I hope you don’t mind, but I didn’t want to leave my daughter at home alone. This is my youngest daughter Dawn. I have another daughter, but I’m afraid she couldn’t pull herself away from her study group.” Ted nods understandingly and they order their food. About fifteen minutes into the meal, Dawn excuses herself to go to the bathroom, using all of the courtesy ingrained into her by the Hyuga clan.
When she enters the bathroom, Dawn goes into a stall and locks it. She activates her Byakugan and looks through the wall at Ted. She examines him critically, not finding any chakra emitting from him, but what does she does find surprises her. She deactivates her Byakugan and returns to the table.
After the meal, Dawn, Buffy, and Joyce are driving home. “You never answered my question! Why did you need me to be sitting in a stupid bush? He couldn’t have caused a scene at a restaurant like that anyways!” Buffy whines.
“Because I’m the Hokage and your mother and I said so,” Joyce grouches. “Besides, it never hurts to have backup plans.”
Dawn smirks, “If I have to go, so do you, Buffy!” Their mother quickly prevents a fight by asking Dawn what she found. Dawn grins widely, “Mother dearest,” she begins. “For the very first date you have been on in eighteen years, you have been picked up by someone very special.”
“Is he a demon?” Joyce inquires, pulling into their driveway.
Dawn continues grinning, unnerving Buffy a little at the intensity of it. “Nope! You managed to pick up a fully functional robot!”
Buffy and Joyce stare at her in shock and exclaim simultaneously, “What?!”
“How is that possible?” Buffy frowns, holding her fan close to her.
Dawn replies, “I have no idea. But, he’s a robot! Just a mesh of wires and gears!”
Joyce rubs her temples slowly. “We’ll deal with this in the morning. I’m going to ask Jiraiya what he thinks about it.”
“Jiraiya?” questions the older daughter with a raised eyebrow.
Dawn says in a sing song voice that would make even Drucilla proud, “Mommy has the hots for the teacher!”
“I do not!” sputters Joyce. “He is merely the logical choice for advice for this situation!”
Dawn smirks, “I’m sure he is. I’m sure it has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that Tsunade and Jiraiya were so close throughout their lives and that you need romantic advice.”
“It’s not a romantic situation! This is an investigation of a robot!” Joyce says indignantly.
Buffy joins in, “Than why are you blushing?”
“I’m not blushing! It’s just hot in here! I’m going to bed! Both of you get to bed!” Joyce declares, leaving the vehicle in a huff, still red faced.
Buffy and Dawn exchange glances. “You’re good,” Buffy comments.
Dawn grins, “Oh yes I am!”
Next Day at Sunnydale High after School:
The youngest Summers girl skips into the library whistling innocently. Giles eyes her suspiciously as she skips up to him and grins widely. “Mom went on a date last night with a really cute guy! Are you jealous?” she inquires.
Giles stares at her for a few seconds and deadpans, “What?”
“You are, aren’t you! I knew it!” Dawn exclaims, jumping and spinning with excitement.
“Huh?” Giles says in confusion.
Dawn twirls around to face him, “Don’t you try to cover it up now, you ninja librarian! I’m onto you now! You have a crush on my mother!”
Joyce snaps from the doorway, “Dawn! What have I told you about this! Enough!”
Giles looks back and forth from mother to daughter before asking Joyce, “Did I miss something?”
“Just a little,” Dawn replies innocently. “But I know you like her.” She narrowly avoids a pencil that imbeds itself into the shelf next to her. Joyce smiles just as innocently as her daughter, which sends shivers up Giles’ spine and gives Dawn a sense of impending doom.
Joyce says pleasantly, “You know, Dawn, I think I’ve been slacking on your training lately…”
Dawn stares at her in horror, “You wouldn’t!”
“Care to find out?” Joyce challenges her evenly.
Dawn looks around for some way of escape when she suddenly grins evilly. “I’ll tell Willow and Harmony that you and Giles are dating. The whole school would know before the day was out.”
“If you did that, my dear daughter,” Joyce replies calmly, “I would have no choice but to triple your current training, since you obviously have way too much time on your hands.” Dawn sighs in defeat, but mischievous thoughts still course through her head unimpeded.
Giles says loudly, “Will someone just tell me what is going on?” Joyce sighs and explains the situation with Ted to him. Dawn opens her mouth to comment several times, but the killer intent leaking from both Sannin manages to silence her each time.
“That’s it?” Giles says curiously. He glares at the girl, “You made up this entire scenario, from your mother’s current boyfriend being a robot?”
“For the last time, he is not my boyfriend! He is an investigative subject!” Joyce growls.
Giles bites back a comment that seems to want to pop out immediately and slowly replies, “Wrong choice of words. Sorry.” He thinks, ‘Curse you, Jiraiya, and your lack of any tact whatsoever!’ Somewhere in his mind, he swears he could have heard a perverted giggle. Aloud he says, “Do you want me to investigate this guy, Joyce?”
“Yeah, Giles. Find out what you can about this guy and if it is okay to just leave him as is,” Joyce answers.
Dawn pipes up quickly, “So you can find out whether or not you can keep dating him!”
“Enough!” roars Joyce. Dawn smiles innocently and skips out of the library as quickly as she came in.
Giles rubs his glasses and mutters, “Children these days and their wild imaginations.” He sits down next to the phone and dials a number.
Willow’s house phone rings and she answers, “This is the Rosenburg Residence.”
“This is Giles,” the librarian says. “Could you run a background check on a Ted…”
Joyce inserts, “Buchanan. Ted Buchanan.”
“For a Ted Buchanan,” Giles finishes.
Willow replies as she sits down at her computer, “Ted Buchanan, got it.” She does a search on him through the Sunnydale database until she finds him. She gives him Ted’s address in Sunnydale and comments, “He seems to have been married, but she disappeared. Other than that, I’d say that he is the average guy with no criminal record at all.”
“Can you do a more thorough search?” Giles inquires.
Willow frowns as she skims through the information online and replies quickly, “I could, but it will take about an hour.”
“Do it,” Giles said. He hangs up to await her results.
An Hour Later:
Willow calls Giles back at the library. “He’s as clean as a whistle! Where did that phrase come from anyways? Sorry! Willow babble. Anyways, there is nothing wrong with him that I can find legally. He has been married four times before, but his wives have all gone missing and were never found.”
“That last part is a little odd. Thank you for your efforts, Willow,” Giles says gratefully, “I’ll call you back if I need more information.” Willow acknowledges his response and hangs up.
Giles hangs up and glances at Joyce. “He’s clean legally. The only odd thing is that he’s been married four times and his wives have all gone missing. I’ll send Angel’s team to his house to check it out. If he’s harmless, than we’ll leave him alone. If not, they’ll report back. I’ll need you to find out when he works. You can use the excuse of arranging your next date and needing to know his work schedule so you can work around it.” Joyce grimaces at the thought but nods in agreement.
“I’ll call him and find out when I get home,” Joyce grumbles. “Dawn will be ready, since there is no school on Saturday and she hasn’t made any plans yet.”
Dawn mumbles unhappily, “Of all the things I could be doing, I have to visit a robot with my Saturday.”
“The faster we search through his house, the faster we can leave,” Angel reminds her. Oz walks with them, gazing impassively at the medium-sized house.
Dawn activates her Byakugan and looks around the house. “It’s clean of any traps or hidden alarms.” Gaara looks to Angel who nods to him. The boy’s sand move up into the door and unlocks it. They enter the house silently.
After a few minutes, Dawn frowns, with her Byakugan still pulsing, “Something is in the basement.”
The team heads down to the basement and find a large closet. She opens the closet and peers inside. “Mom sure knows how to pick them,” Dawn comments dryly.
“This is Team Kakashi,” Angel says into his communication device. “It seems that Mr. Buchanan has a few skeletons in his closet. I think it was his first four wives.”
Dawn looks up through the floor and says quietly, “Ted is home early. He should still be at work! He’s coming this way.” The sounds of footsteps approach the basement.
Ted comes down into the basement as the ninja disappear into the shadows with henges. He looks around slowly and murmurs, “I must be hearing things. I could have sworn I heard talking.” He turns around to see a wall of sand. “What the—“ he manages to say as the sand covers everything but his head to prevent him from moving. The sand retracts to leave an unprotected hole on the chest. Angel activates a Chidori and stabs it into his chest. Ted says haltingly, “Does…not…compute…Impossible for humans to hold… lightning!” He slumps over and a slow whirring sound is heard as he shuts down.
Dawn smirks, “Imagine what would happen if we hadn’t gone as ninjas for Halloween! I might be stuck with a psychopathic robot father!”
Angel rolls his eye and retorts, “I can see how that would be a problem for an annoying little brat.”
Oz’s sand peels off of Ted and makes a thin wall between the two ninjas. “Play nice,” he whispers. His sand surrounds Ted again and lifts him into the air as Oz starts to walk back up the stairs.
A Few Hours Later at the Summer’s House:
Andrew exclaims loudly, “This is so cool! A real robot!”
“It’s a psychopathic killer,” Jonathan points out. He smirks slightly, “But it is cool.”
Andrew grins, “It’s like the Terminator!” He goes behind Ted and moves his arms about jerkily. He drones from behind Ted, “I’ll be back!”
Warren stares at the robot and says, “I’ll have to study this. Perhaps we can use something like this in the future if we need more support in the field or at the home base.”
Joyce says from her chair behind them, “Not a bad idea!”
Glancing over his shoulder, Warren says politely, “If you don’t mind, I would like to take the robot to my house to study it in more detail.”
“Fine with me,” Joyce replies.
Nighttime at Warren’s House:
Ted lays motionless on a large metal table in Warren’s basement. A shadowy figure stands over him with his eyes glowing yellow, “Yes, I believe this will be most useful to me.” He chuckles evilly.