7 - It's a Wrap
Usual disclaimers: Don't own them. Never have, never will. Please don't sue.---------Part 7 - It's a Wrap
After the excitement was over, they all retreated back to Gary's place. There was nothing to be done with the bodies, human or otherwise. The authorities would have to make of it what they would. The Paper's front page now gave a rather confused account of a body found on the lakefront near a pile of what was being called "slaughter house waste". ("Hey, at least it's a change from 'gang members on PCP'," quipped Buffy) Giles was now lying on the sofa, an ice pack on his head. Gary had wanted to take him to a hospital, but he refused. Buffy pulled up a chair to sit next to him.
"How's the headache?" she asked.
"Pretty average, on the whole," he replied. "Another job well done, Buffy."
"Yeah, she was awesome," enthused Willow. "I wish you could have seen it. It was like a movie, but real. Oh, Ms. Olmos is making you some tea. She said it's the universal British antidote. And she didn't get hysterical or anything. And she told us how to kill the monster."
"I plan on having major hysterics when I get home," came a voice from the kitchen door. The admissions officer walked up and put a cup and saucer down on the coffee table. "Sorry, it's tea in a bag."
"I've gotten used to it," said Giles. "Have you been to England?"
"Oh yes, I spent a year at Oxford."
Giles brightened up at this. They started talking about places and people. Buffy and Willow backed away.
"This is good," said Willow, "'cause you know you should keep talking to people with head injuries to keep them from going to sleep and everything."
"Yeah, and she talks his lingo," agreed Buffy. They could hear Giles and Victoria trading stories about some professor they both knew. They went and sat down at Gary's dining table. He joined them, wincing as he sat down.
"Will someone explain that "tied to him" thing?"
"I think he summoned the hydra," said Willow. "That's why there was a ritual circle, and sacrificed animals, and everything. When you stepped on the circle, you disrupted the spell. He was still tied to the monster, but he couldn't control it anymore. And I think he had some side spell going to keep him from feeling the monster's pain when it was wounded. That's why he collapsed when it got hit in the eye by the crossbow bolt."
"And that's why he died when Buffy killed it." Gary felt ill. Buffy noted his pale face and gripped his hand.
"It's not your fault he's dead, Gary," said Buffy firmly, looking him straight in the eye. "It's his fault for trying this stupid stunt." She kept looking at him until he nodded his head slightly in assent. Buffy frowned. "I wonder why he did it."
Ms. Olmos cleared her throat.
"Well, this is totally unofficial, and you didn't hear it from me," she paused, looking at the group. They all took the hint and nodded their heads. "He was a student at Northwestern. He was expelled last semester. Strange behavior, harassing other students, that sort of thing. The last time I saw him, he was threatening revenge. I was afraid he was the type who would show up with some guns, or a bomb. This was not in my wildest imagination."
Oz nodded. "No one expects the Spanish Inquisition," he intoned.
"So," she asked, "is this the sort of thing we can expect if a Sunnydale student comes to Northwestern?"
Gary noticed Buffy wince. Giles and Willow looked outraged, Cordy seemed to be considering the question seriously, and Oz - who the heck could figure what that kid was thinking? Giles recovered first.
"Fate seems to make sure The Slayer will be where she is most needed. If she comes to Chicago, you will be very glad she is here." he said stiffly.
Ms. Olmos smiled. Well, I keep that in mind when the admissions committee meets.
Giles groaned as he rose from the sofa.
"Well, this has been very exciting, but we have to get up early tomorrow to catch our flight back to Sunnydale," he stated. "We better head back to the hotel."
"Ah, what about your swords and stuff?" asked Gary.
"We certainly can't take them on the airplane with us," said Giles.
"You can keep them as weird souvenirs," suggested Buffy.
Cordelia walked up to Gary and handed him a piece of paper.
"That's my cell number. If your freaky paper says that something really bad..."
"As opposed to the usual, everyday bad," muttered Willow.
Cordelia ignored the interruption. "...is going to happen in Sunnydale, give me a call, ok?" She smiled winningly at Gary.
"Er, yeah, sure," he replied.
"And keep an eye out for reports of death by barbecue fork," Buffy added.
"That's the Sunnydale newspaper code for death by vampire," Willow explained.
"Ah, I'll be sure to do that." Gary could feel a major headache coming on.
Gary called the taxi company and walked his guests down to the front door of McGinty's. Ms. Olmos refused his offer of a ride home, but did hand him a business card. "Feel free to call me." The teens grinned at him.
He watched them get into their cabs and stood there until the vehicles rounded the corner. He felt something nudge him on the ankle. He looked down.
"Oh, hi Cat. Please tell me tomorrow is going to be less exciting."
Cat looked at him with that "humans are so stupid" look that only felines can truly master.
"Yeah, what was I thinking? See you in the morning."
This is my attempt to explain how Buffy, with her less than stellar academic record and total lack of school activities involvement (slaying gets in the way French Club meetings, oui
?) was accepted into Northwestern, a very competitive university.
Ah, for more innocent times. Back in the early 70's, my brother purchased an antique whaler's harpoon while visiting New England. He was allowed to bring it into the passenger cabin.
Constructive criticism is welcomed; flames will be diverted to my furnace to help keep down heating bills.
I actually had one or two ideas on how to continue this story line. When I work the kinks out, I'll post it.