I own nothing. Buffy and Angel people belong to Joss and Mutant Enemy. Anita Blake people belong to Laurell K HamiltonTimeline/Authors Notes:
This takes place in the Guardian 'Verse and takes place prior to Four Letter Word before Megan becomes a part of the family. This will make no sense whatsoever unless you've read New Dawn first.Author's Note II:
Two fics in two days. This is a fic I've had written for a while and didn't post solely because it was about the kids and I didn't think there would be any interest in a fic that was pretty much solely based on original characters. However, given the response to Full Moon Ritual, I decided to post it because y'all seem interested in seeing family moments and I figured you'd want to see Buffy's boys in action.
Please feel free to request moments you would like to see.
Luke pauses outside his mother's bedroom and listens to the sound of her breathing. It's even and deep which means she's asleep, finally
. It always takes her a while to fall asleep when someone new moves into the house. Luke remembers his mom watching him his first night with her, while he feigned sleep. At the time he thought she was watching him to make sure he didn't steal anything or hurt her through the night, but she did the same thing the first night Jeremiah joined them and again when Ryan joined them. He knows now it's because she worries about them, not because she fears them.
Even though his mom has never lacked for a family, she seems to know how scared they all are on their first night here.
Luke, of course, knows exactly what it's like to be without a family, how it feels to not be wanted and to lose everything. So, like his mom, he has his own rituals he follows on the first night someone moves into the house. Although, unlike his mom, he's not trying to make the newest member of their family feel at home. That's not his job.
His job is to make sure that they will always
have a home.~*~*~
He's not all that surprised to see Jeremiah leaning outside the new kid, Samuel's, room, waiting for him. His brother looks tired, which isn't unexpected given that it's after three in the morning.
"Ryan's already in there with him," Jeremiah tells him, his voice is only loud enough for Luke to hear. "He's giving Samuel a heads up, so we don't scare the shit out of him like we did with Ryan when he moved in."
Luke nods and glances towards his mom's room once again. If she woke up and overheard the coming conversation, Luke knew she would tan his hide and ground him for a month. She wouldn't approve of this, or the fact that Luke intends to have this conversation with every one
of his future brothers and sisters. As much as they've all tried to make her understand, Derek especially, his mother doesn't quite get what it's like to be a lycanthrope. She doesn't like that even though this is their home that they need order and rules – and not the kind of rules and order human kids live with.
It sucks, but it is what it is.
"If we get this started soon, we should be finished before dawn," Jeremiah says. "Something tells me Mom's not going to be sleeping in today."
Thinking of the mountain of food he had waiting for him the first morning with his mom, Luke can't help but smile. "She never does." ~*~*~
Samuel looks shit scared when he and Jeremiah walk into the room. Luke can hear his heart pounding and he can smell the fear, but Luke doesn't mention it. Nor does he mention the fact that Samuel hasn't looked him in the eyes yet.
Luke's the oldest in the house and, according to Ryan, the undisputed Alpha of the Summers Clan. Jeremiah, naturally, is his second. The structure of the Summers Clan hierarchy is similar to that of a pack, but without the power play. It's actually more like a monarchy and, as the first born, Luke is the Alpha.
"How's it going?" Luke asks casually, using the friendliest voice he has. "You settling in all right?"
Samuel shrugs, but still doesn't meet his eyes. "Everything's cool. Buffy... Ms Summers seems really nice."
"That's good." An awkward silence fills the room. Luke still hasn't gotten the hang of these types of meetings yet.
"She told me the rules already," Samuel blurts out when the silence gets too much for him.
"Ryan said that you were going to explain the house rules to me," Samuel explains, "but Buffy already told me the rules."
Luke shakes his head. "The rules she told you were Mom's
rules. The rules I'm here to explain are The Mom Rules
. They're not the same thing."
"The Mom Rules?" Samuel repeats. "But she told me the rules: no fighting, no biting, and no dating until I'm sixteen."
Luke can't help but smile. "Well, our rules are kind of like that, although I don't really care when you date. These rules are for Mom and about Mom, no one else."
"And they can't ever be repeated to anyone but another sibling," Ryan says, "that includes not telling Derek and not telling Mom. She'll flip if she finds out about them."
"They're our rules for Mom," Jeremiah reiterates. "And if you break them, you're out. No second chances."
Luke sighs. There's a reason why he's the one to explain the rules. Jeremiah is as subtle as a brick.
Samuel now looks considerably more than shit scared. "What are the rules?"
"Okay." Luke takes a deep breath. "Rule number one is that Mom is never
to be infected. She's human and we like her human. She is the most important person in this house. If she's infected, we could lose her."
The newest member of the Summers Clan nods.
"Rule number two is that Mom comes first, even before pack, pard, nest or sloth," Jeremiah states. "We protect her at all costs."
"Don't infect and protect Buffy, got it," Samuel says more to himself than anyone else.
"Rule number three is not so much a rule, but a request. Call her Mom, not Buffy or Ms Summers. It makes her happy." Luke still remembers the day he called her Mom for the first time. It was the day he realised for the first time that she loved him.
"She also likes you to go to her and tell her what you're feeling," Ryan adds in rule number four. "Especially in the early days. She'll hover for about the first week until she's sure you're okay and aren't going to run away."
Luke ignores the look both Jeremiah and Ryan send his way. He didn't really
run away. He just went for a walk to clear his head. "Rule number five is that Mom isn't to get involved with 'pack' problems. This doesn't apply to you yet, because you don't have a nest, but when you do join a nest, and if there are problems, Mom isn't the one to go to. Go see your Alpha or, if that fails, Derek. He's the most powerful lycanthrope loyal to the Summers Clan. He's protective of Mom."
"And if Derek can't help you or isn't there, come and see me or Luke," Jeremiah adds.
Samuel nods again.
He hesitates a moment, wondering how to phrase the next rule. It's one of the two rules he hates. "Rule six is important, right up there with rules one and two, and that is to keep an eye on Mom whenever possible," he says, exchanging a meaningful look with Jeremiah. "Mom was sick when she was a teenager, so she needs to take medicine day and night. She's fine now, completely okay, but if you see her acting strangely come and find me. If I'm not here, Jeremiah can help her." He knows there's not much of a chance of her relapsing, not if his suspicions are correct, but he doesn't want to take that risk.
"Mom also gets a little sad around May. We're not sure why, but she does," Ryan tells him. "Hugs make her feel better most of the time, and try not to get worked up if she calls you a pet name or something. For some reason, she likes to call us special names."
"Special names?" Samuel frowns.
Luke's mouth twitches at that bit of advice. "What Mom's little Teddy Bear
is trying to say is that rule number seven is to keep Mom happy, we don't like to see her sad and she doesn't like to see us sad. Ever. She is totally cool with the whole need for human or non-human affection, it's actually one of the things that helps her when she's upset. She doesn't freak out if you crawl into bed with her after a nightmare and she likes to call us by our special names when we're upset or sad. Isn't that right, Ryan?"
Ryan fixes him with a deadly glare. "I hate you, you know that right?"
Jeremiah snorts, doing very little to cover his laughter, and even Samuel is smiling. Luke nods happily, not worried about embarrassing his brother. It isn't like anyone else would ever have the balls to tease him about Mom's name for him. Especially since he is
"If another lycanthrope outside your nest gives you a hard time or tries to bully any of us, you have to call Derek," Jeremiah says, continuing on with rule eight. "In fact when Mom gives you a cell, you should set Derek's number two on your speed dial. We're pretty much supposed to call him whenever the shit hits the fan."
"Who's number one on the speed dial?" he asks.
"Mom," all three of them answer.
"Are there any other rules?"
All three of them nod and the mood in the room becomes tense.
"This rule doesn't actually have a number because, well, it's the
rule," Luke says. "No vampire is ever
allowed near Mom. Ever. That also goes for vampire servants and wannabes. If you find an vampire who can call your beast and they try to use you to get to Mom... run. Run to the nearest state, don't come home, not until we've taken care of it. Vampires are our enemy. I don't give a flying fuck if they're a Master or a minion. If you see a vampire near Summers territory you call – "
"Derek?" Samuel finishes for him.
Luke nods. "If he's not there or if you can't get in touch with us, don't wait until you can reach us before you do anything. I have a list of numbers of all the alphas in LA. You call each and every one of them."
Samuel nods, looking pale. "Okay, I think I've got it."
"Just remember that Mom comes first, that she's our everything, and you'll fit in fine." ~*~*~
Instead of crawling into his bed to sleep for what was left of the night, Luke finds himself crawling into his mom's bed. He knows she won't mind, she never does, and he's not surprised when he feels her arms around his waist, pulling him closer.
"You okay, honey?" she asks, still half asleep.
He kisses the top of her head and starts playing with her hair. It's a habit he picked up the night she told him about her illness and it's a habit he can't seem to break. "I'm good, Mom, go back to sleep."
She hums softly and snuggles closer to him. "Did you boys have a nice talk with Samuel?"
He freezes at the question. "W-what?"
"You didn't scare him, did you? You kids scare so easily at first," she mumbles the last part and he wonders if she's even awake.
"We didn't scare him." At least he thinks they didn't.
She doesn't reply to his words and it takes him a moment to realise she's fallen back asleep. He closes his eyes and continues to play with her hair.
Maybe she does get what it means to be a lycanthrope.