Snap out of it!
Thank you for the reviews from SariLane, ConstanceTruggle, WARLOCKPOTTER, jupitersdaughter, LilyMartin, bradsan, evilredknight and eriktheviking.
This chapter is for valkyriecain.
-------------------------------Snap out of it --------------------------------------------------------------------
Buffy had had a hell of a 48 hours, she had fought an apocalypse and then helped bring her Uncle back from the brink. She knew that her other Uncle was the only one that could truly reign him in at all. It was for this reason that she had been so mad at ‘Uncle Nicky’. She didn’t have the full details but she knew that Clint was carrying a bucket load of guilt. It was sad but she could recognise that look from a mile away. She made a silent vow to support him through this ordeal. She knew he wouldn’t think it but Buffy felt that she owed him.
As she walked up the stairs Buffy could admit, if only, to herself that she was tiring, even with her slayer reserves. She wanted to see her Dad before seeing Clint. She just hoped she would get some sleep before he freaked out, realising she hadn’t actually slept since yesterday morning.
He greeted her with a warm hug and led her over to her favourite leather green sofa in the library. He handed her, her favourite coffee.
“I brought them back here because they need help.” She sounded determined and Giles doubted anyone could stand in her way when she was this resolute.
Buffy didn’t miss the look of absolute pride when she explained the reason. “They may not deal with the supernatural but they protected New-York and they worked as a team because they though Uncle Phil was dead. They need to learn to work as a team all they will end up dead.”
Giles agreed and was only too happy to provide help, “Go sleep dear. You deserve it.”
Buffy snorted, “Yeah I will but I need to stop and see Uncle Clint.”
Giles could see the concern, “Buffy?”
She gave him a wry smile, “He’s me when I came back; I need to return the favour.”
Giles hugged her tight, just like he did every time he was reminded of those months. Buffy reassured him, “Dad it doesn’t hurt any longer.”
Giles still got a thrill every time he heard Buffy or Dawn call him that. The whole heaven issue was such an incredibly tangled mess of feelings. He settled his emotions by kissing her forehead and tried to explain, “I know love but it still hurts.”
Buffy wanted to move away from the topic, as it was once described on Grey’s Anatomy, she hated being ‘dark and twisty’. She looked at her adoptive-father, “He needs someone who he can talk to and his husband can’t be that yet.”
Giles kissed her forehead one last time, “Go but remember sleep is good for you.”
Buffy huffed, “Yes Dad.”
Clint was alert to the door opening and he reflexively went for his bow. He relaxed seeing his niece step through the door; she just seemed amused. It was a sad but true fact that he would never be as badass, as his niece.
She sat on the arm of his chair letting him soak up her presence. He still was reluctant to let go of Phil’s hand. She spoke softly, “How are you doing?”
“Calmed down enough that I no longer want to shoot Fury on sight but my god I wasn’t strong enough to save him.” She hated how haunted he looked as he confessed.
Buffy’s heart broke, hearing just how sad her Uncle was, and she wanted to go and kick Loki’s butt. She didn’t know how to break through to her Uncle; she went with humour sometimes you had to go around to get what you want. “You know I’ve got a troll hammer; I’ve taken out one god with it, I’ll grab it and go hunting in Asgard for you.”
Clint looked up with tired eyes, “No need just sit here and make sure I don’t do anything stupid.”
Buffy was proud of the amount of self-awareness he was showing and, in truth, it made her hopeful. If he knew that he had the potential to do something stupid, he wasn’t as self-destructive as she had been.
She snuggled up to him and tentatively started the conversation, “Remember after I came back?”
Clint sucked in a breath, “The only thing more horrible than hearing Phil was dead was hearing that you were dead.”
Buffy looked into his eyes and could tell his thoughts were going down a dark path, she prompted him gently. “What did you tell me?”
Clint snorted, “I said that I’d put an arrow through the eye of anyone who’d caused you harm but I’d also kiss them because no matter how selfish I was glad that you were back.”
Buffy laughed softly, “You were the only one to ask me outright was I suicidal.”
Clint would have shrugged his shoulder if he had the mobility but the chair and Buffy stopped him.
"I have skills but psychology was not one of them." He said honestly.
Buffy had always valued his blunt honesty it was refreshing. "True so I’m returning the favour. If you do anything stupid before Uncle Phil recovers I'll kick your ass." She trailed off, which is never a good sign.
Buffy smirked, "I'll kick your ass, ask the Devon coven to heal you and then wait until Uncle is well enough to let him have a go. Then I'll wait until Nan is ready to have her turn."
Clint snickered, to an outsider it would sound so very violent but in this family it was how love and affection was shown. It was to be expected when Nan had shown her love for Grandad by shooting him three times but not killing him.
"You do realise that neither of you are as scary as Vicky. I still remember when she found out about our wedding." He resisted the urge to shudder even now.
Buffy looked proud as she wiped a fake tear, “I know but it’s something for me to aim for.”
Clint figured with the lives they lead it was a good goal to have. He knew that he trusted Buffy enough to tell him what his problem was, "I know that I wasn't myself. Loki took everything from me that made me."
Buffy knew this needed to be said, "...but?"
He looked fully at her, "I went into S.H.E.I.L.D, killed good people and all is forgiven because it wasn't me. Only I remember pulling my bow and doing everything for the attack. Christ I would have done it again just to make the bastard proud."
Buffy was sad for her Uncle but in a moment of reflection she noticed the interesting parallels that could be drawn between him and her ex-boyfriend.
"You think you have the market cornered on that? You forget about Angel?"
Clint was annoyed, "You want to compare me to peaches? Comparing me to Peaches that's mean. Look at you, sounding all British."
Buffy pouted, she couldn't help it anymore when she was indignant she sounded like Giles. “Not funny.” She tried to bite back a yawn and failed.
Clint smiled, “Go sleep don’t worry about me. We’ll still be here.” He promised.
Buffy pursed her lips looking a little doubtful but even she was losing a battle against her tiredness. “Fine the Devon coven will be coming to help heal Uncle tomorrow.”
Clint gave her the most reassuring smile that he could manage. “Don’t worry I’m too scared of Vicky not to be here in the morning.”
Buffy grinned, “Damn straight, she’ll be down once she has changed.”
Buffy woke up to the rays filtering through her window. What truly woke her up though was the explosion. Whilst she had been exhausted and only vaguely remembered hitting the pillow she could remember enough to put two and two together.
Her shout could be heard throughout the town-house, “Goddamn it Tony if you’ve put a hole in my home I’ll turn you into scrap metal.”
Tony will deny to his last day that he squeaked on hearing the angry growl of his new favourite blonde.
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Next up: Healing, hiding and training will begin if Steve can stop blushing!Authors note
Okay so slightly more serious tone but necessary next chapter will be way more fun. As always would love to hear your thoughts and reviews.