Nana Knows Best
After sending Angel to Hell, Buffy goes to her father's family in New York - The Merteuils.Disclaimer:
BtVS is Joss Whedon's. Cruel Intentions belongs to Columbia Pictures Corp.Republished:
Kathryn's scenes will include BDSM, drug abuse, threesomes, foursomes, nothing graphic just implied. Please remember she's at her 'best' riding high on cocaine. The movie starts relatively in the same timeframe, but Annette will not make an appearance.
Buffy watched them through the window; they stood gathered together on the Quad. She knew her life had changed forever last night. Left with no one else, she turned to the one person who had always been there for her - her Nana.
No one knew about her family, not even Willow, since the divorce she wasn't allowed to visit them anymore. Plus, even in Sunnydale they had heard of them, especially her Nana. Anne Merteuil was known on several continents. Her father's mother was one of the most powerful women/people anywhere. Buffy always hated when people found out and started treating her differently because of it. Nana told her it was the price of keeping the name alive and strong.
She used to laugh at Cordelia when she made such a big deal about having money. Her grandmother's estate could buy and sell the Chases several times over. Buffy had never cared; she just loved her grandmother and had always looked forward to her summers in the Hamptons. Everything changed when her parents had divorced. It was the only thing, after more than fourteen years of marriage, they had finally agreed upon. They wrote it into the custody papers. Buffy hated it, and it played a large part why she stopped trying in school; it was her revenge on them.
She played the dumb blonde, it was all anyone expected from her. She was the muscle so she didn't have to have a brain as well. Her own mother didn't even question it, but then again she only looked up when the bottle was empty anymore. Buffy had made the Honor Roll at Hemery every year with ease. Her French teacher had never understood how she couldn't complete the homework, but aced every test. She had spoken French almost before she spoke English. Nana wouldn't carry on family discussions in any other language. She said there was no other way to tell the true emotions behind one's words otherwise.
Buffy told the driver to head for the airport; she was ready. The Scoobies turned to see a black limousine pull away from the curb. They hadn't even noticed it, they were so deep in theories regarding Buffy's whereabouts. Looking back over her shoulder, Buffy said a silent goodbye to her life in Sunnydale; realizing the call to Nana was as binding as any contract. Nana would expect her to take her rightful place as a Merteuil, with everything the name implied.
Looking back on it now, she knew her mother's influence had a lot to do with her decision to remain a slayer. Nana was the only person she knew with enough influence even the Council would have backed away in fear. Buffy had never wanted to become part of that world, but now she knew there was no other choice; so she was determined to learn from the best and play to win. At least her time as a slayer had taught her how to fight with not only her body, but also her mind. It allowed her to find her opponent's weaknesses and wait for the right time to use them. She had made up her mind that no one would ever use or manipulate her again.
"We are here, Miss Elizabeth. The plane is ready to take off when you are. Madam sent clothes, and they are waiting on-board." The driver told her as he held the door.
"Thank you, Jeffrey. It's nice to see you again. I hope you and your family have been well," Buffy smiled at her grandmother's personal chauffeur.
"Yes Miss Elizabeth everyone is fine. The house is in an uproar over your coming home to stay with Madam. She has missed you. Oh, she doesn't say it, but she reads your letters over and over."
She had always been a favorite of the servants. A bright, happy, polite child who always asked to help, not like some people he could name. Jeffrey couldn't keep the satisfied smirk off his face thinking about the fit a certain person was going to throw when they found out Miss Elizabeth had returned. No, not only back, but also living with Madam. Everyone felt giddy with anticipation. They couldn't wait to witness the explosion, when the other family members learned physical proximity didn't matter.
Madam had always seen to the heart of a matter, or person. Miss Elizabeth had a true heart, although it seemed rather bruised. They knew Madam would do anything for this tiny golden child.
The world and everyone would soon see how true that statement was.
A limousine pulled up outside a huge Hamptons mansion. It was the crown jewel of the Merteuil family, and where Nana reigned with an iron fist. Buffy couldn't help the excitement she felt being back here again. The last time was the summer before she was called, and then everything in her life had changed.
The house seemed to go on forever, and sat on rolling lawns of emerald green. It was, in fact, a French chateau an ancestor had moved stone by stone, and then reassembled to become the Merteuil's summer retreat from the city. As Nana got older, she stayed here more and more, and the city came to her. Although at 65, she was far from old, just stubborn.
The grounds spread out over acres that included gardens, an indoor and outdoor pool that could be joined, tennis courts, stables, a shooting range and a dock, which held no less than four boats at all times.
Buffy walked up to the front door, which opened the minute she reached it. There stood a small bald man of indeterminate age with the blackest eyes she had ever seen, Jean-Pierre
, the major-domo. He had been with her grandmother forever, and ran the house with the precision of a general.
"Bon Jour, Jean-Pierre.
Buffy kissed his cheeks. He smiled happy to see the little gold one had finally come home.
"Bon Jour, Mademoiselle Lizbeth
. Madam is in her salon waiting for you."
Buffy saluted him laughing, and moved away with with a smooth, easy gait. He smiled at the changes the years had made in the young Miss. Jean-Pierre couldn't understand how two people could look so much alike and be so different.
"Bon Jour, Nana,
" Buffy called out softly.
There in a Queen Anne chair sat a tiny woman. Everyone thought Buffy got her coloring from her mother; they were wrong. Anne Katrina Merteuil was a tiny woman whose hair still held golden tones; her eyes were the same large hazel as her granddaughters. If you didn't know better, you would think from a distance she was Buffy's mother. Only when you were close could you see the fine lines around her eyes and mouth, which told her age. Her skin was still smooth holding a hint of pale gold, rather than Buffy's darker honey tone.
Anne's face lit up seeing her granddaughter standing there. She threw her arms open wide as Buffy rushed into them.
, you have finally come home to me. Child of my heart, tell your Nana about it then we can wash it all away, oui
Her lilting voice soothed Buffy's sore heart. She told her everything from beginning to end.
"When the statue opened, I tried to save him. I remembered Whistler telling me Angel's blood could close the portal. So, I kissed him, told him I loved him, and then stabbed him, except the statue kept pulling him toward it. I held onto him so tight but I wasn't strong enough. As it started to close, I did the only thing I could think of; I killed him Nana. I couldn't send him to hell. He was Angel again, my Angel. I threw Kendra's favorite stake at him, and he turned to dust before it snapped closed."
Buffy's entire body shook with sobs. Anne combed her fingers through her hair and waited for her to finish.
"The statue was the only thing left; so, I took out all my anger, hurt and pain on it. Then I realized I had nowhere to go. Mom kicked me out, Kendra was dead, I was wanted for her murder, Giles and Willow were hurt, and Xander..." her voice trailed off.
"Lied to you oui
?" Anne filled in the blank, Buffy couldn't seem to speak.
Buffy nodded her head against her grandmother. She sat up as she heaved a huge sigh. Sitting didn't help her growing temper. Buffy practically shot off the couch, and started to pace the room.
"I knew he was jealous of Angel, but he didn't do those things Nana. Angel was innocent. I caused him to lose his soul; it was my fault not his. Me and those damn gypsies!"
"He suffered for over a hundred years for everything his demon did. Then because a stupid jealous boy couldn't understand the difference, Angel died for them too. Why couldn't Xander see everything isn't black and white? It's all just shades of grey." Buffy stopped and took a deep breath. "I'm sorry Nana, forgive me."
"Non, ma petite
, your anger is good; use it to burn away the grief. You are right to be angry, and I would worry more if you weren't. You will see there are many in the world who hunger for what they think is theirs, because they claim it so. Lizbeth, never let anyone take from you what is your once it is in your hands." Her grandmother's voice held a note of steel.
"You're talking about more than what happened aren't you Nana. You're talking about the family."
"You have always been a smart one ma petite
when you do not play what is it called? Ah, ma oui
, the dumb blonde. I will take care of this mess. The police, the Council, even your parents, but I want something from you child. Something I have always wanted."
"What Nana? I knew there would be conditions to my coming here," Buffy said.
"I will become your legal guardian, and you will become my heir with all that implies. You must carry on the tradition by changing you name. Lizbeth, I will teach you everything you need to know to lead the family," she explained, closely watching her granddaughter's expression.
"Nana, I accept, and you'll find being the Slayer trains you for many things. I'm not as soft as I once was. There isn't anything left for me in Sunnydale. Maybe without me there, Mom can clean up her act. I want her out of Sunnydale though. Set her up with a gallery in San Francisco after she gets sober. I don't care what Dad does; he hasn't bothered with me since the move. Last, I heard he was in Europe with his newest secretary. Make sure the Council keeps Giles if he wants to stay. He's a good Watcher, and probably the best hope the new slayer will have to last longer than a year. Have Mom tell them some story the Council can back up. My friends have done enough. I won't add to their troubles by having them worried and looking for me. I'll make a list of what I want from my old things, but will need new clothes. I guess new everything. The pool and horses will help, but I'm used to a more active life so when you're through with me, some other type of lessons would help."
Buffy reeled off everything she could think of from all angles.
A look of wonder then satisfaction came over Anne Merteuil's face. Her granddaughter had grown up, and the things she had experienced had changed her, made her stronger. She was like a finely tempered rapier of Toledo steel. It looks delicate but was very strong, and if wielded by the right hand very dangerous. I will teach ma petite to wield her weapons well.
"I will take care of it ma petite
go rest. No one will drop by, I have issued persona non-gratis
. They are salivating, thinking I am ill. We will have the entire summer to prepare for the grand unveiling," she laughed thinking about the family's reaction.
"Fine Nana have fun, and let the games begin."
Buffy closed the doors, heaving a huge sigh. She walked upstairs to a room at the back of the house overlooking the gardens. Different shades of yellow and white decorated the wall, while a huge Louis XVI bed dominated one wall. She crawled into bed and fell fast asleep, while down the hall her grandmother wheeled and dealed for her future.
"Mr. Travers, there is a Madam Merteuil on the line for you sir."
Quentin Travers' brows went up at the name. He wondered what she could possibly want with him. He wasn't even aware she knew who or what he was. Quentin hadn't become Head of the Watcher's Council by being a stupid man. He knew it would be stupid ever to underestimate this woman, or her reach.
"Hello Madam Merteuil, Quentin Travers here. What may I do for you?"
Travers, I am calling in regards to Elizabeth Summers, my granddaughter."
Quentin felt sweat break out on his forehead. Bloody hell, why weren't they aware of this connection. In the past, if a girl from an influential family was next in line to become the Slayer, the Council would take steps to circumvent the situation. To allow the granddaughter of one of the most influential women on several continents to become a slayer could create huge problems. It could shake the very foundation of the Council, if not destroy it completely.
, are you there?"
"Yes Madam, I am. What can we do to help fix the problem to your satisfaction?"
"Oh you are such a civilized man. The Prime Minister told me such was the case, but you know how the politicos can be oui
She left the threat hanging in the air.
He swallowed hard, and tried not to stammer. "How do you see us achieving the best end result for your granddaughter?"
"Actually Lizbeth thought this matter through carefully finding a perfect solution ma oui
. Here is what you should do…"
Quentin listened attentively, writing down instructions like a lowly secretary.
"We should be able to take care of this with no problems, Madam. The Council recently received notification as to the newest Slayer's identification. We shall simply send her to the hell, err Sunnydale, post haste. Her current watcher is new, and could be an asset perhaps as an apprentice to Mr. Giles. He would of course remain as the resident Sr. Watcher."
"I'm sure my granddaughter would have no problem with that, since Mr. Giles will of course be handsomely compensated for the added responsibilities, Adieu
Quentin heard nothing but dial tone, hanging up he heaved a huge sigh. He shouted for his secretary who ran into the room.
"Call an emergency meeting of Council for twenty minutes from now."
Anne had a hard smile on her face when she dialed the next number. "Hello," Joyce's slurred voice came over the line. "Buffy, if that is you. Yous come home right, right now, young lady."
, Joyce." Anne's cultured voice came over the phone.
Joyce was suddenly sober, hearing this voice from the past. "Hello Madam, this really isn't a good time."
"Oh I disagree Mon Cher
, it is the perfect time. Lizbeth is here with me, where she is staying."
"No, she isn't. Buffy is my daughter. I don't care how much money you have, you aren't buying her," Joyce yelled into the phone.
"Oh I didn't have to chère
, you threw her away. She ran to safety, to me! Away from a drunk who only pays attention to the glass in her hand."
Joyce shakily sat down her glass of scotch. The situation hit her hard enough to break through her alcoholic haze.
"Anne, she's my baby don't do this. I've already lost Hank; don't take my little girl," she cried huge, body shaking sobs into the phone.
"Joyce, you need to get your life together. I offer you that; Lizbeth wants it for you. She wants you away from that town to give you a fresh start, a sober one. Do this for her, if you ever hope to repair the damage you and my son have already done," Anne said not unkindly.
Anne told her everything she needed to know. Papers would arrive tomorrow, once signed she would no longer control Buffy's future. People would come to move her, and someone would take her to a clinic to get sober. When she got out, a brand new life was waiting for her in San Francisco.
Hanging up the phone Joyce looked around their home and sobbed, "Buffy, baby, I'm so sorry."
Anne thought about everything Buffy had told her about Rupert Giles, and then decided to handle the matter personally.
There was still no sign of Buffy, and he was getting worried. He had tried to talk to her mother, but Joyce was too inebriated. Giles never knew her mother had such a serious problem. Buffy certainly had never let on to either him, or her friends.
are you somewhere you may speak freely?" a cultured voice asked.
"Yes." He closed the door to his office, and locked it. "To whom am I speaking to, please?"
"I am Lizbeth's grandmother. She is here with me; she is safe, monsieur
"Thank god. Where are you? When will Buffy be returning? Pardon me madam, you never told me your name."
"I am Anne Merteuil, perhaps you have heard of me, oui
"The Anne Merteuil, you are Buffy's grandmother," Giles sputtered, suddenly getting a sinking feeling.
, I am calling to let you know Lizbeth will not be returning. Your Monsieur Travers is sending you the new girl to train. Lizbeth has other duties, other responsibilities. She blames herself for what happened, and I will help her to heal. Give her the life, which is her birthright."
"But, her duty is here."
it is not; she has given enough. Ask her little friend Alexandre how he laid the plans just so for ma petite
to kill her lover. Her lover not the monster, Monsieur Giles
. She loves you and her little friend very much, but I will not allow that life to destroy ma petite
." Her voice was hard as nails.
"What about her mother, and school?" Giles tried desperately to find an argument.
"Au Revoir Monsieur
, Lizbeth will probably write to you once she is feeling better."
Giles heard the dial tone as he stared at the phone as if it was some foreign object.
"Bloody hell!" There was a knock at the door.
"G-Man, you in there? Wills is ready to go," Xander called through the closed door.
"Alexandre," he whispered. He flung the door open to see Xander's shocked face.
"You okay, G-Man?" Xander stared at him wide-eyed. Giles had never looked at him like this, and it was freaking him out.
"What did you say to Buffy?" Giles growled, advancing on the teenager who scuttled backward.
"Nothing! What are you talking about?"
Giles grabbed him by the shirt shaking him like a rag doll. "Tell me what you said."
"Giles, are you having a XANEX moment or something, put Xander down," Cordelia demanded. "He said he didn't say anything. What has you acting like a postal worker?"
"I just got off the phone with Buffy's grandmother. Buffy's with her, and safe."
"Then what is your problem?" Cordelia wound up to start her diatribe once more.
"Cordelia, do shut up." Giles had no time to deal with the cheerleader's attitude.
Cordelia's mouth gaped open and close like a fish, until it finally snapped shut. She sat down in a huff glaring at the librarian.
"You lied to Buffy didn't you, Xander? Didn't tell her Willow was trying the spell to restore Angel's soul? What did you say?"
Giles towered over the teen, and his hands clenched and unclenched in anger.
"I told her Willow said kick his ass
, and she did so what. Everyone said she wasn't trying hard enough to kill Angelus. So, when she was finally ready, I wasn't about to tell her not to? Do I look stupid?"
Xander looked from Giles to the others in the room, expecting them to agree with him. Giles stared at the boy, wondering if he ever knew him. He thought the boy had actually cared for Buffy.
"You look like a petty jealous child. She didn't kill Angelus, you fool; she killed Angel. Willow's spell worked, and I'm guessing it was too late to stop it. Buffy had no choice, but to kill him."
"She had no choice, so I did the right thing." Xander stubbornly defended his actions.
"Not cool dude." Oz shook his head, wondering not for the first time what went on in Xander's head.
"He killed Jenny, hurt Willow and tortured you. Angelus, Angel makes no difference; only good vamp is a dead one."
"Don't you even dare speak her name. She was trying to restore Angel when she died. Jenny more than anyone, except Buffy, understood the difference between the two. Get out of my sight Xander; I can't stand to look at you. You got your wish. Angel is truly dead, but Buffy is never coming home. Her grandmother is going to make sure of that."
Giles turned away unable to look at the teen. He stopped when Will called out to him.
"What do you mean, Giles? What does Buffy's grandmother have to do with it?"
"It doesn't matter Willow; all that matters is Buffy's gone and she won't be coming back. The Council is sending the new slayer here. In light of all that has occurred, I think it best if you all cease your aide in slaying."
Giles went into his office closing the door.
Xander looked at the others. "Willow, I did the right thing. If she had known, she wouldn't have fought with everything she had. He would have killed her."
"Xander, leave me alone. You didn't do it for Buffy, you did it for you. Now, my best friend is gone, and I'll never see her again. I just can't talk to you. Oz, please, just take me home."
Xander quickly turned to the other male member of the infamous Scoobies. "Oz, you understand don't you?"
"Can't say I do man. It was beyond cruel." He shook his blue head as he pushed Willow's wheelchair out the door.
Xander was running out of people to support his decision, and finally turned to his girlfriend. "Cordy, you agree with me don't you?"
Her eyes narrowed at her boyfriend, and let her famous temper fly. "I could care less, spaz boy. What I do care about is you're dating me, but can't get over your crush on Buffy. Cordelia Chase doesn't play second fiddle to anyone."
The head cheerleader pranced out the swinging doors without another look in his direction.
Xander walked over to the office door. He just knew if he could make Giles understand then everyone else would come around.
He leaned forward then paled. There were quiet sobs coming from inside. Xander's shoulders slumped dejectedly as he walked out the Library.