Summery: What if only a week after Buffy returns home after the events in ‘Anne’, her mother gets in a car accident and is killed. Buffy finds out that not only is Hank not her real father but, SSA David Rossi, is. Buffy is introduced to a possibility that she never knew before. Was she really capable of falling in love and having a normal life? Not exactly… (Buffy Summers x Spencer Reid in later chapters)
A/N: This story takes place in Season 3 of BtVS, after the Scoobies find out about Angel being back but before Faith ‘goes bad’ and Season 6 of CM. The only thing that changes is if you move up the years of Buffy. Spencer Reid is 24! He joined the FBI and BAU when he was 18. I know this could never happen but, in this story… it does.
Disclaimer: I do not, nor have I ever owned Buffy or Criminal Minds. I just wanted to see what happened when they got all swirled up in my brain...
The doorbell jarred Buffy from her sleep. She had only gotten back from patrol a few hours ago and was still sore from an older vampire that was attacking some teens in the cemetery.
Buffy threw on her terry cloth robe and made her way to the front door, all the while wondering why her mom hasn’t gotten up yet. She moved quickly, looking out the window to see two uniformed men wearing grim expressions. She opened the door, careful to stay beyond the threshold.
“Buffy Summers?” One of them asked.
“Yes? What’s going on?”
“I’m afraid to tell you that your mother was killed tonight, a traffic accident.”
Buffy’s mind went blank. “What?” She asked numbly.
“Your mother is dead, Miss Summers.” She closed the door and reached for the phone.
“Giles, I need you.”
ONE WEEK LATER:
Buffy sat at her vanity, running a brush through her blonde hair for what seemed like the hundredth time. A soft knock came at her bedroom door and a matching voice spoke. “It’s time for the reading of the will.” She turned slowly and faced her watcher. Buffy stood from the stool and headed downstairs. Her eyes felt heavy and dry, it took most of her self-control to keep more tears from spilling over.
When everyone was seated at the dining room table, Joyce’s lawyer began to speak. “This is the last will and testament on Joyce Summers…” he droned.
“To Rupert Giles, my daughter’s watcher and my dear friend, I leave the gallery and all art in its possession.” Giles took a deep breath and nodded. “To Alexander Harris, the son I never had, I leave the sum of $5,000. Please use this to move out of your parent’s house.” Xander let out a sad chuckle and nodded for the lawyer to continue. “To Willow Rosenburg, Buffy’s surrogate sister, I leave the sum of $5,000 to use to further your education.” Willow put a hand over her mouth and let the tears run freely. “And to my beautiful daughter, Buffy Summers, I leave the total sum of $10,000, for her college education, and I leave a letter explaining the following circumstances. Guardianship of my daughter, Buffy Anne Summers, will go to David Rossi. If he refuses, it will be turned over to Rupert Giles.” Buffy felt her jaw almost detach and fresh tears fall down her cheeks.
The lawyer handed Buffy an envelope and nodded to everyone before leaving. Her hands shook as she opened the envelope. Tears fell freely as she read through the last words her mother was telling her. After she finished, she looked up to Giles with wide eyes. “Hank isn’t my father, this David Rossi is. He’s an FBI agent.”
THREE DAYS LATER:
Giles had his arm around Buffy’s waist as they walked through the maze-like halls of the FBI Academy in Quantico, VA. “What if he doesn’t want me, Giles?” her voice was quivering in fear, very un-Buffy-like.
“Then I’ll get him to sign over custody to me and we’ll go back to Sunnydale.” She nodded. “Now, let’s hurry before we miss our appointment.” Giles walked through the glass doors, Buffy trailing behind him. Buffy looked around and saw the door she was looking for. “Giles, up there.” Buffy nodded to the office up the stairs.
Both she and her watcher paused before Buffy raised her hand to knock. A brief ‘come in’ was heard before Buffy pushed open the dark wooden door. Her breath caught in her throat when she saw the older dark haired man behind the desk. “A-Are you David Rossi?” the man looked up and nodded. “My name is Buffy Summers. I’m Joyce Summers’ daughter.”
David’s eyebrow’s knitted together. “I don’t know a Joyce Summers.”
“You knew her as Reynolds, Joyce Reynolds. She told me you lived down the street from her...”
He nodded his head slowly. “I haven’t seen or heard from her in ages. How is she?” Buffy’s gaze went straight to the carpet.
“Joyce was killed in a car accident almost two weeks ago.” Giles spoke from the doorway.
“I’m sorry for your loss but, I still don’t understand why you’re here.” Buffy pulled out the copy of the will and Joyce’s letter and handed them to him.
“My mom left me that letter with her will.” She looked into David’s eyes. “It states that I’m your daughter and that guardianship should be given to you until I turn 18.” His face remained blank. “I already took a DNA sample for you to test yourself. A detective in L.A. sealed it for me, her phone number is on the post-it.” He nodded, seemingly in a daze. “I know you’ll want to verify this yourself.” Buffy set the evidence vial and post-it on his desk. She then looked up to Giles before leaving the office.
“I’ll be right out, Buffy.” Giles told her with a small smile. The smile faded, however, when he looked to Rossi. “I’m Rupert Giles, a friend of the family. I just wanted you to know that if you decided to not want to be a father, guardianship of Buffy would go to me. She will be well taken care of.” Rossi nodded. “We will be in town for a few more days because Buffy wanted to see the Holocaust museum. Call me after you’ve done your tests and background checks, with your decision.” Giles left Rossi’s office with a black expression on his face.
Rossi was in shock. How could he not be? Taking a few deep breaths, he got to work. Picking up his desk phone, he dialed the one person who could and would find out anything there was to know about his progeny.
“You have entered to Twilight Zone of Knowledge.”
“Can you look up Rupert Giles and Buffy Summers?”
“Sure, sir. Is this about a case?”
“No. It’s personal. Can you still do it?”
“Yeah. I’ll do it. Call you back when I have the info.”
Minutes later, Rossi’s desk phone rang. He picked up without a second thought. “Rossi.”
“Sir? It’s Garcia. I found what you were looking for.” Her voice was hesitant.
“What is it, Garcia?”
“I think you should come down to my lair.” Rossi nodded and began packing up the things Buffy and Rupert had given him.
“I’ll be there in a few.”
Meanwhile, Penelope was looking over the records she had uncovered, trying to catalog it in her mind. Her door opened and she spun to face her visitor.
“Buffy Anne Summers, age 17, blonde hair, green eyes?” Rossi nodded. “She has a spotty juvenile record. Was a cheerleader at Hemry High in L.A , then apparently got involved in the wrong crowd and got expelled for burning down the high school gym. Her parents, who were going through a very nasty divorce, put her into a mental institution, Bennington Sanitarium. Sound familiar?” Garcia raised an eyebrow at Rossi. Buffy and her mother, Joyce Summers then moved to Sunnydale High where her record has been clean.”
“What about Rupert Giles?” Rossi asked.
“Rupert Giles moved to the states almost two years ago and became the librarian at Sunnydale High. His record is clean too.” Penelope looked at Rossi and bit her lip wondering if she should say something. “What’s going on, sir?”
“If I tell you something, will you promise not to tell anyone else?” she nodded. “Buffy Summers is my daughter.” Her eyes grew wide. “Yeah, I know, came as a shock to me too. I only found out about an hour ago.”
“Are you sure?”
Rossi nodded. “I saw it in her eyes. I just knew.”
“What are you going to do about it?”
“I’m going to request some time off so I can get a teenager moved into my house and get to know the daughter I never knew I had.”
Garcia couldn’t stop the smile from appearing on her face when Rossi turned to leave.
AN HOUR LATER:
Rossi knocked on Hotch’s office door and entered a moment later. “Hotch, can I request a few weeks off?” The Unit Chief looked at him surprised. “Preferably starting tomorrow?”
“Is everything alright, Dave?” David nodded, still a little shaken up by his apparent daughter’s past.
“I just have to take care of a few things. So, can I have the time off?” Hotch nodded.
“Of course, I’ll start the paperwork immediately. Just call if you need anything.”
“Thanks Hotch. I think when I get back I’ll have some news to share with the team.”
From there, he had went to his office and called Rupert Giles. “Mr. Giles? It’s David Rossi. I’d like to start arranging for Buffy to move here.” After he finally said it, a weight had been seemingly moved from his chest.
“Are you sure, Agent Rossi?”
“I’ve never been more sure of anything, Mr. Giles.” Rossi heard Mr. Giles’ resigned sigh.
“Ok. We’ll pick you up for the flight back to Sunnydale tomorrow.”
THE NEXT DAY:
Giles, Buffy, and Rossi arrived at the Summers’ house late and almost everyone was exhausted. Everyone but Buffy, that is.
“I’m going out for a while, ok?” she looked to Giles for approval but Rossi put his two cents in anyway.
“Are you sure? It’s pretty late. Why don’t you get some sleep?”
Buffy ignored him and bypassed him to go to the front door. “I’ll be back in a few hours.” She told Giles.
“Be careful.” Giles said quietly. “If you see Angel…”
“I’ll tell him the news.” She cut him off. “I know the rules, Giles. Do you also want me to start keeping spreadsheets and detailed records?” She asked him, eyebrows raised. Giles closed his eyes at the familiar tone.
“You need to be careful around him, Buffy.” He told her gravely.
Rossi, meanwhile watched this exchange with interest, and small amounts of jealousy. His own daughter wasn’t even listening to him.
“I always am. I’m just doing my basic circuit. No stopping at The Bronze or the warehouse district, just the cemeteries.” Giles nodded. “I’ll even come through the front door!” Giles let out a small chuckle. “Then tomorrow, we have to talk about my duties when I move to Virginia.”
Buffy left a moment later, and Giles turned to Rossi, who was looking over the photographs. “I’m sorry, Dave. She just needs to blow off some steam. You’ll see as you get to know her better that she has to do that a lot.”
David nodded. “Who’s Angel?” He asked, facing Giles.
“That’s Buffy’s story not mine.”
“Why did she say she was only going to the cemeteries?”
“They calm her down. Plus, she’s also visiting a few people.”
“Her mom?” Giles nodded, sadly.
“Plus a few others. Buffy’s lost a lot of people the last few years.” Thinking of Jenny, his mood grew darker. “We all have. Any more questions or are you ready to be shown to the room you’ll be occupying for the next few days?” Giles motioned for him to follow him up the steep stairs.
David picked up his duffle and followed the Brit.
Giles had shown him to the guest room, located next to Buffy’s room. “What room are you staying in?” David asked, putting his duffle on the bed.
“I’m not. I’ll be staying at my apartment, packing.” David’s eyes knitted together.
“You’re moving?” Giles nodded.
“Here, into this house, along with a friend of Buffy’s. Xander Harris, you’ll be meeting him tomorrow. You’ll also meet Willow and Oz. Buffy’s best friends.”
“Why is a friend of Buffy’s moving into this house?”
“Xander has a rough home life and it was in Joyce’s will.” Giles smiled softly at the picture on the bedside table. “She loved all of these kids like they were her own and wanted the best for them.” He looked at David with a smile. “Why don’t you get some sleep? Trust me; you’ll need it with that bunch. I’ll stay until Buffy gets back; I need to talk to her anyway.” David nodded and watched as he left the room, shutting the door in his wake.
What are they hiding?...
Buffy came through the front door, covered in grass stains as well as some blood on her face. Giles got a bowl, filled it with warm water, and a washcloth before joining her in the living room.
“What did you come across?” Giles asked, running the washcloth over her various cuts.
“Just your run of the mill stuff. Nothing unusual.” Buffy took in a breath. “What’s going to happen when I move?” Giles looked at her with a conflicted expression.
“You’re training is complete. You just have to patrol now and again.”
THE NEXT MORNING:
Buffy came down the stairs and was shocked to see Rossi, flipping pancakes at the stove top.
“What are you doing?”
“Making breakfast. Giles called while you were sleeping. Everyone is coming in a few hours, so I thought I’d make breakfast.” Her lips thinned but she nodded slowly. “Do you want any?”
She gave him a small smile. “Sure.”
FIVE DAYS LATER:
David was helping Buffy load the boxes from the trunk of his car to Buffy’s new room in his condo. He was covered in a fine layer of sweat, breathing slightly labored. How many pairs of shoes does one girl need? Buffy, on the other hand was walking up the stairs with yet another box, not even a drop of sweat.
He set the last box down and pulled out his ringing cell phone. He looked to Buffy with an apologetic look and answered. “Rossi.”
“Hey, this is Hotch. We were wondering if we could stop by your house tonight.” His boss and longtime friend asked in his usual monotone.
“Sure. You guys can meet the surprise I told you about before I left last week.” And Garcia can help Buffy unpack.
“Ok. We’ll be there in half an hour.” Dave hung up and turned to Buffy.
“The team is going to be here in half an hour.”
“Hopscotch? Them guys? Why does he go by the name of a game?” Rossi let out a chuckle.
“His name is Aaron Hotchner. We call him Hotch, Not Hopscotch.”
“Yeah… that makes more sense.” She looked around the room, formulating a strategy of where everything should go. “What are the others’ names?”
“Derek Morgan, Penelope Garcia, and Dr. Reid.” Buffy nodded, swallowing the nervousness of meeting her father’s friends and teammates. “Jack may also be coming as well. That’s Hotch’s son.”
“Do you think I should change first?” She looked down at the grungy sweats that she normally wore to train in.
David was caught off guard. “I, um, I think you look fine.” Buffy nodded slowly.
“Ok. I just don’t want them to get the wrong impression. These people are like your family.”
David saw tears in her eyes so, he moved to her to face her head on. “And now they’re yours too.” She gave him a watery smile.
“Do you think they’ll like me?”
“Of course.” He said simply. “I’m going to leave you to it. I’ll call you out once I prepared them.”
She nodded. “Okey doke. Are any of them really organized?” He nodded.
“Reid is. You can ask for his help when he gets here?” She nodded, biting her lip. “And I’m sure Garcia will want to help you as well.” David left her to begin to sift through the many boxes.
About twenty minutes later, the doorbell rang. Rossi took a deep breath and opened the door, preparing for the worst. “Hey, guys. I have someone I’d like for you to meet.” He let them some in and stand amongst Buffy’s many boxes.
“What’s going on Rossi? I thought you only went away for a family issue.” Hotch asked, surveying all of the boxes. “Are you moving?”
Rossi shook his head. “Someone’s moving in with me. Buffy, come here please!”
The team, minus Garcia, stood open mouthed at the teenage girl coming towards them. She came to stand next to Rossi, who put his hands on her shoulders and moved her in front of him. “Everyone, I’d like you to meet Buffy Summers. My daughter.”
Garcia reacted first. “Oh my goodness! Would you look at you! You are so cute! I’m Penelope Garcia.” She pulled her into a tight hug, catching Buffy by surprise.
“Can’t breathe!” Buffy managed. Penelope immediately let her go.
Finally over the shock, Morgan stepped up to her and took her hand. “It’s great to meet Rossi’s spawn. I’m Derek Morgan.” He gave her a charming smile, Buffy raised an eyebrow and rolled her eyes.
Hotch came next. “I’m Aaron Hotchner but, you can call me Hotch. It’s nice to meet you.” He gave a small smile but Buffy couldn’t help but see the sadness that plagued him.
Buffy took in a breath when she saw the youngest member, when she looked into his brown eyes. He gave her a shy smile. “I’m Dr. Spencer Reid.”
“Nice to meet you all but, I better get back to unpacking.” She looked around at the boxes letting out a huge breath. She looked at Rossi perturbed. “Why didn’t you tell me that all my stuff wasn’t going to fit?”
“I didn’t realize that you had enough pairs of shoes to open your own Payless.” She narrowed her eyes at him but before she could retaliate Garcia let out a shocked gasp.
“You can never have too many shoes. Or purses.” She glared at him before taking Buffy’s elbow and leading her away to her new room. “I’ll help you.”
“Do any of you guys know how to organize really well?” Buffy asked Garcia. Who turned and shouted to Reid.
“Come, Boy Genius. You services are required.” Garcia then pulled Buffy with her to the bedroom, a reluctant Reid following.
Garcia immediately went to work, looking through all of the boxes and began sorting things. Reid stood next to Buffy, looking over the room.
“How should I organize things in here?” She asked.
“I’d put most of your clothes in the walk-in and use a wall for your shoes? The desk should be kept clean for when you do your school work.” She nodded.
“Thanks. Now, do you want to help me and Garcia attack the boxes?”
Meanwhile, Rossi, Hotch, and Morgan were discussing Buffy.
“She’s 17 and likes to take walks to blow off steam. She acts like she’s just another valley girl but in reality, she’s really smart. I’m thinking that only the people closest to her know that.” Rossi stated. “She’s a good girl but has had a heck of a time of it.”
“Is she acting like you’re her father?” Rossi shook his head, sadly.
“I understand, she’s going to have to get used to me but all she does is nod while I’m talking. The most interaction we had was a few minutes ago. She thought we called you ‘Hopscotch’.” He added as an added fact.
Hotch’s eyebrows went up and Morgan bellowed a laugh. “I like her. She also didn’t swoon when I smiled at her.” Morgan pointed out. “She seemed interested in Reid though.”
Rossi’s eyes widened. “Do you think Reid likes her?” Morgan shrugged.
“There’s not that much of an age difference anyway… like 5 years?”
“No. That’s not going to happen. I’ll kill him first.” Seethed Rossi.
Both Morgan and Hotch chuckled. “I think you’re going to be fine.” Hotch laid a hand on Rossi’s shoulder.
“You just need to give it some time.” Morgan stated.
Garcia was helping Buffy hang up the final pieces of clothing, while Reid was alphabetizing her book collection. “Where do you wear some of these things?” Garcia asked, holding up a pair of leather pants.
Buffy smiled and shrugged. “Parties, sometimes I wore them to school.”
Garcia raised an eyebrow. “Rossi’s going to have a heck of a time with you.”
Buffy nodded. “I’m going to take a wild stab in the dark and say that he had you look me up?” Garcia looked at her, worried of her reaction.
“He just wanted to know what he was getting himself into, you know.” Buffy nodded. “So, why’d you burn down the gym?” Garcia chuckled.
“A gang attacked a school dance and they were taking students hostage. I set a small fire for a diversion and got most of the kids out while they were preoccupied with stopping the fire from spreading. The gang had already killed some kids so the school blamed it on me and expelled me. Mom and Hank were divorced and we were on our way to Sunnyhell.” Garcia nodded and took it all in.
“You’re really brave.” Reid stated from the doorway. Buffy shrugged, ducking when a blush came to her cheeks. Garcia watched this with a smile on her face.
“When are you going back to school?”
Buffy shrugged. “I don’t know. Dad has to register me and then I have to get supplies. Then I’ll have to start looking up colleges for next year.”
“Have you taken the SAT?” Buffy nodded at Reid’s question. “What was your score?”
“1430.” His eyes widened. “I know. It shocked me as well.”
“You could go pretty much anywhere with that. What do you see yourself doing?” She shifted her feet under his intense questioning.
“I don’t know for sure.” She mumbled. “I didn’t even think I was going to college but with everything…” He nodded, understanding.
“Why don’t I give you a tour of Georgetown? In a few weeks Rossi and I are supposed to give a presentation there about the FBI. You could come along. I’ve taken classes there so, I could show you around.” Reid blurted. Buffy looked a little shocked but pulled herself together.
“Are you sure you’re not busy? I wouldn’t want to bother you on one of your only days off.” She really wanted to spend some time with him but she didn’t want to be a hindrance.
“I have nothing planned. Plus, it’d be a good place to start with your college research.” She nodded.
“I’d love to. Can you call me later with the details?” He nodded, knowing that he shouldn’t be so excited to be spending time with Rossi’s 17 year old daughter.
By the end of the night, almost everything was organized in Buffy’s new bedroom. The only things that she had yet to organize were her toiletries in the bathroom that she was sharing with Rossi. That’s going to be awkward…
Garcia gave Buffy another hug. “Thank you so much for your help, Penny. I don’t think I could’ve done it without you.” Buffy told her.
Next, she threw caution to the wind and pulled Reid into a fierce hug. “Thank you so much! How did you alphabetize those books so fast?” He gave her a shy smile and explained.
“I read 20,000 words per minute and have an IQ of 187.”
“Holy cheese and crackers!” Buffy managed. “Were you made in a test tube or something?”
They let out a tiny chuckle at that one, even Reid was laughing. “No, I wasn’t.” Buffy nodded, still caught off guard and a little hurt. 'He probably wouldn’t look at me twice…'
The BAU team left moments later, leaving Buffy and Rossi to their solitude.
“Hey, Dave?” Buffy asked. “Where should I put my toiletry stuff in the bathroom?”
Rossi looked at her, wide eyed. “Umm… I’ll clear out a couple of shelves for you tomorrow, ok?” She nodded and headed to her room.
TWO DAYS LATER:
Rossi sat up from his bed and stretched. He shuffled down the hall to the bathroom, not even noticing the sounds of running water coming from the inside. He opened the door and was shocked to see his daughter dressed in the smallest pair of shorts he had ever seen, with headphones on, running a razor up her legs.
‘And I don't want the world to see me
Cause I don't think that they'd understand
When everything's made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am…’
She sang softly. She looked up at that moment and saw Rossi standing there with a perplexed look on his face. She pulled off her headphones and faced him with a look of annoyance. “You couldn’t knock?”
He only stood, staring at her before walking back out and getting his cell phone to call one of the only people he thought would understand.
“Hotch. I need your help. I just walked in on Buffy and she- she”
“What was she doing, Rossi?” Hotch asked calmly.
“She was shaving. Her legs. And she was wearing…” He left off.
“What was she wearing, Rossi?”
“Something she shouldn’t even own. Why does she even own them?” Hotch couldn’t hold in the chuckle anymore, this was absolutely absurd. “Why are you laughing at me?”
“Rossi, you need to calm down and talk to her. Drink some coffee and wait until she’s finished. She’s probably just as embarrassed as you are.”
A few minutes later, Buffy came into the kitchen. She had decided on jean shorts, a green tank top, and matching flip flops. Rossi’s eyes widened when he saw her. Was she going out in that?
“I’m going to go shopping for the rest of my school supplies, ok?” She grabbed a piece of toast before slinging a messenger bag over her shoulder.
“Not dressed like that you aren’t!”
Buffy stopped dead and turned to face him with her eyebrows raised. “What’s wrong with what I’m wearing?”
“Those shorts are too short and that shirt shows too much… too much”
“Cleavage?” She asked pointedly.
“Yeah. That.” He put his hands on his hips. “You look like a stripper, Buffy.” He blurted, immediately regretting it.
Her eyes filled with tears. “So you think I’m a slut?” He shook his head but she didn’t care. “You’re not the first and you probably won’t be the last. I’m going to go now, Dave. See you in a few hours.” She left the condo before he could say anything else.
Buffy walked the route she had memorized to the nearby Target. Her thoughts replaying Dave’s comment over and over again. ‘You look like a stripper, Buffy.’
Then thoughts raced back two years ago to her conversation with Angel. The sarcasm, the things he said… Buffy closed her eyes to keep from crying. Pulling all of her bravery together, she entered the red framed glass doors.
She followed the many various signs that lead to the school supplies. She was going to do well here. This was a fresh start… mostly.
Buffy was so intent on her choice for notebooks that she didn’t even notice the person putting a hand on her shoulder. It being instinct, she threw them over her shoulder and prepared for a fight. Her eyes immediately widened when she saw it was none other than Derek Morgan looking up from his spot on the floor with a look that could only be expressed as surprise.
“Shit! I’m so sorry! You just took me by surprise.” She pulled him to his feet and began to search his eyes for any traces of a concussion.
“Where did you learn that?” Morgan asked, waving to his spot on the floor.
“A family friend taught me. Are you sure you’re ok?” He nodded and waved her off.
“I just wanted to see why you’re not here with Rossi?” Buffy looked to the floor with a hurt look.
“We had a bit of a fight.” He nodded in understanding.
“What was it about?” She rolled her eyes.
“What I was wearing! He told me I looked like a stripper.” Morgan sucked in a breath and shook his head.
“He’s just probably dealing with the new fatherhood thing. He doesn’t want you to get hurt.”
“I’ve been hurt before and it wasn’t because of what I was wearing. Well, there was that one time when I tripped over my May Queen dress but that’s not the same!”
“He just doesn’t want you being taken advantage of but seeing as you just threw a FBI agent over your shoulder without a breaking a sweat…” Buffy let out a chuckle. “So, do you need any help getting this stuff back to the condo? I could give you a ride?” She gave him a small smile but shook her head.
“I kind of need the walk. Plus, I wanted to check out their bikinis before I checked out.”
“Yeah. I’ll just be going then…” He turned and left a chuckling Buffy behind him.
When Morgan was settled in his car he dialed Rossi’s cell. “She’s at Target and she’s fine. A little pissed and a lot hurt but fine.” He heard Rossi’s sigh of relief.
“Thanks for calling, Morgan.”
“No problem, Rossi.”
AN HOUR LATER:
Buffy was trekking up the stairs to the condo. When she reached the door, she knocked and waited to be let in. When the door opened, she looked into the worried eyes of David. “Thank God, you finally answered. I was about to topple over.” She walked past him and headed to her room. “I’ll be out, just let me put these on my bed.”
When she came out, Rossi was sitting on the couch waiting for her. “I just want to say one thing before you go all 'grr' again.” He gave her a rue smile. “I know you need some time to adjust being the guardian of a teenage girl but, I’m also adjusting. I grew up in L.A and was living in small town in California. I’ll dress the way I’ve always dressed because I want to.”
“I’m so sorry Buffy. You don’t look like a stripper. I was just being a crazy overprotective father and I was scared someone was going to see you dressed like that and think it was an invitation for something more and I don’t want you to be on the board at work.”
Buffy gave him a small smile and nodded. “When are you going back to work?”
“The same day of your first day at school, Monday.”
“Three days left, huh?” David nodded. “Ok. By the way, Dr. Reid is taking me on a tour of Georgetown in a few weeks. He said that you guys were giving a presentation to students.”
He raised an eyebrow. “Do you have an idea of what you want to major in?” She shrugged. “It’s ok if you don’t. Most people have no clue what they want to do with their lives until their second or third year of college.”
She nodded. “I actually was thinking about psychology and criminal justice.” He looked at her surprised. “I was involved in a take back the night group in Sunnydale and it just got me thinking.”
“Maybe you’d like to come to one of my lectures at the FBI Academy on profiling?” He asked her, smiling at the thought of sharing his life’s work with his daughter. “Maybe make a day of it? You could shadow the team?”
“That’d be great, Dave.” She looked up and saw the time. Almost sundown. She could do some slaying tonight. “Is it ok, if I go for a walk for a little while?” Rossi nodded. “Ok, thanks.” She went to her room and changed into grey sweatpants and a hoodie, hiding a stake in the pocket.
She had looked up local cemeteries earlier so she would know the basic area she was headed. She knew that if something triggered her ‘spidey sense’ then, she’d just have to follow it. Virginia didn’t have a high demon population but she wanted to be prepared anyway.
Being a Slayer was all about being prepared. They were kind of like the Boy Scouts but, they didn’t offer a badge for ‘demon killing’.
Buffy was caught off guard when she felt something close to her. It was extremely close, closer than it should be. She should’ve felt it before.
She stood, hand on her hips, bracing for a fight, “I’m really not in the mood for this cloak and dagger BS. Show yourself.” She heard a low growl behind her and she turned, keeping her stake low in a feign of vulnerability. The vampire in front of her had definitely just risen for the first time. He not only felt young but, there was dirt caked in his hair.
He stalked toward her, still growling. She only shook her head before flipping over him and staking him from behind.
The cloud of dust went up and she finally released a sigh. This was something she could do right. She knew how to do this.
Buffy continued to walk down that same path, before slaying another vampire. After another thirty minutes of no sign of any others, she headed back to the condo.
THE NEXT MORNING:
Rossi was getting worried, he hadn’t heard a sound come from Buffy’s room since he’d gotten up that morning. Was it normal for a teenage girl to sleep well past noon? He knew from his own experiences that boys were infamous for sleeping ‘til noon but, were girls the same? Did the same rules apply?
After another five minutes of arguing with himself, he knocked on her door, surprised when he heard a soft ‘come in’. When he walked in, he felt his jaw drop. Buffy was sitting in her bed, reading a book. But, not just any book, one of his. His teenage daughter was reading one of the books he’s written about profiling serial killers. This couldn’t be good.
“What are you doing?” His voice coming out a little strangled.
“Dr. Reid told me that you had written a few books on what you guys do at work so I wanted to read them. I thought it might help me understand you better.”
“And did they?”
“Not really. But, I still think it’s interesting.” Rossi nodded slowly, not sure how he should respond to that. “How long have you been doing this? The whole FBI thing?” Buffy asked. “Because on the book jacket you said something about having been doing it for over a decade and this book was written almost four years ago…”
“What’s your question, Buffy?”
“Did you and my mom have sex while you were in the FBI, on a case?” Buffy blurted.
Rossi shook his head. “I wasn’t on a case but, I was in the FBI. It was actually on one of my first trips home after joining. She was home from school and it just kind of happened. We didn’t plan it and it wasn’t supposed to be more than a one-night thing. We both knew that.”
Buffy nodded, taking it all in. “Would you have been there if you’d’ve known…about me?”
Rossi shrugged. “It’s hard to say, really. I was a really self-centered person when I was younger and I still can be sometimes but, I’d like to think that I would’ve been involved if I’d have known. But, I don’t know. All I can say is that I’m here now and there’s nothing you could do to make me give you up now.”
Buffy looked up at him, with these really big eyes that made Rossi wonder what she looked like when she was younger. Had she always gotten her way? She must’ve, with those eyes. They were lethal.
“Thank you, David. For letting me move here, to live with you. I really do appreciate it.”
He laid a hand on her shoulder, “No problem, Kiddo. I’ll let you get back to reading. Let me know what you think of when you’re done, yeah?”
Buffy nodded before going back into the book.