4. Meeting the Kids
Chapter Four: Meeting the Kids
"Faith, is that Willow?" Buffy asked, holding a protesting Dawn in her arms. She smiled thankfully when she saw her best friend in the hall.
"Hi Buff. Here, why don't you let me take her?" Willow said, taking pity on her. Buffy nodded, handing the squirming child to Willow.
Wesley walked in next. Together with Faith, they watched in shock as their little sister stopped struggling once she was in Willow's arms. Their little sister didn't like strangers. They looked at each other, faces expressing shock.
"And what's your name, princess?" Willow asked the girl in her arms.
"Dawn." She answered, playing with Willow's hair.
"Well isn't that a sweet name. Is it ok if I call you Dawnie? Or Princess Dawn?"
Willow smiled, and then turned to Buffy.
"Doesn't your shift start in fifteen minutes?" she asked her.
"Then go. Don't want to make Mike mad. We'll be fine."
"Ok. I'll just introduce you. This is Faith, Wesley and Dawn. Guys, this is Willow. Now I have to run. See you all later. Oh, and if you by any chance see William, tell him I say hi." She said before walking out of the door.
Willow turned to the two elders.
"Why are you here?" Wesley asked.
"To tutor you in math and help take care of Dawn." Willow said.
"Why can't Buffy do it?"
"Cause she's close to losing her job."
"Oh. Can you make real pizza? And hamburgers with fries?"
"Good. Want a tour of the house?" Wesley asked, obviously relieved he won't have to eat anymore frozen pizza.
"Sure. That would be great."
Wesley nodded and took her hand. Dawn jumped off her arms and walked to Faith.
"I like her. She has pretty red hair."
Faith smiled and nodded.
The house was quite big. The ground floor consisted of a huge living room, a kitchen, guest bathroom and a dining room. On the first floor were the bedrooms and the office. The first room they visited was Dawn's. It was very nice, painted blue and pink, with lots of stuffed toys.
Next to it was Wesley's room. It was a bit bigger than Dawn's. It was painted four different shades of yellow, each wall a different shade. On the walls Willow saw many diplomas from different contests. Wesley was obviously a smart boy. He had a bunk bed and many books.
The third room was Faith's. It was the largest one from the three. The walls were covered with posters of various stars and bands. Her bed was a queen size. She also had many books.
The room next to that one was the bathroom. It was quite large, with a bathtub, a shower, toilet and two sinks.
Across from that was the office. Filled with shelves and bookcases with many folders, Willow frowned a bit. It was messy. Papers were strewn all over the place. On the floor, the table and the chair. On the table she also saw a very expensive computer.
And the last room was the master bedroom. They didn't look inside it, Willow saying that their dad might not want them to invade his private space. The kids just shrugged and took her back downstairs and into the basement.
In the basement, the first thing Willow saw was the corner at the back of the room. In the corner was a huge drum kit. They were beautiful drums.
There were more shelves, bikes, roller blades and a skateboard. They then took her to the garage, where Willow saw a black dirty De Soto along with a motorbike. They obviously belong to the boss.
Next was the garden. It was a very big garden, together with a small pool. Willow loved it. This house was everything she ever dreamed of. And everything she knew she couldn't have.
The tour being done, they went back inside and sat down in the living room.
"So, why don't we have a little chat, hmm? Get to know each other better?"
Faith rolled her eyes.
"Do you always start off like this? Even in class, the first thing you wanted to know was something about us."
"Hold on, you two know each other?" Wesley asked.
"Yes, I'm the new math teacher at Hemery."
"Do you teach elementary too?"
"Have my first elementary class tomorrow. I take it I'll be seeing you there?"
Wesley nodded enthusiastically.
"Definitely. Math is my favorite subject. Except that our last teacher sucked major. You don't suck major, do you?"
"I hope not. So, what else do you like? Apart from math? I saw some diplomas in your room."
"Yeah, I used to compete. Science mostly. And languages. I liked it."
"So then why did you stop?"
"Mom died and he didn't have anyone to study with. Can I be excused?" Faith asked.
"Do you have any homework?"
Faith shook her head. Willow stood up.
"Don't lie to me, Faith."
"Fine. I have a geography test on Thursday. But that's all. I swear."
"Ok. I'll quiz you tonight. I'm giving you two hours. I'll see you then." Willow said, sitting back down.
Faith glared at her and stomped upstairs, slamming her door.
"Telletubies are on Willow. Can I watch?" Dawn asked.
Willow smiled at her and turned on the TV. Then she turned back to Wesley.
"Is that really why you stopped competing?" she asked.
"Yes. Dad got really wrapped up in work; he didn't have time for us. And Faith, she got wrapped up in herself. Buffy was busy also, and I can't stand Darla."
"My other aunt. She was mom's sister."
"I see. Are there any competitions this year?"
"I don't know, I haven't looked. Why?
"Because if you want, I can help you prepare for them. Don't tell anyone, but I used to be a nerd in school, I know about competitions, I think I could help you. But only if you want. It's all up to you. I won't push you to do something you don't want to. Now, tell me, do you have any homework?"
"Yeah, I have a science project due in two weeks and an English vocabulary test tomorrow."
"Ok, well why don't you go and get started on those two and I'll come and quiz you about the words in about an hour, ok?"
Wesley nodded and went upstairs. That only left Dawn and Willow. Willow looked at the clock and saw it was only half past four. God knows when Mr. Giles will be back.
"Dawnie? Will you come and help me in the kitchen?" she asked the little girl.
Dawn looked up and smiled.
Willow turned off the TV and together they went into the kitchen to prepare dinner. An hour later, lasagna was ready on the table.
"Dawnie, can you go upstairs and call those two down for dinner, please?"
Dawn nodded and ran up the stairs. Five minutes later, three sets of stomping feet were heard coming down. As they rounded the corner, Faith and Wesley stopped. There was cooked dinner on the table. Buffy never cooked. They haven't had cooked dinner for ages, only at grandma's house. Their mouths began to water. They sat down quickly, waiting for Willow to join them too.
"Help yourselves. What do you guys want to drink? Coke, Fanta, water, juice or Ice Tea?"
"Coke, water and juice, coming up." Willow said, walking to the table with the drinks. She sat down and they started to eat, Willow occasionally helping Dawn.
"So, how is that homework coming along guys?" she asked as they were clearing away their plates.
"Well, I've read half of the stuff, but I don't know it all yet."
"And I'm stuck on my project. But I know all the vocabulary words."
"That's great. Well hurry back upstairs. I'm going to go give Dawn a bath and then I'm off to quiz you. Ok?"
The two nodded and went upstairs. Half an hour later, Dawn was tucked in bed and Willow was knocking on Wesley's door.
She walked inside.
"Hey, how's it going in here?"
"This project has got my head spinning a bit, but I know all the words."
"Ok, take out a piece of scrap paper and give me the words. We'll see how I can help you with the project after that."
Wesley handed her a paper and sat down, pencil at the ready.
"Ok. First word. Accommodation."
"Caribbean. Queue. Businessman. Woolen. Intelligent. Diarrhea. Pharaoh."
Ten minutes later, Willow was giving Wesley an A-.
"This is really great. You only had two mistakes out of twenty-five. Now what's this project about?"
"We were supposed to choose anything to do with science and do a project about it. I asked if I could do vampire bats and vampires and the teacher said yes. So, that's what I'm doing. And it all has to be from a scientific point of view."
"I see. And what's the problem?"
"Don't know how to do it from a scientific point of view."
Willow thought about it for a minute.
"Well. How about you write two or three pages about vampire bats and bats in general. Then write about how the myth about vampires began, where and when, stuff like that. Then you could write about what people did when they thought a deceased was a vampire."
Wesley was nodding enthusiastically, writing it all down.
"You've heard of Dracula, right?"
"Well, the character is based on a real person. A Transylvanian prince in fact. So why don't you write about him? He was really cruel, killed people for the fun o fit. And there was a woman in the Slovak Republic, or what's now the Slovak Republic, she killed virgins for their blood and then bathed in it. These are both examples of human vampires. And there are more, I'm sure. And then, cannibalism has to do with vampires too. Cannibals eat human flesh; they're bound to drink the blood too. Then, to make it a bit more interesting, why don't you write about how you become a vampire, what happens to you when you do and how you can kill a vampire? And for the ultimate scientific point of view, write about medicine. Because that's how in the older days, a few centuries ago, it all began. People were buried even though they were still alive. And then they woke up in their grave and came back to the world, so people thought they were vampires. And also, some diseases are very similar to what vampires look like. If you were allergic to the sun and only came out at night, people could think that you were a vampire and things like that. You can find all of this on the Internet. And you could bring in some movies, like Interview with the Vampire, or Blade."
"Wow Willow. Thanks a lot. These are really good ideas." Wesley said, still writing.
"It's not a problem. Now, I have to go check on your sister. It's getting late. I want you in bed before nine. Clear?"
Willow walked over to Faith's door and knocked on it before opening the door.
"Hi Faith. Ready for a little quiz?"
Faith looked up from the book she was reading.
"Yeah, sure. I don't have it all down yet, but I know most of it, I can learn the rest tomorrow."
"Ok, but I'm planning on actually tutoring you tomorrow and I'll be giving you homework, so there might not be that much time."
Faith looked at her.
"Exactly how much homework are you going to give us?" she asked.
"I don't know yet. Depends on how much we get done in class. Now, on to geography."
They spent the next half hour in Faith's room. Willow was satisfied with most of her answers. They weren't memorized; they were in her own words, which was what most teachers wanted anyway. When they were done it was nine fifteen.
Willow stood up, stretching.
"Ok. You did good. Read it through one more time before bed. Now, go wash up and lights out at ten, ok?"
Faith nodded. Her head was buzzing with all the information crammed into it. Slowly she walked to the bathroom.
Willow went to check on Wesley and saw that he was asleep. As was Dawn. Quietly she made her way downstairs and into the kitchen. She took out her books from her bag and made plans for tomorrow's lessons. It was ten by the time the front door opened. Drowsy, she looked up.
William walked into the kitchen, briefcase in hand and a frown on his face. He smiled at Willow.
"Evening Miss Rosenberg. How are you today?" he asked, taking a bottle of water from the fridge and sitting down next to her.
"Tired. And you?" she answered truthfully.
"Same. I'm sorry for being so late, I should have told you. I just got a promotion and I have to stay in that bloody building longer these days. Is that alright with you?" he asked.
"It's fine. I made some lasagna. It's in the oven if you want some. I have to get going though. I will see you tomorrow. Oh, and Buffy says hi. Bye." Willow said, standing up and walking out.
William looked after her. What was it about her that captured him so much? Sighing, he bent down to the oven and took out the lasagna. It was warm. His frown falling back into place, he sat down and ate.
* * *
Willow unlocked the door to the apartment quietly. She walked in and saw that Buffy was still awake and apparently waiting for her.
"Hey Buff. What are you still doing up?"
"Waiting for you. How was your day?"
"Long. All I want to do now is to fall down on my bed and sleep until 7. But, I did have fun. The kids are great. Though Faith was a bit reluctant. I guess it'll take time. And how was your day?" she asked, sitting down next to her.
"Same. Long. Am tired. I think I'll turn in too. See you in the morning."
They said goodnight to each other and both of them went to bed. They didn't wake up until their alarms went off in the morning.