Chapter 12 Lunch With Giles
Chapter Twelve Disclaimer
The characters of Angel, Buffy the Vampire Slayer,
and Forever Knight
do not belong to me. Summary
Giles and Natalie have lunch and discuss the vampire situation in Toronto. Author's Note
The Jamie Kennedy at the Gardiner is an actual restaurant. Check them out at www.jkkitchens.comTwelve: Lunch with Giles
The Jamie Kennedy at the Gardiner was a very nice restaurant. Natalie had suggested it for somewhere they could talk mainly because she’d always wanted to try it and it wasn’t that far from her office. It had a very open floor plan, yet you could still carry on a private conversation with no problem. The acoustics seemed to actually disperse or blanket noise. Advantageous, as they were going to talk about vampires and demons and who knows what all.
Of course, she wasn’t too sure how the topic of conversation would affect her appetite. If he dealt with this all the time, it probably wouldn’t faze him in the least. Still, if she could snack in the same room that she did autopsies in, then what was the problem?
Giles was very pleased with the restaurant. He knew that Jamie Kennedy had quite a reputation. The museum – the Gardiner – that the restaurant was located in looked quite enticing as well. The menu, however, was what was enticing him at the moment. There were some wonderful choices. The Navarin of Lamb and the Paillard of Pork looked delicious. However, for some reason, the Sheep’s Milk Tartlet was really calling to him.
The menu was making Natalie salivate as well. She really wanted to try the Gardiner Burger and the Yukon Gold Fries, but she didn’t want to look like a Colonial in front of the Englishman by doing something as uncivilized as using her hands to eat. So, she started to focus on other choices. After mulling over the Hopper and the Sockeye Salmon, she focused on the Striploin of Beef with Blue Cheese Gratin.
After the waiter took their order, Giles looked up at Natalie and raised his water glass. “Here’s to an edifying and enjoyable lunch.”
Nat chuckled and raised her glass. “I’ll drink to that.”
They chuckled self-consciously. Nat smiled at Mr. Giles and laughed again. “This is really silly. I feel like I’m in high school on my first date with a guy.” She laughed at the thought. “Really silly.”
Giles nodded in agreement. She was right, he thought to himself. It was like a first date. He wasn’t quite as nervous as he was on his first date with Jennie, but he still had that lovely awkward feeling. “It’s quite alright. I understand completely. Not to mention, it’s quite an awkward subject we’re going to discuss, isn’t it?”
She nodded in agreement as she took another sip of wine. He was right, of course. Vampires and demons. They had all been characters of make believe to her before. And, then came Nick and his “family”. “I guess we should just dive in. So to speak.”
“Quite right.” Giles agreed. “Well, how exactly did you find out about vampires?”
She chuckled as she remembered. “One of my patients woke up in the morgue. It was Nick. Angel’s partner. Scared the hell out of me. Luckily he woke up before I conducted the internal examination. He tried to mesmerize me, to make me forget what I had seen. It didn’t work. He said that a few people have too strong a willpower to be mesmerized.”
Giles nodded as she spoke.
“Ever since then, I guess you could say I’ve been a lot more exposed to the supernatural. I’ve met some of his “family”. His Sire, and Janette, of course.”
“Janette is the vampire that has let Drusilla live under her roof?”
“Yes. Yes, she did. I understand that she is living there to keep the peace. Apparently, she wanted to move in with “Daddy”, her Sire. But Buffy – Mrs. Angelus – vetoed that.”
He laughed at that. “Yes, I imagine she would. Inviting any vampire into your home is a bad idea; inviting Drusilla in is a death wish.”
“Yes, she is really spooky. I didn’t like being anywhere near her. I didn’t know exactly what it was. She just gave the creeps.”
He chuckled. That
was certainly an understatement. “I’m afraid it goes much farther than the creeps. You need to stay away from Drusilla. She’s far more dangerous than your average vampire.”
Natalie frowned. More
dangerous? “How so? Is it this premonition business?”
Giles nodded seriously. This young woman had far more curiosity than was really healthy. He had to ensure that she understood just how dangerous it was to be curious in this case. It must be because her experience with vampires was so different than what he was used to.
These vampires were different. It disturbed him. He didn’t want Buffy to start having feelings
for vampires. Well, any more than she already did. Life would’ve been so much simpler if Angel and Spike weren’t so ambiguous. A Slayer’s supposed to kill vampires – no questions asked!
Natalie was watching Giles expectantly. He was looking very pensive. I wonder what’s on his mind? Is he wondering just how much he should tell me?
“Nick says that vampires like Angel and Drusilla are distinctly different than him and Janette. Is that what you mean about more dangerous? Because I have seen Angel confront LaCroix, Nick’s sire, and I was amazed to see LaCroix back off.”
Giles looked up with interest and encouragement.
“But I also got the impression that Angel had some reputation that spooked the vampires around here. I notice several people that back away from and avoid him. Nick said they were all vampires that had lived in Europe at one time.”
Giles chuckled. “Yes, I imagine they would. He used to be known as the Scourge of Europe at one time. But that’s not what I meant about Drusilla. She has the additional danger of her mental powers. Never look her in the eyes, Natalie. Never. I cannot stress this enough. Not only can she see the future with remarkable precision, she can enter your mind.”
Nat raised her eyebrow at this. She smiled. “Yes, the vampires here can do that. It’s called a mesmer. I’m immune.”
“No!” Giles yelled, slamming his fist on the table, spilling some of their wine. Natalie jumped. She looked around nervously. She flushed as she saw all the eyes focused on them.
Giles looked around as well. Bloody hell. That was far more intense than was called for.
“I’m terribly sorry. I just—well, I need you to understand… You can’t take any chances when it comes to—“
The waiter had returned. Giles turned and nearly drooled. The smell coming from the meal nearly took his breath away. It’d been a long time since he’d had a meal like this. He turned to Natalie. She, too, looked like she was going to faint from sheer pleasure. “Was there a problem?”
“No, no.” He managed to spit out. “As long as I get that wonderful smelling meal.”
“I second that!” Natalie breathed out. She licked her lips nervously, checking for drool. That really would be a bad thing.
Giles didn’t think that anything could’ve distracted him from the plate set down before him; but her tongue darting out did. He could feel a different hunger flare deep down within him. A hunger that had nothing to do with food. He took a deep breath and tried to concentrate on his food. He looked up cautiously, only to be confronted by those incredibly expressive eyes peering into him.
“Penny for your thoughts?” Nat quipped between bites. The food really was incredible. She’d be paying for this later, though. She rarely ate food this rich. Usually it was junk food between bodies. “Or maybe we should wait until after our meal. I just hope you’re not still angry at me.”
He swallowed. Anger was certainly not the emotion that was dominating him at the moment. It was such a surprise. He hadn’t felt like this for some time. He smiled up at her. “Not at all, not at all. I’m just worried about you. You mustn’t be complacent about the vampires. Not even Nick and his family. You may be immune to their… mesmer, was it? But that doesn’t mean that they’re not a threat. A vampire is not human. It… even the ones like Angel and Nick… is a creature of instinct and hungers. Even if Nick has feelings for you, he can still be a danger. And, Drusilla… well, she’s a danger to all of us… vampire and mortal.” What was it about Drusilla? I know she gives me the creeps and a lot of other things. But why is he so paranoid about her?
“Why are you so paranoid about vampires? I know that they’re dangerous and some are pretty homicidal and evil, but they’re just another form of life and…”
Giles groaned and raised a hand to interrupt her. “Natalie, you have to understand. Now, I realize we are dealing with two different… well, breeds, for want of a better word. However, I have a great deal of experience and education in these matters and…” Education?
Nat thought incredulously as she listened to him.
“Drusilla, now,” he was saying. “She isn’t just dangerous because she’s a vampire. She’s dangerous because of her mental powers and her mental disease.” Disease? No wonder she’s so scary!
“You see, before Angelus… Angel… turned her, he drove her insane. It left her quite, quite mad.” He paused to take a bite, and looked to see what effect his small speech had had. Good. She looked suitably shocked.
“Well, that does explain quite a bit. Although, I had only thought she’d had an emotional or nervous breakdown. Not a complete psychosis. But, why? Why on earth would he want to do such a thing?”
He chuckled, shaking his head at her innocence. For a woman that had been exposed to vampires for several years, she was still quite untouched by it all. Maybe these vampires really were significantly different for all that. “Probably because he could. Before he was cursed with a soul, Angelus was quite probably one of the most evil vampires in history. For Angelus, the desire to inflict pain and terror was actually more desirable than anything else. Sex. Feeding. Anything.”
Natalie shuddered without thinking. Just what have I gotten myself into? This is why Nick reacted the way he did. Why he seems to submit to Angel whenever he’s around.
“You see why I’m so intense. You have to understand. I’m a Watcher with many generations coming before to prepare me for this fight. The reason I’ve come is because I can’t have my Slayer getting too complacent about vampires. I wouldn’t call it a paranoia. After all, they really are out to get us.”
She nodded automatically, as she took a healthy swallow of her wine. She took another bite of her meal, trying to mull all this over in her head. He was quite correct. He had to ensure that Buffy didn’t trust the wrong vampire. Though, she didn’t see that happening. She was fairly sure that she would attack Janette or LaCroix, or even Nick for that matter, if she felt that they were a danger. “Yes, I can see your point. It’s quite intriguing, you know. These two variations on a theme. I wonder how it happened. Maybe they evolved independently from each other. I agree, an exchange of information is what we need. After all, who knows when someone else will come to Toronto. Someone like Angel and Drusilla.”
Giles had finished his meal as she spoke. She was quite right, of course. It was actually pretty surprising these two societies had never stepped on each other’s toes before now. Of course, Nick’s type seemed more able to slip into human society. Much more so than Angel or Spike ever could, soul or no soul. “Yes, well, it’s going to take a little more time. Maybe we should order dessert?”