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Summary: One night Buffy comes across Willow fighting a man.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Highlander > Willow-Centered > Pairing: OtherbelginteiFR15742,49211411,05924 Feb 0619 Mar 06Yes

Chapter 7

Summery: Buffy gets some unexpected help in her fight with Angel (Okay not so unexpected unless you have only just arrived in this dimension and have not seen ‘Becoming part 2’.

WARNING CHARACTERS DIE IN THIS PART.

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Buffy turned to face the police officer. “Put your hands up. Back away from the girl... slowly,” she ordered.

Another officer came in behind the first, gun drawn, surveying the scene.

Buffy got to her feet and raised her hands. “Look, I didn't do anything.”

The officers ignored Buffy’s protests.

“Do it! Now!” the second officer ordered, bringing his gun to bear, Buffy slowly backed away.

The first officer holstered her gun and crouched down to feel for Kendra's pulse, but couldn't find one. “This one's dead,” she told her partner.

The second officer jerked his chin towards the mezzanine, “What about up there?” he asked.

Buffy and the female officer looked up at the stacks and saw Xander lying unconscious on the floor behind the railing. “Xander...” cried Buffy moving towards her friend.

The female officer grabbed her and pushed her back. “Get her out of here!” she said to her partner as she moved towards the stairs.

Buffy pleaded with them, “Wait! Just see if he's okay! Please!” She gave up for the moment when the officers continued to ignore her, offering no more resistance and let herself be led out. As the female officer went to check on Xander, she crouched down by him carefully checking for any sign of life.

As Buffy was led out the door she tried again, “Please. You don't understand...”

“You'd do well to keep your mouth shut, missy,” the officer snapped, they turned down the hall and saw Snyder coming down followed by two more officers.

“But I didn't ‘do’ anything... uh, Officer... uh, Jackson,” Buffy said as she strained to read his nametag.

“Why do I find that so very hard to believe?” Snyder sneered.

With Buffy in tow, Officer Jackson turned to the newcomers, “In there.” He said nodding behind him, who returned his nod and entered the library, before looking at Snyder, “You know this girl?”

Snyder looked at Buffy as if she was some loathsome creature, “Buffy Summers. If there's trouble, she's behind it.”

“You stupid little troll. You have ‘no’ idea!” Buffy snapped.

“Attitude problem. Serious attitude problem. She burned down the gym in her last school, you know,” Snyder said dismissing Buffy’s anger.

Buffy faced Officer Jackson, “Look, I just wanna know if my friends are okay,” she pleaded.

“All right, that's enough,” snapped the officer. He spun Buffy back around and pushed her up against the wall; he got out his handcuffs and began to read her, her rights, “You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and...”

Buffy glanced over her shoulder, and without warning elbowed the officer in the face. He grunted in pain and stumbled backward into the lockers. She grabbed him by the neck flipping him over onto his back.

Snyder took a step back worried that he would be next, “I’m just a civil servant...” He quaked. He was too relieved not to be attacked to move, and just let her run down the hall.

The female officer came out of the library having heard the commotion to see Jackson on the floor spouting blood from his nose, and Buffy running away. She raised her gun and took aim at Buffy. “Stop!” she commanded.

Snyder stood stock still in the middle of the hallway.

“Get down!” the officer ordered; Snyder dove to the side at the instruction.

Buffy glanced back as she turned down an adjacent hall, a bullet from the officer’s gun shattering the window of the hall door. The other two officers came out of the library, guns drawn. She waved them in Buffy's direction. As the foot pursuit began, she grabbed her radio mic at her shoulder, “All units, Officer down. I repeat officer down. The suspect is on foot at the high school. Homicide suspect. Female, blonde, approximately sixteen years old. Wearing beige slacks and a knee length blue coat. Suspect is ‘very’ dangerous,” she said into it.

Buffy fled into the night...

--------------

Sunnydale General Hospital

Buffy turned the corner, wearing a wool cap and a long, dark coat. She kept her eyes down, her hair a curtain blocking the view of her face. She searched the patient files hanging on the wall, letting out a small sigh when she didn’t find any of her friends’ names. She continued slowly down the hall, avoiding the eyes of another passing doctor. She checked another series of files, but still found nothing. Cautiously, she turned down the left passageway.

Xander walked up behind her and placed a hand on her shoulder, “Hey stealthy slayer.”

Buffy gasped thinking she had been discovered, she spun around ready to attack, but relaxed when she realised who it was. “Xander!” she cried hugging him tightly, “Ohhh...” Xander hugged her back, they held each other for a long moment, before Buffy let go. “I was so worried, I didn't know if you were okay. The cops were...”

“Yeah,” Xander said, “I-I heard them chase you out. I was just coming out of it.” he held up his arm in a cast, “Souvenir,” he said with a little smile.

“What about the others, a-a-about Willow?” Buffy asked in a worried tone of voice. At that moment Xander saw two police officers coming into the hall behind her. “Are they okay?” Buffy beseeched, misconstruing the look on his face.

She was momentarily taken aback when Xander pulled her into another tight hug, but she went along with it when she glimpsed the officers. Buffy hid her face in Xander's shoulder while they headed down the hall in the direction that she had come. When the police had turned the corner the two friends separated again. Buffy gave Xander a little smile, “Okay. That was about equal parts protecting me and copping a feel, right?”

Xander didn't smile back. He turned his face down looking sad and very worried. “What is it?” Buffy demanded beginning to get worried again.

--------------

Giles lay unconscious in his hospital bed. He had a bandaged forehead and a black eye, but otherwise seemed healthy. A worried looking Buffy and Xander stood next to the bed.

“The doctor said it was head trauma. He can wake up at anytime, but, um... the longer it lasts, the... less likely it is,” Xander told Buffy quietly.

Buffy took her Watcher’s hand, absently rubbing the back, “I never should've let Willow try to do that curse. Angel must've known.”

“The doctors found a contact number in England, I guess it was the Council, they told the doctors to do whatever it takes and they will pay the bill.”

Buffy snorted, “Sounds like them, full medical cover for the watchers... slayers though... well there’s always another,” she said somewhat bitterly thinking of Kendra. “Although I am glad they will do whatever it takes to fix him, I don’t want to lose another Watcher.”

“What do you mean?” asked Xander.

“Merrick, the Watcher that found me in LA was killed protecting me from a vamp. I don’t think I could stand losing Giles the same way.” Buffy heard the door open and turned quickly to see who it was.

Xander looked over his shoulder too, and they saw Cordelia come in. Xander quickly moved over to her. “Hey,” he said.

Cordelia whispered, “Hey,” as they exchanged a kiss and held each other close. She sighed, “How is he?” they separated and looked at Giles; “The doctor told me that...” she trailed off.

“Yeah. We're, uh... still waiting,” said Xander giving Cordelia’s hand a gentle squeeze.

Buffy pulled her eyes away from Giles to look at the cheerleader, “You okay?” she asked.

Cordelia snorted, “I ran. I think I made it through three counties before I realized nobody was chasing me. Not too brave, but great for the legs.”

Buffy gave her an understanding smile, “It was the right thing to do. Did Willow keep up with you?” she asked.

Cordelia frowned, “Ms Calendar took a bolt through the neck, after Willow pushed me out the way of one of the bookcases I lost sight of her,” she told them.

“Willow was trapped under the bookcase,” Xander explained, “I was trying to get it off her when a vamp hit me, the next I knew was when I heard the cops chasing you,” he said looking at Buffy in near panic that something could have happened to his best friend.

Buffy tried to reason it out, “Well they’re not likely to be in the hospital. Where are they?”

“Maybe they’re in the morgue,” suggested the cheerleader, “I mean if the police thought they were dead they’d have put them there right?” Cordelia looked to Xander in confirmation.

“I don’t know,” Xander said shaking his head.

Buffy looked quickly at Giles before turning to her two friends, “I gotta go find Willow, will you...”

“Go, we’ll watch him, just find Willow okay?” said Xander.

Buffy nodded before rushing out the door.

--------------

Jenny began to come around, she could feel the manacles around her wrists, ‘This is getting old,’ Angelus stood facing her waiting for the elder immortal to regain consciousness. “Ugh...” she moaned as she began to stir a bit and exhaled, “What...” she began to ask when she saw Angelus.

Angelus smiled sweetly, “Hi, teach. I wasn't sure when you were gonna wake up.”

Jenny straightened up slowly, testing the manacles around her wrists, “What do you want with us?” she said when she saw Willow chained to the wall next to her.

Angelus grinned, “I wanna torture you again. I used to love it, and it's been a ‘long’ time. I mean, the last time I really tortured somebody, they didn't even ‘have’ chainsaws.” He strolled past Jenny and Willow over to the statue of Acathla. Jenny’s gaze followed him, seeing the stone demon with the sword protruding from its chest for the first time.

Angelus noticed Jenny's stare. “Oh, yeah. Acathla. He's an even harder guy to wake up than you are. I mean, I get him from the museum, think I have all the right phrases... blood on my hands, you know the kind of thing. Nothing. I got nothing. Big doughnut hole for my troubles. It turns out I need an immortal mother and child.” He stroked his chin thoughtfully, “Hey, you're pretty up on these things. You could probably... tell me what that means.” He approached Jenny again, “But honestly, I sorta hope we can play for a bit...” he stopped in front of her, “'Cause I ‘really’ wanna torture you and your child.” Turning an evil stare towards a rightfully frightened Willow.

--------------

Summers house

A police officer came down the stairs to stand next to Detective Stein, he handed the detective a picture he found of Buffy.

“No, i-it's impossible. There... there's been some terrible mistake.” ‘Buffy what have you done?’ Joyce told the detective.

“And you have no idea where your daughter is?” asked Stein.

“No, I...” Joyce tried to explain.

“Do you always let your daughter stay out this late?” he asked glancing at the picture.

Joyce shook her head, “No. She goes out; I can’t always keep track,” she said somewhat embarrassed, ‘This has to stop, it will stop, Buffy you are so grounded your grandchildren will be in collage before it ends.’ “She said she was going to her friend Xander's house. Maybe she slept over,” she suddenly remembered Buffy and Willow had said something about being with the young man. She went pale, ‘My god what if it was another immortal? No Joyce you’re not thinking. Joe would have given you the heads up if another immortal was in town.’

“Is that Alexander Harris?”

Joyce nodded again, “Yes.”

Detective Stein looked at the officer, “Second victim.”

“What?” Joyce asked.

Stein ignored Joyce’s question, “Your daughter has a history of violence, doesn't she, Ms. Summers?” He nodded for the officer to leave the house.

“Well...” Joyce began to hedge.

“You call us.” Detective Stein said smugly, he pulled out his wallet, “Okay?” he dug out a card, handing it to Joyce, “If she decides to stop by. Be best if she just comes in.” He told her before walking out, leaving a very worried and confused Joyce standing in the doorway.

--------------

Buffy, having found no sign of the immortals in the morgue, figured that if Willow and Jenny had got out, Jenny’s home would be the most likely destination. When she reached the house the door was ajar, Buffy just walked in hoping that the two immortals were there, “Willow! Jenny!” she called out looking around the silent home.

Behind her Whistler came down the stairs, “I don't think Willow’s here.”
Buffy spun around to face him, “Who are you?”

“Whistler,” he said introducing himself.

Buffy started to become suspicious, “What are you doing here?”

Whistler reached the base of the stairs, “I'm waiting for you.”

“Why?” asked Buffy.

“'Cause I-I need a date to the prom. My mother says I may attend, but no fondling,” Whistler said, smirking.

‘I am so ‘not’ in the mood for this,’ Buffy closed the space between them; she grabbed him by the throat and shoved him up against the wall. “I have had a ‘really’ bad day, okay? If you have information worth hearing, then I am grateful for it. If you're gonna crack jokes, then I'm gonna pull out your ribcage and wear it as a hat.” She growled letting him go.

Whistler shrugged his shoulders as he straightened his clothes, “Hello to the imagery. Very nice,” he said lightly before becoming serious, “It wasn't supposed to go down like this.” He moved away from the wall, “Nobody saw you coming. I figured this for Angel's big day. I thought he was here to ‘stop’ Acathla, not to bring him forth. Then you two made with the smooches... now he's a creep again.”

“We didn’t know...,” said Buffy quietly, the guilt thick on her voice.

Whistler gave her a small smile, “Hey, not here to judge. Body like yours...” the smile changed to a smirk, “I’d pretty much give up my soul for a shot at that, too.” He became serious again, “But it took Angel off the roster. Which puts you on the spot in a big way. What are you gonna do? W-what are you prepared to do?”

“Whatever I have to,” Buffy snapped.

“Maybe I should ask, what are you prepared to give up.”

Buffy started to become agitated again, her arms flailing. “You don't have anything useful to tell me, do you? What are you, just some immortal demon sent down to even the score between good and evil?”

“Wow. Good guess,” Whistler said giving her an impressed look.

Buffy stepped into his personal space again, “Well, why don't you try getting off your immortal ass and fight evil once in a while? 'Cause I'm tired of doing this by myself.”

“In the end, you're always by yourself. You're all you've got. That's the point,” Whistler said somewhat sadly.

“Spare me,” Buffy said disgusted and started to leave.

“The sword isn't enough. You gotta be ready.” Whistler called after her, “You gotta know how to use it!” He told her as she slammed the door. “Man, this is gonna be close...” he said to himself.

--------------

Buffy cut through the park heading home, her head down. A car drove by. She stepped into the street and watched as the car carried on down the road. When she turned back she saw a police car coming, but didn't run, instead hoping that the officer wouldn't notice her.

He had seen her; he turned on his blues and twos letting the siren give a brief loud tone. He pulled the car into the curb and stopped. Buffy ignored him and kept walking right past the front of the vehicle.

The officer drew his gun as he got out, “Hold right there!” he called to her. Buffy spun around to see him aiming his gun at her. “Put your hands on your head! Do it!” he ordered.

She stared at his gun, frightened, and began to raise her hands. Suddenly the gun went flying out of the officer's hands. The next kick got him in the face and the third in the shin, before being grabbed and thrown onto the hood of his car, where he lay unconscious.

His attacker faced a surprised Buffy. “Hello, cutie,” smiled Spike taking a step towards the Slayer. She immediately punched him twice in the face. He grabbed her by the shoulders to restrain her, but she brought her knee up into his gut. “Now, you hold on for a second!” he growled giving her a good shove away. Buffy reached into her coat and pulled out a stake. Spike jumped back and held up his hands in surrender. “Hey! White flag here. I quit.”

Buffy looked at him in disbelief, “Let me clear this up for you. We're mortal enemies. We don't get time-outs.”

“You want to go around, pet; I'll have a gay old time of it. You want to stop Angel... we're gonna have to play this a bit differently,” Spike told her.

Buffy narrowed her eyes, “What are you talking about?” she asked still holding the stake at the ready.

“I'm talking about your ex, pet. I'm talking about putting him in the bloody ground,” Spike snapped.

Buffy chuckled a little manic, “This has gotta be the ‘lamest’ trick you guys have ever thought up,” she said lowering her stake.

“He's got your girlfriend and the teacher. Right now, he's probably torturing them,” Spike said.

‘Willow.’ “What do you want?” Buffy said a little defeated.

Spike looked intensely at her, “I told you. I want to stop Angel.” he snickered, “I want to save the world.”

Buffy looked somewhat stunned, “Okay. You do remember that you're a vampire, right?” she said sarcastically.

“We like to talk big,” explained Spike indicating himself, “Vampires do. 'I'm going to destroy the world.'” he looked at the officer, “That's just tough guy talk.” He went over to the car and sat on the hood, “Strutting around with your friends over a pint of blood. The truth is I like this world.” Spike said as he pulled the cigarette pack from the officer's shirt pocket, “You've got... dog racing, Manchester United,” pulling one out and dropped the pack on the officer, “And you've got people. Billions of people walking around like Happy Meals with legs. It's all right here.” He lit the cigarette and took a long drag, “But then someone comes along with a vision. With a real... passion for destruction.” He gave Buffy a serious look, “Angel could pull it off. Goodbye, Piccadilly. Farewell, Leicester Bloody Square. You know what I'm saying?”

“Uh, sort of?” she said a little confused.

“Why don’t you put that stake down?” Spike said nodding towards Mr Pointy.

“‘Cause of the whole ‘not believing you’ issue. You might not be down with Angel but why would you come to me?”

Spike stood and took another drag, but didn't look at the slayer, “I want Dru back. I want it like it was before he came back. The way she acts around him...”

“You're pathetic,” snapped Buffy. He punched her in the face. She punched him right back. “I lost a friend tonight!” she told him.

“I wasn't in on that raiding party,” Spike told her.

Buffy ignored him, “And I may lose more! The whole Earth may be sucked into Hell, and you want my help 'cause your girlfriend's a big ho? Well, let me take this opportunity to ‘not’ care.”

“I can't fight them both alone, and neither can you!” Spike pointed out.

Buffy punched him hard in the jaw, making him flinch. He straightened back up and felt his jaw, checking for blood.

“I hate you,” Buffy raged.

“And I'm all you've got,” said Spike.

At that moment the police officer began to stir on the hood of the car.

Buffy looked down briefly, “All right. Talk.”

Spike turned to the officer, “I'm just gonna kill this guy.” Buffy cleared her throat loudly. Spike turned to her realising she wouldn’t approve. “Oh, right.”

Buffy raised her eyebrows at him, “Let's get inside.”

They left as the police officer began to wake up and feel his head.

--------------

Buffy and Spike continued to eye each other as they headed up the path to her house. Just then Joyce pulled up in her Jeep and saw them. “Buffy?” she called out.

Buffy gave her mother a quick glance, before continuing to watch Spike.

“Where have you been?” Joyce asked as she stopped the car and got out, “Are you okay?” she said coming over, “The police were here. Are you okay? I went looking for you.”

“Mum, let's go inside, and I can explain,” said Buffy, ‘Oh right Summers, what are you going to say?’

Joyce was becoming hysterical, “Who is this man?” she looked at Spike not giving her daughter time to answer, “Who are you?” then returned to Buffy, “Are you okay?”

Buffy hearing the panic in her mum’s voice; she tried to explain, “Mum! I'm okay. I was... busy... doing something. And this is Spike, and he was doing... it... too.” ‘God Summer’s you sound pathetic.’

Joyce frowned, “Doing what? Buffy, terrible things have happened. What were you doing?” ‘Out screwing more vampires... Joyce that’s a terrible thing to think about your own daughter.’

Spike smirked at the exchange, “What, your mum doesn't know?”

Buffy glared at Spike. ‘I am so going to put a stake through your heart, bastard.’

Joyce turned to Spike, “Know what?”

Buffy began to panic slightly, “That I'm, uh... in a band. A-a rock band with Spike here.” She shot Spike a look that said ‘If you mess this up you are so dead’.

Spike nodded vigorously, “Right. She plays the, the triangle.”

“Drums,” Buffy cried out at the same time.

Spike quickly corrected himself, “Drums, yeah. She's, uh, hell on the old skins, you know.”

Joyce stared at them for a second unconvinced, “Hmm. And, uh, what do you do?”

“Well, I sing,” answered Spike.

“You know what? Why don't we go inside, and, and we can talk about this,” Buffy nodded. ‘Anything to give me time to come up with a better cover story.’ She started toward the door, and Spike followed.

Joyce just stood looking at them, “Well I'm not sure how I feel about this...,” she said with some apprehension.

Just as Buffy and Spike got to the porch she whispered to the vampire, “You think she’s buying it?”

Before Spike had a chance to reply, a vampire rushed across the porch, he pushed past Buffy and Spike and jumped down the steps bent on attacking Joyce. She screamed struggling to get away. Buffy grabbed him by the shoulders and forced him around to face Spike. Letting him go she pulled out a stake while Spike gave him a series of punches to the face. Spike's last blow sent the vampire spinning around and towards the Slayer who thrust the stake into his chest instantly turning him to dust. Joyce just stared in shock.

Spike stepped down from the porch and looked at the pile of ash. “One of Angel's boys,” he told the Slayer.

“Yeah, probably watching me. Or you,” said Buffy glancing at him.

Spike nodded, “Yeah. He won't get a chance to tattle on us now.”

Joyce was in shock; although she knew about vampires, and how to destroy them she had never seen it, “Buffy... what... is going on? What are you?”

Buffy looked at her mother for a moment, exchanged a look with Spike, ‘Oh well so much for the band story.’ She stepped up to her mother and looked up at her, hoping against hope for understanding. “Mum... I'm a Vampire Slayer.”

Joyce just blinked her eyes, raised her eyebrows and shook her head in complete dismay. “B-but...” she tried to say, her thoughts and emotions in a whirl.

Buffy sighed heavily, “Let’s go inside and I’ll explain everything,” she said gently as she took her mother’s arm and guided her towards the door.

--------------

The hospital/Summers house

Xander brought Giles a bowl of Jell-O who looked at it like it was something that had been scrapped off his shoe. He turned his attention away from it and back to the phone conversation with Buffy. “I'm fine, Buffy, really. I obviously don't feel 100%, but... I'm awake, and I know my name and who your President is and god help me, who the British Prime Minister is, so the doctors don't think there is going to be any permanent damage.”

Buffy was in her kitchen, “Thank God. So sorry I can't be there.”

“I know. I'm sorry we didn't get to cure Angel,” sighed Giles.

“Don't be. It just... it wasn't meant to be. I know I’m never gonna get Angel back the way he was and, you know, it just makes it easier,” Buffy told him.

“Have you had any luck finding Willow or Jenny?” asked Giles changing the subject.

Buffy had a small smile on her face hearing the worry in his voice, “Yep. I got a lucky break.”

“What do you mean?” asked Giles curiously.

“You wouldn't believe me if I told you,” said Buffy giving a little laugh. “You remember that funky-looking mansion on Crawford Street? Angel is holed up there; I’m going in just before dawn tomorrow.” She hesitated before broaching the worry she had for Willow, “Do you, um... do you think Willow is still alive?” she asked, a lump coming to her throat.

Giles was silent for a moment, sympathising with his Slayer being worried for the redhead but also for Jenny, “Yes they are still alive. The ritual Angel has to perform calls for ‘The power of the immortal mother through the child’, I believe it refers to Jenny and Willow,” he explained. “It is hard to tell, the translation on the cover stone had not been completely uncovered when I saw it at the museum.”

--------------

As Buffy entered the living room the silence was deafening. She stood just inside the doorway with her arms crossed. Spike and Joyce both got up, Joyce was holding a glass of bourbon.

“Is Mr Giles all right?” asked Joyce.

Buffy nodded absently at her mother, while staring intensively at Spike, “Yeah. He's fine. All right Spike, talk. What's the deal?”

“Simple. You let me and Dru skip town, I help you kill Angel,” said Spike.

Joyce looked shocked and confused as realisation dawned on her, ‘Spike’s a vampire.’

Buffy shook her head, “Forget about Drusilla. She doesn't walk.”

“There's no deal without Dru,” Spike countered.

“She killed Kendra,” Buffy said a little anger coming to her voice.

Spike smirked, “Dru bagged a Slayer?” he chuckled, “She didn't tell me!” he glanced to Joyce, smiling, “Hey, good for her! Though not from your perspective, I suppose.” He added quickly on seeing the look from Buffy.

“I can't believe I invited you into my house,” Buffy said with contempt.

Joyce sighed with relief, “So you didn't kill that girl.”

Buffy gave her mother a withering look, “Of course not. She was a Slayer, mum.”

Joyce frowned, “Like you?” ‘She must have become the Slayer when Kendra died!’

Buffy gave her a thin smile and a nodded, “Yeah mum, something like that.”

“Look,” Spike growled pulling Buffy aside, “This deal works for me one way. Full stop. Me and Dru for Angel.”

“Honey, a-are you sure you're a Vampire Slayer?” Joyce said in a panic.

“I'll take her out of the country. You'll never hear from us again, I ‘bloody’ well hope,” Spike told the Slayer.

Buffy ignored her mother obvious confusion, “Fine. Get back to the mansion. Make sure Willow is all right,” she told the vampire.

“I-I mean, have you tried ‘not’ being a Slayer?” asked Joyce, ‘What are you saying Joyce?’

They both looked at her. “Mum!” exclaimed Buffy, while Spike sighed in exasperation at Joyce. Buffy turned to Spike, “Be ready to back me up when I make my move.” He nodded and walked around her toward the door. “If Willow dies...” Spike stopped and turned back to Buffy, “Dru dies,” she told him. He gave her a final stare before heading out the door.

Joyce was trying to work around the facts, “It's because you didn't have a strong father figure, isn't it?” ‘What am I saying, why is this so hard all of a sudden, a week ago I had planned on telling her everything.’

Buffy sigh, “It's just fate, Mum. I'm the Slayer. Accept it.”

“We should call the police,” Joyce said head for the kitchen.

Buffy chased after her mother, “No. We're not calling the police.”

Joyce stopped and faced her daughter, smiling, “Well, now that we know that you're innocent, it's...”

Buffy was momentarily thrown, “What? You thought I was guilty. Jeez, feelin' the love in ‘this’ room,” she said sarcastically.

Joyce shook her head, “No, I didn't think that. It's just... now we have proof.”

“We have my word mum. Not proof,” Buffy pointed out.

Joyce continued heading for the kitchen, “Look, I am sure that they will understand.”

Buffy followed closely taking her mother’s arm, “Get them involved, you'll get them killed.”

“Well, you're not gonna hurt them,” ‘You can’t if you’re a Slayer.’

“I'm a Slayer, not a postal worker,” Buffy pointed out. Her mother picked up the phone, and Buffy slapped her hand onto the switch hook. “The cops can't fight demons.” She took the phone from her mother, “I have to do it,” she said somewhat sadly putting the phone back in its cradle.

“Do what?”

“I’m gonna need Kendra’s sword,” Buffy said mostly to herself.

“Sword? Buffy, what’s happening?” Joyce demanded, “What happened tonight.”

“Just have another drink, okay?” Buffy muttered not wanting to deal with her mother just at that moment starting to walk off.

Joyce threw her glass aside in anger, causing it to break on the wall making Buffy momentarily flinch. “Don't you talk to me like that.” Buffy stopped in her tracks, “You don't get to just dump something like this on me and pretend it's nothing!”

Buffy looked somewhat sadly at her mother, “I'm sorry mum, but I don't have time for this,” she started moving towards the door again.

“No! I am tired of 'I don't have time' or-or 'you wouldn't understand'.” Buffy turned to face her again, “I am your mother, and you will ‘make’ time to explain what is happening.”

Buffy looked annoyed at her mother, “I told you. I'm a Vampire Slayer,” she snapped.

“Well, I just can't accept that!” Joyce said somewhat haughtily.

Buffy stepped a little closer, getting a little angry that her mum was keeping her from saving Willow. “Open your eyes mum. What do you think has been going on for the past two years? The fights, the weird occurrences. How many times have you washed blood out of my clothing, and you still haven't figured it out?”

Joyce raised her voice angrily, both at Buffy’s statement and her own guilt, “Well, it stops now!”

Buffy raised her own voice, “No, it doesn't stop! It ‘never’ stops! Do-do you think I chose to be like this. Do you have any idea how lonely it is, how dangerous?” she said, the despair coming across, “I would ‘love’ to be upstairs watching TV or gossiping about other girls or... God, even studying! But I have to save the world... again.”

“No. It’s insane,” Joyce said taking Buffy by the shoulders, “Buffy, you need help with this.”

Buffy knocking away her mum's arms, “I'm ‘not’ crazy, mum! What I need is for you to chill. I’ll be back, I’ll explain, but I gotta go... now,” misunderstanding what her mother was trying to say.

Joyce shook her head, “No. I am not letting you out of this house alone,” she said making an attempt to grab her daughter’s shoulders again.

“You can't stop me,” said Buffy shoving her back into the island and heading for the door, opened it and stepped out.

Joyce became very angry for a moment, and in despair that her daughter may very well be going to her death, said something that even years later she could not believe she said; “You walk out of this house, don't even ‘think’ about coming back!”

Buffy was momentarily torn as to what to do. Then one face appeared before her, a smiling redhead with an adorable face and the cutest babble. She gave her mother a long stare before turning her back on the house.

Joyce collapsed to the floor the tears streaming down her cheeks having failed once again at communicating with her daughter. “Oh Buffy, please come back. I-I’m sorry, don’t leave me.”

--------------

The library

The main area was cordoned off with yellow crime scene tape. Buffy walked in and pulled down the tape. As she headed toward the now upright table, she looked down at the chalk outline of Kendra on the floor, passing it slowly careful not to step on it. When she reached the table she looked around for a moment at the broken Orb, candles and other things that were obviously scattered when the vampires attacked. She reached under the table, pulling out Kendra's large duffel bag and set it on the table.

As she went through it Snyder came into the library. “You do know this is a crime scene, don't you?” Buffy looked up at him as he approached, “But then... you're a criminal, so that pretty much works out,” he stopped near the counter.

Buffy narrowed her eyes slightly as realisation came to her, “You know I didn't do it. The police will figure it out.”

“In case you haven't noticed, the police of Sunnydale are ‘deeply’ stupid,” Snyder sneered taking a few steps closer, “It doesn't matter anyway. Whatever they find, you've proven too much of a liability for this school.” He took a breath for effect, “These are the moments you want to savour. You wish time would stop so that you could live them over and over again... You're expelled,” he smiled smugly.

Buffy pulled the sword out. She held it up and turned it in her hand. Snyder’s gaze shifted nervously between the sword and Buffy. He gulped.

Buffy gazed at the polished blade before looking at the principal, enjoying the look of fear on his face, “You never ever got a single date in high school, did you?”

“Your point being?” asked Snyder a little annoyed.

Buffy walked towards the library doors and leaned the blade in towards his face as she passed him. He took a step back nervously and watched her go. This time she made no attempt to avoid the chalk markings on the floor.

Snyder waited until he was sure she was gone before pulling out his cell phone and dialling. When he heard someone pick up at the other end, “It's Snyder. Tell the Mayor I have good news...”

Neither Buffy nor Snyder noticed Wesley slip from behind the closest upright bookcase and rush out the rear exit.

--------------

Jenny’s house

Whistler walked into the kitchen and looked around. He spotted a bottle of sherry and took a sniff, but then saw that it was empty. He put it back down and kept looking around.

Buffy came in, watching the man case Jenny’s refrigerator. “Whistler. What did you mean, the sword isn't enough?” she asked.

Whistler found a bottle of beer, “You know, raiding an immortal’s fridge is like raiding an Englishman's. You're never gonna get the good stuff.”

“Tell me how to use it,” Buffy asked a little annoyed.

Whistler took a swig and looked back at Buffy, “Willow's the key. When Angel kills Jenny your little redhead will absorb her Quickening, he then drinks from her at that moment, the power of Jenny’s Quickening will infuse his body with the power to withdraw the sword. You see the knight that first slew Acathla was an immortal. He was killed by the first immortal Jenny fought and defeated, she is the only one at this moment that can pull the sword out then you girlfriend will get it from the Quickening, and through Willow your ex gets the power.

“In fact now I think about it? All this could have been avoided if anyone of the main players had never come to Sunnydale.” Whistler saw the confusion on the Slayer’s face, “Angel came here because he was supposed to help you stop Acathla coming forth, Jenny came here because her tribe asked her to keep an eye on Angel and the curse, and you and your mother came here because your mum is Jenny’s Watcher... The Powers have really surpassed themselves this time.”

“What do you mean my mum’s Jenny’s Watcher? Jenny’s not a Slayer.”

“So neither Jenny nor Willow told you about their watchers?”

Buffy shook her head, “Ah, No.”

“Each immortal has a Watcher that they normally don’t know the identity of. These watchers don’t normally interfere with those they watch, but your mum has been known too on occasions.”

Realisation dawned on Buffy, “She threw the Molotov cocktail!”

“Yeah that was your mum, she’s quite sassy, probably where you get yours from,” Whistler smiled gently at her.

“How come Giles didn’t know about my mum being a Watcher?”

“There not the same organization, not anymore anyway they are barely on speaking terms these days, some kind of power struggle 5000 years ago the Slayer watchers broke from the immortal watchers.”

Getting back to the subject at hand, “How do I stop it?” Buffy asked almost to low for the demon to hear.

“Once Angelus beheads Jenny and Willow begins to absorb the Quickening there is only two things that can stop Acathla opening his big mouth. Kill Angelus before he draws the sword,” Whistler hesitated for a moment before telling her the rest, “Or Willow's blood and death will close it. One blow will send her and Acathla straight to Hell. But I strongly suggest that you get there before that happens, 'cause the faster you kill Angel, the easier it's gonna be on you.”

“Don't worry about me,” Buffy said angrily ‘No way will my Willow die.’

“It's all on the line here, kid,” Whistler said gently sensing what she was thinking. ‘You bastards, how can you put this kid through the ringer like this.’

‘She has much to do, this will make her stronger.’ a detached voice told him.

‘Yeah or break her, you are too far removed, it has been eons since you interacted directly with humans, you sometimes place too much on your chosen warriors.’

‘Maybe messenger, but that is not for you to decide.’

‘Yeah just watch them get destroyed.’

‘SILENCE DEMON.’ Whistler’s mind recoiled in pain that somehow did not reach his face.

“I can deal,” Buffy said sadly, “I got nothing left to lose.” She walked out the door.

“Wrong, kid. You got one more thing,” Whistler said quietly.

--------------

Main hall of the mansion

Drusilla stood at one end of the room near the large fireplace, Spike in his wheelchair at her side.

Angelus, sword in hand walked over to the two Immortals chained to the wall. He was ready to begin the ritual. “Well its time for someone to leave us,” he smiled sweetly at Jenny, “Such a shame, you taste so sweet, but maybe Willow will survive the trip to hell and I can feed on her for eternity.”

As Angelus raised the sword, Willow realised that it was Jenny’s own, “NO!” she screamed as the blade swept down and through her friend and mentor’s neck. She felt her legs go from under her, “Oh goddess, please no, I don’t want it please no,” she cried as Jenny’s Quickening began to envelope her, she tried to get away from it but the manacles were too strong. It was almost like having your life flash before you but it was someone else’s, and she felt the tears streaming down her cheeks at the loss of her friend as well as at the intense pain ripping through her body. After almost a minute she felt the Quickening subsiding, her body now hanging by the manacles.

Willow felt Angelus take hold of her, she tried to pull away but she was still too weak. She felt his fangs enter her neck and began to feel light-headed as her life’s blood was drawn out of her.

After a moment, Angelus staggered back from the young immortal, he had never felt so strong, he had drunk immortal blood many times but this felt different! Somehow he had been able to take part of the Quickening; he had flashes of other people’s lives from over the centuries. “Wow what a rush,” he said as he began to recover, he grinned at Drusilla before turning his attention to the stone demon.

Walking purposely towards it, he began to recite the ritual, “Acathla... Mundatus sum... pro te necavi. Sanguinem meum... pro te effundam... quo me dignum... esse demonstrem.” (Acathla... I have been cleansed... I will bleed for you and prove myself worthy.) He used the blade to cut his right hand before dropping it and reaching out for the sword sticking out of the demon’s chest. “Now, Acathla... You will be free. And so will we all.”

Before Angelus could grasp the sword, he heard his favourite plaything approach and dust one of his boys. He turned to look at Buffy, as did all the others, amusement covering his face.

Buffy met his gaze, “Hello, lover,” she said all too sweetly as she moved near Willow who had not yet recovered from the blood loss.

“I really don't have time for you,” Angelus said somewhat bored.

“You don't have a lot of time ‘left’,” Buffy said angrily at seeing the healing fang marks on her Willow’s neck.

“Coming on kind of strong, don't you think? You're playing some deep odds here. Do you really think you can take us all?” smirked Angelus.

“No. I don't,” said Buffy returning his smirk.

While everyone’s attention was on Buffy, Spike took the opportunity to get up from his wheelchair and with a determined look on his face hit Angelus hard across the back with an iron bar. Angelus cried out in pain as he collapsed to the floor where Spike continued to lay into him.

Drusilla stared at Spike her insane mind finding it difficult to comprehend what her childe was doing!

Buffy used Kendra’s sword to sever the manacle chain holding Willow’s right wrist before using Drusilla’s confusion to begin to close the distance between herself and the insane vampire. Unfortunately, the remaining vampire guard recovered from the shock of Spike’s attack on Angelus and attacked Buffy from the side. Buffy spun around to face him, but he punched her, her sword dropping from her hand as she hit a chair, shattering it and falling to the floor. Recovering quickly she tripped him as he came at her again and scrambled to her feet, ready to fight. He came at her again with a series of punches, which she easily blocked.

Meanwhile Spike was continuing to pound Angelus. “Painful, isn't it?” he smirked.

Drusilla was beginning to freak now, seeing the plan falling apart she tackled Spike, taking him down to the floor, screaming insanely all the while.

Buffy's assailant backhand punched her in the face, and she found herself staggering into a chair by the wall but she quickly recovered to block another swing, bringing her knee up into his stomach, he doubled over and she kicked him in the face, knocking him to the floor. She spied a pile of wood fragments that had once been the chair and grabbed a piece. The vampire got to his feet moving back into the fray. He ducked a roundhouse kick and blocked the follow up as Buffy tried to position herself for the kill.

Spike and Drusilla got up from the floor and faced off against each other. “I don't want to hurt you, baby.” She grabbed him by the throat and shoved him into the wall. He slapped her arm aside and punched her in the face, “Doesn't mean I won't.”

The vampire Buffy was fighting was more competent than most, not giving her an opening to dust him.

Drusilla swiped at Spike with her hand and left four parallel scratches across his cheek. She followed up with a punch that knocked him to the floor.

Angelus began to come around groaning in pain. He rubbed his eyes and looked up at Acathla. Getting to his feet he staggered over to the demon.

Willow was just beginning to revive when she saw Angelus moving towards the demon, with Buffy in no position to stop him. “No,” she cried out as she struggled with the left manacle. For some reason she felt weak she couldn’t seem to clear her head, it almost felt like something was missing.

Buffy was finally getting the upper hand against the vampire as she blocked a kick and punched him, spun around and punching him again he fell onto his back. Buffy quickly followed him down with her stake and jammed it into his chest.

Behind her Angelus took the last few steps to Acathla, grabbing the sword stuck in the demon’s chest with his bloody hand. A blindingly bright light burst into the room.

Buffy looked up from her kill in time to witness Angelus pulling the sword from the demon's heart. With a few telltale sparks the light suddenly vanished. Angelus whipped the sword around in his hand and held it up to look at it. Buffy scrambled to get her own sword that lay nearby.

Drusilla looked up from her fight and gazed at Acathla with a smile, “Oh... Here he comes.”

Spike came up behind her and grabbed her around the throat with his arm, choking her.

Buffy held up her sword and faced off with Angelus. He held his own ready to fight. “You almost made it, Buff,” he taunted.

“It's not over yet,” Buffy shot back the anger at the things Angelus had put her through over the last few months.

“My boy Acathla here is about to wake up. You're going to Hell.”

“Save me a seat,” Buffy growled as she thrust at him with her sword, but he parried and swung around with a thrust of his own, as she moved to block.

“You’ve been practicing lover!”

They clashed blades several times, moving almost to fast for Willow to follow in her weakened state, Buffy ducked a wide arcing swing from him. “I’ve had a couple of great teachers, I’m a quick study.”

They faced off again, trading thrusts and parries with one another. Angelus tried another arcing swing from above, but she easily ducked and sidestepped out of the way. They faced off again in front of Acathla and traded a few more blows. Angelus tried a swing from above a third time, and again Buffy ducked it, escaping to the side. She jumped up on a low table and swung at his head. He parried, and swung at her legs. She jumped over his blade, landing on the floor. Angelus tried a wide swing again, and this time cut her superficially on the arm.

“You should have practiced more,” he said trying to take advantage of her distraction and came at her with his sword held high, but she dropped to the floor and rolled out of the way, so he only managed to smash a bowl on a table behind her.

Buffy kicked his legs out from under him and scrambled back up, “Maybe but I can still take you.” He turned to face her still on his knees and swung three times in rapid succession, all of which she parried. He swung a fourth time, and this time Buffy knocked his sword into the table with her parry and pinned it there. He backhanded her, and she spun away. He pulled the sword from the table and swung it hard at her. She blocked it, and kicked him in the stomach, making him double over. She jumped over him into the clear, he thrust, and she parried before he kicked her in her sword arm, and she stumbled back a step.

Angelus followed up pressing her hard; Buffy retreated out into the atrium trying to get time to recover. She lost her footing hitting the ground and scrambled back to her feet as Angelus slowly advanced. She spun around and swung at him, and he blocked her. Her sword bounced off of his and fell with the tip onto the low wall of a planting bed.

Angelus stamped on the blade before she could raise it again and knocked it from her grip, he spun around and elbowed her in the face, knocking her back into a stone table, which collapsed and fell with her.

Willow had finally managed to get free of the manacles; she had lost sight of Buffy and Angel when they moved outside, when she heard a deep thundering growl coming from Acathla as he began to wake.

Spike had finally strangled Drusilla into unconsciousness and she slumped over in his arms, “Sorry, baby. Wish there was another way.” He lifted her into his arms and started for the door. On the way he passed the doorway to the atrium and glanced outside, when he saw Buffy and Angel he stopped to take a better look. Buffy was backing up against the wall without her sword while Angelus slowly and deliberately advanced on her holding his. “God, he's gonna kill her,” he said to himself. He watched for another moment, then shrugged and headed for the garage with Drusilla.

Angelus played with his sword, idly pointing it at Buffy. She looked up at him, frightened. “Now that's everything, huh? No weapons... No friends... No hope.”

Buffy closed her eyes and steeled herself for whatever was coming.

“Take all that away... and what's left?” Angelus gloated; he drew the sword back ready to thrust it directly at her face.

“Me,” came a voice from behind him. Unnoticed by Buffy and Angel, Willow had slipped into the atrium and retrieved Buffy’s sword. Before he could turn to look she swept the sword through his neck.

Willow fell to her knees as the dust that had been Angel settled between her and Buffy she felt a sudden rush similar to a Quickening but without the lightshow.

Buffy rose and stepped over to Willow who looked up into the Slayer’s eyes, a sad look coming to her own face. “You okay Will?” she asked as she held out her hand.

Willow accepted the hand, rising she shook her head, “No. Buffy, Angel told us how you would be able to stop Acathla; in fact he taunted us with the fact you would have to kill me if he drew the sword before you could stop him.”

Buffy paled, shaking her head, “No there has to be another way!”

“Buffy you have to,” Willow pleaded with the Slayer, “If you don’t, Acathla will destroy the world. Buffy it would be my fault.”

Buffy turned and stormed back into the main hall, “I’m not listening to this,” she almost screamed.

Willow ran after her grabbing her by the arm and forcing the Slayer to face her, “Buffy I don’t want to die, but there’s no other way. You have to do it,” she said tears beginning to run down her cheeks.

“I said there has to be another way?”

Willow did something then that she would have never thought she was capable of doing. She raised her hand and slapped Buffy, hard. “Stop feeling sorry for yourself, the world needs saving again, and you have to do it,” she could see that Buffy was still resisting, “DO IT YOU BITCH,” she screamed.

Buffy just looked at her best friend holding her hand to the place Willow had slapped, tears coming to her eyes. She knew Willow was right, which if it was possible, was making it even harder “I love you Will, please don’t make me do this.”

Willow closed the distance between them taking Buffy’s face between her hands, “I love you to Buffy, I have from the day we met,” she said as she gently kissed the Slayer on the lips, pulling away and waiting a second for Buffy to open her eyes again she smiled gently, “You must do it, for me Buffy, do it for me.”

Buffy raised her hand to brush her fingers over Willow’s lips, across her cheek. She laid her hand on Willow’s cheek and kissed her back softly. Behind Willow the vortex was growing. Buffy broke off the kiss and looked deeply into Willow's eyes. “I love you,” she whispered.

Willow smiled “I love you too,” she said again.

Buffy touched Willow’s lips with her fingers. “Close your eyes baby,” she said gently.

Willow closed her eyes. She tried hard to stop the tears escaping her eyelids. Buffy stepped back drew back her sword and thrust it into the redhead’s chest. Willow’s eyes whipped open in surprise at the pain. A bright light emanated from the sword. Buffy stepped away from her. Willow reached out to the Slayer, “Buffy...”

Buffy did not realise she was doing it until she found herself holding onto her girlfriend. The power of the sword began to swirl into the vortex. It enveloped the two young women. When the light touched their joined hands it seemed to be repelled for a second. Then in a flash of brilliant white light the vortex imploded, and the stone demon exploded throwing Willow into Buffy and slamming them both into the wall where they slid to the floor unconscious.

--------------

Willow stirred, raising her head from Buffy’s breast looking around at the almost destroyed room. “Don’t you two make a cute couple!” came a male voice behind her.

Willow jumped up to face the strangely dressed man, “Who are you?” she asked as she looked around for any type of weapon. Spying her sword nearby she scrambled over and grabbed it to face the man again.

“The name’s Whistler,” said the man holding his hands up, “No need for the use of sharp objects.”

Willow, holding her sword at low guard positioned herself between the unconscious Slayer and the strange man, “What do you want?” she asked warily.

“Just here to explain a few things, like why you are not at this moment residing in a hell dimension,” Whistler smiled at the redhead.

“Alrighty then, I’ll bite. Why am I not in a hell dimension being forced to watch ‘Who’s the Boss’ reruns?”

“Simple sweetheart, love. Your little declaration of love gave you a ‘get out of jail’, or should I say hell, Free card. So what are you going to do with your good luck?” Willow frowned trying to figure out what this strange man was telling her, without even thinking about it she looked at Buffy. “She’s planning on leaving Sunnydale, she had a big fight with her mum, things got out of hand and her mum threw her out, both are going to need time to rebuild their relationship, she could use a girlfriend right about now.”

“I could never let her leave me,” smiled Willow, she looked back at Whistler but he had vanished. She frowned before turning back to the Slayer as Buffy started to come around. Kneeling beside her friend, she gave Buffy a smile that verged on a smirk, ‘Buffy loves me.’ Willow held her hand.

Buffy groaned, spots dancing before her eyes, she blinked several times as her vision began to clear. She became aware of a hand in hers, she looked to her left to see Willow smiling down at her, Buffy returned the smile, “Hey, what happened?”

“Well according to a guy called Whistler ‘cause we declared our love for each other somehow it stopped me being sent to hell. Pretty neat, huh?”

“Whistler was here?” asked Buffy as the redhead helped her rise.

“Ah I think so! He was sort of here then he wasn’t,” Willow tried to explain.

“Yeah he seems to have a way of doing that, he’s a demon sent down to even up the odds for our side or something like that,” said Buffy brushing off her cloths. She glanced at Willow out of the corner of her eye, “Ah about that! If you don’t want to take it any further I’ll understand,” she said unable to look at the redhead.

Buffy felt Willow’s arms envelope her in a hug, “I said I love you Buffy, I’d like to see where it takes us,” she released the Slayer, a little worry coming to her voice, “Unless you... ah don’t want to...”

Buffy looked up at Willow, she saw the worry on her friend’s face, “No I do want it’s just...”

“Just what Buffy?”

“I can’t stay here, I’m leaving, I need to get away somewhere I can think without the gang or school or slaying. Will you wait for me?”

“No,” Willow said, she saw her friend’s face fall; she could not keep the smile off her face, “Because, see, I’m coming too.”

Buffy shook her head, “No you can’t.”

“What do you mean, I can't?”

“I won't let you; you have too much to lose. You’re an A student, there is nothing out there for you.”

“Yes there is. There’s you, and anyway of the two people here, which is the boss of me?” said Willow.

“But Will I don’t know what I’ll do out there or even where I’ll go!” Buffy said.

“I know a place! No one will find us until you’re ready...”

Buffy shook her head, “I don’t think that will be possible. Whistler told me that mum was Jenny’s Watcher. I get the impression that they are very good at finding immortals.”

Willow smiled, “Hmm, I didn’t know about that, but it does explain why Mr Wyndham-Pryce was in the gallery the other day,” Willow could see the confusion on Buffy’s face, “When we shook hands I saw a strange tattoo on his wrist, when I mentioned it to Jenny she thought that he may have been her Watcher but I guess he is mine?”

“Which just makes my point, anyone we meet could be a Watcher,” pointed out Buffy.

“It won’t matter, they can’t enter where I’d take you, Cassandra’s home is in a sacred forest north of San Francisco, unless you are invited you could wander them for a hundred years and still not find her home.”

“Cassandra?”

“Yeah she’s a Wiccan high priestess, as a member of her coven I have a permanent invitation, we can stay there as long as you like.”

“Ok, ok we’ll go together but we need to get some things. I’ll meet you at the bus station in an hour.”

“Yeah, okay will do,” said Willow smiling as she turned to go.

--------------

Joyce climbed the stairs and looked down the hall at Buffy's door she thought she heard someone, “Buffy?” she called out in hope. She walked over to Buffy's door and looked in. The window was open, and some of Buffy's things were strewn across the bed. She stepped in and looked around. She saw a note on the bed among the clothes, picking up the note she read it with some trepidation. The tears began to rundown her cheeks as she collapsed on her daughter’s bed, “Buffy.”

--------------

The Library

Xander and Cordelia walked through the library doors to see the banged up Giles at the table. On seeing the couple Giles stood up, unable to stop a groan from escaping as a wave of dizziness swept over him, “What did you find out?” he asked with some trepidation.

“The cops were all over the place so we couldn’t get inside but did see one body bag being loaded into the coroner’s wagon,” Cordelia said sadly.

“If you want maybe Cordy and me could get into the morgue tonight and find out who they took away,” Xander said with very little enthusiasm.

“No that will not be necessary,” Giles said removing his glasses beginning to clean them, Xander would have swore that the Watcher’s eyes misted up, “The body will be Jenny’s,” he explained replacing his glasses, “And as Buffy obviously stopped Angel activating Acathla both she and Willow must have survived.”

“But where are they?” asked Xander worried that even with Giles explanation something could have still got his friends.

“Maybe they went somewhere to be alone,” said Cordelia quietly.

Giles nodded, “Yes you maybe right Cordelia. You two should get to class Principle Snyder is still watching us very closely. Meanwhile I’ll see if I can find out anything from the authorities.”

--------------

Bus Station

“The bus for San Francisco is boarding from bay 12, will all passengers please ensure their luggage is securely locked before handing it to the driver, thank you,” came a voice over the loud speakers.

“Well that’s us, I guess. Are you sure you want to do this Will?” asked Buffy for about the tenth time, as she stood holding her suitcase.

Willow smiled at the Slayer, slinging her backpack on her shoulder and picking up her suitcase, “Buffy, I love you... you know that still sounds weird hearing it out loud... I mean not in a bad way, but in a good weird way. It makes me all tingly like when I’m going to cast a spell... Well I guess you wouldn’t know about that not being a witch... Maybe it’s like slaying... you know when you’ve had a really good slay!” she babbled before scrunching up her nose, “Is it like slaying?”

Buffy could not help laughing, “I love you too Will, and yes it is like a good slay. Now come on we have a bus to catch,” she said grabbing the redhead’s hand and pulling her towards the bus driver who was stowing the bags.

They sat about halfway down the bus, Buffy by the window looking out, deep in thought as the bus pulled onto the highway. Willow studied her friend, ‘You’re doing the right thing Rosenberg, Cassandra can help her.’

Neither girl noticed a car parked nearby pull away and start to follow the bus as it headed out of town.

The End

A/N: Well that is it; I originally had no intention of writing a sequel, as I just wanted to prove to myself that I could finish a story! Until it occurred to me that no story is truly finished, just paused. Anyway I hope to start writing it later in the year, the next one will follow along season 3’s storylines, but without Angel????? Then onto season 4. BUT THAT WILL BE WHERE IT PAUSES PERMINENTLY.

Dave.

The End

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