Black Dress
By Darcy Galvan

Title: Black Dress
Author: Darcy Galvan
Rating: PG-13
Spoilers: season 5
Summary: Giles waits for Buffy while his conscience prays on him
Distribution: drop me a line first!
Feedback: will be shellacked and framed and added to my shrine.
Disclaimer: BTVS is all Joss & Co, and the song "Black Dress" belongs to The Normals.
Author's Note: This story was written before Into The Woods. Gee, I have a tendancy to kill characters off, huh? But in this case, it was necessary for my little brain blip. I was listening to the song "Black Dress" by The Normals and I thought, "Whoa, B/G brainstorm" and the black dress brought about the death and...I'm stopping now....


Will she walk slowly

Or will she come at all

 

Giles stood at Buffy's door, hands clasped so tightly before his rigid form that they fairly shook. He'd rung the bell nearly two minutes ago, yet he was still standing, still waiting for that jiggle of the knob. A normally unnoticeable noise that meant so much more on this afternoon. This cursed day. Giles had no idea if Buffy would answer the door at all, and if she didn't, he would not have been surprised. Riley's funeral was in twenty minutes and he'd come to pick Buffy up. Perhaps she'd gone with Willow or Xander.

 

I can't believe that I was watching

Can't believe I made the call

 

When they'd ambushed the nest of vampires in a group, it had seemed a standard maneuver. They planned to enter the crypt fast and hard, surprising the creatures and dispatching them with minimal difficulty. Vampires tended to be sluggish during the day, much as any normal human would be if they were suddenly woken in the depths of night. Buffy was in a different part of the cemetery, dealing with her own foes. Giles kept thinking in the days after, that if Buffy had been there with them, things might have turned out differently.

"I have a bad feeling about this, Giles," Riley stated, standing in front of the crypt. Giles had passed off the younger man's worries. Perhaps he really had no valid reason to humor Riley's unease. Maybe he'd been impatient, simply wanting to slay and go home to a decent meal, maybe a nap. Maybe his hidden distaste, the resentment so well concealed under layers of emotion, denial so strong that sometimes he even believed that he was Riley's friend. Perhaps that was why he had brushed the comment aside as they moved in.

The demon guarding the sleeping vampires caught the men by surprise. Vampires normally did not associate with other demons unless a plot that would benefit both parties arose. Maybe there had been such a plan that the Scoobies had not been aware of, but when all was said and done, Riley was lying on the floor, his swiftly spilling blood staining the previously dusty white marble slabs an obscene red. The demon was disintegrating slowly on the side, Riley's stake protruding from it's chest, Giles' from the throat. The vampires were gone, having combusted as they leapt, startled, from their slumber and unwittingly into bright daylight, their demise absurdly easy.

 

I can't get a handle on my thoughts now

Guess I've already made my mind

He's a soldier in my battle

I'm the king with too much time

 

Giles knelt by the boy. He really wasn't a boy anymore, but lying there, the sickening knowledge of his death dawning in eyes terrified and dull at once, he'd seemed dreadfully young. Giles held his hands over the wounds in vain, his left arm curled uselessly at his side, eyes blinking rapidly, stinging from the thin trickle of blood from the laceration arcing over his eyebrow down the temple.

Buffy entered, having successfully destroyed her vampires, to check on "The Testosterone Brigade" and was greeted by a heart-wrenching sight.

"Buffy..." Riley choked.

"I'm sorry, I'm so sorry," Giles gasped, still trying to staunch the crimson flow from a dozen wounds.

"Didn't want..." Riley's lips fell slack.

 

Will she wear that black dress

Will she wear that black dress

As holy as the night

As holy as I want to feel

I want to feel all right

What if she is angry

I know that we're both scared

Do I look her in the eye

Or do I even dare to care

Was it his indifference and casual dismissal that had killed Riley? The notion that he had ignored the young man simply on merit of his lack of friendly feelings had caused Giles no end of torment. Yet, as Giles stood there, the scenes still snapping on and off in his mind, one after another like a horrid slide show, one emotion rose in bizarre tandem with the horrible guilt. Desire. Desire had ridden in his mind and body since the night in The Magic Box when he and Buffy had spoken of her imminent death. Affection, loyalty, amusement, protectiveness and love had been Giles constant emotions, but somewhere along the line they transmuted, rising to a different level. He had loved her from the first sight of her slim form, but soon he had fallen in love with his sweet Slayer. Desire had become the latest facet in Giles' feelings toward Buffy.

He couldn't help but picture her golden hair, and shining blue eyes. The soft lips, always so perfectly painted and shining, inviting contact that was yet barred by the confines of their relationship. But when she opened that door -- *if* she opened the door -- would the illusion be shattered by the familiar anger blazing? Pain?

 

I'm drowning in desire

I've been good for so long

I know I've got no right now

But no one can tell me that I'm wrong

 

She did not belong to him in passion or anything beyond friendship. She belonged to the world as their protector; belonged to others as their friend, even their enemy; to boys her own age and disposition. She had belonged to Riley these past months and she belonged to him yet on this humid, drizzling day. But emotion does not follow reason, and passion was in firm control of Giles, twisting and painfully sweet in his chest.

 

Will she wear that black dress

Will she wear that black dress

As holy as the night

As holy as I want to feel

I want to feel all right

Maybe I'll be good

I could be gone when she gets here

I've still got a chance to make this one all right

 

Three minutes. He should leave. She wasn't coming out and there was no use standing on the step like a fool, believing she would glide out and into his arms.

 

My temptation's on the stairway

 

He should go. His eyes roamed over the door, the still window shade. No relieving motion to set his soul at ease. Not a stirring.

 

My temptation's at the door

 

But he couldn't move. Maybe, just maybe...

 

My temptation is before me

 

The noise. The clicking and scraping that set his heart thundering, hands tightening again as the door swung...

 

She is standing before me

In that black dress

 

"Hello, Buffy."

 

THE END