Giles' Isle
By Lauren

<<Take it away Dr. She-vil:
Here's a thought instead.  If you were stranded on a desert island and
could only have one ASHBLF with you forever, which one would it be?
GylzGirl and Dr. She-vil>>

Title:  Giles' Isle
Author:  Lauren
Distribution:  Okay.  Just ask me first... I like to feel needed.
Disclaimer:  Everyone belongs to Joss Wehdon, WB, Mutant Enemy, 20th Century Fox Film Corp., yadda, yadda, yadda...
Content:  I'm shooting for Buffy/Giles here, but it will take me a bit of time to work up to it....

The sails were blown taut by a warm June wind.  They reminded Buffy of some old men she had once seen while hanging out at Willow's house after school---tight white shirts over round bellies.  "Yup."  She thought. "That's exactly it."  She smiled at the mental picture the straining sails inspired.  "The only things missing are Twinkie wrappers, beer cans, and old lawn chairs!"

She basked contentedly in the sun as she watched Giles scuttle about the little boat.  "Are you sure you don't need any help?"  Shading her eyes, she squinted at the broad line of his shoulders while he pulled first one rope and then another.  How he could remember all the different pulleys and switches and gadgets on this contraption was completely beyond her. "You know, I could help---if you need help... "

"I wouldn't want you to strain yourself,"  he grunted between tugs before muttering to himself, "besides the fact that you would probably sink us."

"Heard that."

Stretching back out onto her towel, she gave up on conversation.  "At least I can get a good tan on this whole 'Watcher/Slayer Bonding' trip." It felt like hours before the wind settled down and they could get to more important things---like lunch.  With a couple of sandwiches and a few sodas under her belt (so to speak, since she *was* wearing her favorite bikini), Buffy felt much more inclined to get started with the whole bonding thing.

"So what's the sitch?  You already know my life story."  She studied his face over the rim of her soda can.  "What else is there to know? Except... You're getting a burn Giles.  Didn't you use any of the sunscreen I gave you?"

"It was purple!"

"Well duh.  It starts off purple and then you rub it in and then it disappears.  It's kid's stuff, but I thought it would be fun."  She shoved his thigh playfully with the tips of her toes.  "You're going to look like a Fire Demon of you don't put something on your face soon."

His eyebrows rose so fast that his glasses slid down his nose.  "A WHAT?"

"Giles, I spend ninety percent of my day in *your* library.  I get bored.  I read.  Sue me."  She flicked at an invisible bug on her shoulder, allowing Giles the necessary amount of time needed to scrape his jaw off the deck.  Once he had regained his composure, Giles was off like a shot.  He quizzed Buffy on the most obscure demons he could think of... And amazingly enough---she got all of them RIGHT. They were soon so engrossed in the conversation (hard thought on Buffy's part and stunned amazement for Giles), that neither one of them noticed the black thunderheads rolling in until it was too late.

The sky shattered above them and all hell broke loose. 

Waves crashed over the deck, pounding the little boat harder and harder with each swell.  It was all that Buffy and Giles could do just to keep from being swept overboard into the churning sea.  Every order Giles tried to scream to Buffy was snatched away by the howling wind before she had a chance to hear it.  They were left with the precarious language of pointing from one rope to another, but they were too slow.  A lightening strike took out the main mast in a shower of sparks and a thick cloud of ozone.  Things went from bad to worse when the deck caught fire despite the constant wash of seawater.  Sink or swim.

Rather than be burnt to a crisp and dragged to the bottom of the sea, Giles grabbed two life jackets and made his way to Buffy's side.  With a strong grip on her wrist, he flung both of them into the hungry water below.

* * * * * * *

The swish of warm water up her nose brought Buffy sputtering back to consciousness.  She felt worse than when a gang of blue-skinned meanies had ambushed her five-on-one.  To top it all off, she didn't even want to begin thinking of how many places she must have sand in.  Judging by the imprint she had left when she first sat up, at least half of her face was covered, and by the grit on her tongue even more was in her mouth.

Prying off her sodden life jacket, Buffy washed the sand off of her face with the next wave.  That was when she realized Giles wasn't beside her. Panic---being the great motivator that it is---sent Buffy flying from a seated position into a galloping run.  She was out of her small stretch of beach in seconds, fairly leaping over a tumbled dune of sand and scrub grass.  She didn't bother to check her pace when she caught sight of a tall, bedraggled figure staggering away from a large wave.

Screaming his name (with what was left of her voice) at the top of her lungs, she plowed into him---sending them both sprawling back into the shallow water.

"If I wasn't dead before... "  he sputtered through a mouth full of water, "Then I certainly should be now."  He gasped in pain as her arms circled tightly around his battered ribs.

"I thought I'd lost you,"  came the choked reply from against his chest. Her eyes were blazing when she looked up.  "Don't you EVER scare me like that again!"

He simply rolled his eyes, hugged her briefly, and hauled them both to their feet.  Giles staggered about for well over an hour with Buffy clinging stubbornly to his side before prying her loose. 

"Buffy, I'm not going to disappear if you let go."

She pushed a damp clump of hair out of her eyes.  "It isn't that."  She shivered slightly in the cooling breeze.  "It's just that---well---it's getting cold and I'm still wet and I don't have a jacket or my towel and---" she sniffled, "---my hair won't stay out of my face and I'm hungry and this place looks about as socially active as Snyder's date schedule and I've got sand in my swimsuit... " She sniffled again. "Besides, you're warmer than I thought you'd be---for someone who wears so many clothes all the time, I'd thought you'd be kinda cold."  She kicked at the sand, refusing to look up at him.

He was having the most difficult time restraining his laughter... He felt like he was going to choke!  Here was Buffy---his Slayer---looking like a drowned rat!  Her hair was clumped together from the saltwater and a thick streak of dried sand ran from her left temple all the way down to her shoulder.  The brightly printed bikini she was so fond of looked as though it had been nibbled on by rabid mice, and the matching sarong was hanging in shreds about her hips.  Muddy streaks studded with the glitter of sand coated her belly and legs... Ah yes, his Slayer was quite a sight at the moment.

With an air of superior grace, Giles gathered the pouting, shivering Buffy to his side and set off in search of still, clean water and civilization.

* * *

Two hours of frustrated exploring produced a cleaner Slayer and no signs of habitation whatsoever.  Giles---feeling particularly cross by now---settled himself against the trunk of a palm tree and scowled out at the sea.

"Do you have any idea of where we are?"  Buffy asked, hugging her knees to her chest in an effort to stay warm within the lengthening shadows.

"Let me just get the map out of my pocket!"  Giles pretended to spread open a large piece of paper onto the sand before him.  "Ah yes.  Here we are.  B.F.E."  He swiped an angry hand over the empty sand.  "Unless we find a 'You Are Here' sign tacked to a tree, then I bloody well don't know where the hell we are!"

"I'm sorry Giles," she said in a small voice.

The tense line of his shoulders drooped as her injured tone sank in.  If she started to cry he didn't know what he would do.  Seeing a girl---no, she left girlhood behind when she was forced to kill Angel---seeing a woman like Buffy pushed to the brink of tears scared the socks off him.

"Come on."  He stood and held out his hand to her.  "Get up.  We'd best be getting some shelter built and a fire started before the sun goes down.  Knowing our luck today, there'll probably be a troupe of ancient pigmy vampires on this island and I would at least like to have the false security of a grass hut around me when they find us."

* * * * * * *

"Well, it ain't pretty, but I'm sure even Martha would approve."


"Stewart.  You know---she makes her furniture out of recycled paper pulp and has recipes that are even more freaky than some of your old spells? That Martha."  Buffy looked approvingly at the finished hut.  " 'It's a good thing.' "  She quoted solemnly.

"A better thing would be to have a plentiful supply of fuel for the fire, so stay within yelling distance and try to find as much dry wood as you can."  He gave her a gentle shove towards the beach.  "I'm going to go shopping for groceries." Any protest she might have had died on her lips when Giles started to remove the remains of his shirt.  "Please hurry Buffy.  It appears we may only have another hour or two before the sun goes down." 

With Buffy safely off to gather wood, Giles set about turning his shirt into a makeshift sack.  "Now let's see what sort of produce is in season here... "

* * * * * * *

Sunset found Buffy and Giles comfortably seated on a small pile of palm fronds before a crackling fire.  Buffy was admiring her handiwork (she had built the ring of stones around the hearth while Giles was out after coconuts), and Giles was carefully identifying the fruits he had gathered.  After a small dinner of some weird---but tasty---greenish, star shaped fruits, Buffy's thoughts began to turn longingly to her warm, soft bed at home.

"Um, Giles?"

"Hmmm?"  He sleepily dragged one hand through his hair, leaving it standing up in spiky clumps.

"OK.  I know 'Gilligan's Island' wasn't reality or anything, but they had hammocks and bamboo beds and stuff to sleep on.  I think I've gotten enough sand in my suit for one day, thank you, so I don't really want to sleep on the ground."

"Hmmm?  Oh.  Yes."  He scratched his head and reached for glasses that were no longer there.  "Well, since this hut is only temporary---we're still too close to the open sea and we're too far from fresh water---we'll have to make do with the remainder of the roofing materials for tonight.  We can build something more substantial tomorrow."


"We're sleeping on these palm leaves tonight."

"There aren't enough for two piles."

"Buffy, shut up, lie down, and go to sleep."  He curled up onto his side, pillowed his head on one arm, and closed his eyes.  When she remained standing, he reached up and grabbed her wrist, pulling her onto the pile of greenery.  Buffy stayed as quiet and as still as she possibly could, confused by the feel of his warm bare skin against her back.  She glanced nervously at the long arm that crossed her stomach and hugged her to him.

"Um, Giles?"


"You don't snore do you?"


He didn't snore.  At least she couldn't remember hearing him snore last night, but now there was a new problem...  Buffy needed to get up, but she couldn't figure out how to do it without waking Giles.  She had tried to crane her head back to look at him when she first awoke, but all she could see were sharp cheekbones and smudgy purple shadows under one eye. Nature could wait 'till Giles had gotten enough sleep, she decided.  So, with a little discomfort, Buffy snuggled against the warm body behind her and drifted back into sleep.                                            

*The dream was a pleasant one, filled with soft sighs and softer curves. The dream left Rupert Giles yearning for more.  A gentle wiggling motion brought the heat of a well-rounded backside full against him, and he nearly lost his breath at the contact.  He let his hands roam freely over the body before him and was faintly confused by the clothing he found there.  These sort of dreams did not usually include clothing...  At least, not clothing that would get in his way.  He pushed the little niggling worry to the back of his mind, and continued his exploration of the dream woman's body.  His sleep-heavy fingers were slow and clumsy when he tried to remove the offending cloth, but persistence has its rewards.  A contented sigh escaped his lips when one goal was finally reached.*                                                               

Buffy's eyes snapped open.  Giles was feeling her up!!!  Wave after wave of panic flooded her body to the point where she thought she was going to have a heart attack!  His fingers stretched lazily for a moment before lightly stroking her skin, and Buffy didn't know whether she was going to die---or what?  She tried to move back against him just a bit more, hoping it would give her enough room to push his hand away without disturbing him, but she found a new problem.  Giles was... He was... Oh boy was he ever!!!  It was now or never.  Buffy took Giles lightly by the wrist and carefully pulled his hand from within the top of her suit.  She then tried to slowly inch away from him, in the hopes of getting out of the hut.                                                               
He grabbed her about the waist and with a warning growl (He growled? Giles growls?), pulled her back against him.  They were now in even closer contact than before, and the territory he had been exploring was no longer interesting enough to hold his attention.  He was now heading south.  (ohmygodohmygodohmygod)  Buffy tried desperately to scoot away from his hand, which only encouraged him.            
*She was arching against him---grinding the tight curve of her bottom into his groin.  Giles groaned as she pushed against him more forcefully than he had anticipated, sending  a rush of hot breath against the back of her neck.  No.  The back of her head.  She was much smaller than the women he usually dreamed about, but near enough to make no never mind.*                                                                 
His hand was hot against her skin as it inched lower and lower.  Biting her lip, Buffy scrunched her eyes shut and waited for his hand to stop moving.  She was strangely disappointed when his fingers swept to the curve of her hip instead of...  But it was only to push her forward for a bit.  (Why is he pushing me away?  Why is he...  Oh.)  After a moment's adjustment, the hard heat at her back had been rearranged---as well as possible with the clothing still there---to press firmly between her legs.  Now each time she scooted back to get away from his hand...  Her face burned.         
This was not how she had envisioned her Watcher waking up in the morning.  Never in her wildest---well, in the ones she would let herself admit---dreams had she ever pictured Giles like THIS.  She thought he slept in tweed pajamas for heaven's sake!  Buttoned up tight and colder than a corpse under all those layers---THAT was Giles, not this half-naked, burning-hot, growling man behind her!                       
His hand was moving again, but this time it didn't settle on her.  He was touching himself!  Her breath was rushing fast and ragged as his wrist pressed tightly against the front of her suit.  A rough groan of frustration filled the air and Giles switched his tactics, placing his palm squarely over her pelvis and pulling her tightly against him. Beginning a slow rhythm, he alternately pulled Buffy snugly to him and then relaxed, letting her slide against him before repeating the torture.
She couldn't move.  She couldn't breathe.  She had the most insane urge to arch her back as far as she could, tilting her hips so he could... She leaned her head back and took a shaky breath.  (gotta leave now gotta get outa here gotta... oh that was nice... gotta stop this gotta get up gotta wake him up... ooooh... )  She waited for him to relax his grip before the next onslaught, and sprang up, running for the door of the hut before her feet touched the sand.  She didn't bother to stick around to see his reaction, or hear the muffled gasp of a name.                   
 * * * * * * *                                                           
The air was still crisp enough to feel icy against Buffy's heated skin. Clear and bright sunlight began to filter through the surrounding trees, turning their foliage into glowing stripes of jade and emerald.  She paced on the sand, unsure of what to do about Giles' sleeping habits. Should she casually mention the morning's groping or should she just stay quiet?  She didn't want to upset him since she was positive he must have been dreaming about Jenny---who else could it have been?                
For some reason the thought of any woman---Jenny or otherwise---invading Giles' dreams (THOSE kinds of dreams no less), made her flash hot and cold, between fits of anger and nausea.                                 
When Giles woke and found himself alone (what were you expecting old man, to find some sweet little bird all curled up beside you?), he sighed (the dream had felt so real so alive so damn frustrating), hoping the burning ache would disappear on its own, without the need of a... ahem... helping hand.  (go out anyway you sodding coward)  With his grocery sack positioned before him, he stood up and tiptoed from the hut.  (no sign of---oh hell)  His chest collapsed, sending spasms of pain shooting through his heart, stopping his breath, and leaving him frozen to the spot at the sight of Buffy's bare back heaving with sobs.               
She didn't know why she was crying, but if she held it in she knew she would burst.  A shaky hand touched her shoulder and she flung herself around into the waiting arms behind her.  He cradled her so carefully, brushing his hands over her back, tracing her spine with calloused fingertips.  He was whispering to her, crooning nonsense words into her ear mixed with the occasional, "It's all right now...  I'll keep you safe...  Don't cry little love..."                                                                           
"We'll get off the island somehow."  He finally whispered, stroking her hair, but she just shook her head.  "We'll build a better shelter today---one that has real beds and room to walk about in... "  Her shoulders only shook harder (beds---don't want BEDS---I want ONE bed---he wants TWO).  "We'll get out of this mess, you'll see, and when we get home everything will be back the way it was."  She went still...  So still he thought she had turned to stone for a moment, but you can't get tears from a stone.  A stone couldn't send you heart racing just by placing one small, still hand on your back.  A stone couldn't bring the blood rushing back to the surface, setting your skin on fire like that. Bloody Hell.                                                            
He pushed her to arm's length, a false smile plastered to his face.  It nearly fell when he saw the look in her eyes---despair and confusion mixed with something else, something he hadn't seen in so long, he wasn't sure it was truly there.  "Tell you what, if you go find us some thin branches, I'll teach you how to fish."  He smiled again in an attempt to fool them both into feeling more at ease with her tears, and pushed her towards the trees.  "Quickly now.  Early morning is best for catching fish."                                                        
The moment she stepped out of sight, he dropped onto the sand.  The pressure in his groin was unbearable, but he couldn't relieve himself. He wouldn't allow himself the pleasure.  If he hadn't been so involved in showing his Slayer how much more he knew, then they never would have ben caught unprepared by the storm.  If he had taught her how to handle the rigging, they could have worked as a team and brought the boat out safely.  If he hadn't been such a mug and thought ahead to the consequences of sleeping in the same room with Buffy---not to mention on the same pile of leaves---then he wouldn't be having this argument with a particular portion of his anatomy.                
 "Oh, what the hell."  He stalked back into the dim interior of the hut. "I'm so wound up right now I'd make an ass of myself if she so much as looked at me cross eyed..."                  
* * * * * * *                                                           
Buffy sniffled and kicked at little pebbles on the sandy ground as she walked back to camp.  She swiped at the ferns around her with the slim branches she had found, and grimly watched the delicate plants fairly explode on contact.  One in particular burst apart with an impressive scattering of tiny green leaves.  Tearing apart the local flora would not be a healthy habit to develop, and Buffy had the feeling the island would soon be bare of any greenery.  When she was only about fifteen more paces from the camp, she heard a low groan.  It sounded like a man in pain---horrible pain---and the gasped "Buffy" confirmed it.      
There was something on the island with them and it was hurting Giles!!! With the strength of a madwoman Buffy crossed the distance to the hut and ripped its door from the hinges.  She leapt into the dark room with her branches at the ready, lashing them lightly against the floor, and searched the gloom for Giles' attacker.     
He was alone.                                                           
"Buffy, what is it?"                                                    
"I thought... I thought you were being attacked by a wild animal or... or something.  I heard noises.  Um... kinda torture noises."  She suddenly felt horribly shy---as though she had stumbled onto him in the middle of bathing or something.  "I thought I heard you call me.  I guess I'm just nervous without a Hellmouth around to keep me occupied.  Um... I'll just... I'll just go... um... outside.  Yeah.  I'll be outside."        
If he had been standing his knees would have given out on him.  Of course, his knees *had* given out on him already, but that was for another reason entirely.  His face flushed to an even darker shade of red, and the air felt chill on his sweaty skin.  That had been entirely too close of a call, and if Buffy had burst in just a few moments earlier?  Ye Gods.  As Cordelia would have put it for Buffy, "This is *so* going to set my therapy back."                                                                           
They needed separate huts.  No.  That would be too far apart---just in case there was trouble with any native wildlife---okay.  One hut with two rooms.  No.  Too much work.  One hut with two beds.  Yes.  He could deal with building a larger hut, and beds wouldn't be very complicated to make.  He ran one hand through his hair, tugged at the waistband of his khaki shorts, and walked slowly to the doorway.  Just as he was about to step out into the morning sun, he glanced back by the pile of leaves, and flushed brightly once more when he spotted a darker patch of sand.  Wet sand. 

Maybe separate huts wouldn't be such a bad idea after all.  


 The day was blessedly boring for both Buffy and Giles.  A new hut (bigger is sometimes better), was begun in a small clearing by a swift little stream.  Giles even proposed the idea of blocking part of the stream to make a pond for Buffy to swim in.  Still, at the end of the day the tired pair once more had to return to the cramped little shelter on the sand.    
Dinner was just as uneventful as the day's labor had been, and Buffy sat scowling at her new calluses, blisters, and splinters between bites of fruit.  One hand had a particularly bad sliver buried right in the palm. Quietly, Buffy moved to sit by Giles and held her hand out for him to inspect.  Neither made a sound while he gingerly drew the long sliver of bamboo from her skin.  Placing a gentle kiss over the reddened flesh, he swiftly pronounced her to be all better.       
Her stomach began to churn the instant his lips touched her palm. Looking at the piece of fruit dangling from her other hand, Buffy swiftly lost her appetite... And Buffy without an appetite was definitely unusual.                                           
With an extra b it of wood tossed onto the fire (more for the comfort thanthe warmth), Rupert Giles could no longer avoid the dangerous ground of sleeping arrangements.  He had made certain to work himself into exhaustion that day, in an effort to ensure he would be too tired to dream... Or do other things.  Of course one problem remained to spoil his chivalric effort---there was still only one small pile of leaves to sleep on... And one slightly flushed Slayer to share it with.  It was going to be a long night.      
Turning to face the wall, Giles made himself comfortable on the palm fronds and willed himself to sleep.  Sometimes mind over matter works... But then again, sometimes it doesn't.  Buffy stared at his back, fighting down the tears that suddenly threatened to erupt.  She felt as though he was trying to block her out---he obviously didn't want her near him.                                                                                
The sound of her feet pacing on the sandy floor rasped in his ears. Through lowered lashes, he could just make out her shadow on the wall as she moved back and forth.  It wouldn't have mattered if he could see her shadow or not---he could almost feel it where it crossed his skin.  She radiated an energy he could feel a mile away.  If they were to be rescued and brought back to Sunnydale, how was he ever to lead a normal---Hellmouth Normal---life again?  It had only been one night, and already he couldn't find sleep without her beside him (face it old man, you're doomed to a life of insomnia now... you might as well get bitten so you won't need to sleep).           
Buffy glared at her Watcher's back (he can't do this I won't let him do this he can't shut me out), before kneeling next to his still form.  He was pretending to be asleep, but Buffy could see how his hands were shaking.  She hung her head in shame that she could be so blind to what Giles must be feeling.  Why he must be going through book withdrawals or something, or maybe he was scared.  Her anger was forgotten as swiftly as it had been kindled.  With a martyr's sigh (oh God I love the feel of his skin), Buffy curled herself up against his back (I could really get used to sleeping like this), feeling the tension drain from his spine as she tucked her thighs in behind his (yeah this is good).  With her hips pressed tightly against his backside she stretched up and placed a soft kiss between his shoulder blades (God he smells so good), then snuggled against him once more.                                                                              
"G'night Giles,"  she whispered.                                        
He pretended to sleep.                                                  
* * * * * * *                                                           
Before the sun managed to move more than an inch above the horizon, Rupert Giles was off to work on the hut.  He had decided during the night that perhaps a life filled with insomnia might be preferable to one spent masturbating in frustration.  Two rooms.  There would be two rooms in the new hut.                                                                
* * * * * * *
She woke alone, and for some reason that hurt.  Yesterday had been scarry waking up with Giles all... Horny... But at least he had been there (he's mad he must be mad at me).  The camp was just as deserted as their bed had been (funny to think of that as a bed... OUR bed), so she struck out for the secondary camp.                                                                                
Sure enough Giles was there, stringing poles up all over the place and collecting big piles of leaves and stuff.  Buffy didn't say a word, she just grabbed a long piece of grass rope Giles had made and started lashing the structure together.  By the time the sun was at its peak, the new hut was nearly liveable.                                                                             
Like a mantra, Giles had been chanting over and over in his head, "Two rooms... Two rooms... I'll be safe with two rooms... "  It wasn't terribly poetic---or effective---but it kept him from hungrily watching the way Buffy's body moved every time she breathed.  His hands shook whenever she stepped too close.  His breathing was shallow and swift from the sight of her---all tussled and grubby like a little ragamuffin.  This wasn't working.   
After lunch, they finished fleshing out the main structure and began to cover the walls and roof.  They were nearly finished when the sun began to go down, and rather than walk to the other hut in the dark without any weapons---old habits die hard---they decided to sleep in the new hut.   
Buffy was completely beside herself.  Giles hadn't spoken more than three words to her all day and he was acting really strange.  He had even growled at her once when she dropped a pole on his foot... That wasn't too strange, but still, Buffy preferred to have him give her a lecture full of words she'd never heard before to having him growl and glare at her.  Except for that one morning, Buffy had never heard Giles growl---they were completely different growls, but they were still growls.  Buffy sighed.  She wanted him to growl at her again (it must be the heat), but she wanted the first growl---the sleepy, sexy growl---and all she was getting?  The get-that-bloody-thing-off-my-foot growl. Damn... but maybe tonight?
Giles sat in a steaming, glaring heap on the other side of the fire.  He had been so obsessed with finishing the hut, that he hadn't given any thought to beds.  To top everything off, the change in the hut's size had left him short of building materials and he was still left with the problem he had been trying to fix in the first place.  There was only one small pile of leaves on the floor (I can't take much more of this).     
* * *                                                                   
Snuggled up tight, Buffy relished the contact while Giles counted the minutes until she fell asleep.  She wouldn't cooperate.  Instead of falling directly into dreamland, Buffy was wide awake and feeling mighty chatty.  She asked Giles this and that about his childhood, and just about any other question she could think of.  She ignored how he gritted out some of his answers through clenched teeth, and simply snuggled herself closer against his back to think up a new question.                                                                           
It was driving him mad.  He couldn't breathe or think or move with her touching him like this!  She was pressed up behind him with one arm wrapped across his chest.  The small hot palm of her hand moved from his shoulder to his throat as he struggled to answer query after query. Whenever he seemed to have a difficult moment finding and words, Buffy "encouraged" him by softly petting his skin.  It was killing him. 
He stopped speaking.                                                    
Buffy's fingers roamed with a mind of their own, tickling over sensitive spots, lingering in areas where the skin felt hotter.  She brushed her thumb lightly over one nipple---his gasp barely registered to her---she was so completely entranced by the feel of him under her hand.  He trapped her searching fingers with his own hand, but she worked them free and began exploring again.  Her palm slipped down his side in a feather light caress, sliding slowly onto the warm smooth plane of his belly. One finger followed a slender line of hair from just under his ribs to the indentation of his navel and lower, to where it began to become slightly more coarse.                                                                            
With a groaning lurch, Giles pulled himself from the floor and headed for the second room.  He muttered something about needing more firewood, and didn't come back for endless minutes.  When he returned with several pieces of wood, he was shivering and soaking wet.  Buffy didn't ask for an explanation, and Giles didn't offer one.  To quote an old movie she had once seen, "Daylight is beginning to glimmer... "  and Buffy felt the heady rush of a woman in control.  She would test her theories in the morning, but for now it was time to get some sleep.  So, without a care in the world, she closed her eyes and drifted off.                      
With the fire added to, Giles steeled himself to face Buffy again. Relieved to find her asleep already, he crept to the "bed" and settled himself beside her.  Even in sleep she snuggled her little backside against whatever part of him she could manage.  He sighed in frustration (I'll never leave this island alive).  Sleeping with her behind him was sheer torture---she couldn't keep her hands to herself---and having her curled up against his belly was out of the question too.  This was getting complicated.  
When he didn't move to touch her, but was just lying there like a piece of wood, Buffy solved his dilemma.  Even in her sleep---lately it was especially in her sleep---she was drawn to him like a bargain hunter to a clearance table at a sidewalk sale.  With a sleepy mutter, Buffy rolled over and tucked herself neatly into Giles' side.  He sighed, adjusting her body so that her head would be pillowed on his shoulder instead of shoved against his ribs.      
Combing the sleep tangles from her hair, he closed his eyes and relished the feel of her skin on his.  The light weight of her arm over his chest pinned him to the ground, leaving him breathless from the pressure.  It was insane, but it felt right having her in his bed.  She crossed one warm thigh over him, sending his heart racing out of control (that water wasn't cold enough), and it took all of his willpower to keep from dragging her hips over his own.  It took a while for his heart to slow down after that.  He had to face the inevitable.    
The minutes ticked by in the fire-lit room.  The only sounds to be heard in the still night were those of two people breathing softly in unison, and the crackling breathing of the small fire itself.  A choked whisper disturbed the quiet.        
"I love you Buffy... "                                                                             
In her sleep Buffy snuggled closer to him, and smiled. 


When Buffy woke the next morning, she was alone.  She could hear Giles outside as he worked on the hut.  A feral grin lit up her face...  Giles was in for a shocker today!
* * *                                                                   
Thinking he had managed to avoid embarrassment for the morning, Giles was happily on the roof of the hut.  Layer after neat layer of broad, green leaves were laid out with the precision that only obsessive perfectionism can muster.  For the first time since they had been stranded (on an uncharted desert isle... ), Giles felt almost comfortable.  His sunburn had faded to a warm---albeit, slightly freckled---glow, and despite the lack of sleep, he felt more alive than he had in years.                 
He nearly fell off the roof when Buffy stepped from the hut and waved good morning.  With a shaky wave back, he nodded after she finished speaking (dear God, I didn't hear a single word she said but I'll just pretend everything is normal... yes, everything is under control... ), and watched her hips sway as she strode towards the beach.  The only coherent thought that managed to enter his brain after she left was, "She didn't have any tan lines... "        
He didn't even blink for quite some time.                               
By the time Buffy came back from the beach with (the remains of) her sarong filled with shells, Giles had managed to regain his sense of composure.  He was seemingly oblivious as she walked into camp, swinging the bag of shells while she hummed to herself.  He pretended not to notice the way everything jiggled just right as her arm swung back and forth.  He even pretended not to notice when she stole a bit of his rope to tie up her hair, and the way everything shifted with her arms above her head like that.  He was running out of pretend-ability.             
"I found some shells we can use for plates and stuff, " she cheerfully called to him.  "There's some really big ones in here."  Shading her eyes with one hand, Buffy settled the other on her hip and began to toy with the string-side of her suit bottoms.  She wasn't quite brave enough to go the full monty, but HE didn't know that.  Elation puffed up her chest at the sight of his blush.  Things were going along swimmingly. 
"You've been up there all day Giles.  Come on down and have a little something for lunch."  When he failed to answer or even look at her, Buffy changed her plan of attack.  "Are you feeling OK?  You were pretty white when we first got here, and you've gotten a tan real fast... Maybe you have heatstroke or something?  I could climb up there and... "                                                                           
"NO!  N-no, I'm fine.  Really Buffy.  Now why don't you go get dressed for lunch and I'll be right um, I'll be right down."  With that, he disappeared to the other side of the roof.   
She was reclining comfortably in a shady spot when he stepped from around the corner of the hut.  His jaw dropped at the pretty picture she presented.  Wild blonde hair, brilliant, sparkling eyes, a playful smile and little else, hit him with the full impact she had been aiming for. No words came, although he stammered and shook and gestured in agony.  He pointed first to the hut, then to her, and back to the hut as the color rose in his face.  "Shirt!"  He finally managed to choke out.                                                                          
"Professional Squid thing,"  she offered as her excuse.  He looked as though he was about to burst into tears if things didn't start to make sense soon.  Her laughter broke the spell, changing her back into the seemingly innocent Buffy he knew.  He blinked.   
"From the movie 'Silence of the Lambs' Giles.  Squid Pro Something-or-other.  What you do, I do.  I think."  She indicated his bare chest.  "It isn't fair for me to have to wear that icky old suit every day when you're doing the whole 'National Geographic' thing.  So, off it went."  All the picture of innocence, she sweetly smiled at his flushed face, and offered him a piece of fruit.  "Melon?"                                                                           
His hands were shaking as he took the offered fruit.  In total silence, he watched Buffy take a bite of the pale orange flesh.  The fruit was ripe unto the point of bursting, and its pale juices dribbled down her chin and onto her exposed breasts.  She didn't seem to mind.  Happily licking the sweet juice from her fingers, Buffy just smiled.                                                                                
Presenting her with his back, Giles tried to make the most of the strangled-looking bit of pulp that was now his lunch.  He managed to choke down most of his food without tasting it, and was fully prepared to get back to work when a small hand touched his shoulder.  He froze.  When he felt Buffy's other hand join the first, he knew he should get up and run.  His feet wouldn't cooperate.  He was doomed.         
Buffy took a deep breath and gathered all of her courage.  It took every last ounce of her Slayer's strength to keep her hands from shaking when she finally touched him.  Closing her eyes, she brushed her palms over his warm shoulders.  She couldn't resist.  Leaning slightly, she touched the nape of his neck with a gentle kiss.  The sound of his gasp made her heart race, and her whole body tensed with anticipation.     
He thought he was going to die.  His heart was pounding, he was sweating like a wild thing, and he couldn't seem to draw a deep enough breath. The light touch of Buffy's lips on his skin nearly shattered him.  Run! Run!  Run!  His mind screamed.  His body had other things in mind entirely.     
Buffy went down onto her knees behind him, sliding her fingers through the back of his sweat-dampened hair, pressing her own bare skin to his. He didn't move an inch, but she could feel the tension building in his body like steam in a tea kettle.  Pretty soon he was going to hit the boiling point (and I'm gonna make him scream).  With the most agonizingly slow movements, Buffy slipped her arms around him.  She made certain to let her fingertips brush tantalizingly over sensitive areas, listening for any change in his breathing.  When he drew in a swift, silent gasp, she slid her fingers back again---just to double check.                 
He was sitting as still as humanly possible, scrunching his eyes tightly shut, and trying in vain to keep from making a sound.  When Buffy stopped touching him and moved away, he nearly betrayed himself with a groan of disappointment.  She wasn't gone for long.                                                                                
Releasing her hold on him, Buffy quietly crept around his side.  She wanted to be able to see his face when she touched him.  She wanted to watch him struggle with his reactions.  She wanted to kiss him.         
On her knees before him, Buffy reached out a shaky fingertip to trace over the features of his face.  She drew her finger over his brows, across his cheek, and down his jaw.  With aching tenderness, she placed her palm against his throat, sweeping her thumb against his racing pulse.  She slipped her other hand into his hair and pulled him, unresisting, into a kiss.               
Their lips touched.  Brushing over one another, the slight hesitancy in the contact made it electric, sending bolts of adrenaline into their blood.  What began as a one-sided, closed-lipped kiss, soon began to evolve into something more.  Their lips parted slightly, allowing their breath to mingle for a moment before seeking each other out once more. Now, his hands were searching her hair, pulling it loose from the confining ponytail---winding tightly, he held her to him.                                                                            
Buffy felt him fight her for a moment, but it was to drag her closer not push her away.  With one fluid motion, she moved herself astride him, feeling their bodies collide like sand and sea.  He deepened the kiss, slanting his mouth hungrily across hers, driving any sane thought from her mind.  Buffy wrapped her arms securely about his neck and kissed him back as though her life depended upon the contact.   
He dropped his hands from her hair and slid them down her bare back.  He wanted more than anything to touch her intimately, but with her plastered against him, he was left with little room to explore.  Finding the edge of her bikini bottoms, he resisted plunging his hands inside.  Instead, Giles captured her head once more, and broke away from the kiss. Cradling her flushed face in his hands, he searched her dazed eyes, an unspoken question on his lips.  
"I want this Giles... I want *you*... "  She swallowed convulsively, shrugged and gave him a shaky smile.  "I love you,"  she whispered.  The sincerity in her voice and eyes  made his heart stop.  When he tried to answer back, his own voice failed him.  "You can tell me later... show me NOW."  
He pinned her to the sand and happily obliged.                                                                            
* * *          
It felt like an eternity later when they pried their sweat-glued bodies apart and ran laughingly for the stream.  They had sand stuck in the oddest places, but neither seemed to remember that once they made it to the water.  The sight of Buffy screaming and jumping with every cold splash spurred Giles to grab her wrist and drag her to the ground.    
When they came up for air, Giles suggested moving back to the hut and the warm little fire inside.  He didn't have to ask twice.                                                                               
Later, as the fire cast its ruddy glow onto Buffy's skin, Giles tucked her securely against his side.  He went cold with dread when he heard Buffy quietly sniffle.  If she was regretting this---he didn't know what he would do.  With his heart in his throat, he turned onto his side, propped himself up on one elbow, and looked down at her.  She opened her eyes when his fingertips touched her cheek.         
"Buffy?"  The confusion and hesitancy in his voice made her lip tremble. "Did I hurt you?"                  
"No, no, it isn't that.  I mean---it did hurt a little, but I just had this crazy thought that you were gonna be like Angel was afterwards and---"         
He silenced her with a kiss.                                                                               
Wiping the tears from her face, she suddenly grinned at him.  "Giles," she crooned while circling one of his nipples with her fingernail.  "What were you doing that morning when we were going to go fishing?  You know---when I ran in and you were on the floor---" She kissed his throat, nibbling her way to his ear.  "---and you were all shaky and sweaty---" He shivered as her tongue touched his earlobe, followed by a soft nip with her teeth.   "Were you thinking about teaching me how to fish?"  She blew softly into his ear.  "I've heard some men take fishing VERY seriously, but you don't need to worry about me.  I know how to fish. I'm really... "  One hand slid down his belly to settle on him with a possessive grip.  "...really good at fishing." 
The polite, conversational tone mixed with the intimate contact, was strangely surreal but very effective.  With gritted teeth, Giles pried Buffy's hand from his overheated body, and promptly showed her just what he had been thinking of that day...  To say the least, they were both very happy it hadn't been about fishing.