By Janine Ose
TITLE: Wake-Up Call
AUTHOR: Janine Ose
SPOILERS: Graduation 2
DISTRIBUTION: B/G Shippers and A Watcher's Love (everyone else please ask first)
DISCLAIMER: All characters belong to Joss Whedon, 20th Century Fox, WB and Mutant Enemy.
SUMMARY: After the evens of G2, Buffy and Giles receive a wake-up call, a nasty but effective one.
Exhausted and covered with layers of slime and dirt from the battle that day, Giles stumbled into his apartment. He kicked off his shoes and walked over to pour himself a drink. Tossing back his scotch, he winced as the liquor hit his throat then sighed wearily. The day had been one he definitely had no desire to repeat any time soon. The explosion had killed the mayor but it had also destroyed the high school. A weary chuckle escaped him. It was ironic really. Principle Snyder had been killed and then he and Buffy had destroyed the man's pride and joy, the high school.
Shaking his head, he trudged up the steps and wandered into the bathroom. Stripping off his clothes, he turned on the shower as hot as he could stand it and stepped in. Leaning against the cool tile wall, he let the water beat down on his body. Gradually he felt the tension ease from his muscles. With some effort, he managed to wash himself off and turned off the water. Careful to avoid his ruined clothes, he dried off and walked into the bedroom. Slowly he eased his tired body between the sheets and heaved a sigh of relief.
His mind wandered as he fell into the state somewhere between wakefulness and sleep. Images of the injured and dead flashed before his eyes and he whimpered slightly. Soon they were replaced by the sight of the students banding together to attack the mayor and his small army. His body moved restlessly on the bed and as the images and sounds unfolded he searched for the one person that meant more to him than anything else. He could hear her voice, she was taunting the mayor, waving something in front of him. The sound of her feet pounding through the school's empty halls reached his ears and he realized that the mayor was chasing her. Suddenly she came crashing through the window, glass flying around her as she dropped to the ground. In an instant he depressed the plunger and the school exploded in front of him. It was over, they had won.
His breathing slowed and evened out as he fell deeply asleep. The images haunting him changed and a shiver of fear raced through him. He watched as Buffy taunted the mayor. Watched as she began to run through the empty halls, her footsteps echoing eerily around the deserted building. His fear built as she stormed into the explosive filled library and the mayor came crashing through the wall after her. Suddenly she tripped and sprawled across the floor. Desperately he reached out his hand but he couldn't reach her. With horror filled eyes he watched as the demon that was the mayor reared up above her ready to strike. "GO!" she screamed at him. He shook his head and scrambled towards her. Reaching out again, he grabbed her hand and hauled her towards him. The demon hissed at them and they could feel its breath as its mouth barely missed them when it struck. Together they moved to the upper level and the second plunger they had hidden there.
As they crossed in front of the windows Buffy looked at him, calm acceptance in her eyes. "I love you," she whispered. "That's why I can't let you die. Forgive me." With that she propelled him backwards and through the window. As soon as he hit the ground, hands dragged him from the school. He fought against them, wanting nothing more than to be with her. He didn't even hear the explosion, he was so caught up in his own grief. But as he watched the building crumble he felt as if his heart had been ripped from his chest. Dropping to his knees he threw back his head and howled in pure anguish. "Buffy!!! No!"
Their friends were there, next to him, trying to help him to his feet. Angrily he shook them off. "Get away from me!!" he spat. Disinterestedly he watched as tears coursed down Willow's cheeks and Cordy sobbed against Xander's chest. He had no feelings for them, this group that at one time he had considered his family. He had no feelings left at all now that she was gone. "We cared about her too Giles," Xander said quietly. Oz reached out and stopped him from saying any more. "Don't say anything else Xander," he warned in a low voice. Arching a brow at the sensitive young man, he got slowly to his feet. "Heed his warning mate. You open your bloody trap again and I'll kill you," he vowed softly. Willow gulped. "Giles," she whispered. His eyes were hard when he looked at her. "Giles is dead, do you hear me? He died the minute she did." Willow looked at Oz with wide eyes. "What's wrong with him?" she asked in a fearful whisper. Oz regarded him sadly. "He was in love with her. She was his life." Giles turned and started to stride away. "Where are you going?" Cordy called after him. He stopped and looked at her. "Away. Everything that meant anything to me is gone. It died in there with that thing. With any luck something will come along fairly quickly to take me out of this world." He stared at them intently for a moment before starting to walk once more. "Always tell those you love that you love them. They could be gone before you ever get the chance."
Giles sat bolt upright in bed. Sweat streamed off his body and his breath came in short ragged gasps. His eyes darted wildly around his room as he fought to reassure himself that it was only a dream. As his breathing slowed he hung his head in his hands and groaned. It was only one word, a name, but it was enough. "Buffy."
Across town, a small form tossed in her bed. The images that haunted her sleeping mind were vivid and all too real. The mayor turning into his demon form and rising above the assembled students and parents. She glanced around and willed them to wait until her signal. She could sense their fear and struggled to keep hers from showing. She watched as the mayor moved. Snyder was saying something and then suddenly he was gone as the mayor swallowed him whole. "Now!" she shouted. The students threw off their robes and started fighting. Leaving them she moved to stand in front of the mayor. Taunting him with the knife that killed his precious Faith, managed to gain his full attention before heading towards the library at a run.
Somehow she managed to ignore the sounds of the mayor's demon body crashing through the walls next to and behind her as she ran. She crashed through the library doors and was headed to the upper level when she heard him crash through the wall behind her. Turning her head, she flashed him a grim smile just as she propelled herself through the window. The glass shattered and she hit the ground with a painful thud. Getting to her feet she ran and joined Giles, watching as he depressed the plunger and the school was blown sky high. Then suddenly, as the dust swirled around them, the images changed.
Once again she was taunting the mayor with that knife, Faith's knife. She waved it in front of him, whispering about how easily it slid into Faith's stomach. Her words sickened her but she knew they were the only way to get his full attention. He roared in outrage and she turned and ran towards the library. He crashed through anything that stood in his way as he followed her, intent only on capturing the one that had killed his precious Faith. She ran into the library and headed for the stairs to the upper level.
The sound of him crashing through the wall startled her and she stumbled, falling when she reached to top step. Glancing back at the demon she saw him rear back to strike. As he lurched forward someone grabbed her and dragged her out of his path. She could feel his hot breath as he barely missed her legs. Using the arm around her as leverage, she propelled herself to her feet and looked at her savior, not the least bit surprised at who it was. Together they headed toward the second plunger hidden on the second floor. As they passed the windows he stopped and looked at her. "I love you," he whispered. "That's why I can't let you do this. Forgive me." The next instant he picked her up and kissed her softly before hurling her bodily through the windows.
Hands reached for her when she hit the ground and dragged her safely away. Realization hit and she struggled to get away, managing to get to her feet and take a few steps just before the school exploded. Coughing, she fell to her knees. She could feel her heart break and her soul being torn in two. Pounding her fists on the ground she howled in anguish. "Giles!!! No!" Hands lifted her to her feet but she angrily shrugged them off.
"Get off me!" she yelled. Her expression was icy as she regarded her friends. She saw the tears rolling down Willow's cheeks and heard Cordy's sobs and knew she should feel something but she didn't. There was nothing to feel now that he was gone. "We loved him too Buffy. He was like a father to all of us," Xander said in a quiet voice. A harsh bark of laughter escaped her lips. "I already have a father Xander." Xander opened his mouth to say something but Oz shook his head slightly. "Don't," he waned softly. Willow stared at her, concern in her eyes. "Buffy," she whispered. Her head whipped around and she stared at her friend. "Buffy's dead. She died in there with him. Never use that name again."
Willow edged closer to Oz. "What's wrong with her?" she asked worriedly. Oz put his arm around her and held her against his chest. "She was in love with him. He was her entire world," he said sadly. Angrily blinking back her tears, Buffy turned and strode away. "Where are you going?" Cordy called after her. She stopped in her tracks. "Away. There's nothing here for me now, there's nothing for me anywhere. Maybe I'll get lucky and find Spike. He'd be glad to finish me off." She started to walk again when something occurred to her. She looked back and regarded her friends intently. "If you love someone, tell them. You don't want to end up like me." With that parting shot she disappeared into the swirling dust and melted into the shadows.
Buffy sat bolt upright gasping for breath. Her eyes darted frantically around the room. "A dream, it was only a dream," she whispered as she hugged her knees to her chest. Gradually her breathing eased and her trembling stopped but she couldn't bear the thought of going back to sleep. Instead she sat and tried to make sense of what she had seen in her dream. She ran it over and over in her mind until her head ached. Each time she tried to put the pieces together his face swam before her eyes. Finally she gave into the compulsion and let her tears fall. Hanging her head in her hands she allowed the truth in. One word, a name, filled her mind and she let it tumble from her lips in a soft sob. "Giles."
Buffy's hand shook as she rang his doorbell the next night. She had spent the entire day thinking about her dream, finally breaking down and calling Oz. He had come right over and spent the afternoon with her, listening patiently as she haltingly told him her dream. When she had finished he hadn't said a word. All he had done was smile one of his secretive smiles and taken her hand in his own. "You already know the truth Buffy," he had reassured her in a gentle voice. "Your dream was nothing more than a wake up call. A very nasty wake up call, but effective." Seeing her terrified expression, he had pulled her into his arms and held her tightly as he reassured her again and again that there was nothing wrong with the way she felt and that her friends would support her no matter what her ultimate decision was. Then he had asked her if she had thought about what she might be letting slip away if she didn't follow the path her heart had chosen for her. His quiet words had shaken her more than her dream had the night before. When he saw understanding fill her eyes, he had kissed her forehead softly and driven her here, to Giles' house.
She rang the doorbell again, glancing behind her to make sure that Oz was still parked in the driveway. He shot her an encouraging smile and she returned it halfheartedly. The sound of the door being opened startled her and she turned to look at the man standing in front of her. "Can I come in?" she asked in a shaky voice.
Giles moved aside to let her in and watched as Oz started his van and pulled away. When he was gone, he stepped back inside and closed the door. Buffy stood in the middle of his living room, an expression he couldn't quite interpret on her face. As he walked towards her he noticed that she was wearing a pair of shorts and a plain white t-shirt. Her hair was pulled back into a simple ponytail and her face was devoid of makeup. In short, she looked nothing at all like the Buffy he had grown accustomed to seeing. "Is there something wrong?" he asked, his concern evident on his face and in his voice. She stared at him with a blank look on her face. Her mind was too busy trying to adjust to his appearance to formulate a reply to his question. He was wearing nothing but a pair of faded jeans. No shirt, no glasses and no shoes. His hair was mussed and he looked like he hadn't slept very well. "Buffy," he said quietly.
Shaking herself out of her reverie she frowned. "What was the question?" He reached up and rested his hand lightly on her shoulder. "I asked you if there was anything wrong?" he repeated, frowning when he felt her body begin to tremble beneath his hand. "I-I, oh God I can't do this!" she cried and ran for the door. He ran after her, his arm snaking around her waist as her hand reached for the doorknob. "Buffy, stop! What's wrong?" he demanded as he grabbed her.
Tears rolled down her cheeks. "Oz said, Oz, he said," she started before breaking down and sobbing. Growing increasingly worried, Giles lifted her up and carried her to the sofa. "Shh shhh, Buffy, easy. Take a deep breath and tell me what Oz said," he instructed as he sat down and arranged her on his lap. Buffy struggled to do as he told her but she couldn't manage to catch her breath she was crying so hard. "Dream. Dead. You. Me. Oz told me. Tell. Love," she managed through her tears. Her frustration grew as she realized he didn't understand her but the harder she tried to breathe the more difficult it became.
As he watched her struggle to breathe, Giles desperately tried to figure out some way to calm her down. He slid her off his lap and hurried over to get her something to drink. When he returned and sat next to her, she crawled back into his lap and curled up there. Giles pressed the glass into her hands and helped her lift it to her lips. She winced as the liquor hit her throat but continued to sip it, letting its warmth fill her. Gradually her breathing eased into small hiccuping breaths and Giles set the glass on the coffee table. "Do you think you could try again?" he asked hesitantly.
"Dream last night. You died. Threw me out the window. Kissed me. School blew up. Heart hurt, soul hurt. Left to find Spike. Help me die," she explained between hiccups. Giles' eyes widened and he inhaled sharply. Buffy looked at him curiously. "Your turn," she ordered.
"I dreamed last night. You died. Tossed me out the window. Said you loved me. Asked me to forgive you. My heart and soul died the moment you did. I told the others Giles was dead. Left to find Ethan or Spike. Knew they would help me die," he explained in a halting whisper.
"We dreamed the same," she stated matter-of-factly. Giles could only nod. Buffy took a deep breath. "Oz, he said it was a wake up call. He convinced me to come here. I have to tell you that, tell you that, I-I, oh screw it!" she swore before grabbing his head in her hands and kissing him hard. After a split second of surprise, Giles wrapped his arms around her and returned her kiss fiercely, plunging his tongue into her mouth and claiming her as his own. Buffy groaned his name and pressed closer to him as his hands ran up and down her back. As the kiss spiraled out of control, the need to feel her skin against his own forced Giles to tug her t-shirt from her shorts and run his hands underneath. Buffy pulled away from him momentarily as she yanked off her shirt and tossed it aside.
Giles' hands caressed her skin and he trailed soft kisses down her neck, pausing to nibble gently at her throbbing pulse. Arching against him, Buffy kicked off her shoes and reached between them to unfasten his jeans. Following her lead, he undid her shorts. She shimmied out of them and her panties and tugged his jeans down his legs before resuming her position astride his lap. Locking her eyes with his, she raised herself up and slowly began to lower herself onto him. Holding her backside in his hands, Giles helped her move, hissing softly as her wet heat surrounded him. Gripping his shoulders tightly, Buffy began to move against him in slow sure strokes. When she stopped and rotated her hips in a circle, Giles growled and maneuvered them so that they lay fully on the sofa.
Wrapping her legs tightly around him, Buffy thrust her hips against him and ordered him to move. Giles thrust into her, each stroke harder than the last. They kept their eyes locked on each other's as they moved together towards their shared goal. Suddenly Buffy whimpered and tightened her legs around his waist. Giles thrust powerfully into her one last time and they came together, her walls clutching him as his seed streamed into her. Their cries echoed around the room and their bodies shook as the sensations flooded them. Gasping, Giles collapsed on top of her and buried his face into her hair. Buffy tucked her face against his neck and snaked out her tongue to catch the sweat that beaded his skin. "I love you," she whispered as she clung to him. Giles chuckled slightly and raised himself up on his elbows to look at her. "I love you too, Buffy. However, at this point, I think that's just stating the obvious."
A bright smile lit Buffy's face and she began to laugh. "Oh, I don't know, you could just want me for my body," she teased lightly. Giles' eyes darkened and he rotated his hips, smiling in smug satisfaction when she groaned. "I do want your body, luv. I very much want your body. But I also want the rest of you." He moved again and grinned when he saw her desire flare in her eyes. "So, do I get the entire package or will I have to be content with what's lying beneath me, hmmm?" he asked as his lips captured one of her nipples and he bit gently. She gasped and arched against him. "The whole thing, you get everything. All my bad habits, jokes and my body. It's all yours, just please don't stop," she pleaded. He paused momentarily to look at her. "And all of my bad habits, lectures and my... everything. It's all yours," he said seriously. She laughed shakily. "Good, now that we've got that established do you think you could continue?" Laughing lightly he proceeded to do just that.