About 12 years had passed since they had ran from Washington. Mac had moved to the mountains of Colorado, Joe following like a good watcher. Faith visited often.
Richie had married Eva and they lived in Bellingham, Eva being the slayer for the area.
Teá was the Slayer for all of the Indian reservations. She was called the 'roaming Slayer', a new idea started by Giles in response to the need.
Mary was in England with Willow running the new Watcher/Slayer program and training girls as they appeared. She and Angel had gotten close, but decided that it wouldn't work. Too hard to compete with memories.
Riley was working with Angel and his gang in LA. She and Connor flirted on and off, then began dating..
Joe was thinking about retiring. He was tired. Tired of the petty bickering, the politics, of typing. Mostly of the politics and typing. Bickering was old hat.
Duncan eyed his friend and watcher thoughtfully, "You know. I was at a great Bed and Breakfast in Wales a couple of months ago. It's really remote and the owners are pretty ok." Mac said, tongue in cheek.
Joe sighed, "Remote sounds great. Where do I sign up?" he asked rhetorically.
"The English translation is Forever Haven." Mac said and pulled out a ratty business card and passed it over.
Joe read it, "Forever Haven, get away from it all." Joe looked at Mac thoughtfully. "Ok, I'll go on a vacation, I need it."
Joe had flown into Manchester, England and driven into Wales. The closer he had gotten to the B and B it became greener, more isolated and more calming to his spirit. He had even found a halfway decent blues station on the radio while he drove.
He found the B & B with only a little difficulty, though once he got a good look at the house he wondered how had missed it. It was a three story manor house made of imposing gray stone. The bikes leaning drunkenly by the purple front door and the riot of flowers made it a lot less imposing though. He got out, stretched and looked admiringly around. The rolling fields were broken by trees, low stone walls and the occasional house. Mac was right, this would do him a world of good.
The front door opened and a woman's voice shouted, "Dominick Joseph! Maddox Giles! You'd better get your tails in here!"
Joe had jumped at the sound of his name but was distracted by twin boys of about 9 or 10 race around the house, notice him and wave, then dash inside.
"Mam, someone's here!"
"Oh good, right on time. Please, please pick up the legos, my budding engineers, before I take them all away." The woman's voice pleaded. Joe smiled at the exasperation in her voice then gaped in shock as she walked out to greet him.
"Bu…" he stammered.
"Bronwen Adams. It's great to see you Joe." Buffy gave the shocked watcher a warm hug and took his suitcase from his unresisting hand.
They walked in the foyer and Buffy shouted up a stairway, "Joy, be a sweetie and raise the flag to signal your Da!"
A girls voice floated down to them, "Yes mama."
"So, how was your trip?" Buffy asked cheerfully as she led him into a comfortable room that including a full bath and the greatest view. Joe had stared in open mouth consternation at the twins playing on the carpet in the living room as they had walked past, now he was staring at Buffy. They looked like Methos would have as a boy.
"But, but…Immortals can't have children."
"Surprise." Buffy replied dryly.
"How many?" Joe asked, trying to process. No wonder they had run, the hunters (A/n a renegade branch of the watchers, dedicated to destroying immortals) would have been on top of them in a heartbeat.
"Four. Joy is 11, Dom and Maddox are just about 10, and Connor is 6." Buffy patted the shocked man's arm, "Let's go to the kitchen and get you a beer." She gently took his arm and led him downstairs to the large open area kitchen. It was in shades of blue and yellow and had a large farm table and chairs to seat 12. She sat him down and got him a beer.
He absently took a drink, "Ok, let me get this straight. You and .?." Buffy smiled, "Morgan." Joe smirked, "You and Morgan live here and run a B & B. You have four kids, which is impossible, and you still look 17."
Buffy giggled, "Pretty much."
"Love! I'm back." Came Methos familiar voice. "In here!" she called back into the mudroom. You could hear him taking off his boots and thumping around.
He came out of the mudroom and smiled. "Joe, you found us. Mi casa es su casa!!" Methos said, putting the 5 gallon bucket he carried down to hug the old watcher.
Buffy stood and looked into the bucket, "Ooohh nice trout. Glad I don't have to gut the suckers." Methos laughed and rolled his eyes at Joe, "This from the woman who killed vamps and demons."
"They don't wiggle." Buffy stated firmly and the men laughed.
Suddenly there was chaos as Dom and Maddox ran into the kitchen ran into the kitchen. "Da!" they hollered and threw themselves at him.
"Boys." Methos kissed them on the tops of their heads, then ruffled their hair. "Lego's up?" he asked they nodded. "Put away Da."
"Good job monsters, take these fish out and we'll clean them for dinner."
"Yeah!" the boys jumped up and manhandled the bucket between them and staggered out into the mudroom, heading outside. Buffy rolled her eyes at Joe, "10 year old boys and fish guts. Oh joy." She remarked and Joe smiled. "I remember."
A very pretty girl with dark hair and her mothers face walked into the kitchen, "Mum?" she asked, looking at Joe.
"Joy, this is a very good friend of your fathers, and he became a friend of mine as well. Joe, this is our miracle, Joy." Buffy smiled proudly.
Joe stood and shook her hand, "Pleased to meet you Joy. You are beautiful just like your mom." Joy blushed but was pleased. She leaned against her mother, her long dark hair a contrast against Buffy's bright hair.
"Mum, did my package come from Uncle Richie yet?" Joy asked, "Not yet. If you want to ride your bike into the post office and pick it up, you may though." Joy shook her head no, eyes still on Joe.
Methos came back in through the mudroom, 3 boys in tow. "Look who decided to appear." He remarked to Buffy. She smiled and held out her arms, "Connor." The tow headed boy scampered over for a kiss. "Hi Mom."
"How was your exploring?" Buffy asked, brushing the hair out of his eyes.
"I saw an owl, two foxes with babies, a turtle, lotsa squirrels, a field mouse and a fairy!" Connor said all in one breath. His brothers shouted him down, "There are no such things as fairies!"
Buffy looked at them seriously, "Remember what I told you boys. Never close your minds to the possibilities. What do we know are real but other people don't know?"
"Vamps and demons and stuff." The boys replied.
"So if there are vamps and demons and stuff, could there not be fairies?" Buffy asked.
"Yes Mom." they said in unison. Buffy smiled, "This land, just like our other home is full of mysteries. Don't forget. Now wash your hands for dinner and use soap!" The boys smiled at their mom and Connor stuck his tongue at his brothers. His Mom always knew.
"Joy, could you…?" Buffy looked up at her daughter, "Ok Mom, let's go monster 3." She said using her pet nickname for Connor and they trooped upstairs.
Methos chuckled at his children and kissed Buffy softly. "Eww, go wash fish boy, smoochies later." She wrinkled her nose at him and Joe laughed.
"I see who rules the roost." He remarked as Methos wandered over to the large stone sink and started scrubbing up. "Wouldn't have it any other way." He threw Buffy a smile, which she returned, the love obvious on their faces. Methos walked back over, snagging a beer from the fridge before sprawling onto the chair beside his wife. "So, what's this I hear about you retiring?" Methos sharp hazel eyes on his friend.
Joe sighed, "I'm tired. Beyond tired."
"Try chasing 4 kids around." Buffy rolled her eyes as she heard the sounds of squabbling upstairs.
"That's what I feel like. Though it was the Watcher council acting like a batch of 4 year olds. The immortals are pretty much policing themselves in battle." Joe shrugged.
Methos smiled at the memory, "I don't know how I survived as long as I did. Though making sure I couldn't find myself had its obvious advantages." His eyes met Joes and they raised their beer bottles to clink them together.
"You learned politics at the knees of the best minds in history, of course the politics would appeal to you." Buffy teased.
"Ha! My philosophy was 'the shortest blade of grass doesn't get cut first.'" Methos snorted. The adults looked up to see one of the boys come in soaking wet.
"Dominick Joseph." Buffy demanded.
"It wasn't my fault Mom!" he protested and Buffy said, "Sure Dom." and walked him out of the room to deal with the latest crisis.
Methos smiled, "He's named after you."
Joe's smiled wistfully. "I'm honored." The men clinked their beer bottles together and took another sip.
Buffy came out, a great deal damper than she had went in and drained her soda in one swallow. She looked at Joe, "You do understand why we left?" she asked him quietly.
"An immortal able to have children? There would be a ruckus of epic proportions." Joe said wryly and fell silent.
"Are the kids..?" he asked and Methos and Buffy shrugged. "We're pretty sure Joy is a slayer."
Methos smiled, "And the monsters? I feel something, time will tell."
Joe smiled, this family had their prize and damned if he wouldn't make sure that they kept it.
He held up his beer, "To Forever Haven." They smiled and clinked beers. Suddenly there was chaos on the steps and the clatter of feet. It was the sound of a family moving on.