Fruition 2.0

Chapter 8

As the day settled into another rainy Seattle afternoon, the group of dubious houseguests had managed to make themselves at home, much to Xander's chagrin. To her credit, Dawn seemed to be fairing a bit better and was wearing the mantle of hostess with relative ease.

When he had sought refuge in his studio, Willow and Giles were hunched over some moldy old book like two prepubescent girls reading a Tiger Beat. Oh well, to each his own and that was certainly not his own - that is... Andrew was nipping at Dawn's heels in the kitchen while relating the entire third season of Enterprise to her --- bit by boring bit. Around two, Buffy had called and treated everybody to an account of her exceedingly normal day of mommyhood. After that crowning moment, he had made his retreat mumbling something about a deadline on an order.

Once alone in his self styled sanctuary, he felt a bit more like himself - himself now verses his seventeen year old , somewhat gawky, somewhat sad self. The entire day had brought back numerous memories of sitting in the background while others discovered things -- important things --- and consequently made important decisions.

However childish, a part of him wanted to order everyone out of HIS HOUSE saying that he was well equipped to take care of his own wife. That thought brought him to confronting another fact that he had danced around all these years - the fact was a part of him was just fine about having part of this mystical keyness flowing through him. It kind of helped him feel special and yes, he could hear all the arguments that it didn't matter, that he was just as important to the team as everyone else. But, the truth was it did matter. And he liked the look in Willow's eyes last night when she realized the power that he held.

Petty - maybe but true.

Looking down, he realizes that he has made mincemeat out of a damn fine piece of poplar. Oh well.

Deciding against any more contact with power tools today, he sits at his desk and starts to sketch out of few designs running through his head. Drawing helps to remind him that here is a talent that the others don't have. A talent that can damn well support Dawn in fine style - thank you - no Council money needed.

His mind catches on a stray thought - a talent that the others don't have.

He calms at the thought of taking control of the situation. Plus it might just work and it is better than sitting here waiting for the next attack if you will... They have a life to live and that's what they are going to do.

'Terrible Fire, my ass' he thinks. He'll release all the terrible fire they want and then some.

%^%^%^%^%^%^%^%^%^%^%^%

After take out sushi - so not a good idea - he pleaded a headache and turned in by 9:00 PM. Dawn catching his drift followed suit soon after. By the time she finished up in the bathroom, he was already in bed with the lights off.

The lights from the bathroom silhouette her figure as she leans against the door considering him.

"I know you're awake. So what did you want to talk about?"

"I know you know I'm awake, I was just waiting for you." Propping himself up on his elbows, he looks at her. His voice is a bit husky when he continues, "I though we could make a little light of our own."

Coming away from the door, she takes a stance that is pure Buffy - legs slightly apart, feet firmly planted on the ground, arms crossed. "As flattering as that sounds, what gives? I wasn't born yesterday --- well, not quite anyway."

Her usual direct and funny delivery takes some of the righteous wind out of his sails. She has never been much for subterfuge. It's a beautiful thing.

Holding up his hands in mock surrender before patting the space beside him, he gives up. "OK, I give, Beautiful, I'll tell you. I have an idea."

TBC