Sword Dance

"Come on, Giles!" Buffy held her rapier at the ready. "You're better than this, I know you are."

"I know I'm better than this." Giles countered her attack. "I just don't want to hurt you, that's all. I'm here to train you, not hurt you."

"You, hurt me? I'd like to see you try!" Buffy held her sword up high. "Come on Yoda; let me see what you've got!"

"If you insist," Giles smiled slightly, and then opened up with a vicious attack that had Buffy instantly on the defensive. His katana made a gentle whispering sound as it cut through the air, easily deflecting Buffy's attempts to counter-attack. He took a step back, the sword blurring as it made complicated patterns in the air.

Buffy found herself mesmerized by the fast-moving blade, and didn't have time to react as it sliced through the air and knocked her own weapon from her hand. The rapier fell to the floor with a clash, waking her from her trance.

"What the hell was that?" she asked, getting her breath back.

"Something MacLeod taught me once," Giles smiled, putting his katana back on the rack. "You had enough?"

"Not likely, old man!" Buffy smiled, still thinking it was just a game.

"As you wish," Giles' tone of voice changed as he walked across to the weapons chest and pulled out two long-bladed swords. "Let's see how good you really are."

"But that's..." Buffy looked at the swords.

"Sasha's, I know." Giles tossed it to the young Slayer. "You want to see just how good I am?" He raised his own sword so the blade ran up the middle of his face. "FIGHT!"

Buffy dodged back as the Watcher lunged at her, the tip of his blade cutting the bottom inch from her fringe, almost drawing blood from her forehead. She swung her own weapon in return, falling back on her training. Giles' face was stone-hard as he continued his attack.

"You're faster that that, you know you are." He sliced low, making Buffy jump to avoid a sliced leg. "Show me how good you are."

Deciding it was time to stop playing around, Buffy speed up, using the adding strength and speed that came with being the Slayer to counter Giles' attack. Rather than going on the defensive, Giles just got faster, the two blades becoming blurred in the air, moving so fast that Buffy had a hard time keeping track of her sword. Sensing that her Watcher wasn't going to be letting up anytime soon, she pushed herself harder, using every last bit of strength and skill she had to fight back. Still Giles continued his attack, matching her move for move with a graceful ease that came from literally centuries of practice.

In the end, the Watcher simply grabbed Buffy's sword mid-stroke, the razor-sharp blade almost severing his hand. "That's enough for today." He let go of the blade, the blue lightning of his Quickening healing the wound almost instantly. "What did you learn from this?"

"That you're a lot better than you ever let on?" Buffy suggested, wiping the sweat from her brow. "That you have a few hundred years of experience fighting for your life, against people who see a sword as an extension of their being?"

"And?" Giles slipped into teacher mode. "What else?"

"That there will always be someone faster and better than me," Buffy admitted. "That I need to pick my fights, and use my brain, not just my brawn."

"Thus endith the lesson, young Skywalker." Giles smiled.

End of Sword Dance

Note: some people found this to be a little sexist and condescending towards Buffy. That was never my intention.