A/N : After a lot of thinking, some advice getting, and some decision weighing, I finally caved and decided I needed to write this fic. The idea exploded in my head with so many possibilities that I just really need to write it. I apologise profusely to all those people who will now have to wait an extra couple of days at a time for new chapters of my other WIPs, but here's hoping you will like this fic enough that you'll forgive me.
Title : The Wild Child
Rating : PG-13
Summary : All-Human AU. Buffy Summers is out of control, and is sent to her God-father in England for the Summer before Senior year, in the hopes that when she returns to Sunnydale she'll be more of a lady and less of a wild girl. What influence will Mr Giles have on his god-daughter? And what influence might she have on his docile nephew, William Rayne.
Disclaimer : All recognisable characters are based on Joss Whedon's creations for the TV series' Buffy The Vampire Slayer and Angel The Series.
Chapter 1 - The Arrivals
The sound of Joan Jett's voice at considerable volume filled Buffy's ears through the headphones as she relaxed her head back against the aeroplane seat and tapped along to the very appropriate 'Bad Reputation'. She wasn't even really bothered about listening to it right now but the guy next to her was visibly irritated by the sound which he could hear beyond her headphones. Annoying what appeared to be someone who thought he was above everyone else was worth listening to more music than she really felt the need too.
A glance out the window and Buffy saw the edge of California disappear from sight. She didn't care so much that she'd left Sunnydale or her Aunt and Uncle, it wasn't her home and they didn't care enough to count as family, despite the fact they were actual blood relations. The only person Buffy would really miss was her cousin, Faith, who had become more like a sister to her these past eight years.
Eight years. Had it really been so long since she'd seen her parents, since that horrible day when she was told they'd gone to heaven and wouldn't be coming back. Though she never admitted it to anyone but herself, Buffy missed her mother and father terribly, and the old life she had with them back in Los Angeles.
L.A. was her real home, with Joyce, her Mom, in charge of the gallery down-town, and Hank, her father, working as a top lawyer for Wolfram and Hart. Buffy was proud to be their daughter. She loved school and seeing her friends and being the perfect little angel in every sense. Looking at her now, things had definitely changed.
One night when Buffy was staying over at a friends house, Joyce and Hank went out celebrating him winning his latest big case. They enjoyed dinner, drinks, and dancing before heading back home, and that was when tragedy struck.
Buffy closed her eyes and grimaced at the memories that danced behind her lids. The newspaper pages with the ugly photographs, waiting for a verdict on the man who took their lives. Details of the gun he carried, the drugs he'd taken, the way he lived. Words of remorse as he explained he'd just needed the cash, and Joyce had struggled to keep her purse. The gun went off, he hadn't meant for it to...not the first time, then he couldn't leave a witness who had seen his face.
He was sent to prison for fifteen years, but Buffy felt she had the worse deal as the authorities agreed with the Summers' last wishes and sent their daughter to live with her Aunt and Uncle in Sunnydale. The little blonde girl had nothing against the Wilkins, she just didn't know them very well, and to be torn from your home, your life, and worst of all your parents, at the tender age of nine, that was not something any child should have to endure.
Still, Buffy felt she'd coped better than a lot of girls would. Despite Faith's influence on her, she never did drugs or attempted suicide as she grew up. Sure she drank, but didn't everyone? And she had the occasional cigarette. Petty crime, well that wasn't usually something she set out to do, it just kind of happened...and then there were the men. Her Aunt quite despaired of her where the male side of the population were concerned, though it was a miracle the woman even noticed!
Buffy's Uncle Richard was the Mayor of Sunnydale and his role as town leader ate up a lot of his time. Aunt Rachel was always right there with him, lending her support, and it left little time for Faith, nevermind Buffy who was only a niece, not a daughter.
The Summer following Junior year of High school, the Wilkins finally decided it would be better to split the two girls for a while in the hopes that at the very least their own daughter's behaviour might improve. It didn't seem to occur to them that Faith had always been a little wild one, where as Buffy had only changed since coming to be around her cousin!
Still Faith was to stay home and spend more time with her mother who was determined to make a lady out of her unruly girl yet. Meanwhile, Buffy was told she was to stay with her God-father for the Summer, and that meant a plane ticket and a ride to England.
Buffy's memories of Rupert Giles were exceptionally vague. She knew he and her father had been friends since the Giles family moved to America when the boy was just twelve years old. He and Hank were the best of friends all through High School and college, and when it came to marrying Joyce who would Hank choose for a best man but Giles. Soon Buffy was born and again he was called upon for her christening to take the role of God-father.
Apparently he quite doted on her as a baby, buying her gifts and always offering to help out whenever he could. But when Buffy was five, Giles had gone away, back to England to run his Uncles estate when the old man sadly passed away. Buffy couldn't remember being particularly bothered, but then she couldn't really remember this Giles person at all, other than she thought she'd liked him when she was a kid.
Thoughts and memories filled her head and she was soon falling asleep, still wondering what her Summer was going to turn out to be like. Without Faith, without The Bronze, their usual hang-out, and without Angel...
The plane landed on the runway at Stanstead and Buffy looked out the window at the grey cloudy sky. She'd expected it to be raining, since this was England after all, and she quite fancied running through a storm for a change. After the near constant mind numbingly boring, sunny days of the aptly named Sunnydale, it would be a pleasant releif. Still, she had the whole Summer, this was only Day One.
As everyone filed off the plane and across into the airport, Buffy sighed. Little kids and parents, running at each other with grins and squeals of delight, was the sight that met her eyes as they came in through the gate. Boyfriends and girlfriends, husbands and wives, all embracing and kissing and exchanging I love you's and I missed you's. Buffy tried not to look at the displays of affection, since she knew there would be no such thing for her. She barely knew this Giles guy that was supposed to pick her up, hence the reason he'd said he would have a card with her name on, much as some of the business people waiting for foreign clients and such had.
Amongst the rabble of people, there was no card with Buffy Summers written on it and the girl shook her head. Was she surprised that no-one had come to collect her? Nope, not at all. It wasn't as if anyone actually cared what she did. Fishing in her pocket she managed to find the piece of paper with the scrawled address on it, the one that started with Giles House. Originally she'd thought it just meant that man's home, until it was explained to her that the guy lived in some kind of mansion or whatever.
With just one large bag thrown on her shoulder, the black clad figure of Buffy Summers wandered back outside where taxi cabs waited alongside more smiling relatives. Still the young blonde stood alone.
"You okay?" a voice asked behind her and she swivelled around to see a man just an inch or two taller than herself in biking leathers, "You look a little lost"
"Can't be lost if you know where you are" she answered smartly, and with a smile "This is England, right?"
"Last time I checked" the man smiled back, "Still, you don't seem altogether familar with your surroundings as I myself am...Could I assist in some way?"
"Gotta love you British guys" Buffy shook her head, still smiling, "Can't say anything simple, always gotta use ten more words than you need" she told him, "But, you're not bad to look at and I have nothing better to do so...you know where this is?" she asked, handing him the piece of paper in her hand.
"Of course" the man nodded, wondering how this girl was anything to do with the Giles' family.
"So, er...name?" she prompted and he quickly remembered himself, holding out a hand to her.
"Pryce, Wesley Wyndham-Pryce" he said too correctly and Buffy rolled her eyes. Two minutes after she steps off the plane and she'd already run into her first wannabe cool guy.
"Okay Wes" she sighed, ignoring his hand until it retracted, and not bothering to tell him her own name "You got transportation?" she asked and he nodded, leading her over to a black motorcycle with red flames painted down the side.
'Definite wannabe' Buffy tried not to smile as he climbed onto the bike and she slid on behind him. He offered her the only helmet he had but she declined. The British wind in her hair, thats what she wanted. She wanted to take in the feeling of this country, this life she was to have for the next three months, and this was how she intended to start doing it.
The scenery rushed passed her face at sixty miles an hour. It was like flying without wings and made her feel awake and alive after so many hours trapped in a trans-atlantic steel tube. The world continued to appear in a blur until an angry red light made Wes pull the bike up sharply.
Buffy took the oppurtunity to change her grip on the man and shift in the seat, looking around at all the jammed traffic as she did so. To her left was something that caught her attention.
A huge car, black and definitely expensive, complete with tinted windows, that were doing little to hide the passenger in the back since he had it rolled down far enough that Buffy could see his face. She wondered absently who he might be. Some rich and important stuck-up British guy, with more money than brain cells and no real concept of living life at all, she guessed.
As if he felt her eyes upon him he turned to look and for a second their eyes met. Buffy was taken aback by the depth of them and the bright blue colour like the sky back home. She was a little surprised when she re-focused her eyes and found he was not just smiling at her but blushing because he'd noticed she was staring. As the traffic lights changed to green she gave him a sexy wink as Wes revved the bike and they pulled away at double the speed of the car, weaving in and out of all other vehicles as they sped on through the town.
A few more minutes and they passed the 'You are now leaving...' sign and were in the countryside, the like of which Buffy hadn't ever seen before. Home wasn't like this. It was all fresh and green and so very British out here, with fields full of sheep and cattle, and little houses and cottages set into the landscape that all blurred together as they rode at high speeds.
The mansion of a house came into view many minutes before they reached it. Like something off the cover of one of the books her aunt sometimes read, by Jane Austen or some other author that didn't interest the blonde at all. It must have at least sixty windows across the front alone, with ornate statues, fountains, and arrangemets of plants making a huge garden outside.
The bike pulled up at the gate and a security camera swivelled to look at them.
"It's me" Wesley said in the direction of it, helmet off now so his identity could be confirmed.
There was a buzz and a click as the gates were unlocked and opened of their own accord, the bike powering on through as soon as the gap were wide enough. Buffy was in awe of the building they approached. So far it looked like this trip to England might be better than she'd anticipated, except it seemed this house was a pretty long way from anywhere else...
"Welcome to Giles House" Wesley anounced as he pulled up outside the doors and they both got off the bike.
"Seems like you know this place" she said suspisciously, "I mean, security guys don't let just anyone in these places, right?"
"A friend of mine works here" he said, almost uncomfortably, just as a red-haired girl came barrelling from the side door and threw herself into his arms.
"A friend?" Buffy smiled, "Or a girlfriend?"
"Er, this is Willow" Wes said with a shrug as Buffy gave him a look.
"Oh, hi" Willow smiled shyly as she stayed in his arms and glanced over at the blonde, taking in her tight, revealing, and mostly black attire. She didn't seem to be the kind of girl her boyfriend associated with, and she wasn't entirely sure she approved he was starting now. The motorbike had been a bit of a sore point, but racy women now?
"Hey" Buffy smiled fakely, "Is, er, Rupert Giles here?" she asked, looking back up at the huge building before them.
"Oh, no, not right now" Willow shook her head, "He's gone to pick up his God-daughter from the airport. She's coming from America..." she stopped talking when it suddenly occurred to her that Buffy herself had a California accent, "You?" she checked.
"Me" came Buffy's reply with a nod, "I guess we missed each other, huh?"
"I don't understand" Willow frowned, "He left for Heathrow hours ago!"
"That'd be fine except, er..." Wesley was now frowning also "Good heavans, I don't know your name" he realised
"Buffy" she supplied, "and I flew in to Stanstead" she almost laughed at how ridiculous the situation was, "We can still get inside right?"
"Oh, sure" Willow shook herself out her daze. She hadn't meant to be staring at this girl but she was so completely not what she'd expected. Coming from LA she'd expected a Valley girl type, all dyed-blond hair and fashionable clothes. Here was a semi-punk/goth type girl who's permanent expression seemed to be a frown and whilst her hair was dyed-blonde, it also had black streaks that made her look quite wild and scary.
The three went into the house, through the front door this time since Buffy was a guest, but Willow felt very weird about it.
"Um, I guess I should show you your room" she realised, making her way up the large staircase in the centre of the entrance hall. Buffy just stood at the bottom taking in the house's interior much as she had the outside for several minutes before she finally followed on up the stairs.
"How come you're here?" she asked the red-head as they walked across the landing to the bedroom that would be Buffy's for the Summer, "I mean, you're not British"
Usually she was not the type to initiate such conversations with anyone, especially not other girls and certainly not when she was sober, but it seemed weird that in such a traditional British setting there was some flame haired fellow American.
"I work here" Willow told her latest acquaintance, "with my Mom, and my brother, Xander. We emigrated three years ago"
"Cool" Buffy answered absently as she followed on into the huge bedroom that was to be her own. It was bigger than her room back home, bigger than any room she'd ever had, but totally not her taste. All floral patterns and old-fashioned furniture - she'd have to fix that later.
"I'll come let you know when Mr Giles gets back if you want" she heard Willow say from the door, "If you need anything, the phone is right there" she gestured to a table before disappearing. Buffy glanced at the aforementioned phone with a card next to it with a list of extension numbers to pretty much every room in the house.
"So, this is how the other half live, huh?" she said to herself as she took a run at the bed and landed amongst the pillows with a satisfying thump, paying no mind to what the employees on the floor below might think about the noise.
For half an hour she lay there, staring at the ceiling, thinking about what she'd left behind and what her time here in England might be like. She only moved again when her thoughts were interrupted by the phone ringing into life. She reached across to pick up the receiver and found Willow was on the other end of the line, informing her that Giles had been contacted and sent his sincerest apologies for the mix up. He was now on his way home but expected to be a couple of hours at least.
Buffy decided the best plan for today would be to explore the house before her God-father returned and told her not to. Not that being told not to do something did anything but make her want to all the more, but it was simpler just to start her exploration of her surroundings now, since there didn't seem to be much else to do.
Grabbing her Walkman from her bag she clipped it to the belt of her short black skirt, and slipped off her jacket to reveal a low cut red top with 100 PercentBitch written across the front in silver graffiti style lettering. She shoved her headphones on her head, jacked the volume of her music to the max and headed out of the bedroom door.
She had no idea where she was going so she just started walking down the corridor, though it was not so much walking as a cross between it and dancing to the rhythm of the music that pounded in her ears.
As no one was looking when she reached the staircase, she couldn't resist siting herself on the top of the banister and sliding a fair distance down. The trouble was when she slid off the bottom her legs didn't hold her weight correctly and she pitched forward - straight into a pair of male arms.
Buffy laughed as she righted herself and pulled her headphones from her ears.
"Nice catch" she commented as she glanced up at her saviour, expecting it to be Wes or just some random servant-type guy. She got the surprise of her life when slightly familiar bright blue eyes met hers, "Hey, look who it is?" she shook her head as she took in the rest of the man's figure. Geek seemed to be an understatement given his appearance, but his accent was far from disagreeable when he spoke, and the scar that ran through his left eyebrow was intriguing too...
"Good heavens, I saw you earlier, on the back of a motorbike" he realised, almost blushing all over again when he added, "You winked at me"
"What are you doing in my God-father's house?" Buffy narrowed her eyes at him, a little thrown by the situation.
"You're Buffy Summers?" he said eyes going wide as dinner-plates as they roamed her body. She was hardly what he'd been expecting, and he was quite certain she was not what Giles was expecting either.
"You know my name but I don't know yours" said the girl, absently striking a pose against the banisters as the mystery man looked her over for a second time, but then she was sort of dressed to grab attention.
"Er, my name is William Rayne" he said politely offering her his hand which she shook, though she was trying not to laugh, "I'm Rupert Giles' nephew" he added, before she had a chance to ask.
"Interesting" was Buffy's only comment as she turned to walk away, pulling her headphones from her neck and moving to put them back over her ears.
"Um, where are you going?" William called behind her. She was not what he was expecting but from what he had seen of her (and in that outfit one could see quite a bit) he thought he was going to like her, she was different to any other girl he'd ever met, that much was obvious from just five minutes of meeting.
"I dunno" Buffy shrugged as she placed the headphones on her ears but not turning the music on yet, "You know anything fun I can do in this place?" she asked him, doubting he would.
"Depends what your idea of fun is" came his innocent reply.
Buffy's only answer was to smile at the comment in a decidedly suggestive manner before dancing off down the corridor and out of sight.
William had thought his annual Summer visit to Giles House would be just the same as any other. When he was told his Uncles God-daughter was to be there too he had assumed the same as everyone else. Some typical Californian type all full of talk about fashion and love of the beach, who would be even less interested in him than the girls he currently knew. The only female that really paid him any attettion was his sister, Drusilla, and even she was not consistent in her affection for his company, though it wasn't her fault...
Though William was sure he stood no chance of meaning anything to the girl he had just met a part of him really wished it would turn out differently. She could be the excitement he'd been looking for in his life, the one person who would help him to 'come out of his shell' as you might say. He smiled as he climbed the stairs to his room, happy to be away from home for a while, and thrilled to know he had three months to get to know Buffy Summers better.
To Be Continued...
A/N2 : I know Buffy isn't totally like the show, but this is AU and I'm using her attitude from 'When She Was Bad' and also SMG as Faith-in-Buffy in 'Who Are You?' as inspiration. Please let me know if you like this by reviewing and telling me. I think this story is going to go on for some time but there will be lots of twists and turns involved in a mega Spuffy storyline - at least that's the plan! More coming soon!