Title: From Here

Author: mistymidnight

Rating: Meh...PG-13?

Disclaimer: Joss Whedon, as always, owns the characters and BtVS. Gidgetgirl owns the plot of the fic.

Spoilers/Timeline: Takes place after season four (BtVS) and season one (AtS), but does not follow the canon of seasons five and two.

Summary: A slayer, a witch, an ex-demon, and an eternal snob--mothers?

Author's Notes: Yeah, it's another gidgetgirl challenge. I really ought to be working on Willow Rosenberg, Child Psychologist...maybe I will after I write up this chapter. Huh. Who knows?

CHALLENGE DETAILS:

THE BELTANE BABIES CHALLENGE

Back in the day, on Beltane, couples would make love to honor the gods... in some societies, children who were conceived on Beltane were thought to have special powers...

Enter the Buffy crew, in the modern world. They, like most of the rest of the world, have no idea it's Beltane, and an angry (or mischievous) fertility goddess wreaks havoc on them by causing them all to have sex (and conceive) with whatever member of the opposite sex is most handy.

Flash forward nine months, and you have a bunch of Scooby and fang gang offspring, all born within a week or so of each other, all with some form of special powers, as a result of being Beltane babies.

Options:
Between 3-7 kids.
The couples may be conventional, unconventional, incredible unconventional, or a mix.
The story may take place during conception, when the kids are babies, when they're small children, or when they're teens.

Requirements:
Some, but not all, of the makeshift couples must end up together.

One of the kids must be a firestarter.

One of the kids must be a little girl who loves boys and always has a minimum of three 'boyfriends.'

Something odd must happen on Beltane, as their birthdays approach.

I started writing this a long, looooooong time ago, and I came across it in my documents folder tonight. It could be the lack of sleep in control here, but I decided to post it. Let me know what you think—love it, hate it, don't care one way or the other, etc. But no flames, please. Much thanks.

Prologue

I have the absolute weirdest family on the planet. Seriously. It's not even debatable. My parents hate each other. Okay, granted, that's not really uncommon these days, but I mean they really hate each other. Like "I'm-gonna-kill-you-and-your-little-dog-too" hate. And don't tell me I need counseling, 'cause I don't. After I tell you my story, though, you might be ready to call in the nice men with their white coats and butterfly nets, because you'll call me crazy. And I can't really say I blame you. I'd call me crazy, too, if I could.

And now I'm babbling. Apparently babbling is something you learn rather than inherit, because my Aunt Willow babbles all the time. I've never heard my mom babble, even though Aunt Willow claims it's a fairly frequent occurrence. She claims that my mother is just as bad as a babbler as she is. So, then again, maybe it is inherited.

My mother says I inherited just about all her traits. Well, she says that when she's in a good mood. When I've done something really dumb, she says something like "It's all your father's fault". Either that or she mutters something pretty much unintelligible except for the words "Spike" "damn" and "gene pool". I told you my parents hate each other.

But I'm probably confusing you. So you should go back to the beginning and find out how all this began. Well, maybe not to the very beginning, because that's all groin-y-ness and there's an ick factor. But closer to the beginning. Does that make any sense? Probably not. I'm really crappy at explaining things. So I'll just let you see for yourself.

Welcome to my world. It's like this...


September, 2000

Buffy looked down at her new boots. Or rather, tried to look down. She could only see the tips of her shoes from the angle she was at--her big, pregnant belly was in the way. Buffy sighed. Only a couple more months, she told herself. In the meantime, however, she needed to do something--anything--to distract herself from the half-gallon of Fudge Ripple Deluxe that sat in the freezer.

She walked over to her nightstand and picked up a pad of Post-Its and a pen. Scribbling something on it, she tore the top Post-It off and stuck it firmly to her shirt.

The next time she tried to look down at her boots, she saw the note attached to her stomach: Sorry for the inconvenience. P.S.: Those are stunning boots.

It's lame, Buffy thought, but whatever.


Cordelia sat at her desk. The windows were open. Perfect, she thought, licking a stamp and applying it to an envelope. Nothing like a little fresh smog.

The elevator creaked and Angel walked in, silent as usual, careful to stay away from the open windows.

"Don't say good morning or anything," Cordelia snapped from her desk. The little moral voice inside her was telling her she ought to shut the window so her boss could get around the office without crumbling into dust, but the rest of her was just telling the voice to shut up. Men, she thought, slapping a stamp onto an envelope with a little more force than was necessary. I hate men.

Angel glanced her way. "Have you seen Wesley yet today?"

"Wesley," Cordelia snapped. "Must we talk about Wesley? I've got a constant reminder right here." She glanced down at her belly. Sorry, kid, she thought. I'm not mad at you. It's all your father's fault.

"Uh, Cordelia, I--"

"Tell me that you understand how I feel and I will rip out your un-beating heart," Cordelia told him, not looking up from the envelopes she was now sorting. "And no, I haven't seen Wesley."

As if on cue, Wesley burst in through the office door. "Good morning," he said.

There was an awkward silence. There'd been a lot of that since May.

"Hey," Angel said finally, mostly just to break the quiet spell.

"Joy," Cordelia said dryly, "Wesley's here."

Wesley and Angel ignored her as much as possible and went off to Angel's office, discussing some kind of demon the oozed pus or something equally gross. Cordelia sat alone in the sun. The telephone stared at her from its spot on the desk.

Before she knew what she was doing, she had picked up the phone and was dialing Sunnydale.

Sometimes a girl needs moral support.


Of all the mommies-to-be, Anya seemed to be the only one totally unbothered by her pregnancy. When everyone else had been in the panicked "oh-my-God-what-have-I-done" stage, Anya had been deciding on colors for the baby's room (wherever it might end up being--hopefully not in Xander's parents' basement) and thinking about names. But then again, Anya was the only one lucky enough to actually be pregnant with her boyfriend's child. Everyone else had not been quite so lucky: Buffy and Spike, Cordelia and Wesley, Willow and Oz. The whole Willow-Oz baby was putting a bit of a strain--to say the least--on Willow and Tara's relationship. Anya couldn't help but feel a little badly for them.

But she mostly just thought about baby things: clothes and toys and bottles and, of course, the need of a steady income. And diapers. Sometimes she had nightmares about diapers. So far, they were the only real thing she was dreading, even more so than the birth itself. Well, Anya had always been good in dealing with pain. Diapers--not so much.


"Willow? Where are you?"

"Here," Willow answered from her spot on the floor. She was sitting amidst a pile of old magazines, flipping through the pages absently.

Tara walked into Willow's field of vision, cordless phone in hand. "Sweetie, it's Cordelia."

"Is everything okay?" Willow asked, a feeling of worry creeping into her chest.

Tara smiled. "Everything's fine. She's just calling for a little mommy-to-mommy support."

"Oh, okay, then," Willow replied, holding her hand out for the phone. Tara handed it over and then returned to the kitchen, where she had been making lunch for the two of them, leaving Willow alone with a pile of magazines and on the phone with an irritated Cordelia.

"Hey, Cordy," Willow began delicately. Usually when Cordelia called, it was to vent about her problems. Normally, this wouldn't be so horrible, but once her raging hormones were thrown into the mix, Cordelia was not exactly a fun phone-friend.

"Willow!" Cordelia groaned. "Why? Why is this happening to me?"

Willow sighed. She got asked this question on a regular basis—sometimes by Buffy, but mostly by Cordelia. Never by Anya, though.

"It's just…" Cordelia trailed off. "It's Wesley, for crying out loud! Wesley!"

"I know, Cordy."

"God, how embarrassing. I slept with Wesley."

Willow examined her fingernails and decided she needed to file them. It wasn't that she was trying to be rude in not paying attention to Cordelia's ranting; it was more that she'd heard the same exact spiel almost every week since Cordy had found out she was pregnant.

"With Wesley, Willow. Why? I was so over him. I still am."

"I take it things are still awkward over there?"

"Duh! How could they not be?"

"Cordelia, you've been calling me every week for four months. And I'm gonna give you the same advice this week as I've given you every other week: You have to talk to him."

"I know. But I'm trying out another idea."

"And this idea is…"

"I leave town and change my identity."

"That's not a solution. That's an escape plan."

"I think it'd work."

Willow sighed, then turned as she heard Tara enter the room.

"Lunch is ready," Tara told her.

"Okay, thanks, baby. I'll be there in a minute." She turned her attention back to the telephone. "Listen, I gotta go. But talk to Wesley. You're only making this harder on both of you, okay? Bye."

She hung up before Cordelia could reply.

Some might call it cold-hearted, Willow thought, but I can always blame it on the hormones.


Okay--definitely not my best. Pretty darn bad, actually. But it'll get better. (It has to, right? I mean, I don't think it can get much worse.)

Just in case you haven't figured it out, the babies' biological parents will be Buffy/Spike, Anya/Xander, Willow/Oz, and Cordelia/Wesley. But don't take these couples for granted--at least two romantic pairings will change.

I checked everything out—Beltane would occur, in the Buffyverse, around the episode "New Moon Rising", thus the Willow/Oz-ness. And in the Angelverse, it would be around the episode "Sanctuary".

mistymidnight