Disclaimer: Joss owns everything, but Kaya is my OC.
A/N: This is a oneshot, set right after 'Smile Time' but in an AU world in which teenage Connor is still around, along with Cordelia who has a 5 year old with Xander (she was born when they were in Highschool.)
A/N2: I'd like to give a thanks to Christina at the CCS board for coming up with the title for me.
Things had been going well for Xander, Cordelia and five-year-old Kaya. After five years, Xander had left Sunnydale and moved to LA full-time (mostly due to Sunnydale now being a hole in the ground) and he, Cordelia and Kaya became a happy little family. The parents had a feeling that was very well about to come to an end.
It was a long, long day for Xander and Cordelia. First, Angel got turned into a puppet, and then they had to take on a children's TV show that was being run by evil puppets. But sadly, that was the easy part. The hard part was about to happen. Smile Time, just happened to be their precious daughter Kaya's favorite show ever, and now they had to break it to her that it will never be on again; because they slaughtered the whole cast."Here we go," Xander sighed as he knocked on his daughter's door.
"Come in-y," the child said from in her room.
Xander opened the door and he and Cordelia walked in the room. The five-year-old was sitting on her bed, holding her favorite toy; a Groofus doll. Cordelia immediately threw her arms around the child, thankful that her daughter wasn't one of the children that were in the coma's due to watching the show. "Ah, Cordy, I think you're choking her," Xander said. Cordelia backed off.
"Why is mommy all huggy?" Kaya questioned.
Both parents hesitated. Neither one of them wanted to be the one to break her heart. "Um, sweety, your dad and I have something to tell you," Cordelia announced.
"I am I gonna have to eat vegetables, am I?" Kaya asked, horrified at the thought. Like her father, she was more of a chocolate/doughnut person.
"No...well, yes, when we have dinner. But that's not what we have to tell you," Cordelia said.
"You can't watch Smile Time anymore," Xander blurted out.
Tears filled Kaya's eyes, "but-but, I didn't do anything wrong," she cried.
"No Kaya, you didn't. This isn't a punishment, and it's not just you. No one can watch Smile Time anymore, because it's not going to be on TV again," Cordelia explained.
Xander rubbed the back of his neck as he thought up an answer, "because they all got tired and decided that they can't be on TV anymore."
"Nuh, uh," Kaya shook her head, "not Groofus, he doesn't get tired. He's too good for that. Why are you saying he's tired? Why are you taking him away from me?"
"We're not," her mother insisted, "you can still have your doll. He just won't be on TV anymore."
"But Groofus never got to do the analogy/metaphor song. Now I'll never know what they are, or the difference," the child sighed.
"I'll teach it too you," Xander promised. "Or, you know, your mom, or someone else," he added once he realized he didn't know the difference either.
"It won't be the same, daddy," she argued.
"I'm sorry," both parents said in unison.
Before anyone could say anything else, the front door to their apartment opened, and in walked Connor, "Hey. You two okay? I heard those Smile Time puppets didn't go down without a fight,"the teenager yelled as he shut the door. He turned around and saw the door to Kaya's room was open, and apparently, she heard everything he said.
"You killed them!" she cried.
"Thanks Connor," Cordelia sighed.
"Oops, sorry," Connor apologized, with his 'oh shit' face on.
Kaya focused on Connor. "Did they really kill my Groofus?" she asked. Connor looked at Xander and Cordelia as a non-verbal way of asking them what he should say. Unfortunately, that said it all to little Kaya. "They did!" Her attention was once again on her parents. "How could you?"
"We didn't mean too, baby. Groofus...he was..." Xander tried to explain.
"Sick," Cordelia interrupted. "He got very sick. And it made him to some bad things. So, mommy and daddy had to stop him. Because that's what we do."
"Plus, I never have to hear that damn Self-Esteem song, again," the usually sulky Connor, added happily. The very worst part about babysitting Kaya, was having to hear that song. It drove him crazy, and he thought he deserved a lot of credit for not gloating about how he had a feeling the show was evil long before kids started getting sick. Cordelia and Xander glared at the teenager, who decided to shut up.
"I don't believe you! Groofus is a good Groofus, and his friends were okay too. They wouldn't hurt anyone," Kaya tried to tell them.
Cordelia one again hugged her daughter, but this time, it was to comfort Kaya and not herself. "We're so sorry. We know how much you love your Groofus."
"I do," Kaya sniffed, "I love him very much. And now he's gone."
"You still have your doll. Your doll isn't bad," Xander pointed out.
Kaya pulled away from Cordelia and wiped tears from her eyes. "It's not the same. Doll Groofus doesn't talk or sing."
"That's the best part," Connor mumbled. Cordelia 'shushed' him.
"Okay, I know you're upset. But is there something that daddy and I could do to make you feel any better? Shopping perhaps?"
Kaya thought about her mothers suggestion. She did like to shop. She got that from her mom. But her heart just wasn't in it at the moment. "Maybe later," she said.
Suddenly, something else Connor learned about the days events entered his head. "Hey, Kaya, you like puppets so much? Well get this, my dad is a puppet! Made from Smile Time and everything!"
"No way," Kaya denied.
"I'm serious," he insisted. "Ask your parents."
"Oh, you mean the Groofus killers?"
"Kaya we are so sorry," Xander sighed, "but Connor is actually telling you the truth. Your Uncle Angel is really a puppet."
"Really, really," the three older people in the room confirmed. "His nose even comes off," Connor went on to say.
"Like Mr. Potato Head?"
"Exactly," he said with an Angelus-like smirk. She was about to go torture his father, and the removable nose, and he was going to enjoy watching.
"Well, then what are we waiting for? Let's go!" Kaya stated, holding out her hand for Connor, indicating she wanted him to lead the way.
"Have fun, and have her back by dinner," Xander instructed as Connor took Kaya to see Puppet Angel.
"Thank god she has your attention span, and love of torturing Angel, but my good fashion sense," Cordelia mused.
Xander nodded in agreement. "But I bet this isn't over. She'll be mad about the Smile Time thing again at 7 am tomorrow when she has nothing to watch."
"I know," Cordelia moaned. "Despite that though, I, personally am so glad I will never have to deal with that show again."
Xander shrugged, "it wasn't so bad. There is worse out there."
"Name one," she challenged.
"Point taken. Hey, you think he's evil?"
"Please, do you even need to question it?"
"Think we'll ever be able to prove it and take him out?"
"Oh I hope so. After all, Kaya, isn't really a fan so we won't have to worry about hurting her feelings again."
"Very true," Cordelia agreed.
Both parents sighed and began to mentally prepare themselves for Kaya's next round of Smile Time/Groofus morning, and of course, the veggie argument that was sure to happen at dinner. Meanwhile, somewhere else in the building, there was a five-year-old happily playing with Angel's felt nose and a teenager who loved watching every second of it.
A/N: please review.