Disclaimer: Joss is a God and he created BtVS and AtS so that I will have something to love. :D
Summary: Buffy and the old gang receive an invitation. Post – Chosen and post – NFA. The story's definitely better than the summary.
AN: Fred, Wesley and Gunn are not dead. Angel gets Shanshu. And the whole AI gang lives with Buffy and the scoobies and the slayers in Scotland. Story is in Buffy's POV.
Chapter 1: Five Years After
It's been exactly five years today since we've fought back the First, changed the world and left Sunnydale. It was our biggest fight ever and the gang sometimes celebrates its anniversary. And when I say sometimes I mean once. Only once.
Everybody's just so busy making plans, talking strategies and it's all so tiring sometimes. You'd think that not being the only slayer would make the weight of the world lighter. But it still isn't.
Anyway, like I said, today is the anniversary of that last fight in Sunnydale. That's how most of them remember it: the day we defeated the First. But for me, it's much more than that. For me, it was the day I realized how much I loved a certain vampire and it was the same day I lost him. It's the day my beloved Spike saved the world. He died a hero. And no one seemed to care.
Dawn did sometimes. We'd spend some nights just talking about him and how he changed our lives. Because that's what he did: he changed our lives.
"Buffy." Angel knocked on my door. He has been staying with us the past couple of years, together with Fred, Wesley, Lorne and Charles, after they saved the world yet again. It's weird that they brought a dragon with them though. Angel said he tamed it. Why? I didn't know. "Dinner's ready." By the way, he eats like a normal person now. He became human again after stopping the apocalypse thanks to the Shanshu prophecy.
"I'll be right there." I answered him as I stared out onto the view from my balcony. Scotland really is a beautiful place. Too bad there are all sorts of nasties lurking in the dark here. Nasties. I always loved how Spike called things I'd just rather call demons. He walked further into the room, stopping to stand beside me. "How's Nina?" Nina is sort of Angel's girlfriend who's a werewolf. I get jealous of them sometimes. But not really.
"She's locked up safely in her cell." He said, crossing his arms across his chest. "Today's the day right?" I forgot to mention that even though Angel's basically human now, he still had his vampire strength, sight and hearing. Don't ask me how that happened.
"Yeah." I answered softly. It's funny that he's the first one to say anything about that day since he wasn't there.
"Do you miss him?" There was a slight jealousy in his voice.
"Everyday." I said without hesitation. He still didn't know how I really felt about Spike. All he knew is that 'he's in my heart' and that's an understatement. I really didn't want to talk about Spike right now so I immediately changed the subject. "Come on, I'm starving." We walked out of my room and down the hall.
The place we're staying at is huge. It's kinda like a mansion. But because there are so many slayers – teenage girls - staying here… sometimes I feel like it's too small, even though the house has 10 floors, 5 bathrooms and about 20 rooms in each floor, a training room, a laboratory for Willow, Fred and Wesley, two big dining areas and a very hotel-like lobby.
"We've tracked down a new slayer, somewhere in California." Giles said before taking a spoonful of food.
"We'll get on it tomorrow." Xander nodded, still wearing his eye patch. That only reminded me of those days.
"Is Andrew back from China yet?" Willow asked.
"He called this morning. Said he was on his way back with a slayer." Charles answered.
"Did you find out anything about the fluid I gave you last night?" Wesley turned to Fred. They're so lovey-dovey and I hate it because I envy them. God, I'm such a lonely loser.
"Not yet. But I'm working on it." Fred answered with a sweet smile.
The old gang… They didn't say anything about that day. Nothing. It's like they don't remember it… and him… "Guys, we're eating dinner. Can we not talk about this right now?" I got out angrily. And they didn't. Not one of them spoke after that. It wasn't really a big deal that they talk about work. The big deal is that they don't remember Spike.
I expected Xander to at least say something about Anya. But he didn't. Not even one quip about her through this whole damn day.
Dawn looked sadly at me before leaning in and whispering to me. "Here's to Spike." She raised her glass of wine. I can't believe how grown up she looks now.
I smiled gratefully at her. It felt good that at least one person understands how I feel. Though I doubt that she felt regret and longing and did I mention regret?
It took me a while to realize that Dawn, my little sister, was drinking wine. "Where the hell did you get this?"
I pried the glass from her hand and she groaned in protest. "I'm 22, Buffy. It's legal for me to drink."
"The legal age for you to drink is never."
She rolled her eyes at me, but still accepting defeat, and continued eating.
I went up back to my room after dinner, staring again at the vast landscape I saw from my balcony. I remembered that final moment in the Hellmouth, the moment where I laced my fingers through his and our hands burst into flames.
"I love you."
"No, you don't. But thanks for saying it."
"Stupid vampire", I muttered as a tear fell down on my cheek. I gripped the railing when I weakened in his memory. "Stupid." I muttered again.
"You weren't talking about me, were you?" Angel walked out into the balcony beside me. I wiped my tears off with the back of my hand immediately. "Cause technically, I'm not a vampire anymore." He smiled. I tried to smile back at him. "Buffy…" he started. I'm sure he didn't know what to say, just like the previous years where he'd try to comfort me when I'd remember Spike. "I have to tell you something. I think it's time." He shifted slightly and I knew he wasn't about to tell me 'everything's going to be ok' or any other words to try and take me out of my misery.
Just as he opened his mouth to speak, Willow barged into my room, holding a couple of letter envelopes. "Will?" Angel and I walked back into the room and met her half way.
"Someone sent us these." She handed me one envelope with my name written on it. "Xander, Dawn, Giles, Andrew, Nina, Fred, Wesley, Gunn, Lorne and Angel have one too." She handed another one to Angel.
"What is it?" I asked as I opened it.
"Looks like an invitation." Angel answered as he read the cover of the card he found inside the envelope.
To be continued…
A/N: Hopefully, the next chapter will be better. So please review and let me know if I should go on.