Title: Something To Think About
Author's Name: The Library Girl
Fandom: Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Pairing: None; Just Rupert
Season: After the show ends.
Summary: How do you find the money to feed 50 Slayers?
Disclaimer: This is where I put the statement saying that I do not own Buffy, Giles (Heh! I wish!), Sunnydale, or anything relating
to the show. No one is paying me to do this and if you feel the sudden urge to send me gifts, you might want to talk
to someone about that. Joss Whedon owns all things Buffy and has not given me permission to use these characters
as I have so if you have problems with the story, please send the pretzel bombs to me, not him.
Author's Notes: Thanks need to be given, and here is where they go. Thanks to Joss for creating characters so fun to watch and
to borrow for a bit. Thanks to Tony Head for making Giles so amazing. I tried to fight it, but he was just too
remarkable not to fall in love with. Big thank yous to my other half and best friend Ann for all the love and
support. I could never write without her help and I would never want to try. I appreciate all her work. Thank
you to Jess and Michelle for listening and helping me put this in readable form.
Something To Think About
Rupert frowned as he studied the papers spread out on the table in front of him. He wasn't a stupid man, but this contract was so involved, the wording so pretentious, that he found himself wishing for a dictionary. He'd been reading for about an hour now and was only a third of the way through.
"Hey Giles, where are we keeping the spare crosses these days?" Xander asked, walking to stand behind him.
"Hmm?" Rupert looked up, his mind slowly processing the question. "Oh, Dawn put them in the bureau in her room."
"What are you reading?" Xander asked, looking over Rupert's shoulder.
"It's a contract," Rupert answered, distractedly.
"For what? Don't tell me you got a job?"
"Unfortunately, no," Rupert answered, sighing.
He wordlessly handed the cover letter that had arrived with the papers to Xander and went back to his reading. He was lost somewhere in the minutia of payment plans when Xander caught his attention.
"Are you crazy?!" It seemed to be a rhetorical question, so Rupert merely looked at him. "This is…it's so insane I don't even have words to go there."
The question caught Xander off guard and it took him a minute to reply.
"Well, because you just can't do this. Aren't there rules or something?"
"Not anymore," Rupert responded. "Any protocol for such things died with the Council. We're the ones making the rules now."
"But Giles, you can't be serious about this. Do you know how many ways this could go bad?"
"Xander, this is the only way that I can think of to get money. We have fifty Slayers to feed and more to find. We need a place to house them, we need to rebuild the Council and get organized. All that takes money. The disaster relief funds from the government are almost depleted. If we don't do something drastic, we won't even be able to pay the hotel bill in two weeks."
"Giles, I get that we are poor here, but when you said we needed to do something drastic, I was picturing getting a job."
Rupert sighed, leaning back in his chair.
"Don't you think I've tried to find employment? With the city budget cutbacks there isn't much call for a teacher or a librarian and none of the museums are interested. Besides, my salary wouldn't be enough to support sixty people. And it's not as if we can send the girls to work. Most of them should still be in school."
"Do you really think this is the answer?"
"You must admit, it's a safer option than your Adopt a Slayer idea," Rupert replied, rolling his eyes.
"Hey, I was tired," Xander defended. "And I still say it would have worked. 'For a low monthly contribution, you too can do your part to keep the world safe from evil. We'll send you a picture of your Slayer and you can even exchange e-mails with her.' People love that sort of thing"
"Yes, and it isn't the least bit crass or commercial," Rupert snorted.
"Okay, so the live feed Slayer webcams in the exercise yard were a bit much, but..." He trailed off as Rupert glared at him. "Giles, seriously, this is a bad idea."
"I really think we don't have any other choice." Rupert sighed. "This isn't a preference, it's desperation."
"Are they at least paying you well?"
"Actually the terms are quite generous," Rupert replied, rifling through the papers. "And he's agreed to give us some money in advance. We can take the girls to Bath."
"Why Bath?" Xander asked, watching the older man look over the contract.
"I have a family home there. It's too small to be a permanent solution, but it can house us all until the money comes in from this. And we won't have to pay rent."
"And after the money starts rolling in?"
"We acquire a larger property, invest some of the money, and do our jobs."
"And you don't think this violates some sacred hush clause?" Xander asked, furrowing his brow.
"It might, but there is the greater good to think of here. We have a duty and this money is the only way that I can see for us to do it."
"But won't this keep you too busy to run the Council?"
"I'm just the idea man, Xander. My job is to send him periodic lists of concepts. What he does with them is none of my concern."
"And you don't think this will lead to panic and mayhem and the unraveling of the known universe?"
"Highly unlikely. I think they will consider my work an excellent use of my imagination."
"I guess." Xander relaxed. "And how much are you getting paid for this?"
"After the initial five hundred thousand dollar advance, we receive twenty percent of all profits. I've looked into other ventures of this type and twenty percent could actually bring us in a few million a year."
"Did you say a few million?" Xander was stunned.
"Conservatively speaking, perhaps ten million. But that doesn't include any merchandising. It could go as high as twenty million. With the proper investments, we could rebuild the Council, take care of the Slayers, and possibly even expand our operations."
"Wow. Giles, I had no idea. I guess I can see why you decided to do this. And how did you find this guy?"
"He was the only person who took my idea seriously. I talked to well over fifty people, but most of them thought the concept was too…morbid to appeal to the public."
"Do you think he'll do it justice?"
"I certainly hope so, but at this point I'll be happy with a steady paycheck."
"And you're sure you can trust him?" Xander was frowning.
"Relatively. And I am being fairly vague about all the details. Why do you ask?"
"No reason really," Xander replied with a shrug. "I guess I'm still stuck on that we can't tell anybody thing you used to drill into our heads. Hey, would you mind if I had Willow Google him?"
"I suppose not," Rupert said, going back to the papers.
Xander rummaged around the hotel room until he found a scrap piece of paper and a pencil. He ignored Rupert's frequent glares.
"Okay, what's his name?"
"His name is…" Rupert looked at the contract, making sure to get it right. "Joss Whedon."