TITLE: "Yearly at YVR" (1/2)
AUTHOR: Marie-Claude Danis
EMAIL: mc@fangy.net
SITE: http://fangy.net
ARCHIVE: Yes to list archives, and to whoever already has my stuff. Otherwise just let me know where it's going.
NOTE: Thanks to Alex for saying "there ya go" a lot.
RATING: R for language.

Set in the same universe as "How to Bend, How to Sway", which can be found here: http://fangy.net/howtobend.html. This deals with Spike's relationship with he and Buffy's daughter, James, now in her late twenties. James meets her father at the Vancouver International Airport during one of his yearly visits from Germany.

* * *

"Are you sure we're in the right place?"

"What does this say."

"International Arrivals, Gate D74."

"Then yes, we're in the right place."

"He'll be here, James. Exhale."

James jumped on the balls of her feet, scanning the crowd for a familiar face. "I know, I just... he gets lost."

"No he doesn't. You just like to think he does."

"It's happened."

"He'll be FINE."

Robbie chuckled at her frustrated whine and shoved his hands in the pockets of his good pants. It was always a good idea to wear the good stuff when James' father was around. What a hard nut to crack. Robbie stood up straighter at the thought.

The subtle movement caught James' attention and she eyed him suspiciously. "You nervous?"

"What do you think."

"He loves you."

"No, he loves YOU. He's just humouring me."

She smirked. "You're getting off easy then."

"He looks at me with that 'you're fucking my daughter' look in his eyes. And he's always sniffing me."

James patted him on the shoulder dismissively, her gaze back to roaming the wide populated expanse of the terminal. "Sniffing is good. He's just sniffing me."

"It's *creepy*."

"Would you cut it out?"

"I'm just saying. I get the impression he knows I ate your last bagel last week and he's going to disembowel me for it."

She turned to face him, mouth gaping accusingly. "YOU ate that?"

"Focus. He's going to eat ME."

She stepped closer to him, her expression softening. She smiled and stroked his face. "You'll be fine. He likes you, you know? He thinks you're good for me. And you're wearing your nice clothes and everything." She smoothed out a non-existent wrinkle from his blue shirt.

He smiled back at her, slipping both arms around her waist. "Yeah. And what are YOU wearing?"

"Hey, *I* don't need to impress my father."


"Jerk." She leaned in and kissed him, threading her fingers through the black curls in his neck.

"HEY. You get your bloody paws off my daughter!"

"DAD!!!" Rob's arms windmilled to keep his balance as he was unceremoniously shoved away mid-kiss.

James turned to see her father standing there next to them in khakis and a white shirt, a carry-on slung over his shoulder. He grinned and opened his arms, soon engulfed in a tight hug.

"Hey sweets..."

James wrapped her arms tightly around his neck and squeezed her eyes shut, taking in a lungful of his smell.

"You're here," she let out shakily, grinning into his neck.

Dammit, she knew she'd choke up. She'd been playing this moment over in her mind all week, like she did every year, intent on keeping her cool for once. But his smell and his strong arms around her always melted her resolve. She felt his hand - they were like no one else's - caress her hair, and his nose burying itself in her cheek.

"I missed you, pet..."

James pulled back to look at him and burst into a watery grin. His hands framed her face with a gentleness she'd always associated with him. It was a familiar gesture, one they'd been doing since she was little, when his hands were much bigger to her, and he had to crouch for them to be eye to eye.

His blue eyes smiled back at her own. "Happy birthday," he whispered happily, privately, like they weren't surrounded by hundreds of moving people.

He traced his thumb over her cheek, caressing the stray tear away, and kissed her lips briefly before taking her into a tight embrace again. He saw Robbie behind her, standing there and watching like he wanted to be anywhere but here. His smile changed into a smirk. James felt it and moved out of the way a little, still ensconced in the crook of his arm.

Spike extended his hand. Robbie shook it nervously. "Mr. Walthrop."


"G-Good to see you again."

"Indeed. What have you done to my daughter lately?"

Robbie paled. "I... uh..."

"Dad, stop it. He's terrified enough as it is."

"I've had a long flight, sweets, a long flight with bad movies. I'm in dire need of entertainment."

He looked back at her, and found it hard to tear his eyes away to look back at the poor young man he always took so much harmless pleasure in torturing. God, she looked so much like... But she looked so happy, so healthy, just so happy to see him. He'd originally thought the years would go by quickly, but truth was he found himself counting the days between her birthdays, when he'd leave everything behind in Germany for a few days to be with her.

"What do you say we get out of here, hm?" he whispered to her, tightening his grip around her shoulders.

Robbie watched the silent exchange that passed between them at that. They looked all the world like brother and sister, not father and daughter. They made a strange, fascinating sight for those in on the story. They completed each other's movements like they'd spent every minute of their lives together, instead of apart and on different continents. He watched her father see only her as she spoke, his expression clouding over with that look he always got in her presence, something between fierce possessiveness and emotions he couldn't possibly begin to guess about.

Robbie cleared his throat. "You guys have a lot of catching up to do. I'll leave you to that. Do you have any luggage I could take back, Mr. Walthrop?"

"Nope, everything's in here." He gestured to his carry-on. "I'll hang on to it."

"Okay. See you back at the apartment then."

James smiled gratefully and her father looked at him with an unreadable smile. "Thanks, Rob."

Robbie swallowed awkwardly. He'd never called him by his name. He'd always been 'wanker'. Maybe he did like him after all. Hard to tell with them vampires.