A Moment of Reflection
Disclaimer: Joss owns, I don't. *sob*
Pairing: ( Elizabeth Anne Summers/ Rupert Giles)
Rated: R. Toasty R.
Plot? You want a PLOT? Be grateful I'm bothering with a *premise*
Archive: Why would you want to? But if you do, please ask first.
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Xander hoisted his backpack onto the Magic Box counter, pulling out the trophy seized in tonight's battle.
A mirror: six inches across, maybe ten high, and surrounded by a painted from of flowers and butterflies. It didn't *look* much like anything a Dark Coven would crave. Still, the Huli *had* put up quite a fight.
He looked up at Giles. "Dangerous mojo. Right?"
"Not dangerous - per se." The Watcher reached for Willow's abandoned sword and began to clean the blade. "Although in the wrong hands?"
"Like that Dragon guy." Xander set down the mirror and started in on his own crud-covered blade. "Why do demons have to be so *messy*? At a nudge from his girlfriend he corrected himself. "Evil demons, I mean."
"As I was saying." Giles handed over a stack of rags. "In the wrong hands the Mirror of Virtues could prove a grave hindrance to..."
"Virtue?" Buffy stepped up to take a closer look. "Not exactly the name you'd expect for a demonic artifact."
"The Mirror is not exactly a demonic artifact." Distracted by the chance to lecture, Giles set down Willow's now-clean weapon and picked up Buffy's. "The Mirror was created by Olgrid the Optimist. The name came because he believed that..." The stroke of soft leather across the steel picked up speed. " If people could see the dreadful results of their evil acts - they would choose to behave well. Thus a Mirror of Virtue."
Buffy smiled. it wasn't all that often she could get Giles distracted enough that he would let her skip out on the clean up. Or distracted enough for much of anything. All that stoic concentration. Damn, But since she was getting lucky? "Let me guess?" She smiled. "That why the guy was called 'optimist'."
"So one must assume." Giles frowned at he rubbed the leather cleaning pad over a speck of rust just below the pommel. "Olgrid was murdered by his apprentice shortly after the mirror was created. The mirror vanished into the realm of myths until... Well, I don't suppose we'll ever know how the DragonLord got his hands on it."
"Arcane history, OK, but...?" Willow had taken the Mirror from Xander, and was now inspecting the frame from a distance of about one inch. "What does it do?"
Giles gave up on the rust, and passed the chamois to Xander. "It shows - not the future - but the possible future."
"OK." Willow turned it over slowly. "So - how does it work?"
Giles put down the blade and stepped over. "Hold the mirror." He folded her fingers gently over the carved frame. "Focus on what you want." He raised her hands until the glass was a few inches in front of her face. "Whisper your question." He stepped back slowly. "The Mirror will show you a vision of the closest probable world where what you want - is."
The crew watched as Willow closed her eyes tightly, whispered, and... "Ewww."
"What!" Xander almost dropped his axe.
"Nothing," she reassured him. "Just..."
"What?" Giles's voice was softer, but no less concerned.
"Well, Giles." Willow grinned, half- embarrassed. "I was going to ask you about... Watcher Training... but..."
He raised one eyebrow. "Armageddon?"
"Worse." She made a face at the Mirror. " Tweed-Willow. Which is so NOT my look."
"Well, that is hardly the only possibility." Giles leaned back against the counter. "That is the - pardon the pun - virtue of this mirror. Unlike the Lake of Ardin, this mirror allows you to ask again and again, tailoring your question until..."
He would have continued, but Willow was already focused back on the glass.
"Way!" she half-shouted. " Much better!"
"What?" This time it was Anya who asked.
"Big house on the beach." Willow grinned, passing the mirror on to Xander. "I definitely need to do more work on that spell-compilation program." She picked up her pile of books. "See you later."
"Later." The crew waved as Willow vanished out the front door.
Xander thought a moment, then repeated the whispering ritual. "Not bad." He turned the mirror towards Anya. "Looks like that new job is gonna work out after all."
"That's good. I want them to pay you much more money." Anya looked over his shoulder. "Ohhh. And they *will*. But what if...?" She leaned forward, whispering to the glass. " Ohhh." She squealed again. "Even more good. Excuse me, I have to make a call to my stock broker - *right now!*"
Grabbing Xander's hand, she dragged him out of the shop.
Xander just called over his shoulder. "Bye Giles, Buffy."
"He could at least have finished the axe." Giles frowned, picking up the half-cleaned blade. "It's like I'm the only..." He turned back to see Buffy staring at the mirror. Her face was... sad. No... devastated.
"Buffy." He watched in horror as a tear trickled down her cheek. "Buffy. What's wrong?"
There was no answer but a sob.
"Buffy. " He grabbed her shoulders. "Please, tell me."
"It was blank." She looked up, her eyes bark with pain. "The mirror was blank. I asked it for..." She sniffed back a sob. "Well, that doesn't matter, but I *asked* and it didn't give me *anything*. Which means there is NO chance. " She collapsed back onto the counter stool. "I ought to have known that . I mean - Slayer equals no life - right? But I had hoped..." Surrendering, Buffy buried her face in her hands.
"Oh, Buffy" Giles eased his palm under her chin. "A blank mirror doesn't mean you cant have what you wished for - It means you have it now."
"What?" She glanced up, eyelashes fluttering damply.
Giles bent lower. "If you wished for...say ... a world where you had those dreadful waffles for breakfast?"
Buffy forced a smile. "Like this morning?"
"Exactly." Giles's tone was openly relieved. "Then the mirror would stay empty because - that's something you already have."
"So." Buffy looked down, then up again. "If I wished for ... someone... to love me?"
"Then they do." Giles took one of her hands in both of his. "Perhaps not as openly as you might want - but certainly as strongly as you wished."
"You..." Buffy leaned forward. "You're certain?"
Giles stepped back. "I'm quite sure Angel's devotion is... as great as he could give any woman." Turning back to the counter, he picked up a fresh polishing cloth. "Whatever your physical distance..."
"But." Buffy stood up, stopping him with a hand on his shoulder. "I didn't wish about Angel."
"Then.." Giles hesitated. "I am sorry if I misthought Spike." He kept his eyes on the now-gleaming sword. "Obviously his emotions are deeper then he lets on."
Buffy leaned closer. "Not Spike."
Giles glared at the hand on his shoulder. "Magic or not - I refuse to believe that Riley - or that prat Parker..."
"Not even close." Instead of removing her hand, Buffy used it to pull her Watcher closer. "I wished for you."
"Wa...Wa." Giles stuttered.
"I said." Buffy repeated slowly, licking her lips between each word. "I. Wished. For. You. To. Love. Me."
"Well, that is..." Giles grabbed for his glasses. "I do. I mean, of... of course I do... but...as a..."
"NOT as a father." Buffy's eyes sparkled with something far brighter then tears as she pulled the glasses from his grip. "Buffy knows that spell-trick. I was *very* specific."
"Ev... Even so."
Buffy stroked one hand up his chest until she hooked her fingers over his collar. "So either your magic mirror is suddenly cracked, or..." Pulling his head down, she matched her lips to his.
Giles shuddered. He wanted to step away, but her grip was unyielding. He knew he should say something, should protest, but his voice was... gone. As was any hope of rational thought. The only thing he could do now was open his lips and swallow the willingly offered heat of the feminine mouth to desperately pressed to his.
There was a long silence.
It might have gone forever, but even Vampire Slayers - and Watchers - do need to breath. By the time Buffy let go, they were both doing so. Heavily.
Buffy grinned. "That all you have to say?"
"You seem to ..." Giles swallowed. Hard. "Did the mirror..." He paused, groped for his absent glasses, then started again. "Well, are you quite sure that ..."
"Totally." Buffy leaned forward, running one hand up the flat planes of his chest. "So if you're not gonna tell me this Magic Eight-Ball thing is somehow lying?"
"Um. Well. That is..." Giles stepped back.
Buffy followed, catching him by the belt. "Giles!"
Giles shuddered. "I suppose you wouldn't believe ...?"
"Then, I suppose..." Giles shivered even harder as Buffy slid her fingers under the waist of his trousers. "I must..."
She pulled him forward."Come here."
"Buffy?" Giles struggled to keep his balance - mental and physical.
"You. Must. Come. Here." Buffy repeated slowly.
He did so.
She raised her face for another kiss, and this time Giles did not require a hand on his collar to convince him to bend down and join her. Or to slide his hands over her shoulders. Or to urge her up so her breasts were pressed against the thin cotton of his shirt. Or to slide his hands under her slim hips so that their curving fullness warmed under his palms.
The kiss was hot, and deep, and even longer then the first.
When it ended, Buffy was nearly purring.
"Good." She loosened a shirt button, wiggling her fingers inside until she could play with the curls on his chest. "As in very much of the Buffy feeling good."
Truer words were never spoken, Giles conceded. She did feel wonderful. Soft, yet strong. Warm. Infinitely female. And touching her made *him* feel wonderful. Strong. Brave. Indisputably male. More so then he had in... well, any time he could remember just now. However, that given, he still had a responsibility to protect her youth. Her innocence. Her...
"Heavens. Buffy!" he exclaimed, shaken from his reverie by the nip of teeth on his chest.
"Heaven. yes. Giles-heaven. " Buffy added a second hand. "Am I your heaven?."
"Indeed." Giles tried to catch the tickling fingers before they reached his nipple, but only succeed in pressing them closer. "But..."
"No but." Buffy smiled, her still-free hand undoing yet another button. "Except maybe one primo hard one that I..." She smoothly undid his belt buckle, then slid down his zipper.
"Buffy!" Giles grabbed the second hand just before it invaded very personal territory." I can not deny my attachment to you, but..." He raised one of her captured hands to his lips. "I am older. More familiar with my emotions." He turned over her hand, kissing the palm. "I have had longer to... accept how I feel." With a final kiss to her fingerers, he released her. "Are you sure you would not want to.. date a bit first. Be certain of your feelings?"
Buffy smiled. A predators smile, and a queen's. "I'm certain of what I'm feeling - right now." Using her wrist to pop the waist button, she eased her hand into his trousers until her finger curved around quickly filling flesh.
"Oh lord. Buffy?" Giles tried to step back, but he was caught again. This time by something far more connected then a mere shirt collar.
"Giles?" Buffy drew him closer, sliding on tip toe to slide against his body like an amorous tiger. "Do you remember what Faith said about Slaying?" She slid her free hand under the back of his waistband, urging his pants to fall.
Giles blinked. "That it made her hungry and... oh dear lord..." He shifted, stepping our of his fallen pants in an effort to keep his balance.
"Exactly." Buffy pressed him back towards the pile of mats in the corner of the workout room. Pulling off her top, she tossed it in the pile with Giles's discarded clothing. "You can take me out for breakfast in the morning."
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Even so, feedback is entirely welcome. As in - please. :-)