Disclaimer: I don't own Buffy the Vampire Slayer or any of the characters mentioned in the cannon.

A/N: A huge thank you goes out to everyone who reviewed the last chapter of my season 3 rewrite, you guys rock honestly. My musie would be shrivelled useless thing without you guys :D

I know that I was supposed to be taking a bit of a break, and I did… I took one day and during that whole day musie did nothing, but pester me to get this started so here it is. :D

Hmm… I don't know how much I'll get done over this weekend, because my nieces are coming down later today, and are spending the weekend, and tomorrow I'll probably be taking them to our local show that is running. It'll be fun watching them run around and beg to go on all the rides… of course there so small still that they can't go on most of the ones that they want to go on. Ie: the roller coasters lol.

Anyway I'll let you get on with reading, and I'll try to get at least something done. :D


The Freshman

Angelus stood in his kitchen with the light on. His arms crossed over his chest as he surveyed the work that was finally finished. The kitchen that had once been filled with old kitchen appliances was now filled with sparkly new appliances, each one handpicked by the tall dark demon himself. He smiled to himself as he began slowly prowling the newly done up kitchen. He ran a finger down the island feeling the smooth surface of the marble he'd had put on in exchange for the old cracked one. Angelus turned his gaze back to the appliances and he walked towards the fridge. Opening the door, the inside light came on revealing the so far empty fridge, and a cool gust of air blew past him.

Shutting the door Angelus reached down and turned off the switch that allowed the appliance to run. Going around he turned off all the switches in the large kitchen except for the light as he grabbed a large white blanket that was on top of a small pile of them, as he began throwing them over them to protect them from dust. His home was ready for his at the moment human future-mate, but he knew that it would probably be a while before she lived here with him. There was a lot that needed to be fixed between the two of them, a lot that he had been the direct cause of. But his home was ready for her when the time finally did come that Buffy came to live with him, and whilst she was human doing so, this kitchen would be hers.

Angelus smirked to himself as he made his way over to the light switch. It seemed that he could be at the very least grateful to his pansy ass soul for one thing. He'd know how to cook for his mate, if the desire to do so ever arouse in him. Angelus turned off the light and walked out of the blanketed kitchen and back through the mansion heading towards the closest exit.

Buffy paced back and forth in a cemetery in front of a large tombstone that Willow was sitting cross-legged in front of on a large picnic blanket a couple of books scattered around her a pen in her hand and a leaflet in her other hand which she was reading with a small frown looking down at the courses trying to find something that Buffy might like. Buffy paused in her passing. "Anything?" She asked with a sigh, facing the red head, before beginning to pace again.

"Ah!" Willow exclaimed, causing Buffy to once again pause her pacing to look at the red head. "Introduction to the modern novel. A survey study of twentieth century novelists." Willow read. "Open to freshman." Willow looked up hopefully. "You might like that."

Buffy looked at the red head with slight concern, as she gently nibbled her bottom lip. "Introduction to the modern novel? I'm guessing I'd probably have to read the modern novel."

Willow nodded. "Maybe more than one." She informed the petite blond.

"I like books." Buffy conceded, a small frown still marring her brow as she thought about it, an image of a large pile of books she had to in her minds eye. "I just don't want to take on to much." Buffy turned to the side, before turning back to face Willow. "Do they have an introduction to the modern blurb?" She asked slightly hopeful, that there was such a course even though it really didn't seem likely.

Willow looked back down at the leaflet scanning the page. "Oh!" She exclaimed. "Short story."

"Well, that's good." Buffy said relieved. Short stories sounded so much easier to read.

"Oh no." Willow muttered still looking at the page. "It conflicts with Psych."

Buffy shifted her feet. "Maybe I shouldn't take Psych." Buffy muttered dubiously, worried about taking a class that sounded so brain-y.

Willow jerked her head up to look at Buffy, her expression pleading. "You gotta. I-it's fun, a-and you can use it as your science requirement. Anyway, Professor Walsh is supposed to be great. She's like world-renowned." Willow explained.

Buffy sighed conceding. She really did need a science requirement. "How do you even get to renowned? I mean, like, don't you have to be nowned first?" Buffy asked.

Willow looked back down at the leaflet. "Yes, first there's the painful nowning process." Willow looked down the page and her eyes lighted excitedly. "Wait!" She cried glancing up at Buffy to make sure she had the blonds attention. "Images of pop culture." She read. "This is good." She told Buffy looking up at her again. "T-they watch movies, T-TV shows, even commercials."

Buffy looked at Willow surprised. "For credit?" She questioned.

Willow smiled. "Heh, isn't college cool?"

"How'd I miss that one?" Buffy wondered as she walked over and sat beside Willow on the picnic blanket.

Willow looked over at Buffy with a slightly reproving look. "Well, you did sort of wait till the last minute with your course selection."

Buffy settled herself down more comfortably on the blanket. "Sorry, Miss I-Chose-My-Major-In-Playgroup." Buffy quipped gently, looking over at the leaflet to read over the course with her own eyes, still disbelieving that she had over looked such a fun easy sounding course. Behind the two girls, the dirt on a fresh grave shifted and a hand shot out of the dirt and into the fresh night air.

"That's an exaggeration." Willow replied fighting down a small blush that wanted creep up over her cheeks. "I just you know, think it's good to be prepared. Don't want to be caught unawares."

"Well, I've been busy." Buffy muttered defending herself. "It's been a very slay-heavy summer." Buffy explained to her friend, a small worried frown creasing her brow. It wasn't the mass amounts of vampires and demons she had faced after the aftermath of The Mayors defeat that had her worried. That she considered normal all the night life coming back and out of hiding naturally gave her a lot more slayage hours. It was the absence of Angelus over the Summer break that had her worried. She hoped it meant that he had left town, gone back to Europe maybe. But it just seemed so easy, to easy even. And Angelus wasn't one to just give up on something. He wanted her miserable for eternity, not something he could manage across an ocean. "I just haven't had a whole lot of time to think about UC Sunnydale."

Willow looked away slightly uncomfortable, realizing that she hadn't known that. She was supposed to know that! Instead she had been more busy concentrating on her life as a freshman at UC Sunnydale. The vampire that was struggling to get out of his grave worked his head and shoulders out of the loose dirt shaking his head slightly as he looked around getting his bearings. Willow mentally shook herself and smiled over at Buffy. It wasn't really her fault she deserved to get excited over school academia, and she was sure that if it had been anything more than what Buffy could have handled she would have been told about it. "It's exciting though isn't it?"

"Yeah!" Buffy exclaimed. "It's gonna be an adjustment." She added a little worriedly.

"Yeah, it's like, five miles away. It's uncharted territory." Willow quipped not realizing that her friends worry about life at college was genuine. Behind them the vampire placed his hands firmly on the sides of his grave and began struggling to pull himself out of the dirt completely.

"Giles said I have to be secret-identity gal again." Buffy sighed, it had been a nice change having everyone know her secret… at least at the high school anyway, but now it was back to being the weird girl that most people wanted to avoid.

Willow nodded sympathetically. "That makes sense." Willow agreed as the vampire behind them managed to crawl out of his grave. He clambered to his feet, turning towards them his throat burning with the hunger, the sound of their voices attracting his attention.

"It's gonna be tough, though… with a roommate." Buffy muttered dubiously, as she pictured herself trying to sneak out of the room in time for patrol with a roommate hanging around.

"Yeah." Willow agreed. As the vampire behind them stalked towards them a smile that revealed his fangs on his lips as he approached his unwitting prey. Never for a moment wondering why two girls would be out at night in a cemetery, talking about college.

"I'm psyched about college." Buffy told Willow with a small nod. "Definitely." Behind them the fledge stopped short as his eye fell on the weapons that were stacked beside the gravestone they were sitting against. "I just need to figure out how it's going to work with my extra-curricular activities." The fledge looked from the weapons to the petite blond that was talking and back again, the gist of the conversation registering in his hunger filled mind. "I just can't let it take the edge off my slaying." The vampires eyes widened and he shook his head, and backed away quietly, before turning and running off into the night, deciding that it would be wiser to find a safer more defenceless victim for his first meal.

"I gotta stay sharp." Buffy concluded, before turning so that she could look back at the grave, hoping to see that the fledge she was waiting on would be waking up. "Is this guy ever gonna wake up!" Buffy grumbled turning back around with a sigh. It was getting late and she really wanted to get home… tonight was the last night she'd spend in her own bed after all, before she headed off to live on campus. Willow yawned hugely and Buffy smiled at her. "It's ok Will's you can go. You've fulfilled your best friend requirements."

Willow looked over at Buffy and shook her head. "No it's ok. Really…" Willow yawned again."

Buffy shook her head slightly. "Not that I don't want your company Will, but I couldn't bear to be responsible for you not being fully awake for our first day on the campus tomorrow."

Willow smiled and nodded. "Alright. Thanks Buff. I'll see you on the campus tomorrow." Willow said excitedly as she gathered the books she had brought out with her. Leaving the leaflet for Buffy to peruse through if she wanted to look for anything else that could catch her interest.

"Yeah. See ya tomorrow Wills." Buffy called as Willow made her way out of the cemetery, a cross and holy water tucked away on her person.

Buffy looked after Willow for a moment wishing that she too was able to go home. Buffy glared over her shoulder at the still unmoving grave. She was sure that this guy had been mauled by a vampire. She had even sensed that newly turned vampire vibe coming from the grave when she had checked it over to make sure. Buffy looked over at the leaflet that was lying on the picnic blanket beside her and picked it up with a sigh. She looked over the courses that Willow had circled for her with her black pen. Her eyes fell on psychology 105 and she nibbled her lower lip thoughtfully tapping the circled course with her finger. She wished she could be as sure as Willow about what courses she wanted to take, but a future job wasn't really on her radar, and so she was left with all the courses and no real direction she wanted to go, and yet she had to choose what she wanted to study.

Buffy sighed again and let the leaflet drop back onto the blanket climbing to her feet Buffy picked up her crossbow from the side of the tombstone and walked over to the grave to check it out. She froze as she saw that the ground had been disturbed where it hadn't been when she had first set up camp in front of the grave. Buffy whirled around searching for the missing fledge, slowly scanning the cemetery she sighed and lowered her weapon when she saw no sign of the fledge. "So much for not letting college interfere with my slaying. And it hasn't even started yet." Buffy muttered as she turned back to walk over to her blanket.

Buffy frowned as she drew closer, her senses tingling and the familiar warmth rose through her body spreading from the base of her spine. Raising her crossbow again Buffy came around the corner of the large tombstone, her crossbow pointed at the dark leather wearing figure sitting on her previously unoccupied picnic blanket, casually looking at the courses circled on her courses leaflet. "I thought you'd left town." Buffy said accusingly to the Master vampire she hadn't seen all summer.

"What, and leave my town after just having rescued it from mass populous reduction." Angelus quipped not looking up from the leaflet he was looking over. His eyes jumping from one circled course to another.

Buffy scowled at him. "It's not your town it's mine." Buffy corrected crossly, beginning to feel slightly silly holding the loaded crossbow at him when he obviously wasn't worried about it.

Angelus looked up at her. "Our town then." He adjusted with a wide charming smile curving his lips, one that had Buffy's twitching to return it.

"Sorry. I don't share town bragging rights with evil murderous vampires." Buffy grumbled lowering her crossbow, but remained standing, ready to raise it again at a moment's notice.

"Not even with evil murderous vampires whose un-life you saved?" Angelus asked.

Buffy narrowed her eyes, suddenly feeling the pulse in her neck beating under the scar that had formed after Angelus has bit her. "Not even." She said firmly.

"Pity." Angelus murmured, jumping to his feet and dropping her course leaflet as he stepped towards her, Buffy's crossbow already re-aimed at him. "I wouldn't mind sharing a town with you." Buffy scowled at him in confusion her heart picking up a slightly faster rhythm. Angelus stepped towards her and Buffy shifted her crossbow threateningly, her finger moving over the trigger warningly.

Angelus paused in his stride respecting Buffy's wariness even though he seriously doubted that she would fire the weapon at him. Not after she had gone to the trouble of saving his life. "You know you don't need that Buff." Buffy looked at him warily, watching as he slowly raised an arm and reached it out to her, his fingers straight to reveal that his hand was empty. Angelus bit back a sigh of contentment as his fingers brushed along the soft skin of her cheek until his entire palm covered the soft skin of her cheek completely the tips of his fingers sliding into her hair. He caressed her skin with his thumb gently his eyes on hers as she watched him for any sign of hostile movement. It irked him that she didn't trust him, but he couldn't blame her. All the blame for the mistrust she felt was at his feet. "I'm not going to hurt you."

Buffy stepped back from him and his caressing hand, her skin already missing the feel of his hand, as she made a disbelieving noise. An emotion that was echoed in her hazel eyes. "Come into my web said the spider to the fly." Buffy quoted sarcastically. "I'm not as stupid as the fly… not anymore." Buffy muttered seriously.

Angelus inclined his head. "You're more stubborn though." Buffy eyed him for a long moment, more as he stood facing her before he turned and walked away quickly disappearing into the night. Buffy remained alert for a few long moments more. Watching for any signs that he was still out there, but her senses told her that she was once again alone in the dark cemetery. Slowly lowering her weapon Buffy turned and began packing up her things, more than ready to call this night a bust.

Buffy sighed as she folded up her picnic blanket, Angelus' words running through her head, as they were so often did. 'I'm not going to hurt you.' He'd said, Buffy shook her head at herself as she found that she wanted to believe him. But it was stupid to do so. He was the deadly spider and she would be the helpless fly that got eaten if she wasn't careful. Angelus was no longer an ally. He was no longer bound by any conditions to not hurt her friends or family. He no longer had any reason to play nice with her. He was the enemy! Buffy told herself firmly… that was final!... right?

Buffy shook her head again to dispel the questioning thought. Checking to make sure she had everything Buffy turned and headed towards Revello Drive and her bed.

Buffy looked around as she stood uncertainly in amongst a crowd of bustling students that all seemed to know what they were doing. She clutched her folders to her chest as she looked around. Everything was all so different to the High School… it was so much bigger. "FRESHMEN!" She heard a female student volunteer yell, and she turned towards the voice hoping for some clue as to what she was supposed to do. "WE'RE DOING THIS BY FOLDER COLOR! IF YOU'RE NOT HOLDING ON TO A YELLOW FOLDER, YOU'RE IN THE WRONG GROUP. YOU BELNG UP BY WIESMAN HALL." Buffy looked in the direction the female student pointed, before looking down at her small pile of folders. Not seeing a yellow one, Buffy started moving in the direction she had been told.

For a small moment a protest rally caught her attention, an angry student stood on a raised platform in front of a banner that read 'THIS MUST STOP.' Buffy looked at it surprised before turning away. Before she could move a step she was accosted by an unknown student handing her a flier. "Rally tomorrow night. We have to let the administration know how we feel." He told her.

"Yeah, right." Buffy said uncertainly, as the student moved on to the next person he saw. Buffy placed the page on top of her folders and began walking only for a girl to come up to her.

"Have you accepted Jesus Christ as your personal saviour?" The girl asked handing her a flier from the pile she was holding.

"Uh," Buffy said self-consciously, taking the flier that had been shoved at her. "You know I mean to and then I just got really busy."

Buffy hurried along as the girl moved on, only to stop in her tracks as another flier was shoved under her nose, and she looked up to see a guy smiling at her. "Party, Thursday at Alpha Delta, you gotta be there. Free Jello shots for freshmen women."

Buffy took the flier. "Hey, you guys know where Wiesman hall is?" She asked looking up only to see that the guy that handed her the flier was already talking to another freshman girl behind her. Buffy sighed and continued walking up the stairs she had mounted, pausing at the top looking around, hoping to see a large sign that said 'Wiesman hall.'

Willow came up to her a strong bounce in her step. "Hey Buffy." She greeted giddily making the blond turn around in relief.

"Oh boy, am I glad to see you." Buffy sighed, as she fell into step with Willow as they continued up the path.

"Isn't this cool? There's so much going on." Willow exclaimed as she looked around avidly.

"Yeah." Buffy nodded. "Almost, one might say, too much." She muttered, feeling overwhelmed by the whole experience so far.

"I got all my courses… except for Modern Poetry, I had to switch to Ethno-musicology." Willow said excitedly, turned slightly so that she could look at Buffy. "But that's cool, West-African drumming, I think it's going to change everything. Have you met your roommate yet?"

"No." Buffy said with a shake of her head.

"Me neither." Willow murmured, still slightly sore that she hadn't been roomed with Buffy, like the two had hoped. "I hope she's cool."

Buffy looked down her eyes catching the brightly coloured fliers on top of Willow's folders. "I see you got ticketed too."

"Yes!" Willow exclaimed. "I've heard about five different issues and I'm angry about each and every one of them." Willow looked over at Buffy's small pile. "What did you get?"

Buffy looked down at the flier on top. "Jello shots!"

Willow frowned in disappointment. "I didn't get Jello shots." Willow rifled through her fliers and picked out one. "I-I'll trade you for a-a Take Back the Night." Willow said trying to hand it to her petite blond friend.

Buffy didn't comment on the name of the flier, although it did bring back memories of being tied up to a stake with occult books piled underneath her for fuel. She smiled at Willow and simply handed over all her fliers, earning a beaming ecstatic smile from Willow as she happily took them all glad that she hadn't had to give up one of her own fliers in exchange. Buffy looked ahead of them, suddenly remembering where she was supposed to be heading. "Are we heading anywhere near Wiesman Hall? I still need to get my I.D card." Buffy asked looked around for the hall.

"Oh, I got mine this morning." Willow frowned. "The lines are really long now, you should have gone early."

"Well, I hope that I learn from this experience, and that I grow." Buffy quipped as she continued to walk in step with the red head along the path.

Willow glanced over at her best girlfriend. "I'm being annoying, aren't I?" Willow murmured .

"No." Buffy corrected quickly. "It's nice that you're excited."

Willow smiled widely. "It's just in High School, knowledge was pretty much frowned upon. You really had to work to learn anything. But here, the energy, the collective intelligence," Willow skipped slightly in her excitement. "It's like this force, this penetrating force, and I can just feel my mind opening up, you know?" Willow looked around the campus with a dreamy expression. "And letting this place thrust into, and spurt knowledge into…" Willow trailed off as she caught the look Buffy was giving her. "That sentence ended up in a different place than it started out in." She muttered self-consciously.

Buffy smiled slightly. "I'm with you though. I'm all for spurty knowledge. It's just, a little overwhelming." Buffy turned to Willow hopefully. "Don't you feel it?"

"Well, I'm…" Willow began only to trail off as she was distracted by seeing Oz walking down the hill towards them. "Ooh, boyfriend! My on-campus boyfriend." She exclaimed excitedly. Oz walked up to her with a half smile on his face, as he leaned forward and kissed Willow with a tender passion.

"Oh no, I forgot to pick mine up." Buffy quipped uncomfortably. "Line's probably really long there, too." She mumbled to herself as she looked away from the couple. She was glad for Oz and Willow she really was! It was just really hard sometimes to see past the fact that the man/demon she loved, didn't love her.

"How are you?" Willow asked Oz as they broke apart, not noticing Buffy's uncomfortableness.

"Good." Oz replied. "It's pretty much a madhouse."

Buffy looked back up at them, relieved that she seemed to have found someone else that found this place as overwhelming as she did. "I know, I was just saying that to Willow. I mean it's just so overwhelming. Don't you feel completely disoriented?"

Before Oz could answer a guy noticing Oz walked over to them. "Oz!" He called.

"Hey Paul." Oz greeted turning to face Paul.

"Finally matriculating with us, very cool!" He ribbed good naturedly. "Tell me you're playing this week!"

Oz nodded. "Thursday night, Alpha Delta."

"Ooh!" Willow cried holding up one of the fliers Buffy had given her. "I have that one!"

Buffy looked at them helplessly, a grow sense of aloneness growing in the pit of her stomach as she watched her two friends seamlessly embed themselves in college life without some much as a nervous twitch. "I'm bringing the wrecking crew." Paul informed Oz. "Jello shots. Hmm?" Paul turned more serious. "Do you know where they're distributing the work study applications?"

"Back of Richmond Hall, next to the auditorium." Ox replied pointing in the general direction with his finger.

"Thanks. See ya bro." Paul called as he walked off with a wave.

"Go get 'em." Oz called after his friend, before turning back to Buffy and the conversation they had been having. "My band's played here a lot." He said in explanation for knowing Paul. "It's still new he assured, making Buffy smile in relief again, until Oz saw someone else he knew across the campus. "Hey, Doug."

"Well, I've got to get to Wiesman hall, before the line get's any longer." Buffy muttered, turning to continue down the path.

"Oh, I'll come with." Willow exclaimed, giving a cheerful wave to Oz as he moved off in the opposite direction.

A while later Buffy and Willow walked into another building and began walking down a hallway as they wandered the campus, familiar rising themselves with it. Willow looked up at a staircase and smiled brightly as she saw the sign. "Library… Ooh! Library. C'mon." Willow urged. Buffy smiled and mounted the steps with Willow.

"It's too bad Giles can't be librarian here. Be convenient." Buffy murmured as they reached a landing and turned left to mount another staircase.

"Well, he says that he's enjoying being a gentleman of leisure." Willow explained.

"Gentleman of leisure?" Buffy repeated giving Willow a look. "Isn't that just British for unemployed?"

Willow smiled and nodded. "Uh-huh, he's a slacker now."

"Speaking of slack, have you heard anything from Xander?" Buffy asked, not having heard anything from the brown haired boy for a long while.

Willow shook her head. "Not for a while, he's still on his cross-country-see-America thing." Willow explained as they reached another landing, and turned to once again climb another flight of stairs. "He said he wasn't coming back until he had driven to all fifty states."

Buffy glanced over a Willow. "Did you explain about Hawaii?" She asked.

Willow looked down guilty. "Oh, he seemed so determined. I didn't want to put a big gigantic hole in that see the whole of America attitude."

Buffy nodded her understanding. "I hope he gets back soon. It'd be fun to have the whole gang back together, you know, hang out in the… library." Buffy gaped as they finally reached their destination. "Wow!" She breathed as she took in the huge room, and the high ceiling.

"Oh my gosh! Isn't this amazing?" Willow exclaimed, resisting the urge to do a happy dance as she looked at the vast library, her fingers already itching to get a hold of some of the books that were stacked so neatly on the shiny polished shelves… the shelves at the old High School library never shined!

"It's… cozy." Buffy muttered as she looked around, not as overly enthused by the large library as Willow. This place didn't feel like a place where they could have their secret Scooby meetings about what new peril was attacking Sunnydale. Buffy eyes roved around the many, many tables nearly all of them filled with students pouring through books. No… this… this wasn't a sanctuary like it had been at the High School… there was no privacy. Buffy frowned slightly, the one thing she hadn't really expected to change had, and she found that it had once again knocked her off kilter.

"You know," Willow observed. "I never wanted to hurt Giles' feeling, but occult books aside, our old library just didn't have the greatest selection. But this!"

"Yeah, this is great." Buffy said dubiously. "You know, if we ever need a place for the Nuremberg rallies."

Willow turned her eyes back to Buffy. "This is a real library." She explained, and she grinned as she heard somebody 'Shh' them. "See," She whispered eagerly. "We even have to whisper. It's like a whole new world." Willow exclaimed giddily, earning another 'shh' from the same student as well as a venomous glare.

Buffy looked around the library again, a huge wave of homesickness hitting her as she once again took in the large vastness of the library. Why was she the only one that seemed so out of place in this vast new world of knowledge seekers?

Buffy carried a small armload of books, students milled about her all hurrying to find their necessary books, none of them wanting to miss out. Buffy walked slowly down a bookshelf scanning its contents for the last book she needed. Willow came back over to her a shopping basket hung over her arm. "Here." Willow said gesturing the basket for Buffy to put their books in.

"Thanks." Buffy said, not wanting to mention that she had been fine carrying all their books without the aid of the basket. Buffy and Willow began walking again. "Can't wait til mom gets the bill for these books, I hope it's a funny aneurysm."

Willow looked down at their lists. "Introduction to Psychology." She murmured looking up at the shelf they were walking along. Her eyes catching sight of the books on top of the shelf half hanging over the edge.

Buffy looked up at them dubiously. "I'll get 'em. You know this store discriminates against short people." She muttered.

Willow smiled. "Oh, I think there's a protest next week."

Buffy moved closer to the shelf using it to help her reach higher as she leaned up on her toes. Her fingers brushed the books. She went to grab them, but her hand slipped knocking all four off instead. "Woah, oh." Buffy cried as they fell, and a man that had been crouched beside the end of the shelf let out a surprised pained sound and staggered back as all four books hit him simultaneously on the head. "Ohm ahh." Buffy stuttered shocked. "Oh God, I'm so sorry." Buffy apologized profusely.

Willow and Buffy looked at him as he stood up. "I'm ok. It's ok." He said reassuringly. "Well, that was bracing."

"I'm so…" Buffy went to apologize again, but changed her mind. "The books were just too high, and then everything was bad." Buffy mentally shook herself, as she reran that sentence through her head. 'Pull yourself together Summers! So what if you hit him on the head with like half a dozen Psychology books… thick Psychology books.' Buffy bent down quickly to help prevent herself from spewing any more crazy babble.

"Let me give you a hand." He offered slightly wincing as the movement made his sudden headache throb. He grabbed a couple of the books and looked them over. "Let's put a few of these down here." He said as he placed them in the shelf on a level closer to the ground. "So, uh, are you girls taking Intro Psych, or do you just want me dead."

"Uh huh." Buffy answered, before realizing how that sounded. "I mean the first one." She added looking a way embarrassedly. 'What in the world was wrong with her?' She thought slightly flustered still from the accident and now her mouth that seemed to want to make her look like a babbling idiot.

"Well," Riley said looking away from the cute, but definitely strange blond. To the red head. "You'll have a lot of fun. Professor Walsh… she's quite a character."

"You've taken it?" Willow asked excitedly, her eyes lighting up.

"I'm a TA, I'll be helping the Professor out." Riley looked from one to the other again. "I'm sorry, I've forgotten my manners in all the concussion… I'm Riley."

"Willow." The red head said indicating herself. "And this is my friend Buffy." Willow introduced gesturing at the petite blond. She looked between them for a moment thoughtfully, the thought flickering through her head that, the two would make a cute couple, and Riley seemed like such a great guy, far better for Buffy then Angel had ever been… what with all the creature of the night stuff, and the pain that was Angelus.

"It's nice to meet you both." Riley said politely.

"I'm nice to meet." Buffy replied, earning herself a surprised look from Riley. Buffy looked down when Riley looked away again distracted by Willow.

"Hey, do you know if we're going to be studying 'Operant Conditioning' in the first semester? 'Cause I hear that's kinda Professor Walsh's specialty." Willow asked as Buffy mentally berated herself.

Why was she acting like a stuttering fool? Sure Riley was a little cute, but he had nothing on Angel, or even the dark leather wearing look of Angelus. Buffy thought confirming it with a discrete glance up at Riley from under her lashes. And she never babbled like this much of a fool in front of him… it must be the fact that I tip a load of heavy books on his head. Buffy frowned at her gaze dropped back to the ground at her feet. Beside even if she did like Riley in that way, she wouldn't be able to anything about it… not with Angelus' reappearance into her life after a summer of not having to deal with him. All she'd end up doing was getting Riley killed. Buffy nodded to herself slightly. It was better off for everyone involved if she just continued acting like a ditsy idiot. She decided.

"Absolutely." Riley agreed as Buffy looked up from her mental berating, having decided on a course of action. "Do you know her treatise on Dietrichs work?"

"I know of it." Willow sighed longingly.

"It's not in the syllabus, but it's a fascinating read… if you're into that sort of thing." He muttered clearing his throat, realizing he was sounding a bit overzealous. "They have it here."

"Oh, where?" Willow asked eagerly.

"I'll show you. I don't meet that many freshmen that know that much about psychology."

"Well, it's fascinating." Willow breathed.

"Yeah, you know, 'cause everyone's got a brain." Riley gave her a polite half smile, before gesturing to Willow that it was this way, as he began leading them.

Willow glanced over at Buffy giving her a concerned, but slightly sharp look, feeling that something was up with her friend, the flustered stage should have been over during her long silence in the conversation. Buffy half shrugged at her nonchalantly, and Willow gave her a last searching look, before heading off after Riley. Buffy sighed and followed, knowing that she was going to have to give Willow an explanation for her behaviour.

A little while later Buffy and Willow walked out of the bookstore, and as they mounted the steps, Willow turned on Buffy. "Ok, so what was the whole I'm just an average Joe, stereotypical blond act in there Buffy? I mean Riley is cute, not that I'm interested, but he seemed interested in you until you decided to go all…"

Buffy sighed. "Willow for one thing I'm totally not interested, and secondly… after you left last night… Angelus payed me a visit,"

"What?" Willow exclaimed, earning a sharp look from her friend, and Willow glanced around, before lowering her voice. "I thought you said he'd left town?"

Buffy shrugged. "I hadn't seen him all summer, so I thought that it was a possibility, but it seemed that he was just spending time working on whatever diabolical plan he's cooked up now to make my life miserable."

Willow narrowed her eyes at Buffy. "So, what? You're just not going to have a life, because Angelus is stalking you."

Buffy looked at Willow surprised, before shaking her head, at the red head. "No, I'm going to have a life, that consists of doing my best to get my upperclassmen and my fellow freshmen killed."

Willow sighed, "You know… you could just kill him, and then you wouldn't have to worry about it anymore."

Buffy shot Willow a look. "It's not that simple. I thought you understood that." Buffy said feeling more than a little hurt that her best friend thought that she wasn't dusting Angelus for the hell of it. "Angel means more to me, than words could ever fully explain." Buffy said firmly before hurrying down the stairs her books in her arms.

Willow looked after Buffy shocked. "Buffy, wait! I-I… damn." Willow muttered to herself as she watched Buffy reach the end of the stairs. She really hadn't thought that Angel would still be playing on Buffy's mind so strongly after all this time. With a much more sedate pace Willow made her way down the stairs. Hopefully a guy would catch Buffy's interest, and turn her mind from Angel. Willow thought hopefully, she really didn't think it was natural for Buffy to cling onto Angel's memory for so long. The red head frowned as she remembered last year sitting across from Buffy on the petite blonds bed holding her as she cried over the loss of Angel for a second time, and told her of the pain that she didn't think she could face again without dying.

Buffy walked winding her way through the bustling students as she walked down the hall that her dorm room was located. She sighed to herself as she headed down the hall. She'd overreacted with Willow she knew, she shouldn't have taken Willow's comment do hard, there was truth to it after all. If she dusted Angelus all her problems would go away. She wouldn't have to worry about being seen with a boy, or even dating a nice boy, and it wasn't as if Willow knew of her feelings for the dark demon. Buffy rubbed at her chest, knocking the shoulder of a boy in her distraction. But at the mention of killing Angelus her heart had constricted painfully and fear had consumed her. fear of his loss. Buffy sighed she was a walking contradiction! She loved Angelus, but she didn't want to! He wasn't right for her, he didn't even like her! 'I don't loathe you.' She heard Angelus' delirium filled voice in her head. God how her heart had jumped and scurried with a hope that she had forcefully and ruthlessly smashed down when she had heard those words. She didn't put much stock in them, he'd been delirious after all.

The look in his eyes, the look that she couldn't, or didn't want to place as she had been staring across at him from in the darkness after the fight with The Mayor, haunted her, she couldn't shake the look. Those eyes haunted her dreams. Buffy shook her head she didn't want to think about it. she didn't want to think about him, it only led to more pain, but now that he was making a reappearance in her life… she was undoubtedly in for a whole new world of pain. After all you didn't haul yourself away for a summer and not cook up a few new ideas on how to make the person you want miserable… just that to an impossibly large degree. Buffy shivered and bit back a whimper, and she scowled determinedly. She'd handled what he'd thrown at her before she could do it again, right?

Buffy looked back as she walked past an open door the numbers on it catching her eye. Seeing the number 214 attached to it, she backtracked and walked into the room. Her eyes landing on young woman with her suitcase opened on the left hand side bed. Buffy looked about the room curiously, as she slowly walked into the room. "Hi." Buffy greeted.

The young dark haired woman looked up from her unpacking, a perky smile on her face. "Oh, hi! Are you Buffy?"

"Yeah." Buffy nodded, as she continued looking around the room, her eyes taking in the symmetry of the room, with the two beds, and then the two desks on the other side of the room opposite them.

"Kathy." The dark haired girl introduced herself.

"Hi," Buffy said again. "It's nice to meet you." Buffy put her things down on the right hand side desk, before walking over to the free bed and sat down on it.

"Yeah." Kathy murmured, the perky wide smile still fixed to her face.

"So, it ah… it's a pretty nice room." Buffy observed not sure what else to say to her roommate.

"Hmm!" Kathy exclaimed turning around, having turned back to her suitcase, a poster hanging down her arms. "I was surprised, 'cause you hear horror stories about freshmen housing." Kathy looked at the bed Buffy was sitting on, then her things piled on the right hand side desk. "You took the right side?"

"Yeah." Buffy said self consciously. "Umm, but if you want it…" She offered.

"No, no." Kathy cut her off. "I just wanted to make sure that's what you wanted. Excited for classes tomorrow?" Kathy asked as she turned to observe her side of the wall of the apartment, looking for a good spot to hang her poster.

"Painfully." Buffy quipped.

Kathy laughed good naturedly, turning back to look at Buffy. "I bet there's going to be a lot of parties to go to this week, too. Not that I'm a crazy partier. Oh, and I'm not always this hyper, either. I'm just excited." Kathy beamed.

"Yeah, me too." Buffy agreed with much less enthusiasm.

Kathy crossed the room with her poster heading towards the wall. "I'm really glad they put me with somebody cool." Kathy said talking to Buffy over her shoulder as she began sticking down the brightly coloured poster of Celine Dion to the wall. "I can tell that you're cool. I just know that this whole year is going to be super fun!" Kathy exclaimed as she stuck down the bottom corners of her poster.

Buffy looked at it for a long moment, trying not to judge her new roomies taste in music. She turned her eyes away from it.

Buffy lay in her bed looking up at the ceiling, as Kathy snored beside her, occasionally smacking her lips. Buffy looked over at the digital clock on the nightstand separating their beds, and sighed. It was still early, much earlier than she was used to going to bed. She was taking the night off slaying so that she could be fully rested for her first bout of college classes tomorrow, much good it was doing her, though. Buffy rolled onto her side facing away from Kathy and determinedly closed her eyes wanting sleep.

But the noise in the room and her mind wouldn't let her. Her thoughts continuously drifted to Angelus and what horrors he could possibly have in store for her now. Buffy brought her hand up to her neck gently cupping the scar in the shape of Angelus' fangs. The raised skin was still sensitive even after all these weeks since it had happen. Worry fluttered in her belly, and her eyes opened and she stared out into the darkness. Angelus could still enter her family home, where mother would now be lying in her bed asleep. Buffy curled herself into a ball, her hand curling into fists as she placed them on the mattress in front of her.

Angelus climbed up the tree that led to Buffy's bedroom window. Easily jumping from the tree to the roof, he walked silently over to Buffy's closed window, easily opening it he slipped into her room, and looked around, his eyes taking in its bareness. Angelus sank down on the bed, lying down on it his head resting on her old pillow as he looked up the ceiling. Her lingering scent filling his senses. He searched for her out on patrol, had even walked the grounds of the college looking for her. He found wisps of her scent her on the grounds, but nothing to suggest that she was out patrolling.

He'd followed it though, picking her scent out of the din, an almost impossible task as her scent mingled with the others living in the same dorm building. But he'd done it, he'd followed it all the way to dorm room number 214, he'd been tempted to knock, but he hadn't, her roommate had been asleep and Buffy… Buffy probably would have slammed the door in his face. Angelus smirked to himself… there was always tomorrow night, he knew where she lived now. There was no real hurry. Angelus buried his face in her pillow breathing in her scent for a moment, before getting up and walking the room, looking at the things she had left behind.

His eyes landed on the picture she had once pointed out to Angel, which had led to them making a date to go to the ice rink. He picked it up and looked at the image of the child Buffy, after a moment he placed it back down and turned away from it. Without further perusal of the things Buffy had chosen to leave behind Angelus slipped back out the window closing it behind him, before taking off into the night.

Professor Reegert took a sip from his soda wetting his mouth before he continued with his introductory lecture. "The point of this course is not to critique popular American culture. It is not to pick at it, or look down upon it. And it is not to watch videos for credit." He said earning a small round of laughter from the students. Buffy looked around at them from her position in one of the middle rows closer to the back of the class. "The point is to examine..."

Buffy leaned to a female student beside her. "Do you know if this class is full yet?" She whispered, earning a disapproving look from the girl.

The Professor looked up at Buffy from his position in annoyance. "And there are two people talking at once, and I know that one of them is me. And the other is… a blond girl. You, blond girl. Stand up. I'm excited to hear what you have to say that's worth interrupting my lecture for."

Buffy looked around at the other students, before nervously standing to her feet. "I was just asking if the class was still open, if I could still sign up." Buffy told him trying to ignore the staring of the other students of the class.

Professor Reegert took a step back towards his desk, and picked up the clipboard resting there. He held it up for the entire class to see. "If your name isn't on this sheet then you are wasting everyone's time." He turned his eyes back to the petite blond standing awkwardly in amongst the rows of students. "Are you on this sheet?"

"They told me that if I just…" Buffy began.

Reegert interrupted. "Do you understand? You are sucking energy from everyone in this room. They came to learn. Get out!"

Buffy gathered her things. "I didn't mean to… suck." She muttered in an attempt of an apology.

"Leave!." Reegert said in a carrying voice.

Buffy turned and began making her way through the students sitting in their seats looking up at her. Some with pity and others with annoyance. Buffy paused, and turned back to the Professor. "Thank you." She said quickly, before continuing on her way out, as Reegert who didn't want to waste any more time on the energy sucking blond turned back to his class to continue his lecture.

Buffy walked out of the building and onto the grounds. Looking around she walked over to a tree not too far away, and sat down at its base leaning against it. Bringing her knees up and hugging her chest, her bag with her books lying on the grass beside her. As she sat there she closed her eyes and allowed herself to pretend that it was familiar cool arms wrapped around her, offering her comfort, and encouraging words to keep her motivated. Buffy opened her eyes with a heavy sigh, imaginings like that would do her no good. Angelus would never sooth, or comfort her in anyway, unless he told her he planned on killing her quickly, which she severely doubted would ever happen.

Buffy looked around a busy hallway, wondering where Psychology was in the large unfamiliar hall. Riley spotting her on his way stopped by her. "If uh, you're looking for Psych, it's through here." He pointed.

Buffy smiled up at him gratefully as they began walking towards the indicated classroom. "Oh thanks. How's your head?" She asked regretfully.

"Sorry?"Riley asked as they entered the classroom that was filling up with students.

Buffy looked up at him surprised, sure that he had directed her to Psych because he had recognized her. "Yesterday… in the bookstore… you don't remember." She sighed feeling stupid for bringing it up.

"Oh no, sure, I remember you. You're Willow's friend." Riley said, remembering the strange girl that had accidentally tipped the books down on his head.

"Yeah." Buffy said confirmingly.

"My heads fine, it just stung for a bit and I lost most of my basic motor functions. I'm sorry, I'm trying to remember you?"

"Buffy." She replied, with a small relieved smile, it seemed that she wouldn't have to worry about getting this guy killed by Angelus.

"Buffy, right. Have fun tonight, ok?" Riley said as he began to make his way over to the teachers desk.

Buffy turned towards the tiers, but turned back worriedly. "You know, I was just wondering. Professor Walsh isn't planning on yelling at me and kicking me out of the class, is she?"

Riley gave her a confused look, and fixed a polite smile on his face. "It's not in her lesson plan." Up in the tier's Willow smiled slightly as she saw Buffy, and Riley talking, perhaps her friend wasn't so uninterested.

"Great." Buffy said relieved, before turning back to the tiers. Spotting Willow and Oz she walked up to them, taking a seat beside Willow. "Hey." Buffy said with a smile that was apologetic for her abrupt departure at the bookstore.

Willow smiled in return, seeing that the teacher wasn't there yet she leaned towards Buffy. "How was pop culture?"

"I decided not to take it. It seemed dull." Buffy said uncomfortably, as she settled her stuff.

Willow was about to make her own apology for her perhaps hurtful words that had led to Buffy hurrying off on her, when Professor Walsh marched into the room, heading straight her desk. Setting down her briefcase on it, she took a sheet of paper that Riley handed. "Ok." She said finally looking up at the tiers and the students sitting in the seats. "This is Psych 105, Introduction to Psychology, I'm Professor Walsh." She began her lecture as she leaned back against her desk, and crossed her arms. "Those of you who fall under my good graces will come to know me as Maggie. Those of you don't will come to know me by the name my TA's use, and think I don't know about, 'The evil Bitch Monster of Death'. Make no mistake, I run a hard class, I assign a lot of work, I talk fast and I expect you to keep up." Walsh surveyed her students coolly. "If you're looking to coast I recommend Geology 101, that's where the football players are."

Buffy swallowed, as she listened to Professor Walsh's lecture. It seemed that she was in for one hell of a year, and this was only the first day!

Buffy walked along a footpath, looking around searching for the hall she was looking for. She really missed the small campus of the High School, there was no way that you got lost on those grounds. Buffy collided with a student walking the opposite way. "Ooh!" Buffy said in surprise.

"Wow, sorry." The boy said looking up from his map.

"No, I-I wasn't looking." Buffy said looking up at the dark haired, lanky boy she had bumped into.

"Did you, uh lose your way?" He asked looking around the dark campus.

"Me? Oh, no, no. I'm just going to Fischer Hall…" Buffy looked around. "Which I know is on the Earth planet. Recently voted 'Most Pathetic.' Uh huh." Buffy said in a teasing tone, trying not to sound like she was embarrassed about being lost… again.

"Hmm, well, I'm lost and I have a map." He said holding up the sheet of paper that was creased with fold lines. "So…"

"Ooh, I come in second. I'm Buffy, by the way."

"Eddie." The Boy replied.

Buffy stepped closer to him look at the map over his arm as he held it out. "Ok, so… That's Fischer Hall, right?" She asked pointing to the spot on the map.

"Ok," Eddie agreed. "And that's Dunwirth Building, that's my dorm…" He explained. "It's just… it's us I can't find." He muttered hopelessly, looking around the campus once again.

Buffy frowned at the map, and searched the grounds, before looking back at the map. "Are we the blue part?" She asked.

"No…" Eddie muttered, before taking a closer look and perking up. "Yes!"

"Ok, right, so I-I came from there," She murmured pointing in the direction of the hall she had just left. "Then we just wanna go that way." Buffy said pointing in the direction she had been heading. "To the bike path.

"You sound very certain, I'm in." Eddie said lowering the map as they began walking towards the bike path, he looked over at her, and noticed the books she held to her chest. "You're taking Psych 105 with Professor Walsh." He stated.

"Yeah, I mean, I'm gonna try." Buffy corrected with a dubious frown. "She's not afraid of the long words, huh?"

"Yeah, she's pretty intense. A lot of the courses are really tough." Eddie agreed with a matching dubious expression.

"I'm a little upset. I had it on good authority that this was a party school." Buffy murmured lightly.

"I think it's supposed to get easier." Eddie said, not sounding very certain that it would.

"I still feel like carrying around a security blanket." Buffy admitted as they turned with the path.

"'Of Human Bondage.' Have you read it?" Eddie asked.

"Oh," Buffy said flustered. "I'm not really into porn… I mean I'm just… I'm trying to cut way back."

Eddie laughed at Buffy's mistake. "No, there's no actually bondage," He assured. "It's just a novel. I've read it like, ten times. I always keep it by my bed… security blanket." He added to explain why he had brought it up.

Buffy frowned to herself, as she thought of Angelus. "I don't really have a security blanket… unless you count Mr. Pointy." Buffy said unthinkingly.

"Mr. Pointy?" Eddie questioned, not sure what to make of the name.

"Oh, bike path." Buffy said pointing to the narrow path they had been heading towards, to escape from what was about to become a very awkward attempt at covering her tracks. "So, it's nice to know that I'm not the only entirely confused person on this campus." Buffy said as she turned to face Eddie.

"I suspect there's a lot of us." Eddie said softly, with a small shrug.

"Well, I'll look for you in Psych." Buffy promised.

"Yeah, maybe we can help each other figure out what the hell they're talking about."

Buffy laughed with a nod. "Ok." She agreed.

"Maybe even make it through the year." Eddie said with a laugh of his own, as he turned to continue up the path he had to take to get to his dorm room.

"Goodnight." Buffy called after him.

Eddie turned slightly to look over at her as he continued to walk, he gave her a small wave. "Night." He said with a kind hope filled smile. Buffy turned and began walking away.

Eddie smiled happily at her retreating form, glad that he had found another person that was as confused about college as he was, turning around to once again continue towards his dorm. He walked a few steps, when he was pulled to a stop as arms grabbed him from behind, a cold hand settling over his mouth preventing his scream from being heard. He looked behind him to see that a man with a deformed face was behind him. Hearing movement in front of him he saw another two people with deformed face staring at him hungrily, before they parted to reveal an attractive blond woman. His eyes landed on her fearfully as she took a step towards him, her arms clasped behind her back. "I'm sorry." She apologized mockingly, as she leaned towards him. "Did you lose your way?"

Buffy moved down the footpath heading towards Fischer Hall, only to come to a sudden stop as a solid body moved out of the darkness and into her way. She looked at the familiar chest covered in green silk, and wearing his leather duster for a second, before tilting her head back to look up at his face. Buffy took a step back from him and scowled her light mood from earlier darkening again. "I didn't think you worked the university." Buffy grumbled.

Angelus shrugged. "I don't usually. To easy. All these trees, large campus. It's like stealing candy from a baby." Angelus smirked at her. "I need a challenge."

Buffy gave him a look. "So, then I suppose you're here because, your un-life just isn't complete without getting your nightly dose of making Buffy miserable. You must have been so annoyed that you couldn't get any licks in last night." Buffy muttered, glaring up at him as she waited for whatever hurtful comment was about to fall from his lips.

"Well, actually no." Buffy looked up at him with wary surprise. "I came here to see how your first day of UC Sunnydale went, but then I saw you with that boy, what was his name," Angelus cocked his head to the side. "Eddie?"

Buffy's expression went from wary surprise to anger, and without second thought she pulled her arm, her hand curled in a fist and she punched him, making his head rock back. "Don't you dare!" Buffy snarled. "Don't you go anywhere near him!" Angelus turned back to look at her, a little blood on his lip where it had busted. "He was just a guy with a map." Buffy cried looking at him with angry fearful eyes. "He's just a guy." Buffy muttered. "And he doesn't deserve whatever's running through that psychopathic head of yours." She bit out.

Angelus touched a hand to his lip wiping away the blood from the already healed wound, and he stepped closer to Buffy and her small trembling with emotion form. "Alri…" Angelus began, but was cut off.

"I won't let you hurt him." Buffy declared, a vision of Scott's lifeless body filling her vision followed by the small futile chase she had given when Angelus went after the man that had stopped and asked if she was alright last Christmas. She punched him again, making him take an unwilling step back this time.

Angelus growled lowly as he straightened, catching the punch she threw at him and forcing her arm down with a lot of effort, he managed to catch the other punch she aimed at him, and he forced both her arms behind her back, bringing her up against him. "Would you stop that, and listen to me." He rumbled.

Buffy looked up at him as she struggled to pull her hands free from his, with angry eyes. Ignoring as best she could the feeling of his strong body pressed up against hers. "I'm not going to hurt the boy." He assured her.

Buffy looked up at him with disbelief. "Why? Nothings stopped you before."

Angelus half smiled down at her. "Because I don't need to."

"Wha…" Buffy began to question, but was cut off as Angelus' mouth took possession of hers. His tongue slipping between her parted lips to explore the heated depths. Buffy's sounds of protest quickly died as the talented persuasive kiss heated her blood in such a way that only he had been able to manage before.

Angelus growled contentedly as he felt her sink into the kiss, her tongue coming up to rub against his. Leaving her mouth after a long moment, the sound of Buffy's panted breaths sounding strongly in his ears, and her heavy arousal filling his nose with her unique scent, and the pleasant scent of her vanilla body lotion. He trailed wet kisses down her cheek, heading towards her neck, and the scar he had left there. Buffy moaned softly as she felt his lips press against the skin under jaw before beginning to trail down her neck. Angelus worked his way down to the mark that physically marked her as his. It wasn't a true mating mark, not yet… but it let others know that the intention was there.

As soon as his tongue ran over the raised flesh of the scar his face shifted uncontrollably, with the desire to make it into a mating mark. Buffy's eyes shot up and fear shot through her as she felt his fangs brush against the vulnerable skin of her neck, and with a quick movement, taking Angelus by surprise she broke free of his grip and shoved him away. One of her hands coming up to feel the scar, making sure that he hadn't drawn blood, her eyes never leaving. Angelus' amber gaze met hers steadily, a small frown drawing down his brow ridges. "What's the matter Buff? This face never used to bother you."

Buffy swung her leg out at him in a powerful kick, sending Angelus to the ground. Buffy placed her foot on his chest like she had the first time she had met Angel. "It's not the face that bothers me Angelus." She put more pressure on his chest, even though she knew it wouldn't make a difference, it's not like he breathed, but it managed to make her feel a little better. "It's what you're planning to do with that face that gets to me." Buffy growled at him, her hand unconsciously coming up to rub at her neck again where she had felt her fangs graze her skin. "I won't let you turn me." Buffy said firmly. 'I'd die first.' Echoed in her mind, but she didn't say it, not wanting to put any ideas into his head. There was more than enough in there already. He didn't need her to add fuel to the fire.

Buffy removed her foot from his chest, the stake she had hidden pressed against her skin accusingly, as she gave him one last long look, before she turned, picked up the books that she had dropped to the ground when she had started attacking him, and walked in a hurried pace towards her Fischer Hall. Angelus picked himself up, letting his face shift back into the smooth plains of the human, and sighed. He was uncomfortably hard, his cock pressing uncomfortably against the restraining leather of his pants, despite that he smiled to himself as he watched her retreating back. Things could have gone worse. Angelus turned and walked the other way whistling jauntily to himself. He paused for a moment when he came across an area that had the small signs of a scuffle having taken place. He shrugged to himself and moved on, not caring, his mind going back to Buffy and what would be his next best move.

Eddie's dorm room, the door was pushed open and three vampires rush in and quickly sweep everything into the boxes they brought with them. Cleaning the small single dorm room in a matter of moments. The long blond haired guy vamp sat down on the desk and pulled Eddie's personal pad towards him and grabbed a pen out of the plastic cup that had been designated pen holder. Scribbling down a rough hasty fair well note, the minion ripped it out, taking the pad and the pen he dropped the note on the now bare mattress, and left the room shutting the door with a soft click behind him.

Buffy walked along the mostly empty hall of her dorm. As she trudged down it, a deep scowl darkening her face as she mentally berated herself for responding to Angelus' kiss. Her lips and mouth still tingling from the sensual attack, the skin on her neck missing Angelus' attentions as much as her mouth was. Buffy sighed as she slowly opened the door to her shared dorm, and carefully walked in, her eyes flicking to Kathy as she snored. Shutting the door Buffy moved around in the dark as she got ready for bed.

As she climbed in pulling the covers over herself she ran her tongue along her mouth, the feel and taste of Angelus' tongue still whispering like a ghost through her mouth. Buffy shook herself, and laid down closing her eyes a moment later she opened them the image of Angelus as he looked down at her before he kissed her, that strange look in their depths haunting. "Damn it!" She cursed softly, and rolled over, trying again.

At the end of Psych Buffy looked around for Eddie as her classmates filed past her, not having seen Eddie despite trying to discretely search for him during class. Willow and Oz stopped beside her. "You looking for someone?" Oz asked glancing around at the almost empty classroom.

"Yeah." Buffy replied distractedly.

"You made a friend?" Willow beamed. "Good for you."

"Thanks, mom." Buffy quipped teasingly, as she continued to search the class hopefully, upon not seeing him she sighed and walked out of the classroom, when they reached the hallway Buffy stopped in her tracks. "You know what, I'm gonna go see if I can find him." Buffy said as she walked off remembering that he said he lived in the Dunwirth building.

"Him!" Willow questioned as Buffy walked off worry curling in her gut as she manoeuvred through the milling students that were hurrying through the halls.

Buffy stood in the doorway to the single dorm room that was Eddie's, the building's RA standing beside her holding a clipboard. "Yeah, Eddie just took off, packed his stuff, left a note." He said indicating the note that was left on the bed. "Happens sometimes." He said with a shrug. "People just can't handle it. There's always a few kids who lose it early in the first semester and just bail." Buffy crossed the room and over to the bed, picking up the note she sat down, as she read it over.

'This is too much to handle. I can't take it anymore. No time to say goodbye! Eddie.' Buffy read with a small frown. "Weak ones, I guess." The RA said with another shrug, before turning and leaving Buffy in the empty dorm room. Buffy placed the note on the bedside table, looking at it she noticed that the top drawer was partially opened. Grabbing the handle she pulled the drawer out a little more, her hazel eyes landing on a copy of M. Somerset Maugham's 'Of Human Bondage.' With a frown Buffy picked it up and looked at it, the worry that had been beginning to settle roared back to life in her belly. Eddie wouldn't leave this behind, you didn't leave your security blanket behind!

Buffy dropped the book back in the drawer and closed it, before getting up off the bed and marching out of the dorm, and out of the school grounds.

Eddie lay unmoving deathly pale in a cluttered room, around him the vampires that had killed him are looking over his things. The female minion picked up a purple sweater holding it against herself trying to judge how it would look without the aid of a mirror. Sunday sat in her chair that was raised off the ground, making it look like a throne. She held Eddie's CD's in her hands as she lounged back in her throne. "Boring," She sighed throwing yet another CD into the pile that was designated as junk. "Boring, boring, boring, boring." She sighed again as looked at another CD cover. "Astonishingly boring." She threw the remaining CD's in the junk pile. "We-we have to kill some cooler people. Will somebody remind me?"

The female minion turned to face her now wearing the purple sweater. "You were the one who said pick on the weak ones, thin the herd and all that." She looked down at herself then back at Sunday. "Does this sweater make me look fat?"

Sunday rolled her eyes at her. "No, the fact that you're fat makes you look fat. That sweater just makes you look purple."

"You're such a loser." The female minion muttered, pulling the sweater off over her head.

"Hey, words hurt like a fist." Sunday mocked fisting her hand over her heart mockingly.

"Hey, check it out." The male long blond haired minion said holding up a rolled up poster.

Sunday leaned forward in her throne. "Well? Do we have a Klimt?" Her minion opened it. "Yes!" Sunday said making a triumphant gesture.

He carried the poster over to a wall were two different styles of posters were hung up. "Big score for Klimt." He cried as he stapled the poster to the wall. 'Monet still well in the lead, but look out for team Klimt, coming from behind." He picked up a marker and made a mark on the white board that had been set up, under the Klimt column.

Sunday leaned back in her chair as if she hadn't cared. "Freshmen!" She scoffed. "Man, they're so predictable."

"And you can never just eat one." The blond haired minion said from his position by the whiteboard.

"Yeah." The female minion agreed. "I'm hungry.

Sunday rolled her eyes. "What a shock. We eat when I say we eat." She said firmly.

"Well, we could hit the tunnels." The hungry female minion suggested hopefully.

Sunday sat up in her chair. "We eat," She stood and her face shifted and she growled threateningly. "When I say we eat!"

The female minion rolled her eyes. "God, lighten up."

"I think it's funny when you scream… it's like…" The minion growled. "Whoa!"

Sunday jumped down from her throne. "I gotta get me some better lackeys. I swear, you guys are useless." She walked across the room. "I shouldn't even take you out on the hunt."

The female minion put her hands on her hips. "Great! Why don't you let dead Eddie get your dinner?" She growled.

Sunday smirked over at the minion. "That's pretty much the plan." At that moment Eddie's eyes shot open as Sunday walked past him and out of the room.

Buffy stalked up the hill too Angelus' mansion and threw aside the curtain barring her entrance. Looking around the room, she continued on when she didn't see him. Buffy walked through to the main room just as Angelus came down from the stairs having sense her coming. His half smile was met with a dark scowl. "So, Buff. To what do I owe the plea… oww!" He muttered as Buffy slugged him harshly in the face.

"You killed him! After you said that you wouldn't. That you didn't need to." Buffy growled using her fingers for quotation marks.

"Killed who, Buff?" Angelus asked as he dodged another punch.

Buffy tried to kick him only to have the effort blocked. "Eddie. You know the boy you saw me talking to last night!"

Angelus blocked the punch she threw at him and grabbed hold of her arm. "Well, as much as I hate to not lay claim to a kill. The only person I killed last night was a tall red head at The Bronze."

Buffy paused glaring up at him breathing hard. "Oh, and I'm just supposed to believe you am I? A vampire that murders with a song in his heart."

Angelus shrugged. "Believe me or not lover. It's up to you. But when have I not laid claim to a kill, hmm?"

Buffy stepped back from him with a deep frown on her face, as she pictured Eddie's dorm room in her mind. The bareness of it, the note… Buffy met Angelus' eyes a strange sense of relief filling her at the realization she had come to. "It wasn't you." She muttered, before turning and hurrying out of the room, she paused for a second at the door. "And I am not your lover."

"I beg to differ, Buff!" Angelus called after her, as he watched her walk out of the room. He sighed and scrubbed a hand down his face. That was just great, some kid she talks to gets killed and she immediately suspected him. The past really was a bitch. Angelus sighed again and walked after his petite blond to see that she had already left through the side entrance, the thick black curtain still swaying slightly from her hasty exit. "We'll see how long it takes before you see that your mine." Angelus murmured. "And make no mistake Buff. You are mine." Angelus turned from the curtain wishing that he could go after her. The more time he spent with her, the quicker he'd be able to prove that he meant her no more harm.

Buffy opened the door to Giles apartment whilst knocking the sound of the music coming from Giles stereo blotting out the sound. Buffy closed the door behind her and walked further into the room, looking around for her father figure. "Giles?" She called.

Behind the counter an attractive black woman pulled out cheese placed on a plate. "Rupert, is this Blue cheese, or is it just cheese that's gone blue?" She asked as she walked around and out into the front room, stopping short in surprise when she saw the petite blond standing there looking at her in shock. "You're not Giles." She said, stating the obvious.

Buffy did her best to keep her eyes on the woman's face and not wonder if she was really only wearing a shirt that seemed too big to be hers. "Uhm…" Buffy said nervously. "You know that door was open, so I just… uh, Giles does still live here, right?" Buffy asked, almost hoping that the answer was no.

"He does." The woman replied, just as Giles coughed and turned off the music drawing their attention.

The woman smiled. "He appears." She said as Giles came out of the hallway and into the room, wearing a blue bathroom. "Rupert, you have a guest."

"Buffy! Hello." Giles greeted surprised at the unexpected company.

Buffy looked from the woman she had never met before to Giles. "Is this a bad time?"

"No!" Giles assured her looking over at his guest. "Oh uh, forgive me. This uh… this is uh, Olivia. She's uh, an old friend, she's staying here for a few days." He stuttered.

"Couldn't pass through sunny Cal without looking up ol' Ripper." Olivia said affectionately.

"Uh huh." Buffy said dubiously looking from Olivia to Giles and back again.

"Buffy's a uh, was a student of mine." Giles explained to Olivia before turning his eyes back to Buffy. "How's uh, how is university?"

"Pretty much the same as high school, in the sense that I need help." Buffy replied.

"Ahh… help… yes." Giles stuttered, shifting his glasses.

"But, this just looks like a bad time." Buffy said looking over at Olivia again.

"No, you guys talk." Olivia told them with a smile. "I'll just go slip into something a little less comfortable." As she turned to leave, she shared a look with Giles that didn't go unnoticed by the flustered, troubled Slayer before she left the room.

Giles turned his eyes back to Buffy, as Olivia mounted the stairs to Giles room. "So, uh, trouble with uh, studies?"

"This is a bad time." Buffy repeated glancing towards the stairs.

"You keep saying that." Giles noted.

"Well it looks pretty bad!" Buffy exclaimed. "I think someone had just a little too much free time on their hands."

"I'm not supposed to have a private life?" Giles questioned.

"No!" Buffy said firmly. "'Cause you're very, very old, and it's gross." Buffy whined.

"Well, before I succumb to the ravages of age, why don't you tell me what brings you here?" Giles intoned, reminding Buffy of why she had come.

"There's a student missing." Buffy said getting straight to the point.


"Eddie. He's supposed to have left school, but… I just don't think he did. I met him outside last night, and then I went back where we met, and it looked like there had been a struggle and at first I thought Angelus, but it's not his EMO…"

"And?" Giles asked as stood in front of Buffy his arms crossed over his chest.

Buffy looked at him surprised. "And we need to stop this! And Eddie's RA said that kids disappear a lot. There could be a gang of vampires working the campus. We need research, an-an-and charts and stuff." Buffy said ticking the things they needed off with her fingers.

Giles uncrossed his arms and looked down at Buffy slightly uncomfortably. "I-I still don't see where I fit in. You haven't described anything that you can't do yourself."

Buffy looked up at him incredulously. Where was the man that did everything he could to help and guide her? "Ok, remember before you became Hugh Hefner, when you used to be a Watcher?"

"Officially you no longer have a Watcher." Giles took off his glasses, so that he didn't have to see the look in her eyes. "Buffy, you know I'll always be hear when you need me. Y-your safety is more important to me than anything but, you're going to have to take care of yourself. You're out of school and I can't always be there to guide you."

"I'm sorry to bug you." Buffy said sadly, turning towards the door.

"Buffy I…" Giles began.

Buffy turned back to him interrupting. "Oh! No! I mean yeah, you're… you're right. I can handle it. It's just that…" Buffy hesitated and changed her mind about telling Giles about her problem with adjusting to college. "I'm on it." Buffy turned again and began walking towards the door.

"I-I'm here if you need me." Giles called after her, just as she closed the door behind her. Giles sighed despondently and replaced his glasses, sometimes being a teacher could feel like the worst job in the world.

Olivia walked back to the room with jeans on and Giles shirt tucked into them. "She's gone?" She asked looking around for the petite blond that had asked for Giles help.

"Yes." Giles replied his eyes focused on the door where Buffy had left with a sad droop to her shoulders.

"So, did you help her?" Olivia asked looking up at him from her slightly smaller height.

Giles shook his head. "I don't know." He answered softly turning to look at the beautiful woman beside him, doing his best to turn his mind from whatever it was that was obviously troubling Buffy.

Buffy walked through the dark campus surrounded by students walking to and from different buildings of the large campus. Buffy looked around at them in annoyance. "How am I supposed to hunt in this mob?" She asked herself as she paused looked around at the milling students. "Don't you people have homes?" She asked as group walked by her, to deep in their own conversation to hear her. Buffy turned still puzzling over the question of how to hunt and remain undercover girl with all these people out and about wandering the school grounds. Her eyes caught sight of a familiar figure, his back turned towards her. As if sensing her gaze on him he looked over his shoulder and she caught a glimpse of his face. "Eddie?" She mumbled questioningly wondering if she was wrong and Eddie had just decided to leave school.

Buffy ran after him as he walked leading her to a secluded spot. "Eddie! Eddie, hey wait up!" Buffy cried as she finally caught up with him beside a bulletin board. "God I was worried that something had happened to you…" Buffy trailed off as Eddie turned around his face revealing the hard ridges she would know anywhere. "…And of course it has, 'cause you're a vampire. I'm sorry." She apologized.

"I'm not." Eddie said with a hungry smile, glad that he finally caught someone. He lunged at her, Buffy stepped out of his way, letting his own momentum carry him past her, she pulled her stake, and as he charged her again she let him run right into her stake.

Behind her Sunday watched from a concrete dais. "Slayer!" She called making Buffy turn around. "Wow, um, I heard you might be coming here." She said as her minions came out of their hiding spots to surround Buffy. "This is, I mean, what a challenge! The Slayer!"

Buffy looked at Sunday coolly. "And you are?"

"I'm… I'm Sunday. I'll be killing you here in a minute, or so." The blond vampire said confidently.

Buffy cocked her head slightly. "You know, that threat gets more frightening every time I hear it." She quipped.

The blond lanky minion looked between his boss, and the petite blond. "Uuh… are we gonna fight? Or is there just gonna be a monster sarcasm rally?" He asked.

The orange haired female looked Buffy over. "I'm in for a piece."

"Everybody gets to play." Buffy promised glancing around at the minions, quickly deciding that they were the least of her problems.

Sunday cast them a look. "Guys, this is totally mine."

The blond mal minion looked up at her. "Ok," He agreed, not all that sure about going up against The Slayer. "But you gotta share the eatin'. 'Cause I'm thinkin' Slayer's blood's gotta be… woah! Like Thia Stick."

Buffy shot him a look. "I thought people were supposed to get smarter in college." She quipped, turning her gaze back to their leader.

"Yeah, I think you had a lot of misconceptions about college. Like that anyone would be caught dead wearing that." Sunday said giving her clothes a dismissive disgusted once over.

Buffy looked down at her clothes with a frown, wondering what was wrong with them. Something she normally wouldn't do when she was on top of her game. Buffy looked back up in time to be punched by Sunday. She fell to the ground with an 'oof' Sunday jumped off her dais and tried to kick Buffy, but the petite blond blocked having recovered from the blow. Buffy scrambled to her feet and threw to consecutive punches. Sunday ducked the first and blocked the other, before punching Buffy again sending her sprawling to the again.

Buffy moved to get to her feet, only for Sunday to kick her in the face. Buffy threw a punch at the vampiress stomach, but Sunday grabbed her wrist deftly and used her grip to throw her onto the dais. Buffy attempted to hit the vampiress, when she jumped up onto the dais after her, but the blond vampiress grabbed her by the throat restricting her air flow. "Don't take this the wrong way, but," Sunday punched her in the face. "You fight like a girl." She snarled as she threw Buffy off the dais, before somersaulting off herself.

Buffy scrambled to her feet, and managed to kick the blond in the stomach, Sunday dodge her second kick, but landed the next one on Sunday's face pissing the blond vampiress off. Buffy threw a punch, only to have Sunday grab her arm. The vampiress swung her around, before throwing her onto the hood of a nearby pickup truck. Buffy attempted to get up, but Sunday jumped on top of the hood and kicked her in the back, sending the petite blood up onto the roof. Buffy sat up and attempted a left hook, only to have Sunday grab her by the wrist, before jumping up on the roof, forcing Buffy to lie back on it. Sunday brought her knee down harshly onto the captured arm, and a crack rent the air.

Sunday smirked, but before she could do anything else she heard a loud threatening growl and the presence of an old vampire, before the sound of heavy feet landing on the already dinted hood of the pickup truck. Sunday let go of The Slayer and turned around, to see the tall dark form of Angelus staring at her with angry amber eyes. Angelus punched her with a shift harsh movement sending Sunday flying off the hood of the truck and onto the ground. Angelus jumped off the hood to land on the ground in front of the surprised vampiress. "You know attacking another vampire's mate, might be forgivable in a lowly fledge of minion, but in a vampiress that's been around for a few years… it's not something that can be over looked." Angelus growled threatening.

Sunday glanced over at The Slayer surprised as she slide from the roof to the hood of the pickup. Looking up at Angelus again, she scrambled to her feet and fled, anger filling her at being denied the respect that killing The Slayer would have gained her. It would have been the thing she needed to become a Master! And to have that taken away, because some vamp was crazy enough to want her as a Mate… was unforgivable. Seeing their boss flee the three minions looked at each other, before turning tail and running after her, not willing to stay if she wasn't.

Angelus turned back to Buffy as she was about to slide herself off the hood. She looked at his legs for a moment blocking her path off the hood, before she moved to slide off the side. Angelus moved blocking her way, and reluctantly Buffy looked up at him with wary eyes as she clutched her left arm to her chest. Angelus reached out towards her injured arm and Buffy leaned back clutching her arm closer. Angelus paused and sighed. "Come on, let me look at it." Angelus mumbled reaching out again. Buffy not seeing how she could get away without it, reluctantly let him take her arm. She watched him like a hawk as he took her arm in a surprisingly gentle hold. She winced as he gently felt along her arm allowing her to keep it clutched to her chest. Not feeling any breaks, Angelus slowly began stretching the arm out towards him, hearing a little muffled murmur of pain escaping Buffy's tightly shut lips.

Angelus glanced up at her as he continued to tend to her arm. "You know, you should have easily been able to take her. She's only been turned for ten years or so."

Buffy glared at him through a wince. "Thanks so much I feel so much more miserable, are you happy now?" Buffy grumbled.

Angelus looked up at her angrily. "No! I'm annoyed, that you allowed that second rate, college scavenging vampiress to get so close to killing you."

"Well, I'm sorry that I was selfish enough to almost let someone else take the pleasure from you." Buffy cried biting back tears as she tried to take back her arm.

Angelus tightened his grip on her arm, not allowing her to pull it away, as he leaned over her, forcing her to lie back on the hood of the truck his free hand planted on the dinted hood, bracing himself above, so as to not further hurt her already injured arm with his weight.

Buffy looked up at him with wary eyes, her heart beating loudly in her chest. "You're mine Buff. And I protect what's mine." Angelus growled and Buffy's eyes grew wide. "Even if it means protecting you from yourself."

"Don't play with me!" Buffy cried, raising one of legs and planting it firmly in Angelus' chest kicking him off of her and to the ground. She scrambled off the hood, holding her throbbing arm close to her chest as Angelus flipped to his feet. "I don't belong to anybody, but myself! You chauvinistic pig!" Buffy glared at him. "Least of all you!" Buffy cried, before turning and fleeing herself, her mind abuzz with his words. 'You're mine Buff. And I protect what's mine. Even if that means protecting you from yourself.'

Buffy shook her head as tears formed in her eyes. 'Lies!' Buffy thought bitterly, they had to be lies. It was obviously the new angle Angelus had decided to play, and she wasn't going to fall for it!

A little while later Buffy sat in her dorm room, on the side of her bed Kathy snoring obliviously in her bed. Buffy gingerly stretched out her arm, holding it with her other as she did so it keep it steady. She grunted softly in pain and winced, but nothing seemed to be truly broken, it was probably just a crack. Buffy sighed and folded her arm back into her chest like a wounded wing, her mind drifting back to Angelus and what he had said to her. She frowned, what did he hope to gain by telling her that she was his, like she was some kind of possession that he could lay claim to.

'She wasn't a possession!' Buffy thought angrily, before she focused her mind on the more important angle, why would he say it? What did he hope to gain? He'd never cared for her apart from keeping her alive long enough to satisfy his hunger for vengeance and to have her death be by his hands. Maybe that was what he meant, his to kill, his to dispose of how he pleased, and not a moment, before he was ready.

But the protecting part, and even from herself. What in the name of the hellmouth was that supposed to mean? You just didn't go around declaring that you were protecting someone when they wanted you to be miserable for an eternity, right? Buffy sighed tiredly, it was all so confusing. Angelus was confusing. He was stupid-cryptic-undead-evil- confusing-lots of other things she was too tired to think of at this moment guy! Why couldn't he stick to one form of mentally torturing her? Was it really that fun to see her struggle under the weight of whatever new form of torture he cooked up when he got sick of one?

Buffy closed her eyes and the expression she didn't want to read in his dark eyes jumped out her again, peering at her from the depths of his chocolaty gaze. Buffy opened her eyes with a small jerk, she hated seeing that expression. It gave her hope, a hope she couldn't afford. Hope that had to be false! It had to be! Buffy wrapped her uninjured arm about her waist attempt to hug herself with only one arm against the dangerous emotion that threatened to weaken her already thin defences. Why could he have given her back her heart that night in Angel's apartment when he had so coldly spoke to her of her first time? Those words she doubted she'd ever forget, or the feeling she had gotten as her naïve innocent love of Angel, and ignorance about the hurt that a man could press up the woman that loved him sunk home deeply into her skin. Only for her to discover the nightmare was only just beginning.

Buffy squeezed her eyes tightly shut, as she brutally stomped down the hope that was trying to tear down the thin walls that were trying to protect what was left of the scattered broken pieces of her heart. She couldn't afford to let Angelus' soft persuasive words, and charming smiles lead her down a path of destruction that she was sure many women before her had travelled and met a brutal end all of Angelus' design. She had to protect herself! So that she could continue to protect her friends!

Angelus threw a pewter water pitcher at a wall of his mansion, severely denting it, looking around he grabbed the next closest thing and threw it at the wall to, looking on as it smashed into tiny shards as it made contact with the wall, the sound doing something to mollify him. Turning Angelus began pacing around the room muttering curses to himself as the three, three month old minions watched frightenedly from a doorway sensing them he turned on them. "Unless you want me to chain up and torture to dust I'd stop gawking if I were you." He growled his eyes flashing amber, and his minions ran, heading towards the closest exit, all of them deciding that it was best if they left their Master Angelus alone whilst he vented his anger.

Angelus paced angrily as he marched up and down the room. How could he have been so damned bloody stupid! He was a charmer of women! He knew how to get what he wanted out of them. For him it was as easy as whistling a jaunty tune! But he'd been stupid enough to call Buffy his, in a fit of temper! Angelus scrubbed his hands through his hair. She was hardly ready to hear that favourably, right now she was probably lying in her bed looking up at the ceiling and running through all the reasons she could come up with as to why he'd said, what his motives where, and how they succeeded in making her miserable in the long run when his 'plan' fell into place. "DAMN IT!" Angelus roared at the now empty mansion, before sinking down on the couch. He'd get through this, he'd make Buffy see what she was too him, what she should have always been to him, and it didn't matter how many blunders he made whilst he did it!

Angelus frowned as he thought. Now that he'd told her she was his, he'd have to change his battle plan slightly. Up his offensive to counter and overcome her defensive. It wouldn't be easy especially now that he had raised her guard more than it already was around him. Angelus sighed and forced his body to relax, forcing his tension and anger into a more productive emotion; determination. Angelus rested his head on the back of the couch, and closed his eyes bringing up the vague memory he had of Buffy leaning over him whilst he was delirious with fever and the poison. Her lips moved telling him something. Something he couldn't remember, until she told him to drink. Angelus felt his cock stir as the memory of her powerful rick blood hit him, and he turned his mind away from it.

He couldn't afford to torment himself when he couldn't sate himself within his petite blond, or afford to take another to his bed. And he refused to sink so low as the soul by jacking himself off. He wasn't desperate enough to do that… yet.

Buffy opened the door to one of the college campus buildings stepping out into the sunshine, her left arm still carefully folded against her body. Her eyes landed on Willow and Oz talking happily with another student. Looking down at her arm for a moment she looked back over at the two as they laughed with the student she didn't recognize. Buffy turned away not wanting to bother them with the troubles of The Slayer. They were enjoying a normal college experience, she wanted that for them. She was pleased that they had it as much as they could have whilst being privy to what went bump in the night.

Buffy walked through the crowd disappearing from her friend's sight range without their notice. So why did she feel so alone? Buffy brushed the feeling aside, she'd felt alone since Angel's death. She could handle alone. She just hadn't felt the aloneness that came with not being a part of them in a long while.

In their lair Sunday and her three minions gathered around Sunday's thrown, as light from outside streamed in through the cracks of a boarded up window. "N-n-n-n-no! The best part was when you ragged on her clothes." The lanky blond haired minion said, doing his part in the cheer up Sunday-a-thon they were having. "She was like, 'No! Not the ensemble!'" All four of them cracked up laughing

"Those jeans? With the little patches.? She has no one to blame, but herself." Sunday snarked feeling much better.

"I heard they're coming back in." The female minion said.

"Not if I kill every single person who wears them."

"Who was that Master vamp that interrupted us anyway? If he hadn't shown up you would have killed that blond bimbo for sure." The female minion asked.

Sunday growled lowly, before tossing her head. "I don't know. But he has to be pretty stupid to want The Slayer as his mate."

"I heard that it's not really a choice, more an instinctually feeling, you know… like… two halves of one whole, or something." The mostly un-talkative dark haired minion who was wearing a black t-shirt with a white skull printed on it."

"You mean soul mates." The female minion piped up.

Sunday growled loudly catching her minion's attention. "Vampires don't have soul's you ding-bat."

The female minion shrugged. "Well, it's something that lets a vamp know when they've…"

"ENOUGH!" Sunday roared, her hand breaking the ends of the arms of her throne. "I don't care why that idiot wants The Slayer as his mate, I don't care to discuss the drive behind the choice!" Sunday paused and calmed herself. "It doesn't matter anyway. That Slayer won't last the night, she's a done deal. Her little vampire protector or no." Sunday leaned forward in her throne. "In fact guys, you're gonna hit the tunnels."

Sunday's minions looked at each other nervously, not sure what to think of the order. That Master vampire had radiated power, of a kind that hadn't felt before, not from anyone. And The Slayer… what if she was just having an off night?

Buffy entered her family home through the kitchen, still favouring her left arm. Buffy looked around the kitchen. "Mom?" She called when she didn't see her. Buffy wandered through the kitchen and mounted the stairs, hearing sounds of activity up there. Joyce came out of her room, and into the hallway a smile on her face as her eyes landed on her daughter. "Buffy." Joyce exclaimed a little surprised.

"Hi." Buffy greeted.

"Hunny, how are you?" Joyce asked as she moved forward to hug her daughter, Buffy hugged her mother back with just her right arm.

"I'm ok." Buffy replied softly with a small shrug, which caused her to wince.

"How's college?" Joyce asked before noticing her daughters injured arm. "You've been fighting." She stated with a concerned frown, she had hoped that college would put an end to the whole Slayer thing.

"Oh, uh, they started it." Buffy offered feebly, trying to right it off, giving a little movement of her left arm to help put her mother's mind at ease.

"Just as long as you're being careful." Joyce said resignedly, before remembering the state of her daughter's room and grew uneasy. "I-I really didn't think you'd show up for a while." Joyce said as the started further down the hall.

"Oh," Buffy exclaimed. "I didn't have classes today, and everything's just been so hectic I figured it'd be nice to come and crash for…" Buffy trailed off as they reached her room, the door open, revealing that wooden crates had been crammed closely together in the small room.

"Oh," Joyce murmured flustered. "Well, yeah. You know, I-I didn't think you'd be back for a couple of weeks. Uh, but I didn't move anything, it's still your room." Joyce offered as she peered into her daughter's room.

"You filled it with packing crates." Buffy accused glancing from her room to her mother.

"Yeah, but I didn't move anything." Joyce promised.

"If it's still my room, shouldn't I still be able to fit in it?" Buffy looking back at the room filled with packing crates.

"Well, it's just for a couple of weeks while we do inventory at the gallery. I just really didn't think you'd be back so soon." Joyce mumbled as she began moving down the hall again.

Buffy looked back into her old room. "Neither did I." She muttered.

Buffy walked back through the kitchen on her way out, she paused though when the phone rang. Walking over to it Buffy picked it up and brought the phone to her ear. "Hello?" Buffy frowned when she received no answer. "Hello?" She said into the phone again, upon receiving no answer again Buffy hung up. With a last look around her old home Buffy continued across the kitchen and out the kitchen door, pulling it closed behind her.

Buffy walked into her dorm room grateful to see that Kathy wasn't there. She froze however when her eyes landed on her side of the room. All of her stuff was missing in an eerily familiar way. Shifting her gaze to her stripped bed Buffy took in the small sheet of paper that was laid out on the mattress. Walking over to her bed she picked up the note.

'This is all just too much for me. I have decided to take off. Sorry I didn't have time to say goodbye, but I need to be by myself. Good luck this year. Buffy.' The petite blond frowned as she read the note, the unfamiliar handwriting staring up at her. With a sigh Buffy sat down on her bare mattress the note still clutched in her hand a small worried frown on her face as she stared into space for a long moment.

Getting up Buffy dropped the note careless back on the bed, and walked slowly from her dorm, down the hall and out of the building and into the fresh night air.

Buffy entered The Bronze as the band on stage played a slow sad song, something that Buffy noted suited her mood just perfectly. Casting a quick glance around, and seeing only unfamiliar faces she headed over to a vacant couch and sank down. Buffy looked around The Bronze, at some of the people slow dancing with their boyfriends, or husbands, to the people sitting around at the provided tables holding drinks in their hands and laughing. Buffy sighed perhaps coming here hadn't been such a good idea after all.

Feeling a familiar tingle at the base of her spine filling her with a sudden warmth Buffy scanned the crowd more closely, her eyes finally landing on the bar, and the familiar figure of Angelus standing at the bar, his back to her. Buffy sighed despondently. 'Of course he'd be here. He has is very own Buffy's feeling crappy detector.' Buffy thought, as she stood from the couch and walked over to the bar, taking the free spot to the left of Angelus, resting her back against the bar, looking out at the milling people. "So, is this the part where I run you off, or is this the part where you say something incredibly hurtful, then I run you off?" Buffy quipped as the bar tender handed Angelus his glass of scotch.

Angelus took hold of the glass and looked over at her, and smiled. "No, this is the part where I take a drink, whilst scoping for my meal."

Buffy frowned over at him, as Angelus took a sip, his eyes scanning the occupants of The Bronze, a teasing tilt to his mouth that has Buffy fighting the urge to smile. "In that case I suppose I better get right to the running you off part." Buffy sighed, as Angelus set down his glass. "Once again saving the day."

Angelus looked over at her, half turning to face her, as Buffy turned so that she was facing the bar. "What's bothering you Buff?" Angelus asked.

Buffy looked over at him. "Nothing." She muttered.

"Right. I'd believe that, if you were any kind of accomplished liar. Mouth says no, your face says yes."

Buffy glared over at him for a moment, not appreciating that he had called her bluff. Glancing down at the last swallow of scotch that was in the glass, Buffy swiped out of her hand, taking hold of it and quickly downed it. Setting down the glass she made a face and coughed as the liquid burned down her throat. "Oh God. How can you drink that stuff?" Buffy spluttered whilst Angelus chuckled at her, patting her back.

"You got to get past the first swallow, it gets easier after that." Angelus said still chuckling as Buffy wiped at her mouth. Buffy threw a glare at him and he shrugged, his hand now rubbing her back in slow circles. "Well, that'll teach you for swiping my drink… and I think it proves my point. Something's bothering you." He said as Buffy shrugged off his hand, finally realizing that it was still on her back.

"If something was, and I'm not saying there is… you'd be the last person I'd talk to about it." Buffy said moodily.

Angelus shrugged. "Suit yourself. Although I hear it's not good for you humans to keep your emotions all bottled up inside." Buffy scowled over at him, and Angelus moved away from the bar, walking across The Bronze.

"Hey!" Buffy called after him making him turn to look at her. "You better not be going off to-to… go… fishing!" Buffy said adjusting her accusing question as she realized the stupidness of calling out 'kill someone'.

Angelus smiled at her. "Come with me and you can find out." He told her, as he turned and continued on his way out of The Bronze, Buffy watched him go with hawk eyes, breathing a sigh of relief as he left The Bronze without a companion.

"I saw that." A familiar male voice said in an accusing teasing tone.

Buffy turned to face him with a wide smile. "Xander!" She cried giving him a one armed hug.

"Hey Buff." Xander replied returning the affectionate gesture.

"Oh, when did you get back?" Buffy asked excitedly, glad to see her old friend back in town safe and sound.

"Couple days ago." Xander shrugged, he looked in the direction Angelus had walked off in a frown darkening his face. "I see Angelus is still hanging around."

Buffy followed Xander's gaze checking to see that Angelus hadn't re-entered the club without her notice. Not seeing him Buffy turned back and waved it off, not wanting the tall dark and evil vampire to ruin her reunion with Xander. "You freak of nature. Why didn't you call me?" Buffy asked teasingly.

"Well, I knew you guys were starting the whole college adventure and I didn't want to um, you know… help you move." Xander admitted with an unrepentant grin.

"I missed you." Buffy told him. "How was your trip? Was America nice? I hear its' nice." Buffy asked not giving Xander enough time to answer.

"There's some purple mountains majesty, I'm gonna have to say." Xander quipped.

"What did you do" Buffy prodded. "What'd you see?"

"Well…" Xander hedged, embarrassedly.

"Tell me!" Buffy begged impatiently.

"Grand Canyon!" Xander blurted.

Buffy looked up at him excitedly. "You saw the Grand Canyon!" She exclaimed.

"Well, I saw the movie Grand Canyon, on cable. Really lame." Xander admitted.

"Huh?" Buffy asked the excitement sliding off her face to be replaced by confusion.

"Basically," Xander began with a forced nonchalant shrug. "I got as far as Oxnard, and the engine fell out of my car, and that was literally. So, I ended up washing dishes at 'The Fabulous Ladies Night Club' for about a month and a half while I tried to pay for the repairs." Xander admitted. "No one really bothered me, or even spoke to me until one night when one of the males strippers called in sick," Xander paused for a moment as he saw the quirky smile gracing Buffy's face. "And no power on this earth will make me tell you the rest of that story. Suffice to say I traded my car in for one that wasn't entirely made of rust, came trundling back home to the arms of my loving parents, where everything was exactly as it was; except I sleep in the basement and I have to pay rent." Xander finished, his explanation. "How's college?"

"Male strippers?" Buffy queried, the quirky smile still on her face, as she hoped that she'd be able to wheedle what had happened out of her best guy friend.

"No power on this earth!" Xander repeated firmly.

"Ok," Buffy relented as they began walking over to the couch she had vacated when she had spotted Angelus in The Bronze. "College is good."

"Ok uh, once more with even less feeling." Xander quipped.

"No, really!" Buffy said quickly, a little too quickly. "I-I mean, Willow's in heaven and Oz has this really cool house off campus with the band." Buffy explained as they sat down on the couch.

Xander raised a brow at her. "And you're sitting here alone at The Bronze looking like you just got diagnosed with cancer of the puppy."

Buffy sighed, realizing that her friend wasn't going to let her get away with keeping her problems to herself. "It's just… there was this vampire, and she took me down, and I just… I don't know how to stop her… I mean I can't even stop Angelus…"

"Ok, let's stop there for a moment, little Miss beat-herself-up, Angelus is a whole different kettle of fish. One that you'll take down," Xander said firmly. "When he finally takes that one step too far." Xander assured, and Buffy frowned, but didn't say anything, her heart constricting in her chest. "But as for this new vamp… where's the gang? Avengers assemble! Let's get it going!"

Buffy shook her head adamantly. "No, I don't want to bug them. I mean they're just starting school, and they don't need this."

Xander looked at her confused. "Ok Buff, what's the 'what' here?"

"It's just, what if I can't cut it?" Buffy asked finally voicing the fear that had been bugging her for a while.

"Can't cut what? Slaying?" Xander asked.

"Slaying, everything." Buffy sighed looking down at her knees.

"Buffy, this is all about fear. It's understandable, but you can't let it control you. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate lead to anger… no, wait, hold on." Xander muttered realizing he had gotten the quote wrong. "Fear leads to hate. Hate leads to the dark side… hold on, no, umm. First you get the women, then you get the money, then you…" Xander took notice on the look on his blond friends face and gave up. "Ok, can we forget that?"

"Thanks for the Dadaist pep talk, I feel much more abstract now." Buffy quipped.

"The point is, you're Buffy." Xander said pointedly.

"Yeah," Buffy muttered. "Maybe in high school I was Buffy."

"And now in college you're Betty Louise?" Xander asked, with raised brows.

"Yeah." Buffy agreed. "I'm Betty Louise Plotnick of East Cupcake, Illinois. Or I might as well be." She muttered.

Xander got up from the couch and crouched down in front of Buffy, looking up at her with serious eyes. "Buffy, I've gone through some fairly dark times in my life, faced some scary things," He smiled. "Among them in the kitchen at 'The Fabulous Ladies Night Club.'" Buffy's lips curved up in a small respiratory smile. "Let me tell you something, when it's dark and I'm all alone and I'm scared, or freaked out or whatever, I always think. What would Buffy do? You're my hero. Ok, sometimes when it's dark and I'm all alone I think, what is Buffy wearing?" Xander admitted.

"Can that be one of those things you never, ever tell me about?" Buffy asked sincerely.

"It's a deal." Xander agreed standing. "Let's put this bitch in the ground! What do you say?"

Buffy hesitated a second, before holding out her right hand, and Xander took it helping her up off the couch. "I think I say thank you."

"And nothing says thank you like dollars in the waistband." Buffy gave him a weird look. "Ok, what do we do first?" Xander asked.

Buffy sat at a computer in an office on the college campus, having broken the glass in the door to open the locked door. Xander stood behind her examining newspapers he had pulled from one of the filing cabinets that took up most of the space in the room. "Kids disappearing every year, not too many, just enough so that everyone things that they up and left." Buffy said as she looked at the computer screen.

"I can' believe the vampires took your stuff. Murder I expect, but petty larceny seems to… petty." Xander muttered as he shifted through the newspapers.

"They have to be keeping it somewhere, on campus, or at least nearby." Buffy murmured.

"Hey, how far back do the disappearances go?" Xander asked as he examined a newspaper article.

Buffy used her right hand to type on the keyboard, when she was finished she looked up at the screen. "Uhh…" Buffy murmured as she read through what had come up looking for a date. "They weren't too common before '82." Buffy supplied.

"Match number!" Xander crowed. "Check this out." He said as he carried two newspapers over to where Buffy sat, as she turned in her chair to look at him, as he dropped the two newspapers on the counter the computer was placed on. Buffy leaned over to read the headlines. "Psi Theta loses its charter. Building to be close for renovation." She read.

"1982." Xander said indicating the date on the newspaper, he looked over at the other, and began reading what had caught his attention. "Former Psi Theta fraternity house lies dormant while zoning issues drag on before the City Council. We have a winner."

Buffy looked at the picture on the newspaper. "Looks pretty cherry." She commented dryly.

"You up for a little reconnaissance?" Xander asked.

Buffy looked up at him confused. "You mean where we all sculpt and paint and stuff?"

Xander shook his head. "No, that was the renaissance."

"Oh. I've had a really long week." Buffy muttered in explanation. "Let's go look at the house."

Buffy climbed up a ladder and onto the roof of the old fraternity building, she picked her way through the fallen debris and made her way over to the closest skylight, lowering herself onto it she brushed some of the debris out of the way so that she could peer inside. Her eyes landed on the vamps she had fought and lost to, she scowled as she saw them going through her things. "Score!" Buffy murmured as Xander came up beside having finally managed to get up on the roof. Buffy's eyes narrowed as Sunday picked up one of her skirts and held it in front of her hips, swaying them mockingly. "Look how tough I am." Buffy heard Sunday's mocking voice as it drifted up to her.

"Oh! That's my skirt!" She grumbled. "You're never going to fit in it with those hips!" Buffy glanced over at Xander. "We have to kill them!"

"We need weapons." Xander commented peering through the skylight over Buffy's shoulder.

Buffy turned her gaze back to the vampires bellow. "I don't see my weapons trunk down there. It was right by my bed." Buffy's eyes widened as one of the vampires picked up her childhood toy pig. "Mr. Gordo?" She whimpered. "Go to my room." Buffy said steely. "If it's not there try Willow's. I'll keep an eye… my diary?" Buffy growled as the lanky blond haired minion picked it up and flicked it oped inquiringly.

"Uh-oh, score!" He cried waving the book in the air.

"I'll hurry!" Xander promised, knowing the trouble that could occur over the sanctity of a woman's diary. Xander turned and began picking his way back across the roof towards the ladder he they had used to climb up on.

"Laugh all you want," Buffy muttered venomously down at the four vampires in the room. "This time we play it my way. And the rules are just going to be a little bit…" Buffy broke off as she heard a crack, just before the old skylight gave way under her weight, and she fell into the room. Buffy hit the floor and looked up at the vampires that had all stopped what they were doing to look at her. "Ahh. Ah. Oh." She muttered, not the entrance she was planning on making.

Sunday dropped her skirt and turned to her. "Say, don't I know you from… beating the crap out of you?" She taunted.

Buffy stood to her feet, brushing the dirt off her clothes. "I just thought I'd drop in. Get it? Drop in?" The vampires remained stony faced. "Boy, tough room." Buffy quipped.

"I must say, you've really got me now." Sunday mocked. "I mean, it's a diabolical plan, throw yourself at my feet with a broken arm and no weapons of any kind. How'm I going to get out of this one?"

Buffy glanced around the room. "You got a nice set up here," She brought her eyes back to Sunday. "But you made one mistake."

Sunday took a step towards her. "Yeah? What was that?" She asked.

Buffy frowned, not having really thought that far. "Well, I'm not actually positive, but statistically speaking people usually make at least…" Sunday bored with the conversation punched Buffy in the face cutting off the petite blond.

Willow and Oz stood in front of Kathy in her dorm room, the dark haired girl having called them when she came home to find Buffy's stuff gone and the note. "It seems kind of weird." She finished her explanation as she handed Oz the note Buffy had left.

"Yeah," Oz muttered. "Weird a pretty good word for it."

"Buffy wouldn't just take off, th-that's just not her nature." Willow said frantically. "Except for that one time she disappeared for several months and changed her name, but there were circumstances then. There's no circumstances." Willow told them as she attempted to make herself believe what she was saying.

"Does Buffy have a history of emotional problems?" Kathy asked them a little callously, as curiosity plagued her at the red heads words. "'Cause on my request form I was pretty specific about a stable non-smoker."

"I don't think this is her handwriting." Oz commented.

"I bet there were circumstances!" Willow cried, not hearing Oz in her own panic. "We've probably been so wrapped up in our own petty lives that… that we totally missed the circumstances. We're bad friends!"

"Let's think this through." Oz said trying to calm his red head down.

Willow shot him a look. "How can you be so calm?" She accused, as she silently wonder how they were going to track their petite blond friend down, when they'd had no luck finding her last time.

"Long, arduous hours of practice. Now either Buffy took off, or she was robbed, or…" Oz was cut off as Xander came to stand in the doorway.

"It's a prank!" He cried, and everyone in the room turned to look at him.

"Xander!" Willow cried monetarily forgetting about Buffy in her exultation at seeing her best friend since kindergarten.

Xander walked into the room with wide spread arms. "How are my guys?" He asked as he hugged Willow warmly, before moving on to Kathy, who stood shocked. "I don't know you, do I?" Xander said as he continued to hug the unfamiliar black haired girl.

"No." Kathy agreed.

"This is very intrusive, isn't it?" Xander asked as he still stood unmoving.

"Little bit." Kathy agreed again, and Xander let her go.

"Xander." Xander introduced himself.

"Kathy." She replied with a smile.

Xander looked over at Oz. "Do we hug?" He asked the musician.

"I think we're too manly." Oz replied in his usual monotone.

"What's the prank?" Willow asked her mind going back to Buffy, now that the happy buzz of seeing Xander had died down in her brain.

"Prank?" Xander questioned before remembering. "Oh, the room." He explained. "Well, some friends of Buffy's played a funny joke, and they took her stuff. And now she wants us to help her get it back," Xander took in the confused look Willow was giving him as she tried to think of who these friends were, Buffy hadn't mentioned any new friends, expect for the one that had left school. "From her friends who sleep all day and have no tans." Xander added.

"Oh!" Willow exclaimed in understanding. "Those friends!"

"Funny guys." Oz murmured as Kathy looked at them.

Xander looked over at Buffy's bare bed, where she said her weapons chest was. "They took the chest." He observed, before turning his eyes to his friends. "Well, let's go! Let's go to our friend. It's nice meeting you Kathy." He told the girl he had hugged unnecessarily, as he turned and walked out of the room followed by Willow and Oz.

"You too!" Kathy called as Oz shut the door behind them.

Xander turned to them once they were out in the hall. "Let's go to Will's, get supplies."

"Is Buffy in danger?" Willow asked as they started down the hall.

"She's in a holding position." Xander assured her. "We've got some time."

Buffy fell to the floor as she took another hit. Buffy spotted her trunk, and started to crawl along the floor to get to it. Sunday stepped in front of her, cutting off her path to her weapons, she twirled Buffy's class protector award in her hand. "Oh, and this. This is my favourite item."

"You don't want to touch that." Buffy warned her. Sunday smiled at her cruelly and dropped it to the floor, before stomping down on the handle, the wood braking under her strength. Deftly she moved towards Buffy who was looking at her broken Class Protector award, anger building inside her. Sunday leaned down and grabbed Buffy's left arm. "You know this arm's not looking so good. It might have to come off."

Buffy turned her gaze to Sunday. "You want to know the truth? I only need one." She growled, fisting her right hand she punched Sunday with it, sending the vampiress wheeling away. Buffy rolled to her feet, and marched over to Sunday and kicked her harshly in the face. The force flipped the vampiress over the couch and onto a coffee table breaking it. Sunday clambered to her knees as Buffy advanced towards her. The Slayer kicked the vampiress again, catching some broken wood with her foot, slamming it into Sundays face, knocking her back into the broken clutter.

"This is startin' to suck." The lanky blond haired minion observed as he along with the other two minions watched.

Sunday got to her feet, her face hard with the ridges of the demon. Sunday's female minion ran to help. Buffy sensing her coming grabbed a tennis racket, and stepped up onto the arm of a chair, roundhouse kicking Sunday in the face, she swung her right arm out behind her, and the minion collided with the racket, sending her flying over the couch, breaking the frame of the racket leaving a broken piece of wood in Buffy's hand, perfect for a makeshift stake. Sunday advanced on Buffy, just as the minion wearing the black skull T-shirt turned and ran for the door, deciding that things were definitely going downhill from here. He is stopped in his escape attempt however as the door burst open as Xander marched in with Oz close behind him carrying a cross which he held up in the minions face forcing him back.

Willow came in behind them still trying to load the crossbow she was wielding. The lanky blond haired minion noticed her struggle and smiled thinking she'd be an easy meal he began advancing towards her. Willow brought up the crossbow just in time, and fired it into the minion's heart.

He looked down at the wood sticking out of his chest, before looking back up at Willow. "Woah!" He said, before turning to dust.

Buffy stood as Sunday lay on the floor, having been knocked down again. "When you look back on this, in the three seconds it'll take you to turn to dust," Buffy told her, as the female minion looked around, feeling decidedly out number she turned and head for another door quickly running out of the room. "I think you'll find the mistake was touching my stuff."

Sunday flipped to her feet and rushed at Buffy, who swung her unwounded arm at her. Sunday blocked it with a small growl. "What about breaking you arm," She taunted, grabbing hold of Buffy's left arm and squeezing. "How'd that feel?"

Buffy whose arms where otherwise engaged, glared at her. "Let me answer that question with a head butt." She said, before slamming her forehead into Sunday's forcing the vampiress to let go and stumble back.

Xander faced off with a recently turned minion, Oz who stood behind the unknown vampire hits him on the head with the cross before ducking down, so that he was on all fours. The minion turned to see who struck him, and Xander pushed him, making him fall to the ground as he stumbled over Oz. Oz straighten up as Xander rushed forward hurriedly staking the vamp before he could get back up.

"And for the record," Buffy growled, making a fist with her left hand. "The arms is hurt," She threw a powerful uppercut at Sunday sending her flying back. "Not broken." The minion with the black t-shirt with a white skull on it, looked around, before he too made his escape, whilst the others were all distracted with watched the petite Slayer.

Oz, Xander and Willow came up behind the petite blond. "Hey, Buff. Need a hand?" Oz asked as he looked from her to Sunday as she got to her feet.

Buffy turned to them as she twirled her stake with a smile. "No thanks," Buffy twisted around throwing the stake at Sunday, the tip embedding itself into the vampiress' heart. "I'm good." Sunday shook her head in annoyance as she looked down at the stake protruding from her chest, looking up at Buffy she stomped her foot, before she turned to dust.

Buffy looked over at her Class Protector award, and walk over to it, picking it up, glad that the plaque hadn't been broken off when Sunday stomped on it.

A little while later the gang left the old fraternity building carrying Buffy's stuff in boxes. Xander carried her trunk, walking a little behind the rest. "So, all that other stuff in there? That's just gonna sit there, right? Uh I mean, no one owns it in the strictest sense." Xander asked.

"It seems wrong, somehow." Oz murmured.

"Dibs on the rowing machine." Xander called out, not wanting some else to claim it first.

Giles ran up to them. "Buffy!" He called gaining their attention making them pause as they waited for him as Giles ran the rest of the way over to them, carrying a crossbow in one hand, a cross and battle axe in the other.

"Hi Giles." Willow greeted as she walked past him, and Giles fell into step beside her.

"What's with the arsenal?" Xander asked, nodding to the former Watcher's hands with his head.

"I've been awake all night. I know I'm supposed to teach you self-reliance," Giles said talking to Buffy as he stood in front of her. "But I can't leave you out there to fight alone. To hell with what's right, I'm ready to back you up. Let's fight the evil a-and fight it together." Giles said feelingly.

"Great! Thanks!" Buffy said not having the heart to tell him just yet that, they'd already taken care of the threat she had talked to him about. "We'll get right on that." She promised, before stepping around him and continuing on, her example followed by the others.

"The evil is this way?" Giles asked confused as he began walking with them.

"My room is." Buffy corrected without looking back.

"Hey Giles," Willow said awkwardly. "Could you get this box on top?" Giles nodded moving over to her he placed his weapons in the box, before taking it from her. Willow smiled gratefully.

"So, college not so scary after all, huh?" Xander called up to Buffy.

Buffy smiled. "It's turning out to be a lot like high school, which I can handle. At least… I know what to expect." Buffy paused in her stride, making the others stop, she looked to her left, and sighed, before turning back and walking the couple of steps to Giles. "Here take this, I have something I have to do. I'll catch you up." Buffy promised as she headed over towards the trees she could sense Angelus watching them from.

Giles and the others watched her go until she disappeared into the tree line. "Come on," Oz said breaking the concerned silence that had fallen upon them. "Buffy's room is this way." He finished as he began walking again, the others reluctantly following his lead, as they turned their eyes away from the tree line where Buffy had walked from their sights.

Buffy didn't have to go far until she spotted him, standing beside a tree, his eyes on her, having evidently decided to wait for her, instead of disappearing like he normally did.

"Fixed up your problems, I see." Angelus murmured as he walked towards her.

Buffy crossed her arms over her chest. "You were watching… what happened to… fishing?"

Angelus shrugged. "Didn't see anything that interested me… and only towards the end." He stated, not touching anywhere near the real reason he had left The Bronze without prey.

Buffy looked up at him with wary eyes. "What are you doing Angelus? What are you playing at?"

Angelus looked at her searchingly as he took the last step, and gently placed his hands on her arms. Buffy glanced down at them with a small frown before looking back up at him, tilting her head back slightly to do so. "I'm trying to prove to you that I'm no longer your enemy," Angelus half smiled at her. "And that I'm not going to hurt you anymore."

Buffy took a step back from him shaking her head, forcing his hands to release their gentle grip on her arms. "No, you are my enemy." Buffy looked away from him for a moment, as she felt tears threaten to well in her eyes, but she forced them back, before returning her gaze to his. "You proved that, everyday, from the moment I met you in Angel's apartment." Buffy said a little shakily, but her voice full of a raw pain. She backed away from him then, before turning and walking away from, and the expression in his eyes, the soft half smile, and the soft touches. Somehow, Buffy silently observed, this kind of torture hurt worse than all the rest.

Angelus watched her go, not making a move to after. It would be pointless, and do nothing more than agitate her. He'd planted the seed, now he had to let it settle. Angelus turned when he could no longer see her, and began making his way back to his mansion.

In another part of the campus the vampire wearing the black t-shirt with the white skull painted on it ran. He looked behind him making sure that The Slayer wasn't following him. He paused at a tree as he encountered a clear spot in his path, looking around quickly, he made to dash across it. Hearing a noise he looked behind him as he ran, only for two darts from a tazer hit him right in the chest. The vamp convulsed and fell to the ground helplessly, the amount of electricity rocking through his body enough to immobilize him for a good long while. He looked up as three figures broke from their cover, wearing camouflaged clothing advanced towards him, one carried a coil of rope, the other two carried guns which where pointed at the immobilized vamp, just in case he managed to move, before they could get him tied.

A/N: Well that was the first chapter of my season 4 rewrite, I hoped you liked it, and that Angelus didn't seem to be a big pussy cat. I personally don't think I've written him as such, but let me know what you think, and I can do my best to make him more Angelus-y.

Anyway please feed the musie so that she continues to feed me :D