"We need to warn Buffy and Spike. They could be in some very real danger." Giles looked at the three teens – one very terminal teen mind you – in front of him frantically.
"So tell her." Man, for such a smart guy he's really... Not smart. Xander gave the Watcher a look that was the very personification of annoyance. "You know all the facts, you're smart Watcher-guy, she'll listen."
"That's the problem." He muttered, turning away slightly in shame.
"Buffy doesn't... Trust me – so much anymore." He admitted repentantly. "I don't really think she'll listen."
"We can talk to her –" Willow rearranged her thoughts at the look that Angel leant her. "I mean, no, Giles, it really should be you that tells her."
Giles sighed, "Perhaps you're right. I just don't want to see her hurt. Or – more dead." He winced, the thought tormenting him.
"Mr. Giles," Angel began, "I think you should just go. If she gets a hint that you're coming she might bolt."
"What exactly did happen?" Xander's protectiveness for his less alive friend streaked forward, and he raised a hand to halt the conversation.
"Never mind that right now, Mr. Giles, we can't wait. If Drusilla's getting closer... She won't be happy about Buffy being with Spike, and she has this habit of making minions. A lot of them. She doesn't kill them though. She always had William or I do it." Maybe it's a good thing if Drusilla comes for Spike... That would live Buffy...
"Right, right. I'll be off then."
Giles left, and the three stood there awkwardly, shuffling their feet and looking at the floor.
"Weather's been nice." Angel offered uncomfortably.
"Yep." Willow pursed her lips to the interesting tile beneath her feet.
"We should probably go look, in case he can't find them." Any chance of escape from this awkward fest...
"Yeah, let's split up. Weak humans on one team, strong well capable Vamp on the other." Xander said, grabbing Willow by the elbow and leading her out.
Oh thank god. Angel thought relieved, and followed them out, heading in the opposite direction.
"Dear lord, I can't find them anywhere." Giles paced nervously in front of the library table after the relentless search his Slayer had just lead them on.
"Us either, didn't even find a clue, like a cigarette butt, or a dead body – I'm just saying! Spike likes to eat people!" Willow defensively covered her ill chosen words.
"This isn't good. What is Dru found them already?" Angel nearly knocked his chair over with the force of his abrupt standing. "What if she-"
"Angel!" Xander called sternly. "Chill man, they could be anywhere. We might have crossed their path. There must have been somewhere we didn't check. Giles?"
"No, no. We've checked everywhere in Sunnydale and on the outskirts. They aren't here."
"What about a location spell? That could be useful." Willow supplied hopefully. Yay, magic. Her errant suggestion being quickly ignored, remembrance of her last spell corrupting all of their minds.
"We'll look again. Don't stop until you've found them."
"But where could they be?"
"Hank, I understand exactly what you're saying. But the police are doing everything they can. They think it was an animal, which it very well could have been. And if it was it's probably left town." Joyce listened with practiced patience to the man on the other end of the phone. "Yes, I understand – No! You can't kill it!" Moments passed. This would be so much easier if he knew about Vampires. "Yes, yes Hank. I do realize that, I just – Hank, this is ridiculous – Stop interrupting me!" Rolling her head to the ceiling, the mother of the late Buffy Summers dropped the receiver to her shoulder for a few seconds break of the horribly accusing voice of her ex husband. "Yes Hank." Her voice was calmer now. "Yes, I'll call you tomorrow." She hung up without a goodbye, and slumped against the wall, head hanging in her hands. God Buffy, we should have stayed in LA. You should have been normal...
"Ok this is bad." Xander said another series of hours later. "This is really, really bad."
"I agree." Willow chimed, raising her hand in agreement.
"What are we supposed to do?" Angel threw his hands up, frustration building with his rage.
"A location spell! They're really simple, you just-"
"No, no spells, we aren't using any bloody magic." Giles snapped.
"Well I think maybe we should. We've been looking long enough. We need to find Buffy." Xander supported his red haired friend without doubt.
"I agree, Willow get the stuff. We're running out of time. Anything could have happened to them by now.
"Oh Miss Edith you naughty thing." A dark giggle reverberated throughout the dark barn. "We mustn't!" Another soft yet cruel laugh escaped the female Vampire's lips. "Now darling, come have tea with Mummy." She said to the figure tied up on the wall. "Miss Edith's been a good girl, so she gets to watch."
Drusilla walked her way over to the petite girl and loosened the chains that bound her. Weak, she slumped to the dusty hay floor of the shelter. "Please," she begged quietly.
"Oh, don't you worry my treat; we are going to have much fun!" She lifted the lump of human into a half broken wooden chair, and dropped her form into an impossibly uncomfortable position. "You just be good." She quirked her finger up in emphasis of her sharp words.
"Here, the light is going this way." Giles pointed and weaved his way through the trees, flashlight leading the way.
"I can't see!" Willow complained edgily, tripping over various roots and stones.
"I can." Angel said amused, but took her arm in guidance.
"Ok, that's just weird." Xander's statement of the obvious went unnoticed by the confused group.
The light from the spell had stopped dead in the middle of the forest, and was lowering itself into the ground. No sooner than the cluster of people had caught up had it vanished beneath the cold hard dirt.
"Perhaps they are underground?" Giles took off his glasses – which were useless in dark anyway – and cleaned them on his shirt.
"Maybe..." Willow thought hard. "Or maybe they're-" She cut off short, unable to say the word that they were all thinking. Dust.