Sequel to "Akoshta." What can I say...This is going to tie all those spoilers up and beat them to hell. I am totally going my own way on this. Hopefully I get all the problems out of the way so this will flow well. Oh, and there's a plot again. Oh, yeah, baby. Hell, if I get guts enough...smut?? Anywho, I suggest you read the first one or you'll have no freakin' idea what's going on. Love to those who r&r. If it weren't for ya'll Akoshta woulda been about 15 chapters long....not 23.

Title: Akoshta: Self

Author: Kaylorin

Beta Read by: RogueAngel

Synopsis: Sequel to Akoshta. The Council becomes more disconcerted with the length of time their Slayer has been active. My explinations of The Council, origins of The Slayer, Giles is back, and The Scoobies kick ass with some interesting allies.

Rating: R

Distribution: Fine with me, make sure it's the final edited copy, and let me know where it's going. My e-mail is kaylorin90@yahoo.com

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Preface

Rupert Giles lounged on his couch while reading and updating yet another text. The amount of creatures he had seen during his tenure as Watcher in the United States had given him more information ever cataloged on so many species; he was sure he'd be at it until the Second Coming.

The problem he was having at the moment was the simple fact that Buffy had yet to call. His concentration was interrupted from the slightest noise. Not at all like the man he normally was. The closest thing he'd ever had to a daughter was Buffy, and so much of her destiny lay in the Vampire that, up until two years ago, had been hell-bent on killing her.

Giles had come to believe in Spike more and more throughout last summer's devastation. No Slayer on the Hellmouth, of course, was a large part of the problem, but the absence of Buffy herself was the largest problem.

The close knit group that had formed over the last six years to help fight the forces of evil had fallen into depression. They knew that until either Faith reformed or died, there would be no Slayer. Buffy had been the reason this group had ever come to be, and they were magnificent as a group, but wholeheartedly alone on the most basic of levels.

Oddly enough, less than a week after they put Buffy's body to rest, Spike showed up on Giles' doorstep, saying that he had made a promise, and that nothing would keep him from honoring it.

At the time, Giles thought it completely ironic that the one person who Spike should have been doing this with was gone. The prophecy would never come to pass. The pain, so evident on Spike's face that night, was taken out on any demon he could get a hold of. Giles had no need to help. Whatever it was that drove the Vampire that night, he worked it out just before sunrise, as he did every night for the next three and a half months.

Willow had come over days later, asking if they should get the group together to talk about patrolling. She was surprised, but pleased, that Spike had already been at it. Slowly, one by one, the group formed once more...with a few new tricks.and fought together.

That summer had been nearly impossible, but the Watcher knew he had to go. The children were growing up. Tara and Willow moved into the Summers' home. Xander and Anya were living together. Dawn was beginning her sophomore year. They were growing up, and they no longer needed him for support. So he left.

Going back had been harder, and the knowledge that the prophecy had every possibly of coming to pass weighed heavy on him. Spike was as attentive as ever, and Buffy put up with him much the same way she had before her death. Everywhere she looked, there were disapproving eyes at Spike's affections, including the Watcher's.

The truth was, as much as Giles had learned in Sunnydale, his upbringing kept intruding on his demeanor, his words, and his actions. He had to leave, or there would be no chance.

Which brought him here, back home once again. He hid away as best he could from The Council in general. He collected books from the many libraries in their headquarters, came home, revised what was in desperate need of revision. Tedious was the chore, but the less time he spent with those people, the better.

Seeing the newly trained Watchers annoyed him. The knowledge that everything they learned was moot in the real world, and that they looked upon him as a failure more often than not. He had been unable to keep his distance from his charge. Not only had he come to love her, but he respected her, and 'horror of horrors,' he held pride for her long life. Her active status was nearing the end of her seventh year. The longest a Slayer had lived, not the oldest, but the longest lived.

Now she would be rewarded for such an astonishing accomplishment. He hoped that with Willow's knowledge, Tara's understanding, and Dawn's obvious adoration of the Vampire, eventually Xander would understand.

Now all Buffy had to do was push aside everything he had taught her. Much like the new Watchers' training and beliefs, it was moot.

The phone chose that moment to ring. He reached over and picked up the receiver. "Hello."

"Hey, Giles," the voice of the Slayer sang. "Guess who's back?"

The happiness in her voice caused a smile to creep to the corners of his mouth. "Spike did well I take it?"

"Couldn't tell ya, Watcher. Still all undead and walkin', though." A familiar English accent Giles never could quite place the exact nuances of came over the line.

"Spike." Giles took off his glasses and began to clean them while holding the phone between his cocked head and his shoulder. "I fully expected you to return last night."

"He did," Buffy chimed in. "Had to tell Xander and Dawn what was going on, then patrol."

"Don't forget save the...Xander," Spike interrupted.

Giles eyed his clock. It was nearly 11:00 A.M. so it was about five in the morning for them. "Have you even gone to bed yet, Buffy?"

"Uh...no. Haven't gone to sleep yet." A low chuckle came from, what Giles guessed, was the extension.

"I don't want to know." He was now furiously cleaning his glasses. "Just be sure to get some rest."

"Don't worry, Rupert. I'll put her to bed myself," Spike said.

"Imagery, people!" Giles heard Dawn yell in the background.

"Quite," he agreed. Spike chuckled again, then hung up.

"Ok. So, I just wanted to call, and tell you that the prophecy came true," Buffy finished, a little nervous. Like she was telling her dad she had sex last night, which, except for the fact that legally he wasn't her father, was true.

Giles sighed into the phone. It wasn't over. He knew that, but couldn't tell her. "I'm glad for you, Buffy."

"Thanks, Giles. That means more than you know."

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"But why can't Spike just live here now? It's not like you two are living the life of celibacy," Dawn exclaimed. She thought her idea was great; there was no reason he shouldn't.

Spike loved that Dawn would even consider it, but, in the end, it was voted down by the Slayer. "Simple. I'm not ready for that."

Spike was disappointed, but he understood. She was 21, and it wasn't as though they were talking marriage, or whatever would pass as such for a Vampire and a Slayer. There was no question as to the relationship between the two, but, whatever they shared physically, there was still a lot to pan out personality wise.

He knew her as well as he had known anyone in his 120-plus years of existence, but the person, or Vampire, she knew best was the bantering, lovesick one. It was still so much, and she couldn't bring herself to just say "Sure we're dating, so we really should live together with my teenage sister." It was just too much too fast.

In the following months, he converted his lifestyle. First on his list, finding a place to live that was suitable to bring the woman he loved. No matter how much work he did on it, a crypt was still a crypt, but to live anywhere with the living, he needed something not many of the undead had: money.

This is where Dawn came in. "Why don't you write?"

Spike cocked an eyebrow at the girl sitting across from him on the sarcophagus. "Did you forget?" He pointed to himself. "Bloody awful."

"I don't mean poems, Books. How many stories have you told me in the past two years? Like 50 billion?" Dawn rolled her eyes. "Write them down. I bet Willow could edit them if you ask. She might even be able to find an online publisher or something."

And so began his first project. A book. As it turned out, the story of how he came tearing into a family's home after a child had unwittingly invited him in, had a chance of becoming a good children's book, with a few alterations and a proper pen name. Dawn was elated to be given the job of picking a name. Immediately she shouted, "Randy Giles!"

By mid-April, the book was published, and 'Randy' received his first check. The check was the problem. No social security number, no cashing of the check. In desperation, and quite frankly no other recourses, Buffy had Tara call AI.

Tara called happily, asked Fred if there was any way she knew of to get the necessary documents and not let Angel know. It took some time, but a package arrived three weeks later, and, that day, Randy Giles opened his first account ever on record and deposited his check.

He acted as an usher for Xander's and Anya's wedding and discovered an uninvited guest...the demon kind, disguised as human. The demon was after the groom, but Spike dispatched of him before he had a chance to do anything.

When the first camera was discovered, the mood shifted. The Troika was up to something, and the Scoobies were all on the case.

Willow traced the signal, and Buffy went after the group, Vampire in tow. The three geeks got away, but the Vampire gave chase with his pumped up Vampire senses. Within minutes the geeks were surrounded by a none-too- happy group of Scoobies.

Warren, the self proclaimed leader, began to fight, and the two lemmings followed his example. The unevenly matched fight was interrupted when Warren pulled out a crystal and began chanting. Jonathan tried to warn him it wasn't ready. The power that the transmigration spell required had to be bound or the user would simply go into nothingness, which Warren did. Andrew and Jonathan were turned over to the police and convicted of invasion of privacy.

Before the end of May, Spike had a home. A house actually. Having no credit history made buying difficult, so he opted to rent for now. It was a simple, small home, with a large finished basement. A requirement for any Vampire going out into the world: a deep, dark hole.

As the school year ended, Spike's presence was expected. He patrolled with Buffy, helped Dawn study for her History and English finals. He helped Buffy register for the fall semester. She refused to let him pay for school, but, with some help from Willow, she applied and qualified for a grant.

The best of news came three days before Dawn finished her school year. He was opted for more books. Five in fact, and he received a healthy check upfront. His relationship with Buffy was going so well he felt heaven would be a step down. The group in general not only accepted him, but had become his friends. There was little he wouldn't do for any of them.

The Vampire had found a family, and in his worst enemies. How much stranger could his world get?