Spike finally caught up to Buffy as she approached the front porch of the house "Buffy wait up!"
Buffy stilled and turned to face him, she was visibly upset "Spike..."
"No love, you don't have to say anything. It was really my fault, I should've known better" he sighed
"Oh god, no Spike it's not that I didn't want to. I really did it's just; I can't get into anything right now. I've got responsibilities now y'know? Ava comes first"
"I never said she shouldn't Buffy"
"I know, it's just there's some things you don't know and it's probably best if you don't" she cried "I just can't do this right now"
"Oh but you can shack up with Peaches for months at a time, but me? Forget about it?"
"Spike that's not it" she yelled
"The hell it is! Buffy... I'm never gunna be good enough for you am I? Actually don't answer that I already know, say goodbye to Ava for me okay?" Said Spike backing away from her
"Spike, please stay" she pleaded
Buffy paused for a moment
"Tell you what slayer, I'll just get out of your life" said Spike walking off into the shadows
Buffy knew better than to follow him, she slowly walked to her front door. Wiping her tears away just before entering
"Mom! Where the hell have you been?" Ava yelled, she saw that her mother had been crying "are you okay?" She asked
"What? Yeah I'm fine" said Buffy
"Where's Spike?" Asked Andrew
"He uh, went to patrol for me. I was feeling a little beat and with Ava being sick and all... Say you must be feeling better"
"What? Oh yeah... Y'know a batch of chicken and stars and a few movies with Andrew is like the best cure" babbled Ava
"You can drop the act, Spike told me you weren't sick. It's okay I'm not mad, but get your butt to bed young lady it's late. Why are you still up?" She asked
"Well I tried calling you but it was going straight to voicemail" said Andrew "she wouldn't go to sleep until she knew you and Spike were safe. Spike is safe right? You didn't stake him?"
"No I didn't stake him, but I think we all better get to bed" said Buffy ushering her daughter up the stairs followed by Andrew
When everybody went to bed Buffy made her way downstairs, there's no way she could sleep. She was too worried about Spike.
Buffy had a million thoughts running through her head, she decided to make herself a cup of hot chocolate. She knew she wouldn't sleep but maybe it would relax her a little, plus her hangover was setting in already. She reached for a mug out of the cupboard as a quiet knock came at her front door.
She opened the front door to find, one of the local Slayer's Mia with Spike stood on her front porch.
"Sorry Buffy, I didn't mean to wake you but this bozo, says he's Spike. I need confirmation" said the young brunette
Buffy and the rest of the gang had made it clear to every Slayer they trained that, under no circumstances should Angel or Spike be dusted. She was actually surprised that Mia remembered, in training she was a wild one she reminded Buffy of Faith in the early years though not as evil.
"Uh yeah" said Buffy opening the door wider to let Spike in
"Sorry again Buffy, he put up a good fight though" smiled Mia
"Anything unusual tonight?" Asked Buffy
"No ma'am, I'll get the others to check in with you at first light" said Mia
"Thanks Mia, be careful okay?"
"See you tomorrow"
Buffy closed the door and looked at Spike and sighed slightly.
"Bird packs a punch, almost as good as you pet" said Spike wiping the blood from his lip
"Well I did train her, you're lucky to be alive Spike" said Buffy "c'mon I'm making hot chocolate" she said disappearing into the kitchen
Buffy poured the hot water into the mugs and stirred them "so wandered into the graveyard?" Asked Buffy
"Yeah, s'where I belong init?"
Buffy sighed placing the mug in front of him and sat down across from him "look Spike, there's a few things you need to know"
"Let me guess, this is the 'talk'. The one where you tell me you just wanna be mates?" He asked
"Can you let me finish?... My life is complicated right now"
"Hasn't it always been?" he snapped
"Yeah but this time its personal, I need to tell you a few things about Ava" she took a deep breath
"What is it love?" he asked genuinely concerned.
"She's not a regular teenager, well she is, she's just different... Sixteen years ago, I'd just come out of the fight of my life, I lost my home. I lost my friends, I lost the person that I loved... And then I found out I was pregnant, I thought about abortion I really hate myself for thinking about it but I did and then I realised I couldn't because that baby was the one thing in the world I had left of the person I'd lost"
"Buffy, what are you saying?" He asked
Buffy's tears ran slowly down her face "through some miracle, we had a child. Ava is your daughter"
"What!" Asked Spike taken aback
"I know it's crazy, but Ava is a special girl. She's a prophesy, 'a child born of darkness and light will wield the most powerful weapon in the great battle'" said Buffy
"I'm sorry you might wanna repeat that, I've got a daughter?" stammered Spike
"I'm sorry I should've told you sooner"
"You're damn right Buffy!" Spike stood up "I've had a daughter for fifteen years and not even known about her! And if I hadn't of stumbled upon her a few nights ago I'd of never of known" he yelled
"I wanted to tell you, but you didn't come back. I figured maybe you didn't love me as much as you thought, I was setting you free" she cried
"You damn well weren't! You forget Buffy I know you! And I know when you're lying, you couldn't give a shit about me" he spat
"How the hell can you say that Spike! I waited and waited for you but you never came!"
"So what was wrong with you coming to find me?" He asked
"I did!" She blurted
"What? When?" He asked
"I heard even before Andrew saw you that you were alive, I had some weird Slayer dream. So I came back to LA to find out for myself, it was the day you became solid, y'know the big flash of light thingy that happened. And I saw you, it took you all of two seconds to run off with Harmony to get your kicks" she cried
"No! Don't even try to explain, I wasn't your first thought. You didn't even think about me in that moment" she said sadly
"That's not true, I thought of you the whole time"
"That is disgusting..." Said Buffy screwing her face up in disgust
"Not like that... You should've told me Buffy" he said
"Well I'm telling you now... In a month's time Ava will be sixteen, Giles and Willow have been researching the prophesy, trying to translate it. They found out this epic battle is supposed to go down when she's sixteen, and I can't do anything to stop it. She could die Spike and I'm powerless" she sobbed
"She's not going to die Buffy, we're gunna do everything we can to make sure of it okay?"
"Okay" Buffy sniffled
"Does she know?" Asked Spike
"She hasn't got a clue about you, she knows she's not a regular kid. She's got amazing strength but she has no idea about the prophesy" said Buffy
From behind the kitchen door Ava stood with her hand clasped over her mouth crying.
"We'll get through this Buffy, I promise you" he pulled Buffy into his arms holding her tightly