Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.

Beta'd by the wonderful Marella916 and All4Spike.

After a spectacular defeat at the end of NFA, resulting in all life in this dimension ending, the Powers have decided to give the dimension one more chance. They decide our favorite blonde vampire is just the guy for the job. Numbed from recent events Spike thinks they've gone barmy, he's not a hero but the Powers insist. What's a souled vamp to do when he is sent back in time?

Just a warning: This is an AU spuffy story. BUT Buffy is only 16 when this starts so the spuffy lovin' while it will happen won't be for awhile. There will be briefly Bangel. I don't mind Angel, but I do not like the pairing of Buffy/Angel but it is necessary to the plot. I have rated this M for now for adult language, eventually there will be smut but like I said it won't happen right away so try to be patient. I hope you enjoy what I have done with the characters. I have used certain elements of the show, certain bad guys and even some dialog.


Willow and Xander were sitting at the table in the library waiting for Giles to join them. School would be out for the summer in a few days and they were helping him move his books to Spike's house so they would be available while the school was closed during the break.

Willow started reading out loud from one of the books. "I wonder what this does? Tropo, strato, meso, aero, iono, exo... Elements are brought to bear. Wind, earth, and water churn amidst the fire. Let the air be burned."

A loud popping could be heard in the room and all the lights went out. The sunlight streaming through the windows provided enough light for the pair to see.

"Uh, Wills, what'd you do?"

"Nothing! I didn't do anything!"

"Then why is your hair standing straight up?" Feeling his own head Xander exclaimed, "Why is my hair standing straight up? And why did all the light bulbs just explode?"

The door swinging open startled both teenagers. "What in the blue blazes is going on in here?"

"Ahh! You scared me!" Willow screamed. "I didn't do anything. All I was doing was reading from this book and everything went nuts. Here see… all I said was, Tropo, strato, meso, aero, iono, exo... Elements are brought to bear. Wind, earth, and water churn amidst the fire. Let the air be burned."

More popping sounds could be heard coming from the hallway as those lights went out too.

"Willow that is a book of magic spells." Both teens looked over at Giles to see that his hair was now standing on end too. "It is not something to be trifled with."

"I didn't know! Honest."

"I'm sure you didn't. But now that you do, you must be careful. It appears that you have some magical ability. I feel it prudent to get you some training. Spike tells me that Ms. Calendar knows something of magic. I shall ask her if she would be willing to teach you."

From that moment on, Xander spent most of the summer patrolling with Spike while Willow spent her time learning magic with Ms. Calendar.

§

Angel spent the summer traveling between Sunnydale and L.A. He was careful not to let Buffy know the times he was in town; instead he took to the shadows, watching her out with her sister and father shopping and eating dinner. He wasn't comfortable leaving Spike alone with Giles and the two teens but he felt he needed to devote himself to persuading Buffy back into patrolling.

Finally he caught her coming out of Neiman Marcus laden with shopping bags without her sister or father tagging along, Angel allowed Buffy to see him.

"Angel! Wait, what are you doing here?"

"I wanted to see you."

"But I thought you said you couldn't trust Spike enough to leave Sunnydale?"

"I'm only here tonight then I'm going to drive back. I just wondered if you had slayed any vamps so far."

She sighed deeply and rolled her eyes. "I told you, I'm done with that."

"Buffy, you can't turn your back on this." He took a step closer.

"Watch me. Is that the only reason you came here?" she asked, not bothering to hide the irritation in her voice.

"Well, um." He stammered looking around nervously.

"I thought maybe you came to see me because you wanted to, you know, see me?" she said, trying to catch his eye.

"Oh! Well of course." At his answer, Buffy gave the vampire a shy smile.

§

It started out as a routine patrol. Xander and Spike had finished the rounds through the cemeteries and were near the Bronze when two vamps jumped out of an alley. Spike and Xander immediately started fighting, the boy more than capable of handling a vamp on his own due to his training with Spike. Just then, they heard a scream coming from a nearby street. "Go! I've got these two." Spike sent Xander off while he dealt with the fledglings in front of him.

Xander ran towards the sounds of a fight and found Cordelia fending off a vampire near the Bronze. Coming up behind them, he quickly staked the vamp through the back just as he was about to get his fangs into the young girl's neck. "Hey, you all right? He didn't bite you did he?"

"No I'm fine. What was that thing?"

"Vampire."

"Quit joking Xander, what was that?"

"I wasn't kidding, that was a vampire and you were almost dinner." He said looking her square in the eye.

After her brush with death, Cordelia started spending time with Xander and Willow. The news that Sunnydale wasn't an ordinary town barely fazed the cheerleader. While Cordelia showed promise during her training sessions with Spike, it was decided that she would be the bait while out on patrols. The statuesque brunette would wander down the darkened alleyways and streets, hoping to lure vampires to what appeared to be an easy target.

"Ugh! I totally get why Buffy gave this up. Those were brand new Prada shoes!" Cordelia complained as she picked herself up off the ground after being knocked down by a vamp. Turning, she quickly staked the vamp that had attacked her, leaving the others to Spike and Xander. Willow and Ms. Calendar were standing to the side being guarded by Giles as Jenny instructed the fledgling witch in how to create a ball of sunshine. The grunts and groans of the fight quickly changed to screams of pain as Willow's spell took effect. When the dust settled, Willow was beaming with pride.

"Good job Red." Spike said smiling at her.

"Way to go, Wills!"

"Not bad, but couldn't you have done that before he broke my shoe?" Cordelia demanded as she hopped on one foot.

§

The summer passed quickly for everyone. Dawn and Buffy were having a good time in L.A. but for different reasons. Dawn spoke on the phone with Oz almost every night. He told her about patrols the gang went on and the different demons they came up against. Dawn raved about the music that he had sent her to listen to.

Buffy was enjoying L.A. because Angel was there almost every night. After that one night when they had run into each other, Angel made fewer and fewer trips back to Sunnydale, preferring to spend his time with Buffy. After one disastrous attempt at going to the movies, when Angel had picked out a nouveau art film that had subtitles, the couple decided to forgo the cinema.

They would walk around town talking. Ok, so actually she did most of the talking. One night while they were out walking, Buffy led them to a park bench and asked point blank if what Giles had said about him was true. It took some time but eventually Angel told the young girl an abridged version of the events that had led up to him receiving a soul.

"Do you regret it?"

"Getting the soul? No. Without it I wouldn't have met you."

"That's, um, nice. But I meant the killing and stuff."

"I did, I do. At first the guilt was overwhelming. But I've learned to live with it. It gets easier as time goes by. I can't ever make up for what Angelus did."

"Why do you call yourself Angel now?"

"Well, because of the soul. I'm not Angelus anymore. Angelus is the one who killed all those people. I have a soul, I'm Angel now."

§

While Buffy was thrilled with the attention from the handsome vampire, she was getting tired of his behavior when they were out. He would refuse to go into restaurants with her, citing that he was a vampire and didn't eat human food. He would balk at going into any stores, stating that his absence in the numerous mirrors would cause alarm. All Angel seemed to want to do was take walks that invariably led to a cemetery. He would encourage her to patrol, even going so far as to hand her a stake one night outside the gates of a graveyard.

§

Giles was nervous, more nervous than he could ever remember being. Clutching the flowers in his hand a little tighter, he reached out and rang the door bell. His nervousness became more pronounced when he saw who answered the door. "Buffy, I, um, well," he stammered, his mouth flapping uselessly.

Looking over her shoulder to see if her mother was coming, she grabbed the watcher by the arm and dragged him down the porch steps closing the front door behind her. "What are you doing here?" she hissed.

Bloody hell! I forgot she returned from her father's today. Good job Rupert, the first time in years you try to ask a woman out on a date and her daughter gets in the way. Straightening his tie Giles stood tall to face down the young girl. "I am here to see your mother, if you must know."

The sound of the door opening had Buffy stepping away from the older man. "Buffy, I thought I heard the doorbell." Joyce took a step outside and saw who her daughter was speaking to. "Oh Rupert! How nice to see you. Would you like to come in?"

"I'd love to, Joyce." Giles made his way back onto the porch, handing Joyce the bouquet of flowers. "For you my dear." He said shyly. The two made their way into the kitchen leaving a confused Buffy standing out on the lawn.

§

The first couple of weeks of the new school year were rough for Buffy. She was even more isolated than before. Her mom was apparently dating Giles, of all people, Dawn was hanging out with Oz and the slayer found that she couldn't take hanging out with the Cordettes any more. They had tossed Cordelia to the side when news had got out that she was dating Xander. The only person who did spend time with her was Angel. And today was the field trip to the Zoo. Just what I've always wanted to do, spend all day out in the heat with a bunch of smelly animals.

Up ahead, Buffy could see Xander, Willow, Cordelia, Oz and Dawn standing on the path near the hyena exhibit. They were watching as Kyle, Rhonda and Torrie bullied Lance. Just as it looked as though Dawn was going to interfere, Mr. Flutie broke up the confrontation. Turning her back on the group, Buffy stared into the elephant enclosure.

"Xander where are Kyle and that group going with Lance?"

"Probably a game of cat and mouse."

"What is it with those guys?" Dawn glared at the teens.

"They're obnoxious. Professionally." Willow replied smiling sweetly at the younger girl.

"I'll handle it." Xander said as he took off after the group of kids who making their way into the closed hyena house.

A few minutes later all of the teens were escorted out by one of the zookeepers. "You kids shouldn't have been in there! Those hyenas just arrived from Africa; they're still under quarantine."

§

With a thud Willow dropped her lunch tray down on the table, startling the rest of the group. "Anyone notice Xander acting really weird yesterday and today?"

Oz gave a non-committal shrug, Dawn just shook her head.

"Way weird! He kept sniffing me on the bus ride back from the zoo yesterday!" Cordy announced.

"Well it's gotten weirder. He's been following me around all morning." Willow told the gang.

§

Jesse ran for the high school library. Kyle and his group of losers had been chasing him all over campus since the first bell. The only thing that slowed them down was crossing paths with the school mascot. Knowing Willow and Xander usually hung out there during study period, Jesse ran harder to get there before the bell rang.

Turning the corner at a dead run, he slammed into someone coming from the opposite direction. Looking up from his position on the floor he swallowed tightly when he saw Lance standing over him. Before he could scramble to his feet, Jesse was grabbed from behind and dragged yelling down the corridor.

§

Cordelia was startled when the door to the computer lab slammed shut. Spinning around she saw Xander walking towards her. "I'm almost done, then we can get to the meeting."

"What's the rush? I thought we might stay here for a while." Moving to stand next to the cheerleader, he ran his hand up and down her arm. "I'm sure we can think of something do with ourselves."

Pushing his hand off her, Cordy turned to pick up her books. Suddenly Xander was standing behind her pressed up against her back as he snaked his arms around her waist. Without thinking, Cordelia elbowed him in the stomach. "Get off me." As he doubled over, she took a few steps forward to get out of his embrace.

"Come on Cordy, no need to play hard to get. There's no one here but us." Cordelia was shocked when Xander took a step towards her. The awkward boy was gone and in his place was a confident man.

"And in a minute you'll be the only one here. If you touch me again, I can guarantee you'll be on the floor in pain."

"Don't be that way. I know you want me. I think its time to take this to the next level."

"No it's really not. Even if I was ready, it certainly wouldn't happen in the computer room at school."

"Cordy, Cordy, Cordy, this is going to happen." Suddenly Cordelia was trapped between the wall and a very determined Xander Harris. The strange light in his eyes was unnerving, forcing her to scan the vicinity for a weapon. His next words froze her to the floor. "The when and where really aren't up to you." He placed his left hand on the wall next to her and his right hand on her shoulder. With excruciating slowness Xander let it slide down until he was grasping her breast in his hand.

Cordelia was stunned at the liberties Xander was taking with her body. Her immobility broke when he squeezed her left breast roughly through her shirt, making her wince. With no warning, she brought her knee up to hit him squarely in the sensitive area between his legs. The blow wasn't as hard as she would have liked but he was too close for her to get much power behind it. Grunting more in shock than pain, Xander took a step back.

The crash of the door startled both teenagers. Cordelia sighed with relief. Though she would never admit it, Xander was starting to scare her and she was glad for the interruption.

"Spike!" she cried out, pushing Xander away from her.

"You're late, came to see what the hold up was." There was an odd scent in the room. Flaring his nostrils Spike zeroed in on Xander. Not bothering to take his eyes off the boy, he spoke, "Cordy why don't you head on over to the library." The girl quickly made her escape.

Spike didn't waste time talking. There was something off about the boy and after what he had seen and heard, he wasn't going to take any chances that Xander wouldn't try to get the cheerleader alone again. It didn't sound as though the boy was willing to take no for an answer. Balling up his left fist, Spike knocked Xander unconscious. Hefting the boy up, he carried him down the hall towards the school library.