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. Banner by the lovely and talented nmcil12

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.

"I will contact Spike and see if he has any information that will help." Giles picked up the phone and dialed the vampire's house. After a short conversation he turned back to the two upset teens in the room. "Unfortunately Spike has no idea what is going on. Whistler had no information either. They are on their way here to discuss the matter and form a plan."

While they waited for Spike and Whistler to arrive Giles went down to the office to excuse them from classes for the rest of the day. He told the secretary that the children were traumatized by what they saw and weren't ready to go back to class.

Just as Giles was making his way back to the rattled teens Spike came sauntering in. "So what's up watcher?"

"One of the teachers has been killed. His headless body was stuffed in a refrigerator in the lunch room." Giles sighed pinching the bridge of his nose.

"He was killed here on campus." Willow provided.

"How'd you work that out Red?"

Xander chose to answer instead. "Willow found his glasses on the floor in his classroom today."

"And he hadn't changed clothes from yesterday either." She added.

"Watcher said he was missing his head?" Spike asked tilting his head to the side.

"Where did they put it?" Xander shuddered at the thought.

"Whistler have you received any visions that might shed some light on this matter?"

"Nope, sorry gang. The Powers must figure we can handle this on our own."

"Alright, I say we patrol tonight. I'll take Red and Whistler can go with Xander."

"What about me?" Buffy spoke for the first time.

"I'm sorry Buffy if you want to help maybe you can patrol also. If you find anything please let me know."

"Sure, I'll ask Angel to go with me if that's alright."

"Yes, that will be fine. I'll stay here and research if there are any rituals that require a head to perform them."

"Sounds like a plan." Spike clapped his hands together and left the room after telling everyone to meet back at the school after patrol.


That night Buffy was out on patrol, Angel had said he was busy and couldn't patrol with her. So she was making her way past Weatherly Park when she sensed a vampire nearby. Following her senses she made her way towards the street. Passing under a street light she saw Willow with Spike. Just as she was about to rush over a demon came charging towards the two roaring, swinging his clawed hands. Spike quickly shifted into game face and started throwing punches. A solid left hook had the demon take off running. Dropping back into his human face Spike grabbed Willow and the two rushed to follow. Buffy ran to catch up with the pair.

As they turned the corner on to Spring Street the demon screamed and ran for the nearest manhole cover. Spike and Willow came to a stop when they saw the substitute science teacher standing there seemingly unconcerned that a monster had been in her midst. The two shared a glance and quickly made their excuses and went back to the library to tell Giles what they saw.

Buffy didn't know whether she should follow the demon through the sewers or head back to the school. Taking her cue from Spike and Willow she started back towards the high school.

"Giles! You won't believe it! We were out patrolling and we found this demon right. So we started chasing it. Oh! Do you know Ms. French the sub for Dr. Gregory?" Willow was brimming with excitement and could barely get it all out.

"Yes Willow I have met Ms. French. She's lovely in a, a common, extremely well proportioned way." Giles cleared his throat and his face reddened slightly.

"Um okay. Anyway we were chasing this demon right, big hairy with these really long claws. And we chased him to Spring Street when he or she, Spike was it a he or a she? Oh never mind. Anyway the demon screamed! I mean like really screamed! And then it ran away down the sewers." She smiled brightly at him.

"Willow what exactly does this have to with Ms. French?"

"Cause the lovely and well proportioned Ms. French was the only thing standing there. He took one look at 'er and ran for cover." Spike drawled.

"He ran? From Ms. French?" they could see Giles wheels starting to turn.

"Yup. Like a scaredy cat. So why would a demon be afraid of our substitute teacher?"

"I don't know but I think it would be prudent to keep an eye on her."

"Keep an eye on who?" Xander asked as he walked in with Whistler in tow.

"Ms. French, she scared away a demon tonight!"

"No fear Wills, I can keep an eye on Ms. French. I have been invited to a private study session with Ms. French after school tomorrow." Xander smiled at the group. He was feeling quite proud of himself.

"How? When? How?" Willow's face scrunched up into a look of confusion.

"Funny Willow that's usually my line. She asked me today after we left the library."

"Be careful Xander something's not right with her."

Of course I'll be careful Xander thought. Careful to not make a total fool out of myself with the beautiful older woman!

Buffy stood off to the side watching as the group discussed the situation. I wonder… If I had started slaying again when I came here would these guys have still helped? Would we have been friends? Merrick always said slayers fight alone that I couldn't tell anyone. Could I have all this?


"Giles!" Willow was calling frantically.

The watcher came out of his office, "Yes Willow."

"Blayne never made it to school today. His mom called the office, he didn't come home last night."

"Okay that's wigsome." Xander said as he made his way towards them. "He had an after school session with Ms. French yesterday."

"Xander you need to be especially careful tonight when you meet with her. As far as we know she was the last one to see Blayne before his disappearance."

"Right gotcha watch out for the beautiful teacher who has the hots for the Xan-Man." He called over his shoulder as he walked out of the library.

Oh good lord, save me from hormonal teenage boys, Giles thought to himself as he shook his head at Xander's retreating figure.

Picking up the phone he was half way through dialing Spike's number before realizing that Spike would be little help if the teacher was doing something to the children in her own home. Without an invite Spike would be unable to enter the domicile to render assistance. He sighed to himself while he waited for someone to pick up the line. Whistler was the one who finally did answer and Giles explained the situation to the demon as best he could. After some discussion they decided that it would be best to follow Xander to Ms. French's house and render whatever assistance they could if necessary.


Xander awoke with a start to find himself being dragged down the basement steps of Ms. French's home. The last thing he remembered was seeing a lot of Ms. French's cleavage and drinking a glass of soda. "Whoa! What's going on here?" The teen started to struggle as he saw the cages on the floor. He noticed that Blayne was locked in one and he was being dragged towards the empty one with the door open. "Oh, no. I'm not going into a cage!" Xander began to struggle in earnest and managed to break free as the teacher tried to push him into the metal cage. Gotta remember to thank Spike for teaching me that move. He darted back behind the cage and started to look for a weapon. As he took a step back something slimy brushed up against his hand and he turned to find himself face to face with a nest full of egg sacks. "Holy Crap! Nope, no way, not happening, whatever freaky thing you have planned I'm not helping." He yelled at the woman standing across from him.

"Oh yes you will." Ms. French smiled sweetly as she started walking forward. She halted as she heard the sound of someone kicking the front door down.

"DOWN HERE!" Xander yelled picking up a piece of pipe that was lying on the floor. He swung it wildly at her head and was surprised as he connected but her form shimmered and as she turned face him again Xander's mouth dropped as she changed into a giant praying mantis

"Ah!" he screamed.

Whistler was the first one to make it down the stairs followed closely by Giles and Willow. The red head quickly ran over to the other cage and began working on the lock to free Blayne. Giles and Whistler pull out their swords and quickly engage the giant bug standing in the middle of the basement. It seemed to be a futile effort as every swing they took was blocked by one of her long arms.

Xander looked around desperately for something to distract her with when an idea came to mind. He smashed his foot down on a sack of eggs. As he moved on to destroy more an inhuman screech came from what used to be Ms. French. Using the distraction that Xander provided Whistler took a low swing with the blade catching the teacher in the legs where her knees would normally be. Unable to stand upright any longer she fell to the floor where Giles was able to behead her.

As the group stumbled out of the house they saw Spike pacing on the front lawn. He started laughing when he saw them. "Oi! What the bleedin' hell happened?"

"Apparently cutting the head off of a giant Praying Mantis leads to an explosion of bodily fluids." Giles answered while trying to wipe demon guts from his glasses. "And where were you? You should have had no problem entering the house Ms. French obviously wasn't human."

Spike walked over to the front door to show that a barrier was still in place.

"But that means…." Giles rushed back into the house and after a few moments he emerged helping an elderly woman down the stairs. "Meet Ms. French. She says that a young woman broke into her home a few days ago and restrained her in her own bedroom."

The group called the police and quickly made their getaway before they arrived.

"Okay that was just gross." Willow groaned as she looked down at her ruined clothes.

"No kidding Wills."

"What the hell happened?! What was that?!" Blayne started to hyperventilate. Whistler quickly made his way over to the upset teen. Placing a hand on his shoulder he calmed the boy down before sending him on his way home.

"We'll follow him and make sure he gets home safe. Then I plan on taking a very long shower. I think I have praying mantis in my shoe." Xander threw an arm over Willow's shoulder; the red head screeched and pushed it off as they walk down the street. "Oh, yuck! Demon guts. This is so gross."