OF THINGS TO COME

Disclaimer:  I don't own any of the characters except for the ones that I created like Billy and Zarathos.

EPILOGUE

Buffy had been asleep in Spike's arms when the telephone rang.  At first she simply wished and hoped for it to be a dream.  But as the phone kept ringing she resigned herself to the fact that she had to roll over and get the phone.  Being five months pregnant didn't help matters any.  She had discovered that she was pregnant a few weeks after surviving whatever spell Willow had cast on the top of Kingman's Bluff.  Spike had been a jumble of emotions ever since, no matter what she tried to do to help him it ended up that Spike seemed to be more nervous than she was about the baby.  Dawn on the other hand had reacted as if they had just won the lottery, shouting at the top of her lungs and jumping around the house like a chicken with its head cut off.  Giles had been quiet and only expressed his congratulations after Buffy had assured him repeatedly that everything was fine and that she was happy about being pregnant.  Willow had mostly gotten back to normal; in fact Buffy's pregnancy had been good for the witch.  It had given her something to focus on that was removed from the events of that cool night.  Initially Xander had been furious with Spike and had spent many days, that threatened to lengthen into weeks, avoiding Spike entirely and barely talking to Buffy.  In the end Buffy had stormed over to his apartment and threatened to break every bone in his body if he didn't come around.  Anya had just grinned merrily and had taken up knitting, insisting that she and Xander would be the baby's godparents.  Since then the old Scooby gang actually had a quiet five months until Buffy got the call in the middle of the night from Angel. 

After that night on Kingman's Bluff Angel and the others had returned to Los Angeles and mostly went about their business.  Fred and Gunn had become secretly engaged but with all else that had been going on they decided to wait to announce their good news until sometime later.  Angel and Connor had continued to build towards a better relationship, with Cordelia helping a great deal.  Faith had spent the time since that night counting the days down until her pregnancy would be over and she'd be back to her old self.  Wesley had spent the time trying to keep Faith calm and help Angel out when he could.  Lorne had even gone so far as to open up another club, but this time he had kept its location and name a secret for fear that it would be destroyed just like his previous clubs had been.

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It had only taken about an hour after Buffy had received the call to wake everyone up and get them on the way to Los Angeles.  Spike had grumbled about being woken up so late but offered to call the others while Buffy took her time getting ready.  Dawn had woken up because of all of the commotion and lights coming on.  After hearing what was going on she had started to go back to bed but Spike had grabbed her arm and pulled her along with him down the stairs to help him with the arrangements.  Xander and Anya showed up a few minutes later with Xander looking as if he could fall asleep at a moments notice while Anya looked like she was the expectant mother, what with the excited grin plastered on her face.  Willow had almost sleepwalked through putting her close on and in the end the group had to wait for her to change clothes again before they could leave.  Xander and Anya took Willow with them while Spike, Buffy, and Dawn piled into his DeSoto before taking off towards Los Angeles. 

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They arrived at the hospital to find Angel and Connor pacing nervously, both acting as if they were the father that was expecting children.  Angel seemed to be nursing his left hand, holding it as if it had been broken while it was visible that Connor had a large bruise on his forearm.  Gunn and Fred were trying to appear busy, rifling through the stash of magazines and newspapers.  Cordelia nervously kept looking back and forth between her watch and Angel and Connor.  Every time one of the two would walk by they'd reach down and grab her wrist, twisting it so that they could get a good look at her watch.  Then they'd frown or scowl in frustration and continue their pacing. 

"Angel…," Buffy called out hesitantly as she and the Scooby's poured into the waiting room.

"Buffy…good you're here, you to Spike," Angel answered with a relieved but still impatient frown on his face as he walked up to her.

"Well Peach…Angel…you asked us to come right over so we did, any word…," Spike said with at first in his usual obstinate way before he calmed down and hid it better behind a tired smile.

"Not yet…Wesley and the doctors are in with her now…she started having contractions a few hours ago…nearly broke Angel's hand and Connor's arm," Cordelia interjected with a worried yet excited look on her face as she looked quickly up at Buffy before returning her gaze to the hands on the watch, acting as if by watching them closely she could make the hands turn faster.

"Nearly…," Angel mumbled softy with a pained and sarcastic frown on his face as he sat down beside Cordelia and slowly tried to move his fingers. 

"Where's Giles…," Fred asked softly as she looked around the room and didn't see the former Watcher.

"He had to go back to England for something…official council business he said…rotten timing if you ask me," Dawn said with an unhappy frown on her face as she crossed her arms and sat down beside Angel. 

"Dawn," Buffy exclaimed more in a chiding manner than in anger as she let Spike guide her to one of the unoccupied plush chairs in the room.  Dawn began to respond but then thought better of it and stayed quiet. 

"I hope everything's okay in there…," Fred said with a very worried frown on her face as Gunn pulled her closer. 

"Angel…what can you hear that we can't," Buffy asked softly as she leaned closer to Angel as Spike helped her keep her balance. 

"Nothing much…a few screams from Faith…but that could mean anything…or everything," Angel replied darkly before he ran a nervous hand through his hair. 

"Have they picked out names yet…," Spike asked softly as he wrapped an arm around Buffy and leaned over as far as he dared.

"Well we're about to find out…here comes Wesley," Cordelia said with a very nervous look of excitement on her face as she stood up and took a deep breath.  Everyone stopped what they were doing and waited in silence before a very weary looking Wesley pushed open the door of the waiting room and stepped inside.  Before any of the questions could be asked he removed his mask to reveal a tired but smiling face.  Buffy and Cordelia started to ask the same question at the same time but Wesley sighed and waived them off.

"Everything went fine…Faith's fine…the twins are fine…," Wesley blurted out with a look on his face that made Angel think the former watcher was about ready to pass out from all of the excitement.

"Hmm…three fine's in one sentence…that's never good," Fred said with a worried look on her face as she looked over at Gunn.

"It is this time…the doctors are running a few standard tests on the twins right now and I've got to get back to Faith…I just thought that I'd come back out here and tell you guys the good news," Wesley said with an overwhelmed frown on his face before he ran a nervous hand through his hair. 

"Wesley wait…we want info…what are their names," Willow spoke up with an excited smile on her face as Anya seemed to want to ask the same question but Willow had gotten to it first. 

"We weren't sure what to name them until after they were born…but our son was born first and we named him Liam…," Wesley began with a deep sigh and shrug of his shoulders before he momentarily cast Angel a quick glance, glad to see the very appreciative and honored smile that spread across the vampires face.  "And then our daughter was born and we named her Hope," Wesley added with a very proud smile on his face as he stood up and took a quick glance around the room before walking out of the waiting room.

"Liam eh…wonder how they came up with that," Spike chimed in with a good-natured smirk on his face as he leaned over and lightly poked Angel, who was still smiling widely, in the shoulder. 

"Shut up Spike," Angel replied with a half hearted look of anger on his face before Anya squealed with delight that got Fred to start laughing and then snort.  Everyone looked over at her and Fred blushed a bright red as she hung her head.  From across the room Spike started to laugh, softly at first, but soon the entire group caught on to it and they all ended up having a good laugh at the situation. 

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A few months later Joyce Ann Summers was born to Buffy and Spike.  Much like the scene in Los Angeles everyone arrived at the hospital just as Joyce was born.  Afterwards everyone had crashed at Buffy's house.  Wesley and Faith had been glad because staying at Buffy's house for that night allowed the pair to get a few short hours of sleep while Anya and Willow tag teamed and took care of Liam and Dawn, Fred, and Cordelia took care of Hope.  Out of the three that took care of Liam Fred held him the longest, saying that she just liked doing it.  But the real reason wouldn't be found out until a couple of weeks later when she and Gunn told everyone that she to was pregnant.  Connor made a confused remark about all of the babies but Cordelia had laughed at him and tried to explain to him that after all of the bad times that everyone had been through everyone was finally getting some happiness, and he shouldn't jinx it.  Dawn and Billy soon went back to school after Xander and his construction group had repaired the damage that had been done weeks earlier.  They protested against going back, with Dawn offering to stay at home and help Buffy take care of Joyce, but Spike and Buffy had ended up physically having to push her out of the front door to get her to go to school.  In the weeks and months that followed Buffy, Spike, and the Scooby gang adverted a couple more apocalypse's, with the last one trying to use Joyce as the catalyst.  Back in Los Angeles Angel and his team had similar experiences, with each time an apocalypse was adverted Angel hoped that he'd be changed back into a human, or at least as close to being human as Spike was, as a reward.  Almost a year later his wish was finally granted and he and Cordelia ended up adverting an apocalypse.  Afterwards he had stumbled into the morning light and was overjoyed when he didn't burst into flames. 

It wasn't very much longer after that apocalypse that Angel and Cordelia were married, with Connor acting as a reluctant best man because Spike had other things to do.  Things like marrying Buffy at the same time in a double wedding.  The two couples had at first planned separate weddings but then Willow and Anya had put their heads together and put enough pressure on Cordelia and Buffy that the two finally caved in and agreed.  Feeling a little bit of poetic irony Spike and Angel only asked for one thing, that the wedding be held very early in the morning, so that just after the two former vampires had kissed their brides the sun would rise and they could all begin their new lives.  As they held the reception and the first dance was announced Spike turned to Giles and Willow and gave them a slight nod, with Buffy looking on with a very confused look on her face.  Angel and Cordelia were about to join Buffy in asking what was going on when the first few notes of Wind Beneath My Wings came over the loudspeakers. 

After the first dance Lorne had put on another slow song and every couple that had attended the wedding was invited to join in.  Only Giles and Lorne sat it out as Willow raced over and pulled an extremely nervous Connor out onto the dance floor.  Wesley and Faith declined as both were busy trying to feed Liam and Hope.  Dawn pulled Billy out onto the dance floor after handing Hope to Giles.  That night both newlyweds used the two best rooms in the hotel before the next day they had both caught a flight to London.  Once there the two couples split, with each couple taking a separate tour of Europe.  Spike took Buffy and Joyce back to where he had grown up and lived before the three had taken in the sights of Paris and then went on to Italy.  Angel took Cordelia back to where he had lived as a young man and then the pair went to Sweden and Switzerland.  In Switzerland the two couples met back up, with Buffy and Cordelia getting many pictures, and a good laugh out of Spike and Angel's attempts to ski and snowboard.  In the end Angel suffered a broken arm and Spike broke his ankle.  The two couples' final stop was in England to meet with the Watchers Council and try and explain everything to them.

Back home Anya and Xander had snuck off to Las Vegas and gotten married and Anya was pregnant by the time that Spike, Buffy, and Joyce got back.  Willow had started her own coven and had been able to curb her magic use a bit, only using it when she needed to instead of using it to do everyday chores.  Fred and Gunn later had their child and Fred was insistent on naming their young son Charles after his father.   Lorne had done so well with his new club that he opened up two more and then soon a third.  Connor had been enrolled in a local high school and after some initial hardships was doing quite well.  Spike came back and got work as a writer, using his years of being a vampire as source material for his novels.  Buffy had begun working at one of the local real estate offices.  With all of the constant deaths and new people moving into Sunnydale the housing market was very profitable.  Because he still possessed the power and strength of a vampire Angel had continue to work helping the helpless while Cordelia had finally landed a spot as a fashion reporter for one of the regional news channels.  With the birth of the twins tensions had thawed somewhat between Wesley and his father, thus allowing a biannual transfer of funds to pass to Wesley and Faith, allowing them to buy a house in the hills around Los Angeles.  A house that had a big yard and plenty of rooms, because more often then not they'd get a few visitors that would stay the night with them.  And as Joyce and Charles got older they spent many summers there.  In fact everyone had agreed that once a year on the Fourth of July that everyone would always get together and have a big party, hoping to keep their family together forever.

END OF EPILOGUE