Chapter 6

Hey everybody it's been a while hasn't it. I finally have the third book, so inspiration all around! YAY! ONWARD TO THE BATTLE FIELD!

The trip was taken in silence. Neither of them spoke. A few times Alice would open her mouth to say something, but she would look to Joss and no words would come out. So they walked in complete silence, the sound of the night being the only thing that broke the silence. After some time Joss looked to Alice and spoke.

"Where are you taking me anyway?" he asked. Alice looked back to him and smiled.

"It's not far from here Joss. This way." She said sweetly then pointed in the direction of the school. Joss scowled at the strange vampire. Why were they headed toward the school? Of all places, that was one he didn't want to be back to, at least not until tomorrow.

"We're not heading for the school, silly." Alice said, Joss glared which in turn made Alice laugh, "I don't need to read your thoughts to know you don't like school. What normal child does?"

"Then where are we going?" he grumbled, "and what was so friggin important that you had to go through all this to bring me here?"

"All shall be revealed in time little lamb." She said with a smile as she placed her hand on Joss's shoulder and led him down the street. Finally she stopped at a small cottage like house. Joss stopped and scowled.

"What is this? Where did you bring me?" He growled, Alice smiled and placed her hands on her hips as she stood between him and the house.

"This is my place." She said looking at joss directly. Joss scowled. Why on earth had she brought him to her house? What was she planning? Alice let out a happy sigh as she turned her back to Joss and looked to the small house. The building didn't seem to have any higher level, but no doubt there was some kind of lower level. Of that he was sure.

"It's no mansion in the 90201 but that's peachy keen by my standards." Alice said fondly. "This is my pad in this cute little town."

"Why'd you bring me here?" Joss grumbled, sticking his hands in his pockets, Alice looked over her shoulder at the young slayer.

"That's what chums do right? Show each other where they live?" She asked sweetly, "C'mon lamb, I'll show you around."

"Like I'd enter a vampire's lair." Joss commented., suddenly he felt a slight bump from behind, he looked behind him to see Alice hipcheck him with a wink.

"Lamb, come on, no one's used the term vampire's lair since I was young." She said, then paused, "Originally."

"I'm not going in there," he grunted, planting his feet firmly in the ground. Alice rolled her eyes.

"Pops has been teachin you right. That's good." She said placing her hands on her hips and smiling, Joss scowled, "But let's be honest here, if I wanted you six feet under, you'd be there Daddy-o."

Joss pursed his lips, she had a point, but he just wasn't ready to trust a vampire. He'd done that twice already. Once with Sirus, and again with…

"Vladimir Todd?" Alice asked, her face had gone deadpan. With incredible speed and force Alice dragged Joss into her house. It wasn't until he smelled the slight scent of Lemon pledge that he realized he was no longer outside. He turned to see Alice locking several locks, a deadbolt, and a chain lock, he even saw something glow with a light blue light on the door. Panic washed over Joss as he went for his stake, holding it tight in his hand and keeping it at eye level. Alice let out a sigh, and turned to see the pointed end of Joss's stake. Almost as quickly as she'd seen it had she disappeared. Joss stood on high alert. Something about Vladimir Todd had set her off into predator mode—not that he was all that shocked that she would turn on him—though he didn't understand why. She soon reappeared behind him.

"Don't flip your wig ok? The deadbolts are for protection." She explained putting her hands up in defense. Joss's grip tightened on the stake.

"Protection for who? You're a vampire!" He hissed. Alice gave him a look.

"And you're a slayer, can we skip the name callin' Joss?" she asked, "Just hear me out. Ok?"

Joss scowled, he wasn't about to let down his guard after he was just flung into the den of a vampire. The stake was still pointed out toward Alice, while he had a firm grasp on it. Alice didn't budge from her spot as she eyed the stake in his hand. If Joss had to guess she was debating whether or not she should just attack him and steal his stake. After all he had the disadvantage still being rookie, and she, the _yr old vampire. She could easily kill him.

"Why don't you put the stake down and let me explain?" Alice said softly. Her hands still up in surrender mode as she walked toward him.

"Hell no!" Joss growled shoving his stake toward her, she stopped just far enough to avoid the pointed end.

"Joss, pal, kid, listen, I can explain everything—sort of," she said with a smile, "And I know, that you know, that if I wanted to I could take it from you."

"You keep saying that, but sometimes I wonder about that." Joss hissed. Alice frowned a bit.

"I don't want to force you to put your stake down. I want you to trust me, and do it on your own." She said, then took a step closer so that the tip of Joss's stake poked through her shirt, directly over her heart. Joss glared in silence, reading alice's expression, before he begrudgingly holstered his stake. Alice let out a sigh.

"Start explaining." Joss hissed.

"Ok, ok look," She started then paused for a minute, "I can't go into too much details at the moment because of a certain…let's call him an acquaintance—he would dust me if he found out I was even talking to you."

"I thought you didn't talk to your kind?" Joss hissed. Alice sighed.

"I avoid it if I can, and talk to those when I need to." She explained, "This guy, he's evil, and the worst part is, I think you've already met him."

Joss stared as he watched Alice go from slightly cool to a panicked as her voice became shaky. In the short time he'd known Alice he'd never seen her so shaken. Alice turned her back to him and resting her hand on a nearby wall and stared at the ground.

"Who is he?" he asked, his voice taking a softer tone. Alice shook her head.

"I can't tell you that." She said in a small voice.

"What's he look like?"

"I can't tell you that either, lamb." She mumbled, after a moment of silence Alice lifted her head, "I can't tell you anything about what his name is, or what his plans are." She then pushed herself off the wall and looked over her shoulder, "All I can do for you is teach you how to really hunt for vampires."

"Why me?" joss asked sternly. Suddenly Alice's mood did a 180 and she started to grin again.

"Wanna take a guess at that one daddy-o?" she asked crossing her arms. Joss scowled, nothing this girl did made sense.

"it's because I'm a rookie, isn't it?" he grumbled. Alice snapped her fingers.

"Well a ringa-ding-ding, the kid's finally gettin it!" she said cheerfully, "A rookie still has an open mind, they don't just kill and go. Though I'm sure you've tried."

Joss remained silent.

"Anyway, for lack of a better word, it makes you slightly corruptible." Alice went on, Joss scowled, "Oh don't give me that look. My point is, you haven't actually tried to kill me yet, so that means your mind is still pretty open to hearing me out. Which is good. Not just for me."

"Oh really?" Joss asked skeptically. Alice nodded as she walked further into the house, she motioned him to follow her. he stayed where he was, unsure. Alice let out a sigh.

"Oh come on!" She shouted exasperated, "What more do I have to do to prove to you I'm not going to hurt you?"

Joss scowled, she had a point. At no point since they had met had Alice ever given any indication that she wanted to hurt him. She even gave him several opportunities to stake her, counting just a few moments ago. He rolled his eyes and mentally kicked himself as he decided to lower his guard, only a little, and followed her further inside. Alice only smiled warmly and without words.

"You wait in here, kay joss? I'll be right back, I'm gonna grab somethin from the kitchen." Alice said, and motioned to a very vintage looking couch for him to sit. It had a weird brown flower print, and reminded Joss of his grandmother's house. Before he could protest Alice was already in the kitchen. He sighed and decided to look around her living room. He scowled, noting that nothing in the room screamed teenage vampire. Or even vampire for that matter. There were framed pieces of knitted doilies and pin stitch work or cats and other things decorating the living room, to his left there was a stone fireplace that looked as though it was used pretty often, atop its mantle were a few framed photographs. He cocked his head to the side as he gave them closer inspection. Only one of them was in color. It was a picture of a black haired girl, that looked a lot like Alice, she was dressed in black—not so surprising—and standing next to a man in a trench-coat. He was much taller than she was with long hair dark hair. Joss scowled, something about that man looked familiar. He plucked the photo off its place on the mantle and just as he was about to get a good look at the man's face...

"I'm back!" Alice shouted gleefully, scaring Joss as he nearly dropped the picture. He turned to see Alice holding a plate of cookies. He stared in confusion.

"What? A vampire can't bake in her off time?" She asked, placing the place the wooden coffee table that sat inbetween the fire place and an old looking chair.

"You bake?" Joss asked, Alice smiled.

"Not as well as I used to." she said walking over to him, placing a cookie in her mouth, "What cha lookin at kiddo?"

Joss was silent for a while, holding the framed photo in his hand. Alice smiled, taking it out of his hands, and holding it up. Her smiled faded when she saw the picture.

"Huh, thought I burned that." she mumbled matter-o-factly to herself. She then shrugged and placed it back on the mantle.

"I...sorry..." Joss mumbled, though not entirely sure why. Alice pursed her lips and frowned.

"What on earth for?" She aksed, handing him a cookie. "Not like I was hiding anything there."

"Who is he?" Joss asked unable to keep his curiosity to himself as he took the cookie from her hand. Alice paused for a moment, then moved to the chair on the other side of the coffee table. She sighed and plopped down, sitting sideways with one leg on the arm rest and the rest of her draped over the other.

"You can call him many things really," She said in a monotone voice as she stared at the ceiling. "As ffor me, I call him D. and well, he's the vampire who made me."

Joss's eyes went wide with surprise, he looked to the picture again, he still couldn't shake how it was the man felt familiar to him. He looked back to Alice who was still staring up at the ceiling.

"It's a long, boring...grueling story kiddo." Alice then said, she looked up, "Suffice to say, I was young once, and young people make mistakes. Some bigger than others."

Alice then stood up and walked over to the picture frame holding it in her hand, "We used to be close once. Really close..."

She paused and scowled at the picture, then slammed it face down so hard Joss heard the glass break, "But now I can barely stand to look at him."

"Dunno why I even have that stupid photo anyway." she grumbled to herself. Then almost as if she had a switch, her old smile returned. "But enough about that! How bout I tell you the real reason I dragged you out here."

Joss scowled. It was about time.

"Listen Joss, the real reason I brought you here, is so that we can be on equal terms." She said, this time taking on a more serious tone. It somewhat creeped Joss out actually how serious she sounded.

"Equal terms?" He questioned, trying to sound just as serious, but probably not succeeding. Alice nodded.

"You know where I live now. If ever you think I've crossed you, or you think I may have hurt someone, you now have the means to get to me at any time." She said, then dug into her pockets and pulled out an old skeleton key, "This key unlocks every room in my house. Including the lower levels."

Joss nodded. He knew there was a lower level to the house.

"Listen to me Joss." She said, her voice now held a hint of darkness. "I am giving you this key to show once and for all that I am your alley."

She paused for a long moment before handing him the key, "All I ask is that you trust me from here on. I have no intention of hurting you or anyone in this town."

"Of course that's not the only reason I'm giving you this key." She then said her normal chipper sing-songy voice returning. "You're also welcome in my house any time you want. Just don't go into my room when I'm not here ok?"

"Why?" Joss asked automatically.

"I'm a girl Joss, I like my privacy." She said, "Besides, you don't want to go in there. I have a lot of posters of half naked men in my room."

Joss wasn't entirely sure if she was joking or not. However against his better judgment—again—he decided to agree.

"Alright fine." He said. Alice smiled and held out her hand.

"Well then Joss, welcome to my house." She said, Joss grumbled and took her hand in his as they both gave a firm shake.

Yeah, it's been a while since we've come to this part. Typing isn't exactly easy to do for me anymore. My computer is sort of an ass, so I had to use my mom's computer. (I hate that) anyway the next chapter will be up, oh man I have no idea when. But rest assured it will be up eventually. Sorry.