Chapter 21/? A few hours later Buffy awakens to the sound of her window opening. "You know you could come in through the front door" she says sleepily. "I could but its easier to come in this way" Angel whispers sitting on the edge of the bed near her head "You mean you could avoid the third degree by my mom" Buffy adds Ignoring that Angel strokes Buffy's cheek. "How are you?" Buffy takes his hand and holds it tightly. "Better now that your here. Angel?" Buffy lays her head on his thigh. "How long are you going to stay in Sunnydale?" she asks Angel strokes her hair lightly. "Until the end of the week" he says sadly Blinking back her tears Buffy says steadily. "Well then you and Katie need to spend some time together before you leave." "I'd like that" Angel states Buffy sits up and moves to his lap. Laying her head on his shoulder she starts talking. "Snyder called Mom and said he'd have me expelled if I wasn't back at school on Monday. Mom can't watch Katie during the day so I was thinking that Katie might like to spend some time with her Daddy." Angel kisses her head and answers, "I'd love to watch her. who's going to watch her when I leave?" "I'm trying to talk Spike into it. I'd prefer that someone I can somewhat trust to watch her. And somehow the person I can trust is Spike. Weird huh? I mean the guy who has tried to kill me time and time again turns out to be the one I trust to watch the most important person in my life" At that Katie wakes up fussing, Buffy giggles and gets off Angel's lap. Going to the basinet she picks Katie up. "Yes Katie you are the most important person in my life." She carries the baby back to the bed and sits down next to Angel. Angel kisses the baby's head. "And mine" Buffy glances at the clock, "I should go get ready. But Katie needs to be changed first.' she looks at Angel and smirks. 'And Daddy is going to help. Isn't he?" "Yes I will. Its been a while since I've had to change a baby." Buffy walks over the changing table and puts Katie down. "Well then we luck out huh Katie?' Buffy starts to take the baby's sleeper off. 'At least your Daddy has changed a diaper." "Considering its been almost 300 years" Angel remarks handing Buffy the wipes and a diaper. He watches as Buffy changes Katie's diaper. 'It hasn't changed much.' He glances at the clock then says, 'Buff its getting late. Why don't you go get ready and I'll get Katie dressed then I'll go see if my errant childe is up" Buffy hands Angel a pale yellow sleeper with blue birds to Angel. "Thanks.' she kisses Angel on the cheek. 'Mom is in the dining room working. I'll let her know your here before I get in the shower. And tell Spike that he has to shower and wear clean clothes" "He'll complain" "I know. Tell him if he doesn't I'll throw his duster in the fireplace" Buffy leaves the room Angel turns his attention to the task of getting Katie dressed. "Well Katie now we get the fun of making sure Spike is up" Angel says after he has finished dressing the newborn. Picking Katie up he carries her downstairs into the dining room to find Joyce working at the table. "Hello Joyce" he greets "Oh hello Angel. Buffy told me you were here.' Joyce remarks. 'She also told me you climbed through the window again" Angel looks sheepishly at Joyce. "Sorry I saw that you were working and I didn't want to disturb you" "Next time use the front door. That way Buffy won't have to worry that you'll get injured" Joyce remarks. 'Buffy told me that you were getting Katie dressed.' she gets up and looks Katie over. 'You did good" "Thanks. The last time I did was my sister Kathy. Now I have to go wake up Spike. Here' he hands Katie over to Joyce. 'I'd take her with me if I didn't have to wake him up. Spike is not nice to wake up" "Well tell him that if he behaves I'll make him some hot chocolate tonight. Bribery always works with Spike" Joyce states Angel nods and heads to the basement. Angel walks down the stairs and calls. 'Spike get up" "Go way sleeping" Spike grumbles "Get up Spike. We leave in an hour and you need to get ready" "I am" whines Spike "No your not. Buffy wants you dressed in nice clothes and cleaned up" Angel turns to walk back up the stairs. "If your not ready Buffy told me to tell you that she will throw your duster in the fireplace" "What?!" exclaims Spike sitting up, "Bloody Hell. She better not" he growls From the top of the basement stairs Buffy calls. "Spike what did I tell you about watching your language?" The two vampires look up and see Buffy standing in her bathrobe her arms crossed glaring at them. "Don't make me hit you again" she snaps turning around she stomps back upstairs slamming the bathroom door behind her. "Get up" Angel growls heading back up the stairs. Spike swears under his breath as he gets up. Walking up to the kitchen he calls, "Poof I didn't bring nice clothes. All I got is what I'm wearing" "Spike I picked up some slacks and a dress shirt for you there in the hall closet" Joyce calls from the dining room "Thanks Mum" Spike replies opening the closet door he finds the clothes ironed and hanging up. He trains his hearing on Buffy's bathroom and hears the hair dryer going. Growling in annoyance he calls, "Mum Slayer's still getting ready can I use your shower?" "Yes Spike go ahead" Joyce answers returning Katie to Angel. Angel takes Katie over to the couch. Holding her close he talks to her in his native tongue Irish Gaelic. Buffy comes down the stairs to and listens to the melodic words she walks over to the couch and sits down. Buffy leans against Angel's shoulder and takes her daughters hand she smiles when Katie squeezes her finger. "Its time to get going" Joyce calls from the dining room Buffy gets up and heads upstairs. "Spike get your undead ass downstairs.' she calls going into her bedroom she grabs her dress coat, Angel's duster and Katie's jacket. Heading back downstairs she hears Spike grumbling behind her. She slips the jacket onto Katie and then situates the baby into her carseat. Angel then takes the carseat from Buffy. 'Spike are you ready?" Buffy calls "Yeah Slayer I am" he grumbles from the doorway Buffy looks him over, "Nice threads" "Why couldn't I wear my normal clothes?" he whines "Spike when was the last time you wore something other then those pants and shirt?" Buffy asks "But Slayer I like my clothes" the blond vampire complains "You look nice Spike' Joyce compliments, 'Now lets get going" Joyce herds them out to the car. Buffy and Angel secure the carseat and Spike sits in the front. Soon Joyce pulls out of the driveway. A few moments later she pulls the car into the parking lot of the funeral home. "Spike remember what I said" Joyce warns "I know Mum I'll behave." Spike promises getting out of the car he follows Joyce inside. Buffy and Angel stay behind getting Katie out of the car. Holding her daughter Buffy stares at the funeral home sadly. "We shouldn't have to do this Angel. We should be at home with both of them." "I know Buffy. I know" Angel squeezes her shoulder. "But we are here. Lets go say our goodbyes to little William." Buffy nods and they head into the building and find Joyce talking with a grey haired gentleman. Joining her mother Buffy and Angel are introduced to the funeral director. Then they go into the service room. Angel and Spike are at first worried about crosses but walking in they are relieved to find no crosses around. Once inside Katie starts fussing loudly waving her hands wildly. "Shh Katie" Buffy says holding her close. Buffy gently strokes the baby's back. Katie keeps bawling not pacified. "Its OK" Buffy says Angel looks at Buffy. "want me to take Katie outside?" he asks quietly Spike sitting behind Angel leans forward. "I'll take her peaches. The Slayer needs you." Buffy stands up and hands Katie to Spike. Spike holds the baby against his chest tenderly and takes Katie out to the hallway. He walks the floor with the crying baby. "Hey little sister whats wrong?" he asks. Katie waves her hands in the air. Chuckling Spike takes her hand and says, 'Oh your just a little restless huh?" he sits down and laughs as Katie pulls his fingerto her mouth. "I take it you want your bottle huh?' Spike stands up and goes to the door to the room. "Angelus" he says lowly knowing Angel could hear him. Angel turns around and sees Spike standing in the doorway holding Katie. He stands up and walks over to his children. "What Spike?" he asks "Katie wants her bottle" Spike answers Angel nods and goes back to his seat and whispers to Buffy. "Where's Katie's bag?" Buffy reaches under her chair and pulls it out. "What's wrong? She doesn't need to be changed yet." She turns to see Spike leaning against the door frame. "She wants her bottle" Angel answers. Buffy starts to get up. 'Stay Spike will feed her. He needs to start taking care of Katie" Buffy nods and sits back down. Angel goes to the door and hands Spike the bag. "Sure your up for this?" "Sure peaches. Katie and I will have to spend time together anyway might as well start now" Spike takes the bag. 'Now go Slayer needs you" He closes the door and sits down. Looking at the baby in his arms Spike reaches into the diaper bag and pulls out the bottle. Spike sits there holding the baby as she feeds. Katie keeps her grip on Spike's finger the whole time. "Katie you miss your brother huh?" Spike asks. "I know your mom and dad do. But hey you may have lost one brother but you still have me. And I'm not that bad to have around. Your parents would disagree." Spike and Katie both fall asleep in the chair. In the room the service finishes. Angel turns to Buffy to see tears falling down her cheeks. "Lets go back to the house" Buffy shakes her head wiping her tears away. "Not yet. Can we go for a walk?" Angel nods. "Sure baby. I'll tell Spike to go home with Katie and your mom.' he kisses her forehead and moves away. Angel leaves the room to find Spike and Katie asleep on the chair. "Spike" Angel says softly. Spike opens his eyes to find Angel standing infront of him. "We leaving?" he asks groggily Angel shakes his head. "Buffy and I are going for a walk. Can you take Katie back to the house with Joyce?" Spike nods. "Thanks" Angel returns to the room and joins Buffy. "Mom said she'll put Katie to bed" Buffy slips her hand into his "I found Spike and Katie asleep" Angel chuckles. Buffy grins. "You ready?" Angel asks. Buffy nods. The two lovers walk out to the hall Buffy sees Spike holding Katie while he waits impatiently for Joyce. Buffy walks over to Spike. "she still sleeping?" she asks quietly. Spike nods. "Thanks for watching her Spike" Buffy and Angel walk hand in hand outside. They walk towards the cemetary. The two are silent for a while. Buffy suddenly stops. "Buff whats wrong?" Angel asks worriedly Buffy looks around. "Angel do you know where we are?" "Uh Buff we have been here many times" Angel reminds Buffy looks around "This is where we had that talk about the future. Remember?" Angel looks around. "Yes I remember. This is where I told you that I couldn't have children" he walks behind her wrapping his arm around her waist splaying his hand across her belly. Buffy places her hand over his. "And I said that there were a lot of things vampires couldn't do donate blood work for the phone company" "And have little vampires" Angel chuckles "Yeah. How wrong we were' she mutters she turns to face him. Touching his face lightly she whispers. "We had two little babies.' she sucks in a deep breath. 'And now we have one" Angel hugs her. "It'll be all right Buff. Katie will be fine. She'll grow up to be a happy little girl whose parents adore her. A bunch of aunts and uncles who will spoil her. Then we have Spike. An annoying peroxide blond vampire who already adores his little sister" "yeah a vampire who has tried to kill both of us time and again. She does have him wrapped around her little fingers already." she giggles. 'Who would have thought? Spike, William the Bloody railroaded by a baby." The two laugh and keep walking. "He should be here though Angel. He and Katie should grow up like we planned. Two happy little kids who play and fight" They talk more about it as they walk. ****** Finally they reach the house. From the outside they hear their daughter crying. Buffy looks at Angel, "What is Katie still doing up? she was asleep when we left." Worried the two parents head inside to find Joyce walking the floor trying to calm the crying baby and Spike sprawled on the couch watching TV. Spike looks up when he hears them enter. "Bloody hell Poof good thing your back. Your kid has been crying forever." Buffy walks over to her mom and daughter taking Katie from her mom she asks. "How long has she been crying?" "For over an hour. She didn't want a bottle, didn't need to be changed or burped, didn't want to sleep or play. She just started crying and wouldn't stop" Joyce answers Buffy and Angel head up to her room and try to calm the crying baby. Buff rocks her and talks to her but still Katie cries. "its ok Katie girl. Your safe" she looks at Angel tearfully. "She misses him" "I know. I've read that twins sense each other maybe she has sensed that he is gone.' Angel takes the baby from Buffy. He takes Buffy's hand and pulls her to the bed. The two of them lay down on the bed with Angel holding the baby against his chest. Buffy lays her head on his shoulder as she listens to Katie's cries calm as Angel purrs. Buffy strokes her daughters back soothingly. She listens as her daughter falls asleep. After a few moments Buffy says quietly. "Angel" "Yes" he answers stroking her hair "I can't do this" she says tearfully "Do what Buff?" "I didn't want to get into this today but I need to.' she sighs. 'Angel I can't do this. I can't keep saying goodbye to you everytime you come here. It hurts to much." "So what are you saying? You don't want me to spend time with Katie?" he growls "No' she insists sitting up. 'I have been thinking this over a lot lately. I think it would be for the best if I am not home when you come see Katie. And when she visits you I think it would be a good idea that Mom or Spike bring her. I can't keep this up Angel. It hurts too much to say goodbye.' she wipes away her tears. "I love you Buffy" Angel insists. "I know your right. Saying goodbye hurts" "Angel you told me that you wanted me to be happy. I can't be happy if everytime I see you I have to let you go." she says tearfully. "I can't do it Angel. I wish I could" "I wish I could too. So what are we going to do?" Buffy sits up and looks at the window sadly as she talks. "I think it would be for the best if we not see each other unless we need to. So we should set up a schedule. When Katie is older and she visits you Mom or Spike can bring her. When you come back to Sunnydale Katie can stay with you. Or maybe you can stay here and I'll crash at Willow's.' she frowns thoughtfully. "When its a holiday though we'll have to deal. Katie isn't going to celebrate holiday's without one of us." "I agree. So on holiday's I'll come back to Sunnydale and stay at the mansion" "Not on Christmas. A little girl can't open presents without her Daddy. On Christmas Eve you'll stay here. Same with...' she chokes off a sob. 'birthdays." "All right" Angel agrees. The rest of the weekend the two spend time with their daughter and planning the next few months. Chapter 22/? Finally Monday rolls around. Buffy awakens to her alarm going off at 7 am quickly she turns off her alarm so to not wake her daughter. She gets up and checks on her sleeping daughter. Looking down at the sleeping baby Buffy smiles thankful that Angel had stayed until dawn watching Katie so she could sleep. Quietly Buffy goes downstairs to find Spike still up watching cartoons. "Hey Spike" she yawns "Hi Buffy" Spike greets, "Your up early pet" "Yeah I know. Mom and I have to drop Katie off at Angel's before school. I need to take a shower- Katie and Mom are both still asleep. Katie could wake up at anytime can you listen for her?" "Sure" Spike acknowledges "Thanks" Buffy says returning upstairs to take a shower. Drying off Buffy glances at her reflection her eyes drawn to her flat abdomen. Rubbing it lightly Buffy sadly thinks, "It feels weird to not have them kicking." She then hears Katie fussing. Putting on her robe Buffy heads towards her room and finds Spike picking up the crying baby. Spike senses the Slayer behind him. "I'll watch the tyke while you get ready" "Thanks. Can you give her her bottle? Its in the fridge. Put it in the microwave for 15 seconds" Spike takes the fussing baby downstairs into the kitchen and heats up the bottle. Carrying Katie into the living room Spike returns to watching his cartoons. Buffy walks downstairs to find Spike talking to Katie about cartoons. Heading into the kitchen Buffy pours herself a bowl of cereal then joins Spike and Katie in the living room. Buffy laughs at Spike's commentary. "Spike you are the biggest mystery in the world" "No I'm not. I fight, I kill and I feed." "But you also watch cartoons with a baby." Buffy remarks Joyce walks down the stairs. "Honey we need to get going if we're going to drop Katie off and get you to school on time" "Yes Mom." Buffy stands up and returns her bowl to the kitchen. Going back to the living room she says to Spike. "Hey can I have my daughter back Spike?" Spike looks up from the baby. "I guess so" he says reluctantly handing the baby back "At least I have a while before I need to worry about Spike corrupting you huh Katie?" Buffy mutters heading upstairs "I heard that Slayer" Spike calls "I know" she calls back. In her room Buffy changes her daughters diaper. "Hey baby girl I bet you can't wait to see your Daddy huh?" she remarks as she changes her. The baby giggles. "I knew it" she laughs buttoning up the sleeper. "Well I hope you have a good day with Daddy. After all Mommy has to go to school" she wraps the baby up in her blanket. As a last thought Buffy puts in Mr. Gordo Jr. in the diaper bag. Slipping on her back pack Buffy grabs the diaper bag in one hand she cradles her daughter and heads downstairs. "Buffy did you pack enough diapers?" Joyce asks "Yes Mom. I also added Gordo Jr. and an extra sleeper." "What about bottles and formula?" "Yes I packed it last night." "What about your lunch?" Joyce asks "Oooops.' Buffy groans. 'I knew I forgot something. Can you put it in my bag?" Joyce comes out of the kitchen with a lunch bag and slips it into Buffy's bag. "OK. We need to get going" Joyce grabs her briefcase as Buffy puts the baby in her carseat. "Spike do you need me to bring anything back?" asks Joyce "Mum can you pick up some smokes?" Spike requests "Spike smoking is not a good habit" "Mom he's dead it can't kill him...unfortunately" Buffy mutters, "It will though if he smokes around Katie" she calls "Bite me Slayer" "Spike thats your job" she replies sweetly as she walks out the door with the baby "I'll pick some up for you Spike." Joyce promises following Buffy outside to the car. She finds Buffy in the back seat with the baby. "You ready?" "Ready as I'll ever be" Buffy groans. "I don't want to go back to school yet" "I know honey. But if you want to graduate..." "I know." Buffy sighs. The Summers women are silent as they head to the mansion on Crawford Street. "Well Katie we're here" Buffy says as Joyce pulls into the driveway "Honey do you want me to come in with you?" Joyce asks Buffy glances at the clock. "No. Why don't you go onto work. I don't need to be at school for another half hour. I'll walk from here" Buffy says unbuckling the carseat "OK. Sweetie just don't be late to school. " "I won't" Buffy promises. "See you later" "Do you need a ride home?" "No. I need to train with Giles for a while. I don't know how long I'll be. I'll see if Angel or Cordy can take us home" "OK but be careful honey" Joyce says as Buffy closes the door. "I know Mom" Buffy says. "We'll see you later" Buffy heads towards the front door and opens it. Joyce waits until the door closes before she pulls out of the driveway. "Angel" she calls upon entering "Morning" Angel greets tiredly as he enters the main room rubbing his eyes Buffy puts the carseat down beside the diaper bag. She removes her back pack and places it by the door. "Did you get enough sleep?" "Yeah. I'll be fine. I can catch a nap while Katie sleeps." Angel watches Buffy take the baby out of the carseat. Walking over he gently touches the back of her head as he leans down and kisses her head. Pulling away he looks Buffy in the eyes momentarily. "I'm going to go eat" he says reluctantly as he walks into the kitchen. Shaking her head sadly Buffy takes the baby into Angel's room to put her down. Kissing her daughters head Buffy places her in the basinet. Buffy goes into the kitchen to find Angel finishing off his breakfast. Leaning against the door frame Buffy crosses her arms. "Angel you can't hide what you are from Katie. You need to get used to having her see your demon form" "Buffy she's a baby she is too young to see it" Angel protests Buffy walks closer to him and touches his face. Angel flinches when he realizes that he's still in demon form. "Angel she'll see it sooner or later. It'll be better if she grows up with it rather than finding out about you later in life." Buffy then remembers a past conversation she had with Angel. "Angel she'll love you no matter what" "Buffy" he begins to protest "No Angel. Listen to what I have to say." she orders shoving the vampire into a chair. She straddles his thighs and forces him to look directly at her. "I love you Angel but you are being an ass. You keep wanting to hide what you are. You can't do that. Katie needs to see not just who you are as human. But she needs to see and understand that you are also a good vampire guy. As long as we have known each other this has been the only thing we have argued about...your need to hide a major part of yourself from me." she touches his face lightly as it melts back into its human form. "And I happen to love both sides of you." she kisses him lightly "Buff I thought we decided to keep our distance" Angel murmers against her lips Buffy pulls away and looks at her beloved's chocolate eyes. "I know. I just needed to" she sighs. The two remain silent as they gaze into each others eyes. Angel finally breaks the silence "You should get going." he tucks a strand of hair behind her ear. "Don't want you to be late" "I know. Snyder will kill me" she groans as she gets off his legs. "I'll just go kiss Katie and head out." she says walking to the bedroom. Angel follows watching from the doorway as Buffy kisses the newborn. "Bye Katie girl" he hears her say. She turns around and sees him standing there. Walking past him she talks "There are bottles in the diaper bag. I've got to meet with Giles after school so unless I do something to piss off Snyder and get detention. So see you later." she says picking up her backpack. "Back to the place I hate" she groans. "Have fun and get some sleep" she calls as she leaves. Angel grabs the diaper bag and takes out the bottles putting them in the kitchen. Taking the diaper bag with him he goes into his room. After checking on the newborn Angel crawls back into bed. ****Buffy's locker**** Spinning the combination of her locker Buffy opens it and finds a couple envelopes inside. At first she is confused about what they could be but then swallowing her tears Buffy opens one of the envelopes. "I am sorry for your loss" she read. Opening another one she smiles though her tears as she reads "Congratulations on being a new mother" wiping away the stray tears Buffy grabs her history book and closes her locker. "Hey Summers" she hears a male voice call Turning around she sees one of the football players coming towards her. "What?" she asks He stops before her nervously shifting on his feet. "Me and the guys wanted to express our sympathy on your loss along with our congrats." Stunned Buffy stares at him then stammers, "Thank you" Buffy walks towards class aware of the looks she is receiving. "Ms Summers?" a woman's voice calls Buffy turns around to find the school psychologist walking towards her. "Yes Ms. Jones?" Buffy asks hesitantly "I would like to talk with you" she says "I uh have class" Buffy remarks "I will get you excused from class" "I can't. Snyder is looking for any reason to expel me." "OK. Well why don't we meet during lunch" asks Ms. Jones Knowing that if she doesn't agree Ms. Jones won't stop badgering her Buffy agrees. "sure. I'll come to your office during lunch" "I'll see you then" Ms. Jones says as she walks away. Buffy goes to class. ****At the Mansion**** Angel is awakened by Katie crying. Sitting up he rubs his eyes tiredly "Da's coming Katie" he says getting out of bed he goes over to the basinet and picks up the crying baby. "What's wrong little one?" he asks holding her close. "Your diaper doesn't need to be changed." He carries her into the kitchen. Manuvering her so he has a free hand Angel makes up her bottle. "You hungry sweet one?" he asks. The moment he puts the bottle to her lips she calms down. Angel returns to his room and sits with his back against the headboard he closes his eyes. ****Lunchtime at school**** "Hey Buffster" Xander greets. "Ready for lunch?" he asks "I have to go meet with the psychologist. But first I'm going to call and check on Katie. Got 35 cents?" she asks Xander "sure" Xander digs into his pocket and gives it to her. "Thanks. I'll see you later" she says heading towards the payphone. She dials Angel's number "Hello" he greets groggily "Did I wake you?" Buffy asks "Uh yea. Something wrong?" he asks "No. I just wanted to see how things are going" "Fine. she's sleeping again" "All right. I'll see you later. Go back to sleep" she says hanging up. Buffy heads to the main office. She knocks on Ms. Jones's door. "Come in" calls Ms. Jones Buffy enters. "Sorry I'm late. I needed to make a call" "Checking up on your baby?" asks Ms Jones "Yeah" Buffy admits "All new mothers do that. I still check up on mine and she's five" "So what did you want to talk to me about?" Buffy asks sitting down "I wanted to see how you are doing. I heard about your loss, I am so sorry" "Thanks" Buffy says her voice tearful "Its hard to lose a child. I wanted to offer you the chance to talk about any problems you might have" Ms Jones remarks. "The hardest part of all is that not only have I lost my son but I'm going to lose their father as well." "May I ask why?" Buffy fidgets with her ring. "He and I broke up and he moved away. He came back to help me for a while but he has to leave. We know its for the best for all of us. Its just other than Katie and William he is the most important person in my life. I love him and I know he loves me." "Do you feel like he's abandoning you?" Buffy shakes her head. "No its just I'm going to miss him and so is Katie. Angel's always been the one I could go to when something was wrong. Not only is he the guy I love but he's my other half. When we're apart I feel like I'm ripped apart." "Does he feel the same?" "Yes. He's just too noble. He loves me too much to stay" The bell signalling the end of lunch. "Buffy if you ever need to talk I'm here" Ms Jones says after the bell rings. Buffy nods and leaves heading to class. Before she knew it school was over. She heads to the library to meet with Giles. "Hey Giles" calls as she enters. "Hello Buffy" Giles greets coming out of the stacks with some books Buffy sits on the edge of the conference table. "So Giles any Hellmouth worthy news?" she asks "No." Giles answers "Do you want me to practice?" Giles looks up from his book. "Not today. I thought you'd like the afternoon free. Faith is going to come in and practice. Why don't you go see Katie" he suggests Buffy grins "Thanks Giles" she says excitedly as she runs out of the library. Buffy hurries to the mansion. Opening the door she finds Angel reading to Katie on the couch. She watches them for a moment and then drops her back pack on the kitchen table. She heads over to the couch and sits next to Angel. Angel puts the book down. Buffy asks "How did it go?" "Katie slept all morning." he tells her smiling "How was school?" he asks "Long. I missed her" she takes the baby's foot and kisses it. She avoids his eyes and says "and you" "I missed you too" Angel admits. They are silent in their thoughts. Buffy then breaks the silence, smiling faintly she says "Katie's asleep" Angel looks down at his daughter and smiles. "Yes she is" "I'll go put her down" Buffy says. Angel carefully hands her the baby. He watches as Buffy takes the baby to his room. A few moments Buffy returns and picks up her back pack and carries it to the couch. Flopping on the couch she groans in disgust. "What's wrong?" Angel asks looking up from his book "Homework" she answers "Let me know if you need help" Angel says returning to his reading Buffy works on her homework every so often she asks Angel for help. After an hour Angel looks up from his book and smiles "Katies up" he says. Buffy closes her book and jumps up. Angel watches in amusement as his love rushes to get the baby. "Hey Katie girl" Buffy says picking her up. "Lets get you changed." Buffy changes her diaper quickly and carries the baby into the living room. Buffy and Angel play with the baby. Chapter 23/? "Come on Buff your mom's probably worried" Angel says. They get into the car and drive to the house. "Mom" Buffy calls as they enter the front door "Buffy" Joyce calls worriedly as she hurries into the living room. "Hello Angel" she says "Whats wrong Mom?" she questions sensing her mothers concern. "Hey Slayer" Spike greets. "Peaches" he growls. He sees the baby and grins. "Hey Katie" "Buffy there's something I need to talk to you about" Joyce says Angel stands, "I'll go put Katie down" "Angel this concerns all of us." Surprised that her mother included Angel into the family. "So what is the problem?" she asks sitting down. She sees her mother is nervous Buffy becomes concerned. "Mom what is going on?" she demands Joyce sits beside Buffy. "I got a phone call from your father's lawyer" Buffy glares at Spike "OK Spike what did you do?" she demands "Nothing Slayer. I promised Mum I'd stay away from him" Spike protests "Buffy he's not dead." "Too bad" she mutters under her breath. "So whats the problem?" asks Buffy "Honey your father is..." Joyce takes a deep breath and continues, "your father is suing for full custody of both you and Katie." Buffy stares at her mother surprised and both vampires growl angrily. "Why?" she asks. "Why does he care now?" she demands "I'm almost 18! I'm not going to!" she jumps up and runs outside "Buffy" Joyce calls Angel gets up and races after Buffy. "Buffy stop" he calls. She stops running when she reaches the park. Angel stops behind her "Buffy?" Buffy wraps her arms around her waist. "Why? Why is he doing this to me?" she sobs. "He wants to take my baby" she slumps the the ground and sobs. Angel sits beside her and wraps his arms around her. Buffy turns in his arms. "Angel I hate him" "No you don't" "Yes I do." Buffy insists "He tried to sell off our babies. And caused William's death. And now he wants to take me and Katie away from here. I don't want to leave. I hate him" she sobs against his chest "we'll fight him Buffy" Angel says "I promise you he won't take Katie from you" "We can't fight him Angel. If we did he'd find out and so would others." "I don't care if he finds out about me. He isn't taking Katie" Angel says. Buffy keeps sobbing. "Shh beloved" "I can't lose her Angel. Not now" she sobs "I know my love" Angel soothes rocking her. "I know" he picks her up he carries her home. Entering Joyce jumps up. "She's asleep" he whispers heading towards the stairs he carries her to bed. Taking off her shoes he covers her up. "Angel" Buffy whimpers "I'm right here" Angel says stroking her forehead. "I'm not leaving" he promises. Buffy nods and curls up and drifts off to sleep. Angel checks on the baby and quietly he heads downstairs. He finds Joyce and Spike talking.

"Is she asleep?" asks Joyce. Angel nods. "I talked with my lawyer he told me that Hank has a strong case." "How though? Its not like he spent anytime with her" Angel demands "He's suing on grounds of neglect and child endangerment. He's using the fact that Buffy has gotten in trouble more since moving here and her pregnancy as grounds for custody." Buffy had woken moments after Angel had left. She listens to the conversation from the top of the stairs. Quietly she sneaks back into her room and pulls on her shoes and grabs her coat. She kisses Katie and then she carefully opens the window. Silently she crawls out the window. Once on the ground she heads towards Cordelia's house. She pounds on the door. She waits impatiently for someone to answer. Finally the door opens and Cordelia is standing there furious. "What do you want Buffy?" she demands angrily "Cordy I need your car" Buffy remarks "Uh no" Cordelia replies starting to close the door Buffy shoves her foot in the door. "Please Cordy" she begs tearfully "Why do you need my car?" Cordy asks "I need to go to LA" "LA in my car? I don't think so" protests Cordelia "Cordy if I don't go to LA my father is going to ruin my life." "And I care because?" "He wants custody of me and Katie" "Your almost 18" Cordelia reminds "I know. But he wants my daughter. Please Cordy" "All right." Cordelia replies she grabs her purse and gives Buffy the keys. "I'm doing this because its wrong for a Slayer to beg." "Thank you Cordy. If Angel or my mom come by please don't tell them where I am" "No problem" Cordelia replies closing the door Buffy gets in the prom queens car and drives towards LA. Angel goes upstairs to check on Katie and Buffy. He senses something is amiss. He checks the bed. "Damn it" he growls. He runs downstairs. "What's wrong?" asks Joyce "Buffy's gone" he replies "Where is she? Its midnight" demands Joyce Angel grabs his jacket. "I don't know. She could have gone to burn off some anger by patrolling" Spike grabs duster. "I'll help you look" he offers. The two vampires leave the house in search of the Slayer. "Be careful Buffy" Joyce whispers Chapter 24/? ***Two hours later*** Buffy pulls into the driveway of her fathers house. She rings the doorbell insistantly and pounds on the door. "Open up" she calls The door opens and her father stands there rubbing his eyes tiredly. "Buffy what are you doing here?" he asks surprised "Hank who's there?" a womans voice calls tiredly "No one honey. Go back to bed" he calls. Buffy enters and sees a woman about 25 standing in the doorway of the living room "Hank who is that?" the lady asks "Yeah Daddy tell her who I am" Buffy glares "Gina this is my daughter Buffy" Hank introduces nervously "Nice to meet you" Gina says "He's told me so much about you" "I'd say the same but I didn't know you existed" Buffy retorts "Why are you here?" asks Hank "I want to know why your doing this?" she demands "Because I care" he replies "No you don't" Buffy protests "Yes I do. I've missed you Buffy" "No. If you cared you wouldn't have done this to me. Why are you trying to rip apart my life?" "I'm protecting you" he protests "Protecting me?" she laughs "Your protecting me by taking away my baby?!" she says angrily "By taking me from my family?!" "I'm your family" Hank argues "No your not. Giles is the father I never had. Your just the one who I share DNA with. They are my family" she laughs "Even Spike is more like family than you ever were and I hate Spike" "Buffy your 17 and not even out of high school and you've all ready destroyed your future" "No I haven't" she retorts "I have a beautiful little girl. And she is my future." Gina calmly says "Your father is right. You are too young to have children" "You should have aborted the bastards kids" Hank mutters Buffy hears that "excuse me?!" she says angrily her eyes showing her anger. "You have no right to say that to me" "Yes I do" Hank argues "There are people in this world who want to have kids and they can't. And you a highschool student gets knocked up." Buffy sees the sadness on Gina's face then realizes "You want my baby because you can't have one of your own." Gina nods "Yes. But thats not the only reason. We want to give you the chance to be like other teenagers" "I won't ever be like other teenagers. I am not giving up my baby. She is my miracle so was William. And because of you I lost my son" she says angrily her father is about to protest she continues. "You say that you want to have children and can't. We thought it wasn't possible" Hank snorts "Well you did" "Yes I did. And I'm glad I did. I love Angel. I love the twins. If you ever think of taking Katie from me I will make your life a living hell" "Don't speak to me like that" Hank says angrily. "I am your father. I deserve more respect" "You lost my respect years ago. If you ever come near my daughter" she walks closer to him. She grabs his neck and slams him against the wall leaning close she says her voice angrily "I will destroy everything you hold dear. See Daddy I don't take well to threats. And I'm betting you will be getting visits from Giles, Angel, Spike, and Mom. I'll tell Spike to leave you in one piece. Just so you know Giles seems mild mannered but when he's pissed watch out" she releases him. "Now tomorrow morning you will withdraw the custody papers. And Mom and I will file for a restraining order." she walks to the front door without turning around she says "By the way you are no longer my father" she slams the door behind her ***In Sunnydale*** Angel and Spike return to the house to find Joyce pacing. "Did you find her?" she asks "No. Looked everywhere" Spike says The phone rings "Buffy?" Joyce answers. "You bastard" she hisses. "You've done enough damage for a lifetime" "Joyce I just called to let you know that I am going to have my lawyer pull the suit tomorrow first thing." "Why?" asks Joyce she smiles "Buffy threatened you didn't she" Spike laughs "The Slayer threatened her father" "Shut up Spike" Angel growls. Katie wakes up crying. Angel heads upstairs to calm the crying baby. ****Two hours later**** Buffy pulls into the driveway getting out of the car she climbs the trellis and into her room through the window. She finds Angel asleep on her bed holding Katie against his chest. Smiling she slips off her shoes and walks to the bed. Carefully she takes the sleeping baby from Angel's arms and takes her to the basinet and puts her down. She looks at the sleeping infant she smiles. "You went to see your father" Angel states quietly from the bed Buffy nods without turning around she says "I had to Angel. I needed to talk to him" "What happened?" he asks Wiping away her tears she answers, "He has a new girlfriend. Gina she's not much older than me." she walks towards the bed and sits down. "They wanted the twins because they can't have any kids. Angel he was angry so angry" "Why?" Angel asks softly "In his words ' you a high school student gets knocked up while people who want kids can't have them.' He didn't want me when I needed him. And now I don't need him he wants me for my baby." "I'm sorry" Angel says stroking her back "He told me I should have had an abortion" "I'm glad you didn't" Angel whispers Buffy looks up at him "So am I." "Go to sleep beloved" he says "I love you Angel. I always will" "Forever" Angel says