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A Time For Ghosts

Title: A Time For Ghosts
Author: Kat Lee
Characters/Pairing: Giles/Buffy with a mention of Giles/Jenny
Rating: PG/K+
Word Count: 654
Disclaimer: All characters belong to their rightful owners, not the author.

Halloween was to be a quiet day, or so Rupert Giles had always told those who looked to him for advice. It was indeed a quiet day, but the reasons he gave for the monsters not causing trouble, typically speaking, was far from the truth. The humans had made a mockery of the holiday, but like Giles himself, the monsters had another reason for not wanting to be out on the streets on Halloween night for Halloween was when the ghosts came out.

All Hallow's Eve had always been a day where the mortal world stood at the very edge of the barriers separating dimensions. It had always been a day, too, when the dead reached out to the living. This Halloween, as Giles listened only partially to his grandmother prattling on about all the things he had done wrong throughout the year, was no different.

He tried to ignore the specters that filled his apartment as he drank alone, but no matter where he turned, he could still see them, still hear them. There was his grandmother and several other deceased relatives who did not approve of him, his status, or his ways. There were those who had been slain on his watch and others who he himself had slain. Of course, too, there was dear Jenny, who constantly reached out for him no matter how he tried to ignore her. He shivered as he felt her go through him every time she tried to kiss him, and his heart ached as she sobbed for the life they could have had if not for Angelus.

Each of his ghosts brought a certain level of guilt with them but none more so than Jenny. He should have cared for her more when he had her alive and loving him. He should have found a way to stop Angelus in time. Most of all, he should have loved her as strongly as she did him without allowing his ungentlemanly thoughts of a certain Slayer to interfere with their budding relationship.

His doorbell rang, and Giles literally jumped from his seat to answer it. "Buffy?" She stood on his doorstep, shaking with more terror than he'd ever witnessed in her. Her beautiful, blue eyes were the biggest he'd ever seen and full and red with her tears that flowed.

"G-Giles. I saw her! Mom . . . She came to me!"

"Ah, yes." He pushed his glasses back up on his nose as he realized he should have seen this situation heralding in with the holiday. It was, after all, the first quiet Halloween they had had since Joyce's untimely death.

"Yes? Giles, it was Mom! My Mommy! She came to me! She told me she loves me! But the last time I saw her, it wasn't her! I -- I -- " She trembled, then looked at him point blank. "Was it her? Giles, tell me what's going on!"

He opened his arms, and she raced into them. Fresh sobs raked her; he held her gently but tightly. "I imagine it was her, my dear. You see, Halloween is a night for ghosts to visit the mortals they most wish to see. Some try to exact revenge for their deaths on this day, but most go to those they loved. She came to you, Buffy, because she loves you."

That was also why his grandmother was here, taking this opportunity to tell him how he could improve his life, and why Jenny always came to see him on this night. It was why Kendra chose to come to him with her demands as to why he had not tried to become her Watcher; she trusted him so greatly that she believed he could have saved her. It was also why Buffy clung to him now and why he held just as tightly and desperately to her. Halloween had always been a time for ghosts, and for love.

The End

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