Author: Kat Lee
Fandom: Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Character/Pairing: Buffy, Giles
Challenge/Prompt: sunnydalescribe DC 5: Confine
Word Count: 809
Date Written: 30 September 2018
Disclaimer: All characters within belong to Whedon, not the author, and are used without permission.
Buffy’s green eyes widened as she stared at her Watcher in disbelief. “You smoked?!” she asked incredulously.
Giles lifted his tweed-covered shoulders in a slight shrug. “I told you,” he reminded her, “that I understand how such peer pressure can make such a grotesque habit in which we might not otherwise partake seem tempting.”
Buffy made a face. “No. Smoking doesn’t tempt me at all.” She shook her head. “I don’t care if the other kids are doing it, Giles. I’m not about to let one of those things touch my lips! Besides,” she took a lollipop out of her pocket, unwrapped the paper from around it, and stuck it in her mouth, “that’s what I have these for.”
Despite the fact that he’d so often begrudged having such an immature Slayer, Giles found himself smiling at her response. “I only hope it stays that way. As a Slayer, you may have a stronger immune system and better recovery system than others, but -- “
“Giles.” Buffy took the lollipop out of her mouth. “Not. Gonna. Happen,” she stressed. She licked her pop, then pointed out, “I still can’t believe you smoked!”
He pushed his glasses back up onto the bridge of his nose. “I found it to be quite alluring at the time,” he confessed. “It seemed to help me break away from all the confines of the rules and regulations my family placed on me.”
“Yeah. You come from a whole mess load of Watchers, don’t you?” The sucker was back in her mouth now, and she moved it, with her tongue, to one side. “I can’t imagine it was easy,” she admitted, “growing up with such sticks in the mud.”
Giles narrowed his eyes at her in silent warning. “Not that you’re a stick in the mud,” she hurriedly continued. “I bet you can be pretty cool when you let yourself loose. But do you ever let yourself loose any more?”
He coughed delicately behind his hand. “That, young lady, is beside the point.”
“No, it kinda is the point. You’re trying to teach me how to live with being a Slayer, not that I want to, but it looks like I don’t have much choice. You need to remember how to live yourself. Your parents may not have given you much of a chance to live before, especially with your father and your father’s father and his father and all being Watchers -- “
“Actually, it was my father’s mother,” Giles corrected her gently, “and her father -- “
Buffy rolled her eyes. “So not the point! The point is,” she said, taking the lollipop out of her mouth and waving it at him for emphasis, “you’re in California now. It’s time to live a little!”
“I’ll live,” he responded dryly, “when we know you will. Do you know how many Slayers have lived pass the age of eighteen, Buffy?”
She looked at him. “No,” she answered slowly, “but I have a feeling you’re going to tell me.”
HIs answer stilled her. She almost swallowed her pop but yanked it out of her mouth. “None? Really? You’re sure they just didn’t, like, go on record as being older than eighteen? Maybe they didn’t want to -- “
“Buffy -- “ he cut her off. Their eyes met and locked. “None,” he repeated softly. A chill ran through her. “But you,” he continued determinedly, “are going to be the first.”
She nodded, and he noted that the color had drained from her beautiful, young face. “Teach me how to live,” she said quietly, glad nobody else was there to witness her shy, doubtful moment, “and I’ll teach you how to live too.” Hopping off the table, she offered him her hand.
“It’s a deal,” he answered, but though he shook her hand, he was already certain of one thing. He would live through this girl. He would help her to have all the experiences that he had wanted but never had, or at least as many as she could while surviving as the Slayer, and he would help her to do so better and longer than any of the numerous Slayers who had come before her. Together, they would make her live. She’d survive. He’d see to it, and if he was successful . . . Well, watching Buffy live may well make up for the life he had never had.
“We begin now.” He yanked her forward, but Buffy was fast. She hit the ground in a spinning kick, smoothly knocking his feet out from under him. When he returned to his feet, he noticed that she wouldn’t meet his gaze. She was chewing on the stick of her lollipop now, looking embarrassed and more than a little nervous. “Well done,” he complimented. “Again.” He didn’t care how many times he fell for this girl; together, they would make her live.