Summary: Giles' point-of-view, at the end of his life.
Disclaimer: I don't own any of the characters they belong to Joss Whedon, WB, etc. I wrote this after "Killed by Death" so any of Giles past up to that point belongs to Joss, etc. The ideas and Giles past after that belong to me. I'm not making any money so please don't sue.
Author's Notes: This is about Giles at the end of his life. All Giles thoughts are in italics.
Feedback: I love feedback, even flames as long as they're constructive. PLEASE send feedback to lalaland(at)crosslink.net
My Watcher Career. It was the worst and most wonderful thing that ever happened to me. It brought me so much pain, and so much happiness. I never thought of myself as being a watcher before I met Buffy. Buffy... she had such fire and spirit. She had such a capacity for love and compassion, yet she carried such a burden of responsibility. She was unlike any other slayer before her. She had to be dealt with differently. I was so proud of myself, when I was able to train her without using the handbook.
There was even a group of friends who helped us. There was Willow, Xander, Angel, Cordelia, Ms. Calendar, and Oz. She never knew whether to let us help her or push us away. In the beginning it was only Willow, Xander, and Angel. We were a wonderful team and she was a great slayer. Angel, such an interesting case. Never before had anyone heard of a vampire with a soul. He was such a strong young lad. Young, ha. He lived more years than I have. He carried such a burden of guilt. He loved Buffy more than anything and I know she loved him. You could see it in her eyes, and it was almost as easy to see it in his. The first time I knew he loved her was when we found the prophecy that said Buffy was going to die trying to kill the Master. He was frantic trying to find a way around it. Buffy looked so fragile and scared when she first found out. I can hardly believe it was the same girl that, but a day later, knocked me out to keep me from going after the Master myself. She could really hit, too. She killed the Master and fulfilled the prophecy. We were lucky Angel and Xander got there in time to revive her. Despite the fact that Xander was the one that revived her, she still only had eyes for Angel. Xander was foolish to ever think he could come between them. He had a good heart though and could always cheer the girls up.
We were happy for awhile; fighting evil. Cordelia, Oz, and the lovely Ms. Jenny Calendar joined the group. Then disaster struck. The love Angel and Buffy shared finally reached such a height that it gave him a moment of pure happiness. That moment broke the spell the gave Angel his soul. He went on a rampage, joining Spike, Drusilla, and the newly risen Judge. Buffy quickly took care of the Judge by simply blowing him apart with a... with... some sort of military weapon. It looked like a mini-cannon she held on her shoulder. Oh well. It was quite effective.
Buffy tried to kill Angelus that night, but couldn't. Soon after he killed Jenny, and mocked us all. Jenny... she was always messing with that darn technology and trying to get me to try new things. She had such a love of life and I loved her. At the end, I was so mad at her for being a gypsy and not telling me. I'm glad we were getting back together, the last time a saw her. I don't think I could have bared it, if she had left this world thinking I hated her. Buffy tried over and over to kill Angelus, but she couldn't. Then, he killed Willow. Willow... she was always so quiet, so shy. She had a kind heart though and was a lot of help using that blasted computer. I'm glad she finally gave up going after Xander. Oz was a fine young man and truly cared for her. I wish he hadn't pulled away so much when she died. I just hope that he's happy now. That was the last straw for Buffy. She finally killed Angelus. After that, she lost her zest for life. She was the worse slayer for it. In the end, she died in battle, only a few months after she had killed Angelus. Kendra came and replaced Buffy, but it wasn't the same.
Xander strove endlessly to kill all vampires on Earth, but in the end was killed by one. The boy always had so much emotion. Sometimes, I think he was the most innocent of us all, though he would have denied it. I could hardly believe he fell for Cordelia. They always fought so much. Cordelia... It's hard to believe how much she actually cared for Xander. She was always such a... snob. She started out giving all of us a hard time, until she started helping us. I never will understand that girl... . Kendra was able to kill Spike and Drusilla out of anger at Buffy's death. That was the only time she fought with emotion. though. Her lack of ingenuity and strict following of the book gained her a slayer's career of only two years.
With Kendra gone the rest of the group broke up. I was transferred here, to Chicago. I lived here for five miserable years waiting for a slayer that was supposed to appear. I didn't think I'd ever find another slayer I could teach, until I met Sarah. She had a bad attitude, a good heart, and was a born slayer. She's been the slayer five years now; a long time for a slayer. Oz now leads a normal life... well as normal as werewolves get. Cordy ended up married to a rich politician. She was never happy after Xander died though and from what I've heard, she still isn't happy. And here I am. Lying in a hospital, in Chicago. The nurses keep whispering to each other that they don't think I'll make it through the night. They don't think I hear them, but I do. Blasted vampire gangs. Why can't they be like normal vampires and fight with teeth, fists, and an occasional club or spell?!? Blasted gangs. They have to keep their guns and their old gang ways. Defending their turf. All a lot of nonsense... . Nonsense that got me shot.
Looking back over the years, my fondest memories are of that too short period of happiness. After we had crushed the Master's bones, but before Angel lost his soul. When Buffy was still the slayer. She will always be my favorite slayer. We were so happy then. Everyone had someone. Willow had Oz, Xander had Cordelia, Angel and Buffy had each other, and I had Jenny. Jenny... she was the first person I loved that I had to bury. Then I had to bury Willow, Buffy, Xander, and Kendra. They were like my children. Soon my latest child will have to bury me. I hope she knows it's not her fault. It took her to teach me that I wasn't responsible for their deaths. It's funny. I know I'm not responsible, but I still feel as if I am. Oh dear. I hope this isn't it. I wanted to say good-bye... . Oh dear
With that thought Giles slips into death. He finds himself surrounded by bright light. As his eyes become accustomed to the light he sees an amazing sight. There they are, standing just a few feet away. Willow and Xander are waving at him, as happy as can be. Kendra stands in all her rigid severity, lightened entirely by the huge smile on her face. Angel stands with his arms wrapped around Buffy's waist. Buffy smiles at him and looks up at Angel, before snuggling closer into Angel's arms. Jenny stands sheepishly smiling at him.
"Welcome to the afterlife," Buffy says.
"Good to see ya... . Well, not good 'cause your dead, but... well... you know what I mean," Xander says, stumbling over his words. Everyone laughs and Xander covers up his mistake with a hug.
"Glad you had a good life," Willow says, hugging him in turn.
"I've missed you," Kendra says. Buffy walks up and gives him a hug. Angel smiles and shakes his hand. Jenny slowly approaches him.
"Hi, Rupert," she says shyly. Giles holds her close and kisses her. He wraps his arms around her waist and smiles at them all.
"But... Sarah," Giles suddenly remembers.
"You can keep an eye on her. Don't worry," Angel replies.
"But first, you have to come to your welcoming party. Everyone you've ever know will be there," Buffy says, dashing off. Angel chases after her playfully. She laughs and teases him staying just out of his reach. She looks happier than I have ever seen her. Giles thinks as he watches the two run off. Then, he looks over at Jenny. We're all happy now.
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