On to the next part

Title: Christmas Worries (#5 in my “Happy Endings Series”)

Author: Jada

Disclaimer: I don’t own anything except what I make Joss’ characters do.

Rating: PG 13 (?)

Spoilers: The whole B/A cannon to be on the safe side

Summary: Buffy and Angel celebrate Christmas with their family when a unexpected surprise occurs.

Author’s Notes:  Okay, this fic takes place a month after the last one, “Sharing Secrets With Mixed Reactions.”

     Now, a lot has happened in this month, so much that I should probably write another fic in between this one and the last. I really don’t want to do that because it would probably be a lot of dialogue and none of it would be all that cheerful. So, I’ll just tell you what happened. A “Hush” like episode happened, only with Angel being there and no B/R kissage (Ew!). Riley knows that Buffy is the Slayer, but he doesn’t know that Angel used to be a vampire. So, he has a problem with Angel because he is still jealous. Hank has kept in touch with Buffy and has found out about her being the Slayer also. Hank doesn’t know that Angel used to be a vampire either. After moving back to Sunnydale, Angel bought the Bronze and is turning it into the only safe place for people to be without vamps. He has all these anti-vamp booby traps installed in the club. He also gave Xander a job as manager of the club and is letting Xander stay in a little apartment in the back of the Bronze.

     I may, someday, write the fic that I have just explained, but that is a rather big ‘maybe.’ It would probably depend on the number of people that wanted it and the amount of time that I have to write.

Author’s Note 2: For those of you who are going to ask, yes, I know that Angel isn’t really 240, but that is just Joyce’s guess.

Author’s Note 3: Okay, Spike is not in this fic, not because I don’t like his character, but because he really doesn’t fit and, truth be told, I really can’t write his character.

Author’s Note 4: Sorry for such a pathetic fight scene. I’m not good at writing action.

Dedication: I would like to dedicate this fic to Keke, tigerwolf, me, and especially, to Diana Rose, who sent me the nicest review that I have ever received. Thanks guys, for all your words of encouragement.

Feedback: Yes, please:)

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     “What time is it?” Buffy Summers asked her boyfriend.

     “Five minutes later than the last time you asked,” Angel responded.

     “I’m being crazy, aren’t I?”

     “I don’t know. “Crazy” might be a bit strong-”

     “Actually, I think it fits perfectly,” Joyce cut in.

     “I just want everything to be perfect,” Buffy said, stealing a piece of carrot, just as Angel chopped it. With a playful glare at his girlfriend, Angel continued to chop.

     Buffy, Angel and Joyce were in the Summers’ kitchen. Angel had offered to cook, giving Joyce a Christmas off cooking duty, for a change. Joyce had agreed to turn over the cooking reins once she had heard the glowing reviews that Buffy had for the ex-vampire’s cooking abilities, no matter how biased they were.

      Buffy was sitting on one of the kitchen stools and occasionally stealing food from Angel’s chopping board. Joyce was getting the silverware and dishes out of the boxes that they were usually kept in until Christmas. All three were awaiting the arrival of Hank and the Scooby Gang.

     “Buffy, I don’t know why you’re so worried about this. It’s not as if you father has never spent Christmas with us before,” Joyce said, as she set out the holiday plates.

     “Mom, I know that Dad has spent Christmas with us before. But you were married then, and my friends weren’t coming over, and Angel wasn’t here, like spending the night here.”

     “But, your father likes me, doesn’t he?” Angel asked, looking up from his chopping.

     “Chill, Honey, he likes you. At least in theory. I mean, he’s never really slept in the same house with the both of us, while we were sleeping in the same bed,” Joyce sent Buffy a look. “Not that we’re going to be doing anything, at all, that would be considered bad while in this house. Because that would be bad and wrong, and did I mention bad?” Joyce shook her head in mock defeat. “It’s just that idea that we do, do things, when we’re not in this house that my father might have a problem with.”

     “But I thought we had all of that cleared up already. I mean, he knows that we . . . do stuff,” Angel said, censoring the last part of his sentence, for Joyce’s benefit.

     “Honey, I know that, but my father really hasn’t had to have it right in front of his face, yet. Not to mention the fact that he and my mom have to go three whole days without killing each other.”

     “As long as he doesn’t provoke me, we’ll be okay,” Joyce said. 

     Just then, the doorbell rang and Buffy jumped off of the stool that she had been sitting on, and raced for the door.

     “World War III, round one,” Joyce muttered under her breath, but Angel heard her and stifled a laugh. “Oh, you might think that this is funny now, but you just watch,” Joyce said, as she started to walk to the door to greet her ex-husband.

    

 

 

     As Joyce walked into the foyer, she say Buffy and Hank hugging.

     “Hello, Hank,” Joyce said politely.

     “Joyce, you look good. How are you?” Hank responded, in that same polite manner.

     “Can’t complain. The gallery is doing great, Buffy is doing great, all in all, life’s pretty good.”

     “That’s nice.”

     “Why don’t you go and say ‘hi’ to Angel, Dad?” Buffy suggested, ushering her father into the kitchen.

     Thanks, Joyce mouthed to Buffy.

    

 

 

     As the trio entered the kitchen, Angel looked up from what he was chopping, which was now celery, and said “Hello,” to his girlfriend’s father.

     “So, I see that they’re conned you into doing the cooking, now,” Hank commented.

     “Actually, I offered,” Angel said.

     “What in the world possessed you to do that?” Hank asked.

     “I just didn’t think that it was fair for Joyce to have to do all the cooking for all of those people.”

     “And I think that’s very considerate of him,” Joyce said.

     “Besides, Angel’s a great cook, Dad,” Buffy added.

     “Great, ‘cause I’m starving,” Hank said.

     There was an uncomfortable silence.

     “So Angel, how are things working out with that club of yours?” Hank asked.

     “Well, we finished the remodeling last week and I plan to hold the grand re-opening on New Years Eve.”

     “How’s the profit margin?”

     “ Pretty good, considering the mortality rate of this town.”

     “Yeah, there’s that.”

     “Could we talk about something other than work, please? It is Christmas, after all,” Joyce said.

     “Well, what did you have in mind?” Hank asked.

     “I don’t have anything in mind, per se. I just don’t think it’s right to be spending Christmas Eve talking about work.”

     Before Hank could respond to that, Buffy blurted out, “Angel and I are thinking of going out of town during Spring Break!”

     “Where are you thinking of going?” Joyce asked, this being the first time she’d heard about said trip.

     “We don’t know. Just . . . somewhere . . . that’s not here.” Buffy finished, rather lamely.

     “That’s nice,” Hank said.

      Another uncomfortable silence.

     “Buffy, why don’t you show your father to the guest room,” Joyce suggested.

     “Sure. Right this way, Dad,” Buffy said, leading her father toward the stairs.

 

 

     As soon as Hank was out of hearing range, Angel said to Joyce, “So, World War III, huh?”

     “At least.” Joyce responded with a sigh.

     “Buffy’s been worried about this since it was planned. I mean, having all of these people here, together, people that don’t necessarily know will get along all that well. She’s been afraid that there would be a lot of bickering. I’ve tried to reassure her, but I don’t know how wise that was.”

     “I guess we can only hope for the best,” Joyce said

     “You know, right now, I’m almost glad that Cordelia and Doyle couldn’t make it. As much as I would like to see them, Xander and Cordy would probably kill each other, and their constant squabbling is something that I don’t want to add to the list of things that Buffy is worrying about.”

     After Angel spoke that last sentence, Joyce got this soft smile on her face.

     “What?” Angel asked.

     “You really love her, don’t you?” She asked.

     “What can I say, she’s everything that I always knew that I always wanted, and then some.”

     “Really? I mean, I’d be lying if I said that I knew why you fell in love with Buffy, not that there is any reason why anyone shouldn’t love her. She’s a wonderful person. I just never understood your reason. I mean, you’re, what, two-hundred and forty? Why would you be interested in a sixteen year old, if it was more than just a physical attraction? What could you, in all your experience and worldly knowledge, find in a teenager that you couldn’t find in someone older?”

     “Joyce, I would love to answer that question for you, and for Buffy, in those times that she asks, but I can’t really put it into words. I fell in love with her for so many reasons, it would take me a lifetime to name them, and I still wouldn’t get to them all. But I can tell you this, she’s the only person that I have ever been in love with, she’s the only person that I’ve ever wanted to be in love with. I never thought that I’d be able to say that. That’s probably another reason why I love her.”

     “Maybe it doesn’t matter why, as long as you do,” Joyce said.

     “Maybe.”

 

 

      The door bell sounded and Joyce went to answer it. She pulled back the door to reveal Giles, Willow, Xander, and Anya.

     “Merry Christmas!” Anya said, holding out a bag of wrapped gifts.

     “Merry Christmas and Happy Chanukah,” Joyce responded.

     “Thank you!” Willow said to Joyce.

     “You see, Ahn, Chanukah is just as important as Christmas,” Xander told his girlfriend.

     “Yeah, ‘cause not everybody worships Santa,” Buffy added, walking down the stairs, with Hank close behind.

     “Good Lord, you do have them trained, Willow,” Giles told the red head.

     “I try,” She responded.

     “Please, all of you, come in,” Joyce invited.

     As they entered, they deposited their gifts under the Christmas tree, or as Willow likes to refer to it as, the Chanukah bush.

     “So, where’s the Boss-man?” Xander asked, referring to Angel. “Boss-man” was his new nickname for the ex-vampire.

     “In the kitchen,” Buffy responded.

     “Yeah, he’s cooking,” Hank added, still not believing that Angel would volunteer for such a task.

     “Angel’s cooking?” Willow asked.

     “Yes,” Buffy replied, happily.

     “Is that a good thing?” Giles asked

     “That’s what I’ve been wondering, . . . um?”Hank trailed off.

     “Oh, sorry. I forgot that you two haven’t met before. Dad, this is Rupert Giles, he used to be my Watcher, I told you about him, remember?” When her father nodded, Buffy continued on. “And Giles, this it my father, Hank Summers.”

     “Yes, of course. It’s a pleasure to make your acquaintance.” Giles said, extending his hand.

     “The pleasure’s mine,” Hand responded, grasping Giles’ hand.

     When both men had released each other’s hand, Buffy said, “And to answer both of your questions, Angel is a great cook.”

     “So, you’ve said.” Hank told his daughter.

     “Angel is a good cook, and by the way he looks, I’m guessing in more than in the kitchen,” Anya said, in her usual blunt manner.

     To try to smooth out the ripple that Anya had made in the comfort level, Buffy said, “Dad, this is Anya. She thinks it, therefore she says it.”

     “I do not! Do I, Xander?”

     “Um, well, that’s part of your charm, Ahn,” Xander replied.

     Nice save, Willow mouthed to Buffy. Buffy just smiled. Soon, dinner was served and all concerns about Angel’s cooking abilities were put to rest.

 

 

      After dinner Buffy and Angel prepared to leave to go on patrol.

     “Buffy, do you really have to go. I mean, you told me earlier that you haven’t been feeling all the great lately and it is Christmas and your friends are here and your father,” Joyce said.

     “Mom, the vampires don’t really care how well I feel, even if I am feeling better, nor do they care if it’s Christmas or not. They’re not big into religion, if you know what I mean,” Buffy said.

     “We’ll try to be back as soon as possible,” Angel promised.

     “Okay, go, but be careful,” Joyce said.

     “And take care of her, Angel,” Hank said, coming into the foyer where everyone else was.

     “Dad, I’m the Slayer. Shouldn’t you be telling me to take care of him?” Buffy asked.

     “Just take care of each other,” Hank amended, kissing Buffy in the forehead.

      “We will,” Buffy said, grabbing Angel’s hand and near dragging him out of the door.

 

 

     Buffy and Angel were walking through Restfield, patrolling, holding hands, talking, and sneaking the occasional kiss. But right now, Buffy was in a talking mood.

     “Don’t get me wrong, I love both of my parents, but sometimes they drive me insane,” Buffy said. “I think that’s sort of in their job description.”

     “Buffy, they just love you,” Angel responded, giving her hand a squeeze.

     “I know, but do you know how much I would love to go back to that wonderful apartment of yours and just lock ourselves in, turn off the phone, and not come out until the new year?” Buffy whispered, pulling Angel flush up against her.

     “Oh, I have some idea,” Angel said, leaning down to kiss her.

     Buffy and Angel were so caught up in each other that they didn’t notice the ten vampires creeping up on them, until it was too late.

 

 

     “You just (kick) can’t give (punch) us one moment (kick) to ourselves,” Buffy said, as she staked a vampire.

     Angel was just as busy with the vampires he was fighting. Buffy was exhausted as she dusted the third to last. She turned around, and was thrown into a tree trunk by one of the two remaining vampires.

      “Buffy!” Angel shouted, as he dusted the last two and ran over to his girlfriend. She was unconscious and had a pretty nasty bump on her head. Angel scooped her up into his arms, and dashed her to the hospital.

 

 

     Buffy woke up on the way to the hospital, but Angel made her go in and get checked out anyway. Buffy and Angel were sitting in one of those cold hospital cubicles when a woman of about thirty, walked in the sort of room.

     “Buffy Summers?” the woman asked.

     “That’s me. Look, it’s nothing personal, but I really want to go, so could we just skip this whole thing and I can go home before anyone starts to worry,” Buffy said, trying to get off of the gurney.

     Angel held her back and said, “Buffy, I just want to make sure you’re okay.”

     “But my friends are over and my parents-”

     “Can wait,” Angel cut in. “Buffy, I think that everyone would rather us be a little late if we know that you’re okay.”

     “So, are you ready to start?”the doctor asked.

     “Yeah,” Buffy said.

     “Okay, I’m Doctor Monroe. I understand that you want to get out of here and back to your family, and believe me, I understand.  So, lets get this done with and get you on your way, okay?”

     “Okay.”

 

 

     After Dr. Monroe checked her out, Buffy got out of that horrid paper gown and back into her normal clothes.

     Buffy was just waiting for the results of her blood test when Dr. Monroe came back into the room.

     “So, am I free to go?” Buffy asked.

     “Not quite. Ms. Summers, we found something in the results of your blood test,”

     “What?” Angel asked, the faintest feeling of dread, slowly growing in the pit of his stomach.

     “Um, would you ming stepping out of the room, sir”

     “Anything you have to say to me, you can say in front of Angel.” Buffy said.

     “Okay.”

     “Am I dying?” Buffy blurted out.

     “Oh, Heavens no, nothing that serous,” Dr. Monroe said.

     “So, what is it, what’s wrong with Buffy?”

 

                                       

                                        To Be Continued . . .

 

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     I know, I know, I’m horrible. But I am also stuck. For most of you reading this, it’s probably blatantly obvious where I am going with this, but truth be told, I really don’t know where I’m going with this. You see, I have two ideas. In one, Buffy is pregnant, in the other, she’s not. I have ideas for story arcs leading into the next season for both possibilities, but I don’t know which way to go. So, tell me what you think. Should Buffy be pregnant or should this ‘thing’ be just a virus? E-mail me with your response and tell me why you think it at  I will be taking suggestions up till June 1, 2002. That is the cut off date. At that date, I will tally the votes and write my next fic. In the meantime, this series will be put on hold, unless I decide to write that missing month. Thanks, Jada:D

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