Title: Wolf Pack
Chapter Title: The Gathering
Author: Baby Blues
Disclaimer: Not mine, but the story is.
Summary: The younger generation of the pack heads out into the woods for a small picnic to discuss the new turn of events as well as their future.
Dedication: To Lea, who wrote that perverted story with me. Lol You know what I'm talking about!
~Buffy: And he's practically being rewarded with cookies, gold stars, and all that jazz . . . I think he even replaced Spike's spot on the kitchen counter for those nightly Cocoa-with-marshmallows-talk with mom.
It was a quiet afternoon, the sun glinted warmly above the sky as the group made their way across the outer woods of Sunnydale, looking for a nice spot to lay their picnic that they had prepared earlier at Joyce's house. The sounds of fleeting birds echoed above them, and the soothing noise of rustling leaves sounded dreamy in their ears.
Buffy's long stresses blew with the breeze in gentle golden waves. Her slim sea blue skirt flowed down to her ankles, the wispy silk showing off her tiny yet curvy figure. Her tiny feet were encased in white sandals and her white top showed off a nice amount of tanned midriff and a lovely feminine four pack. She looked like Aphrodite walking in the sunlight with an air of power and splendor. She looked like the embodiment of everything that was beautiful . . . of everything that was woman.
"So, how's life with Mr. O'Connor?" Kendra asked, walking with Buffy as the group continued onwards, the sweet scent of nature intoxicating their heightened senses.
Buffy rolled her eyes. "Hell," she answered curtly, "I never knew I would feel like a stranger in my own home."
After she had run up to her room after their erotic kiss, she had later found out from a talk with Willow and Cordelia that her own mother had offered their house as a temporary home for her unwanted mate. And although Buffy hadn't really seen him during the few weeks he'd been staying, except for the constant and very uncomfortable moments when he would corner her, she soon found out that he had been hunting for a permanent home for the pack.
The remaining living males who survived the battle had left Sunnydale the following morning. Those who didn't survive the ordeal were buried out in the woods in their wolf form. The only lone wolf left was Gunn, Angelus' good friend who was staying at a hotel in town. He often came to visit the Summers-Giles residence to have a few words with Angelus, and eyeing Cordelia like a meat-package whenever she was around.
"Why? What's he doing?" Willow asked curiously, her red hair bright and fiery beneath the rays of the sun.
"We can conjure up a few things on what he's doing . . . or will be doing," Xander piped in impishly as he started stroking an imaginary penis. Oz and Spike lightly chuckled.
Buffy smiled and shook her head, "Coming onto to me every minute he can . . . "
"What's the problem with that?" Cordelia asked with a grin.
"That's 'cause Miss Prissy here thinks she's Virgin Mary. All saintly and whatnot," Faith answered, popping out of nowhere.
Buffy winced at the sight of a pink scar on the other girl's lips. She hadn't seen the hersince the battle, and it was time to make amends to the person she had caused a lot of damage to. "Listen, Faith . . . " Buffy began, wanting to apologize for the injuries she had caused the other girl.
But the younger brunette held up her hand and smirked coldly. "Hold the apologies, Princess. I don't need it from you. Just hand me one of your mom's chicken sandwiches and I'll be on my merry way . . . I hear Angelus may need some company this afternoon," Faith grinned when she noticed Buffy's jaws clench instinctively. "After all," Faith sighed, "His so-called 'mate' has left him out cold."
Spike growled, grabbed a sandwich from the basket Willow was carrying and shoved it towards Faith. "Here. Now get lost," he growled, knowing that if she stayed any longer with this attitude of hers, an unwanted bickering will turn up soon between her and ALLof them.
The group watched as Faith sauntered off with a iniquitous gleam in her eyes. Spike looked at Buffy, his own scars from the battle prominent within the light. There was a cut on his eyebrow, and even more bruises beneath his dark clothes and leather duster.
Buffy tore her eyes away from him as the ensemble stopped at a shaded area of the woods, a perfect spot to have their picnic. She hadn't seen Spike 'til that morning. And from what she had heard from Willow and Cordelia, he had been a mess after the ordeal. Shamed from being defeated so quickly, he disappeared in the woods for a few days to heal inner wounds deeper than his physical injuries.
"I heard Joyce is praising him like he's God," Xander said, biting into his sandwich as Kendra threw some grapes in the air and catching it with an open mouth.
"Yup. He talked about the gallery one night, and my Mom was so far gone afterwards, it would be hard to pull her out now. The entire conversation was about art. I was ready to gag after their conversation about Fertility statues," Buffy explained.
"Wow," Willow said, wide eyed as Oz lovingly caressed her arm.
"Not only that, but he's constantly working to get the pack in order. He's a responsible male adult. A huge plus for Mom," Buffy nodded. "And he's practically being rewarded with cookies, gold stars, and all that jazz . . . I think he's even replaced Spike's spot on the kitchen counter for those nightly Cocoa-with-marshmallows-talk."
"What!?" Spike raged, hurt that he was slowly being replaced by a new male who, not only stole his mate, but his own position as pack leader . . . as well as Joyce's favorite 'son.'
As if reading his thoughts, Buffy laid a encouraging hand on his shoulder. Joyce had always been like a mother to him, a friend as well as a confidante that he could always count on and run to whenever he needed an adult figure to give him some comforting words. "You're still her favorite . . . you'll always have a place in her heart. And plus," she shrugged and smiled, playfully ruffling his hair, "You came to her life first," Buffy said and laid her head on his chest as a consoling gesture to one of her best friends.
'I was first in yours as well,' Spike quietly added, but kept his mouth shut as he basked in the feel of having Buffy so close to him once again. He kissed her forehead and enjoyed the glorious moment.
Cordelia eyed the two blondes sadly as she picked at the remains of her sandwich. The pair had always been so close. She had always been so jealous of Buffy finding such intimacy with Spike, but to see her two friends going through such a tough time in their relationship hurt her. Cordy knew that the two would never be more than friends from now on. Buffy was someone's mate now . . . and Spike had to move on to find his own.
Xander and Kendra were now throwing grapes at each other and laughing their heads off with mirth. Willow quietly held onto Oz as he leaned against a tree and strummed his guitar.
"So . . . this is all great and fun," Cordelia said, breaking the silence, "But I'm bored."
"Ooo, let's play Truth or Dare," Xander said, perking up a bit more.
"We're not in 5th grade anymore, Xander," Kendra said.
He shrugged. "It'll be fun. Give us something to do."
"Alright, who goes first?"
"I will, since it was my idea."
"A brilliant idea at that," Spike mumbled as he internally rejoiced when Buffy moved closer to him.
"Okay, Cordy, truth or dare . . . "
* * * * * * * * * * * *
Angelus watched the group beneath the shade of a tree in the background. He had taken some time off from his work to take a walk out into the woods. He had run into Faith, flirted with her to get some info, and ended up here, at least twenty feet away from the younger members of the pack.
They were playing truth or dare, and he smiled as they laughed and fooled around with no worries bound to their young shoulders. Their only responsibility was each other, taking good care of the other person . . . while he had to take care of all of them . . . and he loved it. Loved the power and respect it gave him.
His eyes darkened when he saw Spike let Buffy snuggle closer into his embrace. He had seen their earlier display. When Buffy rested her cheek against the young man's chest for more than ten minutes. It took him all his discipline not to stalk towards them and rip Spike's head off before dragging Buffy back at the house and ravishing her 'til he finally made his mark on her and she couldn't walk any longer.
Laughter filtered through the air once again and Angelus sighed as he watched Buffy give Cordelia a high five. She was so young, so beautiful . . . the perfect mate. They seemed to fit together, the ideal contrast between light and dark, large and small, male and female, handsome and beautiful.
He looked down at his watch then back at the group before disappearing into the woods to return to his work.
He would have Buffy . . . by his side, as his mate, and in his bed by the end of the year. That was his new goal, a goal he had to achieve with no questions asked and no excuses made.
Continued to Chapter 11: The Survival
Back to Chapter 9: The Kiss