Games in the Dark
Part 4 of 5

"I-I'm s-sorry Buffy's not here Mr. Giles," Tara's unsteady voice broke the uncomfortable silence in the room. She never knew how to act when alone with Mr. Giles. Even though he had the kindest soul she'd ever known, she still felt a bit self-conscious around the Watcher. He had such an air of authority yet the others didn't seem to notice it. Even Dawn treated him as just another Scoobie gang member. She decided that treating him with the respect he deserved was only proper and it was the only way she felt comfortable with their brief exchanges. Besides, he showed such patience and understanding with the others, she didn't want to burden him with another thankless moocher who teased him relentlessly.

"That's alright, Tara. I'm sure she'll be home soon. I can wait... make some tea?" He suggested.

"Sure... allow me..." Tara stood up and Giles jumped to his feet.

"Don't be silly, I can manage. I know my way around the Summers kitchen," Giles smiled warmly.

"Can I have cocoa?" Dawn asked as she hurried into the living room as if on queue.

"Sometimes I swear you have Slayer hearing. I'll get the usual provisions," He headed toward the kitchen.


"Marshmallows.... I know Dawn. I have done this before. Or don't you remember?"

Tara smiled at Dawn, "You should help him. You guys keep moving things around...makes it difficult for visitors."

"I don't think he likes me," Dawn said straightforwardly and sat down across from the young woman to whom she'd grown so attached. Between Willow and Tara, Dawn really felt like she had a surrogate mother. Not that her real mother could ever be replaced but Buffy certainly didn't fit the motherly mold very well.

"Dawnie, that's not true. Mr. Giles cares for you... very much," Tara could understand the girl's hesitance around him, he could seem so serious and troubled at times. Unfortunately the situation around the Hellmouth usually called for such behavior.

"He cares about Buffy...not me. He just got stuck with the package deal. I'm just a surprise super-size side-dish of his Slayer... unordered two-day-old limp fries that the clerk pawned off on him when he..." Dawn paused with notice of Tara's smile. "Sorry... I'm really craving McDonalds."

"Dawn... you're not old limp fries. You're more the toy surprise in a Happy meal," Tara offered and shrugged. "Mr. Giles would have left after Buffy died had he not cared so deeply for you. He stayed for you."

"He stayed for her..." Dawn mumbled as the door opened and Willow hurried in excitedly.

"Anything... I mean... um, did Buffy come home yet? Have you seen Giles?" Willow realized the duo staring bewildered at her behavior were oblivious to the news she'd recovered from Giles and Buffy earlier. She should tread lightly until one of the parties involved spilled the beans themselves, or were caught doing something sweet and naughty. Willow would love to see the gang's faces at that enlightenment.

"Giles is in the kitchen. Buffy's been out all day. What's got you all freaked?" Dawn smiled as she caught the flirtaceous wink Tara shot Willow. They were a great couple, a couple so deeply in love Dawn could only wish for such love some day. The phone rang and Dawn rushed to pick it up.

"Hello?" After a long pause and some odd expressions on Dawn's face, the young Summers girl covered the receiver and shook her head. "It's Buffy... she sounds completely wasted..."

Willow took the phone, "Buffy? Have you talked to Giles yet?"

Giles walked in carrying a tray of tea and cocoa with cookies and set it down on the table. Willow motioned wildly toward him, insisting him to take the phone. Giles approached tentatively; unsure of what the excited redhead was getting on about now.

"He's here... you should talk to him," Willow stared at Giles as he waited for the phone to be handed over. He assumed it was Buffy and really didn't want to hold this conversation over the phone in front of an audience.

"No, Buffy... stop... just listen for a second. No... he's here, he wants to talk to you," she shrugged at Giles whose forehead creased with worry over the conflict between the friends. "Buffy... you don't understand..." Willow paused and glanced down at the receiver then hung up the phone.

"Well?" Everyone said anxiously.

"She hung up. She's drunk... very drunk and quite upset," Willow's eyes went wide at Giles, "I think she might be at your place. She kept asking where you were."

"She wants to see me?" Giles asked nervously.

"Why wouldn't she want to see you?" Dawn interrupted.

Tara smiled, "Hey...Dawnie, what happened in school today?" She asked, trying to draw the nosey young girl's attentions away from the adult discussion.

"Giles, you better get to her before she does" Willow's eyes couldn't mask her concern.

"Is Buffy ok? She's not, is she?" Dawn jumped up and rushed to the door. "Let's go already."

"Dawn, perhaps we should wait here," Tara suggested to the anxious girl. "Giles will find Buffy and..."

The door burst open again with Xander and Anya entered sporting arms full of videos and snacks.

"Let the Slayer horror-fest begin. Ringmaster Xander is on call and ready for..." Xander paused at everyone's concerned looks.

"What hell is breaking loose now?" Anya asked bluntly. "I'm not dressed appropriately for a Apocalypse and I haven't logged the days sales totals... oh Giles, hello. When I said I hadn't logged the receipts I meant..."

"Buffy's in trouble..." Dawn held the door open, waiting impatiently for someone to spring into action with her. "Come-on people... let's go!"

"No!" Willow shouted then quickly shied quiet at her outburst. "Um, Giles should go alone. She's fine... she just wants to see Giles."

"If she's fine, she won't mind us making sure, right? Come on!" Dawn stormed out and Xander shrugged and set down the bags of supplies.

"I'll drive," he followed Dawn out. "Hey...where are we goin?"

"I call... um, Shotgun! That's what it's called right?" Anya said and followed behind Xander.

"Hey... no fair! I called it!" Dawn whined.


Giles winced as Dawn and Anya argued the finer points of who should receive the honor of riding in the front seat of Xander's car on the way to intruding on his most personal and intimate of conversations with Buffy.

Tara stood up and approached the flustered Watcher. "I'm s-sorry Mr. Giles. I t-tried to..."

"Tara knows?" He glared at Willow who quickly waved her hands defensively.

"I didn't tell!"

"I- I kinda figured it out f-for myself," the shy young lady smiled softly. "She does l-love you. Her heart's known it f-for some time. Her mind is just... um, s-stubborn."

"Does Dawn...?"

Willow shook her head quickly, "No one else..." she looked to Tara for reassurance.

"I've told no one but I wouldn't put it past Dawn to suspect something," Tara smiled. "She can s-see how much Mr. Giles cares for Buffy."

"What a bloody disaster...well, I suppose we should get a move on. The show must go on," Giles sighed deeply and headed out the door.

"When did you get to be sucha smarty-pants?" Willow asked her girlfriend.

"Many years of practice," she gave Willow a quick peck on the lips and walked to the door, pausing to look back at the fiery redhead. "They're destined you know... to be together."

"How do you know?" Willow asked.

Tara lowered her head, suddenly shy. She looked outside then glanced back at Willow. "Let's just say... the trees told me."

They finally followed the others, shutting the Summers household door behind them.

"What's up Slayer? Old man Giles makin an appearance or what?" Spike waited anxiously for Buffy to explain her sudden rampage through the Watcher's apartment.

"He's at my place. I can't even manage to make him jealous without messing it up." Buffy whined and plopped down onto the floor.

"So what now?" Spike didn't know what to make of the situation. His plan wouldn't work if the Watcher didn't show up.

"I don't know... " Buffy covered her face with her hands, sobbing in defeat. "I think I love him."

Spike could see an opening when it presented itself, "Think? Sorry luv... you should know when loves got you by the balls. Pardon my expression." The vampire took a seat next to the upset Slayer. "Love bites you on the ass... ceases your heart till there's nothing left to save your sorry soul. There ain't no doubt when it hits. Just an undeniable freight train running you over until you're flattened like a penny." He glanced at the sobbing Slayer. "You should know whether you love this bloke or not. You should live and breathe him!"

"I just don't know... for sure..." Buffy cried and looked over at Spike with doubt. "You loved Dru... right? How did you know?"

"Dru?" Spike snickered. "She was wild. She was darker then my dark half, wicked! She drove me to new levels of revulsion... fed my dementia. She was wondrous. I'll never have that again... I can tell you!"

"Why did you sacrifice it?" The drunken Slayer swayed as she asked the question.

"Sacrifice it?" Spike paused. "Yes, I guess I did." He stared into the shadows, remembering the good old times with Drusilla. The bloodbaths they would offer as gifts to the unworthy socialites as they traveled Europe. He could have it again. Buffy could give that to him.

"I love Giles. I've always loved him. But there's something else... something different."

"Of course you love him. Like you do Dawn or... um, that boy friend. That annoying twit!"


"Yes. It's a familiar love... a wholesome love between family or friends." Spike snickered. "Real love hurts... aches, torments!"

"Aches...?" Buffy sighed.

"You're just lonely. It's been some time since you got horizontal," Spike got up and glanced outside, impatiently waiting for the Watcher to return.

"You're a pig Spike!"

"But an available pig," he sat back down. "I could help you release some of that frustration...tension."

"No way!" Buffy shook her head.

"But you were ready to put on a show for the Watcher a second ago. Why not make it an epic scene," Spike slowly slipped his hand up Buffy's back and began to knead her shoulders. He smiled as the Slayer closed her eyes, enjoying the attention. 'This could work.'

"Change of plans. I don't think we should..." she mumbled.

"Stop thinking," Spike slowly maneuvered behind her and started to massage her with his other hand, giving her his full treatment. "Relax... enjoy."


"I'll give you what he won't Slayer. Give you so much more..."

Buffy let out a slight moan as the vampire's hands worked their magic. His cool touch felt so nice on her overly heated skin. It reminded her of Angel; the after patrol cavorting they would sneak. The vampire's touch delved deeper, moving along her back and she felt the tender touch of silken lips to her neck. 'Stop this,' she thought but couldn't act. The sensations he brought to her felt so good, she was mystified by the moment. She leaned back as Spike kissed along her flesh, moving slowly aside, coming around until his lips brushed along hers. The Slayer froze in place, unsure of what to do. It was so nice to feel someone against her, wanting her. Spike deepened the kiss, sucking her lips as he leaned into her, driving her to join in. Buffy gasped as she felt his cool hand slip up her shirt and rest on her breast. She couldn't take it anymore; it felt so good. Buffy gave in, biting at the sensually frigid lips of the vampire seeking to unveil her lust.

Spike's lips spread into a devious smile as he lowered her toward the floor, slipping over her to take control of the embrace. He couldn't care less if the Watcher showed now. Buffy was his. He rocked his hips into her, pressing his stiffening arousal into her as his tongue sought entry into her mouth. She tasted so fresh, like a newborn. Spike had to hold back the urge to bury his eager fangs into her pale flesh.

Buffy's eyes squeezed shut as the vampire's teeth scraped her skin. This was so wrong but she couldn't stop herself. She just wanted someone to want her and Spike wanted her. His lips moved down her neck to her chest as she felt his fingers slip into her jeans. Buffy's eyes opened wide as the vampire's fingers found their destination and she moaned with pleasure. Her head fell back and her eyes glimpsed a dark figure standing in the open doorway. It took a moment for her eyes to focus and she gasped as Giles face became clear in her vision, sobering instantly with the display of his wounded expression. Buffy's mind froze with panic as Spike continued his explorations, completely oblivious to the intruder.

Giles distressed eyes changed to a cold stare that fell to the floor and he lowered his head.

"What's going on?" Dawn came up behind the shattered Watcher and he took her arm, leading her away as he shut the door to the unimaginable sight.

Part 5...