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How I Spent My Summer Vacation

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Summary: During the summer with her father after her first year in Sunnydale, Buffy took a trip to another world.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Literature > Fantasy > Wheel of TimeCherryTigerFR1513,030058012 Aug 102 Aug 10No
TITLE: When She Came Back (Summer Vacation #1)
SERIES: How I Spent My Summer Vacation
AUTHOR: Cherry
RATING: PG-13
PAIRING: B/W, B/W/X
SUMMARY: During the summer with her father, Buffy took a trip to another
world.
ARCHIVE: http://www.thekeep.org/~cherry/
SPOILERS: All of Season One, and eventually parts of Season Two.
FEEDBACK: Yes, please.
DISCLAIMER: I do not own any of the characters contained here-in,
from Buffy or Wheel of Time.

"You're Amish! You can't fight back... 'cause you're Amish! I
mock you with my ice cream cone, Amish guy!"

"Witness." Willow crossed her eyes, looking down at her nose.
"Now my nose is cold."

"Let me get that for ya." Xander grinned as he started to lean
in, about to lick the ice cream off her nose.

"Xander!"

Unrepentantly, Xander said, "I'm sorry, I can't help myself. Your
nose looks so tasty."

He gently wiped her nose off, then found himself looking into her
eyes. The impulse to kiss her struck him, and he nearly did so... before
noticing the vampire standing on the other side of the wall behind Willow.

"Willow, get out of here!"

Xander tried to fight the vampire, struggling and quickly losing,
when suddenly a hand came out of nowhere, and yanked the vampire off him.
There was a blur of punches, then Buffy knocked him to the ground.

"Hi guys!" She paused to stake the vampire. "Miss me?"

*****

"So, what about you? How was your summer? Did you slay anything?"

Buffy visibly flinched. "Not a single vampire."

"Well, you haven't lost your touch. That vampire..."

"Yeah. Felt really nice to just beat something up again."

Xander grinned, then frowned slightly as he noticed something
about Buffy. "I like your hair... uh.. how did you get it to grow so
long over the summer?"

Buffy tossed her head, sending all the small braids swaying, most
of which reached down to the small of her back. "Seemed longer to my
hair, I suppose."

Willow stopped, and turned towards the cemetery they were walking
by. "We buried the Master for you. Giles did this ritual and we poured
holy water and everything."

Buffy casually looked where Willow was pointing and shrugged.
"That's cool. I was secretly wondering if he'd want them as a
conversation piece."

"Not the kind of conversation I'd want to have." Neither girl
disagreed with him.

*****

Hank lifted a suitcase up on the bed, and opened it while Joyce
continued to pull clothing out of another one. "This should be the last
one."

Joyce slowly lifted out a full length green silk dress, with a
slightly confused expression. The dress itself looked sheer and clingy,
and clearly not something a teenager would be expected to own. "Hank, why
does she have all these dresses? I've never seen her wear one at all, and
some of these..."

Hank shook his head. "I have no idea. All I know is, I can't
find a bill for any of them, and they all appeared when I got back from
that three day trip I had to take. It was very strange. Before that she
was very distant. Existing, but not really there. Then when I got back,
it was like she was suddenly back to herself. And she had all this
clothing I'd never seen before."

"There are no tags in them either. I just don't understand...
these seams weren't even machine sewed. I think these dresses were
hand-sewn, every single one. Not to mention that the embroidered dresses
are simply amazing, and so many styles and colors...."

"Joyce, that's not even the strangest thing. I swear her hair
grew a foot longer during that three day trip."

*****

Buffy walked up to her small group of friends, and tried to follow
the conversation about vampires. It went on until the bell rang, then
Giles said something to her, and she agreed to whatever it was, walking
off as her brain finished processing his statement. There was a moment
when she was confused, wondering what a man could possibly teach her, when
she finally recalled that he was her watcher. Even so, it was unlikely he
had anything to add to what she knew.

*****

Buffy leaned down to pull Giles back to his feet. "I'm so sorry!
I really thought you were going to duck that time." Giles mumbled and
nodded, flopping into one of the library chairs with a groan of relief.
Buffy collected both quarterstaves, and put them back in the cage. "So,
how did I do?"

Giles wheezed a few more times, catching his breath. "You clearly
have not been slacking off this summer. You're more focused than ever.
Or to put it in Xander's terms, Vampires beware."

Buffy took a sip of water. "Yay me."

*~*~*~*~*

She sleepily nuzzled into the warm body next to her, her arm
draped across his chest. The stillness was shattered less than a minute
later when shrieking little girl burst through the door, left ajar just
for that reason, yelling, "Mommy mommy, daddy daddy, get up get up!"

Buffy groaned as her warm pillow of a husband rolled away long
enough to pick up and deposit the squirming youngster between them. Tiny
little hands started poking and patting at her face until she opened her
eyes at last. "Morning Dawnie."

"YAY!" Dawn, the three year old daughter, made her way over her
still groggy mother and jumped to the floor running off downstairs.

Buffy rolled onto her back, sighing as she heard the chuckle next
to her. "Angel, did you have to tell her about the picnic last night?
It's Saturday, I wanted to sleep in."

She wandered downstairs sometime later, feeling more herself after
a quick shower and a session with the toothbrush and mouthwash.
Amazingly, Dawn was already dressed and Angel must have even cleaned up
the kitchen, because there was no evidence of Dawn's messy eating habits.
It didn't take too long to pack the lunch, but before she knew it, it was
time to go already.

Time seemed flexible that afternoon, as before she knew it, Buffy
found herself sitting with her two closest friends, Willow and Xander, and
her husband Angel, on a blanket in the grass in the park. It was a
perfect Sunnydale sunny day, which Angel was finally able to appreciate
ever since the Shanshu thingie happened. Her daughter Dawn, and Willow
and Xander's son Jesse, playing happily together. It seemed to be a
variant of tag, which quickly wore them out.

"Buffy?"

She blinked, then focused on her best friend. "Will?"

"You seem distracted today. What's up?"

Buffy glanced at Angel, who smiled back at her. She picked up his
hand, and looked at her oldest friends in Sunnydale. "I wish Giles and
Mom could be here." She paused for a moment. "But I'm sure they're
enjoying the cruise. I've got an announcement to make, and I wanted you
guys to hear it first. I'm pregnant."

Slayer reflexes were the only thing that could have caught
Willow's lunge to hug her, so without them Buffy was quickly knocked
backwards, laughing in surprise. "Oh my god that's so fantastic! Xander,
I want another one too!"

Buffy's attention was suddenly ripped from the celebration as an
arched silver doorway appeared a dozen yards away. She stared at it for a
moment, finding the way to her feet without realizing.

The soft questioning tone from her husband caught her before she
could step towards it. "Buffy?" She turned and looked around. A
husband, a beautiful child, another on the way. Her two best friends,
married and with a child of their own. It was the perfect life... it
just wasn't hers.

"I'm sorry. I have to go." Buffy turned and ran to the doorway,
stepping through without pausing.

*~*~*~*~*

Buffy lurched up in bed, panting for air. She stared at the
window, waiting for a moment, then Angel's face appeared.

"Mind if I come in?"

Buffy sighed. "Sure, come in. Don't mind me, just reliving an
old... nightmare."

Angel stepped into her room, and leaned against the window frame.
"How are you, nightmares aside?"

"Peachy. What's the disaster?"

"I'm sorry, I wish I had better news." Buffy just shrugged in
response. "It's the Anointed One. He's been gathering forces in town,
and I don't know why."

"Oh. So, nothing major."

Angel frowned. "You don't sound concerned."

"That would be because I'm not. I'm ready for a little vamp
staking action anyhow."

"Don't underestimate the Anointed One just because he looks like
a child. He has power over the rest of them. They'll do anything for
him."

"Yay him. And here I thought all vampy minions would make with
the obedience on command. So is that it? A vague warning that someone is
doing something not of the good?"

Angel turned and slipped back out the window. "So very sorry to
have disturbed your sleep. I missed you."

Buffy lay her head down, then sighed. She sat up to respond, but
Angel was already gone. "I should really ask Giles about that Shanshu
thing."

*****

"We haven't really had a chance to talk since you got back, honey.
How was your summer?"

Buffy stared out the window, watching the world zoom by. "Boring
at first. Followed by bewildering. Then perfectly normal."

Joyce pulled up in front of the school, and watched as Buffy
climbed out. "Have a good day."

Buffy smiled back. "No doubt."

*****

Buffy pulled two books out of her locker, looked at them, and
shoved one back.

"Angel stopped by? Wow. Was there... Well, I mean, was it having
to do with kissing?"

Buffy smiled at Willow. "No, there were no smoochies."

Xander butted in. "How about groping? Was there any groping?"

"Jeeze you guys, hormone central here. It was just the 4 AM
VampReport. Remember vampires, pointy teeth, walk by night, don't like
crosses?"

"Oh. What did he say?"

"Anointed One. Yadda yadda."

Xander spun around. "Did you just yadda yadda sex?" He winced
when both girls smacked him and walked past. He hurried to catch up, "Oh,
hey, did you guys hear that Cibo Matto's gonna be at the
Bronze tonight?"

Willow's eyes lit up. "Cibo Matto? They're playing?"

"No Willow, they're gonna be clog dancing."

Willow sounded slightly confused as she responded. "Cibo Matto
can clog dance?" After Buffy smacked Xander again, she mumbled, "Oh,
sarcasm, right."

"We should attend, no?"

Cordelia stepped in front of the trio, looking them up and down
dismissively. "Oh, look, it's the Three Musketeers."

Buffy gasped softly, as to her eyes Cordelia suddenly took on a
new appearance. She tuned out the rest of the conversation, simply gazing
at her in surprise until Cordelia addressed her directly, finishing a
conversation about slaying, "So your secret's safe with me."

"Yeah. Secret. Cordy... there's something... oh, nevermind."
Buffy rushed off, leaving the other three behind, and confused.

Cordelia was the first to recover. "What is her damage?"

*****

"Ever since she got back, she's been a little different."

Xander shrugged. "She's always been different."

"Did you see how she was looking at Cordy today? It was almost
like she pitied her."

"Well, we should ask. She said she's coming, right?"

"I think so." Willow stared into the ice cream, then dipped her
nose into it. While Xander soon noticed, it wasn't the reaction she'd
been hoping for.

*****

A few minutes later, Buffy arrived at the Bronze, making her way
in. To no great surprise, Angel made his way over immediately. She
sighed to herself as they greeted each other, knowing her snippiness the
night before had put that expression on his face.

"I can't help thinking I've done something to make you angry. And
that bothers me more than I'd like."

"It's not you. I just had a realization this summer, and a
reminder last night. The only way you and I could ever be together is
if..." She broke off. "I don't think we can." She stepped around him,
and walked to Willow's and Xander's table.

Angel turned to follow her with his eyes. "If...?"

He continued to watch as Buffy and her friends spoke a few words,
then Willow looked his way, saying something. Buffy glanced back at him,
then shrugged, and turned to Xander, dragging him onto the dance floor.
Two dances later, Buffy dragged Willow out to join them.

Unnoticed by him, Cordelia left the club alone not much later.
She didn't make it back to her car.

*****

Buffy walked up behind Giles as Xander suddenly interrupted him.
"That's a very interesting point about trout, you just brought up now."

She ignored Giles stumbling over trying to hide the topic of
conversation. "The Master's grave is empty. I had a hunch last night,
and checked it out. Vacant."

There were the not unexpected reactions. "I think they're going
to try and bring him back. Can they do that?"

"Well, there a-are revivication rituals, b-but I've certainly never
heard of one being successful."

"Damn. Jerk better not kill me again." Buffy whirled around and
stalked past the principal coming the other way.

Snyder gave the others still sitting in the lounge area a look.
"I believe the rest of you have class as well? And someone here has a
job?"

Willow gathered her books and left, commenting to Xander once out
of range. "I told you she was being all slayery. Giles agrees with me."

"Yeah Will, but he thinks it's a good thing."

*****

Buffy sat crosslegged on the table as Giles read through the book.
She glanced up at the window shattered, and snagged the rock out of the
air. After checking the bracelet, she said, "Hey, this is Cordelia's."
She opened the note and read it, "'Come to the Bronze before it opens, or
we make her a meal.'"

"They're gonna cook her dinner?" Xander ducked his head. "I'll
pretend I didn't say that."

"What do we do?"

Buffy shrugged and hopped down. "I go to the Bronze, I save the
girl."

"Ok, very bad plan."

"I agree."

Buffy grabbed an extra stake from the cage. "You guys keep
researching. I'll go spring this way obvious trap and be back before you
know it."

Willow jumped up as soon as Buffy was gone. "SEE!? It's like
she thinks she's indestructable now."

*****

She stopped walking as soon as she felt him, and turned with a
cheerful smile. "Hey. Good timing. Wanna bust some heads?"

Angel simply stared for a moment. "Happy to help."

They walked into the club, spying a girl crying in the corner.
Buffy glanced at her once, then looked around. "You're not Cordelia."

The vampire turned around, grinning evilly. "Cordelia couldn't
make it."

A few seconds later the vampire was pinned to the floor.
"Shouldn't there be more of you?"

She glanced at Angel, then shoved the girl over to him. "Watch
her. Don't kill her just yet."

She ran out of the club, actually starting to worry now.

*****

"Oh god, Xander! Where are the others?"

Xander struggled to sit up as Buffy helped him. "I don't know.
Giles said the ritual was... they needed people who were close to the
Master. Physically close. When he..."

"The ones who were with the Master when he died."

"Giles, Willow, Cordelia..."

"Ms. Calender. We need to find out where."

Not more than ten minutes later, Buffy was crossing her arms in
front of the female vamp, Xander and Angel looking on. "Xander, could you
get me about a gallon of holy water and a syringe? She'll talk. Oh,
she'll talk."

The vampire was spilling everything she knew before he even
reached the door.

*****

Buffy slipped into the warehouse as one of the vampires addressed
the others, ranting on about life and death and blood and hell. As she
saw it, the usual.

In a panicky voice, Xander whispered, "Buffy, we gotta hurry."
He reached out and shook her arm when she simply stood there at first,
staring at her four friends hanging down limply. "Buffy!"

"Oh god, Willow... Xander, Angel. Get them out of here."

Angel nodded. "We'll need a distraction."

Buffy's response was cold. "I can do that."

"What are you gonna do?"

"Kill them all. That should distract them."

She slipped around and up behind one of the vampires as the ritual
continued. Giving Xander and Angel enough time to get in place, she then
staked the vampire in front of her, the dust falling away to reveal
herself. The floor quickly turned chaotic, as most of the remaining
vampires attacked her. She drew them away, letting the head vampire
escort the child-like Anointed one away. Her hands flashed, and all four
fell into dust a moment later.

"Your day is done, girl. I'll grind you into a sticky paste, and
hear you beg before I smash in your face." Buffy looked up to see the
head vampire had returned, and was lifting a sledgehammer above his head,
aimed in her direction.

"That's not even a good rhyme." Buffy stared at him as he ran in
her direction, lifting her hand up when he was still a dozen feet away,
and a jet of flame leapt from her outstretched hand, engulfing the
vampire's body, burning it to ash in seconds.

Up above her, Xander and Willow stared in shock. They hardly even
noticed Cordelia waking up to look down at Buffy with them, simply staring
as Buffy walked over to the skeleton.

"Hey, why is Buffy glowing?" Willow glanced at Cordelia quickly,
then looked back to see the skeleton crumble away into dust under Buffy's
intense stare.

"Glowing?"

*****

"I'm telling you, she was glowing. Really brightly too. Like she
was full of light or something. And she did something to that skeleton.
I'll bet she's a mutant who can channel sunlight!"

Jenny gave the oblivious cheerleader a skeptical look. "Somehow I
doubt that."

Across the quad, Buffy walked along with her watcher in another
direction. "It's kinda a long story."

"You accidently traveled to another world, and while there studied
a form of magic, eventually finding your way home months later only to
discover less than a day had passed."

"But can be summarized pretty easily. Hey, I promised I'll
explain everything after classes. And I will."

"I look forward to hearing this." Giles watched her head off to
class, and smiled to himself. "Never a dull moment around this girl."


-- End Summer Vacation #1

The End?

You have reached the end of "How I Spent My Summer Vacation" – so far. This story is incomplete and the last chapter was posted on 2 Aug 10.

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