Rupert Giles (british_watcher) wrote in chosen_nomore,
Rupert Giles

What's Going On?

Who: Giles, Buffy, and Faith
Where: Buffy, Xander, Willow, and Dawn's Place
When: After the whole 'accidentally killing a slayer' debacle
Status: Complete :)

It had been a few hours since Xander, Faith, and Buffy had left to go and retrieve the runaway Slayer, and Giles was starting to get worried. Both Willow and Dawn had left to do who knows what, and they had left Giles in this large home where he wasn't comfortable or familiar with to wait and find out what happened.

He had been sitting on a sofa when he finally heard a car pull up outside. He stood up and walked over to the window to see who it was. He hoped that it was at least someone that he knew, after all. He wasn't sure if he would be able to explain himself and what he was doing here if someone else showed up.

He was relieved to see that it was someone that he knew, but a little concerned to see that it was only Faith who got out of the car. He wondered where Xander and Buffy were. This was worrisome. He opened the door to let Faith inside. "Where is everyone else? What happened?"
Tags: buffy, faith, giles
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Faith pulled up to the new Bon Temps headquarters that Buffy managed to score. She had tried to clean up as much of Xander's blood from the back seat as she could. Blood still gave her too many flashbacks that she wished would just disappear. But she knew it had to be done. It was hard when all you had was soap and water.

She sat in the car once she pulled up. Her thoughts were on how exactly they were going to deal with this. She and Buffy weren't on good terms - when were they ever? - but the more Faith thought about it, the more she realized the two of them had more and more in common than Buffy would ever admit.

Still, the blond Slayer had come to Faith's rescue. Sure, Faith didn't believe Buffy killed the other Slayer FOR her. But at the same time, Buffy had still risked her life for Faith.

She got out of the car and approached the front door when it opened and a worried Giles let her in.

Faith shut the door behind her. "We got problems, Giles," she told him. "Xander's in the hospital. We found the rogue, but she decided to pull a knife on us. Xander got the sharp end of the knife in the scuffle. He's okay, though. B's in the hospital with him."

She turned to him. "There... was an accident, though. With the rogue. She's dead."
He wasn't too shocked to hear that something had happened. They would have all been back now if things had went normal, possibly either with the rogue Slayer or coming in telling him that she had escaped or not been there by the time they got there. It was much more dire than he had imagined, though. "So, he's going to be OK?" Giles asked. A part of him regretted putting this on them immediately because of what had happened. If the girl had lashed out, then she was apparently more unstable than he or Faith had realized.

And then it was like a ton of bricks had hit him. "She's...she's dead?" If she was attacking, then they had to defend themselves...but they had come here in an effort to help her, or possibly save her from herself. This was pretty much the opposite of what they had intended. He pulled off his glasses and rubbed his eyes for a moment, sinking back down onto the sofa.

He looked up at her after a moment. "You have to tell me what happened." There was no longer a tribunal to report to when a Slayer died in action, or if a Slayer killed another person (he guessed that either Faith or Buffy did the killing by accident). For that he couldn't help but feel a little relieved. It was just something that they had to deal with now, and hopefully they would be able to do so.
Faith nodded at Giles' question about Xander. "Yeah, sounded like he lost a bit of blood but they got 'em all flushed back in," she stated, running her fingers through her hair. She sighed and sat down in the nearest chair.

She looked up when Giles confirmed he had heard what she said about the rogue being dead. Her eyes shifted to the ground a moment, hearing him remove his glasses. It was a sign he was perturbed by the news, which was a big fat understatement.

Faith sat back. "We cornered her in the motel room we tracked her down with. It was stupid - we shouldn't have agreed to let Xander be the one to knock on her goddamn door, but the guy's pretty insistent on helpin' so we didn't think much of it. Anyway, the guise only worked for like one fucking minute before she knew the game was up and she attacked Xander with the knife. It got 'em in the arm."

She rubbed her own arm a moment. "Then I came in and wrestled with her a little and she got the better of me for a split second. Next thing I knew, Buffy had tackled her offa me and when they came to a stop, the knife was stickin' outta the rogue."
Giles was glad to hear that, despite his injury, Xander sounded like he was going to be OK. Despite helping Willow some with the problem with Dawn, he couldn't help but wonder if things would be better if he hadn't brought this stuff here at all. Maybe then Xander wouldn't have been attacked and the other Slayer might still be alive. Of course, it could be him sitting in the hospital now, but he would never know that now.

He listened to her as she started to describe what had happened. It seemed to him that the Slayer might have been extra edgy when they had approached her. He wasn't sure why they had let Xander go in before them, although he remembered the boy (man, he was a man now) wanting to be rather helpful in all situations. While he was more than capable of defending himself, a nervous and worried Slayer with a knife was not something that he should have been throwing himself against.

And it was Buffy who had done the actual killing. "It sounds was an accident," Giles said after thinking on it for a moment. "After she attacked, I'm not sure it could have come out much better." Not that he had wanted this to happen. Oh no, not at all. The girl had been willing to flee them at every turn, but he had hoped that, once they actually got to her, she would be willing or even wanting to talk.

That hadn't been the case at all, though, it seemed. "Are you OK? Did she hurt you in any way?" he asked Faith.
"Like I said, we didn't know she had a fuckin' knife," Faith stated, leaning forward and resting her elbows on her thighs a moment, letting her hands dangle. "If we did, we coulda maybe handled it better so nothin' like this could've happened. Xander wouldn't've been sent to the damn hospital..."She shook her head.

Glancing up at him, she nodded. "Yeah, I'm cool, Giles. My pride might've been bruised by lettin' a baby Slayer get the best of me, but other than that, think I was the lucky one outta the three of us."

Faith sat up straight again, running her fingers through her long, dark locks. She looked back at Giles, right into his eyes. "I think B's messed in the head because of all this, G.Think she needs someone to talk to before she jumps off the deep end. I know how that's like, and then some. I think she needs ya'."
"Anything can 'get the best of you' if the situation goes badly enough," Giles reminded her. "Sometimes all it can come down to is a lucky shot being gotten." Unfortunately, no matter how much either Faith or Buffy trained, someone could always get a lucky shot when their guard was let down just a little, or even without them letting their guard down. That's why it was called a 'lucky shot' after all.

"Me?" He hated that him and Buffy were so estranged that he could barely picture himself talking to her about such a thing happening right now. "Do you think she'd even be willing to talk to me about this?" She might not. She might just push him away and say that she was fine, or just say that she didn't want to talk about this with him. He didn't want her to go down the same route as Faith had done, though, because they hadn't talked to her properly.

He looked away for a moment, still thinking all of this over. "Maybe she would do better to talk to someone who has already gone through it before?" he suggested. If anyone knew what was going through her head right now, it would be Faith. She had been in this exact situation, actually. She had killed someone who hadn't been a demon or vampire of some type. Maybe she would be better for this than he would.
Faith took his statement in about anything getting the best of you. It was true, but sometimes, you have to look back and wonder if things could've gone just a little differently. She leaned back in the chair, arms behind her head and watched the emotions run through Giles' face at the mention of Buffy needing him at the moment.

She had a feeling he would try and get Buffy to talk to Faith. It seemed logical but right now, Faith didn't think logic had much to do with the situation. "You and me both know she ain't gonna like what I have to say. At least, she won't take my word for it. She'll hear me out, I think me and B got passed that, but I don't think she'll listen. We're still in the stage where we think the other is just tryin' to be 'right' rather than... well, just bein' right, ya' know?"

She leaned over and nudged his arm with her knuckles. "She needs to hear this shit from you, G. Despite everythin', I think you two are a true team. Ain't nothin' gonna change that, even though you think they have. What she needs to hear needs to come from you... For both your sakes."
He sighed when Faith pointed out that Buffy wouldn't want to listen to anything that she had to say. She was right, unfortunately. Buffy didn't always take advice or even offers to talk well from the people that would help her the most. She was kind of...hard headed like that, unfortunately. While he had liked her strong will, sometimes it could get in the way of, well, her listening to reason.

He pinched the bridge of his nose when Faith explained that him and Buffy were a true team. "We may have once been a 'true team' as you say, and we'll always be connected, but the trust that we once had is gone, on both sides. I made my mistakes and she made hers."

This might be the opportunity for them to start to rebuild the bridge a bit, though. He stood up. "I will talk to her, though. She might need to hear this from me, but I just hope that she's willing to listen."
Faith smiled when he actually took her advice. It was sad to hear that whatever had happened between them still hadn't been mended. Buffy might think Faith would revel in this discord between them. Once upon a time, sure, she probably would have. But that was all behind her and since running around with Giles for a few months now, really, all she wanted was his respect.

Which she pretty much got.

She knew it, though. She knew no matter how many years could pass, Giles would always be Buffy's Watcher. And it didn't make Faith jealous at all.

Faith sat back in the chair. "Glad you're listenin' to me for once, G," she said with a smirk. "It'll do ya' both good. It's rough. Me? I did the wrong thing and lied to ya' when I killed Wilkins' assistant. That's how rough it can get." Not that Buffy would ever lie to push the blame off of her.

"Good luck," she told him, sincerely.
He actually knew that she would no longer revel in the animosity between him and Buffy. He knew that she was a lot better than Buffy and the others gave her credit for now. Of course, they would have to get to know her better and not automatically assume that she was there to start a fight or something. That would actually go a long way between him and Buffy getting along better at this point.

"Luck is what I'm going to need to get her to listen to me now," he admitted. He wasn't entirely blameless in all of this, either. The mistake he had made listening to Principal Wood in trying to get rid of Spike. It had made it so that she would never want to listen to a thing he said again, even if his heart had been in the right place with worry about her. Of course, he had been proven wrong in Spike being the one to save them all with that pendant he had been wearing.

He smiled up at Faith. "At least you are here to be the voice of reason between all of us." Something that none of them would have expected to come from Faith, but time had showed all of them that they couldn't exactly have any expectations or assumptions about anyone. It would do them a lot of good to remember that as well.
After some rousing card games with Xander, Buffy was feeling a little better. Not that she should, but he had definitely lifted her spirits . Especially since she felt guilty about getting him hurt. Again.

Of course, the dead slayer still weighed heavily on her mind. Still way too heavily. She pulled into the driveway of their home and didn't care that her parking job had been a little skewed. She spotted Giles' vehicle still there. She clenched her jaw, ready to climb back in and drive somewhere so she didn't have to deal with him.

She knew there had to be a bar around here somewhere… She sighed. She had faced Xander and had faced zillions of scolding and varying disapproving expressions from Giles. So, she should just go in.

Buffy opened the door quietly, hoping no one would notice her. But, Giles and Faith were sitting on the couch in the living room having a conversation. Probably about her. She stuffed her keys in her jacket pocket and stepped into the living room, arms folding around herself. "Hi," she said, expressionless as she took a seat on the edge of the armchair in the living room. "I'm guessing you heard," she said, glancing at Faith for a moment before she fixed her gaze on Giles.
Giles had looked up when he heard the car pulled up, and watched as Buffy walked into the room. With a quick wave from Faith, she left the room as well, presumably to go outside, have a cigarette, and let them talk in private. He couldn't help but feel proud of her since she had come such a long way from being the young, immature girl that she had once been. Now wasn't the time to be thinking of Faith, though. Now he needed to focus on Buffy.

"Ah...yes, Faith explained to me what happened," he said to Buffy. "She told me that you were trying to keep the girl from continuing to attack Xander and to keep her from attacking Faith." Which, in his eyes, meant that it wasn't her fault.

Of course, even after all of their time apart, he could still read Buffy pretty well. He could tell that she was feeling like she should have been able to do something better, to keep that girl alive and not kill her. "Buffy, if the girl's first reaction whenever someone talks to her is to either run or attack, her fate was unfortunately sealed." They had followed her through multiple towns, and she had run each time she realized that they were there. He had hoped that they could talk her down, but, after running so many times, she may have thought they were there to attack her, or she felt that attacking them would make them leave her alone.

"Buffy...this isn't your fault," he finally said to her. "I had hoped that we could bring this girl in, but she was against us from day one. If she attacked you, then it was self defense."
Buffy watched as Faith left the room, nodding slightly to her before folding her hands in her lap. She was prepared for the scolding and disapproval of a lifetime. She waited, listening to Giles' words. But, it never came.

Even after everything, there was understanding. And even forgiveness. Her brow crinkled, not sure she wanted this reaction. Shouldn't she be punished? Shouldn't she be carted off to the nearest Watcher jail? Not that she would go willingly, but still. She just couldn't believe that everyone was taking it so well.

"It's not…my fault?" she repeated the words softly, still confused by his understanding.

"You're right," she said after a long pause. "But, I still feel just awful. I can't stop picturing what happened," she reached up and rubbed her eyes, as though that would make the image disappear. "I know she was attacking us, but she was a Slayer. I made her that way. Because I made Willow do the spell, she was forced to be a Slayer and went all nutso. Not all people can handle it…and I wanted to help her," she sighed, not intending for that all to come spilling out, but it was definitely the root of her guilt.
"No, it's not your fault, Buffy," he said, shaking his head. And yet, he could understand why she would take something like this onto her shoulders. When he had been in a similar situation, he had done the same, all but running back to the Council, wrapping himself in the traditions and layers of tweed, and pretending he was someone else. It had truthfully taken him years to have more of an understanding of what had happened and what he should feel.

"If you didn't feel awful about it, you wouldn't be human, Buffy," he pointed out to her. "Just because you were justified doesn't mean that you will necessarily feel great about what ended up happening." Especially since the girl had been made a Slayer by Buffy's decision to enact them all. "The judgment to activate all the Slayers was one that had to be made, Buffy. We wouldn't have survived with just you and Faith and a bunch of regular girls." Sad but true. The lot of them had barely survived, anyway.

"I know you wanted to help her, so did I," Giles admitted to her. "We chased her across the country in an effort to make her understand what was going on." He sighed. "Faith and I both tried to talk to her, but all she did was run some more. It wasn't that she didn't believe or even that she couldn't handle what we were telling her. She liked the idea of being strong, but wanted to use it for her own benefit."

He looked away. "She's not the first who rejected the idea of being a Slayer. She's certainly not the first to attack people." Faith wasn't even the first to do that. "Even if she had been called as a Slayer in the old way, I think her reaction would have been the same. Her reaction had nothing to do with the spell you had Willow cast, Buffy."
Buffy hated when he was right. She always did. She wanted him to be pissed at her, to give her some sort of timeout punishment. But, of course, Giles was annoyingly kind and understand. Hell, he was trying to make her feel better about killing someone.

She wondered if Faith had felt the same after Buffy tried to tell her it wasn't her fault for killing that man. But, there was a difference. Buffy cared and said so, while Faith pretended not to care. And Buffy was a bit less stubborn. So, maybe she should just accept it and move on?

Even if she did, she knew she'd still see the dead girl in her dreams. But, eventually that too would fade. The incident would become a distant memory. These thoughts filled her as Giles comforting words continued. "So, maybe it's better this way," she thought sadly. She remembered the mental patient that had become a slayer in Los Angeles and wondered if it would have been better or more merciful to end her life, instead of continue keeping her locked up for her own good.

"I guess I didn't really think of the consequences when I had Will do the spell," she said, "I just assumed, Poof! All the potentials are slayers and we'll all come together to save the world and lalala all would be right with the puppies and kittens." She sighed, "I guess I overlooked the whole potential criminally insane and mentally insane people that might be slayers."
He actually knew that she would prefer some sort of punishment, or to at least be told that she was wrong or something. For two people that had been mostly estranged from one another for a few years now, they still understood each other far too well for it to be real. Faith was right about one thing: their bond could never truly be broken. Even if they weren't able to talk to one another at any one time.

"Better may be a strong word, but it's a situation that I think would have come up if it were you, Xander, or Faith going there, or Faith and myself going there on our own," he admitted to her. He hated that this girl just wasn't properly cut out to be a Slayer. To even put it that way felt like he was dismissing it too quickly, but it was true. Every potential was not necessarily made to be a Slayer. Dana, the mental patient, had shown just how true that was before.

"Even if there was still the old line of Slayers, the line could have passed to any girl that had mental problems," Giles told her. "It's happened before. The Council would just find a way to get the girl out of wherever she was being kept and keep her on a very tight leash. It still didn't usually work out." He had grown to dislike even talking about the old Council, considering what all they did for the 'greater good.' He knew for sure that they would have tried to use Dana, or worse, just 'put her down' in an effort to get a Slayer that was more controllable and predictable.

"At the time, that was the best idea that could have been come up with." Many more people would have died if they hadn't activated all of the Slayers. None of them may have survived long enough to get out of there.
Her brow crinkled as she listened to Giles. All of this was definitely making sense. If it wasn't this Slayer having issues, then it could be another and another. And like he said, it had happened in the past, where a Slayer was called, naturally, but had too many mental issues to be a Slayer.

Buffy couldn't blame those girls. The nightmares were enough to drive anyone insane. She still had them. She still woke in a cold sweat sure that the Master was coming back and prepared to kill her all over again.

"It just sucks that the Slayer line couldn't be more selective or something," she said, "But, I guess no one can know how a person is going to turn out." She couldn't' help thinking of Faith, who had killed people, but overcome it in the end. Unfortunately, the Slayer she had killed was probably too far gone for any sort of rehabilitation.

She offered Giles a slight smile, "Thanks, Giles. I really mean that," she said. "I really don't deserve any sort of comfort for all this, but I do feel better. I hope you hang around a bit longer. I'm going to call a Scooby meeting later tonight, if you're up for it."

(OOC: We can probably call it done, unless you want to end it.)