Something Beautiful
written by Sandra Pascoe

Rating: FRT
Spoilers: Some S7, set post S7.
Summary: A Watcher and A Slayer.
Thanks: A big thank you to Patty and Julia... two wonderful betas who took the bull by the horns and betad this thing. Couldn't have done it without you!
Author's Notes: Hey all ...little fic for you ...*grins*. It's sickly sweet- you might need a bucket
Feedback Author: Sandra Pascoe
Author's Website: Realm Of The Tweedy Book Guy

Giles leaned against the gravestone, folded his arms…waited…and watched. He looked deceptively relaxed and the young woman quirked an eyebrow at him before closing her eyes and breathing deeply.

"That’s it," whispered Giles, not sure whether she could hear him, "use the power of the Slayer…be one with it…let it guide you…"

Giles smiled as he noted her muscles loosen…her arms hanging limply by her sides…the wooden stake held slackly in one hand. Her breathing shallowed and, thought Giles, she looked like a study in concentrated relaxation. His eyes momentarily left her to glance around the silent graveyard…HER graveyard, he thought. Within weeks of them arriving in Cleveland, she’d claimed this as hers. This was where she would patrol…she brooked no arguments…she’d made her mind up and that was that.

Giles smiled as he remembered those first few weeks…all of them desperate to put the past behind them and start again. Each slowly finding their feet…dealing with both the mundane and the extraordinary as if they were one and the same. It was about coping…about trying to build something new. Buffy learning to enjoy life once more…Xander mourning Anya…Willow and Kennedy amicably splitting and going their own way…Dawn somehow managing to support each and every one of them.

Giles had fallen into a routine…trying to stop those old thoughts from rearing their ugly heads. He tried to stop himself remembering the past so much…remembering the hurt…being shoved unceremoniously aside…watching his Slayer slide into darkness and not being able to do a thing about it. Of course, everyone else moving on didn’t help. Seeing Xander so competent…so supportive. Willow dragging information from the computer before Giles had a chance to reach for a book. Dawn and Buffy slowly forming a quite formidable team. Even the potentials were standing on their own feet. Giles was so immersed in sorting out the mess left behind by the destruction of the Watcher’s Council that he rarely had time for much else. He started to feel like an outsider again…like he didn’t belong. They had their own lives now…and Giles found himself keeping his distance...unable to put the hurt and pain of the past few months behind him quite so easily. Then everything suddenly changed. She’d approached him one day…tentatively…disturbing his reading to ask if he would patrol with her. He’d merely smiled and nodded, hiding the joy that rushed through him. She’d grinned happily and hauled him to his feet, not giving him a chance to argue or change his mind…as if I would, he thought ruefully.

The two of them had quickly developed a routine…falling into it so easily that Giles sometimes found himself remembering a more innocent time…a time when patrolling with a Slayer was like second nature. But Cleveland was different than Sunnydale. They had time here. There seemed no rush and Giles found himself instinctively offering suggestions during fights…suggestions that weren’t laughed off or ignored…suggestions that were invariably taken and followed. A brief whisper…a short comment…that was all it took now. They grew close…spending time in one another’s company when not patrolling…the touches…the glances…even finishing each other’s sentences.

One night, after patrol, she’d crawled into his bed and they’d simply held each other until sleep came. It was a natural extension to their relationship…it became a regular thing…after patrol they’d share a bed. For a while that’s all they did, neither wanting to take the ultimate step until completely sure...until the questions each of them had were answered. Then one night she’d looked up at him, licking her lips slightly. Giles had looked into the eyes gazing at him and suddenly felt that he’d come home. THIS was where he belonged…here…with her. They made love slowly…savouring every touch…every feeling…every sensation. A gentle exploration…each delighting in eliciting responses from the other until both were swept along by passion and came clutching onto one other. Giles had lain awake afterwards, cradling her, marvelling at how his whole life had seemed to be preparing him for this…preparing him for HER. It was as though he had been carved, sculpted, moulded by experience, by life in order to be ready for her. Accordingly, to Giles, she was made for him. She delighted him, annoyed him, aggravated him, baited him, teased him, loved him, cared for him. A Watcher and a Slayer, Giles had pondered as he drifted off to sleep, a perfect combination.

A sudden flurry of movement dragged Giles’ thoughts back to the present. He glanced up, barely in time, to see her hand stab out and embed the wooden stake unerringly into a newly risen vampire’s heart. The vampire exploded in a shower of dust and she skipped back, a smile fluttering briefly across her face before she dropped into her fighting stance once more. Giles found himself once again impressed by her economy of movement and he smiled as he recalled a familiar phrase: "plunge and move on…"

She saw the smile on his face and couldn’t resist grinning back. Every time he looked at her she felt as though her heart would burst out of her chest. I don’t think I’ve ever loved…or been loved so completely, she thought…and who would have guessed it would have been HIM? Giles started walking towards her and she dropped out of her fighting stance. Looks like another night is almost over. She watched him fondly, marvelling at how this easily confident persona he cast was in direct contrast with the nervous and stuffy personality she’d previously encountered. An "old fashioned duffus"…that’s what she’d called him when he had nervously questioned her about her reasons for wanting him…about her sexuality. Kennedy grinned…what a conversation THAT was. She’d seen a flicker of recognition in his eyes when she had told him that "you fall in love with a person, Giles…not with a sex" and that had intrigued her. Giles refused to be drawn however and had merely smiled…a wicked smile that had caused her knees to almost give way. That, together with his comment of "you’re telling me that we’re all capably bisexual then" had not only delighted her but increased her curiosity. He had neatly talked away from the subject and she’d forgotten all about it in her concern when he’d mentioned telling the others about their new-found relationship. At her request, they told Willow first…away from the others…and her reaction had surprised both of them. Willow had burst into peals of laughter, told them they were both hopeless at keeping secrets and said that Kennedy was "doing a me in reverse". After that, bringing their relationship into the open had been much more painless that she’d anticipated.

"That’s enough for tonight, love," Giles’ voice cut into her thoughts and she grinned and looked up.

"Gonna escort me home, duffus?"

Giles rolled his eyes and slipped an arm around her waist. "Annoying creature," he murmured, dropping a kiss on the top of her head.

"So tell me," said Kennedy as they walked from the graveyard. "You said that Watchers and Slayers are the perfect combo…" she paused for effect and leaned into him slightly. "So didn’t you and Buffy ever…do the wild thing?"

Giles raised his eyebrows. "We most certainly did not. Buffy is a very dear friend…and more…" Giles trailed off as he caught sight of Kennedy’s grin. "You are a very evil woman."

Kennedy giggled and snuggled closer, sighing happily. Giles slowed his pace slightly, wanting to savour these moments…just the two of them…alone…happy. He sent a silent thank you to the powers that be and tightened his grip around her waist slightly.

They walked home slowly…two people…silhouetted by streetlights. An ordinary couple…going for a midnight stroll. Ordinary? Not quite, thought Giles, but in this strange world you have to find something beautiful and hang onto it. And that’s what we have…something beautiful.