Willow was putting away the last of the magic supplies when Giles knocked on her bedroom door. “Come in.” Willow said closing the drawer after setting several items inside.
“How'd it go?” Giles asked.
“Great, I couldn't get to Buffy. But I found Xander.” Willow said smiling. “Told him where we are and that we're okay. Though I could sense he wanted to tell me something.”
“We need to figure out what we're going to do quickly Willow.” Giles said as he began to pace the length of the room. “We not only need to return to Buffy and the others but we are also in a lot of danger here.”
“This is because of our, uh, talk last night isn't it?” Willow asked stepping in front of him. “You want to go back so we can ignore what we, what I said.”
“Willow, no.” He said reaching for her, “That's not it at all. I may not have thought we'd ever have that discussion but that doesn't mean I didn't want to have it.”
“Are you saying that you… That we could…” Willow stammered.
“Yes.” Giles said before pulling her against him and lowering his head to kiss her.
Spike stood outside Willow's door watching the scene inside. “This could make things much easier. If the witch cares for the watcher I may be able to use that weakness.” He mumbled before disappearing, couldn't risk one of the vampires spotting him and realizing he wasn't who he appeared to be.
“Did you hear someone outside the room?” Willow asked pulling away from Giles.
“No.” Giles replied, “Are we going to discuss this or pretend like it isn't happening?”
“Avoiding was my thought.” Willow said, “Giles I lo… I can't do this right now. We have to figure out our plan first.”
“Let's go to dinner tonight.” Giles suggested, “We can't work all the time.”
“Dinner? I…” Willow stammered.
“Just Dinner, maybe dance some more.”
“All right I guess.” Willow agreed. “Where are we going?”
“Mr. Price suggested a few places we might enjoy.”
“You told Price that we…” Willow said staring at the watcher.
“Wanted to go out to eat.” Giles finished, “Don't worry so much. Now we are supposed to meet Melanie. Shall we?” He finished extending his arm to Willow.
“Let's go learn some spells.” Willow said smiling as she took his hand following him out of the room.
“So that's all we know.” Buffy said watching Amy closely. She still wasn't happy about needing the witches help, but if Althenea couldn't do anything Amy could be their only hope.
“I'll speak to the coven, but honestly I don't know of any spell to bring someone from the future.” Althenea admitted.
“Not even if they belong here?” Xander asked obviously grasping at straws now. His friend was in danger and they needed to get her back, or at least warn her.
“No. But as I said I'll contact the coven right away.” Althenea said standing up and heading to the door. Dawn following behind her.
“I don't know how to bring her back, but I may know how you can contact her.” Amy said after hearing the door closed.
“Amy if this is a prank or…” Xander said not trusting her any more than Buffy did.
“It's not. I'm not even sure it'll work.” Amy looked briefly at Xander before returning her attention to Buffy. “One of you will have to do it. It has to be someone she'll let into her mind.”
“I'll do it.” Kennedy volunteered.
“You sure?” Buffy asked Kennedy, then to Amy, “Is it dangerous?”
“Not really. Just keep in mind you'll be in Willow's mind. I don't know what you'll see. She obviously has some dark stuff in there. And she won't be able to communicate with you.”
“Like when she talked to me.” Xander said.
“Yeah.” Amy agreed. “Possibly the same spell, I'm not sure. But this will only work if she's still in Sunnydale.”
“We'll take that chance.” Buffy said. “Can we do it tonight?”
“I'll come back in a few hours.” Amy agreed.
“Let's discuss what you need to tell her then.” Buffy said to Kennedy. “Let's talk in the kitchen.
“So Giles, do you think Melanie's spell will work? Can we really trap the First inside the Hellmouth, which I thought was closed anyway?” Willow said sitting across from the former watcher as they waited for their food to arrive.
Giles took a sip of his wine before answering. “I think it could work, yes. But it's dangerous; it uses a great deal of magic, some of it dark. Are you sure you can do this?”
“No.” Willow said quietly. “If I… Giles I don't want to endanger these people. If I… If… Giles if you think I might hurt these people will you…”
“Yes.” Giles answered. “I'll make sure they're safe. Though there doesn't seem to have been any activity from the First since we arrived.”
“I know, but it's happened before.” Willow said taking a sip of her drink. “Doesn't mean it's not still here. I am worried about Abigail. She's new, and it's been picking off slayers pretty quickly.”
“It's her job, you know that Willow. We'll protect her the best we can but…”
“I know but, I wish there was a way to lure the First without involving her.” Willow sighed and smiled at the waiter who had just arrived at the table.
“Thank you.” Giles said as the waiter set the last plate on the table, and waited for him to walk away before responding to Willow.
“We can look into it tomorrow.” Giles picked up his fork and began eating.
“Are you sure you want to do this?” Buffy asked Kennedy, as she lit the last of the candles. “Xander or Dawn could do it. Faith is still here, so I could do it if you want.”
“No, I'll do it.” Kennedy insisted. “I'm prepared for what I could find.”
“Are you guys ready?” Amy asked coming in the room. “You know what you're supposed to tell her?” She glanced at Kennedy.
“Yeah, She's in danger, the First is after her now, not the slayers or the Hellmouth.” Kennedy said, “And we all miss her. Oh, Giles is in danger too.”
“'Kay, let's get started.” Amy said entering the circle of candles with Kennedy. “Don't forget you can talk to her, but you probably won't be able to hear her.”
“Let's just do it already.” Kennedy replied sitting across from Amy on the floor and taking her hand.
Kennedy took Amy's hands and closed her eyes as Amy instructed. Amy then closed her own eyes and began a quiet chant. Kennedy felt her body start to sway, as she felt slightly dizzy. Within moments, Amy's voice began to fade and she could hear Willow and Giles but only faintly. She slowly opened her eyes; she was in a restaurant, not one she was familiar with though, looking at Giles. Okay, she thought, where the hell am I.
“Willow?” Kennedy said quietly, a little disoriented from unfamiliar surroundings and the spell.
Kennedy started to pull away from Willow, now she was looking at Willow and Giles both; they were dancing, and talking quietly. She couldn't make out what they were saying, but they seemed close. “Willow?”
Willow's head jerked off Giles shoulder, at the sound of her name, only it wasn't Giles saying it. It was Kennedy. “Kennedy?” She said softly.
“Willow?” Giles asked, “Is something wrong?”
“I hear Kennedy. She's calling me.”
“Are you sure?” Giles asked, “The First impersonates the dead, Kennedy would be dead now.”
“I know but… It sounds so real.” Willow said sadly.
“Willow, you need to get back here. Some girl from L.A. called and said the First wants you dead. You need to come back to us now, before it kills you.” Kennedy warned.
“Giles, what the hell is going on?” Willow said nervously pulling him from the dance floor. “She… It is telling me to go back to our time, that the First wants to kill me, not the slayers now.”
“Willow, it could be a trick. It's trying to get rid of you; you may be the only one that can stop it.”
“But…” Willow said not sure what to think.
“Willow don't listen to it.” Giles said pulling Willow against him. “You know what it's capable of.” He said lowering his head to kiss her.
“Willow!” Kennedy said jerking slightly at the sight of Willow kissing Giles. “No.” She said before everything became blurry.
“Kennedy?” She could hear Buffy's voice over her. “Are you alright?”
“Buffy?” Kennedy said opening her eyes slowly, to find herself on her bed.
“Yeah, you started crying then fell over. What happened? Willow's not…” Xander asked concerned.
“I told her, well, most of it, but she…” Kennedy began sitting up. “She's not evil.” Kennedy walked away from her new friends not ready to discuss with them what else Willow wasn't.
“Giles I need to talk to them again.” Willow said as they walked down the street heading back to the council. “I need to be sure that Kennedy wasn't, uh, real.”
“I don't know what good the spell will do, they won't be able to talk to you.”
“I'll find a different spell then. There has to be a way.”
“We'll look into it tomorrow.” Giles said taking her hand as they walked.
“Kennedy?” Dawn asked knocking softly on the bedroom door. “Are you alright?”
“Fine.” Came the obviously not ‘fine' voice.
“Do you want to talk?” Dawn asked, “Something you saw is obviously bothering you.”
The door opened and Kennedy stared at Dawn for a moment. “You won't tell anyone?”
“I can't promise… I mean if my telling won't endanger Willow or anyone else than I won't say anything.”
“It's not about danger.” Kennedy reached out grabbing Dawn's arm and pulling her in the bedroom.
“I saw… Willow… her…”
“She's okay right? You weren't too late?” Dawn asked becoming anxious.
“She's not hurt. Giles either. They seemed very…” Kennedy paced at the foot of the bed while Dawn stared confused at the other girl. “Happy.”
“Well that's good, right?” Dawn asked slowly, knowing nothing upsetting Kennedy that much could be that easy. “Happy's better than miserable.”
“Dawn they were happy together.” Kennedy stopped walking and turned to stare at the other girl.
“You mean they were…”
“They were kissing.” Kennedy finished.
“Willow and… Are you sure?” Dawn stuttered sure Kennedy must be wrong, “I thought she was…”
“Yeah, so did I. Guess we were both wrong.”
“But Giles?” Dawn asked, “He's He…”
“I saw what I saw.”
“But… Okay I know this is important but did she get the message.” Dawn asked deciding to change the subject since she had no idea how to deal with this new development.
“I told her but… I'm not sure she, understood. Then I left.”
“Then maybe we should do it again.” Dawn suggested, “We need to be sure she understands.”
“I can't do it again, I won't.”
“I'll go this time.” Dawn said standing up and heading for the door, “But Buffy's gonna want to know why we want to do it again.”
“Tell her.” Kennedy said after a moment. “I don't want Willow hurt.”
Willow rolled toward the sound of her name not quite ready to open her eyes.
“Go away Xander.” Willow groaned rolling again, this time away from the voice and pulling a pillow over her head.
“Wake up. We need to talk.”
“Will you leave if I listen to you?”
“Yep.” Xander said from the chair next to the bed.
Willow rolled back toward her friend opening her eyes to take in her surroundings. “What do you…” she stopped mid-sentence as she realized she wasn't in her room at Buffy's, she was still in the future, and Xander couldn't be there with her.
“What are you doing here Willow?” Xander asked, “Why aren't you home with us celebrating our victory.”
Sitting up fully awake now, Willow faced the Xander-shaped thing in front of her. “'Kay so if you're going to impersonate Xander you might want to pay more attention to him. I mean ‘celebrate our victory' is so not Xander.”
“Will you don't recognize your best friend?” Xander asked a hurt expression on his face.
“Sure so you're my friend, come give me a hug, Xander.” Willow said reaching for him.
Giles was startled awake by the sound of Anya's voice calling to him.
“Giles.” Anya said annoyed, she'd been calling to him for several minutes now. “Damn it Giles wake up.”
It must be the First was Giles first thought. His second thought was if the First wanted to get him to do something, it certainly wouldn't contact him as Anya.
“What do you want?” Giles asked quietly.
“Oh, I can hear you.” Anya said excitedly. “We weren't sure if it would work, Althenea and Amy have been working on it for hours.”
“Anya.” Giles warned, he had enough to worry about without dealing with the ex-vengeance demon. “Do you want something?”
“No, just thought I'd tour your brain.” Anya replied, “Of course I want something. Did Willow get… Were you really kissing Willow?”
“Anya, did Willow get what?” Giles asked, now sure this wasn't a dream, nightmare maybe or possibly the
First is using Anya to make him insane.
“Sorry, you have no patience anymore. Did Willow get Kennedy's message?”
“Kennedy's…” Giles said as realization hit him. “Anya did Kennedy use this spell to speak to Willow?”
“Yes.” Anya replied, “Well not exactly, She could talk to Willow but Willow couldn't respond. And she said you and Willow were kissing.”
“What was the message?” Giles asked.
“The First knows Willow's there and is now after her, not whatever it's original target was, you two are in a lot of danger. So, I can't really see anything around you is Willow there with you?”
“Anya it's the middle of the night.” Giles replied rubbing his temples, why would Buffy decide to put Anya in his brain, must be getting even for the wanting to kill Spike thing.
“So, if Kennedy saw what she…”
“Good night Anya.” Giles said getting out of his head and grabbing a robe. He needed to talk to Willow now, Kennedy may have been real but it's only a matter of time before the First did contact her.
Willow pulled open the door just as Giles raised his hand to knock. “Giles!” Willow gasped backing up a step.
“Willow are you all right?” Giles asked nervously. “I uh had a visit and…”
“Who was it Willow?” Giles asked surprised.
“Xander, well the First really. I mean, like I wouldn't recognize my own best friend. Who was it for you?”
“It wasn't the First. It was Anya.”
“You sure the First didn't just want to annoy you.” Willow said smiling.
“No, it was her.” Giles said. Willow turned and walked into the bedroom motioning for Giles to follow. “She says they know what the First is after.”
“How?” Willow asked.
“Not sure., how they know but Anya was very sure.” Giles explained pushing the door closed as he walked in. “The First wants you dead Willow. That wasn't it's original intent but…”
“But plans can change?” Willow sat on the edge of her bed. “Why?”
“You stopped it last time. I imagine it can hold a grudge.” Giles sat next to her. “What did uh, Xander, have to say?”
“That I should go home to my friends.”
“What do you want to do?” Giles asked, if Willow was in danger maybe they should just tell Price they would do the spell, that they wanted to go home.
“I can't leave without helping them Giles. We didn't let the First stop us before, I'm not going to now.”
“If you're sure.” Giles asked. “I do think we need to speed this up though. No sense waiting around until it comes after us again.”
“So we talk to Abigail and the coven tomorrow.” Willow tried to smile. “And see if we can get this plan going.”
“Yes. Well then I'll let you go back to sleep.” Giles said standing up.
“Giles.” Willow said quietly as he walked toward the door.
“Yes.” Giles stopped and turned to face her.
“Stay here.” She said not looking up. “Not sure I want to be alone. Finding out a big evil is after you personally is kind of… scary.”
“Willow are you…” Giles began.
“Just please hold me.” Willow said reaching out for the watcher.
Willow moved over to the center of the bed leaving room for Giles next to her. Giles sat down pulling her close to him.
Willow opened her eyes slowly, not wanting to move away from the warmth of Giles body next to hers. Just having him there had allowed her to go back to sleep, but judging from the sunlight coming through the windows, they needed to get up and go find Melanie and Abigail.
Rolling over to face the man sleeping next to her, Willow smiled slightly, she had thought about this since high school. Well, except for the evil force trying to kill her part. She raised her hand slowly and ran it across Giles cheek, he mumbled and turned his head toward the touch. Smiling again, she lowered her lips to his face placing a gentle kiss on his lips. “Giles.”
“Uh,” Giles said moving toward her retreating kiss.
“Wake up.” She said softly, “We need to find Melanie.”
Opening his eyes, he watched her as she stared at his face. “Yes, Melanie. We do need to get out of here.”
“Yeah. Sucks though.”
“Why?” Giles asked sitting up. “Don't you want to go home?”
“Of course I do. It's just that Giles, Buffy and Xander aren't going to be happy about this.” She sat up and turned to face him. “I don't want to have to deal with that, I just want to be happy for a while.”
“We can't stay here so we don't have to face the others.” Giles pointed out.
“I know. And I'll deal with them when I have to but right now lets go save the world.” Willow said getting up and moving toward the closet.
“Right, I'll meet you downstairs in a half and hour then?” He said heading to the door.
“Yeah.” She was already heading toward the shower.
“You want to do the spell, now?” Melanie asked wanting to be sure she understood Willow's request.
“Not right this minute. But soon.” Willow clarified, “Is it ready?”
“Yes I have everything here but how are we going to lure it?” Melanie asked, “It hasn't made an appearance in days.”
“Actually it did last night.” Willow said, “Told me to leave.”
“And I had a visit by someone from our time.” Giles interrupted. “They say that the First has changed it's agenda so it's after Willow now. We need to get this done before it…”
“Then we'll talk to Abigail about finding it on patrol.” Another member of the coven suggested.
“Actually I was thinking about that.” Willow said, “I was never happy with the idea of using Abigail as bait. She's a kid. But if the First is after me, I should be able to make it attack me.”
“How?” Giles asked, “I'm not going to let you…”
“Nothing dangerous.” Willow said quickly, “I mean it is dangerous, I'm using myself as bait but the magic is safe. I'll set up the same spell I did before, with Buffy. The First will think I'm going to…”
“I'm not going to let you do the same spell that's already killing you Willow.”
“You can't really stop me Giles.” Willow said, “Now listen to the rest of my plan please.”
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