Author's Chapter Notes:
I mean, people are perfectly happy getting along and then vampires come and they run around and they kill people and they take over your whole house. They start making these stupid little mini-pizzas and everyone's like, "Oh, look! A mini-pizza!" ??“ Buffy in “Ted” by David Greenwalt and Joss Whedon
Chapter One

“What do you mean I can’t leave? A-a giant,” Buffy gestured at the steady sunlight pouring through Giles’s apartment window, “hurricane is coming!”

Giles couldn’t meet her gaze and stared at the glasses in his hands. He’d been polishing them a moment ago. “I’m so sorry.”

“Everyone else in the city is leaving. My mom and Dawn are home packing right now. It’s a mandatory evacuation. Even the hospital’s cleared out. And Xander heard from some of his co-workers that even the firemen and police officers are jumping ship after everyone’s out. That’s weird, right?” Buffy couldn’t understand how her Watcher didn’t understand that she had to leave.

“Yes, that is rather odd. Perhaps it’s a hellmouth quirk? And no, you cannot leave the hellmouth.”

“Screw this!” Buffy started to pace, her hands moving as she talked. “I know it’s my job to guard the hellmouth, but this is crazy. If I die, who will do the guarding? Faith? She’s in prison. A-and who will protect Dawn from Glory while I’m here?”

“Hurricanes in southern California are a rarity. Nora in 1997 was downgraded to a tropical storm before it made landfall. To have a storm of this magnitude barreling toward Sunnydale – ”

“Means there is probably some sort of supernatural connection. I know, I know.” Buffy stopped and sighed. “Fine. I’ll stay. Alone. As usual.”

“Not everyone is leaving,” Giles said patiently, adjusting his glasses back on his nose.

“Just dummies who don’t have a clue what they’re facing because they’ve never faced it. Willow and Tara have already left, and from the look on Anya’s face, she’s planning on dragging Xander away whether he wants to leave or not. Count me in the dummy crew.” Buffy slumped down on the arm of Giles’s sofa, hating herself for calling people dummies. Who knew why they weren’t leaving? She knew there had to be elderly people out there who didn’t have transportation or people who just didn’t know how deadly storms could be. Her father had been the anxious type, and of the few things he gave her, a healthy respect for nature was one of them. She still remembered how he had been glued to the news, watching the coverage of the Superstorm when she was thirteen. She’d had nightmares about being lost in the driving snow and freezing to death for a month.

“Yes, there are people who ride out every storm. And they end up dying, but I’m not talking about them.” Giles sat next to Buffy on the couch. “I’m talking about me. I’m not leaving you here to face this alone.”

Buffy blinked at him. “You aren’t?”

He smiled at her ruefully. “Of course not. A good Watcher always goes down with his Slayer.”

Buffy bonked him lightly on the arm. “That is not a thing.”

“Ow!” Giles rubbed his arm but continued to smile.

There was sadness in Giles’s eyes, and Buffy wondered if he ever thought about her dying. “You’re right. It’s not. Most Watchers have grieved long and hard for their Slayers, but they haven’t died with them for the most part.”

“I knew it,” she said with irony to lighten the mood and hopefully brush away his sadness. She couldn’t bear his sadness, or she’d start crying, and Lord knew, she’d been crying enough since she and Riley broke up. She refused to let herself be sad about him anymore. Willow had called him a poop head. Buffy outwardly agreed, but some small part of her couldn’t help but wonder if there was something wrong with her. Maybe she was unlovable.

Her joking tone worked because Giles’s eyes shifted away from hers. “All the same, the research we’ve been doing has paid off, and I’m on the verge of sorting the whole thing. I just have to make a few calls and gather up the appropriate texts. There’s a spell and – ”

Buffy interrupted him. “You have to run by the Magic Box, and you’ll meet me at my house with all the supplies.”

“Something like that.”

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