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Title: Hard Truths
Date: 05/13/04
Author: Jen
Email: supermom11200@yahoo.com
Rating: PG-13 for language and violence
Pairings: B/A, B/S, B/G, G/Olivia, G/Joyce, W/Oz, W/T, X/OC
Setting: Beginning set after Lie to Me (S2), flash forward to the end of LMPTM (S7) then after that, it’s all over the place, going seriously AU.
Summary: See challenge below
Distribution: BGWM, GRB, Giles’ Flat, WG, my usual haunts
Feedback: It’s my drug of choice.
Disclaimer: Nope, wasn’t me. I didn’t do it. Joss, ME, and various other entities did.
Notes and Thanks: 1) This comes to you courtesy of Daien’s challenge on BGWM. It’s an older one, but no one else has done it that I know of. If you like it, thank Daien. If you don’t, blame me. LOL I tinkered with the challenge slightly to make it easier for me. Hope you like it.
2) Dialogue taken from LMPTM. I didn’t write it and I think we all know that. :D I refuse to give credit to whoever wrote that episode. I still throw things at the TV whenever I see it.
3) My lovely, wonderful, sweet friend Kim punched up the angsty Angel parts. Thanks, luv. You are absolutely the BEST!!!
4) Phen, you keep coming to the rescue and saving me. Thank you so much!! Sorry about the B/A, but the story REALLY needed it. :P

‘’ means thoughts, ** means emphasis.

BGWM Challenge #70 Daien “Season Two Buffy Kicks Some Ass”
The beginning is set between Halloween Season 2 and Angel’s return in season 3. Buffy is sent* to late season 7 right after the infamous door-slam in the face. She doesn’t like what she sees and hears (Spike is the only one who understands her, the only one she can count on blah, blah, blah. Buffy’s treatment of the Scoobies especially Giles. Buffy’s indifference to the victims, Wood and his mother for example) She turns to Giles (in both time periods). Have Giles open up to her in both time periods (not that he’s in love with her though, she’s still 16-17). Have early Buffy stake season 7 Spike and kick season 7 Buffy’s ass when she tries to stop her. When Buffy returns to her own time period she vows not to become a pathetic vamp-lovin’ ho The decisions she makes lead to Buffy and Giles getting together eventually (season 5ish) and Spike meeting another dusty end (yes he gets it twice!) ASAP.
*this can be accidentally or purposely (Ethan, Whistler, whomever)

Winter, 1998
Buffy Summers sighed as she closed her bedroom door. She hated funerals, especially for people she knew. The fact that Ford had been willing to trade her to Spike for eternal unlife didn’t matter. He had been a friend once. That was what had mattered.
Before she came up the stairs, her mom had told her that there was a package waiting for her. Joyce had professed no knowledge of the sender, but had smiled, thinking that her daughter had a secret admirer. Maybe Xander was finally going to ask Buffy out; if so, Joyce approved. He was such a nice boy. She wandered off to the kitchen, happy in her daydream.
Buffy laid her coat across the end of the bed and walked to her desk. The brightly wrapped package caught her eye and she smiled. Reaching a hand toward the gift, she sat on her bed and carefully pulled off the paper. After opening the box, she lifted a lovely turquoise necklace and held it to the light. She smiled again and put it on.
Suddenly, Buffy doubled over. The pain was intense, but lessened as time passed. When she sat up again, she noticed that she was in her mother’s bedroom.
‘How had this happened?’ she thought. She considered the necklace and mentally stuck her tongue at herself. She should know better. The last gift she received had turned her into a noble lady from the 18th Century. There was something wrong with the necklace. She knew that somehow, she had been sent somewhere else. She didn’t know how she knew, she just did. Giles would know what was going on. She had to get to Giles.
Before she could move, the door opened and voices carried to her.
“Buffy...I—I understand your anger. Please believe me, we did what we—,” her Watcher’s voice said.
Buffy looked everywhere but at him. “He’s alive. Spike’s alive. Wood failed.”
Giles sighed. “Well, that doesn’t change anything. What I told you is still true. You need to learn—“
At those words, Buffy finally looked at her mentor. “No, I think you’ve taught me everything I need to know,” and she shut the door in his face.
The mirror image of herself and the image of her Watcher was undeniable proof that it was her in the future.
Then, the impact of what she heard fell over her. The Buffy on the bed looked at her counterpart in outraged disbelief. This…THIS was her future self? What kind of person had she changed into? She rose from the bed, stalked over to the other Buffy and threw her against the wall.
“Who the hell are you and what the FUCK did you just do?”

Spring, 2003
The older Buffy stared at herself. She shook her head and looked again. But, there was still another Buffy in the room and that Buffy was pissed.
“What did you just do to my Watcher?” younger Buffy demanded again.
“What I had to do. He tried to kill my best fighter.”
“Spike? The same Spike that has tried to kill me twice? He’s your best fighter? Are you on drugs or something? Spike is a vampire. I kill vamps. It’s in the job description, look it up.”
“I don’t know who or what the hell you are, but you certainly don’t know what is going on and shouldn’t be making judgments about what I’m doing. I’m doing what has to be done. You don’t understand.”
“Understand? What’s to understand about Spike?” young Buffy said sarcastically.
“Spike got a soul for me. He went through unspeakable torment for me,” older Buffy said with a sigh.
“And that means what? He’s special? Isn’t one vamp with a soul enough for you? For us? What about Angel?”
“Angel’s not here anymore.”
“Angel left?” Buffy asked, her eyes darkening momentarily. “Why did he leave?” She narrowed her gaze. “What did you do to make him leave?”
The other Buffy responded, “Look, I don’t have time for a history lesson, Angel did what he always does and decided he knew what was best for us and he left. We’re not together.”
“And now you’re dating Spike?”
“I’m not dating Spike. Spike fights for me and with me. He’s a good guy now. He would never go behind my back and---”
“Yeah, right. Spike’s a paragon of virtue, blah, blah, blah, I’m sure. One day, he just sat up and switched over from the dark side.” Buffy looked at herself and let the disgust she felt show on her face. “I’m going after Giles and you better pray that he’s okay. Cuz, if he’s not, I’m coming back and I’m gonna kick your ass.”
Older Buffy bristled at herself. “Oh yeah? You and what army?”
“Just me. I’m the only fighter I need. I don’t need Spike,” she said with a nasty twist of her lips, “to fight for me. I’m enough.”
As the younger Buffy stomped out the door, older Buffy watched herself. ‘Was that what I used to be? Was that really what I was?’ she thought, as she sunk down the wall and to the floor.
Younger Buffy slammed the door behind her and almost ran straight into Willow. Willow, who had been hovering at the door trying to listen to the identical raised voices, took a step back.
“Uh, Buff, where you going?” Willow asked, and then did a double take. This was the Buffy she remembered from high school, with darker hair and fewer lines on her face. ‘What’s the Hellmouth going to throw at us next?’
“Will, where are we?”
“Uh, did you hit your head or something? We’re at your house.”
“No, Wills. Better question, when are we? What’s the year?”
“2003, you know that.”
“2003?” Buffy exclaimed. “Nevermind. Wills, I can’t talk now. Where did Giles go?”
Willow looked at the floor and then back to her friend. Hesitantly, she reached out a hand and touched Buffy’s shoulder. After touching Buffy and seeing something in the Slayer’s eyes that had been missing for so long, Willow answered her.
“He left. He said he needed to think and clear his head.”
Buffy took off for the stairs, dragging Willow behind her.
“Which way did he go?” Buffy demanded.
Xander peered up the stairs and rubbed his eyes at the sight before him. Buffy, but not Buffy, charged down the steps with Willow in tow. He looked from Willow to Buffy and back to Willow again.
Willow shrugged at the question in his eyes and nodded.
“He didn’t say where he was going, but I saw him turn left at the sidewalk,” Xander replied.
“Good. Left, I can do left. I’ll be back with him. Somebody may want to go up to the bedroom and slap some sense into that…that THING pretending to be me. Or don’t. I think I may enjoy that myself.”
Xander and Willow grinned at the old-new Buffy and headed for the stairs as Buffy rushed into the night.


“Giles!! Where are you?” Buffy yelled.
Her prey hesitated slightly at the corner, yet continued as if he hadn’t heard her. She quickened her pace and easily caught up to him.
She grabbed at his arm and he jerked away from her.
“What do you want now, Buffy? To tell me how much of a disgrace I am to the Watcher name? How many times I failed you in the line of duty? Just leave me be,” he said wearily.
“No, God no, Giles! How can you even think that? I had to come after you. I heard what she…I said and couldn’t listen to her anymore. How’d I get so messed up?” she asked him softly.
At her question, Giles turned around to tell her exactly how it had happened and stopped. Under the harsh glare of a streetlight, Buffy stood before him, but not the Buffy who had just broken his heart. This Buffy was a powerful force. Confidence and light radiated from her. His heart swelled for a moment before he shook his head.
“Ah. I was wondering when and in what form you would appear to me,” Giles said with a sigh. “Go on then, have at me.”
Confusion appeared on Buffy’s face. “Giles, what are you…?”
“I know that I have failed her time and again. I couldn’t keep her safe. That wasn’t in the job description. I was supposed to send her out to fight until she died and another was called. But, she was Buffy, you see. She wasn’t the job. She was Buffy.”
Buffy looked up at him with tears in her eyes. “Giles? What do you see when you look at me?”
Giles sighed again. ‘Why must this be so hard? Oh yes, it is the First.’
“Buffy, I see you as you used to be, so vibrant and full of life. I still remember that time. Before… before everything went wrong; I see what you were, and I weep for what has happened to you.”
“Giles, how can I prove that I’m me and not whatever it is you’re talking about?” Buffy asked.
Giles gazed down on her face and slowly extended his left hand. As it encountered her hair, he faltered. Feeling the softness beneath his hand, he gasped.
“Giles? What’s wrong? Did I…?”
“Buffy?” he whispered. “Is it… can it really be you?”
His voice shook and she threw herself into his arms. He closed them around her and laughed quietly.
Buffy felt the tremors under her cheek and looked up at him.
“I think we need to talk, Watcher-mine,” she told him.
He laughed aloud at the neglected endearment. “Yes, I believe we do.”
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