“Willow, this is a bad idea. Buffy isn’t interested in being set up.”
“That’s exactly the problem, Dawn! It’s been three years since she dated anyone! She’s become too used to being on her own! It’s past time that she got herself back out there,” Willow proclaimed. Since Sunnydale fell, Willow had been intensely studying with a few major covens around the world and had emerged from the process with strong emotional controls and at one with the universe. The problem was that she had decided with her new spiritual enlightenment she was the most qualified to instruct everyone on how they should be living their lives. She had mainly focused on Xander, who had taken it with fairly good grace, but now that he'd settled down with a nice girl who had met with Willow’s approval, she had clearly decided to turn her attention to the rest of their friends.
“Even if you are right, which you aren’t, Doug is not her type,” Dawn said, opting for the easy out. She had already spent the morning enduring Willow’s academic advice and she was beginning to get a headache. Navigating her sister’s love life on her behalf was way above her paygrade.
“He’s perfectly nice! Exactly the kind of guy that she should be looking for right now. He’s quiet, dependable—”
“And has the personality of stale bread. She’d eat him for lunch!”
“That’s what she needs! You said it yourself! She needs somebody who she can be safe with. Someone who won’t break her heart. Someone who is among the living!”
“Okay, maybe, but I think Buffy’s a lot better at identifying who that might be than you are.”
“Please! If I left to her own devices, Buffy would remain single for the rest of her life. She spends all her free time with Giles’s for crying out loud.”
“Yeah, funny that,” Dawn replied, but Willow somehow missed the sarcasm.
“Isn’t it? I mean, don’t get me wrong, I love Giles. I’m a big Giles fan! But you got to admit he’s not the most exciting company. She needs to be out with people her own age.”
“Look, Willow,” Dawn sighed. “Why don’t you just tell Buffy that you are worried about her and want to know what’s happening in her life?”
“That’s what I was on my way to do right now! I just thought I could get you on board with the whole Doug thing first, but no matter. I’ll convince her anyway,” Willow said, confidently. She spun out of the Council’s Tea Room and headed down the hall in the direction of Buffy’s office.
“You’re what?!” squawked Dawn, scampering behind her. “Willow, she’s in with Giles!”
“Perfect! I’m sure he’ll agree with me that Buffy should get out more. He must be wanting his own life back by now!”
Arriving at her destination, Willow threw open Buffy’s door and then shrieked. Dawn hastily peered over Willow’s shoulder and gave a huff of relief. Buffy and Giles were on the couch by the window. Buffy was kneeling over Giles, her hands in his hair. Her knees were planted on either side of his lap and Giles was bracing her with his hands on her upper thighs. Under her skirt. High under her skirt. And he seemed in no hurry to move them, despite the interruption. But the rest of their clothing seemed more or less in order.
“I knew I should have locked the damn door,” Buffy said, mildly.
“Don’t worry! There’s no emergency! Don’t let us break the mood,” Dawn said, quickly pushing Willow out of the way and reaching for the door.
“Don’t worry. You haven’t,” Giles replied, perfectly at ease. Dawn giggled and shut the door. They really were too cute.
“Giles had his hands. . . .” Willow trailed off, horrified.
“Honestly, I don’t know why you’re so surprised. They haven’t exactly been hiding it.”
“But it’s Giles! And Buffy! And Buffy and Giles! Together!” Willow protested.
“They are actually really a cute couple once you get used to the idea,” Dawn assured her.
“I’m never going to be able to sit on that couch again,” Willow proclaimed fervently. Dawn quashed down a twinge of exasperation and reminded herself that Willow hadn’t been around much when Giles and Buffy had been in their courtship phase and, even then, they had been subtle enough about it that it would have been easy to overlook if you weren’t paying attention.
“Well, if it makes you feel better, I’m pretty sure they were only engaging in some verbal foreplay,” Dawn offered.
“F-foreplay?” Willow stuttered and Dawn felt her patience evaporate.
“Chill. I said of the verbal variety,” Dawn retorted and then added with a mischievous gleam, “Though I suppose it all does depend on. . . .” She trailed off with a mock thoughtful look on her face.
“Depend on what?” Willow asked, taking the bait.
“It depends on whether Buffy was still wearing any underwear,” Dawn laughed and bounced off, leaving a flabbergasted Willow behind her.