Callix: Chapter 4/4

Jul 31, 2021 20:27


Giles sat in a chair, staring out the window. Rain pelted the glass - rain was on the forecast for at least the next week. He sighed heavily and glanced down at the ring that he’d worn for the past seventeen years - more than slightly scratched and in desperate need of replating, but more a part of him than the ring he’d switched from his left pinky to his right the night before their wedding.

Seventeen years. Time flies when you’re having fun, he’d heard. He smiled softly, rubbing the underside of the ring with his thumb. Mass amounts of fun had definitely been had over the years.

* *

Their wedding had gone as planned - an absolute surprise to their friends, who had all clambered through the portal without needing a second invitation. His mother had taken such joy in assisting Buffy with her dress - using the time to tell her a great number of stories from his childhood. Her favourite was the one where he thought he’d killed someone - she still laughed about it now, all these years later.

More often than not, when they’d pass a mannequin, she’d grin - and about three-quarters of those grins were followed with a laugh…a hearty laugh that always brought tears to her eyes. He found it beautiful. And it was a funny story.

He’d been maybe four years old, out shopping with his Mum. He’d gone up to a man and introduced himself…and then waited, as he’d been taught. The man didn’t respond, didn’t even look at him. And young Rupert had gotten frustrated that he’d been ignored when he’d been so polite to a stranger. So he kicked him…and the man fell down…and his head rolled across the shop floor. Young Rupert had screamed and sprinted to his mother, wrapping his arms around her leg as he cried that he hadn’t meant to kill the man.

“It was an assident, Mummy! I didn’t mean it!”

And Sophia couldn’t even be annoyed that he’d knocked a mannequin over in his frustration and ruined a display. Not when she was laughing as hard as she was.

Giles chuckled to himself, replaying the memory from a parent’s point of view. He had laughed over many things his own children had done throughout the years. And his Mum had had such a beautiful laugh. It was a laugh that echoed every time she told that story.

They’d been married a little over six months and the boys were fifteen months old when Sunnydale perished. He had tended to his wife’s wounds in a non-descript hotel room in a just as non-descript town close to the Mexican border. That had been the longest two and a half hour drive he’d ever experienced. He’d wanted to check her as soon as she had slipped in through the window, but she had refused…saying she was fine and didn’t want the children to see her injuries.

It wasn’t until they’d been able to get the boys to sleep later that evening that he was able to carefully help her undress, unable to hide his grimace at the gashes in her side. As he cleaned and sutured her wounds, she watched their sons sleeping…curled up together in the middle of one of the two double beds in the room. She inhaled sharply as he dabbed another layer of antiseptic on her wound. He apologised softly and she responded with an onslaught of tears that had nothing to do with her physical pain.

Later that night, they held one another…talking softly instead of sleeping. And as the sun rose, casting an orange glow around the edges of the curtains in the windows, Buffy kissed her husband and asked if they could go to England. He responded with an immediate affirmative, asking how long she’d want to stay. She looked over at their sons, who had slept throughout the entire night and were still snoring, and then looked into Giles’ eyes.


He kissed her slowly, then said that he’d make the arrangements as soon as they could sort everyone else out.

They landed in London three weeks later. His brother had been visiting their mother and they had both arrived at the airport to pick them up. Callum and Felix bonded with Stephen quickly - and watching her husband and his brother reconnect made her wish that Stephen lived closer. After a night of slow drinks and long conversation, Sophia made it clear that they were very welcome to stay with her for as long as they’d like. After all, they’d need time to decide what they wanted to do - where they wanted to live…and there had been plenty of room in her home to accommodate them all.

A few months after their arrival in England, Giles was approached by the four man cabinet of what remained of the Council. Vampires and demons still roamed the Earth - and with the number of new Slayers came the possibility of a new Council. A need for a new and reformed Council.

With a new Head.

Giles had initially declined the offer, stating that he had no interest in living in the city - it wasn’t a place he wanted to raise his children. They were happy in the countryside and had been looking at some land not that far from his mother’s home. And that was when Councilman Murray had smiled and said that a new Council could, and very well should, have a new location - and they were prepared to fund the construction of a new building, complete with dorms for the new Slayers.

And so, he talked it over with Buffy - and she’d been the one to convince him to step into the role. The Slayers needed him, the Watchers needed him, the Council needed him.

Xander and Willow arrived three weeks after Giles accepted the offer - and Xander threw himself straight into construction. Giles was sure that grief was fuelling him - he was also just as sure that it was what Xander needed to do. And so he allowed him to take full control - under the proviso that Xander would speak to someone about his loss and not bury it within him. Willow had intended to head to Devon, but when Xander tearfully asked her to stay…she stayed. And that was when Giles had decided that perhaps they could form their own Council-based coven. Willow agreed, but only if Giles was close by to help keep her grounded. Though he was sure that she was very capable of grounding herself, Giles understood the fear.

The Council reformation took place relatively quickly and it wasn’t long before they started recruiting Watchers and other members of staff from the Academy. Unsurprisingly, Giles was exactly what the Council had needed. The years under Travers’ watch had made Watchers soft and pliable - exactly what was needed for ‘yes men’, not what was needed to fight evil on a nightly basis. Rupert Giles was a breath of fresh air - fair and compassionate, clever and knowledgeable, and was respected by all. Two years after the implosion of Sunnydale, there were seventy-four Slayers - twenty active, the rest in training. There were twenty-two active Watchers, researchers, linguistics, demonology experts…and the Academy was at capacity.

Two and half years after their arrival in England, the Giles family grew one member larger - with the birth of their daughter, Amy. Sophia doted on the children and had been incredibly saddened when Rupert and Buffy brought up the conversation of building a home on the other side of the Council grounds. She did her best not to let her son and daughter-in-law see her sadness, but Giles knew his mother’s tells. And when Buffy mentioned that Sophia had spent the morning in the kitchen instead of out in the garden, Giles realised that a family discussion was required.

* *

A soft beep in the corner of the room broke Giles from his thoughts. He turned towards the sound and sighed, his jaw clenching as he ran his fingers through his hair. He moved his chair closer to the bed and rested his fingers on top of the blanket.

He heard the door open behind him, but didn’t turn around to see who had opened it. He did close his eyes when a pair of hands rested on his shoulders from behind.


“Hello, love…” Giles whispered, reaching up and covering Buffy’s left hand with his.

“You need to rest, honey.”

At that, Giles turned slightly and looked up at her. “As do you…but, rest doesn’t come when your child…is in peril.”

“True.” She whispered. “Have you been reading to him?”

He glanced at the book resting on the foot of the bed, shaking his head slowly. “I’ve been thinking.”

He gestured towards the window, a sad smile on his face. “The weather is the same as when Mum passed. And I was thinking about how much she loved the kids…how much she would have loved Simon, had she been able to meet him.”

Buffy moved closer to the bed and leaned down, kissing the warm cheek of her son. She watched him for a moment, sighing when he didn’t move. Then she pulled a chair over next to Giles’ and sat down, slipping her hand into his.

“Sophia told me once that she had always loved the name Simon.”

Giles chuckled softly. “She did. Dad hated the name.”

“But, he liked Rupert?” Buffy said, the amusement in her tone sounding slightly forced.

Giles’ smile faded slightly, his thoughts continuing to churn in his mind. His Mum had passed after a very brief illness when the boys were eight years old. Amy had been getting ready to turn five…and Buffy had been four months pregnant with Simon.

“Where are they?” Giles asked, silently wiping a tear from his cheek.

“Amy and Simon are with Xander and Willow. Amy wanted to take Simon to see the ducks.”

Giles nodded, then looked at her. “And Cal?”

“Here.” A voice said from behind them.

Giles stood up quickly, turning towards his son. Callum glanced at the bed…and didn’t bother trying to stop the tears from falling. Giles moved quickly, pulling Callum into his arms.

“I’m sorry, Dad. I didn’t mean to get so angry.”

“It’s okay.” Giles whispered in response, curling his fingers against the back of Callum’s shoulder.

“It’s not.” Callum pulled back and exhaled a slow breath. “I said some really shit things to you. And this…” He gestured towards the bed. “…this isn’t your fault. It’s not the Council, it’s not demons…it was a fucking bad decision. And that’s not on you.”

Giles placed his left hand on Callum’s cheek and waited until Callum met his eyes. And then he spoke softly, but deliberately.

“This is not on you, Cal. Mistakes happen, bad decisions happen. Please don’t take this as your burden.”

“He’s my brother, Dad. How can it not be?”

“Callum…” Buffy started, placing her hand on his arm.

“What if he’s not the same when he wakes up?” Callum whispered emotionally. “What if he doesn’t wake up? How do we even deal with that? How do I deal with that?”

“Felix is going to wake up, Cal.” Buffy said in a tone that left no doubt that she truly believed it.

“I shouldn’t have left him there, Mum. Hell, we shouldn’t have even been there. The stupid Upper Christmas party. We should have said no. And I should have fucking pulled him out with me when I left. But, no…I got the shits with him and left - and then someone dropped something in his drink…and now we’re here.”

Buffy sighed softly. “You’re seventeen…seventeen year olds do stupid, stupid things. But, that doesn’t mean that either you or Felix are stupid. No, you shouldn’t have been there…but, I shouldn’t have gone to a frat party one time when I was in high school.”

Callum stared at his mother. “Did someone spike your drink and then you ended up in the hospital in some kind of coma?”

“She was nearly eaten by a snake demon.” Giles said quietly. “After someone spiked her drink.”

Callum’s gaze slid to his father. “Of course, she did. Jesus, how did you two even survive Sunnydale?”

A tiny smile appeared on Giles’ face. “We had each other.”

“And Willow and Xander…Oz and Anya…”

“Yes.” Giles agreed, turning to look at her. “But, mainly we had each other.”

“Uncle Stephen called.” Callum said suddenly, looking at his brother. “Said Felix is a Giles…a son of the most successful Watcher and the longest surviving Slayer. Said…he has no option other than waking up and being all logical about how any of this happened.”

“Logical…that’s our Felix.” Buffy said softly, reaching up and running her fingers through Callum’s unruly curls. “And he will wake up.”

“I asked Caroline if she dropped something in his drink.” He exhaled a slow, deep breath. “I wasn’t exactly prepared for the…displeasure…that brought on.”

Giles furrowed his brow. “Why would you think Caroline would do that?”

“I didn’t. I don’t. But, she’s his girlfriend…and…” He closed his eyes briefly. “I’m a fucking idiot.”

“You’re a concerned brother who wants to know what happened and why.” Buffy said, taking a step forward and hugging him.

“So…I think I can help with that.” A voice said from the doorway.

Giles closed his eyes and took a deep breath. “How can you possibly help with that, Ethan?”

“I went searching, didn’t I?” Ethan replied, walking into the room and gesturing towards Felix. “You really think I’m going to sit around and do nothing while he’s there and you lot are scrambling to right your topsy-turvy world?”

Callum turned his head and stared at Ethan. “Topsy-turvy? Who the hell says ‘topsy-turvy’ these days?”

“Shut up.” Ethan said, giving him a wink. Then he walked over to the bed and stared at Felix. “You best be fighting in there, Katze. You’re too much like your parents to not be…”

Despite the situation, Buffy smiled at the use of Ethan’s nickname for Felix.

“So, how can you help?” Callum asked, moving to stand next to Ethan. After a moment, he sat down on the edge of the bed. “Who did this to him?”

Ethan hesitated briefly and then looked at Callum. “The question you need to ask is…who would do this to you?”

“Me?” Callum stared at Ethan and then understanding shone in his eyes. “This was meant for me?”

“According to what I’ve uncovered, yes.”

Giles narrowed his eyes. “Who’s behind this, Ethan? A member of the old Council? A demon…a warlock. Retaliation for - ”

“A jealous ex-boyfriend.” Ethan interrupted, glancing at Buffy. “Not one of yours.”

Callum looked very confused for a second and then tilted his head slightly. “Sutherland?”

Ethan’s eyes darkened momentarily before returning to their normal hue. “He’s being detained at Council for questioning. But, he’s been very forthcoming with some information…and is seemingly very remorseful. Of course, that could be due to the fact that I threatened to feed him to a Lakhe.”

“Who the hell is Sutherland?” Buffy asked, darting her eyes between her husband and son.

“Ted Sutherland.” Callum said with barely restrained rage. “Reena’s ex-boyfriend.”

“He’s in the Academy?”

Giles’ eyes flashed as he clenched his hands. “Not any longer.”

Buffy put her left hand on Giles’ arm, her right on Callum’s. “Wait…before the both of you go all Ripper on me...” She looked directly at Ethan. “Talk…quick - because there’s not much time here.”

Knowing that she was talking about Rupert and Callum storming out of the room and not about Felix getting worse, he took a deep breath and told them all he’d been able to determine.

“Mr Sutherland is none too happy that Callum has struck up a relationship with Reena. He wanted another chance, change things up, be what she wanted…blah, blah, fucking blah. But, when he talked to her the other day, she made it pretty clear that that was not going to happen.” He looked at Callum and smiled. “Apparently, she’s pretty into you.”

“Ethan…” Giles prompted, a warning tone in his voice.

“I’m getting there.”

“Get there quicker.” Buffy said urgently. “Seriously.”

“The goal wasn’t to hurt him - ”

“He spiked his drink with a drug…and didn’t mean to hurt anyone?” Callum said, his eyes darkening to a shade of green that rivalled his father’s.

“What I mean is that the intention was to make you seem like you enjoy parties a bit more than you actually do - and most people have trouble telling you two apart. So he dropped the tab…and then Felix collapsed. When Caroline rushed to his side, Sutherland realised his error...and ran.”

“None of this helps my brother. It doesn’t even help Sutherland because when I - ”

“You’ll do nothing to him.” Giles interrupted, his voice almost eerily even.


Giles met his son’s eyes and shook his head. “You’ll do nothing to him, Callum. This is a Council issue.”

“Bullshit, Dad. This is a Callix issue - because he came after me and hurt him.”

“You are all students at the Academy. This also took place on Council grounds.” Giles held his son’s gaze. “Let me take care of this, Cal. Don’t take this into your own hands.”

Callum’s eyes glistened. “What if he dies, Dad?”

“Ah…you do love me.” A tired, hoarse whisper came from the bed.

Everyone turned toward the voice…and within seconds, the bed was surrounded. Felix swallowed with some difficulty and lifted his hand before furrowing his brow. With much effort, he opened his eyes…immediately squinting against the light in the room.

“My arms feel heavy.” He said, attempting again to lift his hand. “What the fuck is going on?”

Buffy leaned over, pushing the ‘call’ button before pressing her lips to Felix’s forehead. “You scared the shit out of me.”

“So not my intention.” He mumbled with a smile, leaning his head towards her before slowly opening his eyes again. His eyes darted to each person before settling on his brother. “You still mad?”

“Not at you, mate.” Callum said, his voice thick with emotion as he lowered himself into the chair next to the bed.

“Jesus…you’re all acting like I was dying.” He chuckled softly. His chuckle ebbed when he met his father’s glistening eyes. “Was I?”

Giles shook his head slowly, reaching down to take Felix’s hand into his. “We can talk about it later, yes? Right now, you’re awake…talking…looking a bit tired, but…all things considered…”

“What things need to be considered?” Felix asked, gently squeezing his father’s hand.

Before Giles could answer, the door opened and a nurse rushed in. She glanced at the bed and grinned brightly.

“Ah, Mr Giles…you’re awake!”

Felix stared at the nurse, then shook his head slightly. Buffy gently stroked his hair.

“What is it, Fe?”

“That’s weird. Mr Giles.”

“Yeah, especially since I’m older…” Callum added with a grin.

Felix rolled his eyes, then answered each question the nurse asked.

Giles turned his eyes to Ethan’s. “Have Branton schedule an urgent disciplinary meeting, then notify Sutherland’s parents to request their attendance.”

Ethan nodded in acknowledgement, gesturing towards the door. “Amy and Simon?”

“I’ll walk out with you.”

When Ethan took a step towards the door, Felix looked at him. “Where’re you going?”

“Just need to take care of something. I’ll be back in a few, Katze.” He offered Felix a smile, which was returned instantly.


Giles’ eyes were warm as he hooked his thumb towards the door. “Amy and Simon are outside with Willow and Xander. They’ve been worried.”

Felix nodded slowly, still clueless as to what had happened to him. He looked at the nurse and sighed.

“Am I going to be okay?”

The nurse finished making notes in his chart and then looked up. “I’ll let the doctor make the final call on that, but…what I’m seeing here is very promising.”

Felix narrowed his eyes slightly. “Do they teach vagueness in nursing school?”

Buffy snorted a soft laugh.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Two days after his release from the hospital, Felix felt that he was alert enough to comprehend an explanation of what had happened. However, after listening to a description of the events, he wondered if he’d been correct in that thought. He stared at Giles, then glanced at Buffy and Callum.

“So…Ted had a jealous temper tantrum and drugged the wrong guy?”

“Well, that’s a gross over-simplification.” Giles replied, cleaning his glasses.

“Is it? Because that’s pretty much exactly what happened.” Felix said, exhaling a deep breath. “What is going to be recommended at the disciplinary hearing?”

“Expulsion, then he’ll need to face the drug charges.”

Felix said nothing for a moment, but stared into his father’s eyes. “Expulsion? Dad…we’re talking about an error in judgement here.”

Callum’s eyes widened in disbelief. “An error in judgement? He fucking drugged you, Fe. You could have died! That’s not an error in judgement, that’s a crime.”

Felix took a deep breath, then looked at Buffy. “You understand where I’m going with this, Mum?”

Buffy nodded slowly. “I do, but I’m not sure how much I’m going to be able to sway the decision on this.”

“Why would you?” Callum asked, narrowing his eyes at his mother. “Seriously, why would you even want to sway any decision on this?”

“Because, he’s your age - and he made a stupidly dangerous decision. But, he needs help…not banishment.” She looked sharply at Giles, raising an eyebrow. “When you were their age and you made a stupidly dangerous decision, what happened?”

“I was expelled.” Giles stated quietly.

“And how did that fucking work out for you?” When Giles lowered his eyes, Buffy looked back at Callum. “I’m not saying that I don’t think there needs to be consequences. There does. Severe consequences. But, it can be detrimental to his mental health if he’s expelled and expected to just slide into a normal, mundane life.”

“And it was detrimental to my mental health wondering if my brother was going to live or die!”

“But, it’s not about you, Cal.” Felix offered gently. “Ted shouldn’t be punished based on your feelings on what happened. Because, at the end of the day, while you were affected…you weren’t the one who was physically harmed.”

Callum’s jaw clenched.

Buffy thought, not for the first time over the years, that Callum was very much like his father. Sure, they were identical twins - and even now it was hard to tell them apart by looking at them - but, their personalities were very separate. Callum leaned more to the Ripper-esque walk of life - he had his father’s temper…a fairly short fuse and a huge explosion. He was led by emotion…which also led to anger issues at times. Felix was more like her…quick to forgive, believing that a second (and sometimes third) chance should be given - because mistakes happen. He was led by passion…which came with an infuriatingly long fuse - that could be extinguished before causing an explosion.

Felix tilted his head slightly, not taking his eyes off of Callum. “I need you to breathe, brother.”


“I need you to breathe. And I need you to let this go. Because if you don’t, you’re going to go off half-cocked and bad shit’s going to happen.” He paused for a moment. “I can’t do this alone.”

Buffy and Giles glanced at each other, the words reminding them of a moment many years before.

Callum was quiet for a long moment and then gave a slow nod. “I’ll follow your lead on this one, Fe. But, don’t expect me to be friends with him.”

Felix chuckled, scratching the back of his head. “Don’t expect me to be friends with him. This isn’t about friendship - I just don’t think he should be thrown out of everything he’s always known because of one stupid moment.”

Felix turned to his father and regarded him carefully. “Saying that, if he even thinks of doing something similar, I’d be all for expulsion.”

“Christ, you’re so much like your mother.”

Felix smiled and gestured to Callum. “And he’s just like you.”

“Yeah, and just like them…you two balance one another.” Ethan said, walking into the room…covered in feathers. When everyone in the room stared at him, he shook his head. “Your lovely youngest. Should’ve named him Loki.”

“Loki Giles - it actually has a nice ring to it.” Felix said with a deep laugh. “Where is he?”

Before Ethan could respond, a large clear balloon floated in…hovering above him. And then suddenly, it popped…dumping another load of feathers over Ethan’s head. Giles had just taken a sip of his tea…and now found himself choking - a consequence of drinking and laughing simultaneously. Buffy reached over quickly, patting his back as she laughed as well.

Amy ran into the room, tears streaming down her face. “Oh my god, that was…your face, Uncle Ethan!”

Ethan narrowed his eyes at the girl. “You’re supposed to be on my side!”

She laughed even harder, giving her younger brother a high-five when he came out of hiding from the hallway. Simon’s bright green eyes filled with laughter and mischief.

“Gileses stick together, right Amy?” Simon giggled.

“Always, Si!”

“Turncoat.” Ethan grumbled playfully.

Simon grinned and ran over to the sofa. When he was about three feet away, he launched himself and landed perfectly between his older brothers. He stretched his legs out over Callum’s thighs and leaned against Felix’s arm.

“I’m glad you’re okay, Felix. I was really scared.”

Felix shifted, sliding his arm around Simon and resting his hand on his chest. “Why were you scared?”

“You wouldn’t wake up and everyone was crying. When everyone cries, it’s bad.”

Felix was quiet for a minute, then leaned down and placed a soft kiss on top of Simon’s head. “Well, I’m awake now, Harry.”

Simon snorted a soft laugh. “Is the Academy like Hogwarts?”

“Better than.” Felix smiled.

Ethan continued plucking feathers out of his shirt. Amy walked around the sofa and sat down on the arm next to Callum.

“Why don’t you want to be a Watcher?”

Felix glanced at Callum. “Because he’s going to be an amazing Watcher. And I’d rather help with training. If we both do really well, we can help strengthen the Council in two different ways. If we’re both Watchers…we’re kind of stuck. Does that make sense?”

“Nope.” Simon said, playing with Felix’s watch band.

Amy reached down and tickled Simon’s toes, grinning as he giggled and pulled his foot away from her. “Who’s the best Watcher and Slayer team of all time?”

“Mummy and Daddy.” Simon said without hesitation.

Buffy smiled, shifting her gaze to Giles.

“We need Gileses to follow them, don’t we?”

“Callum follows Daddy…” Simon furrowed his brow as Amy nodded. “But…Felix can’t be a Slayer. Are you going to be a Slayer?”

“Oh, no…not me. If Felix can’t be a Slayer, what’s the next best thing?”

“An ambulance driver.” Simon answered confidently.

Giles laughed, his adoration of the youngest Giles clearly evident.

Callum playfully poked Simon’s stomach. “What do you want to be?”

“Happy.” Simon said with a grin.

“Well, we’re going to do everything we can to make sure that you get to be what you want to be.”

Buffy reached over and slid her hand into Giles’. He squeezed her fingers gently and then leaned over, pressing a soft kiss to her lips.

“I love our life.” Buffy whispered, her breath warm against his lips.

When all four children groaned and jumped off the sofa, Giles chuckled. Then he slid his fingers through her hair. He inhaled slowly as he watched her eyes darken a shade.

“Hey, Ethan…staying for dinner?” Callum asked, reaching over and pulling a feather out of the collar of Ethan’s shirt. “Because…I think you should. And I think we should all go pick something up.”

Ethan narrowed his eyes. “You can drive…”

“Mm…yeah. But, I think we should all go pick something up.” He tilted his head slightly towards his parents.

Ethan rolled his eyes. “Okay. Rupe…I’m taking the Wonder Twins and Co to grab dinner.”

“How come you don’t call them Callix like Willow and Xander do?” Amy asked, sliding her arms into her jacket.

“Who says I don’t?” Ethan grinned, pulling his keys out of his pockets. “Callix and Amimon…Callixamimon. That sounds like it should be the name of a brilliant spell. Want to help me work on it?”

“My magick isn’t as good as yours or Daddy’s or Willow’s.”

Ethan gave her a wink. “At your age I couldn’t even blow a candle out with magick. You’re miles and miles ahead of me, darling.”

Ethan closed the front door behind them. Buffy and Giles listened to the six of them banter back and forth all the way out to the car. When they heard the car pull away from the house, Giles smiled.

“How much time do you think we have?”

Buffy grinned, jumping up and pulling him with her. “Enough.”

Giles’ smile grew as he followed her down the hall that led to their bedroom.

The past seventeen years had been full of ups and downs, laughter and tears, elation and devastation. He wasn’t sure how many more years they had left together - he certainly wasn’t getting any younger - but he couldn’t wait to see what else was in store for their family.

Team Giles was certainly on a roll.

~ End

This entry was originally posted at However, you can comment here or there...I'm still around! :)

nc17, callix, b/g fanfic, frao, summer of giles

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