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Starrynight7 commented on Chapter 33 on November 24, 2020 03:04am Liked

Yay early! No complaints here applause

I’m so hoping Ben is lying in the hospital somewhere in a coma or some other incapacitated state lol. The rocket launcher really was a wasted resource heh.

Ooh shopping.... I agree with Buffy that the collar would look just drool on him. Guh. *ahem* 

ANYWHO, great chapter as always, and depraved enough to admit I’m very much looking forward to next week innocent

💫

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Tahkaullus01 commented on Chapter 32 on November 20, 2020 04:27am

So I was just looking at the banner for this story again... and I think I might have spoiled it for myself when I noticed certain details surrounding some of the characters.

Two Suns, a faded out Vantar in full demon-mode, Ben in slave rags and a collar. 

They're going to Pylea aren't they? And with all this business about the Slayer being a hybrid species too... I can't help but wonder what you have in store for Buffy and Faith.

 

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Fluffypuppy commented on Chapter 32 on November 18, 2020 04:40pm Liked

I really want faith to smack glory 

always love the bit when spike and buffy fight over the bazooka while robin is oblivious in’  ‘Him’

 

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rana commented on Chapter 32 on November 18, 2020 03:08pm Liked

Oh wow. So much happening here! The Knights (which hahahaha, Graham and Spike), Hank, Glory! I've always wondered if they could have just sent Dawn and Joyce to visit aunt Darlene for a couple months. What happens to Glory after? 

I'm really hoping they give Glory a beat down, she switches to Ben, Spike kills Ben, problem solved and they can all move on to more pleasant things LOL. Too easy?

Loving Graham and Faith. 

Curious to see what you do with the Angel/Connor storyline here. Are you fixing the Angelverse too?

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magnus374 commented on Chapter 32 on November 18, 2020 12:54pm

Buffy is adorable here and the hint of blushing is so cute. 

Then Faith is back and of course there had to be some teasing. Faith's report on Angel is not good, there us nothing wrong with him, well nothing curable that is. I didn't think about the fact that Darla now is in a different place in the family line could help mess Angel up. Since she seemed to have the same demon and everything, I didn't really think much about it.

I like that Buffy is actually worried for Graham's sake. He needs to be really careful so not spook her. Some good advice from Buffy but I can understand her feeling worried that she is sharing too much. 

Naturally Buffy felt the need to check up on them during their date. Spike had some good things to say to her but before they could interrupt something the knights attack. 

There are so many unknown things about these knights, they were sort of just thrown in on the show. They are not as bad as the guardiens ( the most meaningless plot point ever) but there are many strange things about them. 

Now suddenly Hank turns up, thinking he has any say in things after not being involved in their lives for years. As if that is not bad enough, here is Glory. 

Using the bazooka is good and with Graham there they have a possibility to get ammo. Let's hope Glory isn't turning into Ben until she's home or they will lose the track again.

I realised that I forgot to comment on one very important thing, Buffy's reluctance to slay the tracking demon Andrew summoned. It was great that she thought about the fact that they basicly kidnapped it, that it wasn't it's fault it was here. It shows some important thinking there. So the creature was drawn to power. Since it reacted to Xander I suppose he gas the same possibility for magic as in your other universe.

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Oddbird commented on Chapter 32 on November 18, 2020 05:53am Liked

Eeeeeeeeee this is sooo good!!!! Poor Buffy having to deal with her judgy dad on top of everything but I love Hank getting an eyeful of just how badass Buffy is!!

I loved the beginning, how Spike just took the interruption in step and went back to giving Buffy the best birthday ever. I love Faith sticking around, and how she’s managing to give Graham a chance. I looooooove the contrast between how wonderfully supportive Spike is (helping with homework in a casual, non-condescending f way, just helping her through the densest bits, running off with everyone so Buffy could fight her fight, keeping Joyce calm...) with her jerk of a dad who clearly doesn’t trust them at all. Supportive!Spike is the best!!! And it’s so much the line he was walking anyway in season 5 with much less encouragement so this is really clever.

This was exactly the chapter I needed this morning, thanks so much for writing!

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pfeifferpack commented on Chapter 32 on November 18, 2020 01:25am Liked

“They brought her back, human.  She remembered everything they’d shared, somehow.  The whole century-plus.  Yup that whole storyline should have put paid to the whole soul making a different being thing.


I'm kind of looking forward to Spike having a go at whipping Angel into shape actually.


“Faith and I are… delicate.  Can you keep it between us, that you came to me?”  Very true. I'm glad that Buffy cared enough to clue Graham in though. Faith is like an abused dog or horse who shies from humans and doesn't trust easily if at all. She'll need a Faith whisperer with a lot of patience and love. I hope he can be that for her because she deserves to be loved.


I NEVER understood the whole Knights of B. I figured it was writer fanboys having some fun more than anything since they didn't do a whole lot except add to the tension and cause the Scooby getaway to go sidewise. No explanation whatsoever and they were irrational zealots. how had a bunch of hard-bitten guys, a militant order like that, around since, apparently, the era in which swords and chain-mail were the most popular kind of weaponry, escaped the notice of a group as thorough and widespread as the Watchers Council?  Also, why would you stick with the medieval thing for this long?  It just made NO sense!


Looks like Graham did fine with the date. Faith was a happy camper at least.


Hank's timing is priceless... just in time for a visit from Glory! Talk about a crash course on all that his family has had going on that he side-stepped. 


What a total jerk to think he has any say in Buffy or anyone else's life since he is the one who opted out.  I'm glad they stood united in front of the git. A firm boot in his arse is all he deserves.


Aaaaaand there's Glory just to put a cherry on the sundae.


 He flashed fang.  “Get. Your. Useless. Human. Arse. To. The. Car.” And the reality is there to hit Hank in the face. My guess is he'll find a way to rationalize everything and go back to denial.


I should but do not have a shred of sympathy for Hank... sorry. Yeah, it's a lot to take in BUT he was never there or willing to be in on his kids life so ... nope. Big old nope on the sympathy.


Yes, use the rocket launcher and the troll hammer. 


  “You can try to throw me back in the looney-bin later, Daddy.  Right now I have to go save the world from all the things that go bump in the night.  You know; the ones you insisted don’t exist?”  Good for her. He doesn't deserve more than what he's getting... protection.


 Guess all that picture-perfect shit’s just on the surface, huh B? With most families. All families are dysfunctional in their own way IMHO.


Excellent update.


Kathleen

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FictionRedhead commented on Chapter 32 on November 17, 2020 09:09pm Liked

Hank being present for all this is such a cool, unexpected twist.

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vicdave99 commented on Chapter 32 on November 17, 2020 07:31pm Liked

Great chapter!....... 💙

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Tahkaullus01 commented on Chapter 32 on November 17, 2020 03:53pm

Ah the Knights of Byzantium... how the freaking hell is a sect of a dead branch of the Christian faith still around?

The only answer I can think of is that there is a fuckton of shit the Vatican doesn't want us to know about. Wanna bet once upon a time the Watchers' Council used to leech off of them too? 

Also, fucking Hank. Wasn't expecting him, not particularly happy to see him, won't shed a tear if Glory decides to play with him (look I was one of those kids who, even though he was a nightmare projection of Buffy's fears, really wanted to punch him. No one hurts our Slayer).

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Lou commented on Chapter 31 on November 17, 2020 06:07am Liked

Sweet to think of Clem being part of the gestation team and then partying -- so cool.

Author's Response on November 17, 2020 01:01pm

Hehe, it's really fun to think of alternate reproductive strategies for various species in here.  Glad you liked.  Thank you!

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magnus374 commented on Chapter 31 on November 11, 2020 01:41pm

Naturally they had to celebrate the victory over the Council and we got to enjoy a hot sex scene. The image of Buffy playing with her nipples is always great. Glory us still a problem though and some planning had to go into that. A rocket launcher could help, especially if she suddenly turns into Ben. They also have the hammer. I liked Buffy telling Spike that he should let Lydia interview him and how he could play during that.

After the Council left, there had to be some damage control, the demons would see their presence here as something involving the Slayer and it would complicate the balance. There is also normal life to deal with, like helping in the stores and doing some shopping.

Lovely conversation about Clem and his species. Their actions feels like a combination of a seahorse and a penguin. It didn't sound like asexual reproduction though. I mean, they do fertilise the egg don't they? And they do have males and females, so I can't find it that strange. It was enjoyable to see Buffy being weirded out though. Then the talk turned to be about vampires and Spike tried to tell Buffy something he considered important. I did have some trouble following his reasoning so I was mostly with Buffy in this but in the end Spike did get out a big message about his feelings.

Then we have trouble in LA. Darla is back. That situation is a big mess when we think about the soul, the demon and memories. It's hard to get that to make sense. In my mind the demon was brought back ( what I call the vampire demon is basicly a demonic soul) but her body was human making it impossible for the demon to act. The soul was there too but why doesn't they remember an afterlife? Clearly a lot of these things were things we weren't supposed to think about, but it is irritating.

Angel has a complicated history with Darla and there is a lot of feelings involved. 

Anyway Angel's actions are troubling indeed, actively allowing those humans to be killed was disturbing. Buffy and Spike have their own problems to deal with but luckily they have Faith🙂 so she can look for him. Also a nice little talk about Spike's vampire family and the complications it brings.This also brings up that the soul doesn't do anything good, it just made Angel feel bad on what he had done. 

And it ends as it begins with some hot actions.

Author's Response on November 17, 2020 01:20pm

>>Naturally they had to celebrate the victory over the Council and we got to enjoy a hot sex scene. The image of Buffy playing with her nipples is always great.>>

hehe, yeah for some reason we've not gotten around to graveyard sex in this (I don't think, anyway, though it was teased)...  Bout time we got there, with these two.

>>Glory us still a problem though and some planning had to go into that. A rocket launcher could help, especially if she suddenly turns into Ben.>>

one thing i hate about episodic TV; the refusal to use the same answer twice, even if it would be completely logical to do so.

>>They also have the hammer>>

I still love the image of Glory's shocked face when she got bludgeoned in the kisser with that.  So good.

>>I liked Buffy telling Spike that he should let Lydia interview him and how he could play during that.>>

Lydia really needs a good time.  If Spike was a free man he could give her quite the whirl, blow her mind, lol

>>After the Council left, there had to be some damage control, the demons would see their presence here as something involving the Slayer and it would complicate the balance.>>

I hated setting them back like that, PR-wise, but it was natural, as you say, for it to happen, sadly.

>>There is also normal life to deal with, like helping in the stores and doing some shopping.>>

At first I thought Spike would grumble his way out of that, but then when I thought about it more, no doubt he'd put up with that kind of thing with Dru and Darla (though with more bloodshed, considering the fun they had shopping in LA in AtS...)

>>Lovely conversation about Clem and his species. Their actions feels like a combination of a seahorse and a penguin.>>

it kind of does, doesn't it?  It was fun to play with ideas

>>It didn't sound like asexual reproduction though. I mean, they do fertilise the egg don't they? And they do have males and females, so I can't find it that strange.>>

Yeah, I guess since there are 'males' and 'females' of sorts, it's technically sexual reproduction, still, but not "sexual" reproduction, if you know what I mean (technically it's the vamps/weres who have more asexual reproduction in the pure scientific sense).
 
I'd also like to think the Loose-Skinneds as I've posited them would have a non-binary gender which nanny the babies, and are the ones not included in the egg-passing-about that year (stretch of several years?  something fun like that.  Man, you should see the weird-ass reproductive strategies I've come up with for some of the species in my Original Work, which is a scifi/fantasy crossover thinger.  Talk about a playground!  Hehe, that stuff is really fun to play with!)

>>It was enjoyable to see Buffy being weirded out though. Then the talk turned to be about vampires and Spike tried to tell Buffy something he considered important. I did have some trouble following his reasoning so I was mostly with Buffy in this but in the end Spike did get out a big message about his feelings.>>

Interspecies communication is bound to have its roadblocks sometimes!!!  (it makes me wonder what would have happened if other species of human were still around for us to mate with, since obviously it happened in the past of our history.  Maybe it partly happened seldom because of miscommunications beginning at the instinctive level like that and ending at the verbal level...  It also makes me wonder if there really are other hominids around--like if Sasquatch / Yeti, etc are actually extant, and if they are hominids, would we consider it murder to kill them, or for them to kill us, or would we consider them animals the way some consider it murder and some don't for us to kill chimpanzees and gorillas?--Because it has bearing on my whole thing about Vamps not being murderers for killing humans, no more than sharks are for killing and eating other fish.  But that's quite a tangent (mostly because it's a question I already had to deal with in my X-Files series).)

>>Then we have trouble in LA. Darla is back. That situation is a big mess when we think about the soul, the demon and memories. It's hard to get that to make sense. In my mind the demon was brought back ( what I call the vampire demon is basicly a demonic soul) but her body was human making it impossible for the demon to act.>>

Yeah, that whole thing on AtS very much complicated the system we'd been given on BtVS...  Obviously I went through a serious mental rollercoaster trying to solve it.  Some people think the demon isn't really an entity at all, but merely the presence or absence of conscience, which to me sounds like garbage; in my mind there HAS to be a separate entity involved, one brought in and in residence, or there wouldn't be, for instance, game-face and the whole two-sided van-tal thing.  Yeah, Darla really confused matters by remembering everything they did when she was a vampire.

>>The soul was there too but why doesn't they remember an afterlife?>>

That too!  That's why I came up with the idea that they don't have one, so much as come from and return to a sort of vampire spawning-ground.

>>Clearly a lot of these things were things we weren't supposed to think about, but it is irritating.>>

YES, it IS!!!  I sometimes wish they had thought it through better so it was more coherent... but then if they had it would've given us all a lot less wiggle-room to come up with our own theories, and I enjoy everyone's creativity as we strive to make it all make sense, so I guess I prefer it this way.

>>Angel has a complicated history with Darla and there is a lot of feelings involved.>>

Honestly based on the fact that he did those trials to save her, rather than to anchor the soul to be with Buffy or Cordelia means before Connor she was really the love of his life, whatever he might protest.  He could've done such a trial to find, for instance, a supernatural prophylaxis similar to what Cordy and Groo found... but instead he preferred to suffer, because no way could he let himself be happy.  He couldn't imagine happiness in anything but either causing suffering in others or suffering within himself.  Saving Darla is about suffering FOR someone else, so it's ok.  That guy is twisted. 

>>Anyway Angel's actions are troubling indeed, actively allowing those humans to be killed was disturbing.>>

yeah, the lawyers were one thing, but what about their innocent dates, wives, etc?

>>Buffy and Spike have their own problems to deal with but luckily they have Faith🙂 so she can look for him.>>

she's been very fun to insert in all this.  I know in real life they couldn't crossover the shows easily, there were too many constraints, but making them more connected has so many advantages in storytelling!

>>Also a nice little talk about Spike's vampire family and the complications it brings.This also brings up that the soul doesn't do anything good, it just made Angel feel bad on what he had done.>>

They were so much clearer about that in AtS; wish they had been on BtVS too, so Buffy could've got it.
Glad you liked the sexy bookends.

Thank you so much as always!!!

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pfeifferpack commented on Chapter 31 on November 11, 2020 04:36am Liked

Part of me expected their very hot lovemaking to be interrupted by someone since they were in the outdoors. Nice that Buffy is not at all inhibited sexually at this point unlike her poor self in canon who never really let herself just enjoy what she truly liked. I always suspected there was an appeal with exhibitionism and that whole "might get caught" aspect with her but she felt too guilty to just let go. Not too likely in the cemetery BUT there are vamps and demons and maybe the Council idiots who might have stumbled on them at the wrong time.

“Still have that big bleedin’ rocket launcher, do you, the Boy stole from the Army base to take out the soddin’ Judge?” Yeah, I always wondered why they didn't try that on Glory. Maybe the far too good guys returned the stolen weapon after they used it on the Judge. It might have slowed Glory down or even killed her actually. Blown her to bitty pieces.

Like selling yourself out as an attraction for a Watcher theme park, except you’ll get to smell her being all turned on the whole time, and know you’re screwing up their official books while you’re at it, and affecting a bunch of scholarship, and setting the story straight a little while you’re at it…  LOL. And nice echo of Spike in Giles' Restless dream with the attraction reference Yeah, I think that would be a worthy cause and Lydia would be so happy even if he feeds her lies.

 I’ll settle for knowing that I get you the hottest, and that I get to be the one who enjoys all the proceeds. Smart girl, Buffy. 

 things still remained a bit uneasy for a while when it came to Slayer-demon relations, which sucked. Bloody Council had to muck it up. I understand why the demons backed off a bit. They had to assume Buffy as the Slayer would still be connected with the Council in ways that were not good for them. They'll see in time.  Trust has to be built and thanks to the Council some backward movement happened.

Love Spike at the gallery. I think he'd be pretty knowledgeable actually. Love his saying Buffy was a Bronzino... yeah, He'd go with the portraits that seemed to glow... the effulgence of the subjects. Joyce nearly swooned. “Oh, God,” Mom called from the back of the room, “Buffy, for God’s sake, don’t ever let him get away, please.  I almost had a heart attack just now, and I’m only a secondhand witness…”  

Hum... dating cousins... could be part of my family there (my mom had a pair of her cousins who married. They were first cousins and had to move to a state where it was legal.... then there is my uncle who married his ex-daughter-in-law but that's another story). 

but with us, the blood is the sex.  ‘S how we make new vamps, how we feed…  It’s just, since we used to be human, we still have this vestigial human sexuality as part of our recessive natures, and it gets excited by that experience, so the two get conflated This makes complete sense. Then again sex and reproduction at least in humans aren't always that tied together unless you get religions involved LOL.

I'm not squicked out at all by what he was talking about. It makes perfect sense actually. I can see that Buffy would be struggling though. Glad she know him well enough to know that he was leading up to something important to him. 

Because you’ve reawoken the man, and you satisfy something in me that never had been.  Not in a hundred-fifty years.  Even if bein’ with you, bein’ loved by you wakes the blood-lust in me, it’s always overpowered, Buffy, by knowing that by some miracle, you want me.  That you would touch me with a loving hand… and I wouldn’t trade that in a thousand years for just sharing blood with you and having none of the rest. That is really so beautiful. Yeah, he wants the love, the tenderness and maybe it IS because William never got it but maybe he's not so singular really. I imagine other vampires had that same need but not all. Some were satisfied with just the standard urges. Maybe some weren't even aware of wanting it. Spike knows himself though.

  I just wanted you to know that I’d love you either-or.  That I didn’t have to have you this way to stay with you forever.  That the bastards were wrong, and you’d have me no matter what, and it isn’t the blood keeps me here serving you.  That I’m yours, love, no matter how it panned out between us. Funny, that's how I took it right away. I never even thought about the conclusion Buffy jumped to!

 He still has the soul, but it’s not working.  But it’s not like we can give him another one!  And if the soul’s not enough, what is?  And we can’t stake him if he’s got it, can we?  Or can we? Poor Cordy still buying into all that soul importance thing that Angel clings to. No wonder she's confused. She hasn't made the leap to realize that the soul doesn't make anyone good or evil but their choices do.

The soul just makes him feel bad about the stuff he did.  It never stopped him from doing it.  Like when he was with me.  All the things he did with me. Bingo! That was one thing they did well on Angel the series... they really didn't overdo the importance of the soul in general except how Angel needed one to have even what little grasp he did have on a conscience or any desire to do good at all. Without the curse, he was far too in love with evil for evil's sake.

I think they also showed pretty clearly that Darla was his real love. Cordy was good for him, brought out the best in him but Darla had a place no one else could touch. I always thought one reason he was attracted to Buffy was that she reminded him of Darla in all but her basic character. She was the "good Darla" that his souled self could love. He did trials to try to save Darla even willing to die in the process (he COULD have used those trials to anchor his soul so he could be with Buffy or Cordy or whomever but no... it was to save Darla).

 If anyone knew the kind of hold Angel had over people, the way he could manipulate…  And he’d had twenty-plus years to work on Spike, not just three.  Not to mention that she knew that whatever his protestations, Spike had both hated and also, obscurely, loved and idolized Angel. Absolutely! (and why Angel was able to get to Spike in S5 of Angel, keep him from going to Buffy. Spike was already conditioned in many ways and Angel knew just what to say.).

locked a bunch of Wolfram and Hart lawyers in a room with Darla and Drusilla and left them there to be vamp-munchies. Yeah, that was bad enough but it was also their spouses and/or dates. Angel pretty much gets a pass from Bangel fans for those sorts of choices when they extoll his superiority to Spike for some reason.

  He might mostly hate his grandsire, but he still cared about the guy; in the same way that you couldn’t not love a parent who’d raised you, even when they’d done their share of abusing you, Yeah, that's a sad truth right there. Abused kids are often more loyal and protective of the abusive parent for some reason.

 he messed with both our heads, so that one of us couldn’t ever love you the right way, and one of us almost missed her chance to love you at all, because I was so convinced that all the lies he told me about you were true; that you were nothing more than a monster.  What I would’ve missed; this loving, beautiful poet of a demon, and man  Yup... canon in a nutshell.

You were whoever your mom needed you to be, and then you were whoever Angelus wanted you to be, and then you were whatever Dru needed you to be.  And then you came here Yes, yes, yes, yes! You have been in my brain, haven't you? LOL

Whoever he wanted you to be… he didn’t know you.  He never knew you.  He only knew who he wanted you to be.  But that’s not you.  And I happen to think you’re pretty neat just the way you are,  Oh how I wish she'd seen that and said it in canon! He wouldn't have gotten so twisted up when the amulet spit him out!

Spike has just the cure to Buffy's birthday curse! That sounds like the best birthday possible actually and then once she can move the next day can come the cake and prezzies.

Yet another brilliant chapter.

Excellent update.

Kathleen

Author's Response on November 17, 2020 01:54pm

>>Part of me expected their very hot lovemaking to be interrupted by someone since they were in the outdoors.>>

hehe, i was wondering if anyone else was going to get anxious about that, the way it was a thing early on in the fic, and during the Riley stuff.  I decided to be nice this time, hehe.  They deserve it.

>>Nice that Buffy is not at all inhibited sexually at this point unlike her poor self in canon who never really let herself just enjoy what she truly liked.>>

100% omg i insist on it!!!  She was practically CRIPPLED in canon and it was painful to watch.  no way that's happening here.  She gets to be healthy and love herself, dammit!

>>I always suspected there was an appeal with exhibitionism and that whole "might get caught" aspect with her but she felt too guilty to just let go.>>

because she always had to be 'the good girl' in every other arena...

>>Not too likely in the cemetery BUT there are vamps and demons and maybe the Council idiots who might have stumbled on them at the wrong time.>>

hehe i get the feeling if any council folk saw this they'd run away, avert their eyes, gallop back to the teapot, trembling, toss back a bit of some very IRISH tea to brace themselves, and wish they'd never seen it, LOL.

>>Yeah, I always wondered why they didn't try that on Glory. Maybe the far too good guys returned the stolen weapon after they used it on the Judge. It might have slowed Glory down or even killed her actually. Blown her to bitty pieces.>>

one thing i hate about episodic TV; the refusal to use the same answer twice, even if it would be completely logical to do so.  Maddening.  Using that thing against Glory would've been so utterly satisfying (not that I didn't enjoy seeing them smack her in the kisser with the hammer, but the bazooka?  would've been CHOICE.)

>>LOL. And nice echo of Spike in Giles' Restless dream with the attraction reference Yeah, I think that would be a worthy cause and Lydia would be so happy even if he feeds her lies.>>

too bad Spike isn't a free man.  He could've given poor, repressed Lydia the time of her life.  God knows she could use it, hanging around being Travers' secretary or whatever the hell the boys' club forced her to do instead of giving her her due as a watcher in her own right.  (Just imagining what it'd be like to be a female watcher... ugh.)

>>Smart girl, Buffy.>>

heh, she knows how to work the system 

>>Bloody Council had to muck it up. I understand why the demons backed off a bit. They had to assume Buffy as the Slayer would still be connected with the Council in ways that were not good for them. They'll see in time.  Trust has to be built and thanks to the Council some backward movement happened.>>

frustrating that this sort of PR work is necessary.  I hated to do that to them, make them lose so much ground, but it was only logical.

>>Love Spike at the gallery. I think he'd be pretty knowledgeable actually>>

it was an image that popped into my head and then wouldn't leave till I did it, even though it made me giggle uncomfortably.  Also shows the guy would probably cut his own hands off for Joyce if she asked him to, lol  (speaking of, unrelated, but that whole hands thing never washed with me.  Did it ever bother you that his hands didn't crumble to dust the moment they were no longer attached to him?  Not that I'm complaining, because a handless Spike is not to be imagined, GOD NO, but it always niggled at me.)

>>Love his saying Buffy was a Bronzino... yeah, He'd go with the portraits that seemed to glow... the effulgence of the subjects. Joyce nearly swooned.>>

those paintings are gorgeous.  they really do seem to glow subtly.  I could see him loving their nuanced, quiet beauty.

>>Hum... dating cousins... could be part of my family there (my mom had a pair of her cousins who married. They were first cousins and had to move to a state where it was legal.... then there is my uncle who married his ex-daughter-in-law but that's another story).>>

My mom's married to her stepbrother now my father passed, so don't feel bad.  (They weren't raised together, which I think helps?)

>>This makes complete sense. Then again sex and reproduction at least in humans aren't always that tied together unless you get religions involved LOL.>>

lol, depending on the religion!  who even knows, anymore, right?  what a mess, the whole thing...

>>I'm not squicked out at all by what he was talking about. It makes perfect sense actually. I can see that Buffy would be struggling though. Glad she know him well enough to know that he was leading up to something important to him.>>

it's fun to play with different ideas of reproduction, though I can see how it would squick her out, lol.  Glad it didn't squick you.  (Technically I suppose I wasn't really cleaving to the letter of 'asexual reproduction' in there, since there are 'males' and 'females' of sorts.  That makes it still sexual reproduction... but not "sexual" reproduction, if you know what I mean (technically it's the vamps/weres who have more asexual reproduction in the pure scientific sense).
 
Since then my brain's gone off on the whole Loose-Skinneds thing, and posited them having a third, non-binary gender they'd shift to when not 'in use' for breeding, which nanny the babies; the ones not included in the egg-passing-about that year (stretch of several years?  something fun like that). 
I have too much fun with this stuff.  You should see the weird-ass reproductive strategies I've come up with for some of the species in my scifi/fantasy novel.  No doubt most of us who write stuff like that really just want to 'play god' as it were. 

>>That is really so beautiful. Yeah, he wants the love, the tenderness and maybe it IS because William never got it but maybe he's not so singular really. I imagine other vampires had that same need but not all. Some were satisfied with just the standard urges. Maybe some weren't even aware of wanting it. Spike knows himself though.>>

it makes one wonder how many vampires are more like him or Harmony, and how many are just an id with teeth...  I lean toward more of them are more like Harmony... or at least 50/50, based on how they were portrayed on the show, with so many coming at Buffy all frothy and mindless, and the rest stopping for a chat, and acting totally human (Sunday's bunch, the ones stopping to blink and ask questions and be confused, Holden, et al)...

>>Funny, that's how I took it right away. I never even thought about the conclusion Buffy jumped to!>>

well, you know.  Interspecies communication is bound to have its glitches and roadblocks sometimes!!! 
(it makes me wonder what would have happened if other species of human were still around for us to mate with, since obviously it happened in the past of our history.  Maybe it partly happened seldom because of miscommunications beginning at the instinctive level like that and ending at the verbal level...  It also makes me wonder if there really are other hominids around--like if Sasquatch / Yeti, etc are actually extant, and if they are hominids, would we consider it murder to kill them, or for them to kill us, or would we consider them animals the way some consider it murder and some don't for us to kill chimpanzees and gorillas?--Because it has bearing on my whole thing about Vamps not being murderers for killing humans, no more than sharks are for killing and eating other fish.  But that's quite a tangent (mostly because it's a question I already had to deal with in my X-Files series).)

Anyway, yeah.  In a way I think it's amazing that Buffy and Spike understand each other as well as they do, sometimes, prior to his being souled.  I think the fact that they do often has more to do with the fact that she's a Slayer and thus can understand where he's coming from on an instinctive level, whether she wants to admit it to herself or not (in canon), etc.  If she was fully human...  
Well.  I find it hard to imagine a full-human/vamp relationship actually working.

>>Poor Cordy still buying into all that soul importance thing that Angel clings to. No wonder she's confused. She hasn't made the leap to realize that the soul doesn't make anyone good or evil but their choices do.>>

I'm honestly trying to pinpoint when she got past that in the show, and I think it had to have been after this spree of his, since it really highlighted for everyone down there what he was and wasn't capable of, soul or no soul...

>>Bingo! That was one thing they did well on Angel the series... they really didn't overdo the importance of the soul in general except how Angel needed one to have even what little grasp he did have on a conscience or any desire to do good at all. Without the curse, he was far too in love with evil for evil's sake.>>

God, I wish they'd given Buffy this revelation, instead of keeping all the nuanced portrayal stuff in its AtS bubble.  She really deserved to know/see it over on BtVS too.  It would have helped her so much with the stuff she needed to figure out in herself and with Spike, GOD.

>>I think they also showed pretty clearly that Darla was his real love. Cordy was good for him, brought out the best in him but Darla had a place no one else could touch. I always thought one reason he was attracted to Buffy was that she reminded him of Darla in all but her basic character. She was the "good Darla" that his souled self could love. He did trials to try to save Darla even willing to die in the process (he COULD have used those trials to anchor his soul so he could be with Buffy or Cordy or whomever but no... it was to save Darla).>>

Oh, 100%; and Connor later as sort of a culmination of everything he couldn't be, nor her, and definitely not them together; a sort of embodiment of their sins washed clean.  Talk about living vicariously through your child as a second chance.  I think that's why he was so devastated at what was done to Connor and how he turned out, why that wrecked him so completely.  But I agree; before Connor she was really the love of his life, whatever he might protest.  He could've done such a trial to find, for instance, a supernatural prophylaxis similar to what Cordy and Groo found... but instead he preferred to suffer, because no way could he let himself be happy.  He couldn't imagine happiness in anything but either causing suffering in others (look at how many times he had to witness suffering in Buffy to know he was loved.  Still the same guy, much?  Soul or no soul), or suffering within himself.  Saving Darla is about suffering FOR someone else, so it's ok. 
That guy is twisted. 

>>Absolutely! (and why Angel was able to get to Spike in S5 of Angel, keep him from going to Buffy. Spike was already conditioned in many ways and Angel knew just what to say.).>>

if you raise a person, you know how to push their buttons, and just which ones to push.  In a way, vice-versa, but the parent will always have the upper-hand over the child, because the child will always want to please the parent.  Which means the parent will always have a built-in carrot to hold out in front of the child and use it to coerce behavior; they can just withhold love and say, "you can have it, you can have everything you've ever wanted from me (my respect, my approval, my love), if you only try harder, do more, be this, deny yourself," and it's sick.

>>Yeah, that was bad enough but it was also their spouses and/or dates. Angel pretty much gets a pass from Bangel fans for those sorts of choices when they extoll his superiority to Spike for some reason.>>

don't even get me started.

>>Yeah, that's a sad truth right there. Abused kids are often more loyal and protective of the abusive parent for some reason.>>

Yeah, isn't it?  it's the weirdest twisted mental knot ever invented, that.  learning to seek love so hard that you cannot give up the struggle, at any cost, your self-worth is so invested in it that to lose it means losing your identity.  you have no idea who you are without it.  Figuring that out is the work of lifetimes, god, what a mess.  

>>Yup... canon in a nutshell.>>

so satisfying to evade it in these fics, innit?

>>Yes, yes, yes, yes! You have been in my brain, haven't you? LOL>>
We have twin-brain in a lot of aspects, I think.  hearts

>>Oh how I wish she'd seen that and said it in canon! He wouldn't have gotten so twisted up when the amulet spit him out!>>

YAS.

>>Spike has just the cure to Buffy's birthday curse! That sounds like the best birthday possible actually and then once she can move the next day can come the cake and prezzies.>>

hehe, Spike really needs to clone himself.  

blow_kiss thank you so much!!!

pfeifferpack Replied on November 17, 2020 08:50pm

Did it ever bother you that his hands didn't crumble to dust the moment they were no longer attached to him?  Not that I'm complaining, because a handless Spike is not to be imagined  YES that has bothered me so much (and agree that I'm glad it didn't happen). BUT there is precedence on Angel... In Heartthrob where we meet the long term lovers James and Elisabeth, James has his heart cut out and given to the doctor (The Collector) in payment for being invincible so he can kill Angel in revenge. Why didn't the heart dust (or James)?

 

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Oddbird commented on Chapter 31 on November 11, 2020 04:08am

As always, there is so so much going on here!!! I absolutely loved it. I love all the many different ways Spike and Buffy are finding to learn and to love each other. I love this odd sense that they’re growing up together, even though Spike has been around for more than a century. I love Spike gamely agreeing to sell art for Joyce and then actually enjoying it! And I love the way Buffy is always trying to protect him from himself, and he lets her even if he doesn’t quite see what she’s doing at first. They’re such an intriguing couple, this particular Buffy and Spike, can’t get enough!! (Oh and I loved your thing with Clem - because with all the amazing things in the natural world, much less the supernatural, no way all demons have sexual reproduction, you’re totally right). 

Author's Response on November 17, 2020 01:00pm

>>As always, there is so so much going on here!!! I absolutely loved it. I love all the many different ways Spike and Buffy are finding to learn and to love each other.>>

*squee*  Thank you for this, you made me smile hugely

>>I love this odd sense that they’re growing up together, even though Spike has been around for more than a century.>>

yeah, it's so clear on the show, and yet I think also oddly glossed over, and so very important, yanno?

>>I love Spike gamely agreeing to sell art for Joyce and then actually enjoying it!>>

it was such a bizarrely fun image when it popped into my head that I couldn't let it go.  It had to see the light of day (and it makes it quite clear that he would chop off his own hands for Joyce and count himself lucky).

>>And I love the way Buffy is always trying to protect him from himself, and he lets her even if he doesn’t quite see what she’s doing at first.>>

heartheartheart  Buffy's such a protector!  So fiercely so.

>>They’re such an intriguing couple, this particular Buffy and Spike, can’t get enough!!>>

hehe, I'm just excited that I've managed to make them successfully different in 'flavor' than the latter-day version of themselves.  That's an accomplishment!

>>(Oh and I loved your thing with Clem - because with all the amazing things in the natural world, much less the supernatural, no way all demons have sexual reproduction, you’re totally right).>>

HEE, that was a fun one to work out.  (I guess since there are 'males' and 'females' of sorts, it's technically sexual reproduction, still, but not "sexual" reproduction...) 
I'd also like to think they have a non-binary gender which nanny the babies, and are the ones not included in the egg-passing-about that year (stretch of several years?  something fun like that.  Man, you should see the weird-ass reproductive strategies I've come up with for some of the species in my Original Work.  Talk about a playground!  Man, that stuff is fun to mess with!)

Thank you so very much, as always, for your enthusiasm!!!  It warms my soul.

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Fluffypuppy commented on Chapter 31 on November 11, 2020 01:23am Liked

Can faith sort out angel?

vamp family relationships are confusing 

Author's Response on November 16, 2020 03:01pm

They sure are!  I know I'm glad I'm not in a vamp family!

thank you.

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Lou commented on Chapter 30 on November 10, 2020 06:00pm Liked

That was a showdown and a half!  Nice tweaks with the throwing of stakes and the Buffy empathy with Faith worked really well.

Author's Response on November 16, 2020 03:01pm

Yay, so glad you enjoyed it!!!  It was a fun rewrite, fitting everyone in!

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Tahkaullus01 commented on Chapter 31 on November 10, 2020 03:30pm

Why is it always Clem who gets the m!Preg in these things? I mean yeah he's a convenient plot tool but c'mon, there are others... I think... maybe...

Hmm.

Author's Response on November 10, 2020 08:23pm

LOL, is it really that common? I haven’t seen it anywhere, but maybe I’m reading the wrong stories. I’ve seen him paired up with female lode-skins, and seen him mentioned as gay (which makes sense to me because he reads to me as gay), I’ve even seen him paired up with Xander, but I haven’t seen him in this particular seahorse type situation before, I must be missing all of the fun stories!

 Thanks for commenting!

Author's Response on November 10, 2020 10:58pm

Loose*
how iPhone felt the need to replace that word...

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Lou commented on Chapter 29 on November 10, 2020 11:02am Liked

Wow lots of stress and tension -  this could get very nasty.  What a great team and I'm loving Joyce the Valkyrie!

Author's Response on November 16, 2020 03:00pm

hehe, so glad you're enjoying Joyce!  I've been loving making her an important part of the plot again, instead of just having her be in the background!!!
Thank you!

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Fluffypuppy commented on Chapter 30 on November 06, 2020 01:44pm Liked

Think travers was more scared of Joyce.  She’s terrifying 🤣

Author's Response on November 09, 2020 01:27am

She really is!  I'm so glad to get to use her in here instead of just saving her and then leaving her lying around as window-dressing.  Glad you enjoyed her part in this!  Thank you.

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YouCutYourHair commented on Chapter 29 on November 04, 2020 12:18pm Liked

 Reading all this righteous anger against a broken and harmful system... was very cathartic escapism on today. Thank you.

Author's Response on November 09, 2020 01:26am

Thank you so very much for the comment!  I'm extremely grateful that you found it cathartic.  It was certainly cathartic to write, beyond glad it was helpful, timing-wise, to read.  I really appreciate the feedback, thank you again!

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pfeifferpack commented on Chapter 29 on November 04, 2020 05:38am Liked

Just saw that I didn't comment on this chapter! Mea Culpa.

your eyes have green in them, and gold, and brown; they’re multifarious and lush, verdant gardens…”

Buffy held up a hand.  “I love you, and you can write me a poem about my eyes later, William  I absolutely loved this exchange! His poetic gushing and her response were brilliant.

they know for sure now that my demon-side is way dialed up and awake, they can see it in my eyes,  Yes, because no matter if they keep it secret from the Slayer (and maybe even the field Watchers assigned to them) or not... the Council knows the origins of the Slayer are demonic. 

I love Giles here. His basic belief system has been shot to hell and he's not found his footing just yet BUT the line in the sand has been drawn and he chose correctly the side he will stand on.  “Yes, well, when they do, they’ll be coming against a concerted force of far more than just one Slayer and a vampire.  That much is certain.”  

Spike isn't wrong  Everything you’ve done for them since you first marched down there like a brilliant madwoman to fight Nest has been bleedin’ pro-bono work, don’t you see that?    BUT Buffy isn't able to walk away even if she wants to, even if she's entitled to.

 I have powers.  If I don’t use ‘em to help people, that makes me evil!  We could never come home!  We could never sleep again!  They’ll hunt us forever And she's not wrong either. They are both right. That pretty much means the system is what's wrong.

God, Spike is SO insightful! Yes, that's exactly what they did and how they did it. It's also why Buffy, Faith, and every other Slayer is driven and can also easily go off the rails when something goes bad. Buffy helping loose Angel's soul and the resulting deaths. Buffy not saving everyone in the different apocalypses. Faith and the Deputy Mayor. every person is necessary and important to the ecosystem you’re protectin’ because they’re yours… an’ everything in your instincts rebels if even one of your charges dies. Spike even gets around to just that about Faith. Buffy's horror at the idea of killing humans is hard wired, same with Faith. They must protect their sheep or die trying.

“Probably why you’re runnin’ off half-cocked all the bleedin’ time, then,” Spike opined, eyes still on the alter-Slayer.  “Don’t have a territory of your own.  And before, you and Buffy were fighting over this one; whose it was, which of you was top sheepdog, all while takin’ care of the herd together. Absolutely. This is why Faith needs her own territory even if they can join for specific battles they will always be in contention for top dog. Dog fights for primacy are brutal.

I care about it because it’s a place I live in, and because I’ve become fond.  But it’s your territory, pet.  You’re the alpha.  I’m your… enforcer.  I’m your… consort in the power-structure.  When I fight to keep it, I’m doing it for you.  I’m helping to hold it for you.  I’m doing it to support your place… and I care because it’s yours. That makes absolute sense. In a way, Buffy is HIS territory, his flock to guard and tend. His wiring isn't location-specific but it is person connected, relationship connected. He's a true Biblical Ruth "Wither you go I will go and your people shall be my people and your God my God" 

Yeah, Knowing that Faith is hard-wired that way showed Spike that it as much a part of Buffy as any body part. To change her or to try would be to mutilate her in a sense. You’d be safer… but you wouldn’t be you anymore.  I’d have lost you, either way. It may have started as conditioning... training that became inbred but now it is who she is and always will be.

For some reason, I found this very moving He exhaled, abrupt and loud in the gloom.  “I’m very, very brassed off, love.  And I’m so bloody terrified I might lose you, I don’t even know how to breathe.”   The depth of honesty as he shows his heart, his emotions, if lovely. He is brassed off. Not AT her but for her and for the circumstances, the injustice of it all. He also reveals just how deep his love is by the last part of that.

Hot, urgent sex more for connection than anything lust related. Wonderfully written and raw.

Oh, Anya, you are so smart. You sure let them push you around like a little Council.  I can’t get over sometimes how much you let them weigh in on your decisions.  Even your personal ones, like who to sleep with; which, honestly, just never really made any sense to me at all  Yes. Buffy did hand over her agency to the lot of them. Not as much in this story but in canon pretty much wholesale.

I could see it as a holdover from the demonic inheritance, since it’s such a similar power-structure to that required to keep a fledgling vampire in line…YES, yes!

Giles must have had enough conditioning in how to isolate his Slayer. That explains why he didn't want her informing Joyce when it would have been much safer for Joyce and Buffy (especially after Darla's attack in S1)... That role of making sure the Slayer had NO ONE  else to rely upon. He didn't do it consciously but it was trained into him nonetheless. Common sense should have had him sitting down with Joyce and explaining about Buffy's calling and the dangers. Should have told her how she could be used against Buffy by the forces Buffy had to fight.

The Gods of Chaos.  Who did you think I worked for, Xander?  JC Penney?  I love this! So very Anya and funny too. And the vengeance demons naturally would have been from that group. Not evil nor good (I always thought TPTB were a mix) but Chaos. 

I'm with Faith and Tara regarding Joyce. Oh yeah. Hot and wonderful... she is fierce.

LOVE the showdown opening move at Willy's. 

Nice tight writing with mounds of meat! Loved every bit of it.

Excellent update, sorry I didn't leave a comment before. RL has me inside-out.

Kathleen

Author's Response on November 09, 2020 02:10am

>>Just saw that I didn't comment on this chapter! Mea Culpa.>>

pssssh I'm just excited to see comments from you whenever you can offer them!

>>I absolutely loved this exchange! His poetic gushing and her response were brilliant.>>

I'm super excited you enjoyed it, since it was one of my favorite moments that sort of fell out of the fingers mid-scene.  I love when they come out with stuff like that for me (you know, when you feel like you're just relaying a scene and had nothing to do with it?)

>>Yes, because no matter if they keep it secret from the Slayer (and maybe even the field Watchers assigned to them) or not... the Council knows the origins of the Slayer are demonic.>>

100% my hc 

>>I love Giles here. His basic belief system has been shot to hell and he's not found his footing just yet BUT the line in the sand has been drawn and he chose correctly the side he will stand on>>

About damned time, in some reality or another.

>>Spike isn't wrong  BUT Buffy isn't able to walk away even if she wants to, even if she's entitled to.>>

it's always driven me bonkers that no one's ever sat down with her and brought that to her attn. in canon; that EVERYTHING since Nest has been her working for FREE.  ALL her heartache over Angel, all the stuff in LA, freaking GLORY, the depression, those idiot boys, the war with the First... ALL stuff she DIDN'T HAVE TO DO.  Don't EVEN get me started on their putting her through that fucking cruciamentum to kill her off because she was a vamp-dating spare and they had no freaking clue what to do with her by then.

>>And she's not wrong either. They are both right. That pretty much means the system is what's wrong.>>

yup

>>God, Spike is SO insightful! Yes, that's exactly what they did and how they did it. It's also why Buffy, Faith, and every other Slayer is driven and can also easily go off the rails when something goes bad. Buffy helping loose Angel's soul and the resulting deaths. Buffy not saving everyone in the different apocalypses. Faith and the Deputy Mayor. Spike even gets around to just that about Faith. Buffy's horror at the idea of killing humans is hard wired, same with Faith. They must protect their sheep or die trying.>>

It's so much fun to play around with, essentially, pack-dynamics vs lone-hunter predator dynamics with Slayers and vamps to figure out these things.  I have so many schematics.  GOD it's fun.
Someone in here compared Slayers to tigers and vamps to wolves (lone predators vs animals who can be pack-hunters or lone-wolves), I was like, the reason I like the sheepdog thing is because dogs still have humans using them / controlling them while they control the territory beneath the humans, protecting a territory but not HUNTING in it; tigers would just EAT everything.  A sheepdog doesn't necessarily pack-bond to other dogs; they pack-bond to the humans controlling them first and foremost.  (and yes, vamps = wolves, from which they were semi-domesticated, if our sheepdogs were more like half-wolf husky sled-dogs in instinct.)

>>Absolutely. This is why Faith needs her own territory even if they can join for specific battles they will always be in contention for top dog. Dog fights for primacy are brutal.>>

TERRIFYING.  And it makes SO much more sense, once you look at it through that lens.  No matter how much they might love each other... there's that instinct. Even with littermates...

>>That makes absolute sense. In a way, Buffy is HIS territory, his flock to guard and tend. His wiring isn't location-specific but it is person connected, relationship connected. He's a true Biblical Ruth "Wither you go I will go and your people shall be my people and your God my God">>

Very much so, yeah, isn't he?  I love it.  He pack-bonded to Buffy as her beta, if you will.  
(I cannot handle that Ruth quote, btw, since I first read "Fried Green Tomatoes At the Whistle Stop Cafe", have you read that?  The movie's amazing as well, but the book had me on the floor.)

>>Yeah, Knowing that Faith is hard-wired that way showed Spike that it as much a part of Buffy as any body part. To change her or to try would be to mutilate her in a sense.  It may have started as conditioning... training that became inbred but now it is who she is and always will be.>>

He would destroy that which he loved.  
It's funny; this is about the only time (so far anyway) he's had to use his safeword.  She uses hers later in a far more usual situation, but it's funny to me that THIS is what he safewords (he's such a vamp.  the idea that he might actually use it during sex is almost laughable).

>>For some reason, I found this very moving.  The depth of honesty as he shows his heart, his emotions, if lovely. He is brassed off. Not AT her but for her and for the circumstances, the injustice of it all. He also reveals just how deep his love is by the last part of that.>>

Poor Spike; he's really not wired for ANY of this.  He's a ticking time-bomb, with all these people and things ganging up to hurt his mate, and there's not one gotdamn thing he can do about it without wrecking the relationship.  He's gonna explode from the stress one of these days.

>>Hot, urgent sex more for connection than anything lust related. Wonderfully written and raw.>>

hearts

>>Oh, Anya, you are so smart. Yes. Buffy did hand over her agency to the lot of them. Not as much in this story but in canon pretty much wholesale.>>

I was DYING for Anya to bring that up (and couldn't manage to fit it in the first story), because OMG she did and it was SO STUPID, IT MADE ME INSANE.

>>YES, yes!>>

so exciting when people like my random meta wanderings, thank you for the enthusiasm!

>>Giles must have had enough conditioning in how to isolate his Slayer. That explains why he didn't want her informing Joyce when it would have been much safer for Joyce and Buffy (especially after Darla's attack in S1)... That role of making sure the Slayer had NO ONE  else to rely upon. He didn't do it consciously but it was trained into him nonetheless. Common sense should have had him sitting down with Joyce and explaining about Buffy's calling and the dangers. Should have told her how she could be used against Buffy by the forces Buffy had to fight.>>

100%.  He definitely had his share of brainwashing!!!  He thought he was so openminded, and compared to some, he was, since he'd had such a dodgy background, but he had swallowed a lot of the conditioning (clearly, the way it started to come out more and more as the years went on and wear and tear worked their ways with him).

>>I love this! So very Anya and funny too. And the vengeance demons naturally would have been from that group. Not evil nor good (I always thought TPTB were a mix) but Chaos.>>

I always thought they must too.  TPTB seemed kind of tough to pin down, but I bank on Chaos to keep things from being too black and white.  I'm right there with Ethan; keep them in the mix.  In that way Ethan could be said to be a good guy, just for shaking up everything before the mix got too dead-set all the time.  The Vengeance crowd as well. 

>>I'm with Faith and Tara regarding Joyce. Oh yeah. Hot and wonderful... she is fierce.>>

I freaking love Joyce, and I am having more fun than I can express actually USING her instead of just having her survive only to drop her on the sidelines to stand around as window dressing.  I have so many plot-bits for her to jump on as we continue!!!  *g*  (Maybe it takes a certain age-bracket to start to really appreciate her character?)

>>LOVE the showdown opening move at Willy's.  Nice tight writing with mounds of meat! Loved every bit of it.>>

So very glad you enjoyed it!!!  You're too kind.  And don't worry!  I'm just excited to hear from you if and when you can, thank you so very very much!!!  *hugs*  RL got insane there for a few days.  I spent most of it refreshing my electoral map every 17 minutes or so and not sleeping for days, so I feel you.  Hang in there, hope life is treating you better now.

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pfeifferpack commented on Chapter 30 on November 04, 2020 03:41am Liked

This just made tonight slightly bearable. Seriously, nothing was remotely doing the job until I read this brilliance.

This confrontation in canon was one of my all-time favorite scenes in the series. Buffy standing up to Travers and declaring independence and more was golden. You took that and expanded it to something even better because it didn't leave out a lot.

Adding Faith, Joyce, and Spike pro-actively to the mix was glorious. The additional threat of W&H was inspired. Yeah, I'll just bet they could handle the influence of the Council without batting an eye. Legally they'd likely eat them for lunch.

So many parts that I could quote because they made me cheer but I'll pick out just a few lest my comment becomes longer than the chapter.

Before she lost it and started a little Slayer ballet  I love that Slayer ballet image. I don't think anyone has ever used that phrase and it is perfect.

Oh, my GOD I absolutely adore Joyce here! This is the mama bear in full force. This is what any mother should feel and she was prepared to the gills. She stands in the breach for all the mothers of all the Slayers and Potentials from the beginning to the future. She is fierce and Travers and the Council would do well to fear her wrath.

“Murderous bastard who tried to have my baby killed, is it?” Mom answered without skipping a beat.   Buffy assures me you might have helpful information for us, so I’ve agreed not to press charges against you… for the time being GO Joyce! Yes, she has issues with things the Council has already done to Buffy, and now is her hour to lay it out.

Joyce could also threaten to report how they collect all those young girls all over the world. Sounds like human trafficking to me. Probably would to at least enough officials to make it hot for the Council.

 The Slayer has been here since the beginning.  The face of the Slayer changes… but the spirit, the soul of the Slayer has been the same since the start.  You guys?  ...  Transient Love how Spike supplied the final word. Like a perfect partnership completely in tune, he knew just what she was fishing for. She's right. There has been ONE Slayer in multiple bodies. The Slayer is the constant. The Council are just interchangeable men (for the most part) who were intended to be her support system. 

 “We’re not your instrument.  You are ours.”  And hurrah! This is the bald truth. The purpose of the Council laid bare.

Girl has a demon in her isn’t keen anymore to your glove, lads I cannot say enough about the analogy using the sad life of the Falcon. What a perfect choice! That is exactly what was done to the Slayer. It is unnatural and wrong to the point of evil. Just beautifully stated.

 go tend your library or whatever the heck it is you do in London when you’re not harassing the people who actually do the fighting.  Back to what they are supposed to be doing. Chronicling, researching, indexing, and so on. Looking for prophecies and portents. Coordinating as needed with other resources and smoothing things with authorities (I mean, really, Buffy should never have been threatened with expulsion from school for one thing nor in trouble with the law).

It doesn’t matter how I do my job.  It doesn’t matter who I do it with.  It doesn’t matter how Faith does it, or that she’s allies with Angel down in LA.  None of that matters.  It doesn’t matter who we sleep with—which by the way, why that’s such a giant topic of concern for everybody is way beyond me, and really kind of gross, let’s be real—or how we manage the demon populations where we live.  None of that matters You betcha! As long as they are fighting evil it is not their concern and never was. Poor Kendra was a complete slave to where I cringe watching those scenes. Her sad comments about not being permitted friends, school, social life of any kind. She couldn't even make field decisions having to run back to her Watcher for the next instruction was horrifying! She couldn't even LOOK at Xander for the love of God. THAT is how they liked their Slayers. Poor thing had the shelf life of a mayfly.

I’d think twice before parading in here telling us what to do.  Because you’re just the support staff.  We’re the Slayers  Amen!

 I have three very powerful witches, two summoners, and a thousand-year-old ex-demon on tap.  I think they can cover the research… and our butts, if you decide to go rogue on us.  Great use of Buffy's fire-power. 

Love the threat of W&H vs. Council so very much! Yeah, they are evil but so is the Council... fire with fire.

And I want you to leave after this and never come back, and keep your wetworks bastards away from them, and away from my son-in-law, away from my entire family, or I’ll find a way to end you.  Again, just love Joyce and that last threat of ending them is cheer-worthy.

The contract and all its details were exactly what should have existed. Having it magically enforced is excellent. I hope it has enough weight that they won't/can't come back later to try to eliminate Spike or Faith or Buffy. I hope it's iron-clad. 

Didn’t they get that not wanting to have your life run by a bunch of dickish old men wasn’t the same thing as turning evil? No, no they didn't get that. Look at the world around you... women or minorities who start to see their worth, start to demand autonomy leads to blowback of epic proportions. The status quo is fragile and scared when challenged.

 What an exquisite and cathartic chapter! I loved every word.

Excellent in every way.

Kathleen 

Now back to my previously scheduled wine drinking and nail-biting while I rage at the darkness.

Author's Response on November 09, 2020 02:38am

>>This just made tonight slightly bearable. Seriously, nothing was remotely doing the job until I read this brilliance.>>

*blushes*
Super glad it was cathartic.  God knows we needed things that helped during all that tension.  I read a ton of stuff... and unfortunately have very little memory of what I read.  I feel awful about it, but there it is.  I did a lot of pacing holding my phone and staring at projections.

>>This confrontation in canon was one of my all-time favorite scenes in the series. Buffy standing up to Travers and declaring independence and more was golden. You took that and expanded it to something even better because it didn't leave out a lot.>>

I appreciate that.  I really loved this episode in canon myself, but there was so much I wanted them to say/throw at those dicks and they never did and I was ready to get everything in there, and the kitchen sink.  No holds barred (I probably rewrote it about eight times, lol)

>>Adding Faith, Joyce, and Spike pro-actively to the mix was glorious. The additional threat of W&H was inspired. Yeah, I'll just bet they could handle the influence of the Council without batting an eye. Legally they'd likely eat them for lunch.>>

Fight fire with fire.  LOL, i know I already said it, but I'm having so damn much fun with Joyce in this story it's not even funny.  She brings a level of mature rage that's just... well, you said it. Cathartic.  That, 'I've kept my mouth shut and been a lady for too long, like HELL I'll do it anymore now I know what's up!'  And she brings ideas like LAWYERS, that Buffy and Faith wouldn't think of because they're twenty, and that Giles wouldn't think of, because demonlawyers/evol, and it's just FUN.

Maybe I'll have Joyce run for Sd Mayor next.  HEE.

>>So many parts that I could quote because they made me cheer but I'll pick out just a few lest my comment becomes longer than the chapter.>>

You're so damn sweet to me.  blow_kiss

>>I love that Slayer ballet image. I don't think anyone has ever used that phrase and it is perfect.>>

hearts

>>Oh, my GOD I absolutely adore Joyce here! This is the mama bear in full force. This is what any mother should feel and she was prepared to the gills. She stands in the breach for all the mothers of all the Slayers and Potentials from the beginning to the future. She is fierce and Travers and the Council would do well to fear her wrath.>>

THANK you, that is exactly the emotion I wanted to evoke; that she stands for all those mothers whose babies were reft from them mysteriously and they never saw them again.  YES.  EXACTLY.

>>GO Joyce! Yes, she has issues with things the Council has already done to Buffy, and now is her hour to lay it out.>>

honestly how she wasn't more in their faces demanding WTF after Kralik is beyond me.  She must've been so thrown she didn't ask more questions.

>>Joyce could also threaten to report how they collect all those young girls all over the world. Sounds like human trafficking to me. Probably would to at least enough officials to make it hot for the Council.>>

You know, that's a very good point!!!  If they ever come back to bother her babies again she can throw that at 'em, lol  (because you know, they really are just THAT Creepy.  UGH, disappearing people, and god knows what...)

>>Love how Spike supplied the final word. Like a perfect partnership completely in tune, he knew just what she was fishing for.>>

i have a stupidly huge crush on the whole 'Spike supplies the word Buffy's looking for' thing.  it floats my boat.

>>She's right. There has been ONE Slayer in multiple bodies. The Slayer is the constant. The Council are just interchangeable men (for the most part) who were intended to be her support system.>>

they REALLY need to accept their reality. 

>>And hurrah! This is the bald truth. The purpose of the Council laid bare.>>

I about SCREAMED when she got down do that in the episode.  TAKE THAT you bastards!

>>I cannot say enough about the analogy using the sad life of the Falcon. What a perfect choice! That is exactly what was done to the Slayer. It is unnatural and wrong to the point of evil. Just beautifully stated.>>

when I was a wee smol I was WAY in love with peregrine falcons and wanted to get into falconry, because beautiful bird, noble, get to touch it, yadda... till I found out HOW they did it.  Now it SICKENS me.  And this is just... so the same, only using love withheld to do it, and it's GROSS.  (Some parents do this to their kids too, and it makes me nauseous.)

>>Back to what they are supposed to be doing. Chronicling, researching, indexing, and so on. Looking for prophecies and portents. Coordinating as needed with other resources and smoothing things with authorities (I mean, really, Buffy should never have been threatened with expulsion from school for one thing nor in trouble with the law).>>

OMG don't even get me started.  She should NEVER have been in the psych ward, much less in trouble with the law, etc, but they were I think punishing her for wanting to stay in school and thought if they let her get expelled she'd focus more on slaying.  They didn't WANT her in school, didn't mind if she got in trouble, because if Joyce lost custody... guess who was waiting?  They could figure out a way for 'uncle Giles' to get custody easily enough through legal sleight of hand, and maybe Joyce would even be grateful she wasn't going into the system.

Honestly the fact that Buffy managed to graduate and stay with Joyce (came back from LA, etc) is amazing with those bastards trying to send her off the deep end...

>>You betcha! As long as they are fighting evil it is not their concern and never was. Poor Kendra was a complete slave to where I cringe watching those scenes. Her sad comments about not being permitted friends, school, social life of any kind. She couldn't even make field decisions having to run back to her Watcher for the next instruction was horrifying! She couldn't even LOOK at Xander for the love of God. THAT is how they liked their Slayers. Poor thing had the shelf life of a mayfly.>>

Kendra depressed the hell out of me, and was a perfect foil for us to see the life Buffy had narrowly avoided by being 'missed'.  How they'd also missed Faith is a question that fascinates me.  I wonder if maybe Giles had already been in place in Sd, btw, in the library there (since no one treated him as if he were a completely new fixture to the school, it seems he was there at least since the start of the year), because they knew they had a Potential in town (my hc being of course that Cordy was one)... but then they ended up sending their trouble-Slayer to him instead, and Buffy's being there circumvented her being Called.  Either way, whatever Slayer was on the hellmouth fighting Nest was going to be short-lived, and Giles would either die in the fight with her or be devastated by the loss, and hence be out of the way.

>>Amen!  Great use of Buffy's fire-power.>> 

It was weird tweaking the lines around to accommodate the new lineup, but they are even more loaded this time around, so back off, guys!

>>Love the threat of W&H vs. Council so very much! Yeah, they are evil but so is the Council... fire with fire. Again, just love Joyce and that last threat of ending them is cheer-worthy.>>

Joyce is gonna EARN her being salvaged in this fic and I'm going to have FUN with her, dammit!!!  No sitting around making sammiches for our Summers matriarch!

>>The contract and all its details were exactly what should have existed. Having it magically enforced is excellent. I hope it has enough weight that they won't/can't come back later to try to eliminate Spike or Faith or Buffy. I hope it's iron-clad.>>

Have those magicks-workers for a reason!
(I did wonder in canon why the Council never bothered Buffy again, when there was nothing holding them back.  I really felt like, esp with the way she was acting post-death, the only explanation was they had no idea what to make of her after her return, were scared to death of her and what she was, and were literally staying away.  It's all I can think of, otherwise, it makes no sense considering how they function.  This time though, I wanted to be sure they would stay away.

>>No, no they didn't get that. Look at the world around you... women or minorities who start to see their worth, start to demand autonomy leads to blowback of epic proportions. The status quo is fragile and scared when challenged.>>

another reader continually complains that the Council as written is illogical.  I'm like, yes, they are, because the patriarchy is illogical and the show is showing that v. plainly.  It is illogical and self-destructive to keep whole segments of your society down, and by it relegating your next Einstein and Tesla and Curie to die in the salt mines, but they do it to stay in power because they're terrified of the majority treating them as badly if they were to share power, and so we have global economic, ecological, and human rights disasters, and the next cure for cancer and ocean-energy and whatever starving to death in a hut in India or on the streets in winter in Cleveland or something, or working to death for $2/hr as a waitress, when we could be advancing together.  But at least they're rich and in charge of a dying world!  Tell me that's not illogical!

>>What an exquisite and cathartic chapter! I loved every word. Now back to my previously scheduled wine drinking and nail-biting while I rage at the darkness.>>

I'm just glad it helped in some way.  I hope your nails survived and you're feeling better.  I myself was not supposed to drink at all on my med.  I did drink, and I don't care who knows it.  I'm not sure I know anyone who didn't!!!

*hugs*  

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Darkangel16 commented on Chapter 30 on November 04, 2020 02:56am

 I really enjoyed Joyce giving it Travers. Giles got off easy but thats ok he has made up for it. 

Author's Response on November 09, 2020 01:28am

So glad you enjoyed Joyce, because I've enjoyed no end making her actually useful to the story!  (Not that that ends here.)  
Giles will definitely continue to make up for his past associations; far more than he did in canon, where he screws it all up!

Thank you so much!

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Oddbird commented on Chapter 30 on November 03, 2020 05:45pm Liked

Ugh, Travers. I can’t even. I enjoyed this SOOOOOO much I couldn’t give it justice. The only thing better than Buffy doing this with Spike on side is doing it with Spike and Faith both on side AND Joyce with lawyers on speed dial!! I really hope some of the junior watchers listened to what they were saying and finally had a revelation on how evil they were.

 

I loved all the British watchers tearing up a big at Spike’s football rant. Really, how could they not.

Im so indignant that they thought Buffy would go along with Glory. Of all the nerve! After everything she’s gone through!! Gaaaahhhhh....

 

she put them in their place though and it was glorious. I’ve said before how much I love this version of Buffy and Spike. As you’ve said elsewhere, they just have less baggage, and it’s completely enjoyable. Thanks for another great chapter!

Author's Response on November 09, 2020 01:40am

Travers is SO foul.  I haaaate him.  (It doesn't hurt that he's THAT actor.  The guy who played the Evil Ma'ax, who burnt small children alive in a sacrifice to a nonexistent god, so that he could control his captive populace in "The Beastmaster", an awful-wonderful sword-and-sorcery (poor man's Conan) movie I took in with my mother's milk, which set in my mind that Rip Torn will FOREVER BE SATAN IN HUMAN FORM.  

He burns smol children alive, sends hordes out to rapepillageloot, and turns people into brainless tortured slaves.  OF COURSE he'd think nothing of leading a hegemony of patriarchal asswipes to control heroic, brainwashed teenaged women for centuries. It's a mindlessly perfect role for him.

Ahem.  (Just saying, though, I don't think he's ever played a good guy.  Don't think he knows how to.)

Where was I?  I ADORE making use of Joyce in this way, getting to showcase her strengths and having her stand for all the families that were raped by this system, in all her raging motherly glory... (not that this is the end of her usefulness in this fic, oh my no!)...  And of course Faith on side as well, as you say, is wonderful fun.  Not even starting in on Spuffy being waved in their faces as a blatant challenge to the controls they've foisted on these poor girls for ages.  Assholes.  Though as to the younger Watchers... one doubts their mental plasticity.  Giles only got out of (some of) it because he had a dodgy background.  And even then, some of it he takes so very much for granted that he automatically sort of divorced Buffy from Joyce in the beginning and isolated her from her family as much as he could manage and never thought twice about it, keeping Joyce in the dark when it would have been much safer for her to be in the know, etc.  And obviously all that came roaring back in as the years went by.

LOL, I would defy any English dude (and not a few English women) to tear up if anyone started singing Three Lions or talking about The Cup coming home again someday.  Pretty sure it's in the red blood cells or something.  (I personally prefer Three Lions 98, but that's only because that was the version I heard first, and it mentions players I actually watched, *g*

There's another song called 'Vindaloo' that was a hugely popular football song in 1998 that's hilarious, you should give it a listen, it's by Fat Les, seriously, look it up if you need a laugh.)

End of second or third tangent tonight...

Yeah, I think they really were hinting at that in the canon episode, that they didn't trust Buffy to do the right thing when it came to Glory, with all their idiot tests and things, but when it came to her letting her demon side have free rein, I can REALLY see them coming right out with it.  Bastards.  I'm really glad you're enjoying this version of them.  In a way it really is super calming to write them this... light.

It'll be even weirder to write them without even this much baggage, in the Reordering story, lol.

Thank you so very much!!!






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O524 commented on Chapter 30 on November 03, 2020 05:21pm Liked

That was awesome.

Author's Response on November 09, 2020 01:25am

Yay, I'm so glad you enjoyed it!  Thank you so very much for commenting!!!

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magnus374 commented on Chapter 30 on November 03, 2020 04:00pm

Here we had the confrontation with the Council. Things was of course tense in the waiting moment and then they came and immediately showed weakness. Showing up with weapons is one, that's only logical considering the circumstances but when the situation was confirmed they should have lowered them, keeping them up made them look weak. 

There are so many stupid things in their reasoning. The worry that Buffy was controlled could actually be a concern, I can grant them that. One big question is why this need for dominance? The Slayer is one, well two people out there fighting, she doesn't really threaten the power structure or politics within the Council. There is no point in demanding her to submit, there is no logic in it. Then we have more stupid things like keeping information hostage. They are part of the world too! Just like Buffy say what should they do with the information if not give it? A lot of the bad things is pointed out by other characters. Buffy held a great speech about who held the power and it's true, the whole point of the Council is the Slayer. She also points out how the Slayer is for fighting evil and that do involves humans. I have always believed that most of the wetwork teams are actually working with the evil on the human side. As I said in another comment, "they don't want the sheepdog getting a taste for mutton "

Joyce is doing a wonderful job. Involving a lawyer could be an irritation for the Council but involving Wolfram and Hart that would be problematic, they are the perfect ones to use as a threat. In the end the Council was beaten and had to agree to the demands. And those demands were perfectly logical, reasonable and the Slayers should already have had those things, but as I keep saying "that would have made sense ". If they can keep this up the Council of the future could turn out well. It's mostly an attitude thing actually, the practical changes needed aren't that many, it's a new view on some things that are needed.

Many great things here. We touched on the fact that Giles wasn't paid the whole sum since Buffy didn't live with him. The idea that Slayers are somewhat like fledges at first is a neat idea that follows a good logic but it doesn't mean they should have to be totally controlled. It's always nice to see Lydia. There is an appeal with her librarian looks.

I have a feeling that I missed a ton of things but enough us enough😉

Author's Response on November 09, 2020 01:49am

>>Here we had the confrontation with the Council. Things was of course tense in the waiting moment and then they came and immediately showed weakness. Showing up with weapons is one, that's only logical considering the circumstances but when the situation was confirmed they should have lowered them, keeping them up made them look weak.>>

they were of course coming in from a weak position, trying to shore themselves up and bluster a lot so no one noticed it; funny that you're the only one who caught that little subtlety, well done!!! 

>>There are so many stupid things in their reasoning. The worry that Buffy was controlled could actually be a concern, I can grant them that. One big question is why this need for dominance? The Slayer is one, well two people out there fighting, she doesn't really threaten the power structure or politics within the Council. There is no point in demanding her to submit, there is no logic in it.>>

I think they fear the idea of a slayer working for the other side because whether they are many and she one (or two), she is still a power that can be used by the other side to tip the scales.

>>Then we have more stupid things like keeping information hostage. They are part of the world too! Just like Buffy say what should they do with the information if not give it?>>

I really honestly think they worried about who she was working for; in canon, and moreso in this version, with her demonside given free rein.

>>A lot of the bad things is pointed out by other characters. Buffy held a great speech about who held the power and it's true, the whole point of the Council is the Slayer. She also points out how the Slayer is for fighting evil and that do involves humans. I have always believed that most of the wetwork teams are actually working with the evil on the human side. As I said in another comment, "they don't want the sheepdog getting a taste for mutton ">>

I do agree about the wetworks guys, and actually, that comes up again in later chapters, which is hopefully something you'll like.

>>Joyce is doing a wonderful job. Involving a lawyer could be an irritation for the Council but involving Wolfram and Hart that would be problematic, they are the perfect ones to use as a threat. In the end the Council was beaten and had to agree to the demands. And those demands were perfectly logical, reasonable and the Slayers should already have had those things, but as I keep saying "that would have made sense ".>>

in a way the way the Council is written is written that way to show that patriarchy DOESN'T make sense in the real world.  Things like keeping whole segments of the population down in artificial ways and keeping power in small groups isn't logical, it actually causes certain groups to labor and die in for-profit ways that will end up squandering the next Einstein, the next Tesla, the next Curie, but they probably die in the salt mines instead of having the luxury of schooling, the opportunity to exercise their gifts; it's a society that works against its own self-interest in the name of keeping power in the hands of the few, because that few is SO terrified of allowing that many to share in that power, because they fear they will in turn be treated as badly as they've treated others if they share it, because they can imagine no other structure, so they hoard it and continue to make impractical and illogical decisions that cause worldwide global economic and ecological and human rights disasters and destabilize entire regions and manufacture wars rather than recognize that altering the system is far more practical and far more logical.  The Council is our current world political system in microcosm.

>>If they can keep this up the Council of the future could turn out well. It's mostly an attitude thing actually, the practical changes needed aren't that many, it's a new view on some things that are needed.>>

precisely.

>>Many great things here. We touched on the fact that Giles wasn't paid the whole sum since Buffy didn't live with him. The idea that Slayers are somewhat like fledges at first is a neat idea that follows a good logic but it doesn't mean they should have to be totally controlled.>>

I have a lot of fun working on the ways vamps and Slayers are similar.  I have vast schematics about it.  I probably spend way too much time on that.

>>It's always nice to see Lydia. There is an appeal with her librarian looks.>>

she's a lot of fun to play with.  She'll bust out all over some day and let the world beware (if she doesn't get blown up, that is).

Thank you as always!

magnus374 Replied on November 11, 2020 10:59am

I don't agree with your view on the political system or the patriarchy but you are someone I can respect.

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SelfAndShadow commented on Chapter 30 on November 03, 2020 03:42pm Liked

That was FUN! Especially loved Joyce giving them what for and threatening them with W&H, but everyone showed to advantage. Will we get to see Lydia's interview with William the Bloody? And was Dawn really doing her homework - or listening at the door?

Author's Response on November 09, 2020 01:25am

So very glad you enjoyed it, and that you felt everyone showed well.  It was fun trying to build in everyone's parts, and I especially loved showcasing Joyce as an active participant, and having Faith on side.  

Hehe, we'll have to see about that interview, but I think we can all agree that Dawn was definitely listening at the door!!!

Thank you so much!!!

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Tahkaullus01 commented on Chapter 30 on November 03, 2020 03:21pm Liked

Good GOD that was satisfying to read! I always loved this scene in the series but damn this blew it out of the water!

Author's Response on November 09, 2020 01:23am

What a wonderful and exciting comment to open the responses!  Thank you so very much!!!  I'm so very gratified that you enjoyed it!!!

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magnus374 commented on Chapter 29 on October 28, 2020 02:27pm

And now we are back to chapters filled with information and things to comment on.

Everyone of course had to be informed about the Council and their actions. I really liked the scene with Spike describing to Buffy how her eyes acts when she goes "feral ". He was so very careful with what he said and tried to make it look as good as possible, clearly worried about her reaction. It had the same feeling as when you get those questions that don't have any right answers, everything you say will be the wrong thing. Something about that just made me like it. 

Leaving Sunnydale is actually a very logical solution from Spike but he doesn't know how hardwired some instincts are in Buffy. Spike is right in that Buffy  doesn't owe the Council anything. Of course she don't, they don't do anything for her. They are just an obstacle ( that's the role they are written as ), they almost can't be worse then they are written as. They could have been so much better. The Council in itself could still run the organisation since the Slayer is better placed out in the field, but she shouldn't have to be cut off from the world, ties to it would make her fight even better. There shouldn't be one watcher, there should be a team around her, a researcher, a spellcaster, a couple of backup fighters and probably a medic too and of course some connection/allies within the demon world. Then they could have made sense, now they don't deserve respect.

Anyway back to the story. Getting Buffy's feelings through the claim made Spike understand how deeply Buffy is affected by being the Slayer, how deeply she is chained to the earth ( in this case I found it fitting even though I normally use this line for the demon part of the original slayer ). That sheepdog analogy was a great one so of course it deserves to be used again. I really liked what Spike said and how we touched on the subject of Slayers being toppredators and therefor not get along, they are not packanimals, they are not wolves, they are tigers. Through Spike we got this really good explanation. He doesn't feel the same way, vampires are more free, more chaotic but Slayers are chained to the earth, more bound to their territory. He will follow Buffy, but if she gets harmed, he will take action. 

So many great things was said, Anya had a ton of great things to say and I liked how she touched on the subject that the Powers very much are like the Council. I mentioned before my image of the two chessplayers (the powers of good and evil) each trying to win and Chaos as the thing that disrupt them, keeping the game going because either winning would be bad. She also said some good things on how the Watchers and the Slayers are functioning now. 

Joyce is a joy to see, she will fight against the Council. I liked the idea that she was a potential. Another idea idea I mentioned before was that potentials were following a bloodline, there are complications to the idea but it could work. Anyway, always good to see Joyce in this mood. The others had good things to say too and Faith basicly confirmed many of the things said by Spike.

The connection to the demon world is giving them information and Buffy could challenge the Council. They have already showed themselves as enemies, so there have to be a confrontation.

I probably missed a ton but this comment will have to do🌸

Author's Response on November 03, 2020 01:24am

>>And now we are back to chapters filled with information and things to comment on.>>

lol, me meta-ing all over the place in prose form.

>>Everyone of course had to be informed about the Council and their actions. I really liked the scene with Spike describing to Buffy how her eyes acts when she goes "feral ". He was so very careful with what he said and tried to make it look as good as possible, clearly worried about her reaction. It had the same feeling as when you get those questions that don't have any right answers, everything you say will be the wrong thing. Something about that just made me like it.>>

It was fun to play with words there and try to figure out how he would try to get out of that.  No such luck, Spike! 

>>Leaving Sunnydale is actually a very logical solution from Spike but he doesn't know how hardwired some instincts are in Buffy. Spike is right in that Buffy  doesn't owe the Council anything. Of course she don't, they don't do anything for her. They are just an obstacle ( that's the role they are written as ), they almost can't be worse then they are written as.>>

It would have been a much easier solution (if, you know, people didn't have jobs and college and things), though it would've been a very high-budget, road-trip TV show with no hellmouth and no monsters, LOL. Just Glory, hunting them down over and over again in their various motels like some inexorable pursuit predator...  How very exhausting.  

>>They could have been so much better. The Council in itself could still run the organisation since the Slayer is better placed out in the field, but she shouldn't have to be cut off from the world, ties to it would make her fight even better. There shouldn't be one watcher, there should be a team around her, a researcher, a spellcaster, a couple of backup fighters and probably a medic too and of course some connection/allies within the demon world. Then they could have made sense, now they don't deserve respect.>>

that's how I envision how they should work, as well.  How I think they should be restructured, actually, instead of the 'cells' they have in post-Chosen continuity.  You and i think a lot a like in these matters.

>>Anyway back to the story. Getting Buffy's feelings through the claim made Spike understand how deeply Buffy is affected by being the Slayer, how deeply she is chained to the earth ( in this case I found it fitting even though I normally use this line for the demon part of the original slayer ).>>

I think it's extremely blunt, that visual metaphor of her being chained to the earth in the shadow play, for sure.

>>That sheepdog analogy was a great one so of course it deserves to be used again. I really liked what Spike said and how we touched on the subject of Slayers being toppredators and therefor not get along, they are not packanimals, they are not wolves, they are tigers.>>

yes, they are in the way they hunt, compared to vamps who are more pack animals.  I like the sheepdog part though because of the way they function with the Watchers, who function like the humans using the dogs.  Though, it would definitely be interesting if we used pet tigers to guard something!!!  How would it have changed human history if we'd semi-tamed ocelots to guard our llamas or something?  Hmmm...

>>Through Spike we got this really good explanation. He doesn't feel the same way, vampires are more free, more chaotic but Slayers are chained to the earth, more bound to their territory. He will follow Buffy, but if she gets harmed, he will take action.>>

It was fun to work on that theory, I really enjoyed it, I'm glad you liked some of it. 

>>So many great things was said, Anya had a ton of great things to say and I liked how she touched on the subject that the Powers very much are like the Council. I mentioned before my image of the two chessplayers (the powers of good and evil) each trying to win and Chaos as the thing that disrupt them, keeping the game going because either winning would be bad. She also said some good things on how the Watchers and the Slayers are functioning now.>>

It's always fun trying to work out what Anya's perspective would be.  She would definitely have a broader one, she's seen so much and worked with so many higher beings, or at least witnessed their machinations!

>>Joyce is a joy to see, she will fight against the Council. I liked the idea that she was a potential. Another idea idea I mentioned before was that potentials were following a bloodline, there are complications to the idea but it could work. Anyway, always good to see Joyce in this mood.>>

I always hate when stories save Joyce just to save her because they don't like that she died, but then she's not used.  I wanted to save her to make her useful to the plot, so that was one of my goals, and I'm glad it's coming along well.  I think we agreed in some other comment thread that it's fun to posit whether bloodlines might be involved as well, it's interesting to wonder about these things, and then of course how does that affect Dawn?

>>The others had good things to say too and Faith basicly confirmed many of the things said by Spike.>>

Faith's turnabout in that one episode always fascinated me, with regard to the Slayer instinct vs the separate psychology of each separate human girl. It was made very clear there that there are two separate psychologies or entities involved there, playing off of each other.

>>The connection to the demon world is giving them information and Buffy could challenge the Council. They have already showed themselves as enemies, so there have to be a confrontation.>>

this chapter was almost more fun than rewriting the confrontation.  but that was fun too.  Thank you as always!

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daria22 commented on Chapter 29 on October 28, 2020 10:25am Liked

Spike and Anya enriched this group enormously. Their point of view is a needful perspective. The emotional part of Spike's and Anya's insight was pleasantly tickling my nerves))))

Joyce... Yes, she made mistakes. But she is an amazing individual who can learn and listen. Bravo, she is HOT!!! 

Author's Response on November 03, 2020 01:12am

It's definitely fun to empower Anya to speak up and open things up more!!!  (and to have people listen to her and Spike more!!!)  

Also a lot of fun to explore Joyce as a useful character.  I hate when stories save her and then don't use her for anything.  One of my goals in this was to not just save her but actually make USE of her thereafter, so I'm excited by how people are responding to her role in this.

Thank you so much!

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