Summary: Denise and Giles start work on rebuilding the fragmented Watcher's
Council, and Giles learns a hard lesson in Council history. And Buffy and Willow
This is the third and final part in my digression from the main story,
"Triptych". This one centers on Giles and Denise, with Buffy and Willow at the
end (hey, it's their story!) Trust me, the final piece of the puzzle is in this
Thanks a-plenty to Shyfox for beta-reading this for me. I also wish to
acknowlege Thomas Cahill for his marvelous work, "How The Irish Saved
Civilization", from which I borrowed some of the finer points of this story. If
you steal from one source, it's plagerism. If you steal from many sources, it's
And to any Christians out there, I apologize in advance. I'm not attacking
Christianity in general, just the intolerance that underlined Christianity during
the Dark Ages. I believe in Christ too. I like His style.
Part 3: Who watches the Watchers? Who watches the Watchers?
Giles had spent the last hour scanning the pertinent texts that Denise
Parkinson had selected for him. His cup of Earl Grey sat beside the books,
forgotten and now room temperature. His eyes were growing bleary and twice he
felt the need to wipe the lenses of his glasses with a napkin. When he could read
no more, he looked up and saw Denise waiting for him to finish, a look of infinite
patience on black woman's face.
"Where did you obtain this text?" Giles asked cautiously, both suspecting and
dreading her answer. Her answer confirmed both his suspicions and his fears.
"The Biblioteca Secreta."
Giles tensed as he heard these words. The secret library of the Watcher's
Council. "How did you manage to sneak this book past Council security?"
Denise looked around her, innocently. "Large weather we're having, isn't
Giles nodded understandingly; evidentally she had no desire to incriminate
herself or anyone else. "Denise, I was led to understand that the biblioteca
secreta was a storage ground for black tomes. Satanic rites, chaos magicks, the
original draft of the Necronomicon. Dark works to be shielded from prying eyes."
He shuddered at the thought of someone plundering the Council's secret archives
for its evil magics. He knew his onetime mate and now enemy Ethan would have
given his soul (had he not sold it to the devil long before) for even the most
minor tome of the archive.
"Yes, Rupert, we were all told that," Denise answered levelly, "and indeed,
there are many texts and scrolls in the secret archives that must be kept from the
eyes of the world. But the Council, in their infinite wisdom, has chosen to
conceal the Greater Book of the Goddess, which you hold in your hand, as well as
many other texts, dating all the way back to the time of the Pharaohs. These
texts had been the very foundation of the Watcher's Council, yet you and I are the
first people in nearly nine centuries to look upon these pages."
"I'm honored," he coughed nervously, "but I am still having difficulty
translating the whole of the marked text. I assume that you have had better
"I have, Giles", she answered as she moved from her chair to a space behind
Giles, looking over his shoulder. "This passage here," she pointed, "can you read
"I can," Giles answered, as he re-read the runic script;
"That She who is Chosen
Never forget the charge of the Goddess,
Let her seek comrades,
Those who shall aid her,
Those who shall befriend her,
Those who shall remind her
Of her purpose."
"And it gets a little muddled after that," Giles admitted. "Eighth Century
Celtic Runic script was never my strong suit."
"I understand," Denise said as she took the text from Giles' hands. "My weak
point was Sumerian. But you can understand the implications."
Giles pursed his lips in thought. "Yes," he whistled. "All these years, I was
taught that the Slayer, the Chosen One, must fight alone, yet this book indicates
that the Slayer must have allies. Hmph," he laughed briefly to himself. "In
spite of my best efforts, it seems that Buffy had gotten it right all along. I
had recently suspected that Buffy was stronger by her association with the
"Exactly, Ripper," Denise smiled. "By surrounding herself with friends willing
to fight alongside her, she is made stronger. Not just physically, but
emotionally as well. Her friends serve to remind her why she continues to fight."
She sat down next to Giles and added, "That's one reason I brought Sandra to
Sunnydale after she graduated from high school. To introduce her to Buffy's
friends, and hopefully help her find her own support group."
"It seems to have worked. I noticed that Tara seems quite fond of her. But
what of the last portion?"
"The last stanza, I believe, goes--" Denise read,
"Let her seek a lifemate,
One of great power for good.
For each Chosen One,
A mage shall be chosen as well.
The Chosen and the Mage must
Each seek out the other,
And stand fast together,
Against all adversaries.
Let them live together,
Let them fight together,
Let them love together,
For all time."
She regarded Giles with a sly grin; "What were you saying about Tara and
"This book," Giles whispered, "was an early instruction manual for Slayers,
then?" Denise nodded. "And it is saying that the Slayer must bond with another,
Denise nodded again. "I've translated most of the pertinant texts, and there
seems to be no doubt. The Slayer and the Mage will be stronger together than
either would be alone. Admit it, Giles, would Buffy have survived alone, without
Giles thought for a second, a second was all it took to make him understand.
"No, I don't suppose she would. I had always been fearful of Willow's
participation. She always seemed so fragile, so unsure of herself, especially in
"She wasn't unsure of herself the other night", Denise observed. "From what
Xander and Angel told me, it was Willow who freed Buffy's soul from Hell. No mean
"She was motivated, that much was certain," Giles admitted, "and the year we
thought Buffy gone, she was a ghost of her former self. Walking wounded. She was
quite literally lost without Buffy."
"Precicely. The text indicates that the Slayer and the Mage would 'share a
soul', would be soulmates. Two halves of one entity. It's not a coincidence that
the symbol Willow chose to represent her love for Buffy was a Mizpah coin. Two
halves of the same whole." She carefully turned the parchment pages to another
marked passage. "This part gives the instructions for a formal joining ritual or
handfasting. Essentially a Slayer Wedding. Once Buffy regains her memory, it
might not be a bad idea for her and Willow to look at this passage."
"You may be right. But why was this information not revealed before?"
"Politics, mostly", Denise answered. "The information in this text was passed
down from the fifth century, orally. And like most oral tradition, every detail
was preserved painstakingly from one telling to the next. This text was written
in the Eighth century AD, when Patricus, the man who would later be known as Saint
Patrick, brought the knowledge of the fading Roman Empire to Ireland. When
Ireland learned to write, their scribes copied every work they could get their
hands on. That's where we got the Book of Kells. It's also how many texts were
salvaged after the Fall of Rome.
"But with this new knowledge came the spread of Christianity. The Irish were
possibly the first people to accept Christ freely, without being conquered by
Rome. As Christianity spread, paganism was on the decline. And Christians still
hold the idea of same-sex unions as anathema. This text was considered an open
invitation for homosexuality."
"So the Watcher's Council at the time censored the text?" Giles guessed.
"Not censored, Rupert, but simply hid." She closed the book slowly, handling
the ancient codex with reverence. "The basis of these tomes, of much of the
Watcher's Council, predates Christianity. Did you know, for example, that
vampires derive pain from exposure to any religious talisman, not just the
crucifix? If my studies are correct, the symbol is even stronger when the wielder
believes in its significance." She cocked an aristocratic eyebrow at the thought;
"Maybe Willow should consider wielding a Star of David instead of a cross. Even
the Mizpah coin she wears would be just as effective."
"Intriguing," Giles muttered, "and it makes sense; vampires existed long before
most humans, let alone Christianity. But why was this information suppressed?"
Denise chuckled, "Because, my dear Ripper, history has always been written by
the winning side. The Biblioteca Secreta was founded during the Crusades, as a
direct result of King Richard Couer'De Leone himself. Old Lionheart heard about
this cabal of 'unwashed pagans', supposedly trafficking with demons and devils,
and threatened to put them to the torch. The Council responded by creating this
pro-christian mythos around them; crosses against vampires, all other religious
artifacts are the work of demons. And sadly, this medeival mentality still holds
sway within the Council, and the rest of the world. The Burning Times are never
as far back as we would like to think."
Giles put his elbows on the table, and let his hands support his head. He
remembered an incident just a few years back, where a demon created the illusion
of two children, killed in an occult attack, to stir up paranoia in Sunnydale,
controlling the minds of most of the adult populace. Before the nightmare was
over, Joyce Summers and Sheila Rosenberg led the townspeople in burning their own
daughters, Buffy and Willow, at the stake. Indeed, he knew that the mentality of
the Burning Times was alive and well, needing only the slightest provocation to
"This is weighty stuff, my friend", he said to Denise. "I trust that this has
something to do with your plans to rebuild the Watcher's Council?"
"Indeed," she said, "with your help, of course. Right now, you are the most
respected figure among the remaining Watchers. If you were to declare yourself
senior watcher, the others would follow your lead. You have the opportunity to do
some good here."
"I thank you for your confidence in me, Denise, but I don't know. I've had
enough difficulty dealing with Buffy, let alone the entire council."
"Believe me, I don't wish to put more pressure on your shoulders. But the two
of us together, we could start building the administrative branch, the core group.
We would need to find established Watchers, people whom we could trust. I
understand that Wesley Price is working with Angel these days. Do you think he
would be able to assist us?"
"Perhaps," Giles mused, "and despite Buffy's hostility toward him, he was a
good Watcher. Just at a bad time." Giles pondered the offer he had received some
more. "The world still has need of a Watcher's Council", he said, half to
himself. He smiled broadly. "And I need a challenge. Denise, count me in."
The two Watchers shook hands, cementing a pact that they hoped would change the
And outside Giles' townhouse, looking in through the bay window, a surly
British vampire with a severe crew cut pulled out a cigarette, lit it, and inhaled
deeply, depositing a black patch in the back of his throat.
Soon, Spike would inform his new master of the ressurection of the Council.
His master, the one who had removed the chip that forbade him from harming others,
would know how to deal with this information.
The war was coming, of that much Spike was certain. And he had no idea how it
would turn out.
He grinned sardonically at himself. "That's what makes it interesting,
Aproximately 25,000 BC...
The Slayer emerged from the rude shelter of her cave, clad only in a ceremonial
loin cloth. She looked at the sky around her. The sun had set, casting its last
rays upon some drifting clouds, tinting them dark red. Blood red. The blood
tribe would emerge soon, and she would have to again defend her tribe from
But first, the ritual. The event for which she had prepared for the last five
moons. The joining.
Her chieftain emerged from his hut, and greeted her stiffly. He took her hand
and led her to the sacred place, the place where the bones of her ancestors were
lain in the earth.
Unlike her darker haired fellows, the Slayer was born with hair the color of
the sun. This marked her as special, as chosen of the gods. She was to serve the
gods all of her life, defending the tribe against the evils of the night. And in
serving the gods, she was destined to bond with the tribal Shamaness.
The Shamaness waited patiently for her Slayer. She too was singled out by
destiny. Her hair was the color of fire, indicating that she was chosen to speak
for the gods. While she was the ears and voice of the gods, the Slayer was their
strength, their right arm. In serving and loving each other, the Slayer and the
Shamaness would better serve the gods. It was the way of things.
Once they reached the sacred place, the chieftain gave the Slayer's hand to the
Shamaness. The Shamaness took the Slayer's face in her hands, and pressed her
lips to the Slayer's in greeting. She then picked up a small clay pot of red dye,
and dipped her right thumb into the pot. With her thumb, she marked the Slayer's
forehead and nose. She then painted across her breasts and belly. The marks
would fade soon, but the gods would always see them. She was marked by the gods,
and was theirs. As she was now the Shamaness'.
The two women smiled at each other, as they withdrew to the Shamaness' tent.
The second part of the joining was less ritualized, and more private, but much
more pleasurable for both Slayer and Shamaness. The two women, no longer subject
and priestess but equals and lovers, discarded their scant coverings, and brought
their bodies together on the sleeping mat. The chieftain smiled at himself, and
left the two women alone to consummate their ritual marriage.
Willow woke up suddenly, her heart racing, a sheen of sweat covering her body.
She was aware of the scent of her arousal. "Whoa", she said aloud.
Her dream had been intense, and highly erotic. She was a pagan priestess, and
Buffy was her disciple and lover. They had performed some ritualistic marriage,
and had made raw animal love together. Even now, she could still recall how her
dream-Buffy had touched her. A small portion of her mind made a record of those
thoughts, to remember those touches and try them out on Buffy tomorrow night.
She quickly dismissed her fears regarding the dream. She was just jumpy.
Tomorrow, Buffy Summers would be back home, with her. She had made all the
preparations for Buffy to move in with her, and would make the offer once she saw
the townhouse. She knew that Buffy wouldn't decline her offer. Yeah, that was
all the dream was. Pent-up sexual frustration. Well, she wasn't going to be
frustrated tomorrow night, that was for sure.
Buffy woke up suddenly in her hospital bed, her breath coming in shallow pants,
the last spasms of a powerful orgasm still shaking her limbs. "Wow", was all that
she could say. That was some dream.
She was Raquel Welch from "One Million Years B.C." and Willow was some kind of
priestess, who was also her lover. They had performed some ritual together,
before a session of pure passionate sex. She tried to figure out the source of
her strange dream. Did it have anything to do with the memory gaps that had
eluded her since her return?
She curled up again in her bed and made herself relax. She was just antsy
about seeing Willow tomorrow. Would she still want her? She had said as much
since she awoke a few days ago. She hoped that Willow wouldn't change her mind.
She needed Willow like she needed oxygen.
And tomorrow, she and Willow would be together again. And as far as she was
aware, life was good.