Forever, That's The Whole Point

Chapter 7

Chapter 7

Giles and Aurelia came rolling up in the alley by the Bronze as patrons fled for their lives. Giles looked over at Aurelia. "You know, you're making me a little irrelevant now, Aurelia."

"I do not mean to." Aurelia said. "If it is any consolation, I do not know too much more about the supernatural. My extent is werewolves and vampires." Giles smiled and nodded and Aurelia opened the door and got out.

Willow ran up to her. "Buffy! The werewolf, it's in there."

Aurelia made a dash for the door as it was about to be shut by the bouncer. "Pardon me!" She rushed through the door as it slammed shut with a thud. Slowly, Aurelia stepped into the main area and looked around. The place had been trashed by the panicked people. Tables and chairs were lying everywhere, spilled drinks were splattered on the floor….

A shadow behind a bead curtain caught her attention and she made her way towards it. As she walked, she took off the backpack and pulled out a chain. It had been Giles' idea to bring the chain. The bead curtain led to the restrooms and the backstage area. There was another bead curtain that lead to the stage office and it was swinging.

Aurelia climbed the few steps and went in. She walked onto the stage with the chain now wrapped around her forearm. When she'd passed the drums, the werewolf came out from behind the stage curtains, snarling. Aurelia spun around to face it and dropped her backpack. She quickly unraveled a length of the chain from her arm and got ready to fight.

She threw the chain out and it wrapped itself perfectly around the werewolf's neck. It began to struggle and yanked at the chain, pulling Aurelia into and over the drums. The chain fell from the werewolf's neck and it made a dash for a window. The wolf crashed through and landed out in the alley. Aurelia wanted to go after it, stop it, but the door burst open and the authorities came pouring in.

After the authorities had left, the Bronze employees came back and began to straighten things up. Aurelia managed to grab her chain and put it back into her backpack. Cain had shown up while the authorities were finishing up and he was watching Aurelia.

"You let it get away." He finally said.

Aurelia turned to him. "I did not let it do anything. I had the chain around its neck."

"Chain? What were you gonna do, take it for a walk?"

"I was going to lock it up."

"That's beautiful. This is what happens when a woman tries to do a man's job."

Giles walked up to Cain. "Now, you look here, Mr. Cain. This girl risked her life trying to capture a beast that you haven't as yet been able to find."

"Uh-huh. And Daddy's doing a great job carrying her bag of milk bones." Giles threw down his bag, but he managed to restrain himself. Cain stepped closer to Aurelia. "You know, sis, if that thing out there harms anyone, it's going to be on your pretty little head. I hope you can live with that."

Aurelia looked up at him. "I live with that every day."

"First they tell me I can't hunt an elephant for its ivory…. Now I've gotta deal with People for the Ethical Treatment of Werewolves." Cain walked away.

"Pillock!" Giles said.

"That man is most unpleasant." Aurelia said.

"Right, let's move out." Giles grabbed his bag and left.

After a moment, Aurelia followed. "We should return to the park. The werewolf will probably return there since this place is no longer safe for it."

Aurelia walked up behind Giles' car after spending most of the night hunting the werewolf. She didn't see anyone in the car. "Giles? Giles!" She reached the open window and looked in. Giles woke and sat up with a grunt. "I didn't see you there. I thought something had happened."

"Oh, no, I'm, uh..." Aurelia opened the passenger door and got into the car. "I'm ok. I'm just, um, fine…. uh, just, uh, I'm, uh... Uh, any sign of the, uh, werewolf?"

"No. I could take a guess that you did not see anything either from the vantage point of having your eyes closed."

"It's, uh, it's, it's, uh, gonna be light soon, so we'd better…."

A newscast was playing on the radio and Aurelia silenced Giles with a hand. "Police say that the incident was apparently connected to the animal mutilation which occurred two nights ago. The coroner's office has identified the body as that of Sunnydale High School student Theresa Klusmeyer, age seventeen. The authorities ask that anyone with further information…."

Giles looked over at Aurelia. "We're gonna get this thing. We have another whole night. There's nothing more we can do now. It's nearly sunrise. That werewolf won't be a werewolf much longer."

The next morning, Aurelia paced the library while Willow sat at the table with Giles behind her and Xander leaned against the counter. "I cannot believe I let the wolf get away. Cain was right. I should have killed it when I had the chance." Aurelia said.

Oz came in and overheard the last comment. "Killed what?"

"The werewolf. It was out last night."

"Is everybody ok? Did anyone get bitten or, or scratched?"

"No, we're fine." Willow said.


"Yes, but the wolf got someone." Aurelia said. "Theresa."

"'Got', as in…." Aurelia just looked at Oz and briefly raised her eyebrows. "Oh, I'm sorry."

"I could have stopped it."

"Well, we, we have one more night." Giles said.

"Another night?" Oz asked.

"Oh, yes." Aurelia said offhandedly. "And believe me, I will give that wolf something to howl about."

"But while we hang here doing nothing, there's a human werewolf walking around out there, probably making fun of us." Xander said.

"The way werewolves always do." Willow said sarcastically.

"But there's really no way to tell who it is." Oz said.

"Oh, sure there is." Xander said. "Giles knows stuff, and I'm practically an expert on the subject."

"On account of once you were a hyena?" Willow asked.

"I know what it's like to crave the taste of freshly killed meat, to be taken over by those uncontrollable urges."

"I believe you said you didn't remember anything about that." Aurelia said.

"I said I didn't remember anything about that. Look, the point is, is I have an affinity with this thing. I can get inside of its head." Xander closed his eyes. "I'm a big, bad wolf. I'm on the prowl. I'm sniffing, I'm snarling, I'm a slobbering predator, I'm…." He opened his eyes. "Wait a second! It's right in front of us. It's obvious who I am. I'm Larry! The guy's practically got wolf-boy stamped on his forehead. You got the dog bite, you got the aggression, not to mention the excessive back hair. I'm gonna go talk to him. Gonna force a confession out of him."

"Good." Giles said. "Go. Uh, in the meantime, we need to cover our bases. Willow, um, check the student files. See if anybody else fits the profile. Uh, Aurelia…."

"Where are we going?" Aurelia asked.

"I-if none of that works, I think I may have an alternative."

Aurelia followed Giles into his office. She watched him pull out a large gun. "What is that?"

"This is a tranquilizer gun." Aurelia's brows knitted in confusion as she tried to remember the word. "Instead of killing the werewolf, it will put him to sleep. We can bring the wolf back to the library and lock it in the bookcage."

"Very well." Aurelia walked back to the office door, but she held back when she saw Oz and Willow talking.

"Well, like…." Willow said. "Looking up stuff. I'm gonna be doing that most of the night. You could help me, help together?"

"I can't." Oz said. "Um, uh, I'm busy."

"Oh. So…."

"I…. I gotta go." Oz turned and jogged out of the library.

Willow watched him go, confused about his behavior. Aurelia looked sadly at her friend from the office doorway, wishing there was something she could do.

Later that afternoon, Willow was surfing the internet on her laptop. Aurelia came out of Giles' office and went over to her. "Does anybody besides Larry fit our werewolf profile?"

"There is one name that keeps getting spit out." Willow said. "Aggressive behavior, run-ins with authorities, about a screen full of violent incidents."

"Who is it?"

"One Buffy Anne Summers."

Aurelia looked at the screen. "That is most unfair. Most of those were not my fault. Somebody else started them. I was just standing up for myself."

"They say it's a good idea to count to ten when you're angry."

"It has never worked for me."

Willow giggled. "I'll keep looking."

"I couldn't help overhearing what happened this afternoon."

"Yeah. Oz wanted to be someplace that was away…. from me."

"I am sorry."

"I can't figure him out. I mean, he's so hot and cold. Or luke-warm and cold."

"Welcome to the mystery that is men. I believe that once they grow body hair, they lose all ability to tell you what they really want."

"It doesn't seem like a fair trade."

"May I suggest something?"


"If you want to speed up the quotient with Oz, you should to do something daring."

"Like what?"

"You should make the first move." Aurelia looked at the clock and then gathered her things to head off to class.

Willow followed right behind her. "Well, that won't make me a slut?"

Aurelia laughed. "Willow, I believe your reputation will remain intact."

"It used to be so much easier to tell if a boy liked you. He'd punch you on the arm and then run back to his friends."

Aurelia shook her head. "Boys never did that in my day."

"Well, you're lucky."

"They wooed you with flowers and poems and jewelry just to win your favor. These days…. Men have been spoiled too long and they've become complicated."

Xander walked up to them. "Hey."

"I'll see you guys later." Willow said. "Cordelia asked me to look over her history homework before class. I think that means I might have to do it." She walked off with a small wave.

"Wow, those two gals are hanging out a lot together. This would be a good time to panic."

Aurelia let out a laugh. "Only when they begin plotting should you panic."

"You'll let me know, right?"

"Of course. So how did it go with Larry?"

"What's that supposed to mean?"

"I believe it is supposed to mean, 'so how did it go with Larry'?"

"He's not the werewolf. Can't we just leave it at that? Must you continue to push and push?"

"I am sorry. I was just wondering."

"Well, he's not."

"Did I offend you in some way?"

"No. Let's just…. Drop it, please?"

"Very well. But I must say that he was our lead suspect. Without him, that puts us right back at square one." Aurelia sighed. "I cannot stand this. It's so frustrating!"

"Chill out. We'll work this. You're Buffy. Eradicator of evil. Defender of, um…. things that need defending."

"Tell that to Theresa. She could have used my defending before she was ripped apart by that…." Aurelia stopped, a grim thought coming to her.

"Werewolf." Xander finished.

Aurelia shook her head. "Nowhere in any of the reports did it say anything about her being mauled. They were linked to the animal attacks from the previous night, so we just assumed werewolf."

"What else should we have assumed?"

"We shall find out. Will you accompany me to the funeral home?"

"Sure. Are we breaking in?"

"Of course not. Theresa's viewing is this evening. I should like to attend."

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