Disclaimer: I don't own Buffy, but I do own Sophie :)
"Dawn, Connor, I'm going to the mall with Willow and Sophie" Buffy called. "Xander's coming over to fix the wall later, Faith's tired and Tara's back's still sore, so don't bother them, and for the love of God, NO MORE SPELLS!"
"Okay, I get it, geez!" Dawn yelled back. Willow, carrying Sophie in her arms, raised an eyebrow at Buffy as they headed out the door.
"Why would Faith be tired?" she asked. "You two went to bed pretty early last night."
"Yeah, well, the thing is, I was pretty wound up after yelling at Dawn, and Faith was trying to help me relax, so we didn't actually er... sleep, for a while."
"Oh" said Willow, blushing slightly, "I getcha."
Dawn paced back and forth angrily, while Connor lounged on her bed. The pair were becoming quite close, and although Buffy wouldn't usually be happy about Dawn having him in her room, she really had more important things to worry about, and now that Dawn was twenty she couldn't really do much about it anyway.
"Why won't Buffy just let it go?" Dawn yelled. "I've only made one little mistake!"
"Actually," Connor cut in, "It's two if you count that time you blew up the pop tarts last week." Dawn glared at him.
"Not helping, Connor."
"Sorry" he shrugged.
"Anyway, I've found another spell to try, I'll just have to do it before Buffy and Willow get back. But, just in case everytyhing goes belly up again, I don't want to lose my only support, so," said Dawn, handing Connor a few ten dollar bills, "Just get out of here for a while, go see a movie or something."
"Why?" Connor asked curiously. "You know I'm completely supportive of your magic, but if it's something dangerous..."
"It's not dangerous, just a spell to let me talk to animals" Dawn explained. "But if I screw up, I could accidentally turn everyone into animals, so..."
"Got it, I'm outta here" said Connor, jumping up from the bed and heading for the door. "See ya, Dawn. Good luck."
Meanwhile, at the mall, Willow was looking at a jewellers while Buffy had stopped at a shoe store.
"Hey, baby" said Willow, lifting Sophie up to look at a case of rings. "I need a little help here. Which one do you think Mama Tara will like?"
"I don'ts know Mommy Willow" said Sophie. "They're all so prettyful..." At that moment, Buffy appraoched.
"Hey Wills, why are you looking at... oh" said Buffy eyes widening as realisation dawned. "Oh my God, you're going to.."
"Well, I know it may seem a little sudden but I think we were kinda heading that way before Tara died, and things have been really amazing since she came back, and we have Sophie now so... yeah" Willow smiled, finishing her babble, and Buffy let out a squeal, throwing her arms around her friend. "Hey, watch out for Sophie!"
"Sorry" said Buffy, changing her position so that she was no longer crushing the little girl in her slayer hug. "This is great, I'm so happy for you guys!"
"I haven't even asked her yet.."
"Oh come on, Will, it's not like she's gonna say no! You and Tara are made for each-other!" Said Buffy, taking Sophie from Willow. "Isn't this great, Sophie? Your Mommies are getting married!"
"What's married mean?" asked Sophie, confused.
"Getting married is when two people who love each-other very much promise that they'll be together forever" Willow explained.
"Oh" said Sophie, thinking about this for a moment before turning back to Buffy. "Is you and Auntie Faith gonna gets married too?"
"Umm... Let's talk about that in a couple of years, okay?"
Before long, the three shoppers headed home.
"It's a beautiful ring, Willow" said Buffy, admiring the gold band with a small sparkling diamond that her friend had chosen. Willow nodded, closing the ring box and tucking it back into the bag, then helping Sophie out of her booster seat and climbing out of the car.
"It's not much, but I kinda think Tara would want something simple." As the three opened the door, they were greeted by a wolf with deep brown eyes rubbing its head against Buffy's leg, a Chimpanzee wearing an eye-patch running around with a toolbox, and a blue-eyed dove fluttering onto Willow's shoulder.
AN: I put a lot of thought into deciding what animal everybody should be, Tara in particular, so I hope you agree with my decisions. This story will have several arcs, so the animal thing will last a few more chapters, before the new arc begins.