Written for a Taming the Muse prompt - Courage


600 words

Courage from Xander's pov


It's Easy When You're Gifted...


Buffy was slashing and staking with her usual grace and economy of motion. Her quips were sometimes muttered through gasping breaths, but they were there. Even while she was flipping over the head of a particularly tough opponent, she was telling him how badly his fighting sucked.  Her joy in her own strength and skill was clearly visible.  She landed on her feet and decapitated the much larger vampire, all in the same fluid motion.


Spike was to her left, snarling and laughing at the same time. His retreat into his vampire mien - fangs and claws out and visible - was indicative of how fierce he found the fighting, but he was still visibly enjoying it.  Slashing, punching, kicking - and taking the occasional punch or kick himself - his face showed every bit of the confidence and love of violence with which he'd crawled out of his grave.  When he was knocked down by a demon that had apparently decided to throw in with the vampire gang, he was on his feet and back in the fight with a speed that would have appeared instantaneous to mere human eyes.


Willow stood behind Kennedy, throwing fireballs as needed and making sure that the magical barrier between the attacking vampires and the huddled children and teachers behind her remained in place. Serene in her knowledge that nothing could get past her barriers, and that she was capable of immolating any vamps foolish enough to go up against an experienced witch, she smiled as she watched her girlfriend in action.


Kennedy concentrated on efficiently staking or beheading whatever attackers thought they could take out the red-haired human standing between them and dinner. She knew Willow was more than capable of taking care of herself, but Kennedy was still new enough to her slayer powers to enjoy giving them a good workout. Watching Spike and Buffy taking on two or three opponents at a time, with seemingly little care for their own safety reminded her that vamp or slayer healing could handle almost anything.  When a lucky swipe of a female vampire's claws opened a cut on her arm, Kennedy was more worried about the rip in her new shirt than she was the wound, which she knew would be healed by the morning.



With a sigh, Xander forced his tired body off the ground and tested the ability of his wounded arm to still swing a sword.  The quick healing spell that Willow had thrown at him had stopped the bleeding, but there had been no time for bandages to support the ripped flesh. The now-closing cut was still painful and still impairing his movements. With a sigh, he resigned himself to missing a few more days of work while the arm finished healing.


He moved forward just in time to catch the eye of the female vampire Spike had so casually tossed behind him. He readied his sword, watching as she rose to her feet, golden eyes focused on him, snarling and baring teeth that could end his life before any of his powerful companions could move to save him.


Her inhumanly fast leap and his only humanly fast defensive swipe ended in a stalemate.


"Foolish human," she growled, nursing her bleeding arm.


"Stupid vampire bitch," he replied, somewhat surprised to find himself still standing.


"I'm going to enjoy rending you from limb to limb."


"Let's do it," Xander said with a sigh. "I've got to be at work early in the morning."


the end