"What's wrong with her?"
"I honestly can't say. There's nothing physically wrong that I can find."
"She's burning up."
"I know. If it continues we'll have to hospitalize her."
"No hospitals," she whimpered. She was not sure they could hear her. She couldn't open her eyes. It hurt too much. Everything hurt too much. She was going to die and it was the most painful thing she'd ever experienced. She felt like she was burning up from the inside out. Something was eating away at her. Her chest burned and it hurt to breathe.
"I'm afraid the baby is gone."
She felt a tear trickle down her cheek at that comment. They hadn't planned on getting pregnant so soon, but within two months of being married she'd missed her period. She had just been to the doctor last week. She knew when Lindsey had cried out at the sight of blood what had happened. She was just incapable of saying anything.
"Blood," she whispered. She shivered. How was it possible to feel so cold when she was burning up?
"Should I clean her up?"
"Yes. I'm afraid I'm at a loss. She could be in shock from losing the baby, but something brought this on before that."
"All right, Doctor, thank you for coming."
"It's my pleasure, Mr. McDonald. I'm sorry for your loss. I'll come back to check on her this evening. Despite her apparent aversion to hospitals, we may have no other recourse if she's not on the mend soon."
Buffy knew he was more concerned about her than the loss of a baby. They had barely adjusted to the fact they were going to have one. He had been happy, of course, so had she.
She felt the dip in the mattress as he joined her on the bed. He shifted her so she was sitting and ran a cool, damp cloth along her lips. She wasn't used to feeling so weak, helpless. God, she hated it. She was just glad she had someone there to take care of her.
"I know, baby."
"Yes, I'm sorry you saw the blood."
She whimpered, frustrated. He didn't understand. She didn't either. She just knew she had to get a hold of Giles. He needed to use her blood. She forced her eyes open. She reached for him, unsure which of him she saw was the real one. The room was fuzzy, his face was a blur.
She cried out, clutching her chest with her free hand. The burning, the pain. It was unbearable.
"Need you to go to a pay phone."
"You said anything."
"All right, all right."
She gave him Giles' phone number. "Tell him to use Buffy's blood."
"Can't explain. Just tell him. Please."
"I can't leave you, Annie."
"Going to die."
"You are not going to die!"
"Make the call."
"Are you saying if I don't make this call you're going to die?"
She whimpered, what energy she had was spent. She felt him lay her gently on the bed. Distantly, she heard him pick up the phone.
"Pay phone," she murmured.
"I'm going to have someone else do it."
"No names. No information on where we are."
"I get that." She could hear the confusion in his voice as he spoke to someone on the phone.
"Anything for you, Annie."
She smiled. She liked when he called her Annie. It was stupid. She drifted out again, whether she fell asleep or lost consciousness she couldn't be sure. It was like that on and off for what seemed like days. She had no idea how much time had actually passed. She was distantly aware of Lindsey telling her his friend had made the phone call.
"You have some explaining to do."
"Hmm?" she murmured. She was in one of her coherent moments. He was trying to get her to drink some water. Her lips and mouth were parched. She could feel his panic, Angel's not Lindsey's. He thought he was going to die. He thought he had failed her. Tears fell from her eyes, wondering if Giles would do it. Give him her blood.
It had seemed very gross and morbid to Buffy when someone had come to take her blood. It was in case of an emergency, though. The Council would not take the risk that a transfusion with non-slayer blood would dampen the slayer's abilities. So, they required blood to be taken and stored. If what she suspected was true about Angel, that he needed her blood, Giles should have enough to at least get him out of the woods.
She had no idea how she knew. Was he even alive? Was it possible? Everything pointed to that fact yet she knew she had killed him. Hadn't she? All she knew was that there was something very wrong, whatever it was affected her, too, and her blood was the answer. She knew it with every fiber of her being.
It was sometime during the night when she recovered. Just like that she was as good as new. Lindsey was shocked when she sat up in bed and got up to go the bathroom.
"You just broke that fever, you've got to be weak."
"No, I'm fine, really."
She took a moment to get her wits about her and nodded. "Yeah. I'm going to take a shower."
She paused at the bathroom door. "I lost the baby?"
"You're sorry? You didn't do anything, Annie. I'm the one who couldn't do anything to help you."
"It's not your fault."
"It's not yours either. We have plenty of time to have other babies." He walked to her, cupped her face with his hand. "You feel better."
"Get that shower. I'll be right here when you're done."
"Are you hungry?"
"I could eat."
"I thought as much. I'll get you some soup."
She shut the bathroom door and peeled her pajamas off. She didn't wear them often, couldn't remember even putting them on. She wasn't sure what had happened. She looked at her reflection in the mirror. She looked okay. A little pasty, like she had been through the ringer. There was a mark on her chest she didn't understand, though. It almost looked like it came from a crossbow bolt.
"Weird." It was already healing. She imagined by later in the day it would be gone. She tousled her hair and went about getting herself cleaned up. A shower was just what the doctor ordered as far as she was concerned.
Story ©Susan Falk/APCKRFAN/PhantomRoses.com