"A vampire who needs information it knows is in one of your books or one who does not want you to have information it knows is in one of your books."
"Good point," he said dryly. "But did they have to come in here and steal them from me? I've worked very hard at obtaining the volumes I do have."
"Rupert," Jenny said calmly.
"I'm sorry, it's just disconcerting is all. This library is supposed to be like a sanctuary, protected."
"They're obviously after something, Rupert, or they wouldn't have chanced coming here and meeting Buffy."
"I realize that, Jenny, or I wouldn't be here until," he paused to glance at his pocket watch. Jenny could not help but smile. She truly believed that underneath the tweed and the formality that encompassed Rupert Giles was a passionate man. She had hoped their night out tonight would encourage him to let loose a little bit, but apparently monster trucks had not been the way to go about it.
"It's after midnight, Rupert."
"Yes, I suppose it is," he said resolutely.
"It's late, we haven't found much, Buffy hasn't reported back in yet."
"I'm not sure that I expect her to."
"If she had found something she would have called or come back, so I'm taking that to mean she found nothing. I encouraged her to consult Angel, but she did not seem to take to the idea for some reason."
"I wonder why," Jenny said.
"I have no idea, she's been acting rather strangely for the past few days."
"Since her friend's moved to town?"
"Yes, now that you mention it, since about then."
"Maybe she's just confused, Rupert. It happens to girls that age."
"Perhaps," he responded, though he did not sound convinced.
"So what else is it you want to look up or cross reference?"
"Nothing further tonight, Jenny, you've been more than kind and understanding to stay with me for this long. I think the time past long ago for me to get you home for the night."
"I don't mind, Rupert. Really, I'm glad to help. I'm sorry the evening didn't go so well."
"The evening was fine, Jenny. I'm used to plans being disrupted by now, never a dull moment in Sunnydale."
"You're lying, but thanks," she said as she began to help Rupert put the ancient texts they had been referencing away in the locked cage area.
"Nonsense," he said. "I have no reason to lie to you, Jenny. I admit it was an activity I would never have chosen myself but that's what dating is about. Or so I've been told."
"So that means I rate another one?"
"I most certainly think so, yes."
She stood in the cage's doorway waiting for Rupert, not moving even when he walked toward her as if wanting to pass through. "I'm glad."
Jenny watched as he locked the cage, turned off the library lights and then joined her by the doors leading to the hallway. "You're going to go home and do more research aren't you?" she asked.
"Perhaps, I don't know. I might look and see if I can find Buffy."
"Get some sleep, Rupert. She'll be fine, she'll contact you if she needs you. Maybe she ran into Angel and they're talking or something."
"She'll be fine."
"With Spike in town I'm not so confident in that belief as you are, but I suppose there's little I can do for her tonight."
"And you will be able to do even less for her tomorrow if you're exhausted and she needs your help."
"Point taken," he said. "Now let's get you home."
"I like the sound of that," she said coquettishly.
Story ©Susan Falk/APCKRFAN/PhantomRoses.com