Rating: NC-17, eventually
Pairing: Willow/Lindsey, Giles
Word Count: 802 this chapter
Summary: Willow makes an unexpected friend at the coven.
Timeline: Through "Beneath You" (beginning BtVS S7).
Disclaimer: I claim no ownership over these characters. I am merely borrowing them from Joss et al.
Distribution: My site, the usual lists, anyone with previous permission. Anyone else - just ask.
Feedback: Yes please! It makes me happy and keeps me writing.
Betas: velvetwhip & menomegirl
The next day, Willow found herself back at the stables. No one was around today, but she thought she heard something at the other end of the barn. She carefully made her way down the row of stalls, trying not to jump as some of the horses poked their heads out to see who was out there. Finally, near the end, she found Lindsey in an empty stall.
"So what's an American lawyer doing mucking out stalls in England?" Willow asked.
Lindsey nearly dropped his shovel at the sound of her voice, not to mention her question. Turning, he pasted a grin on his face. "Two visits in two days, I'm going to start thinking you're sweet on me."
Willow just stared at him with one eyebrow raised.
Lindsey dropped the act. Returning to his chores, he answered, "Hiding."
"From Wolfram & Hart?" Willow pressed.
"Are they looking for you?" Willow asked.
Lindsey threw the shovel against the wall, spinning to face Willow. "I don't know," he practically yelled, causing several of the horses to whinny in distress. "I don't know," he repeated, more quietly this time.
"But they could be?"
"Yeah, they could. They don't like it when people quit," Lindsey said.
Risking a glance at Willow, he was surprised to see no recrimination on her face. Coming closer, he asked, "So, Mr. Giles couldn't wait to tell you to stay away from the evil lawyer?"
"Something like that," Willow admitted. Grinning, she added, "Didn't work."
"I can see that. Is it my irresistible charm?" Lindsey flirted.
Willow shook her head. "I don't like people telling me who I can be friends with. I figure that if you're here hiding from the big, bad law firm, then you can't be all bad. Also, I'm not exactly one to throw stones." She paused, noticing that Lindsey was once again just wearing a t-shirt and jeans, and how good he looked in them. "So, um, did Giles go all parental and tell you to stay away from me?"
Lindsey chuckled. "About 30 seconds after you left."
"Has he always been so mean to you?" Willow asked.
"Nah. He was fine up until he saw me talkin' to you. He said something about not wanting me to interfere with the progress you're making here."
"I don't know what he thinks you could do to do that," Willow said.
Lindsey shrugged. "Maybe he thinks just being around my evil hand will draw you back towards dark magic."
"Evil hand?" Willow asked.
Holding up his right hand, he said, "Evil. A parting gift from my former employers."
Willow blinked. "They gave you an evil hand? What was wrong with the one you were born with?"
"A self-righteous vampire cut it off," Lindsey spat.
"Oh, right. Giles mentioned you and Angel had some problems," Willow said.
"That's putting it mildly," Lindsey huffed. "How do you know Angel?"
"He used to date my best friend," Willow said.
"You're friends with the Slayer?" Lindsey asked. He threw up his hands. "Great, just great. I can't get away from him even here."
"It's not like Angel and I are close or anything. The last time I saw him was when I told him that Buffy was dead. She saw him alone after I brought her back."
"You resurrected a slayer?" Lindsey asked, surprised. He'd heard about it, of course, but he hadn't realized that Willow had been the one to do it. "No wonder you were able to go dark so easily. That was some powerful magic you were practicing."
"Yeah, but it seemed like a good idea at the time. I mean, it was a good idea. It worked, after all. We've got Buffy back," Willow tried to say with her usual bravado, but it sounded flat, even to her ears.
"But at what cost?" Lindsey asked.
"Can we not go into this? That's what the coven therapists are for, after all," Willow requested, fidgeting slightly.
"Sure, sorry I brought it up," Lindsey said, moving to retrieve his shovel.
"Do you, um, maybe want to go for a walk?" Willow nervously asked. She was sorry that she'd upset Lindsey, but she really didn't want to talk about the morality of bringing Buffy back. That didn't mean she wanted to stop talking with him, though.
Lindsey perked up. "Yeah, let me saddle a couple of horses."
"No, no, no, no, no. No horses. Walk, like two people walking, one foot in front of the other, walking," Willow babbled.
"Not a fan of horses, check," Lindsey chuckled. "Guess that explains why I hadn't seen you around the stables before yesterday."
"No, horses and Willows are unmixy things," Willow confirmed. "So, do you wanna? Go for a walk, I mean."
"It'd be my pleasure," Lindsey said, grabbing his jacket.
Continue to Chapter Four