Giles toured the kitchen, smiling. The plans they had drawn up together were now a reality and it was everything he had hoped for. He could even forgive the younger men for wanting the bigger island now that he could see it. He smiled at Xander, who was preening under the attention he was getting for decorating. "I do love this," he said, running a hand down a cabinet front. "How much longer before we can move in?"
"They have all but the spare rooms done," Xander told him, leading him down to what was going to become the library. "Here," he said, pushing open the door. "Your room."
"My room," Oz said from the window seat inside. "It's got the internet connection."
Xander shook his head. "All the rooms have one. This is Giles' room, your's is next door, on the left." He let Giles wander around, pulling Oz up to follow him into the next room, opening the door and putting him inside it. "See?" He flipped on the lights, wincing at the work still being done. "Thought they had this done already."
Oz turned to hug him. "They will in about a day, I found one of the guys and asked. Some of the bookcase stuff was back ordered." He kissed Xander gently, swallowing his protest. "They know," he reminded them.
"Doesn't mean we need to put on a show," Xander complained, pulling back. "Later."
"Okay." Oz looked at the built-in desk then back at his lover. "When did that get added?"
"When I put it into the plans that first night. You were busy looking up bathtubs." He smirked. "That way, you can look outside. And if you're at the right angle, you can see the kitchen over the sink." He showed it to him.
Oz nodded. "Very cool." He wrapped an arm around Xander's body. "What about your room?"
"Not a clue still," Xander said, frowning. "It'll have a desk and bookcases anyway but I'm not sure what I want to do with it yet." He got away from Oz, going to look out the window. "How'd your board go yesterday?"
"Fine. I'm readmitted and they're fixing all the stuff they screwed up. The Dean is pretending to not know how it happened." Oz walked over to rub down Xander's back, silently offering him comfort. "You could start school with me," he suggested.
"I sucked in school, Oz, I really did. And I hated it."
"You could find stuff you don't hate, maybe take some skill oriented stuff that's not all lecture." Xander shook his head, turning into his body for a hug. "Shh, we'll figure it out. I promise." Xander nodded. "We'll find you something to do besides take care of us."
Xander snorted. "Yeah, 'cause I do such a good job of that too."
"No, you do a great job. Miri's very well raised and happy, which is important to me. I'm happy with how you take care of me, so is Giles. We just need some time alone to grow back together again. Once the house is finished, we'll start being ourselves and we'll start being really happy together."
Xander shrugged. "I guess." He kissed Oz's forehead. "Thanks."
"Anytime." He squeezed Xander then let him back away. "Want to go find Giles? I'm sure he's upstairs looking for his tub."
"It's connected to our bedroom on the other side. And Miri's room was being painted last I knew."
"Then we'll be able to move soon." Oz wrapped an arm around his waist, leading him out into the hallway. "Which way to our new room?"
"Upstairs. Second door on the right. The big master suite."
"Suite?" Oz asked as he led the younger man up the stairs.
"Yup, suite. As in a room for our clothes, and a bathroom attached, and a door leading to Giles' bathroom too." Oz nodded. "And we'll find him in there too probably."
"He's down in the kitchen with Miri," one of the workmen said. "Um, about his office," he said, pointing at Oz. "The bookcase stuff is in but the store is closed today due to a death. We'll get it day after tomorrow and install it on our next to last day."
"That's cool," Oz said, nodding. "Just so long as it's finished before you guys leave." The workman smiled and jogged away, heading to where he heard a crash. "Hope that wasn't important or a window."
"Nope, wasn't either," Xander said. "That's the boss's truck." He led them into their bedroom, letting Oz wander around the spacious room. When he was back beside him, he gave him an expectant look, which wasn't answered. "Well?" he said finally, starting to bounce in nervousness.
"I was just shocked," Oz told him. "It looks like it's been here forever." He smiled at his lover. "You did great, Xander."
Giles walked in carrying Miri. "Her room's been seen and met with her approval too, especially the nice doggy bed someone's put in there for Spike."
"We really should tell Willow about that," Oz noted.
"Don't think that's going to go over well. She's not real happy at the moment," Xander said. "We talked last night and she couldn't get into her favorite outfit."
Oz shrugged. "Being pregnant means gaining weight."
"Just don't tell *her* that," Xander warned. "She's really touchy about it right now."
Giles nodded. "Truly so. When I went with her to her doctor's appointment, she complained to him about how fat she was getting and how much of a pain it was, but the next moment she was enthusiastic about it."
Oz shook his head. "Hormones." He looked at Xander. "Speaking of which, don't you go in for a checkup this week?"
"Friday," Xander said. "Are you coming?"
"I think we all should," Giles said. "That way we can let Wesley watch Miri for a bit and have some time alone."
"Oh, the nursery," Xander said, leading them over to the extra door in their room. "It was a closet originally, a big one, and I didn't think we'd mind having him or her in here for the first little while." He opened the door to show them a nice little alcove with Miri's cradle set into it already. "All fixed up for the new baby."
Giles smiled, patting Xander on the back. "You did think of everything." He looked at the big bed under the windows. "Wherever did you find that bed though? It looks like it could have belonged here in the house."
"It did," Xander said. "We found some furniture in the basement and I fixed it up. The welds on that are about a day old, there were a few things that needed replaced and we had to weld it together to get it to stay together, but it belonged here in the house. I called Jim to tell him and he said it was okay if we used it."
Oz grinned, walking over to sit on the edge. "Ooh, soft mattress," he said, sinking backwards. "Perfect."
Giles laid down beside him. "Not too hard or too soft," he said in appreciation. He pulled Oz closer, holding onto him. "And it's perfect to hold each other on too."
Xander nodded, a smirk very evident on his face. "Very." He looked over his shoulder as one of the workmen walked by so missed Oz getting up, but he couldn't miss being picked up and tossed over his shoulder, or the trip back to the bed. He sank down on the bed next to Giles happily, holding up his arms for Oz to join him. "Better?" he asked once they were all cuddled together.
"Much," Oz said. He looked up at the quiet snickers. "Just trying it out for firmness."
The contractor nodded. "So I can see." He walked in and shut the door. "Guys, it looks like we're about to come to an end. We've only got about two more weeks of work left."
Giles smiled. "I'll cut the last check as soon as we go home." That was waved off. "We're that far under budget?"
"Mostly due to you guys helping, but we're about a week early. I think we've got everything paid off." He pinched Xander's upraised knee. "And most of it's because of him. He saved us tons on breaks and things by feeding and watering us."
Xander grinned. "Seemed silly to have to bring someone out here."
"Yes, and it tasted better too," the contractor said dryly. "Freshly made always does." He stretched. "We'll be out of your hair mostly in a few days, full crew for the next three days only, then we'll be down to the finishing touches which will be only a few of us."
Oz nodded. "Thanks."
"Anytime, and if you guys want some help moving some of that stuff, just yell. We'll have enough strong guys here to help."
Xander nodded. "Really thanks. We don't have that much left but it's going to take us most of a day to get it in and set up how we want it with just us."
"We need to go furniture shopping," Oz reminded them. "Somewhere that delivers."
Xander nodded. "Definitely. And on sale if possible." He looked at Giles, who was asleep. "I think he agrees. Want to do that after my doctor's appointment?"
"Yes," Oz agreed, hugging him. "Or before. We could take Miri. Got to call them and make sure they can sit too."
"Oh, yeah, I'm sure Angel wouldn't be happy if we just dropped Miri off with him." He smiled up at the contractor. "He's a PI and he's a little on the fussy side."
The contractor smiled. "Everyone has buttons." He waved and walked out, leaving them alone.
"Think we should let him sleep?" Oz asked. Xander nodded and they got up, going to finish their tour of their new house.
Oz stared at the stuff he liked, considering it. "Think it's too modern?" he asked Xander, who was facing opposite of him, looking at some wood-heavy furniture. He turned to look at it. "I really don't think we need more wood in the house," he said.
"Just a few tables," Xander said, pointing at one he liked. "For the dining room?"
"Okay, I like that one," Oz said, walking over to it to check the tag, and wincing. "Ouch. Not on sale."
"We can ask if they have one like it on sale."
"Okay, good point. What color is the dining room anyway?"
"A rosy-tan color. Sort of like that tan that you see at sunset sometimes."
"Okay." Oz looked back at the livingroom groups. "What about that stuff?"
"Don't really like any of it," he noted. Xander looked around for a salesman. "I don't think anyone else is here," he said after a few minutes of searching.
Oz shrugged. "Let's go to that other store, the one Cordy liked. She has nice stuff at her place."
"Yeah, she does," Xander said, following him out the door. "Too bad Giles couldn't come."
"Too bad Wes is out of town," Oz reminded.
"Yeah, it was. It'd have been nice to have done this with him too."
"He'll love whatever we pick," Oz told him. "Unless it's plaid."
"But I want one of those big, comfy chairs that are like half a couch and the only one I've seen has been plaid." Xander slid into the passenger's seat, buckling up.
Oz slid in behind the wheel. "He'll kill you." He buckled up and started the car, frowning as the engine made a grinding noise. "That's not good."
"You could have it checked out while I'm waiting on Doctor Adams."
"No, I want to be there," Oz told him. He put the car in gear, listening for any more funny noises. "Maybe it just needs oil. I'll check that when we stop for gas."
Xander nodded, leaning his head back against the seat. "Okay."
Xander looked around at the furniture and smiled. "Oz, come here," he called, bringing his lover over to look at what he had seen. "I like that one," he said, pointing at the gray/purple/blue living room group. "And it will go with the paint before you ask. The paint in the livingroom is light blue."
Oz walked over to it, feeling the fabric. "Kind of scratchy." He sat down and sank. "Um, not," he said, fighting his way back out of the couch. "Way too soft."
"But the fabric?"
"I like the color," Oz admitted. He ran a hand over it. "Nope, it feels like burlap." He looked at Xander. "You like the style or the color?"
"Um, color mostly," Xander admitted, looking around. "For style, I like those over there," he pointed toward a shadowed corner to his right. "It looks like stuff that could have been there." They walked over, holding hands as they browsed. Oz ended up pulling Xander away from those and up the stairs to the other sections of the store. "No more basements?" Xander asked, playing with a pout.
"No, no more basements." Oz looked around the furniture in the main showroom, wincing as he caught sight of a few tags. "This stuff is way expensive."
"Yes, it is," Xander said. "Close to six hundred for a desk like yours."
Oz shook his head. "Where did you go to get furniture? I liked yours."
"Discount place on 16th. Where did you go to get yours?" Xander asked him.
"Same place," Oz said. "Let's go there."
Xander nodded and they walked out, heading for the car.
Oz headed right for something he liked, sitting down on it to test it. "Hey, Xan?" he called. "Come try this one." Xander jogged over, sitting beside him. "Comfy."
Xander ran his hand across the fabric. "Not really cuddleable fabric," he noted. "Someone would get friction burns."
Oz nodded, handing over the fabric book. "Look through there for something we like." Xander flipped through the swatches, stopping at one he liked, showing it to Oz, who felt it. "Like that. Would it go?"
"Maybe," Xander said hesitantly. "The livingroom is a light blue, like the blue you see through really fluffy clouds."
The saleswoman cleared her throat. "Can I help? We can custom order other fabrics if you'd like."
Oz stood up. "We're renovating a very old farmhouse. We want stuff that will suit it, at a decent price, and we need things we can sit on for long periods of time."
"And cuddle on," Xander added. "Don't want more friction burns from our couch."
She smiled, waving them over to another section. "I think we have just what you're looking for."
Oz looked at it then back at the other one they had both liked. "Very wood intensive," he said.
Xander shook his head. "We liked the style of the other set better," he suggested. "It's a big, open room with lots of light and space. And a fireplace."
She considered them. "Somehow that doesn't seem like you two."
"Yeah, but we love it out there," Xander said with a shrug. "I wouldn't have said that either." He looked around and led the way over to a small alcove under a display. "See this stuff? We like this sort of stuff," he said pointing at the overstuffed furniture. "Very comfy and soft but not too soft. We just need it in a fabric that'll not hurt us and compliment our house."
She smiled, handing over the swatch book. "Look through there. We can get anything covered in two weeks."
Xander nodded. "We're moving in in a week or so when the work's done."
"We may be able to get to it faster, but I know it won't take over two weeks." She smiled as Xander handed over the book to Oz. "Where did you guys find such an old house?"
"It belonged to a friend," Oz told her, testing the one he had been shown. "I like it, and we can vary the color for the other rooms. I'd like that big one for a reading chair," Oz told his lover.
Xander nodded. "Me too."
"An order from the company would have to be made if the fabric isn't already in stock. That's why it'll take two weeks."
Xander nodded. "Okay, we've got ten rooms to decorate. Looks like you're it." She smiled. "You work on commission, don't you?" She nodded again, still smiling. "And this'll be cash so you'll get it sooner." He pointed out the fabric it was open too. "We need a whole livingroom group in that fabric, and we need it to be comfy. I noticed the couch wasn't as stuffed as the chair was."
She held up a finger, going over to the desk to get a form and a pen. "Okay," she said, coming back. "You need a set of overstuffed?" She checked the tag and wrote down the style number. "Which pieces?"
Xander looked at his doctor, biting his lip. "What's wrong?" he asked.
"Just a mild fluctuation of your hormones, Xander," he said, patting his leg. "I want you to come back in two weeks, with Willow or not, your choice." That got a small nod. "Okay, now then, how are you feeling? Are you being careful?"
"Yeah, we are. Oz is always careful with me."
"And Mr. Giles?"
"We're remodeling a house," Xander told him. "He's under great stress."
"That's perfectly understandable. I heard what happened to your store." He finished making notes and looked up. "I need you to be especially careful now, Xander, your hormones are looking very odd at the moment."
Xander swallowed hard. "Is it possible?"
"No," he said quickly. "I don't think so at least. There's no great number of growth hormones." He stood up. "I want you to relax about this, but to be very careful." Xander nodded, sitting up. "And if you *think* you might have screwed up, I want you to come see me for the morning after pill. I really don't think you want to be pregnant, right?"
"No, not at all." Xander shuddered. "That's a scary thought."
"Yeah, it is," his doctor said. "So relax, and be careful." He smiled as he closed the folder. "That's all, end of lecture." He watched the young man walk around the curtain to get redressed, looking over the hormones again, not sure why.
Xander got into the car beside Oz. "He said we have to be super careful now."
Oz nodded, putting down the furniture forms. "Then we will." He stole a quick kiss. "Home?"
"Home," Xander agreed.
Giles looked up from his forms as his men walked in, smiling at them. "The workmen assured me we could move things over starting in three days."
Xander sat down across from him, handing over the furniture form. "We found lots of stuff to populate the house with sitting places but we missed a few of the spare bedrooms; I realized it on the way home."
Giles looked at it. "So I can tell. Did we really need this much furniture?"
"Yes," Oz said. "That's almost all the rooms." He poured himself a glass of juice, walking over to sit beside them. "It's all very comfortable, in one style, in various colors. And a dining room set."
"I can see that," Giles said slowly. "This is a bit much."
"Not really," Xander said. "Per room, it's less than I spent on my apartment. They were having a nice sale and it'll be very nicely delivered to us."
Giles put the form down. "We can afford it so it's not totally unexpected, but it is quite a lot."
"And it's paid for," Xander said. Giles nodded. "It was a good thing, it's all from the same place, and you'll like it. It's a very comfortable thing to sit on and it's pretty to look at."
Giles patted his arm. "I'm sure you did just as well with this as you did with everything else about the house, Xander, I'm just concerned that it was a bit expensive since we' re trying to cut costs."
"Does that mean you don't want the steak we brought you?" Oz asked, nodding toward the fridge and the box he had put in it. "We brought you lunch."
Giles smiled. "No, I'm quite thankful for the lunch." He got up, getting his box out of the fridge and putting it into the microwave. "How long before it gets here?"
"Two weeks," Xander called. "I have to go back in another two weeks." Oz looked at him. "He said he wanted to check my hormone levels again, that's why we had to be very careful." The phone rang and Xander got up to get it. "Hi," he said, sitting on the lone chair. "Hey, Wills, what's up? No, we'll have furniture in two weeks and a house in about a week. Want to come out and stay for a weekend?" He looked up as Oz groaned, putting a hand over the receiver. "Her mother just found out."
Oz nodded. "Of course she can stay then. Do we need to go pick up the litter from where her mother exploded?"
Xander put the phone back to his ear. "Oz wants to know if you need trashbags to clean up her mess." He shook his head with a smile. "She okay?" He nodded. "Okay then, once we have a real house you can come stay for a few days. Of course we'll pamper you, Willow. You're carrying baby Giles." He snorted and hung up. "Her mother passed out but the paramedics were nice about it." Giles smiled as he took the box out of the microwave. "And she said her next visit would be for an amnio, whatever that is, so we could know the sex of the baby." He stood up, walking back to the table. "It's a few days after my next appointment, so whoever wants to go can."
Oz held up a hand. "I'm going. Not sure if I want to know though."
Giles smiled. "I would." He sat down across from them. "We need to go shopping again tonight." He picked up the bone, nibbling around it. "Excuse me while I make a pig of myself, I'm starved. Miri didn't allow me to eat with her and she's just went down."
Oz nodded. "We had that problem yesterday. She thought Willow was going to have a kitten and when I tried to explain to her that it was going to be a baby human she got really upset."
"She's never seen a baby person before," Xander told him. "I've only told her about mommy kittens having baby kittens so that's all she knows."
Giles smiled. "I think we should get her some books about having a baby sister or brother."
"Which do you want?" Xander asked.
"Truthfully, I would love either, but I would really like a son. I've always wanted a son. Actually, I used to be scared of raising a daughter because I thought I'd turn her manish." He put down the bone, working on cutting up his steak. "Thank you for bringing me this. It's quite a nice treat."
"It's always the small treats that mean the most," Xander said, grinning. He stood up. "I'm going to go take a long bath, you guys behave without me." He headed for the bathroom, closing but not locking the door behind him. He ran the water, pulling out his little test kit, just to make sure, and peed in the cup, setting the test strip into it. "Every month," he told it, watching it while he kept an eye on his water, "we'll talk every month and make sure nothing bad's happened."
Willow came dancing into the trailer, holding up a folded over and stapled paper. "I have the results back," she sang. Xander snatched it from her and read it from the side, sitting down hard. "Bad?" she asked, sitting at the table. "I had Buffy read it too but she just gave me a look."
Xander held up a finger, heading for the door. "They should be here when you read it. Though the tape over the sex was a nice touch."
"I'm not sure if I want to know or not," she pouted.
Xander nodded. "I know." He stuck his head out the door. "Oz! Go get Giles! Willow's got her test results back!" He headed back inside, stepping over Spike. "Um, Willow, can I give you bad news and you promise not to cry?" She nodded patiently. He picked up Spike, handing the puppy to her. "Um, that's Spike."
She looked at the dog. "I knew that Miri named him that." He shook his head. "No?"
"No, that's *Spike*," he said again. Her mouth fell open. "We've been waiting for the right moment to tell you and I think today's just the day for news." She nodded, looking at the dog. "Angel's offered to have him turned back," he said.
Oz groaned. "You told her? I thought we agreed to wait until we were sure she wasn't going to kill Angel. Don't want to lose him as a sitter." He hugged her. "Sorry."
"How long have you known?" she asked in a little girl's voice, a very upset sounding one.
"Not long. A few weeks after we moved into the trailer. We've been trying to figure out how to tell you." She nodded, hugging him. "I'm sorry, Willow, but we'll help you fix it."
She looked up. "No, Angel will fix it or I'll stake his cute butt." She petted the dog. "No wonder he liked me."
Xander patted her shoulder. "He'll be fixed, one way or another."
"Just don't spay him," she said, pulling him against her chest to hug him. "I don't want him fixed that way."
Xander smiled. "Never crossed our minds." He handed Giles the paper. "Her results."
Giles sat at the table, carefully removing the staple and opening the paper. Which dropped from his fingers. He looked up at Willow, who was looking very scared. He pushed it over to her, silently watching as she read it.
"But they said there's only one," she complained.
"Um, Will?" Xander took the forms to look at it. "Maybe you miscarried one though. It's entirely possible." He lifted the tape and nodded, handing it to Oz, who handed it to Giles without looking. "Not wanting to know still?"
"Not sure still. If I know, I'll have notions."
Giles smiled, handing it over to her. "Well, that certainly answers one question." She looked at the paper and smiled. "Then you're pleased?"
"Yeah, I'm happy." She hugged Xander. "Are you?"
"It'll be a nice balancing influence for Miri." Xander walked over to the ringing phone, picking it up. "Hello?" He sat down in the chair. "Um, that's got to be wrong. Can we redo the test?" He nodded, hanging up and grabbing his keys. "I'll be back soon, guys, really." He jumped down the stairs, running for Giles' car.
Oz watched him from the door then walked over to the phone. "It's time like this I want star 69, don't you?" Giles and Willow both nodded. "Want to try and follow him?"
"Not really. I'm sure he'll tell us," Giles said reasonably.
Oz nodded. "Maybe. Depends on the news." He grabbed his keys and headed out. "We'll be back later."
Giles looked at Willow, shrugging. "I'm sure they have it. How are you?"
"I'm okay. My stomach itches where the skin's stretching and I'm fat but otherwise okay."
Xander looked up as his doctor walked back into the room. "It's wrong, right? They got it mixed up with someone else's? Or maybe it was just a stupid mistake? Like they dripped something into the test?"
The doctor sat down in front of him. "No, Xander, it's not a mistake." He rubbed his knee carefully. "I need to know what you want to do here." Someone knocked on the door. "Not now!"
Oz walked in, shutting the door behind him. "I think I'm involved." He walked over, hugging Xander tightly. "Shh, I'm here," he whispered in his ear, just holding on while Xander clung to him. "We weren't careful enough?"
"No," Doctor Adams said, handing over the test result, "I'm afraid you weren't." He got up. "I'll give you a few moments alone. Some decisions have to be made fairly quickly about this." He walked out, closing the door behind him.
Oz looked at Xander. "I'm sorry," he whispered, "I was sure I was okay." Xander shook his head. "Whatever you decide, I'm there. Okay?" Xander looked up at him. "Whichever way you go."
Xander nodded, hugging him. "Yeah, I know."
To Be Continued... In The Next Story.