Title: Buffy at 32: The Buffy/Giles Ship
As I sat to write an entry for summer_of_giles for the first time in 5 years, there were some "leftover" thoughts that did not fit into either fic (the first being posted today, the other saved for free posting day). Here are my simple thoughts on Buffy and Giles in 2013...
We as fans, as fanfic writers, have worked over our favorite characters in thousands, maybe a hundred thousand, different ways.
And we special class Giles fans – and even more specifically Giles/Buffy shippers – have combined, tormented, and rewarded our favorite guy in just as many ways. We’ve cannoned, fannoned, recycled, rehashed, and even reused each other’s plots.
I don’t know about you, but 10 years and eleventy-million fics written and read since the show aired (and plenty of comics read and dismissed), sometimes, I run out of ideas.
I set the fandom aside for several years while I focused on babies and careers and moving and growing up. But no show ever captivated my emotions like Buffy did. No ship ever felt closer to my own RL one that that of Watcher and Slayer. No fandom ever gave me friends who have stuck long after the last scene faded to black.
It astounded me, returning to Livejournal this past January, and discovering scads of more technologically-advanced tributes on Tumblr and YouTube, that this fandom remains alive. Furthermore, it astounds me that Buffy Anne Summers is, somewhere out there, 32 years old. Though I constantly think of her as 21ish, only four years separate us.
I wonder what she would really want to be doing right now. I spent much of my time as the show aired putting my Mary Janes into her combat boots, wondering what it would be like to be that strong, that beautiful, that tortured. Now I wonder if Buffy, age 32, envies my shoes. Maybe she would welcome post-childbirth weight, the occasional married-life humdrum, a minivan.
I think we stick with these characters, long after their original stories are all told, because they speak to us. I think they grow in the directions we do. I think just like me, Buffy, in her 30s, has become less about the angst and loss and more about the focus and peace.
I used to disdain Buffy for her treatment of Giles. My heart used to ache for what I thought was a lonely and abandoned man. Now I know that these two people were stronger and smarter and held more potential for happiness than I ever gave them credit for. Like me, like my own true love, they simply took longer to figure it out. But now they’re here. In my June 2013 version of them (and like several other amazing fics I have read this year), they are scarred, but more importantly, they are whole. I don’t know whether I can write more for them (I like to think I will), but I know that from this point forward, in my heart, Giles and Buffy are healthy, free, and together, the most I can ask from them after they gave up so much to save their world.