Crossover: BtVS/Evil Dead
Disclaimer: Since I am a poor chickadee with no wealth to speak of, I think it's safe to say that neither BtVS nor Evil Dead are mine. ^^;
Written for: TtH August Fic A Day Challenge/Gift fic for Missy
Summary: Buffy has issues with her husband’s nickname for their daughter.
Author's notes: Comics? What comics? >.> This is set post season 7 for BtVS, and after the end of AoD for Evil Dead.
“Don’t,” came a drowsy voice, turning both father and newborn daughter to face the bed where the mother lay, “call her that.”
“You’re supposed to be asleep, baby,” Ash said with a wince, cradling Cheryl Anne Williams oh so carefully in his arms. To both their eyes, she was beautiful, a larger baby- after her father, Buffy had teased- with a head of dark fuzz and the pale blue eyes that were typical of newborns. The baby cooed quietly, those wide eyes enraptured with the shiny hand he laid against her and chubby little hands reaching out for it. An echo of his daughter’s eyes, Ash’s own widened comically as he quickly pulled the hand away with something of a fearful expression, as if worried something horrible would happen if she touched it. On the bed, Buffy laughed softly, sleepily, and watched with a twinkle in her tired eyes.
“Tell that to the painkillers that just wore off.” The petite blonde began to move on the bed, pushing herself up into a sitting position in a slight struggle against the blankets piled over her, and Ash looked torn as she did so. His hands were very much full with their new daughter, but it was clear from his gaze that he wanted to help. She shook her head at him and took the opportunity to find a comfortable position on the bed. It wasn’t exactly an easy task, as Cheryl’s size had caused several problems during birth, but after a moment or so, she settled down. “Besides, what did I tell you about calling her ‘Cher?’”
“Oh come on, Buff,” he answered, a slight pout in both his voice and expression. “It’sa good name for her- classy- and it’s short for Cheryl.” The baby burbled happily, as if in agreement, and Ash smirked at his wife before glancing down at the precious bundle in his arms. “Yeah, you tell her, Cher. You like that name just fine, don’tcha?”
“Yeah, well, whether she likes it or not, all I can think of is my first roommate in college. You know, the one who tried to steal my soul?” Her tone was dry, hazel green eyes rolling at his antics with Cheryl, but she was smiling as well. She hadn’t lied when she mentioned the painkillers had worn off, but no pain in the world could take away from the joy of seeing her husband and her newborn daughter together. Besides, pain or no pain, she was already more than ready to be out of the hospital. She was just going to have to time it carefully, and plan her escape when her husband and their friends were otherwise occupied. Actually- like now, when their friends were nowhere in sight, and Ash had his hands full of baby.
“She likes ol’ righty,” Ash said, a quiet wonder in his voice and completely oblivious to his wife’s plotting. When she looked over again, he was waving those shiny silver fingers at Cheryl, being sure to keep them just out of her reach. Buffy laughed a little, even as she began to push the covers back from her as quietly as she could.
“You can let her touch, you know,” she teased, eyes locked onto him to ensure he was still entranced with their daughter as she managed to get the covers off the top half of her legs. “You’re not going to hurt her.”
“It’s got sharp edges- what if she scratches herself? Or gets those pretty lil fingers of hers snagged in a joint while I’m bendin’ mine?” He shook his head, but didn’t look away, keeping those careful brown eyes on the gurgling baby as his wife used his distraction to slowly swing her legs completely free from the blankets and down over the side of the bed.
“She’ll be fine. You’ve got her, and you’re not going to let anything happen.” And that, Buffy was confident, would be that. She’d been with Ash long enough to know how protective he became of her sometimes- the last several months of her pregnancy had doubly reminded her of that- and she knew he would be even more so of their daughter. As she cautiously wiggled to touch her feet down to the cold floor, she idly let visions of the future float through her mind- Ash showing up at Cheryl’s first school with his chainsaw in hand, Ash terrorizing any enemies the girl made as she grew up, Ash showing off his boomstick to the first date their baby brought home… Not that, if she was honest with herself, she would be far behind him, a thought that the memory of Dawn’s first day at Sunnydale High reinforced, but it was enough to make her giggle a little- and giggle just loud enough to cause Ash to look over to see what was so funny.
“Get your butt back in bed, B.” The voice startled both of them, cutting off Ash before he could even begin to protest, and freezing Buffy with one foot touched down to the chilly hospital floor tile. Standing in the doorway to the room was Faith, arching an eyebrow with her hand crossed over her chest as she watched them both. Affronted, Ash nodded and huffed in response.
“Yeah, what Faith said,” he told her, jerking his head toward her and the bed, a firm glare on his face. “Doctors said you’re not supposed to get up, so you better plant yourself right there till they say otherwise, got it?”
“Tyrant,” she scowled, but- busted- she reluctantly and gingerly pushed herself back up onto the bed. Faith smirked and sauntered away from the door, making her way over to Ash and holding out her hands.
“Here, lemme take her. You can deal with Ms. Escape Artist over there,” the dark Slayer offered with a grin. “Aunt Faith wants some visiting privileges.”
“Sure thing,” he said firmly, and as carefully as humanly possible, he slipped Cheryl into her arms. “Be gentle with her, she’s kinda curious. And- and her head’s real sensitive, so make sure to hold it up for her. Call her ‘Cher,’ too, she likes that.” The last part was said with a defiant look as he glanced over at Buffy. “And Faith?” He paused, waiting for her to look up from his daughter to him. “Thanks.”
“We’re cool,” she answered, then turned all her attention to the baby in her arms. Buffy watched as Faith seemed to lighten, a smile stretching wide across her face, and she bounced Cheryl gently. Then she turned and headed out the door, talking as she went. “Come on, little C. Let’s go see Uncle Robin, huh? And tell you some funny stories about your mom and pop.”
“You sure that’s a good idea?” Humor threaded through her tone as Buffy inclined her head after Faith, a warm smile occupying her lips. She might have been caught before she actually got away, but it was still good to see a softer side of her sister Slayer, something she wouldn’t have believed existed a couple years ago. Granted, when Ash turned on her after Faith disappeared, her smile turned into a pre-emptive wince.
“Now look here, doll.” Aaaaand, here it came, that same protective speech he’d been giving her periodically for the past several months. “We’ve been over this ‘n over this. You can’t be pushin’ yourself like that, baby. I know you hate this place, but you gotta do what the docs say. They know what’s best for ya.” He sighed, running his good hand through his hair, and blew out a puff of air. Buffy, for her part, shrunk back on the bed a little, knowing what was coming next. She’d heard it before, and it was true enough to send a thread of guilt through her. “This ain’t like it used to be, when it was just me and you, and even then, I woulda told you to stay put. If something happens to you, what’m I gonna do with that little girl? What’s she supposed to do if you’re not around, huh?”
“Nothing’s going to happen to me, Ash.” She tried to banish the guilt from her mind, even as she settled back against the pillows on the bed. “I’m going to have to leave early anyway- you know the doctors make funny faces when they figure out how fast I heal. I just- wanted to head out a bit earlier than that.”
“Not gonna happen.” His face was about as serious as Ash got, watching her eyes and face with a steady gaze. “The head doc, Frasier, is one of ours. Her daughter Cassie’s a Slayer, she knows what’s going on, which is why we came down to Colorado, instead of staying in Michigan, remember? So you’re stayin’ put until she clears ya.” And as firm as he was being, he softened it with a kiss to her forehead, metal hand gently cupping the back of her neck as he carefully pulled her close and set his chin to rest on the top of her head. He was treating her just like he had since he’d found out she was pregnant, like she was made of glass and ready to shatter with the slightest touch. Buffy sighed softly and, for the moment, just snuggled into his chest.
“Bully,” she finally grumbled, although the word was muffled by his shirt. “I’ll stay. But under protest, so make sure to note that in those stupid charts.”
“Your wish is my command, Buff,” Ash answered with a lighter smile, but even as the blonde pulled back to give him a hopeful look, he added quickly, “So long as it doesn’t contradict Doc’s orders.”
“Spoilsport.” But there was no heat behind the complaint, because if she was really honest with herself, Slayer healing or no, she still hurt, both where her tailbone had been bruised, and where she’d had to have several stitches to repair tearing that had happened during birth. Ash smirked and kissed the top of her head this time, his good hand slipping gently down her back between it and the pillows, rubbing soothingly up and down her spine.
“C’mon, baby, why don’t you lay back down. I’ll get the doc and some pain killers, and you can get some rest. Cheryl’ll be fine with Faith for now.”
“Don’t.” The protest, unlike when she had first awakened, was quiet, as she grabbed at his wrist when he started to pull away. Without a hitch, he picked up the intercom with his other hand.
“Not going anywhere, darlin’.” Then, after calling for the nurse with the com, he moved around to the other side of the bed and slid, somewhat awkwardly, onto it. By the time the nurse arrived with the requested pain killers, he’d gotten into place with Buffy held comfortably in his arms, her head nuzzled into his shoulder. It wasn’t long after she’d taken the medicine that it went into effect, and then she was out, slipping into a deep slumber in the arms of the man she loved, and the father of her newborn daughter.