the pearl

Nervous All The Same

The phone rang loudly. Xander groaned and sat up, reaching for it. "Yeah?" he said hoarsely.

"Xander?" a thin strained voice said quietly.

"Yeah. Who is this?" he asked harshly, rubbing his eyes. He frowned, looking down at the phone. "Wait...." He shook his head. "Willow?"

"She's gone, Xander," Willow said, her voice frantic.

Xander blinked, trying to form a coherent thought. "Who?"


Xander stood up, shaking his head. "Gone?" he croaked.

"She ran away...Oh God, Xander, I don't know where she is..."

Xander nearly fell over in relief, then realized what she was saying. "What do you mean she ran away? What happened?" he asked, his voice sharp.

"She found out."

"Found out?"

"About you."

Xander sat down with an audible thump. "What?" he said after a few seconds.

"She found out you were her father. And she ran away." Willow paused. "I don't know where she is. She might be coming to see you."

"Willow, I..." Xander tried to find the words. "I don't know why you called me. I can't do —" The doorbell rang. "What the?" he muttered. "Willow, you didn't want me to be her father, remember?" he said as he walked to the door. "And I don't..." He unlocked the locks. "...know what I'm..." He opened the front door. "" He stared at the person in shock.

"Xander? Xander, who is it? Xander!" Willow screeched into the phone.

"I...I'll get back to you..." he said, hanging up the phone. He looked back at the person standing in the doorway. "Perry," he said quietly.

The teenage girl looked up at him, her chocolate brown eyes matching his.


Xander handed the girl a cup of coffee then sat down across from her. He watched her for a few minutes, his eyes shining slightly as he looked upon his daughter for the first time in twelve years. Her hair had darkened, a wavy dark brown with just the faintest gleam of red. Her eyes, so like his own, were in Willow's pixie face, accenting her lanky body perfectly. She was gorgeous, perfect, and he had a part in making this almost unreal creature.

Finally, he spoke. "Why did you come here?" he asked.

She looked at him. "I had to know," she replied, her voice soft.

"Know what?"

She looked directly at him, her eyes sharp and critical. "Are you my father?" she asked.

Xander sighed. "Yeah," he said, his voice calm and resigned.

Perry nodded slowly. "I thought so," she said quietly. She looked back up at him. "You were both what? Seventeen?"

"I was eighteen. Your mom must have been a month shy of her 18th birthday when you were born."

She frowned. "You weren't there?"

Xander sighed, rubbing the bridge of his nose. "Perry..." he said quietly. "How much do you know about your..." He paused, trying to find the words. "About the past?"

She shrugged. "Oz told me a few things. You were both young, in love, and it didn't work out."

Xander leaned back in his chair. "Right..." His head dipped back for a second, then he looked back at her. "Perry...I..." He looked away, unable to meet her eyes. "Remember those two funerals you went to when you were really little? Like around four?"

Perry frowned. "Vaguely..."

"That was the first time I found out you even existed."

She looked at him in shock. "What?"

Xander sighed and looked back at her. "Your mother didn't tell me she was pregnant." He paused. "I didn't know I even had a child until you were four...much less a daughter like you."

Perry stared at him, her head shaking slightly in disbelief. "No..." she breathed. She blinked, trying to make sense of it all. "But why? Why didn't she tell you? Why didn't I know? Why...?"

"She thought I wasn't ready," Xander said, standing up and walking back to the kitchen. He poured himself another cup of coffee. "Maybe she was right, maybe she wasn't, I don't know..." He walked back. "I can't apologize for what your mother did, Perry. And I can't justify it."

"But why didn't you try?" She looked at him angrily.

"How could I?" Xander snapped back. He looked directly at Perry, his eyes sharp with pain. "Just show up on your mother's doorstep with a stuffed animal in one hand? Spend years in court fighting for custody?" He looked down into his cup. "Perry, if I could have been your father, I would have been there for you. But I couldn't." He looked back up at her. "And for that, I'm sorry."

She looked down at her hands. "Andrew was right," she said softly.

Xander frowned. "Andrew?"

"My stepfather."

Xander nearly spilled his coffee in his lap. "What?" he squeaked.

She looked at him. "You didn't know?" She looked back down. "No, of course you didn't know," she muttered to herself. "She....uh...she got married when I was around ten..." She shrugged apathetically. "He's okay, I guess... He doesn't like me asking a lot of questions, though..." She frowned. "He gets upset whenever Oz comes over, and, recently, Mom, Oz, and Andrew would have really loud fights about me...and 'my heritage'." She looked up at him. "Oz gave me your address on my sixteenth birthday. Andrew went through the roof." She chuckled bitterly. "I guess the possibility of being in the house with two of Mom's old boyfriends was too threatening for him..."

"She wasn't my girlfriend," Xander said quietly, staring down at his coffee cup.


Xander looked up at his daughter. "Your mother wasn't my girlfriend. She was my best friend. We..." He sighed. "We were dating other people and, one night, we got...carried away by our hormones and..." He gestured to her.

Perry looked at Xander, her eyes narrowing, then looked away. "Shit," she said under her breath.

"Hey, watch your language, young lady."

She looked up at him in shock, then saw the twinkle in his eyes. She started giggling. Xander joined her in the laughter.

The two sat there in the living room, their laughter slowly subsiding. Xander looked at Perry. "Perry?" he said, his voice low.

She looked back at him. "Yeah?"

Xander leaned forward. "I know it would have been better if I was your dad from the beginning, but that didn't happen, and I'm sorry." He paused. "But, if it's possible, could I be your dad now?"

Perry looked up at him and smiled slowly. "Yeah..." she said quietly. "Yeah, I'd like that...Dad."

This Angel/Buffy the Vampire Slayer story was written by Kate Bolin. If you liked it, there's plenty more at And you can feedback her at