On Proper Ways to Name Your Baby

Author: Missalline

Summary: All names have a story behind them.


General Audiences/ K+

A/N: This is a companion piece to my story from last year (Wish Lists), but this one can be understood with having read that one.

A/N 2: The ‘master fic’ for this universe is still not done; I write really slowly (and have been working on other things…).




Angel is wary of the night, and has been since he showed up human on her doorstep.  Not the dark, that isn’t his problem, but the actual occurrence of night, and specifically going out in it.  Buffy really doesn’t think he does it consciously; it’s more like he just avoids going outside, and thinks that those curtains just need to be closed. The den doesn’t even have windows, she realizes, and he spends a bit of his time in there. He’ll go out if she asks him to, and he won’t object if she reopens the curtains, but he never volunteers to himself.


“Do you want to go out tomorrow?” she asked one night when they were getting ready for bed, “I’ve got an idea for something you might like.”

He hesitated for just moment before saying “Sure.”


Buffy got everything ready early. She wanted the whole thing to be a surprise. Then she picked up her book, stretched out on the couch, and waited.

And waited.

And waited. 

She waited, watching from the corner of her eye as Angel got more and more fidgety, as he got up to close the curtains, as he finally sat down in his favorite chair.

“Buffy?” he asked just after there was no more light in the sky, “Weren’t we going to go out?”

“Oh yeah,” she said as if she had completely forgotten, glancing up from her book. “We’ll go soon.”

“It’ll be the middle of the night soon,” he pointed out softly.

“I know,” she responded, this time not looking up from her book, “It needs to be for what I have in mind.”

“Why?” he asked, crossing his arms over his chest.

Buffy smiled softly. “Because that’s the best time to look at the stars.”


Around ten that night Buffy finally packed Angel, and a stocked picnic basket, into their seldom used car. She refused to tell Angel where they were going, so they were forced to run the risk of letting her drive for the hour it took them to get there; a ‘there’ which confused Angel when she pulled over on the side of the road and parked the car. Buffy got out and grabbed the basket then started walking through the trees, knowing that Angel would follow her. They walked for a little while, their fingers intertwining soon after they started, then exited the trees and stopped on top of a hill.

“Help me spread this out,” Buffy said, pulling a blanket out of the basket. Once the blanket was spread and the corners weighted to protect them from the light breeze, Buffy lay down and patted the spot next to her. Never one to pass up a chance to cuddle with her (though he would never call it that), Angel quickly obliged.

“What are we doing here?” he asked after a few minutes of silence.

Buffy took a deep breath and gave his fingers a light squeeze. “You don’t go out at night anymore,” she said softly, “Not if you can avoid it.” Angel stiffened next to her and was obviously about to speak, but Buffy stopped him. “Hush,” she said quickly, “Let me finish.” She took another moment to collect her thoughts, and then continued. “I see how happy being human makes you, and I love that.  But I think that you’re letting it scare you. I think,” she said slowly, “that you’re so afraid of losing your humanity that you don’t want to do anything that you used to see as an inhuman characteristic of yourself. Am I wrong?”

Angel didn’t say anything, but his grip on her hand had tightened tenfold.

“Look at the stars,” she said after a moment, “Stargazing is something that people, human people, have been doing for millennia. And it’s something they could only do at night. So from this moment, I don’t want you to think about night as the only time you could go out when you weren’t human; I want you to think about night as the only time that you, human you, gets to see the stars.”


When Buffy finished speaking Angel stayed quiet for a while, just contemplating what she had said; which turned into contemplating how much he loved her; which, of course, meant that he had to kiss her right then and there. He spent the rest of the night making constellations out of the freckles and spots scattered over her body.


A couple of months later they were once again getting ready for bed when Buffy made the first suggestion. “Ya’ know,” she said, “some people name their kids after where they were conceived.”

“We are not naming our first child ‘Random Hill in the Middle of Nowhere’.”

“But you’d be alright with it for the next one?” she asked playfully. His only response was a glare.


“Aibhilin? Really, Angel? Do you have any idea how hard that is to spell, not to mention say?”

“But its Irish,” he protested.

 “I know it is, but I’m sure there are Irish names that won’t get our baby picked on.”


Buffy was eight months pregnant before she finally came up with a name. They were in bed again, and Angel’s hand had taken its usual position of being fully splayed over the baby bump.

“What about the reason?” Buffy said softly, “We conceived because of the stars.”

“Starchild?” he mumbled sleepily, vocally cringing at the thought.

“Lord no,” Buffy chuckled, “That’s much to hippie. What about Starkid?”

Angel snorted, and then promptly fell asleep.


“I thought you were kidding,” he complained the next morning when she brought it up again.

“I like it,” she insisted with a smile, “It’s fun and playful, and there’s a meaning behind it.”

“Other names have meanings,” he countered, “Delaney, for instance, means ‘descendant of the challenger.” 

Buffy sighed. “Well,” she said, her stubborn streak evident in her voice, “We still have a month to decide.”


They started arguing about names again the moment Buffy went into labor (well, after Angel recovered from the initial freak-out), and they didn’t stop until the midwife banned all discussion of names from the delivery room.

“We can name her Delaney,” Buffy finally conceded once the newborn was safely tucked in her arms and nursing at her breast, “But Starkid is going to be her middle name.” She looked up at Angel, daring him to argue.

He knew better than that; he’d seen this face before. Instead, he just smiled and said, “I think that’s a wonderful idea.”

He only realized that Buffy had been the mastermind behind a devious plan after everyone started calling her Stary.