"Bloody hell!", the vampire exclaimed, quickly putting the offending digit in his mouth, thereby preventing another stream of expletives from leaving his lips.
"Oh dear God", muttered Giles despairingly. Feeling a sudden headache coming on, he took off his glasses and pinched the bridge of his nose.
It had been like this all night. With Xander in hospital and Revello Drive in ruins, it had been up to the Watcher and the vampire to bury the hatchet for a few hours and carry out some necessary repairs to the windows and doors of Slayer Central; repairs aimed more at becalming the panicked Potentials, Giles had no doubt, than effective at keeping out Caleb's band of Bringers should he send these after them again. The trouble was, he had had to conclude during the course of the evening, that neither of them was any good at carpentry.
When Wendy had first suggested Bob take a holiday, he had scoffed at the idea; but after Dizzy had pointed out to him the fact that he'd been mindlessly adding sharp sand to the mix for the last 20 minutes or so, he had gone into town and booked himself onto the first flight out to SoCal. Yet, there had been no getting away from work entirely, for although Pilchard hadn't objected to staying behind with Wendy and minding the yard; Dizzy, Scoop and Muck had insisted they were due some time off, too...and Spud -- well, it was hard to leave Spud out of anything, really.
And so it happened that, while out for a leisurely walk through a quiet Californian suburb, they all heard the heartfelt "Ow!" followed by the equally heartfelt "Bloody hell!" and then the sound of creaking wood and crumbling masonry coming from somewhere on their right. Four pairs of eyes turned to Bob, who grinned and said, "Can we fix it?" "Yes, we can!", the others replied; and after doing a quick Dance of Joy on the spot, they veered off as one towards where the sounds had been coming from.
Having arrived at the scene, it didn't take Bob long to see that the two men attempting to barricade a large window could do with their help. He sent Spud inside to make the all-important tea (it gave Spud the idea that he was helping and kept him nicely out of the way of sharp tools), cast an expert eye over the splintered window frame, and assured a grateful if worried Giles that they would have the job done in no time, and at no more than cost price.
Before too long, Dizzy was busy mixing up cement, Scoop was clearing away the rubble from the front lawn, and Muck had taken it to the nearest landfill site for illegal dumping. During the night Bob had shown Spike the correct way to hold and guide a plane along the wood, and so the vampire had had no more cause to cry out for the splinters embedding themselves in his flesh; and Spud and Giles had kept each other company drinking copious amounts of tea.
When the sun rose again over the sleepy town of Sunnydale, the house at 1630 Revello Drive once again looked like any other in the street -- except for the fact that its windows were all boarded up and there was a cement mixer stood in front of it. But stranger things had been seen in the town of late, and the neighbours were hardly interested in worrying about something as minor as that.