|Story Title:||Can't Buy Me Love|
Buffy, Spike, Giles, and Bess are free. What will Bess make of her first glimpse of the world outside the dungeon walls?
Edmond “Eddie” Giles Rosenberg-Maclay born March 11, 2010
Joshua "JJ" Harris was born on April 21st, 2004
The twins (Danielle Dawn, "Dani" and William Rupert, "Billy") were born on February 12th, 2004.
Annie was born on February 14th, 1999
Spike and Buffy were married in February 1999
Buffy was born January 19th, 1981
William/Spike was turned by Dru in
All the Potentials were endowed with full Slayer power in February 2003.
Buffy and Spike learned of the other dimensions and got the memories from the 'Rome' Universe in May, 2003.
The ‘Wish-World’ lasted from January 19th, 2005 to January, 16th 2010.
Daughters – John Mayer : http://youtu.be/rZLbUIa7exE
ScreenCaps courtesy of ScreenCap Paradise:
Special thanks to 'epd4' for betaing this chapter!!
|Rating / Warnings:||
NC17. Content is only suitable for mature adults. Contains explicit language, sex, adult themes, and other adult situations that some people may find objectionable. If you are under the age of 17 or find any of these themes objectionable – GO AWAY.
Wednesday, April 28th, 2010, 2:30am, London:
With the urgency to find where the remaining guards went and the resulting mêlée in the white room, everyone had forgotten about Kralik ... still strapped to the chair in the blue room, cut nearly in half by Weatherby's machete ... everyone except Bess. As the others took the few remaining researchers and guards and Watchers and put them into cells, Bess returned to the blue room on her own. Kralik was still unconscious from the blow that Weatherby had delivered earlier to shut him up. Bess pulled the machete out of his body, tugging on it hard to free it from where it was embedded into the wooden seat of the chair beneath him. Kralik moaned and his head rolled limply back and forth as the pain caused by removing the weapon reached his brain. Bess dropped the machete with a metallic clatter on the stone floor and knelt in front of the disemboweled vampire.
"Hey..." she called, picking his head up so he could see her. "Hey ... remember me?" she asked, trying to get him to focus on her face.
Kralik moaned louder and slowly opened his eyes. His already addled and twisted mind was in a pain-induced haze. He blinked his eyes to try and bring the room into focus, then stared at her blankly for what seemed several minutes before finally nodding slightly.
"You remember? You know me?" she asked again to be sure he was actually answering her question and not off in some la-la land nodding to Leprechauns. "Who am I? Tell me."
"Blondie's ... girlfriend," Kralik replied with labored effort - his dry, raspy voice passing his parched and bloodied lips as a despondent whisper.
Bess smiled slightly and nodded, her eyes narrow with vengeful spite. "Good. I want you to know who dusted you..." she informed him as she thrust her stake into his heart.
Kralik's dazed mind barely reacted, his eyes seemed more confused than frightened for that brief moment between life and death, then he disintegrated into shimmering particles of dust and joined the rest of the debris on the floor of the blue room, joining Weatherby and Travers by becoming nothing more than a painful memory.
When Bess joined the others upstairs, she watched from a chair in the corner of the conference room as Spike and Buffy sat together on a couch at the back of the room and talked with the kids and Clem back in Sunnydale. She listened as Spike told Billy how proud he was of him and talked about stuff Bess didn’t understand … things about Scoobies and decoder rings … but she understood the main parts, particularly the ‘I love yous’, and more of those feelings that she kept trying to push away and keep hidden tightened her chest and threatened to bring tears to her eyes. Why wouldn’t those feelings just stay away?
Bess bit her bottom lip and swallowed back the lump in her throat as she turned her attention away from the pair of blondes at the back of the room and scanned the people sitting around the conference table. Slayers and Watchers … more Slayers than Watchers, to be sure; the Slayers talked in small groups, some about the battle, others about the massacre in the white room, still others about what was going to happen now. Bess felt a strange kindredship with these girls, but at the same time felt alienated from them – she wasn’t one of them, and yet she was. Their proximity to her raised the fine hairs on the back of her neck, a warning of danger … just as she knew that her presence tingled the same warning to them.
For the first time in over a century, Bess was free … but what she felt most of all was simply lost. In the dungeon, it had all been simple – she knew her place. Like a square peg that had been whittled down to fit into a round hole, she’d learned to fit into the slot that they’d forced her into; she had no idea now to fit in now. Who was she? What was she supposed to do now? How was she supposed to act? Was she a Slayer? Was she a vampire? An evil vampire or a good vampire? Was she a girl? Was she a woman?
Bess jumped when Spike touched her shoulder and pulled her from her perplexing thoughts. She looked up into his eyes and Spike dropped down to one knee in front of her, wincing in pain as he did so and still holding his stomach, which had finally stopped bleeding, but was still precariously stitched together at best.
“A bit overwhelmin’, yeah?” Spike began, tilting his head towards the throng of Slayers at the conference table.
Bess pulled her eyes away from his and scanned the group as she nodded her agreement. “I feel like I should be fleeing … or fighting,” she admitted.
“Ya get used to it after a while,” Spike assured her.
“I feel…” Bess began and stopped. What did she feel? Alone. Frightened. Unsure. Jealous … Jealous? Jealous of the children that she’d heard receive so much praise and love from this man who claimed to be her father … and that old feeling of being unworthy tightened her chest. Surely she was unworthy of that kind of affection or she wouldn’t have been abandoned by everyone who claimed to have cared for her in the past. If your parents didn't love you enough to stay with you, then who would?
“Bess,” Spike began softly. “You did it … you got the message to Junior, you’re brave and strong … the two of you saved us, pet.”
Bess shook her head slowly. “Buffy saved you … she got you free, not I,” Bess pointed out.
“There’s something you don’t understand yet, Buttercup,” Spike continued. “Your mum, she don’t stand alone against the demons like you had to … she’s got me and her friends and our family … and now you – and you have all of us. You aren’t alone – we help each other, when one falters, another steps up … that’s a team, that’s a family, and you’re part of it now. We all work together – we all do our part and you did a big part … you made sure we didn’t fail.”
“I’m not sure I know how to not be alone...” Bess admitted softly, feeling much more like she was fourteen year old girl than a century old vamp.
“No one knows how when they first start out, pet. That’s what your mum and me are here for … to show you how – to help you crawl, then stand, then walk, then run like the wind … We love you, Bess, and we’re so proud of you … we know you can do it.”
Bess bit her bottom lip and looked up at the ceiling, blinking back the tears she’d been fighting and willing them to not fall. She took a deep breath and looked back into Spike’s eyes and she could see his words reflected in them … pride and love – could that really be for her? “How do you know?” she asked timidly, searching his eyes for the doubt she knew must be there.
Spike smiled softly at her. “’Cos you were born that way … you’re made from her,” Spike informed their daughter, tilting his head towards Buffy. “You’re a Summers girl and Summers women are the strongest women I’ve ever had the pleasure of havin’ my ass kicked by.”
Bess snorted a soft laugh and shook her head, closing her eyes and leaning her forehead against Spike’s bare shoulder as the tears she’d been battling began to fall. She never saw the doubt she’d been looking for in his eyes … only a confidence that could almost make her believe that she could do this – she could be someone.
“Buffy, I suggest we adjourn, all try to get a few hours rest before we endeavor to make any decisions on what to do next,” Giles proposed to her as Spike was talking with Bess.
Buffy absently nodded her agreement, her eyes on Bess and Spike. When Bess leaned against him and Spike wrapped an arm over her shoulders, Buffy smiled sadly. This wasn’t going to be easy for any of them, least of all the Slayer-vamp who had lived locked away for so long.
Buffy pulled her attention away from them and focused on Giles. “Yeah, that sounds like a plan,” she agreed. “Are there any bureaucrats left standing?”
Giles removed his glasses and cleaned them, shaking his head. “I don’t believe so … a couple of ‘Watchers in training’ I believe are all that remains here along with some researchers.”
“You’re the senior Watcher …” Buffy pointed out.
“Actually, I’m not a Watcher … I quit, if you’ll recall.” Giles pointed out.
Buffy rolled her eyes. “Giles, being a Watcher isn’t something you quit, just like being a Slayer isn’t something I could quit; it’s not about who’s signing your paycheck. It’s in your blood, it’s part of you. You’re the head man now.”
Giles took a deep breath and let it out slowly. Buffy, of course, was right, although Wes may disagree. “Indeed, I suppose that’s true,” Giles agreed with a sigh.
“Which fills you with much joy and elation …” Buffy teased, seeing the look of consternation on his face.
“Huh? Oh yes, sarcasm … very good,” Giles stammered, his mind on a thousand other things … not the least of which was Edmond. How could he stay here and run the Council and still have any chance of watching his son grow … of spoiling him rotten and teaching him things only a father can teach? How could he choose between what had been his own calling, his life’s work, and his child? Could he turn his back on his chance to make things at the Council ‘right’ … turn his back and walk away from the Slayers and Watchers in the field that would benefit from his experience and leadership? If he did, would that put the world at risk? His son wouldn’t have much of a future if the whole world collapsed into the Hellmouth or was sucked into a hell dimension or overrun by any multitude of demons.
“We’ll work it out, Giles,” Buffy assured him. “Tomorrow.”
“Indeed … I’m certain you’re correct … tomorrow,” Giles repeated tiredly.
“So, what’s the plan, B?” Faith asked as she and Wes joined Buffy and Giles.
“The plan is to sleep now and plan tomorrow …” Buffy answered, standing up from her place on the couch.
“Do you think any of those doctors and trainees we locked up are any threat to us now?” Buffy questioned the small Sunnydale group.
Faith shrugged but Giles and Wes both shook their heads negatively. “I doubt it, Buffy,” Wes started. “We've cut the head off the dragon ... without a leader … they really have no reason to fight any longer. They’re quite aware that they’ve been defeated.”
“We should just let them go, then,” Buffy suggested. “Take their weapons and keys – change the locks or the alarm code or whatever and let them go home to their families.” Perhaps it was the utter relief and joy of talking with her own children after the nightmare of the dungeon, but Buffy was loathe to keep humans that weren't a threat to them prisoner. Doing so may not have made her as bad as Travers, but it felt ... wrong. It made her feel dirty to think that a child would be going to bed tonight wondering where their mother or father was; there had been enough of that going around, it needed to end somewhere.
“I’m not certain we know how to change the alarm code…” Giles pointed out.
“I think I have someone who can help with that,” Faith interjected. “Our buddy Jim, the night watchman …”
“You made friends with one of the guards?” Buffy questioned.
Faith shrugged. “Sort of … you know, in a very violent, abusive, and bondage kinda way,” Faith elucidated with a sarcastic smile. “OH! Which reminds me … your phone,” she exclaimed looking at Giles and reaching into her back pocket for the smart phone that she had retrieved from Travers’ office earlier.
“Oh … sorry …” Faith apologized as she handed the broken and battered phone to Giles. “I guess it’s not really a good phone for a Slayer.”
Giles took the phone and looked at it with disgust … the face was cracked into a hundred pieces, at least – it looked like it had been through a war. “Indeed,” he agreed with her assessment.
“Maybe Will insured it,” Faith suggested.
“We can bloody well hope,” Giles droned as he dropped the demolished phone into his pocket. With Olivia’s help, he had just gotten it set up to his liking. Giles sighed and a small smile played on his lips … on the bright side, getting a new phone would be an excellent excuse to spend all day and night with Olivia again … setting the phone up, of course.
Back at their hotel, Giles helped Spike up to their room as Buffy paid for an additional room for Bess. Bess stuck close to Buffy on the trip back from the Council headquarters … trying not to ask too many questions or be frightened of all the strange sights and sounds that surrounded them. She had never actually seen automobiles before or trucks or motorbikes … she’d heard tell of them when they brought in new vamps, but to actually see them was rather overwhelming. Even though it was a short walk back to the hotel, Giles had called a cab since Spike was in no condition to walk … and on her first night outside the dungeon walls, Bess got to ride in one of the wondrous marvels of technology – a London black cab.
Spike watched their daughter’s face as the taxi began to move slowly through the nearly deserted, pre-dawn streets of London. Bess’ eyes were wide with wonder as she watched the world move by … it was as if she’d stepped into a time machine and darted ahead over a hundred years. Spike had lived through all the changes of the last century … had been able to see the strides of the industrial age and the computer age first hand and adapt to them little by little. Bess, on the other hand, was being dropped from one time into another in the blink of an eye … but Spike was proud of how she was handling it. She seemed to be like a sponge, just absorbing everything she saw and heard and felt, or perhaps like a child, like the child she had been before – curious about the world, a tom-boy, unafraid of new adventures and ready to explore the unknown.
Buffy was able to get a room right across the hall from theirs and next door to Giles’ for Bess. The blondes walked up the single flight of stairs to the second floor and Buffy showed the girl how the key worked … quite thankful that it was an actual key, not a key-card set up, in the hotel. In the room, Buffy showed her how the light switches worked, then the toilet, sink, and shower and how the water worked and tried desperately to think what else she needed to show her.
“I’ll get you something clean to sleep in and some clothes for tomorrow,” Buffy offered when the short tour of the room was done. “We’re right across the hall … if you need anything, just knock on our door, ok?”
Bess nodded, looking out the door and at the door across the hall.
“Ok … why don’t you get started on a shower and I’ll find you some clean clothes?” Buffy suggested as she headed towards the door.
Bess nodded again, looking at the bathroom door and hoping she could remember how the water worked. “Thank you,” she offered, genuinely grateful for Buffy’s help and patience.
Buffy smiled at her. “That’s what moms are for,” Buffy assured her as she headed across the hallway to her room to see if she could find something that would fit the thin girl.
When Buffy came back into Bess’ room, she laid the clothes on the dresser and sat down to wait for their daughter to finish in the shower. Buffy closed her tired eyes and leaned her head back against the chair, and fell asleep almost immediately. Buffy wasn’t sure how long she’d been asleep, waiting for Bess to finish, but when she awoke with a kink in her neck, the shower was still running. Steam poured out of the small bathroom and filled the whole room with a cloud of damp, warm mist – then Buffy heard what sounded like splashing and when she stood up she could see water running out of the bathroom door and saturating the carpet in the bedroom.
“Bess!” she exclaimed as she ran to the open bathroom door to see what was going on.
“Buffy!” Bess giggled as she sat up, bringing her head up from under the water that filled the overflowing tub as more hot water poured down like rain from the showerhead. “This is the most fantastic invention ever!” she declared, splashing in the tub like it was a swimming pool and sending another wave of water over the edge and across the bathroom floor towards the carpet.
“Bess! You can’t do that!” Buffy admonished her as she hurried in, turned the water off, and unplugged the stopper in the tub. “You can’t splash water everywhere!”
Bess’ giddy expression folded in on itself and turned into a pout that only reaffirmed the Summers blood in her veins. “I’m sorry … I didn’t mean to,” she apologized meekly as Buffy tried to mop up the water from the floor with the towels.
“That’s not a swimming pool!” Buffy continued to rant. “God, I hope we don’t have to pay for the damage to that carpet … Oh, I hope water didn’t run downstairs! What in the world were you thinking?”
Bess bit her bottom lip and looked down at the rapidly lowering water in the tub. “Sorry …”
Buffy sighed and rolled her eyes as she dropped the soaked towels in the sink. God, I sound just like Mom! Buffy thought as she took a deep breath to calm down. How many times had her mother asked her ‘what were you thinking?’ … too many to count.
“It’s ok … I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have yelled – you didn’t know,” Buffy apologized. Buffy dropped down onto her knees to be eye level with the girl who was still sitting in the empty tub. “Bess – I’m sorry,” Buffy began again, putting a finger under the girl’s chin and lifting her face up so she was looking at her. “I shouldn’t have lost my temper … I’m just really tired and … I forgot for a minute that you didn’t know. Bess, I need you to be patient with me, ok? I make mistakes … I don’t mean to, but I do, but it doesn’t mean I don’t love you.”
“Why?” Bess whispered, lowering her eyes and looking back down.
“Why … do I love you?” Buffy questioned, trying to follow what Bess was asking. “I love you because you’re you – it’s unconditional; you’re our daughter and that’s the only reason we need.”
“Then why did you leave?” Bess wondered, her voice barely audible.
“Awww, baby,” Buffy sighed, sitting back on her heels on the wet floor. “I didn’t have a choice … neither did your father. He thought he’d left you somewhere safe, with the Weatherfords; he didn’t know you were a Slayer … we didn’t know you were still … alive.”
Bess nodded, but still didn’t really understand. Buffy had been there that day … that same day her father had disappeared. If they loved her so much, why did they run off? Why did they abandon their family? Why didn’t they take her and Anne with them?
“C’mon, let’s get you dried off and get some sleep … things will be better tomorrow,” Buffy assured her as she stood up then went out to the bedroom area and grabbed a blanket off the bed for Bess to dry off with.
When Bess was dressed in a t-shirt and shorts, Buffy turned the bed down for her. “Do you need anything else? Have you eaten anything? Are you hungry?”
“I’m ok …” Bess told her as she sat down on the bed, bouncing lightly on the edge.
“Ok, we’ll get some blood tomorrow and go shopping – get you some clothes and shoes and fix your hair … it’ll be fun – you’ll see. I’m really not always this cranky. If you need anything, you know where we are – just knock,” Buffy assured her with a smile.
“Ok,” Bess agreed absentmindedly, still bouncing lightly on the springy mattress.
“Ok, good night, then,” Buffy called over her shoulder as she headed for the door.
“Good night,” Bess replied.
“Bouncing on the bed like it’s a trampoline is kinda like running water all over the floor …” Buffy warned her before closing the door.
Buffy leaned back against the door heavily and rubbed at her eyes. She was exhausted and just beginning to realize how many things Bess didn’t know. “Wanda … please help me, please give me strength, give me patience … give me another one of those chocolate bars,” Buffy prayed aloud.
“Well, I don’t have any strength or patience to spare,” Giles began as he came out of Buffy and Spike’s room, hearing the last of her prayer. “But I do have this,” he offered, pulling a Wispa bar out of his pocket.
Buffy smiled and took the candy from his hand. “I think you just saved my life…”
Giles snorted a laugh and headed to his room across the hall and down one door from Bess’. “I expect that makes the score: Slayer, five-hundred and twenty seven; Watcher, two.”
Buffy popped the last bite of chocolate into her mouth as she entered their room … she moaned in pleasure, that tasted about as good as anything she’d ever had. The fact that she was starving and utterly exhausted might’ve had something to do with that.
Spike had just dropped his jeans and was just sitting down on the bed when she closed and locked the door behind her. Giles had checked his wound, helped him clean his upper torso, and tore a clean sheet into strips to re-wrap his midsection. Spike had ripped a couple of the stitches loose, but it was still holding well enough that his own healing powers should be able to mend the gaping wound in his stomach within a few days. Giles had also straightened Spike’s broken nose and taped it in place so it wouldn’t heal crooked – which had been more important to Spike than his ravaged stomach; he didn’t want to end up looking like Rocky Balboa after going ten rounds against Apollo Creed for the rest of his life.
“How is it?” Buffy asked as she walked over to him then helped him pull his jeans the rest of the way off and swing his legs gently up onto the bed.
“Tickles a bit…” Spike replied with a grimace, as he tried to breathe through the pain and will his body to relax.
Buffy went to the bathroom and got a couple of washcloths and filled the ice bucket up with warm water. She sat down heavily on the edge of the bed next to him and started cleaning the blood and grime off the lower half of his body. “I’m so sorry, Spike,” she began, trying not to hurt him – his whole body was still covered in cuts, burns, and bruises.
Spike grabbed her hand, pulled it to his lips and dropped a soft kiss on her palm. “Not your fault,” he assured her. “How’s our girl?”
Buffy smiled and shook her head. “She’s like a kid in a candy shop … turned the bathtub into a swimming pool and is this very moment probably jumping on the bed like a trampoline.”
Spike snorted a soft laugh and closed his eyes as Buffy laid her hand softly on his cheek. “She doesn’t understand why we left her way back then. I tried to explain that we didn’t have a choice, that you thought she’d be safe with the Weatherfords, that we didn’t know about any of this … but I’m not sure she really understands.”
“I’ll have a talk with her tomorrow, yeah? She’s been through a lot, I don’t know if she’ll ever trust anyone again, even us,” Spike admitted.
“Spike … I think,” Buffy took a deep breath. “I think she might have some of her soul,” she blurted out quickly, not sure how Spike would take that news, but not knowing any other way to tell him.
Spike pursed his lips together, closed his eyes and nodded. “Yeah,” he agreed. “She cares too much ‘bout ... us – what we think, what we feel.”
Buffy let out the breath she’d been holding, thankful that this wasn’t news to him.
“She’s good at acting like it ain’t there … but it shows. I reckon tomorrow we need to have Red give it all back to ‘er and hope she don’t turn into a moody, violent, reticent teenager who’s stronger than her bloody parents.”
“Oh, so you think she’ll turn into me,” Buffy kidded, rolling her eyes but not laughing as she went back to cleaning his legs with the damp cloths. Unfortunately, Spike’s worries were also hers and hit a little too close to home.
“Whatever happens, we’ll work it out, together, yeah? She’s a good girl … she’s just had a bad time of it,” Spike pointed out. “I think she really just wants one thing, the same thing we all want … to be loved.”
Buffy nodded and sighed, hoping he was right, hoping their love would be enough to pull Bess through what was certain to be another difficult time for her.
“How did you pass the Gem to her without her knowing?” Buffy wondered, changing the subject slightly as she moved to his other leg and tried to get the dried blood and dirt off without reopening his wounds.
Spike thought back to the struggle for the Gem in the white room and replayed the scene for Buffy …
Kralik and Spike both raced on hands and knees across the floor of the room towards the jumble of over turned tables in the center, following the blood trail the Gem had left on the sterile floor. Spike got to the maze of tables first and began searching for it frantically, pushing the overturned tables out of the way, flipping them and sliding them until he caught a glimpse of the small, green bauble. Spike reached for it, just barely grabbing it between his outstretched fingertips just as Kralik caught him and hurtled the smaller vamp away, sending Spike sliding across the floor towards Bess, who was unconscious - tranquilized.
Spike hit Bess with enough force to send them both crashing against the cabinets a few feet away. The surgical instruments that had been dropped on the floor earlier scattered; flashes of light bounced off the sharp, shiny blades as the two blondes slid through the middle of the pile. Spike was still bleeding from the gaping wound in his chest that Kralik had made getting the Gem out and excruciating pain radiated out to all parts of his body from his broken ribs; he tried to breathe through the pain, but breathing just made it hurt worse, so he stopped and concentrated on forcing his mind to stay conscious and focused.
Spike could hear Kralik growling and overturning the tables, still looking for the Gem in the center of the room. Spike grabbed one of the scalpels from the floor and struggled to cover and protect his still unconscious daughter’s prone body with his own. Shielding his actions from the prying eyes of the onlookers overhead with his body, Spike stabbed the scalpel deep into Bess’ upper thigh and slid the Gem of Amarra into the deep wound, pressing it nearly to the bone with his index finger. Spike then began pulling the tranq darts out of his daughter’s flesh, hoping that she could wake up … hoping that she could defend herself, because he wasn’t sure how long he’d last now. Before Spike could get all the darts out, he was jerked up by the scruff of his neck by Kralik and tossed on the floor a few feet away from her.
“I knew if I put it back into myself and my wounds healed up, Travers would know …” Spike explained. “Buttercup didn’t have any wounds to speak of … other than the tranq darts. Wankers never even thought to check her,” Spike observed with a touch of pride that one of his plans had actually worked for a change.
Buffy nodded slowly, blinking back tears, as she stopped her ministrations and looked up at him. “But you could’ve dusted… I could’ve lost you,” she whispered, her voice cracking with emotion as she met his eyes with hers.
“If ‘ifs’ and ‘ands’ were pots and pans…” Spike began the old rhyme as he took her hand back in his and pulled it to his lips.
Buffy rolled her eyes. “All the tinkers would be in the unemployment line…” she finished with a sigh.
“Buffy, if he’d of gotten hold a’ that Gem …” Spike started.
“I know … all our friends would’ve thought we were dead and might not have looked for us,” Buffy groaned. “That doesn’t make me like the fact that you don’t have it anymore. We need to put it back…”
“Yeah,” Spike agreed half-heartedly.
“Buffy, let the girl have it for a bit, yeah? Take her to a bloody swimmin’ pool, let ‘er jump off the high dive … let her swim in the ocean and bounce on a real trampoline … let her feel the sun on her skin – let her be a real girl. Buffy, please, pet – I owe her that much,” Spike pleaded with his wife.
Buffy’s chin quivered as tears rolled down her cheeks. She wanted Spike’s wounds to heal, she wanted him out of pain, she wanted him to be able to walk in the sun and be a ‘real boy’ and she wanted to not worry about some person or demon getting lucky and dusting him – but at the same time she understood his guilt, because she felt it too. Bess had been cheated out of so much of her childhood … she’d been used and abused and treated like a piece of meat with no value of her own for so long, maybe it was time someone did something for her without asking for anything in return. Maybe they could show her how much they loved her … maybe they could show her that not everyone in the world was a monster and that people could be good, people could be trusted – maybe she could learn to live, even trust and love, again.
Buffy finally nodded, patting a hand down on Spike’s shoulder. “You’re a good father, Spike … the best any child could hope for. I’m so lucky to have you next to me, I love you so much,” Buffy offered sincerely, leaning down and dropping a soft kiss on his lips.
“I love you too, Buffy,” Spike murmured against her lips. “You’re a good mum, ya know that, yeah?”
Buffy rested her forehead against his and sighed as Spike rubbed his hands lightly up and down her arms. “I yelled at Bess for splashing water all over the floor,” Buffy admitted. “I sounded just like my mom,” she groaned, rolling her eyes.
Spike chuckled softly, still running his hands up and down her bare arms. “See, that just proves it. Joyce was a good lady … a good mum – and so are you … even if you don’t share your bloody chocolate with me.”
Buffy sat back and smiled guiltily. “You and your vampire smelling,” she teased.
“Didn’t need t’ smell it … I tasted it … you taste like heaven with chocolate on top,” Spike informed her with a smirk.
Buffy laughed lightly and shook her head. “Well, smarty pants, for your information, I do have some chocolate to share with you. It’s right here,” Buffy informed him, tilting her head to the side and rubbing a finger up and down her bare neck.
Spike’s face turned serious and he shook his head. “No ...”
“Yes,” Buffy argued. “You don’t have the Gem – we have to do this the old-fashioned way.”
“The bit…” Spike began to argue.
“Is fine. I’m fine – I’m all healed, you’re not. I can spare a pint of blood. I didn’t argue with you about the Gem, did I? You don’t argue with me about this,” Buffy insisted.
Spike frowned and shook his head, but Buffy stopped him from arguing further by laying a finger on his lips. “Show me the demon,” Buffy demanded, but Spike just shook his head adamantly.
“We can do this the easy way or the hard way,” Buffy warned. “But either way, you’re gonna drink.”
“You can’t force…” Spike started, talking past her finger on his lips when Buffy pressed down on his abdomen lightly with her other hand. “Bloody hell!” Spike screamed in pain, gold flashing momentarily in his eyes.
“Easy way or hard way,” Buffy repeated.
“You’re the most stubborn, obstinate, insufferable woman I’ve ever bloody known,” Spike grumbled, as he allowed the demon surface.
“I love you too, honey,” Buffy replied as she leaned down so her jugular was next to his fangs. “Now, bite me.”
Spike could hear and smell her blood pumping in her artery and the demon wrested control from the man, sliding his fangs into her hungrily. Spike felt that euphoric feeling wash over him as her sweet, chocolaty Slayer blood covered his tongue and ran down his throat. At the first drop of crimson, the demon sucked even harder against her neck as he wrapped one arm around her shoulders and pulled her body down against his ravaged chest – all pain completely forgotten.
Buffy gasped and then moaned as Spike’s fangs sank into her neck and her skin began to tingle as chill-bumps chased up and down her body. His cool lips against her hot flesh just intensified the feeling she had of being a burning glacier … hot and cold at the same time. It didn’t happen often, but there were times when Buffy wished his bite didn’t send her libido spiraling out of control … and this was one of them. She was too exhausted and he was too weak, his injury too severe, to do anything but leave them both wanting more.
Buffy could feel him open the bond between them and she did the same and suddenly they were on the peak of a snow covered mountain surrounded by icy-hot flames that licked hungrily at their bare skin. Spike lifted her up and Buffy wrapped around him with arms and legs as Spike’s lips found hers. Buffy’s head spun when she felt Spike’s demon press his hardness into her wet heat as she wrapped around him and silently begged for more. As the flames danced around them, melting the snow with their golden blaze, the warriors let their inner demons dance a deadly, graceful ballet of blood lust. The demon roared against her skin as he pounded his hard weapon up into her burning sheath with unbridled passion, and Buffy took all he had to give. Unencumbered by their humanity, or their bodies, or even gravity … ruled only by their spirits and desires, the pair rose up from the mountaintop into the atmosphere, spinning and spiraling together towards nirvana.
As they climbed higher and higher, so did the flames, which continued to burn them with ecstasy while they danced among the stars. Buffy felt like she was melting ... melting into Spike, just as her blood flowed into him, she felt her whole being begin to surge into him and it was the most amazing thing she’d ever felt – as if she was being poured into a mold that was made for only her and fit her perfectly. She could feel her own dark, inner demon surface and reach out for his, and when they touched, the flames surrounding them exploded in fiery bliss, sending them hurtling as one towards heaven.
The pair soared and whirled, dancing as one being. Like an ice skater, they spun together in a tight spiral, going faster and faster until they were nothing but a blur to the heavens and the heavens were nothing but a blur to them. Buffy screamed out when her orgasm overtook her physical body as Spike continued to suck and lick at her neck and drink her hormone-charged, life-giving blood. Buffy clung to him in the heavens as they spun faster and faster and faster still – unable and unwilling to control the velocity or the intensity of their dance.
Her body tensed and trembled against his until she could no longer breathe, no longer scream, no longer do anything but feel the power of her own dark demon as it carried her away on waves of bliss. Spike pulled back, forcing his demon back into hiding and began softly licking and kissing her neck, sealing the wound with his saliva and slowing their spin in the heavens.
Buffy felt air return to her lungs as she gasped for breath … but their demon spirits still danced among the stars, slowly shifting from the dizzying and frantic spin to a slow, sensuous death spiral, not wanting to leave the bliss behind. Finally, their demons pulled apart as the twirling slowed further and further until they finally stopped … in fact, the whole world seemed to stop in that moment. The flames were nothing but smoldering embers as they stood atop the snowcapped mountaintop, Buffy wrapped around him, held tight in Spike’s arms, Spike’s cock still sheathed in her heat.
Spike leaned in and kissed her lips softly, then trailed his tongue down to her neck and nuzzled against her, licking and kissing her neck and slowly they came back to themselves and were back in the hotel, back in their bodies, back in the world. Buffy’s chest heaved with exertion as her heart raced in her chest and the tingling in her body slowly dissipated. Buffy sat back, checking her neck for blood with one hand … there was none, the wounds were closed.
“God, Spike … did you … did you see that – feel that?” she asked between gasps of air.
Spike smiled and lifted a hand to her face, drawing one finger lightly down from her temple, along her jaw to her chin. “Your demon’s as beautiful as you are … dark, feral, raw … primal,” he affirmed. “Bloody amazin’, you are, pet.”
“I’ve never … not since the Shadowmen … it’s never taken over like that before,” Buffy stammered slightly, trying to figure out if that meant something or not.
“No worries, luv,” Spike assured her. “You’re bloody exhausted … and with my demon so close, it found a crack – an opening and took it. It’s not any stronger than it’s ever been, you’re just completely knackered.”
Buffy let out a long breath and nodded. There was no doubt about that. She couldn’t remember the last time she’d slept and even one of Travers’ bland, lukewarm meals would be welcome just about now. Buffy trailed her hand lightly down from Spike’s shoulder across his bandaged abdomen to his hard cock … he hadn’t cum like she had in the … what was that? A wet dream? A wet day-dream?
Buffy leaned down and touched the tip of her tongue to the swollen head of his cock, licking the droplets of pre-cum from his cumslit and Spike closed his eyes as he moaned in pleasure, which encouraged Buffy to continue. She wasn’t sure if he would be too tired or too beat up to want it … but apparently not. Buffy slid her lips down his shaft, licking small circles with the tip of her tongue all down his length.
“God, Buffy … feels so bloody good,” Spike moaned, laying a hand on the back of her neck and tangling his fingers in her golden tresses.
Buffy winced slightly when he did that, not from pain but from the gross-factor that was her hair. She’d taken a ‘whore’s bath’ earlier when she’d come in to get clothes for Bess – washing up quickly with a washcloth, but her hair hadn’t been washed in days…it felt gross to her, matted and oily, and she was sure there had to be blood and dirt and who knew what else in there too, but Spike didn’t seem to notice or mind.
Buffy put the thought of her gross hair out of her mind and concentrated on Spike … at least she could make him feel better for a few minutes, just as he’d done for her in their shared day dream. Buffy stroked his balls lightly with her fingertips as she alternated between fast, short strokes and hard, long ones on his throbbing cock, making Spike squirm slightly. He really wanted to jerk his hips up against her, but his ravaged abdomen wouldn’t allow it – he had to let her do all the work.
“Cum for me, baby,” Buffy murmured against the sensitive skin of his rod before dropping her heavenly mouth down hard and deep, swallowing and taking all of his desire into her.
“Ahhh … bloody hell!” Spike exclaimed when the head of his cock hit the back of her throat.
Buffy sucked down on him harder and Spike’s hips jerked up involuntarily, sending pain shooting out from his abdomen in all directions. Spike gasped, but pushed the pain aside, focusing his mind on his wild angel who was taking him to heaven. Spike opened his eyes and watched her, her beautiful lips engulfing him, her cheeks hollow with the force of her mission, her face flushed with the passion she was pouring over him and her beautiful, golden halo flowing freely around her angelic face. Spike let the vision and the feeling of her mouth and hands on him mingle with the aroma of her own cum and it sent him soaring.
“God, Buffy … gonna cum, pet,” Spike announced, his voice deep and rumbly as he felt his cum shoot up from where she was fondling his scrotum and swell his cock with waves of bliss. For a moment, Spike caught another glimpse of Buffy’s inner demon – dark and feral, as his cum shot into her soft, warm mouth and they both moaned in ecstasy as she continued licking and sucking while she swallowed his nectar passionately.
Buffy licked every last drop from Spike’s cock, making Spike moan in pleasure with each circle of her tongue around his softening rod.
“So bloody good, pet,” Spike moaned when she finally released him. He pulled her up his body and Buffy dropped a kiss on his lips.
“I love you so much,” she whispered to him.
“Love you more, my raven goddess,” Spike contended with a satisfied smile, his arms wrapped around her.
Buffy smiled back at him. “I didn’t think you liked the ‘Elvira’ look on me…” she pointed out, recalling how upset he was when she came back from her visit with the Shadowmen with more demon mojo and long, jet black hair to go with along it; knowing that was what Spike saw when he saw her inner demon emerge to dance with his.
“It suits her … you’re the light … she’s the dark,” Spike explained. "Two sides to the same amazin' woman."
Buffy nodded, thinking that was most likely quite true. “Well, we two yin and yang girls need a shower in the worst way,” she informed him, and Spike released her as she stood up and started for the bathroom.
As he watched her walk away, he couldn’t help but feel like the luckiest man in the world … he wanted to pluck the stars from the sky and lay them at her feet like diamonds. She’d helped him keep his promise to Bess; she was a fighter, a scrapper, a bloody lioness. Buffy was the most giving woman that he’d ever known and certainly, as he told Bess, the strongest woman he’d ever had the pleasure of having his ass kicked by. Spike drifted off to sleep as he heard the shower start in the other room … dreams of Buffy dancing in a graceful ballet across the stars as they lay on the ground at her feet filling his exhausted mind and body with a peaceful joy.
Buffy sank slowly down in the tub until only her nose was above the water as the shower rained more hot water down on her tired and aching body. She closed her eyes and listened from under the water as the shower splashed around her, splattering what little of her face that was above the surface with warm droplets of delight. She held her breath and went under the surface completely … she could feel her hair fan out in the warm water and it tickled her shoulders and back. Then she opened her eyes and looked up … she could see the ripples on the surface of the water where the shower was still pounding down, filling the tub higher and higher.
Buffy smiled as an old memory popped into her mind … she couldn’t have been more than five or six. She’d been playing ‘frogman’ in the tub – splashing recklessly as she turned one way then the other in the clear water. “Buffy! That’s not a swimming pool!” her mother had exclaimed when she walked in to find the bathroom floor covered with an inch of water. “What were you thinking!?”
Buffy began to laugh and she sat up quickly, sending a wave of water over the edge of the tub and onto the floor, which just made her laugh harder and splash another gallon or two of water onto the floor. She sat back against the cool tiles and her laughter suddenly morphed into deep, sobbing tears. Buffy sat forward and covered her face with her hands as her emotions, which she’d worked so hard to keep bottled up when she was in the dungeon, poured out. Behind her closed lids, Buffy could see what her mom saw that day … a happy, carefree child, unencumbered by all the ‘shoulds’ and ‘should nots’ of adulthood; she could see herself in her children, and her children in herself. Suddenly she was laughing and crying at the same time as she realized that she need look no further than her own heart for the strength and patience that she’d asked their Guardian Angel for; it had been within her the whole time, she’d just forgotten.
“Thanks…” Buffy murmured aloud as leaned back against the cool tiles and let out a deep, shuddering breath, finally allowing herself to truly relax for the first time in many days.
Daughters – John Mayer
I know a girl,
She puts the color inside of my world
But she's just like a maze
Where all of the walls all continually change
And I've done all I can
To stand on her steps with my heart in my hands
Now I'm starting to see
Maybe it's got nothing to do with me
Fathers, be good to your daughters
Daughters will love like you do
Girls become lovers who turn into mothers
So mothers, be good to your daughters too
Oh, you see that skin?
It's the same she's been standing in
Since the day she saw him walking away
Now she's left, cleaning up the mess he made
Fathers, be good to your daughters
Daughters will love like you do
Girls become lovers who turn into mothers
So mothers, be good to your daughters too
Boys, you can break
You'll find out how much they can take
Boys will be strong and boys soldier on
But boys would be gone without warmth from
A woman's good, good heart
On behalf of every man
Looking out for every girl
You are the god and the weight of her world
Fathers, be good to your daughters
Daughters will love like you do
Girls become lovers who turn into mothers
So mothers, be good to your daughters too
So mothers, be good to your daughters too
So mothers, be good to your daughters too
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