Sequel to Easier Said
Author's Notes: This is a sequel to my fic "Easier Said."
Betas: The Wonderful Colleen and the Amazing Mezzibelle (Action figures sold separately. :-)
Disclaimer: Joss is God. The characters are his. I'm merely having fun with them.
Summary: Spike takes off for places unknown only to find an unwelcome passenger along for the ride.
Road Tripp'n Part Six
Moments before, Willow had deliberately broken the circle of protection by knocking over one of the candles. She had been beyond desperate. Tara's face had started to turn blue from choking, and every pleading cry that managed to escape her lips, tore holes in Willow's soul. It was Glory all over again, fingers slipping into Tara's brain as Willow frantically tried to reach her through the din of the crowd. The barrier had to be removed. She had to reach Tara--only now T'Keti could reach her too, and did.
Magic. It was the only solution. Even if Buffy were to crash through the door just in the nick of time, T'Keti had control of the only person who could force him out of this plane.
It's no use, Willow thought, tears falling from her eyes. Tears that T'Keti mistook for victory. Willow knew she had made this decision long before Tara had even suggested the spell. It was ultimately the reason she was here--to do what was necessary.
Osiris, hear my plea! Willow projected from her mind. She felt the telltale tingling of magic prickling through her body.
Osiris, awaken! Take this sacrifice of blood... As soon as the words left her mind, a pint of blood boiled away from inside her. She felt the vapor rising out of her nose, eyes and ears.
Osiris, hear me! One of Willow's molars cracked and crumbled to dust.
Your enemy seeks release in this realm. A fingernail on her left hand disintegrated.
"Osiris!" Willow croaked out loud, and a lock of her hair vanished.
T'Keti frowned in anger at the name of his nemesis. His sole purpose in existence was to chip away at the barrier Osiris so diligently defended. His undead walked the earth as a testament to that fact. His beautiful dream of undeath eclipsing all life forever was now only one dead witch away. He renewed his efforts on snapping the red-head's neck, but found a baleful presence manifesting beneath his grasp. Magic began to drip from the girl's body in hot, fiery gobs, burning him. T'Keti tried to squeeze tighter, but he felt his grip slipping.
Abruptly, Willow's head snapped forward, black eyes focusing on the blonde wiccan before her. A flick of her wrist and Tara flew across the room. She slammed into the far wall and was held pinned there by an invisible force.
"You won't get her back," Tara sneered at her.
"Your time is up, T'Keti. Osiris commands you to leave," Willow said forcefully, hoping the power coursing through her would be enough. Already she could feel Osiris growing bored with the exchange. Willow could have easily reduced Tara to ash by now, preventing T'Keti's release.
A fitting end for the temerity in summoning the god of the undead, Willow thought. No...not me--Osiris. He thought, then I thought... Oh boy. This was not of the good. She would have to act fast.
Willow uttered a short incantation, took a deep breath, then plunged into Tara's mind.
"I found you. I found you." Spike reluctantly embraced Drusilla as she sobbed against him.
"Hush, pet. It's alright now. You found me." She raised her head and looked into his eyes, and Spike knew things were far from all right. His mind started working furiously, more out of self preservation than anything. When he last encountered Dru, he had threatened to stake her as a testament of his love for the Slayer. Not really something Dru's going to forget, Spike thought wryly.
"Not the time to make funny thoughts my bad, bad Spike," Dru said, lightly running her fingernails along his neck. He shivered at her touch. She'd spent a lifetime learning what pleased and hurt him, taking equal pleasure in both.
"You a mind reader now?" Spike asked. One of her nails made a shallow cut and small droplets of blood welled up like dew.
"Can't you hear it?" Dru said, cocking her head, looking up into the sky.
"Hear what, pet?"
"The moon whispers. It's like a child hiding in a coal bin, frightened of the dark. It wants to come out and play, Spike. It's lonely. The moon told me where to find you. I needed to find you." Dru started to cry again, and Spike felt a pang of remorse. He knew he had to get back to the car, back to Julie and... But the state Dru was in, if he tried to leave, he'd most likely end up dust--or worse. Dru definitely excelled at worse. And he doubted he could fight her with any great success. She smelled fresh and ripe with blood, as if she had drunk her fill of small cherubs.
Spike on the other hand, felt weak, almost malnourished--like after the first week of being chipped, before he found other sources of blood besides the walking and talking and screaming variety.
"Dru..." Her head snapped back, a feral growl replacing the soft mewling sounds she'd been making.
"You still love her." It wasn't a question. Spike closed his eyes and braced himself for the pain, but was flabbergasted when he felt her hand softly caress his cheek. "After everything she's done to you?" His eyes snapped open in surprise.
"How..?" Spike blurted out.
She leaned in and kissed him fiercely, pulling him against her. Her tongue flicked, cold and inviting, across his lips. He found himself responding to her as he had so many times before. His black beauty, his dark queen. She pulled back from their embrace, her eyes studying him carefully.
"You taste like her," Drusilla said, but her voice was unnaturally calm, almost serene. She pressed her hand flat against his chest, right over his stilled heart.
"You burn for her, William," she spoke softly. Spike looked at her confused. "She burns within you. Like before, only more so."
Spike knew the before she was talking about, and it wasn't Buffy. He had fled into the night then too. The humiliation of Cecily's rejection hot on his cheeks. Tears streaming down his face as he tore his poetry to shreds- the words that gave voice to his deepest desire; to love and be loved by someone extraordinary.
Then Drusilla. She had found him crying like a worthless sod, but she'd seen through him. Saw how much he loved to love. And she was so lonely. She gave him power when he was weak. She dripped blood and desire into him like ambrosia, and he worshipped her for it. They tore through Europe like the plague, laughing and dancing, reveling in their shared nature. Creatures of the night. Free of humanity. Free of the hurt. And the tattered remnants of love that even his demon couldn't drive out of him, he gave to Drusilla, willingly. And now she was back again.
"Come with me, William," she said, her voice desperate and pleading. "We can be together. There's so little left of our family. Mommy's gone. Daddy's gone. It's just us now, my sweet. Come with me. Together, we'll make the whole world taste like ashes."
Spike wiped a stray tear from Drusilla's cheek. A part of him wanted to return to those halcyon days of blood, fist and fang--when his only thought was of Dru, and how he could please her. But that was before the clever head-chips and white-hot retribution. Before Buffy. And Dawn. He knew there was no going back. Dru no longer captivated him as she once did. She was a fleeting memory of desire now, like Cecily. He remembered the longing, but it no longer inspired him.
When Spike opened his mouth to speak, Drusilla lashed out, punching him hard in the face, knocking him to the ground, cold fury in her eyes. He realized that she knew his answer even before he had.
"You'll always be beneath her, William," she hissed at him. "Even with that tin soul in your head."
"I know," Spike replied, not looking at her.
"No, you don't! She's covered in you now too. She's coming to take you away. I hate her, Spike. I hate her!" Spike glanced up at her, afraid again. Dru was pacing, agitated. Her voice had gone several octaves higher, and her hands fluttered like birds caught in snares. He'd seen her work herself up into a frenzy before, but this was different. She smelled of panic.
"What do you mean, Dru?"
"You aren't meant for her. Daddy wouldn't like this."
"Have you lost it completely? What the fuck do I care what Angel wants?" Drusilla stopped pacing, staring at him.
"This is all wrong, Spike. Can't you feel it? Daddy shouldn't have let me play with you. It's all wrong now."
"Christ, Dru! I'm not one of your fucking dolls!" He tried to get up, but Drusilla kicked him to the asphalt again.
"Your precious turned Angelus against us. And now she's turning you. Why our family, Spike? Did you ask her? Daddy turned Mommy. Made her swollen and spiteful. I'm next, aren't I? What's she going to do to me, Spike? What's she going to do to your princess?"
"Dru. Pet. She won't do anything to you, I promise," Spike said, mustering all the sincerity he could.
"You lie, Spike. Bad dog." Suddenly, a wicked smile played across her lips, and she clapped her hands girlishly. "I'll give her a present, like Angelus. A present so she can't love me."
Spike looked up at her, dumbfounded. Then he started to laugh. Hard. He laughed until he felt the stitches in his side start to pull loose.
"God, Dru! You're fucking crazy!" he said, still chuckling. It was then that he saw the poniard in her hand, gleaming in the moonlight. And an echo of an old memory surfaced of staking a minion for laughing at Dru during one of her 'episodes.'
"Never. Fucking. Laugh. At. Her," he had said. Then dust.
Shit, Spike thought. Why didn't I remember that before?
"Tara?" Willow tried to get her bearings, but the darkness permeated everything. She could feel the heat of T'Keti's rage pounding against the barrier she had imposed, locking him out of the deepest recesses of Tara's mind. But the umbilical of power flowing through Willow, her pipeline to Osiris, had started to fade. She could feel it, slowly bleeding out. And when it was gone, T'Keti would have no problem reaching Tara again. And her.
Willow pushed that thought away. Think positive. Find Tara.
She was in an old house, Willow knew that much. The air was hot and thick with humidity. The old wood floors creaked and groaned as she moved from room to room, searching. The bright pale light from the windows seemed to only add to the thick darkness. Finding no one on the lower level, she decided to search upstairs. She touched the banister of the staircase and found it covered in a dark, sticky oil. Touching the wall, she felt it there too, and she realized the whole house was coated with the oily substance.
Just then, Willow heard something, a faint scratching sound. She ran upstairs, but the sound stopped. A search of the bedrooms found only immaculately made beds and more stagnant air.
The scratching started again. She could hear it coming from behind the door at the end of the dark hallway. The bathroom. She hadn't checked the bathroom.
"Tara?" She pushed against the door and the hinges groaned in protest. The sight she saw made her convulse in horror. Tara was in the corner of the bathroom, sitting naked. Bright red blood flowed between her thighs onto the pale, white bathroom tile. A doll was in her hand, its face pressed to the floor. The scratching noise came from Tara running the doll's hardened eyes over the tile. Tara's head drooped against the bathroom wall, not looking at her, not seeing her.
"Tara. Oh Goddess...no...stop. Tara..." Willow went to her, placing a hand on the doll, halting the half-circle motion of Tara's arm.
"It's her fault, you know," said a voice from the doorway, startling Willow. Tara didn't move. Willow recognized the figure as Tara's brother.
"Daddy said it was her fault. She bewitched me is all."
"Bewitched?" Willow echoed, confused.
"She has her ways. Even under them heavy clothes, you can smell her witchery."
Willow looked at him in shock and anger. "Get out of here!" she shouted.
He shrugged and grinned at her. "You're like her, ain'tcha? Won't bewitch many with that red hair of yours." With that he laughed and disappeared into the hall. Willow turned her attention back to Tara.
"Tara, baby, please! We don't have much time. We have to get out of here," Willow pleaded. She felt the power slipping from her. Osiris had had enough, she knew. And suddenly, the tether was gone--Osiris had abandoned her.
Just then, the whole house began to shake. The bathroom mirror swung open, and bottles and ointment came crashing down into the sink and onto the floor. A deafening rumble filled the house.
"Tara please!" Willow cried, and the shaking stopped. An eerie silence prevaded, only to be broken by the slam of a screen door from downstairs. Tara bolted upright, her eyes wide with panic.
"TARA!" came a booming voice up the stairs. "Where are you, girl!"
"He's back," Tara whispered.
"Who?" Willow asked.
Continued in Road Tripp'n Part Seven