PAIRING: Spike/Buffy, Giles/ Drusilla
RATING: NC-17, folks.
SPOILERS: Season 6 through "Wrecked".
DISCLAIMER: All hail Joss Whedon, UPN, the WB, FOX, Mutant Enemy and 20th Century Fox Film Corporation. GO team! Theirs, not mine.
DEDICATION: To each and every one of you who have followed the series and kept the faith. Thereís a happy ending in store, I promise.
AUTHOR"S NOTE: Spike quotes from ĎShe Walks in Beautyí by Lord Byron.
DISTRIBUTION: Please ask my permission first, just so I know where itís headed. All of my stories may be found at http://www.willingslave.com
FEEDBACK: I ainít too proud to beg. Please, for the love of all that is holy, and if you really do want to know how this freaking epic ends, send mail to email@example.com
Chapter Fourteen: Domino
I think it's time for a change
You may get disgusted
And think I'm strange
In that case I'll go underground
Get some heavy rest
Never have to worry
About what is worst and what is best
- "Domino", Van Morrison
Willow blinked. "Am I supposed to have heard of you or something?" She looked at Aureliusí smiling face and her temper flared even higher.
Aurelius laughed. "You have no idea how refreshing you are. So innocent, so naÔve." The patronizing tone made her really, really want to hurt him. The conceit he demonstrated proved that it had been way too long since heíd been truly on his guard. He was smug, secure in his reputation and big bad vampire mage status. Willow decided to use that to her advantage. She sent a brightly pulsing ball of light spinning past his head, and her hunch was confirmed when he turned to watch it pass.
"Youíre not a stellar judge of character," she observed as she pulled out one of the chopsticks that held her hair into a loose chignon. "I lost my innocence a long time ago."
"Youíre a child. Youíre no match for me," he scoffed as he turned his head to the side to watch the glowing orb zip past again.
"I have backpacks smarter than you," she said calmly, as she shoved the wooden stick into his chest with a fierce jab. He looked at her, shocked, as he teetered and fell to his knees.
"Buffy?" Spike asked, as he strode to the bed and placed his hand on his loverís cheek. She turned her face to him, her eyes blank. Her nude body was pale as chalk, and the chains that held her down clanked as she shifted.
"Iím hungry," she said softly.
"I know you are, love." He bent over her to break the shackle at her wrist. Abruptly, she sank her sharp fangs into the flesh of his neck.
He cried out at the sensation. It had been years since he had been bitten by another vampire; no one had dared to dominate him that way since his fledgling days with Angelus. Buffy sucked greedily at his blood for several seconds, and then suddenly he flew across the room, his head slamming into the wall. Spikeís eyes fluttered shut as he lost consciousness.
Drusillaís headless body stood at the foot of the bed. "You need living blood, my sweet," said a distant voice. "Drinking from Spike will make you all rumbly in your tummy." Buffy looked over at Spikeís prone form, then made a face and wiped her mouth with the back of her hand.
The vampiress walked across the room and retrieved her severed head. "Itís a good thing dear Aurelius gave me my precious magick ring," said Dru. "Or Iíd be very angry at my Spike." She murmured an incantation and the shackles unlocked, freeing the Slayer. "Time to dine, my lovely girl." She took Buffyís hand and they walked together into the corridor. "And when you are done, I will make you sing, sing with pain."
Tara lay on her stomach in the middle of the floor, surrounded by piles of books. Cordelia sat on the couch, reading "Pat the Bunny" to Connor. "Judy can pat the bunny," Cordelia read animatedly to the baby. "Now you pat the bunny." The infant stretched out his hand and touched the soft fur on the page. Cordy turned to Tara excitedly. "Did you see that? Heís brilliant."
Tara nodded distractedly. "Heís amazing, Cordy. Smartest baby ever, no contest."
Connor stuffed the corner of the book in his mouth and chewed it enthusiastically. "No no, muffin," chastised Cordy. "Donít eat the nice book." She took away the book and handed him a teething ring. He squealed in pleasure, flashing the two tiny white buds that were poking out of his gums.
"Iíve go it!" said Tara excitedly, pointing at a passage in her heavy tome.
"What?" asked Cordelia.
"I know how to undo what happened to Buffy," said Tara. "Itís right here in the prophecy of Reynault. "The Slayer shall become the fruit of the tree of Aurelius," she read. "Both the dark and the light child shall sacrifice all to undo this reckoning. When the pure has become dark, the weak become monstrous, and the wise man become a fool, the root of the tree shall be destroyed and the unholy children will be restored to human life."
"What does that mean?" asked Cordelia. "Sounds like your standard issue prophetic gobbledygook to me."
"Itís actually pretty simple, at least in theory. If we kill the root of the line of Aurelius, then all the vampires of his line will become human again," explained Tara. "We just need to find the very sire, the one who is their ultimate ancestor, and take him out, and we can save Angel, Spike and Buffy. We can make them all human again."
Cordelia thought of Angel being human again. No more blood. Skip shanshu, thanks. Sex without Mr. Leather Pants making a command performance. No more brooding, hopefully. "We have to try," she said decisively. "Iím totally onboard for this. How do we find the prime root guy?" she asked, grabbing the book from Taraís hands.
"With magick," said Tara, as she shut her eyes and began to glow.
Angel and Giles walked up the stairs to the mansion on Crawford Street. The front door stood open, the inside empty and quiet. They stepped over the threshold, Giles with a crossbow held at the ready, Angel brandishing a sword. Their footsteps echoed on the cool marble as the sound of bubbling laughter reached their ears, quickly followed by a sharp scream.
"Iíll take the laughing, you take the screaming," said Giles as he dashed up the stairs to the upper level.
"Gee, thanks," muttered Angel, as he ran out into the garden.
Willow was stabbing a vampire in the chest repeatedly with a long, thin branch. "Poof, damn it," she yelled in exasperation. "I poke you with wood, you go poof. Thatís how it works. Itís a universal invariant."
Angel took a look at the skewered vamp and his eyebrows rose. "Actually, itís not. I donít think the master went poof either," he commented. "And youíve got a very, very old vampire there. Aurelius is thousands of years older than old Heinrich." He looked at the unmoving figure. "Well, he was."
"So itís an age thing?" said Willow, as she turned to face him. "The older the vampire, the less poof?"
"Could be," he said. "They get harder to kill the older they are, so maybe there is some kind of correlation."
Willow looked at the corpse at her feet. "I like the comfort of the dead vamp disappearing into a cloud of smoke." She smiled at Angel. "I like closure."
"Heís dead, and weíve got other problems," said Angel. "We need to find Buffy."
"Thatís why Iím here," said Willow. "Iím here to save her."
"You canít save her, Willow," he said earnestly. "We have to do the right thing, do what she would have wanted us to do."
She looked at him askance. "And that means that you want to kill her?"
He flinched. "Sheís dead already, Willow. Giles said-"
"I donít give a fuck what Giles said," she said angrily. "Iím not letting anyone hurt Buffy. Sheís not dead; sheís a vampire now. Sheís just- exploring a different lifestyle choice. We all have to learn to accept it."
"Iím sorry, Willow," said Angel. "But Giles and I are committed to doing what Buffy would have wanted. Dawn and Joyce would never choose this path for Buffy, and we have to respect that, too. Itís for the best, Willow."
She looked at him for a long moment. "Iíve never really considered you the voice of reason. I donít buy it now." Her jaw set as she let fly with two bolts of energy from her hands. His face registered surprise as the green lightning slammed into his chest.
The basement was an abattoir, the stench of death thick in the air. Two bodies hung from chains on the wall, their limpness indicating no signs of life. Buffy sat on a filthy mattress on the floor. She was dressed in a flowing blue gown, the sleeves hanging inches beyond the ends of her fingers. Her fangs were buried in the neck of a slim, blonde girl, and her throat lifted and fell furiously as she avidly sucked the blood from her victim. Drusilla looked on approvingly as she ran her hand across her throat. A large opal ring came into contact with the cut that circled her neck. The ragged edges of the wound glowed and fused together into flawless skin at the touch of the stone.
Giles kicked the door open and sent a wooden stake flying from his crossbow, and it landed with a meaty thud between Buffyís shoulder blades. She hissed and turned around, dropping the drained corpse. "Christ," he said explosively, confronted with a sight even more terrifying then her broken body had been after the fight with Glory.
"I remember you," said Dru wonderingly. "Angelus smashed your fingers once." She tilted her head and regarded him, a cruel smile on her lips.
Giles held a stake in his hand as Buffy advanced on him; her eyes fixed on his neck as she angrily pulled the wood from her back. "Buffy," he whispered, his eyes locked on her face. "Thereís nothing left of you in there." The Watcherís face set as the Slayer rushed at him in a blur of movement. He closed his eyes at the impact and gasped hard as the wind was knocked out of him. He waited for another onslaught, but all was still.
He opened his eyes, and saw Drusilla holding back the newly turned vampire. "You smell good," the dark haired girl said. "I remember how rich your mouth tasted, how warm. You loved me so sweetly, when you thought I was your gypsy girl."
Her eyes bored into his, clouding his mind, making her the woman he still missed, the love that had never died in his heart. "Jenny," he said wonderingly, his eyes filling with tears.
"You have such lovely soft lips," she purred to Giles. A look of annoyance crossed her face and she turned to Buffy. "Weíll play later. Sleep now," she commanded, and the Slayer fell to the floor in a heap. She smiled at the Watcher as she stepped up to him; her small hands slid down the front of his shirt, her tongue flickering over her lips. "Did you miss me?" she asked. "Do you ever dream about me?"
He leaned forward and twined his hands in her hair as they kissed voraciously, hungrily. His large hand cupped the swell of her breast, and she slashed her nails through the thin silk of his shirt. He gasped in pleasure. "Bed," he said huskily. "I want to take you to bed."
She took his hand and led him out of the room. "We shall have such fun, Rupert," she said seductively. "Naughty games, where we both shall win."
Taraís eyes opened wide. "Crawford Street," she said in a weak voice.
"Congratulations, you located the wrong vampire. Thatís Angel," Cordelia said, in an exasperated tone. "Youíre supposed to find Aurelius." Connor slept peacefully on her shoulder, his rosebud mouth blowing tiny spit bubbles.
Tara turned to the nanny. "You have to go to Angel," she said seriously. "Youíre the only one who can save him."
Cordelia turned and looked at the slight, English girl in disbelief. "How is she going to take out a who knows how freaking many year old vampire?"
Nanny Travers looked at her seriously, and then let her true self be revealed. The blue scales that covered her draconian form glowed in the dim light, her eyes large amber orbs, intelligent and wise.
Tara quickly grabbed the baby from Cordeliaís arms as she sank to the floor in a faint.
Spike opened his eyes. He was in bed in his crypt, bright light from the windows washing over him. He turned onto his side and saw Buffy. She was sleeping soundly, her mouth smiling. He leaned over and kissed her on the eyelids.
"I love you," she declared with a yawn.
"As I love you," he replied. He pulled her mouth to his and kissed her slowly. She moved her mouth to his chest, kissing and sucking his nipples.
"I feel like thereís something weíre forgetting," he said as his hands stroked the soft skin of her back.
"It canít be important," she murmured. "Nothing can be more important than this." Her tongue circled the rim of his navel, and he pushed his hips into the soft skin of her belly.
"I want you now," he said, pressing gentle kisses into the skin of her neck.
She plunged down on his erection, her tight walls holding him firmly as she began to move up and down. They locked eyes as they made love, their bodies moving in a familiar rhythm. She bent down to kiss him, and he sighed as her lips ran gently over his. "Spike," she whispered.
He ran his hands down her spine to cup her ass, moving her faster. "Come for me," he begged. "Now-" He exploded within her, shaking as he was jolted by a wave of pleasure.
She cried out, her body tensing as she arched backward in orgasm. As she came down and began to calm, she leaned forward, and Spike could see the pronounced ridges on her face, the shining white of her fangs.
He closed his eyes and crashed hard into reality. He was lying on the stone floor of the mansion, his head pounding. His right eye was stuck closed, and he wiped his thumb along it, feeling the tacky sensation of his own blood. He had to find Buffy and get her out of here. He finally found her in the basement, a freshly drained body lying on the floor in front of her. The young manís dead eyes stared blankly at the ceiling.
Buffy turned to look at him. "Spike," she said slowly.
He kneeled down next to her. "Iím here, love," he told her quietly. "We have to get going. This place isnít my idea of a good time."
"I killed people," she said, her voice odd and broken. "I couldnít help it."
"I know," he reassured her. "Weíll sort it all out. Just come with me, sweetheart. It will all work out in the end."
"Can you take me home?" she asked, confused. "Iím dead, now. Can I still go home?"
He looked at her seriously. "Iím sorry, love, but no, you canít go home. Letís go to the crypt," he said softly.
"Theyíll try to hunt me," she said, staring at the corpse. "And I donít know if I want them to- stake me, or not. Iím dead, so I shouldnít be afraid of dying. But Iíve died too many times now, and it keeps getting worse, like a bad dream that I keep sinking into deeper and deeper."
He wished that he could raise Drusilla and kill her, over and over again, just to make her suffer for all the pain that sheíd caused the fragile woman that he loved. "If you want to be free of eternal life, weíll take a nice walk together in the sun come morning. If you want to live with me in my world, Iíll take you away from here, and weíll have a bloody good time, alright? But, for now, just stop thinking, pet. Let it all go."
He helped her up and covered her in his coat, holding her tight as they walked down the hall. "Do you still love me?" she asked, her voice wavering. "Iím not special. Iím not the Slayer, anymore. "
"Course I do," he said softly. "Iíll love you forever. No matter what." And anyone who tried to take her away would pay and pay. Slowly, and painfully.
Drusilla was no innocent. She had traveled the globe, lived for well over a century and had vampire, demon, and human lovers. But she had never experienced anything like this. Sex was pain, and blood, and violence. Whether giving pain, or receiving, didnít really matter; she enjoyed both. But this long, careful, exploration of her body, this delicate moving and stroking, was outside of her experience.
Without the pain, everything seemed so out of focus. It was like wandering in a watercolor fairyland, all the edges blurred and indistinct. Sheíd drunk something forbidden, and fallen to paradise, she thought. I want to live here forever, in this shining, secret world. She was Titania, and golden trails and lights and sparkles danced under her closed eyes. She twirled and pirouetted, the beautiful queen of this glorious kingdom. Dru sang free and loud, her voice full of all the glory and wonder of her realm .
Her Watcher bit down hard on her shoulder as he groaned loudly, and the enchanted world broke apart, collapsing in a falling shower of golden mist. Pleasure twisted and broke inside of Drusilla, and she cried out at the beloved mixture of pleasure and pain, as familiar and comfortable as the tang of blood, the white beauty of the full moon. Giles pulled her close, and her dark hair tumbled over the muscles of his chest. "I love you, " he said softly.
She smiled up at him. "What a funny thing to say. Love hurts, and rips and tears. That was all sweetness and silvery slithery."
He looked at her, his eyes warm and soft. "I feel so light with you, so unburdened. I wish this moment would never end."
"All good things come to an end," she said seriously. "Comets, flowers, puppies. And especially love. They all have to end."
He pressed a kiss to her forehead and began to doze. Drusilla watched him intently. She slid out of bed, taking down her doll from the bureau and smoothing out its petticoats. "I like him," she said seriously. "Heís a big strong man, but heís very gentle with me. He knows how to treat a princess. He took me to my fairy kingdom, and it was so lovely." Her brow furrowed, and she bent her head closer to her doll. "I know he smells good. But if I eat him, then we wonít be able to play any more. You know I donít like to stop until they are quiet and still." She listened to what her doll had to say, and smiled. "Thatís a very good idea, little miss."
Dru pulled a small silk wrapped package out of her valise and laid out a careful pattern of tarot cards over the floor. She looked down at the arc, and then at Giles, sleeping peacefully in the bed. "Itís in the cards," she whispered to him. "Itís fate, now, my handsome prince."
"I can do this," Cordelia told the sleeping child. "I am a strong, self sufficient woman. Iíve battled my fair share of scary creepy things in this town. Thereís nothing that I canít handle." She looked down, her eyes filling with tears. ĎIíll be back, I promise, Connor. Iím the only mommy that youíll ever have, I swear it."
"Angel would not want you to risk yourself in this way," Nanny Travers said anxiously. She looked at Cordelia seriously. "I still think that it would be best that you stay here at the house, where itís safe. I will fight the battle, and Tara can stay here to protect you and Connor."
The witch came in through the front door. "The spell works," she informed Cordelia. "Do you remember the incantation I taught you?" The other girl nodded, her brow furrowed.
"I really must insist," said the nanny firmly.
Cordelia put her hands on her hips and glared at the Englishwoman. "I was brought up to be a good wife and mother," Cordy pointed out. "And one thing that I had drummed into my head, is that you stand by your man, no matter what. Even if he loses all his money, or is a big geek nerd loser dork, or has a little blood drinking, sun avoidance problem. And Iíve got two men to be strong for now, two men who are worth everything to me." She picked up the heavy bag and slung it across her shoulders. "Iím ready to go fight for my happily ever after."
Anya slept next to Xander, her back resting against the metal rail of his hospital bed. He woke up from his sleep and turned his head, pressing a gentle kiss to her forehead.
He stared up at the ceiling and thought over the day heíd had. Awakening from a coma, being told that his parents and fiancťe had been ready to pull the plug on his life support. It had been a miracle that heíd been healed, his doctors had said.
He knew it wasnít a miracle. He knew it was Willow. He looked out of the window at the starry sky. Somewhere out there, his best friend had set her magick free. He shuddered and pulled the warm body of his lover close.
One thing heíd learned, being born and raised in Sunnydale. He knew that when funny things started happening it never turned out well. Heíd seen enough of magick to know that there was no such thing as a free ride. Consequences, Spike had yelled at him so long ago. Always.
He hoped that when the time came to pay, no one he loved would be handed the bill.
Buffy lay in bed in the crypt and shivered, even under the layers of sheets and blankets that she no longer really needed to keep warm. She had opened her arms and Spike had wound himself around her. The strength of his long limbs held her down, stilling her shaking body, and allowed her to finally sink into sleep. Spike rested his chin on the top of her head and kept vigil over her in the dark.
As dawn neared, she turned to him and opened her eyes. "For love I have claimed you. By blood I have bound you," she said to him, with a sweet smile.
"Return to me," he replied, as he finished the vow that had bound them to each other for eternity, the blood oath that had begun the path that had led them to this moment.
"Iíll always return to you," she said. "When Iím so lost that I donít even know who I am anymore, I can look at you and know. The woman I see in your eyes is who I really am, the best part of me. Nothing else matters." She pulled his mouth to hers in a long, searching kiss.
Spike felt her uncertainty and every touch of his hands and mouth was a reassurance, a promise that his love was, literally, eternal. As he rolled onto her and pulled off her gown, he whispered into her ear. "She walks in beauty like the night, of cloudless climes and starry skies. And all thatís best of dark and bright meet in her aspect, and her eyes." He parted her thighs and filled her with the core of himself, bestowing everything his body and heart had to offer. He held nothing back, revealing all, living their vow.
Tears trickled down her cheeks as she moved underneath him, her body craving to take him in and shelter him, to comfort and hold him, and keep him safe within her, forever.
Tara descended into the garden of the mansion, Cordelia close behind. Willow turned to see her lover appear at the foot of the staircase. "You shouldnít be here," Willow said. "Itís dangerous."
"I felt you use your magick," Tara said. "If you continue down that path of using and abusing, you know that I canít be by your side. And by your side is the only place I want to be."
Cordelia saw Angel lying on the ground, unconscious. She ran to him and cradled him in her arms, her face tight with worry. "Angel," she said softly. "You have to wake up."
"I have to help Buffy," Willow began.
"Spike will take care of Buffy," said Tara, "heíll protect her until the end. He loves her, the same way I love you. I need you to come home, and stay out of all of this. Thereís a big supernatural battle brewing. I need to protect Connor, and you can't be in a situation where using magick is the only option. We need to find Giles and get him out of here too. "
"But I can fix all of this," Willow said. "I can just turn back time, and make Buffy alive again-"
"No more magick, Willow," said Tara. "Weíve all lost so much because of the risks that you take. You and I lost our love, and Xander nearly lost his life. You need to step back from the abyss, and admit that some things are beyond your control. Today is the day you learn to let go."
"Just this one last time," Willow pleaded.
"No," Tara said gently. "No more. Itís over now. Itís not in your hands anymore. This is no longer something that you can fix."
Cordelia shook Angel's shoulders her voice becoming more and more frantic. "I need you," she cried. "I need you to help me fight Aurelius."
Willow turned and looked at the dark haired girl. "But Aurelius is dead, Cordy. I killed him." She gestured to the vampire that lay on the grass, a thin stick protruding from his chest.
As they turned to look at him, the eyes of the vampire mage slowly opened.
Continued in Chapter Fifteen: Revolution