The Watchers' Diaries: The Apocrypha
Entry 2 - Intentions
held the letter out of Spike's reach. "No joke. I need someone to
watch the shop for a couple of hours. Xander and I have a meeting with
the caterer. Buffy's working and I trust you with the cash register more
than I trust Willow with the merchandise. Besides, being here isn't good
for her recovery. So, since I'm letting you use this address for a mail
drop, I think you can do me the favor of watching the store this once.
a sigh, Spike relented, figuring the letter was more important than the
indignity of playing shopkeeper. "You can hang your coat on the rack,
and I've left instructions on how to write up sales and run credit cards,"
Anya said as she headed for the door. "Use your discretion if anyone
wants anything from upstairs; I think you have an idea what's dangerous."
paused on the threshold. "And, Spike, I know how much is in the register."
that, she was gone, leaving Spike alone in the shop. Grumbling, he hung
up his duster and returned to the counter where the letter lay waiting
for him. He should be glad she hadn't insisted he wear an apron or one
of those stupid tags Buffy had told him about -- "My name is Spike.
Ask me about our curses!"
opened the envelope and extracted a few sheets covered with Giles' impossibly
tiny writing. He'd been waiting weeks for the response, popping into the
Magic Box through the sewer entrance every few days, trying to pick the
times when it was most likely no one but Anya would be there. Which is
how he now found himself manning the shop during the mid-afternoon when
all good vampires should be asleep in their crypts. Ah, well, his sleep
cycle had been shot to hell months ago.
Spike, the letter began formally, giving Spike cause to smile. Habit
could be the only explanation for such a convivial greeting.
will confess to some surprise and even a bit of pleasure at receiving
your letter. Communication from Buffy and the others have been spotty
at best, so any news is welcome. I'm certain Anya is currently driving
you all mad with the wedding preparations. Well, perhaps not you since
I don't believe you're part of the wedding party, but given your proximity,
I seriously doubt you will escape unscathed.
I received my invitation, but I must confess to some trepidation as to
whom she might be planning to invite from her acquaintances. After a thousand
years of being a vengeance demon, I'm certain some of her friends are
There are moments I wonder if Xander truly understands what he's getting
into. Demon/human matches are never easy and very few of them ever work
out, though I have some hopes for this one since Anya has chosen to live
as a human.
the way, if she hasn't mentioned it, I'm certain Anya will include you
in the list of those whom she expects a gift from. She and Xander have
registered at Robinson's-May, so be forewarned.
frowned. The watcher was probably right, and a gift wouldn't be out of
line if he wanted to stay on Anya's good side. Not that he cared, personally,
but it could be important to Buffy.
bell over the door tinkled and three girls entered, busily whispering
to each other and giggling. They were about Dawn's age, he reckoned, and
immediately headed for the table not far from the counter where Anya had
arranged a display of candles. Keeping one eye on them to make certain
they didn't nick anything, Spike returned to his letter.
sorry to hear about Tara. There's a certain steadiness about her I had
hoped would be a good influence on Willow. However, even without her experiences
with Glory, the idea of having one's memories manipulated by someone you
care for is repugnant and I respect her decision. If you should see her,
please give her my warmest regards.
to Willow, it is precisely as I feared. When she performed the resurrection
spell, she was working with forces she truly didn't understand and it
has left its mark. Perhaps I am to blame for all of this. I should not
have allowed her to perform the ritual to restore Angel's soul to him;
she was not ready for such forces. Since then, she has been steadily increasing
in power with no true guidance.
I do not know this "Rack," I have an excellent idea of the type
of lowlife you are describing, having had my own experiences with that
element. I fear you are right in your assessment that she has not seen
the last of him -- or of Amy. If Willow's power is now truly out of control,
Rack will be drawn to it, and he may threaten to cut off her "friend"
as a way of compelling Amy to bring her back. And yes, I do know the story
behind her ratting, and there are a few items you should know as well.
burst of giggles, and Spike looked up to discover the girls were casting
surreptitious glances in his direction as they pawed through the set of
candles that were supposed to help one's love life. Unable to resist,
he flashed them a smile and they dissolved into more giggles before turning
away to chatter among each other.
mother was a powerful witch who managed to wreak a great deal of havoc
and pain with her pursuit of her youthful dreams. When we attempted to
break the transposition spell she had cast on Amy, she attempted to kill
Buffy, but only succeeded in destroying herself. Amy, despite her own
trauma, seems to have followed in her mother's footstep. You might recall
the love spell which had every woman in Sunnydale -- including Drusilla
-- pursuing Xander. Amy was responsible, and turned Buffy into a rat.
Later, she used the same spell on herself and was unable to reverse it.
Willow took care of her until, well, such time as she managed to uncover
the reversal spell. Watch for her; there will likely be more trouble.
must thank you for confirming what ritual Willow used to bring Buffy back.
Not surprisingly, the Council is highly interested in Buffy's return and
are busily involved in their own research. I used your information to
steer some of my friends in the right direction without mentioning the
source. I didn't think you would particularly mind if the Council didn't
know of your involvement. The spell is indeed a powerful one, with a heavy
cost to those who use it. I imagine Willow kept most of the details from
the others, though Tara should have had an inkling and Anya certainly
should have known better. Anya was probably also the source for the artifact
they used; not all of her suppliers are above board or human.
is no mistake that you and I were excluded from this plan. Dawn I can
understand; she had been through enough and it would be best not to get
her hopes up. But we would have tried to stop this insane plan and Willow
knew it. You know how powerful blood magic is; it is, after all, at the
very heart of a vampire's creation. Despite our differences, I do believe
you care enough for Buffy that you would not have risked the possibility
of her coming back wrong.
girls approached the counter and Spike reluctantly put the letter aside.
"These are supposed to help make a boy fall in love with you, right?"
the leader asked as she put the candle on the glass top.
quick sniff told him they'd grabbed the combination of vanilla, cinnamon
and amber, a scent designed to invoke passion. He considered telling the
girl what she wanted to hear, but looking at the long dark hair and eager
eyes, he decided she was a little too young for passion. "Not the
best. Try this."
moved from behind the counter and fetched another candle from the display.
This scent was lighter, purer, a blend of ylang-ylang and moss, suitable
to promote mild romantic and happy feelings. "If it's love you're
wanting to find, this should work much better. And this," he hefted
another candle, "will help reinforce it. Light it first and extinguish
did not mention that his second suggestion would provide an aura of protection
for any silly spell they might be considering. It'd be best to tell them
they were too young to be dabbling in such things, but he had enough experience
with Dawn to know exactly how well that would go over.
the sale rung up and the sound of giggling thankfully absent, Spike returned
to the letter. He was nearing the end and he hoped there would be no more
you write about Buffy concerns me in more ways than you can imagine. I
had hoped that my departure would help her see that she needed to take
more control and interest in her life; I fear I was wrong. Perhaps I should
have stayed, tried to talk more directly with her. Difficulty is, every
time I attempted it, she shied away, content to let things rest in my
hands. Even after that appalling incident with Dawn at Halloween, she
preferred to leave the discipline to me. I should let you know that I
heard Dawn complaining to you on the back porch later that night about
how mean I was to her. Hopefully your speech on why vampires are bad and
what boys really want took root better than mine.
to the other matter
I imagine it will not surprise you that I was
not particularly cheered by what I read. Firstly, Buffy's behavior is
quite out of character and may be the sign of another, more serious problem.
you were frank with me, so I will be frank with you. I would
be happier if you were far away from Sunnydale and from Buffy. I think
a relationship with you is the worst possible thing for her to be involved
in at this or any other time. That your chip does not appear to work on
her does nothing to ease my worries. Your behavior in the past regarding
Buffy has been reprehensible and somewhat unstable. Nor is that my only
concern. You are a vampire. She is the Slayer. I have never believed that
such a relationship is either feasible or desirable. And before you convince
yourself that this is simply because I do not care for you personally,
let me add that I had many of these same objections regarding Angel.
for all my objections, I have no power to stop whatever relationship the
two of you are engaged in at this point. As you so rightly pointed out,
the time has come for Buffy to stand on her own, make decisions and stand
by the consequences. That you wrote me about your concerns has eased my
fears slightly -- but only a little.
do make this promise: if you harm Buffy in anyway, if I hear you have
mistreated her or harmed her or Dawn, I will not appear in Sunnydale to
stake you, assuming Buffy does not do so herself. That would be far too
simple and too painless. But you will pay.
the research on the Protocols yields useful information, I will let you
know. Please, write again. Much as I dislike it, you are my only correspondent
and my only coherent source of news and I would like to remain abreast
of the latest developments. I will end now, as I would like to post this
before it rains and the clouds are gathering. Are you familiar with Bath?
My flat is near the Crescent and I am within easy distance of the old
folded the letter and slipped it into the pocket of his duster. Glancing
at the clock, he wondered how long before Anya returned and he could get
away. He needed to think and he desperately wanted a cigarette.
Continued in Entry 3 - Research