Sequel to Shepherd; part of The Voicesverse
Rating: NC 17 (just to be safe)
Summary: I think we all know what this is, don't we?
Spoilers: Post-Shepherd, a part of my Season 7 AU.
Distribution: Just talk to me, I'm easy.
Disclaimers: All Joss, all ME, all the time...
Feedback: You beta, you beta, you bet! firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you, I think, to the Gutter posse, headed by Kly and Chris (in a dead tie, at that), and bolstered mightily by the 'stir the pot' queen, Kelly.
This is totally unbeta'd. Which is what happens when you fall asleep on a smut piece. It rolls out at 2 a.m. ready to be posted, before you lose your nerve.
Colleen, I know how you love these, so this is for you.
Buffy could almost see him switching gears. Going from surprised to appraising, as if just seeing her as a woman again for the first time since he'd arrived.
She never ceased to be mesmerized at the way his emotions traveled across his face. No wonder he'd had stayed in trouble at kitten poker - always owing exorbitant amounts of tabbies and Siamese, debts that she supposed had been written off when he returned from Africa with a soul. There was nothing about his face that was static. She watched, fascinated, as his body language changed, as he leaned back in his chair and placed one ankle on the opposite knee.
And his eyes. They'd gone from wide-eyed, clear blue shock to an almost grayish appraisal to deep, still navy blue, a change she always found intimate and thrilling. She shifted in her seat, a little intimidated by the starkness of his gaze, and looked around. They were the only two diners left in the room. His new pea coat lay across an empty chair.
Somehow the pea coat just wasn't the same as the leather duster.
Of course, neither was he, she admitted, taking the time to do some objective appraisal of her own. The new sweater suited him, almost as well as nothing at all did. And it didn't wear him, as bulky as it was. Nevertheless the look of him was so fresh, so un-Spikelike, that she almost felt like she'd propositioned a half-familiar stranger. She'd felt that way a lot in the months since he'd returned from his journey to win a soul.
The vampire realized it long before the slayer, who was wrapped up in her own thoughts, did. The rate of her breathing had increased slightly and grown shallower. And although the expression on her face was secretive, he could see a change in her coloring, as her heart pumped the blood through her a little faster.
When in bleedin' hell had this 'business' dinner tableau transformed itself into a seduction scene?
The small votive was guttering, its low fits, spits and starts providing a counter point to the sharp clinks of pots and pans from deep in the hotel kitchen. His eyes traveled to a pale red spot of wine, spilled on the pristine tablecloth. Absently, his eye moved across until it reached the edge of the expanse of white to the black dress of the beautiful woman sitting across from him. Entranced, he followed the lines of her dress to her neck and finally to dark, sea-like eyes that almost melted into the dimly lit room.
Hiding from him behind those hooded eyes, he thought. There wasn't a place on earth she could hide. Her only sanctuary from him had been the grave.
Her arms looked softer, all browned by the sun, the sharp cuts of the muscle smoothed by bronze color. When she lost herself in him, every muscle in that body flexed around him, almost to the point of causing him pain.
The emotional pain was worse.
He could look at her forever, always see something new, and almost be content not to even touch her.
As if she'd read his mind, she slowly sat up and leaned forward, elbows on the table, fists under her jaw. The movement was so slow, so deliberate, that he could almost hear the individual commands her brain sent to her body.
He sat very, very still, just waiting.
"I said," she began with the merest edge of impatient desire in her voice, "that I 'think' I can be persuaded.
A slow grin spread across his face, sharpening his features into something faintly predatory.
"Four months is long time," he agreed slowly. "May have forgot how."
"Isn't it like riding a bicycle?" she asked archly.
"Dunno," he said, chuckling low in his throat. "I prefer my cycles with engines."
A pout inched her lower lip forward. He wanted to lean across the table and catch it between his teeth, tugging her toward him until he could fasten his mouth on hers.
He realized at that moment that he was already very, very hard, and that his new pants were a lot more revealing than the simple black denim had been. Finding himself grinning inanely, he made his next proposition.
"Would you like to see my laptop?"
Her eyes widened in surprise, and he smelled the rush of her arousal. In answer, he grew even tauter. Bloody hell! Could he even walk to his room?
Her surprise had shifted to sly amusement. "Your... laptop?"
"Yeah," he said in a normal tone of voice, sitting up briskly and looking at the table, the walls, anywhere but at her. "It's... uh, in my room."
"Really?" She was enjoying his discomfort, the beautiful bitch. Probably knew exactly what he was going through. "You don't... carry it with you?" she asked innocently.
He tried to keep his tone even, matching hers. "Well, I can," he said, "but it's a bit big." He grinned wickedly. When had they ever done this? If this was what a flirting Buffy looked and sounded like, he suspected he'd need many cold showers in Colorado, until he could get back to Sunnydale. He vowed to make sure that the two months was just that: not a day longer than two months.
"Oh..." she said slowly, raising both of her perfect eyebrows. "Can I see it? Your laptop, I mean."
The Sunnydale Inn had an elevator to its second and only other hotel floor. The slayer wouldn't know that, but he did. But he suspected that the wait and subsequent ride would give him far too much time to fantasize. Silently, he pushed her up the stairs. She looked a bit dazed from their swift dining room departure. He understood perfectly: he wasn't sure how they'd gotten out of there either.
At the landing, she dug her heels in and pushed her back against the wall, grabbing him by the neck of his sweater. Her hair was long again, streaked with the sun. Colorado could never suit her the way California did, he thought idly. He put a hand on the wall to the right of her head and leaned in to breathe her scent.
She smiled mischievously and cupped a hand brazenly on his crotch, squeezing lightly. "I thought you said your laptop was in your room," she whispered conspiratorially.
All thought went out of his mind, as her name came out of his mouth in a soft, low moan.
Her hand dropped to her side as her eyes dropped below his beltline.
"Nice pants," she observed in a normal tone.
If he'd ever in his life wanted to kill this slayer, it was at that moment, as she ducked under his arm and came up behind him.
"Yeah?" he breathed, not trusting himself to say more or even move.
With a sparkle in her eye and a knowing smirk on her lips, she cut her eyes up at him. He could hear it in her voice. "Do they have buttons?" Her left hand lightly brushed his hip on the way to the front of his pants.
Suddenly, he had her wrist locked in his hand and slowly spun her to face him, pulling her close.
"I could dance with you all night," he whispered into her hair.
She smiled as she pressed himself against him. "Night's getting shorter all the time," she observed in a husky whisper.
Another moment of suspended time and his hand slammed into his pocket, snagging the room key. Four steps and they were in a corridor with rows of doors. Eight steps and he had pushed the card into a lock. They slowly looked at each other as the little light shone, all green and glowy.
Her eyes narrowed as his mouth opened. "Don't say it," she warned.
He shut his mouth with a snap and pushed open the door.
"She spent the night with Janice," she said, unable to stop herself.
"Thought we weren't mentionin' it," he said dryly, looking around the room for his baggage. He hoped they were in the right room, he thought stupidly, as his eyes lit belatedly on the two bags.
She bit her lip. "It was just the lock..."
He nodded. "Green and glowy." He looked at the card in his hand and threw it on the dresser. "Key," he explained unnecessarily.
As he ran a hand through his hair, Buffy looked down at the floor.
"Bollocks!" he exploded. "Now I can't get the look of her out of my mind! Is this what it's like tryin' to have a quiet moment when you have kids? Cause if it is, I'm bloody well glad I'm a vampire!"
Buffy looked up, beginning to be amused by the rant. Finally, one corner of her mouth twitched as she giggled. Then, twisting around, she crossed the floor and made a flying tackle, carrying them both to the bed in a fit of laughter.
The bulky brown sweater framed his face and made his eyes look even bluer.
"Hey!" he said indignantly. "I mean it!"
"You mean you're in bed with me and thinking about my sister?" she teased.
"'On' bed," he corrected her, trying to sit up. "You bints are all alike, thinking my brain is located somewhere below my waist."
She slowly put a palm on his chest and firmly pushed him down. "Now about the buttons..."
"No buttons. Just..."
The sound of a zipper cut through the breathy stillness.
"Now where's your laptop?" she asked innocently.
In a flash, Buffy found herself on her back, Spike's rapidly recovering erection against her thigh. A low satisfied sound passed directly from her throat to the air. Her body almost vibrated with it.
"Oh. There it is," she said hoarsely.
He felt her nod more than he saw it.
"Well, in my day," he began in a caressing tone, "there was exquisite torture in just getting a woman out of her clothes," he said, as the tips of his fingers traced the scooped neckline of her dress. "Lots of buttons and layers on layers. Hardly seems fitting that there's nothin' between us except that thin slip of a dress," he said thoughtfully.
"And your pants," she pointed out.
"There's that," he admitted, raising up slightly to look down. "My *nice* pants," he said with a grin.
"Size 28," she quipped.
"Hard to find," he agreed.
She snaked an arm around his neck and buried her fingers in his hair, pulling his face toward hers. "If you don't want your 'nice' pants in two long strips," she said dangerously, "you'd better lose them. Soon."
"Make me," he said with a smirk on his lips.
Her hand captured his belt and began tugging. In a moment the other clever hand joined it in trying to unfasten the buckle. She was so intent on her work that a little wrinkle formed between her eyes.
Spike kissed her.
In the months that they had engaged in their secret affair, every encounter had been characterized by pain, like the abrading of two bleeding wounds. His anger at loving her, her anger at wanting him, had made the sex more of a sadistic punishment than pleasure, try as hard as he might to change it. It had been a painful, excruciating journey into the dark, which had abruptly ended one night in her bathroom. And had sent him on another journey.
When he returned from Africa, his darkness had been slow to heal. Where his hurt was merely scabbed over, he found her whole again. Every bit of contact with her had made him begin bleeding again. And the fact that she had once again become a child of the light had only exacerbated his darkness. Best to stay away.
He'd avoided the pain of rubbing salt in his unhealed wound as much as he could, but there had been times that their need had outweighed his survival factor. And the last time they'd made love, right before Riley had come for Spike, had been better. *He* had been more at home in his skin and with himself than he had ever been.
His heartfelt wish to Anyanka had buggered that up.
As his mouth melted onto hers, he almost winced in anticipation of the sharp knife that would cut into his gut, which always came when his darkness met her light. Maybe not so deep this time, maybe...
Nothing. In wonder, he realized that there was nothing stabbing, nothing chafing, irritating, or reopening that old wound. He was with her this time, sinking deep into her softness with an overwhelming feeling of finally being home.
She shifted her leg in impatience, calling him back with the immediacy of her desire. He backed out of the kiss slowly, fixing her with his eyes as he pushed at the shoulders of her dress.
"Little slip's like armor now, innit?" he said hoarsely, trying to recover from that moment of falling into her like he would into a feather bed.
There was a soft clink of his belt as she pushed him away, worrying at the hem of her dress as she tried to work it up. He pushed her down, and slid his hand up her leg until he met the thin fabric.
"Hips up," he directed. Soon her dress was around her stomach.
Dark eyes stared into his, as his hand ran lightly across her belly. She continued to fight the dress.
"Shhh," he soothed in a whisper. "No hurry, pet. Got all night to get the bloody thing off. Just take it in stages," he explained as he slipped a hand between her legs and pressed against her wet panties. His eyes glinted in amusement as she gasped. "Stage one," he said, maneuvering under the wisp of fabric. "And no rushin'," he scolded as he slipped two fingers inside her, reveling in her heat. She bucked lightly.
As he covered her mouth with his, she breathed a pair of words into him. He smiled against her lips as he recognized them.
Continued in Part 2