Rating PG: seems too blue to be G
Disclaimers: Joss and his minions suck for this outcome, but alas, the 'verse is still theirs. Will add the "all hail Joss" back if he manages to fix this mess.
I hate him. Always have. That's what Slayers are supposed to do. We. Hate. Vampires. We kill them, drive stakes in their dead, unbeating hearts. I've done it a hundred, maybe a thousand times, watching as they explode in a cloud of dust.
Cinder and ash that gets in your hair, in your clothes. It's stale like spent dirt when it spreads across your tongue. Nauseating and vile. No matter how much I scrub, I can never get their sooty remnants off my skin. They're everywhere, hollow corpses with nothing inside. Long dead. No souls. Their dust seeps into every one of my pores. I want them out.
And Spike's no different. He's one of them. Another empty shell spreading its filth to everything it touches. Can't love, can't feel, can't care.
Then why does he make me feel so alive when I'm with him? It's a trick. It's gotta be a trick. Just like the chip. There's nothing wrong with me. Tara said so. He's lying to me. Again. The chip, the eggs, all a tangle of his ever-spreading lies. Definitely two reasons why I don't trust him. I'll never trust him.
Except when I'm in his arms. But that's different. I feel safe. I feel loved. I just feel...
It can't be love. Anything but love. Another trick.
The only thing better than killing a Slayer is...
I can't believe I let him in. I'm just another conquest. I have to be. He's had his one good day, and now I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop, the oblivion, the third notch in his belt. Some days I wait for it. I pray for it, the sharp stab of fangs against flesh, then the blissful void of nothingness.
But it never comes. Damn him.
Instead he holds me close, nuzzles my neck, whispers in my ear like a lover. Vampires can't love. I can't love.
I've forgotten how.
I want to be numb. I don't want to feel. I'm not ready to give up my empty shell and walk into the light. So I sever ties to my one lifeline, my only link to the world around me.
It's over, I tell him. Goodbye evil, unclean beast. Get out of my life, out of my work, out of my town. I've said that so many times, I could scream. But this time I mean it. I want that thing, that vampire and its sooty insides far away from me, its ashen fingerprints off my body, off my soul. He - it- is beneath me.
But as I say those words. I don't see a monster before me. Monsters don't crumble at words. Men do.
And this one is named William.
My words stab him deeper than any stake ever could. I can see it in his eyes. He does have a heart, and I've just broken it. Vampires do feel. They know how to grieve, for a hundred and forty-seven days if need be. They feel the sting of rejection. They hurt.
What have I done?
He's not the monster. I am. I never asked for his love, never begged for his loyalty. It wasn't a trick. It was his gift, and I used it. Exploited it. I stomped all over it, tried to destroy it with my fists, beat it until no one could recognize it. Mangle it like I have his face and body so many times.
Who's the soulless, uncaring one now?
I turn and walk out of his crypt to face the sun. But it feels cold and unforgiving. Any warmth I'd felt remains inside those stone walls. With him.
My Spike, my William, I'm sorry. God, I'm so sorry. I don't know how to fix it. I want to feel alive again. I want you, every part of you - your heart, your mind, your love. But until I figure out what's wrong with me, I don't deserve it.
I'm beneath you.
But I need you. I want to love you. But I can't. I'm scared. I'm lost and need to find my way home. Don't give up on me. Please, don't do that. I'm counting on you to show me the way. I need your help. I need your forgiveness. I need you, Spike.
Please forgive me.