Summary: The past may be dead but certainly isn't buried.
Pairings / Warnings: This is Spike/Buffy but it follows the original canon -- revisionist canon just takes half the fun out of S/B. If the concept of slash offends you, don't read.
Timeline: Season 6, between "Wrecked" and "Entropy". Before the attempted rape, before the trip to Africa and before the soul.
Feedback: First fic. I'll take anything.
Disclaimer: Not mine. Blame Joss -- he's the one who puts these ideas in my head.
Thanks: I owe all to Lara Dean-Brierley. She's the one who inspired this fic, beta read it and assured me it was good enough to post. I could never have made it without her.
Smartass responses and vicious punches. Anger and violence. Desire flaring suddenly and hurling them both in a downwards spiral of urgent kisses, bites and caresses until they're lying broken on the bed or on the floor, almost unable to move. It's always like that.
There's also love, he tells himself, even if she denies it. He's sure there's love.
He sometimes doubts it, though.
What he fears the most is that what brings them together is that other thing they share but don't acknowledge.
Oh, he knows she thinks about it too. He feels it at times, sees it in her eyes buried beneath the intensity of their emotions for each other -- deep, deep beneath, in a place where they don't have to look upon.
The same memory. The same pain ("Why did you leave me?") and the same longing. Hidden away but clinging to them nonetheless - He is there.
Master, maker, Sire.
Partner, best-beloved, nemesis.
* * *
They don't talk about it, of course. They pretend He doesn't exist. She has mentioned Him once since the whole thing began ("*A* vampire made me hot! One. But he's gone. You're just convenient!"). He remembers the way pain coursed through his body. It must have shown on his face too because she never uttered another word about it.
If she didn't know before, she knew then, he figures. He suspects she guesses most of the story. Not like she's some sweet innocent virgin anymore and, after all, the Demon has come for her too.
Her own story is no secret to anyone. In the end He left, despite the soul. ("Big surprise there!")
So they don't talk about it.
When, amidst kissing her soft neck, he stops and sniffs at His mark (the scent lingers still after all this time) before licking it delicately, she chooses to ignore it. And when they're making love and she caresses his cool chest with her eyes closed and a dreamy look on her face, he pretends not to know she's reliving that one night.
Little games they keep on playing.
* * *
"There's no one left for you but me."
It's true, she'll admit that much. He's there whenever she needs him, reliable backup every time it truly mattered. Her only tie to reality now. How ironic!
She keeps on playing all the roles she's supposed to -- friend, head of the family, Chosen One. But hers is a mockery of a life. She moves like a puppet controlled by other people's expectations of how she should behave.
Except when she's with him. Then the strings are cut loose and, for a few precious hours, she's herself again.
So what if what they share feels more like misery than happiness? Misery loves company, didn't you know?
At least there's honesty. He is surprisingly open and forthcoming for a demon. Easy to hurt with words and fists. And neither of them holds back, in spite of the obvious vulnerability.
Was he always like this?, she wonders. Or is it His fault? She hopes not, doesn't want to think of him as His creation. Doesn't want to feel obliged to be thankful, like he's some sort of weird parting gift.
* * *
There are times when his blindingly white hair and his ocean blue eyes seem to be of the wrong color.
She hates those moments, hates to be reminded of Him. Flinches when he says "I love you" with such tenderness it could break her heart (too much like the way He said it). She needs this to be something else.
So she defends herself with sarcasm, kicks and feigned indifference -- a shield he cannot break.
Domination and submission - those are the rules of the game. Bleed and fuck him and let him do it to you in return.
She knows there's more to it. She's given definition and contour by her name on his lips and his body pressed against hers. More than just the sex (mind-blowing though it may be) she keeps coming back for that sense of focus.
He's got her caught.
* * *
To even things up she feels the urge to mark her possession of his body with cuts and bruises. "*Mine* and no one else's!" She was furious when she found the faded scars on his neck. He couldn't walk for two days after the beating he took that night.
Ssshh, don't tell. She's becoming more like *them* with every passing day.
* * *
She'll have to stop this soon, she's aware of that. She won't walk down the path of loving a vampire again -- you end up losing your soul even if you don't get turned.
"Tomorrow," she promises. Every night, outside the door of his crypt she makes the same promise -- "I won't come tomorrow."
Until then... well, no point in turning back now that she's here, is there? Might as well enter for another round.
She steps forward and pushes the door open with determined gestures.
The game is on.