Summary: This is a bitter little fic. Nothing really happens. Buffy thinks about the men in her life and the reasons why she's with Spike.
Pairings: B/S. References to B/A and B/R.
Timeline: Season 6, between "Wrecked" and "Entropy". No soul.
Disclaimer: Not mine. The characters that is - though I treat them so bad I think even Joss would be proud.
Thanks: To Lara Dean for the beta - and for so much more. =)
Feedback: Pretty please?
The thought of Angel or Riley wearing nail polish is enough to make her bend over with laughter.
It looks ridiculous in most men, that's what she thinks. It always seemed to her a sign of dubious sexuality - a gay kind of thing.
Not on Spike. No, never ridiculous.
It only adds to his shadowy persona. Shadows that include his sexual preferences, she is very aware of that.
But somehow she never thinks of him in those terms. Spike manages to look beguilingly androgynous and thoroughly male at the same time, although she has no idea how he pulls it off. The fact is that he does. His mouth is almost feminine in its fullness, but who notices such details when his features are so sharp? And he has long, thick eyelashes that he uses to veil his bright stare, mimicking the bashful gaze of a virgin - so shy, so timid.
So fucking *hungry*.
She misses the times he wore eyeliner - it was easier to tell that his are the eyes of a predator.
Sometimes, she thinks about them. Her lovers. She can't help comparing them. Even if the memories are painful. Maybe that's the reason why she does it. So that she doesn't forget why she's doing this.
Why she is fucking a soulless demon.
She remembers Riley.
So innocent. So misguided. So alien to what she is.
She remembers genuine smiles and warm human flesh.
(Spike's smiles never reach his eyes these days and Angel didn't smile at all.
The contact of their skin makes her nerves tingle, triggering a heat wave so intense it obliterates the coolness of their touch.)
She remembers picnics in the sunlight and frat parties.
(Angel used to point out the constellations to her when they met at the cemetery, lying on a blanket spread over the damp grass.
The fairy-tale Prince danced with her to slow music right after he told her they weren't going to live happily ever after.)
She remembers Riley's open expression and the way his emotions always showed on his face and in his blue eyes.
(So different from Spike's eyes. His eyes make her think of storms - gathering clouds and flashing lightning.
When they catch the light, she swears she can feel electricity sizzling through the air.)
One could always tell what Riley was thinking.
(Only in the most intimate moments did Angel let her know his feelings - and it was always in words.
Angel's face was a mask of thinly veiled sorrow and seldom did his eyes mirror more than pain. His eyes were dark wells she could drown into.)
Brave little soldier boy thought he had to protect her from the evil creatures of the night, but couldn't even last one round with her. And he had felt so ashamed that he was the weak one and so hurt when she told him that it didn't matter.
And that should've been endearing but she found it ludicrous.
So he tried to conceal his pain.
(Spike is always straightforward - brutal honesty, ruthless fists. Harsh and hard, doesn't hold anything back.)
She remembers the only time Riley let go in bed, the night they were trapped in the poltergeist-haunted house.
The only time she let go with him too.
(Angel made love to her with the utmost gentleness - the kind of first time girls dream about. So sweet, so caring.
So careful not to hurt her.)
Riley refused to undress in front of her in the following two weeks.
After that night, he always flinched when she touched him more roughly.
(Spike is never gentle. Neither is she when she's with him.
His bruises heal so quickly. She is always amazed. Sometimes they fade right before her eyes.)
So, she was always cautious from then on.
And she had tried to make it work. She had tried so hard!
Because Angel had left her so that she could find
someone who can take you into the light
and have children with
and live a normal life.
A house in the suburbs with a lawn and a barbecue and friendly neighbors and PTA meetings, like she was a character in some goddamn PG rated movie and isn't that. just. fucking. hysterical!
(Poor, poor Angel. So deluded.)
The darkness had rubbed off on Riley, tainting him and scarring him inside and out. On his skin and in his soul.
(Poor, poor Riley. So broken.)
This time she doesn't have to worry about those pesky souls.
In some ways, Angel and Riley were alike, she realized not so long ago.
Physical ways mostly, like she had unconsciously sought a human counterpart to her dark lover. Big tall men with broad shoulders and large hands - even in high heels her head was always leveled with their chest.
Spike is different.
She never has to look up to meet Spike's fierce eyes and his mouth is always oh, so close. His slender body appears deceptively fragile until he undresses revealing well-defined muscles. But she can wrap both arms around his torso. He has narrow hips and slim long limbs. Very much like hers.
But the affinity between them stretches beyond physical similarities.
Yes, Spike is her equal in more ways than one. She feels the connection and knows he senses it too. That's why she's with him. So that she doesn't forget what she is.
Killer in disguise.
The threat is concealed and the violence hidden beneath the illusion of easily breakable bones and delicate, manicured hands.
"*That's* the Slayer?" is the mocking remark of demons who encounter her for the first time. What a nice young man, was probably what his victims thought before he let his human mask slip. The fact that he can't kill humans now doesn't change what he is.
Death wearing nail polish.
People should really learn to see past skin deep.
She doesn't blame them, though. It took her a while to understand how it's supposed to work too. Now that she knows, she deals with it. Being with Spike helps put things in perspective.
(One would never think Death comes in such small packages.)
April 17th, 2003