All About Spike - Plain Version
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CHAPTER 2 - DISCOVERY
Saturday - Pre-Dawn
It was almost a relief to be returning to Spike's crypt. That familiar feeling of anger bubbled through her as she thought of him. I won't hit him, Buffy promised herself. She refused to return to that unhealthy tangle of sex and violence that always seem to overwhelm her when she saw him. Her mind flashed with images of his face, the knowing eyes, the cocked eyebrow, the smirking lips that felt so sweet and . . . She shook the images out of her head. He had hurt Dawn. She was angry. She would forbid him to ever associate with Dawn. But she would not strike out.
After 120 years, he was the master of violence. If she lashed out, she was entering his dark world. She knew she would lose her fragile control and once again they would be tumbling together, loving -- no, damn it, fucking each other.
But he had let Dawn down. He had promised to drop her sister off at a slumber party tonight, while Buffy worked closing shift at the Doublemeat Palace. When she had returned home at two, after work and patrolling, she found Dawnie huddled on the sofa. She had covered her up, noting the puffy face and dried tear tracks. So the bastard hadn't shown up.
Probably she should have waited until morning, when Dawn could tell her what had happened. But she was too angry to sleep and almost automatically she found herself striding to confront Spike.
She almost knocked at the door, remembering that she no longer had the right to assume that she was wanted or welcomed. Then her rage bubbled up again. When had she ever had to ask to see him? She slammed the door open.
The crypt was dark, lit only by the faint glow of the new moon through the window and doorway. "Spike! Spike!" No one answered. She stumbled across the room to a table where he kept candles. As she did she tripped on something on the floor. The table had candles, but no matches. Of course, he always used his lighter.
She finally groped her way over to the battered television and turned it on. The dull flickering light filled the room. She looked over to see what she had tripped on.
It was a stake. Beside it was a large pile of dust.
She froze. After glancing around, she slowly stepped over to the pile and knelt. It had a coarse greasy texture that she recognized after years of slaying vampires. No!
She was standing up now. "Spike, where are you?"
She clambered down the ladder, and began looking around frantically. He had to be hiding. Maybe some of the other vamps had come after him. A lot of them were pissed off at him for helping a slayer. The pile had to be some other vampire, because . . .
Her eyes adjusted slowly to the dark, but it was still hard to see. The lower chamber was still in ruins from when she and Riley had destroyed the demon eggs. Beyond the overall damage, however, it looked as if it had been ransacked. Boxes were turned over and clothes and toiletries were scattered over the floor. What wasn't burnt was slashed and gutted. She rushed around the small chamber, looking in shadows, corners. He wasn't anywhere.
She noticed a large portfolio and scattered pictures and papers on the floor. She picked them up and carried them to the upper chamber where the television gave her more light. It was leather, slightly scorched and battered, but it seemed to have survived to general destruction. She examined it and the pictures. Three were photographs of her. A few other pictures were of cities and locations scattered through time. The papers were sketches.
She stared at them. There were six pictures of Spike and Dru. They reminded her of the type of quick portraits artists sold along boardwalks and in tourist areas. The early ones were more formally posed. One showed the two in game face and she wondered if the artist had survived the session. In most, they looked like a young couple laughing, hugging, dressed in the costumes of the decade. In this picture they were hippies, in that one he had his hair in a ducktail. This one had Dru as a flapper and he smirked, wearing a raccoon skin coat. Another was a hilarious caricature of the two of them looking like Sid and Nancy; his hair bleached blonde while Dru looked Goth with black clothes and pale makeup.
One picture, older, stood apart. Two men and two women, wearing Victorian clothes, posed stiffly. Angelus stood grinning, his hands possessively resting on the shoulders of Darla and Drusilla. Darla sparkled, reaching up and touching Angel's hand. Dru seemed dazed, her eyes slightly unfocused. In back of her stood a small man dressed in a shabby suit. Buffy looked again, startled. It was Spike, his hair darker and wavy, looking uncertain beside the bigger vampire. The three were a unit, Spike was beside them, yet seemed to be standing alone.
She ran her finger gently over the almost unfamiliar features. Her eyes smarted slightly, and then she shook her head angrily. He had to be someplace else, hanging out, getting in trouble. She'd find him at Willy's drinking and playing poker. He would be out in the cemetery somewhere, smoking one of his cigarettes. He had to be somewhere.
She climbed up the ladder. This time she noticed his black duster folded and lying on the sarcophagus. She walked over to it, picked it up. In the pocket were a packet of cigarettes and his lighter. Her lips trembled, then she ran out into the night.
Spike's eyes jerked open.
It was hard to focus. He lay panting, confused. Where was he?
He was lying down in some sort of huge wooden box. He turned, trying to figure out where he was and scraped his shoulder on the rough floor. He sucked in his breath at the sudden pain and touched the wound.
Except he wasn't frozen. His chest rose and fell as he breathed. His heart pounded in his chest. And his shoulder was warm. Warm blood leaked onto his fingers.
He was alive!
Continued in CHAPTER 3 - WAKING
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