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Helping
By Colleen

Sometimes I feel like it's easier for Spike to get out of that basement than it is for me.



“You helped.”

He’s just sitting there against the basement wall, buried in himself again. She’d thought, for a moment, that he’d made some kind of breakthrough. She hadn’t expected to see him show up, fight for the girl. Help rescue the girl. And that fiery torch. What was he thinking? Vampire and flames do not mix. Death wish, much?

But he’s already dead, isn’t he? And now, more like dead and gone.

She wants to bring him out of himself. Let him know that she’s grateful. That she knows how hard it was for him. But she’s afraid to try and pull him out. Afraid he’ll try and hurt himself again.

“Spike,” she sighs. But he doesn’t seem to hear her.

She has ten minutes left in her break. She sits beside him on the concrete floor. She vaguely remembers a night like this, the positions reversed. She’s crying, and he’s sitting beside her.

“We...” She jumps at the sound of his voice. “We saved the girl?”

“You saved the girl from those boys. You untied her. Don’t you remember?”

“I think so.”

She waits for more, but he’s silent again. She looks into his eyes, but the spark has gone out. She won’t tell him. Not that Cassie died. Not that they couldn’t really help at all.

So she sits beside him in silence.

Her break is over and she has to leave. The kids will be coming. Maybe today she’ll make a difference. She wants so to make a difference. It would be so easy to give up. On them. On him. She hates the feeling of impotence, but she’s going to try.

She pushes herself up. He’s still quiet. At least she didn’t set him off this time. He’s so lost. So alone. Impulsively, she bends down and plants a kiss on his forehead. “Thank you.”

His eyes open wide. His mouth cracks open too, but then shuts wordlessly.

Buffy feels a tear on her cheek, and brushes it off. She has to pull herself together. For the kids. Turning down the corridor, she leaves him behind as she heads for the basement stairwell.