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Two banners for this fic! Lucky me. This one by my talented Always _jbj

 

Title: Born To Be My Baby (4/14/06 – completed 11/20/06)

Author: Slaymesoftly

Rating: NC17 (eventually)

Disclaimer:  Joss Wheden’s characters; my story.

Author notes and summary: The sequel to A Mother’s Plea, my only vamp Buffy story to date. (oops, now there are two!)  More has changed than just Buffy’s status as a human….

 

Born To Be My Baby

 

Chapter One

 

         Settling into the life of a teen-aged vampire who was also the resident Vampire Slayer turned out to be trickier than anyone could have predicted.  Joyce was able to withdraw Buffy from high school, getting no argument from Principal Snyder when she said her daughter would be better off finishing her senior year on her own and taking the required test to get her GED.  As many times as he’d tried to expel the Summers girl from his high school, he chose to view her voluntary withdrawal as a victory of sorts, and his knowing smirk had Joyce fighting to restrain herself.

 

          She left his office and went immediately to the school library where she spent the next hour ranting to Giles about his employer and what she would like to do to him.

 

           “I’m tempted to ask Spike to turn him, just so I can watch Buffy drive a stake through his evil little heart,” she grumbled as she ran out of names to call the man.

 

            “I sincerely hope you are not serious about that threat, Joyce.”  The watcher’s voice held a trace of panic as he looked at the angry woman.  “You cannot use William the Bloody as your own personal--”

 

            “Oh, relax, Rupert.  I’m not serious.  That was a one-time thing, to save my daughter.  I don’t plan to make Spike a hired assassin.”

 

            “You do understand that most people would not consider having a vampire drain and turn a girl to be ‘saving her’, do you not?” Giles asked with a frown.  “I am quite certain the Council of Watchers would not see it that way at all.”

 

             “You haven’t told them, have you?” Joyce’s voice climbed to a higher register and her eyes widened.

 

              “No, Joyce,” he sighed.  “I haven’t told them.  I felt it was more appropriate that I give Buffy a chance to become accustomed to her new… lifestyle and to decide for myself what seemed the best way to handle this situation. I am hoping they will not notice, as long as she continues to meet her obligations as the Slayer.”

 

            “She’s been going out every night and patrolling, just as she did before,” Joyce said loyally.  “And she’s trying to find out more about the Mayor and his plans….”

 

           “Yes, yes.  I think we’ve pretty much worked out what we can do to prevent the Ascension.  The problem may lie in getting Buffy in to the ceremony now that she is no longer a graduating senior.”

 

            “I think Angel and Spike are going to help with that,” Joyce said quietly. “Although no one actually tells me anything.  I have to guess what’s going on from bits and pieces of conversations.”

 

             The watcher interrupted her rambling complaint to ask, “Spike and Angel?  They are working together?”

 

            “Well, not so much together,” Joyce admitted.  “For one thing, I will not have the man – vampire – who killed my daughter in my house; so whatever conversations she has with Angel take place over the phone or elsewhere.  And Spike gets very… testy when Angel’s name is mentioned, so Buffy tends not to discuss her plans in front of him.”

 

           “I must say, I am impressed and surprised that Spike has remained in Sunnydale so long.  I did not expect him to take his responsibilities so seriously.”

 

            “He takes them VERY seriously,” Joyce said, nodding her head.  “Buffy is the only childe he has ever made and he is very concerned that he handle it well.  I believe it is one of the issues between him and Angel.”

 

             “He never made a childe before?” The watcher had not realized that Buffy was Spike’s first childe.  The Watchers’ Diaries were not very clear about just what was involved in siring a childe as opposed to simply creating a minion, but he knew there was a difference and that there were duties and obligations to be met on both sides.

 

            “No.  Until recently, he apparently felt his life was quite full with his relationship with his own sire.  He said he had no desire to create another vampire just to enlarge his family or to replace Darla.  And the fact that the one he did create is the Slayer and has retained her soul apparently complicates the situation tremendously.”

 

         “I would think that Angel would be the expert on being a souled vampire,” Giles said mildly.  He had made no attempt to discourage Joyce in her dislike for the old vampire, having his own difficulties with Angel’s continued existence; however, he recognized that the other souled vampire would be the one most able to help his Slayer understand and cope with her new status and he tried to refrain from adding to her unwillingness to allow him anywhere near her daughter.

 

            He did try to discourage the woman’s obvious affection for Spike, repeatedly assuring her that the unsouled vampire was inherently evil and could not be trusted.  His astonishment when Joyce shared with him the number of times Spike had visited her home – unbeknownst to Buffy – and done no more damage than to accidentally drop a mug of hot chocolate, was overwhelming. The idea that a vampire, even one that was old and therefore in control of his demon, could and would willingly spare the life of a trusting human was counter to everything he’d been taught in his years with the Council of Watchers.  He vowed silently to try to see the enigmatic vampire through less prejudiced eyes, if for no other reason than for their shared dislike of his grandsire.

 

           The next time Buffy came to his apartment to discuss the final plans for Graduation Day, he mildly suggested that she might want to have Spike present also; just to be sure they were all on the same page.  She gave him a surprised smile and nodded eagerly.

 

           “Sure, Giles.  He’d like that.  It’s been hard having to make plans with nobody speaking to anybody else except me.   I guess Angel should be here too, huh?”

 

           Trying very hard not to express how completely distasteful he found that idea, Giles nodded his curt permission and Buffy went out happily to meet her sire and tell him the good news.

 

~~~~~~~~~

 

            “What do you mean, you won’t come if Angel’s there?”  She glared at Spike, her lower lip going out in a pout.  “Could you be more immature?  We need to make our plans and I’m tired of running back and forth between Giles and you and Angel.  You have to do this, Spike!  I’m… I’m ordering you to!”

 

            The vampire squeezed his eyes shut, stretched and cracked his neck as he fought to keep his fangs from descending.

 

            “Goddammit, Slayer. Could you try to act like a childe for one soddin’ minute?  You don’t give me orders, you stupid bint. You take them!  From me!  I’ll be buggered if I understand what you’re findin’ so difficult about that concept.”

 

             Before Buffy could respond, the sound of Angel’s laugh had them both whirling to find her great-grandsire walking towards them.  While Buffy frowned in confusion, Spike went into game face as he realized that Angel had heard every word he’d said.

 

            “What’s the matter, boy?” the older vampire asked with a sneer.  “Not sure how to train a childe properly?  Maybe you need some lessons.”

 

            Buffy could feel the underlying tension between the two vampires, including her sire’s fury, but had no understanding of the source.  Spike’s relationship with her had been nothing but respectful, even when he lost his temper at her refusals to behave like a “proper vampire” and she had no idea what sort of upbringing her sire had suffered at the hands of Angelus. She sensed an underlying current of fear in Spike’s demeanor – something she had never expected to see in the vampire who had been one of her toughest opponents.

 

            “Don’t even think about it, Angelus,” he snarled, stepping between the vamped slayer and her sometime boyfriend.

 

  With a start, Buffy realized that the fear was not for himself, but for her, and she stared at him in shock.  Surely he didn’t think Angel was going to hurt her?  He had apologized over and over for his actions the night he had drained her and left her for dead.  While the two vampires glared at each other, she went over what Angel had said when he walked up to them, and the contempt with which his voice dripped when he said it.  Cold anger replaced her confusion when she understood that he was sneering at her sire for not being able to control her. 

 

Stepping around Spike’s protective body, she walked up to the much larger vampire and asked softly, “I suppose you think you could do a better job of “training” me, Angel?  Would you like to give that a try?  Right now, maybe?”

 

The soft tone of her voice was contradicted by the look on her face.  It was not a fledgling vampire staring at him, but the Slayer; her stony glare augmented by the fangs she was baring as her demon responded to her urge to do violence upon Angel’s body.  She bounced on her toes, waiting impatiently to see if the souled vampire would be as eager to discipline her as he had implied.  Instead of taking up her challenge, Angel adopted an air of superiority and stepped back from the clenched and deadly fists in front of him.

 

“This foolishness just proves that Spike is not setting a good example for you, Buffy.  You should never challenge a master vampire like that.  You should treat me with respect; after all, I am your great grandsire,” he finished with a righteous look on his face.

 

“You’re also the bloody wanker who killed her in the first place,” Spike growled, admiring his childe’s actions even as he got into position to defend her if need be.

 

“At least I didn’t turn her,” Angel snarled, more willing to take on his grandchilde than the lethal looking, vamped-out Slayer in front of him.

 

“No,” Buffy interrupted the potential battle.  “You didn’t turn me. You left me to die in front of my mother with nothing more than a ‘sorry, Joyce’.  Do you think she hasn’t told me what happened?  How you just dumped me in a busy emergency room and left? If Spike hadn’t been there, and hadn’t been willing to do what she begged him to do, I’d be nothing but a decomposing body in a grave somewhere.  Is that what you wanted, Angel? Do you think that would be better for me?”

 

With a long-suffering sigh, he dropped his head onto his chest. “No,” he whispered.  “I don’t think it would have been better.  I’m not sorry you’re here, Buffy, I just—”

 

“You just think you can treat me like any other fledgling vampire – and you want to take it out on Spike when you can’t,” she replied with sudden insight.  “You’re not angry that he turned me, you’re angry that he made me so strong, and that I kept my soul.  You’re sorry I’m still the Slayer.”

 

“Don’t be ridiculous,” he snorted, turning away so that she couldn’t read his eyes.  “I’m just trying to teach you how to be a vampire.  I know you already know how to be the Slayer.”

 

“Well right now I don’t need to know any more about being a vampire. I need to be the Slayer until we’ve prevented the Mayor’s Ascension.  Then, maybe, I’ll worry about learning to be a better vampire.”

 

At Spike’s look of heightened interest she added quickly, “Or maybe not.”

 

“Knew you didn’t mean it,” he snorted, falling into step beside her as they turned toward the Watcher’s apartment.  Angel followed morosely behind them, trying to ignore the easy banter between them and mulling over the idea of leaving Sunnydale after the battle.

 

The atmosphere in the apartment quivered with tension as the two vampires, the newly-vamped Slayer, her watcher and her best friends all went over the last minute details of their planned battle against the Major and his minions.

 

“All right, Xander’s in charge of weapons and mobilizing the people he thinks will be able to handle them.  Willow will do a cloaking spell so that Principal Snyder doesn’t know I’m there until it’s too late.  Angel will guard Willow until it is safe for her to leave and Spike will guard Giles while he sets up the explosives.   I’ll get as close as I can to the podium and be ready to lead him into the school.”

 

“Didn’t you have to leave your old school because you burned it down?” Xander inquired innocently.  “Is this going to be, like, your MO?”

 

“It was only the gym, not the whole school, and I’m not burning this one down, I’m blowing it up!”

 

“Makes all the difference,” Spike agreed with a grin before turning to look at his childe with admiration.  “Burned it down, huh?” he said happily.  “That’s my girl!”

 

“She’s NOT your ‘girl’,” Angel snarled, glaring at his grandchilde.

 

“Figure of speech, Granddad,” Spike grumbled. “Don’t get your knickers in a twist over it.  It’s not like she’s your girl anymore, either,” he muttered just loud enough for Buffy and Angel to hear.

 

“Could you stop baiting Angel?” Buffy hissed at him. “We’re trying to prevent an apocalypse here!”

 

“Spoil sport,” he grumbled even as he subsided into silence.  He caught Angel’s sneer in his direction as he obeyed the Slayer’s command to stop baiting the other vampire and was poised to lunge when he realized that Buffy had also seen it.  Before Spike could move, the Slayer had grabbed Angel by the throat and was squeezing his neck with one hand while she punched him with the other.

 

“I.  Told. You. If you wanted to try disciplining me, you should.   Let’s start now, huh, Angel? Give me an order to follow and let’s see what happens. Do you want to do that, Angel? Do you? Huh? Do you think since you killed me, you should have the right to say what kind of vampire I am?  Is that what you think?  Do you think Spike is too nice to me? Is that the problem, Angelus?” 

 

Each snarled word was punctuated by a fist to the vampire’s rapidly bruising face and body as the Slayer allowed the pent-up anger she’d been carrying to explode onto the one responsible for her current condition. 

 

There was shocked silence in the room as her watcher and friends saw the familiar body wearing a demon’s face pummel the master vampire until he was lying on the carpet feebly trying to protect his face and head from the now out-of-control Slayer. At a nod from Giles, Spike stepped across Angel’s inert body and gently put his arms around Buffy, pulling her back against his chest and murmuring into her ear while Giles stood over Angel protectively.  The watcher had no real interest in saving Angel’s life, but he knew they would need all the help they could get against the Mayor and he also did not want his Slayer doing anything for which she would be sorry later.

 

“Buffy,” he said urgently.  “I understand you are angry at Angel – as well you should be – but I believe if you continue to punish him like this, you will find yourself regretting it.  And, as you so correctly pointed out to Spike, we have an apocalypse to prevent; Angel’s help will be needed.”

 

Buffy’s vampire face gradually faded as she regained control of herself and realized what she had done.  She looked over her shoulder into her sire’s eyes and said softly, “I’m okay now, Spike. You can let go.”

 

“Do I have to?” he whispered, nuzzling her ear and squeezing her gently before loosening his arms. 

 

Buffy rolled her eyes at him, recognizing the attempt to make her smile for what it was, and whispered back, “You do. For now, anyway.”

 

“Gonna hold you to that, pet,” he responded with a grin as she stepped away from him.  “We’re gonna be discussin’ this again once we’ve sent that old man to hell where he belongs.”

 

She rolled her eyes again and then looked down at the groaning vampire at her feet. 

 

“You could have just told me to stop it, like you did him,” Angel growled, hissing with pain as he tried to sit up.

 

“I’m sorry, Angel,” she said, doing her best to sound sincere.  “I guess I just kind of lost it.  Spike’s trying to teach me to control my demon but sometimes I just forget how.”

 

Pulling himself into a chair with a groan, her former boyfriend slumped against the back of the overstuffed chair and glared morosely at his smirking grandchilde.  He didn’t miss the fact that the smack Buffy administered to the back of Spike’s head was a gentle warning rather than an actual attempt to hurt her sire, although it did cause the other vampire to wipe the smirk off his face and drop his eyes in apology.  Angel’s demon snarled at Spike’s easy acceptance of the Slayer’s disrespectful behavior, even as the souled vampire admitted that he himself had no desire to test Buffy’s new-found strength.

 

Buffy didn’t miss the look that flashed across Angel’s face, but instead of confronting him about it again, she simply moved closer to her sire, effectively sending the message that while her behavior might not be that of a typical fledgling, Spike was now the most important vampire in her life.

 

 

 

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And this one from a generous reader – thanks, Ben.

 

Chapter Two

 

That the Ascension entailed the Mayor’s turning into a giant snake caught everyone a bit by surprise, but with the use of Faith’s knife as bait, Buffy was able to tempt the now-demonized Mayor into chasing her into the building.  Visions of Principal Snyder being swallowed whole lent wings to her feet and she burst out of the gym doors just ahead of the giant mouth that was reaching for her.

 

“Now, Giles!” she screamed as she dove behind a dumpster.

 

The ensuing explosion blew the large trash receptacle over onto its side, effectively pinning the shell-shocked Slayer beneath it.  Within seconds, Giles and Spike were beside it, frantically calling her name.  With no heartbeat to listen for, the vampire was forced to rely on the fact that he would have felt it if she had been dusted by the explosion or the heavy dumpster. 

 

“She’s under there,” he gasped, grabbing one edge of the huge metal container and preparing to lift it.  While the Watcher lent his own insignificant human strength to the task, Spike let out a groan and raised the bin far enough for a barely conscious Buffy to crawl out and roll away before both human and vampire strength gave out and the heavy box crashed to the asphalt surface.

 

Buffy opened her eyes to find herself being held tightly by her sire, his face a study in relief and fear.  She was surprised to see tears glistening in his eyes as he held her and whispered into her ear how worried he’d been and how glad he was to see her.  The knowledge that she was completely safe in the strong arms that held her allowed her to relax into unconsciousness, a small smile on her face.

 

She awoke to the gentle rocking sensation of Spike’s long strides as he carried her away from the school.  When he felt her stirring, he paused and looked down into her battered face.

 

“Where are we going?” she asked softly.

 

“Where I can get you cleaned up and make sure nothing’s broken,” he growled.  “Where do you think?”

 

“I think I need to go back to the school and help with the clean-up,” she said firmly, squirming around until he set her feet on the ground.  “I can’t just run off and be pampered while everyone else is fighting!”

 

“You did your bit,” he growled.  He had allowed her to stand up, but kept his arms around her lightly until he was sure she could stand by herself. 

 

“Come on, Spike,” she growled back at him.  “You know better than that.  My  ‘bit‘ isn’t over until we know we’ve defeating all the minions and everyone is safe.”

 

With a resigned sigh, he dropped his encircling arms and nodded.  “Yeah, yeah, I know.  Chosen One, sacred duty, blah, blah.  Let’s go then.”  He turned around and began striding back towards the burning building and screaming students.

 

“You’re going with me?” The surprise in her voice stopped him in his tracks. 

 

“You didn’t think I would?” The hurt was evident on his face and Buffy stammered as she tried to explain.

 

“Well, I only asked you to protect Giles until he got the explosives set. I didn’t really expect you to fight other vampires with me.  I mean, that’s what Angel do—”

 

A blood-curdling snarl cut her off in mid-sentence.  He whirled to face her, fury and pain exposed in equal measure.

 

“You are my childe,” he managed to get out around his fangs.  “I would never send you into battle by yourself.  I’ll be by your side until this mess is cleaned up and I don’t feel like I need to watch your back anymore. When it’s done, I’m going to be gone.  Your precious Angel can help you protect the Hellmouth.”

 

“You… you’re leaving?” 

 

“You don’t need me.  You don’t even want me, truth be told. Every time there’s a problem, you go running to your precious ‘Angel’ for help.  It’s time I moved on.  I never intended to stay this long anyway. I’d just popped in to visit your mum when your boyfriend decided his life was more important than yours.”

 

He whirled and began striding towards the burning school, ignoring the sound of her feet as she ran to catch up.  He was already regretting the words his anger had pulled from his subconscious, knowing he would now be forced to either admit he didn’t want to go, or to leave the childe for whom he was beginning to feel more than just a sire’s responsibility.  Cursing his impulsive mouth, he waded into the battle, taking out his frustration and anger on the remaining minions who were quick to figure out that neither one of the two old vampires on the scene was on their side.

 

~~~~~~~~~

 

When the emergency teams had arrived, the fire was almost out and the injured had been taken away in ambulances, a small group gathered on the far side of the road, taking care to stay out of the way of the still busy firemen.  Giles, Willow and Xander slumped with exhaustion – too tired to enjoy the taste of victory. 

 

The watcher looked at the three almost as weary-looking vampires and said, “I believe we’ve done all we can here tonight.  I am going to take Willow and Xander home and then fall into my bed.  I suggest you do the same.”

 

“Fall into your bed?”  Spike’s remark evoked only a minor groan from Buffy, who poked him with a tired arm.

 

“Perhaps, when I am less exhausted, I will find that remark amusing,” the man said stiffly.  “As it is….” He trudged toward his car, gesturing for the two teenagers to follow him.

 

“See you tomorrow, Buffy! “ Willow waved before joining Giles in the walk to his car.

 

Xander cast a disgusted eye at Buffy’s companions, then muttered his “Good night” and followed the other humans into the night.

 

 

 

Chapter Three

 

            The three vampires watched in silence as the watcher drove off with Buffy’s remaining human friends.  Now that the battle was over and they had prevented the apocalypse, there seemed to be nothing holding the threesome together.

 

           “Good job, guys,” Buffy finally broke the uncomfortable silence, giving each vampire a small smile of appreciation.  “I guess we can go home now, too.”

 

            Angel sent a resentful look in Spike’s direction before touching Buffy’s arm and asking quietly, “Could we talk, privately?  I have something important to tell you.”

 

            “Need to borrow some hair gel, then, do you, Angelus?”

 

            “Shut up, Spike.  This is none of your business.”

 

            Buffy’s hand on Spike's arm forestalled any comeback that could have re-ignited the earlier argument between the two now-glaring men. When she saw that he was forcing himself to answer her unspoken plea, she turned her attention back to Angel.

 

            “Can’t it wait?” she asked plaintively. “I’m tired too. I just want to go home and go to bed.”

 

            Angel clenched his jaw and exhaled sharply. “Buffy, you’re a vampire.  You don’t go home and go to bed when it’s only midnight.  When are you going to stop trying to pretend that you’re still human?”

 

            “When I stop feeling like one,” she snapped.  “What the hell is wrong with you?  I’ve been up for most of the past two days AND nights, I just outran a giant snake, almost got turned into a Buffy pancake, had a fight with my sire about my job and fought a bunch of evil Mayor minions.  I’m tired and I want to take a shower and sleep for the next two days.  How does that make me a bad vampire?”

 

            “You had a fight with Spike?” Angel’s expression became more interested as he focused on the only part of her rant that held any interest for him.  “Did you hurt him?”

 

            Buffy’s eyes rolled.  “It wasn’t a fight, fight, you big dope. It was an argument.”

 

            “Which you won, of course,” Angel sneered, temporarily forgetting the beating Buffy had administered the last time he implied that her sire was shirking his duty.

 

            To Buffy’s surprise, it was Spike who put a restraining hand on her arm this time, saying just loud enough for Angel to overhear, “Leave it go, Slayer.  We’ve got better things to do than deal with his jealousy.”

 

            “We do?  Oh, yes!  We do.  That’s right.” 

 

            Turning her back on the puzzled Angel, she took Spike’s arm and looked up at him with a dazzling smile.

           

            “We have showers to take, beds to fall into… and… and sleeping to have… and… I think I’m losing the theme here,” she whispered finally.

 

            “Not a problem, luv.  I’ll be there to remind you.”

 

            “Buffy.” Angel’s cold, controlled voice cut through the flirting banter she was sharing with her sire and she turned with a sigh.

 

            “Yes, Angel.  Let’s get it over with.  What do you want to tell me?”

 

            “Privately.  I said I wanted to discuss it privately.”

 

            Buffy watched Spike’s face darken as her sire realized that she was going to let Angel have his conversation.  He shook his head at her, turning away and muttering, “I’ll see you around, Slayer,” as he began walking away.

 

            Buffy looked back and forth between the two vampires, desperate to follow Spike and reassure him that she wasn’t choosing Angel over him again.  Before she could do so, the blond vampire was out of sight and she was left with a very self-satisfied looking Angel.

 

            “What do you want that’s so freakin’ important that it couldn’t wait?” she snapped.

 

            “I wanted to tell you that I’m leaving Sunnydale,” he said quietly.  “I didn’t sign on to follow a fledgling vampire around and watch her flirting with my grandchilde.  I’ll let you know where I am when I get set up and if and when you come to your senses and want to learn what it means to be a real vampire, you can call me.”

 

            She gawked at him, her mouth hanging open as she tried to process what he was saying.

 

            “You’re leaving? Leaving Sunnydale? Leaving me?”

 

            “I’m going somewhere that I can do some good.  You don’t need me – you’ve got that bleached moron to help you fight – and, you clearly don’t have any interest in learning how difficult it can be to live as a vampire with a soul.  When you are ready to be taught about being a vampire, and how to handle the soul, you can come to me. I’ll be in LA.”

 

            Buffy stared at him, waiting for the heartbreak she was sure she was going to feel.  Instead, a calm sadness settled over her and she went up on tip toe to kiss his cheek.

 

            “I’m sorry you feel that way, Angel, but maybe you’re right.  Hellmouth or not, Sunnydale probably doesn’t need both of us.  And LA isn’t that far away; if I need you for another apocalypse or something.”

 

            “So, I was right.”  The bigger vampire’s voice was sad, only his clenched fists and the amber flashes of his eyes gave a clue to his real emotions.  “You would prefer to be with Spike.”

 

            “Actually,” she said quietly, “Spike says he’s leaving too.  And I wasn’t aware that you were giving me a choice.  You said you were leaving.”

 

            “Well, obviously, if he goes, I won’t need to,” Angel said stiffly.  “You should have said that right away.”

 

            “I thought this was about going where you could do some good?  It sounds to me more like it’s about being jealous of Spike!”  She glared at her former boyfriend, torn between anger and a tiny surge of pleasure to think that two master vampires were fighting over her.

 

            “I would never be jealous of that bleached pain in the ass.  He is beneath me – and he’s beneath you.  The sooner you realize that, the better.  Clearly, the proper mate for a souled vampire is another souled vampire, but until you come to your senses and stop blaming me for—”

 

            “For killing me?” she asked wryly.

 

            “For accidentally drinking too much from you,” he continued with a growl.  “When you can get over being mad about that – and thinking that Spike ‘saved’ you, you will understand that we belong together and that he is just standing in the way.”

 

            Buffy shook her head in disbelief.  “I can’t believe what I’m hearing, Angel; but I’m too tired to argue about it tonight.  If you want to go, go.  I’ll miss you.  But I’m not sending Spike away just to make you happy.  Good night, Angel.”

 

            She turned and without looking back, began to jog slowly in the direction Spike had taken.  She knew she would have no chance of catching the angry vampire if he was really trying to stay away from her, but she was equally sure that he wouldn’t leave Sunnydale without telling her mother ‘good-bye’ first.  Increasing her speed, she began to run toward her house, the knot of fear growing in her stomach giving her the first indication of which of the older vampires’ departures would leave the largest hole in her life.

 

            She neared her house just in time to see Spike exiting the backdoor, waving back over his shoulder to the woman silhouetted in the light from the kitchen.  When the door closed behind him, his shoulders sagged and his head dropped onto his chest, preventing him from seeing the slender blonde now perched on the hood of his Desoto. 

 

            Spike was reaching for the door, when he finally realized what his senses had been trying to tell him and he froze, his thumb still on the door lock.

 

            “You weren’t going to tell me ‘good-bye’?  Even Angel was man enough to do that.”  Her voice was flat and hard, giving no indication of the emotions roiling through her.

 

            One look into the devastated eyes he raised to meet hers, and she immediately regretted her words.  She was momentarily lost, absorbing without conscious thought the easily visible emotions that the vampire had been hiding behind his cocky attitude and sexual innuendos. 

 

            “I don’t think I have that in me, pet,” he responded after long minutes of soaking up the gradual realization dawning in her eyes.  “I’m a bloody coward and a weak man.”

 

            Buffy slid off the hood of the car, slowly approaching the wary vampire.  Spike’s hand dropped to his side, his fingers twitching with the need to touch her just once again before he left.  He remained stiff and still as she moved into his personal space, lifting her hands to rest them lightly on his shoulders.  Neither one had looked away yet, and Buffy held his gaze as she asked softly, “Does that mean you can’t go if I ask you not to?”

 

            Hope warred with experience as he struggled to believe what she was saying.

 

            “See,” he said with a shaky laugh, “there you go again – confusin’ who’s the sire and who’s the childe.  I’m the one should be doin’ the asking and you should be doin’ what you’re asked.”

 

            “What would you ask me to do?”

 

            “I’d ask you to tell me what you want.  Do you want me to leave, Buffy?”

 

            She shook her head silently, still staring into his eyes.

 

            “What about the big poof?” he asked, sounding more petulant than he intended.

 

            “He wanted me to choose,” she said simply. “So I did.”

 

            Her quiet statement was all it took to break his self-control. In fractions of a second, she was pressed against him, the arms holding her in place comfortingly strong and gentle. Her hands slid from his shoulders to his neck, her slender arms wrapping around it and bringing their faces together. 

 

            “Don’t leave me, Spike.  I need you,” she whispered into his neck.  “I need my sire… and I need my…f riend.”

 

            “Right,” he managed to say, her words reminding him that just because he was her sire and she enjoyed his company, it didn’t mean that her feelings for him in any way mirrored his own.  “What kind of a sire would I be to leave my only childe jus’ because I was…

 

            “Jealous?” she guessed shrewdly.  Angel’s sarcasm about which vampire would make the proper mate for her had opened her eyes and she suddenly had a better understanding of the tension between the two. 

 

            “Of the poof?  Don’t be—” He broke off when he saw the grin growing on her face.  “Did you really choose me?” he asked. “Over your soulful boyfriend?”

 

            “He hasn’t been my boyfriend since the night he killed me,” she said firmly. “It’s just taken him a while to figure that out.”

 

            “So, then…” he began, pulling her close to his body again,  “Does that mean there’s a vacancy at that position?”

 

            His lips brushed over hers, waiting for the final assurance that he wasn’t misunderstanding her intent.

 

            “I hope not,” she whispered, rising on her toes to press back with her own mouth. “I was kinda hoping it was already filled.”

 

            His non-verbal response, which left her weak-kneed and panting, was the answer for which she’d been hoping.  Only when she had begun to wrap her legs around his hips and move against the hard length pressing into her, did she remember that they were still in the driveway of a house in which her mother was undoubtedly still awake.  Reluctantly, she dropped her legs and tried to push herself away.

 

            “Spike… Spike!  We have to… to stop.  My mom….” Her complaint trailed off in the wake of another bone-melting kiss and this time it was the vampire who pulled away.  He held her at arm’s length, taking deep, unnecessary breaths to calm himself while he stared at her hungrily.  He cast a look at the darkened house and dropped his hands.

 

            “You’re right, love.  I don’t want Mum coming after me with the axe again.  And you’re right exhausted.  What say we postpone the rest of this… discussion... until you’ve had that hot bath and some sleep?”

 

            Her lip crept out in a pout, evoking a heartfelt groan from the vampire. “Ah, now, that’s cheatin’, love.  Here I am tryin’ to do the right thing and let you scamper off to bed and you go and stick that lower lip out at me.”

 

            “I don’t want to go to bed right now.  Want more kissing,” she demanded, evoking another groan. Spike pulled her close again, allowing her to feel what she was doing to him. 

 

            “I don’t want to kiss you, love,” he growled, tightening his hold when he felt her stiffen.  “Didn’t mean it that way, Buffy.  You know I didn’t.  Meant I don’t want to just kiss you.  I want more, Slayer.  Want all of you.  Want to touch you, taste you, feel you around me… If we keep standin’ here snogging each other, I’m gonna be embarrassing the both of us.”

 

            “I… I want more too,” she whispered, ducking her head.  She knew if it were possible, she would have been blushing. “Just not here in my Mom’s driveway.”

 

            “Tell you what, pet.  You go inside, take that nice hot bath and get some rest.  If, before dawn, you’re sure this is what you want, come to my crypt and we’ll spend the day there.  And,” he added, stroking her face softly, “If you decide it’s not what you want, if you’re not ready… that’s alright.  I’ll wait for you.  I’m not goin’ anywhere. Not now.”

 

            “Okay,” she agreed shyly.  “But I’m not changing my mind, so you’d better be there when I get there.”

 

            “I will, I promise.  An’ I never break a promise to a lady.”

 

            “’K, then.  I’ll see you before dawn….” She rose on her toes and kissed him again, pulling back before it could turn into something more than the promise she meant it to be.

 

            “I’ll be waiting.  With bells on,” he added, wiggling his eyebrows at her suggestively.

 

            “Just so that’s all you have on,” she replied saucily, running into the house with a giggle when he choked and coughed.  She waved happily from the entrance before shutting the door on his thunderstruck expression.  She ran up the stairs quickly, pausing when her mother opened her bedroom door and touched her arm tentatively.

 

            “Does your happy expression mean that Spike isn’t leaving Sunnydale?” Joyce asked, her face giving no hint of whether she thought it would be a good or bad thing.

 

            “Yes, it does; and no, he isn’t.” 

 

            “And?”

 

            Buffy flinched at her mother’s insistent tone, then straightened up and looked her in the eye.  With a sudden burst of confidence, she said simply, “I think I love him.  And I think he loves me.  We’re… we’re going to be together.”

 

            “You don’t mean sire/childe together, do you?” her mother asked with a sigh.

 

            Buffy shook her head, embarrassed but firm.

 

            With an unexpected smile, her mother visibly relaxed, her shoulders dropping and her face softening.

 

            “I believe he does love you, Buffy. I’ve been able to see it for a long time.  I guess this is as close as I’m going to come to having an actual son-in-law someday, isn’t it?”

 

            “I’m sorry, Mom,” Buffy said softly with a wisdom beyond her years. “I know this isn’t what you wanted for me.”

 

            Joyce shook her head.  “Don’t apologize, Buffy.  You aren’t responsible for being Chosen, and you’re not responsible for being a vampire.  I can lay that one at my own feet.  And, I don’t regret it!” she added quickly when Buffy’s face fell.  “I would much rather have you around than not – no matter what you are. You are still my daughter and I will always love you and be grateful to Spike for saving your life.”

 

            “Well,” Buffy said with a small smile, “technically…”

            “He saved you.” Her mother’s tone brooked no argument.  “He did as I asked, and he saved my daughter for me.”  Joyce waved her hand dismissively. “It was that other vampire that killed you.  Not Spike.”

 

            Buffy grinned at hearing Angel referred to as “that other vampire” and nodded her head.  Giving her mother a quick peck on the cheek, she said, “I’m going to take a hot bath now and try to catch some sleep.”  She hesitated; then added softly, “I probably won’t be here when you get up in the morning, but we–I’ll come by tomorrow evening. After dark.”

 

            Joyce studied Buffy’s face briefly, then nodded.  “All right, sweetheart.  I’ll see you tomorrow night then.”  She backed into her bedroom and closed the door, leaning her head on it briefly as she let go on any last hope that Buffy would be living a normal life.  She knew exactly where Buffy would be going before dawn – and why.

 

My daughter is a vampire.  She is going to the cemetery to sleep the day away in a crypt with her vampire lover.  

 

Brushing away a lone tear that had slipped out, Joyce shrugged and climbed into her bed, closing her eyes and allowing sleep to overtake her.

 

Buffy luxuriated in the tub full of hot bubble bath until she felt it begin to cool.  Although she was not as affected by heat and cold as she had been as a human, she could still feel temperature differences and she still enjoyed the muscle-relaxing therapy of a good hot soak.  However, with the heat rapidly fading, she quickly washed her hair and scrubbed her skin until it tingled; then got out of the tub.  She got out, dried herself off and applied her usual after-bath moisturizers and deodorants. 

 

            I guess old habits die hard  She made a wry face as she applied deodorant to sweat-free armpits.  She quickly blew her hair dry, brushing it out as she did so and leaving it hanging loose the way she knew Spike liked it, but rarely got to see.  Not sure enough of her vampire sense of time yet, Buffy set her alarm to go off at 4:00 AM and tucked herself into bed for a few hours of much-needed rest.

 

 

            Chapter Four           

 

            Long before the alarm actually went off, Buffy was awake and tossing restlessly in her suddenly empty-seeming bed.  Now that the decision had been made to follow the path towards which her instincts had been pushing her for some time, she was impatient to get to Spike and begin another new chapter in their relationship.

 

            First he wanted to kill me, then he wanted to help me save the world – and that ho-bag of a girlfriend… A throaty snarl erupted from her throat at the thought of Spike’s sire and the devotion he’d shown for her. Then, he turns up crying on my mother’s shoulder about the same cheating bitch.  And, then, it turns out he comes to see my mom every time he’s in Sunnydale! Because he likes her.   Not me – my mom!  And not only does he not kill her – he lets her talk him into turning me. He had to know I might stake him for it.

 

            Throwing aside the covers, she got up and dressed quickly, putting on matching black lace underwear under her utilitarian sweats.  She brushed her hair one more time, ran a little gloss around her lips and slipped out of her bedroom.  Just before she closed the door, she turned and ran back to snatch Mr. Gordo off the bed.   Stuffed pig safely under her arm, she ran with a light step all the way to Spike’s crypt, arriving at his door only to find herself struck with a sudden attack of nerves.

 

            What if he doesn’t want me?  I mean, he wants me; I can tell that. But what if he doesn’t want me to stay here?  I shouldn’t have brought Mr. Gordo. What was I thinking, I’ll just go— Her panicky thoughts were interrupted by the opening of the door.  Spike stood just inside, his hand still on the latch, an expression of wonder on his face.

 

            She’s here early.  I wonder what that means?  Maybe she changed her mind and she’s come to tell me she won’t be stayin’.  Couldn’t blame her.  My beautiful childe.  Deserves better than a cold grave.

 

            Buffy stared, her fingers squeezing and releasing the stuffed pig’s body the only indication of her mounting nervousness .  That, and the still-habitual breathing that caused her to pant lightly as she watched his expression change to one of apprehension.

 

            You’re early, pet.  Wasn’t expectin’ you so soon. Is anything wrong?”

 

            Don’t let anything be wrong, Buffy.  Don’t have changed your mind. Please don’t have changed your mind.

 

            “N-no. Nothing’s wrong. I just… If I’m too early, I can leave—”

 

            She had only half completed her turn when his arms went around her and he practically cried, “No!  Not too early!  Never too early, love.  Don’t go!”

 

            Sagging with relief, she allowed him to hold her up while she basked in the knowledge that he really wanted her there.

 

            “So…” she ventured, uncharacteristically shy and unsure of herself, “It’s okay that I came over early?  You don’t mind?”

 

            “Mind?  Have you lost your bleedin’ marbles, Slayer?”  His snort of amusement was followed rapidly by a softer tone as he held her tightly and whispered against her hair, “You’ve got no idea how badly I’ve wanted this, pet.  Just to have you here – in my home… not that I think it’s… I’m goin’ to find something better, somethin’ more suitable for you.  Not that I’m sayin’ you’re going to be living here, mind—” His voice rose again as he realized he might be taking too much for granted and Buffy giggled softly at his confusion.

 

            “You’re cute when you’re babbling,” she said with a smile.

 

            “Hey! Master vampire here, missy.  I am not ‘cute’!”

 

            “Yes, you are.” She turned so as to be facing him, and tilted her head up to his.  “You’re cute.  Just like Mr. Gordo.”  She waved the stuffed pig in the air, giggling again when he stopped himself just before his lips would have met hers to growl, “What the bloody hell is that?

 

            “That’s Mr. Gordo,” she replied with a hint of steel in her voice.  “Where I go, he goes.”

 

            “And you brought him here?”

 

            “Well… yeah.” Her voice lost some of its assurance. “Is that… is it okay?  I just thought….”

 

            “Is he going to stay here?”  Spike’s voice gave no hint of what he was thinking, but his face was an open book.

 

            “Well… if I sta—hey!”

 

            The rest of her words disappeared in her throat as Spike took the pig and, using the back of his hand to sweep the candles off a stone shelf, he reverently placed it in the middle. Giving it an affectionate pat, he turned to smile at the bewildered slayer.

 

            “He looks pretty happy there, don’t you think?”

 

            Her face relaxed into a genuine smile as she nodded her head.

 

            “Yeah, I think he looks pretty happy.  I think he’s glad to be here.”

 

            “I don’t think I can tell you how happy I am to have him here, love.”

Spike’s voice had deepened and his eyes darkened as he once again held her against his body.  “I don’t think I have the words.”  He dipped his head and brushed his lips across hers before capturing them in one of the bone-melting kisses she was already learning to associate with the vampire she’d thought she knew so well.

 

            “Lips work,” Buffy gasped, allowing her body to mold itself to his.  “Words… overrated… want… lips…”

 

            With a soft growl that reverberated all the way down to her toes, Spike swept her up and was across the crypt in a few long strides, pausing when he reached an opening in the floor that Buffy had never noticed before.

 

            “Trust me?” he asked softly.  At her timid nod, he stepped through the opening and dropped to the level below, landing so lightly that she barely registered that they had stopped.  She stared around in amazement, taking in the large, four-poster bed, the thick rugs covering the dirt floor, the armoire and the roll-top desk in one corner.  A single large candle provided the only illumination, although Buffy could see what looked suspiciously like an electric nightlight glowing from well down the darkened tunnel at the far end of the room.

 

            “Spike? Where… wha—when…?”

 

            He ducked his head shyly and admitted, “Did a bit of shopping after I left you.  Some of this stuff was already here, but I wanted you to feel comfortable – as comfortable as you could, anyway.  I know a hole in the ground isn’t what you deserve, love, but until I can—”

            She interrupted his apologetic explanation with another lengthy kiss; one that ended with the two of them tumbling onto the bed as Spike staggered across the room. With a giggle, she broke free of his demanding mouth and squirmed all the way onto the fluffy bedding until she was against the headboard. She smiled up at him, her own eyes darkening as he crawled across the bed to her on all fours, looking every bit the predator that he was.

 

            “This is where you tell me you’re only here for the kip, Slayer,” he growled, even as he began to rain kisses down the side of her face and neck.  “‘S your last chance to protect your virtue.”

 

            “Don’t wanna protect my… virtue? Is that one of those old-timey words that you use to remind me that you’re older than dirt?”

 

            Instead of answering her, the vampire continued his assault on her neck, smiling when she caught an unnecessary breath as his blunt teeth grazed her throat where the scar from his bite was still visible.  When he put his lips around the mark and began to suck on it vigorously, she gasped and arched up, using her powerful arms to pull his body down against her.

 

            Spike rested on his elbows, continuing to suck on her mark while he reveled in the feel of having her strong, soft body writhing underneath his.  He allowed his entire weight to settle onto her, temporarily stilling as he heard her sigh in contentment.  He took his mouth off her throat to look into her lust-filled eyes.

 

            “You know I’m bloody batshit-crazy about you, don’t you, Slayer?”

 

            “Translation, please,” she whispered, breaking his gaze and running her own lips along the soft skin on his throat.  She growled softly when she encountered the scar from his turning bite, nipping hard at it with blunt teeth before moving on.

 

            “I love you, you disrespectful” … kiss … ”bossy” … kiss … ”beautiful” … kiss …”sexy”… kiss …”childe”. With his last word, he once again fastened his mouth on hers and they were lost in each other.  With no need to breathe, the kiss went on and on until the desire building up inside their bodies began to demand more.  Buffy was moving under him, her legs apart so that he could press against her where and how she wanted him.  Her legs came around his hips to hold him there while she ground against him, small whimpering growls coming from her throat.

 

            With an effort, Spike tore his mouth from hers, kissing her face frantically as he gasped, “Wait, love, wait.  Let me do this right.  Please.  Don’t want it to be too quick.”

 

            Ignoring her whimpered protest, he shoved himself far enough off her body that he could begin pushing her sweatshirt up until he could see the black lace bra that she had hidden under it.  With an appreciative growl, he pulled the shirt off her willing arms and slid back down the bed, pulling her sweat pants with him as he went.  When they were off, joining her kicked off shoes and socks on the floor, he ran his eyes back up the length of her legs until he could see the light brown curls peeking out from the scrap of damp lace covering the source of the intoxicating aroma he could now smell.

 

            Beginning at her ankle, he kissed his way up one leg, pausing to nibble on the skin behind her knee before draping that leg over his shoulder to give him more access to what he wanted.  Buffy’s hips were already moving as he nipped and licked at her through the lace.  When he finally used his teeth to rip the lace off and swept his tongue from one end to the other, she arched off the bed with a shriek and grabbed his head with both hands.

 

            While he worried her clit with his tongue and blunt teeth, his hands were busy moving her bra out of his way so that he could caress the breasts and hard nipples waiting for his touch.  Buffy’s head was tossing from side to side as he put over one hundred and twenty years of practice into making her first orgasm with him something that would wipe Angel’s one-time love-making out of her mind.  When her gasps and whimpers were coming faster and faster, and her grip on his hair was becoming painful, he pulled her swollen nubbin into his mouth and sucked on it until she had stopped shuddering under him and was lying limp, gasping for unnecessary air.

 

            Feeling more than satisfied with himself, he rose to his knees and pulled his own shirt over his head, throwing it away and unbuckling his belt in almost the same motion.  Buffy’s half-open eyes widened as he pushed his jeans down and the object that had been pressed against her earlier came into view.  Torn between curiosity and embarrassment, she kept shutting her eyes then opening them again to take quick peeks at his naked body when she thought he wouldn’t notice. 

 

            Damn! He noticed.  She blushed as she caught a glimpse of his cocky smirk.  Spike ran one hand down his naked chest, smiling at the way her eyes followed it all the way down to the dark-blond curls from which his cock was jutting.

 

            “See anything you fancy, pet?” he purred, standing up briefly to kick his jeans onto the floor.  When she glared at him for calling her on her obvious admiration, he laughed softly and again knelt down between her open thighs. He ran his hands up the insides of both legs, moving past what she had thought was his target and up the silken skin of her stomach until he reached her rib cage. With a quick movement, he dropped onto the bed and rolled on to his back, pulling her with him to straddle his hips. His hands made quick work of the clasp on her bra, and he tossed it onto the growing pile of clothing scattered about on the floor.

 

            Lifting his head, he fastened his mouth around one rosy nipple, sucking on it until Buffy was moaning and pushing it into his mouth even harder.  His cock was bumping against the cheeks of her ass, seeking the opening in which it wanted to be buried.   Staring into his eyes, Buffy fought back the urge to look away as she slid down until she was poised over him. Spike’s mouth came off her nipple with a soft “plop” as he met her gaze with wonder and growing desire.

 

            Never taking their eyes off each other, Buffy lowered herself onto his ready cock, which Spike had quickly moved to hold into place with one hand, the other hand resting on her hip.  Slayer healing being what it was, and well over a year having passed since her disastrous night with Angel, they found that – to their dismay – the Slayer was as tightly closed as she had been on her seventeenth birthday.

 

            “I’m sorry, love,” Spike managed to get out as he fought the demon’s urge to force its way in.  “I’m afraid it’s going to hurt.”

 

            “News flash, Spike.  Number one – I’m a slayer, so yay for high pain thresholds; number two – been there, done that already and lived to tell the tale; and – big plus for number three – I’m a vampire.  Didn’t you tell me we like a little pain with our pleasure?”

 

            “That we do, pet.”  He gave her a feral grin and pushed his hips up as he pulled her down with both hands.  The small, fleshy barrier gave way and he slid into her; a tiny gasped “oh!” the only sign that she’d felt anything beyond the totally new sensation of having Spike inside her.  She looked down at his face, watching his demon emerge and totally unaware that her own face had shifted as well until she bent to kiss him and their fangs clashed together.

 

            The taste of each other’s blood as their torn lips and tongues met was distracting enough for them to almost forget what the rest of their bodies were doing.  While their hips began a rocking motion that was as old as life itself, they sucked and licked as though starving.  As the urgency lessened, they became more conscious of the sensations building in their lower bodies and both slid back into their human faces.

 

            Spike gently rolled them over so that he was once again above the slayer, his hips never stopping their gentle motion and his lips now free to whisper his devotion into her willing ears.  Buffy’s arms and legs wrapped around her sire, feeling, for the first time in her life, the absolute connection that came from having shared both blood and sex with another vampire.  She unconsciously tightened her interior muscles, pleasantly surprised when Spike hissed and began to croon encouragement in her ear.

 

            “Oh, yes, love.  Like that, Buffy.  Love you, my wonderful talented girl.  Do that again, sweetheart; squeeze me, you are making me hurt in all the right ways…”

 

            As he babbled in against her neck, his hips were moving faster and harder until he was pounding into her, game face to the fore once again.  As Buffy met him thrust for thrust, digging her nails into his churning buttocks, she allowed her demon full rein also.  They climbed to their impending release, each striking at the same time and burying their fangs in each other’s throats, pulling hard on the borrowed blood there as they rode out simultaneous orgasms.

 

            Spike slowly removed his fangs from Buffy’s neck, licking the wounds closed before lapsing back into his human face.  She followed his lead, licking the marks she’d made over Drusilla’s original bite and then pushing her demon away.  For minutes they lay together, coming down slowly from the heights to which they had climbed together.  Finally, he rolled off, pulling her with him to snuggle against his chest.

 

            “So,” she began, stopping to clear her throat and tame the squeak in her voice.  “I guess that’s what they mean by `hurts so good’, huh?”

 

            She felt his chest rumble with laughter as he tightened his arms around her.   “I doubt anyone has ever made it hurt quite that good, my love,” he said, making no attempt to hide the admiration in his voice. He reached down and pulled the rumpled bedclothes up over their bodies before he continued.  “And I doubt anyone ever will.   All they can do is envy us.”

 

            Buffy’s wide yawn was followed immediately by an attempt to apologize, but with a gentle chuckle, Spike ran a soothing hand across her forehead and encouraged her to close her eyes.

 

            “Didn’t you want to do it again?” she asked plaintively, even as her eyes were drifting shut.

 

            “ I do, love, and we will.  But you need to sleep now and so do I.  We have the rest of our unlives to practice making love to each other.”

 

            “Practice? You mean we could get better at it?”

 

            “I’m countin’ on it, Slayer,” he said with a trace of his usual cockiness. “I’m definitely countin’ on it.”

 

            “ `K, then,” she murmured into his chest. “Sleep now, practice later.”

 

            Safely underground and protected from the deadly sun, the two vampires – one old, one almost brand new — fell into the day’s deep, restorative sleep, each confident that when they awoke the other would still be there.

 

The End?

 

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