Palpatine 10/18/17 09:43 pm Granted, and thank you, Pari, for pointing that out to me, so that I could write to the author and address the issue personally. I'm most grateful. Pari 10/07/17 01:42 am @Palpatine authors are in charge of the banners they add to their stories, so you will need to contact them personally to let them know their banner pic is not showing. Pari 10/07/17 01:41 am @kelticmoon, I added some back but they are not updated, meaning things you find on the default skin may not be on the other skins :) kelticmoon 10/05/17 10:47 pm Where are the other skins that use to be here? Palpatine 10/05/17 03:52 pm Some of the pictures seem to be having real trouble being looked at, they keep on saying "enable third party hosting", a real problem it seems. Pari 09/25/17 10:11 pm Hey nmcil we got this strightened via email, thanks for the donation. Thanks to all who donated as we are now paid up through/to Jan 2019! nmcil 09/21/17 03:08 am How can we contribute using PayPal? nmcil 09/21/17 03:05 am What happen to the PayPal donation. I USE PayPal. squawks 05/18/17 09:16 am pj! I remember wishing one of your stories would be finished seriously about a decade ago. Amazing. I just tried an old password I used to use and amazingly got in too. Memories! pj 03/20/17 06:20 am 10 yrs later, i finally rem my username and password. Pari, you rock. Hope you are well.
Hello!! Yes, it’s me, and with a new long fic. I’m all bouncy!
This fic is a big challenge for me. It’s canon-ish and it’s about more than getting Buffy and Spike together. I hope I manage to tackle this challenge and I hope you like the journey. Oh, and if you’ve read Mixing Business with Fanfic… remember how jittery I was about that? I’m twice as much now! WARNING: This Buffy has two Spikes, and will be having sex with them both. There will also be m/m/f. Thank you, so very much, Kristi, for working so hard on the outline and finding every possible plot hole I could land myself in. Thank you my wonderful Tina, for finding time to beta for me in the middle of such a busy phase of your life. Thank you Andrei for test-reading, calming me down, urging me on, and loving me. I love you!
Buffy rubbed her left hand down her jeans looking at it in wonderment.
She’d had no feeling in that hand since… No you don’t. But thanks for saying it… Her stake held firmly in her right hand, she entered the weathered building, absentmindedly wiping a stray tear from the corner of her eye with the other, taking the time to follow the lonely teardrop with her eyes as it glided from knuckle to knuckle. Two miracles in one day. She snorted at the thought. She didn’t want the feeling back. She didn’t want to be able to cry. Spike didn’t get his life back, and there was nothing left worth crying for.
Nothing left worth living for.
The heel of her Docs landed on a piece of broken glass and she wrinkled her nose at the crunching noise. Guess he was onto something wearing these. The glass would have cut through thin leather. A smile was caught and extinguished before it dared make its appearance on her face. Nothing left worth smiling for, nothing worth laughing for. Nothing. He died so she could live. Another snort. LIVE?
The tingles at the back of her neck alerted her to the proximity of the one she was stalking and she spun on her heel with a crazy glint in her eye, the same one Dawn had said she couldn’t stand facing any more before moving in with Giles. “Come out, sucker. Give me something to fucking sing about!”
Someone had sneaked up on her. No no no no. She knew what would happen. She had been there before. She would round the corner, all ready for a fight and she would hear him say, “Hello, cutie,” and her heart would stop. And then she would look up and it wouldn’t be him. It would be the Immortal. Smiling at her and asking if she remembered him. And his accent would be Italian and for the millionth time she’d wonder how on earth she’d ever confused him with Spike. Only then it would be Spike again. Burning.
“Buffy? Talk to us.”
His hand was reaching out and she took it in hers knowing that it wouldn’t be him again until it was too late…
…that she’d wake up screaming.
Only this time she wasn’t alone in bed when she woke up drenched in sweat and tears, her breath wheezing, her heart banging against her ribcage, her throat sore, and the echo of her inhuman cry in her ears. There were arms wrapped around her; hands tracing her face; voices, one voice – the right accent – times two, whispering soothing words in her ear; and two cool bodies framing her shuddering form. “Spike?” she croaked and felt a head nod against her right shoulder.
“We’re both here, luv.” William’s voice came from her left.
“Good,” she whispered, in the determined voice of a spoiled child. “Don’t go anywhere.”
Spike rolled her to the side, her back to him and both vampires shifted closer to her, touching the entire length of her body. William raised her leg and draped it over his hip, smoothly sliding inside her. It wasn’t passionate, and it wasn’t about sex. It was about feeling whole, and as Spike hugged both lovers, lazily rubbing his cock against her lower back, all three felt just that.
The Immortal sank back in his deep purple settee, a glass of champagne in hand. He swirled the golden liquid, enjoying the fizzing sound as much as the view of the bubbles clashing and popping. He was a lover of beauty, always had been, and took great pleasure in the little things in life. Like fine liquor and oysters.
He grinned his Cheshire-cat grin and brought the champagne flute to his perfect lips. He refused to revert to his normal form unless he really had to, as it insulted his aesthetics. All but one of the rooms in the castle he called home had gilded mirrors, for him to admire his handsome face and tall, sculpted body, conveniently glossing over the fact that they weren’t what they seemed anymore. They had been real once, millennia ago, when he inhabited a completely different dimension. Now they were just memories he worked hard on keeping solid, and he did a pretty good job, if he said so himself.
Women never resisted him. He always had whom he wanted, for as long as he did, and occasionally enjoyed the company of virile young men in his bed. Nobody could turn him down or leave him. Nobody ever had. Except that schifosa, the Slayer. If he had a mother, she would have told him that every cloud had a silver lining. The way things were, he’d just happened to have read that saying and his grin became wider as he once again went over what that lining entailed in his particular situation.
Worst case scenario he would maintain his perfect record of nobody turning him down.
“Sofia,” he called, clapping his hands once. An olive-skinned beauty of about twenty entered the room almost immediately, and took an elegant bow not getting too close to him.
“You called for me, sir?” she asked in a melodious, slightly accented voice.
“Yes. Be a darling and bring me some oysters, si? And you’ll be spending the night with me.”
“Si, Signore.” Her lascivious smile and the way she flipped her waist-length hair as she turned to go, the raven mane caressing her back, the light catching the lustrous curls, made him forget about the sting of the rejection he had received from Buffy. He would go dark for the night and have the blonde back in his bed soon enough. His plan was already in motion.
“But why does it have to be today?” Buffy whined, stubbornly refusing to open her eyes. “I want to spend today in bed. With you.”
“Most of today is gone already, kitten. Plus, we spent yesterday in bed,” William replied, reaching down from his sitting position against the headboard to run his thumb along her cheek. “And the two days before.”
“No, we didn’t. We got up and ate. And showered.”
“One, we didn’t shower as much as needed,” Spike offered entering the room naked and dripping, “as you smell like you’ve been doin’ nothin’ but shaggin’ for three days in a row. Which is what you did.” He smirked. “And as much as I love that particular smell on you, I left you some hot water ‘cause your mates won’t.” He neared the bed and popped a cigarette in his mouth, speaking around it. “And two,” he lit the cigarette and took a deep drag, “we didn’t get up and eat. You, Slayer, had all your meals brought to you in bed.”
“As did you,” she answered with a cheeky grin, barely cracking one eyelid. “And I didn’t hear you complain about it. Now where’s breakfast?”
Spike chuckled and looked at William, indicating the foot of the bed with a tilt of his head. William seemed confused, so Spike pointed at Buffy’s feet, which were sticking out of the covers before moving towards them. The other vampire stood and followed his example and with their superhuman speed they each grabbed a dainty ankle and pulled, sending their lover tumbling to her ass on the floor.
“Oh my God, you’re so dead!” She sprang up, sleepiness forgotten in a flash, and jumped on William’s back as he turned to flee to the bathroom. “And you’re piggybacking me.”
She dug her heels into his hips. “Faster, faster!” She couldn’t believe she was giggling. She couldn’t believe she was genuinely happy after so long. She couldn’t believe she had everything she wanted, for once, and yet she was so completely dreading facing her friends and letting them know what – who – it was that made her so contented.
She had decided to come clean with them, to not hide her relationship this time around; she just didn’t want to do so today. Or for a week. Or a year. She wanted to stay in this cocoon of love for as long as she could before having to face the disapproving faces of people who thought they knew what was best for her. Buffy wasn’t worried she’d back out of this newfound happiness; she would fight tooth and nail to hang on to it. Only thing was, she was worried she would have to sever her bonds with people that had been in her life for so long while doing so. Not that she and those who used to call themselves the Scoobies were all that close those days. She couldn’t handle that they wanted her to move on, and they obviously had a hard time dealing with the fact that she wouldn’t.
William got them both under the showerhead and winked at Spike who turned the water on full force. Buffy tried to jump down, but William had a steel grip on her wrists in front of his sternum. “Stop wriggling, luv. You need a shower.”
“But he said there was hot water. This is so definitely not hot.”
“You’ll survive,” said Spike, flicking the ash from his cigarette into the toilet bowl. “But don’ stop wrigglin’. Love lookin’ at your bum like that.”
“Come here and tell me that, Slayer.”
“Oh, I will.” She spluttered. “Or you could come here and shampoo my hair.”
He didn’t need to be told twice, especially when she wriggled her ass.
Willow hung up the phone and bit the corner of her lips, a frown forming on her face as she turned to face the rest of her housemates who sat around the table, having a late lunch. “That was Buffy. She’ll be by this evening.”
“Nice of her to remember us. She may even remember her duties if she keeps this up,” remarked Kennedy and Willow’s frown got deeper.
“Did she sound ok?” asked Dawn, and Giles muttered “Does she ever?” adding some bourbon in his cup of coffee.
Xander was trying to swallow a mouthful of roast beef, but his smile at the thought of seeing his friend – something that didn’t happen all that often those days, unless there was an Apocalypse threatening – reached his single eye.
“That’s the thing. She sounded… perky. As in perky high school Buffy. With the babbling and the… perkiness,” said the redhead thoughtfully and tried hard to ignore how the young Slayer she was thinking of breaking up with rolled her eyes.
Xander finally managed to win the fight with his food and remarked cheerfully that maybe she had met someone, to which Dawn added, “Or discovered the beauty that is Prozac,” sounding a lot more concerned and bitter than she was aiming for.
“Well, maybe she managed to dispose of the Immortal.” Rupert washed the statement down with a gulp of coffee that he hoped would ease the headache growing between his eyes. If it had any effect, it wasn’t immediate.
“Yeah, or he fucked some happiness into her,” snorted Kennedy, blatantly defying the glares shot her way, and Willow had to remind herself how not nice it was to zip people’s mouths up with magic.
Instead she gave her girlfriend what she hoped was a warning look and said, “I guess we’ll all find out soon enough.” trying to sound casual.
“Pet, fixing my lapel isn’ goin’ to make them like me more than they did last time.” Spike was dreading the meeting more than Buffy was. Sure, he’d been privy to what happened in his future, or what would happen in William’s past – and wasn’t all that way too confusing? – and how he’d atoned and things had become civil between them, but he somehow couldn’t see them all accepting him with open arms.
He felt jealous of William and snorted at the hilarity of the thought. There was nothing to be jealous of him for, he won on all accounts. He hadn’t tried to rape his girl. The thought of actually trying to do so, of the hurt he had to feel inside to lose it to the point of doing something like that brought tears to his eyes, and he was glad Buffy’s attention was now trained on his back, where she tried to straighten invisible crinkles on the heavy leather. He hadn’t gone through all the shit William had to get a soul, of all things, and still he got the girl. Yes, he was having it much better than William, who had to go through a second Apocalypse and watch Angel die the moment he got Sanshued, but he couldn’t help envying the calmness his older self seemed to possess, even if he was by far the better looking of the two.
What Spike didn’t realize was that William was as capable of hiding his fear as he was. William was not calm, he was just trying to appear that way so that Buffy wouldn’t blow a gasket. So, his Slayer had said that what had happened in that bathroom, now buried under tons of Sunnydale rubble, belonged in the past and should be forgotten, but he knew none of her friends would see things the same way. Although things had started to change in their attitudes towards him before Sunnydale fell, he knew that they would choose to remember him as the monster that had defiled their Golden Girl.
“Can’t you put some gel on your hair? It’s all over the place.” Said Golden Girl scrunched up her face in dismay and he held his tongue, his new self not wanting to point out how she had made a mess of his curls just minutes after they got out of the shower. Some things never changed, and neither did Buffy’s tendency to use sex as a painkiller or distraction. Only this time she loved him. All of him.
“Leave the man be and let’s go. How far is it to where we’re goin’?
“Just half an hour drive.” She waved a set of car keys in front of the dumbfounded vampires’ faces and turned towards the front door.
“You drive?” they asked as one.
“Yup. And it was mighty hard finding a black DeSoto and getting it shipped all the way here.”
They chased after her, arguing that they could walk, and weren’t cars not allowed in the centre of Rome, anyway? She shushed them both and said neither her place nor The Manor that housed the new Council headquarters, and enough Slayers to make sure vampires would never bother Italy again, were in the centre.
All they could do when she refused giving either of them the car keys was cry, “Shotgun!”
They both ended up in the back seat, whining in a very unmanly way.
The house Giles shared with Willow, Xander, Dawn, and Kennedy was adjacent to the headquarters. They all believed they had given up too much to have to actually share their lodgings with super-teens that never quieted down, and Buffy was immensely grateful she wouldn’t have to pass through The Manor’s gate – and probably raise an alarm due to her companions – to get to them.
Standing in front of the heavy wooden door, Spike and William flanking her, she reluctantly raised her fist and knocked, before reaching out and holding both of their hands, praying it would be one of the girls, preferably Willow, and not Giles or Xander that opened the door.
She should have known she didn’t have enough credit left for another wish so soon after being granted Spike and William back.
Chapter End Notes:
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