All That Glisters by Starlight_Slayer
Summary: When Buffy Summers finds herself at the mercy of one of the most ruthless gangsters in America, Ethan Rayne, it seems that all is lost for the tragic teen.

But can hope come from the most unlikely source? And can troubled hearts finally find peace?
Categories: NC-17 Fics Characters: None
Genres: Action, Angst, Romance
Warnings: Adult Language, Buffy/Other, Character Death, Freaky/Kinky, Rape, Sexual Situations, Spike/Other, Violence
Challenges:
Series: None
Chapters: 24 Completed: No Word count: 75230 Read: 26470 Published: 05/14/2012 Updated: 12/17/2012

1. Gilded Tombs Do Worms Enfold by Starlight_Slayer

2. Like birds I' th' cage by Starlight_Slayer

3. Barrel of Rotten Apples by Starlight_Slayer

4. Enjoy'd no sooner by Starlight_Slayer

5. Let me not think on't by Starlight_Slayer

6. Unpack My Heart With Words by Starlight_Slayer

7. Strip Thine Own Back by Starlight_Slayer

8. Et Tu Brute? by Starlight_Slayer

9. Strange Bedfellows by Starlight_Slayer

10. No Might Nor Greatness by Starlight_Slayer

11. What Plighted Cunning Hides by Starlight_Slayer

12. Out, Damned Spot by Starlight_Slayer

13. Let Me Be That I Am by Starlight_Slayer

14. Many Fond Fools by Starlight_Slayer

15. Action is Eloquence by Starlight_Slayer

16. One Man in His Time by Starlight_Slayer

17. The World’s Mine Oyster by Starlight_Slayer

18. The Littlest Doubts Are Fear by Starlight_Slayer

19. No Evil Angel by Starlight_Slayer

20. Oh, What a Tangled Web We Weave by Starlight_Slayer

21. Winged Cupid Painted Blind by Starlight_Slayer

22. But Never Doubt I Love by Starlight_Slayer

23. One of Which is Verbal by Starlight_Slayer

24. Breathe Life into a Rock by Starlight_Slayer

Gilded Tombs Do Worms Enfold by Starlight_Slayer
Author's Notes:
I hope you all enjoy.
The crashing of furniture resounded in the small apartment, as the stocky man found himself thrown through a glass table, landing with a painful thump on the floor.

Panting he desperately struggled to catch his breath, spitting out the stringy blood in one violent exhale, before raising tortured eyes to the two burly men ominously looming over him like an impending storm.

“You were warned this would happen if you didn’t have Mr. Rayne’s cash.” The taller man sneered in what sounded like a British accent. He was well over 6 feet tall and almost as wide as his height, with bulging muscles that were covered with questionable tattoos. He ran a hand through his jet black hair before grabbing the prone victim by the scruff of his collar and hauling the smaller man to his feet.

“Well? Where is his bloody money?” His voice was raspy and low, enough to chill anyone to their bones.

‘Bloody money’…more like ‘blood money’.

“Come on, tell us, Hank. Stop fucking around. Time for playing is over. It’s do or die time now.” His compatriot barked out a scoffing laugh, lighting a cigarette and leaning against the doorjamb.

Hank Summers swallowed noisily, trying to find his voice.

Pleadingly he raised his gaze to the two men.

“Please, don’t kill me! I can get the money. I just need…a little more time.”

He knew that he was really on his last life right now. He never should have borrowed a cent from lowlife scum like Ethan Rayne, but his gambling and drinking had gotten out of control, and with a motherless 17 year old living under his guardianship, he felt like he’d had no choice.

However, a string of bad bets and the ensuing alcohol binges had whittled away the money in a matter of months, meaning he no longer even had the initial capital to repay to the loan shark, never mind the extortionate interest that Rayne was demanding.

“There’s no more time, Hank.” Bulky spoke up, his lips peeled back in a grim mockery of a smile. “Ethan gave you an extension last time, and that was your last bloody chance. It’s over, done, finished…and so are you.”

Dropping Hank to the floor Bulky cast a meaningful glance to his companion. Smoky, as Hank had come to think of him, was almost as impressive in size as Bulky, but not quite so talkative, which did nothing to reassure Hank.

Hank Summers knew that he was not a brave man. Courage in the face of danger had eluded him ever since some of the bigger boys decided to pick on him in sixth grade.

But when he saw Smoky reach into his trench coat pocket and retrieve a wicked looking pistol, he felt his entire life flash before his eyes.

“Wait!” He begged, feeling like the world was in slow motion as Smoky raised the gun and took aim as his pallid face.

“Buffy!”

The shrieking, almost womanly cry from the man halted Smoky, and his aim faltered a little.

“What’s a buffy?” asked Bulky.

“She’s my daughter. She…she would be worth more than what I owe…in trade.”

“You’re offering us your daughter?”

“Yes…yes! Take her! She’s 17, beautiful. A man like Ethan could have some fun with her. More than he could have with 20 measly grand.”

Bulky seemed to take a moment to think it over, before turning slowly back to Hank Summers.

A genuine smile split the large man’s face, and Hank felt relief wash over him at the gesture, and even more so at the next words.

“You know, I think we will take the girl.” He strode over to where Smoky was standing with the lowered gun hanging by his side, almost laughing at Hank’s audible sigh.

“It’s funny,” Bulky continued, “A lot of people would probably call me and my boy here scumbags, bastards, probably even lowlife. But nothing…nothing…in this world could make me sell my own flesh and blood.”

All of a sudden Hank felt a cold feeling of foreboding settle in the pit of his stomach.

“What…?” His stuttering words clogged his throat.

“See here, Hank. It’s funny because, what this is, is a win-fuckin'-win situation for us. We can take the girl…and ...we can kill you too.”

“What? No! I’m giving you her in exchange for me.”

“Sorry Hanky old boy.”

Almost robotically he stumbled backwards, the glass from the broken table crunching unnoticed under his boots.

His eyes were solely trained on the gun.

While he heard the shot, strangely enough he didn’t feel it tear through him destroying his organs in the blink of an eye. It was as if he was outside of his own body, watching one of those old news reels.

However, agony brought the world crashing back to him momentarily and he did feel the blood bubbling up in his mouth, spilling out in tiny rivulets that ran down his chin staining his old shirt.

And he did hear feminine screams coming from a voice so familiar to him.

Buffy.

She must have arrived home. Poor girl. Watched her mother waste away from cancer, only to see her last living relative murdered. If it wasn't so tragic, and he wasn't dying, he might have laughed.

But it didn’t matter anymore, because darkness was fogging the edges of his vision, and his mind was dimming.

He’d always thought death would be stunningly painful, but it turned out that for Hank Summers, death was more peaceful.

A tumultuous mind finally laid to rest.

His body was barely cooling before his teenage daughter was dragged away by the men who now owned her. Men she had no idea even existed.

He didn’t see Bulky clap a hand over her mouth, while restraining her flailing wrists behind her slender back.

Nor did he see her dragged down several flights of stairs and cast into the back of a black van like a discarded piece of litter.

Her cries only fell on dead ears.

No, he didn't know any of it, because for Hank Summers, a lifetime of torment and pain was over.

But for Buffy Summers, it was only just beginning.
End Notes:
Please leave a review. I appreciate feedback. Thanks for reading!
Like birds I' th' cage by Starlight_Slayer
Author's Notes:
Here is the second chapter of this story. Thanks for reading and reviewing. Hope you all enjoy.

Warning in end notes...I didn't put it here because I didn't want to spoil the story.
When she finally came back to awareness, the first thing that shattered Buffy’s blissful unconsciousness was the pain splitting her skull in two.

Looking around, wincing as the pain worsened at the movement, she noticed she was in a small, bare room. It actually looked kind of like one of those old medieval dungeons that movie villains used.

The air was damp and stale, almost putrid, and the lack of windows alerted her to the fact that she was probably in some kind of basement.

One of her wrists was manacled to a shackle on the wall, and after giving it a few solid tugs, Buffy was fairly sure it wasn’t going to budge. With a sigh she gave up trying and leaned back against the damp stone wall with an anguished sigh escaping from between her lips.

What the hell was this place?

She vaguely remembered bidding goodbye to her two best friends, as they dropped her off at the small apartment she shared with her father, before walking into a scene that had shaken her to the very core of her being.

It was as she was turning the key in the lock that she had heard the unmistakable crack of a gunshot, and with a pounding heart had bounded into her living room only to be confronted with the sight of her dad bleeding to death on their hardwood floor.

Her entire being had come to a shrieking standstill and hysteria had taken over any kind of rational thought that she had.

However lacking as a father figure he had been, Hank was all she had left.

And in that moment she knew she was about to lose him.

Of course, the situation wasn’t exactly helped by Psycho Tweedle-Dum and Tweedle-Dee tackling her and bundling her into the back of a van.

God, what did they want with her anyway?

Naturally, to know what they wanted, she would have to try and figure out who they were first, and at that point she was pretty much all with the clueless.

Yeah, this didn’t look good.

And she really needed something for that headache.

The scrape and creak of the oak door brought her attention soaring back to the present, and her head turned towards the shadowy doorway. With immense trepidation she observed the men who passed through it, as they observed her equally carefully.

She recognized one of the men from earlier, even though she had only gotten a brief glimpse of him in all the commotion. His tattoo covered arms, jet black hair and hugely imposing presence were something that Buffy would take a long time to forget.

Accompanying him, was another man, with coffee colored skin, an average build, and a sneer etched on his face. Buffy immediately bristled at the way he studied her.

“So this is the new girl?” the latter asked.

“Yeah, gonna take her up to Ethan now. Let him give her a once over and then, maybe a bit of how’s your bloody father and then ship her off to one of the outposts.” Buffy cringed under the vile stare that she gave her. She felt like a bug under a microscope, ready to be studied and poked and prodded. Unfortunately she suspected that poking and prodding were the least of what this ‘Ethan’ the British guy spoke of was planning to do.

With two long strides, he made his way over to her and unclasped the manacles from the wall shackle as he hefted her to her feet, grasping both her wrists firmly together behind her back before snapping a pair of cuffs onto them. Carelessly, he shunted the young girl forward, and she almost tripped over her feet. She wanted to scream, shout, reprimand him, as she usually would when someone pissed her the hell off.

But her survival instincts were telling her right now that was a bad idea if she wanted to still draw breath tomorrow.

And she did want to live. So badly.

But she wasn’t sure whether or not she could live like this, a prisoner, without hint of escape or release.

As she was pushed up a thin spiral flight of concrete stairs and up into a corridor, she was struck by the finery of the place.

In all honesty, it wasn’t what she had expected considering her accommodations so far. The hallways were a sprawling mass of riches, with gold framed paintings lining the walls, bejeweled ornaments standing in cases between ornately embellished pillars.

Whoever this guy was, he was rich. And despite her limited experience in this area, beyond the Godfather marathon she had watched with some of her best friends back in 8th grade, this whole set up stank of mobsters.

No, this didn’t bode well at all.

It seemed that they traversed a hundred hallways, to the point of dizziness, before they came to a standstill in front of a mahogany door.

She was aware of one of the men knocking before hearing a cold cut British accent bidding them entrance, and being shoved through the door alone.

When it slammed behind her, she whipped her head round to try and negotiate some kind of escape plan, but a quiet throat clearing forced her to slowly turn her head to face the lone figure left in the room besides her.

The smell of old tobacco and whiskey was assaulting her senses in the small office, and she wrinkled her nose in disgust, both at the smell and at the man.

“So, you are Buffy Summers, I take it.” The man clearly wasn’t expecting an answer. He stood up from behind his desk and made his way over to her, rather lithely for his build and age.

He was a modestly built man, with dark hair, and tan skin that was just starting to be tinged with the haggardness of age. It was the look in his eyes that really cut Buffy down to the bone, however.

They seemed so…empty.

So evil

“Who are you?” She asked, finally finding her voice.

“That’s a good question. I look in the mirror every day and ask myself that. But we can’t ever really know ourselves, can we?”

With false bravado, she straightened up, and looked him dead in the eye.

“Actually I was just asking for a name, but I’m guessing you love to hear the sound of your own voice. You must be Ethan then.”

Ethan let out a rich chuckle, as he took a cigarette from his pocket and lit it. Another strong laugh followed when Buffy choked on the cloud of smoke that filled her lungs from his exhale, and leaned on the corner of the desk, studying Buffy where she stood not 2 feet from the door.

“You’re a feisty one, Miss Summers. Don’t meet many like you these days. I like that, it shakes things up a bit. Don’t like to get too accustomed to routine here, you understand, I’m sure. After all, there’s nothing quite so delicious as a little chaos. And yes, you are quite correct, I am Ethan. But feel free to call me Mr. Rayne.”

Ethan stubbed out the cigarette, took a huge gulp of some kind of alcohol from a crystal glass on his desk and approached her, like a predator stalking its prey. She shuffled back a little but that only provoked a smirk from the man.

“Now, Miss Summers, you should be pleased to be permitted to stay in these walls. Once you have been…used up, I can guarantee that your accommodations will not be quite so comfortable.”

In one swift movement, he pinned her body with his hands on either side of her head against the wall, evoking a pained gasp from her, and what sounded like a moan from Ethan as he ground his lower half against hers. She gagged as his smoky breath invaded her nostrils, and turned her face away from his. He was determined that she wouldn’t hide from him, or from what he was about to do, and grabbed her chin between oily fingers, forcing her gaze towards his own.

“Now, now, Miss Summers. You didn’t think I brought you here for tea, crumpets and light entertainment, did you? Oh, you did? What a precious little diamond you are!”

“Don’t touch me, you fucking bastard!” She hissed, wishing he didn’t have her pinned so tightly, so she could have crowned his jewels with her knee.

Cocking his head to one side, Ethan curled his lip up into a nasty smirk.

“But I own you now, dear Buffy.” She felt his hand settle on her breast, squeezing her delicate flesh hard enough to bruise. “And as I own you, I can touch you whenever, and wherever I please.”

With one savage motion Ethan tore open the flimsy fabric of her blouse, sending buttons flying to the floor. She whimpered pathetically and struggled in his grasp, but his hold was steadfast.

“No!” Her scream did little but make him wince, and he rubbed his lower regions against her even more vigorously.

Screwing her eyes tightly shut, she endeavored to muster the strength to push him away, but it seemed hopeless.

“You do know that your daddy dearest was the one who gave you to me, don’t you?” His malevolent laugh chilled her, but she wouldn’t give him the satisfaction of the reaction that he so craved. “Your father didn’t value you as much as he valued his own life. That makes you my property…chattel, you might say.”

He was worming a hand into her pants, touching the most intimate regions of her body, and she was powerless to stop him.

“Mmm, I love it when they struggle.”

Never before had things seemed so bleak.

The slamming of the heavy door made her heart leap with fear, and both she and Ethan spun round to see who had entered.

Standing before them was a leather clad blond man carrying a hip flask, and swaying on his feet.

“So, this a private bloody party, or can anybody join in?” His drawl was a deeper rougher version of Ethan’s, Buffy noted, as her captor loosened his hold on her.

“Bloody hell!” The dark haired man swore.

“What? Not pleased to see me…Dad?”

Buffy’s jaw dropped open as his swayed listlessly one last time and fell to the floor with a quiet crash and she sighed in relief as the iron hold was fully relinquished and Ethan fell to his knees to tend to this man who was apparently his son.

She would cry the tears for what had almost happened when she was alone though.

Ethan Rayne would never get the satisfaction of seeing them.
End Notes:
Warning: Attempted Rape.

Thanks for reading. Please review. :)
Barrel of Rotten Apples by Starlight_Slayer
Author's Notes:
Thank you all for reading and thanks to everyone who has reviewed.

I'm sorry this update has taken so long, but I finally have the new chapter of this story ready...so here it is.

I hope everyone enjoys.
Spike jerked back to consciousness like Satan himself was hot on his heels.

Actually it was less devilish and more watery…a freezing cold jug of water to be exact.

And apparently someone had poured it over his head.

The freezing liquid stung his every cell and it felt as if it was burning through his skin, eating its way down to his bones.

“Bloody hell!” Spike cried out, heaving himself up to a sitting position as the top of his head almost collided with his father’s nose. “What the bleeding hell is wrong with you?”

With an angry huff Spike shucked off his long coat, and pulled off his T-shirt revealing toned muscle covered by pale skin.

The water cascaded down his hair and face, dripping from his body like hundreds of tiny waterfalls, coating his body in a thin film of moisture that glistened in the dull light of the study.

Ethan laughed and walked around his desk, flopping into his chair while his son struggled to his feet. Spike could still feel the alcohol flowing through his veins thick and fast and it was leaving all the edges slightly blurred.

“Wrong with me, son? I’m not the one stumbling around drunk in the middle of the bloody day.” Ethan said, pouring himself a whiskey. “Besides, you wouldn’t wake up and the floor needs a wash. Two birds with one stone.” The dark haired man laughed at his own joke with a wry chuckle, but let his face fall when he saw the thunderous look that Spike was giving him.

“Yes, stone cold bloody sober you are.” Spike hissed sarcastically, gesturing to the glass of amber liquid in his father’s hand. “Wanker!” He added under his breath.

His father heard the hushed comment but merely raised an eyebrow at the thorn in his side. Spike always seemed to choose the most inopportune moments to appear and ruin his fun. Ethan’s cock was still hard and throbbing in his pants and as soon as his son departed he had every intention of picking up exactly where he left off.

Now…if he could just get rid of his boy extra fast…

The blond shook his head like a dog to dry off and sat down in one of Ethan’s office chairs, much to the older man’s displeasure.

“So are you going to tell me why you’re here? I thought you would still be with Drusilla in England.” Ethan asked with feigned interest.

“Don’t try and pretend that you care about what the bloody hell me and Dru are up to, Ethan.” He said, stressing his father’s name. “All you care about is that I interrupted your little grope session with that chit.”

Both men’s heads snapped round to look at the small blonde who had been forgotten in all the commotion of the last twenty minutes.

The young girl was seemingly trying to make herself as inconspicuous as possible, huddled in the corner with her arms wrapped around her middle and her back pressed tightly against the wall.

A tiny trembling shudder was detectable if you looked close enough, but when she noticed the attention focused on her, she raised her chin defiantly.

She was a pretty little thing in Spike’s eyes. He hadn’t really noticed when he’d come into the room on account of the fact that he could see three of everyone and everything, and also because she had an Ethan attached to her.

But now that he could get a good look, in spite of the fact that she looked as if she had been dragged backward through a barn, she was radiant in her beauty.

Spike shook his head to clear it. He really must have had too much to drink if he was thinking like that about one his dad’s bits of fluff.

“Oh, dear Buffy. I’ve been neglecting you. I’m sure you must be devastated.” Ethan sneered mockingly, receiving only a glare from the girl.

He tried to almost rape her, and he would have succeeded if his apparent wastrel of a son hadn’t unintentionally intervened.

And now he was…what?

Joking with her as if they were some kind of buddies?

“Feel free to keep right on with the neglecting, asshole.” Buffy murmured petulantly.

Ethan laughed but his expression morphed into a slight frown, as if daring her to challenge him further.

She looked at both father and son with intense hostility before dropping her gaze to the floor.

How the hell was she going to get out of this?

“Who is the bint anyway?” Spike asked, snatching the bottle of whiskey from his father and chugging it straight from the flacon without even bothering to use a glass. He ignored his father’s reprimanding glare as he put his booted feet on the old varnished desk top without a care.

“Don’t try to change the subject, William.” Ethan warned. “I want to know why you’re here.”

Slamming the bottle down onto the desk, Spike sighed and combed his fingers through his already mussed and still damp hair.

“Bloody Dru dumped me.” He said feeling his temper flare once again as he saw the image that had been emblazoned onto his mind the previous day.

His girl and his cousin writhing together in ecstasy.

“I wondered when she would wake up and see some sense.” Ethan joked but he only received a nasty glare from his son.

“Piss off you sodding git!” Spike said. “Dru’s my world and without her I’m nothing.”

Ethan sighed. He’d heard the ‘Dru’s my world and without her I’m nothing’ speech a million times over the past ten years.

He didn’t really understand what his son saw in the woman.

In Ethan’s experience Drusilla Giles wasn’t even all that good in bed. She had always reminded him of a limp rag. It wasn’t as if she didn’t try, the girl was always very…pliable. But Drusilla had never been able really been able to bake Ethan’s cookies.

Of course his son lived in absolute and blissful ignorance about his clandestine trysts with Drusilla. Not that Ethan cared if the boy found out. In fact…it would make for rather an enjoyable watch.

“Why don’t you take one of girls for a spin?” Ethan suggested, as he tapped his fingers against the desk top, already bored with his son’s moaning. “You had fun with Faith last time, didn’t you? Now there’s a right little goer. Ooh, those thighs!”

Spike grimaced and scratched the back of his neck.

The ‘girls’, as Ethan called them, were high class hookers that his father owned in body and soul. Most of the high level businessmen in Los Angeles swore by the ‘Rayne Girls’ but Spike often swore by avoiding them except for in emergencies.

Although they were fun for a little while, sometimes spending too much time with them became torturous.

They had no spark inside them.

Most of them were just empty shells trained how to blow a guy’s load and then toddle off without question.

It was the one of Ethan’s activities that sickened him the most.

They couldn’t excite Spike.

Not like his Dru did.

“I don’t want any other bloody girl, Dad. I want Dru.”

Ethan groaned with frustration, his voice becoming harsh.

“Well Dru doesn’t want you, does she? Or she would be here begging for you to come back to her. But she’s not. She broke off your relationship.” Ethan took a swig of whiskey. “You’re a Rayne, son. You’re not that sniveling little boy you once were, running after a chit who doesn’t want you. Be a man.”

His father had always been that way with him. Ever since he was a small boy, he had always been judged by his dad’s perverse standards and he never met any of them. To Ethan, being a man meant raping, pillaging and destroying whoever crossed your path. It meant not having feelings beyond lust and greed, and taking pleasure in other people’s pain.

While, of course, some of that had rubbed off on the younger Rayne, Spike hated the reminder that he was bad-by-blood and could never be any better.

Losing his temper, Spike surged to his feet and picked up the chair he was sitting on, flinging it across the room and smirking in satisfaction as the wood shattered against the wall.

“Fine!” He yelled. “I will be a bloody man. I’ll take one of your sodding girls and shag the bloody living daylights out of the bint until she can’t walk and I can’t remember that bitch, Dru’s, bloody fucking name.”

In all honesty, Spike didn’t believe that was possible, but he was so sick of his father that the words spewed forth from his mouth without him having any control over them.

He paused, panting in his alcohol induced fury. “In fact, I’ll take that one.” He pointed to Buffy who inhaled sharply and shrank back away from him.

Striding over to her, heedless of his father’s calls for him to wait, he grabbed the young girl and pulled her to him, roughly jerking her body around, even as she fruitlessly struggled in his grip.

Leaning his head down and licking the shell of her ear with his soft tongue, he made her shiver, and neither of them was sure if it was in pleasure or disgust.

Pushing her ahead of him, he thrust her through the door and out into the elaborately decorated hallway of the mansion.

As they exited the stuffy office, the door swining heavily shut behind them, Spike grinned sleazily.

“Looks like you and I are gonna have some bloody good fun, love.”

Buffy held back the tears at the thought of what was going to happen to her.

Just how had her life come to this?
End Notes:
Thanks for reading. More updates coming soon.
Enjoy'd no sooner by Starlight_Slayer
Author's Notes:
So this update has been a long, long time in coming but it's finally here! And I'm hoping to regularly update in the future.

Sorry to have kept everyone hanging on that little cliffhanger for so long. There are some darker portions in this so please proceed with caution if you're easily offended.

I hope everyone enjoys this chapter. :)
Buffy struggled with all her might as the blond man kept a tight grip of her slight frame. He was deceptively strong, especially considering the fact that he smelled like he’d taken a bath in a tub filled with whiskey.



“You asshole!” she shrieked, bucking and biting at him. “I’ll kick your ass!”



“Hush that sweet little mouth, Princess, or I’ll find a better use for it than nattering,” he muttered into her ear as he pulled her forward.



Wisely, she snapped her mouth shut, but didn’t quit her struggles.



Unable to halt him, Buffy found herself dragged up the stairs and shoved roughly into a bedroom. She shivered with trepidation when she saw the blond lock the door behind them.



There was a chill in the atmosphere that made the place feel like a mausoleum. Momentarily she wondered whether this room would be her tomb.



The dim room was sparsely decorated with only a large bed in the middle of the room and a short chest of drawers under the window. On the black painted walls there were remnants of what looked like old posters that had been torn down at some point.



Spike thrust her against one of the black walls and ran a hand sensually down her side, bringing up goosebumps in his wake.



“Don’t touch me!” Buffy warned, pointing her finger at him.



Spike just laughed and gripped her wrist, pulling her flush against him. He slowly moved one large hand purposefully down her ribcage, halting on her hip. He drew an unintentional moan from Buffy before she realized what was happening.



“Stop me.” He whispered with a challenge thickly coating his words. “Come on, pet. If you want me to stop, then make me stop. Show me that fire.”



His voice lulled her into a kind of trance and for just a moment she allowed herself to become lost in the sensations that he was generating. The deep pools of his azure eyes pulled her in and she let her own aching eyes drift shut, giving up the fight.



After everything that had occurred in the past few days, feeling a gentle touch on her body was washing away some of the pain. In that split second it didn’t matter that he was Ethan’s son and therefore the progeny of Satan. All that counted was the feel of his fingers on her, like a fantasy that would have no repercussions.



However, this was as far from fantasy as things could get.



His hand slipped farther around to cup the curve of her ass, but the movement brought her slamming back to reality and she pushed him back violently.



“I will stop you. I won’t let you touch me you….evil thing!” Buffy hissed.



“Actually, the name’s Spike…”



“I don’t give a damn what your name is! I want to get out of here.”



“Not an option, love.” Spike slurred. “Apparently you belong to my Da. Which means you’re going nowhere. At least not until he’s done with you.”



“I’ll kill him,” she threatened. “And you too, if I have to.”



Spike’s eyes widened at how feisty this young girl was. She was just a slip of a thing but had more heart than most grown men he’d met. Such a tiny innocent child didn’t look like she could hurt anyone.



Just the thought of it made the laughter start to bubble up within him. It was like a tidal wave washing over his senses and he couldn’t contain it. Fuelled by several days of drinking, it spilled from his mouth and his hands dropped away from her, holding his stomach as torrents of laughter poured from deep within.



Buffy stared at him as if he’d totally gone insane and that only made him laugh even harder. He panted and wheezed as the giggles bubbled over the seam of his lips. It quickly morphed into hysteria but he couldn’t stop himself.



As she stared at him, Buffy wondered if she should hit him over the head and try to run but just the sight of him sent shivers down her. He’d clearly lost his mind and dealing with a psychotic, scarily strong man wasn’t on her list of sensible things to do.



But fortune favors the brave, right?



She was just about to launch herself at him with the aim of attacking when the laughter halted as abruptly as it had begun. The blonde followed his gaze and realized that he’d caught sight of something over her shoulder.



He shoved her roughly to the side and strode over to the chest of drawers where an oak picture frame was sitting atop it. He picked up the object forlornly and stared at it.



“Dru…” he mumbled sadly, not moving his eyes from the photograph.



Buffy peered at the picture from where she was standing frozen to the spot against the wall. She couldn’t make out the exact details but she could see a picture of what looked like Spike with a stunningly beautiful dark haired woman.



The brunette in the photo was attired in what seemed to be a dark crimson velvet dress, while Spike was dressed exactly the same as he was now.



Buffy suddenly became self conscious of her dirty clothes and matted hair on sight of the elegant woman in the frame.



“Who is she?” asked Buffy, wanting to break the silence. Silent-Spike was even scarier than attack-y-Spike. At least with attack-y-Spike you didn’t have to wait poised for his next move.



“None of your bloody business,” Spike bit out harshly. His voice was rough with the threat of impending tears.



“Okay,” sighed Buffy, moving over to the bed and slipping on to it. It felt good to rest her exhausted legs on the soft mattress. It was definitely better than the cold stone floor that had served as a bed for her the previous night.



Only moments later Spike whirled around and glared at Buffy. The blonde tensed under his critical gaze.



“You’re a woman,” he stated unnecessarily.



Buffy nodded. “Yes…”



“Well then tell me, pet. Why are women such faithless bitches that shag any sod they stumble across?”



“Excuse me? Faithless huh say what now?”



“Bitches! Bloody bitches. All you do is cheat and lie and shag around behind the backs of the men who love you.” His jaw muscle twitched as he spoke and the rest of his body vibrated with tension.



“Not all women are the same,” Buffy informed him with a frown. “Just because you clearly got cheated on and dumped by some ‘faithless bitch’ doesn’t mean you can act like super-asshole-man.”



His face turned red with fury as he digested her words and he stormed over to her. His strong arms pinned her to the bed, his face only inches away.



“Don’t you talk that away about her!” he spat threateningly. “You’re not a bloody patch on my Black Princess.”



Buffy coughed as whiskey fumes assailed her and turned her head to the side. “You just called her a ‘faithless bitch’, you nutball! I was repeating what you said. God, what is your freakin’ damage?” she yelled, trying to stay undaunted by the mixture of his proximity and volatility.



“She is a bitch,” he whined, his face softening. Spike sniffed sadly and rested his head on Buffy’s shoulder, sobbing silently. “But she was my bitch! I loved her so much. My Drusilla was my everything. She was my whole soddin’ world, Goldilocks. I’m nothing without her.”



“Sorry,” Buffy shrugged impotently, feeling increasingly uncomfortable. Seeing Spike cry was the last thing she’d expected.



In all honestly it made him seem even more pathetic than he had before, but somehow she thought telling him that would go down as well as a strip show in a monastery.



“I would have done anything for her. But all she wanted was to shag bloody Angelus and God only knows who else.” He rose to his feet and picked the frame back up, stroking the image of Drusilla. “I just wanted to make you happy, love.”



The image didn’t respond to him, of course. But the fact that it was just a picture didn’t matter to the drunken man. It was like she was deriding him by ignoring him. Fury coiled and sprung in his veins once again and he growled like an incensed lion.



“Bloody women!” he yelled, hurling the frame against the wall.



Buffy covered her face with her hands as it shattered but Spike didn’t even seem aware that she was there. He was lost in his own rage. She could see the muscles tensing and flexing under the skin of his bare back.



He reminded her of the Incredible Hulk and she thought that he might turn green at any moment.



“I gave you everything, baby!” he sobbed, kneeling down to pick the damaged frame up and staring at the photograph. Drusilla just continued to stare back mockingly from the frame, a slight smirk on her lips. “Bloody bitch!”



The frame dropped from his fingers again and he slammed his boot down onto the delicate wood and the remnants of the glass. He ground it under his heavy heel with tortured venom. A barrage of incoherent insults tumbled from his lips.



“Bloody, soddin’, cheating bint! Oh God Dru! Why? Why did you do it?” He fell desperately to his knees and Buffy’s eyes widened exponentially at the sight. “I gave you everything, love and you left me for that bleeding nancy boy! Tell me why you did it!”



Buffy couldn’t help but think that he looked like a child having a tantrum as he kneeled on the ground, tears running down his face.



He was definitely a paradox. On the one hand he was a bad-ass dressed in leather, silver chains hanging from his neck, rings on every finger and peroxide hair. Yet on the flip side he was a weeping mess lamenting his ex-girlfriend’s unfaithfulness.



The teenager frowned, wondering if maybe he was actually nuts. He was definitely exhibiting signs of psychosis. Great! Not only did she end up with an evil mobster’s son but he had to be insane too.



This was just her luck!



After several minutes Spike finally wiped his eyes and struggled to his feet. The broken glass crunched underneath his boots as he walked over to the bed and sat down. Buffy curled into herself even more tightly when she saw his approach. Even though she knew it was impossible she wished she could make herself invisible.



The blond man looked drained though as he slumped down onto the bed. His shoulders were down.



He seemed…broken.



She could sympathize with that. Not that she had sympathy for the psychotic mobster spawn. But she saw a part of herself in him right now.



They’d both been betrayed by people they loved and now they were both lost souls.



Of course the one thing that separated them was the fact that she was a good person and he was unadulterated evil.



“I’ve always loved her,” he mumbled, seemingly to the thin air as he no longer appeared to notice Buffy’s presence. He was lost in the hell of his own internal pain. “Ever since the first time I saw her. She was so…beautiful and beguiling. My ripe wicked plum, she was. Always juicy and ready for the taking. Never understood what she saw in a git like me. I wasn’t worthy of this goddess. God, I’m so useless!”



Buffy licked her lips but remained silent as she listened to him talking. There was a soothing quality about his voice when he wasn’t yelling and cursing. Despite the roughness of his accent, his deep tones were somehow mesmerizing.



However, there was a point when Buffy couldn’t take anymore. And that moment occurred when she had to hear the ‘ripe plum’ story for the twentieth time in as many minutes.



She’d been told never to poke a sleeping dog when she was a little girl but something snapped inside of Buffy and a scoff tumbled from her lips.



“God, do you ever stop whining?” she hissed. “You think you got it so bad but you don’t even know what bad is!”



“Big words from a little girl,” he retorted threateningly, his head whipping around to face her.



“I’m not a kid, Captain Peroxide.” She almost laughed at his growl, her fear slipping away as she gained confidence. “I’ve been through a whole bunch of shitty things.”



“Really?” he scoffed.



“Yes, really.”



“Like what?” Spike asked with a raised eyebrow.



“I…that is so not your business, Blondie!” She sighed and ran fingers through her dirty blonde locks. “If you wanna see hardship, just look at where I am now. Stuck with Psycho and Psycho Junior. So what if your girlfriend dumped you? It happens. Just stop acting like a big baby, suck it up and move on because no one wants to hear you whine and moan, like a broken shell of a man.”



His mouth gaped open at her words. Apart from Drusilla, no other woman had ever talked to Spike in that way. Most girls cowered from the bleached blond as soon as they found out that he was a Rayne, especially if they were his goddamn prisoner!



He wasn’t sure if he wanted to rip out her throat for her insolence or if he wanted to keep her forever thanks to her spirit.



One thing that he was sure of at that second was the fact that he needed to be inside of her. It was the sole thing that penetrated his whiskey-addled brain, like a primal instinct rising up in his blood and erasing all other rational thoughts.



Nothing turned Spike on like fighting…be it verbal sparring or an all out fist to fist duke out.



His swift, intense desire for Buffy cut through his pain and grief over Drusilla. Right now he craved the solace of her body, whether she was willing or not.



He lunged forward to where Buffy was sitting with her chin on her knees and grabbed at her. Instinctively she blocked him with her wiry arms and tried to slip away from him but he was stronger than she was despite his drunken state.



His mouth attacked hers relentlessly until she granted his tongue access. The blond tasted of booze and cigarettes. It should have been repulsive but he actually didn’t taste bad. And that thought restarted her struggles because thoughts like that were of the mentally insane and she wasn’t about to fall into that trap.



“Come on, pet,” he cajoled her, moving his lips to the curve of her jawbone. One of his hands was pushing her legs farther apart as he settled into the cradle of her thighs. “Open up for me. I know you want it.”



The soft, bare skin of his chest was rubbing against her, generating friction that made her body unconsciously respond even as her mind railed against what he was doing to her. She wasn’t a toy and she wouldn’t let this monster use her.



“No!” she cried, the earlier actions of his father rushing back to her memory. “Get off of me!”



The bulge of his cock poked into her flat stomach as he ground himself against her. Her wiggles didn’t exactly help matters and he swelled impossibly larger.



“Mmm. Just a little to the left there love.”



“You’re a pig!” she spat, still trying to buck him off.



“Now, now, let’s not get nasty here.” He smirked and nibbled on her neck eliciting a pained grimace from the girl. “I promise to make it good for you, Goldilocks. It won’t hurt a bit…unless you want it to.”



He reached into her damaged top, ripping it open where she had loosely retied the material, as his expert fingers sought out her cherry red nipples. One other arm banded tightly around her back before his other arm joined it, fixing her firmly in place. His lips were on her collarbone now and for a second she wondered if it would be easier to give in.



Easier to give up.



But Buffy was a fighter and she wasn’t prepared to let him take her that easily.



With some difficulty Buffy eventually managed to free her knee from where he was keeping it pinned under his own leg and bring it up sharply to his crotch, catching him smack in the most vulnerable area of his groin.



The blond’s entire body tensed as he roared out his pain. His eyes widened comically the moment that her bony knee connected with the delicate flesh of his family jewels.



“Bloody hell!” he shrieked, in the most unmanly way.



He glared down at Buffy and she felt a frisson of fear course through her. He looked like he was ready to throttle her to death.



And then the movement stopped. Spike suddenly went slack on top of her. She glanced up at his face and rapidly realized that he’d passed out, probably from a combination of the pain and the alcohol in his system. A small sigh of relief passed through her lips.



Maybe things were looking up.



Buffy endeavored to wiggle out from under his body but his arms were fixed too tightly around her abdomen to be able to free herself from his grasp. She exhaled in frustration and let her head fall back heavily against the mattress.



Okay maybe not so much with the looking uppage then.



She was trapped…in more ways than one.



Sure, she wasn’t getting raped right now, and moments ago that had been a definite possibility but she couldn’t see a way out of this. The young girl had never felt this vulnerable before. She was exposed and there was no way to cover up.



For the first time in her life Buffy Summers wasn’t sure that there was such a thing as hope anymore. It was like Pandora's Box had flung itself open, but this time nothing remained at the bottom.



Everything was bleak.



And she couldn’t see it getting better any time soon.

End Notes:
Thank you for reading! Please review. :)
Let me not think on't by Starlight_Slayer
When Buffy Summers was a little girl she always wanted to be able to fly. Every summer she would sit for hours in the park with her mother watching the birds go by in the sky. She always envied their delicious sense of liberty. They could go wherever they wanted, whenever they wanted, never being tied down.

Right now, Buffy was flying just like those birds. She was soaring high over the city, studying the little people underneath her. They looked like ants. Tiny little ants going about their pointless lives on a road that led to nothing but darkness and despair.

But that sort of life wasn’t for Buffy, because she had the freedom to fly and it was the most wonderful sensation. The sun warmed her tanned face and the wind tickled her hair and licked at her neck.

Licked at her neck? Wait…what?

Her eyes shot open and she squealed as she was yanked out of her blissful dream and back into a reality where a very unblissful blond was trailing his tongue over her neck.

He raised his head and smirked at her. “So Sleeping Beauty finally awakes,” he drawled.

“Get off me,” she choked out, and to her surprise Spike obliged, clasping his head when he moved.

“Bloody hell!” he sighed, grimacing as he rolled his neck. “These hangovers are always a bitch.”

Buffy didn’t respond, self-consciously pulling her ruined shirt closed over her chest. She felt grubby and sticky and all she really wanted to do was wake up from this horrible nightmare and awake back into a world where things made sense again.

Right now she felt more like she was living in a Shakespearean tragedy than in a normal life.

As she readjusted to being in hell she realized she must have fallen asleep the previous evening. The teenager had been so exhausted after everything that had happened that sleep had eventually overcome her, no matter how hard she’d tried to stay awake.

Now morning was here again.

A new day was dawning on her newly hellish existence.

Sunlight was trickling through the dirty window like golden treacle, dancing languorously over Buffy’s dirty hair, face and clothes. She looked like a wild child, sitting there all mussed and feral.

Her posture contradicted her appearance. It was overwrought, as if she was poised for fight or flight, and something about that didn’t sit well with Spike.

Usually he reveled in other people’s fear, but having this girl be scared of him didn’t actually make him feel good at all.

Instead, it made him feel like a true Rayne.

He raked his eyes over the tense girl and frowned. “You don’t have to cover up your goodies, Princess. I won’t touch them now.”

“Right,” she said skeptically. “You proved that with all the attempted raping last night.” Her voice was ripe with hateful accusation.

Spike winced at her blunt words but he didn’t negate them.

Through his alcohol dulled memory he could vaguely remember trying to force the girl. He wasn’t truly sure that he could have gone through with it though.

Rape was in his father’s bag of tricks, but Spike had never really enjoyed it. The only times he ever forced a girl had been to appease his father.

Ethan expected his son to be like him and when he was younger Spike had longed to make his father proud of him. So he’d done things he wasn’t proud of.

Things that he’d change if he had the power to alter history.

However, booze brought out the darker side of Spike. After all, he was still a Rayne and so the badness was pretty much baked right into his genetic code.

So yes, he’d tried to…force…her.

But what was one more thing added to the list that he’d change if he could?

A sudden pain in his crotch brought him crashing out of his thoughts and the memory of Buffy’s knee connecting with his sensitive cock came rushing back.

“Oi!” he said to the blonde girl on the bed. “Did you knee me in my bloody dick last night?”

Buffy’s eyes shot up to meet Spike’s. He actually looked just as lousy as she felt, which improved her mood a little bit. His hair was a mass of untamed blonde curls and his eyes were swollen and ringed with red.

She could see where she’d scratched and bitten at him during their tussle the previous night and felt a pang of satisfaction in her gut that she’d at least managed to damage him a little bit.

“Aw, did I hurt you?” she asked with mock sincerity, the beginnings of a smirk forming on her cherry lips.

He tilted his head to the side, daggers flashing from his eyes. “Yeah, you bloody well did! Could do a bloke some permanent damage putting it to him down there.”

“Not sure how that would be a bad thing with you,” she muttered, dropping her eyes to the mattress.

And then he was right there again, inches from her face. She wasn’t sure how he moved so quickly but she mentally admonished herself for purposely provoking him.

“Trust me, love.” He fisted her long hair in his hands and tilted her head back so she was forced to meet his gaze. She gritted her teeth and met his stare with equal venom. “I’m an understanding bloke a lot of the time….okay some of the time. But you ever try damaging my bits again and you won’t live to regret it.”

For a second Buffy just glared at him.

She hated this man. She despised him with every single fiber of her being. But even more so she loathed the fact that he had complete and total control over her. His threats weren’t empty threats, she was sure. But she still wasn’t going down without a fight.

Plucking up her courage she spit a globule of saliva in his eye.

He stared at her with a mixture of disgust and disbelief for a moment as the wet glob trickled down his cheek, before drawing back his hand and backhanding her across the face.

He caught her right on the cheekbone and a sharp crack echoed in the room as her head snapped to the side. Her body bounced against the soft mattress and it took her several seconds before she could get her breath back.

“You need to start learning some respect, little girl,” he warned her, suddenly seemed larger and more menacing as he loomed over her.

Buffy gritted her teeth even more tightly and turned her face back to him.

“Don’t you get it, Spike?” she asked with rancor as he wiped away her spit. “There’s nothing you can do to me that’s worse than this hell I’m already trapped in. It’s like being tortured with no way out. So do your worst, because I’m not afraid of you.”

“You haven’t seen my worst.”

He was on his feet again, bouncing on the balls of his toes as if he was spoiling for a knock down. His bare chest was glistening with a thin sheen of perspiration thanks to the combination of his annoyance and the physical effects of his hangover.

“Then show it to me. C’mon Spike, let’s see just what kind of man you really are.”

By God did he want to show her! It would be so easy to give in to his base desires and use her fragile body as a punching bag. She would be an easy outlet for his anger. The adolescent wasn’t as strong as him, in spite of her inner fire, and she would crumble like rotten plaster under his punches.

But then he really would be just like his father. How many beatings had he seen Ethan dole out to his mother before she died? He couldn’t even count the number of times she’d been nursing some injury thanks to his father.

No, he wouldn’t turn into Ethan.

Not today.

The peroxide blond clenched his jaw for a moment trying to steady his temper before exhaling all the pent up air inside of his lungs. It really would do no good to beat the girl to a bloody pulp right now. He just had to keep repeating that mantra to himself until he truly believed it.

With a huff he sank down onto the bed and rolled his neck on his shoulders.

“I’m not going to do my worst, love. I’m not going to hurt you.” He tried to convey his sincerity through his eyes but she didn’t seem convinced. “Listen, I have a bit of a temper, alright? When you provoke me I lash out.”

“I didn’t provoke you to try to rape me,” Buffy sneered and Spike sighed again.

And there was that word again. ‘Rape.’ It was one of those words that were bound to make people wince and shy away. Yet this brave teenager seemed to have no problem in hoisting him up on her sword to pay penance for his almost-crime. But he still wasn’t convinced of his own culpability.

“Bloody hell! Would you stop using that soddin’ word! It was the alcohol that made me…hurt you.” He ran a hand through his mussed blond curls, wanting to explain how he felt but not knowing how to. “Put together a few bottles of whiskey, a week without sleep and years of conditioning from dear Da and that’s what you end up getting. I wanted you, one way or another. And I was too drunk and thickheaded to hear you say no last night. But I’m no rapist, pet. Not really”

“All those excuses don’t make it okay.”

“Do you think I don’t bloody well know that?”

“Actually, yeah. That’s exactly what I think. God, look at you, Spike. You’re not even sorry! You tried to rape me! How many times do I have to say that before you get it through your dumb brain?”

Pushing down anger at her jibe, Spike nodded slowly. “I know that. I’m not going to give you an apology ‘cause we both know it’d be bloody worthless. But I shouldn’t have done that. I just wanted you.”

“Like father, like son, I guess,” she scoffed.

“I’m nothing like my father,” he denied, anger seeping through the edges of his voice.

The fact that she was voicing the same thoughts that haunted him didn’t help to abate the waves of inner loathing and fury washing through his polluted veins.

He would always be polluted with Rayne blood and there was no way to change that.

Buffy shivered and began to pick at her damaged fingernails. “You’re not so different.”

“I bloody well am!” He glared fiercely at the teen. Throughout his life he’d always been terrified of turning into his father, so when their similarities were pointed out, especially by a precocious teenager, it made his blood boil. “And you seem to be forgetting just who you’re talking to, Goldilocks.”

“Right. I guess so. I’m talking to the boy that’ll never be quite good enough to please Daddy, right? Isn’t that what you want, Spike? To prove your worth! That’s what every lost little kid wants.”

She knew that her insightful taunt had struck an over sensitized nerve when his body flinched and shuddered at her comment. However, he missed the look of sadness on her face as she delivered the remark.

Buffy had never managed to quite live up to her father’s own standards. He’d wanted her to have a better life than he could give her. He wanted her to have a future. And in the end he sold her into slavery.

Irony’s a bitch huh?

Unaware of Buffy’s own inner turmoil, Spike’s nostrils flared wildly and he gripped her around her throat. “I’m better than my father!”

“And you’re totally proving it,” she choked, pushing the words out of her constricted throat. “You’ll never be better than him because you want to be him.”

“I don’t!” he yelled.

And it was true, he didn’t. So why couldn’t he stop acting like his father?

So many of his actions mirrored those of Ethan but it was like it was innate to his nature. His hand fell away from Buffy’s neck and he shoved her back to the bed, standing and turning from her.

He opened his mouth to try and negate her accusation. “My father gets off on the pain he puts people through. The more you cry the more he enjoys it. Bloke would put the Marquis de Sade to bloody shame.”

“And you’re so different?” The derision in Buffy’s voice was still there but there was an added layer of genuine curiosity to her question too.

“Yeah, pet. I’m different from him. The difference is that he causes the pain ‘cause he loves it and me…well pain just seems to follow me around wherever I go.”

He looked pitiful, standing in the room, smelling like a whiskey distillery. Buffy actually felt a pang of empathy hit her.

He really was pathetic.

She waited for him to continue with his ‘explanation’, but he was prevented from elaborating when a sharp knock on the door sent two pairs of eyes whipping toward it.

Spike slowly rose to his feet and ambled over to open it. One of Ethan’s men stood on the other side, a smirk decorating the large man’s otherwise expressionless visage. Buffy remembered dubbing the man ‘Bulky’ when she’d first arrived in Ethan’s less than hospitable custody.

“Mr. Rayne wants to see you,” he informed Spike, pointedly ignoring Buffy.

“Does he?” asked Spike mockingly. “Maybe I don’t feel like coming down yet.” He glanced over his shoulder at where Buffy was sitting on the bed. “Maybe I’m having too much fun.”

Bulky didn’t look particularly amused or interested in Spike’s antics. “Mr. Rayne wants to see you now,” he repeated monotonously to the peroxide blonde.

Spike sighed and rolled his eyes. He clearly wasn’t intimidated by the gorilla in front of him but, with the hangover from hell haunting him in all its viciousness and a moody teen reprimanding him for his drunken actions, he figured it was just easier to give in right now.

“We’ll be down in a minute,” he told Bulky, who nodded and headed off down the hallway.

“So we’re going to have tea and cakes with your Daddy?” asked Buffy sarcastically after Spike shut the door.

“Shouldn’t think tea and cakes are top priority for him,” Spike replied, stretching like a cat.

The toned, tight muscles in his chest and abdomen rippled as he stretched, making Buffy suddenly very aware of his semi-nudity. He might be an asshole and a psycho but as a hormonal young girl she couldn’t help her body’s involuntary response to his statuesque build. Feeling her face flush a deep shade of red, she quickly looked away.

“Don’t you ever wear a shirt?” she asked Spike sharply.

He smirked. “What, you don’t enjoy ogling my naked little bod?”

He trailed one hand down his chest and tummy, stopping just above the waistline of his pants. Her eyes followed the path, bulging out of her skull as she noticed the obvious protrusion pushing against his zipper.

“Eww,” she sneered. “As if I wanna look at look you. Clothed or naked.”

He flashed her a look that told her he clearly didn’t believe her, but made his way over to the closet, rummaging in there for a minute before whooping a cry of victory as he pulled out a black T-shirt.

“This used to be my bedroom when I lived here,” he told her, pulling the shirt over his head. He sighed nostalgically. “Had some good times here. Once, me and Dru…”

“So!” Buffy exclaimed, cutting his words dead. She didn’t think her senses could deal with another ‘Dru’ story. “I guess we should head down to your dad. We don’t want to keep him waiting, right?”

Buffy couldn’t say she was excited to see Ethan again. Actually the exact opposite was true, she was dreading it. However, she knew as well as Spike did that when Ethan Rayne said ‘jump’, you said ‘how high?’

She was already starting to get accustomed to that fact.

They headed down to Ethan’s office reluctantly and saw Bulky waiting outside the door, guarding it as effectively as Cerberus guarded the entrance to Hades.

He opened the door to the office and ushered them in, watching them carefully as they slipped into the seats on one side of the old desk.

As they sat, their eyes met for a second and both saw the fear in the other’s gaze. Spike knew why Buffy was so afraid but she couldn’t figure out why Spike would be scared. Surely a big badass like him wasn’t afraid of his daddy?

She quickly looked away from him and they both sat in silence, lost in their own stormy thoughts.

The only noise was the sound of Spike drumming his fingers on his thighs.

After what seemed like eons, finally the door opened and Ethan sauntered in, seemingly totally carefree. He moved around the desk and slipped into his chair. Curious brown eyes studied the two blonds in front of him while he poured himself a large whiskey.

“Did you two have…fun last night?” Ethan asked, a leer firmly in place on his smug face.

Buffy opened her mouth to retort but Spike managed to speak first.

“I had a bloody great time,” he lied earning himself a stunned look from Buffy. Before she could disagree with his ‘confession’, he hurried on with his story. “Real little goer this one. Got her all broken in for you. Well, she was already broken in if you know what I mean. A lot bloody looser than I expected though which was…disappointing.”

He let an evil smirk bleed onto his lips, cringing internally at the act. He wasn’t sure why he was spewing these lies, but assured himself it was for selfish reasons.

If Ethan thought that Spike had let an opportunity to bed this girl slip through his fingers, then he couldn’t even imagine how disgusted his father would be with him. Ethan saw women as nothing more than property so he would be absolutely appalled that his son had let her get the best of him.

To him it would be like a cow attacking its master…and winning!

And okay, maybe it was also because he was aware of his father’s kinky desires and didn’t want Buffy tainted by them. Everything in his life was tainted in some way from his vantage point and, as little as he cared for the girl, it would be nice to think that there could be some remnant of innocence left someplace.

He didn’t know Buffy or her sexual history but there was something about her that screamed inexperience. Spike wasn’t sure he was ready to sell what was left of his soul and willingly allow Ethan to steal that innocence away.

Ethan looked mildly disappointed at his son’s revelation that Buffy was already well practiced in the art of sex.

He’d been looking forward to having some fun with the girl, but apparently she was more experienced than she seemed. While an experienced little bitch could provide hours of fun for Ethan, he loved to ruin a young girl himself.

What else should he have expected anyway with the girl having a father like Hank Summers? No doubt her dad had pimped her out in the past to cover his debts.

Ethan’s cock grew harder in his pants at that thought.

Well, it didn’t really matter whether he could use Buffy or not right now anyway. Not with the fast brunette he had waiting for him upstairs in his bed.

Oh, if only Spike knew about that, he’d be spitting nails right now! However, his son was too gullible to ever guess who Ethan had spread out like a smorgasbord and awaiting him in his bed.

Concealing his smug smirk at the thought, Ethan lit a cigar and puffed away at it before turning back to the pair of blonds.

“Well, I suppose I’ll try her out in the future,” he told Spike, waving his hand in Buffy’s direction. “Maybe we can get Dr. Jinx to tighten her up a little before then. A couple of snip-snips and she’ll be all but a virgin again.”

Buffy winced at the image and drew her arms even more tightly around her chest. Spike noticed the self-protective gesture and felt a small spasm of sympathy for the girl whose life had been turned upside down in a matter of days.

However, at least now she wouldn’t have to be subjected to his father’s whims, as the older Rayne appeared to have already lost interest in her, and for that the peroxide blond breathed a sigh of relief.

He’d bought Buffy more time. He frowned internally at the thought, wondering once again why he even cared.

“In the mean time,” continued Ethan, “I’ll send her over to Gwen. If you’re right about her being such a little goer, she’ll make an excellent addition to my girls. Now, this couldn’t have worked out better could it?”

Spike bit down on the inside of his cheek, tasting blood as his father’s words sank into his brain. The pain was a welcome feeling though. He’d thought that his cleverly plan would keep Buffy at the mansion for a while and maybe even give him a chance to actually get her to let him into her pants willingly. If nothing else, it would have been a welcome distraction from mourning his breakup with Drusilla.

And now, with his big mouth, he’d managed to talk Ethan into prematurely sending Buffy over to Gwendolyn Post and her hellish whorehouse.

Why did his plans always turn to shit?

“Actually I thought I’d keep her around for a bit,” Spike hedged, hoping his father would fall for the act. Maybe he could still salvage something. “Nice bit of pussy on tap won’t do me any harm will it?”

Ethan frowned and stubbed out the cigar. “I don’t think so, Son,” he replied. “Pretty girl like this adds to the coffers and you know me, I always put my business interests first.” He made his way over to Buffy and coursed a hand down her face, chuckling when she flinched away. “She goes to Gwen. Today.”

“Who’s Gwen?” Buffy asked quietly, unsure whether or not she really wanted an answer to that question.

Ethan cackled malevolently. “Gwendolyn is my right-hand woman, Miss Summers. She’s the one who’ll train you to take your rightful place in the world. On your knees.”

“What?” Buffy gasped and screwed her eyes shut to stop the now familiar tears prickling behind her eyelids.

She glanced at Spike but he pointedly refused to meet her eyes and kept his own gaze trained on his father. There was something hard in his stare that Buffy couldn’t identify, but she assumed he really wasn’t interested in her fate.

Why would he be?

“Your place is to service men. It’s what you were born to do, my dear. Don’t worry, in time you’ll probably even like it. All whores do.” He cocked his head to one side and winked. “And it won’t be long before I come along to test your newfound skills, so you won’t get much of a chance to miss me.”

“I won’t go!” she insisted but Ethan just laughed even harder this time.

“Of course you’ll go, my dear. You don’t have a choice. Does cattle have a choice when it’s sent to the slaughterhouse?”

“I’m not cattle!” she screeched, surging to her feet and lashing out at Ethan.

Her ragged nails raked a long scratch down his cheek and she tried to rain as many kicks and punches as she could on the Brit. Her hands and legs flailed and the petite teenager managed to strike a few good blows to his softer areas before his arms finally came around his stomach, pinning her arms.

Even restrained, she still spit curses at him, but he threw her away from him, chuckling when he head connected with the wall. She blinked dazedly as she tried to pick herself up off of the ground.

“You will not do that again, Miss Summers,” he warned her. “You are a very stupid child and I’m just glad to say that you’ll no doubt learn some respect from Gwendolyn. Now, no more outbursts.”

Buffy glared back defiantly, seething at the older man. However, she knew that he was right.

What could she do?

She wasn’t strong enough to fight him off and even if she somehow managed to fight him successfully the next time, she still couldn’t take Spike out too, and then defend herself against Ethan’s supersized bodyguards.

Maybe she could bide her time. It occurred to her that wherever he was sending her might be less secure, but if it belonged to Ethan she doubted that it would be.

In other words, she was screwed.

Her eyes caught Spike’s gaze once again but he was keeping his face carefully blank. Nothing bled through his expression. There was no hint of sorrow or joy or anything right now.

He didn’t want his face to betray the slight pangs of concern that he felt for her. Not that he was even really able to admit that to himself. But her hatred toward him was more emotion than anyone else had given him for a good long while and he’d quickly come to cherish that contempt.

Because contempt wasn’t as bad as indifference, and that’s what everyone else in his life seemed to feel toward him.

Ethan hollered for his two minions, who came barging into the room as soon as they heard him call. He gave them instructions to take Buffy to the brothel and scribbled a quick note to Gwen.

The woman was pliable and he was sure she would easily accommodate Buffy. In fact, he was convinced that it wouldn’t take long before the older Englishwoman was enjoying Buffy’s charms herself.

Perhaps old Gwen would train Buffy to be the kind of whore that she had been before she graduated to being a prim and proper madam.

He was actually very excited about getting her trained up. Once she was ready he could sample the delights for himself. His cock hardened further at the thought of the teen being painted and trussed, eager and ready to service him on her knees.

He could hardly wait but sometimes anticipation was even better than the actual act itself.

While Ethan was lost in his depraved thoughts, the two men, who reminded Buffy of gorillas, grasped her arms before she was able to stop them.

“No!” she shrieked, twisting in the arms of the two men that held her. “Let me go!”

“Stop the fidgeting, darlin’,” one of them warned her. “You don’t want to get us all excited here do you?”

She glared at him and tried to wriggle free again, yelling curses at the both of them.

Of course they didn’t loosen their hold on her. She had no choice but to go.

It was her destiny now.

She was dragged through hallways and out into the open air, still kicking and screaming as loudly as she could. If the mansion hadn’t been so secluded, the cops would have been called ten times over by now.

As Spike stared through the dusty window of Ethan’s office at the truck parked outside, he watched her getting forcefully ushered into it. The girl still hadn’t given up her struggle but she was clearly on the wrong end of a losing battle. He felt a pang of regret in his gut at the sight.

A pang that refused to be quashed.

He tried to swallow over the lump in his throat but some unidentifiable emotion was clogging him.

That spunky little blonde would no doubt lose her spark pretty fast in that place. He knew that she would become just another one of those dead-eyed hookers. The Rayne girls were compliant and talented with their bodies, but they were soulless.

To imagine Buffy that way generated a strange emotion inside of him.

He really didn’t like strange, new emotions. They were so…pesky. Blissful numbness was way easier on the heart and mind.

When he felt like this, there was only one thing that would help ease the pain.

Alcohol.

And as he spun on his heel and stormed out of Ethan’s office without another word to his father, he went in search of his favorite painkiller.

Tonight, he intended to drink the West Coast dry.
Unpack My Heart With Words by Starlight_Slayer
Author's Notes:
Thank you to all the reviewers and to everyone else that's still reading this story.

Some warnings in this chapter for non-con Buffy/Other and F/F slash.
When the truck finally stopped moving, Buffy felt sick to her stomach. She’d heard the lewd remarks that the two men were making during the entire journey and it provoked a sense of nausea deep within her gut.

The door flew open and she was yanked out, her arms being pulled this way and that. She tried to resume her struggles, scratching and biting at them. But it only seemed to amuse them.

She wondered just how many times they’d made this exact same journey with different girls. She was pretty sure she wasn’t the first.

What had their fates ended up being?

Trying to put those thoughts out of her mind, she just managed to catch a glimpse of the large house before she was dragged inside. The sprawling white mansion reminded her of Ethan’s abode and that was enough to send a chill searing down her spine.

Inside, however, it was totally different to the Rayne Mansion. Where Ethan preferred traditional decorations, this house radiated an eastern vibe. There were deeply colored velvet drapes hanging from the walls, sensuous soft furnishings, and oriental rugs strewn around.

It was clearly kitted out to resemble some kind of Arabian harem house.

Buffy didn’t get any time to think about it because an older woman appeared from around the corner and marched over to Buffy, cold eyes making contact with Buffy’s apprehensive green orbs.

“I’m Gwendolyn Post,” the woman curly informed her. There was a supercilious air to the woman’s voice that immediately set Buffy’s teeth on edge.

Gwendolyn was a primly dressed middle aged woman with a clipped British accent. Her mousy brown hair was pulled tightly back and secured in a taut bun. She wore no makeup or jewelry except for a pair of black framed glasses which sat perched atop her dainty nose.

She looked about as far from a whore or a pimp as it was possible to find. However, Buffy had quickly been discovering that appearances could be deceiving.

Buffy briefly glanced down at her own worn attire. She was still dressed in her ripped shirt and filthy jeans. The blonde fidgeted uncomfortably as the clothes seem to scratch against her sensitive skin.

“You must be Buffy Summers,” Gwendolyn said, quickly skimming the note that one of Ethan’s men had handed her.

Gwendolyn felt a frisson of excitement at the thought of having this new girl in her stables. When she didn’t get a response from Buffy, she didn’t seem fazed at all and merely raked a pair of appraising eyes over the girl.

“You will of course be trained,” the mousy brunette told her without any further preamble. She lifted a hand and touched Buffy’s cheek gently. “Our clients expect the best and that is what we provide them with. You will no doubt adjust rather quickly to this lifestyle.”

“I’ll never adjust,” muttered Buffy, but her interjection went ignored by Gwendolyn.

“I’ll have Faith train you, I think,” she continued as if Buffy hadn’t even spoken. “She’s one of the best we have here and you could do worse than learning from her skills. I trained her personally so I know she won’t let me down in passing on the teaching.”

Gwendolyn clapped her hands almost excitedly and one of the older woman’s gorilla-like bodyguards came rushing over. “Please escort Miss Summers to her room,” she instructed him.

Buffy tried to avoid his touch, but the bald headed man grabbed her arms and dragged her through a maze of corridors. It seemed almost as huge and confusing as Rayne Mansion.

When they finally reached her room, he escorted her inside and pushed her down onto the shiny leather couch, before marching out, locking the door after he slammed it behind him.

After he left, Buffy rested her head in her hands for a moment, holding back the flood of impending tears, before finally raising it to take the opportunity to look around at her surroundings.

The room was actually pretty lavishly decorated with paintings on the walls, frilly fixings, and velour drapes hanging from the ceiling. It wasn’t as exotic as the hallways had seemed but it still seemed especially lavish, considering what it was going to be used for.

She really didn’t want to dwell on that little gem of knowledge.

Maybe the function of its use was why there was such a huge, king sized bed adorning the center of the bedroom.

A shudder coursed through her at that thought and she fixed her eyes on the wall to try and stem the tears that threatened to burst through.

Buffy wrapped her arms around her shins and curled her body into itself. She wished she could make herself so small that she would just disappear.

She didn’t know how she would get through this. It was hopeless.

God, it really was hopeless.

She dropped her head back into her trembling hands and let a few tears fall down her flushed cheeks.

Within a few minutes the door opened again and a voluptuous brunette came sauntering through. Buffy wiped at her eyes and lifted her head to appraise the girl in front of her with a critical gaze.

Although the brunette couldn’t have been much older than Buffy it was clear that she was one of the whores from her outfit.

The girl was wearing a short, shiny leather shirt peppered with diamantes around the hemline. She looked like she’d been aiming for a cross between Rhinestone Cowboy and Pretty Woman.

A small leather bra cupped her ample breasts but they still bounced as she walked and Buffy grimaced at the image. The outfit was completed with a pair of shiny, black thigh high boots sporting impossibly high heels.

Smoky chocolate eyes raked over Buffy with disdainful curiosity and the girl tossed her long dark curls over her shoulder as she approached. Her mouth, painted with blood red gloss, twisted into a smirk when she soaked in the radiant innocence of the trembling blonde on the couch.

“So you’re the fresh blood, huh? I’m Faith,” the buxom girl finally said, breaking the tense silence.

The blonde didn’t respond and turned her face away from her dark haired counterpart. However, Faith wasn’t taking no for an answer. This was her job and she was good at it so she was sure she could train this little slip of a girl to be just as good.

Okay, maybe not as good as she was, because there was no whore as good as Faith, but maybe someday this Buffy chick could definitely rank a close second.

It was a shame she seemed so resistant to being there. Maybe the slimly built girl just needed a different kind of persuasion.

Faith smirked and moved nearer to the other girl. She ran a painted nail down Buffy’s face but the blonde flinched away from her touch, brown eyes lingering on the planes of Buffy well sculpted features.

“Just leave me alone,” Buffy said. Her words weren’t pleading though. They were intoned as numbly as she felt inside.

“Can’t do that little B.” The other girl sighed, already getting bored with Buffy’s lack of responsiveness. “Look, I wanna help you, okay?”

“You can help by letting me out of here.”

“Not my place to do that. From what I hear, you belong to Ethan now and he’s pretty possessive about his girls.” A mocking grin split her face. “You’re one of us now, sweetie. So the sooner you get used to that, the better it’ll be for you.”

Buffy glared at her. “If you won’t help me get out of here then you can go to hell.”

“Oh come on, don’t be like that,” the brunette chuckled. “We’re supposed to be getting to know each other. I’m gonna be your Yoda or some such shit. Never mentored a girl into whoredom before but seems like it could be fun.”

Buffy crinkled her nose and turned away from Faith’s appraising stare. She wanted to be anywhere but here right now.

Even being stuck with Spike hadn’t been as bad as this. Well most of it hadn’t been as bad. While he might have been the spawn of Satan, once he sobered up a little he wasn’t as evil as he’d first seemed.

Whereas Faith just seemed like…well right now she seemed like a younger, female version of Ethan, with larger breasts of course.

“I just wanna go home,” sighed the blonde.

“Don’t you get it B?” Faith asked. “This is your home now.” The dark haired girl shrugged. “You know it’s not so bad. You get a warm place to crash, all your meals, enough blow to keep you going forever, and even friends if you can avoid being a bitch.”

“And the added bonus of STDs?” quipped Buffy, but her sarcasm fell flat.

“Ethan likes his girls protected, Blondie. We’re not street hookers. And Gwen looks after us. She might look like a teacher but she’s wicked cool, yo.” When Buffy didn’t even seem to hear her, Faith let out a little growl of frustration. “I get that this is rough on you but you really gotta build a bridge and get over it. You’re stuck here now. Don’t you get that?”

“I’m going to get out,” Buffy assured her.

Faith laughed at the nerve of the girl. “Yeah, good luck with that. This is real life, honey. There’s no way out of here. You’re not Rapunzel stuck up in a tower and there’s no Prince Charming coming to rescue you.”

“I don’t need rescuing. I can get out of here myself.”

“Sure you can.” Faith patted her shoulder patronizingly. “Let me know how that goes for you.” She slipped off the couch and kneeled in front of Buffy. “But now back to reality. You got some training to do, sweetie. Gwen wants you working by next week which means you need to know exactly how to handle the Johns.”

“Ugh,” Buffy sniffed. “Handle them?”

“Well handle their bits.”

“Can’t I just go with the tried and tested biting it off?”

Faith rolled her eyes. “Not unless you want them to find your body on the cold, dank floor of the LA River.” She paused and caught Buffy’s gaze with her own. “You really gotta start taking this serious. Listen, just do what I say and you’ll be five by five, babe.”

“And if I don’t do what you say?” inquired Buffy.

“Trust me, honey. You really don’t want to find out. Anyway,” said Faith, rising to her feet, “the first thing we need to do is get you showered and into clean clothes. No offense, B, but you’re smelling a little ripe.”

Faith didn’t give Buffy any time to refuse and dragged her toward the bathroom. In truth, Buffy wouldn’t have said no to Faith’s offer anyway. She felt uncomfortably dirty right now and relished the thought of clean water washing the dirt away from her body.

As they stood in the too-bright white room, Buffy suddenly started to get a strange feeling. Faith was still standing in front of her, instead of giving her privacy.

Her worst fears were confirmed when the brunette ordered her to strip down.

“You need to get those rags off, B,” Faith commanded her. “And I need to see what’s underneath them.”

Buffy felt incredibly uncomfortable stripping down in front of another person, even if that other person was female. She wanted to refuse but there was a hard glint in Faith’s eyes that stilled her tongue.

It didn’t help that Faith kept her eyes trained on the younger blonde, sassy brown eyes gliding over the gentle curves and valleys of the California girl’s tanned body.

“You’re pretty easy on the eye, you know, B,” Faith commented, smirking when Buffy’s skin flushed a deeper shade of pink.

Her blush spread from her cheeks to her chest and she turned away from Faith, forgetting that the round globes of her ass were subsequently exposed to the other woman.

Faith prowled forward, grasping hold of Buffy’s hips, chuckling when Buffy stiffened at her touch.

“You can’t tense up like that every time someone wants to cop a feel, honey,” Faith warned her, sliding a hand down Buffy’s silky thigh.

“Please, don’t,” begged Buffy, the tears starting to break free again.

“But I want to,” laughed Faith, her fingers growing ever closer to Buffy’s center.

The brunette let go of Buffy momentarily and ushered the other girl into the shower cubicle. She turned on the water, just enjoying the show for a moment, before stripping off her own figure hugging attire.

Seeing that Faith was naked in front of her, Buffy didn’t know where to look. She wanted to melt into a hole in the ground of spontaneously combust or something. Actually anything would be better than this.

Hell even naked Spike would be better than this.

And why the hell did that thought just pop into her addled little brain?

Buffy wanted to turn her head away from Faith’s exposed body but the brunette clasped her chin and pressed their lips together. She worked her tongue into the younger girl’s mouth even as Buffy vigorously resisted, trying desperately to keep her mouth clamped tightly shut.

It wasn’t long, however, before she had the shorter teen pressed up against the shower wall, and she finally found that Buffy’s resistance was weakening.

“Come on, B,” Faith murmured. “Just let it go. Give in and I’ll make you see how good it can be.”

“No,” Buffy hissed against Faith’s soft lips. “I don’t want…”

“Yeah, you say you don’t want it, but your body feels different. Let’s take that stick out of your ass, baby.” Faith giggled. “Maybe we can put something else inside instead.”

Faith’s hand shot down to the sandy thatch of curls at the apex of Buffy’s thighs and peeled her lips apart. The wetness that Faith found there was undeniable.

“I’m not into girls,” Buffy told her, trying to break free of her hold.

“You don’t have to be ‘into girls’ to appreciate a little girl on girl fun.”

“I don’t want ‘fun’,” she spat, failing to wriggle out of Faith’s steely grip.

“You can’t know you don’t like it until you try,” Faith said, tweaking Buffy nipples between her thumbs and forefingers.

“I…I don’t want to.”

“Listen, B. I’m really trying to do you a favor here.” Faith forced Buffy to meet her gaze, conveying the seriousness of her words through her eyes. “In less than one week there’s gonna be a bunch of guys that want to get inside you.”

“You’re gross.”

Faith continued as if Buffy hadn’t spoken. “You won’t have a choice with them. I’m trying to show you that it doesn’t have to be all bad. If you can find your own pleasure then it makes it fun.”

“I don’t want pleasure, Faith.”

“Sure you do.” Faith slipped a finger across Buffy’s most intimate place, eliciting a high pitched groan from the other girl. “Give in to it.”

Buffy unconsciously spread her legs a little wider, not even realizing that she was welcoming Faith’s fingers inside of her. The brunette’s slender digits made their way into Buffy’s slippery hole until Faith suddenly paused, a strange expression on her face.

“Whoa, you’re a virgin, B?” Faith asked with a smirk, withdrawing her hand from Buffy’s slick channel.

The blonde gave a sharp nod of admittance before averting her eyes from Faith’s piercing stare.

“Woo! Some guy is gonna wanna pay big for that shit, babe,” whooped Faith. “Gwen will be buzzin’ when she hears about it. You’re just the gift that keeps on giving, ain’t ya?”

When the teenager stiffened, she leaned down and licked Buffy’s ear. “Don’t worry though. I’m not gonna de-virginize you right now. I just want to make you understand that this life isn’t so bad.”

Her fingers slipped back onto Buffy’s slippery clit, worrying the little pearl roughly. Buffy gasped and bucked in Faith’s hold but she was no longer sure if she was still trying to get loose or if she actually wanted more. The sensations were dulling her pain and anguish and she didn’t want that to stop.

She didn’t want to feel anything but the pleasure.

Faith’s movements grew more vigorous and Buffy panted hard until she finally cried out in bliss as she trembled in Faith’s embrace, her legs almost giving out beneath her. It was only the brunette’s strong hold that kept her from falling.

As her breathing calmed down a little, Buffy fell limp in Faith’s arms. For a moment the blonde floated on the ecstasy of post-orgasmic bliss before reality came slamming back into her.

She’d just let Faith give her an orgasm. God, how could she have let that happen?

It wasn’t just that Buffy had always considered herself straight, but Faith was an evil bitch. She was a whore and possibly a sociopath too. And Buffy had actually enjoyed their contact. Now that it was over, however, and the harsh light of reality was shining through again, she hated herself for what she’d allowed to happen.

The brunette seemed infinitely amused with Buffy’s discomfort. She watched the display of emotions that played out over her new pet’s face. Hurt, disgust, anger and finally resignation all flitted over the blonde’s delicate features. Faith was sure it wouldn’t take long to break this prim little creature.

“We might make a whore of you yet.” Faith laughed and sauntered away, leaving Buffy still crying under the shower spray. The Bostonian’s voice came drifting back to her. “I’ll leave your clothes on the bed.”

Buffy barely heard her though. She sank to the cold tiled floor and buried her head in her knees. Moans and tears wracked her naked body. Sobs of grief, of humiliation, and of hopelessness tore through her, splitting her chest into two.

How could she ever accept that this was her life now?

How could she go on living if this was her fate?
End Notes:
Please review and let me know what you think. :)
Strip Thine Own Back by Starlight_Slayer
Author's Notes:
Thank you for reviewing. Here's my long overdue update. Chapter warnings are in the end notes.

Enjoy. :)
The Rayne mansion was quiet for once except for the faint sound of birdsong outside the window. Spike lay aimlessly on the bed in the room that he’d grown up in. He stared up blankly at the white expanse of the ceiling. This place brought back so many memories from his childhood.

Memories that he sometimes wished that he could strip from his recollection.

However, sometimes his mind wandered off without his permission and delved into that perilously vast pit of recollections.

Every single room had some kind of association that it brought with it. Some reminded him of the pain his father inflicted on him with bloody and brutal beatings, others flooded him with the memories of his mother’s warm hugs, and of course some were full to brimming with remembrances of his time with Drusilla.

And now there was a new memory.

His night with Buffy.

Spike wasn’t sure why he couldn’t purge the young blonde from his mind. It wasn’t as if anything concrete had actually happened between them. Well not unless you counted her putting her knee sharply into his crotch which had caused some very concrete pain. But nothing romantic, or even sexual, had happened between them in the end.

Anyway, she was just one girl out of hundreds that had crossed his path. It wasn’t as if she was even anything that special.

Except that…she kind of was more special than he’d have liked to admit.

The teenager hadn’t kowtowed to him like most people of both sexes did. And he liked that sass. She hadn’t been afraid to tell him what she thought and had held little back from him even when she was in grave jeopardy. Buffy had given him a bitter dose of reality which he really should have hated.

And yet…that was the exact reason why he couldn’t stop her from invading every single one of his current thoughts, both waking and sleeping.

As nice as it might sound to have people pretty much bowing down to you at every turn, in truth he was bored of minions and fake women acting like he was something special because of his bloodline. To him his bloodline meant only darkness and pain. Touching reality might have been bittersweet at least it wasn’t a badly constructed fantasy like the rest of his life.

Of course it didn’t help that Drusilla, the one person he believed was real in all of this, had abandoned him when he needed her the most. It was really little wonder that he felt so confused right now, his mind and a heart a whirl of tumultuous emotions. She’d always been a flaky woman, but realizing that she was having an affair was devastating to him.

Perhaps the gaping hole that Drusilla had left in his heart had allowed Buffy to slither into his mind. Despite her attempt to commit mass genocide on his little swimmers, the teenaged, green eyes blonde had firmly wedged herself in there.

“You’ve always been a git when it comes to women, Spike ole boy,” he muttered to himself gulping down a mouthful of whiskey.

For so many years Spike had made Drusilla his everything. She had been the center of his existence even though he was only a dog to her. Yes, he was just a dog that she never had any qualms about kicking for her own pleasure. But he hadn’t cared about that because he was happy to be able to beg at her feet. He took the punishments she gave him and then begged for more.

All he’d wanted was to have someone to love and to be loved. But still, apart from his mother, he’d never experienced that. And he’d certainly never experienced real romantic love from a woman.

In fact he was starting to doubt that he would ever be lucky enough to be embroiled in such a thing.

“Give up mate,” he sighed, wallowing in his own misery. “Born to be a bloody loser, aren’t you?”

Sometimes it was just easier to pretend that didn’t matter to him anyway. He was, after all, the Big Bad. Being the son of Ethan Rayne and acting like a punky badass fooled the whole world into believing that he really couldn’t care less about receiving love. Sometimes he even fooled himself.

And then sometimes he would be all alone, like right now, and his loneliness would creep up on him and nip him on his very bitable little ass.

Spike heaved himself to his feet and rested his tipsy body against the wall. The bleach blond pulled a flask out of his long leather duster and took another swig. It was the last alcohol in his possession right now. Thinking about Drusilla’s indiscretions and his boundless loneliness drove him to the whiskey and he was sure he’d imbibed the equivalent of a distillery during the past few days.

He couldn’t help his craving for the demon drink though. Thinking about his former paramour and the pathetic state of his life really didn’t help his delicate mental state. It was always her fault.

Unless you asked Drusilla, of course.

In that case it was always Spike’s fault.

He supposed it was a good thing that she was in Ireland with Angelus right now or he might just do something he’d regret, like ripping her cold, black heart from the cavity of her chest and forcing her to eat it with a side of fries.

Except that he wouldn’t, because he’d never hurt a hair on her head, not really. The sad truth was that if she came begging for his forgiveness right now he would probably take her back. Hell, the woman wouldn’t even have to beg. She’d probably just need to flash her sad, childlike eyes at him and he’d be her puppy once again.

Yes, he had no pride when it came to that woman. The worst part of his whole relationship with Drusilla was the fact that he was even prepared to endure her faithlessness. He suspected for a long time that she was involved with her stepfather and his distant cousin, the renowned sex trader, Angelus.

There were times when she would sneak off for weeks, not even bothering to give him an excuse for where she’d been. Sometimes she even inadvertently flaunted what he assumed was the physical evidence of the trysts too as she displayed her bruised body to him. The weeping welts that often peppered her milky skin made him sick to his stomach. Drusilla passed it off as her own clumsy fault for slipping and falling. Spike should have realized she was lying but he was too blinded by his misguided love for her.

He just put it out of his mind and pretended everything was okay because he thought that love was about trust.

Love and trust. Did they even exist?

He snorted as he thought about the person that was supposed to love Buffy the most was the one that stuffed her into the jaws of evil.

And there was that damn name again! ‘Buffy.’

Buffy! Buffy! Buffy!

The bitch was haunting him. Without even knowing it she was driving him to the brink of insanity.

“I’ll be as bloody barmy as Dru soon if this keeps up,” he groaned with a self deprecating smile. “Half way round the bend already.”

The recollection of her tortured eyes as she was tossed into the truck to be taken away to the brothel stabbed at him with icy blades. As if that wasn’t bad enough, he wagered he could actually still feel the heat of her skin warming him like a cozy blanket. Such sweet torture, especially when she was out of reach.

Through it all he just wanted to purge her from his mind but he couldn’t. It was like she was a beacon for his thoughts and he couldn’t turn away from her. He could even still smell her scent on the mattress and it was doing crazy things to his brain, relentlessly warping and twisting it until Spike was no longer sure which way was up.

Of course this was just another thing that was all Drusilla’s fault. If it wasn’t for her, he’d likely never even have met Buffy and then she wouldn’t be dominating him like an emotional poltergeist.

“Bloody women,” he swore under his breath before realizing that he didn’t have to whisper. The blond let out a tormented roar that turned into something that sounded suspiciously like a sob.

Spike swallowed down the remaining contents of his flask and realized that he needed to head down to the den for some more alcohol to drown his sorrows. He didn’t want to sober up. It was too depressing to be forced to live life without a drunken haze to filter out some of the pain.

He tossed the old flask at the wall, chuckling at the clang when it bounced off the plaster making a small dent.

“Take that, wall!” he chuckled, hysteria gripping him with its cold fingers.

When the flask hit the ground with a clink, something else caught his eyes and curtailed his laughter. Spike slid off the bed and on to his knees to retrieve the small object, and stared at it in his palm. He immediately recognized the tiny gold button as having come off of Buffy’s ruined shirt the other night.

In spite of his inebriation her image flashed vividly in his brain and he couldn’t mistake the sparkly little globe.

He cradled it softly in his hand. It stirred up a strange mix of emotions within him, the dominant one being guilt. Because he did feel guilty about what he almost did to her. The girl was an innocent and she didn’t deserve to bear witness to the monster within him. Grief, torment and drunkenness meant she experienced it firsthand but now he wished he could take that back.

“I’m sorry I couldn’t save you, love,” his sighed, holding the button in his palm. “That place’ll ruin you. I know that. But I’m too much of a ponce to stand up to my Dad. Should’ve insisted that you stay here but I’m too useless to save a woman. Couldn’t even save my own Mum, could I? She’s gone because of me too.”

He knew he should have done something more to help the girl. In his current, reflective state he realized that he hated the way his father destroyed so many lives. He’d seen it happen before but never so close up. There had always been distance between himself and the victims.

But now…

His mind wandered to the look on her face as he tried to force himself on her. She was so terrified yet courageous at the same time. Such a brave little toaster. Even with her face all red and angry she was a little beauty.

At the thought of her pretty face and tight body Spike felt the blood rushing downward. If he had his time over again he couldn’t say that he wouldn’t try to get her naked because in his heart he was a self confessed pervert. And oftentimes proud of it.

However, next time he would take the seduction slow. He definitely wouldn’t force himself on her. He’d make her crave him like she craved oxygen. Maybe he’d start out by kissing her on the mouth until she moaned and melted into his arms. Next he would move his warm, wet mouth down her body, sucking each delectable little nipple into his mouth and then…

Spike glanced down. His zipper was painfully biting into his rapidly expanding cock and Spike hissed at the uncomfortable feeling. Jerking off to Buffy wasn’t going to solve any of his problems right now.

Especially the problem where he desperately wanted to stop thinking about her.

With a sigh he heaved himself off the ground and decided he desperately needed some more alcohol.

Right the hell now.

He made his way through the hallways and into the den but stopped in his tracks when he saw a shirtless Ethan standing in front of him, rooting through the liquor cabinet.

“Da,” Spike said, surprised to see the other man in such a state of undress. He blinked and frowned. “Why are you half bloody naked?”

“Hmm? Oh I don’t know. Why would I be half naked in my own home?” Ethan retorted dryly.

Spike rolled his eyes, pushing his father to the side so he could pull a bottle of Jack Daniels out of the cabinet. “I’m going to take a guess and say you’ve been shagging some tart. She a bit of a boozehound and want you to pour that whiskey down her throat?”

Ethan smirked. If only his son really knew the truth. He doubted the boy would be standing there so calmly should it be revealed. No doubt he’d throw one of his famous William-esque tantrums that marred his childhood.

“Actually, you’re quite right. I do have a little tart up there,” Ethan told him, picking up a nice bottle of single malt. “We’ve been having a wonderful afternoon.”

“Lucky for some I suppose,” Spike mumbled, pulling the cap off the bourbon and swigging the dark liquid straight from the bottle.

“Indeed,” Ethan agreed. “And how are you coping since your woman rejected you?”

Spike winced at his father’s harsh words. He knew that Ethan wanted to sting him. The older Rayne had always derived pleasure from tormenting his son. It was one of the reasons that as soon as he hit puberty he’d forced himself to graduate from being wimpy William to being badass Spike.

“I’m coping,” Spike said quietly, swallowing another hefty gulp of whiskey. “Probably better off without her anyway.”

“I should think so,” agreed Ethan, trying to hide his smirk once again. “Why don’t you take me up on my offer of a session with one of my girls?”

“I don’t want one of your soddin’ girls, Da.”

“Oh. If you don’t want just one you could take several of them if you prefer. Although I would imagine you’re not man enough to handle that many women.” He chuckled. “If you couldn’t even keep a tart like Drusilla happy, then how would you possibly manage to satisfy a troupe of well-used whores?”

“You’re a real git sometimes,” Spike hissed out through clenched teeth. His father had always possessed a knack for voicing some of his worst fears and twisting them against him. His sexual insecurity was a huge issue for him since Drusilla’s final rejection.

“I’m a git?” Ethan gasped in mock astonishment clutching the space on his chest where his blackened heart might have been. “I’m only trying to help, son. I just don’t think you should get above your station in life.”

“Well it’s help I need like a bloody hole in the head. So you can piss off with your advice.”

“My my,” chortled Ethan. “You really do need to get your end away, my boy. Relieve all this tension, so to speak. Perhaps you could have another session with the new girl as soon as Gwen has her fully trained up. I’m sure her standards can’t be too high with a father like Hank Summers and she’s already endured you sweating and panting away on top of her, hasn’t she. Oh what’s her name? It’s escaping me! Becky? Bunny?”

“Buffy. You knew her name, Da.”

“Mmm, yes. Pretty little Buffy Summers. Such a fine addition to my stables.” Ethan preened for a moment. “Gwen told me she’s doing quite well over there.”

“Oh?” Spike asked with feigned disinterest. He didn’t want his father to know how much the girl had been haunting his thoughts during the two days since she’d left for Gwendolyn’s brothel. He’d learned a long time ago that giving Ethan any kind of ammunition to you against you was usually a fatal move. “So she’s working already?”

“Hmm?” Ethan leaned against the liquor cabinet and sighed. “No, not yet. Faith’s training her up as we speak. Gwen said our Miss Summers might take a little extra training to break her…vivacious spirit but I’m sure she’ll be a wonderful submissive in no time at all.”

“That’s brilliant,” Spike choked out, his voice strangely hoarse and strained.

“Well, I have a woman to get back to, so I must bid you cheerio for now, my boy,” Ethan said, patting his son a little too heavily on the back before striding out of the room.

Spike stared after him, finding his mind dominated by that little golden haired pixie once again and wishing he’d tried harder to keep her away from that horrible place. He was a failure as a son, a failure as a boyfriend, and now a failure as a man. Slumping down onto the couch he poured a copious amount of alcohol down his throat.

He savored the burn.

**********


In all of her seventeen years and eleven months, Buffy Summers didn’t think she’d ever suffered through a humiliation as mortifying as this. In fact she was pretty sure it was even worse than the summer when she’d been forced to wear a cow hat as an employee of the fast food restaurant, the Doublemeat Palace.

The teenager was strapped to a bed face down and completely naked. Her wrists were bound painfully behind her back and her arms felt like they were being stretched almost to breaking point. Her legs were slightly drawn up and her ankles were similarly secured.

However, the humiliation didn’t end there. A ball gag was stuffed in her mouth so she couldn’t ‘whine her skinny little ass off’ as Faith had phrased it. That didn’t stop her trying though.

For the past two days she’d been suffering through his treatment but it didn’t seem to be getting any easier. Faith constantly told her that if she just gave in then it would feel okay. But Buffy couldn’t do that because she had a rebel’s heart and that wasn’t something that she could ever see changing.

Buffy flinched as she felt a hand run over her naked back and caress her ass cheeks raising goose-flesh on her exposed flanks. Although the actual physical sensations felt undeniably good, every time Faith touched her body Buffy felt another piece of her soul dissolve.

The wandering hand found her slippery wetness and placed feather light touches over her sex. Buffy cursed her body’s involuntary response to Faith’s bittersweet caresses. It wasn’t fair that her body should crave the connection while her mind roiled against it.

Buffy kept her eyes fixed mostly on the dark blue coverlet underneath her body. She certainly didn’t want to look at Faith, but she also didn’t want to look around the room. The walls were lined with torture toy stocked shelves. It was a disturbing sight to confront, especially when Buffy had already experienced the painful torture that those toys were meant for since her arrival here. She didn’t want to experience the other half but the teenager couldn’t help but think that cruel reality was inevitable.

Suddenly the ball gag was ripped out of her mouth and Buffy felt Faith move closer to her. The dark haired girl’s breath tickled her ear and she shuddered.

“I want you to beg me to eat you, bitch” Faith commanded her, not removing her hands from Buffy’s glistening pussy lips. “Say it, B.”

“Never,” Buffy insisted, trying to turn away.

“Ugh!” Faith growled. “Why do you gotta keeping resisting? Two fucking days and we’re no closer to making you a good little slut. You’re trussed up like a dirty whore and you act like Miss Perfect. What’s it gonna take you make you realize your place?”

“My place isn’t here!” Buffy insisted again. “We both know that.”

“You don’t know shit.” A bubble or wry laughter escaped Faith’s lips. “You think you’re so much better than me, don’t you, B? Because I’m happy to be here and you hate this place so you think it makes you a better person.”

“It does.” Buffy spit back.

“No, it just makes you a slave. I’m free because I’ve chosen this.”

“And that would make you an idiot, Faith. You’re more of a slave then I could ever be because you don’t even see just how strong your shackles are.” Buffy smirked when she heard Faith’s maddened snort. “You’re cheap and nasty. But not that’s not because you’re a whore. It’s because you’re a sellout. You really should take a look at yourself.”

Faith gaped incredulously at the bound girl. If there was any situation where delivering home truths to someone was a bad idea it was when you were trussed up like a Thanksgiving turkey. She wasn’t sure if Buffy was just amazingly courageous or insanely stupid. The dark haired hooker was starting to think it was a mixture of both traits.

With an angry growl Faith pulled the whip out from where she’d tucked it under her belt and brought it down on Buffy’s already reddened bottom with a violent thwack.

“Argh!” screamed Buffy as the pain ricocheted through her lower body before radiating upward. The hurt leeched through her like liquid fire as the whip came down again and again. “Stop it! Please God, stop it!”

“No, B. You need to learn you can’t talk shit and not expect your punishment.” She grabbed a fistful of the blonde’s hair and yanked her head painfully backward. “I will break you, honey. And there’s nothing you can do about it.”

“I’ll find a way, F and you would too if you weren’t so fucking set on staying in this place,” panted Buffy. “You could be more than a whore but you stay here…why again?”

“I do what I gotta do. Gwen needs me. You wouldn’t get it, Miss Priss.”

“Why is Gwen so important to you?” Buffy wondered. She hadn’t had much contact with the older woman during her time at the brothel so far, but the Brit seemed severe and unfriendly with most people. She was kind of lecherous when it came to Faith though and that really made Buffy’s stomach turn. She couldn’t imagine what made Faith so unwaveringly loyal to her.

“You wouldn’t understand,” Faith repeated with a dismissive wave of her hand.

“Try me.” It wasn’t the first time Buffy had asked Faith this question since she arrived and she invariably got the same evasive response from the dark haired girl, usually coupled with a paddling or whipping.

“You really think this is the time to hear to wonderful history of Faith?”

“Maybe it’ll take my mind off of things.”

“We’re not supposed to be taking your mind off this shit,” Faith growled. “We’re supposed to be putting your mind right on it.”

“What can I say? I got a short concentration span.”

Faith frowned slightly and studied the perplexing blonde.

For so long Faith had kept her past bottled up inside. She wondered whether telling someone else might actually help, especially someone like Buffy who couldn’t exactly use it against her. At least not in the position she was currently in. If it did nothing else maybe hearing Faith’s story would help the blonde make it through her upcoming ordeals. And Faith didn’t fool herself that what was still to come would be anything less than a horrific ordeal for the younger girl.

“Okay, I’ll tell you,” Faith agreed, sitting down on the couch and rubbing her knees with her palms. “Have you ever needed someone save you from this raging shit-pile that we call the world when they didn’t need to?”

“Uh...” Buffy paused. “Not until now.”

“Didn’t think so, B. I bet you were a little princess until you ended up here. I mean look at you, you’re a regular Sandra Dee, honey.” Faith plucked a Marlboro from behind her ear and lit it on one of the chunky wax candles that were flickering on the side table.

“I’ve never been a princess,” denied Buffy. “You don’t even know me.”

“I know you, or at least girls like you.” Faith blew out several smoke rings and Buffy coughed when she felt the smoke invade her lungs. “I’ve never been like you.”

“And we’re all grateful for that,” Buffy quipped earning a glare from Faith.

“You wouldn’t understand but I didn’t have a family of my own. No one. I spent my life going from one deadbeat family to another. The brunette wasn’t even sure why she was confiding in Buffy but now she’d started she felt like a dam had burst inside of her. Those weren’t nice places, B. I had to grow up pretty quick to survive. When I was fifteen I ran away. I left Boston and with the help of a few horny truckers and a bunch of slopping blowies. I made it all the way out here.”

Buffy grimaced at the thought of exactly what Faith must have had to do to get to Los Angeles. “So where does Gwen come in to all of this?”

“Patience isn’t your strong suit, huh, B?” Faith smiled, squatting down in front of Buffy so they were at eye level. “Gwen found me on the streets hooking on my own. I was getting screwed over most nights by a bunch of dicks that thought they could take advantage of a young girl. She thought I could be an asset to this place, cleaned me up, and gave me a place to…belong.”

“She just gave you a different place to be a whore.”

Faith growled and slapped Buffy across her face. “She gave me a life.”

“Right and she’s totally not getting anything out of it.” The blonde worked her bruised jaw. “Face it, Faith. Gwen isn’t a freakin’ guardian angel! She’s just as much of a user as those men on the streets were.”

Faith surged to her feet and began to pace. She was already regretting telling Buffy about her first meeting with Gwen. She should have known that the stuck up little bitch wouldn’t understand.

“You don’t get it ‘cause you know shit about loyalty to someone that helps you out, Buffy.” Faith’s face was twisted in annoyance. “But one day somebody might just help you out and you’ll see what it means to feel something for them. Sure, it starts out as gratitude but…Oh, I can’t explain it. But if you went through it then you’d understand.”

“I’d never understand what can make you choose a life as a cheap, dirty whore, Faith.”

Faith flushed a dark red with anger at Buffy’s poignant words and prepared to hit her again but she was interrupted by a sharp tap on the door. She huffed in annoyance and tossed the whip down onto the bed. With a put upon sigh she ambled over to open the door.

“Why, Ms. Post!” Faith said flirtingly when she saw her madam standing in the hallway. “I didn’t expect you to come by.”

Gwendolyn smiled at Faith before entering the room. She pulled the young brunette into a passionate open mouthed kiss, running her hands all over the dark haired girl’s ample curves. Although Buffy couldn’t see what they were doing the repulsive sounds of smacking seemed to force themselves into her ears and she winced in disgust at the visual they conjured.

When they two women finally broke apart, Gwendolyn turned her attention to Buffy, letting one hand travel over her abused skin. “Mmm, she’s looking excellently prepared,” Gwendolyn complimented Faith. Faith beamed at the praise. “Keep this up and she’ll be ready for Saturday I’m sure.”

Faith just offered a hopeful smile to Gwen. The Bostonian was starting to worry that Buffy would never be ready. She’d pulled out every single trick from her deep bag during her sessions with Buffy and yet the younger girl was still resistant. Of course, she knew what kind of punishment Gwendolyn would wreak on her if she found out.

“Of course she’ll be ready for Saturday, maybe even before,” Faith cooed.

“Saturday?” Buffy asked curiously. “What happens on Saturday?”

“Ah, Saturday is the day you lose your virginity, my dear,” Gwendolyn dispassionately informed her. “We’re holding the auction tomorrow night and I have to tell you I already have several very interested buyers. Two of my best clients, Mr. Gorch and Mr. Balthazar, are both very eager to pay the big money for such prime meat.”

Buffy shuddered in disgust at the thought of what was going to happen. In some ways she’d already resigned herself to it but as soon as she tried to envisage it happening her mind roiled against it. Maybe Faith believed she had gotten some way with breaking her but Buffy knew it would take a hell of a lot more to truly collar Buffy Summers.

“Gonna be a big day for you, honey!” laughed Faith, fingering a paddle that she plucked from a shelf. She lightly smacked Buffy’s ass with it and laughed. Gwendolyn giggled along with her.

Buffy was the only one who wasn’t laughing. She was actually seething and impotently plotting her revenge. One day she would see them all punished. Faith, Gwen, Ethan…they would all suffer if she had anything to do with it.

“I think our Miss Summers is a little overwhelmed with what’s coming,” Gwendolyn said knowingly. “She’s afraid, aren’t you, Miss Summers?”

Buffy didn’t respond.

“Answer her bitch!” Faith commanded, bringing the paddle down heavily against the soft, plump flesh of her right ass cheek. Buffy tensed as she felt it connect with her flesh and blinked back a pained tear.

“I’m not afraid!” she said, sniffling a little and feeling even more pathetic than ever.

“Want me to beat her until she admits it?” Faith asked her madam with a raised eyebrow but Gwendolyn merely shook her head. “No, I think she’s had enough for today.”

Faith pouted. “But I was looking forward to it!”

“I know my dear, darling Faith. But you will get your chance again tomorrow. We don’t want to scar the merchandize too badly now, do we?” Faith shook her head drawing an indulgent smile from Gwendolyn and a scoff from Buffy. “Now untie her and come to my room. Mummy needs some love from her Faithy.”

Gwendolyn marched out leaving Faith to obey her orders. The brunette was tempted to give Buffy just one more spanking for the day but she supposed Gwen was right. The blonde was already turning strange shades of black and blue in several places and any girl would be worth less if she was a wreck, even a pretty virgin like Buffy.

With gentleness that belied her sadistic nature, she freed Buffy from the ropes that bound her and helped the younger girl to sit up. The blonde experimentally massaged her joints, feeling tingles replace the numb sensation.

Before opening the door Faith snapped the whip one more time making sure the end cut deeply into Buffy’s sensitive ass. “Don’t miss me too bad, B. I’ll be back later for more fun with Faithy and Buffy.” She flashed a smile at the other girl before leaving the room and slamming the door behind her. A key turned heavily in the lock before retreating footsteps echoed down the hallway.

Buffy rubbed her sore ass, feeling blood congealing on her hand as she touched the delicate skin. She stared at her blood covered hand for several moments contemplating everything that had happened in the past week. Was it really only a week since her life had changed so completely? She could barely even remember the time before now. It was like a different girl that had been a carefree high school student.

Her life hadn’t exactly been perfect before. In fact, it hadn’t been even close to fantastic since she lost her mother. But she’d thought her father loved and she’d always truly believed he’d be there for her when she needed him.

Knowing that he was the one who was responsible for putting her in this hell burned more deeply than any of the vicious tortures that were being inflicted on her.

For a split second she wanted to burst into tears until she realized she couldn’t cry. It was like the tears had dried up and been replaced with a numbness.

Every time she thought things couldn’t get any worse, they actually got a hell of a lot worse. Knowing that Gwendolyn was auctioning off her virginity was possibly the last thing she could deal with. In less than three days she would become a fully fledged whore. The teenager would have to give her innocence to someone that didn’t deserve it, someone that she didn’t even love. The thoughts of how brutal this man would potentially be sent a shudder through her.

With a weary sigh she curled up on the bed, tucking her knees under her chin and prayed for the release of a sleep that was barely able to save her from the harsh reality of her life.
End Notes:
Warnings for mild non-con Buffy/other f/f slash, mild torture and elements of BDSM.
Et Tu Brute? by Starlight_Slayer
Recently, Spike had started to think that the old clock on the mantel in Ethan’s den was his enemy. The relentless tick tock of the clock seemed to mock him. Time was passing him by and he was uselessly drinking away his days.

For the past few days something had been eating away at his gut. It was a feeling that he couldn’t comprehend because it wasn’t something he had to confront a lot. He knew that it wasn’t guilt…exactly. But it felt a little like guilt.

He’d only ever really felt this way once before when he found his…found her in the bathtub that day…cold and clammy.

God, that was a memory he needed to erase.

Spike took another swig from the bottle, gulping down the dregs before tossing it onto the ground. He slipped down onto the couch and fell back with a hefty sigh.

No matter how much he drank, he couldn’t seem to get his brain to stop racing in overdrive. It was like being tormented with no way out.

The image of a blonde girl who had used that exact phrase to him flashed in front of his eyes and he screwed them tightly shut.

Buffy was the last person he wanted to think about right now.

He’d seen the fear and sadness in her eyes when she’d gotten dragged away by his father’s goons and no matter how often he tried to erase it, it seemed emblazoned on his psyche. The most worrying thing was that instead of easing, the pain of that memory seemed to intensify with every passing day. It was actually surpassing his thoughts about Drusilla.

She looked like a lamb being taken to the slaughter. That’s exactly what she was in reality. He was pretty sure that by the time Gwen had finished with her, she would be unrecognizable from the spunky, sassy teenager he’d spent a very strange night with. If his father had been telling the truth about her ‘progress’ at the brothel then it was very possible she was already an animated shell of her former self.

Realizing that he was out of booze, he growled quietly and pulled himself to his feet. He couldn’t actually believe that he’d already managed to empty the liquor cabinet in only a few days. Maybe he was drinking more than he realized.

Trying to keep himself steady he staggered out of the room heading for the basement where he kept a virtually unlimited supply of alcohol.

Spike allowed himself a small nostalgic smile as he recalled some of the crazy evenings the supply in that room had fuelled during his teenage years. They had actually been some of his only good memories of growing up. He let himself indulgently recall the time he and Drusilla fucked on a crate of imported malt whiskey before proceeding to drink half of its contents.

Good times.

He was padding along the first floor corridor and heading for the basement steps when a high pitched whine stopped him in his tracks. For a moment he thought his might have imagined it but when it was followed by a baritone moan he knew exactly what it was.

There was no way that Spike Rayne wouldn’t recognize the distinctive sounds of sex, not with all the experience he’d had of it. He realized it was coming from one of the unused rooms on that floor.

A small smile played on his face as he wondered who it was. There weren’t many girls around the mansion, so he figured it was probably one of Gwen’s girls. Some of Ethan’s minions were gifted a girl or two from time to time when his father was feeling particularly generous.

Shuffling forward, he felt compelled to investigate a little more. Not to mention he hadn’t gotten his dick wet in a while and the loud pleasured moans were making not so Little Spike stand to attention.

And wasn’t it a stroke of luck that there was a small crack of light where the door wasn’t totally shut? Making sure that he was still concealed in the shadows of the hallway, Spike peeked through the space.

He couldn’t deny that deep down he had a perverted side and if people were stupid enough to leave their door open when they were making whoopee, then Spike wasn’t going to miss the chance to get a free show.

However, what he saw wasn’t something he could ever have anticipated. It was abhorrent and horrific and the moment his eyes caught sight of it, he truly wanted to die.

His breath hitched in his chest as the image fully penetrated his paralyzed brain.

Ethan and Drusilla. Together.

He wanted to vomit or kill someone. Maybe both at the same time. His heart was in his stomach and his chest felt like it was filled with concrete.

This wasn’t right! It couldn’t be Drusilla. She was in Ireland with Angelus as far as he knew. He screwed his eyes firmly shut and shook his head before prizing them open and taking another look. Unfortunately the image was exactly the same. He would recognize his ex-lover anywhere so he knew he wasn’t mistaken.

Drusilla was on her knees like a bitch on the cold hard ground letting Ethan pound into her. She writhed and howled under his father’s ministrations.

Her moans were so familiar to him.

Too familiar.

How many times had he made her moan like that himself?

Ethan pulled out of Drusilla, his hard cock jutting upward and bobbing against his stomach. Spike felt sick to his very stomach as he watch Drusilla spin around and take it into her mouth, big eyes peering up at Ethan for some kind of compliment.

“Yeah,” moaned Ethan. “Suck it, you little bitch.”

She eagerly complied with his commands. But that clearly wasn’t enough for Ethan. He wanted more. Grabbing her by the back of her head, he held her in place as he thrust his dick into her throat, ignoring her gags.

Before he came, he pulled out of her throat and shoved her roughly backward. Her tiny naked breasts jiggled with the sudden movement and she giggled and sighed.

Spike knew he should just walk away but something kept him frozen to the spot. He briefly wondered if he’d died and watching this for eternity was his hellish punishment. He just didn’t understand what he was seeing. His father was fucking the only woman he’d ever loved.

How could he possibly do that to him?

For a second he considered grabbing a shotgun and killing them both. He could blow their heads off and bathe in their blood. Or even better, he could kill his father and take Drusilla back to be his own.

Of course that wouldn’t work. Because she would just cheat on him again.

He frowned. Didn’t she tell him that she was leaving him for Angelus? Was it a lie or was she fucking his father and his cousin?

While Spike had been lost in his thoughts, Ethan had fully secured Drusilla to the piping behind her. Her arms were securely cuffed and her legs were spread open and tied to some metal poles opposite her.

She looked so vulnerable that, in spite of his anger, Spike felt compelled to rush in and save her.

Surely if he did that then he would be her hero?

Except that deep down he knew he wouldn’t. Drusilla was a masochist. She loved the pain and most of the time she got off on it. That was one of the reasons why she had always been so enamored with Angelus.

Angelus was just as much of a sadist as Ethan was.

In truth Spike didn’t want to watch her being so violently abused. He wanted to close his eyes as Ethan brought a leather strap down on her porcelain skin, raising angry red welts. He wanted to look away from the gruesome spectacle unfolding on the other side of the door.

But he couldn’t. So for what seemed like an eternity he watched the horror of the woman he loved being abused by the man who spawned him.

After several minutes, Drusilla climaxed violently as the final stroke of the belt smacked sharply against her folds.

Finally Spike was able to look away. It was over. But inside he felt like he was over. Everything he believed in had died in that moment.

The impulsive part of Spike wanted to rush in there and pound Ethan’s face into hamburger meat. However a voice, one that actually sounded strangely like a hybrid of his mother and…Buffy, warned him that would get him nowhere.

Ethan wasn’t afraid of a little violence. In fact he often relished a fight, usually ensuring by some underhanded means that his opponent would lose. And Spike knew that with all Ethan’s meatheads littering the mansion there was no way he could take him.

No, what Spike really needed was a good plan to wreak revenge on his father.

But first he needed to get drunker than he’d ever been before.

After raiding Ethan’s alcohol stash in the basement, Spike headed back upstairs to sit alone in the room that used to be his bedroom. It was strange being in there now. After the peculiar night he spent in there with Buffy, the room was filled with memories of the petite blonde now.

A sad smile flickered over his face as he saw her golden button sitting on the dresser. It looked so lonely.

Almost as lonely as he was.

Although he didn’t have many memories of the blonde, the ones he did have had superseded his old memories of the times he played in there with Drusilla throughout his adolescence.

And that was a huge part of what was eating away at him right now.

It wasn’t just that Drusilla had dumped him and betrayed him. No, that was only half of the problem. The worst part was that the brunette beauty had defined his adolescence and early adulthood and without her he didn’t even know how to be a man.

He didn’t know who he was anymore.

Maybe that was why he couldn’t stop thinking about Buffy. He identified with the young girl to some extent. They were both ruined souls lost adrift on a sea of pain and loneliness.

It could also be because she was the polar opposite of his cheating bitch ex-girlfriend.

Spike smelled her before he saw her. The smell of animalic musk and crushed red roses filled the air as she stood in the doorway, reminding him of their times together.

Spike wasn’t sure those memories were so great anymore now that they were tainted with the image of his father fucking her.

Her long sheer white gown gave her a ghostlike quality and even the sight of her sent a shiver down his spine.

“What do you want, Dru?” he asked sharply, not even bothering to look up from his drink.

She laughed, her giggles tinkling like chimes on the wind. “I saw you, Spike. Daddy didn’t see you though. Tut tut, he’d be so cross if he knew you were watching. Or maybe he’d like it!”

“He’d only like it if it made me suffer,” muttered Spike, sparking up a cigarette. The burn felt good in his chest and he exhaled the smoke heavily, tasting its bitterness on his tongue.

“What a naughty boy,” Drusilla sing-songed, gliding into the room like a fallen angel. “Did you enjoy the show, my Spike?”

“Just get the bloody hell out of here,” he warned her, not wanting to look at her face. He knew that if he looked at her, he’d either forgive her or beat her to a bloody pulp and right now he didn’t have the energy for either of those things.

“I don’t want to leave my sweet prince when he’s angry at me,” Drusilla pouted.

“Not yours though anymore, am I? Just like you were never mine.” He gulped down several mouthfuls of whiskey from the half empty bottle. “You belong to someone else, don’t you, pet? Seems like you’d rather shag my bloody father than stay with me.”

“I have to take my pleasures.”

“I thought that overly foreheaded ponce, Angelus, was doing that for you.”

Drusilla giggled and tugged at her long skirt. She looked so childlike and yet so darkly sinister. It was a very strange combination. “Yes, my Daddy has always been my very first love. He doesn’t mind a broken dolly. He likes to play with his Dark Princess quite often. But your daddy made me his princess as well a long time ago, silly boy. I like it best when they share me.” Her eyes glazed as her mind was filled with memories of her skinny body sandwiched between the two men, ivory skin glistening with sweat.

She believed they’d trained her to be a good little slut for them so she let them take her any way they pleased.

“So you’ve been shagging my father all this time?” Spike asked and her eyes whipped back to his face. “All this bloody time?”

Drusilla let out a whine that might have been a laugh or a moan. He couldn’t tell which. “Ethan’s a bad dog, Spike.” She clasped her crotch with bony fingers and began to rub herself through the thin material of her gown. “I need him because he gives me what I need. Angelus is so often busy with Mummy and you…well you can’t do that for me.”

Spike lifted his downcast eyes to her sly face. She was smirking at him as if she’d said something smart. Rage rose up in him and the bottle went flying out of his hand, hitting the wall with a loud crash. Drusilla didn’t flinch as they were sprayed with glass and booze. Instead she just laughed, moaning as her fingers continued to work on her most intimate area.

Spike ignored her lewd behavior, too irate and disgusted to be remotely turned on by her actions. “Why do you want them and not me, love? I would have been anything that you needed,” he swore. “I would have changed for you if that’s what you needed. If you wanted me to be badder then I would have done it. For you, Dru.”

“Silly William, destined for the sunshine,” Drusilla cackled. Spike winced at the use of his real name. Even though it was the name that his mother had given to him, he hated it. “It doesn’t matter what you do. Do you really think I’d ever choose you over Ethan or Angelus?”

“I thought we were in love.”

“Maybe you were.” Drusilla released her crotch and flung her arms out twirling wildly to music that only she could hear.

“And you…you didn’t love me? That’s a soddin’ lie!”

“It’s not a lie, William.” Drusilla stopped her movement abruptly, their face only inches apart. He could smell the whiskey on her breath when she chuckled. “Don’t you see? I never loved you. You were just my little toy. Both our daddies are more fun than you could ever be.”

He raised furious eyes to her. “You think shagging that bleeding wanker is more fun than letting me love you?”

Drusilla snickered. “Spike!” she whined. “You shouldn’t speak in such a mean way about your Daddy.”

“I’ll speak about the git in whatever way I bloody well want. Now answer the buggering question.”

“Don’t be cross at me.” Drusilla pouted like small child, her mischievously twinkling eyes belying the regret tinting her voice. “I was never yours. Angelus is my maker and Ethan is my keeper. You’re…nothing. Just a silly toy with delusions of grandeur.”

“But…”

“They stole my innocence like a thief in the night. Creep, creep, creep through the beautiful meadows. Pick, pick, pick the pretty flowers. And I’m glad! Do you hear me?”

“I hear you but I don’t understand you. You’re not making a soddin’ lick of sense, woman! Why can’t you give me what I gave to you? Why…why couldn’t you love me?” Tears were falling freely down his face now but Drusilla’s own expression hardened at the sight.

“I didn’t want to give you anything. I rescued you from a life of mediocrity. Do you remember what you were before I made you mine, William?” Her eyes glinted with annoyance. She truly believed the boy should learn his place. Maybe a whipping from his father would teach him a good lesson.

“I remember what I was but I took care of you,” he mumbled. “I gave you my soul!”

She cackled, throwing her head back. “Your soul is as worthless as you are.”

Her face was contorted into an expression that couldn’t be mistaken for anything but insanity. The woman had always been a little unhinged, but right now Spike was convinced she’d lost the plot.

Once upon a time that would have made him want to care for her, take her into his arms and show her how much he loved her. Her carefully chosen cruel jibes wouldn’t have made a difference to him. He would have overlooked them and wrapped her in his embrace until the episode passed them by.

But not now.

He was done with being Drusilla’s whipping boy. The woman had held his heart in the palm of his hand and all she’d done was squeezed it until the delicate organ shattered into jagged shards. He wanted her out of his life.

“Get out!” he hissed. “Get out now and I won’t kill you.”

Drusilla giggled. “You could never kill me, Spike. You don’t have it in you. You’re too…good.” Drusilla spit out the last word as if it was poison. She walked over to him, her body swaying hypnotically as she moved. “You’ll never live up to Ethan. There’s so much goodness in you, buried in your big red heart, and it disgusts me.”

“Shut up!” growled Spike, holding his head between his hands as a barrage of thoughts battered his consciousness. “I’m the Big Bad!”

“You’re not even a little bad, Spike,” laughed Drusilla, the derision extremely evident in her voice. “You’re pathetic. You’ll never hold a candle to your father, my darling. But don’t worry. It’s not so bad always being second best.”

He roared and slammed his hand into the fragile plaster of the wall, embedding his fist deeply inside. In actual fact he wished that he could do the same to Ethan’s and Drusilla’s faces.

Drusilla laughed loudly as she watched him pull his bleeding hand to his chest, cradling the appendage tenderly.

“You’re so soft,” she commented. “Your Daddy has never been that soft, Spike.”

“Shut up,” he hissed.

“Oh, I intend to. I’m leaving now and I won’t be back.” She paused and flashed him a lopsided smile. “Well, I won’t be back to see you anyway. My Ethan is waiting for me and I want to have some fun with him for a while.” She clamped her palms over her small breasts. “I want to feel him inside me. Mmm, how good he feels, flesh to flesh, skin to skin.”

Spike wanted to shut his ears to the taunts but he couldn’t. He felt vulnerable and open being forced to be subjected to this.

A sudden question flashed through his mind.

Was this the way Buffy had felt when he tried to…force himself on her? Had she felt like she was at the whim and mercy of someone else in the same way he felt that he was at Drusilla’s mercy?

The very thought made him shudder with genuine guilt and regret, both of which had been astoundingly unfamiliar emotions to the Brit until a little blonde pixie had worked her way into his mind.

Drusilla’s swaying form yanked him out of his musings and back to the cold harshness of reality. “Goodbye, my William.”

His lips couldn’t form the words to bid her goodbye. Not that he wished her anything good, anyway. She was a nasty cheating bitch. They say love is akin to hate but it was amazing how fast love could twist itself into hatred.

And he felt it twisting right there in his chest.

Even through the red haze of his fury Spike knew that wasn’t Drusilla who should shoulder the blame alone for her indiscretions. He knew from snippets of lucid conversation that he’d shared with Drusilla over the years, that her childhood had been peppered with abuse, mostly from her step-father, Angelus, and it had driven her to the brink of insanity.

Angelus was a distant cousin of Spike’s and one of Ireland’s most notorious sex traders. He took his sadistic side from the Rayne legacy and the dark haired pimp enjoyed it to the very maximum. His relationship with Drusilla’s mother, Darla, had given him access to the young girl. In time she’d become a broken mess.

But Spike had loved her anyway.

Spike always believed that he had enough inside of him to repair the woman someday. He truly thought that he could rebuild her, but now he knew that was just a pathetic daydream and it would never come to pass.

Instead of letting him help her, she’d clearly preferred to turn to someone else.

Ethan.

As a father, Ethan should have treated his son well, tried to be a good person. And instead his father enjoyed tormenting everyone including his son. He’d done one of the worst things that one man can do to another. In fact, to Spike there was no greater betrayal than what Ethan had done to him.

It was hard to believe that the affair had been going on all this time. But it made the pieces fall into place now. His mind drifted back to all the times that Drusilla had gone missing for days. Most times Spike assumed that she’d been with Angelus but sometimes the other man denied having seen her. Spike assumed he was lying but…well everything fit now. She’d been with Ethan. This thing must have been going on for years.

Ironic as Ethan never seemed to care for the girl at all.

The fact that it was Ethan made everything hurt a little more though. It was like rubbing salt into an already gaping wound.

Angelus had always maintained some kind of hold over Drusilla and although it pained him Spike had come to accept that. Her stepfather ruined her and she belonged to the other man in her twisted mind. He could twist her around his fingers like a piece of string and although it hurt Spike he’d come to accept it. It didn’t make the fact that he’d walked in on the pair of them in bed together any easier to stomach. The image of the dark haired oaf rocking on top of his girl was emblazoned on his brain.

But it still didn’t sting with betrayal in the same way that seeing Drusilla with his father had done.

While he might not be able to fathom it, it was obvious that Angelus would always own a large part of Drusilla’s heart and Spike didn’t expect the other man to relinquish it. It wasn’t as if the dark haired trader had any real loyalty to Spike that would make him want to do such a selfless act.

Not like a father was supposed to.

A parent’s love and loyalty toward their child was supposed to be second to none.

And yet…apparently things didn’t work that way in the Rayne universe.

He wasn’t going to let this pass him by without getting retribution. The younger Rayne was determined to bring down his father. But for once he would bide his time.

Hadn’t the older Rayne always instilled in him that revenge was best when served cold?

But doing alone would be tricky. Spike knew he needed help of some kind if he was going to be successful in toppling his father from his malevolent pedestal. It wouldn’t be difficult to find someone to help him. After all, his father had collected his fair share of enemies over the years.

In fact he was spoiled with choice as to who he should choose.

An image flashed into his brain of a spunky little blonde who would enjoy revenge on Ethan just as much as he would. He recalled the look in her eyes when Ethan ordered her to be taken away to Gwendolyn’s brothel and that only cemented his resolution that she would assist him.

He couldn’t exactly be friends with a perky little cheerleader like Buffy, but they had a common enemy now. The enemy of my enemy and all that… And if she could help him bring down Ethan, which he didn’t doubt that a sassy, resourceful young girl like her could accomplish, then he needed her.

He didn’t even stop to question any other ulterior motives that he might have had. And he definitely would never admit that half the reason he wanted to let Buffy in on his plans was because he wanted to free her from that horrible brothel.

The only worry in getting her out was that he didn’t know what kind of state he would find her in when he actually got there. She’d been gone for almost a whole week and in a place like that a week might as well have been a lifetime.

But he would worry about that later, once he had her back.

It was time to go get the girl.
Strange Bedfellows by Starlight_Slayer
“Ready for your close up, B?” Faith asked dryly, her eyes hungrily soaking in the blonde teenager.

Buffy bit her lip to keep herself from verbally hitting back. During the past week she’d learned that saying no to Faith resulted in very painful treatment. Her body still had the cuts and welts to prove it.

It made her sick to recall the ‘training’ that Faith had put her through. For the past few days she’d been forced to do things that she didn’t even know existed, things that she found not only disgusting but also morally reprehensible.

But Buffy was quickly becoming an expert at repression. It was easier not to think about things than to confront them head on. She figured she could work through her issues in very expensive therapy when she turned forty. If she actually managed to live that long.

Right now she had more pressing worries to confront, like the fact that Gwendolyn had auctioned off her virginity to the highest bidder and within the next few minutes she would give up her innocence to a nameless, faceless stranger.

“I don’t want to do this,” sighed Buffy in a childish voice.

Despite her heavily painted face and skimpy clothing she was still the epitome of innocence. Even Faith’s harsh training couldn’t wring the innate guilelessness out of the adolescent.

A tear trickled down her haggard face, causing Faith to scowl at her.

“Don’t mess up the face paint, B,” Faith warned her, wiping away the tear with faux tenderness. “Gwen’s boy paid big bucks for your little gift so you can’t fuck that up. Now shouldn’t you be flexing your Kegels for your upcoming performance?”

“You’re so gross, Faith,” Buffy snapped back, her lip creeping out in a pout. “Not that I expect anything else from you.”

“Are we back to the ‘whore’ thing again? ‘Cause I gotta tell you, B. That’s getting wicked old now.”

Buffy opened to mouth to reply but snapped it shut when the door was flung open. A sour looking Gwendolyn was standing in the door way, panting slightly.

“Mr. Balthazar is here and he’s waiting,” Gwendolyn informed Faith curtly not even glancing in Buffy’s direction.

The blonde felt lead fill her gut. So that was his name, huh? ‘Mr. Balthazar’? He would be the first one to fill her, to experience the way she felt inside. Buffy knew that Faith’s sadistic training should have prepared her for this moment but nothing really could have done that.

All of her life she’d dreamed of losing her virginity to the man she loved in a big fluffy bed while the sun streamed through the windows. Instead it would be torn from her in a seedy brothel by a man she didn’t even know.

“Come on then, girl,” Faith encouraged her, grabbing the blonde’s wrist and pulling her to her feet. Buffy tried to resist, even considering kicking Faith in the shin and making a run for it. However, the other girl was older, bigger, and stronger than her. Not to mention streetwise as hell. Buffy might have had courage, but she wasn’t an idiot. There was no way she could get out of this place alone.

At that moment she sent a prayer up to whoever or whatever might be listening to save her.

She needed a miracle.

Buffy felt scared and yet numb as Faith dragged her down the hallways and pushed her through the door of one of the ‘meeting’ rooms, as they were so euphemistically named.

The teenager stumbled through the door and tried to steady herself as she was confronted with the man who was going to take her innocence. She vaguely heard it slam in back of her but she wasn’t even really aware of anything but what she saw in front of her right now.

She wasn’t sure what she’d been expecting when she’d found out that her virginity was being auctioned off to the highest bidder. Maybe deep down she’d been hoping for some dashing young prince who would make the experience a lot more pleasant. Or at least a lot less abhorrent.

What she actually found in front of her eyes was a chubby, balding middle aged man. His shirt looked as if it was at least one size too small for him as the buttons strained and tore under the pressure of his stomach. The swollen pouch looked like it was plotting its devious escape from his overly tight shirt. Sweat patches were peeking through at the armpits too but he didn’t even seem to care about any of that. Buffy couldn’t help but wonder just how this man had afforded the price of her virginity.

Unless she’d been sold cheaply!

Oh God, that would be just the ultimate humiliation.

“You must be Buffy,” the man said, breaking through her thoughts. His voice was nasal and shrill, instantly setting her nerves on edge.

Suddenly all the training that Faith gave her seemed to fly out of her brain and she stood in front of him like a deer caught in the headlights. Her mouth opened and closed like a guppy but she couldn’t seem to form words. She couldn’t turn on the seduction with someone that repulsed her.

“I-I’m Buffy but…”

“Get on your knees and suck me, bitch,” he ordered her. But she couldn’t move, couldn’t think. She could barely even breathe. Suddenly she was underneath five thousand feet of water and it was filling her lungs.

As he started to walk toward her, she didn’t know what to do. She didn’t know how she was going to get through this.

Buffy gulped.

**********


With a murderous look on his face, Spike Pryce peeled to a stop in front of the gates of the huge white mansion.

The guard, Scott, who was also known as ‘the gatekeeper,’ didn’t even bother to ask him to stop. Whether that was because of his irate expression or simply because Scott recognized him, Spike didn’t know. Not that he cared. Whatever the reason, he apparently didn’t do a very thorough job of guarding the brothel gates.

Right now Spike would happily have beat him down if he’d had to. The peroxide blond had only one thing on his mind and that was finding the girl who would help him achieve bitter retribution against his father.

Squealing through the open gates into the main driveway he stopped right in front of the entrance to the brothel. He hopped out of the old Desoto and jogged up the steps into the house. The doors were never locked there which Spike found a little ironic in itself.

Everyone was welcome apparently.

For the right price.

A familiar blonde was sitting at a makeshift desk in the lobby filing her nails and he bounded up to her. When she caught sight of him her eyes lit up and she primped her platinum blonde curls.

“Spikey!” she exclaimed, pushing out her ample bosom as far as she could.

“Harmony,” he greeted with a little apprehension. He didn’t have time for the annoying bimbette today. She’d provided him with a warm body to enjoy during some of Drusilla’s extended disappearing stints but he couldn’t stand the girl. Harmony was more irritating than nails on a chalkboard. He was surprised that any sane man would pay to spend time with the woman but he figured that in times of desperation it was any port in a storm.

“Looking for some fun?” Harmony batted her eyelashes and pushed out her more than ample breasts. “I have a free slot right now.”

“Actually, I’m looking for someone in particular.” Spike didn’t pay a lick of attention to her exposed bosoms, causing Harmony to pout unattractively.

“Oh.” Harmony sighed in disappointment. “I guess you want Faith.”

“No, you stupid chit. I don’t want Faith. I want Buffy.” At her perplexed look her clarified. “Young, honey blonde, skinny. She’s new here.”

“Oh! You mean New Girl?”

“Yes,” he hissed from between tightly clenched teeth. “Where is she, Harmony?”

Harmony knitted her eyebrows and chewed on her bottom lip. She was lost deep in thought for a few moment, which was apparently the extent of her depths. “Oh!” she exclaimed with a sudden flash of recall. “She’s upstairs with the guy that won the auction.”

“What bloody auction?” Frustration was seeping from every pore as he waited for Harmony’s answer. He could tell she was on something from her slow movements and the dilation of her pupils and it was really starting to grate on him.

“The auction that Gwenny held duh. Some old guy won and he paid big bucks to have sex with her. They’re probably going at it right now so you’re gonna have to wait.”

However, waiting wasn’t Spike’s strong point and without so much as a goodbye to Harmony he strode up the stairs, taking them two at a time. The peroxide blond didn’t even pause when Harmony’s warnings that he couldn’t go up there reached his ears. Didn’t the girl realize that he could make her disappear forever if she pissed him off? Harmony was sailing perilously close to that.

He burst into one room after another, leaving more than one rutting couple feeling slightly embarrassed. Well the men looked embarrassed and the prostitutes mostly looked mildly amused.

It didn’t take long before he kicked open the right door and Spike stormed into the room, feeling his ire increase when he saw Buffy pinned under the chubby, balding man. She was clearly struggling underneath him, and from her state of undress it seemed like she was losing the battle.

He didn’t waste any time in tearing the older man off of her and tossing him against the wall as if he were nothing more than garbage.

“What the hell do you think you’re doing?” the chubby man demanded, massaging his bruised shoulder as he thrashed about to regain a standing position.

“I should be asking you the same bloody thing, mate,” Spike remarked, glaring at the shorter man.

“This little bitch is mine, Mister.” Balthazar glared at Spike warningly. “I paid for her and I intend to have her.”

“Yeah, well you’d better take your little dick and introduce it to Mary bloody palm if you want to keep it.” He squared his shoulders threateningly. “Unless you want to try and touch the girl again. In which case I’d be happy as Larry to rip it off and stuff it up your fat arse.”

Balthazar looked affronted but apparently the man didn’t have much in the way of brainpower as he came marching toward Spike, wildly swinging his fists.

Drawing his hand back, Spike slammed his own fist into the older man’s face before Balthazar could even get a punch in. The crunch of bone echoed in the room and blood streamed from his damaged nose as he hit the ground unconscious.

“That’ll bloody teach you,” Spike smirked, stepping over the rotund man and finally turning his attention to Buffy.

The blonde was shivering and shaking as she sat half curled into a ball on the ground. She was only wearing a tiny skirt and the remnants of a bra and Spike felt his pants tighten around the crotch area in spite of himself. Although the circumstances were horrible, Spike couldn’t deny that she still looked a vision.

When Spike kneeled down next to her, laying a gentle hand on her shoulder, Buffy leveled shocked and tormented eyes to her unlikely savior.

“Spike?” she asked, as if she was waking up from a horrible nightmare.

“Yeah, love. It’s me.”

He reached for her hand and pulled her up from the bed. She struggled to stand on shaky legs so he steadied her. Seeing that she seemed cold Spike hesitantly slipped off his long, black leather duster and placed it around her shoulders.

She hugged it around her but kept lifeless eyes trained on the ground.

“It’s alright now, pet,” Spike tried to reassure her, frowning when she didn’t respond.

A feeling of unease settled on his chest at her seeming disassociation from the situation. He didn’t know much about the psychological side of trauma, in spite of how much he’d had to endure himself, but he was pretty sure that being half catatonic wasn’t a good sign. No doubt the cumulative effect of everything she’d been through was finally reaping its toll on her.

The blond couldn’t identify why he suddenly felt so much concern for this girl. He’d already firmly decided that she would be his best ally in bringing down his father, so he needed her, but he didn’t need to care about her.

Caring about others only brought pain and hurt to him.

Steeling himself, he grabbed her upper arms and shook her. “Listen to me, Buffy. We need to leave now. Any minute now and I have no doubt Gwen’s going to come charging in her with bloody gorillas. We can’t be here when that happens. She’s not going to let me toddle off with her merchandise.”

“That’s right,” Gwendolyn said smugly, appearing in the doorway flanked by two men that could have been in training for Sumo wrestling. “She won’t!”
No Might Nor Greatness by Starlight_Slayer
Author's Notes:
Thanks for the reviews. :)
Gwen and Spike faced each other, silently sizing up their opponents. Buffy clung to Spike almost unconsciously. She barely even seemed aware of her surroundings any longer. Her little hands were screwed into balls and her head was resting against his shoulder.

“Well, isn’t it nice to see you again, Gwen,” Spike said, his voice dripping with sarcasm. He quirked one corner of his mouth as a hysterical laugh bubbled up inside of him. “Done something different with your hair?”

The older woman ignored his impetuous comments, rolling her eyes at him. “You’re not getting out of here with the girl,” Gwen informed him arrogantly, taking a step forward. “So why don’t you put her down and leave here, William. You don’t want me to have to call your father.”

“Call the old sod if you want,” Spike hedged, hoping she was bluffing. He didn’t think the woman would want his father to know how lax her security actually was. It wouldn’t reflect well on her and she loved to kiss Ethan’s butt too much to intentionally court his disapproval.

The flicker of doubt behind her eyes proved he was right.

“I don’t want to hurt you, William,” she sighed, smiling as her two bodyguards flexed their muscles. “But they do.” She gestured to the men.

They were both built like man-mountains. One was dark skinned with close cut brown hair. His muscles rippled under his skin as he clenched and flexed. Tattoos covered every inch of his exposed skin except for his face. The other man was built just as imposingly. His paler coloring was offset by a mop of sandy blond hair atop his head.

The one feature both men shared was the empty abyss lurking behind their eyes. It was as if they were robots build to kill and destroy.

Spike gulped but schooled his face into a mask of nonchalance. “You think I can’t take them, pet?”

“I think even you are not stupid enough to try to take them.”

“Yeah? Well you underestimated my stupidity,” Spike retorted, suddenly pausing with a frown marring his face. “Wait…what I meant was…”

Gwen rolled her eyes again. “Get him, boys!” she ordered her men, cutting into Spike’s words. She stepped aside with a smile on her face. The Brit was sure her boys could crush this annoying pest.

The darker haired man came toward him first, a menacing grin on his face. Spike leaned down to Buffy and gently shook her off.

“Gonna need some space for this, lamb,” he said to her. “Please love.”

Barely understanding him, she skittered away and curled herself into a ball in the corner. She couldn’t watch what was about to happen. Through the haze of her addled mind she knew that Spike’s odds for winning this fight were on the bad side of horrible. And if he lost…well it didn’t even bear thinking about.

Before he could really get his bearings, the dark haired man drove a meaty fist into his face, sending him thumping into the wall. He staggered for a moment, licking the blood off of his split lip and then dropped into his own fighting stance.

“Yeah, you think that’s all it’ll take to do me in, you bugger?” the peroxide blond goaded. “You’ll have to do better than that.”

The larger man growled and stormed forward again but this time Spike was ready for him and drove his boot into his knee. Spike smiled through bloody teeth as his opponent stumbled forward, losing his balance and toppling to the ground. Taking his opportunity, he smashed the steel toe of his large boot into the temple of the fallen man, knocking him unconscious.

Seeing the way his friend had been destroyed, the second of the two gorillas hesitated for a moment. Although the bleach headed man didn’t look particularly imposing or dangerous, he’d just witnessed the fact that appearances could be deceiving.

However, he wasn’t going to prove himself a coward and he rushed at Spike with full force. Luckily for Spike, his smaller size made it easier to duck out of the way of the bigger man’s charge. He managed to get the other man spinning in circles and kicked him sharply in the knee with a heavy, booted foot. The bigger man stumbled forward as he tried to regain his balance, but he didn’t go down. He’d seen his friend felled and wasn’t prepared to undergo the same fate.

“Not so big now are you?” Spike quipped, gloating at the other man.

He smirked at his opponent, smug and confident. If there was one thing he would ever thank his bastard of a father for, it was ensuring that he could fight and defend himself through years of intense martial arts training. The need to duke it out didn’t arise regularly but when it did fighting was an invaluable skill.

However, as had happened so many times before, Spike’s smugness was his downfall. While he was contemplating his own greatness the other man was recovering enough to launch his own attack and came at him full force.

The bigger man yanked him closer by his collar and Spike found himself on the receiving end of two successive very painful punches. The other man’s fist connected directly with one sharp cheekbone, splitting the delicate skin before slamming into his nose. Immediately the pain bloomed within his face and he worked his jaw to make sure nothing was broken. Blood was trickling from one cut on his forehead and another on his cheek. Dark bruises were already blossoming on his face and he was favoring his left arm.

But he wasn’t a quitter and he’d have to be dead to give up.

“Oh you’re gonna pay for that, you ponce!” Spike hissed, squaring his shoulders to continue the fight.

The sandy haired man shrugged. “No’ gonna pay fo’ nothin’ here man,” he retorted in barely comprehensible English. “Bu’ I will be takin’ yo’ girl whe’ I finish kickin’ yo’ ass.”

“You don’t touch her!” Spike said, his mind not even registering that Buffy had been referred to as his girl. Subconsciously he was already starting to think of her that way anyway.

Seeing red, he launched forward with an unabated assault on the other man. It was like he was barely even in control of his limbs as he battered him ceaselessly. The taller man didn’t even have a chance to respond of defend himself under the onslaught.

Realizing that his opponent was keening, Spike rammed his fist into the muscular man’s face one last time, following up with a heavy kick to his midsection and another to his crotch. No one ever said he couldn’t take tips from Buffy’s line of defense, right?

The bulky male let out a very unmanly shriek and crumpled like a used Kleenex to the ground, cupping his abused groin. Panting heavily he collapsed next to his already fallen compatriot.

“You know what they say,” Spike said coldly, turning to glare at the unconscious and semi-unconscious bodies. “The bigger they are, the harder they fall.”

Leaving the two beaten men on the ground, Spike made his way over to where Buffy was cradled in the corner and hefted her trembling body into his arms. She didn’t even need any coaxing to wrap her arms around him. It was something primal in her that responded to him, even though he hadn’t always treated her well. But in that moment her abused mind saw him as comfort and couldn’t do anything other than grab a hold of that beacon of safety.

“You think I’m going to allow you to just walk out of here?” Gwen said coldly, still shocked at what she’d just witnessed. Ethan had always instilled the idea that his son was a wimp and a coward, which was the opposite to what she’d seen.

Spike shifted Buffy in his arms and pinned her with a hostile glare. “Actually yeah. That’s exactly what I think, love. See usually I wouldn’t hit a lady but you’re no lady so for you I’ll make an exception. Now, you either get your lumpy arse out of my way or I’ll give it a thorough kicking.”

The British woman gaped speechlessly at him, unable to respond. Her two musclemen had been the best fighters that she had and he’d demolished them as if they were amateurs. She didn’t want to go up against him in any capacity right now and she didn’t hesitate for a moment to think that he would hurt her without prejudice.

She would let him go and leave this to Ethan to rectify.

Seeing that Gwendolyn wasn’t going to interfere, he hugged Buffy to his chest and pushed past the other woman. The older woman was clearly a little shaken and she didn’t try to get in Spike’s way.

Cradling Buffy’s unresisting body more tightly to his chest, he careened down the stairs of the mansion. The blond breathed a sigh of relief when he made it out of there unhampered. Fighting Gwen’s men off had taken its toll on him and he doubted he could stand another round with one of those gorillas.

As soon as he found himself outside, he breathed a sigh of relief and jogged over to his car. Spike deposited the shaking blonde on the passenger seat before climbing in himself.

The engine roared to life and he revved it before squealing out of the driveway. He sent a silent prayer to the powers that be to allow him to get out of this unscathed. Out of the corner of his eye he saw Scott, the Gatekeeper, leap from his booth to close to the gate but Spike gunned the engine and went soaring past the other man before he could impede their getaway.

He didn’t take his foot off the gas for what seemed like miles. He constantly checked the mirrors to ensure that they weren’t being followed but it seemed like they’d actually gotten away.

For once something in his life wasn’t going wrong.

When they’d gotten far enough from the brothel Spike pulled into a deserted store parking lot and brought the car to a standstill. He cut the engine turning his attention to the blonde sitting next to him. Unfortunately, Buffy didn’t even seem to realize they’d stopped and just continued staring blankly at the windshield in a trance.

“Buffy?” he said softly, hissing a heavy sigh when she remained unresponsive. He laid a gentle hand on her arm, shaking her with restrained vigor. “Come on, pet. Talk to me.”

Still nothing.

“Bloody hell!” he exclaimed to himself. “Girl’s gone bonkers.”

With a sudden flash of inspiration, he remembered how he’d seen people snapped out of trances on some of his beloved daytime soap operas. Lifting his hand his brought his open palm snapping across her face. Her head whipped to the side as their skin connected with a sharp thwack.

The movement did seem to have an effect as Buffy blinked rapidly as if she was just waking up from a deep slumber.

However, it brought another unexpected side effect.

Tears.

At first they started just as muffled snuffles but quickly progressed to fat balls of water dripping down her pallid cheeks and chin. Before long her whole body was wracked with sobs as she openly wept.

Spike’s eyes widened as he shuffled uncomfortably in his seat. Women’s tears weren’t something he was really used to dealing with, at least not when they were genuine. Sure Drusilla often went on crying jags but they were usually to get his sympathy and attention or manipulate him in some way.

It wasn’t since his mother that he’d really been at the mercy of a tearful woman.

And that wasn’t a memory that brought back anything good.

Feeling powerless, Spike scrubbed a trembling hand over his face. He reached into the left pocket of the long leather duster that was still wrapped around Buffy and pulled out a mostly clean handkerchief, which he then handed to Buffy. She accepted it wordlessly and blew her nose loudly.

Gradually the sobs began to subside and the devastated blonde teenager seemed to drift back to reality.

As if she was seeing him for the first time she raised a pair of incredulous eyes to Spike. It was finally starting to sink in that he’d burst into the seventh circle of her hell and pulled her out of it.

At first it had seemed like something out of a dream. A leather clad knight rushing in to save her seemed almost too good to be true. But this was too real to be a dream. She could smell the scent of whiskey, cigarettes, earthy aftershave and even that undeniable Spike fragrance on the leather that surrounded her. The chill of the early evening air was raising goose bumps on her skin and the ache in her body wasn’t the stuff dreams were made of.

No…this was real.

The question was…why?

Why had Spike even bothered to come in a rescue her? Did he want to make her his own sex slave instead? It wasn’t as if he hadn’t tried to take her body that very first night they met. It was only a mere week ago but it seemed like a lifetime. So many things had happened to her since then.

She wondered if she would ever be able to stop repressing them and actually confront them.

However, right now she had a more concerning problem.

Spike.

“What’s going on, Spike?” she asked wearily, pressing on her temples with shaky fingers. “What the hell just happened?”

“Thought that was obvious. I just saved your delectable little arse.”

Ignoring his backhanded compliment she continued with her interrogation. “I know that you saved me. But I want to know why.”

“The question you should be asking is ‘why not?’ Why wouldn’t I save you?”

“Um, the fact that you don’t like me? And I definitely don’t like you. That’s a pretty good reason, right? I figured the mutual hate thing would stop you from risking your own pathetic skin to save me.”

“Oh, that’s nice!” he scoffed. “Some bloody gratitude this is. Insults and hostility is all I get for risking my ‘pathetic skin’ to rescue your precious self. Actually I’m starting to wish I hadn’t bothered.”

“If you want gratitude then answer the questions instead of being all avoid-y.” Buffy sniffled and swiped at her nose.

“You really know how to butcher a perfectly good language,” he commented, deftly changing the subject and continuing his… avoidiness.

“Right, like I’d take talky advice from Mr. Bloody Hell.”

“You could learn a few things from me.”

“I’m sure I could. As soon as I want to take Psychopathy 101, you’ll be my first thought. Well, after your dad that is. Not that I wanna think about him, like ever. Eww.”

He smirked a little. It was good to see that her spark was already coming back a little. When he’d looked into her lifeless eyes back in the brothel he really had wondered if it was already too late for her. He’d seen girls broken even more quickly than that and most of them never recovered, but he had a feeling Buffy would be okay eventually.

Spike wondered if helping him bring down Ethan might speed her recovery. Sometimes retribution could be a better cure for what ails you than any medicine. Again he questioned why he even cared. She was just a tool to him, he reminded himself. But he couldn’t use her if she was damaged, could he?

“Listen love. There’s actually a reason I got you out of that place,” Spike said softly, like she was an animal that might spook easily.

“Oh?” Buffy’s insides clenched violently.

Was this it?

Was this the part where he put her in chains and a collar and took her to some windowless basement to keep as his sex slave until he finally slit her throat and put her out of her misery?

“Yeah, I mean, you don’t have to do it if you don’t want to, but I could use a bloody hand with this.”

Buffy’s eyes flickered over Spike’s crotch as she considered exactly what he might need a hand with. “What do you want from me Spike?” She was proud that she managed to keep the tremble out of her voice.

“I want your help.” At her look of confusion he licked his lips and sighed. “I’ve decided that my Da needs to be stopped. He’s out of control. I want to bring the git down, stop him in his buggering tracks. And I could use your help with that. I want to destroy Ethan and I think you can help.”

For a moment Buffy almost burst into hysterical laughter until she saw the serious set of his expression. The peroxide blond was clearly deadly serious about this. However, out of all the scenarios that Buffy could have envisaged this one was probably the least likely that she’d imagined.

“You need my help?” Buffy frowned.

She didn’t really understand why Spike needed her in this. The blonde teen was pretty sure that Spike knew his father better than most people and so he was definitely capable of bringing down the older Rayne singlehandedly.

“I don’t need anyone’s help, Goldilocks,” Spike chuckled. “But I want your help. You’ve got just as big of a bloody grunge against my Da as I have. If anyone’s got the determination to see him rotting in prison, then it’s you.”

“So what...? You think that I’m going to believe that bunch of crap? Is this just some stupid scheme to get into my pants? I mean you couldn’t force me into it so you think I’ll fall for your white knight routine?”

Spike’s eyes widened and for a second Buffy wondered if she’d genuinely hurt him. In spite of herself she felt a pinprick of guilt in her chest.

“I’m not trying to get into your bloody pants, pet,” Spike denied, shaking his head wearily. “You’d know if I was.”

“Why? Because you’d be on top of me holding me down again?”

“No! Bloody buggering hell!”

“What do you expect me to think?”

“I wish you wouldn’t think at all and then we’d all have a lot less trouble.”

Buffy glared at him. “You’re an asshole. And you’re a disgusting person. And I’m guessing you’re not even that good in bed. You know what they say? Big head, little…”

“You wouldn’t be saying that if you really…knew me.” The timbre of his voice lowered and Buffy felt a strange shiver in her bones. The way he intoned the words was so suggestive that Buffy couldn’t help but feel the tiniest rush of excitement surge through her.

“W-what do you mean?”

“If you spread that luscious little cunny for me and let me inside I’d make you scream. I’d lick it all up until you felt like you couldn’t take any more and then…then I’d push you a little bit further.” He hoped that Buffy couldn’t sense the slight insecurity that laced his voice. Drusilla’s cruel words had taken more of a toll on him than he realized.

Buffy gulped. “I…um.” Her face was red and flushed and her chest was rising and falling with excited anticipation. Her body was now used to responding to stimuli and there were few things that were more stimulating than the combination of Spike’s dirtily drawled words and the intense expression on his face.

“Don’t worry, love,” Spike chuckled even as her excitement skyrocketed. “I won’t touch you. Well, not unless you want me to.”

A cool breeze whipped through the window and Buffy suddenly straightened up. “I don’t want it!” she almost yelled, snapping herself back to reality. She cursed her body for its responses.

“Your loss, Goldilocks.” Spike shrugged and masked his disappointment by pulling a cigarette from his jeans pocket. “We’re not here to have a shag, however much fun it might be. We’re here so you can help me bring my father down. Let’s keep our eyes on the prize, eh?”

“I guess you’re serious and you want me to be all helper-girly but what makes you think I’ll help you?”

Spike frowned. “Don’t you want to bring Ethan down too?”

“Yeah,” Buffy agreed. “But why would you want to stop him? It’s not like you’re any better than him. You’re evil as well.”

Spike choked out a sorrowful laugh. He could never seem to win. He wasn’t bad enough for Ethan or Drusilla and he wasn’t good enough for Buffy. He felt like he was suspended between two worlds and he couldn’t gain entrance into either of them.

Was this purgatory?

“I’m nothing like my father!” he said coldly, refusing to look at her.

“You seem to share the rapist gene with him,” she spit back. Her expression was just as frosty as his and neither of them would meet the other’s eyes.

After a lengthy silence, Spike sighed loudly. “I have my reasons for wanting to stop Ethan.” Before she could delve into those reasons, Spike pushed on. “You don’t need to know what they are but just know they’re real. And they make me very very determined to put an end to my Da’s empire.”

He thought it was best to avoid mentioning the fact that Ethan and Drusilla were long term bedfellows. He didn’t want her to realize just how personal the vengeance was, and also he wasn’t in the mood to rehash that situation just yet.

“Okay. I can accept that, I guess. Although I don’t trust you. Not at all.” She raised a dainty thumb to her mouth and began to nibble on the slightly ragged nail. “But I still don’t get why you want me. You barely even know me but you came charging into Gwen’s place to rescue me like some kind of demented white knight. And now you want me to be your Girl Friday.”

Spike turned his head away from her so she couldn’t see the confusion on his face. In truth he’d questioned his own actions more than once, but he used half baked excuses to justify it to himself.

The only real truth that he could come up with was that he’d felt more of a connection to Buffy during the short time he’d known her than he’d felt with anyone else in a long time. The last person he’d felt so close to had been his mother but it hurt too much to think about her.

“Look love, I understand that you don’t trust me as far as you could throw me.”

“I don’t trust you as far as a newborn baby could throw you,” she interjected.

Spike nodded understandingly which surprised Buffy. “It’s a wonder if you’ve even got a bloody ounce of trust left in that skinny little body after all the buggers you’ve met since you end up as my father’s bit of fluff.”

“I’m not a…bit of fluff!” Buffy yelled but Spike didn’t even acknowledge her comment.

“So you can keep questioning my motives until the cows come home but it won’t change anything. I’m offering you a chance to help me and you can take it or leave it.”

“And if I say no?”

“If you don’t want to help then you can leave, no questions asked. You can run away and disappear and never have to get your hands dirty with a Rayne ever again. Your decision, pet, but this is the last call for answers.”

The cool air circulated through the open car windows and Buffy leaned her head back against the headrest, letting her eyes drift shut.

Although she couldn’t see him, she knew that Spike was watching her, no doubt hoping that she would make the ‘right’ decision. He’d already told her that she could just leave. If she wanted to she could run and disappear and never have to be involved with any Rayne ever again.

But that wasn’t Buffy.

Inside she was a fighter for what was true and right. She knew that as long as Ethan was still out in the world, other girls would suffer the way she’d suffered because of him.

She couldn’t stand the thought of other people being subjected to what she had. The vicious attempted rapes, Faith’s master-class in sadism. She didn’t doubt that without Spike’s penchant for rushing in half assed she would have actually been raped that afternoon.

He had saved her. The realization hit her suddenly. Whatever he was, he did deserve her thanks.

Her green eyes snapped open and met Spike’s inquisitive blue gaze.

“By the way, Spike,” Buffy murmured, waiting for Spike to look at her. “I…I am grateful to you for rescuing me from that place.”

For the first time he graced her with a truly genuine smile that made her stomach flip. She recalled Faith’s words about gratitude and wondered if this was the way the brunette felt when Gwen took her off the streets.

“I’d do it again, love,” Spike assured her. “I’d rescue you again. We make a pretty good team.”

“I guess we do.” In that moment her decision was made. “Okay,” she said determinedly. “Let’s do it. Let’s bring down your father.”

A shard of fear lodged in her heart as the words came out of her mouth. She couldn’t help but wonder if she was really making the right decision or if she’d just made the worst choice of her life.

Sighing, she knew that only time would tell.
What Plighted Cunning Hides by Starlight_Slayer
“We have to act fast,” Spike said as he pulled the car up at the back of the Rayne mansion. He took care not to park up where his father might see him.

Buffy glanced over to her left when Spike spoke, noticing the hard glint in his eyes. He looked even angrier now than when she’d first met him, with his hands braced against the wheel, and she wondered just why he was so set on bringing down his father.

And why now?

“Why do we have to act fast?” Buffy asked wearily.

“Ethan’s going to know you’re gone by now. No doubt that traitorous bitch, Gwen, will have spilled the beans. If we don’t act now then we’ll lose our chance.”

“Shouldn’t we…oh I don’t know…plan something first?”

“If we waste time planning we’ll lose our bloody window.”

Buffy nodded, not having the strength to argue. “Makes sense I guess. You really think we can do this?”

“I think we have to, love.” Spike lit up another cigarette, much to Buffy’s chagrin. He’d been chain-smoking like a chimney for the past hour.

“Those things’ll kill you,” she warned him with a glare.

“When you grow up in my world, dying from smoking-related diseases is the least bloody worry you have.”

Buffy licked her lips. She supposed he had a fair point. But her blood still ran cold at the thought of his world because she was firmly implanted in it now too. And didn’t that mean her life expectancy had just square rooted itself?

It occurred to her that it didn’t really matter anyway. All that this life had brought her was pain and suffering. Maybe she would be better off when she was dust to dust.

Spike watched as shutters slammed shut behind her eyes. It was like she was closing herself off from him, from the whole world. A hard mask replaced the moue of a sorrowful little girl as she clenched her jaw in determination.

“Okay. Let’s make this bastard fry.” Her voice was lined with steely determination.

“Hang on there one second, love,” he said as his hand shot out in front of her, holding her back. “You might need this.”

Seemingly out of nowhere he produced a small pistol and pressed it into the palm of her hand.

“What’s this?” she asked, staring at the gun as if she’d never seen one before.

“It’s a bloody three cheese pizza!” he growled sarcastically. “What does it look like?”

“It looks like something I’m not taking in there with me.”

“Don’t be a stupid little chit, Summers. You need some protection.”

“I got skills of my own,” she retorted with a pout. “I’ll have you know I’m the best hair puller west of the Mississippi.”

Spike flashed her a look that seemed to be the lovechild of frustration and murder before smacking his head against the back of the seat. “Fine!” he hissed, grabbing the gun and stashing it in the back of his jeans. “I’ll keep it. And you better button up that coat too, pet. You don’t want to be giving anyone we might run into an eyeful of your delicious goodies.”

Buffy glared at him, sticking her tongue out petulantly when he turned his back, but she did obey his words and closed all of the buttons. He was right, she didn’t want those perverts catching even a glimpse of her. Unless the glimpse was of her punching them in their ugly little faces.

The thought warmed her heart.

The pair of blonds clambered out of the old Desoto and made their way up to the house as clandestinely as possible. Buffy kept her arms crossed protectively over her chest, partly out of fear, but also because she was aware of how little she was wearing underneath the leather duster. She glanced over to Spike and felt a little smile flit over her lips when she noticed he was unwittingly mimicking her gesture.

When they reached one of the back doors, Spike tugged on it and found it was locked. It took him several minutes to jimmy it open, and Buffy spent the entire time complaining, but when the door finally swung on its hinges he flashed the blonde a look of triumph.

“Who’s bad now?” he said with a quirk of his eyebrow. Buffy just rolled her eyes, totally unimpressed at his posturing and urged him inside.

Spike gently put his hands on Buffy’s shoulders as he walked around to the back of her. “We need to get to Ethan’s office,” he whispered into her ear. She felt a frisson of something she couldn’t quite identify course through her veins. However she couldn’t miss the slight tightening of her stomach or the tingle at the back of her neck that his touch provoked.

“Okay,” she nodded, gulping audibly. “Lead the way.”

Spike led her through the labyrinth of hallways that comprised Rayne mansion. Buffy wasn’t sure which way was up in this place and she unconsciously clung to the back of Spike’s T-shirt as they made their way to his father’s office. It didn’t occur to her just how much she was already coming to lean on him.

Getting into the office itself proved to be relatively easy. Almost too easy. However, Spike didn’t stop to consider the fact that fate might finally have cut him a break. He immediately started rummaging through Ethan’s files looking for anything incriminating.

“Can you use a computer?” he asked Buffy as he sorted through a pile of folders he’d retrieved from one of the file cabinets.

“Hello? Teenager here! Do you live in this world?”

Spike scowled and tossed her a flash drive that was sitting on top of a shelf. “Have a look through his computer files and save anything you think is a mite interesting to that.”

“Yes, Master!” she retorted, he voice dripping with sarcasm but Spike only leered in response.

“Think I like you calling me that, pet.”

“Really? Well I think you’re a pig!”

Spike chuckled.

After that the pair worked in near silence for almost fifteen minutes, accumulating as much incriminating information on the gangster as they could. It wasn’t the most interesting job in the world, but both blonds were determined to find everything there was to bring him down.

“Come on!” Buffy encouraged the computer, drumming her fingers on the desk as the files transferred over to the flash drive. Her body felt like it was filled with nervous energy and she thought she might explode.

Spike looked just as nervous as he raked through file cabinet after file cabinet. His entire being was vibrating with a mélange of excitement, fear and residual anger.

The longer it took to gather the information, the more chance they had of getting caught. Spike wasn’t foolish enough to think Ethan or any of the guards would just let them walk out of there if they were discovered.

He shivered at the recollection of the kind of tortures he’d seen his father favor.

“Bloody hell!” he sighed as he flicked through one particularly salacious document. “My Da’s got some deep skeletons in his closet.”

Buffy frowned, a thought suddenly striking her. “I don’t understand why he’d keep this stuff in his office. I mean, isn’t it like saying: ‘Hey come catch me!”

“You got a good point there, Summers,” chuckled Spike. “But that’s exactly why he does it. Da’s putting two fingers up to everyone by keeping it in plain sight. He wants to prove that he’s untouchable no matter what. Ponce really believes it too.”

He was prevented from saying another word as the closed door flew open. Buffy let out a little ‘eek’ and jumped at the fright, while Spike just rolled his eyes in frustration. Framed in the doorway like a perverse Freddie Kruger was Ethan Rayne. His face was a mask of twisted fury, coupled with a strange kind of amusement.

“Well now,” smirked Ethan his dark eyes darting between the two blonds. “What have we got here?”

Buffy gulped at the subtly murderous expression on the older Rayne’s face and when she glanced at Spike he looked similarly fearful, even though he was trying to conceal his feelings. The concealed terror in Spike’s expressive blue eyes didn’t help to calm her suddenly frazzled nerves.

Ethan’s eyes flickered to Buffy and he huffed out a sigh. “You’ve been a bit of a naughty girl haven’t you, darling?” he said slowly, his amusement building when he saw her flinch. “Running away from Gwen and the girls like that was a very bad thing to do. Not to mention stupid. I don’t like to lose my property. Now I have to discipline you like the bad girl you are.”

“I’m not yours,” she spat defiantly, refusing to lower her eyes when his icy gaze bore into her.

“I beg to differ but let’s not waste our time with petty squabbles. Not when it could be spent so much more usefully with punishing you.”

He tugged at his belt buckle, loosening the thick black strap from his pant loops, and fingered it lovingly. “I think we’ll start with introducing you to the metal end of the belt, my dear.”

He brought the belt down against his own hand with a heavy thwack and smirked at the blonde teen. However, he hadn’t counted on his son’s apparently new penchant for protecting damsels in distress. The peroxide blond stepped in front of the girl.

“You don’t touch her,” he warned his father.

Ethan chuckled mockingly, his eyes flitted between the two blondes. “Well aren’t you a throw himself to the lions kind of sap these days, son? I don’t believe I raised you that way.”

“You didn’t raise me at all!” Spike insisted. “You palmed me off on other people while you were busy ruining lives.”

“Now William, I did the best I could with a lily livered wimp. You’ve never been much of a man have you? No wonder your woman felt the need to turn to me to garner some satisfaction.” At Spike’s shocked look Ethan laughed even harder. “Oh yes, son. I know that you know. Dru tells me everything, silly bint that she is. She told me you saw me shagging her nutty little brains out.”

Buffy’s eyebrows raised at Ethan’s words. She actually felt a little pang of sympathy for Spike.

“Don’t you talk about her!” Spike growled.

“Why not?” Ethan glanced at Buffy with a leer. The petulant blonde merely glared back at him. “You look like you’ve moved on to…tighter pastures. Although you said it yourself. This bird is as loose as the Grand Canyon. Probably not as loose as your last tart though.”

“You fucking bastard!” yelled Spike.

The younger Rayne wasn’t even sure which area of his father’s ‘bastard-ness’ he was referring to now but he’d just had enough of his father. The comforting familiarity of rage rose up within him. Almost autonomously his arm drew back and smashed into Ethan’s smug face.

Ethan’s head snapped to the side, but the older Rayne barely flinched otherwise. He gritted his teeth and turned his head slowly back to face his son. “Now, that wasn’t very nice, son.”

He stalked forward, relishing the fact that Spike took a tentative step backward in response. Both of the men knew that even though Spike was an excellent fighter Ethan could outdo him on most days in a fair fight. And Ethan didn’t even fight fair. Spike shuddered as he remembered the many times that he’d actually been on the end of one of Ethan’s beatings.

With careful precision Ethan’s foot shot out and caught Spike in the center of his stomach. The surprise attack gave Ethan the edge and Spike didn’t have time to respond. While the younger man was doubled over with pain, Ethan whipped the heavy metal end into his temple. The dark haired man marched over to his son and pinned him to the wall. He thrust him backward with so much force that some plaster actually flaked off the wall. The bash to his head left Spike even more winded and he blinked wildly, trying to keep conscious.

“No!” cried Buffy as she saw Ethan’s hands creep around his son’s neck. A pair of thumbs pressed into the younger man’s windpipe, cutting off his air.

In spite of the pain, Spike tried desperately to claw at Ethan’s hands but it was to no avail and the pair of meaty fists tightened around the column of his neck. Blackness started to cloud the edges of his vision and he choked under the strain, becoming increasingly limp.

Buffy felt her breath catch in her chest at the sight of the darker man’s fingers tightening around his son’s throat. The younger Rayne spit and gurgled, trying to draw breath as his father’s hands squeezed the life out of him. Without thinking the teenager glanced around wildly searching for a weapon until her eyes landed on a bronze bust sculpted in the image of Ethan.

With shaky fingers she picked up the hefty statue and calmed her nerves before marching forward to where Spike was still struggling in his dad’s grip. Almost without conscious thought, Buffy slammed the bronze statue into the soft temple of Ethan’s skull.

In the moments that followed, it was as if the world had slowed almost to a halt. She watched as his fingers loosened and fell away from Spike’s bruised neck. Ethan plummeted to the ground, blood cascading in crimson rivulets down the side of his face. He hit the ground heavily, and Buffy couldn’t see him breathing.

She was frozen in place, wide eyes trained mercilessly on the body. Her heart felt like it might beat right out of her chest. She could feel it pounding out the death march underneath her breast, like a mocking tune to rub salt into the gaping mass of guilt that was already starting to fester within her veins.

Oh God. There was a body because of her.

“We gotta get out of here, Lamb,” Spike called to her in a hoarse voice, sucking in the oxygen he’d been denied.

Buffy whirled wildly to face Spike. “Is he dead?” she panted, holding back the tears.

Spike’s eyes flickered to Ethan’s motionless corpse. He was just about to approach it to feel for a pulse when they heard the noise outside the door.

Footsteps.

“I don’t know, love. But we need to get out now before his boys find us.”

“No, Spike, we need to see. Maybe we can help him.”

Spike marched over to her and grabbed her by the shoulders, shaking her slim frame gently. “Listen to me, pet. We have to go now. If his boys find us here with his bloody corpse then we’ll be corpses too. Those gits are loyal to him. You got that?”

The decision was taken out of his hands when the office door burst open and two of Ethan’s bodyguards came marching through. Two pairs of eyes glanced at the prone body on the floor, darkening with anger as they realized their master was in trouble.

“Bloody hell!” Spike swore, rolling his eyes.

Before the two guards could attack he tucked the documents into his pocket and hoisted a near-catatonic Buffy over his shoulder. With his free hand his pulled out the pistol he’d tucked in the back of his jeans and shot one of the men in his kneecaps, grinning as he plummeted to the ground like a felled tree with a blood curdling shriek.

It distracted his companion long enough that Spike was luckily able to side step him. Even with a feather-light Buffy hung over his shoulder, he was still more nimble on his feet than someone twice his size.

He raced out of the door, ignoring the remaining man’s cries to stop. The back of his brain barely registered the sound of gunfire behind him but he was already out of the house.

With a heavy sigh he dumped the girl into the car again and climbed in himself. He was getting a strong sense of déjà vu about this. At least this time he didn’t feel like he’d just gone ten rounds with a pride of lions.

Without glancing back at what used to be his life, Spike sped off into the night.
Out, Damned Spot by Starlight_Slayer
Darkness had already descended over Los Angeles when the pair of runaway blonds finally settled on somewhere to stay for the night. They’d managed to find a cheap motel just off the highway. It was one of those places where it was easy to remain anonymous and therefore reasonably safe. No one asked questions in these kinds of joints.

They were both aware of how imperative it was to avoid any of Ethan’s goons that might come chasing after them if they wished to stay alive.

Spike ordered Buffy to stay in the car while he went inside to deal with the room and she nodded vaguely, refusing to meet his eyes. She didn’t have the strength to argue. Even in the darkness she could make out the bruising around the base of his neck. Bruising that had been put there by his father.

By the man she killed.

Screwing her eyes shut, Buffy leaned her head back against the seat and huffed out a cleansing breath. Her pulse was still racing from what had happened, her heart pumping her tainted blood wildly through her veins. But her mind was slow and lethargic, still trying to come to terms with what had occurred.

Her life had changed so dramatically during the past week that she could barely comprehend it. Every time she thought that nothing else could supersede the last event, she was inevitably proven wrong.

However, she’d never imagined that she’d be a murderer.

It almost didn’t matter that Ethan was a violent, sadistic gangster. That seemed irrelevant. All the teenager could focus on was the fact that she’d stolen away another human being’s life. It eclipsed all of the other pain that had infiltrated her life since her father’s betrayal.

Tears sprang to her eyes at the thought of what she’d done and she pushed the heels of her hands into her eye sockets to hold them back. No good could come of crying right now and she didn’t want Spike to return and find her bawling again either.

The sudden opening of the car door startled her and Buffy’s head snapped up. Spike peered in, his eyes unintentionally raking over her exposed legs. “I’ve got us the room, pet,” he informed her, not quite meeting her eyes.

With a tired sigh she climbed out of the car and followed him up a flight of rickety metal steps to the second floor of rooms. The old rusty key turned in the lock with a squeal that caused both the blondes to wince, and Spike ushered her inside. The room was small but functional even though it probably wasn’t the cleanest place she’d even seen. However, as soon as she clapped eyes on the bed she clenched her teeth together and shook her head vehemently.

“Oh no!” she huffed, staring at the double bed in front of them. Stomping her foot she turned to Spike, eyes suddenly blazing fire. “One bed?! Are you kidding?”

Spike licked his lips and cracked his knuckles, trying to rein in his emotions. As soon as the guy behind the desk had told him that they were all out of twins, he’d known that Buffy was going to lose her mind. However, all he wanted to do was fall asleep and he didn’t need a whining teenager getting on his last nerve right now.

“It’s all they had,” he informed her with faux calmness. “There’re no twins left. So you can either get your arse in that bed or you can sleep on the floor with the rats and the roaches. Up to you, Goldilocks. No skin off my nose if you prefer to kip in the filth.”

“I’m so not sleeping on the floor,” she bit back. “You’re the man…kinda…so you should sleep on the damn floor.”

“I’m the one who’s forking out the dosh for this room, you mad bint.”

“I don’t know what that even means but you’re still the one who’s sleeping on the ground.”

“Thought you birds were all about bloody girl power these days so why don’t you sleep on the soddin’ floor?”

“Ugh, can’t you talk in English?”

“I speak it but apparently you’re too brainless to understand it!”

“Hey, I’m totally not some dumb blonde!”

“Yeah, really going overboard with proving that, aren’t you, pet?” he mocked.

“At least I’m not a first-class asshole!” Buffy yelled. Her eyes were shooting fire at him. She had redefined the phrase: ‘if looks could kill.’

“No, you’re just a first-class bitch!”

And for some reason that was when it all became too much and the emotions overtook her.

From Spike’s point of view it was like watching a train wreck happen in slow motion. Buffy’s face crumpled and tears started leaking from her eyes. Before he knew it she’d melted to ground, huge sobs wracking through her delicate frame. Her skinny arms wrapped around herself protectively but she still seemed so vulnerable. He was starting to get used to Buffy’s emotional outbursts now and he didn’t exactly blame her for her tense emotional state.

He was still in shock himself from the fact that his father was most probably dead. It hadn’t quite sunk in yet but it did niggle at him that he didn’t feel even the barest smidgen of regret at the older man’s passing.

However, he silently cursed his father for bringing a smart, sassy young girl like Buffy to her knees. Almost without any thought he started forward and took the girl into his arms. The sight of her crying tugged at some kind of primal instinct within him. He wanted to protect her, hold her, and assure her that everything would be alright.

As she felt his strong arms surround her she stiffened at first and he thought she might throw him off but instead she pulled him closer. She buried her face in the crook of his neck, heedless of the tears cascading down his skin and soaking the collar of his T-shirt. The blonde sought all of the solace that she could from the warm body wrapped around her.

His own eyes teared up as he silently sobbed out his distress. As much as Buffy had found herself as the victim of betrayal, Spike had similarly suffered. First he’d found Drusilla writhing underneath Angelus which had confirmed many of his worst suspicions about his girlfriend. Then he’d found out his father was doing the horizontal mambo with the woman too. Any trust he’d had for humanity had been sucked out of him during this past week.

The only thing he couldn’t figure out was why he felt so safe when he was in Buffy’s arms. He couldn’t trust anyone anymore and yet she was like a safe haven for him. It didn’t even matter that he was being totally unmanly with all the crying he was doing right about now. That was irrelevant. All that mattered was the feel of her warm body against him, lulling him into a trance of peace.

Spike wasn’t sure how long they stayed like that, each unable and unwilling to break the contact. It felt like an eternity since either of them had been truly held by another human being so they savored it with their souls. It didn’t matter that they both still claimed to hate each other, because they were able to save each other in that moment.

Buffy was the first one to break away, her cheeks pink with embarrassment as she smiled apologetically at Spike. “I’m not usually like this,” she told him, burrowing deeper into the leather of his coat that still hung around her shoulders.

“I suppose you’re entitled to a bit of a snoop and pry after what you’ve been through, pet,” he said understandingly, hoping that she hadn’t noticed his own quiet weeping.

Buffy looked at him askance. She expected him to mock or deride her but his kindness was totally unexpected. Their eyes met and she found herself lost in the deep intensity of his gaze. Never before had she met someone with such expressive eyes. Every emotion flitted through those eyes and they seemed to pull her in as if they were hypnotizing her somehow. Her own gaze lowered slightly and she found herself staring at his pouty lips. They looked so soft, so kissable. It would be easy just to lean in and…

A cough brought her out of her trance as Spike cleared his throat. She immediately jumped back as if she’d been scalded and silently chastised herself for what she’d been thinking. Had she actually been tempted to kiss Spike Rayne? Even the thought of it was mere insanity. Maybe that was it! Maybe all of this stress had driven her totally crazy. Of course it had to be that because she was convinced that those kinds of thoughts would never cross her mind under any other kind of circumstances.

“Want me to get you a coffee or something?” Spike asked, eager to break the tension in the air. He had noticed the strange, yet lustful look that Buffy was flashing at him moments earlier and every sinew in him had been screaming at him to take advantage of that situation. However, something stopped him. He didn’t know what it was, and he was sure he would curse himself for it later, but he couldn’t take advantage of this girl after she’d been through so much heartache.

God, could he be developing actual morals? He blanched slightly at the thought.

“Uh, yeah, coffee would be great if you can find a machine.” Buffy smiled at him but he could tell that it was forced.

“I think I saw one just outside.” Spike climbed to his feet and scratched the back of his neck nervously. “I’ll be right back.”

He turned and flew out of the room, not even giving Buffy the chance to appreciate how tight his buns looked in his fitted jeans.

As she watched him leave, the blonde puffed out a heavy breath. The world wasn’t making any sense at the moment. Spike had comforted her and then she’d thought about engaging in kissage with him. That alone seemed to suggest that she’d actually gone insane and created a fantasyland inside of her warped little brain.

Except that this was real. All of it was real…the bad and the worse.

However, she wasn’t sure which category Spike was falling into right now.

Of course, she still hadn’t forgiven or forgotten his actions on their first meeting. Despite that fact that he’d inadvertently saved her from Ethan’s sleazy paws, he’d almost emulated his father’s actions in forcing her to have sex with him. But he hadn’t actually done it and he claimed that he wouldn’t really have gone through with it.

And she had to admit she did feel gratitude toward him for saving her from the brothel. The blonde shuddered to think what would have happened if it hadn’t been for Spike. That disgusting pervert who had won the auction would no doubt have taken her against her will.

Spike was a mass of contradictions so the fact that he’d come charging in didn’t actually surprise. What did surprise was his tenderness toward her since he’d saved her. Snuggling into his coat she allowed herself to momentarily enjoy his scent. However much she told herself that she disliked him, something about his manly aroma comforted her.

With a weary sigh she climbed off of the ground and slipped onto the bed.

She wasn’t sure how she felt about sharing it with him. In truth she would have preferred if he’d slept on the ground but when she thought about it without the filter of anger and emotion she realized that would be cruel.

A little less cruelty in the world could only be a good thing even if it meant having to endure Spike’s naked skin against her body.

She shivered at the thought.

The blonde was pulled from her reverie as the door opened and Spike came padding back into the room.

Buffy looked up, her eyes red and puffy, when he returned. She sniffled but gave him a grateful, watery smile as he approached with a steaming cup of liquid.

He handed the cup of coffee to Buffy and she slowly sipped on it, but didn’t take her eyes away from the blank wall. She couldn’t make eye contact with him.

“I put a splash of brandy in it for you too,” he told her, gesturing to the flask his pulled from the back pocket of his jeans. “Should help you feel better.”

“Must be magic brandy,” she retorted wryly, sorrow coating her voice.

“All brandy is magic brandy,” he joked but the comment fell flat when she didn’t even crack a smile.

“Do you think there’s a hell?” she asked suddenly, almost inaudibly.

Spike frowned at the question wondering where it came from. And then he realized. She was worried that she would end up in hell. He could tell that what she’d done to his father was truly hitting her now. Although it probably wasn’t just that. He would wager it was most likely an accumulation of all the suffering since she’d become property of the Raynes. No doubt that killing someone would have a detrimental effect on your psyche though.

“I think hell is right here on this earth, to be honest, pet,” he responded glumly. “I see it every day out there. The world is our hell and we’re the bloody demons.”

“Do you think I’m a demon? What I did was evil right?” Her voice was tinged with hysteria as she talked.

“What happened back at the manor, it wasn’t your fault, love,” he murmured quietly.

She didn’t respond, didn’t move, didn’t blink so Spike pushed on with his reassurances.

“Ethan deserved it, you know. He would have done worse to the both of us if you hadn’t slammed that bloody thing into him.” Spike assured her before chuckling wryly. “Killed by a statue of himself. How’s that for soddin’ irony with a bloody self-centered ponce like my Da?”

“I guess it is ironic,” she said with a little humor seeping into her voice.

“I’d be dead as a dodo if you hadn’t done it. Much as I hate to admit it, you saved my life, pet. My Da wouldn’t have stopped if you hadn’t…” He let his voice trail off. He didn’t need to rehash what she’d done.

“Doesn’t mean I like you,” she assured him, although her voice lacked any true heat.

“Feeling’s mutual, love,” he told her with a slight smile. “And I guess we’re even now. Both saved each other, haven’t we? Maybe we don’t make such a bad team.”

Buffy placed the cardboard cup down on the nightstand and turned to face him. Her bloodshot eyes met his and she licked her dry lips.

All the torment that she’d recently encountered had taken its toll on the teenager. Her hair was lank and lifeless, her skin dull. Spike wondered if she’d ever get the spark back. Maybe it was still there but buried under layers of crap. Crap that he’d helped to heap onto her.

“Don’t you care that your dad’s dead?” she finally croaked out past her cracked lips. It was a question that she’d been wondering almost since it happened. She knew that she hadn’t really been able to grieve for her own father and it struck a chord with her that Spike didn’t seem upset by his dad’s death.

Spike shrugged and opened his mouth to reply. However, he snapped it shut again as he actually considered her question.

Growing up Ethan had never really been much of a father to him. After his mother had died, Spike had been left to bring himself up most of the time. The only one who ever really cared about him was their cook and maid, and Ethan’s abusiveness drove even her away eventually. When Spike finally reached an age where he was ‘useful’ to Ethan, his father inducted him into the family business.

But all that had brought him was pain.

There had never been anything good inside of Ethan. The man was pure evil, inside and out. He wasn’t someone who could have ever been redeemed because he took too much pleasure from other people’s pain.

The world was better off without Ethan in it.

“My Da was a bloody bastard,” he admitted. “He used and abused everyone around him. He loved to watch people hurting. It was his only joy. So no, I can’t care that he’s dead, if he’s dead. We can’t know for sure, love. And we can’t take any chances just in case he didn’t bite it.”

“God,” she sighed. “How did I get here? Just over a week ago I was a normal girl, worrying about what to wear to school or what shade to color my hair. I never even thought about murder or gangsters or…brothels.”

Spike didn’t miss the flinch that her reference to the brothel caused and he endeavored to catch her eyes. “You can talk about it, you know, pet.”

Buffy looked at him inquisitively. “About what?”

“About…what happened when you were with Gwen.”

Buffy stiffened and looked away. “There’s nothing to talk about.”

“Summers, I know you’re lying to me. I’ve seen what that place does to people so you can’t kid a kidder, pet.”

“If you already know what it’s like then we don’t need to talk about it.”

“Fine,” he said, feeling hurt at her refusal to open up to her. He knew that it was an irrational reaction, but Buffy had taken center stage in his thoughts since they first met and it irritated him that she wasn’t falling into his arms and confiding her deepest thoughts like fantasy-Buffy did. “You’re not the only one who’s ever lost anything, you know?”

“I know…you’ve lost your Dad.”

“I wasn’t talking about him,” Spike bit back bitterly. “I was talking about my…never mind!”

“You’re talking about your Mom,” she realized softly. “What happened to your Mom?” she asked, laying a gentle hand on his shoulder.

As soon as her words hit the air Spike’s demeanor totally changed. His posture stiffened and his eyes darkened. He shook her hand off of him violently, glaring at her as if she was poison. With a nasty shudder, Buffy realized he was reminding her of the man he’d been the very first night they met.

“That’s none of your bloody business,” he growled, a warning tone lacing his voice. “You don’t get to ask questions like that.”

“I didn’t mean…” Buffy couldn’t understand the violent change in his mood. She realized that talking about his mother had to have been a sensitive subject for him. But she couldn’t help but think his reaction was a little more of an overreaction.

“No one ever bloody well means anything! You’re a bloody stupid little bint who’s getting too nosy for her own good. Do you think we’re sharing here? Like little best buddies? Want to paint each other’s nails and braid each other’s hair after we finish sharing our dirty little secrets? Huh? You’re nothing to me! So stay out of my head.”

“I just…”

“Don’t! I don’t want to hear it. In fact, I don’t want to bloody say another word about anything. Just go to sleep, alright.”

“Where are you going?” she asked quietly, fear embedding itself into her chest when he headed toward the door.

“I need to get some air,” he replied gruffly, refusing to look at her.

He failed to hear her response because by the time she choked it out he was already outside, the door slamming heavily behind him. Of course he knew how harsh he’d been with her but he couldn’t help but think that if he’d told her about his mother then she’d know just how big of a failure he was. Whenever he thought about the woman who gave birth to him it provoked a whole host of emotions within him and none of them were very positive.

Leaning on the railing outside of the room, Spike puffed out the stale air from his lungs. It hurt to breathe right now but he relished the pain. Feeling like the biggest wimp in the world he laid his head in his hands and bawled out the pain. Fat tears ran down his cheeks dripping onto the iron railings.

His shaky hands came up to wipe them away as he heard a sound behind him.

“Are you okay?”

The sound of Buffy’s voice made the tears flow faster. He was starting to feel like a first class pussy boy around this girl. All of his life he’d been pounded over the head with the importance of ‘acting like a man’ and ‘never showing weakness.’

Well all of that had turned on its head hadn’t it?

“Go back inside,” he ordered her weakly. “I’ll be in soon.”

“I’m sorry,” said Buffy, her own voice rough with unshed tears. When she’d seen Spike storm away it had left her feeling bereft. As much as she disliked him, it occurred to her in that moment that he was all that she had.

Everyone had left her and by default she was left with Spike. If he left her too then she wasn’t sure what she’d do. In truth she wasn’t sure that she was strong enough to survive alone.

Spike sighed, the mist of irrational anger dissipating at her apology. “It’s not your fault, love. I have the tendency to overreact to that stuff.”

“I know how hard it is,” she sighed sadly. “I lost my Mom too.”

He turned around, their eyes meeting in a gesture of unity, and nodded. That one look said more than words ever could. Something indefinable changed between them in that moment. She graced him with a watery smile that he returned. “Thanks, love.” His voice was sincere but exhausted. “You go in now and I’ll be there in a minute.”

“Really?” She looked like a lost little girl. Apparently all of her pride was absent without leave for the moment, so she just wanted to be reassured that she was safe.

“I promise.”

Satisfied that he wasn’t going to leave her, she turned and went back inside the motel room. Spike watched her retreating back. She was still clad in his duster, the leather wrapped around her slight frame like a protective skin. It heartened him that she felt so safe in wearing his coat. He knew that he was probably reading way too much into it, but when the coat hung against her silken skin it was the next best thing to being allowed to touch that creamy expanse of skin himself.

The thoughts of about Buffy’s naked body caused a familiar stirring in his nether regions. Since the first night he met her, she had been able to arouse him without even trying. After she was shipped off to the brothel the thoughts continued to spiral and grow embedding themselves deeply within him. However, she hadn’t been within his physical reach until now.

Now, having her could become a reality.

Spike reached down to adjust his turgid cock. The zipper of his jeans was biting into the delicate skin. If Buffy wasn’t waiting for him inside might have just whipped out his pleasure organ and had some fun right there in the open air.

However, even though it might be torture, he would rather return inside. Being surrounded by her scent was worth the sexual frustration. If he was lucky she might star as the subject of one of his wet dreams.

He was suddenly feeling exceptionally pussy whipped.

When he finally returned inside, Buffy was curled up dozing underneath the sheets. She’d finally stripped off his coat and left it hanging over the sole chair that occupied the dingy room. His mouth watered as he realized that she was only wearing skimpy underwear and tatters of her ‘hooker’ clothes underneath the thin cotton sheets.

He knew that Buffy hadn’t wanted to share the bed with him, and she’d clearly requisitioned it for herself. However, there wasn’t a chance in hell that he was sleeping on the dusty stained carpet. He might be on his way to whipped, but he wasn’t that whipped yet.

With a sigh he stripped off his own T-shirt. For a moment he considered removing his jeans too, as he usually preferred to sleep without the constraints of clothing. Somehow he didn’t think Buffy would be too happy to find his naked cock nestled between her butt cheeks when she woke up though so he decided to leave his bottom half clothed. The peroxide blond climbed in next to the sleeping girl, making sure not to wake her.

In her sleep Buffy shifted onto her side, her hand coming to rest over his chest. Taking a liberty he knew could get him a kick in the balls, Spike pulled the sleeping girl into his arms and held her tightly, drawing comfort from her proximity. His nose nuzzled her neck, reveling in the Buffy-like fragrance that he found there. She smelled like sunshine and goodness. He’d been dreaming of holding her like this ever since that first night they met.

It was strange but when he held Buffy in his arms the pain seemed to subside. She was like a human analgesic that soothed his heartache. Even on the few occasions that Drusilla had allowed him the privilege of snuggling up against her it had never felt this…right.

Burying his face in Buffy’s sweet smelling golden locks he finally allowed himself the peace of slumber.
Let Me Be That I Am by Starlight_Slayer
Birdsong and dusty sunlight trickled into the grungy motel room. A blonde teenager stirred from the depths of slumber, smacking her lips together as she drifted back to consciousness.

As awareness filled her senses she became acutely aware of the hard body that was lying flush against her. Her back was crushed against his solid chest and she could feel something stiff and firm straining against the curve of her butt. Somehow, she didn’t think that was a pistol in his pocket.

The young blonde gulped and twisted in the iron grip, coming face to face with a sleeping Spike. He looked so innocent and boyish in slumber. The usual sneer and worry lines that marred his face were smoothed away. She managed to swallow her little gasp of surprise at the feelings that his nearness to her provoked. There was something about having him this close that took her breath away.

She didn’t remember him coming to bed the previous night. She’d gone inside to wait for him but apparently the tug of slumber had been too strong. Although she was glad that he hadn’t abandoned her, under no circumstances had she ever expected to awake with him snuggled against her like a teddy bear.

Suddenly the need to escape from his hold took over her. The feelings that he was generating were strange and foreign to her and the teenager didn’t want to focus on them right now.

Or maybe ever.

In an endeavor to be stealthy, the blonde tried to wiggle out of Spike’s grasp without waking him, contorting her neck in an attempt to unhook herself from underneath his well muscled arm. At first she thought it was hopeless as Spike’s hold unconsciously tightened on her, as if he wanted to keep her with him even in the depths of sleep. However, with some smart maneuvering, the blonde finally slipped out from under his arm. Buffy breathed a sigh of relief as she managed to sit up but a voice stopped her cold in her tracks.

“Going somewhere, Kitten?”

Buffy glanced over her shoulder, her eyes clashing with Spike’s stormy gaze. In spite of herself she could not help but notice that he looked very cute with his mussed bed head and bleary eyes. He rubbed them like a little boy just waking up in the morning and Buffy felt her heart momentarily leap in her chest.

Almost as quickly as that feeling arose, Buffy stomped heavily on it. There was no way she should be getting sweet and gushy feelings for Spike Rayne. The man was still evil, however cute he might appear early in the morning.

“I was just gonna go to the bathroom,” Buffy said, clearing away the hoarseness of sleep from her throat. All the crying that she’d done the previous day had roughened her voice giving her a husky quality.

And Spike couldn’t stop himself from thinking it was damn sexy.

“Yeah?” said Spike. “Gonna have a bath are you, love?” His eyes glazed over as he pictured naked Buffy immersed in a tub full of bubbles and rose petals, vanilla scented oil wafting through the air. Maybe she would lift one toned leg out of the water and her delicate fingers would skim the same path as the trickling rivulets of water. Maybe she would even invite him in to scrub her back.

He immediately cursed himself for those thoughts. This girl was making him turn into such a poof.

Hadn’t he learned his lesson with Drusilla?

“Actually I was thinking more in the taking a shower ballpark,” Buffy announced, totally oblivious to his less than savory thoughts. “I don’t trust this place not to be crawling with bugs and that includes the tub.”

“Huh,” Spike agreed, his mind venturing once again to his happy place where naked Buffy was dripping with suds in the shower.

“Uh, earth to Spike!” Buffy finally said when it appeared that his mind had gone AWOL.

“Sorry, pet,” he said sheepishly, thankful that the teenager didn’t glance down. If she had she might have seen some stirrings in his crotch area. “Not quite with it yet this morning.”

Buffy nodded sympathetically. However much she condemned Spike for his bloodline and some of his actions, she still felt bad for what he’d lost.

For what she’d taken away from him.

Suddenly feeling immensely uncomfortable at the reminder of the fact she was a murderer, Buffy rose to her feet and grabbed one of the towels that was laid out on a shelf. Studiously she avoided Spike’s gaze as she made her way into the bathroom, slamming the door behind her. She didn’t want to look at him right now.

She didn’t want to be reminded of what she was capable of just in case her delicate mental state all came crashing down.

Finally alone, Buffy huffed out a relieved breath. Being in such close proximity to Spike was making her crazy. And for all the wrong reasons.

This morning she’d been noticing things about him that she never should have noticed. It wasn’t right to note the way his eyes crinkled in the corners when he smiled, or how his irises darkened slightly when his gaze clashed with hers. There was no rational reason for her to feel warm inside as she looked at his adorable morning hair.

So why the hell was she being plagued with these damn thoughts?

The only explanation that she had for it was that she’d gone insane. It was a plausible explanation after everything she’d been through recently. People lost their minds after much tamer trauma that she’d been subjected to.

And yet, she didn’t feel insane. Well, not any more than normal anyway. There was something deep within her drawing her to Spike. Maybe it was gratitude for saving her life or maybe it was something else but it was real and tangible and Buffy had no idea how she could sever that connection.

She wasn’t even sure that she wanted to sever it.

After all, while they were still connected, he was still in her life and then she wasn’t alone. Being alone was her worst fear and without Spike it would be coming true right about now. Of course that only gave further weight to the gratitude theory.

Most sensible people in her situation would run away as far as possible, but where did she have to go? She couldn’t go back to her father’s apartment because he wasn’t there…he was dead. And she didn’t really have any other family except for an old spinster aunt in Chicago who she hadn’t seen in years. It terrified her to realize that only Spike stood between her and the vast and barren wasteland of loneliness.

It was enough to make anyone lose their senses.

Making a firm resolution to push these thoughts from her mind, Buffy stripped off her raggedy clothes and stepped into the shower. She turned it to the hottest setting that her skin could stand, letting the warm spray wash over her tired body. It revitalized her, washing away some of the pain and hurt that she’d suffered at the hands of tyrants and sadists.

So many people had hurt her since she’d become property of the Rayne dynasty. They’d hurt her body, her heart, and her soul and she wasn’t sure that she would ever truly heal. The scars ran deep and she felt like she would always carry the blemishes of the pain she’d recently learned to endure.

But maybe she could learn to move on, learn to move forward.

In the safety of the bathroom, under the heated spray of the shower, Buffy let her tears fall one more time. Only this time she didn’t weep tears of pain. They were cathartic tears that erased the hurt and gave her a new slate on which to draw.

A new slate for the future.

++++++++++


When Buffy finally returned, looking hot and flushed from her shower, Spike cracked a smile. For the first time since he’d seen her she actually looked carefree. She looked like an innocent teenager, even wrapped in a towel in a nasty motel room.

“Enjoy your shower, pet?” he asked, running a hand over the back of his neck. He didn’t dare tell her what he’d been thinking about while she was in there. If he admitted that he’d been visualizing her running her hands all over her soft curves, dipping them inside her most intimate area and gently caressing her clit with tender fingers then he was sure she could punch him, kick him in his cojones or call him a pervert.

Maybe all three.

But that didn’t change the fact that he longed to wrap his hand around the thick length of his cock and pump it to her image. God, if she would do it for him then he felt like he could die a happy man. Maybe he would die even happier if she allowed him to return to favor. But he reminded himself that his attraction to her was based solely on lust and nothing else. Wanting to please the girl for pleasure’s sake was venturing into perilous territory for his heart.

“Um, yeah my shower was okay. Very…uh…wet,” she replied, hoping that he couldn’t tell she’d been crying. The last thing she wanted was for Spike to think she was some big crybaby hanging around his neck like an albatross. Tightening her towel around her body, she shrugged. “I feel better now anyway.”

The thought of a wet Buffy sent a blissful shiver through him and he felt like he needed to get the hell out of there. She couldn’t know what she was doing to him, but he was totally aware of it. With a sigh he reached into his back pocket and pulled out what he needed.

“That’s good, pet.” He approached her. “Because there’s something I need to do.”

Before she could say anything he was stretched over her, pushing her down to the bed. His mouth was only a whisper away from hers.

“What are you doing?” she asked, shivering as his hands pushed her arms above her head.

His fingertips caressed the undersides of her arms as they were pinned above her by him. “Sorry love. But I have to do this.”

“What…?”

Buffy glanced up Spike pinned her to the bed, and secured a metal cuff around her wrist before clipping the other ring to the metal bed frame.

“What the hell are you doing, Spike?” Buffy screeched. She tugged on the cuff but it was secured to the bed frame and there was no way she could detach it short of chewing off her own arm.

She knew she shouldn’t have trusted him. Had he just been biding his time until he tied her up and ravaged her body? And why didn’t that sound as bad as it should?

However, his next words surprised her.

“I need to pop out,” he said casually. “Get us some supplies and food. Bloody ho hos and ding dongs have the nutritional value of a piece of chalk and that’s all there is around here. Not to mention I need to get you some bloody clothes.” He flashed a pointed look at her state of near nakedness, even though the important bits were covered by the towel.

“And I need to be cuffed to the fucking bed while you’re doing that because…?”

“Can’t risk you toddling off somewhere,” he told her simply, as if it should have been obvious.

“Where the hell would I go, Spike? I got no clothes, no place to stay, no car!”

“And you’re also a resourceful little chit. If you wanted to get out of here and go on the lam I have no doubt you could do it. This way I’m reassured.”

Buffy frowned. “Why does it even matter to you now?” she probed. “Ethan’s gone, right? So with all of his deadness, I wouldn’t think you’d even need me anymore.”

Spike turned away from her, not wanting the teen to see the blush that formed on his face. He didn’t want her to think he’d turned into an absolute poof, blushing over his growing feelings for her.

And he knew now that there were feelings, even if they were only the lusty kind.

After spending the night cradled against her warm heat there was no question he wanted her. He craved her more strongly than he’d ever desired any woman before. Including Drusilla. That revelation was the most startling to him. Drusilla had once occupied his whole heart as well as controlling his loins. The thought that someone else might be the puppet mistress for his lustiness was simultaneously disconcerting and exciting.

Not that Buffy had control over his heart.

Or so he kept telling himself.

“I need to go and get us the stuff, okay.” Spike picked up his coat from the back of the chair and slipped it over his T-shirt. Realizing he was starting to smell a little ripe himself, he made a mental note to pick up a change of clothes from the mall. “I’ll be back soon so you don’t need to worry.”

How could he be so calm? He was acting as if everything was normal, as if chaining someone to the bed while you went shopping was normal. Well maybe in Spike’s screwed up little world it was normal, but Buffy wasn’t going to take it. She’d been in chains enough recently and she wasn’t going to let it happen again.

Buffy glared at him with outrage electrifying her entire essence. “I swear to you, I am going to cut you into little pieces and scatter you all over this city if you don’t undo these fucking cuffs right now you asshole!”

“See you’ve picked up a potty mouth. Must have spent a bit too much time around Faith.” He chuckled at his comment. “I’ll bring you back some chocolate to help with the PMS.”

Buffy glared at him with fiery eyes. She was scowling at him as if she wanted to cut off his testicles and wear them as earrings. He winced at the image.

“Spike! I’m so not kidding. You don’t own me so you can’t do this to me.”

Realizing that the girl was more stubborn and less broken that he’d given her credit for he relented slightly in his authoritarianism. “Just let me explain, love,” he commanded her, hoping she would see reason.

“Can you explain with a broken jaw? Because if I have to spend the whole day chained to a bed, that’s pretty much what’s gonna happen.”

“It’s just gonna be a few bloody hours. You don’t need to exaggerate.”

Okay now she looked madder, so that might not have been the best thing to say. “What the hell are you thinking?”

“I’m thinking that I don’t want you to run off somewhere and get yourself killed.”

“I won’t run off.” She tugged at the cuff again, wishing she had super strength to snap the metal.

“Listen here, Summers. I know your kind of chit and you’re impulsive. Half way through the bloody day you might have second thoughts about this whole thing and decided to run to the bloody Bobbies…uh…police.” A strange look passed over her face but he couldn’t decipher it. “I’m keeping you under lock and key to protect both of us. If you went to any bloody cop in this city you’d be taking a chance he’s on my Da’s payroll. So you can curse and swear and spit at me all you soddin’ well want, but I won’t apologize for caring about you, okay. Bloody ungrateful chit!”

Spike cared about her? The thought almost stunned her silent but instead of dwelling on it, she mentally filed it away for later perusal.

Was it possible that he was just as scared of being left alone as she was though? Did he fear that horrible abyss that came with having no one to turn to too? It was true that he didn’t really have anyone else as far as she knew. The thought that Spike might share her trepidation softened her toward him.

“Are you done?” Buffy asked with a hint of amusement creeping onto her face. “If you want to make sure I don’t run away then why don’t you just take me with you.”

Spike frowned a little. It wasn’t that he hadn’t considered that, but he was spending too much time around Buffy already. And it was making his blood rush south and too many lusty thoughts were filling his mind. It was addling his brain and as he was pretty sure she wasn’t going to spread her legs for him anytime soon, he’d wanted to get away from her for a while and clear his head.

Clear both of his heads, in fact.

“Not sure taking you with me’s a good idea, pet.”

“Okay, I’ll put it another way,” she smirked, seemingly uncaring of the fact that she was vulnerable locked in the cuffs right now. “You let me come with you or I’ll kick your lily white ass into next week when you finally unlock me. I swear to God!” Buffy kept her tone light and jovial, a smile plastered on her face as she talked.

Of course, the blond could still see her anger bubbling under the surface. Maybe tying her up wasn’t the best thing to do after everything she’d been through.

With a sigh of frustration, Spike turned and hovered over the girl. He could see how mad she was at him right now. She looked like she really would tear out his entrails and feed them to him with lima beans. But that wasn’t what changed his mind. What did change his mind was the determination in her eyes as she looked at him. It was as if to say that she would find a way out if he didn’t let her out. Not just a way out of the chains, but a way out of his life.

In truth he was scared of Buffy running away from him. If he kept her locked up then obviously she couldn’t go anywhere but otherwise she could leave. He couldn’t keep her chained up forever and no doubt if he kept treating her this way, she would leave.

And then he’d be all alone.

Again.

For the first time he looked at Buffy through new eyes. She wasn’t just an object that he could keep in his pocket and use whenever he wanted to use her. She was a strong young woman with determination deeper than any he’d ever witnessed. In spite of everything she’d been through, the girl kept her spark, and she kept it in spades.

Sighing he reached into his pocket and pulled out his keychain to unlock the cuffs.

So he would take her with him to the mall. That didn’t necessarily sound like the best idea in the world but surely it couldn’t be so bad taking a teenage girl shopping at a mall.

Could it?
End Notes:
I hope you liked it! :) Please review. Thanks!
Many Fond Fools by Starlight_Slayer
Spike had never really known what hell was until the moment he set foot in an outlet mall. He was surrounded with shrieking, cackling, annoying people. It was his absolute worst nightmare. The cries of babies echoed in his brain and teenagers who should have been at school jostled him out of the way on the stairways. At one point he really just wanted to give up and cry….screw being a manly man!

Of course, Buffy was overly chipper about the whole experience. Clad in his leather duster she flitted from one store to another like a butterfly. She hadn’t actually set her heart on anything yet but apparently this experience was fun for her even if it was torture for him.

If she’d agreed to try on some underwear for him it might have made it all a little more pleasurable, but the blonde grumbled to himself that she was too much of a selfish little chit to indulge him.

However, Spike Rayne wasn’t a quitter and he was determined to find some new clothes for Buffy. She couldn’t live in the scraps of her old clothes and his leather duster for the rest of her life. If he’d gotten his way she would have worn nothing but nipple tassels forever, but he didn’t think she would agree to that and he’d learned the girl could be stubborn as hell. He thought about suggesting it but he really wasn’t cruising for a right hook to the jaw today.

So with Buffy in tow he braved the crowds and managed to hustle his way into one less than savory looking store.

Buffy glared at him as he pushed her inside protesting that she would never wear any of those clothes in a million years. With a scowl on her face she lifted a pair of crotchless leather pants and showed them to Spike.

“Getting those are you?” he asked with a sneer.

“Eww, you’re kidding right? You must be crazy if you think I’d go anywhere in these.”

He ran his hand over the soft leather and smirked, staring pointedly at the lack of crotch. “They’d be useful for something though. Easy access and all that.”

“And I repeat…eww.”

“If you don’t like any of this stuff then go and have a look in one of these other stupid shops and I’ll wait right here for you. But you better not run off, pet.” He flashed her a sinister smile that made her quiver.

“Fine!” Buffy yelled.

“Fine!” echoed Spike, watching her little butt wiggle from side to side under the cover of his duster as she marched out of the store.

Spike breathed a sigh of relief to have a moment of alone time. He was a little scared that she would run away but after their little talk at the motel he was more reassured that she wouldn’t do anything too stupid. He’d tried to instill how dangerous running would be right now.

Anyway, he attempted to push that fear out of his mind and enjoy his brief period of solitude. A few moments without Buffy meant his cock was allowed a little respite. She seemed to keep him hard all the time without even realizing the effect she had on him. However, unfortunately his quiet time was shattered when a skinny purple haired girl sauntered up to him. The pale, leather clad girl was covered with piercings and tattoos. Her makeup looked like she probably needed a sledgehammer to remove it.

When she reached him she smirked and licked her lips. “Hey, I’m Destiny. Need some…help?” she asked, devouring him with her dark eyes.

Spike rolled his eyes. He was used to forceful women but this one was less than interesting. The only redeeming feature was that she looked like she might shoot him if he refused and Spike had always liked dangerous women. “Uh, I’m just waiting for a friend.” He always called these kinds of females black widows. They used a mate for sex before biting off his head.

Destiny didn’t seem fazed by his less than enthusiastic reaction and chuckled. “Your friend’s a girl?”

“She’s got the right parts,” he replied wryly, wistfully picturing Buffy’s girl-parts that he was yet to see.

Destiny smirked again even though disappointment flickered behind her eyes. “Gotcha. She’s one of those girls that you wanna get into their pants but she’s all innocent and keeps giving you the cock block?”

“Bit nosey, aren’t you?” Spike shifted his stance. He wished this girl would leave him alone already.

“Just curious,” she replied flirtily, her big brown eyes fluttering.

Spike sighed and leaned against the wall. “We haven’t exactly got to the cock stage yet,” he admitted. He wasn’t sure why he was telling her this but for some reason it felt easier to talk to a stranger, especially one that he didn’t care about.

Destiny’s smile widened. “Maybe you need a little fulfillment then? Hmm? Want a wild ride?” The leer on her face made it clear exactly what she was offering. Her hand settled on his forearm and she thrust out her small breasts to sweeten the deal.

Apparently Destiny didn’t do subtlety.

A few days ago Spike might have jumped on her offer, especially when he was on the outs with Drusilla. She was a warm, willing body and would no doubt give him one crazy ride. He’d found that chicks like her were usually pretty kinky and into some fucked up shit that even he didn’t usually touch.

If he’d met her weeks or months ago, he would probably have even taken her back to Drusilla so that they could share her. There were many times when his ex-girlfriend had played with women, supposedly for his benefit.

However, looking at this girl right now turned him off. Subconsciously he was comparing her with Buffy and she came in a distant second to the golden haired girl. In the past Spike rejected goodness in people, but in Buffy it seemed infinitely alluring. He didn’t want some jaded little slut that would hit on a stranger in a clothing store.

That’s when it hit him.

He really wanted Buffy. In more than a ‘use and discard’ kind of capacity. He wanted her in a ‘to have and to hold’ capacity.

The realization was so unnerving that at that moment he was almost tempted to take Destiny up on her offer and bang her brains out just to forget his little epiphany.

He didn’t want to see Buffy as more than a warm body.

He hadn’t wanted to start falling in love with her.

His mind was too preoccupied with thoughts of a love story that he could never allow to happen for him to notice Buffy standing behind him, eyes narrowed at the strange girl he was talking to.

“I’m back,” Buffy announced coolly, stepping to the side of her companion. She didn’t want to think of him as a friend, because in truth they weren’t friends. She didn’t know if they would ever be friends.

Spike turned to her, opening his mouth to speak. However Miss Purple Hair managed to interrupt.

Destiny shot her a glare. “Move along, Squirt,” Destiny sneered. “This guy’s with me. Somehow I don’t think you’re his type, Blondie.”

Buffy laughed at her, forcing the fake giggle from between her pursed lips. “If you want him then you gotta be desperate.” Ignoring Spike’s offended snort, she shook her head.

“Whatever, Kid. I don’t think a guy like him is gonna be all over some flatchested little girl. What are you like in eighth grade? He wants a real woman.”

A growl burst from Buffy’s throat but she bit down on her lip to tame it. “Delusional much? I don’t think he’s into Cheap and Easy, honey. And you’re working both of those things like a pro.”

“You bitch!” shrieked Destiny, feeling Buffy’s words strike an oversensitive nerve. Her face turned red and she lunged forward trying to catch Buffy with a punch. However, the small blonde sidestepped it easily and kicked the other girl in the shin.

Spike stepped back the moment he saw Buffy kick the other girl and he settled in to watch the catfight. His enlarged dick strained against his zipper but he was getting used to that when he was around Buffy. However, watching her all red and flushed and angry was stirring lustiness in him like he’d never encountered before.

Feeling suddenly empowered by the rush of fighting, Buffy drove her tiny fist into the other girl’s face. The purple haired young woman was off balance from the kick so it was easy to catch her unprotected. Until that moment Buffy had never realized how much she would enjoy feeling her hands driving into delicate flesh and bone.

For the first time she realized the sordid attraction to violence that so many people felt. It was like unlacing a hidden part of yourself and letting it free. She’d opened Pandora’s Box and the teenager didn’t know how to close it.

Of course she wouldn’t admit, even to herself, that her barrage wasn’t solely fueled by anger. It was also fueled by the flicker of jealousy that ignited her rage when she saw Spike flirting with the skank.

In the face of Buffy’s newly unleashed rage, Destiny was powerless to do anything other than cover her face with her hands. While neither of the two young women were trained fighters, Buffy’s anger gave her the winning edge.

A crowd formed around the two girls, cheering and whistling for more. It was the best entertainment some of them had seen in a while and men and women alike soaked in the sight of the raging blonde.

“I’m putting ten bucks on the little blonde chick,” one man yelled with a chuckle.

“I’ll take twenty on the blonde,” a female voice called out.

Watching from the back of the crowd, Spike couldn’t help but think that watching Buffy was priceless. And damn if he hadn’t gotten even harder than before as he watched her launch a slightly sloppy uppercut to the pasty-faced girl’s jaw.

Spike was so immersed in watching the fight that he didn’t notice the approach of the uniformed men.

Buffy was still trying to pummel her opponent when a strong arm came around her waist, yanking her away from the pale woman.

The enraged blonde twisted her head over her shoulder, expecting it to be Spike who was holding her, so she did a double take when she realized that it was a large redheaded man with his arms around her.

“What the hell do you think you’re doing?” she shrieked, wilding glancing around for Spike.

“I’m security here, Miss,” he informed her. “And you’re going to have to come with me.”

“What?” she breathed in shock. “I didn’t do anything.”

“We don’t tolerate fighting here,” he told her sternly. “You need to come with me right now.”

“Hey I didn’t start it,” protested the blonde. “You should arrest that bitch.” Accusing fingers pointed at the purple haired woman who was sporting a host of cuts and bruises. “She was the one that started this. Not me.”

The guard glanced between the highly injured young woman and the relatively unscathed blonde in his arms. He didn’t know who started the fight but the other girl had definitely seen the worst of the battle. “I’m sorry, Miss,” he said insincerely to Buffy, before dragging her from the store.

“Bloody hell!” Spike groaned, watching Buffy get hauled away by Security from the shadows at the back of the store.

When the fight had first broken out, he hadn’t wanted to intervene because he’d enjoyed watching Buffy get into a catfight. It made certain parts of his anatomy stand to attention. However, when he saw the security men arrive, fear had wriggled into his heart, even though it had been too late for him to interfere by that point.

Thinking with his libido had managed to land them in a large vat of manure and Spike cursed himself for not pulling Buffy away before she could get so embroiled in the trouble. If Buffy got arrested then this could be very bad for them.

He’d been deadly serious when he’d talked about the Rayne connections in the police force. If any of Ethan’s posthumously loyal followers got a bead on Buffy’s whereabouts then it could be all over for them.

A part of him just wanted to run. He could leave Buffy to the wolves and it would be a huge responsibility off his shoulders. Although he’d cared for Drusilla for many years, his dark haired ex-girlfriend had actually possessed a wonderful knack for taking care of herself when she needed to. However, Buffy only seemed to pull him into trouble all the time.

Except for the time when she saved his life.

And damn it if he wasn’t ready to say goodbye to her yet. Not just because she saved his life, but because she couldn’t push away his growing emotions. He needed to know what they could be together, even if he wasn’t quite ready to admit that.

Breathing out a concerned sigh, he realized that once again, he had to go save the girl.
Action is Eloquence by Starlight_Slayer
Spike needed a plan.



And it needed to be a good one which considering the fact that planning wasn’t his forte was not going to be easy.



He cursed himself for the umpteenth time as he thought about what had happened. He’d been reticent about bringing Buffy with him and it had ended in disaster. Of course, it had. Because did anything happen in his life that didn’t end in disaster?



Even though every single instinct had screamed at him not to take Buffy with to the damn mall, he’d ignored them in favor of her dewy green eyes and watery smile. He’d always been soft when it came to a woman he cared about.



“I’m such a git,” he chastised himself. “Always listening to bloody bints instead of trusting myself. Should have known it would all end up arse over tits.”



But right now wasn’t the time to dwell on what he should have done differently because he had to get her out of the clutches of the security before she ended up in the even stickier clutches of the cops.



However, first things first.



There was no way he was leaving this mall without what he’d come for after going through all this aggravation. Quickly throwing some clothes haphazardly in a basket, making sure to toss in a hat for himself, he paid for them and made his way out of the store.



He clamped the cap on his head, ensuring that it covered his hair and eyes. The blond was aware that his ultra-white curls didn’t exactly help him blend in with the backdrop. If he was going to get Buffy out of lockup then he didn’t want some stray Rayne spy recognizing him.



Following the signs he made his way to the security offices. They were located on the upper level and he sighed impatiently as he made his way there, once again cursing Buffy’s stupidity. And even more so…cursing his own stupidity. He knew that he should have broken up the fight before it got out of hand, but damn if she wasn’t the sexiest little thing when she was mad.



Hormones raged inside him like never before when she was around and he couldn’t control his needs. A part of him was actually terrified that if he didn’t get some release soon then he would do something he’d regret. Although the blond had never been heavily into forcing women, he’d coerced more than one with copious amounts of alcohol. He was wondering more and more just how easy a drunk-Buffy might be.



Finally reaching the security office, he sighed in relief as he realized that there was only one guard in there. He approached the door, but took a step back when the door swung open and the redhead who’d assailed Buffy came striding out.



“Can I help you?” he asked Spike, looking suspiciously at the man in front of him. His eyes flickered in distant recognition but Spike failed to notice as he kept his eyes glued to the door behind him.



Spike nodded blankly, opening and closing his mouth for several moments before he spoke. “Uh, I was lookin’ for somebody to help me,” he drawled, affecting his best American accent.



“With what?” asked the guard, his eyes narrowing further.



“Umm…well, see here’s the thing, Sir. There’s some big guy out in the car park tryin’ to stab people,” he told the guard, schooling his face into a concerned mask.



“Holy crap! One of those days, isn’t it?” sighed the redheaded guard. He picked up his radio and blurted some command into it, before setting off at a run toward the parking lot.



Spike gaped in surprise. He hadn’t expected his little ploy to be successful but sent his gratitude to a God he was previously sure had abandoned him. Nothing was ever this easy but he wasn't one to look a gift horse in the mouth. However, if he’d seen the sly glint in the redheaded male’s eyes then he might not have offered up such a gratuitous prayer.



Waiting to ensure the guard was out of sight, Spike legs carried him forward to the office where Buffy was being held. Through the small glass panel he could see her sitting with her head cradled in her hands. He turned the door handle, a growl escaping his lips when he realized it was locked. Once again he damned his luck. The thing must have been self-locking when it shut because he didn’t see the guard lock it.



“Bloody buggering fuck!” he yelled, slamming his boot into the bottom of the door. “Can nothing ever go right?” He turned his face heavenward and shook his fists in frustration. “Why the soddin’ hell can’t you just cut me a break for once in this bloody excuse for a life? Why?!”



Inside the room, Buffy’s head whipped up at the yelling and she breathed a visible sigh of relief when she saw Spike outside the door. The blonde had been flushed with the fear that he wouldn’t come for her and that she would end up in prison, or even worse at the hands of Ethan’s remaining goons. Spike’s earlier warning hadn’t gone totally unheeded after all.



Buffy rose to her feet, smiling at Spike as if he was the Messiah. She looked so hopeful at that moment and all of Spike’s masculine instincts raged to save her, protect her, hold her without ever letting go. With a sudden brute force, he launched his heavily booted foot into the door, kicking it repeatedly until the wooden frame finally collapsed under the barrage.



The moment the door caved in, Spike found himself with an armful of Buffy. She flung her arms around his neck, breathing in his scent for a moment. Recently Spike’s earthy aroma had somehow transitioned into the comforting fragrance of home for her. It might be weird and wrong, but he gave her that feeling of safety and she was grateful for it.



Pulling back from the embrace, Spike’s eyes raked over her body, checking that she was okay.



“Not hurt are you?” he asked, checking her body for cuts of bruises. He didn’t think the guard would have hurt her, but he didn’t trust anyone with something so precious.



Buffy shook her head. “The guy was kind of an asshole but he didn’t hurt me. He was super professional, all asky about where I live and who my parents are. What a bunch of crap!”



“You didn’t bloody tell him anything did you?”



“As if! God, Spike you must think I’m an inch away from being a total idiot.”



“I don’t think that,” he told her honestly.



“Then you shouldn’t be such an ass. You do think I’m dumb, don’t you?” Accusing green eyes flashed with hurt and anger.



“Look Buffy we don’t have time to debate your soddin’ IQ or my opinion on it right now.”



“But you…”



“We need to get out of here, pet,” her interrupted her, thinking she could save her teenage hissy fit for later. “Unless you fancy waiting around for the bloody guard to come back so you can regale him with your escape plan.” Spike’s expression was grave as he looked at her and she acquiesced.



“Fine!” Glancing down at the bags in his hand as they started walking, her mood suddenly cheered. “Are those for me?”



“Yeah, pet. Seeing as you didn’t get a chance to choose them for yourself,” he told her pointedly.



“I went to that other store and found a lot of pretty things but you forgot to give me money, you big…forgetter.”



“Oh ho! So it’s my fault? I didn’t tell you to do your best Muhammad Ali impression did I?”



“My huh now what impression?”



Spike actually froze in place causing Buffy to bump into the back of him. “You don’t know the greatest boxer of all time?”



They resumed walking and Buffy shook her head. “Not really a boxing fan here, Spike.”



“Could have fooled me. You’ve got a pretty deadly right hook there,” he admitted with reluctant pride. “Not as good as my left, but I’m a southpaw.”



Buffy frowned. “Okay, I understood like less than zero of what you just said.”



“Bloody heathens,” Spike sighed, quickening his pace as Buffy jogged along behind him. In truth he didn’t really want to look at her right now. The farther away from the guard’s office they got, the more his worry was being replaced by anger at her for getting herself into a fight, and Spike’s temper was not something anyone wanted to invoke. He couldn’t even identify why it was percolating so wildly inside of his chest.



“Do you have to bloody dawdle so much?” he snapped at the blonde when he glanced over his shoulder and noticed she was lagging behind.



“Some of us don’t have long legs,” she glared at him. She didn’t want to point out that she hadn’t eaten for a whole day and her body was aching. Those excuses would just make her seem weak and pathetic, neither of which were alluring.



Just to piss her off, Spike marched along even faster.



Finally reaching the open air, they bolted across the parking lot, Buffy’s small legs still struggling to keep up with the bruising pace that Spike set. When the old Desoto came into sight Buffy breathed a ragged sigh of relief. Shoved into the car, Buffy cast her eyes downward as Spike tossed his shopping bags onto the backseat and climbed in next to her. He gunned the engine and wordlessly peeled away.



From the afternoon shadows, the redheaded guard watched the easily recognizable black car leave. He chuckled at the fact the stupid Rayne kid was so naïve. Most people would have questioned such an easy getaway but the impetuous blond was far too arrogant for his own good. Reveling in his good fortune at spotting the runaway pair, he plucked his cell phone from his pocket, a smirk blossoming on his lips as he dialed a familiar number.



“They’re just leaving Parking Lot C now,” he told the man on the other end of the line. “We were damn lucky to get a bead on them, man. This is gonna be a big bucks payday for us so don’t screw this up or…you know what’ll happen.”



Several minutes of tense silence ensued inside the Desoto. Now that he had Buffy back safe with him, the full weight of his worry and fury had descended upon him. He’d come so close to losing her again that he could hardly bear it. And the worst thing was that she didn’t seem to care at all. She was acting like nothing had even happened. Another stick fell onto the fire of his ire.



The only sound in the car other than the gentle hum of the engine was Spike’s raspy breathing as he internally struggled not to pull over the car and beat Buffy to a bloody pulp for being such an idiot. He was aware that the extent of his fury was a little irrational, but so many horrible scenarios were flying through his head about what could have happened that he justified his own anger to himself.



Finally, long after the silence threatened to engulf the both of them, Spike’s sardonically mocking tone shattered the quiet. “That was a great way not to draw attention to ourselves by the way, pet. Bang up job you did there.” He clenched his jaw so violently that Buffy thought his teeth might crack under the extreme pressure.



Buffy lifted her thumbnail to her mouth and chewed nervously on it. Spike seemed mad. Really mad. In fact she was pretty sure that she could see steam coming out of his ears.



“Newsflash, Spike, sometimes these things happen,” she bit back, wrapping her arms tightly around herself and huddling down a little in her seat.



“Oh yeah, well this bloody bollocks seems to happen all the time around you, Summers. You’re like a walking disaster area. If something bad is gonna go down you can bet you’ll be right there in the middle of it, probably causing it.” He knew he should shut up but his mouth wouldn’t seem to stop talking. “You’re a bloody stupid chit and you can’t even accept responsibility for what you’ve soddin’ well done. Well, here’s a newsflash! Grow up, you silly bint.”



“It wasn’t my fault,” she sighed quietly, valiantly holding back the tears. “That bitch tried to hit me so I fought back.”



He opened his mouth to yell at her again, but the almost imperceptible sound of a sob reached his ears. Glancing to look at her he saw her eyes screwed shut, her fist stuffed against her mouth as she tried to bite back the tears and a flood of guilt exploded in his veins. Suddenly his anger had dissipated and all that was left was his own self-loathing.



“I’m not saying that you shouldn’t fight back, Summers. You should always defend yourself. Look, ignore me. I shouldn’t have shouted at you like that. I’m a bastard.”



“Not gonna disagree with that, Spike.”



The blond rolled his eyes in frustration. The girl seemed to have a knack for annoying him like no other woman had ever managed to. Even Drusilla at her worst didn’t get under his skin for such little trifling things in the way that Buffy did. “I’m trying to apologize here,” he said through gritted teeth.



“Is this part of the ‘Asshole’s Apology for Morons’ class that you clearly took?” she sneered.



He pulled the car to a stop in the motel parking lot and shut off the engine. Still bubbling with annoyance inside, he turned to Buffy.



“Listen to me, pet. I know you don’t seem too fond of me right now, and I did behave like a right wanker. But I’m sorry. So you either accept that or you spend the rest of our soddin’ lives nattering on about it.”



With a huff, Buffy flung open the car door and jumped out, marching across the parking lot toward their room. Sighing, the weary blond trailed after her.



As Spike and Buffy made their way back up to their motel room, they never felt the pair of hazel eyes shaded behind sunglasses that were fixed on them.



Silence still prevailed when they got inside the room. It was like a third presence between them, making everything awkward. Buffy was still mad at Spike’s cruel words and he was feeling a little guilty at hurting her.



He didn’t know how to rectify things with the girl. Making up with Drusilla after a fight was easy. He would tie her up and spank her until she forgave him. But Buffy wasn’t his girlfriend and she was the polar opposite of his ex-girlfriend.



He really was at a loss of how to make it up to her. The man wracked his brain at the thought of what he could do to make things right with a hormonal, hurt teenager. However, he was violently yanked out of his thoughts by a pervasive crash.



“Fuck!” exclaimed Spike as the door flew open. Two pairs of eyes shot to the open doorway and the gun-wielding figure looming in it. Spike automatically stepped in front of Buffy in a protective gesture.



The intruder was bulky and tall with a balding head. Tattoos covered his arms and neck and he wore heavy jewelry over every appendage. Dark glasses were fixed on his face and his grotesque smile revealed a host of gold teeth in his mouth. With a smile on his face, the large man slammed the door behind him and raised his gun.



Before the pair of blonds could react, he clicked off the safety and fired.

End Notes:
Sorry to leave it on such a cliffhanger! I promise the next update will be coming very soon. :) Please let me know what you think. Thank you. :)
One Man in His Time by Starlight_Slayer
There were moments in Spike Rayne’s life that seemed pivotal to everything else in his existence. One of them was the day that his mother died. That had changed him as a person even as it continued to shake the very foundations of his world. Another had been the first time he kissed Drusilla. It shaped the man he was becoming and set him on the path to his ultimate destiny, whatever that might be.

And right now, as he watched the large goon pull the trigger of the gun, he knew that this was a moment that could make or break his future. It seemed to happen in almost slow motion, the bullet leaving the barrel of the gun, aimed at Buffy’s forehead.

The trajectory was set.

Buffy’s eyes widened but she stayed glued to the spot, paralyzed with fear. Her nerves were frozen and in only a moment that bullet would tear through her fragile skin and bone, extinguishing her light.

Reacting instinctively, Spike screamed out a cry of despair and leaped in front of Buffy pulling her down to the ground with him. He felt the bullet tear through the outer skin of his upper arm, leaving a bloody trail in its wake. However, it didn’t seem to matter how much it hurt him because Buffy was lying underneath him, her body still warm, her heart still beating furiously in her chest.

Fierce blue eyes shone from his furious face and he jumped to his feet with unwavering determination. His mind blocked out the sound of Buffy’s concerned whimpering, focusing solely on his task in front of him. The barrel of the gun was now trained on him and the attacker smirked nastily, clearly feeling that he had Spike cornered.

“Don’t worry, boy,” the tattooed man said. “I’ll kill you and then there’s nothing to stop me from killing the little bitch too. Maybe when you’re out of the way I can have me some fun with that little piece of ass.”

“You won’t bloody touch her, wanker!”

“Why not? Is she…special?” he sneered mockingly. “Don’t look so special to me. The chick don’t even got a nice rack to thrust between.”

The bulky attacker smirked again, riddled with confidence. Unfortunately for the larger man, Spike’s extensive martial arts training gave him the edge and he leaped across the bed catching the attacker off guard. The tattooed man turned violently at the movement but it was too late and Spike was able to push off the edge of the bed with a vigorously delivered spin kick that gashed a temple.

He followed the move up with a kick to the hand that held the gun and his stunned opponent was powerless against him. Blood was steadily flowing from his arm wound but he ignored it and wrestled the larger man into a headlock, clamping his uninjured arm around the other’s neck. Struggling for his life, the attacker reached back and dug his fingers into Spike’s bleeding would.

“Argh!” shrieked Spike. “Bloody fucking hell!”

The pain screeched through him and stars appeared in front of his eyes. Without thinking, he inadvertently loosened his hold on the other man and stumbled backward. For several seconds he struggled to break through the haze of pain that had descended in front of him but a punch to the face snapped him back to reality.

“Fuck you, you sod!” Spike spit.

He delivered his own equally rocking punch, a malevolent smile forming on his lips. While the other man was still off balance from his well aimed punch, once again he wriggled him into a headlock. This time he wasn’t taking any chances. Using as much force as he was able to summon, Spike twisted forcefully.

A resounding crack reverberated around the small room and the tattooed man fell limp in Spike’s arms. The peroxide blond tossed the cooling corpse to the ground in disgust, breathing a sigh of relief that it was over.

For now.

“Are you okay?” he asked Buffy. She raised her pale face to him and nodded unsurely. “We have to get the bloody hell away from here then.”

Buffy climbed to her feet and dusted herself down. She padded over to Spike full of nervous tension.

“Who was that guy?” She kept her eyes pointedly averted from the sprawled corpse. There seemed to be so much death in her life now and she didn’t want to see any more. It was strange though how she’d almost become acclimatized to it now.

“One of Ethan’s boys,” Spike replied with a sigh.

“But Ethan’s gone right?” Hysteria laced her voice. “I mean how did this guy even find us?”

“Just because Ethan’s gone doesn’t mean that his goons won’t still come after us, love.” Spike didn’t voice his very real fear that Ethan might not be as gone as they’d thought. “And how did they find us? Well, I’m thinking your impromptu world heavyweight bout at the bloody mall might have alerted them to where we were. There’s Rayne spies everywhere in this city, pet.”

“So this is my fault,” she said sadly, looking as if she wanted to cry or reprise her new love of fighting.

“No, it’s no one’s fault,” he told her, unsure as to why he was comforting her. It would be easy just to let her believe that she was fully responsible but somehow his repressed gentlemanly instincts wouldn’t permit that fallacy. Even if she hadn’t gotten herself involved in the fight with Destiny, somehow they would have been discovered. It was only a matter of time.

With a watery smile she nodded in gratitude. She knew he was just trying to placate her, but the little girl part of her appreciated the comfort. Suddenly her nose twitched as she caught sight of the spreading dark stain on Spike’s shirt.

“You’re bleeding,” she said, tenderly laying a hand on his forearm. Her previous anger over the way he’d talked to her in the car had melted away the moment he jumped on top of her to save her life. She was very aware of the fact that she would be dead if it wasn’t for Spike. His penchant for saving her life was getting to be somewhat of a habit.

“Just a scratch,” he replied gruffly, reluctantly pulling away from her touch. He didn’t want to tell her that it was fucking with his pain sensors like a bitch on meth.

Buffy quirked an eyebrow at him, her expression telling him that she didn’t believe him one tiny iota. “The little gunshot wound is only a scratch?”

“It’s not a gunshot wound. The bullet didn’t go in, just flew past so it’s nothing serious. Don’t fuss, Summers.”

“I’m so not making with the fussing,” she denied hotly. “I just don’t want you to bleed to death or get some horrible, deadly infection and turn green.”

“Turn green?” he asked with some amusement.

“What? It’s a thing!”

“I’m sure it is, love. But you don’t need to worry about ole Spike.”

“I kinda do,” she admitted. As soon as she realized what she’d said her eyes widened exponentially, two green saucers staring at him in shock. Spike was equally stunned by her admission. It was hardly a declaration of love but he didn’t imagine she felt anything for him other than contempt or maybe indifference.

But worrying about him meant that maybe she cared. And if she cared maybe she did like him. Maybe she liked him like he was starting to like her.

And that opened up a whole world of possibilities.

Eager to change the subject, Buffy rose to her feet. “I’ll…uh…get a towel to clean it.”

“Really not necessary, love.”

“Take it like a man, Spike. I’m gonna clean it.” Slightly shaky feet carried her into the bathroom to fetch some water. She was hiding her fear under layers of bravado right now, knowing that she had to wait until she was safely alone and under the cover of darkness before she would allow herself to cry again.

For now, she had to stay strong.

“Bloody hell!” Spike sighed raising his eyes heavenward. He wanted to react without feeling to her concern but his heart beat a happy tattoo in his chest as her worry warmed him.

She actually cared.

Minutes later Buffy finally returned with a small basin of water and a towel. She reached for his arm and painstakingly cleaned the cut, pressing the white towel firmly over the wound as the blood finally clotted. “We don’t have any antiseptic but if you keep it clean then it shouldn’t get infected.”

“Never took you for a regular bloody Florence Nightingale but you seem to be quite the little expert on this.”

“I had to clean a few of my dad’s cuts and wounds,” she admitted with forced indifference. “Sometimes when he was drinking or gambling he’d get into fights and come home all cut up. I used to clean him up. We never talked about it but it was easier to pretend that it never happened.”

Spike winced at the pain in her eyes as she remembered her father. It was obvious to him that even though the man was clearly an asshole, Buffy still loved him. And she hadn’t grieved for him yet. Not properly anyway.

“Well, I think you have a hidden talent, pet,” he smiled, relishing the way her fingers danced over his damaged flesh. Goosebumps seemed to leap up over his arms in the wake of her touch and his eyes fluttered closed under her gentle ministrations. He couldn’t remember anyone treating him so sweetly since he was a little boy.

“I have many hidden talents,” Buffy joked, frowning when she realized that sounded more risqué than she’d intended. “I mean…uh…”

“I know what you mean, pet.” He lifted a shaky hand to tuck a stray strand of hair behind her ear and she let out a little breathy sigh.

“Thank you,” she whispered. “For saving my life, I mean.”

Spike gulped, a lump settling heavily in his throat. “I couldn’t let anything happen to you.”

The temperature in the room seemed to rise, and suddenly all Buffy was aware of was Spike’s deep blue eyes and the pounding of her own heartbeat. The little organ was going crazy in her chest, beating out a tattoo of passion and desire.

When had she started desiring Spike?

With harsh realization, she knew that if she didn’t break their gaze then he was going to kiss her, and she couldn’t let him kiss her. She wasn’t ready for it and it was all too much. Purposefully lowering her eyes, she turned her head sharply away from him. However, she didn’t miss the flicker of disappointment that crossed his face.

Wanting to think about anything other than what could just have happened, the blonde turned to the bag of clothes on the bed and began to root through it. However, as she discovered the contents her face turned ashen.

“Are you insane?” Buffy shrieked as she lifted the clothes out of the bag. “You expect me to wear this stuff? You realize I’m not actually a hooker right?”

Buffy sorted through the short leather skirts, skintight pants, shiny tops and other assorted slut-wear. Where the hell did he get this stuff? ‘Sluts R Us’?

“If you’d decided not to get yourself into a bloody scrap with that tart then maybe you could have picked them out yourself,” he shot back defensively, a pout forming on his lips. “I did my best between watching you get hauled away and coming to rescue you. I wasn’t going to spend hours trawling through a shopping mall of bloody teens looking for haute couture while you were in lockup.” The pout intensified.

Buffy could see that he was trying to wheedle his way out of the situation but there was no way she was about to let that work on her.

No way, no how.

“You know that I’m all teeny too right and you spend time around me, dontcha old man?” Her hands were planted on her hips in a manner that reminded him of a teacher. Would that make him her naughty student? Of course there was no way he wanted to let his thoughts progress down that path right now.

He made a mental note to revisit those thoughts during his next shower.

Spike held in a growl. Of course he realized she was a teenager, a very delectable and alluring teenager. Her age hadn’t really bothered him but when she pointed out that there was over a decade between them it made him feel like a dirty old man.

Worse than that, it just made him feel old.

“Look, you have to find something in there to wear, okay?” he commanded her gruffly, leaving no room for argument. “I did my best.”

With a sigh Buffy relented. She was tired of fighting with him. Tired of fighting, period. Wearily she obeyed and hunted for the least whorish item of clothing she could find.

“Where are we gonna go?” Buffy asked him, wriggling into a pair of pleather pants that he’d purchased for her. They were a size too small and clung to her like a second skin but she suspected he’d done that intentionally.

Reminding herself that she only had herself to blame for not being able to pick out her own clothes, she pulled up the zipper and fastened the button at the top. She kept his coat on while she changed. Despite the fact that she was becoming more comfortable with him, she wasn’t even close to feeling okay with baring all to him.

Picking up on her flustered discomfort, Spike concealed a smirk. “Got a friend we can go and stay with. Keep our heads down at her place for a while until the goons get bored of coming after us. Bloody loyal group of sods they are but with Da out of the picture they’ll give up eventually. Concentration spans of a gnat.”

Buffy wrinkled her forehead wondering just what kind of friend Spike was talking about. She hoped it wasn’t one of those special kinds of naked friends. Although a large part of her psyche longed to remain convinced that she didn’t like or trust Spike, there was a strange ache when she thought of the blond being intimate with someone else.

Right now he was hers…hers to have, hers to want, hers to hate.

In silence Buffy finished dressing and they gathered up all of their meager belongings, both lost deeply in their own conflicted thoughts. Neither of the blonds could really identify just what it was that they were feeling right now. They were both on sensory overload, bombarded with their changing perceptions of each other and of the world.

“Uh, Spike, what are we gonna about the…body?”

“Nothing we can do, pet. Not exactly equipped to give him an acid bath right now and the best thing to do is bugger off before one of his pals comes along to find him.”

“But won’t the cops follow us?”

“I already told you. A lot of the cops in this city are on my Da’s payroll. All they’ll know is that we were here but they won’t know where we’ve gone. Or we could just stand here waffling about it until the whole of the bloody LAPD turns up.”

Buffy swallowed heavily. “Okay.” This time it was easier to put her trust in Spike. It was getting gradually less painful to trust him.

“Right, glad that’s sorted, Your Highness. Let’s go,” said Spike, not turning to look at his companion.

Buffy stepped over the prone cadaver in front of the doorway and followed him out to the parking lot. The blonde was filled with apprehension over the next step. She didn’t know where they were headed or what was going to happen.

But with Spike by her side, she felt strangely safe.
The World’s Mine Oyster by Starlight_Slayer
“Are we nearly there yet?”

Spike’s hands tightened around the wheel as Buffy whined out the same question for the tenth time in as many minutes. They’d only been on the road for four hours but she was getting restless sitting inside of the stuffy car, constantly fidgeting and playing with his stereo. If he had to listen to one more pop song he might lose him mind and throw the damn thing out of the window. He was considering throwing Buffy along with it.

“I’m bored,” she groaned.

“Just be glad you’re still alive to be bored.” His hands grasped the wheel even tighter.

“I’m glad. I’m the gladdest. Can’t I be glad and bored?”

Spike rolled his eyes and turned his attention back to the road. “Well we’ll be there soon. It’s less than an hour from here.”

“Will your friend be happy to see us?”

Spike frowned a little at the way she sneered over the word ‘friend’. Was that a hint of jealousy he could detect in her voice?

“Tara’ll be over the moon. She’s a good woman, Summers. Not like some of people you’ve had to contend with recently. Tara’s a right proper lass and she’ll see us right.”

Buffy suppressed her jealousy-tinted eye roll as she imagined some Faith-like figure, all bust and attitude. The teen suspected that her idea of proper and Spike’s idea of the same concept vastly differed. Willing herself not to get irritated, she cleared her throat. “Okay. What are we gonna do when we get there?”

“What do you mean?”

“Well, are we gonna put on animal skins and go fish and hunt for our food? I get that we’re hiding out but don’t we need money and stuff?”

Spike briefly noticed the fact that she constantly referred to them as a we now but he didn’t comment on it. It imbued his heart with a curious warmth. “Don’t worry about money,” he instructed her. “I’ve got that sorted.”

“Sorted? Oh my God, is it blood money?” She looked appropriately stunned and disgusted in equal measure. “It is, isn’t it?”

“It’s what we need so you don’t starve to death. You’re already a skinny little slip of a thing so it wouldn’t take long.”

“Hey! I’m not skinny. I’m petite.”

“Those hipbones tell me differently, love. And it doesn’t change reality. Think of the money as ‘liberated for a good cause.’”

“You mean in the same way I think of you as ‘an asshole’?” she said sweetly.

“Starting a fight won’t change where the money came from, you know? And it won’t alleviate your boredom either.”

Buffy sighed, realizing she’d have to trust him on that. “Fine,” she muttered. Unusually she wasn’t in the mood to really fight anyway. Almost getting killed could do that to a girl. She rolled her neck and shoulders, popping the cricks out and moaning at the feeling.

“Alright there, love?” Spike asked.

“Yeah, just a little stiff. And I’m still a little achy from that fight with that stupid bitch at the mall.”

“Yeah, you were lucky you were able to hold your own with her. Nasty little bird like that could easily have done some damage to you.”

“Uh did you miss the part where I kicked her skanky ass?”

“That you did, pet.” He chuckled. “Although, you were a little lucky. The girl was a sloppy fighter with no training.”

“That wasn’t luck. It was skill.” An offended huff escaped her lips.

“Skillfully lucky, more like. You actually have some potential for learning to fight properly, you know.”

Buffy perked up at his comment, turning excitedly to him. “Really?” She remembered the buzz that she’d gotten from the brawl and instantly wanted to reprieve that high.

“Yeah. If you want I can give you a few lessons when we get to Tara’s. Up to you of course but…”

“I’ll do them.” Buffy grinned, feeling rejuvenated all of sudden. “I can totally see myself as a kick-ass ninja.”

Spike chuckled again, a sly grin imprinted on his lips. “Mmm, in a nice tight catsuit that leaves nothing to the imagination?”

“Ugh, you’re such a pig.” Buffy wrinkled her nose but there was no heat behind her words.

“You know it, baby.”

“Shut up, Spike,” she retorted, but there was only affection in her tone.

A shiver coursed up Spike’s spine at her playfulness. The way she’d been looking at him made him think that the young girl felt something deeper than the indifferent contempt he’d expected her to hold for him. It scared him that she might return his growing feelings because she was so very wrong for him and he knew he would bring her nothing but misery.

After all, if he’d never even been good enough for Drusilla, what could he give to an innocent like Buffy?

And yet he was a selfish man. If she gave him the chance to be with her, he’d take it. Even if it brought her ruin.

Unknown to the blond, his young companion was lost in similar thoughts. Since Spike rescued her from Gwen’s brothel, she’d been caught up in a whirlwind over ever changing feelings for him. At first she’d thought it was merely gratitude, but now she was starting to realize that the river of her emotions ran a lot deeper when it came to the obtuse blond.

The moment that she’d seen him talking to the purple haired bitch at the mall, Buffy had electrified with jealousy. Every cell in her body had clenched with anger at the thought of him flirting with another woman. He’d quickly become hers and the thought of someone else taking him away physically pained her.

However, she’d been able to mentally play the jealousy off as a platonic kind of possessiveness. It wasn’t difficult to justify it to herself because if there was one skill that she could win an Olympic medal at, it would be denial.

But then he’d gone and gotten himself shot.

And right then she’d known.

A moment of clarity had burst right through her consciousness and flashed neon lights right in her eyes. She cared for him, and not just in a sisterly way. She was attracted to him, she worried about him and she wanted him.

Oh God, it hurt to admit it. But it was true. She wanted Spike Rayne in the sweaty, kinky sex kind of way. Spike! He of the evil psychopathic dynasty of gangsters. He who’d almost raped her on their first meeting.

And yet that wasn’t the man she’d gotten to know so well since their forced joint exile from the world.

The man who was whisking her away to keep her safe was…well he was an enigma. But he was an enigma that she still longed to discover. In some ways the man was so open, and yet in others he was a totally closed book. She knew very little of his past and when she’d tried to find out about it, he’d freaked out at her. She could only hope that one day, somehow, he would open up to her.

But she didn’t need to know anything else to know that he was a good man in his heart. She’d seen it for herself and at some point she’d come to believe in him.

Feeling a migraine coming on as the thoughts raced around her mind, Buffy closed her eyes and tried to clear her mind.

++++++++++


Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, the car came to a stop in front of a crumbling house.

“Well here we are, Summers. Home sweet home.”

Buffy tried not to wrinkle her nose in distaste but failed miserably. The old house looked like a rundown shack. It could have used a coat of paint of two sometime in the past century. Buffy shuddered to think what it would be like inside but she didn’t want to seem ungrateful so she gave Spike a halfhearted smile as the clambered out of the Desoto together.

“William?” came a shout, as a buxom blonde woman strode out of her front door toward them.

“Alright, Glinda?” smiled Spike, his grin growing as the blonde smiled equally beamingly. Grabbing Buffy’s wrist he pulled the slightly reticent teen along the dusty path to where the bemused older blonde lady was waiting for them.

Buffy eyed the slightly plump woman in front of her. She was older for sure, perhaps in late forties or early fifties, but a childlike mirth sparkled behind her cobalt eyes. She wiped her flour covered hands on the front of her dress and greeted the two blonds.

“William!” she cried joyfully, pulling Spike into a bear hug. He returned the hug with equal voracity.

“William?” Buffy mouthed silently, confusion painted on her face.

Spike’s real name was William?

“Hello, Glinda,” he murmured into her apple scented hair. “I’ve missed you.”

The older blonde pulled back and nodded. She cupped his cheek lovingly. “I’ve missed you too, honey. It’s been too long. What are you doing here?”

“Needed a little getaway for a while, pet,” he told her. “You don’t mind do you?”

“Of course not!” she exclaimed, horrified that he would ever think she’d mind him coming to visit her.

Noticing Buffy’s awkward posture she turned to her. “I’m Tara,” the blonde told Buffy kindly, the corners of her eyes crinkling as she smiled. She wasn’t the kind of woman that Buffy would ever have associated with Spike. Or anyone in the Rayne Dynasty. There was a kindness in her countenance that soothed the young blonde teenager.

“I’m Buffy,” the teen replied quietly, nibbling on her thumbnail.

“And it’s very nice to meet you, Buffy. Any friend of William’s is a friend of mine.”

“Oh he’s not my friend! We don’t even really like each other.” Buffy blurted out automatically without thinking, a pang of guilt hitting her when Tara’s face fell.

Before Buffy could babble out an explanation, Tara retrieved her smile and ushered Buffy and Spike inside anyway. “Well I’m sure the two of you will get to be friends very soon.”

“Wouldn’t count on it, Glinda.” Spike gave her a frustrated look but she merely laughed.

“We’ll see. Now come in and take a seat, both of you. You get yourselves comfortable and I’ll make you some sweet tea.”

Tara led the two blonds into her house. Strangely the inside wasn’t badly decorated compared to the dilapidated outside. At least it looked clean and tidy.

Bustling away, Tara left her two guests to seat themselves on the shabby couch, keeping ample distance between them. Buffy placed her hands primly on her thighs, suddenly overly self conscious.

Being around someone else, it was like all her comfortableness around Spike had melted away. Vulnerability shrieked to make itself known as her senses picked up on an intruder to the little bubble that had formed around her and Spike. It didn’t help that Spike seemed so at ease around the older woman.

Because of his affection for Tara, the green eyed monster roared in her ears.

Clearing her throat, Buffy stuffed her hands between her knees. She tried to avoid looking at Spike who was sprawled carelessly over the threadbare sofa. There was an air of relaxedness wafting off him right now and it was a little disconcerting. The blonde was so used to the jitteriness of her new companion, that it puzzled her to see him so at ease.

“So, how do you know…um…Tara?” she finally asked, hating the silence that had settled on them.

“Old Glinda was our cook donkey’s years ago,” he replied, sitting forward. Blue eyes probed her face but she kept her eyes downcast.

“She worked for the Raynes?” Buffy hadn’t expected that. The older blonde lady seemed so…innocent.

Spike nodded. “Yeah, pet. She was with us for a good few years. After my mum…uh…after she was gone Glinda came in to take care of us. She wasn’t my nanny but she looked after me sometimes. She even protected me from my Da when he was in one of his rages. Took a good few beatings from him, she did.”

Buffy’s eyes widened. “She looks so sweet and fragile.” The idea of Ethan beating the genial woman to a bloody pulp was horrifying.

“Twenty years ago she looked a little tougher, pet. I’d wager she’s still tough as old boots though. Time can change a body but I wouldn’t bet against her still having a fighting spirit. Appearances can be bloody deceiving you know.”

The blonde was starting to learn that was very much the case. Nothing was as it seemed from the outside. Never before had Buffy been so confused about everything.

In her old world things were black and white, good and bad. But now it was all about the shades of gray and the teenager wasn’t sure that her brain worked that way.

She knew it would take time to process all of the changes but it physically pained her to think about them.

Tara’s return interrupted her disturbing thoughts and she managed to busy herself drinking their newest ally’s sweet tea and feasting on her cookies. Spike also eagerly stuffed Tara’s home baked cookies into his mouth as a companionable silence settled over the room.

“So,” Tara said eventually, deciding it was time to cut to the heart of the issue. “Would you like to tell me why you’re here? Not that I’m not happy to see you, Will, but somehow I don’t think this is a recreational visit.”

“Got that bloody right,” Spike agreed with a hefty sigh, cleaning the cookie crumbs off his hands. “I’m not sure where to start.”

“Maybe from the beginning?” smiled Tara.

“Good plan, pet. Well you know what my Da’s always been like with the birds. The bastard never had a good opinion of women and through circumstances that weren’t her own fault Buffy ended up in his wily clutches.”

“Okay,” Tara said urging him to continue. She could see the pain on Buffy’s face as he recounted the story and wondered just how the blonde came to end up in Ethan’s hands.

“Well, she and I…met not longer after she arrived at the mansion. Can’t say our first meeting was in the best of situations, being that I acted like a stupid bloody git, but I saw something…unique in her.”

Buffy’s head whipped up at that comment but he was so embroiled in his recounting of the story that he didn’t even notice the widening of her eyes.

“Anyway,” he continued. “My Da decided that she’d be best off at Gwen’s getting trained up to be one of her slut-brigade. Some…things…happened and I realized that my dad is a soddin’ no-good wanker.”

“You only just realized that, Will?” asked Tara.

“I suppose I should say I only just recognized it. It took a lot to make me truly see him for what he is. He’s my Da, pet so I always excused what he did, you know that. Not like I was a candidate for martyrdom myself. But now I know for sure that the poofter is an arse beyond all compare.”

“What did he do this time?” Tara took a sip of her sweet tea.

“Nothing I particularly want to talk about,” Spike responded gruffly, his tone firmly implying that this particular topic wasn’t up for discussion.

At Spike’s growly reaction Buffy frowned, a memory washing over her. Ethan’s words to Spike in his office flitted through Buffy’s head: “Dru tells me everything. She told me you saw me shagging her nutty little brains out.”

They hadn’t exactly addressed that little tidbit in the wake of everything that happened since and even if she’d raised the subject, she had no doubt Spike would have shut her down on the issue. Until now she’d completely forgotten about it but the truth of the fact finally registered with Buffy.

He’d caught his girlfriend in bed with his father! No wonder he’d wanted to bring him down. Out of the corner of her eye she glanced at the frowning blond, feeling even more sympathy than ever for him. She’d quickly become accustomed to just how deeply Spike seemed to feel things. Every emotion cut to the bone, be it happy or sad.

The teenager couldn’t imagine how profoundly it would have affected him to have his whole life torn to pieces so viciously. Okay, that wasn’t really true, because she knew exactly how that felt. She’d been ripped from her own world in the blink of an eye and shoved into one that was cold and hostile. More and more, she was starting to discover things in common with Spike.

So deeply lost in her thoughts, it took her several moments to realize that he’d resumed talking.

“Once I made the decision to take him down, I knew I needed…assistance so I went to rescue Buffy from Gwen’s. I figured the enemy of my enemy and all that rot. Got her out of there and Bob’s your uncle, had me a new Girl Friday.”

“And now your dad’s looking for you? So you decided to hide out here?” she asked softly.

“Uh, well see there was something in between me rescuing Buffy and us ending up here.”

“And that would be?” Tara probed.

“That would be the part where I went all First Blood on Ethan’s ass after he tried to strangle his son,” Buffy cut in emotionlessly. “It would be the portion of the story where I became a coldblooded killer.” Her words were strained and bitter as they bubbled from her lips. No matter how much she tried to repress it, the idea of taking away Ethan’s life was still a painful topic.

“Bollocks! You’re about as coldblooded as bloody Mother Theresa,” Spike said hotly, surprising both himself and Buffy with his vehemence.

“You killed Ethan?” asked Tara in shock. There was no judgment in her eyes, though. In fact Buffy thought she detected impressed awe.

“I didn’t mean to. I just saw him trying to kill Spike and I got a little scared.” The surprise in Spike’s eyes floored her and she looked away embarrassed as how her confession might have sounded. “I mean…I didn’t want to be left alone in that place with a homicidal psychopath and my only ally laying dead.”

“Course you didn’t, love,” Spike agreed, feeling a little hurt that she’d seemingly gone back on her acknowledgment about caring about him.

“Spike…I…”

“Leave it, Summers. I understand.”

Tara coughed uncomfortably. “So if Ethan’s dead, why are you here?”

Turning back to Tara he shrugged. “Ethan’s boys are after us for revenge now and we needed to find somewhere safe away from Los Angeles to stay. Already had one of the buggers attack us at a bloody motel.”

Tara nodded, trying to fully absorb the story. “Well you can stay here as long as you need to. Sometimes it gets a little lonely around here anyway, so it would be nice to have some company for a while.”

“You’re a star, Glinda,” he smiled with a wink.

“Why does he call you ‘Glinda’?” asked Buffy, nibbling on the edge of an oatmeal cookie.

Tara grinned nostalgically. “When William was a little boy he was convinced I was a good witch, like from the Wizard of Oz. He thought I’d come to save him from the baddies. He started calling me Glinda back then and it stuck. I’m surprised he’s not found a nickname for you yet.”

“Oi, give me time. I’m sure I’ll find something for her.” He chuckled to himself. “Other than ‘annoying bint’.”

“Hey!” Buffy exclaimed, tossing a half eaten cookie at the blond.” I’m so not annoying. And I’m totally not a…binge.”

“The word’s ‘bint’, Kitten.”

“Really? ‘Cause I thought the word was ‘English’ as in ‘speak it’.”

“Says Ms. Let’s Butcher the Language.”

“As if I do that! At least what I say makes sense.”

“I’m sure it makes sense to you. Just doesn’t make any bloody sense to anyone else.”

“Bloody hell!” mocked Buffy in her version of an English accent. “Is that bloody true? Pip pip cheerio!”

“You realize you’re not making a lick of sense?”

“You realize I’m imitating you? Not making sense totally fits in with the character.”

“You are one step away, Missy,” warned Spike playfully.

“Oh! Are you gonna scold me?” she asked melodramatically clutching a hand to her chest.

Spike paused and blinked as he realized that they were…flirting. Glancing at Buffy only proved that theory. Her pupils were dilated and her face was red and flushed. He could lean in right now and press his lips to hers. Somehow they’d gotten so close to each other and it would be so easy just to kiss her.

Buffy stared at Spike with longing. His eyes flickered from her own green orbs to her pouty red lips. He was staring at her as if he wanted to devour her. That wasn’t such a bad thought, as thoughts go. It would be so easy right now just to part her lips a little and invite him in.

So easy…

The sound of Tara clearing her throat brought them back to reality with a resounding crash and they both fled to opposite ends of the couch. A knowing smile played on Tara’s lips as she watched them behaving like two naughty schoolchildren who’d been caught with their hands in the cookie jar. The chemistry between them was electrifying and there was no way anyone could miss it.

Even though she didn’t know Buffy very well, from what she’d seen of the teenager Tara was starting to believe she could be good for the man she’d always seen as her surrogate son. Perhaps a little matchmaking on her end could be in order.

The rest of the afternoon seemed to pass quickly with polite conversation and stories of the past. The older woman turned out to be the opposite of what Buffy had expected, of course. While she looked fragile and sweet, she was actually feisty with a sharp wit and even sharper tongue. Yet she was also kind too in a maternal way.

Buffy decided that she really liked this woman.

However, as well as getting to know Spike, Buffy was also becoming preoccupied with finding out more about Spike. As brash and forthright as he could be, she still couldn’t seem to truly fathom him.

Sometimes she got little glimpses into the real Spike but mostly it was like having a puzzle almost completed only you couldn’t find some of the pieces. Tara didn’t seem eager to give any of his secrets away either and Buffy was reluctant to ask her. After all, she vividly recalled his reaction after she’d inquired about his mother.

“I’m making my famous chicken soup for dinner,” Tara said finally, standing to clear away the tea and cookies. “So go get washed up.”

“Yes, Mum,” laughed Spike. There was a warm mirth infusing his eyes that Buffy hadn’t seen in the whole time she had known him. It was as if being around Tara had helped the darkness to drain from his soul.

“You’re not too old for me to take over my knee, you know William,” Tara retorted playfully, pulling him into a motherly hug. Buffy noticed the way he melted into the older woman’s embrace, a giddy, childlike smile plastered on his lips.

Buffy wondered why his happiness warmed her own icy heart. Unfortunately there was a small niggle that she wasn’t the cause of his happiness, but as long as he was happy then she was content. And then it all came together: her attraction to him, her longing to know more about him, her feeling of safety when he was with her, her desire to make him happy.

At that moment she realized the truth.

She was falling in love with him.

God, how the hell was she going to be around him now?
The Littlest Doubts Are Fear by Starlight_Slayer
Author's Notes:
Another update. Enjoy. :)
Trying to put her newfound epiphany firmly at the back of her mind, Buffy eagerly sat down to dinner with her companions. She just hoped that they didn’t notice the glaring neon sign that was no doubt flashing over her head, declaring her newly recognized feelings.

In spite of Buffy’s current apprehension over being in close quarters to Spike, the feast that Tara provided for dinner was avidly devoured by both of her guests. There was soup and steak and herby potatoes with a thick sauce. For dessert, she made a sumptuous apple brown betty topped with rich, velvety ice cream.

Despite all of the cookies they’d eaten earlier, the two blonds ate as if they’d been starved for weeks, not even pausing to talk as the demolished the spread. In fact, neither of them had eaten properly in a while and Tara’s home cooking was simultaneously fulfilling and comforting to them.

“You haven’t lost your touch when it comes to cooking, Glinda,” Spike complimented her, stuffing a chunk of dessert into his mouth.

“It really is good,” Buffy agreed. “I don’t think I’ve ever eaten anything so yummy before. This really is one of the best things I’ve ever had in my mouth.”

“Ooh, I can think of a couple of things you’d like even more than this,” leered Spike causing Buffy’s cheeks to flush a deep pink.

“Will!” Tara chided him, immediately picking up on his meaning. “Leave the poor girl alone.”

“She doesn’t mind a bit of teasing, do you, love?” he asked Buffy.

The truth was that she kind of did mind. She minded because her damn panties were getting sticky at the thought of what he could put in her mouth that would be…better. She’d never done that before, always thinking of it as something gross, but doing it to Spike wouldn’t be anything less than…tasty.

“Do you cook, sweetie?” Tara inquired politely, hoping to change the subject. She could sense how uncomfortable the teenager was becoming.

“Uh that would be a no, with a capital never. Back home breakfast was charred toast and dinner was always takeout. I pretty much burn water so me and cooking…so not mixy.”

Tara frowned sympathetically. “You can always learn. I didn’t learn to cook until I was seventeen,” she told them, taking a sip of her water. “You should have seen some of my earliest disasters. But then I had to learn because I had to take care of my father and brother after I lost my mother.”

Both Spike and Buffy noticed the sadness on their host’s face when she mentioned her mother. It was an ache that they were all too familiar with.

“I’m sorry,” Buffy said sincerely, remembering how much it had hurt when her own mother died.

Shyly she met Buffy’s eyes. “It hurts to lose someone you love but it does get better you know,” she told her, sensing the younger girl’s sorrow. “It never goes away but in time you learn to live with it. Every day it gets a little easier.”

“I know. It’s been a long time since I lost my Mom but I still miss her,” Buffy admitted, absently fingering the end of her spoon. “Sometimes I go days without thinking about her and then I feel so guilty that I forgot.”

“She’d want you to go on living, honey.” Tara turned her eyes to Spike who was also playing uncomfortably with his spoon, unconsciously mirroring Buffy’s actions. “It’s always a mother’s wish that her children go on to be happy.”

The heaviness of the conversation was weighing on her but Buffy couldn’t help but pick up on the fact that Tara was trying to convey something to Spike…something that was beyond her current understanding. Her curiosity rose up but she didn’t want to intrude on their moment.

For a while the trio sat in silent solidarity. They’d all lost people in their lives. And the pain never truly dissipated. It stayed there simmering just under the surface waiting for an outlet. That was the nature of grief…it could be sidelined but never eradicated. With that thought in mind, they finished up their food in contemplative silence.

After dinner, Tara announced that she would make up the spare rooms for her guests before retiring to her bedroom for the night.

“It’s nothing grand or fancy,” she said shyly. “Just a couple beds for you, but I hope it’s enough.”

“It’s more than enough,” Buffy assured her. “You’ve been so sweet taking us in here.”

“It’s nice to have you here,” she assured Buffy shyly. “I’ve been alone for a while and sometimes I forget what it’s like to be around people.”

“With your cooking we might just move in,” Buffy chuckled, only half joking.

“See, you’ll never get rid of her now,” winked Spike, hugging Tara tightly once again. Their easy affection caused a reemergence of Buffy’s slight envy problem.

It wasn’t that she thought there was anything there other than a motherly love between Spike and Tara but she was jealous of their physical ease around each other. Buffy would have loved just to be able to sink into his arms and find comfort but something held her back. Or maybe everything held her back, she wasn’t quite sure.

“Okay, well goodnight,” Tara said, pulling out of Spike’s strong arms and leaving the two blonds alone in the living room.

“Night!” they chorused, staring after her.

“So you ready for your first lesson?” Spike asked Buffy, yanking her from her musings. He pushed the coffee table and couch out of the way, making some room for them to practice.

Buffy glanced up at him with a frown. “Huh? What lesson?”

“Promised I’d teach you to fight didn’t I?” Suddenly Spike looked shy and apprehensive, like a nerdy teenager asking the popular girl to prom. “If you’ve changed your mind about learning, that’s okay. I’ll just go…”

“No! I haven’t changed my mind at all. I’m totally non-changy. I was just surprised you wanted to teach me.”

“Course I do. Why wouldn’t I?”

“I…umm…don’t know why not. I guess I just thought you were being nice or something.”

“Aha! There’s your first bloody mistake Summers. I’m not nice. Bloody evil is what I am.”

“Right, you’re totally the Big Bad.”

“And don’t you forget it.”

“I wish I could,” she sighed, breaking the light mood and darkening it. Maybe it wouldn’t be so hard to let herself give into her desires if Rayne blood didn’t flow through Spike’s veins.

Sweeping away her seriousness he bounced on the balls of his feet. “Okay, come on, let’s show you some moves, eh?”

Painstakingly he demonstrated a range of fighting techniques and moves, forcing her to echo each one until she’d gotten it down pat. The words ‘uppercut’, ‘hook’, ‘cross’, and ‘jab’ bounced around her brain like a ping pong ball. He was not an easy teacher, settling for nothing less than perfection. In the hour they spent together she wanted to quit more than once but her pride wouldn’t let her.

Finally, after what seemed like forever, Spike decided she was more than ready for some hands-on training. “So, ready for a little sparring now then, lamb?”

Before she could agree, Spike was at her back pinning her against his chest. One hand banded around her chest, the other fixed over her abdomen.

“W-what are you doing?” she stuttered, breathless and flaccid in his hold.

“Attacking you, Little Red Riding Hood.” His hot breath tickled the prone shell of her ear. “Now if you don’t want to become a nummy treat for the Big Bad Wolf, you need to fight back.” His grip tightened on her, his thumb barely brushing the sensitive underside of her breasts. “Fight back, pet. Show me that fire. I know it’s in you. I’ve seen it. Show it to me!”

Instinctively, Buffy snapped herself out of her daze and reacted, slamming her elbow back into the soft flesh over Spike’s sternum. His little ‘oof’ spurred her on and she spun in his arms, pulling out of his tight hold.

When her eyes darted to his face, she realized he was grinning wildly. There was a sparkle in his gaze, urging her to continue.

“Throw a right hook at me, now,” he encouraged her.

With a manic smile spreading on her own face, she launched the punch at him. However, he easily sidestepped her. The blonde tried again, following it up with a left uppercut that also missed his chin by a whisker.

“C’mon now! You can do better than that, Princess,” he taunted her.

“Hell yeah, I can!”

She came forward with a flurry of punches this time. Even though he continued to avoid her, each time her aim got sharper and she honed in on her target. Keeping her eyes firmly fixed on the prize, she slammed her foot into his kneecap, momentarily stunning him, before driving her fist right into his nose.

The unexpected punch sent him off balance and he grabbed at her as he tumbled to the ground, yanking her on top of him. Their bodies were molded together on top of one of Tara’s ratty, old oriental rugs, their heat scalding each other through the thin layers of fabric that separated them.

Suddenly the air thickened and warmed.

“Oh my God!” she sighed, gazing down at him. “I didn’t hurt you did I?”

He reached up to touch his abused nose and shook his head. “Everything seems to still be attached.” The blond mustered a smile. “Caught me off guard, though. Good improvisation,” he choked out.

“Um, thanks.”

“Got a lot of potential in you, Slayer,” he complimented her.

Slayer?”

“You wanted a nickname and now you’ve got one.”

“I was thinking of something…cute. Not something murder-y.”

“It suits you. You slay me, in more ways than one, kitten.” Treacle coated his voice in a way that hadn’t been present before.

And something seemed to be swelling between his legs that definitely hadn’t been there before, if the evidence pressing against her thigh was anything to go by. His hands came up to rest on her hips and it felt like an electric current deliciously searing her skin.

Continuing to straddle him despite the clear evidence of his arousal she placed her hand over his heart. “So I guess this means I won, right?” Her shallow breaths were making her lightheaded. Or was it his touch that was doing that?

He bucked up slightly pushing his cock farther into the warm cradle of her thighs. “I think you could say we both did.”

The young blonde swallowed at the contact. Never had she experienced anything so erotic and sensual. The way he felt underneath her, firm and hard, was making her pulsate with want and need. Instinctively she pushed down on his dick drawing a moan from him. Her libido screamed at her to lean down, kiss him, touch him, but another emotion was also pervading her senses.

Fear.

She didn’t even realize that the debilitating feeling was seeping into her consciousness until it gripped her whole being. This just couldn’t happen with Spike. Not now and maybe not ever. The idea of losing herself in him was too scary, especially when she felt like there were still so many things that she didn’t know about him…and even more so when she didn’t think that he returned her affections.

Okay, he was clearly attracted to her but the teenager didn’t want to be just a warm body to warm his bed. She didn’t believe that he returned her sentiments or that he ever could. She was just some girl that his father had requisitioned. Now that Ethan was out of the picture, he was stuck with her. Maybe he saw her as something more than a gangly teen…maybe she was a friend, or a little sister figure, or even a potential sex doll to him. But she didn’t think he would ever see her as someone who he could…love. Really, truly love.

Her insecurities bubbled over and as if she was suddenly awaking from a dream she blinked wildly and scrambled off of Spike. She climbed to her feet trying to hide to her frantic expression but he was so saturated with disappointment that he totally missed her trepidation.

He thought that he’d probably pushed her too far in allowing her to feel just how much she turned him on. But he couldn’t help it. He wanted this young woman more than he’d ever wanted anything else in his whole life.

“Alright there, pet?” he asked, trying to keep his tone light but failing miserably.

“Hmm? Oh yeah I’m peachy with a side of keen.” Her smile was just a little too bright, a little too forced. “It’s just getting late.”

Spike glanced at the wall clock. “It’s 9.30.”

“Right. But it’s been a long day and I’m totally beat.”

“Yeah, you’re right,” he said, his expression softening. She did look tired and this seemed to be the day that would never end. “Glinda’s made up a bed for you down the hall.”

“Yeah, she said she was gonna do that.”

“Yeah, of course she did. Well it’s the first on your left.”

“I’ll tell her thanks tomorrow.”

“Okay.” Spike stuffed his hands into his back pockets.

“Okay.” Buffy played nervously with a stray strand of hair.

Well, this wasn’t awkward at all.

“So, I’ll see you in the morning, love,” he said to her.

There was an apprehensive expression on her face as he bid her goodnight. He couldn’t understand why. For the first time in several days she would finally be able to spend some time alone, go to sleep without the fear of being violated while she slumbered hanging over her. Surely she should be happy about that prospect.

Little did he realize that she was dreading being away from him for the night. Waking up in his arms the previous morning had been weird, but good weird. The kind of weird that she wanted to repeat. In truth she didn’t want to be alone tonight and that scared her. It scared her that she was needing him more and good God but it scared her that she was craving the taste of his lips.

“Goodnight, Spike,” she said softly, placing an impromptu kiss on his cheek. Internally she chastised herself for giving into her instincts even as she reveled in the way he skin had felt under her lips.

Before he could respond she turned her rapidly reddening face away and rushed into her bedroom.

Gaping after her, Spike placed his hand on the imprint of her kiss and a smile played on his lips.

“Goodnight, Slayer.”
No Evil Angel by Starlight_Slayer
Author's Notes:
Warning for sexual situations. Dreams are in italics.
Sleep didn’t come easily for Buffy. Her mind was still racing from everything that had happened that day and the ones previously. Her life had changed so drastically in such a short space of time that she felt as if her head was still spinning from it.

However, at the forefront of her mind was her recent revelation about her growing feelings for Spike. She was so confused about how she felt about him. At first she’d hated him, but after he rescued her from a fate worse than death, her contempt had morphed into begrudging gratitude. Over and over she struggled to identify exactly when it had melted into more.

There was no doubt that she was falling for him and their almost-kiss after sparring had only cemented that belief in her mind. The need to love him was bubbling up inside of her, like a living entity but she was determined to continue to push it away.

Loving him would only end badly, she was sure. Everyone who ever loved her either left her or betrayed her. Her mother had tragically died and her father had sold her to a sadist before perishing himself…so she wasn’t exactly lucking out in the love stakes.

All she had to do was control her emotions and everything would be fine. Nodding her head, she sank back into the soft pillow.

Finally convinced that she had gotten everything under control, the teenager allowed her eyes to drift shut as she floated away to the land of dreams.

Seeing Spike clad in a tuxedo was a shock for Buffy. The fact that he was clasping a thorny red rose between his teeth only heightened the level of surprise. The blonde glanced around at the unfamiliar room. Sumptuous velour fabrics covered the bed and windows, giving the room a boudoir quality.

Buffy glanced at the flickering candlelight and the roaring fire, her brow furrowing. “What’s going on?” she inquired, her voice full of confusion.

Spike slipped the rose from his mouth and padded over to her. He looked unusually shy as he approached her. With shaky fingers he ran the velvety head of the rose over her exposed collarbone, making her quiver. “I wanted to make this special for you.”

“Make…what special for me?”

Spike exhaled slowly and urged Buffy to take a seat on the bed. Looking down at herself she realized that she was dressed in a blood red gown. The silk caressed her delicate skin as she moved, exciting her tempestuous nerve endings. As she sat down, the slit in the dress exposed her thigh and Spike gulped audibly at the view.

Placing the rose down on a mahogany nightstand next to the bed, Spike drew one of Buffy’s tiny hands into his larger ones. “I’m talking about tonight, love. I want tonight to be special.”

“And what happens tonight?” Her breath quickened at the look of lust-filled intensity on Spike’s face.

“Tonight I make you a woman.”

He marched forward and yanked her into his arms, his lips relentless against her own. She moaned at the sensations he was generating and opened her mouth to the exploratory movement of his tongue.

Buffy felt a tightness inside of herself that she’d never known before. This man was doing so much to her with just a kiss and as her senses started to run on autopilot, her mind started to shut down. His hands traveled gently from her waist to the curve of her ass, gripping her round cheeks in his large palms.

“Oh my God!” she hissed, her own fingers digging into his shoulders.

Buffy threw her head back, clinging onto her lover. “Never felt this way before,” she sighed. “You make me feel all tingly and want-y.”

“Want-y huh? Tell me what you want.”

“I just want you.”

“And you have me, pet.”

Unfastening her zipper, he allowed the dress to slip over her shoulders. His fingers lingered after the silk had fallen away, stroking at the bare skin. Pushing the rest of her dress down, Spike allowed her two pert breasts come into view.

“You’re perfect, kitten,” he whispered. “So bloody perfect. Could look at you all day.”

Buffy blushed under his complimentary gaze, but she didn’t turn her face away. His nimble fingers traced the valley between her small bosoms and Spike smiled at her clear enjoyment of his ministrations. One strong hand came up to clasp her right breast, massaging it lightly.

“Like that, don’t you,” he purred. “Love it when I play with those love titties of yours.” His mouth closed around her throbbing little nipple, making her shout out in bliss.

“Oh Spike, please, I need you so bad,” she moaned, pulling him closer to her breast. His lips pursed around the cherry-red nub of her erect nipple. Sharp white teeth grazed it pulling another cry from the teen.

“Are you okay pet?” he asked her, his face showing only concern and affection for the young blonde.

“I’m more than o-okay,” she panted. Staring straight into his eyes, Buffy smiled and cupped his face. “I love you, Spike.”


“Oh my God!” Buffy’s eyes flew open and she choked violently as the dream flooded back to her consciousness. “Oh…my…Do I? Do I love him?”

Images of everything that had happened with Spike from the moment they’d met flooded back to her. It was like watching a reel of just how he’d changed. No longer was he the brash obnoxious drunk…okay well he was still that man, but Buffy had seen the softer side of him.

And somewhere along the way, she’d fallen for him. She’d fallen for both sides of him. Even though she didn’t know everything there was to know about him, so what? They do say that love is blind…whoever they might be.

The fact was that she wasn’t just falling in love with him. She loved him totally.

But she didn’t think that he loved her back.

She was so screwed.

++++++++++


Still ecstatic from the kiss that Buffy had given him, it took a long time before Spike finally drifted off to sleep. More than he’d realized, his body unconsciously mourned for the lack of the warm body pressed against his. Never had he enjoyed such a restful sleep as he had when Buffy was in his arms.

When he finally fell asleep, of course the feisty young blonde was the object of his subconscious focus.

He didn’t recognize the dim room, as he stared at the fading light still trickling through the drapes giving the teenager an ethereal quality. She was dressed in a long silk, crimson dress that clung to her subtle curves like a second skin. Her hair cascaded over her shoulders like molten gold as she approached him.

“I’ve missed you,” Buffy whispered, her hands coming to rest on his shoulders.

“Why?” he asked with a frown. “I haven’t gone anywhere.”

“You’re always too far away.” Buffy sighed and guided him to the soft bed that appeared behind him. He allowed her to push him down to the silken sheets before she clambered atop him. “Don’t you know? I need you…close.”

Her face rested in the crook of his shoulder and he couldn’t resist breathing in her sweet scent. She smelled of innocence and hope, of beauty and desire. She smelled of everything he’d always wanted but never believed he could have.

“I’m close now, pet,” he told her. “What are you gonna do with me?”

“What do you want me to do with you?” Hot breath caressed his neck like wandering fingers. He wasn’t surprised to feel that her actual fingers were also wandering as they crept beneath the hem of his shirt, stroking the sensitive skin of his abdomen.

“Want you to touch me, love,” he gasped, helpless as her hands glided over the flats of his nipples. “Want to touch you too. Want to be inside you, filling that sweet cunny, making you scream my name until you’re hoarse.”

“Mmm,” moaned Buffy, clearly pleased by his response. She lowered her mouth to his neck, her tongue darting out to lick a trail from his throbbing pulse point to the lobe of his ear. Her lips captured the prone lobe, teeth grazing it gently as he writhed underneath her. “I want to make you scream my name, Spike. Can I? Will you let me pleasure you?”

“God, yes!” he gasped, his hardened organ begging for escape from the tight confines of his heavy denim jeans. “Please love! I want to feel your lovely, luscious lips on me.”

“Your wish is my command, Spike,” she grinned.

With trembling fingers he helped her slip his T-shirt over his head and scooted back against the headboard, opening up his body to her. She wasted no time in tasting the toned expanse of his pale chest. It looked as if it were carved from ivory, so smooth and perfect except for a few tiny scars. However, dream-Buffy didn’t seem to care about the scars and she licked them with abandon, just as she did the rest of his torso.

When her pouty lips closed around his left nipple, Spike almost fell off of the bed. It was like having an electric current running through him, and he could never get enough. The flat of her tongue laved the erect little nipple while her fingers pinched and twisted at it. Tiny shards of delicious pain interspersed with the pleasure making the experience even more blissful.

As soon as she was satisfied with the attentions she had given to his left nipple, she switched to pleasuring his right one, and she definitely wasn’t neglectful of it. By now the poor man was whimpering in his need for release but Buffy only smiled as she tortured him with the promise of ecstasy. She slipped down his body, her tongue never quitting its sinful actions.

“Can’t last…much…longer,” he told her, his blue eyes darkening to the color of night. “Need your mouth.”

“You have my mouth on you,” she smirked, pausing from her position over his navel, having briefly dipped her tongue inside.

“Need it on…my cock,” he panted. “God, Buffy. Please!”

“Hmm, you like to beg, don’t you?” Her hand closed over his denim clad erection without waiting for a response. “Have you been a good boy, Spike? Tell me.”

“Yes, I’ve been good. Oh please, Buffy. Please. Just suck my dick!”

Flashing him one last smile, Buffy yanked open his zipper, eyes widening as his large cock bobbed into her hand. The organ was red and angry, as if it was reprimanding her for not tending to it sooner. With no further preamble she licked the head, the pearl of pre-come settling on the tip of her tongue. The young blonde swallowed it down with a glint in her eye.

“Oh you taste so good, Spike,” she cooed, diving back in for another taste. “Mmm!”

She bathed the leaking head of his cock with her tongue, paying extra attention to the slit. If it was actually possible his dick seemed to harden even more under her touch. A glance at the blond showed he was a sweating, writhing mess. Continuous nonsensical babble flowed from his mouth even as unfocused eyes stared down at her.

Finally deciding that he’d waited long enough, Buffy beamed at him. “I think you have been a good boy, Spike. And you know that good things come to those who wait. So I’m going to reward you, baby.”

And then her mouth was enveloping the head and shaft of his pulsating, needy cock. The hot cavern was closing around him like liquid fire, burning him up from the inside out. There was no comparison for the feelings she was pulling from inside of him. Somehow he’d gotten past the Pearly Gates and he never wanted to leave this sanctury.

Taking it deeper into her throat, Buffy moaned around his cock, sending delicious vibrations ricocheting through the engorged organ. Her hands were clasped around the base as she manually pumped the section of his penis that she couldn’t fit into her warm, wet mouth.

“Oh fuck, Summers!” Spike cried out, his body arching upward as his eyes rolled back in his head. “Don’t stop,” he urged her. “Keep sucking it. Yeah that’s it. Just do it like that, love.”

Eagerly obeying him, the girl speeded up her motions, sucking harder and more vigorously. Spurred on by his long, loud groans and ceaseless writing, her ministrations were unyielding.

Sensing that he was close, one of her hands drifted from the base of his cock to his heavy balls, rolling them gently in her palm. Her mouth didn’t leave his steely member, her tongue continuing to swirl sensuously around his sensitive slit.

It wasn’t long before Spike felt the familiar tightening of his sac and a roar escaped his parted lips. His dick slipped from her mouth even as she kept on pumping it, aiming the organ at her upper body.

“Oh God, Buffy I love you so bloody much!” he blurted out as his ropey semen covered her face and upper body.


“Fuck!” Spike yelled, sitting up ramrod straight in the bed. “Love her? No…No! Bloody buggering fuck!”

This wasn’t possible! Sure, he knew he’d grown attracted to the young woman since he’d met her, and she’d dominated so many of his thoughts but…love?

Love was something…different. He’d only ever loved Drusilla and that had blown up in his face. But loving Drusilla was easy because evil was so seductive and his former paramour fell happily into the ‘evil’ category. Evil didn’t ask for anything but perversion and moral corruption and, being a Rayne, he’d offered that easily.

However, loving Buffy was a whole different ballgame. It meant being good and moral and not screwing it up as he was so prone to do. He was holding the beauty of her innocence in his hand and he would have to go against his blood not to crush that innocence or warp it into something twisted and ugly.

He had to keep from destroying her even as his heart, body and mind craved her touch…and her love. In all honesty, he thought it was unlikely that he could keep away from her now that he knew how deeply he wanted her.

Sighing he realized that his dream had also had a physical effect on him, and he reached down to wipe away the sticky film of his semen from his thighs. How could a dream version of this teenager get to him so thoroughly? And knowing how relentless his heart was when it wanted something…how could he resist the real version of her.

Enveloped with panic, he jumped out of bed and spent the rest of the night fighting his unending internal struggle.

He was so screwed.
Oh, What a Tangled Web We Weave by Starlight_Slayer
When morning finally arrived, Spike’s head wasn’t any clearer than it had been under the cover of darkness. He was spinning with his newfound feelings. They seemed to be burrowing into him like a virus and he wasn’t sure that there was any remedy to cut them out of his heart.

Taking a cool shower didn’t help because he quickly found that he was compelled to pleasure himself as a naked, and very flexible, Buffy danced around his brain like a tiny little temptress.

Trying to shake himself out of his funk, he headed to the kitchen, hoping that the object of his desires was still sleeping. The last thing he needed right now was to have to confront her when she was sitting there all bright and bubbly with annoying shampoo commercial hair, and her sumptuously delicious natural scent, and her stupid pouty lips that he just wanted to kiss the life out of…

No! He chastised himself immediately. Thinking about things like that could only lead to the bad places where he ended up doing the girl doggy style over Tara’s oak kitchen table. Somehow he didn’t think his host would appreciate that.

Ambling into the kitchen, he breathed a sigh of relief when he saw that it was only occupied by Tara. The older lady was kneading bread at the counter, seemingly lost in her own thoughts.

“Morning, pet,” Spike grinned, hiding his worries as he smiled at her. She raised her head and returned the smile.

“Good morning William. Did you sleep well?” Tara asked him, noting the shadows highlighting his eyes.

“Yeah like a log,” he lied.

“Uh huh. Buffy’s not awake yet?”

“Probably still sleeping, love. Wouldn’t surprise me if she’s knackered enough to snooze the day away. Little mite’s had a hard time of it lately.”

The thought of Buffy and hard in the same sentence only served to harden parts of his own anatomy and he immediately turned away from his surrogate mother.

“Got any more of those choccy biccies, pet?” Spike asked, rooting around in the cupboards looking for the leftover cookies.

“Top left,” Tara directed him casually.

“Thanks,” he replied, locating the treats and happily munching on one of her chocolate chip extravaganzas. He hopped up onto the countertop and grinned childishly.

“Missed your baking, pet. Takes me right back to childhood.”

“I’m not sure your childhood would be a time you’d want to return to,” she replied honestly, pity seeping through her gaze.

“Sometimes I think it was better than the bollocks that bloody adulthood has brought me.”

“Talking of…umm…bollocks.” Spike smiled at the use of her Britishism. “I’ve been wondering Will,” Tara said, cautiously. “What exactly happened to Drusilla?”

Spike shifted against the countertop, his mood taking an immediate nosedive. “What do you mean ‘what happened?’” He swallowed the chunk of cookie that was in his mouth but it suddenly tasted bitter and caustic.

“I mean…where is she? The two of you were love’s young dream, even if she was a total nightmare.” The woman didn’t bother to hide her disdain for the insane brunette. “You almost never left her side and yet you’re here with another woman and Dru is AWOL.”

“Drusilla and me are over.” He tossed the remainder of his cookie in the trash, having suddenly lost his appetite. “There’s not much to say about it really.”

“You’ve never been able to fool me, William. I’m sure there are a lot of things bottled up in that head of yours.”

Spike forced the stale air out of his lungs and rested his head against the cool expanse of tiles behind him. “You’re right,” he told her, letting his eyes drift shut. “But if I talk about it then…”

“Then what, honey?”

“Then I just show myself to be such a bloody fool. Always have been though, haven’t I? Love’s bitch right here.” He threw his arms wildly open, a feral glint in his eyes. “Watch out kiddies or you might turn out to be a sap for any wet pussy in a fifty mile vicinity.”

Tara didn’t even bother to chide him on his language as the worry increased inside of her. What the hell did Drusilla do to him?

“William, I want to help you. Okay?”

“Can you help me get back the last decade and a half that I wasted on that bitch?”

“No, but I can listen.” Abandoning her bread she padded over to him and laid her hands over hers. “Please, Will. I’m concerned about you.”

Finally giving in to her warm touch, Spike laid his head on her shoulder. “A few weeks ago I walked in on Dru shagging Angelus,” he told her gruffly.

“Her stepfather? She’s been having…relations with him?”

“Yeah, suspected it for a long while but never could prove anything until I caught the pair of them at it. Wanted to wash my brain in a bucket of bleach to get that image out of my mind.” He wasn’t sure he’d ever forget his girlfriend’s stepfather’s piggish grunts as his large body covered her birdlike frame. “Seeing Liam Angelus’ hairy arse pumping away at my girl wasn’t something I ever wanted to think about, never mind see.”

“I’m sorry, Will. She didn’t deserve you. You’re a good man and you should have a sweet, faithful girl by your side.”

“I wanted to believe Drusilla was all of those things. Turned out to be wrong though, didn’t I? See, the nasty bint wasn’t just shagging her daddy…she was shagging mine too.”

“Are you telling me that she was sleeping with Ethan?” While Tara wasn’t entirely surprised, she was disgusted by the woman’s actions and made no attempt to conceal it.

“Saw the two of them at it at the mansion. Sick bastard was doing all sorts to her. Made me want to heave.”

“I’m not surprised, sweetie. Goddess, I never imagined someone could be so callous, even Drusilla.”

Spike snorted, suddenly craving a cigarette. “You lived around my Da for all those years, pet. You should be able to recognize cruelty from a thousand yards. Poofter gets off on it, doesn’t he? You should remember that.”

Tara turned her blue doe eyes to him and nodded. “I won’t ever forget what a sadist your father was. I probably know it better than most.” And she did, So many times she’d suffered humiliating indignities on one of his dad’s cruel whims.

“Lucky that I’ll never have kids, huh? Wouldn’t want to pass on this cursed bloodline.”

“You’re not cursed and you don’t know for sure that you’ll never have a child. You’d make a wonderful father, William, no matter what you think.” She patted him on the hand sympathetically and returned to her hunk of dough.

“Can’t imagine it.” He frowned sadly picking off the final remnants of his black nail polish. “Who would want to carry my brat anyway? Only someone who’s as loony as Dru and she’s firmly out of the picture now.”

“What about you and Buffy?” Tara broached, throwing the bread dough down onto the countertop and kneading it vigorously. “It seems you’re getting close to her. And if you and Dru are over and done then there’s nothing to stop you from being with her.”

Spike snorted rudely, hiding his hope in his eyes behind disgust. “There’s nothing going on between me and that little chit,” he replied breathily, swiftly catapulted back into the dream he’d enjoyed during the previous night.

Of course, there was no way he was going to reveal his little nighttime fantasy to anyone, especially Tara. Talking about Drusilla’s whorish actions was one thing but talking about his nocturnal desires? Well he wasn’t even going to touch that level of awkwardness with a ten-foot pole.

“Don’t think I haven’t seen how you look at her, William. I remember when you used to stare at little Cecily Adams that way. Remember her? You were so cute the way you followed her everywhere.”

He vividly recalled his childhood crush and the ensuing humiliation that it caused. He’d fancied himself in love with his classmate but it turned out that she couldn’t stand being around him. She even laughed cruelly about him behind his back.

“I was twelve,” he said with a hint of annoyance seeping into his tone. “And the little bint turned out to be a gigantic bitch anyway.”

“Well I don’t think that Buffy is a…bitch.”

“That’s because you don’t know her that well,” he pouted sulkily. In truth he didn’t think that Buffy was actually a bitch at heart, but when she unleashed her wrath on him she definitely did a good impression of one. His poor testicles could attest to that. However, in the past couple of days she’d been more agreeable, but if he acknowledged that then he’d give into his desires.

And then he’d be Love’s Bitch again.

It was much safer to lie to himself and everyone around him about his feelings.

“Buffy’s just…just a kid I ended up stuck with. The bint’s resourceful and I thought she’d help me take down my Da. Actually, she followed through with that one. But it’s over now”

“So why is she still with you?”

“Dunno,” shrugged Spike. “Just is.”

“And it isn’t because you’ve developed feelings for her?” Tara asked, her eyes glinting with the knowledge that was exactly why she was still firmly at his side.

“Don’t be stupid, Glinda,” he scoffed, trying to convince himself more than Tara about his lack of emotions for the blonde. “The bird means nothing to me.”

Tara rolled her eyes. Sometimes the boy could be so thickheaded that he couldn’t see the forest for the trees. She’d known him long enough that she could tell when he was lying to himself.

“If you say so, William,” was her only reply.

Determined to prove her wrong, as well as wash away the fantasy of Buffy and the ensuing revelation about his feelings that had haunted his dreams, he rounded on her angrily. “I mean it, love. The chit’s been nothing but a liability to me since I met her. Almost got me killed three bloody times.”

“You have such a tendency to exaggerate,” Tara responded disapprovingly.

He rolled his shoulders. “Nah, it’s true. As soon as I can dump her, she’s gone.” He knew that he didn’t mean it but it was like he couldn’t halt the tirade. The words flowed from him like liquid venom, leaving the bitter aftertaste of mendacity in his own mouth. “I’ve had it with women and love so I certainly wouldn’t get involved with one of Ethan’s rejects. Really, Glinda! I don’t know how you could even think I’d bloody well want that.”

Not wanting her to see the tears that were welling up in his eyes, Spike stormed from the room.

“Silly boy,” whispered Tara.

She had a funny feeling that his words would come back to bite him in the ass.

++++++++++


It was the sound of far off voices that pulled Buffy from her troubled sleep. Only sheer fatigue had allowed her to get any sleep at all after her…informative dream. She sat up in bed, stretching her stiff muscles and rolling her joints before climbing out.

The sight of the white, fluffy robe that Tara had left next to the bed warmed her heart and she slipped it on. Although the robe drowned her in its size, she pulled the warm material around her, snuggling into it.

It was the grumbling of her tummy that made her aware of her hunger. She wasn’t really sure how she could still be so famished after all the food she’d eaten the previous night, but she knew that she needed something to sate her hunger.

Padding out of her room, almost silently, she made her way to the kitchen, the sound of the voices becoming closer. However, she stopped in her tracks as she became aware of what the subject of the discussion was.

Her.

“Buffy’s just…just a kid I ended up stuck with,” she heard Spike sneer coldly. The bint’s resourceful and I thought she’d help me take down my Da.”

Shards of ice lodged in her heart, freezing her in her tracks. Did he really feel that way about her? A little piece of her soul dissolved into sorrow.

“So why is she still with you?” Tara asked. Buffy could hear the worry in her voice, grateful for the older blonde’s apparent support.

“Dunno, just is.” His voice was so harsh and uncaring, as if she really was nothing to him, that the blonde teen wanted to burst into floods of tears.

Realizing that Spike had stolen her heart had almost broken her on the inside. But knowing that he didn’t even want it, and would never want it, was enough to completely destroy her.

Unconsciously she wiped away the tears that were trickling down her pale face, barely even listening to what the pair were talking about. Her attention snapped back to Spike when she heard his nasty scoff.

“The bird means nothing to me.” These cold words echoed fatalistically in Buffy’s brain. “The chit’s been nothing but a liability to me since I met her. Almost got me killed three bloody times.”

“Bastard!” Buffy exclaimed under her breath. “I saved his pathetic, worthless life too. Asshole! Fucking asshole!”

Part of her wanted to storm into the kitchen and kick his twisted, heartless ass six ways to Sunday. The part that won out was the part that wanted to cry and wallow as she listened to him systematically describe how he wanted to be rid of her as soon as he could.

“As soon as I can dump her, she’s gone,” he was saying to Tara. I’ve had it with women and love so I certainly wouldn’t get involved with one of Ethan’s rejects.”

One of Ethan’s rejects?

She thought that during the past few days they’d managed to establish some kind of rapport, maybe even friendship. But to him she was just a whore who he’d saved from her fate and nothing more. It cut her to the bone and she had to push down the bile that rose up in her throat.

Unable to listen to another of his words, she turned, fleeing toward her own room. She would leave this place and make it on her own. If he didn’t want her around then she had no business in staying here. After all, she’d done well for exactly eighteen years without him.

Darting into her room, she pulled on some of the horrible clothes he’d purchased for her and steeled herself. She didn’t know where she would go, but she could make it alone.

Of that she was determined.
Winged Cupid Painted Blind by Starlight_Slayer
Spike didn’t know why he’d been so vehement in his denial about his emotions but he was already regretting it even as he slammed the door to his makeshift bedroom. When Tara had asked him about his feelings for Buffy, he’d felt like a cornered animal, and he’d used the only way he knew of getting out of the situation…denial.

But the thought of what he’d said felt wrong. He could still taste the horrible lies on his tongue, burning him like thick acid and he wanted to take them back, but he felt like he’d opened Pandora’s Box and now he was doomed to suffer the guilt for his offhanded lies.

Even though he didn’t think Buffy knew about what he’d said, he felt guilty for the hurt that his words could have caused her.

Suddenly he was overwhelmed with the need to see her, to talk to her and make it all right again. He hadn’t seen her so far that morning, so he figured she would still be asleep in bed.

But it didn’t matter, he would wake her up. He wanted her and he needed her. The blond craved the reassurance that seeing her would give him. Maybe it would wash away his own self-loathing as he thought about his horrible words once again.

Before he could talk himself out of it, he was barging into Buffy’s new bedroom, not even sure why he was going in there other than for his own peace of mind. However, a cold stone of dread lodged in his chest when he opened the door and found it empty. The bed had been made neatly and for all intents and purposes there was no trace of Buffy at all. A frown marred his brow as he spotted the small piece of paper, discarded on the edge of the coverlet.

As if he was wading through tar, he lifted the note between trembling fingers and huffed out a breath, trying to focus his worried eyes on the scrawled words.

Spike,

I’m not really sure what to say but I guess I want to thank you for everything. You saved me but now I’m doing a favor for you and I’m letting you live your life. Don’t try to look for me, please. I hope everything works out for you and tell Tara thanks for everything too.

Goodbye,

Buffy


Spike read and re-read the coldly written note several times, not quite able to digest what he was seeing. Buffy was gone? Why the hell would she skip out on him? Maybe it was all a mistake and she was still here someplace. She had to be. He felt the familiar tentacles of hysteria take a hold of him, zipping around him like burning ice.

Swallowing heavily he walked out and made his way to the bathroom to check if this was some twisted joke and she was actually in there. He chuckled to himself at the thought of her being such a little prankster. He was already wedging himself firmly in the denial camp because the alternative was so unthinkable. But the bathroom door was wide open and the room was empty.

The ice in his chest expanded, painfully contorting his heart.

“Bloody hell!” he hissed. “Where is she?”

He padded to the kitchen, his legs feeling as if they were weighted with lead. Tara was still in the room, filling pans with bread dough. Her head shot up when he entered and she immediately looked at him with concern when she saw the worry shining through his eyes.

“What’s wrong, honey?” she asked, still wary of his temper after their last conversation.

Wordlessly he handed Buffy’s note to Tara and the blonde woman read it with equal distress.

“She must have gone out of the front door but I didn’t see her. I don’t understand why she would run away unless…unless she heard what you said.”

“God, no!” he sighed. “She wasn’t supposed to hear that. Bloody buggery!” Spike’s face was so twisted in heartache that Tara could barely recognize the sweet man she knew. He looked as if he was about to have a conniption at any moment. “Why the hell couldn’t I just keep my fat gob shut?”

“If you were too sensible then you wouldn’t be you Will,” Tara said, only half kidding. “Anyway, we’re just wasting time. You have to find her, William.” Tara sighed exhaustedly. “If she’s running around Henderson then there’s no telling what can happen if one of the Rayne spies sees her.”

“She doesn’t even know that my Da kept some of his people around these parts. She thinks she’s bloody safe, daft bint. But that’s my fault isn’t it? I should have warned her that we’re not even safe here. But instead I’ve been too busy being a nancy boy and…” He broke off, unable to utter another word without having it accompanied by a side of tears.

Instead he took his anger out on the wall, launching a heavy fist at the plaster. A tiny shower of dust rained down on him as he made a sizable dent in it. His chest was heaving, his eyes wild and staring, and his insides were all torn up. Buffy was out there alone and God only knew what was happening to her. Never before had he felt so horribly helpless.

“Go look for her, Will,” Tara said commandingly. “She can’t have been gone for long and she doesn’t know it around here so she surely can’t get too far.”

“She doesn’t want to be found. I already told you she’s a resourceful little bint. If she wants to disappear then she will.”

“And when have you ever let that stop you? You’re resourceful too when you want to be, sweetie,” said Tara, a half smirk forming on her mouth. “So tell me, when have you ever let what you wanted get away from you?”

“Never,” he replied. “And I won’t start now.”

Slipping on his jacket, he marched out of the house, determined that he’d find the girl.

He wouldn’t stop until she was in his arms once again.

++++++++++


How many places were there for a young slip of a thing to hide in a city that she didn’t even know her way around?

Apparently the answer to that question was: ‘too many.’

Having spent all day searching for the blonde, Spike was still coming up with nothing. He’d even trawled through the local stores, the cemeteries, even the banks to look for her, but she was still elusive.

He was about to head back to Tara’s when he spotted one last cemetery that he hadn’t checked on the other side of the street. He parked his car, jumped out, and hurried over to it. The light was already dimming as he wandered through the creepy wasteland, but his eyes searched only for one precious little jewel.

A plethora of questions skipped through his brain as he traversed the rows upon rows of stones. What if Ethan’s men had somehow already gotten a hold of her? What if they were already torturing her right now? What if he did find her and she told him to go to hell? What if he never found her?

He was pulled from his pessimistic internal rant by what sounded like sobbing. Tiny girlish sobs reached his ears and he followed them like the holiest trail of breadcrumbs. They lead him to an old crypt that looked at if it had recently been opened. The door wasn’t fully closed and Spike peered through the gap into the darkness, hoping his eyes would adjust. After several moments the blond decided just to take his chances and he marched inside.

After only a few feet his body collided with a smaller one and the tiny figure bounced off him and was sent sprawling to the floor as Spike’s larger frame rammed into her. It didn’t matter that she was glaring at him as if he was the Son of Satan himself, which he very well might have been, because he’d found her. He’d found Buffy.

Rubbing her ass as she climbed to her feet, the tiny teen sent him a look of annoyance, while simultaneously wiping away the remnants of her tears. As soon as the recognition fully registered with her, her pretty features twisted into a nasty scowl. She pushed past him, striding out into the open air of the cemetery and gulping in several lung fulls of oxygen. “What the hell is wrong with you?” she asked sharply. “I told you not to come after me, not that I thought you would, but I guess this is one of those miracle-y days. Didn’t you read my note?”

In spite of her short tone and ugly glower, he’d never been as happy in his life as he was in that moment. However, that didn’t temper his fury. “Oh I read it, kitten,” he said with anger seeping from his words. “What I want to know is what the bloody hell you were thinking? Did you think I’d just let you run off from me? Did you?”

His hands closed around her upper arms, shaking her stiffly. She struggled in his grip but he had no intention of letting her go. He knew now that in spite of his fears about loving her, the idea of losing her was exponentially worse. He’d been an idiot but he was prepared to vault over the barrier of terror and show her just how much she meant to him.

“So tell me now, love. Tell me why the hell you decided to skip out on me!”

Buffy felt her eyes tear up as she remembered his cruel words that had caused her to flee. She didn’t kid herself into thinking that Spike did anything other than tolerate her but she hadn’t suspected that he was so eager to be rid of her. Her heart ached at the thought.

Since he rescued her from the brothel, Buffy had started thawing toward the younger Rayne. He seemed…nicer somehow, like he was an actual person rather than just his father’s son. And then she’d recognized her new emotions for him as love. Somewhere deep down she’d hoped that maybe he would return that love.

Apparently it had all been an illusion. He didn’t give a damn about her. Her very first instincts about him seemed to be right. The only thing she couldn’t understand was why he’d come after her. Maybe he didn’t want to lose his chattel while he thought it could still be useful to him.

“I wouldn’t want to take up too much of your oh so precious time in making with the ‘splainy, Spike,” she said coldly, refusing to look at him. “You should go back to Tara’s and just let me go. I’m just doing what you wanted, don’t you know that?”

The blond frowned. He wished with all of his heart that he could go back to the time when things between him and Buffy had been progressing very nicely.

She’d seemed more receptive to him day by day but this behavior was a step back to the way she’d been when they first met. He’d opened his supersized mouth and destroyed everything they’d built all in one fell swoop.

He knew now from the look on her face that she had very good reason to be acting like hostile toward him. His longtime friend had been correct. She had heard what he’d said to Tara. The guilt in his veins trebled.

“Buffy love…”

“Don’t ‘Buffy’ me, William. You don’t want me in your life, so I’ll be gone soon,” she spit bitterly.

“So you did hear…” His eyes sought hers just for definite confirmation, even though he would have loved to remain in denial.

“Yes! I heard you! You’re such a fucking asshole. You know, I thought maybe you weren’t a Rayne in nature, that you escaped being as much as a bastard as your dad was. But I was so wrong. Call me dumbo-girl because I fell for it and now I know…I know what you are, what you did. And I don’t want you to ever come near me again!”

“Don’t bloody say that! I’m sorry! I didn’t mean it. Just let me explain love.”

“Don’t ever call me love!” she shrieked, all sense of reason melting from her mind, leaving her only with pure, undiluted hurt and pain.

Unable to control the unfamiliar feelings that were welling up inside of her, Buffy flew at him with wild eyes, scratching and clawing at him. She was feral, only her primal fury driving her forward. Even as tiny as she was, the girl was able to draw blood more than once, aggravating his gunshot injury. Spike did his best to restrain her but her unadulterated anger gave her the edge.

As her legs came up around his waist causing him to lose his balance, they tumbled to the ground together. For a single second, Buffy’s attack faltered as the pain dazed her when she clattered to the floor and Spike took the opportunity to roll her over, pinning her arms to the grassy ground. She was still spitting fire but his superior strength kept her restrained as he stretched his body on top of her.

Staring down into her face, all he could see was twisted anger, but when he looked deeper he saw her hurt shining through. He was coming to the horrible realization that he’d really screwed the pooch and maybe there was no way back from this. His natural defenses had come up and he’d spoken words he didn’t even believe, hurting the girl in the process. Guilt and regret flooded him, taking over his senses, but he was impotent to do anything about it.

“I need you to listen to me, pet,” he hissed through clenched teeth at the struggling young woman. “I know you’re pissed off at me right now and I don’t bloody blame you. I acted like a right git. But please just let me explain. Just give me one bloody chance and if you don’t like it then you can walk out of here and never look back.”

Buffy turned her head to the side, suddenly deflating as the fight seemed to leave her all at once. “Sure, while you’re busy doing that, maybe you can explain why is it that every year this day just totally sucks.” Buffy said bitterly, refusing to look in his direction.

“What day? What are you bloody well talking about?” His hands remained on her wrists but his grip softened. However, she didn’t try to wiggle out from underneath him.

“My birthday,” she sighed. “Today’s just another happy Buffy-birthday.”

A stunned and regretful Spike gazed down at her, his mouth gaping open in shock. Wasn’t this just wonderful? Not only had he destroyed the girl that he’d fallen in love with but he’d managed to do it on her birthday.

“Good job, mate!” he reprimanded himself. “I really am sorry, Buffy. I didn’t mean what you heard. They were nothing more than pretty little lies from the mouth of a lost soul.”

“Yeah? So why did you say it?” she scoffed, refusing to look at him, even though she remained underneath him. “Practicing one hundred and one ways to be a total dick?”

“Dunno.” He sighed and sat up releasing her. His eyes moved from her prone body to the expanse of headstones before him and he stared vacantly at the barren landscape. “Sometimes my gob runs away with me and I talk bollocks that I don’t mean. I’ve always had a bit of a case of foot in mouth disease, pet and you just witnessed a flare up. I truly don’t think any of what I said, love, I was just being a first-class wanker.”

In spite of her residual anger, Buffy giggled. She felt a little of the hurt she’d felt ebb away. However, some of the pain still lingered. “Do you really see me as a burden? Am I just someone you got stuck with and you can’t get rid of?”

“You’re the bloody opposite of that, Buffy. You’ve come to mean so much to me since I met you and it was too much. I got scared and when I’m afraid of something it apparently turns me into the world’s biggest arsehole.”

Buffy nodded. She could understand what it was like to be scared of feelings. Although she couldn’t deny that the idea of Spike having feelings for her was a little weird. She’d been going through the same thing over her newly awakened feelings for Spike.

However much fear she possessed, she had no doubt that Spike was even more firmly rooted in the conflicting emotion. Even though she was young she wasn’t an idiot and she was aware of some of the things must have gone through during his life with his sadistic father. It was little wonder that he was terrified to let himself feel.

Breaking into her thoughts, Spike cleared his throat. “Why didn’t you tell me it’s your birthday?”

“When? Before or after you ranted about wanting me to be all disappear-y girl?”

“Buffy, please. I’m sorry about that.”

“Yeah you’re sorry but that doesn’t change that it happened. I should have expected it though. My birthday is totally cursed.”

“Is that why you didn’t mention it?”

Buffy shrugged. “I didn’t think it was important. I usually spend my birthday watching my dad drinking himself into a coma on the couch.” She sighed. “It’s weird to think I’m never actually gonna see that again.”

“Do you miss him?” inquired Spike tenderly, wanting to touch her but finding himself unworthy.

“I guess I should be all ‘hell no.’” Buffy worried her lower lip with her front teeth. “I mean, he was a waster and an alcoholic, he got us into the worst debt, and he basically sold me to a psychopath. But he was my dad and he was all I had left. So yeah, I guess I do miss him.”

“He deserved an arse kicking for what he did to you. A precious girl like you shouldn’t have been forced to be around rubbish like us.”

“Us?”

“The Raynes. I know we’re scum, pet. I don’t deny it. You were right when you said I was nothing more than the blood that flows through my veins. I try to change but all I end up bloody doing is hurting you anyway. God, I wish I could take back those words I said about you. I didn’t mean it, love.”

Buffy turned sharply to the apologetic man. He sounded as if he might cry and the sincerity of it tugged at her heartstrings. In many ways he was like an uncut diamond, rough and unpolished on the outside but at his center there was something worth holding on to. She realized that he might make mistakes but he was human and he wasn’t afraid to show his humanity to her, making himself vulnerable.

“I know, Spike,” she sighed.

“Think you’ll ever be able to accept my apology?”

“I’ll forgive you eventually,” she said hesitantly, knowing that she almost certainly would forgive him. His reaction proved that his cruel speech had forced just as much pain on him as it had on her.

Silence stretched between them for several seconds but Spike was already getting impatient. “Feel any better yet?”

Buffy snorted out a peal of wry laughter. “It still hurts but pain takes time to go away, right?” she commented insightfully.

“It depends. Sometimes the pain never goes away.” The blond paused for a moment, inhaling heavily as he gathered his courage to speak. “It still hurts when I think about her and she died when I was ten.”

Spike’s words came out of nowhere as an apparent non sequitur and Buffy frowned. He sniffed and swiped at his eyes. Crying in front of Buffy was seemingly becoming a regular occurrence for him.

“Who died?”

“My Mum,” he said with cool detachment. Buffy’s eyes widened at his admittance. He’d gotten so mad about that topic on the only occasion that she ever mentioned it that she never expected him to volunteer information about the woman who birthed him. “My Da had a lot of other women. He never hid that even back then. I suppose he wanted to show me how he thought a man should act, spreading his seed and all that.”

“Wow, he really was an asshole,” Buffy commented, receiving a nod from Spike.

“He flaunted all his bloody tarty little floozies right in front of everyone. My mum, she fell into a depression because of the way he treated her and it got worse and worse. And then one day she took out the shiny blades of silver and she ended it. I found her lying in the bath and the water was red. Deep…deep red. I didn’t understand what was happening at first but then I knew and I tried to help her but I couldn’t do anything. I couldn’t save her. I bloody tried but there was so much blood and I didn’t know what to do. I can still see her blood on my hands.”

Almost instantly Buffy understood what he was trying to do with his confession. He was proving that the cruel words he had said about her to Tara weren’t really true by trusting her with his deepest, most painful secret. If he wanted her gone from his life, then he would never entrust her with something so agonizingly intimate. He knew that no apology would fully negate the hurt, but proving that he trusted her would serve as a salve.

But his confession had done more than just that. It had struck a reverberating chord deep inside of her. It tugged at her heart in a way he could never have expected because she had lived through something very similar. Her own mother had departed from the world, leaving her in the care of a man who was anything but caring. Although Hank Summers was never an all out sadist like Ethan Rayne, he never paid his daughter any attention unless it was advantageous to him.

However, even though he was trying to open his heart to her to help regain her trust, he was also pouring out the pent up pain that he’d stored there for so long, bleeding his own festering sores. She could easily see the hurt and guilt written all over his face as he grimaced at the traumatic memory.

“Spike, you shouldn’t have had to go through that. You didn’t deserve it.” Buffy stroked a hand over his shoulder, noticing how he quivered under her tender ministrations.

“Didn’t deserve it? How can you think that? It was because of me that she died,” he whispered. “So you see, I always hurt the ones I love, pet. Not just you.”

“Because of huh? It wasn’t your fault…”

“Yeah, it really bloody was,” he disagreed, unshed tears roughening his voice. “I killed her. It was my fault.”

“No!”

“Da told me that I drove her to it. He said she wouldn’t have done it if I’d been a better kid, smarter, better behaved, less of a wimp. I did it, Summers. I killed my own mother!”

Moving like lightening she was at his side, her arms slipping around him. “It wasn’t your fault,” she repeated sternly, wanting it to soak into his brain. “Your father was a sick psychopath that gets off on torturing people including his own son! Don’t you see how gross and disgusting that man was? It makes me wanna bring him back from the grave and make him very dead all over again.”

“It doesn’t matter,” Spike shrugged. “I’ve had a long time to learn to deal with it and even if the pain never goes away, I know how to cope. Or I thought I did. But then I find I’m falling in love with something precious and innocent and all I do is crush it to pieces because I’m so terrified of losing it. Terrified of losing you.”

“Of losing me?” Buffy moved backward, not realizing that Spike mourned the loss of her warm touch on him.

“Don’t you get it, Summers? Don’t you see?” He shook his head, wearily. “I said that stuff out of fear because I’m in love with you. And the git that I am tried to deny it and fudge it but…I’m hopelessly, helplessly yours now. So do with me what you will. Kiss me or kill me, love. Just do it fast and don’t drag it out. At least if it’s quick maybe it won’t hurt so bad.”

Shock ran through her tremulously. Until only a few moments ago she’d been convinced that Spike didn’t want her, not even on the periphery of his life, and now he was declaring to her that she was the center of his world…that he was in love with her. There was no guile in his gaze or words and she knew right then that he was confessing the truth.

Spike raised his eyes to meet Buffy’s and saw the tears running freely down her face. At that moment he was helpless to stop himself from dissolving into tears of his own again.

The blonde teenager moved cautiously closer to him and took him into her arms. Her inner voice that wanted to protect her heart was screaming at her to back away but her feminine instincts overrode her survival instincts.

For a moment he stiffened at her touch, but within seconds he melted into her embrace, winding himself around her. They clung to each other, each crying out their own pain.

Spike’s breath warmed her neck as it came out in little pants, his lips just inches away from her neck. She shifted in his hold, his lips touching her skin, tasting the faint salt that lingered on the tan skin.

“I want you, Buffy. I want to make you mine,” he told her, lifting his head and gazing into her big, green eyes. “Just tell me that there’s a chance that you’ll want me too. Maybe not now, but someday.”

Sighing, Buffy clung to him even more tightly, her fingers tracing a soft path over the planes of his sharp cheekbones. “Spike, I don’t want you someday.” He stiffened in her embrace, trying to pull away, but she forced him to look at her. “Someday is just too long to wait. I want you right now.”
But Never Doubt I Love by Starlight_Slayer
Author's Notes:
Warning: Sexual situations
Buffy’s declaration took several moments to process for Spike. Staring into her beautiful eyes, holding her tightly to his chest, and hearing her declare that she wanted him too was a sensory overload for the blond. Happiness wasn’t something he was used to facing so it fazed him a little.

“You mean it?” he asked, his voice dropping an octave as arousal started to simmer in his veins.

“Yeah, maybe I’m an idiot but God help me, I want you!”

“Never wanted anyone as much as I want you, kitten.”

Her eyes fluttered shut when a calloused thumb coasted down her cheek, coming to rest on her bottom lip. And then the thumb was gone, replaced by his own soft lips.

Buffy tensed in shock as she felt him tentatively suck her bottom lip into his mouth, biting down gently on it with his straight, white teeth. She groaned blissfully at the action and that tiny little moan of pleasure spurred him on even more.

As the kiss deepened his tongue sought entrance to her warm, moist mouth, demanding and yet yielding at the same time. As he savored Buffy’s heavenly taste again and reveled in the feeling of his body against hers, he felt his blood rushing in a southerly direction and it wasn’t long before his cock was bulging in his pants.

After taking a few moments to adjust to the initial delight of feeling his lips against hers, Buffy was returning the kiss with equal fervor, nipping at his own bottom lip as playfully as he had done to her.

Need and want brought his hands up to fist in her hair, dragging her even closer and the teenager was compelled to crawl into his lap. Even that didn’t seem to be enough…there was no such thing as being close enough in their rife passion. The two blonds wished they could crawl into each other and become one entity.

Not releasing his hands from her hair Spike’s wandering lips coasted down the perfect curve of her chin, down to her neck, tasting the creamy skin. He sucked it into his mouth, marking her as his. The feelings were so delicious that all Buffy could do was writhe in his arms. She wanted to reciprocate and make him feel just as incredible as she did.

Buffy wasn’t so naïve as to be unaware of what men liked, even though she’d never carnally pleasured one before, but she didn’t want to be a disappointment. Her sexual experience limited except for what she’d had to endure at Faith’s sadistic hands but she knew that Spike’s touch would wash away those memories.

Sensing that his girl’s thoughts were starting to drift away, Spike determined to bring her back to the present and one of his large hands floated down to the curve of her breast, palming it and rolling it in his touch.

“Like that?” he whispered, licking a trail up to her ear. His teeth nibbled on her lobe, drawing it into his mouth and sucking on it like he planned to suck on her other little nubs later.

“Oh God, Spike!” Buffy exclaimed. “Never felt like this.” He wasn’t even touching her most intimate areas yet and the blonde was already teetering on the brink of a climax.

As caught up in his lover as he was, Spike was painfully aware that they were in a cemetery and that it was fast approaching night but he didn’t care. There was a twisted righteousness about consummating their bond in a place like that. After everything they’d been through this couple was far from conventional, and neither was this situation.

His hands ghosted over her ribcage, which was much too prominent for Spike’s liking, down to her hipbones and then even farther toward the pleather covered apex of her thighs. His thumb pressed on her clit through the fabric, gently massaging it. Her ecstatic shriek was muffled by his shoulder as she bit down on the sinewy ridge of flesh, pulling a smile from Spike.

“It’s gonna feel even better when we’re just skin to skin, pet,” he whispered in her ear, his breath hot and shallow as he struggled to remember how to form words through the translucent lust that was clouding his vision.

“Feels…good…now,” Buffy panted, grinding her center against his questing hand.

“Not good enough yet, love,” he sighed, tearing open the zipper of her pants to allow him to get access to the jewel that was hidden beneath.

The blond wiggled his fingers down her mound, sighing in pleasure when he touched her hot slit for the first time. It was as if he was being scorched by the rampant sexual heat that was pouring from the young woman. Buffy gasped loudly at the first contact. It wasn’t as if she hadn’t been touched there before, having been violated by Faith’s fingers, but this was the polar opposite to that. This was pure, white hot pleasure as his thumb slid over her wet little pearl.

However, as his finger started to slide inside her cunt, a small barrier stopped him and immediately he yanked his hand away as if he’d been burned. Wide blue eyes stared at Buffy for confirmation of what he’d just felt but her downcast eyes told him he was correct.

“Why didn’t you tell me?” he asked, searching her eyes.

Buffy blushed knowing exactly what he was referring to. She should have realized he’d know straight away. Even Faith had known and Buffy was willing to bet that this man in front of her had more experience with vaginas than the whore who tortured her. “What was I supposed to say, Spike? ‘Let’s have hot, kinky sex but oh by the way, I’m actually a virgin?’”

“Well…yeah. Although I’m liking the idea of hot and kinky.” Spike grinned but Buffy didn’t return the smile. She merely frowned worriedly. He took her hand and gently kissed the back of the delicate appendage. “Being a virgin doesn’t make me think any less of you, love.”

“Right, because you don’t love experienced girls. I know you were with Faith and some of Gwen’s other girls, and from what I’ve heard your ex-girlfriend pretty much defined experienced.”

A dark look flittered over his face but he shook off the inevitable depression that always struck at any reference to Drusilla. Somehow being with Buffy made it a little easier anyway.

“I’m not gonna deny that I’ve been with a few bloody women who’ve shagged their own fair share of men. And a lot of other women’s fair shares too. But you’re different.”

“Different isn’t always good,” she muttered.

He smiled at her, stroking the side of her face with tenderness. “And sometimes different is the best there is. You’re sweet and innocent and way too good for a bloke like me. But I’m not one of the good guys, love. And I want you. I’m not strong enough or selfless enough to give up this chance to be with you. But I want you to want me too.”

From under hooded lashes, she gazed up at him. Her entire being was swallowed whole by those infinite blue pools. “I do want you. God, I shouldn’t but I do, Spike. I want you.”

He studied her face and saw nothing but undisguised desire and need there. He lowered his face to her, letting his lips caress her pouty mouth tenderly. She moaned at the contact and wrapped her arms around his neck, pressing up against him. She was so delicious.

Tender fingers reached down to caress the juncture of her thighs with extra care. As his fingertips danced over her velvety folds this time he knew what to expect and hell if he wasn’t going to make this the best time of her life. Today she’d turned eighteen but he was going to make a woman out of her.

Her juices continued to pool on his fingertips as he glided his hand over her sweet pussy and an involuntary shiver wracked through him, anticipating her flavor. God, he’d wanted to taste her for so long and now he finally had the chance.

Kissing his way down her body, he soon came face to face with her now bare mound. “Can I taste you here?” he whispered, an imploring note creeping into his voice.

“I-I want you to,” she stammered, more out of arousal than fear. He was short circuiting all of her senses, including her ability to speak.

Spike lowered his head, breathing in the sweet aroma of her scent before he peeled off her pants to reveal the hidden treasure beneath. The blond’s eyes lit up with passion as he claimed his first glimpse of her ripe, juicy pussy. A small thatch of light brown curls partially concealed her pouty outer lips and gleaming labia.

His fingers parted her lips to reveal her tiny pink hole and a little clit that was straining for attention. With practiced skill, he leaned down and swiped the flat of his tongue over the whole of her exposed pussy flesh, humming in pleasure as her flavor hit his tongue.

“Fuck, but you taste like bloody heaven,” he complimented her, dipping down for another taste.

“Oh my God!” she hissed, her eyes rolling back in utter ecstasy. “Fuck! Oh!”

He laved and sucked at her labia several times until she was wriggling beneath him and then turned his attentions to her needy clit. His lips pursed around the little nub, drawing it into his mouth and grazing it with his teeth.

Spike’s expert ministrations quickly brought her to an earth-shattering orgasm, his name spilling from her lips like a prayer as her juices coated his mouth and chin.

Grinning like the man who literally got the cream, he surged up her body, fastening his wet lips to hers. Buffy’s own taste didn’t even repulse her as she thought it might when she tasted her juices on his lips and tongue.

“That was…wow!” she told him, unable to truly find words to describe just how good it was.

“Can’t deny that, pet. You taste like the nectar of the gods.”

“Really?” she inquired shyly. “I always thought guys didn’t like doing…that.”

“Any guy that doesn’t like tasting his woman is a bloody daft buffoon. I could feast on you until the end of the world and it wouldn’t be nearly long enough.”

Buffy blushed under the barrage of compliments, turning her head away.

“I want to give you something,” she told him, when he guided her face back to his. “I want to feel you inside of me.”

If Spike was shocked by her uncharacteristic forthrightness, he didn’t show it. “Being here with you is just enough for me.”

“You…d-don’t you…want me like…that?” Her teenage insecurities shone through and Spike internally cursed himself for being such a fool.

“Of course I do. I just mean if you’re not ready…”

“I am!” she told him firmly and decisively. “I’m ready and I want my first time to be with you.”

Spike didn’t need to be asked twice. A childish bliss rose up in him as he realized he was about to fulfill his dreams with the woman he was in love with. She was perfection to him, even in her imperfections and as he gazed down at her hopeful face he knew that he’d found his home.

Momentarily he realized that they should use some form of protection, doubting that Buffy was on birth control and he moved to reach for his wallet to retrieve the condom that he kept there. However, Buffy’s nimble fingers pulled down his zipper and her hot little hand closed around his turgid dick forcing all rational thought flying right out of his head.

Her tiny fist roughly pumped the length of his penis steadily, and Spike closed his own larger hand around hers stilling her actions. She glanced up at him in confusion and he smiled.

“Keep on doing that and you’re gonna find a pretty mess right on those sweet little titties. Don’t want this to be over so fast, love. Want to savor my time inside you.”

“Need you now,” she pouted, bracing her hands on his shoulders and she tried to pull him closer.

Sensing her eager need, he positioned himself at her entrance. “This will hurt for a moment, lamb,” he warned her. “I’ll try to make it as painless as possible but every woman goes through it, okay?”

Buffy nodded. “I’m glad it’s you, Spike,” she smiled. He was helpless to do anything other than return her smile affectionately.

Wanting to ease the impending pain for her, one of his hands began to knead her breast gently, concentrating on the fabric covered nipples. If they’d been someplace more private he would have gotten her fully naked but he wanted to maintain some shred of modesty just in case anyone happened to wander by. As it was, he hoped that his long leather duster would shield their modesty if necessary.

While one hand concentrated on her pretty little bosoms, the other was poised over her clit, rubbing it gently to help bring the lust to the boil in her veins. It was only seconds before his ploy worked and Buffy found herself lost in her ecstasy again. Taking advantage of her distraction he plunged into her, ripping through the tiny membrane of skin and finally marking her as a woman.

“Argh!” Buffy cried, her shriek of pain partially swallowed by Spike’s lips as he crushed them to hers. He lifted his head and licked away the salty tears that flowed from her eyes. “It was kind of an owie.”

“The owie won’t last for long,” he assured her, tempted to move but wanting to allow her to adjust to the feeling of his dick inside of her. “Soon it’s going to feel like heaven. Being inside you is heaven for me, sweet, lovely Buffy. You feel like silk and velvet and roses and love.”

“You feel…so big,” Buffy whispered, her poetic abilities pretty much nonexistent currently. “I think the pain’s sorta gone.”

“Yeah? Ready for me to move?”

Buffy nodded hesitantly, relishing just the feeling of being so intimately joined with the man she loved. Although she hadn’t been forthright with her feelings yet, every touch, every caress radiated her feelings for him. She was weaving a spell around him and he was powerful to do anything other than let it carry him away.

Languidly, Spike started to pump in and out of her channel, angling his thrusts so he could hit the right spots deep inside of her. Lifting himself to his knees, he pulled her thighs up to achieve deeper penetration. His hands pushed her arms up over her head, pinning them into place. This little show of dominance only made her hotter for him.

“Never had anything close to this in my whole bloody life,” he panted. “Your sweet, pretty cunny swallowing me whole. Wants more of ole Spike, doesn’t it? You love the way I feel inside you, pet?”

“God, yes, Spike! More, please more!”

He plunged as deep as he could go, speeding up his rhythm and pounding into her. Although he was still mindful of the fact that until now she’d been a virgin, the blonde seemed eager to take everything he had to give and more.

Releasing her arms, one of his hands sneaked between them to return to her clit, twisting at the tiny little pearl, sending pangs of ecstasy wracking through her already trembling frame. He pinched at it one last time and she tumbled over the edge, colors flashing behind her closed eyelids as white hot bliss flowed through her.

“Oh my God! Oh God! Spike! Spike! Argh!” she screamed, uncaring about being heard as she reached the pinnacle of heavenly rapture. Her hands grazed furrows over the leather covering his back as she panted and screamed.

Feeling her inner muscles rhythmically contracting around his throbbing cock sent Spike over the edge too and he spurted his heavy load into the depths of her spasming pussy.

“Bloody fuck Buffy!” he yelled as he emptied his full balls into her. “God, I love you so much! My beautiful Buffy.”

Finally spent, the sweaty pair collapsed onto each other with smiles plastered on their faces. The air was thick with the sound of their heavy breaths as they struggled to regain their senses in the wake of their orgasmic experience.

“Happy birthday, kitten,” Spike grinned, finally able to talk again, giving her a chaste kiss on the top of her head.

“Mmm, thank you. I think this is the best Buffy-birthday so far.”

“Should bloody well hope so!” Spike shrugged out of his coat and pulled it over their half clothed bodies.

She turned to him, losing herself in the darkened blue of his eyes. “Why do I feel safe when I’m with you?” Buffy wondered aloud, burrowing into him.

“You probably shouldn’t,” he replied sadly. “I’ve done a lot of bad things in my life. Not to mention, I have a knack for turning things to shit.”

“You saved me though.”

“You’ve done the same, pet. So I’m forgiven, huh?”

Buffy’s mind took a moment to remember what he was talking about and the fight came rushing back. But a smile quickly spread over her face as she thought about the ensuing lovemaking. “Mmm, and then some.”

He pulled her closer to him, sighing into her hair at the way she seemed to fit perfectly against him, like the missing piece of the puzzle. Buffy relaxed into his embrace, her mind filled with cotton-candy happiness.

They lay entwined in each others’ arms, underneath the stars and basking in the afterglow of their lovemaking. For the first time, the future wasn’t something to be feared or dreaded, but something to be anticipated with glee.

All that mattered was that they had each other, and no one could take that away from them.

++++++++++


Faith preened herself happily in the mirror in her bedroom. She knew that she looked wonderful, as always, and flashed herself a complimentary smile. Clad in a blood red dress that skimmed the top of her thighs while clinging to her curves and with dark waves of hair framing her face she couldn’t help but think she was stunningly beautiful. She just hoped her client would agree.

Tottering on her high-spiked heels she left the room and made her way down the hall, pausing to push up her ample bosoms before she entered the room where her client was waiting.

Pursing her lips in the way she knew he liked and sticking out her chest enticingly Faith opened the door and strutted in. Posing with hands on her hips, she beamed at the man sitting with his legs crossed on the leather couch. His eyes gleamed with anticipation.

“Hello Faith,” her client said with a dark smile twisting his mouth.

“Hello, Ethan.”
One of Which is Verbal by Starlight_Slayer
Author's Notes:
I added the previous chapter earlier today, so if you haven't read that one yet, please read before reading this one. :) This chapter contains some scenes of sexual violence.
“Hello, Ethan.”

Faith shimmied into the room, giving him her best sultry seductress look. She flipped her long wavy hair behind her shoulders and slipped into his lap. Her long legs straddled his hips as she faced him, letting his hands come to rest on her waist. She gifted the older man with a saucy wink, intentionally allowing her lacy red panties to peek out from below the hemline of her dress.

“So what gives me the pleasure of your company?” Faith asked, her hands caressing his lithe muscles. “It’s been so long since I’ve seen you. I missed you.”

“I’ve been busy this week almost getting brained by a vapid little bitch,” he told her curtly, frustration coloring his tone.

“I heard about that. Who knew little B had it in her?” She lowered her face to his neck but he pushed her away and stood up, sending her crashing to the ground. The brunette scowled at him but held her tongue.

“Talking about those two makes my cock soft, you stupid bitch,” he growled, cupping the flaccid bulge through the thin material of his dress pants.

The brunette sighed and stood up, brushing herself down. “Maybe we can see if we can’t get Little Ethan standing to attention then.”

However, Ethan was barely even paying attention to her. He was fingering a ropey gash on the side of his head that was starting to heal. “See this?” he asked Faith and she nodded. “This is what that little bitch did to me. Of course, I’m more than ready to do even worse to her now. Payback is an even bigger bitch than she is.”

“Whoa, that’s some cut, Mr. R,” Faith said with a frown. “Little B did that?”

Ethan nodded resentfully. “The stupid cunt got the jump on me. Luckily it’s nothing serious, mostly just superficial damage, lots of bleeding, and probably a nasty scar. Never mind, I shall wear it as a battle wound.”

“Sucks. So what happened to them?”

“The little buggers scarpered. I’ve had all my best men out the whole bloody week looking for my bastard of a son and that little whore he ran away with. But they were too damn thick to fly under the radar for long. I have them trapped like flies in honey.”

“So you’re not gonna let them get the jump on you again, huh?”

“Of course it won’t happen again. Both she and my traitorous son are both as good as dead now that I know their whereabouts. They thought they could run away but I’m always going to be that little bit smarter than they are. Punishment time is coming.”

“I guess you won’t make it quick either,” Faith added with a sly smile.

“That I won’t,” he agreed. “I plan to make both of them suffer for what they’ve done. I didn’t raise my boy as a Judas. He’ll pay and so will the little tart.”

The brunette bounced on her heels like a little girl. She loved the thought of that perfect little princess suffering at Ethan’s sadistic hands. “So where are they?”

Ethan frowned for a moment, wondering if he was revealing too much to Faith. However, it didn’t really matter because he felt that she was barely even a person so telling her was no different to talking to a toilet seat in his opinion.

“They’re in Nevada!” he exclaimed. “Of all the places to go! That stupid boy should know just how many connections I have there. He’s always been a fool but apparently that little bit of fluff with him is an even bigger twit. One of my men saw her out for a wander on her own this morning. He’s getting a full lock on where she’s staying and then…bang…it was I who killed Cock Robin.”

“So, you gonna go get them?”

“Indeed I am. They’re just outside Henderson and I’m heading out there in a few days. My, it will be a beautiful river of blood down which his life flows away. I wonder how he’ll react when he sees me violating his little tart’s loose cunt. Will he play the white knight again?”

The gangster chuckled sinisterly as he relished the thought of tearing apart the teenage blonde while his son watched. He wasn’t a stupid man, and he was well aware that his son had probably developed feelings for the girl. That was his William, always a foolish sap.

Seemingly entranced with his own plan, Ethan continued to reveal all the nasty little things he planned to do to the ‘traitors.” Faith listened intently for a while but she soon became bored. Her job was to fuck not to endure his ramblings once they quit making sense.

“Come on, Ethan, let me make you forget about them,” Faith cooed cupping his burgeoning erection in his warm hands. “I can erase their names from your head.”

Anger bloomed in Ethan’s chest at her interruption. “You think a dirty whore like you has that kind of power?” he scoffed. “You’re just three holes for fucking, bitch.”

With powerful speed, he flipped her onto her stomach and thrust her face down into the mattress. He kept one hand on her back as he used his other hand to spread her cheeks. Without preparing her he plunged his dick into her dry asshole. Her blood served as the only lube between them.

Faith cried out in pain, but didn’t tell him to stop. He was just showing her that she was what she had always considered herself…a whore. She was used to that kind of treatment. In fact she was so used to it that a part of her had come to crave it. However, Ethan’s next move shocked her.

An iron-fist clamped around the soft tissue of her throat, painfully choking the breath out of her. Faith hissed and wheezed as Ethan’s thumbs pressed relentlessly into her windpipe. She gurgled horrifically bucking in his grip, trying to free herself but unable to. She felt the struggle draining out of her as he continued to squeeze, sure that she was about to die.

And then suddenly she was lying sprawled on the ground, a throbbing pain enveloping her throat and neck. Her anxious hands flew up to the tender area and Faith spun around unsteadily, scowling at Ethan’s amused face.

“What the hell was that?” she cried accusingly, climbing tremulously to her feet. Her voice was husky and strained after Ethan’s attack and her eyes were shooting fire at him.

“Just showing you what happens to trash like you when you misbehave,” he replied nonchalantly, as if he hadn’t just come close to murdering her.

“You almost killed me!”

“Almost…yes, I suppose I did. This time it would be ‘almost’, Faithy. Next time it will be…well you know what it’ll be.”

“There won’t be a fuckin’ next time, you asshole!” she shrieked. The usually composed girl was bordering on hysterical as it finally sank in. She’d dangled over the precipice of eternity and she could easily have plunged to the bottom of that canyon.

Faith’s screaming, in spite of her abused throat, grew so loud that it alerted Gwendolyn to the fact that there was a problem and the older woman came rushing into the room. Gwen glanced from Ethan to the sobbing girl curled up on the ground. “Whatever is going on here?” she asked. “Faith?”

Faith let out another sob and raised sorrowful brown eyes to her madam. “Why don’t you ask him? Maybe he’ll tell you why he just tried to kill me!”

“What is she talking about?” Gwendolyn inquired, seemingly bored already.

“I got a little rough with the whore,” Ethan sighed nonchalantly. “She seems to have forgotten her place. Perhaps that Summers girl was more of a bad influence on her that we realized.”

Gwen nodded thoughtfully. “Yes, come to think of it, she hasn’t been the same since her dealings with that little slut.”

Faith growled in frustration at the fact that they were discussing her as if she wasn’t even in the room. “I am here, you know? And he did try to kill me! I almost died.”

The older woman chuckled heartily. “Don’t be silly, child,” Gwendolyn said matter-of-factly. “Ethan can’t kill a thing.”

“W-what?” stammered the brunette. For the first time in a long time she’d been truly rendered speechless.

“You’re nothing more than his property, Faith,” Gwen clarified. “He owns you and if he were to decide to dispose of you then…well that’s his prerogative. It would be a little troublesome to replace you, I suppose, but I’m sure we would find a suitable replacement.”

Faith blinked incredulously at the woman she’d believed loved her. For all this time she’d trusted the older woman and yet she didn’t even care about her.

“You’re siding with him? He tried to murder me, Gwen!”

Gwen sighed in annoyance. “You’ve always been a little slow. I’ll explain it again to you. You don’t matter to anyone. It is solely Mr. Rayne’s privilege if he prefers to be rid of you in a particular way, you should know that. And if he chooses to terminate your employment in a very permanent way then…so be it.”

“I-I thought you cared about me,” Faith said sadly to Gwen, eliciting a chuckle from both of the Brits. The older woman looked particularly amused at the assertion.

“Yes, well you know what thought did, don’t you?”

“He followed a much cart and thought it was a wedding!” Ethan interjected, caught up in the perverse humor of Faith’s utter humiliation. Gwen sent him a fond glance.

Distraughtly, Faith begged the older woman with her eyes. She wanted this to just be a horrible nightmare that she’d wake up from any minute now. “No! No way, Gwen, you’re like a mom to me.”

“Silly, naïve child,” scoffed Gwendolyn. “You have a purpose here and you serve me well but if you imagine I entertain any deeper feelings for you other than as an amusing and very pretty little doll then you’re mistaken.”

“But you always treated me like you cared.”

“I always treat my German shepherd like I care too but he’s just a dog when all’s said and done. He’s a worthless animal so you two share many things in common,” Gwen laughed. The sound was not a happy one. “Let’s face it, Faith. Even your own mother couldn’t stand you and yet you expect me to…what? Love you? Oh dear!” Gwen said coldly, turning her back on her younger charge and shifting her attention to Ethan.

“I can’t believe this,” mumbled Faith, feeling as if her world was crumbling beneath her feet.

Gwen’s betrayal cut deep and the pain was far worse than even Ethan’s physical abuse. She wanted to fall at the feet of her surrogate mother and beg her to tell her that it was all a horrible misunderstanding but from the grimly amused set of Gwendolyn’s face, that seemed unlikely. In any case, her pride wouldn’t let her and she was determined to maintain the barest shred of dignity.

“You may leave now,” Gwen said dismissively without looking at the injured girl.

Faith allowed herself one last look at the woman she’d loved and trusted before bolting from the room. It wasn’t until she reached her own bedroom that she allowed herself the release of tears. As she wept her pain her shaky hands came up to massage the damaged skin around her throat where Ethan had almost barbarically murdered her. For the first time she truly understood why Spike and Buffy wanted revenge on these people.

And there was another first too. This was also the first time that she felt a twinge of guilt for her treatment of Buffy. She actually wondered if she would ever get the chance to offer an apology to the blonde.

Then it struck her.

There was something she could do for the two blonds that would surpass any kind of apology.

With a sly smile, she took a deep breath and picked a side.
Breathe Life into a Rock by Starlight_Slayer
Author's Notes:
Sexual situations and naked Spike in this chapter. ;)
After their first time together, Buffy and Spike couldn’t get enough of each other. It was like they’d finally found something worth clinging on to in this cruel world.

They spent several days splitting their time between making love, sleeping and eating. In fact, many of their meals were taken from the skin of the other’s body. Despite their predicament with Ethan’s men, neither of them had ever felt so totally carefree before.

When they were together it was like the outside world just melted away.

Spike had been a little shocked at just how much of a sexual being Buffy was turning out to be. She seemed to relish each new thing that he taught her, and take to it like a fish to water. The little firecracker was brimming with passion and he knew that there were still even deeper hidden depths to her. He just couldn’t wait to explore them.

Tara learned not to bother them when the door to the bedroom they were now sharing was shut. Unfortunately for her, she’d learned that particular lesson the hard way. The older blonde would never ever look at Peanut Butter Cups in the same way again after what she witnessed.

As Buffy and Spike lay carefree in bed that Saturday afternoon, the both of them felt more contented than ever before. Glowing with affection and coated with a sheen of perspiration from their workout, the pair both tried to get their breath back.

“Bloody hell, Slayer, you nearly killed me that time,” Spike remarked breathlessly, spooning some chocolate ice cream into his mouth. He didn’t think he’d ever expended so much energy before.

“Are you seriously gonna keep on calling me ‘Slayer’?” giggled Buffy, rolling her eyes at him.

“You know you love it. Bet it makes you feel all powerful, eh?”

“Hmm, not really. Wanna know what makes me feel powerful?”

Without waiting for an answer, Buffy reached over and grabbed his recently softened dick, grinning when it started to harden under her touch almost immediately. She pumped her tiny fist up and down the organ until she’d teased it to full turgidity, while Spike’s head flopped back down to the pillow, his eyes rolling up in his head.

Before it crashed to the ground, Spike set the bowl of ice cream on the nightstand and he melted into the mattress, letting himself be the young blonde’s plaything.

Lowering her mouth to lick the head of his yummy-looking cock, another smile touched her lips. “See, this makes me feel powerful,” she whispered. “Having you in my hands, mine to play with.”

“Bloody hell, you really are a little vixen these days!” exclaimed Spike. This wasn’t the first time Buffy had given him a blow job in their short time together, but it was the first that she’d taken the lead.

He was putty in her hands.

And he loved it.

“You want me to suck you?” she asked, peppering kisses over the head of his penis.

“God, yes!”

Complying, Buffy welcomed his length into her mouth, swirling her tongue around the head as she swallowed him into her throat. Suppressing her natural gag reflex as much as she could, she pushed him deeper, glancing up to see her lover fisting the sheets and panting like a woman in labor.

Her small hands enveloped his balls and massaged them gently, milking his pleasure from him. And the pleasure was definitely intense. Spike could hardly believe how lucky he was, as bliss from Buffy’s ministrations zinged through him. She was far from an expert at the act, but her touch inflamed him so thoroughly that it didn’t matter.

“God, love, I’m gonna bloody come!” he ground out, his jaw tightening.

Buffy choked out a muffled encouragement that sounded something like: ‘so come!’

And he did.

Buckets of semen seemed to course down her throat, filling her before finally dribbling out over her lips. Her tongue darted out to catch the spillage, but Spike didn’t seem to mind that some still lingered on her lips when he yanked her to him, kissing the life out of her. His own tangy juices hit his tongue but as it was laced with Buffy’s underlying taste, he couldn’t get enough.

Finally they broke away from each other, their bodies mourning the temporary loss of each other’s warmth.

“Never met anyone like you before, pet,” he told her, reaching to the nightstand for his half melted bowl of ice cream. The teenager had wrung every ounce of energy out of him, and he needed to replenish it.

However, apparently Buffy wasn’t done playing. Grabbing the bowl from him, she dribbled the ice cream over the length of his chest, giggling as it pooled over his toned abs.

“Mmm, you look even yummier when you’re a la mode.”

“What? You saying I’m not a nummy treat all the time, Goldilocks?”

He reached out for her, yanking her to him. Mindless of the ice cream that was smearing all over her upper body, she fastened her lips to his, demandingly kissing him.

“Bloody hell, you know how to snog a bloke into oblivion!” Spike exclaimed when Buffy finally drew back panting for breath.

“I know how to do other things too,” she drawled, looking like a wanton little vixen. “Didn’t I just demonstrate that? Hmm?”

Unfortunately the picture was spoiled when her tummy grumbled angrily. Her hands clapped over the offending organ in embarrassment and she blushed but Spike just smiled affectionately.

“Hungry, pet?”

“Kinda.”

“Can’t convince you to eat me again, huh? What I’ve got might stop you feeling peckish.”

“Pig!” Buffy giggled, poking him in the ribs with an elbow. “Actually I’m really craving a peanut butter and jelly sandwich right now.”

“Is this my cue to get my arse out of bed and make you a sarnie?”

“Nah, it’s cool. I can do it,” she sighed exaggeratedly, laughing when Spike pulled her down to kiss her breathless one more time.

“Don’t forget about me, love,” he begged her playfully.

“As if I could!” She disentangled herself from him and pulled on her pants and an oversized sweater. “Be right back, okay?”

Blowing him one more seductive kiss, she wiggled out of the room, leaving a happy man waiting impatiently for her.

“I’m gonna marry that girl someday,” he whispered to himself.

Padding into the kitchen with a broad smile on her face, Buffy greeted Tara warmly. Her hostess was taking some pies out of the oven and greeted Buffy with a warm grin.

“Afternoon, Buffy,” she said, humor tinting her voice.

“How’s it going, Tara?” Buffy took a deep breath, savoring the mouthwatering scent of the sweet pastries.

“I’m just fine but it’s been a while since I last saw you or William. Everything okay?” Her eyes sparkled with humor.

“Uh, yeah we’ve been…umm…”

“Otherwise occupied?”

“Yeah,” Buffy nodded chewing on a lip.

She turned to the cupboard to find the bread, peanut butter and jelly, purposefully avoiding Tara’s eyes. There were few things more embarrassing than having to make polite conversation with the woman who’d spent the past week listening to the gold medal performance in the Sex Olympics.

Well at least you’re wearing clothes today,” Tara said. “And that’s new for you.”

Buffy choked and blushed deeply, averting her eyes from the other woman’s amused gaze. Apparently as innocent as Tara looked on the outside, she was a minx on the inside and the gleam in her eyes proved that she wasn’t intending to let Buffy off easy.

“Thought I’d try something new,” she quipped, wishing they could change the subject. “I figured when I’m wandering around the house, clothes are of the good.”

“Don’t worry, honey, I know what the first flush of love is like. I was young once too.”

“Well I haven’t actually told him that I…uh…that I…” Buffy lowered her voice. “I love him.”

“But you do.” It wasn’t a question.

“Yeah, I really do. He’s just…there are not really any words to describe Spike.”

Tara chortled fondly. “He really is an enigma, isn’t it? But he’s a good man, Buffy. His heart has been bruised so many times and I know you won’t intentionally hurt him but…”

“Is this the part where you threaten to beat me to death with a shovel if I break his heart?”

“No,” Tara smiled. “I wouldn’t use a shovel to beat you to death. I’d use my bare hands.”

They shared a smile, both united by their different kinds of love for Spike, but also by a feminine bond of their own. Rolling her shoulders Buffy returned to making her sandwich and Tara went about organizing her pies.

“Damn it!” swore Tara suddenly, irritation flittering over her face.

“What’s wrong?” Buffy asked, sucking some jelly from her fingers as she closed the jar.

“Oh, I promised Mr. Grady I’d take a pecan pie over to him and I completely forgot, but I don’t have time now. I have to go see Mrs. Lewis to help her with her housework.”

Buffy smiled. Tara was like a blonde Mother Theresa and she’d never met anyone so innately kind and giving before.

“Well, maybe I can take it,” Buffy offered, suddenly feeling inspired to do some good by Tara’s selflessness.

“Really? You don’t mind?”

“No, it’s cool. I can get a ride from Spike. He’ll be okay with it.”

“If he’s not, I’m sure you have your ways of persuading him,” Tara laughed.

“Tara! I am shocked and umm…”

“Yeah, yeah, save it sister,” giggled the older blonde, sounding years younger than her actual age. “I get the soundtrack every night. And trust me, I’ve learned more about William than I ever wanted to know.”

Feeling that she might melt from embarrassment, Buffy cleared her throat, swiftly changing the subject. “Okay, so where’s Mr. Grady at?”

“He doesn’t live too far away. I’ll write it down for you,” Tara offered, pulling a small scrap of paper out of her purse and scribbling down his address on it. “There you go.”

“Thanks.” Buffy stuffed the paper in her pocket. In the time she’d been in town she’d gotten to know the area a little and she was sure that she’d be able to direct Spike there.

Having taken a shopping trip to the local mall a few days earlier with Spike to buy herself some clothes that didn’t make her look like she should be cruising the Red Light District for Johns, the eighteen year old quickly became aware that Spike was always reluctant to admit when he didn’t know where he was going, so she was usurping him as navigator.

Bidding Tara goodbye, Buffy made her way back into the bedroom to fetch Spike, munching on the sandwich as she walked. The girl was so hungry that she devoured the whole thing in only a few bites. Spike really was giving her the workouts of her life.

When she entered the bedroom Buffy felt an unbidden smile leap to her lip as she spied Spike’s sleeping form. The poor boy must have been too worn out to keep his eyes open. He looked so innocent and untroubled in sleep that she wished he could always have that peace of mind.

Sighing, she decided not to wake him up. Taking a look at the address that Tara gave to her, she realized that Mr. Grady only lived a few blocks away so she could walk over there and be back in less than twenty minutes. Nodding her head decisively she quietly grabbed her coat from the bedroom and the pie from the counter and headed out into the bright, sunny afternoon.

Buffy smiled as the sunlight hit her face. Life was starting to look better and better from her vantage point. Although she was still running from Ethan’s goons, she’d found a man who she could trust and maybe even love.

Things had changed with Spike so quickly but in the short time she’d known him she’d seen him become a better person. Or maybe she just brought out the good person that lurked beneath his bad-boy shell. It hit her psyche like a freight train that she needed to confess her love to him. Remnants of fear still remained in her heart but Spike had proved that she could put her faith into him.

In that moment she resolved to confess her love for him as soon as she got back to the house.

Whistling absently she ambled down the dusty streets, unable to keep the happy grin from turning up her lips.

And then everything fell apart.

An unyielding arm banded around her waist and a hand clamped over her mouth. She tried to scream but the hand was too tight. The pie tumbled from her grasp crashing to the asphalt.

She felt hot, fetid breath on the shell of her ear as a voice whispered to her, “Now now, Miss Summers. Let’s not make a fuss.”

Oh God! That voice! It was impossible! It couldn’t be but there was no way she could possibly mistake it.

As she gasped for breath and her heart constricted in fear, sinister laughter tickled her ears. Laughter coming from someone who was supposed to be dead.

Ethan.
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