Chapter 4

As the car pulled into the roadway leading up to the site chosen to host the wedding ritual, Buffy’s stomach started doing the flip thing. This was it; she was actually marrying Spike. William. Bloody, the. She’d already seen pictures of the area and the grove itself, but they didn’t do it justice. Willow and Amber had suggested the place as being suitable for the Pagan wedding as it had been held in veneration for millennia and was reputed to be a source of great power. Buffy wasn’t religious – she’d dealt with too many ‘gods’ to stick to a Christian belief system - but she had been in some form of heaven, she believed there was something. Spike had been raised in a strict Church of England household but of course a church ceremony was out of the question now. Buffy smiled to herself as she recalled the conversation they’d had when they’d been under Willow’s “Thy Will be Done” spell. Even then they’d struggled to settle on a suitable form of celebration.

Eventually, after much girly discussions, Willow had suggested The Rollright Stones, a site just north of Chipping Norton in Oxfordshire. It had a Neolithic stone circle that could almost have been created for weddings and handfastings, and as it was one of Amber’s favourite places and she was also a “Friend” of the Rollright Stones Trust, it seemed ideal. Buffy hadn’t known what to expect, but the photographs Amber had e-mailed her showed a lush green area with the three sets of stones separated by a short walk. It was a commercial venue in part, of course, there being a visitor centre and central car park, but still the place had managed to retain its otherworldly aspects. It sounded ideal.

Joyce pulled the SUV to a halt and engaged the parking brake. Turning to her, left she was overcome with a surge of maternal love and pride as she saw the look of awe on Buffy’s face. Her eldest daughter was…glowing; there was no other word for it. Cheeks flushed, eyes wide and moist, small smile tugging at the corners of her mouth. She looked adorable. Buffy turned in her seat to face her mom, the slight smile breaking out into a full-on beam. Unable to resist, Joyce reached across the gap and embraced her little girl in a crushing hug.

“Oh, Buffy. You’re getting married! My little girl.”

Tears were running down Joyce’s face now as she pressed a wet kiss on Buffy’s forehead, smoothing her hair back from her face.

“Shall we go see the Stones?”

Buffy nodded. Excited, she turned in her seat to face the three giggling females in the back of the car. Dawn lurched forwards between the seats to grab hold of her sister in a repeat of the mom-hug. There was a soundtrack of “aaaawww” from the Wiccas as they held hands in the back and soaked up the lurve in the car.

The women exited the car in a haze of oestrogen. It was a reaction programmed in every female at a genetic level; one sniff of a wedding, the double x chromosomes immediately formed a bridal party and got with the confetti. Amber lead the way to the stones, telling them a little of the history as they went. The area was steeped in mysticism and had been the site of many a pagan festival. Halloween was one night of the year when the area surrounding the stones was lit up with torches and the air filled with chanting. It was “All Hallow’s Eve”, the time when the barriers between this world and the world of the dead were broken down and communication was possible. It was only the fact that Amber was on the ‘inside’ that allowed the wedding party to book the venue on that date. Usually the site was reserved for the Friends of the Rollright Stones to celebrate their most important day of the year; this year they were going to incorporate the wedding into the festivities.

As the girls walked along the gravel path, they listened to Amber recounting tales of past celebrations. Once they rounded the corner and got their first glimpse of the Stones, they were stunned to silence. A green clearing bedecked with the remnants of summer meadow flowers surrounded the lichen-covered stones arrayed in a circle. Within the circle lay a chunk of stone that had toppled from the perpendicular and formed a natural altar. There was an aisle flanked on either side by sentinels of rock, age-old observers of human comings and goings.

It was, as Amber had suggested, perfect.

“…so I thought if we set up the altar with the green cloth, sprinkled with white rose petals and the candles either end. The willow wand…….hee, just got that reference……Willow……sorry, the willow wand would be laid out on the altar with the rings and the handfasting ribbons draped over the top. Did you read the reference page I sent, Buffy? Have you decided upon the colours of the candles and the ribbons?”

“I think so; I’m gonna read through again later then I’ll let you know. I wanted to see it first, then it would be real. I’m so excited!”

Buffy and the others walked around the Stones in silence, reaching out occasionally to stroke the mottled surface and commune with the spirits. It was a magical place, no doubt about it.

Satisfied that everything was going to be just perfect, Buffy suggested that they return to London and get on with the smutfest send-off.

“There’s gonna be smut, right?” she queried.

Willow grinned. “Oh yeah, baby! Smut ahoy – gird your loins…whatever that means.”

Giggling and excited they packed into the car and headed back to the city.


“So…the big night of wild debauchery you’ve got planned is just me, you and Tweedyman, sitting around contemplating life over a can of lager and a war film. Doesn’t exactly grab me, mate.”

“No, not a war film……. not just a war film. There’s a selection of films. All of the adult variety.”

“Well, there’d better be a ‘Debbie Does Dallas’ amongst that lot or I will bite you, Harris”

Xander snorted. “Yeah, right.”

Spike slumped his shoulders and sighed. “This bloody do-gooding gig’s a right pain in the arse! Just move it, might as well get it over with.”

Sliding into the passenger seat, Spike checked that the necro-tinted windows of the car were wound all the way up. At least he could thank Angel for that little gift; although absconding with the car without permission possibly wasn’t exactly the definition of gift. Still, to give Angel his due he hadn’t really tried to get the car back and hadn’t cursed too much when he’d caught up with Spike in Rome. Even so, the poncey git was not getting an invite to the wedding. There was only so far his soul was willing to go and that was way past his limit.

Xander shut the door and started the engine, pulling smoothly out of the parking garage and into the afternoon sunshine. He couldn’t help but cast an inquisitive glance towards his passenger as the car was bathed in sunlight. He’d never seen the vampire in daylight before and to be honest it was giving him a major wiggins.

“What the bloody hell is wrong with you, Xander? Watch the road, you idiot!”

“Sorry, sorry!” Xander replied as he swerved to avoid an oncoming vehicle. “It’s just…you’re so…pale!”

Spike merely settled back into the seat, putting his feet up on the dashboard. “Well, yeah…slight sun allergy here. What, you think I should get a fake tan before the wedding?”

At the thought of Spike standing in a tanning booth wearing nothing but paper knickers, both men cracked up, their laughter filling the car as it sped away towards Giles’ apartment.


Since the discussion the day before, Willow had been busy! Not only was there an “Ann Summers” representative coming round to ply her goods, but she’d organised a strip-o-gram to entertain the Summers women and the more ‘up for it’ members of the coven. Her small house was decked out in ribbons and balloons, and whilst pinning them up she’d had a momentary twinge as she’d remembered decorating Buffy’s house in Sunnydale for Xander and Anya’s impromptu engagement party. She cringed as she recalled the argument she’d had with Tara that night over her increasing use of magic. It still hurt, the loss of the first woman she’d loved.

As Amber crept up behind her and wrapped her within her arms, Willow leaned back into her embrace. “Memories?” she asked softly. Willow nodded. Amber placed a soft kiss on her cheek, reassuring Willow with her presence. Breaking out of her reverie, Willow turned and gathered her girlfriend in a crushing hug.

Buffy and Dawn came tumbling into the room, squealing as they spied the banners. “Willow! It’s great!” Buffy exclaimed as she bounded up and joined in the hug. Joyce came trailing behind, toting a bottle of schnapps in one hand and a shot glass in the other.

“So, what’s the plan, Miss Rosenburg? I heard mention of baby oil?”

“Mother!” Buffy gasped out.

Joyce chortled, having downed at least a third of the bottle already. “Oh, Buffy. It’s only a bit of fun, loosen up! Come on, have a drink.”

Accepting the proffered glass, Buffy drank it down following it with her patented ‘bleargh’ and shaking head. The girls collapsed into a fit of giggles as they watched her. “He was right! It’s hilarious!” Willow laughed. “Do it again!”

Buffy giggled along with them as she poured another glass. “Ok, but somebody needs to be on hand to fish my hair out of the toilet bowl later.”

Dawn made an ‘ew’ face. Grabbing a bag from off the side she approached her slightly unsteady sister. “You have to put these on, Buffy. It’s tradition.” Taking the bag from her, Buffy’s eyes widened as she looked inside. Pulling out a sash with “Learner” emblazoned across it she slipped it over her head and settled it on her chest. Next, she retrieved a garter complete with flashing lights that she snagged on over her jeans. Dipping in again, she came up with furry handcuffs, a whip and a tiara, which looked fairly harmless until you realised that the points on the tiara were little pink penises. Reaching across, Dawn flicked the switch on the side and the little penises started to glow and vibrate. Buffy set it on her head, a wide grin across her face.

“Okay, girls. Bring on the stripper!”

At that moment the doorbell went. Buffy turned white. “I was only joking, Willow. I don’t really want a stripper. Honestly. Spike would kill me!”

Willow gulped nervously. Oh well – too late to cancel now. “It’s just the coven, I’m sure. Amber, would you let them in?”

Amber scuttled off to get the other witches. The party was soon in full flow, music spilling throughout the room and little groups of women sitting giggling as they got to know each other better. Another ring at the doorbell, then Willow turned down the sound system as she ushered in a bubbly brunette laden down with bags.

“Ladies, for your delight and delectation, I’m pleased to present…Miss Conny Lingus and her Cornucopia of Deviant Devices!”

Squeals followed the announcement and the girls all settled down as the Ann Summers representative started laying out her wares. A dizzying array of battery-operated sex toys were passed amongst the giggling women, the laughter swelling as Dawn placed the finger and thumb vibrator on the floor so that it could jiggle its way towards Buffy. Soon ‘Conny’ had them all wearing nametags…but not their own names. Buffy had the dubious pleasure of being called ‘Wanking Wanda’ whilst her mother, to Buffy’s horror, went by the pseudonym ‘Cocksucking Clara’. Buffy’s cheeks had never been so red!

Games followed, including ‘pin the penis on the naked poster’, ‘match the penis to the naked man’ and ‘finish the limerick with an appropriate smutty ending’. After an hour of this, everybody in the room was limp with laughter and each woman’s vocabulary with regards to names for genitalia had trebled.

So loud was the noise that only Willow heard the doorbell ring a third time. She hurried to the door to greet the poor man who was going to throw himself on the mercy of the rampant women. As she took in his appearance, she stifled a giggle. She’d been very specific with her request to the agency and it appeared the poor man had done his best to give satisfaction. She smiled encouragingly, took his coat and led him to his doom.

At his nod, Willow pressed play on the CD player he’d handed to her and threw open the door. All eyes swivelled to take in the new distraction. As a raunchy beat started up, the strip-o-gram entered, lower face hidden by his cloak, à la Bela Lugosi. When the guitars kicked in, the dark cloak was flung back to reveal an evening suit in the style of every vampire film ever, except this time it was straining around 200 pounds of beefcake. He’d made an effort with pale make-up, slicked back hair and stage blood smearing his mouth and the plastic fangs overhanging his bottom lip. Wriggling suggestively, he dropped the cloak, adopted his best threatening pose, and launched into energetic grinding and thrusting. The shrieks nearly drowned out the music as the women rocked with laughter.

Then he headed towards Buffy. “I am Shagula the Impaler, Miss Learner,” he drawled. “All women tremble before my irresistible body.”

Buffy laughed hysterically. This was so lame! “Oooh, I’m scared of the big, bad vampire! Won’t somebody save me?” she spluttered.

She stopped giggling, though, when the faux vamp stepped in front of her and ripped open the rigged suit to reveal a stark naked body, save for his crimson leather posing pouch and Doc Marten boots. Posing again, the stripper stroked his hands down his body till they came to rest on his hips, pointing to his …package.

Buffy was horrified. Backing away, she found herself pressed against the wall as he sauntered closer, rolling his groin and shimmying his hips as he came closer. There was a chorus of ‘get em off’ in the best tradition of hen nights, then measured handclaps to punctuate the man’s gyrations.

As he reached Buffy, the stripper whipped out a bottle of baby oil stashed in the back of his thong and held it out to her. Buffy shook her head, eyes wide. “Uh-uh!” The roar from the women got louder, and emboldened by the audience, the stripper reached out to grab Buffy’s hand and rub it along his chest.

Buffy reacted instinctively. As he grabbed her hand, she brought her other one up and punched him – watching with horror as he sailed backwards to crumple in a heap on the floor. The mass indrawn breath emptied the room of noise, save for the persistent music coming from the CD player. Willow flicked it off as she looked from Buffy’s horrified face to the fallen stripper, out cold on the floor.

The silence stretched; then Dawn snorted, “Oh, man! That was so cool!”

They all collapsed in hysterics again, a combination of alcohol, adrenalin and shock fuelling their reaction. Only Willow and Buffy remained wide-eyed and immobile. As the man on the floor started to stir, Willow snapped into action. It wouldn’t do for him to wonder how the hell he’d been knocked out by such a petite blonde, so Willow cast a little memory spell, just so that he thought he’d done his usual routine and all was well.

“Oh, are you alright? You tripped on your cloak….here, let me help you up.” He accepted Willow’s offer, slightly bemused as his head cleared. Still, he’d done the job, everyone seemed happy. As soon as he’d got his money he’d be on his way to the next gig. Flashing the room a smile, he waved cheerily as the redhead saw him out and handed over the cash. As the door closed behind him, he heard the guffaws of laughter that always followed his appearances. He smiled to himself; if he could spread a little happiness…


“So…no ‘Debbie Does Dallas’, no ‘Basic Instinct’ in fact………no women-flesh of any kind?”

“Yeah, there’s ‘GI Jane’”

“Bloody hell, Xander – you do realise that you were only army guy for one day that Halloween. And yet despite that you seem have developed a fixation for war films and all things military.”

“What! It’s a hobby! Everybody needs a hobby, Spike.”

“Yeah, well. It’s just…this is my stag night, innit? I’m supposed to be ‘sowing my wild oats’ and having a final fling before closing the ball and chain over my ankle. As stag nights go, this is pretty lame, admit it.”

Giles cleared his throat. “Spike has a point, Xander. It’s hardly a rip-roaring festival of sexual innuendo, now is it?”

“He said no strippers! Made me promise, threatened me with Buffy. Ask him, if you don’t believe me.”

Giles poured them all another glass of scotch. They sat sipping their drinks in silence.

“Soooooo, who fancies a game of poker?” Xander and Giles nodded their agreement and the three men moved to the dining table.

Four hours and two bottles of scotch later, they were still at it, the CD player in the background playing mellow mood music.

“Still say it’s weird without the kittens………”



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