Brighter than Sunshine by facingthesun

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Chapter Notes: If you were reading a WIP of mine, have no fear, I'm not dead! I had some problems in the writer's block department. I never stopped writing though and here's a little project that I've been working on. Enjoy.

Oh, and I almost forgot, I owe nothing. I disclaim it all. ;)
Part I

Spike turned off his car, and instead of leaving the driver’s seat, he yawned. His head fell back and with his eyes closed, he patted down his pockets in search of a cigarette.

“Why do I even bother?” he mumbled, remembering that a particular blonde girl had pinched both his cigarettes and lighter days ago in an attempt to help him overcome the nasty habit.

“I love you,” she had said, her green eyes glittering with affection. “And I’m telling you this because I care about you. You stink, William. Your teeth are going to turn yellow and your lungs are already turning black as we speak. It’s so gross and you need to quit. Can’t you at least try? For me?”

That afternoon he allowed Buffy to raid his belongings and he quit cold turkey. He suffered from withdrawals because Buffy Summers asked him to—because he loved her—and because no matter how addictive nicotine was, nothing was comparable to his cravings for her.

“Spike?” At the sound of knuckles tapping glass, he opened his eyes to find a very sleepy Buffy staring at him through the window. “Hey,” she continued with an embarrassed smile. “I'm so sorry, but I kinda overslept.”

“Oh, that's alright.” He stepped from his car and his jaw dropped slightly, seeing that Buffy was wearing nothing but one of his old t-shirts as a nightie.

“No, it's not alright. I'll hurry. I'll get dressed so fast—we'll be on the road in fifteen minutes, I swear.”

“Buffy, it should be fine. I'll just pack the trunk with your bags while you get ready.”

“Are you sure? I still want to have time for breakfast.”

“Hey, I promised you pancakes, and you're going to get them no matter what, even if we have to get them to-go and you scarf them while I speed down the highway.”

A soft smile crept across her face and Spike witnessed some of her anxiety melt away. “You' d let me eat something messy and syrupy in your precious car? I'm touched, Will.”

“Yeah, well…” He trailed off and was pleasantly surprised once Buffy wrapped her arms around him. Spike closed his eyes and hugged her tight, determined to savor the intimate moment shared between them. Quiet minutes slipped away as they clung to each other in the middle of the Summers' driveway while the rest of Sunnydale slept on the early Sunday morning.

“Thank you for doing this, Spike. Thank you so much.”

“It's my pleasure.”

“I know you hate getting up early, but taking the bus to camp would've killed me.”

“It's nothing, really…”

“It's something to me.” She kissed his cheek and let out an exaggerated sigh. “I guess I should get moving…”

“You're right. Just don't worry about the time; I'll get you there with minutes to spare.”

“To be perfectly honest, that's what I'm afraid of. I don't want to go.”

“Oh, love, I know, but maybe it won't be so bad. Maybe you'll enjoy yourself and have a blast.”

“Maybe, but it seems very unlikely. I'll be the oldest person there thanks to my dad. I won’t know anyone—God, I'll be the camp loser, I can feel it.”

“Or you could pick yourself up some minions, boss them around, and become the queen of camp. Has that possibility ever crossed your mind? It could happen, you know.”

“Do you really think so?”

“I’d even place a bet on it,” Spike said, shoving his hands into the pockets of his jeans once they broke apart.

“Spike, I really should go…”

“We wouldn’t want to keep your pancakes waiting, would we?”

“My bags, I have them stacked by the front door. Some of them are really heavy, I should help you--.”

“Go, Buffy. Run along, I’ll be fine.”


“The more you stall, love--.”

“Okay! I’m going! I’m going!”

Spike grinned, watching as Buffy scurried up the driveway. He yawned once more before following in her footsteps.

“God, there’s a lot of food here. William, you have to share with me.”

“Oh, I’d rather not. Thank you, but no thank you, pet.”

“But why? Are you afraid of my cooties or something?”

“No, you know that. I’m just a little squeamish of all that chocolate and whipped cream. If you wanted dessert, Buffy, we could’ve gone directly to the ice cream parlor.”

“Hey,” she chuckled, sliding an extra fork in Spike’s direction. “If you know of one that’s open twenty-four hours, just lead the way. I could always take some non-fat watermelon sorbet, especially in the summer.”

“Please share this with me,” she continued. “Please? I’d hate to waste it. You’ll love it, I promise. Chocolate chip pancakes are the best breakfast foods on the planet.”

“If I get a stomachache…”

“I’m sorry, but I’ll be forced to laugh at you. I’ll make fun of you and call you a big fat wuss.”

“What if I refuse to eat them period?”

“I’ll make fun of you and call you a big fat wuss, but I’ll also be very disappointed.”

“Oh, heaven forbid.” Spike grimaced playfully before shoving a big bite of pancake past his lips. “So, are you happy now?”

“Well…yeah. Of course.”

“With that pause, your words aren’t very convincing…”

“I’m happy that you’re helping me eat all this food, okay? But in general, I’m not feeling too great.”

“Would you like to talk about it?”

“Not really,” she replied with a faint smile.

“I have syrup on my face, don’t I?”

“That’s what happens when you bite off more than you can chew. Let me get that for you.”

“You enjoy this too much, cleaning me up like a bloody child…”

Her smile grew as she licked her thumb and wiped the corner of his mouth. “There, you’re all better now.”

“Well, it’s a good thing I don’t mind your cooties, because that could’ve been disgusting.” He wrinkled his nose and re-cleaned his mouth and chin with a napkin. “Have you, eh, heard from Angel this morning? Maybe speaking with him would cheer you up?”

“Oh, let’s not talk about Angel.”

“Why? Is something wrong?”

“No—well, it’s nothing new,” she shrugged. “It’s nothing that I haven’t been crying about for weeks. I’m going to summer camp, even though I just graduated from high school. My dad pulled tons of strings to get me enrolled, even though my eighteenth birthday’s on Tuesday. And in the middle of all this, my boyfriend decides to go to Las Vegas without me. See? It’s just the same old crap.”

“God, love, I wish there were something that I could do.”

“You’ve already done more than enough. You’re giving me a ride, a yummy breakfast, and—hey, you’re still planning to drive up for my birthday, right?”

“Nothing could keep me away, and if your boyfriend had a brain in his head, he’d be doing everything in his power to do the same exact thing.”

“William, I can’t expect Angel to be like you, it wouldn’t be fair. I love you, but the way you act sometimes…God, you’re just too good to be true! And it’s not just the way you act. You’re handsome, funny, charming—you’re a total hottie and so close to perfect that it’s freaking annoying!”

“Ah…wow.” Spike covered his mouth with his fist and coughed before he swallowed another mouthful of food. “Are you trying to make me go red in the face here? I’m flattered, but--.”

“I don’t mean to dump a ton of compliments on you. I’ve just been thinking about you a lot.”

“You have?” Spike asked, his brow lifting with interest. “How so?”

“You’re such a great guy. Why aren’t you moving on? We haven’t been dating for two months now; maybe it’s time you found somebody--.”

“It’s been only a month and a half, forty-six days tomorrow.”

“You’re keeping track of the days?”

“I don’t need to find somebody,” he grumbled, intentionally ignoring her question. “I’ve got somebody, thank you.”

“You do? What’s her name?”

“God, Buffy, what do you think her name is? We’ve been over this before; I won’t be getting over you anytime soon. Just because you’ve moved on, you can’t expect me to be able to do the same so easily.”

“I don’t want to fight over this--.”

“Then why’d you bring it up?”

“Because I want to see you happy. Because I want you to pine over a girl who can freely pine for you back. I want you to have a girlfriend--.”

“I don’t need a fucking girlfriend.”

“Okay, then will you settle for a girl who’s somewhat friendly that you can, you know--.”

“Finish that sentence, Summers, and you’ll be walking to your bloody summer camp.”

“Okay, alright, I guess that was a bad joke. But I didn’t just move on, William. You meant so much to me—you still do. God, you were my first. I loved you first, dated you first, kissed you first…”

“You were my first too,” he mumbled, his eyes downcast.

“But I wasn’t your last. When you cheated on me, you broke my heart.”

He blinked, startled but not shocked by her words. When he glanced at her again, he saw drops of tears gathering in her eyes. “It was a mistake. Dru kissed me first…”

“Yeah, well,” she laughed bitterly. “You could’ve pushed her away. You could’ve told me that she was hitting on you and I would’ve kicked her ass.”

“I tried to, but—damn it, you wouldn’t go to the party with me. You were spending so much time with Angel--.”

“We were friends! We studied together, we—I told you that I’d be late for that stupid party. But when I got there, I was right on time, wasn’t I? I showed up just in time to see you and Drusilla all over each other.”

“You waited only a week before hooking up with Angel…barely a week--.”

“Well—God, I had to do something! I had to—I couldn’t just sit around like you! I couldn’t mope and be pathetic, I had to--.”

“I’m pathetic? I’m pathetic for wanting you back? For not going out and finding some random rebound fuck?”

“Wait a minute, Angel is not--.”

“You know what, just don’t. I’m done here. I’ll pay, finish your pancakes or don’t, I don’t care. I’ll be waiting in the car.”

It was a painfully quiet and painfully long ride to the summer camp. Not a word was spoken and not once did their eyes meet. Spike glued his eyes on the approaching road and Buffy kept her entire body turned away from him as she sulked in the passenger’s seat of the DeSoto.

“I’ll help you with your bags,” he mumbled, once he parked the car. “Should I wait here until you find out where you’re staying?”

“I’m sure it’ll be on a dirty floor somewhere.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“My dad didn’t enroll me completely. He got me in the door, but that’s it. Last that I checked, the camp was full, out of beds, and only a few classes were available for me to squeeze into, so==.”

“Buffy, do you want me to wait here or not?”

“William, I really don’t care.”

He listened to the door slam and watched her stomp angrily across the parking lot to what looked like a main building.

After ten minutes of waiting, Spike cursed under his breath. He locked his car and headed out to find Buffy.

“Welcome to Mountain View Summer Camp. My name is Riley Finn, how can I help you?”

“I’m looking for a girl. She walked in here not too long ago. Her name’s Buffy--.”

“Buffy Summers?”

“The one and only. Can you point me in the direction where you saw her last?”

“Sure, I just took her to her room. Are you a relative? A boyfriend maybe?”

“No, I’m her friend.”

“And your name is…”


“Is that your real name?”



“I’d like to see Buffy, and now if you don’t mind.”

“I don’t mind at all.” Riley’s smile never sagged as he emerged from behind the front desk. Once he stood, the other man towered a head above Spike. “You probably know about Buffy’s problem with registration…”

“Did you find some extra room? Where are you keeping her?”

“With the staff. It’s a shame that she’ll be isolated from the other campers at night, but on the brighter side she’ll have some privacy.”

“And what about her classes and whatnot? Can you get her into the ones that she wants?”

“Well,” Riley began as he led Spike through the lobby. “I printed her off a list of all the open sessions. She can pick and choose from there. All she has to do is give me a list of what she wants before lunch. Are you staying for lunch?”

“I’m not sure.”

“You should stick around. There’ll be free food, fun, and entertainment. You can even take a tour of the camp if you’d care to. We like to use this first day as a kind of meet-and-greet for campers, counselors, family members, and our other guests.”

“Riley, if we’re getting close, you can just tell me where to find her. I bet you don’t want to leave the desk unattended for long.”

“Are you sure? I’d hate for you to get lost or turned around.”

“If all fails, I can give Buffy a ring on her cell.”

“Okay. Go through the double doors and outside to a wooded area. To your left will be the cabins, but to your right will be the staff quarters. Once you reach that building, she’ll be easy to find. Just make another right. And if you or Buffy need anything--.

“We know where to find you, thanks.”


“Hey,” Spike said, knocking on the open door.

“Come in.”

He took in the tiny room and token pieces of furniture before sitting next to Buffy on the twin bed. “What are you looking at?”

“My schedule. It sucks big time.”

“That Riley guy up front said you had a list to choose from.”

“It’s a list of thirteen. Want to guess how many classes I need? Twelve.”

“It sounds like they aim to keep you busy…”

“Not really. Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays are different from Tuesdays and Thursdays. The weekends are kept open for—let’s see,” Buffy said, squinting at the paper. “Camp enrichment activities.”

“Oh, now that sounds terrifying.”

“Just wait until you see this.” She tossed the schedule in his general direction before collapsing on the bed with a whine. “Damn, this bedspread is scratchy…”

“The, eh, art workshops don’t look so bad,” he mumbled, reading off the page.

“I’m not artistic.”

“The pre-college classes might be helpful…”

“I’ve graduated, William. My brain’s on hiatus until August.”

“So I’m guessing you aren’t excited about Creative Writing and, um Expressing Yourself Through Poetry?”

“What kind of summer camp is this?! Shouldn’t we be making trail mix and stupid little crafts that we can take home to our mommies?!”

“Sorry, love, but it looks like those classes are full.”

“God! I hate my life!”

“At least you can take some outdoor actives. Swimming, softball, yoga… You like that, right?”

“Yeah, but right afterward I have Etiquette and Ballroom Dancing.”

“Ballroom Dancing?”

“Continue to snicker, Spike, and I will push you off this bed.”

“At least you don’t have a bunk bed, there’s a plus. You don’t have to share a room with any snot-nosed kids either. You can shut the door, and hey, you’ve got a closet all to yourself.”

“Bedspread’s still scratchy,” Buffy said with a frown. “The bed’s way too small.”

“Well, you are on the small side, I say it’s a perfect fit.”

“That reminds me, did you see on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays that I’m in the weight loss class? That should be a scream, it’ll teach me not to eat so many Twinkies and Ring-Dings. It’s all about self-control I hear.”

“Buffy, you’re terrible.”

“It’ll just get worse. I’ll get bitter, bitchy and snarky. I won’t make any friends, I’ll be lonely and—William, can’t we just make a run for it?”

“Your dad paid good money--.”

“I bet if we explained the situation to what’s-his-face, he’d give us a full refund.”

“And then, what? What would you want to do next? Go back home? What would your mother say?”

“We could…William, why didn’t I think of this earlier? We could go to Las Vegas!”


“I’ve never been there, have you?”

“No, but--.”

“It’s a great idea!” she exclaimed, sitting up to grab Spike’s arm. “We could drive there and surprise Angel!”

“And why would I want to surprise your boyfriend?”

“Because…well, it’d be fun! We’d stay in a nice hotel and do some shopping--.”

“All with your dad’s money? Your great idea is going to get us put behind bars.”

“Not necessarily. Don’t underestimate my skill at talking my way out of things--.”

“First, I’ll probably get accused of kidnapping. Then, what would you call what you plan on doing with the money? Just stealing, or something worse? How many years do you think we’d get?”

“I don’t think it’d be a big deal. My dad didn’t want to spend time with me in the first place, and that’s why I was shipped off to camp. He’s probably ecstatic at I’m finally turning eighteen. He won’t have to bother with me anymore.”

“You don’t know that--.”

“Don’t I? I could be here, or I could be having fun with my boyfriend and best friend, he wouldn’t care either way. It’s not like he’ll check up on me.”

“This could completely blow up in our faces. What-what if we waited until Tuesday? At least you’d be eighteen then.”

“William, please? Don’t make me stay here.” She crawled towards him on her knees and gave him her best flirtatious pout. “Please? I want to be with you.”

“I think I liked it better when we weren’t speaking. Pet, you’re being crazy.”

“Please?” she whispered before kissing the sides of his face. “Please? You’ll do it for me, won’t you?”

“I don’t know…”

“Please?” She slipped into his lap and kissed his face again and again with a mischievous gleam in her eye. “Don’t let me spend the summer without you. Don’t let me miss you, Spike.”

“You’re taking advantage of me.”

“Am I?”

To Spike’s surprise, she lightly brushed their lips together for the first time since their breakup. Stunned speechless, he blinked twice and forced his body to stay still as she wiggled against the sensitive mound in his jeans.

“I’d make it worth your while…”

“Bloody hell.” He squeezed his eyes shut as her kisses continued down his chin, throat and back up the curve of his neck. “You don’t have to do this,” he croaked. “You don’t have to play with me. I’ll drive you to Vegas; I’ll drive you to the end of the world. You don’t have to play with me.”

“I’m not playing with you, silly.”

“Buffy, are you insane? Can’t you see that you’re killing me?”

She pulled back and her smile vanished a minute later. Her eyes grew wide and she flew out of his lap and off the bed. “I-I’m so embarrassed,” she whispered, her hand over her mouth. “You must think I’m a slut.”

“I think you’re very unhappy. I think you’d do anything to leave this place.”

“William—no, no. I wouldn’t—God, don’t even think that way! I was just having fun. I was excited to think that we could go to Las Vegas together. I wouldn’t have you used that way, not for your car or Angel or anything, I swear.”

“Well, let’s not worry about it then.”

“Spike, don’t you believe me? I love you.”

“I know.”

“Oh, God, I’m such a bad person! No wonder you can’t move on! I tell you to find someone new, but then I lead you on--.”

“Buffy, that’s enough. It was a mistake. You didn’t realize what you were doing.”

“I’m sorry.”

“And I forgive you, pet.”

“William…” She tiptoed across the room while chewing her bottom lip. She ran her fingers along his skin as if to brush away any trace of her kisses. “I take it back. My idea was stupid. I’m just being a brat. I need to give camp a chance.”

“You don’t want to go now?”


“You want to stay here, take classes on etiquette, sleep in this bed with its scratchy blankets and--.”

“What are you trying to do? I said that I would stay--.”

“Yeah, and I’m getting ready to tell you that I’m taking you to Nevada.”


“I just don’t have any clothes, and could be a problem.”

“William, you don’t have to.”

“I want to.”

“Is this because I…”

“No. I’ll do anything for you, should’ve figured that out by now.”

“Oh, Spike, I want to hug you so much.”

“Do it then,” he said, standing and opening his arms. “Come on.”

“I am so sorry.”

“Hush,” he whispered, holding her close. “There’s nothing to forgive.”

“Was it your room? If it was your room, you can tell me.”

“It wasn’t my room. It was a very nice room.”

“Was it the selection of classes then? It was Pre-college Math that got you spooked, right? What if I replaced that with a study hall period?”

“I don’t think so, Riley.”

“You’re really set on leaving?”

“No offense, but I never really wanted to come here in the first place. I just graduated…”

“And it’s your first summer of freedom?”

“Yeah,” Buffy answered, giving Spike a quick glance as they stood in the lobby with Riley Finn.

“Well, I guess there’s a reason why kids stop coming to camp once they turn eighteen.”

“Thank you for all your help, Riley.”

“Yeah, mate, it wasn’t your fault,” Spike added.

Riley nodded and followed them to the front door. “I’m just glad you had the credit card that your tuition was paid with, with you, Buffy. Every penny’s been put back in the account.”

“Thank you.”

“Take care, guys.”


Spike and Buffy stepped out of the building and remained silent until they were both settled in the car.


“Yeah?” he replied while driving through the parking lot.

“I think we ruined Riley’s day.”

“His chin was quivering a bit, wasn’t it?”

“I think so,” Buffy laughed. “How cute was he? I’ve never seen a guy smile so much.”

“I’d say he wasn’t very cute at all.”

“I wanted so much to jump for joy the second we left that place, but I knew it’d break his little heart, so I held it back.”

“You can still do that, jump for joy, you know. Are you hungry, love?”

“I could eat a little something.”

“We could find a bite to eat. We could sit and plan out trip…”

“That sounds like a good idea,” Buffy smiled. “Let’s do that.”

To be continued...
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