Author's Chapter Notes:
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
If I’m Not In Love

Chapter 1 – What Hurts the Most

Absentmindedly Buffy switched on her CD player knowing full well what disc was in her stereo. Bracing herself she sat on her windowsill looking out at nothing in particular.

I can take the rain on the roof of this empty house
That don’t bother me
I can take a few tears now and then and just let them out
I’m not afraid to cry every once in a while
Even though going on with you gone still upsets me
There are days every now and again I pretend I’m ok
But that’s not what gets me

Buffy couldn’t stand it any longer and slid to the floor in a heap crying her heart out. Climbing to her bed she picked up William, hers and Dawn’s snow white Persian. Looking into Williams’s blue cat eyes she snuggled him to her and gave way to the pain.

What hurts the most
Was being so close
And having so much to say
And watching you walk away
And never knowing
What could have been
And not seeing that loving you
Is what I was tryin’ to do

“No you don't but thanks for saying it”

These eight words tore her up inside. Buffy knew that she deserved them, but she always felt that they would have time. Time to be what they should have always been. She knew deep inside her even without his soul that he would have treated her better than any man had ever treated her.

Still, she knew what was in the past stayed in the past. She couldn't change it, though she really wanted to. But now…Now she wouldn't ever get the chance to tell him, to show him how much she loves him. He was gone and she couldn't do a thing about it…except join him.

It’s hard to deal with the pain of losing you everywhere I go
But I’m doin’ It
It’s hard to force that smile when I see our old friends and I’m alone
Still Harder
Getting up, getting dressed, livin’ with this regret
But I know if I could do it over
I would trade give away show the words that I saved in my heart
That I left unspoken

She just about lost her mind to her grief, and she held on to William as her tears drenched her face.

What hurts the most
Is being so close
And having so much to say
And watching you walk away
And never knowing
What could have been
And not seeing that loving you
Is what I was trying to do

Thinking back she knew even then that there was something that would change forever for her when she first saw Spike. He was a thorn in her side, the bad penny that just wouldn't leave. She secretly loved it when he came back into her life. He was a challenge and kept her strong. He kept telling her it was her friends and her family that willingly helped her to survive as long as she had but to her, she knew they would survive without her.

What hurts the most
Was being so close
And having so much to say
And watching you walk away
And never knowing
What could have been
And not seeing that loving you
Is what I was trying to do

Not seeing that loving you
That’s what I was trying to do

In her deepest part of her soul, she knew she couldn't survive without Spike. It was Spike who issued her a death threat that kept her living.

Then Glory came and changed everything.

Spike fell in love with her, and yes he went about it in the wrong sense of badness all around but this was not why she shut him out. She shut him out because she didn't want him to leave and when she finally tells him she loves him, he denies her.

He denied her and saved the world by sacrificing himself.

She hadn't stopped crying alone in her room, a room that really wasn't hers. For the past 146 days, all she would do was cry in the confines of her room. She didn't have any right to these tears but even in her heart; she knew he denied her, so she could live.

“Buffy?” Dawn muffled through the door knocking.

“What is it Dawnie?” keeping her voice as steady as she could.

“Can I come in?”

Of course she would always let Dawn in but at times like these, she really didn't want her baby sister seeing how hard losing Spike really was. Turning her stereo off she wiped her face and shook of the sadness and opened the door attempt a smile as best she could.

“What's the what Dawn?”

“Please Buffy you can't hide anything from me. I know you have been crying. Crying again and listening to Rascal Flatts continuously I might add”

Dawn wasn't about to let this slide. She wanted to know everything. She knew this was entirely about Spike, and she always wondered why. Raising her eyebrow she crossed her arms and sternly looked at Buffy. It was time to talk or face Dawn's wrath.

Buffy knew it was time to tell her baby sister. She couldn't tell her friends but her sister deserved to know. She led them to her bed. She pushed back the lock of hair that fell from Dawn's face when she scooped up William, and gently tucked it behind her ear and began…


Dawn ran her heart out. She really had to get to Giles and fast. They were running out of time. Tears fell down her cheeks remembering what Buffy said to her.

An hour earlier…

“Dawnie, I love you. You know that right?” At Dawn's tearful nod she sadly continued.

“What Xander told you wasn't completely correct. He SHOULD not have intervened and told you something you had no reason to know. I was wrong too. I never corrected him either, I’m so sorry for that. You know very well, Spike would never ever hurt you. He reacted to the pain I caused him Dawnie. I'm so sorry. P-Please forgive me”

Buffy was hysterically crying now. She finally told her baby sister what she pushed Spike to. She pushed him to desperation, and she denied her heart on account of them. Her friends. Her watcher. She let others dictate her heart. She let her idea of love with Angel ruin what she could have really truly had and could have still had. Now…Now she couldn't ever have that.

Her Spike…Her William lit up her heart like fireworks in that cave. That cave took her heart along with her vampire, her man to dust.

She had once considered that her heartache over Angel was hard. But this…this devastated her. He wanted her to live but all she wanted to do was follow him. Still he told her to go denying her love, which she so deserved.

Buffy told Dawn everything. She held nothing back from her sister. She even told her little sister what happened in the cave.

Dawn was crying as hard as Buffy was. She felt so angry with herself for treating Spike the way that she did. Dawn was deeply heartbroken. She could have had the family she always wanted, and now she never would.

Buffy squeezed her sister's hand knowing just what Dawn felt and regretted it because she felt the same way. Buffy wiped her face and led her baby sister to the bathroom, and there they cleaned their tear streaked puffy faces.

Buffy turned to Dawn her face serious, “I don't want to leave you Dawn, but I can't do it anymore. Dawnie he was my rock. He kept me together. Now…Now without him I can't do it anymore. I really don't want to leave you, but I can't stand to have you see me like this.”

Taking a shaky deep breath Buffy looked at Dawn, pleading with her eyes.

“I-I found away to join him. You know magic and me are un-mixy but this ritual will take me to him. The witch I had gone to see last night told me it has to be done within the next two days, or I won't be able to do the ritual for another two years.”

Holding in the shaking sobs she held her hand out to keep her sister from interrupting.

“Dawnie, listen to me please. The pain and longing, it's too much. I don't want to leave you, but I'm not getting any better. I-I know this time Spike won't be here when I'm gone, but you are stronger than anyone that I know. I have made up my mind…I can't do this anymore.

There are Slayers all over the world now. You are a grown woman. I would love to be there for the rest of your life but my pain is too much. I need to be with him. I am doing it tonight.” Buffy stated firmly but gently to her baby sister.

“NO Buffy you can't! Please, you're all I have left!” But Dawn knew. She knew in her heart that every day Buffy barely lived. This was worse than when she came back from the supposed “hell” her friends took her from.

Lowering her head in acceptance she now knew Buffy’s love transcended this far for her to find a way to him. Dawn knew if she had someone of even that much importance, she would do the same…She wouldn't be able to live without him.

Tearfully she lifted her head. Sighing before Buffy could respond to her plea, she took her hand with a watery smile,

“Then do me this one favour.”

“Anything for you Dawnie”

“Play your song at the nightclub. Roma's is having an Open Mic night tomorrow. Please, Buffy. Let us all see you before you do the ritual to take you to Spike”

Hesitantly, Buffy agreed to wait one more day. At least the ingredients called for aligned stars, and it would be best to do it tomorrow rather than tonight.

Sighing she knew she could hear Spike's voice.

‘Buffy love, magic always has consequences. Don't do this, pet. Think of the Niblet.’

She would wait until tomorrow but regardless what her Spike voice said she would see him soon.

“Ok Dawnie but no later ok. I'm going to bed. Night. Love you” With that Buffy closed the door but not before Dawn heard the soft muffled cries on the other side of the door.

This was breaking Dawn's heart. She really thought that they were doing well in Rome, but apparently not.


An hour later…

Gasping for air she leaned against the stone building of the hotel that Giles, Willow, and Xander were staying at when they had come by for a visit. Dawn had argued they should have stayed at the apartment but they all declined. Dawn knew they all knew about Buffy but not one of them discussed it.

Racing out of the elevator she ran to their room gasping for air and her heart racing, she hunched over her long legs and let a breath out. Standing she straightened her self and with determination, she pounded on the door and prayed for some miracle.


On the other side of the door in the hotel room Giles muttered in distaste at the insistent pounding at the door. He made his way to the door bleary eyed opened it and saw Dawn.

“Good heavens Dawn, do you realize what time it is? We have an early start with the new slayers at the school stationed here. Come in. Come in. Why are you so bloody perturbed? Where is Buffy? Did something happen to her?” Giles frantically polished his glasses and then rubbed the bridge of his nose in agitation.

Dawn entered the room and saw Willow and Xander come in groggily.

Willow yawned and stretched asked, “Something wrong Dawnie?”

Before Dawn could answer Xander awoke at a thought cut in, “We need to research something? I for one vote donuts but seeing as its too late guess these will do” Xander grabbed Giles's Pasticciotti pastry.

Giles glared at Xander but he punned back at him, “G-man no way I need some sugary goodness. There will be no glaring at the Xan-man? So Dawnie what's up?”

Sadly, she looked at Xander with her big blue eyes, but suddenly she realized something and knew he wouldn't care because it would be about Spike.

Angrily, she spat, “What Buffy is about to do is all of your faults. She lost the one person who kept her grounded. He equals her in every way, and he SACRIFICED himself for the world, for Buffy, for me, for all of us. He was never like Angelus and you all KNOW it!”

They were all shocked fully awake. Xander and Willow tried to cut in but shrank back as Giles stood angrily up in front of Dawn.

Before Giles could interrupt, Dawn held her hand up in protest, “I don't want to hear it”

Turning to both Xander and Willow, she asked them both bluntly, “Had it been Angelus who hit you over the head kidnapped you, knocked you unconscious, or held a bottle to your face, I ask you this would you still be standing here?”

Glaring at their sad admitting eyes she triumphantly smirked when they nodded no, they wouldn't be. Spike as much as he had fought it stood by them. All of them at one point treated him horribly and with misdirected hate.

The whole group could not bring themselves to answer although Giles suddenly kept trying to sneak away.

This did not get by Dawn, “Where do you suppose you're going?”

Looking very much like a deer in headlights he stammered on, “I-I-I may know how to fix this problem”

Narrowing her eyes in confusion, she looked at the others who looked even more so guilty as did Giles.

“What's going on? What can you fix Giles? What are you all hiding???” Dawn was getting even more furious with the lack of answers.

Giles ran a hand over his face but refrained from putting his glasses back on needing something in his trembling hands.

He looked straight at Dawn and simply told her, “Dawn Spike is alive well err…Undead and with Angel in LA”

Dawn was so furious that she flew across the room and punched Giles in the nose. Giles groaned in pain and slumped to the ground in a heap. He pulled his handkerchief from his pyjamas pocket and cringed in agony and fear while holding the handkerchief to his now bleeding nose.

“HOW COULD YOU KEEP THIS FROM HER?!!!!!” Dawn furiously shrieked.

“No, don't tell me all of you assumed it was for her own good right? Am I right? I will bet the big fore headed bat has a play in this too” Dawn sneered.

Noticing the guilty looks she punched Xander next and had him yelping in pain on the floor holding his bleeding nose. She then leaped at Willow and dragged her to the phone and demanded, “CALL HIM. FIND HIM I DON'T CARE. DO. IT. NOW!” Dawn seethed.

Willow picked up the phone and with a wave of her hand the phone dialed a number.

Before Willow could even speak Dawn grabbed the phone from her and crumbled by the speakers voice.

“'Ello. This better not be Peaches,” He growled into the phone that his broodiness entailed on everyone.

“S-S-Spike” She cried out and burst into tears. ‘It's really true, Oh god Buffy'

Spike starred at the phone that dropped from his hands. ‘No it couldn't be' Picking up the phone he struggled to shuffle it back to his ear.

Even though his hearing wasn't wrong, he didn’t want to believe it. The girl on the phone sounded very much like his Niblet and she was crying her heart out and rambling out apologies through her sobs.


“Oh god” Sob. “Spike,” Wail. “Say it again please!” Dawn sniffled and hitched her breath.

“Dawn” He smirked.

“No you dumb ass. Please, I need to hear it” Dawn sniffled, but he wasn't getting off that easy. She couldn't believe it, it was Spike! Her dream came remarkably true!

Smiling he softly said to her, “Niblet” She broke down in tears.

“Oh Nib I can't bare your bloody tears.” Spike's mind was spinning at this point. His Niblet was talking to him, and she sounded so devastated. He wouldn't read into it too much until he heard what she had to say.

Hiccupping she added, “Why didn't you come to find us Spike ”

Shamefully, he answered her, “Nib, I wanted you and big sis to live, yeah? I didn't want to muck up your life. Plus how could I top my bloody noble sacrifice and explain how I bloody got back. Niblet I came back sodding incorporeal. I couldn't do anything I came back a bleeding ghost. Well, by the time I got m' body back…I just got scared”

Glaring at the others to intervene, she smirked inwardly when they backed away from her. Dawn knew she could be evil like the rest of them. Without any hesitation at all she explained what was going on.

“Spike you have to come here right away. Buffy died right along with you in that cave. She has been lost without you. YOU wanted her to live, but she couldn't live without you.

S-S-She found away to be with you. We both believed you were gone, and she is performing a ritual to be with you but now…You're back and she won't have to do it! Oh my god! You can save her!” Dawn rambled.

Not letting him get a word in edge wise she rambled on.

“She is waiting until tomorrow to say goodbye to us after she performs her song about you. She has been working on it for some time, but I convinced her to wait for tomorrow night after the show. Please, you have to come.

She will be doing the ritual after she performs to you but since your…Well, back and still undead…Oh my god this could be a surprise…This would be the best day of her life!”

She took a breath and hoped with all her heart, he still loved Buffy.

Spike had been stunned listening to her ramblings. This didn't sound like the Buffy that the sodding poof was telling him about, and that she didn't love him. ‘What was going on?'

“Nib, just breathe. What your trying to tell me is that big sis is taking a chance with magic to be with me but in the process killing herself and leaving you?” asked calmly and barely hiding the edge of anger in his voice.

“I doubted her too Spike, believe me. I also understood.” Glaring at Buffy's two friends she spat out, “Her peace was taken from her before, and then she found herself due to you. Spike she told me everything.

EVERYTHING. She loved you then. She loves you now. Spike she loves you so much she is willing to die to be with you…and…I was going to let her…but now… You” Pausing she prayed he would say he still did and hoping she asked, “Spike do you still love Buffy”

Spike was furious. He wasn't furious with Buffy or Dawn. He was furious at Peaches, the no good Scoobies of hers and himself. He was led to believe Buffy didn't care. When he heard that his Niblet was going to let Buffy go, he let the tear slide down his cheek.

His Buffy was broken up over him but his Niblet was broken up losing them both. Vowing to take them away from pain; he told her without conviction, “Always Niblet. I will love Buffy forever and always. I love both of you Summers girls. You're my girls.”

Crying and laughing; she rushed out, “Then hurry and get your butt here and make us a family!”

“Niblet I don't know where you are. The bloody poof wouldn't tell me shite and little watcher boy said something about Rome, but I really didn't have a bloody idea if that was true and m'sodding grandsire wasn't telling much either.”

Spike was antsy he knew who would willingly help him…Clem. He heard through the grapevine the loose skinned demon friend of his was on the other side of LA with a large number of the friendlier demon Races.

After a short exchange of information and smirking towards meddling trio, she added, “I love you Spike, and I'm sorry for not understanding”

Flinching Spike shot her down, “Niblet there's nothing to forgive, start over eh. I love you too Niblet. I will see you soon. Keep your cell charged. I will call you when I get there. Don't say anything yet. Nib lets stick to your plan. Surprise big sis, yeah”

Grinning like a scheming idiot she agreed. “You bet! I love you get here safe and quickly, please.”

“I will, Nib… Love you too”

The call disconnected, and she turned back to Buffy's so-called friends.

“You have a problem with this?” Her piercing blue eyes glared angrily at them, daring them to defy her.

When she got a string of no's, she told them to meet her at Roma's and see exactly what their meddling did to her sister. Momentarily she stared at Willow who looked completely ashamed and confused at what happened. Dawn brushed it off and headed off to the door only to pause.

As her hand grabbed the doorknob, she looked over with betrayed sad eyes, “You were like her family, my family. You should all be ashamed of yourselves.”

Glaring Xander down she rhetorically asked and watched him shut his mouth from responding.

“Xander just because Anya was human she had more deaths over her head as a demon. Yeah she was human but how did this make her any better. Don’t answer that”

Narrowing her eyes Dawn looked at Willow daring her to speak she spoke her mind.

“Willow what made you so different. You have a different lifestyle and should have understood Buffy. Spike may have done some questionable things in the past but YOU should understand them. Think about that.”

She should have felt devastation over this confrontation but this felt worse than the memories of her and Buffy’s father leaving. This was a low blow but she stood stronger than ever and angrily stared him down.

“Giles I am simply disappointed in you. You were like a father to us. You took your hatred of Angel out on Spike. Spike went to seek out a legend and fought and EARNED his soul. His soul wasn't cursed. That should have awe inspired you. We all put so much importance on Angel’s soul when we should have noticed that Spike’s was not the same. I am to blame for this too but now this…You all obviously heeded to Angel.

Why? To not let Spike and Buffy know about the other? YOU ALL listened to Angel or listened to yourselves. Doesn't matter which. You still hate Angel and yet you follow along with his jealousies to keep Spike and Buffy apart. I am ashamed to know all of you. Tomorrow evening may be the last night you see us… Unless you change and mend what you have done.”

She purposely closed the door with a final click resonating throughout the room.

They all sadly went back to their beds and hoped to make some amends the following day.

Chapter End Notes:
Will they stop Dawn and Buffy? Will Spike come to the rescue?

You must login (register) to review.