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Disclaimer: I own nothing but the plot. I bend to Joss Whedon's will and try my best not to murder his characters.
Summary: Spike has gotten himself a soul by accident. The Powers That Be want him to go to Sunnydale and deliver a message about the upcoming Harvest. He just wants to get in and get out, but will he be able to stick to his plans?
Chapter Summary: Angel roles into town and that's never good when Spike is in the same town.
Warnings: Souled!Spike and AU
Previous Chapter: The Pack
Notes: I'd like to thank kimalis for helping me out with Spike's slang. Then I'd like to thank Buffyworld for episode guides.
Spike put a bucket of smashed cockroaches on the counter. The bartender gave him a look.
“Free drinks for every bug my boot crushes, right? Start counting. Don’t know if I can drink all these in one night, do you give rain checks?”
Everyone was sitting at the table waiting for Spike as he claimed his free drinks.
“We should have never told Spike about the fumigation party,” Buffy said turning her noise to the bucket Spike had.
“I didn’t think he’d actually do it!” Willow exclaimed.
“I forgot all about fumigation night,” Xander said. “Now it makes sense why he was asking for my old beach toys.”
“As long as he’s sharing, he could smash two buckets full,” Jesse said.
“Drinks all around!” Spike said cheerfully.
He put the empty bucket down on the table, then went back for the drinks.
“No one does fumigation night like Spike does,” Jesse said.
Spike pointed with his head, “There’s one! Get it for the bucket!”
Jesse got up and started to stomp after it. It kept slipping past him. He wasn’t watching where he was going and bumped into Cordelia. She spilled her drink all over her dress.
“Watch where you’re going, loser,” she said to him.
“I was just trying to get the cockroach that ran under your feet, you know, squish bugs for free drinks.”
She screamed and jumped,” That’s so gross!”
Jesse bent down and picked it up, “Look! You got one! Want me to get you a drink?”
She turned her nose up at him, “I’m rich enough where I don’t have to squish bugs to get drinks.”
She flicked her hair and walked off. Jesse went back to the table and put the bug into Spike’s bucket. It looked like he had been collecting while Jesse was chatting with Cordelia. Buffy was talking about a guy she met the other night when Spike and her had split up to cover more cemeteries.
“And he was such an awesome fighter. I mean, he was really just wow. And he had muscles. Manly muscles. They were the best muscles I had ever seen. Really, he was hot. Then his moves when he was fighting the vampires. He was wow. I think I’m in love.”
Spike snorted, “Love at first sight? I don’t believe in it.”
Xander felt his neck, his hand danced over the scar Spike had left when he bit him. Jesse had noticed Xander touched it often, usually tracing a single finger around it while he thought. Jesse wondered what he thought about when he played with it. The look on his face never suggested pain or regret, sometimes while his fingers danced over it, he would blush. Jesse didn’t think you should blush while thinking of a vampire bite. He was happy this bite scar was almost faded.
“You don’t?” Xander asked. “I believe in it. You see someone and your insides go all mushy and you just think about that person all the time.” His eyebrows furrowed. “Then you just want them out of your head, but they won’t leave and-” He blinked. “This is all hypothetical of course.”
“Of course,” Jesse agreed with him.
“You have to be barmy to believe in love at first sight. Trust me, I know. Drusilla ‘fell in love’ with me at first sight. We all know that turned out well.”
“I think it’s romantic,” Willow said.
Spike sniffed, “You can have my drinks. I’m going go patrolling. Coming, slayer?”
Buffy scooted away from the table, “Yeah! Maybe I’ll see hot guy again.”
Spike rolled his eyes, “Beat my still heart, young love.”
They were walking in silence down the alley behind the Bronze. Spike had his stake out and Buffy was shifting awkwardly. She didn’t like it when the noisy vampire was silent, it never meant anything good.
“You’re all silent, bad blood or something?”
“You know, slayer. Would once like you to dig deep and find a feeling that resembled caring for other people. And vampires.” He added vampires when he saw her open her mouth.
“Hey, I care. I’m Miss Caring. It just seems a lot of brooding for someone who just ran off.”
Spike growled, “She didn’t run off. He took her.”
“Poor little Spikey,” Buffy mocked.
There was a growl, but it wasn’t from Spike. They turned to see three vampires standing behind them.
“I’m tired and I want to go home,” Buffy said to him. “Can you just take these guys?”
“Three masters by myself? I’m good, but I’m not that good! These are the Three. Few of the top assassins working for the master.”
“Fine, but you owe me.”
Spike kicked one, “I don’t owe you anything.”
Buffy punched another one then kicked the third one, “Hey, who lets you in on the slayage.”
Spike staked the one he was fighting then went to help Buffy, “Excuse me for helping you out from the goodness of my own heart.”
She staked one of hers, “We pay you! We pay you to help!”
He staked the last one, “It’s only so you don’t feel bad about using me.”
She glared at him and he glared back. She was really questioning if Spike had a soul. He always demanded he get paid before he helped and he bit Xander. She was wondering why on one else was furious about it! Every time she brought it up to Xander he would begin to babble about the weather.
“I thought you were used to getting used, William,” said a voice behind him.
They turned again. They were doing a lot of turning; it was making Buffy a bit sick. She looked at who was talking and her stomach flipped. It was the guy from the other day.
“Angelus,” Spike growled.
“Angel,” Angel corrected him.
“Ah,” Spike said relaxing his position but still keeping his defense up. “Gypsies rammed a soul back up your arse finally?”
“Better than a demon ramming it up my ass.”
“He didn’t ram me up the arse! Nothing happened! There were these trials and Africa. Seemed like fun and then he… Why am I explaining myself to the likes of you? What do you want here? This is my mission, not yours. You can wait ‘til the next slayer comes around.”
“The Powers That Be seem to think this is a two vampire job now.”
“Two vampires? I’m going to assume that’s you and me. Where’s Dru? You leave her like you did me?”
“She’s safe with Penn and Lawson.”
“Penn and Lawson safe! I should rip your throat out.”
“She didn’t choose you, Spike. Get over it. Now, I have some things to discuss with Buffy. So, would you mind leaving?”
Spike shook with anger, but let them walk away. He wasn’t going to get into fight with that… that… charlatan! He punched himself in the stomach. He didn’t like it when William helped him come up with insults.
Xander threw his backpack down and walked through the house to the basement door. He could hear Spike violently beating his punching bag. That poor punching bag. Xander collected himself and felt the bite mark Spike had given him. He could still remember the eye-rolled back into your head, cock hard as hell, begging for more pleasure the bite had given him. He had been trying to figure out if it was Spike or the hyena that made the bite feel good. He sucked in a breath. There was no use ignoring him. He walked down the stairs as the shirtless and barefoot vampire ignored his descent.
“Hey,” Xander said to him.
Spike grunted and continued to punch the bag.
“Heard about you and Angel from Buffy.”
Xander sat down on the couch, “Yeah. Heard you had history too.”
Spike just grunted.
“He wants to stick around.” Spike snorted. “But, I told them you were here first and it would be unfair to you. They’re kind of fickle. Wave a shiny new vamp with a soul in their face and they’re all over him.”
“Not you though?”
Spike stopped punching the bag and looked at Xander. It always made Xander bristle when Spike turned his full attention on him. His gaze was piercing and vast. It was too much for his sixteen year old body to handle.
“No you’ll always be my-” He stopped himself before he could say mate. “Friend. You’ll always be my friend. Besides, what’s with all the gel and loose spikes? He’s just trying to look cool.”
Spike laughed, “You’re alright. You know that?”
“I boosted your ego; it’s only fair you tell me a story.”
“Story time? Bugger.” Spike thought. “I ain’t got one for you. Not a good one.”
“Then tell an extremely bad one and hope for the best.”
Spike rubbed his neck, “Let’s see. A long time ago there was a vampire named William.”
“Oh, this William sounds so fake,” Xander teased.
“Shut it or I won’t finish.” Xander mimed zipping his lips. “Right, thank you. So, this vamp, right? He’s all with his clan, then ruddy bastard, let’s call him Angelus, gets a soul. William and him, they’ve been bumping uglies and all those lovely metaphors for sex.”
“You had sex with a guy vamp?”
“You live for over a hundred years; you get curious about this and that. Well, I was about twenty at the time, still didn’t mean I wasn’t curious.” Spike’s tongue snaked out and licked his lips. “Anyway, gets his soul back kind of runs off for a bit. He comes back, I kill a slayer, we do it like bunnies on Darla’s bed. Soul gets lost, he leaves again. Bad, very bad and unspeakable things happen to our dear William. At the end, he ends up in Africa alone and without his dark princess. The end.”
“You were right. That was the crappiest story I had ever heard.”
Spike laughed harshly, “It’s even worse when you’ve lived it.”
“What were the bad, very bad and unspeakable things though?”
“If I spoke of them, they wouldn’t be unspeakable still, would they?”
“You can’t just mention them and then glaze over them!”
“Can and I will, Xander. Now, I need to get washed up so we can head to the meeting. Mind giving me a bit of privacy? Just got to the meeting without me, I don’t know how long I’ll be.”
“Fine, but you better show up. I don’t want a repeat of last time.”
“I swear I won’t get caught up in watching the telly again. Privacy? Please?”
Xander went up the stairs and there was a knock on his backdoor. Spike rolled his eyes and wondered if he’d get any privacy. Angel was standing at the door. Since the house Spike was staying at belonged to humans, he must not have been allowed in. Spike smiled and leaned against the door.
“William,” Angel said.
“Liam,” Spike shot back.
“We had good times, didn’t we?”
“Loads of funs. Particularly around the 1900’s. Those were a laugh. Oh and my training, you were always so creative with chains and torture.”
“You didn’t break though. That’s what made you my favorite.”
“No, that’s what made me your sex toy. Now, would you please tell me what you’re doing here. I’ve got an important meeting to go to.”
“I thought you should know that Darla came to me. Did she ever come to see you?”
“No. Should I feel hurt? Bad that my grandsire didn’t come to drop me a line at my home?”
“William, I’m sorry if I wronged you in the past, but we have to work together on this now.”
“You’re wrong. We don’t and I’m Spike. I told you all those years ago. Don’t forget it.”
“I’m sorry. I really am. Please just forgive me so we can work together on this.”
“This is all your fault. You soddn’ bastard. If you hadn’t taken Dru from me in New York, I wouldn’t have gone to Africa. If I didn’t go to Africa, I wouldn’t have taken up the trials. If I didn’t take part in the trials, that demon wouldn’t have given me ‘what I needed most’ and I would be still livin’ it up with her. There is no way in Hell you will ever get my forgiveness.”
“Well, you messed up my life too.”
“I didn’t coax you into bed. Souled or not, you’ll always think I’m yours to order around and control. I’m not. I’ll never work with you. Not now, not ever.”
He slammed the door in Angel’s face and ignored the knocking and pounding for Spike to open it up. Spike laid on his couch and turned on the telly. He tried to will a beer from the fridge into his hands. It didn’t work. Why couldn’t vamps also have psychic power under their mystical utility belts?
Spike stood awkwardly in the hospital room and chatted with Joyce about what she had missed on Passions that night. He still remembered the flip his stomach did when Xander had bounded down the stairs. He had first thought he was angry at him for settling in and not coming to the meeting, but the news was that Joyce had been sent to the hospital, it scared him. He knew he bit Xander, but Angel wouldn’t do that with his soul. He had met souled Angel before. He wanted to lift up her bandages and check the bite mark, but the nurse was watching him.
Spike focused on the conversation happening in the hall. He hadn’t been invited so he knew they were talking about him, or at least all vampires being evil. They weren’t far off, but it still hurt not being included.
“We should kick out all the vampires,” Buffy exclaimed. “Vampires are no good.”
“We can’t kick out Spike!” Xander argued. “He wasn’t the one that bit your mom.”
“Yeah, but he bit you!”
“I don’t know if you noticed, but I was possessed. I wasn’t exactly Mister Innocent.”
“Giles, don’t vampires have thrall? Do you think Spike might be using thrall on Xander?”
“William the Bloody really isn’t know for-“
“See! I’m not under Spike’s ‘thrall’. The vampire lives in my basement and I get to say what we do with him!”
“Xander,” Willow said soothingly. “If Buffy thinks there is a good reason-“
“You always side with Buffy! You know, Buffy isn’t always right! Take a look at her history tests!”
“I’m not anyone’s side! Jesse, help me out?”
“I have to agree with Xander. Spike saved my life and if Xander was straddling my chest, I would have bit him too.” Xander must have given Jesse a look. “Not that I don’t find any thing wrong with you, I just wouldn’t want you doing that to me. You’re like my brother.”
“How can you take his side?” Buffy asked. “You’re going to be sorry when he eats you.”
“Fine, as long as you stop seeing Angel. I’ll kick him out.”
“That’s not fair. I love him and need to find out why he did it.”
“You’ve known the guy for two days and you love him?”
“Not so tough, Mr. I-believe-in-love-at-first-sight.”
Xander made a strangled noise, “This is not worth it. I’m going to go in there and ask Spike to turn me just to be spiteful! Spike! Get out here! Spike!”
Spike rolled his eyes and came out into the hallway, “You called?”
Xander tilted his scarred neck towards Spike, “Turn me and make Buffy sorry.”
He raised an eyebrow at Xander, “Right. I’m going to turn you to prove Buffy wrong that I’m evil. Your logic fails miserably, Harris.”
“I’ll take the whelp for a cool down, be back later. Keep an eye on Joyce for me.”
Jesse nodded, “Will do.”
After walking around town for awhile with Spike, Xander was ready for a drink. He wanted something strong and something that would rot his teeth to their cores. Spike opened the door and Xander snuck under his arm. Spike didn’t move, his eyes were transfixed on the scene in front of him. Xander followed his gaze to see Buffy fighting with Angel.
“I hope she doesn’t stake him,” Xander said with concern in his voice.
“I told Buffy if she staked Angel, I’d stake you. I was just upset! I didn’t think she’d really do it!”
“Oh, Hell no. This is my fight.”
Spike ran towards the shadows. Xander stood still, trying to make out what he was running at. There were gun shots and Spike fell back onto the floor. Xander rushed over to him and Darla stepped over Spike’s body towards Angel and Buffy.
“Don’t worry,” Darla said. “Bullets don’t hurt vampires. Hurts them like Hell though.” She put one of the guns to Xander’s head then pointed the other gun at Buffy. “Stupid little boy. Don’t attack, Slayer. Don’t want your pet to get damaged.”
Xander heard Buffy’s crossbow drop to the floor. He gulped and prayed for things to turn out well. The gun moved away from his head and Darla was knocked back firing shots into the air. Spike got up. He was bleeding heavily and tilted into the pain. He was in full game face and had situated himself in between Darla and Xander.
“You ungrateful childe,” she hissed at him.
“You won’t have him.” Spike said deliriously. “He’s got a good soul. You won’t have him.”
Darla fired more shots into Spike, “Be a good puppy and stay down.”
Buffy fired her crossbow, which she had picked up off the floor while Darla was distracted by Spike. The arrow hit Darla in her chest. She pulled it out and didn’t turn to ash.
“Close, but no heart,” Darla said throwing the arrow aside.
Darla raised the gun to fire at Buffy, but Angel was behind her. He staked her with a broken pool cue and she turned to dust. He looked mournful, but Xander didn’t have time to elaborate on any thoughts as the weak vampire in front of him collapsed. Xander toppled to the floor as an unconscious Spike rested on top of him.
“I demand blood!” Spike yelled at Xander.
Xander came out of the bathroom and handed the injured vampire a cup of blood and watched Spike sip it. He raised an eyebrow and scanned Xander. It tasted like his blood yet he couldn’t see any cuts.
“Is it good?” Xander asked him.
“Uh, yeah. It really helps the old bullets wounds. I’m going to have to thank Giles for fishing them out.”
“You saved our lives. I mean, you took bullets for me!”
“No big deal. They can’t kill me.”
“But they can kill me.”
Xander climbed into bed with him and pulled the covers up. They sat their in silence.
“So, Angel taking up residence to stay with his slayer girlfriend?”
“Nope, left town after Giles fished the last bullet out of you. I think he felt guilty.”
“As he should.”
Spike finished the pig’s blood mixed with Xander’s own blood and set it aside. He never understood humans. Was Xander just trying to heal him or was he trying to make Spike want to taste him? It was dangerous and his eyes wandered over Xander’s body looking for where he might have taken the blood from.
“If I asked, would you bite me again?”
“I learned my lesson last time.”
“But, I want to know if it was me or the hyena.”
“Just say it was the hyena and move it along.”
“Can you get me some biscuits from upstairs? I really want the ones with cream in the middle.”
“You said you’d take care of me, Xander. This doesn’t seem like taking care of me.”
Xander seemed to remember he had promised to play nursemaid and scrambled out of bed. He hurried up the stairs to get Spike his latest craving. Spike knew it was evil making Xander feel guilty, but this was one bullet he was going to try and dodge for awhile.