Title: Times and Shapes
Chapter: 3/10 Beginning is here
Setting: Post chosen, loosely tying into comic canon of S8 and AtF
Rating: like show
Warnings: Contains a temporary sex change, I'm not a native speaker and this is unbetaed.
Summary: Buffy is on a slayer undercover mission in London and runs into Spike without him recognizing her.
Disclaimer: not mine, all Joss
Feedback: makes me want to bake cookies for all of you
Spike looked bewildered and terribly guilty. He stared at her wide eyed for a split second then he lunged. Buffy almost managed to get her hands up in time to shield herself before he knocked her clean off her feet.
They went down caught in the black leather net of Spike’s duster, Buffy kicking him off, before they even hit the ground. Her head connected with the floor boards, leaving her blinking at the ceiling and at the black crossbow bolt that stuck in the wall directly above her head. It was still quivering from the impact.
She searched for Spike, finding him already busy attacking the newcomers. Had he always been that fast? She guessed that some of her reflexes had been part of the now gone slayer-package too. Nevertheless she grabbed her stake and leapt to her feet in a smooth move.
She finally managed to get a good look at their attackers. All five of them were vampires and had various weapons ready. Four of them were already closing in on Spike while the fifth, presumably the leader, watched from a safe distance.
Buffy grinned when she realized, that they had focused their attack on the supposedly bigger threat. There were decidedly good sides to being disregarded. She ducked under a fist drawn back to gather momentum and rammed her stake into a denim clad back with her usual sure aim for the heart.
The resulting dust cloud distracted one of his companions long enough, so that Spike could twist his head off, giving a triumphant snarl.
Buffy was tempted to just watch him fight, to drink in all the quick, vicious fluent movements. If there had been one good reason why she had not killed him, back when he was rotten to the core and freshly chipped it had been that he was the most entertaining hand to hand combatant she had ever fought. Killing him with the chip in his head would have been like shooting a man eating panther in a cage.
She noticed a stake sliding out of the sleeve of a stocky, quick female vampire and intercepted it just in time, before she could go for Spike’s heart with it. Buffy kicked up the woman’s arm, so that her stake was sliding uselessly over the hard glossy surface of the duster. The vampire screeched in disappointment and threw herself at Buffy. She raised her stake defensively. Spike was caught up, deflecting the blade, one of the remaining vamps swung at him but found the time to give the vampiress the necessary shove to propel her onto Buffy’s waiting stake.
Buffy held her breath, another reflex of the seasoned vampire slayer, to avoid breathing in the resulting vampire dust. A grin spread on her face, damn, it felt good to fight shoulder to shoulder with him again. She enjoyed fighting with junior slayers by her side, but with none of them she had this easy symbiosis that used to click into place with every move.
She saw a raised blade flash and heard Spike cry for a stake. Without a moments hesitation she threw it to him and watched him catch it and burry it into his opponents heart.
The last vamp saw his comrades go down and turned to flee with a snarl.
“Oh no, you don’t!” Buffy hissed and aimed a pot of paint at his head. Not that it did much damage but it distracted the vampire long enough for her to reach him, which, she realized as he grabbed her and held her up in the air like a rag doll, might not have been all that good an idea.
She tried to kick him in the balls and to wriggle herself free from his grip, but his other hand was already grabbing her hair to snap her neck.
He froze mid movement and Buffy fell to the floor rather ungracefully, when his hands dissolved into dust. She looked around. The sword lay abandoned on the floor and Spike was looking down at her. “Bit suicidal, are you?” He said still looking a bit light headed from the fight. “Didn’t think you had in you. Wee fellow like you.”
Buffy got to her feet. “Yes, because clearly only tall people can hit things.” She grumbled, getting up to emphasize how they were practically the same height now. “Good work yourself!” she imitated his arrogance
He grinned, showing fang. “Nah, killing bad guys isn’t work, that’s play.”
“Any idea what they wanted here?”
Buffy shook her head. “Not really, but it looks like they were after Sarah too.” She shot another glance at the unsettling paintings, some of which had been destroyed in the fight.
“Doesn’t he look familiar?” Spike pointed at another painting showing a vampire in game face.
“Isn’t that the one who just tried to run?”
Spike nodded “It’s just… like that with the longer hair and all, I think I know him from somewhere…”
Buffy cursed silently. What it exactly had it been that Sarah drew her inspiration from? Could she be sure that it was only death scenes? The canvas showing Spike lay in tatters now and she swallowed.
Spike put down two canisters of kerosene that the vampire gang had brought with them. “Looks like they came here to torch the place, probably to cover their tracks. Don’t want to be the one bearing the bad news, but it doesn’t look to good for your cousin I’m afraid.”
“They shouldn’t have been able to enter the flat just like that and neither should I.”
Buffy looked at him and let the implications of what he just said sink in. “You think, you could enter because she’s dead?”
“Could be. She could as well have abandoned the place. I don’t know and…” , he looked her straight in the eyes this time “I had nothing to do with it. Where the hell did you get that idea?”
“Her paintings. You were in her paintings and she paints what sees in her dreams. She says it’s what people see when they’re dying.”
Spike looked as if he was going to be sick for a second then his features hardened and he answered: “Look, I wasn’t always a good guy. Actually that’s a pretty recent development considering how much time I spent eating people. Killed slayers too, two of them, but not this one.”
Buffy studied him. Wondering if this was still the same man she had known, the one where she could tell, when he was lying. There was nothing but sincerity in his words. He could have killed her easily by now, or at least he could have tried. There had to be another explanation for that final picture. Maybe it was from the battle in the hellmouth cavern. Several slayers had died there and Spike had been all over the place. Maybe he had been the last thing one of them saw.
And maybe he really wasn’t dead. Buffy was used to move like in a dream, to accept new developments and just work with them, making sense of them later, but now it slowly started to seep into her consciousness, that this might actually be real.
“Don’t think we should stay here much longer.” Spike broke the silence. “Just in case they send someone looking for the guys, who came looking.”
“Do you have a room in town, a place where you can tell me everything ‘bout your slayer cousin, before ya leave town.”
She scrunched her eyebrows. “Why would I leave town?”
He straightened. “Cause these folks are dangerous and I don’t care ‘bout a sidekick. Bin there, done that. Doesn’t work for me and they’re awfully easy to break.”
“In what universe would I be your sidekick? If I wanted to sidekick for some vampire I’d find a tall, dark and handsome one! ”
“One of the major causes of death among idiot humans. It’s obvious that those guys are a little out of your league, matchboy. I’m not in the mood to babysit.”
“They got Sarah and I won’t leave before I know exactly what happened to her. If you think I’ll just bugger off, because some bleached vampire Billy Idol impostor tells me so, you obviously inhaled too much ammonia.”
“Actually it was Billy Idol, who…”
She cut him off. “Look we have two choices here. Either we go downstairs and walk away in different directions or we work together, meaning you’ll stick around at night and help hitting things and I’ll look out for clues and safety during daylight hours. So what’s it going to be? You want to stay or bugger on your way?”
She winced when she noticed the corners of his mouth twitching. A whole year on English soil and she still got the insults wrong.
He shrugged. “Guess, I can’t hold it against you. Never really managed to keep out of fights that were to big for me either. Just don’t come crying, when you catch a bloody nose…or when a bloody nose is all that’s left of you.”
Buffy glared but as long as he agreed to stay she could deal with the superhuman arrogance.
When they arrived at Buffy’s hotel, Buffy addressed a sleepy looking night desk clerk. “My associate is going to need a room, best something with a north side view.” The clerk shot Spike a skeptical glance over the rims of his glasses. Spike answered with a confident smirk. “Smoker” he added nonchalantly.
“I’m afraid we don’t have any rooms free. But maybe your …associate could stay with you for the night? The rooms a double usually."
“Nonsmoker” the desk clerk added in Spike’s direction.
“Gotta be kidding me!” Spike exclaimed with a murderous look.
“We’ll take it.” Buffy answered quickly, before Spike could go on.
Spike looked a bit like he already had plans to burn down the building when they stomped to the elevator. “Thought I’d leave this madness behind in the bloody colonies. But no, those bleeding human anti smoking Nazis dig their claws even into the homelands.” Buffy rolled her eyes at him. There was this stuff where the soul didn’t seem to make the least bit of difference with him. Hadn’t Angel quit smoking when he got the soul?
It had been a while, since someone had been able to annoy her like that…without killing people that is. She frowned, yes there were the things about Spike she obviously had conveniently forgotten. The post mortem halo didn’t really fit him any longer.
She carded the door to their room open and he didn’t hesitate a split second when they entered, to shrug of his clothing and claiming the shower for himself. “Gotta get the grid outta my hair. It’s a hero thing.”
Usually Buffy would have fought him for the shower, but as things were she needed all her mental capacities to shot her mouth again and prevent drooling from happening as she stared at his naked chest. She swallowed, her mouth being suddenly dry. God, it had been a while, hadn’t it?
The muscles rippling beneath his skin had an almost hypnotizing effect on her and it was a good thing he reached the bathroom before his jeans came off. Or not.
She blinked at the sudden surge that had seized her head. She had almost forgotten what it meant to react to another being so strongly. To see some square inches of skin and have your hormones take over like you had no other worries in the world.
Sex with Satsu had been good, pure awesomeness in fact, but on Buffy’s part it had been a very conscious decision to experiment, she had acted more from the urge to have some fun to feel a connection of any kind than on a deep desire that made it almost impossible to pass by a person without touching. In the end what had made Satsu’s offer so much more tempting than those she’d gotten from the rare occasional man she had managed to meet when she got away from slayer central once in a while, was that Satsu was a slayer. She was as strong as Buffy. There had been a kind recklessness to their sex that Buffy associated with great sex ever since Spike and that made her doubt sometimes if she could ever go back to someone who’d bruise too easily. It was not that sex with Satsu had been even remotely violent, but just that there were no physical limits to positions or stamina.
With Satsu, like with Spike, there had been no need to hold back or to pretend. Of course there had not been as much sizzling tension either, but in many ways that had made it even more fun. Fun, something she had barely ever allowed herself to feel with Spike. With Satsu everything had diffused into laughter and play. At first she had presumed that Satsu being in love with her would lead to inevitable angst. But it never had, Satsu had just been happy with what she got and she never made Buffy feel, like she wasn’t giving enough of herself. If a thing for non conventional sex was what she learned from Spike, true carelessness and laughter was what she’d learned from Satsu. That and that she knew now, that she was a sucker for pretty tits. Small ones with tiny dark nipples that looked like the chocolate pearl on top of an old fashioned muffin. Although she had to admit that big ones impressed her on occasion. Like Faith’s. Faith always used to twinkle with an annoyingly knowing dirty smirk, when she caught Buffy staring.
Buffy had just started to wonder what Satsu’s and Faith’s breasts would look like together when she realized with horror that all these thoughts of past sex had started to have exactly the effect that was to be expected from a healthy young male body.