quinara: Spike dressed up and looking down, trying to be sexy. (Spike thinking)
[personal profile] quinara
[start of fic and notes]

'I love you' is a thing you say to people who are dying

by Quinara

Season 7. Buffy/Spike. Some Watchers survived, because sometimes people do.

[bodies III]

bodies IV

--back then--

Dinner was over by the time she and Spike came back upstairs from their make-out session. It had gone on a little longer than planned. The kitchen was a mess of dirty dishes and the thick smell of chicken casserole, and while the house was full of TV noise and girls running up and down the stairs as they found their respective buddies for tonight’s sleepover, there was no one exactly there to deal with it.

In another life, Buffy figured this would have been the moment to worry that they’d been loud, even if they hadn’t got to the part where she completely lost control over her vocal chords. She couldn’t believe it though. You would have barely been able to hear a radio in here over the sound of everybody else, so how any group eating dinner would have heard her and Spike smooching she did not know.

“Watchers are out back,” Spike told her then, distracting Buffy’s gaze from the grizzly offering of however many chicken bones and ligaments and bits it was sitting on the newspaper in the middle of the counter. He’d gone over to the back door, apparently, and was peering through the Venetian blind. “Doesn’t look like they’re finished yet.”

From the look of him, he wasn’t going to say anything about what had just happened in the basement. Of course, Spike had the superpower of looking young and angst-free forever, so to look at him there weren’t even many signs. His hair was kind of a mess, but he’d run a comb through that, and he wasn’t flushed at all. With the duster on, he looked mostly the way he always looked, while Buffy could feel it where she was starting to stink. Her shirt had been sweaty from her workout with the Potentials anyway, let alone what Spike had reduced her to.

“Pet?” Spike asked her after she’d been staring for a while. For an instant, he looked like he wanted her, like a grown-up who wasn’t actually used to making out for extended periods of time without getting much beyond second base. Possibly Buffy was projecting. Nonetheless the look was gone in an instant - as he clenched his jaw, huffed a sigh of air down his nose and turned to lean his back against the door. “What’s wrong now?” he asked, crossing his arms.

Honestly, Buffy didn’t think it was fair that this was her fault. Maybe it was – who knew? – but it didn’t feel like it should be. There Spike was, looking all annoyed with her and swathed in black and boots like he was dressed for battle even though he was just in her house. OK, he was looking defensive, but with that he still seemed scratchy and spontaneous as ever, like he was on edge and dangerous.

It shouldn’t have been so hard for him to take her a little further past 3-2-1 on the countdown to Buffy’s Big Zero, really. She’d had closer shaves in the shower.

And this wasn’t fair, Buffy knew. This was all the squirmy, needy parts of her talking. “I stink,” was what she said, eventually, because that part at least was true. She didn’t know how to be this thing Spike needed, probably someone who didn’t smell quite so much, who didn’t accost him in the late afternoon and shove her tongue down his throat.

Spike quirked an eyebrow. Looking around the kitchen again, Buffy figured there were probably more important things to worry about.

“This whole place stinks,” she added, her eyes falling on the pile of chicken waste again. “What the hell are we gonna do with all that?” She tried for light-hearted. “We’re gonna get ants,” she said. “Or foxes. Or, you know, those big scavenger demons with the sucky faces.” Which wasn’t to say Buffy wasn’t appreciative of the big scavenger demons with the sucky faces, who lurked somewhere in the middle of Restfield and spent most of their time hoovering up dead demon parts, from what she could tell. But she didn’t want them in her yard.

“Could cook it up into stock,” Spike suggested, as though this was a real topic of conversation. “Then we could have soup tomorrow.”

From what Buffy could tell, he wasn’t even faking. This was a legitimate suggestion. “Ew,” Buffy told him, stressing how that was actually a disgusting idea. “Spike,” she reminded him, “people have eaten off of those bones.”

“And that’s why you boil ‘em up, innit?” Spike reminded her, crossing the six feet between them again. Buffy was conscious of her own smell, but he didn’t seem to care, making her blush as his fingers caught the backs of her elbows and spider-walked up to her bare shoulders. “Waste not want not. It’s not like anyone’s dying of cholera in there.”

“Spike…” Buffy sighed, breathing in the not-stinky smell of him. They’d just done this; she had the grazes on her shoulder blades to prove that they had just done this. Looking into his eyes, though, with the noise of the house behind them, she knew she wanted to do it all over again. She wanted him to do it and keep doing it. It felt like a sickness.

The smile in Spike’s expression was all too painfully sympathetic. Buffy guessed that after he’d done his opening up, it was her turn to say something profound, but that wasn’t her forte at all. More than that, she wasn’t sure if Spike really did need to hear things from her, to know what she was thinking. Sure, he probably wanted it, but it seemed to her that what Spike actually needed was to know his own feelings.

In the end, Buffy settled for smoothing Spike’s tufty hair back down into something resembling the weird helmet that he liked. A lopsided smile-frown dragged on her face, but there was enough gel still left in his hair that she could almost get it to lie flat, so she wasn’t a complete failure.

Of course, Spike said nothing while she worked, just breathed like he was inhaling her. The freak.


They both looked around, drawing away from each other’s arms. The doorway to the back porch was open now, and Althanea was standing there with four glasses held in her fingers, Lydia just behind her holding dirty plates and crockery. The Watcher was looking in the middle distance somewhere, her face not nearly as pink as Buffy would have expected. Althanea just looked amused, her spare hand held in a half-hearted fist in front of her mouth.

“Do you mind if we do a little washing up?” she asked.

Buffy glanced over to the sink again, at the pile of housework just begging for someone else to do it. She glanced at Spike, who mostly looked like he was gonna talk about soup again.

“Sure,” Buffy said, wondering how she was going to rescue this place. At least the gas people had stopped even trying to send out bills to Sunnydale: it meant they could run the water heater all day. “I’m gonna go take a shower, but there should be enough hot.”

Of course, it took far less time to wash a Buffy than it took to wash the sheer number of dirty dishes produced by 1630 Revello Drive. By the time Buffy came back downstairs, dressed in jeans and some casual floaty top she’d found on the floor of her closet and didn’t smell too bad, things were much as they’d been before. The girls were slightly more settled, but Lydia and Althanea were still in the kitchen. Lydia seemed to have got herself into a rhythm at the sink, while Althanea was tending to three of their biggest pans on the stove.

The whole place still smelled like chicken, but the window was open, and there was a another acrid-herbal thing going on now.

“You’re not actually making stock, are you?” Buffy asked, scrunching her towel-dried hair. It didn’t seem so weird, really, now that Althanea in her grandmotherly shawls was standing in front of the boiling pots, but Buffy wanted to make the point on principle.

The witch turned around from her cauldrons, abandoning what looked like a wooden spoon in the biggest. “Of course!” she said, smiling the smile of someone who knew how to run a household. “It was an excellent idea. I spoke to Anya before she and Xander left,” she added, “and it sounds as though SuperSave’s ordering hasn’t yet caught up with the declining demand, so there should be lots on offer tomorrow. I thought we might have risotto.” She left this statement hanging, as though Buffy was supposed to have an opinion.

Hoping for the lesser of two crazy, British evils, Buffy turned to Lydia, who was arm-deep in bubbles.

The woman noticed, half glancing over her shoulder and then jumping so that she could look at Buffy properly. “Don’t worry,” she said, as if the expression on Buffy’s face was hilarious: she looked sympathetic, but then also as though she could hardly keep from bursting out laughing. “Spike pointed out we were to remove all trace of ‘nastiness’, as he put it.”

“The magic of magic,” Althanea added, before she turned back to her stove.

From somewhere in the recesses of her brain, Buffy was getting the memory of some long ago Thanksgiving, with the women in the kitchen after the turkey and everybody else somewhere other. The TV made sense with that too, although Buffy felt bad she’d missed Xander and Anya heading to their apartments for the night, because she was basically slacking in her duties as the host. Really, in the memory she could have only been ever getting in the way or stealing an extra slice of pecan pie, but it was kind of nice all the same.

The thing was, her memory definitely didn’t include a lifetime’s supply of chicken stock, nor else a red-faced Watcher doing dishes in that weird British way that left all the dirt in the water to get on the next SuperSave stoneware plate, and suds on it while it dried. Yet at this point in the apocalypse everyone knew some things had to be sacrificed. “Is there anything I can do to help?” Buffy asked, because even if she was training the girls, she didn’t want to go and watch Friends with them.

“Oh no, don’t be silly,” Althanea replied. Lydia was clanking plates again. “I think –” the witch added, giving the nearest pot a final poke with her spoon. “Yes,” she said, glancing back to Buffy, “I can leave that for a few minutes. Why don’t I make us a nice cup of tea?”

It was almost too relaxing to be real. Thankfully, as Althanea got to fussing with the electric kettle which had appeared from somewhere that was possibly the same place as the microwave, the back door opened with a resolute, plasticky yank.

“… you tell him,” Spike was saying, because he was always going to be Buffy’s saviour from the Twilight Zone of normality, “I’ve got his number and if he wants words, we’ll have words.”

He threw the end of his cigarette somewhere that at least wasn’t the inside of the house, and then grunted in reply to something unintelligible that Nigel(?) said. Then Spike was storming nonchalantly back into the house and raising his head to look at Buffy with his bright blue eyes. “Oh, hello, love,” he said, looking her up and down. “Nice shower?”

It wasn’t an innuendo, really. Nonetheless, Buffy couldn’t help but feel a little self-conscious. She patted a hand to her wet hair, which was trailing and curling around one of her shoulders.

Lydia, of course, snorted, with her bubbles.

“What’s that, Chalmers?” Spike shot at her, while Buffy took a seat at the greasy counter. He came over too, and even sat by her side as though this wasn’t a moment for them both to be a little less obvious. “You got soap up your nose?”

“Oh, I’m fine,” Lydia shot back, barely glancing over her shoulder. “Don’t worry about me, William.”

It was that moment Buffy recognise the snark for what it was. Feeling a little put out, she reached for Spike’s hand between their thighs, not going near the countertop until somebody wiped it. “First she goes in your head and now this?” she asked the guy next to her, feeling a pout coming on. “I thought the bitching was our thing.”

Spike had his other elbow leaning on the table, as though he didn’t even care about his stupid coat anymore. Of course, he squeezed her hand as he leaned his chin in his palm, but he still played the game. “It’s true,” he said, as though none of it could be helped. “All the birds want me now.” He nodded to Althanea, who was weaving around Lydia for water. “Me and Thea here have got a sordid assignation down the bushes later.”

Rolling her eyes, Buffy tried to suppress a grin. She wondered what they’d actually all talked about, when she’d gone for her shower – if it was anything other than chicken stock, which was the most absurd thing to be making, really, as if they were settling in for winter when it had been gone 80 that afternoon. Maybe the risotto would take the whole of it, but it seemed like a whole waste of energy to make stuff to keep in this house.

That didn’t entirely explain Spike, of course – not the way he looked at her.

“Believe me,” Lydia addressed her, though Buffy was only half-listening. “You are more than welcome to that walking – grand malade and his psychological miscontent.”

“Oi!” Spike replied, distracted. He actually sounded offended, which was possibly fair? “I think grand is a bit much.”

“I suggest then that you consult The Times’ microfiches for every year of the 1880s,” Lydia replied. “Preferably on a spate of roaring hangovers. Then you might reach your own conclusions.”

It was all moving too slowly, that was what Buffy figured. She skipped the French, but looking around the kitchen it was like her house was actually a well-oiled machine of daily routines and – stock. For some reason it made Buffy wonder whether Giles was right. Not about anything to do with Spike or else to do with her importance to the Potentials, really, but about the mood they were supposed to be living in. There was an impending something on the horizon, and Buffy was struck by the sudden worry that she was the only one who felt it.

“Is no one concerned that we’re all gonna die?”

Really, Buffy didn’t mean to say it out loud, but the words came out anyway, interrupting whatever the argument about Spike’s mental health had dissolved into. The kettle was steaming, a little way from boiled where it sat by the toaster behind Althanea’s back; the pots on the stove were simmering to her side. Lydia was leaning against the sink, holding a towel in her hands. They both looked concerned, but neither of them were looking at her.

Spike was still holding onto her hand, and his grip was tight and bony. The look on his face was though he feared for her. It was sort of like the expression he’d had both times when he’d walked away from her during the whole business with the shadowcasters, but Buffy hadn’t recognised it then. The thing was, he didn’t say anything either.

“Well?” Buffy tried to address all three of them again, slumping in her stool without any support. “Is this what we’re doing here? Just – taking stock and…” Crap, she’d meant to say something more momentous; less pun-like. Oh well. “And making stock?” She caught Spike’s eye. “I don’t wanna defend him of the angry grumble-faces, but don’t you think Giles –”

“Rupert Giles,” Lydia interrupted, “is wrong.” She looked stubborn about this point, and it was at that moment a very weird sight to see, given how twitchy Lydia’s usual expression was. Her eyes were all flinty, in a way that made Buffy nearly flinch. “To think only from battle to battle, always in the short term and never in the long, is a sure way to find oneself without reserve, without perspective and without hope.”

As the kettle kicked into its final, bubbling gear, Buffy looked down, to the side. She would never have said she was without hope, exactly, but the problem was that she knew, as well as anybody if not better, surely, that you did still need to win the battle in order to keep going.

Spike kicked at her foot with his, but Buffy didn’t look around to him. She knew the end was coming, after all, but she didn’t know how to make anybody else see it. She wasn’t sure she actually wanted to make anybody else see it as clearly as she did.

“As far as I am aware,” Althanea then interrupted the awkward silence, “we are none of us in battle right as this particular moment. Perhaps this conversation is best kept for another day.”

The kettle clicked off, and then the witch was making them all tea.

Of course, Buffy couldn’t keep herself to herself forever. Spike was rubbing his thumb over the back of the hand he was clasping, and it was all very distracting. He was leaning on the countertop again, looking at her as though he knew exactly what she was planning. It was strange, though, because Buffy didn’t really know herself. Else, maybe, she didn’t want to think about it.

--the next time--

With patrol finished early, the pair of them made it home around midnight, more than six hours before Buffy had to be up and ready for the demands of the day. The kitchen was dark and quiet as they moved through it – Buffy locked the back door as Spike loaded the cupboards with the crockery long dry by the sink. After the night before, it was strange to watch him play her house. He put all the open food back away as well and for a moment Buffy expected him to start on another set of dishes.

He didn’t. But when he was finished he did seem surprised to find Buffy leaning back against the basement door, arms crossed behind her back and one knee cocked a little, casually. That was fine by her. “You’re kind of domestic, you know that?” she said to him, like her eyes were on his face and not only on his mouth.

“Figured us soldiers all have to play our parts,” Spike replied, his voice as low as hers.

Buffy raised both her eyebrows, as if to question what he thought that role was. As he started over, she turned the handle on the door behind.

It was fun to feel her heart race, right as Spike was slipping by. She followed and tucked the door closed – only to find herself pressed against it.

The kiss that followed was heady, like the ones just in the graveyard. It made Buffy wish her knees would buckle to have her senses so filled with Spike after such a long day, especially as he locked the door. Alas, her buckling was over.

As heady as it was though, this kiss was short, end-of-the-night-ish. Afterwards, Buffy was content to wrap her arms around her vampire’s neck and have him lean against her, foreheads and noses touching and their eyes all shut, the pair of them breathing in the same ripple of air. “And you’re all right then,” Spike asked her, the most personal question anyone had that day, “after everything?”

“Of course,” Buffy replied, slipping her head beside his so they were actually in a hug. There would be no mention of the crying from last night’s sexfest. “I…”

Spike’s arms tightened around her waist, and for a moment Buffy felt it. She felt different, indescribably so. With her eyes shut, she tried to summon an understanding of the feeling, so she could tell Spike about it or else at least figure out what it meant for them.

“I think I’m ready,” Buffy concluded, even though it was only in a whisper. “For what lies ahead.”

When she first tried to pull back from the hug, Spike wouldn’t let her go. He made no other immediate response to her statement, and then an instant later he was tearing himself away from her and leading them both down the stairs.

“How’s that?” he asked, and one step behind him Buffy could only guess at his expression.

Nonetheless, she followed him, letting go of his hand only to shrug off her jacket and sling it over the newel post. “I… I have confidence, I guess?” she suggested, not really so sure about it even as she paused to unzip her boots. Everything inside her was turned the wrong way around. She didn’t know how she felt. “I think before I was worried… Well, I mean, the Shadowmen were all kinds of wrong, but you have to know who you are, right, before you accept any kind of…”

Boots unzipped, removed and left by the stairs, Buffy trailed off as she looked back up. Her gaze had fallen to Spike, naturally, but what was weird was that she could see him looking back at her. The horrible strip lights hadn’t been turned on, but there was a gentle, warm shadowy glow highlighting the angles of his face. OK, it got the tired lines as well, but it was almost how she remembered him in candlelight.

A quick glance towards the bed revealed the culprit. At some point during the day Spike had found an unused table lamp, one Buffy didn’t recognise and figured might have once been part of her mother’s décor for the dining room. The ceramic base was cracked and missing a chunk – it leaned drunkenly against the wall as it cast orange light through its shade.

That end of the bed, the foot of it, also had something new folded underneath it – a blanket, as far as Buffy could tell, something fuzzy. As for the sheets, it looked like they’d been ironed.

“Did you make things nice down here for me?” Buffy asked the guy who was her boyfriend, instantly distracted as she took in the cosy set-up.

“Not just for you,” Spike replied defensively, looking to one side of her.

Buffy had no shame not to take in the view. Spike was standing by his boxes and piles of things and clothes, which seemed neater somehow, his duster in folds on top of them and his boots unlaced where he’d just stepped free of them.

“You’ve got a delicate complexion,” Spike accused, continuing with his defensiveness as the silence hung. A glance her way and then he was scratching the back of his head. “Can’t see you right when it’s as dark as all get out.”

“You made things nice for me,” Buffy confirmed as she came over to him, just before she started pulling his t-shirt from his jeans. “You didn’t have to, you know,” she added conspiratorially, dragging cotton up his chest to reveal one well-lit plane of skin.

“Didn’t know when you’d next be down here,” Spike confessed easily, into his t-shirt, before she managed to get it over his head.

Appreciating the view, Buffy looped her fingers through Spike’s belt-loops and dragged his naked chest towards her – walking backwards until she was sat on the edge of the bed. There was something underneath her, like Spike had boosted the crappy mattress and put cushions under the sheets – outdoor chair cushions, she realised, as she wriggled into the crease and felt the ties. Yeah, they never used those.

Spike was oblivious to how such unexpected pampering was turning Buffy on. It was all a waste of time, his playing Martha Stewart, and yet…

He continued blithely. “Could’ve been… Thought it might not be till after,” he said, even as she popped his buttons. “You know, after… After everything.”

Buffy tapped her hands at the back of Spike’s calves, not listening. Obligingly, he shuffled forward, knees either side of her thighs.

Even as Buffy pulled down the zip on his jeans, Spike didn’t stop yammering. “Didn’t know what you’d be like,” he said. “Figured you’d be bitchy, maybe imperious.” It was comforting, really, Buffy thought. She curled her index fingers back into the handy loops of his waistband, parting the fly around Spike’s rather buoyant erection. “Well, you know, more than usual,” he carried on sarcastically. “Or… Oh.

Curling her fingers into fists, Buffy was glad to have something to hang onto as she suppressed her gag reflex and slid Spike in, out and then down the back of her throat.

Oh. Bloody hell.”

She was out of practice and it still made her eyes water, but it was fun, Buffy decided, to make Spike physically lose control. His legs trembled either side of hers; his torso curled in towards the pleasure she was giving him. One hand thudded against the wall behind her – the other ghosted around her shoulder, upper back and hairline, like he didn’t want to be forcing her onto him but had no idea how not to touch her.

“Oh,” Spike repeated again, the sound of it hitching in his throat. “Oh…

Soon gagging wasn’t the issue, so much as oxygen. Pushing Spike back – where he stumbled – Buffy breathed furiously through her nose as she returned to her more standard BJ repertoire. Useless above her, Spike didn’t seem to trust himself to speak. “Fuck,” he whispered, his hand bunching in her hair.

Buffy rolled her eyes, figuring Spike would see it. She scraped her teeth on him.

“Fuck,” he breathed again, to make his point. As his shock seemed to fade, he was then shuffling closer, making soft sounds of contentment. It sounded like he was in tonight for the romance, but Buffy didn’t much want that this time, because she knew what it meant. She slurped, trying to make her point.

Of course, you couldn’t just leave Spike to enjoy something. His fingers wandered, trailing around her scalp while Buffy tried to figure out what was making him shiver, this time. Then he found her ponytail and began tickling her with it, stroking her neck and under her jaw.

The silliness of it all, when he caught a tickly spot, and the proof that Spike had caught her mood and understood her, was definitely watching her… It made Buffy blush more than the part where her tongue dove into foreskin, where she sucked saliva so she could get him as wet as he liked.

“You’re amazing at this,” he whispered, like it was a secret, leaning low. Like she was… “You know that, right? You…”

As he trailed off, Buffy kept working and Spike bent himself nearly double. In a moment of weakness, Buffy let his hips pull back, so he could make his trip to kiss the back of her head, stroke her hair.

Buffy kissed him back, right on his cockhead, her mouth trembling and inexpert for a moment. Then she squeezed her eyes shut and took him in again, refusing to be as emotional as she’d been the night before.

In the end, for the most part, this moment with Spike was quick and familiar. Buffy took him all the way in one last time, because it made her shiver when he shuddered – but when he let go he was a gentleman. Supporting her head with his hand, a thumb rubbing behind her ear, he somehow managed to shoot far enough back that there wasn’t too much mess and far enough forward that she didn’t have to take all the splooge.

“All right, all right,” Spike surrendered as she set him free, slumping into her lap. Oof. Buffy was right on the edge of the bed, so he nearly slid down to the floor as he kissed her. Of course he did it anyway, fingers underneath her chin so she was looking up. Pretty soon the area around both their mouths was sticky.

This is why God invented Walmart shirts, Buffy thought as she grabbed the hem of her own. She shoved her other hand into Spike’s hair to hold him while she cleaned his face, then pulled the shirt higher to wipe her own mouth.

“You gonna tell me what that was in aid of?” Spike asked as Buffy pulled the chiffon layery-thing the rest of the way off.

She just looked at him, dropping the shirt past his shoulder and then glancing down between their naked chests. Maybe her breasts were a distraction, but she thought they were OK. “That’s a question now?”

“Yeah, you’re right,” Spike agreed, shoving forward so his knees were properly on the bed and taking her by the waist. “I don’t sodding care.”

Buffy snorted and then outright laughed as Spike tilted them sideways, landing on his back and pulling her on top of him into the gold, direct glow of the lamp. She squashed right up close and kissed him, getting as many fingers into his hair as she could fit. Running hands up her ribs and then down to heave her by the ass, Spike twined his socky feet around hers.

It was good, Buffy decided, reliving her best moves with Spike’s tongue this time. Of course, he had designs of his own, running his big toes into the arches of her feet until she was kicking and bucking at him.

Spike’s pillow was at that end of the bed, but it wasn’t for long, slipping and then flying off somewhere to the side of them. When it went, Buffy pouted, pulling back from Spike’s face. There was a fizzle in her feet that ran right up the inside of her legs, and it felt like a punishment. “Can a girl not suck a guy off anymore,” she asked while he looked at her, “without everyone assuming she has some ulterior motive?”

Spike sighed, like she’d caught him. “Are we going to talk about last night?” he asked, fond exasperation on his face.

The tone was light – all of everything around them was achingly light. And yet Buffy could feel the burn of the question somewhere between her heart and her stomach.

She pulled back slightly, not sure what to say. It wasn’t a change in subject, really, but…

Letting her go, Spike sat them both up a little. He ran two fingers down the centre line of her chest and there was determination in the set of his knuckles, no matter that his dick was semi-soft underneath her. “I need to talk to you,” he pressed.

“Well, I’m right here,” Buffy answered easily, keeping her cool even as her heart swelled and pitched like a microwaved marshmallow.

Naturally, even when Spike seemed pretty calm, he wasn’t. He looked at her, urgency in his eyes. “You are, aren’t you?” he asked, a little desperately. A moment more and then he seemed to realise it. “You are,” he repeated, like he was in love with her and it hurt. “What are you… What are you doing here?”

Buffy narrowed her eyes, staring him down with her weight on her hands and her back arched like a stripper. Spike didn’t let up the challenge, just tucked his trailing fingers into the front of her jeans.

OK, Buffy knew she should have realised; obviously she should have. One night with Spike and he was going to nest; he was going to think about what everything meant. He was a futureholic, or something else that tied up all the parts where he was adaptable and determined and a worrier and a killer improviser.

OK, goddammit, this was why Buffy loved him, because when she broke down he would kick her out of bed and make her get on with her life. Then when she was fooling around, when it was necessary, he would come gunning for her and make her face it, look at her like this.

It wasn’t like Buffy even wanted to excuse herself. She just… She had no idea who she’d be tomorrow, so how was it fair to talk about things today? It wasn’t over yet. It couldn’t be.

“I think you know what it’s about,” was what Buffy said in the end, uncomfortably, rolling over to his side. “Everybody does.” That part at least was true.

“And yet I’m not one for the rumour mill,” Spike drawled, turning on his elbow to look at her. “It’s prone to get things confused.”

With her eyes squeezed shut, Buffy didn’t know what to say. She just wanted him to love her again, not run down his hopes like this, when they weren’t wrong – they weren’t. She just couldn’t say it and make it true when there was so much at risk like there was. “Please, Spike,” she whispered. The silence hung. “Please…” she managed to continue. “Will you ask me again after this is over?” she couldn’t look at him when she asked for this, not for something so unfair. “Will you do that for me?”

His fingers trailed through her hair. Half of it was stuck on the sweat of her temples; half her ponytail was stubbornly intact. Naked from the waist up, Buffy shivered, feeling small and mostly like she was made of bones.

As he twirled one lock from her forehead, Spike tweaked the hair until Buffy opened her eyes. “You live in a world of fear, Summers,” was what he said, like it was a serious fault.

Smiling, Buffy touched her fingers to his cheek and tried to let him know how she felt. At least while she still had the opportunity.


[bodies V]


quinara: Sheep on a hillside with a smiley face. (Default)

December 2015

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