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Once Spike had healed sufficiently he set about finding the treasure. I was shocked and chagrined when Spike handed me the ring that would make him invincible for safe keeping. In a later conversation between Spike, Joyce and myself Spike explained that he knew I didn’t trust him completely yet. So he was giving me the ring to hold until such time as I felt he had earned my trust as a good faith gesture. I admit I did question his motives for quite a while assuming that this was just a way for us to lower our defenses around the vampire. But Joyce and Dawn were very vocal in their protests that Spike was not trying to lull us into a false sense complacency before killing us all.
After having Joyce auction the rest of the treasure, Spike purchased a house and placed it under the name of my slayer. I was unaware that demons were able to purchase housing and Spike explained to me that there was an entire network set up for demons in Sunnydale. I can only explain its existence by thinking that the former Mayor, himself a demon, created this network when he founded the town over 100 years ago.
Spike explained to me that, had he left the deed under his name any manner of vampire could enter it unimpeded. By placing the deed in Buffy’s name however, the domicile was protected and could be used as a safe house should the unfortunate need to do so arise. He has also opened his home to our meetings and to Buffy’s younger sister and mother. Dawn can be frequently found at Spike’s house after school doing her homework and playing with her cat that a demon named Clem gave her. Clem had been introduced to Joyce and Dawn by Spike when he was out of town and writing letters to the two of them, often acting as a courier service of sorts.
As time went by Spike proved him self more than proficient at assisting Buffy with her patrols, often giving her a night off and performing the task himself. As the months went by Buffy and Spike started to become friends and I must admit that I was grateful for the assistance Spike provided. Especially as Buffy began her sophomore year of college. Buffy and Spike began seeing one another in a more non-platonic light during her freshman year of college. At first I was against the relationship, having suffered through Angel and the horrors that befell us. But as I have learned my slayer thinks for her self, thus I knew telling her that I didn’t approve would make no difference. As I have come to see Spike as something other than a soulless monster, I can now see that he and Angel are completely different. Spike patrols every night, either with Buffy or without her. He comes to us immediately when he hears of any rumours in the demon world that we should be concerned with. And contrary to Angel, Spike has made a concerted effort to befriend the people Buffy holds dear. During this year alone we have had many battles and Spike has been there for all of them, frequently putting himself in harms way for one or more of us. On Thanksgiving he placed himself in front of Dawn to protect her from a volley of arrows that were being shot at us during a siege by vengeance spirits. He had risked his life for a teenage girl with no thought to his own safety.
Angel was present that day after one of his co-workers had received a vision of Buffy in danger and in direct contrast to Spike’s actions Angel hid in the shadows and insisted that none of us reveal his presence to Buffy. The children informed me that he did aid us in the fight against the spirits during the siege before he quickly left to return to LA. I believe this incident was the final straw in the relationship between Angel and Buffy.
This seemed to be a turning point for Buffy and Spike as well. The stark contrast between the two vampires in their treatment of Buffy could not have been more clearly defined. I firmly believe that Buffy saw Angel’s actions as again treating her like a child with no mind or thought for herself. Since things turned out the way they have I can say my earlier reticence regarding Buffy and Spike was ill placed.
Shortly after Thanksgiving, the young Mr. Osborne left town in an attempt to control the werewolf inside of him. Willow was devastated by his departure and in her grief she placed a “My Will Be Done” spell upon herself unintentionally. She managed to make me blind, turned Xander into a demon magnet (as most of his attempts at romance tend to turn out to be with women who are demons) and she also willed Buffy and Spike to become engaged. I must admit that at the time I was horrified, but looking back on it now I can see the beginnings of the relationship they have now. Spike was attentive and caring towards her but in no way made her feel helpless. He seems to be able to reach both sides of her, the girl and the slayer, and he truly seems to love both. This is something I think that Angel was never able to feel towards Buffy. This event combined with the incident at Thanksgiving moved Buffy and Spike towards a relationship not without some starts and stops. I believe that Buffy was worried what we might say if she became involved with another vampire and it was this worry that made her say the things she did when the spell was broken. Spike’s reaction to the hurtful words she levied against him made me begin to understand that demons, or at least some rare individuals, might be able to have honest emotions.
Spike came to my assistance later that year. Ethan Rayne showed back up in town and against my better judgment I went out for drinks with him. Afterwards I awoke to find myself changed into a Fyarl demon. With Spike’s help we were able to get things changed back to normal. Spike ran Ethan out of town and told him to never to return.
Spike would later once again prove that he has Buffy’s best interest in mind. A former classmate of the children used a spell to make himself into a kind of superstar. Every one, myself included, deferred to Jonathon. Buffy kept trying to tell us that there was something wrong with the situation but we all refused to listen. The only one that believed her was Spike, he encouraged her to listen to her gut instincts, to use his own words, and in the end Buffy was able to break the hold the spell had created. I found myself quite chagrined afterwards and even worse I felt the need to apologize to Buffy and to my mortification Spike.
It was during Buffy’s sophomore year of college that events started to spiral out of control in Sunnydale. Joyce became ill with what we later learned was a brain tumour. Buffy was beside herself with worry, to the point that she believed that there was a magical attack behind her mother's failing health. She proceeded to convince Willow to provide her with a spell to find out what was causing her mother’s illness. The spell revealed something none of us were prepared for. It seems that Dawn is not really Buffy’s younger sister. She was placed here only a few months ago by a group of monks sworn to protect the Key, a mystical object able to unlock any portal. Dawn is that key, given human life and sent to the slayer for protection. We have since discovered that all of our memories have been changed to include Dawn in our lives.
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