Christmas/New Year fic 2016
Takes place the Christmas after NFA – non-comic compliant
HERE COMES SANTA CLAUS
“Come on, Buffy. It’s just a Christmas party. It’ll be fun. Who knows? Maybe Santa will make an appearance.”
Buffy shuddered. “I’ve met Santa. Trust me, you don’t want that guy showing up at a party where there are kids.” She frowned. “Or non-slayer adults for that matter.”
“I’m pretty sure I don’t want to know what you mean by that, but if it’s true, then isn’t it like, your duty or something, to be there in case he does?”
Buffy narrowed her eyes at Dawn. “You of all people should know how much I don’t feel like celebrating Christmas.”
Dawn sighed and nodded. “I do. And I totally get it. Believe it or not, I miss him too. But you know there’s nothing we can do about it. He’s gone. You know it, and I know it. I know you went over that alley with a fine toothed comb, looking for his dust, or his coat, or something. And all you found—”
“Was this.” Buffy held up the Zippo lighter she always had with her.
“Is that,” Dawn finished. “Which you don’t even know for sure is his.”
“I do so. See this little mark here? I did that one night when—never mind. I made that mark. It is his lighter.”
“Which only means he was there. Which you already knew from Lorne. He was there, and now he’s nowhere to be found… and neither is Angel. They’re dust, Buffy.” Dawn winced when she saw her sister’s normally stoic expression crumble for a moment, but she went on. “It’s okay to be sad. But he wouldn’t want you to stop living your life just because he can’t be in it anymore.”
“I never gave much thought to what he wanted when he was around, don’t see why I should start now that he isn’t.” Buffy tried to sound determined, but she could see that Dawn sensed she was weakening.
“Well, who knows? Maybe he’s watching you from somewhere and he’ll be happy to see you doing what he wants for a change. Come on. Say you’ll come to the party. It’s not like I’m asking you to bring a date, or to find some guy there and drag him off for hot monkey sex—”
Buffy gave another shudder. “We agreed never to mention that again.”
Dawn snickered. “You were only told to find out more about the Immortal—not start dating him.”
“I was vulnerable,” Buffy muttered, her face flushed with embarrassment. “I plead temporary insanity or magic or something. I wasn’t me!”
“Relax. According to Willow and Giles it was all of those things. And I think you made up for it by beheading him when you snapped out of it.”
“Still… there’s an ick factor that just won’t go away.”
“Fine. So you’re too squicked out to be interested in men right now. Doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a party. You like to dance. You like to eat and drink—okay, forget the drinking—but there’s lots of stuff you could enjoy.”
“Okay, okay. I give up. I’ll come. But I’m not promising to have a good time.”
“Be as miserable as you want to. Just be there.”
Buffy watched Dawn walk out the door, trying to decide if she could develop a terrible cold between now and the night of the party, or if she should just suck it up and attend for an hour or so. With a sigh, she decided it was her duty as the titular Head Slayer to at least make an appearance at the planned Christmas event next week.
Buffy stood in the entrance to the big ballroom and gazed around. She waved and smiled as she was greeted by other slayers and the Council employees she’d met. While Dawn had become a part of the newly formed Slayers and Watchers Council, sliding easily into the scholarly lifestyle, Buffy had held herself somewhat aloof.
She preferred to patrol on her own when she was in London, and to travel around the world anywhere there seemed to be hotspots of demonic activity to support the local slayers as she was needed. If anyone pointed out that it was a very solitary lifestyle for someone who’d always had friends and family around, she would just shrug and say, “Time for me to figure out who Buffy is and what she wants.”
What Buffy wanted, was to have a chance to tell Spike she’d meant it when she said she loved him. When she’d learned he came back but hadn’t come to her immediately, the guilt that she'd waited so long to say it began to haunt her. And when she learned that he and Angel had seen her dancing with the Immortal and gone back to LA without even asking for an explanation…. At Giles’ suggestion, Andrew had taken a long trip to another continent to look for more slayers. He’d been told not to return until Buffy had forgiven him for sending Spike away. The new girls still arriving occasionally from South America indicated he was still, quite wisely, staying far away from her.
Because what she wanted wasn’t on the list of possibilities, she remained somewhat solitary and removed from the life around her. She did her job. She made small talk when she needed to, but she rarely socialized with anyone and her reaction to any suggestion that she begin dating again was met with barely restrained violence. Only Dawn was brave enough to poke at the scab from time to time, and even she knew better than to try to fix Buffy up with anyone.
“I’ll be ready, when I’m ready,” Buffy had said firmly. “Morty was an accident … and a disaster. And even he knew he wouldn’t have gotten anywhere with me if Spike was around, or if he didn’t cheat and use magic. He admitted it just before I killed him. So, just leave me alone about this. It’s not like it’s been years or something. I’m entitled to some grieving time.”
She sighed and moved farther into the room, working her way toward the table holding food and punch. She smiled her approval when she noticed the occasional slayer who was obviously on guard duty rather than party duty. It wasn’t likely anything would be stupid enough to attack a slayer event, but you never knew what might try to take advantage of the holiday’s possibly lowered vigilance.
Nibbling on a cookie, she wandered toward the tree and the large chair beside it. She frowned when she realized who the chair was for, but relaxed when a small, plump man with twinkling blue eyes came out from behind the curtain to sit in it. He smiled at Buffy’s suspicious appraisal, saying, “I’m the real deal. The one you’re worried about is on the roof, but he’s quite busy right now.”
“Busy doing what?” Buffy frowned and put her cookie down, looking around for a weapon.
“I believe he’s in some sort of altercation with what I had intended to be your present,” Santa said. “You may want to check on them to make sure your gift isn’t being damaged.”
Shaking her head at his confusing words, Buffy never-the-less borrowed a sword from one of the slayers on guard duty and took the stairs to the roof. She ran lightly, but quickly, curious as to what her gift might be and how it was preventing Evil Santa from crashing the party.
She burst out onto the roof to find Spike, his coat in tatters from the demon’s claws, snarling at Evil Santa, who was baring his pointed teeth and mocking the vampire.
“You think you can stop me? With your puny teeth and claws and your stupid ‘I’ve got a soul’ attitude? I remember you from before you had that soul. You couldn’t take me then, and you can’t do it now.”
“Bet he can if he has a little help,” Buffy said, recovering from her momentary shock and delight and stepping up on Spike’s right. She twirled her sword meaningfully.
“Slayer,” the Santa demon snarled.
“Fake Santa,” she said back. “You just never know when to stay away, do you?”
“How did you know—” The demon’s beady black eyes projected pure menace.
“Real Santa sent me. He said my present was up here fighting with you and I should probably come up and make sure it doesn’t get damaged.” She narrowed her eyes at the snarling Santa. “If you’ve damaged him….”
“I’m fine, love. Coat’s had it, but I’m fine.” Buffy cut a quick glance at Spike as he shrugged out of the tattered coat, dropping it behind him. “Real Santa, huh?” he asked as casually as if they’d just spoken that morning.
“I think so. He seemed nice.” Buffy responded just as casually, then turned her glare back on the snarling demon in front of them. “You don’t seem nice,” she said, advancing toward him. “If I remember right, you eat children or turn them into evil elves.”
Evil Santa began to back up, only to find Spike had circled behind him and picked up his own weapon. While Buffy kept Santa’s attention on her and the point of her sword, Spike was able to get close enough to take a swipe at the demon’s neck. The head was only partially severed, and it began to right itself as they watched. Buffy swung her sword from the opposite side, cutting through the neck from that direction while Spike took another whack from his side. Their swords met in the middle with a clash of steel and flying sparks. Evil Santa’s head came off and rolled across the roof, spouting curses the entire way. The rest of Evil Santa remained standing, claws at the ready.
“Bloody hell. What does it take to kill this thing?” Spike growled.
Buffy frowned at the still standing body and the severed head. “I guess we could chop him into little bitty bits,” she said. “Let’s try that.”
The body turned to run, but Buffy was right behind it, swinging her sword at its legs. She cut one of them in half, causing it to stumble and giving Spike time to sever the other leg. When a clawed hand reached for Buffy, she sliced through the arm and sent it flopping to the rooftop.
The torso roared, and a giant mouth burst out of the round belly, it’s teeth gnashing.
“Aha!” Spike said. “That’s where the brain is located.” He ran his sword into the mouth, barely avoiding the teeth that snapped at his arm. Buffy ran behind the shrieking monster and stabbed it in the back. With one last shriek and a gurgle, it fell over and was still. Spike walked over to the still cursing head and picked it up by the hair. He carried it to Buffy and said, “What do you think, love? Is this an independent body part, or just something too stupid to know it’s dead?”
“I don’t know. Try stepping on it.”
Spike dropped the head and brought one of his booted heels down on it. He continued to stomp on it until there was no more sound except the squelching of broken bone and flesh. They looked from the head to the various limbs scattered around the roof.
“I think there’s an incinerator,” Buffy said, making a face as she gingerly picked up a severed leg and held it away from her clothes. She walked to a pull-out slot labeled “trash” and opened it, dropping the leg down the chute. Within minutes, the only sign of the fight were some scraps of fur and demon ichor.
“So,” Buffy said, still trying for casual, but failing badly. “You aren’t dead… again.”
“Easy there, love. Wasn’t holding out on you this time. I just got back in this dimension last night and went looking for you, but you weren’t home and the Bit said—”
“Dawn knew? I’m going to kill her!”
“She thought I’d make a nice Christmas surprise.” He cocked his head at her. “Was she wrong?”
Buffy sighed and moved closer to him. “Of course not. It’s the best Christmas present I’ve ever had. But I could have had it yesterday!”
Spike shook his head. “Still would have had to take care of Evil Santa. This way we got to do it together.” He frowned. “Did you say a Santa told you to come up here?”
“Yeah. He looked like the real deal, and he told me my present was on the roof.”
“Huh. I wonder how… oh well. He was right. And I prob'ly needed the help.”
“Guess we should go down and thank him, huh?” She turned away too quickly to notice the hand he was reaching toward her face.
He sighed and nodded, dropping his arm. “’S’pose we should at that. After you, love.”
Trying to hide her disappointment that he didn’t seem happier to see her, Buffy led the way to the stairs. By the time they reached the right floor, she’d decided not to wait for him to make the first move.
When they reached the floor the party was on, she stopped before the door. She gave a sigh, squared her shoulders, and turned around to make her declaration only to find Spike already reaching for her. With a relieved sob, she leapt into his arms. They clung together for several minutes, holding each other tightly enough to have injured an ordinary human, and alternating kisses with murmured expressions of happiness. Finally stopping long enough to put their foreheads together, Spike said, “I love you, Buffy. I never stopped loving you, it was just—”
“You didn’t think I really meant it,” she said.
“Knew you meant it at the time, love. But… and then grandpa bit off a bit more than he could chew by himself, and….” He pulled back a little and smiled softly. “I’m an idiot.”
“Yes you are,” she growled. “And if I didn’t really love you, I’d kick your ass for it.”
“My arse is yours, love. Do with it whatever you’d like.”
She reached down and pinched his butt, giggling when he growled and pulled her closer.
“Later. We’ve got a Santa to thank first.”
She pulled open the door, taking his hand and walking toward the party room. They paused to return the guard’s sword. “Didn’t have anything to clean it off with,” Buffy apologized with a smile. “I’m sorry.”
The girl shrugged. “No problem, Boss Slayer. As long as it got the job done.”
“It did. So thanks.”
The girl nodded, but never took her eyes off Spike and the sword he was still holding.
“Watch this for me, will you, luv?” he said, handing her the hilt of the sword he’d been using. Without waiting for an answer, they continued toward the party, walking in casually and trying to pretend they didn’t hear the whispers going around the room. They went directly to where Santa was holding court, one child on his lap and a short line of others waiting less than patiently.
Buffy frowned. “That’s not him.”
“That’s not who? Hi, Spike.” Dawn walked up beside them and gave him a satisfied smile. “I told you she’d be here.”
“Santa Claus,” Buffy said. “That’s not the Santa I talked to earlier.”
Dawn shook her head. “It’s the only one we’ve got,” she said. “He was running late, so he just got here. You couldn’t have talked to him before.”
“But I—” Spike gave her a small nudge, and she stopped speaking to stare at him with wide eyes. “You don’t think—”
“I think we both owe Father Christmas a debt, love. Someday maybe we’ll get a chance to pay him back.”
“I don’t know what either one of you is talking about, but as long as you’re both here, you may as well party.”
“You’re joking, right?” Spike put his arms around Buffy and held her tightly to his chest.
Buffy nodded her agreement. “We have a lot of catching up to do. Things to talk about, places to go, things to do…”
Dawn rolled her eyes and sighed. “Right. ‘Catching up to do’. Do you think I was born yesterday?” She shrugged. “Okay, be party poopers. Try to get it out of your systems before I get home tonight, ‘k?”
“Party poopers, huh?” Buffy giggled as they walked out, hands linked.
“I liked the part about getting it out of our systems. Not that I expect that’s possible, but I reckon if we have a few hours to ourselves we might be able to take the edge off.”
“What edge?” Buffy blinked at him in mock innocence, laughing when he growled at her.
“I’ve got an edge to take off, Slayer. Not all of us— Never mind, pet. Know that wasn’t your fault.”
“I’m sorry,” she said angrily, releasing his hand as she realized what he’d been about to say. “I thought you were dead and I—”
“An’ that wanker took advantage of it to work a spell on you. I know all his tricks, Buffy. Don’t blame you. Sorry I brought it up.” He put his arm around her shoulders. “It’s forgotten.”
“I killed him, you know. Cut his head right off.”
“That’s my girl,” he said with a smile and a squeeze.
“I am your girl. Even when I thought you were gone, I still felt like your girl. I missed you, Spike.”
“Let’s see what we can do to fix that, yeah?” he said, holding the outer door for her while she unlocked the one leading to the flat she shared with Dawn.
In spite of his words, when they’d entered the apartment and closed and locked the door behind them, they fumbled to regain the sense of comfort and ease that had been there when they had something to fight against together.
“Well. Here it is. This is where I live now. With Dawn.”
“Know that, love. I was here yesterday, remember? That’s why you didn’t have to ask me in.” His hands in his pockets, he appeared to be waiting for her to make the next move.
“Oh yeah. Right. I knew that. Silly me.” She turned away, looking around as if she’d never seen the place before. “Oh, I almost forgot! Here. This is yours.” She took the lighter from her front pocket and held it out.”
Looking bemused, he took it from her and turned it over. His eyes grew big. “It is mine! How the bloody hell did—”
“I found it. In the alley where you… I found it. I was looking for something… anything that would tell me where… but all I found was this.”
“And you kept it.” There was wonder in his voice, and she sent her gaze flying up to meet his.
“Of course I kept it! It was… it was all I had left.” Suddenly their mutual discomfort about being alone vanished and they came together, hands constantly moving as if trying to memorize faces and bodies. When their clothing began getting in the way of their need to reacquaint themselves with the feel and scent of each other’s skin, it was quickly discarded—some in more pieces than it had started out.
They sank to the floor, both naked, but unable to stop their constant frantic touching long enough to take it any further. In one of their brief stops, Spike reached to cradle Buffy’s cheeks. Their eyes met and held. Suddenly the frantic touches took on more purpose. Spike lowered his head until their lips were touching, breathing her name as she opened her mouth to pull him into a hungry kiss.
With both of them already naked, it took only a few kisses before Buffy’s legs fell open and she wrapped them around Spike’s hips. With a groan, he slid into her, causing them to give matching gasps.
“Welcome home, Spike,” she whispered as they began moving together as if it hadn’t been almost three years since they’d last been in that position.
“Wanted to take my time and make it good for you, love, but it’s been too long since I’ve been here. Want to stay like this forever.”
‘Later,” she murmured as he increased his speed and she began to climb to the heights only he had ever been able to take her. “You can make it good for me later….”
She squeezed around him, smiling when he moaned his appreciation. When she felt him shift into vampire mode, she yelped at the change inside her and clamped down even harder. Suddenly he was touching a place no one else had ever found, and she allowed her full slayer strength free rein as she met him thrust for thrust, and twist for twist.
With a keening wail, she arched up into him and clenched around him, her powerful arms and legs holding him in place as she shook under him. His answering roar of release went on for what seemed like minutes before he collapsed on top of her, his face buried in her neck. She felt him shift back into his human mien and sighed along with him.
They remained still, each lost in memories and regrets for lost opportunities. Buffy felt the moisture on her neck and knew she wasn’t the only one moved to tears by the gift they’d been given.
“Thank you, Santa Claus,” she said. “We owe you one.”
“That we do,” he replied. “At least one.”
Feeling him begin to stir within her, Buffy stretched and suggested, “Why don’t we move this to my room… and the bed?”
He snorted and reluctantly rolled off to lie beside her. “What? You don’t think the Bit would be happy to come home and find us like this?”
“Not in the middle of the living room,” Buffy said as she sat up and stroked his semi-erect cock. “You just hold that thought until we get to the bed,” she giggled.
“Rather you held it, but I reckon if we let it, it’ll just follow you wherever you go.”
Buffy stood up, and extended her hand to him. He was leaning on his elbows and staring up at her.
“Right!” he said, taking her hand and allowing her to pull him to his feet. “Just got distracted by one of my favorite sights.”
Buffy giggled again and let go of his hand, bending down to start picking up their clothes from the floor. As she did so, Spike stared at her bare ass and whimpered.
“Okay, now you’re just messin’ with me.” He snatched up the rest of their belongings and followed her down the hall to her room.
“Not yet. But I’m going to be,” she snickered. As soon as he was in the room, she closed the door and moved a dresser in front of it. “But I don’t want to be interrupted.”
“I like the way you think, love.” Spike dropped his clothes and jumped onto the bed, rolling onto his back and spreading his arms and legs. “Here I am. Ready to be messed with.”
Buffy looked at him and licked her lips. “This could take a while. I’ve missed that body more than you know.”
“Not as much as I’ve missed yours,” he growled, sitting up and reaching for her. “Gonna show you how much as soon as you get that luscious arse in this bed.”
He tugged and Buffy left the floor, landing on top of him and knocking him flat again. “Are we going to fight about this? Who gets to do what to who first?”
“Bloody hell, I hope so,” he said, grabbing her legs and pulling her up to his face. “I think I’m gonna win the first round,” he said as he used his tongue to wring a gasp from her. “But feel free to stop me.”
“I will,” she said, beginning to whimper. “Any minute now….”
When Dawn got home several hours later, the only sounds from Buffy’s room were occasional murmurs too low to be understood, and the occasional giggle. She thumped on the door as she went by.
“I’m home now, and I need some sleep. So keep it down in there.”
The only response was another giggle and something that sounded suspiciously like “It won’t stay down.”
She rolled her eyes and entered her own room, a wide smile on her face. “Merry Christmas,” she whispered as she closed the door. “Merry Christmas to us all.”
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