Chapter 4 – An Enthusiastic Effort
Buffy burst into her dorm room, flopped on her bed and stared at the ceiling. She was exhausted. It was only their first day together and Spike had worn her out.
Willow looked up from her books, and asked, “Where’s Spike? I thought he was supposed to be with you? What if he runs away?”
Buffy pulled on her hair from pure Spike aggravation. “He’s downstairs smoking a cigarette. I hope he runs away to the ends of the earth. I hope he gets stuck ten feet under the Hellmouth. You have no idea, Will, what he put me through tonight.”
Willow sighed. She didn’t regret turning down D’Hoffryn’s offer to make her a Vengeance Demon, but if she’d accepted, she could be granting Buffy’s wish. Was a hope the same as a wish?
“I thought you were going to the mall?” Willow got up and sat on her own bed. Comforting girl talk is always best from a cushiony place.
“We went to the mall. It was a nightmare.”
Buffy walked up to the mall entrance door, with Spike close behind her. He was practically walking on her heels. She reached for the door handle, but he grabbed it first and opened the door for her.
“What do you think you’re doing?”
“Holding the door?”
“I did it to be polite. You know, gents hold doors for ladies?”
“Are you sure you weren’t sneaking up to bite me on my neck or something?”
“Sod it all, Slayer. I have a chip in my head. I’d have a migraine for a week if I bit you. You’re not worth the pain.”
Buffy frowned. She thought she was attractive enough to be worth a vampire bite. Other girls who didn’t look as good as she did got bit all the time.
Spike was still holding the door open, so she walked through.
“Don’t worry, you suspicious bint. I won’t do anything polite again,” he said.
Buffy thought about the positive reinforcement program she was working on, which was the whole reason she was dragging Spike to the mall with her. He had done something nice, holding the door for her, and she supposed he ought to be rewarded with a zap. Professor Walsh told her not to be too critical about giving him zaps, especially at first, but to give him zaps on the smallest pretext. Buffy didn’t want to discourage him from being polite, either. Their time together would go a lot smoother if he was polite.
“It’s okay if you do polite stuff. I don’t mind. You surprised me, that’s all.”
She scrounged around in her patrol bag and dug out the control box. The controls had been way too high this morning and she didn’t want Spike to pass out again. She lowered the voltage by half and gave Spike a zap.
Buffy checked Spike to make sure he was okay after the zap and before she knew what was happening found herself kissing him and sticking her tongue in his mouth.
It’s a good thing there’s a ladies’ room right down the hall, she thought.
“First, we went to the Cut Me Salon so I could get my hair trimmed and my legs waxed,” Buffy said, leaving out their detour to the stall in the ladies’ room. “He flirted with all the girls. He got them to paint his fingernails and cut his hair without an appointment. You know they never do anything without an appointment. Marsalette gave him a hand massage and she looked like she was ready to massage other parts of his body, too. It cost me an extra hundred bucks to get him out of there. He wanted to help with my bikini wax, too. I had to threaten to stake him.”
Willow giggled. “That’s funny, Buff.”
“Funny for you. My mom’s going to kill me when she gets the bill.”
Buffy stared in the mirror, but she wasn’t watching Raylene trim her hair. She wasn’t watching Spike either, since she couldn’t see him in the mirror. All she could see was Marsalette, the manicure girl, waving a bottle of black fingernail polish in the air and painting nothingness.
She could hear everything, though. Spike was gushing. Buffy thought she was going to hurl.
“It was kind of you to take me without an appointment, Marsalette. I hope it wasn’t too much trouble.”
“Oh, no trouble at all, William. I don’t get many male customers who appreciate how important nice looking nails are to their grooming. Would you like a hand massage?”
Buffy saw Marsalette squirm in her seat as she massaged the air with a warm, damp cloth. She heard Spike groan with pleasure. Buffy fumed.
When they left the salon an hour and a half later, Spike was in a cheerful mood.
“How about giving me a zap, Slayer? It’s been over an hour since you gave me one. How often am I supposed to get a zap, any way?” These zaps aren’t half bad, he thought.
Buffy sniffed. She didn’t think Spike deserved a zap after his rude behavior while she was getting her bikini wax.
“You get a zap when I say so and I’m not giving you a zap.”
“Why not? It’s not costing you any cosh is it?”
Cosh? Did he mean money? Buffy hated when Spike talked in code.
“If you mean money, you’ve already cost me plenty. My mom is going to kill me for putting your haircut on her credit card. Besides, you behaved very badly in the Cut Me and I don’t think I should reward you.”
“I was the perfect gent. All the girls were in love with me. Marsalette asked me to come back.”
“You must have been thralling her.”
“I never did such a poncy thing in my unlife, not that I don’t know how,” Spike said, straightening his coat to show he was above such undignified behavior as thralling a female to get his way. Then, he recalled how Buffy had been staring at him, well Marsalette actually, in the mirror and the angry look on her face.
“I would only be jealous of you, Captain Peroxide, if I lived on Planet Bizarro. I don’t care what females you associate with as long as you don’t bite them and I get my project done.”
Spike smiled and watched her cute little butt wiggle as she stomped off.
“Where else did you go?” Willow asked.
“We went into the new leather clothing store so I could try on some pants and stuff to wear on patrol and he followed me into the ladies’ changing room. Big Bad’s excuse was the security guards couldn’t see him in the two-way mirrors because he’s a vampire. I thought I was going to get a cramp in my arm from waving Mr. Pointy at him.”
“Will you get out of here? I’m busy,” Buffy said as she fished around in her patrol bag for Mr. Pointy.
“You’re busy with your clothes off, pet. I didn’t get to see your goodies before, Slayer. Do a turn about for me so I can admire the view.”
“These are security mirrors, Fang Face. The security guards can see us. Get out!”
Where the hell did her stake go? She found the zapper and hit the button. That should hold Spike until she found her stake.
“The gits can’t see me, Slayer. Vampire, remember? I don’t have a reflection, besides it’s more exciting if you might get caught.” Spike stopped arguing and nibbled on her neck and slid his hands onto her butt.
Buffy found her stake at the bottom of her bag. She pulled it out and held it in her limp hand. Spike’s hands and mouth were very distracting.
“Put that stake away,” Spike said. “It’s not nice to be threatening your lover with that thing. You might hurt my feelings.”
“You are not my lover and vampires don’t have feelings.” Buffy unzipped his pants.
“Feel that, Slayer?”
Buffy couldn’t believe she bought Spike’s lies about the mirrors.
“Did you get a chance to check out that new, sexy underwear store?” Willow asked.
“Yeah, and Spike shoplifted stuff and perved on me the entire time.” Buffy told Willow the G-rated version of their visit to the sexy underwear store.
Spike held up some red panties with black lace.
“You’d look good in these. Want to try them on?”
“You’re a pig and I would not. Those things don’t have a crotch and they’re all open and flapping around and open and ewww.”
“They’re perfect for an oversexed girl like you. Just right for that short leather skirt you just bought.” Spike tucked the panties, along with some other stuff, into the inside chest pocket of his coat.
I’m not oversexed, Buffy thought. I normal sexed. Aren’t I?
“Put those back. Look, here comes the security guard. We have to leave.”
“I’m not through shopping.”
“Not through stealing, you mean,” Buffy said. She pulled the control box out of her bag and gave Spike another zap. How many zaps had she given him so far? “You’ll have to behave now.”
“I’ll be very good, luv.”
Buffy did not mention what happened after the guards chased them out of the store. Spike pulled her down an access hall and cornered her in a janitor’s closet. What an animal he was. What an orgasm he’d given her.
“What about patrol?” Willow said.
“Patrol was the worst of all. He talked all the time we were out. I only scared up a single vamp. I zapped Spike to get him to shut up so I could kill the vamp.”
Buffy shushed Spike for the third time since they arrived at the cemetery.
“Will you please shut up? How can I kill any vamps if you’re talking to me all the time and scaring them off?”
“They’re not worth killing if they’re scared off by a little chat. This place is dead. Let’s go to the Bronze and get pissed.”
She didn’t answer Spike. Answering him only encouraged him to talk more. Buffy checked out the date on a new headstone. No, this wasn’t the fledgling she was looking for; she’d dusted this vampire three days ago.
The full moon was overhead. Spike caused so many delays at the mall, they hadn’t arrived at the cemetery until almost midnight. Buffy hoped the newbie hadn’t already popped out of his grave and scampered off. She didn’t want to have to look for him tomorrow night when he was stronger.
“Say, Slayer, did your Watcher ever tell you about how the moon affects vampires?”
The moon and vampires? What was he trying to pull? “I thought it was the moon and werewolves. Are you going to shapeshift or something on me?”
“Course not. You don’t know much about vampires, do you? The moon gives us extra strength. It makes us last longer, get bigger…” Spike grabbed her hand and put it on his crotch so she could feel for herself the positive effect the moonlight was having.
Buffy snatched her hand away. How the hell did he do that? He was even bigger than before. “Knock it off, sex addict.”
“Addicted to you, baby. That was a pretty hot blowjob you gave me earlier. I could do with another go with your hot mouth on me. I might give you some tips on improving your technique. How about getting on your knees?”
“I warned you.”
Buffy told Willow a white lie about killing the vamp and left out a great deal of the other events that transpired at the graveyard. Spike talked and talked until she zapped him. She hadn’t even had a chance to catch her breath before she found herself giving Spike a blowjob and getting grass stains on the knees of her new leather pants. While she was occupied, the only vamp they’d seen all evening crept up on them. It was only by accident Spike saw him and staked the fledgling in time. To hear him tell it, he’d gallantly saved Buffy from violent death.
Spike knocked on the door and called out for an invitation.
“Come in, Spike,” Buffy said. She braced herself for more Spike exasperation.
“Hey, Red,” he said, “Slayer and I are going to be roommates.”
Buffy did not like the insinuating way he said ‘roommates.’ She didn’t want Willow getting any ideas about what she and Spike had been up to all afternoon and evening. She gave Spike a glare intended to shut him up and whipped Mr. Pointy out of the back of her pants and dropped it on her desk with a thump. Spike was not deterred.
“Where am I sleeping, luv?” he asked, checking out the room. “Is this your bed, Slayer? It looks nice and comfy.”
“I’m sure you’ll be perfectly fine on the floor. It’s bound to be a step up from the bathtub,” Buffy said. She had no intention of letting Spike get comfortable, especially not in her bed.
“Actually, Buffy,” Willow said, “I’m spending the night with the new girl I met at Wicca to work on some spells. My bed will be empty.”
Buffy jumped out of her bed and rushed over to talk to Willow. “No, Willow, this is not necessary. I’ll take Spike back to Giles’ place for the night. I’m sure he isn’t going to do anything that deserves a reward zap.”
Buffy signaled Willow she didn’t want to be left alone with Spike, but it was useless. Willow was never good at picking up signals. Her overnight bag was already packed and she ran out the door before Buffy could say another word.
“I’m tired after all your shopping and such, Slayer. I think I’d prefer to bed down right here.” Spike dropped onto her bed and patted the mattress. It was splendid lying on the Slayer’s semi-virginal bed, smelling her perfume and her sweat and other things besides.
“You could join me, Slayer. There’s plenty of room.”
Buffy accepted defeat, kicked off her shoes and hopped on to Willow’s. She’d rearranged the pillows to her liking and made herself comfortable, when she remembered she needed to perform another duty before she went to sleep. She got up and turned on her laptop. After many false starts, not being technology girl like Willow, Buffy logged onto Professor Walsh’s website so she could put in information about her evening with Spike.
“What’s that, Buffy?” Spike said, pulling out a cigarette.
Did he have to talk to her all the time? Buffy didn’t think she’d enjoyed five silent minutes since she’d let him out of the bathtub. And, did he have to say her name in his sexy, low voice that made her squeeze her legs together?
“Don’t even think about lighting that thing up in here, or I’ll take you out with a Number Two pencil. You’ll be the joke of the entire vampire community. I’m doing my homework on you, if you must know.”
What she could she possibly write about their activities this evening that would sound scholarly and would be somewhat truthful? She’d mostly used the zapper to control Spike after he’d done something awful, and not to reward him.
‘I went to the mall with Hostile 17. He held the door for me as we walked in, so I gave him a zap. We participated in several shopping activities and Hostile 17 did not attempt to hurt any humans or put on his vampire face. I gave him several more zaps before we left. We patrolled the Restfield Cemetery together and Hostile 17 helped me stake a vampire.’
She jumped when Spike leaned over her shoulder to read her laptop screen. Of course, he was smoking, because she told him not to.
“What’s this, then? You give me a zap when I do something?”
He’s had plenty of time to read everything I wrote, Buffy thought, but he didn’t straighten up or move away. She thought he might be sniffing her neck.
“I’m not supposed to tell you, because telling will mess up the study, but I might as well, since I’m sure this project is not going to last out the week,” Buffy signed off the computer site and closed down her laptop.
“I’m helping my psychology professor, Professor Walsh, with a study for the government. I’m supposed to give you a pleasure zap whenever you do something good or socially acceptable or whatever. It’s called positive reinforcement. It’s supposed to train you to be a better person, I mean vampire.”
Spike stood up and puffed out his chest. He sucked hard on his cigarette, changed into his vamp face and snarled, “I’m the Big Bad! I’m Evil! I don’t want to be a better vampire.”
He gave up on the rest of his cigarette and flipped the butt out the window because he couldn’t smoke with his fangs out.
Buffy debated on whether she should give him a pleasure zap for throwing the cigarette outside instead of dropping it in the trash can where the smoldering butt would smell up the whole room and start a fire. She decided not to since he vamped out and she told him not to smoke in the first place.
“Don’t give me the vamp face. You don’t have to worry. There’s not much chance of you improving.” Damn, she would have to log back on and make a note that Spike vamped out. Well, she’d fix the log tomorrow.
Spike shook off his vamp face. “This is unfair, Buffy. You didn’t tell me about all this government stuff when I agreed to help you out.” He looked pathetic and picked on.
His stomach growled from hunger and made him forget Buffy’s devious behavior. He looked around the room and spotted Buffy’s tiny refrigerator. He opened the door and picked through the sparse remnants of food. He found a dried up piece of pepperoni pizza with all the meat picked off, a half empty can of diet coke opened days ago and no bags of blood.
“Haven’t you got any blood, Slayer? I’m getting peckish. You haven’t fed me since this afternoon.”
“Guess what, Spike? I don’t happen to have any blood on hand. Don’t drink much of the stuff myself. You’ll have to wait until tomorrow and I’ll get you some pig’s blood.”
Spike made a face to show the depth of his disappointment at her thoughtlessness. “You haven’t planned this big scientific study very well, Slayer, letting the subject starve and all. How about giving me a drink of Slayer O-positive?”
Buffy glared at him. She couldn’t believe this bleach-head vampire would have the nerve to ask her, the Slayer, for a drink of blood. “Not a chance, Spike.”
Spike spied Mr. Gordo on Buffy’s bed and picked up the stuffed pig and held it over Buffy’s head. “There’s consequences to not giving me what I want, Slayer. If I don’t get some blood, the pig gets it.”
He slid his fangs out without going completely vamp face and pretended to gnaw at Mr. Gordo’s neck.
“Give me back my pig,” Buffy said. She laughed at Spike’s antics and jumped to snatch her toy out of Spike’s hand, but she couldn’t quite leap high enough.
“This pig is my hostage,” He tossed the pig hand-to-hand, out of her reach.
“Okay, you asked for it,” Buffy said. She’d given up on the idea of waiting for Spike to do something good before giving him a zap. Zapping Spike worked better when she wanted him to stop whatever he was doing at the moment, than it did for encouraging future behavior.
She picked up the black box and checked the controls. She’d fine-tuned the settings at the mall and the cemetery. The zap waves weren’t as high as the zap she gave Spike earlier this afternoon, but were plenty high enough to drop him in his tracks.
“Wait, Buffy, don’t use the machine, I think there’s something wrong…” Spike did not finish what he was saying because Buffy zapped him, making his knees buckle and his brain spin. He dropped the pig.
They were laughing when Buffy tackled Spike onto her bed. “I’ll give you what you want,” she said and kissed him hard.
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