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Master by Aurora
Chapter Twenty-Four- Spill My Heart for You
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Chapter Twenty-Four: Spill My Heart for You

Buffy woke up a little disoriented. Her head was pounding and her vision was slightly blurred. She felt like she had just woken up from a late night drinking bender. Sitting up slowly Buffy suddenly realized that she wasn’t in the right bed. She wasn’t even in the right room. Glancing around, she grew frantic.

‘Where the hell am I?’

The bed she had been sleeping in was covered with crisp white sheets and a floral top blanket, a far cry from the black satin nest she had come to accept as hers. The room itself was much smaller than Spike’s and the walls and furnishings were all painted white. Buffy felt like she was either in a bed and breakfast or a rehab facility. Neither were really where she wanted to be. Why wasn’t she in Spike’s room?

Buffy’s hazy memory started to clear, uninterrupted images beginning to assault her recuperating mind. Images of her arguing with Natasha, of them impatiently waiting for the fight to begin, and then of the bloodcurdling roars and screams filling the house when it finally did. After that, things became dim again, unclear and hard to decipher. Buffy could remember sitting on the bed, her stake clutched to her breast as she waited for the unknown to happen. And that it did. All she could recall was the sound of glass shattering, of light filling the large room as Natasha instinctively growled. She could see a few people, though their features, more specifically their faces, were indiscernible. She’d fought them off as best she could, knocked a few to the ground even, but they’d been too many. Then the smell of something sickly sweet had covered her nose and everything around her had gone black.

The delayed, yet intense fear struck at last as Buffy came to grips with the situation. She had been kidnapped…again! Her immediate reaction was that Damon was behind the whole thing but looking at where she had spent the night, Buffy quickly dismissed that possibility. No, someone else had taken her out of that house, but who had even known that she had been there beside deranged and bloodthirsty vampires?

Slipping out of bed, Buffy stared down at what she was wearing; a long, red plaid, flannel nightshirt. It sure as hell wasn’t hers, so who did it belong to? Walking quietly to the window, Buffy threw open the flower patterned curtains and saw that she wasn’t in Kansas anymore. It was the middle of the day, the sun was shining bright and people were walking the streets. People leaving their houses, driving their cars, walking their dogs. Buffy was actually staring at real, living, breathing, mostly honest members of society people! The sight of something as simple as a girl riding her bike in the sunshine left Buffy utterly flabbergasted. Though quite mundane, what she was seeing before her held one major implication.

She was free. Free from that house, free from the threat of Damon, free from constantly living in fear. Free from Spike.

The last thought made her eyes sting and something inside her hollow out. In fact the thought of never seeing Spike again made her feel empty, like a part of her was missing. What was she doing standing there? She had to find out what had happened to Spike.

Buffy needed to know he was alright, that he had kept his promise and hadn’t gotten himself killed. She needed to find him. She pushed away thoughts that he had met a dusty ending. Buffy didn’t want to even consider that possibility. Insurmountable remorse wouldn’t even begin to describe how she would feel if she started to think Spike was gone. Buffy refused to believe it. If she did, it would mean she would never see him again and it would mean he would never truly know how she felt. With hindsight, their last squabble seemed so pointless. She had been so wrapped up in technicalities about her freedom that now, when she was finally free, she wanted nothing more than to run back to the vampire lair to tell Spike how much she loved him. Buffy felt like such a fool. If Spike was dead, she would never forgive herself.

Marching determinedly to the closed bedroom door, Buffy didn’t care what lay on the other side. She was going to find Spike. Her resolve faltered somewhat abruptly when the door swung open, forcing her to halt. Going automatically on the defensive, Buffy eyed the man entering the room.

He appeared middle-aged and was fairly tall. Well, taller than she was anyway. He was casually attired, jeans and black knit sweater. The man also wore glasses, which he was wiping down as Buffy subjected him to her scrutinizing gaze. He was standing in direct sunlight, it shinning on him from the open window. He wasn’t a vampire, but even that wasn’t enough for Buffy to determine whether he was friend or foe.

Placing his specs back on his face, Giles sighed loudly. “I trust you had a good night’s sleep?” he asked, trying to be hospitable though there was a guarded element to the Watcher’s voice.

Buffy gave him her most contemptuous glare. “As good as any chemically incapacitated hostage can sleep.”

Giles was quick to correct her. “You are not a hostage. We rescued you.”

Buffy scoffed angrily. “Do you drug everyone you supposedly rescue? What was that stuff anyway?”

“Chloroform. And we only used it to ensure your safety,” the Watcher argued, becoming flustered by the unexpected hostility being sent his way.

“Oh ‘cuz that makes a whole lotta sense!” Buffy threw her arms up in frustration. “Whatever. Thanks for everything but I’ll be going now.”

Giles blocked Buffy’s path, his face stern with indignation. “Surely, you cannot be serious? Where would you go? It would be imprudent to venture out into town so late in the day. You wouldn’t reach the border before nightfall.”

“Who’s to say I’m leaving town?” she heatedly threw back.

Giles’s eyes widened; he was dumbfounded by her irrational attitude. “Are you mad? It would be suicide to go back out there on your own!”

“Look, I appreciate what you did for me but I need to find Spike. So if you’ll just move out of the way, I can go vampire searching,” Buffy adamantly replied.

The Watcher just stared at the small blonde girl, unable to wrap his mind around what she was telling him. Buffy wanted to go back. She wanted to not only search for the vampire that had imprisoned her for months but she wanted to reassure herself about his wellbeing. It was another mind altering revelation to the exhausted, battle weary Watcher. The love that Spike had displayed for his captive had not been unrequited. Buffy loved him back. And that notion in itself nearly knocked Giles on his ass.

“You care,” he bewilderedly mumbled, not so much as asking but reaffirming what he had just discovered.

“Well yeah,” she instantly answered. “Damon was on full out megalomaniac mode. You do know who Damon is, right?”

Giles nodded, but he wouldn’t say how he knew the treacherous vampire. “I do and last I heard he was facing off against Spike for claim over the clan.”

It was Buffy’s turn to nod. “Last I heard too.” Her voice grew scratchy as she tried to contain her emotions. “I don’t know who won. Spike could be dust as we speak,” she hoarsely whispered.

The Watcher needed to sit down. He had been sure that Spike’s declaration of love for Buffy had been based on the grounds of some sort of misconstrued infatuation. However, now that she was exhibiting similar feelings for the notorious vampire, Giles was beginning to doubt everything he had ever been taught to believe about the living dead. For a human to have feelings for a vampire was like having a lamb love the wolf that hunted it. It was against every rational thought he had. It could be considered a crime against nature, against the very laws of the universe. Yet it was happening and there was nothing Giles could really do to stop it. And who was he really to come between two lovers, even if their love defied all logic? If anything, the whole ordeal reignited his suppressed Watcher tendencies, making him want to investigate whatever was left to learn about vampires, especially that which concerned William the Bloody.

“I know you are anxious to see what has become of Spike but I would hope you have enough sense to wait until I can organize an expeditionary group to take you back to the lair,” Giles offered with genuine sympathy.

“Expeditionary group? What are you guys, like some kind of demon hunters?” Buffy not so subtly wondered.

“Well yes, I guess you could say that,” he stammered. He had never encountered someone with such a cavalier outlook when it came to the existence and hunting of vampires. When they had found Cordelia, it had taken him a week to bring her out of her self-encouraged denial. Even Willow and Xander had been skeptical when Giles had first told them about Slayers and his role in the fight against evil. Buffy, however, appeared to be unfazed by anything she encountered, when anyone else would deem it earth shattering. Though he was not used to it, Giles could understand Buffy’s nonchalant manner. After being the only human in a house full of vampires, everything else must seem extremely inconsequential.

“Oh my God! You guys are the streeters, aren’t you?” Buffy gasped out the question.

“The what?” Giles wasn’t sure if he should be offended or flattered. What in pray tell was a ‘streeter’?

“It’s what Spike called the humans that were always fighting with his vamps. It was you guys he was talking about, wasn’t it?” Buffy explained, finally seeing the connection as to why these strangers would know, or even care, about her.

“Yes, he was referring to us, though I would prefer if you no longer called us by that name,” he answered before letting out an appalled murmur. “Streeters indeed!”

Buffy smiled at the older man’s indignant reaction to the nickname. He was stuffy and British but you couldn’t help but warm up to him. “So you’ll help me find Spike?”

Giles hesitated before he responded. “We’ll see it so that you remain safe.”

Buffy shrugged. “Good enough for me,” she stated as Giles moved out of the way. “Now all I need is a change of clothes.”

“I think one of the girls can lend you something,” he said as he opened the door so that they could leave the room.

Neither one had expected to bump into someone standing out in the hallway. Buffy’s hand flew to cover her mouth as she gasped. It couldn’t be. It just wasn’t possible. She was supposed to be dead.


The brunette could only nod as tears streamed down her face. Reacting instinctively, Cordelia pulled her shock rattled best friend into a hug. Once Buffy felt Cordy’s arms around her, once she finally felt some kind of physical confirmation that her friend was really alive, the floodgates burst open. Her knees buckled as she joined Cordy in her crying, unable to hold back any longer the grief she had never been able to fully let go. Thoughts of Spike were pushed aside as Buffy poured herself out, at last reunited with the traveling companion she had been separated from so many months ago.


Buffy was gone.

It was the only thing he could think of as he stared numbly at the shambled room, standing amongst the debris from the unanticipated attack. He was expecting Buffy to suddenly appear from behind the overturned bed or from hiding all along in the bathroom. But he knew better. He couldn’t sense her; he couldn’t pick up on her heartbeat. There was nothing alive in the bedroom.

The reality of everything was slowly settling in. He had acknowledged the fact that he had lost his clan, that Damon had in some way won. Spike recognized that the power he had once exacted over Sunnydale had slipped through his fingers. He got all of that, and accepted it without feeling so much as a twinge of regret. Losing Buffy, however, was the more than he could handle. She was his world and it was now crashing down all around him.

Distraught, Spike fought back the tears that were threatening to spill down his face. The shock subsided, giving way to panic as his mind flitted over every possible worst case scenario. The first thing that crossed his mind was whether or not Damon had taken Buffy. Spike stared out from the dark shadows of the room, his cold eyes landing on the expanse of sunlit floor. No, it couldn’t have been Damon’s vamps. Buffy’s scent was still too strong; she had to have been taken an only hour ago. And there was no way that any right minded vampire, besides Spike apparently, would subject himself to sunlight and still be undead enough to pull off a kidnapping. No, he couldn’t place the blame on Damon, no matter how much he wanted to.

A disheartened Spike heard a moan from the other side of the room. He turned to see Natasha cradled in Vincent’s arms. Spike hadn’t given the vampiress much thought since he had discovered Buffy was missing. Though now, upon seeing the condition she was in, he wished he had remained in his ignorant stupor.

Natasha was entirely burnt on one half of her body. The skin on her left side was a deep crimson, bubbling and chapped from the unpredicted exposure to the sun. She also had a busted lip and her face was covered in a purpled bruise. It was clear that she had been knocked out and that somehow the unforgiving sunlight had fallen upon her combustible skin, but in what order had those events occurred Spike was unsure.

Spike walked toward the two vampires, dashing through the sunlight, unbeknownst to the semi-conscious Natasha and the far too preoccupied Vincent. The oldest vampire of the three had ripped through his wrist with his own fangs and was at the moment feeding the fallen vampiress with his blood. He wasn’t her Sire so his blood was not very potent but at the moment any blood was better than no blood. Or so he hoped.

Spike watched quietly as Natasha sucked on the wound while Vincent stroked her head gently. The tenderness between them reminded the peroxide vamp so much of the times he had fed from Buffy. He hated himself for missing the taste of her blood gushing into his mouth and he hated himself even more for the involuntary reaction his body was having to the memory. Spike felt sick as his jeans tightened from remembering how Buffy’s warm, supple body felt beneath him as he brought her off just from drinking from her neck. How could he think about such a thing at a moment like this? Not only was there a possibility that he’d never see Buffy again but if he did find her, what chance was there that she would even speak to him, let alone allow him to snack off of her?

Guilt finally cemented in Spike’s heart. He should have let her go. He should’ve trusted Buffy, believed in her when she had said she wouldn’t leave but that she had only wanted his trust. Spike covered his face with his hands. Why had he been such a git? So what if she hadn’t said ‘I love you, too.’ Didn’t mean Buffy didn’t care. Didn’t mean he loved her any less. Spike cursed his stubborn pride.

Who was he kidding? Pride was just a smokescreen for his fear. The overwhelming fear that Buffy would never love him, that everything they’d shared had been nothing but a horrible, heartbreaking lie. It was a fear that had presented itself the very second Buffy had requested her freedom, though he hadn’t realized it until now. If he had at least freed her, even if only in the vocal sense, then their last words to each other would’ve held more meaning than the ambiguous sendoff she had given him. He would’ve at least known she didn’t hate him even if their goodbyes would’ve still been bittersweet. Spike would’ve been able to live with himself, which was more than he could say at the moment.

“Spike?” a somber voice called to him.

The defeated vampire turned to look down once again upon his two friends. Vincent was staring back up at him, waiting for instructions from his leader as he held Natasha in his arms. She was still unconscious. Spike inwardly scoffed. He wasn’t their leader anymore; he had no right to tell the older vamp what to do. Didn’t mean he wouldn’t, though.

“’S not safe for the two of you ‘ere anymore. Take whatever vamps you got left and get the hell out of town,” Spike muttered, his gaze growing blank.

“You can’t be serious,” Vincent replied in disbelief. “Damon…”

“Is my problem,” Spike interrupted. “Just do this one last thing for me, Vince. Pick up the pieces and get out of Sunnydale. Find a nice cozy tomb with a view if you don’t wanna do the clan thing anymore. Doesn’t matter really what you do, just leave. Let it be my last order as your leader.”

“I can’t believe you’re simply giving up,” Vincent said, a rising anger evident in his voice.

“Who says I’ve given up?” Spike asked incredulously.

“You did. Just a second ago,” the other vampire stated, becoming concerned that Spike had completely lost his marbles.

“No, I never did,” Spike quickly corrected. “Yeah, I’ve given up on the clan. I’ll give you that. Was a lost cause since before the fight had even started. But Damon’s fate is still fair game and what better way to get back at the pillock than by making him think he’s won.”

“If it’s what you want…” Vincent surrendered, his eyes reverting back to Natasha’s marred face.

“It is,” Spike affirmed. “You’ve been the best chum a man could’ve ever wished for, Vince, but it’s over.”

“It was fun while it lasted,” the crouching vampire remarked with a shrug. Slipping a gentle hand under Natasha’s knees and around her back, Vincent lifted her in his arms as he stood up. “Guess it was a lil’ unrealistic, eh? Askin’ vamps for loyalty and trust when we’re all so…well, so evil.”

“Was nothin’ but a dream, mate,” Spike added sadly.

“Ah, but a good dream nonetheless, even if we were deluding ourselves,” Vincent countered reflectively.

“Better get goin’. Want to make a good head start before sunset,” Spike mentioned as he absentmindedly walked out of the room.

“Can’t use the sewers, Spike. Damon knows all the trails. He’s bound to have his vamps patrolling them,” Vincent stated as he followed Spike with Natasha still in his arms. His curiosity intensified as they made their way downstairs, it peaking when they went all the way down into the basement. He watched silently as Spike effortlessly smashed through piles of old broken furniture, flinging the cobweb covered debris out of his way. Finally pushing through the junk, the younger vampire reached the far stone wall, which was partly veiled by a bulky wooden bookcase. With one tug, the case was knocked to the floor, revealing a once hidden exit way in the stone foundation. Vincent cocked his head to the side as he analyzed the enormous hole in the wall. Why had he never known about it?

“Leads to a system of tunnels. They don’t connect to the sewers and Damon doesn’t know bugger all ‘bout ‘em. Safe way out, mate,” Spike explained, filling in the blanks for his perplexed friend.

“Spike, why is it I’ve never seen this before?” Vincent wondered as he stared out into the blackness beyond the secret doorway.

“I was the only one who knew it was there,” Spike casually informed. “‘S why I picked the house in the first place. The whole clan thing was a little too new and I wasn’t sure who I could trust. Needed an escape route if you guys ever decided to turn against me. Almost forgot ‘bout the bloody hole ‘til just a few minutes ago.”

Vincent warily stepped closer to the opening, his face shifting into its vampire visage so that he could navigate through the thick darkness that clouded the unfamiliar passageway. Holding Natasha firmly to his chest, he glimpsed back at Spike. “Farewell, William.”

“Good luck, Vince,” Spike forlornly muttered.

“Likewise,” Vincent encouragingly replied. “Oh and when you do see Damon again, give ‘im hell for me, would you Spike? Make sure he suffers for what he did to you,” the older vampire gravely requested, his eyes shining with the revenge he would never be capable of exacting.

“No worries, Vince. I’ll see to it that the pillock gets what’s comin’ to him,” Spike reassured, his own lips tugging into a smile.

With the womanly bundle in his arms, Vincent took a step into the shadowy exit but not without glancing back one last time at Spike. “Hope you find her, William.” It was all he said before turning back into the darkness.

Spike observed Vincent disappear into the blackness. The two vampires he had trusted unconditionally were walking out his life, probably indefinitely. Spike headed back upstairs, only stopping when he reentered Buffy’s room. With one glimpse around the decimated empty room, he crumpled to the floor, dropping his face to his hands. In all his time as a vampire, Spike had never been without companionship, whether with Dru or with the clan he had only recently lost he had never been on his own, never truly been alone. At that very moment, Spike was the loneliest he had ever been. The tears he had been holding back since he had discovered Buffy’s disappearance were finally cascading down his sharp cheeks. Whimpers transformed into sobs, his body rocking from the intensity of his sorrow. He was so lost and he hated himself for being so weak.

As Spike mourned for all that he had lost, he longed to bury his face in golden hair and to feel the reassuring embrace of one girl. It was Buffy who he missed, for whom he was weeping like a ponce. Everything else was just icing on the shit cake that was his immortal existence.

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