Fur and Fangs
contains violence, prophecies, more violence and some fluffy romancy-kisses.
pairings: Willow/Spike, Buffy/Spike
disclaimer: the characters of Buffy the Vampire Slayer are owned by Joss Whedon/Mutant Enemy, etc (lots of people who are not me). The alternate Spike is rather heavily based on White Wolf roleplaying Games Werewolf the Apocalypse, which I hold no legal rights to.
Response to Fayth's Alterna-Spike Challenge (included below)
Distribution: Bite Me, please? WLS, anyone else, please ask first.
>Ok challenge 2, this is for everyone. Because i love these types of fic.
>This challenge is called alterna-Spike.
>It must include a Spike that isn't our Spike.
>This could be in the form of Robot-Spike, Shapeshifting Spike
>Demon-Spike, Human-Spike Timetravelling Spike
>or Different Dimension Spike.etc etc etc Whoever must come to Sunnydale and
>find our Wills and
>wackiness ensues especially when the other Spike finds out. Set when you
>want, how you want whatever you want.
>Smut or fluff.
Spike glared at Ripper, certain that the older male would only lead them into their doom. Not glorious death in battle, but a slow, withering, where time and fear and the efforts to stay undetected would wear them away, killing them as dead as any illness or injury. Worse, he was certain that it would be a harsh wounding to their spirits, the People were not meant to cower in the shadows, hiding from their enemies, skulking in the shadows like scavengers. They were warriors, and had a proud and glorious history.
But he was not their leader. He'd tried, challenging Ripper repeatedly, each time coming closer to defeating the leader. But the older warrior was clever, and cunning in a fight. He'd managed each time to win, using Spike's impulsiveness and quick temper against him. But he couldn't hold power forever. Not against vigor and determination. It would only be a matter of time.
But then Spike felt a tendril of cold worry worm it's way through him. Ripper's girlfriend was here. The crazy witch... the one who collected porcelain dolls and information on King Henry the Eighth. Drusilla. Yes, she was beautiful, and yes, she had power, but she wasn't right in the head. Why was she here? What reason could there be?
If Dru was here, there would only be something unsettling happening. She was beautiful, and had a pretty voice, but there was something very disturbing about the way she talked to her dolls, and claimed to hear whispers from the stars. She also reeked of power tonight, obviously prepared for something big.
He lurked on the edges, listening to the voices of the pack, a part of him reveling in their strength, another part worried for the future. They had enemies, so many enemies. Ands the passing years only increased their enemies power, while their own dwindled. Their numbers were fewer and fewer every generation. One day, there would be nobody left to stand and fight the dangers that threatened their world.
"Spike. Just the wretch that I was looking for." Ripper's voice sounded smug, delighted about having finally managed to... whatever it was, it probably wouldn't make Spike happy.
He looked at Ripper, managing his usual cocky grin. But inside, that feeling of worry was getting bigger. "Well, here I am. 'Ello to you as well, and to you, princess."
Dru reached out, her fingers brushing over the steel curve of metal that pierced his eyebrow. Her voice was almost musical. "He's all moonbeams and alabaster... Are you sure he can't stay?"
Spike's eyes widened, and his eyebrows rose. Suspicion and dread snarled in his gut, twisting and clawing at him, making his blood burn and his eyes itched with the urge to change. "Stay? Why wouldn't I be..."
Ripper's smile was almost kindly, the fact that his eyes held the emotion of river pebbles countering the effect. "I'm afraid you won't be here any longer. You've been a voice of dissent in the pack. I'm banishing you, and with Dru's assistance, you will be somewhere far away, unable to trouble me ever again."
"Where are you sending me?" A tiny hint of a rumble had slid into Spike's voice, and he could feel his eyes bleeding over to yellow.
Ripper smiled, a cruel expression. "You know, I'm not certain. Dru's sending you far, far away. Where you land just... wasn't a major consideration, as long as it's far from here. Goodbye."
Dru was speaking, her voice gone distant and oddly doubled, as if her words were being echoed a heartbeat after she had spoken. A small corner of his mind recognized them as Latin, and the air felt thin, but at the same time as if it were filled with something, some pressure against him. He tried to push against it, but the air was too thick, and it would have had more effect to swat at the water in a lake.
Everything spun around him, and Spike howled into the darkness, a primal protest that made words entirely unneeded. He felt himself falling, and then, it was as if he fell into a great expanse of taffy, sinking into something that he couldn't see, his vision gone red-black, his head throbbing and spinning.
It felt as if the thickness around him pulsed, and he was dropped into warm, humid air, and landed on ground, the scent of crushed grass filling his nostrils, along with fresh turned earth, and many many dying flowers. He was in a cemetery, and had a sinking feeling that this wasn't Surrey anymore.
"Where the bloody hell am I?"
But there was no answer carried on the night air, just a feeling so thick that he could taste it, a feeling of evil. Not a specific individual, but... it was as if the very land, the place was filled with evil, contaminated and impregnated with it. If ever there was a place in need of a guardian, a defender of the earth, this place was it. He could only hope that it wasn't too late already. Surely a place tainted with this much evil had drawn tainted and corrupted creatures to it as well?
end part 1.
He had been walking for a while, discovering that he'd landed in the middle of a good sized cemetery. There were a lot of recent graves, the source of the flower scents that he'd noticed, practically been assaulted by. How big was the town or city near here that there were this many graves? He wanted to know, and the only way to find answers, like where was he, what was going on, and how to get home required either finding the nearest town, or finding a person. Somehow, he doubted that graveyards would be the best place for meeting people.
To make matters worse, this graveyard reeked of vampires.
He felt his skin quiver in unease. This wasn't the scent of one or two vampires, there had been over a dozen different vampires passing through here. He could only take this as a sign that he'd been right, the evil he sensed had drawn the corrupt to this place. Maybe the vampires explained all the recent graves. But he had the unsettling instinct that there was more to the story than that, the darkness and evil of this place was more than the presence of vampires. He continued walking, his flesh almost crawling at the thought of remaining here, in the cemetery.
Shoving his hands into the pockets of his black jeans, Spike made his way out of the cemetery, wandering in a direction that was generally downhill. There was a hint of the ocean in the air, the tang of salt and dead fish and rotting kelp. It was also seasoned by all the chemical odors of the urban life, car exhaust, rotting garbage, smoke and chemicals and grease... oh, he was definitely near civilization.
"Hey, Spike... ummm is everything all right? You look a bit... ummm... a bit out of it."
The voice was light, reminding him of a spring breeze. The speaker was a slender woman with hair the red of autumn leaves, and eyes as green as jade. He could feel the magic inside her, and his skin quivered again. He'd never seen her before in his life, but she seemed to think that she knew him. "Red."
"Yeah... well, since I had to go out and get a few things, you can walk me back to the Magic Box, because, you know, not safe to be out alone at night and all." She was giving him a small tentative smile, one that made it clear that she thought she knew him.
"That would be because this place is evil, ducks." She had to know, she had to feel it.
Red only sighed, with something not quite exasperation. "I know, evil, evil evil. That's because of the hellmouth. But that's Sunnydale for you. Evil. So, walk with me anyhow."
He had a name now, he was in a place called Sunnydale, and there was something called a Hellmouth that radiated the evil he felt. Definitely a place in need of protection. From her accent, he thought that he might have ended up in America somehow. Just another sign that magic was dangerous and not to be trusted.
He was still trying to sort out how he'd got here, and where here was when he noticed the echoes following their footsteps. Something... several someone's were following them. He doubted that they were friendly. "Red... we have company on their way."
There was a multivoiced roar from behind them, and the pair was attacked by three... things with dark green scales with faintly geometric patterns in a bluish tone, and sharp talons that looked made for ripping flesh from bones. Spike could feel his inner nature pressing forward, urging him to change, to make this fight more to his favor. His eyes faded from blue to a feral amber, and he could feel his skull shifting it's shape a little, his teeth becoming sharp fangs, his hands reshaping into fearsome claws.
Not all of the roars and growls were coming from the scaled things. Spike could feel his chest vibrating from his own growls, and the air was scented with magic. Eventually, the fight ended, all three of the green things dead on the ground. The redhead whose name he still didn't know was standing there, clearly trying not to throw up, a tiny trickle of blood coming from her nose. She glanced over at him, and Spike knew in that moment what she would see.
His eyes were still amber, his face shifted slightly, the brows heavy and his mouth full of fangs, traces of the scaled creatures blood still over his body. He hadn't quite managed to shift his hands back yet, so he still had wicked looking talons instead of fingernails. Covered in blood, yellow eyes and fangs.... he must look like a monster to her. Especially since one of those things had ripped out his piercing, causing blood to flow from his eyebrow.
"You've been hurt... we'd best get you back to the Magic Box so I can bandage those up. Come on, before something else tries to attack us." She didn't look at all surprised. Nor did she seem to be particularly afraid of him.
He wasn't certain if he was more surprised by the attacking things or by the redhead's lack of fear. Spike followed her numbly, hoping that all of this would begin to make sense soon.
She lead him to a magic store.
It was closed, but she had a key with her, unlocking the door and leading him inside, to a room in the back that looked as if it had been set up for training, with a rack of gleaming weapons on one wall. He sat there, feeling almost numb as she cleaned his wounds, the whole time talking about something called 'Teshrak demons' which he eventually gathered were those things that had attacked them. They weren't poisonous, although there was a high risk of infection because they sometimes scavenged, eating carrion, which was filled with all sorts of germs and bacteria. Her words didn't quite feel like a conversation, there didn't seem to be any need for him to answer. It was more like she was just... babbling, possibly from nerves.
He was feeling more and less confused by the time she'd finished.
"I... think I just need to get some decent sleep, and these won't be a problem anymore." He finally ventured a few words, hoping that they wouldn't cause any unexpected problems.
She turned, looking at him with her green eyes full of mysteries. "That's fine, Spike. But... Giles wanted us all here tomorrow evening for some research on this extremely baffling prophecy he found, so... umm, can you be back here at nine?"
He nodded, wondering who in the world this Giles person could possible be. "That'll be just fine, Red."
end part 2.
Spike had managed to leave the magic store, his mind still filled with questions. He didn't know who the redhead was, or how she knew him, or who this Giles that she'd mentioned was, although it was clear that he was a leader of some sort. Nor did he have any idea who 'us all' meant, beyond that it was clearly more than the redhead this Giles person, and whoever she was mixing him up with. Was there a Spike in this strange place? There must be, or else she wouldn't have known him.
Part of his mind turned the situation over, trying to figure out what was going on, assuming that he hadn't just hit his head, thus making the whole mess a really bad dream. Safest to assume that this was real, and sort out the how later... beyond that it was Dru's spell and Ripper's idea to banish him.
He'd wandered around the town, discovering that it wasn't particularly large, and he'd been right in his suspicion that he was in America. It was the same date, but... He had found a small restaurant, watching people and listening a bit to the television that was turned to a news channel. Current events seemed to be different, not quite as bad, but not a wonderful improvement. Mostly, it was the same sort of thing, but with different names and faces filling the same roles. There were celebrities he'd never heard of, which could have had to do with the fact that he'd never been big on following American celebrities, or it could have been because of the fact that this seemed to be a different world. The Beatles were still broken up, and John and George were both dead, which was a pity. He'd half hoped that there would be more good music here.
The food was tolerable enough, and thanks to some miracle, his credit card still worked. He figured that he'd best go buy some clean clothing before it stopped, just so he'd have something fresh to change into.
He'd lingered in the mall until it closed, regardless of the fact that he'd already bought his things, just watching the people. Fashions weren't the same, but he wasn't certain if that was due to the different country or the different world. It was frustrating, and he had no idea how he could ever get home, or if that was even possible. After all, who would believe that he was from an alternate reality? Who did he even know that he could try to tell? The red-haired witch? But that would mean placing his fate in the hands of a magic-user again.
He'd watched things often enough that he managed to elude the mall security and stay there during the night, slipping out again in the morning. The weather was amazing, and he enjoyed the day, still trying to find out what he could do, and attempting to find out if there was any simple things that he could do to try to defend this place, Sunnydale, California.
Having nothing better to do, he made his way back to the magic store, and recognized the redhead witch, who was shelving books from a shipping crate. There were two other people about the same age, a dark haired boy that almost moved like one of his people, but smelled human, and another woman behind the register, smiling cheerfully as she took the money from the last few customers. Most bafflingly, there were all the scents, of herbs and powders, books and stones and shells and leather, as well as steel and sweat and oil from the back room. He could smell his presence from last night. There was another scent that was almost familiar, and he wished that he could actually get a clear focus on it, without all the interfering scents from the merchandise.
It became apparent that the young man also thought he knew him, a guarded 'Spike... I see you did show up.' greeting his entrance, making it clear that this man did not like him, or at least, the Spike that he thought he was talking to. The whole alternate world thing was starting to give him a headache.
The witch smiled at him, the look saying that she was pleased to see him. "Hey... you could, umm... help me shelve these if you'd like. Xander, stop being mean." The faint blush that accompanied her words made him wonder exactly what sort of relationship she had with his double.
But it would be a good way to cover some of his confusion. He started helping her shelve the books, full of New Agey things about 'Crystal Power' and 'Understanding the Tarot' and 'Past Life Regression'. He couldn't help it, he glanced at the one in his hand and gave a small snort. "Bunch of ridiculous nonsense, this."
The redhead only shrugged, a small smile on her face. "But it's harmless nonsense."
"Willow, how many copies of that herbal teas for therapy book do we have left?" The woman at the register's voice carried, and had just a hint of an accent, as if English wasn't her native language. She could only be referring to the redhead, which meant that he finally had a name for her.
Sighing, redhead that he now knew was Willow looked at the shelf, her finger hovering near the book titles. "Four... unless more came in in the other crate."
The harmless industry of it all was disturbed by the door opening, and a pair of people walked in. Spike froze at the sight of them, his breath coming faster. One was the most stunning woman, her posture and motion proclaiming her a warrior, and her golden hair, tanned skin and long legs marking her as a beautiful woman. He was amazed, he was enraptured... he was in lust. But the person following her... the face was the same, except for the glasses as Ripper. He didn't move quite the same, like a warrior yes, but not with the arrogance and almost menace of his packleader.
Willow gave a small wave, her voice soft. "Hi Buffy, Hi Giles."
Giles who looked like Ripper looked over, a small sigh emerging. His eyes were filled with emotion, worry, compassion, affection for the redhead. Those eyes couldn't have been more different than Ripper's. "Good evening Willow, and... Spike. I did say everyone..."
The blonde, Buffy was looking at him, her eyes slightly narrowed. Her posture had shifted slightly, and she looked ready to fight at an instant's notice. "Giles... that isn't Spike."
Spike felt indignation rise inside of him "I bloody well AM Spike! Who else would I be?"
Giles pulled his glasses off, wiping the lenses with a cloth. "A good question, who else would he be if he isn't Spike?"
"I AM Spike! I should know my own bloody name, you twit!" Spike could feel his temper becoming short, and his rage stirred.
Buffy half turned, enough that she could see Giles as well as Spike. "He doesn't feel like Spike. No goosebumps. So... who is he?"
"Who's who, and why do we care about your goosebumps?" The voice came from behind them, a familiar accent and the voice itself chillingly familiar.
The figure then moved up into view, and Spike stepped back, his shoulder touching the bookshelf. It was himself, only, not quite. This other Spike was paler, a scar over his eyebrow in place of the now... well, where he'd had a piercing. Their hair was the same, and they almost matched in clothing as well. But this other Spike, the one for their world... the biggest difference wasn't the clothing, or the scars. It was the fact that their Spike was dead.
"Vampire!" The word was practically snarled.
"What the bloody..." The vampire Spike looked stunned. "You... a bloody wolf!"
They stood there, glaring at each other, faint growls vibrating in their chests. The other people looked back and forth, their expressions puzzled and concerned.
"umm... Wills? Have you been trying any funny spells lately?" Xander's whisper carried extremely well in the tension filled room.
"I didn't do this! I had nothing to do with this... oh, they've both got yellow eyes now... ummm if he's a werewolf, how come he looks like he's almost changing now, Giles?"
Both Spikes as well as Buffy, Giles, Xander and the woman at the register were looking at Willow. Willow was looking defensive.
end part 3.
"He's a werewolf... how in the bloody hell couldn't you figure that out?" Spike in the leather coat, the one that had to be their Spike, practically growled, glaring in equal measures at the other Spike and at Willow.
Willow glanced at the two of them, comparing the two in rapid detail. Spike that she'd had helping her with the books was a bit less pale, and currently flushed, most likely with anger. She could see his pulse throbbing in his neck, and hear the low vibration of his growl. The place where he'd had a little metal bit shaped like a bent barbell in his eyebrow was a half healed scar, a contrast to the Spike facing him.
Right now, they both had yellow eyes, but... the one beside her had eyes that were a bit closer to amber than true yellow. He was also radiating body heat, and had seemed quite interested when he'd seen Buffy, gazing at her with this measuring, lust-filled look. It was something their Spike would rather be tortured than do.
Neither one looked quite human at the moment, although there were slight differences in the reshaping of their skulls. Both had sharp fangs, and claws... Maybe she'd best say something?
"umm, Spike? both Spikes actually... could you try to calm down a bit? I didn't do it, Giles didn't do it, nobody in this room brought... umm... werewolf Spike to Sunnydale. Why not skip the growling manly challenge thingy until... some time when it won't wreck the store? Maybe we should try to figure out this prophecy, or umm... how he did end up in Sunnydale?" She could feel everyone staring at her, and she knew that she was blushing.
"He's a vampire. How am I supposed to be calm around a vampire? They're leeches, feeding on humanity like useless parasites." The living Spike had a very effective growl.
Willow could see Buffy smile a little bit, and Xander just blinked, as if the sight of Spike, even if not their Spike, saying such things about vampires was incomprehensible.
"Hey! I'm not a bloody worthless parasite! I've helped save the whole blasted world... twice! And I won't get fleas..." Vampire Spike couldn't resist taunting the other man.
With a moment's pause for a quick request for luck, Willow put herself between the two, confident that at least vampire Spike couldn't hurt her on account of the chip. "Right... you don't like each other, you both find it annoying that there's someone else with your face, and yes, Spike, that is what you look like, at least he looked like you before you both went all grrr and growly, and could you two stop that now? It's really not helping."
The living Spike, the one that might be a werewolf, looked at her, his eyes narrowed as he considered her words. "Right... this isn't helping. Not much experience with prophecies, but I have an idea how I got here. My pack leader decided I was trouble, and had his bird the mage send me off to... here. Sunnyhell. Near as I could tell, they didn't pick a destination, just 'away' from them."
Vampire Spike looked at her, his expression angry and resentful of... something. Most likely the other Spike. "I suppose Giles wouldn't like it if we broke the shop. So, what's this about a prophecy anyhow?"
Xander chipped in, his voice nervous. "Is... number two really a werewolf? Not just some whacked out evil twin vampire?"
The words from the living Spike came out between gritted teeth, and Willow had the feeling that he was contemplating physical harm to Xander. "I an NOT a vampire. You'd say werewolf, but the real term is Garou. I'm not the same as that... vampire."
Xander and Anya still ended up sitting as far from the werewolf Spike as possible, which meant that Willow found herself sitting between the Spikes, and Buffy sat on the other side of the werewolf, or Garou Spike, since the name seemed like a touchy thing to him. The big old books were on the table, and pages with the original prophecy and it's translation. All that was left was figuring out what in the world it meant.
Over Darkness Bound, held deep within,
Champions strive to protect the Great Mother
When Darkened Mirrors both stand firm,
Guardian and Hunter and Wise and Chosen,
All unite to defeat the Ancient Foe
Then shall the Binding be Complete,
With Twinned Blood the Darkness Locked.
After a few moments of staring at it, which felt much less awkward with the words translated into English, Xander spoke. "You know, I thought these things were supposed to rhyme?"
Giles sighed, removing his glasses and pinching the bridge of his nose. "It rhymed in the original Babylonian. I was attempting to translate it accurately, not maintain a sense of rhyme and poetic structure."
Willow frowned at the words. "Chosen... could that be Buffy? She's the Slayer, Chosen to fight evil, right? If the Guardian, Hunter, Wise and Chosen are four people, then could the Chosen mean Buffy? Or a Slayer, at least?"
Xander looked up, a frown on his face. "If Buffy's the Chosen, does the whole Darkness Bound within part mean the hellmouth? On account of how it is sort of... trapped underground and everything?"
Giles nodded, his eyes caught with enthusiasm. "If the Darkness refers to the Hellmouth, than the part about the Binding being completed would refer to closing it, permanently. In which case, the four are needed as a condition, and also the... ah, Darkened Mirrors and the Twinned Blood. If all of those conditions are met, then... we should be able to close the hellmouth."
There were a few moments of awed silence from everyone, including the Garou Spike. Willow was certain that they were all trying to imagine what effect the absence of the Hellmouth would have.
Buffy spoke then, her voice full of frustration. "But what's the part about a Great Mother? And wouldn't a wise person be far away from all of this stuff?"
"The earth." The words came from the other Spike, and there was a deep respect in his voice. "The Great Mother is the earth, Gaia. My people... the Garou were chosen to be guardians, the protecting warriors to fight against the enemies of our world. According to the oldest stories, the name of our people meant guardian."
Willow's words came softly, with reluctance. She knew that what she was about to say would be met with a bit less than complete enthusiasm. "I think the Darkened Mirrors are the two Spikes. I mean, they look alike, hence the whole Mirror thing. So, umm... plus he said his people were Guardians, so I'm pretty sure one of the Four is the new Spike."
"What about the whole darkened thing?" Anya didn't sound like she was arguing, just curious exactly how much Willow had guessed.
Willow shifted a bit in her seat, feeling everyone looking at her. "Well, Garou Spike seems to have... a dislike of vampires. For him, wouldn't seeing himself as a vampire be pretty dark? And our Spike looks at him and sees himself, only alive, and... umm... not thinking about humans as happy meals on legs, so again with the pretty dark reflection image double thing. Am I making any sense?"
Spike the vampire moved in his seat, his arm brushing and resting against Willow. "What about the whole Champions part? These people protecting the Great Mother... the earth, right? Who are these champions?"
"If our guesses are right, I think... that would mean all of us. We all, in our own ways, attempt to defend our home, which is over the hellmouth. So, by Champions, it refers to people attempting to defend, people with courage and determination." Giles spoke slowly, as if he was still mentally checking his words against the prophecy.
Buffy looked somewhere between relieved and worried. "So, this means that we might be able to close the hellmouth? Where's the downside to this?"
"We don't know. That's still a bit murky. But it does sound as if... I believe we will need both Spikes for this to take effect, or to work. So, I suppose... ah, where are you staying?" Giles sounded a bit worried.
With a glance that bordered on an angry glare, Spike the Garou looked at Spike the vampire. "I didn't have somewhere yet. But it's not like I have anywhere to go right now, Dru's little spell saw to that."
"Dru?" The name was repeated with varying tones and expression, Willow's own voice a mixture of surprise and fearful recognition. Xander leaned a bit more towards fear, while Buffy's held definite anger.
"Yeah... pretty, dark hair, collects dolls. She's the pack leader's girlfriend, and it was her bloody spell that sent me here. Crazy..." His voice trailed off, his expression making it clear that he did not have fond memories of the woman.
"Why don't you come stay at my place? I've got room." Buffy's voice held a bit of something, more than just acknowledgment that he was needed for a prophecy.
Everyone began to filter out, Xander and Anya already discussing their plans for the rest of the evening, Giles murmuring something about some scrolls and a tablet, and Buffy chatting with Spike about Sunnydale, and how she would make sure he didn't have any problems.
This left Willow sitting there, staring at the page with the translation, one finger tapping an erratic rhythm on the table. Spike the vampire was leaning against a book case, looking at her.
end part 4.
"Red, how in the bloody hell did you find that guy? And why didn't you notice that there was something off about him?" Spike's voice still had undertones of growl to it.
She looked at him, feeling a touch of exasperation. "I was on my way back to the store, and there he was along the street. He seemed all quiet and glowery, which you do all the time. We got jumped by some demons, he went growly and had great fun ripping them apart, not unlike you, although I did not look to analyze a pattern to his mauling. He had yellow eyes, sharp teeth, and claws, sort of like you. If he looks like Spike, acts like Spike, and gets the yellow eyes like Spike, why wouldn't I assume that he was Spike?"
"What about in here, earlier?" Spike seemed quite fixated on the idea.
"He was ignoring Xander, again with the normal Spike behavior. Poked fun at the new Age books. There was the whole stunned lusty staring at Buffy, which didn't seem at all normal, but... well, he was talking to me. I suppose that's a bit out of character. Heaven knows you can't stand to do that. So, I'll let you... whatever it is you do by yourself, and I'll go home and toss and turn over this prophecy. Good night, Spike." Some of her impatience and hurt showed through, but as long as he didn't guess the cause, Willow was safe. As long as he never figured out about her crush on him. She was certain that he would never return it anyhow, so why give him another reason to avoid her?
Spike watched as Willow left, feeling unreasonably hurt at her words. While he couldn't argue about her claim that ignoring Xander was normal, and if his wolfy twin did that as well, it showed good sense, but... It stung to hear her say that she didn't think he could stand to be around her or talk to her. She was one of two people in the whole blasted scooby group that he could stand at all, the other being Rupert. But Rupert reminded him of Dalton, one of the most useful minions that he'd ever kept. Willow... she wasn't like anyone else that he'd ever met in all his years.
She was brilliant, and could connect things in minutes that he had to puzzle over for hours. She knew so much about so many different things, and if she didn't know, she would always know where to look to discover the new information that she needed. Her mind was filled with interesting quirks, and she would come up with the most interesting questions, like asking how vampires shaved with no reflections. Or asking why he only liked to soak his Wheatabix in certain types of blood but not others. A or AB yes, but not O or B for Wheatabix.
That was something else he'd never remembered to thank her for. He'd complained after a terrible fight that vampires didn't heal as fast if they fed on animal blood as from human blood, and after asking him almost an hours worth of questions about the different types of blood and the relative nutritional value of them, she'd gone away for a while. He'd thought that was the end of it, but then she'd shown up at his crypt, a cooler full of blood with her. Human blood. She'd done something and arranged for him to get some real human blood every week from the local chapter of the Red Cross. It wasn't fresh, and certainly didn't have the flavor of blood right from a terrified mortal, but it was immensely better than cold pigs blood in styrofoam tubs. He'd never even asked how she'd managed it, but without those bags of human blood, sometimes two, more often four or five a week, he had no idea how he could have made it through the past month.
He didn't know what to say around her. Before the chip, it had been easy, they'd only encountered each other a bare handful of times, and their words had been a few threats, the typical 'Buffy will stop you' and 'no having!', all of which were really simple. But now... he wasn't working on any plans to take over the hellmouth, and if he were really honest, he wasn't certain that he wanted to anymore. He couldn't hurt her, or any other human, so threats and the assorted responses to threats were out. He wanted... he wasn't sure exactly what he wanted, but he didn't want her to be afraid of him anymore. He didn't want her to avoid him, to think of him as her enemy. She wasn't his enemy now, not in his own mind and dreams.
Some of those dreams were quite... well, he could never talk about them here without that Slayer staking him. Or Willow could even do it herself, especially since he had the chip. But in his dreams... he could see, touch, taste every inch of her soft skin, caress her body with his fingers. He could touch her, bring them both to intense passionate pleasure. He could taste her in his dreams, bite through that soft skin that had smelled so temptingly of vanilla and take just a small taste of her blood... not to feed or hurt her, but in passion, to share her pleasure and his own. He could imagine them, bodies twined together on soft sheets, her skin practically glowing against deep blue or green sheets, or perhaps a dark red... her cheeks would flush with passion and pleasure, and her eyes would look like dark emeralds...
He wanted to make those dreams real. He'd wanted to since... he wasn't exactly certain when they'd become what they were. The first time he'd had an erotic dream about her had been after Halloween, but he hadn't been certain what her name was. He'd wanted to possess her, to take her to his bed and make her cry out his name in lust and need and pleasure. Those dreams had ended with him draining her as she writhed in pleasure beneath him.
It must have been after he'd kidnapped her and Xander for that love spell he'd wanted on Dru that he'd started to see her as more than a pretty face and female body to take and possess and enjoy. But when... he'd started at some point to want more than just willing pleasure with her. He didn't know when, but it had been there. It had been part of the source of the stabbing burning jealousy that he'd felt at the idea of her and that witchy girl. It had been part of the reason he'd been so delighted when she'd broke up with the other girl, well, that and he'd never liked Tara very much.
He hadn't expected it to hurt that she didn't think he wanted to be near her. Especially since the truth was that he wanted to be very near her. But more than that, he wanted her to smile lovingly at him like she'd done with the witch, like he imagined she'd done to wolf-boy. He wanted her to care about him, to want him, not just desire his touch and his body, but to want his company and his presence.
Somehow, he'd managed to botch that from the very beginning. Between trying to kill her in the dorms and the insults that he'd hurled at the whole group while he'd been chained in the watcher's bathroom... He'd crushed any chance of having her before he'd even realized just how much he did want to have her. Then, he'd seen her sitting there, shelving books with that... wolf that had his face. The way she'd been looking at him... it had sent rampant flares of jealousy and anger through him. Don't look at that wolf like that, look at me... But what good would it do to say anything?
He glanced skyward, wondering if there really was a god, and if so, was that god organizing things to go like this out of some sense of amusement? Had this wolf Spike been brought here to torment him with the sight of Willow looking at... Spike suddenly froze, thinking very carefully about that image. Willow had been sitting there, looking at the other Spike with this look of half concealed longing. Longing was a close kin to desire, could she possibly want him?
Maybe there was a sliver of hope for him. Especially since she'd said that the wolf Spike had been watching the Slayer, and in fact, he'd gone home with Buffy. Willow would never go after wolfy Spike if she suspected that he wanted her friend. That safely removed the other Spike from the possibility of competition. Willow wasn't a prize to be won by killing a certain number of demons or looking devastatingly sexy, but maybe if he could make a good impression... she might be willing to give him a chance.
Spike walked over to the table, looking at one of the pages with the translation. Frowning, he considered the words carefully, and then pulled over the book that had the original version. He had an idea, and wanted to look a bit more closely at it before mentioning it to anyone. The line that had mentioned four people, Guardian and Hunter and Wise and Chosen... if the Guardian was the wolf-Spike, and the Chosen was Buffy, could the Wise be Willow? He knew that the word for Wicca derived from a word for wise or learned people. If the Babylonians had used something similar to refer to their mages, then the Wise might mean a sorcerer, which could mean Willow.
He really didn't think he liked the idea of Willow involved with a prophecy tying her in with that wolf. He abandoned the paper that had the English translation, leaving it in the book with the Babylonian, his careful notes in the margins 'Wise -> wicca derives from same root word' and 'possible parallel between wisdom/knowledge and magic use'. It wasn't immediately important now, and it would still be there if he decide to refer back to it.
end part 5.
Willow had gone to her classes, taken a lot of notes, and completely missed the point of one of the examples for her math class. She'd been too busy thinking about that prophecy... or rather, about Spike, and the other Spike. But she would claim it was the prophecy if anyone asked. Spike the Garou would most likely have to stay here. They didn't really know how he'd been sent here, they had a name, but not the method. Unless they knew how he'd got here, it would be almost impossible to find a way to send him home. The almost, of course, assumed that the Hellmouth and demon population would let them even have the time to try to find a way, which wasn't very likely.
So it looked like Spike the Garou was here to stay... at least, here in this world. Buffy had been all giddy about him today, apparently they'd spent hours talking last night. In Willow's opinion, Buffy seemed to have a definite not so professional interest in him. That could be good, Buffy'd been lonely since Riley'd left, which was a whole other messy story. Shaking her head, Willow sighed. Garou Spike just might end up involved with Buffy, and if he was half as loyal as vampire Spike, Buffy would be a very happy Slayer. Considering the way he'd been looking at her last night, he would probably be thrilled.
Sighing, Willow could just picture Buffy and Spike being blissfully happy together. It would certainly be good for Buffy, but... Her mind turned to her... no, to the vampire Spike. He certainly wouldn't want to get involved with Buffy. But that didn't mean that he would want to get involved with her, or anyone else for that matter. But Spike the vampire wasn't quite as bad and evil as he wanted everyone to think. He'd helped Buffy when Angelus was going to open Acathala... Acathala, hmmm. How exactly had that been opened anyhow? She'd better ask Giles, there was something nagging at her mind, something trying to connect and not quite reaching.
Entering the Magic Box, she gave a small wave to Anya, and let herself into the back, where Giles was looking over the papers on the prophecy, and a few heavy looking books as well.
"Hey Giles. umm, this might sound sort of weird, but... how was Acathala opened and closed? Before he got smashed up and turned into the gravel for the mansion's garden walkway, I mean." She kept her voice low enough that the few customers in the front wouldn't hear anything.
Giles gave a shudder, closing his eyes. "Acathala was... opened by the blood of the 'worthy' which was spilled on the sword in order to enable it's removal. The blood of the same person, once applied or contacting a blade would enable it to be closed. Why?"
"Here." Willow pointed to one of the phrases in the prophecy. Reading it out loud, she continued. " It says 'With Twinned Blood the Darkness Locked.' and I was wondering if that had a connection to something, like Acathala. If it was the blood that closed Acathala, does this mean that the Twinned Blood can close the Hellmouth? Which, would mean the two Spikes, naturally."
Giles blinked, and looked at the passage again. "Yes, that does sound right, especially considering. I... someone left a few notes, and it appears that the Wise is you. The Babylonians referred to their sorcerers and magical practitioners as 'Learned Ones', so the parallel is quite obvious. The Wise is a magic user. The person responsible, and I can only assume that it was one of the Spikes, was quite correct."
She sat down, feeling nervousness dance in her stomach. "I'm in a prophecy? But... that's Buffy's destiny, not mine! I can't be the third person, it doesn't make any sense... and do we have any idea about the Hunter?"
With a fond smile, Giles nodded. "Yes, you are in the prophecy. And... well, I've established the something about the fourth, and it's fairly apparent who that person is. You see, the Babylonians did not have a specific word for vampires, and referred to them as 'hunters in the darkness'. Considering that one particular vampire that we know is referred to in two other places, it seems quite reasonable that the Hunter mentioned is the vampire Spike. Which means the Four are You, Buffy, and the two Spikes."
"Oh dear." Willow knew that she was using one of Giles' favorite phrases for prophecies, but it just seemed to fit. "That should be... interesting. They don't get along very well."
"Which 'they' are you meaning? Buffy and..." Giles looked curious.
"Well, there's Buffy and our Spike, of course. But I was actually thinking of the two Spikes. They seems to have... issues."
With a brief pause for thought, Giles nodded. "Yes, I did notice that last night."
"Yay, now that we've got this prophecy mostly unraveled, I have algebra and history to work on. I think I'll just sit here where it's quiet." Willow's voice held a measure of pleasure, and an equal measure of exasperation for her homework.
She was still looking at the open history text when Spike sauntered into the room, alone and wearing his long black coat. "Hope that's not another book on prophecies, Red. We've already got one floating around right now, we don't need another one."
Willow jumped, thankfully managing not to squeak. Looking over, she noticed the leather coat, the old scar over the eyebrow, and the unnatural stillness of his throat, concluding that this must be the vampire Spike. Besides, Garou Spike would probably be with Buffy. "Hey Spike. Actually, Giles thinks we have the prophecy mostly figured out, or at least, we know who everyone is."
He leaned against the wall, lighting a cigarette. "Right, we have Fluffy the Slayer, Wolfy me, and you. Who else?"
With a small, amused grin, Willow answered him. "Vampy you. Guardian is Spike the Garou, Hunter is you 'cause the Babylonians called vampires hunters in the darkness, Chosen is Buffy, on account of being the Slayer, and umm... the Wise seems to be me, on account of having magic."
"I'm in this prophecy? But..." Spike looked stunned.
With a small sympathetic smile, Willow shrugged. "I tried that already. It didn't work. I'm stuck in this thing, and so are you."
Spike scowled, his expression reminding her of someone who'd just bit a lemon. "I'm stuck in some miserable prophecy with the Slayer and a fur ball with my face. Why can't I be in some prophecy about blood and serious changes?"
Willow felt a little bit of hope that he hadn't complained about being in the prophecy with her. "Well... actually, there is blood and the closing of the hellmouth in this one. But we're still trying to get the details there."
"Yes!" Spike looked momentarily delighted, and then got a wary expression. "Exactly who's blood is involved in this?"
Willow tried not to giggle at his expression. "We aren't sure, but... I had an idea. I thought that it might be sort of like the Blood of the Worthy for Acathala, which would mean that somehow, your blood and that of the other Spike would be involved, but... we really aren't sure of the details."
"My blood? Some ritual involving MY blood? I don't like that at all. There are only two times I'm willing to bleed, a lively fight and a nice hard shag. This doesn't sound like either one." Spike didn't sound at all amused, and was glaring at Giles.
Willow was staring at Spike, her mind running with his comment about shagging. Spike... and sex... and blood. That was quite an interesting mental picture. She could feel herself turning absolutely crimson while the images formed in her mind. Especially since some of them featured her. Her and Spike... naked, doing naked things together... and him biting into the side of her throat, marking her as his, her biting into him, marking him as HERS. Oh dear, very very naughty images...
"Willow, you seem to be ahh..." Giles faltered, as if suddenly deciding that he didn't want to know. "Do you have any idea where Buffy and... the other Spike might be?"
Willow nodded, her blush fading a bit. "Buffy wanted to show him around Sunnydale, and something about stopping for coffee. I think... umm... I think Buffy wants to convince him to stick around."
"Do we have a way to send him back?" Spike's voice was only moderately sarcastic.
"No." The answer came from Giles and Willow at the same time.
Willow continued alone. "But stuck in this world isn't the same as staying here. I think Buffy wants him to stay, you know, in Sunnydale, with her. She... seems to like him a lot."
Spike just smiled, a small chuckle escaping. "Buffy wants to keep the wolf... after all these hours of telling me that she didn't think I'm the least bit appealing, she's planning to shack up with my evil... furry twin. Priceless..."
"There's nothing wrong with the way you look." Willow's words were murmured, with no intention of anyone else actually hearing them, but she'd forgotten about super vampire hearing. Now, Spike was looking at her, a smug grin on his features.
Oh yes, she definitely hated being involved in a prophecy.
end part 6.
Spike certainly hadn't expected that comment. While he did know that he looked good, that was not the same as expecting Willow to say so, especially since she'd said there was nothing wrong with the way he looked. Nothing. He wondered if that included when he shifted to his vampire face, or only while he looked human? How much time had Willow spent looking at him?
Maybe this prophecy wouldn't be too bad after all. Especially not if it involved him and Willow.
"You think I look good?" His words were directed at Willow, low and almost teasing. He didn't want her to know how much those words had affected him. It wasn't exactly a declaration of lo... desire, but it was something.
She was blushing again, all bright pink, and he could almost smell the blood, could imagine the most delicate of bites parting the skin, letting her blood trickle out... the chip choose that moment to jolt him with a painful 'reminder' that he wasn't supposed to be hurting people, and he could feel himself wince. The pain almost caused him to miss her words.
"Of course... arrogant vampire, all sexy and confident and swooshing leather coat... like he doesn't know."
He could feel his grin getting wider as her words spilled out. She was remarkable, and her mind worked in such bafflingly mysterious ways. He could spend decades listening, and he still doubted that he'd understand how her mind worked. With a little surprise, he realized that he found the idea appealing.
"So, what do the Four in this thing do anyhow?" He was still watching Willow, delighted in her blushing, and almost regretting the way it caused certain parts of him to respond in particular.
He could hear Giles removing his glasses, guessing that there was also the pinching of the bridge of his nose, possibly an effort to ward off a headache. "As near as I can guess, you will all four have to unite in a battle, facing what is referred to as an Ancient foe which might or might not refer to the Hellmouth. I'm afraid it's rather cryptic."
The bell on the door jangled, and Spike could hear the chattering voice of the Slayer. "Buffy's here. So's my furry twin." He wasn't certain if he liked their arrival, but it couldn't be helped.
"Oh, its you. Giles, do we really need the dead one over there? Can't we just... send him out to beat up some demons or something?" Buffy had started by glaring at him, and was now looking pleadingly at Giles.
Spike glared right back at her, and then decided to take a moment to look at the wolf. Garou Spike was in a pair of blue jeans and a grey shirt, his hair in an wild tousle, curls falling around his head. He was looking at him with a cautious, measuring expression, as if trying to figure out if he could take him in a fight.
"What's your take on Sunnyhell, furry-me?" Spike couldn't quite resist asking the question.
His double glared at him, the pulse throbbing in his neck. "It's... different. Lots of demons, and more bloodsucking leeches in one place than anywhere I've ever heard of before. But there are a few... redeeming features. But, what has been determined about this prophecy, and it that why I'm here?"
Willow looked at the other Spike, her expression thoughtful. "We've figured out who the Four are, you're the Guardian, vampire Spike is the Hunter, Buffy's the Chosen, and it seems that I'm the Wise, because umm... magic and all. You two Spikes are the Mirror, and I suspect that the twinned blood is also referring to one or both of you, but we're still trying to figure that part out in more detail."
"I knew I was in this, but... him? He's a vampire. Vampires don't... they drag things into darkness. They twist things and corrupt them, and feed on the people. How is he supposed to be any help?" His expression was not happy.
He felt the sudden contrary urge to be part of this prophecy, to do better at his part than the wolf managed. "Are you saying that you don't think I'm up to it?"
"Your kind are better at destroying than protecting." He was definitely glaring.
"My kind?" Spike was absolutely certain that he'd been insulted. "Exactly what do you mean by that, wolf boy?"
Willow stood up, not quite between them, but certainly in their lines of sight. "Umm... I'm sort of picking up a violent vibe off you two. Maybe... ummm... we, that is you two and me can go out and find somewhere that isn't Giles shop, and you can sort of look for evil dangerous things to fight? Instead of destroying Giles shop? Buffy needs to stay here and get caught up on the prophecy..."
"You realize..." He'd barely begun his question before it hit him. She did realize, but she was trying to minimize the damage to Giles store. Patrol was her convenient excuse why they should go somewhere else to beat each other up. "Right... patrol for dangerous blokes. I think he and I can do that, and since you are the net girl, you can lead the way to any particular trouble spots."
She got a bit paler, and swallowed hard. "Right. Umm... weapons are over here, which we might need for demons..." She grabbed a crossbow and a short sword, preparing herself. "If you two are ready, we can go now."
They were nicely cooperative on the way out, and even managed to get almost a block away before the angry hostile glares began again.
"umm... could you two wait with the non-human insults until we're out of town? I figured we could start near the stream, it's the sort of area that this one type of water demon likes, and umm... there's a nice open meadow that you two can beat each other up in without any random people seeing." Willow's voice was a bit nervous, but determined. She probably had that Resolve Face.
They were quiet for a while, and then they reached the clearing. Pale light came down from the half moon, and there were small flowers and shrubs in the area. It was a pretty place, and it would be perfect for a bit fight. Spike paused for a moment, and shrugged out of his duster, handing it to Willow.
"Hold this so it doesn't get scuffed up?"
She reached out, touching his elbow, her eyes bright with emotions. "Spike... please, don't try to kill each other. Either of you. Just... beat out your issues, make your manly evaluations, and we can move on."
The wolf nodded, his eyes twinkling with a bit of amusement. "Right... no attempted maiming or killing."
"Whatever you say, luv. No permanent harm, but we have a few issues."
end part 7.