Angels and Demons: A
AN: Hello oh patient readers of mine. I am currently on an
internship until the end of July with *very* limited computer
access (minus email which I can check at work), hence the delays.
I'm going to put out small segments of chapters as I get them
written and 'polished' though, mind you, I'm doing all this by writing
emails back and forth to myself as the public computer I'm currently
on doesn't have Word. Or Notepad. Yes, I'm serious.
But... I will still be totally there with email and appreciate each
and every one of you chiming in, even on these shortened
segments. I figured something is better than nothing for two more
months. Anyway, here's the first bit. I promise, less Spike in the
next one for all those who detest his character. Which is many. LOL
And I was totally number one on BOTH hits and reviews for about a
week. That's insane. And way cool. And insane.
*********** Chapter Thirty-Three Part A **********
"She'll be the death of us all."
Spike took a long drag from his cigarette and held the smoke in
deep before releasing it lazily through the gap between his fangs.
He stretched and grunted in satisfaction as his neck popped.
Just because he lacked a real body didn't mean he had to act
like it. His fingers flicked the remaining stub to the clouds
beneath his feet and he crushed the butt with a heavy, though
granted non-corporeal, combat boot. There were distant screams
from behind them, in the Greater Realms of the Poofs to Be.
The Vampire smiled. Slowly. "Good thing we're already good n'
dead, hey mate?"
The Balance Demon glared at him sulkily. Not that Spike, if he'd
been in the pounce's position, wouldn't have felt the same damn
way. The pigeon had a way of grating when she didn't like you,
and she liked damned few people up and around them, 'cept him
of course. Like in so many other things, Spike was always an
That got him smiling too.
"She's out of control!" Bruce snarled, even as he cast fearful
glances back over one shoulder as the screams escalated.
Spike chuckled and it was a rich, insidious sound- the kind that
crawled up your leg, curled around your spine, and, pardon the
metaphor, sank its teeth into your nervous system until you
screamed bloody murder. "Have you ever known a Slayer to
be IN control?" Bruce stared at him with outraged shock and
the Vampire shook his head slowly. "Gods, man, where have
you all been the last millennia or so? Even when the bloody
Council had them all wrapped so tight they could barely blink
without a crowbar they were always a hair's breadth from
snapping. It's the secret of Slayers you know," he added
sagely, "they're all blooming mad."
There was a gentle pop, a sound that belied the doom of what
was arriving, and Bruce shrieked as Ashley Ward, recently
deceased Slayer and newest employee of the Powers to Be,
shimmered happily into her own non-corporeal presence. Her
eyes were twinkling as she nodded gravely at Spike, and
bared even white teeth at the Balance Demon who shrank
away from her in wide-eyed fear. Spike chuckled approvingly as
she snapped blunt teeth at the air in front of the demon's face
and Bruce screamed, a high pitched squeal that seemed too
high, even for his slight, undignified form.
His polka dotted bowler hat went tumbling as he fell to the
ground and Ashley caught it deftly before flipping it onto her
head. Death hadn't slowed her down one bit. Good girl.
"Been having fun pigeon?"
She snorted as she bounced in one place. Spike had seen her
alive a few times when he'd snuck peeks at Xander before he'd
been blocked from taking little look sees of his mortal connections.
He’d just been checking in to make sure the idiot hadn't screwed
things up too badly, of course, but in retrospect, he didn't think
the girl had had even THIS much energy when she was still alive.
She was running the immortal beings ragged.
"No one wants to play with me anymore. They all just sit there
and cower." She frowned as she looked down at the huddling
Balance Demon. "You know, you think the people who ruled the
Universe would be tougher."
Maybe he should have gone to Hell after all, but Spike took gleeful
satisfaction in the fact that the Powers had finally bitten off more
than they could chew. Not only had they dealt Ashley a cruel fate
by not interfering in her death during their 'Let's Make a Champion'
of XANDER of all people phase, but then the idiots had had the gall
to ask Ashley to stick around and do some good deeds, since she
had died SO tragically young. Of course the whole, be careful what
you wish for, was coming back with vengeance, a baseball bat, and
a rabid mob of friends, because Ashley, shining beacon of goodness
that she was, had absolutely no interest in ANY of the Powers’
buckets of gold plated bullshit.
And they were all too damned afraid of her, big bad super entities
though they were, to do anything about it. Revenge was a sweet,
sweet thing to witness unfolding. Especially when revenge was
about four feet tall.
She spun and turned to peer over the cloudbank. Like Spike, her
exposure to the outside world had been limited, not just because
she was the little hellion she was, but because the Powers feared
what she would do if she saw what her loved ones were being
put through by her death. That was the theory anyway. The
reality was, in death, as in life, the only one who had a dream of
managing her was Alexander Lavelle Harris and the last thing the
Powers wanted was to put Ashley back in Xander’s sphere of
To put it mildly the Powers to Be were shits out of luck.
"I want to see Xander."
Bruce peered up miserably from the protective covering of his arms
as he rocked back and forth from his huddled position on the
ground. Spike lit another cigarette and watched, bemused, as
the diminutively deceased Slayer turned her fickle attention from
the darkened world below to the Balance Demon. She was like a
blonde shark she was, quick to smell the blood, the fear. Or
maybe a lioness, then.
Protecting her cub.
Spike had to hand it to him, coward though he was, Bruce knew
his job as a toady. The demon stood shakily and tried to smooth
down the plaid corduroy pants he wore as he attempted to reason
with the embodiment of stubbornness and human free will. "Ashley,
kid, you know the deal. No birds eye views until you start racking
up some points with the Head Honchos." Bruce got props for being
a good coward, the idiot part was likely to get HIM killed good and
dead though. Rightly so perhaps.
Ashley's eyes narrowed dangerously as she began to circle Bruce
slowly. Spike folded his arms across his chest to watch a show.
"I want to see Xander."
Yes, his pigeon was definitely a shark.
"Kid, you know I would if I could but..." Bruce held his hands out and
up, a peaceful gesture signaling the total depth of his ineptitude.
Ashley's nostrils flared and the Vampire stepped neatly out of the
way as the non-corporeal Slayer flung herself at the Balance Demon
with a banshee shriek of rage. Bruce wailed and flailed in pain.
Ashley tore into him like a force of nature, beautiful and deadly, and
so damn alive despite the lack of a body and breath. He and Xander
had had their differences over the years, and had shared not little
amount of hate, but even Spike had to admit.
Xander did good.