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"Jesus--bloody--mother of--dammit---merlin--oh hell--shit! Shit!"
"What the hell?!" Dawn screeched running down the stairs. Reaching the bottom she clutched her chest, gulping in huge amounts of air as she stared at the two blond men. "What?!"
Andrew slowly closed his gapping mouth as he raised his hand to point at Draco. "Sun."
"What?" Frowning Dawn turned to Draco, "Oh m'god! You're smoking!"
"At least he's not on fire anymore."
"On fire?!" Dawn looked back to Draco who was crouching low to the floor clutching his right arm to his chest. Faint curses could still be heard.
"He went to go outside. I tried to stop him."
"Outside?" Dawn slowly questioned, her hands going to her hips, "You went to go outside?" she asked again, glaring down at him as she lightly kicked him, "You're a vampire! Vampire plus sun equals bad."
"I know that!" Draco snapped out, finally rising to his feet.
"Well then why'd you go to go outside?"
Dawn shook her head, finally recovering from the fright Draco's loud string of expletives had caused. She continued to shake her head as she began laughing. "Ah man, I can't wait for Buffy to come home. She'll love this."
"So our plan of action is to figure out what dimension Mr. Malfoy came from and switch him and Spike back."
"Easy-peasy." Buffy remarked dryly, casting a quick glance at Faith.
Robin raised his hands, "Simplest solution, difficult to execute. Rupert and I came to the same conclusion."
Buffy gave a quiet groan, "Getting answers from him is like pulling teeth."
"Except pulling teeth is easy," Faith quipped as she polished her scuffed shoes. The hardships of slaying. "I say we just send Willow in."
"An excellent suggestion Faith. Mr. Malfoy still isn't able to control himself around yourself and Buffy. Spike's demon, as most do, clashes too much against your Slayer essence and he is just too unprepared to deal with it."
Faith quirked an eyebrow and snorted, "The Slayer thing, right. I was thinking because he has a hard on for her. But whatever floats ya." She tossed the tin of shoe polish and soiled rag to the floor and couldn't help the chuckle that escaped at the sight of the other three cringe.
It was all about the small pleasures in life.
"Where's the wizard man?"
Willow continued scanning through the ancient tome in front of her. As she heard silence she glanced up, curious as to why no one was answering Xander's question. She was shocked to find all attention of her. "What? Why is it that when we look for Draco everyone automatically consults with me?"
"It's the shadow thing," Xander answered, "Where you go he is sure to follow. Plus we're researching ways to get him home and he's no where to be found. If he doesn't have to help then I don't have to either."
"We're researching to get Spike back," Willow countered. She kept quiet about the reason she speculated Draco avoided helping. The probability of him not wanting to return to his dimension, "He and Dawn went out to pick us up dinner."
Faith looked started as she spun around to Willow, "We trust him enough to leave him alone with mini B?"
Buffy gave a tight smile, "We trust Willow enough in her trust of him that he can be around Dawn. Plus Andrew is with them. Worse case scenario if he snaps, he kills Andrew first allowing Dawn time to escape."
"Listen you little punk ass bitch," Faith grabbed Draco by the lapels of Spike's duster and shoved him against the wall, "If you don't start giving us answers I'm going to string you up by your toes," When she saw little reaction she tried the other lane, "Fine how about your balls?"
Draco widened his eyes and started struggling, "Put me down you crazy muggle bitch!"
"Faith! Let him go," When Buffy saw the other Slayer start to protest, she cut her off, "Just drop it, and him, for now. Get out of here so we can talk. But stay in the house! It's still light out and we don't want you dusting Spike's body."
Robin turned to the group when Draco had left, "We should just dust him."
"But my dream--"
"Yes, I understand Buffy. The whole prophecy. But you kids have been changing prophecies for years. Maybe this one isn't meant to play out. Listen, we've all been wrong at some point, maybe--"
"No! My... Ok, my Slayer dream aside."
"What Buffy, what exactly? What has Spike done that he deserves such special treatment?"
"He sacrificed himself to save the world!" Buffy yelled back angrily.
"And that suddenly excuses, erases, the decades to misdeeds that Spike partook in? Have any of you considered the possibility that Willow messing the spell up wasn't a mistake? Maybe the Powers didn't want Spike back. This Malfoy person is a shady character maybe this is his," Robin drew off, rubbing at his head as it was clear he hadn't fully thought out his theory. Buffy was still furious and was having none of it, Dawn appeared to be in the same boat. Willow, Robin couldn't read. Giles, Faith and Xander though clearly looked to be in some agreement of what Robin was saying. Robin caught Faith's gaze, she may agree with him to a degree but she was clearly troubled by it. "As fun as it's been to watch 'Spike' blunder around these couple of days...it's growing old. Fast."
"What is your prob--"
Willow shook her head, quickly quieting Dawn.
"Why won't anyone tell me anything?" Dawn wailed. "I don't care if that isn't Spike in there! It still looks like him. Why do you hate Spike so--"
"He killed my mother."
"Oh," Dawn breathed and slouched back.
The awkward silence only lasted a moment though.
Willow sighed as the group started arguing again about Spike and things like redemption. The Summers women against the world, lucky for them they both had a healthy set of lungs.
Willow found Draco in the next room sitting at the kitchen island. He'd no doubt heard the whole argument.
"What do you want Miss I'm-so-powerful-I-can-raise-the-dead-but-don't-do-a-very-good-job-of-it?"
"Draco I've already told you I'm--"
"I don't want to hear it," Draco groused, covering his ears, "I don't want to hear any of it! It's all so fucking loud..."
"Vampire senses... Another thing to try and--"
"Everything is heightened 100 times *more*. Like...you're wearing that lilac stuff again. Smells nice, not too strong...not like that shit your pirate friend is wearing. You know there's stuff that can fix that."
"Fix Xander's crappy cologne?"
Draco sighed, still hating that it took so much effort to do so. "His eye. There's tons of magical replacements. You can buy them anywhere."
"Not in this world Draco."
"Well this world is stupid! Brooms that don't do anything but *clean*," Draco spat out.
"Yeah well," Willow frowned, "What else *would* they do?"
Draco gave Willow another eye roll, one of those fun 'well aren't you a stupid witch' looks that Willow was beginning to loathe. "You fly brooms?" Willow asked, trying to withhold the giggles, "Like in the air?"
"Where else would you fly?"
Willow gave a little grin but shook her head and veered away from that conversation, "Listen, you wanna go home, right? To your crazy wizarding world that sounds cool and tacky all at once? Well, I'm the girl to do it. But I'm going to need answers, ok?"
"Who says I should help you?"
"You heard them in there Draco. You're becoming an annoyance and a hassle. They want to kill you, Spike's body be-dammed."
"I don't want to die again," Draco admitted quietly, "I've died one time too many already. I don't remember much else other than terror and betrayal...but I don't want to do it again."
"Understandable. Like I said, I'm the one to give help if there's any help out there. But you are going to need to help me, help you."
"Ok, listen. I don't get what happened here. I get the part where me and the other bloke were both dead and that I somehow was shoved in his place upon his revival. But...I'm from another dimension. I can't give you directions on how to get there. I could tell you anything and it wouldn't matter."
"You're right, but I could try tapping into your soul."
"You can do that?" Draco asked, sounding rather skeptical.
"You used to be dead, didn't you?"