|Artwork by||Scarlett Spike|
|Publication date||August 9th, 2013|
|Warnings|| Explicit sexual content
Explicit language Violence
| Preceded by|
Souls, secrets and lessons
| Followed by|
|“||What are you doing? Six months ago you said you didn't want to get hurt, that you didn't want to see him again, and now it's been not even a week that he's here and you sleep with him? What happened to not getting hurt?||”|
- The story picks up right after the events of Souls, secrets and lessons, not counting its epilogue, since it takes place in a distant future.
- Some events may not match actual timeline corresponding to 2008, such as music, TV, technology.
- I do not own any rights to Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel.
It was almost 9 am and Angel was getting ready to go to the agency. He wasn't too thrilled that Spike had his key to the office, in fact, he wasn't happy that the younger vampire was nesting there until he could find a place to stay. Spike showing up in London two days before was unsettling, specially since according to him, he was back because of Scarlett.
Angel had protested against Spike getting his key to the office, but the redhead insisted Spike needed a place to stay. So after the elder vampire gave his key to Spike, Angel asked Scarlett to make a copy of it so he could enter the office without having to rely on Spike opening the door. Of course Angel would demand that key back once Captain Peroxide found his own place to stay, or leave London altogether. Angel was hoping for the latter.
He picked up the newspaper before he entered the office. Nothing strange so far in the news. He walked to his desk and glanced at the closed door and sighed heavily. Should probably wake him up before a potential client comes in. Wouldn't want him walking out of that room and right into the office and making us look unprofessional, he thought.
Without knocking, he opened the door, "Wake up, Spike, this isn't a hotel, time to-", he stopped when he saw a very much startled Scarlett sitting up and hug the sheets that covered her all, save for her shoulders, just as a very sleepy Spike was protesting at Angel's demands, "sod off, you ape," he muttered.
"Get out of here!" Scarlett snapped at the older vampire while gesturing with her hand. Angel gave her a scolding stare. "Get out so I can get dressed," she added matter-of-factly. Angel closed the door behind him. And this is exactly why I didn't want him around. He surely knows how to disrupt the order of things.
Scarlett, still sitting on the bed, started getting dressed while Spike merely watched her and caressed her still naked back. He had to stop when she finally put her top on. She seemed upset and Spike wondered why. Before he could ask her what was wrong, Angel spoke through the door, "just because we are letting you crash here, it doesn't mean you can stay in there during office hours, so you too get dressed and get out."
Spike frowned, "son of a bitch! I wanted to sleep some more, I'm kinda exhausted", he said with a smug when Scarlett turned around to look at him. She let out a soft chuckle, "sorry," she added sheepishly, then she got up and left the room. Spike sighed, got up and slowly got dressed. When he got out of the room, he saw the other two vampires in the small room that served as a kitchen. Both of them had their arms crossed and it was clear they were arguing, but in a low voice. As soon as Angel spotted Spike, he stormed out of the kitchen, followed by Scarlett, who was rolling her eyes.
"I don't know, go out for a walk," Angel said, a sarcastic smile on his face.
"That's why I suggested it," Angel grinned.
"Or he could go and rest in your place, since his presence is bothering you," Scarlett suggested.
"Ok, fine, he can stay here," Angel hastily replied.
"I'll go check that lead on the Silverstone case," she said, but soon changed her mind, "actually, you should go check that, Angel. Yeah, leaving the two of you here while I'm gone... I don't want to find the office trashed."
"Fine by me," Angel picked up the case file and left.
Spike sat on a couch and Scarlett handed him some books. While she was explaining the case, Spike couldn't help staring at her, "how on bloody Earth do you put up with that sod, luv?" he interrupted. She shrugged, "we get along," she replied.
"I don't know, doesn't look like. I saw you two arguing, and I wager it was about me," he said while going through one of the books, occasionally glancing at her.
"People argue, it's normal. Specially when they are family," she replied casually, her eyes not leaving the book she was researching.
Spike frowned, slightly aback, "family? You've known him for, what, six months? And you consider him family?"
"Uh-huh, I don't know how to explain it, but he feels like family to me, felt it the very moment we all three were talking in the bar," she said while looking at Spike, "I guess it has something to do with him being my sire and all," she concluded.
Spike looked down, returning to the book. He felt somewhat out of place. Something about what Scarlett said didn't sit well with him, he wasn't sure why. He felt a pinch of jealousy, he didn't like that she and Angel became so close. He was positive Angel wasn't into her, nor was she, and is not like Spike was in love with her either, he knew that. He liked her a lot, he definitely enjoyed spending time with her, specially intimate time, but he wasn't in love with her, he indeed had feelings for her, he felt madly attracted to her, but it was not love, at least not yet. Which made it all more confusing and complicated.
When he decided to come back to England he wasn't expecting anything to happen right away. Is not like he was complaining, not at all, but she showing up last night and getting all physical surely took Spike by surprise, considering that some hours before she had been somewhat hostile to him. He wanted to bring that subject up since last night they barely talked at all, -save for the dirty talk during sex- but he could tell she was trying to sort this case.
"Bingo!," Scarlett interrupted Spike's thoughts, "this is our boy," she showed him the image, "Grun'lar demon, it eats kidneys. The fucker left a dozen mutilated bodies the last four days," she kept reading, "it has to be decapitated, limbs have to be chopped too and all parts need to be buried separately. Ok, no problem there," she concluded.
"Sounds like fun," Spike smiled at her, "so when do we hunt this bastard? Can't wait for some action," he added while cracking his knuckles. Scarlett stared at the clock on the wall, "well, that's gonna be hard, for once, it's day. Also, someone needs to be in here in case we get clients. So our Grun'lar buddy will have to wait till nightfall for its dismembering," she explained.
"Right, forgot sunlight is still harmful for this bloke," Spike said, somewhat hopeful. She set the book down, "you'll have to be patient. I can arrange that, but it'll have to be in the weekend. We have to go to Devon and it's a couple of hours drive, can't leave Angel alone here. Don't worry, the car has necro-tempered glass."
"Is it the Viper?" Spike asked, a grin spreading on his face. Scarlett nodded, but when he asked if he could drive it and she said no, his grin faded away and a pout took its place. "I wager you let Captain Forehead drive it," he muttered, and Scarlett chuckled, "no, he can't drive my Viper either," she concluded.
"Thank you, pet," he said, truly meaning it. "No problem, sooner or later we were gonna get you sunlight protection. Guess the sooner the better," she replied.
During the next hours, Spike looked around the office, inspecting every detail, looking at case files and books. He was feeling peckish, "mind if I snatch one of your blood bags, pet?" he asked. "Go for it," she answered, not taking her eyes off the papers she was reading. Spike grabbed a glass and poured some blood in it, "got many clients?" he asked while sitting on the couch right next to her.
She tilted her head back, "not a lot, but we scored some cases, low threat cases, where the clients had money and paid well," she explained. "I thought you weren't doing this for the money," he asked. Scarlett shrugged, "is not the reason I do it, but certain cases require rare and expensive ingredients and, well, Angel needs the profits, and we mostly balance those low threat cases with the high threat ones."
"Meaning?" Spike asked. "Meaning that we use the money we gain from the low threat cases to cost the expenses of the high threat ones, specially, if the client is not very wealthy and the job requires rare and expensive stuff," she explained. "Besides, we need to get a certain amount of income, not to just pay the rent and expenses, but to start considering an assistant," she finished.
"What, you don't like being Angel's secretary?" he mocked. "First, I'm not his secretary, I'm his partner, and second, we need someone watching the fort and attending clients while he and I are out investigating during business hours, which currently we cannot do, we have to take turns. And it sucks," she answered. "Speaking of, what are you planning to do? You gonna stay with us or this is a vacation trip?" she asked while looking at the papers again, purposely avoiding eye contact.
Spike wasn't ready to answer that, not just yet. A talk was in order at some point regarding his reasons to stay, but this was not the place nor the time for it. He knew it would be a rather long talk and he surely didn't want to be interrupted by some client, or by Angel for that matter. And if luck would have it, his grandsire walked in and immediately threw a disapproving glare at Spike.
"Any luck?," Scarlett asked. Angel nodded, "yeah, I got a description of the vampire that attacked Mrs Silverstone, apparently he hangs in that closed bar we spotted, which of course we cannot get in without us getting seriously dusted," he explained.
"I'm not scared, you idiot, that hole is full of demons and vampires. Lots of them, and heavily armed, and they don't really like us," he pointed at Scarlett and himself, "they are fully prepared in case we barge in," Angel finished.
"So we wait the fucker out, we tail him and then I dust him," Scarlett said grinning.
"Exactly," agreed Angel. "What about you? The mutilation case, any info on what we are dealing with?" he asked her. She nodded and handed him the case file with the notes she added earlier. "Good, we'll work on it later", Angel said while looking at the clock, it was 1 pm. "I'll be back at four," he finished.
"Me too," replied Scarlett. Spike waited for Angel to leave before asking, "you're leaving too, pet?" She nodded, "I need to take a nap," she replied. "Isn't that your nap room?" Spike pointed at the room where they spent the night, a subtle smile on his face. "Yes, it is, but I really need a nap and a shower, and I doubt you'll let me sleep," she countered before walking out and locking the door.
He was dreaming of what happened the previous night, when the most irritating sound woke him up. "Spike! Get up and get dressed, I told you to not take naps in here," Angel was almost shouting. Spike was furious, he got up in one swift move and stood up to Angel, "I don't like the tone, mate, I wasn't gonna get out there naked," Spike spoke in a low and menacing tone. Angel turned around and left, shutting the door behind, not that he was intimated by the blond vampire, but because it was disturbing that Spike was naked and aroused.
While Spike was getting dressed, Angel was pacing back and forth, cursing under his breath, "stupid English," he punched his desk, just as Scarlett was walking in, "uhm, someone's angry," she teased. Angel had an exasperated look, "you think?" he replied sarcastically, "I told him not to use that room during office hours, yet he did. And if that wasn't bad enough, he was naked!" he added. Scarlett smirked and raised an eyebrow, "naked?" she asked clearly interested. Angel sighed heavily, "we need to have a talk about all that's happening, I'm worried about you. Tonight during dinner or after the hockey game," he finished.
Scarlett frowned, "worried about what?" she asked, but Angel didn't reply because Spike was coming out of the room. "Welcome back, pet," he greeted her with a charming smile, and Angel rolled his eyes. "I'm going to check if everything is still normal with the McKenzie case," the elder vampire said, "I cannot stay here for another minute, the air is too thick," he finished while glaring at Spike, who lifted his middle and forefinger as soon as Angel wasn't looking, "up yours, ponce," he muttered.
"Oookay, that was awkward," Scarlett said while typing on the laptop. Spike stood behind her, leaned over her and casually rested his chin on her shoulder, reading what she was typing, "what is it?" he asked. She turned her face just barely, taking a brief look at his lips, then making eye contact, and then quickly back to the screen, "it's a list of all demon species we found so far and how to kill them, vanquish them and burial rituals, if required," she replied. She got up and poured some bourbon in a glass, "want one?" she asked. "God, yes," was Spike's reply.
He was feeling hot, her scent slowly awakening his inner demon, he was lusting after her badly, and knowing he could do nothing about it for the time being was driving him insane. "So... what are the plans for tonight, pet?" he asked while going through a book. "As soon as the sun sets, we're going to track down that Grun'lar demon, hopefully we find it and bag it fast," she said idly. "And after that?" Spike asked, smiling to himself. "After that, Angel and I are having dinner and watching a hockey game," she replied.
Spike swallowed hard, "dinner? Since when Angel has anything other than pig's blood?" he asked, clearly upset. "Since he realized that it's stupid to only eat what nourishes you, besides, families eat together. And we never miss a hockey game," she explained.
A few hours later, Angel returned. "What took you so long?" Scarlett asked in a low voice, he gave her a look that pretty much read 'you really need to ask?' and she merely sighed, "fine, be that way," she muttered. "Sun is down, we should probably start the search," Spike added, and Angel raised an eyebrow, "we? You're not coming with us," he protested.
Scarlett stormed out of the room and came back with an axe and a sword, "yes, he's coming," she said while handing the axe to Spike and the sword to Angel, "we don't know how strong this demon is. The more, the merrier," she finished.
The air was filled with uncomfortable silence during the trip to the latest crime scene. Angel was more broody than usual, his hands gripping the wheel tight, his eyes fixed on the road. Scarlett broke the silence, "pull over there," she signaled to an alley.
The trio scanned the area, picking traces of the demon's scent. "It gets stronger in that direction," Spike said while walking north, slowly picking up his pace; the other two chasing behind. They ran six blocks until they finally found the spot where the trail ended and after a couple of hours waiting and searching nearby, their demon showed up. Big, gray and with two massive tusks coming out of its mouth. Spike put his game face on and swung his axe at it, but the demon anticipated the blow and kicked Spike in his stomach, who went flying against a wall. Both Scarlett and Angel, also in game face, attacked at unison, and Spike jumped in once more and took the opportunity to deal a mighty blow at one of the demon's legs. It let an angry growl.
Angel ducked just as the demon was about to strike his face with one big fist, and Scarlett saw an opening and struck it on the chest with her sword, once again, the demon growled in pain and anger. Spike swung again and severed its head. "Well, now that was fun!" he said, clearly still reeled for the battle. Scarlett severed its limbs, "I'll go get the car," she said, and Angel tossed her the keys, and as soon as she caught them, she dashed away.
Not ten minutes later she parked next to the two other vampires, tossed the keys back to Angel, who opened the trunk and grabbed some big plastics bags. They placed the torso, limbs and head into separate bags and put them in the trunk. "So, where do we bury it?" Spike asked. "The cemetery," she replied while sitting on the passenger seat.
After they finished burying the remains of the demon, they returned to the office. Angel picked up some books, "come by in an hour, I wanna take a shower first," he told Scarlett and left. Spike raised an eyebrow, "look at the drama queen," he muttered. Scarlett shook her head in amusement, "my god, you two are like children. There's blood in the fridge, and if you go out don't forget to lock the door," she said.
"You leaving?" he asked and Scarlett nodded, "gotta buy some stuff. Good night, Spike," she kissed his cheek and left. Spike decided he was gonna spend most of the night at the bar, drinking and smoking. Maybe, if he was lucky, he would run into some demon or vampires and have a good brawl. He was itching for a good fight.
"So did the Greek, and look what happened," Angel replied jokingly, he picked the beers and the blood bag, put them in the fridge and picked two beers from the fridge that were already cold, he glanced at the bucket, "that smells really good," he pointed out.
"Well, duh! It's chicken, one of the most yummy foods on the planet, second only to beef," she said as she lit a smoke. "Game starts in fifteen," she noted while glancing at the grandfather's clock.
He ordered some onion rings and a beer, and pondered on what to do next. He felt like a caged animal, he needed release badly, so some violence was in order. Hopefully, some vampire would rise that night and Spike would be able to vent out his frustration on it.
"What are you doing? Six months ago you said you didn't want to get hurt, that you didn't want to see him again, and now it's been not even a week that he's here and you sleep with him? What happened to not getting hurt?" Angel asked.
Scarlett rolled her eyes, as if she didn't want to answer, but Angel's expression clearly showed he was expecting an answer. "I slept with him, so what? Is not a big deal. I like him, ok? I enjoy spending time with him," she said in a challenging way, but Angel didn't buy it, he was sure there was something else.
"I can see you like him, but again, I recall you said you didn't want to get hurt. I don't want you to get hurt. Spike likes you, sure. Because you are sleeping with him. What are you going to do when he gets tired of it?" Angel said curtly.
"No big deal if that happens," she replied, her voice quivering just barely, "it's not like we are going out or anything. I'll be fine."
"Is that what you think? That you'll be fine? You are in love with him. You won't be fine," his voice now more compassionate.
"I'm not in love with him!" Scarlett snapped defensively, avoiding eye contact.
"No, you are not," he said sarcastically. "That explains why you broke down when we talked in the park, remember? That's why every time his name came up while he was gone you'd get tense. You can deny it all you want, but you have feelings for him. Very strong feelings," he finished.
"No I don't! I simply slept with him three times, that's all," she replied, slightly angry.
Angel knew he was getting nowhere, he'd have to prove his point from another angle, "ok, you are not in love with him, why sleep with him? You deserve better than Spike, I'm sure if you'd try you could meet someone better. You go out a lot, I'm sure you have guys hitting on you. Why not date someone and see how it goes. Who knows? Maybe you'll find the right one," Angel said, already knowing her answer.
"You don't understand, I can't do that. I'm not gonna date a mortal, not gonna risk falling in love with a mortal, that road leads to nowhere. You should know that," she replied evenly.
Angel wasn't expecting that one, which is why it hurt so much. She had a point.
"You have to let it go," Scarlett suddenly said, and Angel got tense, "it's not that simple, you can't just fall out of lo-" he was saying when she interrupted him. "No, not her. Spike. Don't think I don't know what's happening here. You keep blaming him for everything that happened in the past. There're no guilty ones when it comes to feelings, you know that, and yet you keep taking it out on him. And now you're using my situation, so again, you need to let it go," she finished, and Angel remained silent.
"So yeah, I sleep with Spike. There are a gazillion reasons why I do. And you can't understand half of them," she added.
"Then why don't you explain them," Angel asked as he was crossing his arms.
"Because I can be myself with him," she answered before she lit another cigarette.
"Why can't you be yourself with someone else?" Angel was confused.
"Because with him I can be what I am, a demon, a vampire. I don't have to be careful, I don't have to measure my strength and pray I don't snap one of his ribs. I don't have to pretend to be a 'proper lady', or a human for that matter. I'm not expecting you to understand, because I'm not scared of unleashing my inner demon," Scarlett said. Angel frowned, clearly trying to understand.
"I'm not you, I don't repress my vampire instincts and my inner demon. The more you repress, the worst it is when you snap. Look at you, you can't have a single glass of human blood without getting all jittery. I don't have that problem because not only I know how to control it, but also because I let my demon out. How many times, when fighting, you held back? Every. Single. Time. I don't," she said harshly.
"I'm sorry, dad," she emphasized the word bitterly, "what do you want me to say? You want me to draw you a chart? Yes, I have a fixation with him. Yes, he's fucking hot. Yes, I enjoy having sex with him. I like being around him, I like how I feel when I am with him. But it's just that, we enjoy each other's company. But I'm not in love," she finished.
Angel knew she wouldn't admit it, but he was right. He didn't know, though, if she was lying or if she simply wasn't aware of her feelings. He was more inclined to the second option.
After ten minutes of fighting with it, Spike finally dusted the vampire. He searched for some more but after a couple of hours, he found none, so he headed back to the office. On his way he decided to pay a visit to Angel in hopes the redhead would be there.
"Just wanted to see what you and the bird were up to," he said casually, "you there, pet?", he called out, looking around.
"I'm not," Spike said. He wanted to insult Angel, he wanted to punch him, but thought it better. The situation was bad enough and he didn't want to make it worse, so he simply left. As soon as he got to the office he took a shower and went to bed, he just hoped tomorrow would be a better day.
"No, it's almost noon," she replied. Spike looked confused at Scarlett, "it's my turn to open the office so Angel can sleep some more and stay up much later. Remember I told you we take turns and it sucks? Well, this is it," she explained. "Hurry up and get dressed, I'll warm you a glass of blood in the microwave," she finished and left the room, closing the door behind her.
After getting dressed, Spike got out of the room and sat down on the couch next to the desk, he saw two glasses of blood. "Which one is mine?" he asked, still somewhat sleepy. Scarlett pointed at the one closer to him, "that one," she said as she went back to typing on the computer. Spike thanked her and drank deep, savoring every drop of it.
"Got some good news for you," she said, and Spike noticed she looked too serious. "What is it?" he asked, intending to find out why she looked somber, but then he realized that she would talk about whatever news she had.
"Talked to the coven, told them we'll be there on Saturday. If we leave by noon, we should be there near sunset. We'll have to come back on Sunday," she informed him.
Spike smiled widely, "that's indeed great news. Can't wait to say hello to Mr Sunshine," he said with glee. And his excitement grew when he realized they were gonna be alone for two days, without Angel and his proverbial father attitude. "It's a long drive there, pet," he said with a charming smile on his face.
"Well, seems we'll have to take turns to drive. We'll see," Scarlett replied, suppressing a smile. Spike thought for a moment, "so, where are we going to stay?" he asked, making every effort to hide his anxiety. Scarlett remained silent for some seconds, "I don't know yet," she paused once more, "probably in a hotel," she finished.
Just as he was about to ask if two rooms or one, Angel walked in, greeted them and went to the kitchen. Spike noticed that Scarlett barely looked at Angel when she said hello, but soon after she got up, excused herself and headed to the kitchen and closed the door.
"I'm not asking you for permission or advice, I'm simply informing you," she countered and left.
Despite both were talking in a low voice, Spike managed to overhear their conversation.
The day passed slowly for Spike and while Scarlett had been out doing errands, he and Angel spent most of the time bickering, arguing and being petty to each other. Spike wanted to leave, but sadly, sunset was still a couple of hours away, so he was stuck indoors, with Angel, which made Spike even more anxious to get out.
When Scarlett came back, the two vampires were still locked in a heated argument. She rolled her eyes in disbelief when she heard the subject they were arguing about: hockey versus soccer. They were arguing as if discussing a matter of life and death and they didn't even register the woman's arrival, who had her arms crossed, looking at them back and forth.
"Wow, this is very mature," she had to raise her voice to be heard over the men's yells, who were startled by her, "thank God it was me and not a client," she finished, a scolding stare aimed mostly at Angel.
"Sorry," muttered both men at unison. Scarlett poured herself some bourbon, then offered a drink to Spike, who accepted it without hesitation. He was counting the minutes until sunset, he sure as hell wasn't gonna spend the rest of the day in the office, specially since Angel was going to be in there until midnight.
"While you stay here, I'll go try to find that vampire, you know, the one from the Silverstone case," she said while picking a crossbow and her swords. The sun finally set.
"Relax, I'm not going to barge in, I'm going to scout. From a safe distance, ok?" she tried to calm him down.
"Still, it could be dangerous," he insisted.
She rolled her eyes, "as opposed to anything we do every day," she replied, a tone of resolve in her voice.
Angel sighed in resignation, he knew there was no convincing her to reconsider. "I'll go with her, I can take care of her," Spike said, and Angel threw a look at him, "fine, you go with her," he said.
Scarlett scoffed, "Hello? I'm still here, and I can take care of myself, I'm not a fucking child, I don't need a babysitter," she said exasperated. "If you come with me is not as a babysitter, but as reinforcement, understand?" she locked eyes with Spike, and he nodded in agreement.
"Ok then, grab a weapon and let's go," she ordered while walking out of the office. Spike picked an axe and followed.
"What?" he asked puzzled.
"Gimme your coat," she repeated.
"Sorry, pet, can't do, I always wear my coat," he replied smiling.
"Well, you'll have to make an exception. Or if you don't want to, might as well go back to the office and keep Angel some company," she said face to face, her hands on her hips, a huge grin on her face. "We're gonna be sneaking around in very tight spaces, cannot afford your coat tangling with something, or knocking down a trash can."
"Bloody hell," he muttered under his breath while taking off his coat and putting it in the trunk. Scarlett handed him the axe and closed the trunk shut. "Ok, let's go," she said and walked away.
They hid between some trash cans, completely still. It was not the most comfortable of hiding places, but it was the most effective. And indeed not wearing the coat made it better, he had to admit. The downside was they had to remain completely silent for as long as possible.
After a couple of hours, their target finally emerged from the closed bar; they waited a moment and Spike chased after it, but when Scarlett was leaving her hiding place, one of her swords hit one of the trash cans and it fell making a really loud clanking sound. The vampire foe turned around just as Spike was jumping on it, "they are here!" it shouted just before Spike severed its head with his axe.
"Fuck!" Scarlett muttered as soon as she spotted three demons emerging from the place, machine guns at the ready. They shot a round, which hit the two vampires on their chests. "Bloody hell!" Spike yelled. "Run!" she yelled back while taking Spike's hand and running off. The demons kept firing, several rounds connecting on the vampires' backs.
They finally reached the car and Scarlett sped off. "Fuck, fuck, fuck!" she kept muttering, half angry and half in pain, "I fucking hate getting shot!" she kept rambling on. Spike lift his black shirt and was trying to remove the bullets in his chest, but he couldn't, his fingernails were just barely out of reach, he kept on trying nonetheless. Scarlett glanced at his wounds, "don't, we'll need tools to extract them," she said sternly, "I'm sorry, that was my fucking fault back there," she apologized. Spike glanced at her, he wanted to make a snarky remark, but decided not to, at least, not now.
They arrived at her house, "the kitchen, don't want to stain the hardwood floor or the rug. Blood's a bitch to remove," she said while picking a toolbox from the garage. "There's an unopened bottle of whisky in that cabinet," she pointed once they were in the kitchen.
Spike took out the two bullets from his chest, sipping bourbon in the process; so did Scarlett, and once she was done extracting the ones from her chest she told Spike to take off his shirt and sit backwards on a chair. He kept drinking, feeling her hand softly move around each wound, while the other was removing the bullets. He closed his eyes and restrained a sigh when her hand grabbed his waist while extracting the last bullet. Her touch felt so damn good.
Once she was done parching his wounds, she patted his shoulder, "your turn, Doc," she said while placing the tool on the table and snatching the half-empty bottle off his hands. Once Spike stood up, she took off her top, but not her bra, and sat bracing the back of the chair. He wiped her hair off her back and stared at it for a moment before he began extracting the bullets. She slightly flinched every time he touched her skin, "what?" he asked containing a smile. "What?" she echoed, pretending she didn't hear.
"You're jumpy, pet," he replied. His fingers were caked in her blood; he hesitated for a moment and then licked them. He closed his eyes, savoring her Slayer blood.
"I royally fucked it up back there," she said, completely ignoring his comment. She kept drinking whisky like she was drinking water, "we were lucky only three came out," she finished.
"Yeah, well, you did," he said and she turned her head slightly, trying to look at him, "ouch," she said.
"Did I hurt you?" Spike asked, wondering if he pinched her with the tool, "only my ego," she replied.
He chuckled, "sorry, pet, didn't mean to sound all douchebag, but you have to admit it was funny that after your speech to me about stealth, it was you who knocked down a trash can and gave us away."
"I know, I got too cocky," she said while taking another swig.
"At least they were carrying guns and not crossbows, and I wasn't wearing my coat, I'd be very angry if it got ruined. Already lost my good one some years ago," Spike noted.
The last bullet was on her lower back, just where her tattoo was, and once again she flinched and took a deep breath at his touch. "You're jumpy," he said again. "It tickles," she replied almost breathless.
"Mhm, of course it does," Spike said, a smug on his face, while parching up her wounds.
"Oh you're funny," she replied in a sarcastic, yet amiable tone, and Spike snatched the bottle off her hand. He drank deep, "nice kitchen, pet," he said while looking around. He opened the fridge and spotted assorted types of food and several blood bags, "may I?" he asked while holding a bag.
"You may," she replied while putting her top on. She then grabbed two glasses, snatched the blood bag off Spike's hand and poured some of its content in the glasses, then added bourbon.
She placed the blood bag in the fridge and took a good glance at Spike's chest, who put his shirt on but didn't button it, "you never answered me how you manage to afford to live in such luxury and have a place like this, pet," he asked, interrupting her thoughts.
"This house belonged to my Watcher, his family bought it near the end of the XIX century. Very wealthy family," she replied looking down, trying to hide a melancholic face that he didn't see.
Spike lifted an eyebrow, "if you are living here, and you are, well, dead, where is he? Did you occupy it?" he asked, not finding a logic to her story.
"He's dead, died five years ago," she replied in a very low voice.
"Of?" he pressed on. "Natural causes. He had cancer, left everything to me," Scarlett said while drinking deep from the bottle.
"Hold on, how could you inherit everything if you were dead to the world?" Spike asked, then lit a cigarette.
"That's not entirely accurate," she replied, and Spike frowned in confusion, "Six years ago, a friend of him, who knew me, spotted me in Chicago and was shocked at the resemblance, he called Roger, I'm fairly certain you remember his name since you investigated all about me when you were hunting me in LA... Anyways, this guy called Roger and told him about his sighting, Roger hired a PI, and had them follow me, when he was sure it was me and when the PI told him I was killing demons and vamps, he flew to Chicago and we met. We talked, we laughed, we cried. He was amazed at the whole soul subject. He told me about his illness, he didn't know how long he had left, so he decided he wasn't going to leave it all to the State, since he had no family left. So he pulled some old contacts he had from the Watchers Council and got me a fake ID, my current name, and made the will, which said I was his second grade niece, and would get everything. So when he passed away, I got everything," she explained while grabbing a third bottle of bourbon.
Spike noticed the somber expression, "I'm sorry, pet. You cared for him, I can see that. At least he got to see you once more and see you were still his Slayer. And you got financially secured for a good while out of nowhere," he said.
"Not out of nowhere," she poured more whisky in Spike's glass, "a third of what I inherited was already mine," she replied.
Spike frowned, "what?" I don't get it," he tilted his head in confusion.
"Oh Spike, I guess you didn't fully do your homework," she teased, "My father left me and my mom when I was three, soon after some old aunts of my mom died, single old ladies, who left money to her, a lot of it. Since my parents never married, there was no divorce, so no splitting of goods or so, neither my father knew about the dough, we moved from NY to LA. I was discovered as a potential when I was six, Roger was assigned to me, soon after he and my mom fell in love, married three years after, so my Watcher became my stepfather, and then my legal guardian when my mom died when I was twelve. Everything was put under a bank account on my name, which I'd have access once I came of age. But when I died, that account and everything I inherited from my mom passed on to him. I couldn't get a single penny from the account because well, I was declared dead, also, daylight. But I managed to get some money, eventually," she finished.
"That must've been odd, your mom and your Watcher," Spike asked while grabbing the bottle from her and taking a swig.
"Not really, he was a great man. He loved my mom, he really did. And me. For all accounts, he is- was my real dad, not the pig that left us," she explained.
Spike wanted to change the subject, he could see talking about it was painful for Scarlett. He was feeling tipsy, and so was she, "so you spent over a decade living in the streets and suddenly you became Bruce Wayne?" he teased.
"Bruce Wayne? Really? If you are gonna compare me to a millionaire superhero, pick better," she protested jokingly, slurring a bit and snatching the bottle from him, "like... Oliver Queen, I like the Green Arrow, plus he is hot. No wait! Tony Stark! He has an impeccable taste in music, always listening to AC/DC, you can't not love the Iron Man. But Green Arrow, my my," she stared blankly at the ceiling and bit her lower lip, "he's totally doable," she rambled on grinning and almost giggling, then took a swig.
"What?" Spike said in amusement. "Nothing," she replied shaking her head, "don't mind me."
"Show me around, I'm sure you have some good records," he smirked.
"Records?" she shook her head in disbelief. "Come on," she signaled him to follow.
Spike was impressed, the room had a 42" TV, a home theater and a reclining chair. He browsed her CD collection, which was huge. He spotted a Doors CD, "I'm impressed, never would've guessed you liked The Doors, pet," he picked the CD and put it on.
"You kidding me? I love them," she started to dance and spin around as soon as the music started. Spike was feeling the alcohol make effect in his bloodstream, which made her silly dance look sexy, he grabbed her by the waist, trying to follow her moves. She kept dancing and singing and drinking.
"You are drunk, luv," Spike said while taking the bottle from her and drinking deep.
Scarlett put her arms around his neck, "I don't care, besides, I'm not nearly as drunk as you are. My tolerance is higher than yours, sweetie," she spoke close to his mouth and took the bottle.
He held her closer, "bollocks, I've been drinking longer than you, and I have a century on you," he said staring at her lips.
"I may be younger, and, sure, I'm dead, but I still have Slayer juice powering me up," she threw him a dirty look and put the bottle on the table; she kept dancing and spinning around. Again she put her arms around his neck, then proceeded to caress his bare chest with both hands. The song changed, "come on baby light my fire..." she sang while pressing herself against him.
Spike couldn't resist any longer and kissed her wildly, and shortly after, they were naked and having sex on the floor.
He reluctantly sat up and frowned, "oh please, don't tell me you don't remember what happened," he said before lying down again and sighing.
"What? No! I'm fucking late, Angel's gonna kill me," she added.
"Huh? It's still dark, pet," Spike lit a cigarette.
"No, it's 11 am, I was to open the office two hours ago. Shutters are closed, hence the darkness," she said as she snatched his smoke, took a drag and handed it back.
Spike trashed a little, "I guess I should get up," he replied.
"Don't think you should come to the office. Angel will already be mad at me, you being there will make things worse. I really don't want worse. You want to sleep more? Then do it," she left in a hurry. A few minutes later, he heard her car leave at great speed, and Spike decided he could use some more sleep.
"I'm sorry, ok? Things got a little out of control last night," Scarlett poured herself some blood.
"I beg you, spare me the details. I'm not interested in your sexcapades," he said, his face expressing disgust.
"I wasn't referring to that, we had trouble, left the cell phones in the car," she explained.
"Shut up, you're getting into dangerous territory there," she smiled.
"I just don't understand how can you be so reckless regarding Spi-" he was protesting once more when she interrupted him.
"Angel," her tone was even, almost upset, "if you keep nagging me about this, I'll be forced to do something to shut you up," she had a sarcastic smile on her face.
"Are you threatening me?" Angel was shocked.
"Yes, I am," she replied defiantly.
"I'm looking after you and you threaten me?" he kept on.
"Fine, you asked for it. I like fucking with Spike. He's quite a beast in bed and he does all sorts of things to me that-" she said while grinning.
"Stop, please, I beg you to stop. I get it, now stop, please," Angel rubbed his forehead, as if he had a migraine.
"Good. Now, the Silverstone case is closed, and so is what I do with my life, ok?" she held his stare. "I'm a big girl, Angel, and I do appreciate you care for me, but I don't need a white knight, specially when it comes to my private life. Oh, and one more thing, don't take it on him either," she finished.
"Fine, as you wish. But you cannot make me like him or like whatever you are doing with him," his tone was serious.
"Pfftt, please, keep telling that to yourself. Your bromance is showing, Angel," she chuckled and he raised and eyebrow, "you know I'm right," she added.
The gunshot wounds were itching, so Spike took a shower, then went back to Scarlett's bedroom, turned on the TV and lied down. He wondered how bad were the things going at the office, he wanted so badly to go and see what was going on, but she had been right, better stay here, besides, the sun was up in the sky. At least he could spend some time watching TV in a big, comfortable bed. Plus, he had blood and bourbon, everything was perfect, not to mention, tomorrow he would have his enchanted rings to walk in daylight.
"His shirt got ruined with all the shooting, besides he's gonna need clothes to wear in Devon," she explained.
"Why? He can grab them when you pick him up tomorrow," he noted.
"Actually, I'm thinking we should leave late tonight so we arrive there before sunrise, despite having the car with necro-tempered glass, I'm not comfortable with traveling during the day, you never know what it may happen, and well, it may be risky for him," she replied.
Angel crossed his arms, "you still planning on coming back on Sunday?" he inquired.
"Probably," she smiled, "and you better not go all Big Brother on me, don't need you to call me unless it's an emergency. A real emergency."
"Fine, fine," he replied calmly.
"Really?" he asked not hiding his obvious interest.
"Yup, it's better for you if we travel during the night. You know, windows down, loud music, smoke. I only reserved one room, I hope you're OK with sharing the room. If not, well, I can call and reserve another one," she said faintly smiling.
Spike tilted his head, a smug on his face, "do you really need to ask, pet?"
Scarlett was packing some clothes in a handbag when Spike walked in on her. "Hope you have some space for dinner," she said, glancing at him for a moment, "how you feel about spicy fried chicken? Gonna pick a bucket on our way. While I finish here, go pick the CDs you want to listen while you're driving. Driver gets to pick the music," she finished.
Spike grinned wide and left the room. This was going to be one hell of a trip, he could feel it.
AC/DC's 'Back in Black' was blasting through the speakers and both vampires were singing aloud and headbanging. Spike was gnawing and licking a bone, "bloody hell, these are delicious, been so long since I had spicy wings," he said as he dropped the bare bone in the bucket and picked another wing. Scarlett was driving, one hand on the wheel, the other holding a drumstick, which she kept chomping at. It was almost midnight and they had been on the road for almost two hours. She had been rather insistent about bringing lots and lots of napkins, and blankets to protect the leather seats.
"The only thing better than fried chicken is a succulent and very rare and very bloody beef steak," she replied licking her lips. Spike noticed she had been driving with only one hand since she started to eat, and once she was done eating, she picked several napkins and grabbed the wheel with them.
Once the bucket was empty, they stopped at a gas station. Not only they filled the tank, but also washed their hands in the establishment's bathroom. Scarlett had been clear that she wouldn't let him drive her Viper unless his hands were chicken-free. While he was at it, she was buying snacks and smokes. They met back at the car and he asked for the keys but she doubted. "Oh come on! You told me I could drive it, my hands are bloody clean," he protested with a pout.
Scarlett gave him the keys, "you crash it, and there won't be a safe place in this world to hide you from me and my wrath," she replied grinning.
She removed the blankets and Spike put them in the trunk. "Not that I don't fancy AC/DC, pet, because I certainly do, but I'm the driver now and I want some Ramones," he said as he put the CD. "Hello gorgeous," he purred as he stared at the wheel and caressed it, and Scarlett chuckled. He then started the engine and sped off.
"You know, it was a good call to travel during the night. No way I could have done this during the day," Spike pointed at the open window and lit a cigarette. He loved driving fast, moreover, he loved driving a car like this while his favorite music blasted. Not to mention having female company. "Gotta admit it, pet, I do envy you a bit," he said slightly serious, staring at the road ahead blankly.
Scarlett frowned in confusion and Spike sighed, "the cars, the bike, the house. You live an amazing life. You do whatever the fuck you want, have whatever the fuck you want. I envy you for that," he confessed softly.
She remained silent, simply looking at him. "Don't get me wrong, pet, I'm glad you do though. I'm just saying, must be nice to live like that," he added.
"It is, in a way," she replied somberly and soon changed subjects, "so, are you gonna work with us in the office?" she asked.
Spike took a moment before replying, he had already dodged the question before, but he felt he could answer now. "I don't fancy working with Angel if he's gonna be a dick, but I enjoy the violence the gig gives, not gonna lie, pet. And, well, I need money and I can't get it the way I used to, not anymore," he replied almost embarrassed.
"Sounds reasonable. I can help you, at least help you get the good blood, or, I don't know, get some more clothes," she offered.
"No, I don't want to be a kept boy," he soon objected.
"I'm simply offering help until you are set. No offense, but from what I've seen, you suck at saving," she said in a serious tone, and he looked at her wondering how she knew. "Angel told me," she added.
"I hate it when the sod is right," he muttered.
"You'll need to find a place to live. You can't stay in the office forever. Not that I mind, but you know Angel's gonna nag about it non-stop. Not only that, you surely want to have your own place, with your privacy," she said while opening a box of Toblerone, then she offered some to Spike.
He accepted it, "the office is not as bad as living in a wanker's basement, but yeah, would be nice to have a place for me," he admitted.
"Once you can go out in daylight, things will be easier. We'll get you a nice fake ID, you're gonna open a bank account and start saving," she said smiling.
"You make it sound so easy, pet," he chuckled while savoring the chocolate.
"It is, it's a matter of how to play the cards you've been dealt. Sure, money won't fall from the sky, but even with a soul, you can get money the easy way without feeling guilty about it," she gave him a meaningful look.
He frowned, "what are you going on about?" he asked.
"Not all demons are brainless fucks, they actually do business. Bad, evil business. You con them, you kill them. Or you simply kill them and then rob whatever the fuck they have in their lairs. How do you think I got money before Roger died?" a smug spread on Scarlett's face.
"Really?" he asked in surprise.
"Of course, same with all those criminals I fed off. I take their keys and pray no one else lives in their homes and bam! Cash and other stuff. It's not like they're gonna use it anymore. I'm still a vampire, instinct runs deep, that'll never go away, only that I have clarity to know who to kill and who to not kill," she explained.
"So you're suggesting I start doing the same?" Spike chuckled.
"Basically, as long as you're not hurting innocents, all is right and fair. So probably just go for demons for the time being. And next time you dust a vampire, try to steal whatever cash they have before you off them," she suggested.
Spike grinned, "well, that'll depend on how the fight goes, pet. Not gonna risk my skin for a few bucks," he countered.
"Don't worry, we'll have some practice back in London," she replied.
They stopped for gas a couple more times before arriving to Devon. It was almost 5:30 and sunrise was getting close. The clerk almost didn't let them check in, but Scarlett convinced him with some money. Once in the room, Spike took a quick shower, while she changed into a large black AC/DC t-shirt, and when he got out wearing nothing but a towel around his waist, she was already in bed, facing to her side. He hesitated before throwing the towel and getting in. "Good night," he whispered, but he noticed she was already asleep. He had seen in the car, while he was driving the last miles, that she looked very tired.
Spike wasn't all that tired, he had slept during the afternoon, so it took him longer to fall asleep. He was anxious, the sole idea of finally being able to go out in the day was overwhelming. He kept waking up several times and on the last one, he noticed Scarlett was softly trashing and faintly moaning in her sleep. He rolled on his side, facing her and trying so hard to not do anything, but her arm brushing his made it worst. So he loomed over her and traced his fingers along her inner thigh, and she moaned some more. He was tempted to go further, but didn't. And then she suddenly grabbed his hand and her eyes snapped open. Spike certainly couldn't read her expression, it was as if she was petrified and he didn't know if she was furious or...
She pulled him to her and began kissing him passionately, her hands on his lower back forcing his body against her. Spike noticed she was trying to remove her underwear and t-shirt, so he did it for her.
"I though you were crossed at me for catching me red-handed, pet," he whispered while nibbling her neck.
"I was dreaming of you," she softly chuckled, arching her back at the feel of his lips.
Spike could tell she was still sleepy, "sounds like a good dream," he teased while spreading her legs and let out a pleasure sigh when he felt she was wet. That must have been some dream, he thought.
"Oh yes," she gasped when his fingers slid in and his thumb traced circles around her clitoris.
He noticed she was completely surrendered to him and Spike definitely liked it, so he decided to take it up a notch. Slowly he began kissing his way down, nibbling and licking her nipples. She arched her back once more and Spike continued licking his way down, stopping briefly just below her belly button, barely touching her skin with his lips. He kept going until he met her pelvis. Scarlett lifted her head and locked eyes with him, a pleading look in them. He tilted his head, a smug slowly appearing. "Right then," he seductively said before licking her.
She let out a loud moan when she felt his tongue inside and his thumb pressing her clitoris. Spike felt he was losing his mind when he felt her hips start to softly rock and her hands grab the back of his head and pull him to her. He stopped once he noticed her rhythm was increasing and crawled back to her.
"Why did you stop?" she protested panting.
"Because I wanted you craving for more, luv," he whispered while penetrating her.
She was more euphoric than usual, her moves were slower but harder, her moans louder than the last times they had sex; and Spike remembered that skin was more sensitive right after waking up. That was the beauty of morning sex, everything was enhanced. He could feel her craving for his touch, for his mouth. She was grabbing his ass and licking his neck.
He picked up his pace, making her scream louder; and for a moment Spike wondered if anyone heard them, but he dismissed the thought. He didn't bleeding care if anyone was hearing. Scarlett moved her hands to his waist and then to his back and clawed him hard. He screamed in pleasure and made him thrust harder, and after a good while, he came with a loud grunt, followed soon after by her.
Spike relaxed his arms and slowly toppled on her, he slid his tongue in her mouth and savored her for a moment before resting his head on her neck. He pressed his nose against it and smelled her.
"You smell so bleeding well, pet," he said almost breathlessly.
She chuckled softly, "so do you," she replied.
Spike slowly rolled away, his arms open, then he grabbed his pack of smokes from the nightstand and lit one for him, he offered one to her, but she shook her head, "I'll grab one later," she replied. Scarlett rolled to her side, facing him; and he noticed she was looking at him up and down.
"What?" he asked smiling wickedly.
"Uh, nothing. It's just that I have this strong urge to bite you," she replied staring blankly.
"Beg pardon?" he asked curiously.
She smiled, partly shyly and partly naughtily, "well, it's just that I heard that bites in the femoral artery are pretty... Intense," she said giving him a meaningful look. When she noticed his confusion, she traced a circle in his inner thigh, "here," she added.
"Really? And where you heard such thing?" He asked with interest, "it's the first time I hear of it, pet."
She went serious for a moment and Spike gave her a look, clearly waiting for an answer. "TV," she said in a low voice.
Spike chuckled loud, "TV? What sort of program would say that, luv?" he asked.
"Try a program about vampires," she replied, now softly laughing too.
"Oh come on, you know better than that, all those bloody documentaries are bollocks," he said.
"It's not a documentary, it's a TV series," she said and lit a cigarette.
"Even worse then, luv, you've seen what TV and movies reduced us to. Anne Rice and sparkly vampires," he scoffed.
"Not this one, this one is in HBO," she said, giving a dirty look.
"I never had cable, not even when I was nesting in Wolfram & bleeding Hart, so I don't see the difference," he countered.
"They spend most of the time feeding and fucking. It's like porn heaven for any vampire," she explained.
"Really?" Spike was definitely interested in the subject.
"Uh-huh. Anyways, they mentioned several times about the whole femoral artery thing, and well, it got me thinking," she said.
"And you want to try it," he said with a wicked smile and she nodded, "well, as long as you don't bite anything else, I don't see why not." he added glancing at his genitalia.
"I'm not saying right now, don't want to stain the sheets with blood and have to explain to the maid or the clerk how it got there," she explained and looked at the alarm clock. It was almost 1 pm. "The coven is expecting us at 4, so we have some time to kill until then," she said, smiling seductively. She then began licking his stomach, slowly travelling down, briefly stopping to stare at him, "unless you have any objection," she added before resuming.
Spike closed his eyes and took a deep breath, "oh, I ain't got any objection at all, pet," he replied.
It was 3:30 pm and Scarlett went to the bathroom, she wanted to have a quick shower before leaving. She was about to close the door when Spike tried to get in, "got room for one more in there?" he asked seductively.
"Actually, no," she replied, gently pushing him out of the bathroom.
Spike frowned in confusion, "why not?" He countered, pouting.
"We have to be there in half an hour. If I let you in, I'm fairly certain we'll arrive late. Very late," she replied with a meaningful look.
"I'll behave," he insisted with a smile.
"No you won't. Besides, I may be the one having trouble behaving," she smiled before closing the door and locking it.
"Bloody hell, can't wait to not worry about this anymore," he said while taking off the blanket once he was in the car. He was beyond anxious, not to mention, he didn't know what exactly was going to happen. "So, what are they gonna do to me?" he asked.
"You mean if it's gonna hurt?" Scarlett asked, and Spike faintly nodded. "It's not gonna hurt, they will cast a spell on all your items of jewelry and bind it to your soul. From what I understand, your soul is the conduit that makes the spell work. No soul, no sunlight protection," she explained.
"So in the event Angelus comes back, we don't have to worry about the bastard partying during the day," he commented idly.
She shot him a look, "w-why would you even say that? Why?" she said in an alarming tone. Spike chuckled. "It's not funny!" she added.
"Oh it is funny, but I doubt the sod will get some anytime soon, so no worries, pet," he replied in amusement.
She shook her head in disbelief, faintly smiling. "Ok funny guy, we are here," she said as she parked the car behind the house. The area had enough shade, but still Spike came out with the blanket covering him. Once the witches let them in, they got ready for the ritual.
"I'll let you guys work, I'll be around the fields," Scarlett said before leaving.
An hour passed and the work was finally done. Liz, one of the witches, motioned Spike to get close to the open window. He hesitated for a moment, but finally put his hand in the sunlight. No sizzling, no flames, so he took another step and closed his eyes, letting the sun wash over his face. "Bloody hell," he muttered in awe. "Can I go outside?" he asked them, not sure of what to do.
Liz shrugged, "if you want. Go," she replied.
Spike dashed to the door and slowly set a foot outside, then the other; the sun now completely covering him. "Bloody hell," he kept muttering to himself, he didn't know what to do, or what to feel. This was a big deal, a very big deal, he was no longer confined to dark rooms. Or behind special glass, for that matter. He stood there for some minutes, taking in all of this, when he spotted the redhead in the distance, atop a horse, galloping. Spike frowned, never pegged her for the nature type, he thought and ran full speed trying to catch up, calling her out.
Scarlett turned when she heard him call her and headed his way. He noticed she was fidgeting with her cell phone, and once she approached him, she greeted him, "congratulations," she said pointing at the sun.
"Thank you, luv," he replied, still overwhelmed from this new experience, unable to make a comment about it, "was that Captain Forehead?" he asked pointing at her cell.
"Then who was it, pet?" he asked. Probably none of my business, he thought rather bitterly.
"It was nobody," she replied, "I was having a geek moment," she added, slightly embarrassed.
"Don't make fun of me," she said starting to laugh. "I'm a big geek, ok? Always wanted to do this and it was the first thing I did when I got to be out in the sun," she added, a slight tone of pride in her voice.
Spike got serious, "I don't even know where to start," he said as he lit a cigarette, "so much I want to do," he added.
"Just take it slowly, do whatever you can do right now. Enjoy this. I don't know, wait out the sunset. Those are pretty to look at," she replied. "I'll pick you up after sunset, ok?" she added.
Spike frowned, "you're leaving?" he asked.
"This is something you have to do by yourself. This is time for yourself. Having someone yapping at you kinda ruins it. This is something big for you. It was a big deal for me, so it was for Angel. You're no exception. Enjoy the sun, take your time to think what you'll do next. I'll just be around, ok?" she replied and left.
Spike had forgotten how beautiful sunsets looked like when out in the open, he had spent the last hour and a half lying on the grass. He had seen a couple of sunsets back at Wolfram & Hart, but city sunsets were not the same. This one had yellows and oranges, reds and purples; it was simply too breathtaking, it had been over a century since he last saw one of these, he had almost forgotten what it was like.
Once the sun fully set, Scarlett returned and they went back to the hotel. She picked up some food and some blood bags that were hidden in a cooling container in the trunk. Spike was still trying to process everything, so he was silent most of the time, still, it didn't interfere with their late-night, private activities.
Spike tried not to sleep, he didn't want to miss his first sunrise, so he kept himself occupied. So when she fell asleep long after having sex, he watched TV.
He got up some minutes before sunrise and waited by the window, and finally watched it happen, he couldn't find the words in him to describe the view. He was so submerged into deep thought that he barely heard her talk, he turned around, facing the redhead, who was sitting up, the sheets barely covering her at all, "say that again?" he asked.
"I asked what were you doing, but I guess is rather obvious," she said sleepily, staring at the window, and soon after she went to sleep again. Spike waited a while, and after the sun detached from the horizon, he joined her.
The last couple of months have been quite hectic, specially since Spike was now a day walker. Work had picked up a little more, not because there was extra paranormal activity, but because they were now also taking cases that had nothing to do with monsters and the supernatural, they now had clients usually hiring them as PI to follow loved ones suspected of being unfaithful, which of course the client would use as proof for a divorce case. So Spike would spend quite some time in those cases; and slowly but steadily, he was finally saving money to get his own place.
Angel had been more broody and testy than usual, he wanted only to work with supernatural cases and it had taken a lot of convincing to finally make him cave in. Not to mention that he still complained about Spike nesting in the back room of the office, so if he wanted the blond vampire settled somewhere else, they would have to work in those cases.
Despite Spike's musings and wanting to figure things out with Scarlett, nothing really changed, except that their intimate encounters since he got his daylight pass two months ago seemed a tad more sporadic. Or maybe it was just the amount of work they were having. Spike couldn't really tell, but it was definitely upsetting him.
Scarlett had been insisting on getting an assistant to take calls and arrange the case files, and all three vampires had agreed that they couldn't just put an ad in the paper, because chances were that said person would need to know that they would be working for a bunch of vampires. So the normal course of action would be to check past cases and see if any of the trusted clients wanted a desk job at the office; and after talking with a bunch of them, the redhead had found their assistant.
But Spike wasn't entirely happy with this new person, he certainly wasn't expecting a guy, specially one that would have no trouble picking up birds. Angel didn't really care much, as long as Rick could get the job done, the gender didn't matter. But Spike was bothered, specially since Rick seemed to be quite chatty with the female vampire, and the worst of it was that no matter how much Spike wanted to tell him to stick to his work, he couldn't say anything because the bloke was getting his job done. So Spike had no other option than to zip it.
He used to think Scarlett had feelings for him, specially after overhearing her and Angel all those months ago, but now Spike wasn't sure anymore. When he came back to London, he had been ready to have a conversation about it because he felt something for her, he still didn't know what it was, but he knew there was definitely something. And there was so much he just couldn't figure out about her that it was beginning to make him question if he had seen feelings from her part instead of lust or simple sexual chemistry. He knew there was still many stuff that she kept for herself, hidden behind that self-possessed, self-reliant attitude of hers.
There were many nights where he would be lying on his bed, watching the telly, and hoping she'd cross that door and get all physical with him, but those were less and far between. Lately, the only times they'd have sex was when he was hanging with her, at her place, and half of the times nothing would even happen.
Spike decided he needed some air and some drinking, so he headed to 'Deep Blue', that place where he, Angel and Scarlett had their first meeting almost ten months ago; which both he and Scarlett frequented quite regularly. Spike tried calling her before leaving to check if she wanted to go, but the call went straight to her voice mail. He stopped briefly by Angel's to ask him for the keys to the old Camaro, and of course to check if she was there, but as he suspected, she wasn't.
"He's our employee, mate, and he's trying to seduce one of his employers. It's bloody inappropriate, it is," Spike snapped back, pacing back and forth in Angel's living room. "We have to tell him something, give 'im a warning."
"The point is, he chats her up during office hours instead of doing his bloody work!" Spike knew it was a lie, he knew the guy was doing a good job, he only hoped that his grandsire didn't notice.
"He's getting the job done, so I don't see what the problem is," Angel held his gaze over the younger vampire, "besides, is not like she's your girlfriend, you only sleep with her. You don't love her."
Without saying anything else, Spike stormed off, he was angry at Angel's words, and once he was back in his bed he kept thinking of a way to make his point across. He wanted so badly to go and wait her out, but the more he analyzed it, the more he realized there was no way around it. She wasn't his girlfriend, they were not even dating, they never set rules. And come to think of it, Spike realized they haven't even kissed outside of a sexual situation. He wasn't sure they even had a friendship; sure they shared some anecdotes and past stories, but most of their time together was either in bed, or in the company of Angel in the office or out in the streets fighting some demon. He hated to think that they were just fuck buddies, but it would seem it was the case. It really bothered him, but what was bothering him even more was that she may be with someone else; and Spike certainly didn't like sharing.
That night he found it almost impossible to sleep, he kept tossing and turning, and as usual he watched the sunrise. It didn't help either that he had nightmares, past sins haunting him. He only managed to sleep for over two hours when he woke up again, it was almost eleven, so he got dressed and got out.
Angel threw a disapproving stare at him and Spike decided to simply ignore him, he had other things in his mind. He grabbed a blood bag and drank, silently glaring at Rick, who was at his desk filling up some files. Spike was about to confront him when Scarlett walked in; he watched her greet the human and smile at some comment he made, which Spike couldn't hear. He wondered if she'd act differently or say something to him, but nothing, she greeted Spike normally.
"We should repeat that," Rick said.
"Oh yeah, that was fun," she replied.
Spike couldn't help himself and interrupted their talk. "What did I miss?" he asked, but silently, in his mind, he asked 'Did you sleep together?'
"Oh, I ran into Rick at the bar last night," she replied casually.
Spike could only say 'oh', he knew they were not going to say anything else.
In the afternoon, he waited until Rick left to do some paperwork and approached her, "so, are we hanging out tonight, luv?" he asked while his fingers caressed her arm.
Scarlett gave him an apologetic look, "I'm sorry, is not that I'm not tempted, I really am, but I kinda made plans already," she replied.
Spike felt his jaw drop, he wanted so badly to protest, but he knew it would be for worse. I can't believe she's bloody trading me for that git with the posh accent, he thought.
"I am not. Didn't you notice his face? He was upset, he's clearly jealous of me," Rick replied smiling.
"No, he isn't, you're seeing ghosts," she countered.
Spike had spent most of his night drinking and picking up fights with other vampires and demons. He had needed to vent out the rage he felt after following Scarlett and Rick all the way to the human's flat. And after hours of waiting, fury growing inside, he had ended up brawling all night.
He woke up past midday, sore and hangover, and when he got out, only Angel was in the office, who raised an eyebrow, "I thought you were here to help, this isn't a hotel, Spike," the elder vampire said, looking at the clock.
Spike took a deep breath, "you know, right now is not a good time to have one of your self-righteous speeches, mate," he said in an exasperated tone, "had a long night killing nasties."
"Really? Then why the smell of whisky?" Angel asked.
"Listen, mate, I don't like the soddin' paperwork. I don't like getting up early, like you do. I prefer the fieldwork, trashing all the baddies. And whisky helps me feel even less pain when I fight. So sod off!" Spike replied in a threatening tone.
Spike glared at his grandsire for a moment before turning his look towards the human, rage building up once more. He picked his coat, a case file regarding a ritualistic murder and left. When he came back, several hours later, he once again found the redhead and the human all chatty and giggling. Spike forced a greeting smile and went straight to get some blood, he wanted to once again bring the subject to his grandsire, but he knew Angel would never see his point of view.
He overheard Rick telling Scarlett to call him as the human was leaving, and Spike couldn't help rolling his eyes in annoyance. He looked around, but Angel wasn't nearby, so he purposely blocked the redhead's way, just as she was heading to the fridge.
"So, what's with the downgrade, luv?" he asked, cornering her.
Scarlett frowned in confusion, "Uhm, context?" she countered.
"You know what I'm talking about," he replied, slowly placing his hands on her hips and taking a step closer, "you traded me for mortal boy, pet."
"What? What are you talking about?" she asked evenly.
Spike leaned closer, "you know you can't do with him most of the things you do with me," he said softly, his lips brushing her ear, "you'd break him in half." He felt her tense, "he's not strong, there's no way he can keep up with you," he continued, his hand now under her shirt.
Scarlett held his gaze, but he didn't give her a chance to say anything, "I doubt posh boy knows what makes you lose your mind, like I do, luv," Spike traced his finger down her spine, pressing himself against her, and Scarlett flinched, "like this, he doesn't know whatcha need, he doesn't know you the way I do," he purred in her ear.
Spike could see fire in her eyes, he could see she wanted him for the way her lips parted and the way she faintly licked them.
"You couldn't be more wrong," she replied softly, "you don't really know me, or what I need," she finished.
Spike wasn't expecting such an answer, and before he could say another word, they were no longer alone.
"Don't think is any of your bloody business, mate," Spike replied, almost snarling, before storming off.
He frowned, "it looked that you needed help, he had you cornered," he countered, concerned.
"Sometimes I feel you forget I'm a vampire. I can hold my own, ok? Besides, he wasn't bothering me," she added.
Without another word, Angel left. He didn't know what to think anymore, he only hoped she knew what she was doing. He had promised her to not interfere with her personal life, but he needed to have a talk with Spike before things spiraled out of control, so he left him a message. Angel only hoped Spike would show up.
"I feel touched, you're worried about me," Spike replied sarcastically. His fake smile instantly faded, "told ya thousand times, it's none of your bloody business, but you keep pushin' the matter."
"It is, when you are playing cat and mouse in the office, risking everything we're working for," Angel's tone was dead serious, "I don't like where this is heading."
"Don't think I didn't notice the way you look at Rick, you don't like him being near her. Sure, it's not my business, but if your jealousy interferes with our work, we risk losing either of them, or both. And I certainly don't want that. Why do you even care what happens between them?" Angel crossed his arms, "then again, it probably bothers you because she's not sleeping with you."
Spike chuckled sarcastically, "you keep assuming whatever you want, mate," Spike took a deep drag off his cigarette, "you don't know half of it. I get it, it's not about you being Daddy Dear with her. It's about me. You keep assuming I don't care for her, you keep assuming I'm using her. Guess again, you're wrong," he added, almost snarling.
"Unlike you, I don't have issues getting laid, mate, I could go out, pick up any bird I want and get some. You know that," Spike went on, his tone more calm that before, "yet you keep naggin' and assuming I don't care for her. Why do you think I left in the first place?"
"Let's say I buy it, let's say I believe you care. Why don't you let her be? Maybe she's happy with him," Angel asked.
"Right, because you and I know how well relationships between humans and vampires always end," Spike replied in a sarcastic tone, "we are experts in that matter, mate, remember? Besides, I don't give up that easily."
Angel didn't know what to think, he didn't fully believe Spike, "the only thing I'm going to say, don't cause trouble, Spike. And one more thing, just for this time, I'll give you a pass. Don't show up tomorrow at the office, take the day off."
"I sleep in the office, remember?" Spike replied.
Angel sighed, "fine, you can sleep on the couch. Just don't make a mess while I'm in the office tomorrow."
Although he had been tempted to, Spike kept to his word and didn't make a mess at Angel's. He spent most of the day either sleeping or watching TV, trying to cool off, trying to understand how things had gotten this bad, trying to understand Scarlett's 180 degree turn.
But as much as he wanted to, he couldn't keep to his word of not going to the office, so after sunset he showed up. Neither Scarlett, nor Angel were around, only Rick was there. He then noticed the human was talking on his cell and he had just told the other person 'I love you, I'll wait at the office'.
Spike froze and felt anger rapidly build up, he couldn't believe what he just heard; and he couldn't help himself, he took a deep breath, trying to cool down. He took a moment before approaching him, he wanted to pick his words carefully, he didn't want to fuck up, not because Angel would get angry, but because she would.
"We can play this game all day, y'know? So don't play dumb," Spike insisted.
"We are just friends," Rick replied, still trying to suppress a smirk.
Spike chuckled, trying to contain his anger, "right, and you think I actually believe that? I know she spent the night with you a couple of days ago, mate," he replied, barely managing to suppress a snarl.
Spike couldn't tell if it was sarcasm or not, he took a deep breath, "and let me guess, you do care for her, right, mate?" he snarled back.
The words took Spike by surprise, "and that's your way of getting her in bed, right, mate? Playing the understanding white knight," he added bitterly. He couldn't believe how Scarlett had fallen for this guy.
Rick rolled his eyes, "I told you, we are just friends," he insisted.
Spike chuckled, "oh come on, don't try to sell me that one. You put a soddin' move on her as soon as you got here," he snapped at the human, "I don't blame you, bird is smoking hot. Who wouldn't," he added in a calmer tone, almost to himself.
Rick tilted his head, "you still believe I'm lying," he said in wonder, "you can't, for a second, think that maybe, just maybe, she needed a friend? And so we are clear, I've known her a long time now. Longer than you. We've never been friends until now," Rick replied, ever so calm.
Spike was skeptic, "still not buying it, mate," he said as he headed to get a glass of bourbon. As he was going back to Rick's desk, a man entered the office, "if you're looking for Angel or Scarlett, they are not around. He can file your case," Spike pointed at Rick.
"Just let me finish this, Marcus," Rick replied.
Marcus approached the desk and kiss him. Spike's jaw almost dropped, and at that very moment Scarlett also entered, "Marcus, how are you? Happy anniversary, by the way," she said hugging the man, who thanked her. She gave a brief look at Spike before disappearing into her office.
"I told you, we are just good friends. She's really not my type," Rick replied as he was putting his coat on. "Word of advice, if you really care for her, as you claim, show her you do. Cinema would be a good start. She loves Superman, and the old theatre from two blocks away is showing it. Old classics festival all week, she was pretty excited about it. You're welcome," he finished.
Spike was speechless and could only nod in acknowledgement. Once the couple left, he stood still for a moment before entering her office, purposely bumping into her and landing a kiss on her.
She shifted slightly, "Angel could walk in any moment and I really don't want him to see us going at it on my desk," she said.
"Not what I had in mind, luv," he replied containing a smirk, and she frowned in confusion. "Heard the cinema near here is showing some old classics, thought you may want some company while looking at Superman flying around," he added.
Scarlett tilted her head, eyes fully wide in surprise, Spike replied by simply raising an eyebrow. "Let me get my coat, and close the office," she said, barely hiding her smile. "I might let you drive."
"Nah, no need to, we'll walk, more time to talk," he replied.
Spike mentally chuckled, he would have never thought that threatening a guy would get him a date with her. He only hoped she took it as a date too, and judging by the way Scarlett clung to his arm, he had no doubt she did.