***This was originally posted on Fanfiction.net, but since they are removing all NC-17 stories, I had to make the jump here. I hope those who haven't had the opportunity to read this enjoy it. Remember to leave reviews.

***Disclaimer. None of the Buffy characters are Mine. But you know that already, don't you?

***Since this first part is already written, I will probably post at least 2-4 chapters a day. By the time Part I is up, I should be finished with Part II.

Chapter One

It was almost two in the afternoon, yet the sun had refused to surface. Instead, it stubbornly hid behind a gray sky that stretched across all of Sunnydale. It had rained for the better part of the day; sometimes raging in cloud bursts lasting fifteen minutes or whispering in light drops that almost disappeared before hitting the pavement. Then there was the steady drizzle, as it was now. It hit the ground in a non-committal way, unsure whether to splash already formed puddles or congeal together to create new ones. Simply put, it wasn't the most joyous day in Sunnydale.

And unless you were of a demonic persuasion, rarely was there a day to be called joyous when you lived on a Hellmouth.

The figure that stood alone atop a cliff on the outskirts of town had found it joyous enough when he had first arrived four years ago. All the people, walking around unawares of what fate had bestowed upon them. And not to mention all the potential minions at one's disposal. But that hadn't been what had called him to Sunnydale. The same thing that kept him in this place even now, when he was harmless to those ever so delicious 'happy meals on legs', was what had brought him to la boca de inferno in the first place. Of course, those reasons were on two opposite ends of the spectrum. He had come here to kill the Slayer.

And now, four years later, he refused to leave because leaving her would kill him.

He took a puff of his cigarette, his body shuddering at the thought of her. The rain soaked through his scalp, sending a tingling coolness down his spine. She delivered that same sensation with only the touch of her skin.

Don't think about her, old boy, he thought although it was an impossible task. And as mad as he was with her now, memories of their times together were all that kept him strong, especially with his…deficiencies. He was like a neutered dog, unable to perform his natural tendencies without an electroshock current shorting through his cerebellum. Yeah, it felt good to beat up on the demonic miscreant, but he still felt incomplete. Nothing did that. Nothing but her…

Spike slammed his fist against the hood of his DeSoto. Don't… bloody…think…about…her, he told himself, punctuating each word with a palm to his head. If force of will didn't drive her from his mind, maybe the pain would. Then again, it'd probably wouldn't.

He took another puff of his cigarette and flicked the still burning fag into the damp grass. Smoking wasn't doing anything to relax him. He pursed his lips sullenly and walked away from the car. He walked toward the edge of the cliff and looked out over the town. She was down there somewhere, most likely working at that god-forsaken dump, in a feeble attempt to earn a living. She was strong but he could see through her. He always could. She held it together well enough. But she had too, for her sister's sake. And for her friends. They never did see her. He knew they wouldn't see that it was killing her to work at that place. And that was where he came in. She needed him to be there for her, just as much as he needed her.

Spike cursed himself as he felt the furrows of concern crease his forehead. He dug in the pocket of his duster, producing a flask of whiskey. If smokes and pain wouldn't drive thoughts of the Slayer from his mind, then a belly full of alcohol might do the trick. He upended the flask, downing half of it in one long gulp. He savored its lively burn at the back of his throat before finishing it with one last heave. Its effects were like holy water to his skin, though much more enjoyable. Maybe, just maybe, if he drank enough, he would forget about her. Maybe he would be able to think about her without melting into some lovesick wanker.

Yeah, and maybe a nice sun tan was in the cards for him.

"Just go see her, you sodding git," he scolded himself. His frown transformed into a smile as he thought how ridiculous he must have sounded. He stretched his arms outward, and faced the rain. He laughed bitterly, his Adam's apple bobbing as he did so. The saltiness of the rain cooled the sting in his throat but not his heart. Only she could cool that. But she had made it clear that she couldn't be with him.

Spike felt an almost physical stab at his core when he thought back to that night and the words Buffy spoke.

I'm using you. I can't love you...And it's killing me.

She had said that to him. Well, not exactly. It would have been much easier for him to take if that were what she had said. But her weakness was the thing killing her, not her inability to love him. She wasn't used to not being strong. She couldn't stand up to him, couldn't tell him no. She refused to tell her friends about them. Everything that they were to each other was wrong, or at least that was what she had convinced herself. She couldn't love him…

Spike wiped his eyes roughly with the back of his hand. No, I bloody will not shed a tear for her. He hadn't then, when she had called him William, and he wouldn't now.

"Bugger!" he shouted at the top of his lungs, heaving his empty flask off the cliff and into the foliage below. He realized too late that he had just thrown out his favorite flask. His shoulders slumped and he put his head down. The last few weeks had been hell for him. It was as if a part of him died when she had said goodbye. And though he swore that he would never set eyes on her again, he knew it was another impossibility. Despite his pain and misgivings about being around her, he owed it to her to be there when she needed him. She may be the Slayer, but it didn't hurt to have a vampire by your side fighting the good fight with you. Still, he had kept contact with Buffy to a minimum. A bit of patrolling here and there was all right. Sort of. As long as he didn't touch her, watch her move. She had a gracefulness about her when she fought that was just as arousing as her standing in a steaming shower, the droplets covering her tan skin like liquid rose petals.

"Arghhh," Spike yelled, throwing up his hands in resignation. No matter what he did or what he tried to occupy himself, his thoughts always turned to Buffy.

He hopped on the trunk and leaned back. He was soaked to the bone. His shirt clung to him like a second skin.

"Like Buffy," he said absently. He ran his hands along his chest, remembering the places she touched and kissed and licked and bitten. He smiled at the way her tongue danced across his nipples, probingly. He exhaled at the thought of her warm flesh rubbing against him, her breasts crushed against his chest. Her heart beat hard and fast against him, and those were the only times in the last one hundred and twenty plus years that he truly felt alive. It was as if she was offering her heart to him, giving him that chance to be human for those precious moments with her. She made him complete. Of course, it never lasted. But that's how good things always were. They had a way of slipping through your hands at the most inopportune times.

The blond vampire lay on the trunk, unfazed by the rain, oblivious to the distant thunder. His mind, now dulling slightly with the effects of the whiskey, dove in and out of thoughts of Buffy.

She was the Slayer, a sick fascination of his from day one. Of course, she had been far stronger than any of the three he had killed before. But it wasn't her physical gifts that made her so strong. It was much more than that.

From what he had read, most Slayers lived a life of seclusion usually relegated to their watcher as their only real contact with the real world. That's where Buffy was different. She was never alone. Even now, with the Englishman gone, she still had the Scoobies. The six of them together (if you counted the lil' bit), though filled with their own problems, stood together. And he knew they always would. And as long as she had them to anchor her to this world, she wouldn't give up. She would continue her fight with the passion she had shown since he had known her. And that passion was one of the reasons Spike had so perilously fallen in love with her…

The echo of rapidly approaching thunder snapped Spike out of his thoughts. A jagged edge of lightning struck in the distance; freeze framed for a split second before dissipating.

Spike rubbed his eyes groggily, the effects of the alcohol becoming more apparent. He decided that now would be a good time to pack it up. Not only did he feel like passing out (in what was left of his crypt) but the frequency of lightning strikes was increasing a little to quickly for his tastes. He didn't know if a vampire was a good conductor for electricity or not, but that wasn't a theory that he wanted to investigate.

He fumbled through his pockets for the keys to the DeSoto, leaning against the door while he did so. It took him a few minutes of rooting around before brushing against the metal of the keys. A few minutes later, he finally managed to start the car. Wasting no time, he peeled out.

The road was slick while the sides of the road were nothing but mud. Lucky no one's around, he thought as he raced down the hill, taking up both sides of the already narrow road. All that he wanted to do was get home and out of this car, he didn't want to wreck his only halfway decent possession (aside from his Zippo).

"Slow down ole boy," he told himself, lifting his foot from the gas. A blinding flash of lighting filled his periphery and he swore, shielding his eyes. A deafening roar of thunder carried through the air, almost rattling his teeth. He took his eyes off the road for a minute; aimlessly searching the clouds for the moon, obviously falling to the earth, then dismissed his stupidity.

He leaned back in the seat, on arm over the passenger's seat headrest and turned his eyes back to the road.

"Bloody hell!" he shouted, at the huddled form, lying helplessly in the middle of the road. Only his vampire quickness prevented him from squishing the figure into so much road kill. His tires slid like ice on the slick ground, escorting him off the road. The mud assisted the wheels gain a bit of traction, though the DeSoto performed a full rotation before coming to a halt.

Spike leaned back in the seat, his head aching from where it banged against the steering wheel. He searched his head for injuries and came up with a fair amount of blood.

He wiped the blood against his black jeans and looked out for the almost speed bump.

"Bugger," he said. The rain had picked up more, obscuring his vision. If he was going to see anything, he knew he had to go venture back into the storm and he did not want to leave the confines of the car unless it was for a mad dash to his crypt. But someone (at least he thought it was a someone) was lying defenseless in the road. The very least he could do was pull them to the side. It wasn't that he cared or anything about them. It was just that…

"Tis for the lil' bit," he thought. It was a fact that this bluff was a teenage hangout of sorts and Dawn had come up here once or twice. It would be her luck to run into a human corpse. No, the bit didn't need to see that. Quit being a nit and just help the poor bastard, a voice inside his head nagged.

"Sod off," he said. But the voice was right. Just because he was a vampire who couldn't hurt a human (save for the one person he was helplessly in love with, of all ironies) didn't mean that he was soft. And if he wanted to help someone, it was his own choice and not some fancy-schmancy way of making Buffy proud of him. At least that's what he told himself as he got out of the car.

The rain was coming down so hard now that he didn't even pretend to cover up. He sloshed through the mud, the liquid earth dancing and clinging happily to his boots and the end of his duster. Great, now he would have to get it clean.

"Hey mate," he shouted as he neared the still form, "I hope you appreciate this. You're gonna be paying my cleaning bill." He reached the road and was only ten steps away from the figure. He stomped hard onto the pavement, trying his best to discard the mud stuck in clumps to the bottom of his heels. But it was pointless. He had to go back into the mud to get back into his car anyway.

After a few unnecessary stomps, he moved forward. That's when he saw the figure move. At this distance even the rain didn't prevent him from seeing three things. One, it was indeed a person. Two, that person was naked. And three, that person was most definitely female.

"Now what have we here?" he mused, studying the figure. He sauntered toward her, his smirk firmly in place.

The naked woman twitched at the sound of his voice. He stopped only an inch from her and knelt beside her, his left knee creaking from his fight a few days prior. He winced but ignored the discomfort. His attention was focused on this young girl.

Her skin was a golden hue. Lots of sun, he thought as his eyes trailed her body. She was petite and her hair was shaved in the back. Her bangs hung low covering her eyes and much of her nose, the strawberry blonde hair a perfect compliment to her skin. But her skin wasn't perfect. Not by a long shot.

It was evident that she lived the hard life as deep scars were burrowed across her arms and back and legs. At the base of her neck was a small brand. He peered at it closely, trying to make out what it was. It looked like an 'E' of some sort and was definitely familiar. He reached a hand tentatively toward it. As he was closing in on it she let off a moan of pain.

"You okay, luv?" he asked, now genuinely concerned. He put hand to her skin and drew it back suddenly. She was burning up! And that's when it hit him. Even though it was raining in droves (he was soaked),there was not a drop of precipitation upon her. In fact, as he looked closer, it seemed that the water turned to steam before his eyes. Something was wrong with her and the vampire felt compelled to help.

Without a second thought, Spike removed his duster, covering the girl with it. He delicately put his arms under her and effortless lifted her petite form into his arms.

"Don't worry," he coddled her as he trudged through the mud, "I'll get you to a medic."

She moaned incessantly, as if in a delirium. If she was that hot, there was no doubt that she was out of sorts. And it wasn't the good kind that came after a nice shot o' whiskey, either.

Reaching the car, he balanced her in one hand while using the other to open the door. As he opened the door, her still dry bangs feel away from her face and he almost dropped her.

"Bloody hell," he whispered. Spike's arms trembled from the face he looked into. It couldn't be her. But here she was, unconscious in his arms. Other than a nasty scar that rode the entire right side of her face, it looked exactly like her. But how could that be? He asked himself. He knew it wasn't her.

The girl stirred and Spike saw her eyelashes flutter. Slowly (painfully slow for him) the girl opened her eyes. What looked back at him were the most beautiful blue-green eyes he had ever seen. He stared back at her and immediately felt the connection. There was a look of unbelieving recognition in her eyes. Her mouth moved as if to speak, but before she could, her eyes rolled back and she fell away, unconscious.

"Buffy?" he asked the figure hesitantly. But there was no response. He shook her and called her again. "Buffy. What happened? Buffy." Nothing.

Spike felt a part of him go cold inside at the thought of Buffy leaving him a second time. Steeling himself, he put her in the car. He rushed to the steering wheel and turned the key, and the DeSoto's engine roared to life. He peeled off, the mud graciously allowing the tires traction and he converged back onto the road.

He heard the girl moan and looked in the rearview mirror only to be greeted by an empty backseat. He had turned his back for only a second and she was gone! He slammed on the breaks and skidded to a stop. He turned around to look at the scene with his own eyes and was stunned.

There she was, huddled underneath his duster.

He peered back into the mirror and saw an empty backseat. But when he again looked into the backseat, there she was, clear as day. He reached over to touch her, afraid that she would disappear as she did in the mirror. His cool hand touched her burning skin and he pulled back. She was still on fire, but she didn't dissipate into thin air. It took him a moment to gauge the situation before him and even when it clicked, Spike loathed admitting it to himself.

"Bloody hell," he whispered and looked from the mirror then back to her. His eyebrows furrowed in utter confusion, questions filling his mind. One thing was certain, though. There was no way he could take her to the hospital now. There was only one place he could think to take her.

"Balls," he yelled, pressing his foot down on the gas pedal. He hoped someone other than Dawn was home at the Summers' residence. Once there, he would figure out what to do. All he had to do now was get there.

And break the news to the Scoobie gang that Buffy was now a full-fledged member of the un-dead.