Disclaimer: Not my characters. I don't claim them to be my characters.

A/N: Written as a fill, not a present, for Spuffy Luvr.

Set sometime in the future after season ten.


Willow adores Angel. She totally does. She thinks he's a great guy and she loves when he comes and visits them. And Spike is entirely part of the gang now, completely a card-carrying Scooby. But also sometimes they kinda bring out that urge in her that she gets sometimes where she wants to stitch people's mouths shut.

Not a lot of the time and, really, she only actually did it the once, when she was all Dark Willow Ultimate Evil, but sometimes they bring it back. Like, for example, right now, when they're ten minutes deep into an argument that started by Angel asking her if she has a new job yet.

She's been trying to restrain herself from any mouth-stitching or otherwise using her powers, especially since they're both wrong, but she's been unable to make them stop or get in any more than a word or two the whole conversation. They seem to have mostly forgotten that they're in her bedroom and she's right there.

She tried to get Dawn to rescue her. When the younger girl had darted by her room with an armful of books, Willow had called out a, "Hey, Dawn!" and hoped either for an excuse to leave or a distraction, but Dawn's smart enough not to intervene with this mess. And despite her texting, Xander has yet to call her and pretend to have an emergency requiring her immediate attention.

"You're not even thinking about the consequences. You're just talking shit and trying to make things be the way you need them to be to justify—"

"No, that's you. You never think about consequences, Spike! You just jump onto the next new thing without ever thinking anything through."

"—to justify," Spike's voice rises, "your recluse life, hiding in the dark, all alone and brooding. You're just afraid to talk to people and you want everyone else to be afraid with you. You had your way and we'd all be sitting in dark caves on our own. Bloody stupid."

"Guys, come on," Willow says.

They don't listen to her.

"Stupid? You're the one who was talking about robot vampires!"

It would be nice if they stopped blocking the door and let her escape from her room now.

Also, they get really close to each other when they argue.

Really close.

"Vampire robots, you tit, and all I was saying is that they'd be a hell of a lot easier to fight than those pop-culture vampires going around in the daylight that we've got to deal with now. And magic made those, not computers."

"You didn't know how to type until two years ago!"

Spike actually falters on a response here and Willow gets ready to excuse herself to the bathroom or the fridge or a bar or anywhere but here please, guys, come on, and leave her room to them, but he turns around and meets her eyes and she freezes. "Hey, Will, which one made you turn evil?"

He's thinking about her time with the mouth stitching too and he still asks that?

She crosses her arms and frowns at him, which is usually enough to do the job, but he's apparently so caught up in his argument he doesn't even notice, so she tells them what she's been trying to tell them for the last ten minutes. "Neither one is worse, it's just all about self-control and regulation and knowing how to use everything."

"Right!" says Spike. He points at her. "Right." He turns back to Angel. "And what do you get, though, when you use magic you don't know how to control?"

"Hey!" She's sitting right here! Hello! Willow gets to her feet. "How come everyone's always acting like I'm the only one who went all end-the-world-y!"

Spike says, "Well, I never actually—"

And at the same time, Angel says, "There were circumstances, with Angelus—"

And she cuts them both off by turning to Angel. "Some of us more recently than others."

"Right!" says Spike. "Yeah, Twilight. Shagging a new universe. Uh, shagging to create a new universe. That's magic, mate."

Willow spins, her anger rising and her fingers sparking without her even trying, because neither of them would actually be good without magic either, and also they'd probably all be dead, but when she faces Spike she finds Xander in the doorway right behind him.

"Hey, guys," he says, and throws his arm around Spike's shoulder. "As fascinating as this conversation has been for all of the rest of us in the building, I brought duct tape." He holds up his hand to display the roll around his wrist.

The sparks die away and Willow feels herself settling down. "Thank god." What would she do without Xander?

Then he points at her. "It's for you too."