Disclaimer: I do not own these characters nor do I claim to own them.

A/N: Written as a fill for Velvetwhip at the LJ community Buffy Genfic as a combination of their two prompts:

With: Angelus, a coffee shop, an argument about a past kill
Without: the whole story being humourous, Buffy


With: rain, something about minions, Spike
Without: fluff/humour, Harmony

Beta'd by Spuffy_Luvr and MáireAilbhe.

Spike does know that he's a romantic. It's just who he is. And it isn't just about Dru or Cecily or any of the girls he wrote poems for when he was younger and alive. It's when Angelus doesn't protest against Spike coming with him on a hunt even though it's raining and Spike's top speed in his wheelchair is pathetic, that he lets himself think it means something. Something like things are gonna be like old times again.

He wants them, him and Angelus, to be the way they used to be. Best of friends, watching each other's backs as they brought terror, panic, and bloody screaming death down upon the cowering masses. He's hardly seen Angelus in almost sixty years and, after the disappointing disaster of the attack on the school, he had planned to kill what was left of his old grandsire. Maybe torture him a bit first. The old times weren't always great, after all.

But he'd thought things would get better now that Angelus was really back. Thought after he readjusted to being in the game, they'd get back together the way they'd been.

Angelus holds the coffee shop door for Spike, but when it closes behind him he grabs Spike by the shoulder. "Stay there," Angelus orders and shoves him back against the door.


So that's how it is now. He's left barricading the exit, useless except as an obstacle, while the big guy gets all the glory. Now it's definitely not like it was. Now he's just the minion.

In the old days, he would've competed against Angelus for the first kill. Raced him to sink his fangs into some girl's throat. Or maybe save the girl for later when he's slowed down and can take his time and appreciate her more.

In the old days, he would've really been a part of this. He wouldn't be sitting here, dripping and blocking the way while Angelus slips up to the blonde girl in the UC Sunnydale sweatshirt and taps her on the shoulder. He would've been the one to make the screaming start and it wouldn't be just because of his face either.

Angelus plays it up. He's always been slow about the whole process but, honestly, this is ridiculous. In the old days, Spike wouldn't be waiting for him to make some mocking speech about how people always judge him for his looks (nevermind how Spike certainly looks the worse of the two of them now with his burns). Wouldn't be sitting here while Angelus grabs Miss UC Sunnydale by the hair so she cries and then does nothing more than the grabbing. He doesn't bite, doesn't drink, doesn't tug down her pants. It's not much fun if they don't cry but there's got to be more to it than the crying.

No one's moving. No one's running. No one's stampeding. No one's headed for him at all. They don't even scream much. They just sit or stand where they'd been and shake. One says, "Hey, let her go, man," but that's all.

Where's the fun in this?

"Remember the last time we did this?" he asks.

Angelus spins and drags the girl along by her hair.

She shrieks, thank God.

"Eighteen ninety-six," Angelus says.


Christ. Angelus hardly remembers what it was like, doesn't he? Doesn't remember how they used to do it, storming in and revelling in the rush, the panic. Doesn't remember how fun it was to turn that man's face to pulp with a samovar.

Angelus yanks on the girl's hair, pulling her head back until she looks up at him. He grins down at her as she squirms. "Who do you believe, huh? He doesn't even remember how to duck."

The girl's shaking and gulping in air, her lips opening and closing wordlessly.

Angelus leans in close to her teary cheeks and her trembling jaw and plays like he just missed the words she didn't speak. "What was that?"


Like he proved something, Angelus grins proudly. "See? What did I say?" Then he sinks his fangs into the girl's throat.

Spike rolls his eyes and begins to wheel in closer. There's a pair of even younger girls sitting a couple of tables back. Teens. Maybe even ones who go to the school with the Slayer.

But Angelus steps in front of his path. "I told you to guard the door."

What? "Oh, like they're going anywhere." He tries to push around Angelus, but the other vampire puts his boot on Spike's knees and shoves him back against the door again.

"Stay there." Angelus's voice is firm and tight and harsh and if Spike were anyone else, it'd probably be terrifying. Angelus dumps the nearly dead blonde girl into Spike's lap. "Here, play with this." Then he spins around with a smile. "All right, who's next?"