Title: The Castoff

Author: Jillian K.

Disclaimer: BTVS belongs to Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy. This fic is for entertainment purposes only.

Summary: The First Evil has been subjugated but at what cost? B/S-Angst to the max.

The Castoff

Chapter One

Sure there were losses. Dozens of potential Slayers cut down before they reached any semblance of prime. The Watcher Council's headquarters suffered a crippling blow that had probably done the institution in permanently. Only Giles and a few other watchers remained scattered around the globe trying to rebuild from the ashes. All devastating loses. But at the end we prevailed.

The First and allies retreated and the apocalypse was averted once more. I was still here as were all my dearest friends and my sister. I should be grateful and I was.

There was one more loss that many would not consider a loss at all. After all he was originally just another enemy. Another demon to be defeated. So what is he gained a soul. So what if he fought bravely and tirelessly alongside his love. That did not tip the scales in his favor. His soul was still stained for over a hundred years of sin. Atonement and redemption were for that other vampire with a soul. Spike had to conform to punishment. For he was being punished.

I didn't see him often but I caught glimpses of him here and there, usually in the cemetery or park. Sometimes he hid behind the tree that stood outside my home. He always appeared disheveled and his shirt was in tatters. Eyes unfocused on a face that was always thin but now appeared starved. He no longer bought blood but was apparently feeding on vermin and whatever wildlife he could catch in this state. Dawn had tried leaving bags of pig's blood near the tree he frequented but he never took one. Apparently surviving in a near-starved state was also just.

He was weak and his madness made him vulnerable. He was a perpetual target. His face and body would sport the various bruises and gashes that certified the violence against him. Sometimes he limped. I was never able to catch the perpetrators or even determine who they were. He had no defense and demons and some humans to certain delight in it. The ruthless William the Bloody taken down so low that he was a perpetual victim even of his own mind.

And I wondered how he simply didn't surrender himself to the dawn. What made him seek shelter every time the sun rose? What in his destroyed and pillaged mind kept him alive?

Willow claims that it is the demon that seeks preservation. That it would be unnatural for a vampire to commit suicide but I knew that it was not true. Angel had tried and only a snowstorm sent by the Powers had stopped him. No, a vampire was capable of overcoming his demon. Spike had already done so in his capacity to love and to sacrifice for the sake of others.

Spike's present state was owed to the choice that he made. He allowed the First to enter and use him just to give me a chance to trap the demon. The incorporeal being had taken over so completely that he left Spike a lost and empty shell. Muttering nonsense and no longer smiling.

Sometimes I think that I owed it to him, that I should make an effort and destroy him. Maybe that was why he waited by the tree. To ask for his ending.

And someday I would gather enough courage to put this brave, giving man out of his misery. But before I will tell him just how much I love him and what he is too me. Hopefully he will understand and maybe smile once more. In his eyes I would find the completeness of his love and the total devotion to my family and my world.

But until then I watched and saw and loved.


Author's note: I know this is bordering on the melodramatic but I'm a little depressed lately. The best remedy for that is Haggen Daz's and angsty fics so indulge me. Anyhow this one is going to be very short so read and review please.