Hey everyone! This is the revised version of my original 'Welcoming the Cold'. It's basically the same plot, same everything...just in my opinion, better, and a tad more realistic. Maybe. Anyway, read and review! Even if you've read the story before, I guarantee I've changed enough to make it interesting!
Also, I left all my original A/N's in, dunno why, maybe just to prove it's not a completely new story. For the most part, you can just ignore them...
The night was cold and dark; as Buffy walked alone among the graves, she shivered. Cold was a rarity in Sunnydale. Shivering again, Buffy thought to herself, Not even any vamps to dust tonight. As if responding to her thoughts, Spike stepped out of the shadows, wearing his usual smirk The blonde Slayer stiffened. I take that back.
"So, Slayer, what brings you out on a night like this?" the bleached blonde queried, sauntering up to her with his typical casual swagger.
"Go away, Spike," Buffy answered with an eye-roll, involuntarily shivering once more.
"Cold Slayer? I thought you'd have soldier boy keeping you warm right about now. I, for one, think this is lovely weather we're having," he said, grinning.
"Do you ever shut up?" she demanded in annoyance, trying to brush past him. Spike fell in step with her and she sighed heavily. "What the hell do you think you're doing?" she asked, already resigned to the fact that the vampire had picked tonight to pester her and nothing short of death— figuratively, seeing as how he was already technically dead— would stop his chosen activity of the evening.
"Oh, just taking a walk with my favorite Slayer. I thought we'd continue our little chat."
She opened her mouth to attempt a send-off, then figured, Why not? Maybe talking'll keep my mind of the cold. Subconciously she knew that part of her wanted him around because deep down, she enjoyed his company. The rational part of her brain would never admit to that little fact, however.
He saw her resignation and smirked in victory. "So, how are things going with your little cadet anyway? Everything great in the land of boringly predictable, I'll wager."
"Look, I am not here to listen to you bash Riley." Buffy quickened her pace, irkedby the vampire's comments. God, all he did was insult her life, her choices… Why couldn't he just get one of his own? A life, that is. Oh, right, because he was undead. She resisted the urge to kick one of the headstones in her path.
"What? Truth hurt?" He paused, glancing over at the petite blonde by his side. She was frowning and her lower lip was jutting out adorably, bringing a smile to his lips. "So, how's Nibblet?"
"Dawn's fine. She talks about you a lot." She winced at the little tidbit she'd just allowed to slip out. Spike did not need any stroking, ego or otherwise.
"Does she now? Well, she visits my crypt often enough. At least one of the Summers women has good taste in 'er men."
"What? Dawn does not have a crush on you!" Buffy exclaimed incredulously, even though she had been thinking the same thing recently.
"Yeah, you mean the way you don't?"
This caused Buffy to stumble just as a vampire jumped out from behind a crypt. It lunged at her and she faltered, still thrown by Spike's comment. Just as it was about to sink its fangs into her neck, it was caught off guard and knocked back by a particularly brutal blow from Spike. With a growl it turned to face the other vampire, leaping at him in fury. Spike caught him under the chin with a well-aimed fist. The vamp staggered back into a gravestone and flipped, landing facedown in the dirt where Buffy, who had already jumped to her feet, staked him before he even had the chance to get up.
"Thanks," she remarked grudgingly to Spike.
"Welcome," he replied smugly. Before he had a chance to gloat, however, a crack of thunder boomed and lightning split the sky. Somehow they had ended up right near Spike's crypt and Buffy's eyes narrowed in suspicion. She had no time to remark on her observation before it started pouring. Spike unthinkingly grabbed her hand and pulled her along until they made it inside. He knew his comment about her having feelings for him was a bit of a risk, but judging by her reaction, not far off base. He felt a tiny spark of hope ignite in the far recesses of his heart. Microscopic, granted, but it was there.
"God, it's cold," Buffy said, teeth chattering, her hand unsettlingly warm from were Spike had touched her. The rain began to come down harder and they heard the sound of hail hitting the ground heavily. Buffy cringed at the thought of walking home in that gale. Spike tossed her an oversized shirt, but she declined and placed it on the couch.
"No? Complain about the cold but don't wanna do anything abou' it. Women." He sighed. "Well, suit yourself, then." With that, he stripped off his own shirt and Buffy nearly choked. She stared, open mouthed. Wow, she'd had no idea that Spike looked so good under all that leather. Before she could fully commence ogling, however, she remembered that this was Spike. He was...icky. The blonde vampire noticed the direction of her gaze and laughed to himself, changing his mind about donning another shirt. Anything that would make the tiny blonde notice him was good in his book. Flopping down on the couch, he rolled his eyes when she remained standing. "You might as well make yourself comfortable, don't see you walking home in this weather. With hail the size of bricks and all."
Buffy knew he was right and inwardly winced at not being able to argue. Gingerly, she sat next to him on the couch...
After several hours of watching TV together and her surreptitiously stealing glances at his bare chest, the storm still hadn't let up. "Uh, Spike?" she began. She could not believe she what she was about to say. "I, uh, don't think I'll be going home tonight. Um, where am I gonna sleep?" The last part was said in a rush and she looked away, embarrassedly waiting for him to scoff and send her walking.
"Sleep? Oh, right. Uh, well, I got a new bed downstairs. I suppose I could share it for the night," he said, his voice lowering an octave as he smiled seductively at her.
"Share? Uh, I don't think so." Buffy's face reddened at the thought as she prepared to make herself comfortable on the tiny couch.
"Well, I s'pose you'll be sleeping on the floor then," he said, regretfully.
"Fine," she retorted, taking the hint and getting up to leave, bracing herself against the fury of elements she was about to face once she made it outside. Wah, inner!Buffy whined.
"I'm just kidding, Slayer. Have the bed. I'm not tired. The whole 'sleep during the day thing', you know?" Buffy held back a relieved sigh and grabbed the shirt, descending into the lower levels of the crypt. She started to undress when she turned around and saw Spike standing behind her. Her eyes widened.
"What are you doing?" she demanded. "I thought you said you weren't tired!"
"I'm not. Came to say g'night is all."
"You came to say goodnight?" Buffy scoffed. What was he playing at? Did he really think she would sleep with him just for letting her stay? He had another thing coming if he thought she was Ms. Cheap and Easy. The other part of her laughed at her own ego. Do you really think he'd want you? His mortal enemy? Get real, Buffy…
"Yeah. Uh, so…good night. Buffy." Without so much as another word, he turned and climbed back up the ladder.
Buffy's mind was reeling. He called me Buffy! He never calls me by my name! It's always Slayer this, and Slayer that. Never Buffy. Oooh, and the way his muscles rippled when he was climbing up the ladder. Isn't he cold? It's freezing in here! Well of course he's cold, she chided herself, he's a vampire. But doesn't he feel the cold? And the way I felt all tingly when he grabbed my hand to pull me out of the rain...Oooh, he's so sexy.
WHOA! Ok! Backtrack. I did not just refer to Spike as sexy. Arch-nemesis, remember? Bad, bad Buffy! Hello? I have Riley! Hmmm, Riley's muscles don't ripple. Not that he doesn't have a good body…Wait. Am I comparing Riley to Spike? Ok, no more thinking. No thinking equals no bad thoughts about Spike.
She curled up under the sheets and squeezed her eyes shut in an attempt to turn off her brain. Mmm, I can smell him, was her last thought before she drifted off to sleep.
As Spike sat in front of the TV, watching 'Passions', he couldn't keep his mind off of the Slayer who was sleeping downstairs in his bed at this very moment. God, he loved her. They'd spent several hours together and actually gotten along…she hadn't punched him once! That was something, right? Maybe he should tell her. No. Then he'd get his ass kicked for sure. True, she hadn't denied having a crush on him when they were talking in the cemetery; but that could be because they were attacked right at that moment. Plus, there was that great sodding prick standing in his way.
If I didn't have this chip in my head I'd have gotten rid of that wanker a long time ago, he thought angrily. Standing between me and my Slayer. He loved her so much that if she rejected him he felt that he could just stake himself right there. He knew she didn't feel the same, but to hear it from her lips— pink shiny succulent lips that they were— would be too much. When he had gone downstairs and seen her undressing, he'd wanted nothing more than to pull her into his arms and kiss her until she realized that she wanted him, too. Maybe then they could move onto other things...
Spike smiled contentedly as he let his imagination roam. It had taken all of the self-control he possessed to turn around and climb back up the ladder. "Bloody hell, Summers, what've you done to me?" he muttered, flipping distractedly through the channels.
The next morning Buffy woke in the crypt, disoriented. Why am I in Spike's bed wearing his clothes? she wondered, somewhat panicked. Then she remembered the storm. Seeing that her own clothes were still wet, she cursed, pulling on the damp pants anyway. She'd give him his shirt later.
Climbing the ladder, she saw Spike asleep on the couch.Shethought about telling him that he could have his bed back, butquickly decided against waking him. That was the last thing she needed. Her mind made up, she slipped out the door and started for home.