By Niels van Eekelen

"Don't take another bloody step, Slayer," Spike threatened. A low growl emerged from his throat as his game face was in full scowling-mode. "We wouldn't want Red here . . . to lose her red, now, would we?"

Buffy reluctantly stepped back, her stake still held ready in her right hand, her left hand reaching into a pocket where she kept a small bottle of Holy Water. Behind her stood Xander. He looked tormented by worry and his inability to do anything. The same emotions, albeit in the boy's normal stoic version of them, played over Oz's face to the side, where he was getting up after being thrown against the wall when the vampire had rushed at his girlfriend. "I won't let you get away with this, Spike," the Slayer said, equally threatening. "You know I won't."

"Could be me, of course," Spike replied sarcastically, "but from here, I seem to be doing fine. So why don't you all bugger off or something." Willow was terrified. She was squirming, trying desperately to escape the vampire's hold. It was no use: Spike pinned her arms to her body and her body to his with one arm. His other hand easily restrained her kicking legs. The only parts of her body that Willow could move freely were her fingers. Spike's face, complete with his sharp fangs, hung close to her exposed neck, and Willow imagined that had the vampire been human, she would have been able to feel his breath.

Spike started walking slowly backward. Buffy suddenly tensed, as if preparing to surge forward, but Spike noticed. He caught her eyes and shook his head. "Uh uh, luv," he told the Slayer, "don't forget Red."

Willow panicked when she realized that there was really nothing her friends, or even Cordelia--who was just showing up at the door--could do to save her. Sure, perhaps they would manage to track Spike back to his latest hideaway, but the chances that she would live that long . . . Even Willow, with all her smarts, couldn't calculate those odds without a computer. A big computer. But what could one do against a vampire at full strength when she could only move her fingers?

All of a sudden something struck Willow. An idea. About what she could do with her fingers. It seemed so ridiculous and inappropriate in their situation that she almost laughed, but her life was stil hanging by a thread, so that sort of put a damper on things. Nevertheless, Willow quickly put her plan into action. She was desperate enough to try anything.

When Spike started chuckling, confused glances passed between Oz and the others. When he started laughing out loud and cursing at the same time, the Slayerettes were half-convinced that the vampire had joined his old flame Druscilla in the land of the clinically insane nutcases. "You bloody, buggering witch!" Spike cursed Willow.

Willow just continued tickling her bleached captor.

Finally, Spike stumbled and fell backwards onto the floor, losing his grip on Willow. Buffy stormed forward instantaneously, but Spike, with a sigh of relief, was back on his feet and out of the open window in an instant.

While Buffy followed him in the probably futile hope to get rid of the accent once and for all, Oz and Xander skidded to a halt a Willow's side. "Okay, can someone please tell me was just happened here?" Xander asked when they had made sure that the girl was all right and Oz helped her to her feet.

"Believe me," Willow said with a still disbelieving smile on her lips. "You don't want to know."

And they lived happily ever after until the next story came along.

Story written by Niels van Eekelen. © Copyright 2004 Telltale Productions.

In a perfect world, I would own the series 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer'. Alas, it is not, and I bow my head to Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy. Ah, well. It's probably for the best, me not having a contract to put the show on the air and all.