Disclaimer: All characters belong to Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy. I'm just playing with them for awhile.
Giles opened the door to admit Buffy "You're late!" he stated before turning back into the room.
Willow, Oz, Xander and Anya were huddled around Giles's dining table a mountain of books piled around them.
"Buff how goes patrol?" Xander tossed the book he was reading back onto the table.
Buffy sighed tiredly as she flopped into one of the chairs "I found another demon body tonight."
"Same as the other's" Giles inquired.
Buffy nodded "Yeah pretty much ripped apart."
"So are we thinking commandoes??" questioned Xander
The Scoobies had been out patrolling one night when they had come across a group of commandoes attacking a demon. Buffy had held the others back as they had watched them subdue and toss the demon into a large black van. Since then the mysterious group had been the object of much speculation amongst the Scoobies. It had been decided that they were a military operation of some kind and that as long as they didn't interfere with the Scoobies they would leave them alone.
Buffy had actually been pleased by the reduction in demon activity the commandoes had bought about. It had meant she and her friends had more time to go out and do 'normal things'.
That had changed a few weeks ago when Buffy had come across the first demon body. The creature had been viciously ripped apart, its body pummelled to a point that even Anya was unable to recognize its species.
Willow had theorized that the commandoes had killed the creature during their patrol. At first that had seemed the most logical explanation, however the bodies had kept coming and the Scoobies were now gearing up for the emergence of a new 'Big Bad'.
Buffy looked at around the table at her friends "Definitely NOT them"
"Are you sure Buffy?" Giles pulled of his glasses as he tiredly rubbed his eyes before replacing them "I mean they do seem the most likely suspects."
"Positive! I was leaving when I heard them coming so I hid and watched them. They were definitely surprised when they found the body. I overheard a little of what they were saying and they seem to be as worried about this as we are." Buffy seemed to hesitate before continuing "The thing is I think I know one of them."
Oz straightened slightly raising an eyebrow in silent question.
"I think one of them was Riley"
"Riley as in Professor Walsh's TA?" Willow glanced worriedly at her boyfriend "He's one of those demon hunting commandoes?"
Buffy gave her a wry smile "pretty sure".
Anya took that moment to speak up "So if it's not the commandoes killing all these demons, then who or what is?" she thought for a moment before adding "And what is it's stance on killing ex-demons?"
Giles took a seat at the table with the others "We have yet to ascertain that Anya, and I think until we do its best if both you and Oz keep a low profile." He turned to Buffy "I will start accompanying you on patrol. I don't want you out there alone until we know what we're up against."
Buffy began to protest until she saw the worry on Gile's face. "I promise, no patrolling alone." She got up and moved to the window staring into the night. "Whatever this new Big Bad is that's out there; it's either really really strong or really really mad."
In the courtyard outside a small flame broke the night as a figure of a man moved out of the shadows to stare at the window. Spike smirked as he flicked the still burning match towards the front door "An that's the watcher's place" he took a long drag on his smoke before turning to his companion. "You know what to do?"
His companion nodded silently as they turned and walked away from the apartment. The pair quickly made their through the darkened streets of Sunnydale and into a nearby cemetery.
They hadn't gone far when a large demon came rushing out from behind a crypt, its eyes fixed intently on Spike's companion.
"Bloody hell!" shouted Spike as he unceremoniously shoved his companion behind a headstone. He whirled around to face their attacker in time for a meaty fist to make contact with his nose.
Spike staggered back slightly clutching his nose before shifting into game face and attacking "Oi that was my nose you bastard." Spike clubbed his hands together and directed a powerful blow to the demons jaw, managing to move it backwards a few steps.
The demon merely grunted before it backhanded Spike into the side of a crypt and began to make its way towards the figure huddled behind the tombstones.
Spike was pulling himself to his feet when he heard a shrill cry come from his companion; he looked over in time to see the demon reaching down to grab the cowering figure.
Spike saw red he flew at the demon "Get the fuck away from her!" Spike landed on the demons back, arms encircling its thick neck, the demon staggered backwards as it frantically tried to loosen Spike's chokehold.
Spike suddenly released his hold on the demon dropping back a few feet so that he could spin it around to face him. "MINE!" he screamed as he began to rain blows onto the demons body "You don't get to touch her".
The demon staggered backwards as Spike's fury grew, kicks and punches fell one after the other. The demon let out an agonized scream as Spike wrenched its arm from its socket before twisting it completely off and tossing it aside before continuing with his attack.
Spike was so lost to his rage that he didn't notice when the demon stopped moving, he continued to pummel the bloody mass until a gentle touch stilled his arm.
Spike turned to look into his companions soft eyes "Spike stop; its dead".
Spike turned uncomprehending eyes towards the body that lay at his feet before they flew back to franticly search his companion for signs of injury. "Did he hurt you?"
"No, I'm fine" she reassured him
Spike pulled her into his arms roughly, hugging her close as he closed his eyes and inhaled her scent to calm himself.
The couple stood entwined, taking comfort from each other before finally pulling apart.
"Geez Spike. Overkill much" the girl prodded the body with the toe of her shoe.
Spike gave her a wry grin "Sorry luv. But the bugger shouldn't have come after my girl."
The girls face suddenly dropped "They're going to keep coming, aren't they?" a single tear made its way down her cheek.
Spike grasped her chin gently "Hey none of that." He brushed the tear away "Told you I'd protect you."
She gave a small laugh "Til the end of the world."
Spike threw his arm across her shoulder and they started on their way again "Til the end of the world luv."
The pair had just reached the edge of the woods when Spike once again pushed his companion to the side. He turned in a slow circle listening intently; he lifted his head slightly and sniffed the air, a quite growl vibrating in his throat. "Stay there" he whispered before moving forward again.
He had only gone a few feet when a bright light arced through the night hitting him in the chest. Spike cried out as he fell to his knees, electricity coursing through his body.
"NO!" the girl yelled before rushing forward to help him. She came to an abrupt stop as she saw half a dozen black clad figures emerge from the shadows.
Spike turned agonized eyes towards the girl "You know what to do."
Spike struggled to his feet with a roar when one of the figures moved towards the girl; he struck out sending the figure crashing into a nearby tree.
The girl screamed when she saw the figures raise their guns and hit him with multiple bursts of electricity. She heard Spike screaming in agony and the faint smell of charred flesh hung in the air. Her eyes widened as the figures turned their guns in her direction and began to move forward.
Spike watched helplessly as his attackers began to move towards her. Gathering the last of his strength he launched himself at the nearest figure knocking him to the ground. He turned to stare at his companion "RUN" he cried hoarsely.
Spike watched as the girl turned and fled; the dark figures still seemed to be intent on following her so he vamped out and tried to bite the man he had knocked over.
The yells for help from their colleague stopped their movements and Spike sighed in relief. He only hoped that she would do as he had told her. 'If something happens to me you get to The Slayer or one of her damn Scoobies.'
Spike felt another burst of electricity hit his body; he had one last thought before unconsciousness claimed him 'Dawn'.