Old friends die hard

Disclaimer: Joss owns all, I own none.

Spoilers: Everything is fair game but mainly "Not fade away." & "The girl in question."

Rating: R

Summary: What happened after Angel Slayed the dragon? Did Gunn survive the 10 minutes? Will Spike be able to have one last cigarette in all that rain? Can an 'Old One' understand the concept friendship?' Will Buffy be able to drag herself away? Is it really a good idea to give Faith a box of matches?

Part one

The dark sky was broiling and ... well it was pretty much just broiling enthusiastically. The rain washed the blood from their battered bodies and washed it into the gutters where it sent litter sailing on wild red water rapids. The air was static with power and the thunderheads stacked high above the alley. Surrounding them like the armies of doom and destruction.

The remains of the gang down in the alley knew better. The armies of doom and destruction were down here with them, and they weren't thinning. Spike gave a howl of exhilaration as the great, scaly lizard thing fell from the sky. The head splashing to the ground a second after its body. He gave Angel the thumbs up and the dark vampire grinned back manically, his demon to the fore, before leaping back into the fray.

A double edged axe sliced the air an inch from his nose and drew his attention back to his own skirmish. He was surrounded. Three big demons one to the left, one to the right and one in front of him trying to bash his eyeballs into the back of his head. They were bigger than he, they were stronger than he and the only reason he wasn't so much vampire pulp on the alley floor was because luckily they were not smarter than he. He'd been dodging their blows for a while; trouble was with no weapons he couldn't do any damage to them either.

The odds were evened slightly when the one menacing him from in front flew suddenly into the air and landed with a wallop behind Illyria.

Spike shot her a welcoming look while still dodging blows from the demons on either side of him. Illyria spoke and he tried to take in what she was saying.

"Gunn is safe for now. I've have stopped the bleeding and stowed him in the midden box. He will live if he stays there, but he is a stubborn warrior and so will probably die."

"Yeah well he won't be the only one if you stand there gassing all day instead of lending a hand." Said Spike.

Illyria reached out and grabbed both the demons, crashed their skulls together then threw them to the sides. Their bodies broke against the walls and they slumped to the ground.

"Is that what you had in mind?" She asked. Her face expressionless despite being smeared in demon blood.

"Uh yeah, thanks." Said Spike before the dead air lying in the bottom of his lungs was driven from him by a toothy demon with a club.

Spike was knocked on his ass and Illyria stepped forward to crush the offender but an arrow reached it first, burying itself between the things eyes and dropping it dead.

Spike, who had been struggling to his feet, looked around and then above for the bowman. His eyes widened.

"Bloody Hell!" He exclaimed, ducking and rolling to the alleys edge. "Angel, you great nit, get back."

Angel was up to his neck in the demon army, chopping, slicing and even biting anything that came close enough. Hearing Spike's urgent call he looked up and saw what had the younger vampire so worried.

Above them, bowmen lined the rooftops their pointy bringers of death aimed into the seething mass of demonic hide. They wore hats of all different shapes and sizes to keep the pounding rain at bay, these obscured they're faces and gave them a sinister look in the murky light.

Angel took a second to analyse the situation before grabbing up a short, stocky demon with a flat head on a wide neck. Despite the demon's snarling the vampire held it over his head and pushed his way towards the safety of the walls. A Polgara demon jumped into his way but was knocked out with a head butt, Angel tripped over it on his way to join Spike.

"What the hell is going on? Who are they?" He called over the merciless rain.

Spike shrugged and called out to Illyria. The blue-haired demon refused to take cover and a shoal of arrows flew past her to imbed themselves in Wolfram and Harts army of monsters.

"Guess they're on our side then." Said Spike.

Angel gave him a 'Ya think?' look, as far as he was concerned just because they were shooting at the demons didn't make them allies, it was every life for itself out there.

Another hail of arrows came down across the alley. The shots were deadly accurate nearly every time. Demon after demon fell but there was always more to take the fallens place. Illyria continued to fight, choosing to ignore the projectiles from the sky.

A Fyarl charged with cumbersome effect straight at the two vampires and Angel stuck the sword he'd managed to retain straight through its chest. It died a gasping death. Spike looked impressed.

"Pure silver that sword. You want ta keep hold of that."

Angel looked at him like he couldn't believe the blonde was discussing the price of silver in the middle of the biggest battle they'd ever faced, but then he shrugged and pulled the sword back out of the demon's chest. It was a nice sword.

"Do you think there's actually an end to this lot?" Spike asked conversationally as arrows continued to pour with the rain in front of them. A spiky headed thing went down in front of them its claws reaching out for their boots. They both stepped back, leaning more weight against the wall.

"Probably more of them than the people, or things, up there have arrows."

Another volley of arrows swept across the alley, some finding their mark in demon flesh and others clattering off of tough hide to fall uselessly to the ground.

A huge Goliath of a demon stopped behind the still fighting Illyria and grabbed her by the shoulders, wrenching her off the ground and lifting her towards his wide open jaws. She struggled valiantly but couldn't impede her backwards trajectory.

"Oh no you sodding don't!" Spike leapt out and up into the alley behind it and reached his left arm up to grab a hold on the long braid of matted hair hanging down the things back. He swung on the end of it for a second before moving hand over hand upwards. He reached the demon's broad, rain-slicked shoulders and hooked a knee on one. Grabbing onto the monsters pointy ears he stood up on its shoulders and leaned over its small, totally disproportionate head.

"Hello Rapunzel." He greeted it cheerily when he was eye to upside down eye, before head butting it squarely between them.

"Ow, ow, ow!" He yowled as both he and Illyria fell to the ground eighteen feet below.

The giant fell the other way out cold.

"Ow, ow, ow." Spike took an arrow through the shoulder before he could make it back under the cover.

Illyria dragged him, by his coat, back against the wall. "You saved me."

"S'okay Blue, don't mention it."

Apparently the old one wasn't going to, instead she pulled the arrow shaft roughly from his shoulder causing another round of "Ow's."

"Is it because of Fred?" She asked.

Spike looked at her thoughtfully. "A little bit, yeah." He admitted.

"Then you are foolish to save me, my being here only increases the pain you all feel at her loss."

Spike saw Angel's jaw clench even more, but he carried on staring at the demon's, who thankfully were more concerned with the threat from above.

"I know the storyline, luv. I said a bit of it was Fred, just like a bit of it was you. We're mates right pet; we've got to stick together."

Illyria remained impassive.

"Now don't you get all sentimental on me?" Spike smirked.

From further down the alley, beyond the press of evil bodies an explosion rocked the alley walls and demon bits flew towards the gang.

"Seems like there is yet another player in town." Angel observed once they'd all stopped cowering against the wall.

"You don't think that was the senior partners?" Asked Spike, wiping demon goo off of his coat and holding the mucky hand out into the rain to wash it away.

Another explosion ripped through the alley, lighting it up with a bright flare of yellows and oranges, before the rain dampened it down immediately. Demons were running, lumbering and crawling towards them just like before, only now they didn't seem so sure of themselves. As they moved down the alley they came into range of the archers. Demons fell left and right, some killed others merely wounded. With a glance at each other the vampire comrades set about finishing off anything that twitched. Illyria followed suit, her choice of weapons her bare hands.

It seemed like a week before Angel, Spike and Illyria were standing in the downpour waist deep in demon carcasses.

"Well that was ...invigorating. Did we win do you think?" Asked the platinum vampire.

Angel was looking up. "The best we can ever hope for is to break even Spike. Who or what do you suppose they are?"

"Robin Hood and his merry men." Spike pulled out his cigarettes and put one in his mouth, by the time he got his lighter to the tip it was too soggy.

Illyria stalked to a nearby dumpster and pulled a weakly struggling, barely conscious Gunn out. "They are female."

"Are they now?" Spike looked up again, squinting into the raindrops.

A small figure landed in the alley beside them causing a big splash, a bright red plastic hat was pulled off revealing a brunette grinning at Spike.

"So the rumours true."

"Rumours about me usually are, luv." He boasted.

"Who are you and what do you want?" Angel frowned.

The young woman in front of him casually inserted another bolt into her crossbow. "I'm Kennedy the Vampire Slayer." She loosed the bolt and a demon reaching for Angel's ankle dropped dead into a puddle. "And I want to be somewhere dry with my girlfriend. We don't always get what we want."

Kennedy waved a hand up towards the roofs and the women lined up there stepped back and relaxed slightly. "Apocalypse training for the girls." She explained to Spike.

There came the sound of splashing footsteps and they all turned to see Faith long jumping over bodies to get to them. "Did you see that? That was so god-damn cool." She reached them panting slightly. "What else can I blow up?" She asked playfully, slapping Angel on the back.

His voice was warm. "Faith, it's good to see you, but how, I mean what are you doing here?"

"Is Buffy here?" Spike asked the more important question.

Kennedy answered while Faith looked awkward. "Willow got a call from some chick called Harmony, said Angel was facing the big one and she'd better get Buffy here fast if she wanted to save him. Then she said she wanted to remain anonymous, which was kind of weird considering she'd already told Willow who she was and babbled about high school for ten minutes."

"So how did you get here so fast?" Asked Angel.

"The Immortal brought us in his fleet of jets."

"The ..." The dark Vampire began but couldn't finish.

"So Buffy's ...?" Asked Spike.

Kennedy just grinned.

Faith had the uncharacteristic grace to look embarrassed. "They were supposed to be right behind us, they went back to get her coat. I guess it took longer than they thought to find it."

"That little..." Spike began, kicking a dead demon.

"So we save the world and he gets the girl." Angel summed up angrily, starting off down the road to find somewhere dry to brood.

"That's just so bleeding typical" Spike fell into step beside him.

Illyria settled Gunn more comfortably in her arms and followed. The bond Fred's shell shared with these lesser beings was too strong to resist. "What are mates?" She asked.