Title: "6 Months"
Chapter 4B/7

Written by: Shawn

Summary: Under the watchful eyes of the Scooby Gang, Spike endures the trials he believes will restore his manhood. Meanwhile, Faith makes a shocking discovery at her new boyfriends house that leads to a confrontation with Buffy and Xander.

Category: Romance/Humor

Rated: NC-17.

Ship: Buffy/Xander

Timeline/Spoilers: Everything up to the BtVS series finale "Chosen" is canon except Xander losing his eye. Outside of that it's my AU. Every thing's explained in the story.

My personal archive: http://groups. Joss owns it all. I just let them out to play once in a while.
Email: Notes 1: Willow, Buffy, Xander, Faith, and Dawn live in Cleveland, watching over the as-of-yet unopened Hellmouth. They are currently retired and living normal lives for once. Of course every now and then a vamp sighting might spur a patrol, but for the most part they're fighting the same every day struggles and frustrations as you or I.

Authors Notes 2: This story is for fun and laughs. Taking it any deeper will detract from enjoying it. In other words, read it when you're in a good mood or if you need to be put in one.

Authors Notes 3: No angst in this chapter. Just sit back and laugh. Let the good times roll.

Authors Notes 3: I'm not a Spike fan. Never have been and never will be. You have been warned.

As soon as folk see my face on the movie screen they know two things: First, I'm not going to get the girl and second, I'll get a cheap funeral before the picture is over. -- Lee Marvin

The average woman would rather have beauty than brains, because the average man can see better than he can think. unknown author

What you call dog with no legs? Don't matter what you call him, he ain't gonna come. unknown author

Week 11

The Chocolate Heaven Worlds best bakery.

At least to those that live in Cleveland

77 North Kostner

Tuesday, December 6, 2005 11:30 AM

Cleveland, Ohio

Willow's wild giggling lasted from the second Buffy's call from Leora ended until the moment Xander parked in front of the Chocolate Heaven bakery where the Slayer raced out of the car to buy some anti-exercise goodies.

Seated comfortably in the front seat, Xander allowed himself the luxury of enjoying his best friends hysterical reaction to "the cures" for Spike gypsy-inflicted lady curse. He equally absorbed the child-like glee bought on by Spike's grumblings as the he/she platinum vampire cursed in no less than five languages, though mostly British swear words.

Yeah, it was looking to be a good day indeed for Alexander Lavelle Harris.

"Willow, I'd give you a good thrashing if you couldn't turn me into a frog or something," Spike bitched from under his blanket. The witch just kept right on laughing, so hard in fact she couldn't even go in the bakery with Buffy, instead sending the Slayer off to shop for her. "This isn't a bloody joke! This is my flipping life on the line! What kind of bloke would I be without my manhood? I'M A WOMAN!"

Having helped save the world more than a couple of times, as well as having tried to end it once herself, Willow was quite sure she'd seen and heard it all. Apparently that wasn't the case as she favored the blanket shrouded shemale vampire with nothing less than the cheerful grin of a lonely girl recently asked to the prom by the cutest guy in her class. Or perhaps in her case the cutest girl. "Its... its just that you have to take a bath in..." She shook her head, now hunched over in a fit of giggles. "You have to... you have to actually have... with a... Goddess, where would you even find one?"

Xander deftly interjected, "While I will neither confirm nor deny any knowledge of places where such things are sold, there is a slight chance I might be able to locate a facility that sells such items."

"You mean a porn shop?"

"No, Willow!" he quickly added behind a curling smirk. "And don't laugh at me for knowing about such places, not that I admit that I do. You wouldn't want me to make fun of your periodic outburst of glaucoma that require the medicinal usage of weed, now would you?"

Deer in headlights expression worn on the face of a fair-skinned witch. Willow blinked. "I... I..."

"Uh huh."

"My eyes hurt when I'm in front of the computer to long and..." Spike nudged Wills from beneath his blanket.

"You got a stash, luv? I could use a high right about now."

Looking over his shoulder, Xander glared into the backseat. "The only smoking you will be doing is if that blanket accidentally falls off you."


"Fine. Get out and walk back to England."

"You know good and well I can't walk around in the blooming daytime, you ninny!"

"That's not my fault. You came to my wife for help and you're getting it. You honestly don't deserve help since you made this he/she bed you are currently lying in. You should be thanking us for helping you."

"Listen up, wanker. More than a few times I aided your bloody Scooby troupe in saving the day."

"For every time you helped us you there were three attempts to kill us," Xander reminded the Billy Idol wannabe in a currently female form. "Then there were the multiple betrayals, backstabbing, and your overall eagerness to be the Big Bad that have left you living off of our compassion."

"Well said, Xander." Willow smiled in support.

"Well, if you ask me..."

Xander added, "No one did, Spike!"

"I think you're still sore over me putting the good wood to your wife all those years ago."

No sooner than the words left the he/she's lips did the sunroof in Xander car slowly open, allowing in the warm rays of the brilliantly bright sun.

"Ahhhh!!!! YOU WANKER YOU!! AHHHH!!!"


Willow's compassionate tone, as well as a wee bit of giggling was reason enough to shut the sun roof. Also, the scent of burning Nosferatu wasn't so pleasant. "There will be no more talk of anything you've ever done with my wife, Spike. We're helping you out of the goodness of our hearts and not for any other reason. Got it?"

"One day I'm gonna bite your..." Spike howled when the sunroof began to slowly draw back again. "Alright, alright! Bloody hell!"

Justice, thy name was Xander. And Wills seemed to be quite amused by the show.

Upon looking up, Mr Harris watched Mrs Harris stroll her cute and deadly self out of the bakery carrying a large bag of teeth-rottening goodness. "Oh how I love that woman."

"Me too."

The sunroof began to slowly open!

"I HATE HER! I HATE HER!" Spike howled.

"Well I hate you too," Buffy sing-songed upon climbing in the passenger seat, bag in her lap. She tilted her head and sniffed the air, then scrunched up her nose. "Smokey Spike doesn't make for a pleasing driving experience, honey."

"Sorry, I just couldn't resist." Carefully lifting the bag from her lap, Xander perused the various contents. "Merciful heavens."

Buffy knew that look as the Xander look or pleasure. Orgasm's and chocolate usually brought about that expression, "I bought two double frosted fudge cakes, an assortment of vanilla stripped cookies. a carton of fudge brownies, and a deep dish apple pie that I know some kindly, old woman with a Titanic-sized amount of loving grandkids baked with goodness in her heart." Her husband popped open the box containing the cookies and immediately distributed a couple to her and Willow.

"Mmmm!" the Scooby Gang moaned delightfully in unison upon eating them.

"I suppose I don't rank a cookie, right!" Spike groaned from beneath his dark blanket. Willow shoved two underneath it. He devoured them pretty quickly. "Could use a bit more nutmeg."

Everyone stared at the he/she.

"What?" he answered even though he couldn't see their faces. "I ate a baker once."

"Way to kill the appetite, Spike." Buffy laid her cookie back in the box. "So," the Slayer began, "Have we solved the way to deal with Spike's first trial?"

"Alas, I shall be forced to use mind-altering magic to get us in the zoo," Willow explained. "After that its up to you."

Buffy shivered, but she knew the sooner Spike had his penis back the sooner he would high-tail it out of town. "Well, if I must. But how about the second trial?" Wills snickered in the backseat. "Let me guess? Xander knows exactly where to get a..."

"PLEASE SLAYER!" Spike shouted. "Do not remind me of my utter shame. Let us just purchase the revolting item and be done with it."

Pushing that horrifically bad mental picture from her mind, Buffy decided on the sweeter picture of her husband munching fudge in the front seat. She could never, ever imagine enjoying the sight of Spike or Riley or Angel doing this, no mater that two out of the three couldn't in the daytime. But this guy here, the one she married, he just charmed her every single day. Even with fudgy crumbs on his jacket. "You're so hot."

Peering up, Xander gave a slightly embarrassed laugh. "Is it the sexy way I inhale fudge with my hands that so enchants you?"

"No, its the fact that you will bend over backwards to help an ex-lover of mine regain his penis."

"I will not bend over backwards."

"I meant literally."

"Oh, okay then. I wasn't sure at first what you... hey!"

"Gotcha." Buffy winked.

"You're so lucky you're good looking, great in bed, super strong and able to break the backs of evil demons everywhere."

"You say the sweetest things. Now drive. Its time we start planning."

"FINALLY!" Spike sounded off. "Lets get to the important stuff at hand like returning my manhood."

"No," Buffy corrected him. "I meant buying some milk and munching these bakery goods while watching my DVR recording of Desperate Housewives."

"Yay," Willow cheered as the car drove off.

"Bloody hell."

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo 3

900 Wildlife Way

Tuesday, December 6, 2005 8:30 PM

Cleveland, Ohio

"What an amazing Tuesday night this turned out to be," Buffy quoted before popping another Cool Ranch Dorito into her mouth, Seated on the stone steps inside the Polar Bears indoor home at the zoo when the weather gets too bad, she tried to keep her eyes away from the small bath tub a few feet to her left. The sight and stench going on over there weren't of the good. "Instead of staking a wandering vamp on the East side of town followed by some hot couch loving courtesy of my hubby I'm stuck here being a he/she vampire babysitter."

"Oh cry for me Argentina," Spike bitched from the tub. "I seem to be the one covered in bear pooh wearing this enchanted necklace! I seem to be the one who has to bathe in this filth for three hours! So forgive me if you have to give up a night of Gilmore Girls..."

"How do you know Gilmore Girls comes on Tuesdays?"

"I... See... My channel guide... That doesn't matter!" the he/she bitched once more, seated in a small white tub filled with bear waste. Part one of the three-step plan to remove his curse was as humiliating and nauseous an experience as he had ever dealt with before.

At least it wasn't so cold that the polar bears were indoors. With the animals outside and Willow's illusion/mind altering spell keeping zoo keepers and security off their backs slipping into the zoo was a piece of cake. For Spike though, his misery was only beginning.

Swearing under his breath very time he glanced at the three hour time-gem he wore around his neck, Spike wanted to kill or maim something. Anything! But he just couldn't. He was a petite woman with nice breasts who was really a man with a decently chiseled physique, albeit a vampire in both instances. As if his utter embarrassment wasn't complete the love of his afterlife, newly moved on to holy matrimony had to bare witness to every second of his shame. "Care to share some of those chips, luv?"

With a plastic bag full of assorted chips from hot to salt and sour to cheesy, Buffy appeared unwilling to share as her eyes widened in surprise. "I, uhm... You're covered in poo."

Her retort didn't phase him. "That doesn't mean I'm not snack hungry."

"Your blood's right there by the edge of the tub. Have a sip."

"I've got a wicked taste for hot and spicy corn chips."

Despite their adverse affect on ones breath they were the Slayer's favorite. She calmly shifted the plastic bag out of his view and went back to munching while turning the page on the book she read. "Spike, I am here out of the kindness of my kind heart and that if I don't help you no one else will. The sharing of my snacks are not part of the 'Help Spike Get His Dick Back' plan."

"You were so hot just now when you said dick."

Buffy frowned upon glaring at him. "You are covered in bear crap, Spike. Please do not attempt any flirty talk. If these chips weren't so delicious I wouldn't even be able to look at you. As it stands their tastiness is making this bearable, pun intended," she smiled at the end.

All Spike could do was bitch and moan, so he did. Only in a woman's voice. "I'm bloody shocked the whelp isn't here with you videotaping my torture."

Finishing off a bag of salt and sour potato chips, Buffy explained, "The hubby has instructed me to take numerous camera phone pictures to mark the moment while he's out with Dawn and Wills at the Galaxies Sex Emporium store buying the..." she giggled as she couldn't even get the words out. "Well, lets not discuss it. One humiliating thing at a time."

Doing his very best to ignore the smell, never mind what's covering his body Spike could only shake his head at how things came to this. He just wanted some nice virgin blood, maybe a card game and some hot Slayer loving. Hell, he'd settle for two out of three. Anything but this. "Are you absolutely sure Leora said the three things I have to do to break the curse have to be exactly the way she detailed?"

"Yep," Buffy replied while downing half her Coke. "I even went back to Leora's store this afternoon and talked to her some more. I also bought this cool night light globe thingie. It only lights up when I touch up. Willow and Dawn touched it and nothing happened, but when I did it was all 'let there be light' and stuff. I think it only responds to blonds."

"Might I remind you, luv. You're not a natural blond."

"Ms. Clairol is not listening to a damn word you have to say Mr. He/She. How I came about my lovely blond hair, be it genetics or products sold at at a reasonable price at Walgreen's doesn't matter. My new night light only works for me. Its special because blonds are special, dammit."

"I'm... I'm a blond."

"No, you're a he/she."


"Men have penis's. You have a vagina. Deal!"

"Yelling at me doesn't make me feel better."

"I am not here to make you feel better," Buffy reminded him while tearing into a bag or fiery Cheeto's. "I am here to make sure you don't get into any trouble while you bathe in the crap. That's my job. And while I am doing my job I will partake of the munchies and read my new book entitled "Kicking Life's Ass and Looking Good While Doing It.' I'm on a self-help kick."

"Oh for crying out loud, Slayer. You're a mystical deadly weapon destined to wage war against the forces of darkness forged in the same darkness your powers come from. You're a warrior! Warriors don't read self-help books!"

"What about Dr. Phil? I considered watching his show once. Oprah co-signs him, you know."

"Bloody hell! You've gone and lost your flipping mind.""

"And you're a female vampire in a bath tub covered in bear shit! Don't you dare lecture me on being a warrior," Buffy shouted at him. "You even made me curse and I rarely ever do."

"You're so caught up in playing little Miss Domestic Harris you've forgotten your true self," Spike taunted her from the tub. The target of his ire shrugged as if he didn't matter at all. "You've gotten soft."

"No, I just grew up, Spike." Setting her snacks aside, Buffy rose to he feet and walked towards the he/she. "At some point and time people grow, mature and change. Nothing stays the same. I'm still the bad ass, God Killing, Master stomping, First beheading Slayer I've always been. If the world really and truly needs saving I'm a cell phone call away and Giles is in my Five. But I was the Slayer before I could drive a car until I was twenty four years old. I earned some time to find a life for myself and pursue some of my goals. I also had to deal with my mothers death, get over my depression, reconnect with my friends, accept my role in rebuilding the Watchers Council and decide what it was that makes me happy in life. I am a better person now and I treat people good. If you treated women with respect and class you wouldn't be in a bathtub covered in crap. So the next time you go on and on about my self-help book you just remember... okay, I lost my train of thought but you better remember something poignant and meaningful about this conversation."

"You're nuts, Buffy."

"No, I'm Mrs. Harris. And you're a he/she. Now soak in that crap and hush your freaking mouth." When Spike called her something under his breath, something that sounded like 'itch' she was ready to throw a boulder at him until her cell phone rang. The Spiderman movie theme song ring tone signaled her hubby. "You better not be coming home with a bag of stuff that I have to put on, be tied up with, or eat off your chest. The latter would be okay if its called Ben and Jerry's, but still."

"Honey, I need you to do me a favor," Xander whispered into the phone in a muffled tone.

Buffy's Slayer-sense suddenly flared. "What's wrong? Is the place being held up? Vampires near by? Demons? Pick pockets? You need something killed? I rock at killing things!"

"No," Xander whispered again. "Your sister is talking loud and pointing to things and asking me questions. She doesn't understand male porn store etiquette. Its weirding me out."

He weirds her out sometimes, though she loves him dearly. "Dawn doesn't frequent low end smut shops very often."

"Hardy har har and please call her and inform her that she needs to keep her head down and act as if she is ashamed to be here and not talk to me or anyone else as the male porn store etiquette mandates."

Buffy snorted. "Done. Now hurry up and bring me home some KFC."

"Mmm... Blazing Buffalo wings. Later."

After Xander hung up Buffy pressed "2" on her saved cell phone list.

"Buff, this place is so freaky, oh my God. There are some toys here you could stake a vampire with," Dawn chuckled into her cell phone.

"Sister dear, please refrain from talking loud or to anyone or even walking with your head up as my dear sweet Xander feels you are unaware of male porn store etiquette."


"You have to act as if you're ashamed to be there and not talk to anyone until you purchase your items. Haven't you noticed no one around you is talking?"

"Well... no."

"Have you wondered why when you ask Xander something he just looks at you and says nothing in return?"

"Hmmm... that explains allot."

"Have you noticed that everyone is walking with their head down." There was silence for a moment and then Dawn replied...

"Now that you mention it."

"Shut it, sis. Get the 'man' and get out of there before Xander loses his mind."

"Now I have to mess with him on purpose."

"Okay. Just make sure he doesn't forget my KFC on the way home."

"Gotcha. Bye."

Buffy shut her cell phone and then went back to reading her book. By her estimation in another hour Step-1 in countering Spike's curse would be finished and tomorrow would bring about Step-2. "You okay, Spike."

"Sod off!"

"I'll take that as a yes."

McDonalds restaurant

11580 Euclid Ave

Tuesday, December 6, 2005 10:15 PM

Cleveland, Ohio

"I thought I requested KFC?" Buffy noted after their orders arrived at the counter. Xander scooped up the tray.

"KFC got held up tonight. Squad cars were everywhere when I arrived. Would you have wanted me to ask the cops to allow the terrified workers back in the restaurant so that you could still have your Chicken Strips after a hostage situation?"

"Were they hurt? Were fingers shot off? Was anyone blinded in the attack?" Buffy questioned. "One time I was on my break at the Double Meat Palace and I dealt with six headless zombies and a elderly Zifo demon on a walking cane. I was still able to flip burgers and fry fries afterwards. How hard is it to get back in there and cook up more chicken?" the Slayer pouted while setting their tray down.

Pulling Buffy's chair for her as they sat at a small table near the kids playroom, Xander shook his head at her cute audacity. "You have a one track mind, honey. And most fast food workers aren't nearly as tough or good looking as you are."

"Well... that is true." Grinning brightly, Buffy tore open her honey mustard pack and began dipping Chicken McNuggets. "Do you realize that now the Chicken McNugget is 100 white meat?"

"So what was it for the last two decades?" Biting into his Double Quarter-Pounder, Xander observed the curiosity fall over his wife's face.

"I choose not to think about that at this time."

"Wise choice." Humming from the delicious taste of food after hours of hunger and the strangest trip he'd ever undertaken to a porn store, Xander sighed happily as he was with his girl again and she seemed pleased despite the simplicity of dinner. "So how was our favorite He/She tonight?"

"As far away from Zestfully Clean as you could possibly imagine." The Triple Thick Milkshake was Buffy's next target. She was in such a snack-hungry state lately. Good thing her Slayer-metabolism sped everything up that happened to her body. Everything... "Spike griped and moaned about being in a tub of crap while I tried to give him the benefit of my newfound wisdom and Yoda-like advice."

"Can I safely assume he continued blaming everyone but himself for his predicament while whining about the unfairness of it all?"

"That would be correct. Alas, my infinite patience won out in the end. And in a few days he'll be on a plane back to merry ole England. Penis or not he'll be out of our hair."

"Come'on, you hot Slater you," Xander half-flirted while holding his sandwich, waving it a bit. "Show me those crap-covered Spike pictures."

Removing her T-Mobile cell phone from her purse, Buffy pulled up the pics of Spike yelling at the camera, pointing at her, trying to cover up his face, spitting out something unmentionable that flew into his mouth, and then seemingly crying. "That's the one when he started crying."

"I shall cherish that picture for all time. This is truly the best week of my life."

Buffy rolled her eyes. "You're weird."

"Hey, you married me."

"For the money," Buffy sing-songed with a cute head shake. "Well, partially for the money. I stayed for the extremely good hot loving and foot massages."

"Its nice to know a guy is appreciated," he smiled just before she stole some of his fries. She was playful that way... so full of life now and that he was a part of it made his life complete. "Guess what?"


"Hey! Why not?"

Buffy shrugged. "I hate guessing what."

"For once can't you just do what I say?"

"If I did that we'd be having a threesome with Faith."

"I... I only suggested that once," Xander quickly pointed out. "And I was kidding."

"Yeah, riiiiight," Buffy teased in his face with pointing a Chicken McNugget at him. "Okay, what?"

Puffing his chest out a bit, Xander told her, "I staked a vamp behind the porn store." Her eyes widened with no small amount of pride, interest, and a bit of envy. "He was hovering in some bushes waiting for some poor, unsuspecting porn buyer to wander out. My vampdar started tingling and I was able to identify and eliminate the threat."

Buffy thought it over or a moment. "Translation, you saw him trying to bite someone and rammed into him thus knocking him to the ground, and then while you held him down Dawn staked him, right?

Dammit, she was good. "Neither your luminous smile nor your inaccurate though I won't deny it account of the event are..." Buffy just looked at him. "Okay, yeah that's what happened. But I was still part of the Slaying. I shoulder-rammed him good. Ducked two of his punches and nailed him with a right cross of my own. I knocked a fang loose."

"You're so hot when you Slay."

"That's my line," Xander winked at his wife. "And I would have loved to hear that years ago."

"But years ago I wasn't going to take you home and bone you good like I'm going to do tonight." Her words turned him on instantly, which was the whole reason she said it. Rising from her chair she allowed the hubby to do away with their trash and then hold the door open for her as they exited the restaurant.

"Uhm, Buff..." Hoping to stall her before she reached the car, he was unable to halt her progress from climbing into the drivers side. Quickly, he thought over how good it was that the breaks worked properly and that they had drivers side and passenger side airbags.

Climbing in beside her, Xander calmly slipped on his seatbelt and hoped for the best. "Nice, easy drive home," he half-hoped/half-joked.

"I'm gonna take the long route past that porn store just in case there are any more blood suckers in the neighborhood."

"Trust me, honey, On that side of town whatever's getting sucked in the number one position isn't blood. I felt so dirty going to that store."

"And the other ten occasions you've been there?"

"Dirty each and every time." Xander calmed his heart while Buffy pulled onto the street and even stopped at the first Stop Sign she came too. Her driving skills have made such great strides since Sunnydale, though they still left much to be desired. "Honey, I thought I saw you come out of Leora's with a bag when you went back in to confirm Spike's 3-Step plan?"

"Yep. I bought this cool night-light globe thingie that only lights up when I touch it. Willow and Dawn couldn't make it light up at all. I think it only responds to blonds."

"Buff, uhm, you aren't a real blo..." her Death-Glare halted that statement but good. "Sounds like a cool night-light."

"Oh balls!" Buffy griped upon missing her turn. "No big. It's U-Turn time."

Groaning under his breath, Xander shut his eyes and hoped no cops were in the vicinity. The car roared into a wide turn while he held onto the arm rest, praying they didn't crash. "Honey, lets not do that to often."

"Gotcha." Nearing the porn stores district, Buffy asked, "So how did the 'man' buying go?"

"Thankfully after your call to Dawn and her subsequent laughing and louder talking just to mess with me," he explained to an amused Slayer, "We found the perfect 'man'. The guy behind the counter looked like he wanted to ask us why we were buying such a sturdy male sex doll, but seemed to decline when my manliness intimidated him."

Buffy snorted, "He thought Dawn was hot, didn't he?"

"I will neither confirm nor deny that statement, though my nod may give you a hint."

Buffy noted to Xander she just used her turn signal to turn with a polite nod... then calmly ran a Stop Sign while making no mention of it. "So how much did the fake guy cost?"

"Three hundred and fifty bucks, plus ten more for the motorized pump," Xander replied. "In a strange twist of quirks Dawn found it as fascinating as it was gross. Still, our favorite Key agreed to let the deed take place at her apartment."

"Good. I don't want the memory of such a foul act stinking up our place. At least until we get the new mucho-grandee Harris home complete with all the super trimmings."

The sound of future rich glee erupted from Xander. It was a joyous noise. "Sometimes in the midst of my enjoying Spike's trauma I forget that in a few short months we will be filthy rich and able to afford all sorts of overpriced name brand items we don't actually need."

"Speak for yourself, honey. I need diamonds, a Porsche, and to not have to work if I don't want too. A platinum stake wouldn't be so bad either. Maybe one with my name on it and like a cool pirate drawing. Yeah, that would be of the good."

Circling the porn store area twice and through the alley behind it they surmised the undead had either moved on or the baddie that was staked tonight was all by his lonesome.

"Time to go home, fake sex boy buyer," Buffy chimed in as they headed for home. Hitting the gas she wondered why their was a speed limit at all. "I'll play you in Monopoly for the house chores this week."

"You always distract me by playing in your sexy panties and talking sexy and tossing your sexy hair back."

"Its not my fault you are easily distracted by the awesomeness that is I. And to be honest who wouldn't be," she verbally patted herself on the back all the while knowing she'll let him win the chores she doesn't mind doing while all things to do with trash and laundry will fall to him. She's a good wife that way.

15 minutes later the Dynamic Duo's parking in front of their apartment building.

"Id say a night of babysitting a crap-covered he/she vampire and buying an overpriced well-endowed artificial male lover constitute an evening worth forgetting as soon as possible," Xander offered to a mildly chilly night sky while leaning against their car. Buffy strolled around next to him and looped her arm into his, snuggling close.

"Yeah, those Spike images won't help anyone sleep at night." Buffy sighed. "I wanted to stake a vamp tonight."

"I know, honey. I could tell by the way you were looking for one when we went through the alley that third time."

"Its like I get antsy if I don't pop one every thirty days or so. I chalk it all up to residual Sunnydale weirdness." A loving kiss was pressed to her temple in support. "Maybe I'll run into a bloodsucker tomorrow."

"Maybe so, sweetie." Xander grabbed his wife's hand, leading her into the building. "So after this chore-deciding Monopoly game..."

"Oh yeah, you're getting laid."

"That's my girl."

Buffy cheesed.

Dark Blue 2004 Grand Cherokee

Jared Kohl's rental car Parked outside of Buffy and Xander's apartment building

Tuesday, December 6, 2005 10:15 PM

Cleveland, Ohio

Having spent the last couple of hours tailing Alexander Harris and a couple of his friends to an adult store of some sort, Jared lucked upon his target meeting up with his wife for a little late night dinner. It was yet another chance for him to spy on them from afar and gauge if they shared a real relationship or one that was a means to an end.

The end being Alexander's massive inheritance.

Seated behind the wheel of his SUV parked in the darkened shade of a tree, he considered that while they seemed to indulge in rather deviant sexual interests judging by Alexander's purchase of a male sex doll this evening; information courtesy of tipping the guy at the counter, all seemed to be in order otherwise. While Mrs. Harris could use some driving lessons as she drove far too fast, rarely used turn signals and considered Stop Sign's as having no value more often then not she seemed normal otherwise.

Okay, the male sex toy was still weirding him out a bit. Add into that the day he tailed Alexander and his friend Willow Rosenberg for six miles and noticed that they didn't get caught by one single red light the whole trip was mighty peculiar. And then there was the time he swore he saw Buffy Harris dead lift a kitchen table up a flight of stairs, though he was sure his eyes were playing tricks on him.

Still, Jared felt he had witnessed enough sincere affection, kissing, and that sweet chemistry two people in love give off to know that this couple wasn't faking their marriage. All in all this was more than he hoped for. Not only was he being paid very well for this easy assignment, but the less time he had to spend watching the Harris's the more time he was going to have with Faith. And if in the next couple of months they are still going strong he's already considering relocating to Ohio.

She's that incredible of a woman.

"Time to call it a night," he muttered under his breath. satisfied he'd seen enough of the Harris's to know they were the real deal. Whatever the heck they did with their male sex doll was their business. That was information he wanted no part of at all.

Heights Garden Apartments

1375 Cleveland Hts. Blvd. #109 Apartment 3356

Wednesday, December 7, 2005 8:30 PM

Cleveland Hts, Ohio

Pacing back and forth in front of the bed in her apartment's spare guest room, Dawn curiously tapped her chin, mindful of the two people standing just over her shoulder. The bed itself was occupied, though not by the living. Then again, in a few moments that would still be true when 'John Doe' as she decided to name the male sex doll had company. "This scene has a certain train wreck-like quality to it. On one hand its icky to the tenth power and all together wrong and sick. Yet on the other hand its so strangely alluring you can't turn away. I'm drawn to it like a moth to a flame. Or like Michael Jackson to a kids playground."

"I've seen some weird shit in my day," Faith quoted upon entering the bedroom, hands in her jeans pockets while looking over the male sex toy. "In prison I saw plenty of crazy stuff like people getting shanked for a carton of smokes, but no one was banging a plastic Ken doll." She walked over to the bed and ran her fingers over the male toy's thigh. "This must be a top of the line sexy-boy. That skins pretty soft."

"Isn't it though," Dawn nodded while grazing her fingers over the toy mans bare chest. "That's real hair on his head and around his you know what."

Spike said not a word, head bowed, standing at the entrance to the bedroom as if he were about to face execution. In fact, he'd prefer that to what he was facing tonight.

Halting at the foot of the bed beside Dawn, Faith appraised the man-toy's deflated lower regions. "Uhm, isn't he supposed to come with some wood already?"

"Oh, I forgot." Reaching inside her pocket, Dawn produced a small calculator-sized remote control. "I already put in the four AA batteries."

"Where did they go?"

"You don't want to know."


Dawn held out the remote and pressed the middle button. "I think this will..." Suddenly a low humming sound filtered from the man-toy's genital area as its rubber penis began to slowly expand to a full erect eight inches with a glow in the dark tip.

"Woah!" Faith and Dawn uttered at the same time, their heads turning sideways, mildly impressed by the man-toy's... ahem, stature.

Faith laughed so hard when Spike's arm extended in from of her holding a stake.

"Just kill me already!"

"You're not getting off that easy, Spike. No pun intended," Dawn teased while removing the stake from the he/she's hand. "Look, I know this sucks on an epic scale of suckage, but you viciously broke two women's hearts who turned out to be sisters and gypsies. Now while I'm sure you would rather run through hell with gasoline soaked boxers on then ride the plastic jolly horse, you brought this on yourself. So hop on up and do your business and then we can call it a night. Lost is gonna be on in a few minutes and I don't miss my Sawyer for nobody."

Shutting his eyes to this cruel, cruel world, Spike's life flashed before his eyes.

Once he was the Big Bad.

The Slayer Killer!

Buffy's lover!

A poet!

A kitten Poker champion!

A Passion's soap opera expert.

A powerful and feared vampire known for being merciless!

He even saved the world once by giving up his life all Jesus-like and even survived a fight with a dragon in a alley.

But fast forward to the present and my how the mighty have fallen. Spike was trapped inside a petite womans body, stripped of all his dignity and pride, forced to hear Buffy giving herself to the whelp over and over and over again, being all happy and crap. She even married the village idiot for Christs sake. And here he was, days away from being a girl for the rest of his unlife, soon to be her unlife if he couldn't pull this off.

Spike wanted to die.

Problem was he's already dead. Or she's already dead. Whatever he is now, he's still dead. And now he has to have sex with a male sex toy and force himself/herself to orgasm at least one time in order to complete the second of his three trials in order to regain his manhood.

All of a sudden those gasoline soaked boxers in hell didn't sound so bad. He's seen hell before. Been there a time or two. It wasn't worse than the idea of mounting a battery operated rubber man!

"All aboard!" Faith made a train horn sound, yanking her arm down as if she were to driver. Spike's dreadful glare amused her to no end. "You reap what you sow, dickhead. You play with girls minds and then expect in all the years of your long life that not one of them will ever get you back. You'd have to be fucking nuts to think that. And believe me I still think you got off easy. Because if you did that shit to me I would get a pair of pliers and...

Dawn and Spike blanched pale-white as Faith detailed what she would do to any man that cheated on her with hand gestures and scary descriptions.

"... then I would wrap steel-mesh wire around his..."

Dawn slowly shook her head in a 'no' pose, shutting her eyes as the mental images flooded her brain. Spike dry heaved hard.

"... by then he'd be ready for the baseball bat up the..."

"Okay, Faith!" Dawn half-pleaded. "Please stop. I want to eat dinner later on."

"Alright, D. I'll spare your weak stomach. But you get the picture." Faith stood in front of he/she Spike, her hands now resting on the vampires shoulders. "Look, you gotta ride that rubber battery-operated dick until you get a happy or you will never see Mr. Happy again. I can't make this more simpler for you than that. Now I know you're still freaking out over being a woman and all. But you gotta suck it up and go get your manhood back. Now get up on that bed, ride that man-toy and think of whatever you think of when you're wacking off until you get off. Then you'll be one step away from being a guy again."


"Spike, quit bitching and ride that damn thing," Faith shouted as her anger rose, pointing at the outstretched male sex toy. "You're in this predicament because of the shit you pulled. You messed with a girls heart and you should know how crazy us bitches are these days. You got turned into a woman and you're being forced to go through these trials to humiliate and humble you. But if it was me I would of took a rusty pipe wrench and..."

"That's enough, Faith. Jesus, no more watching Cops or playing Halo for you. You're too violent." Dawn walked over to Spike, whom she still favored with no small amount of affection despite his history with her sister and the group. "If you don't do this you will remain a girl forever. You were born a guy. You were turned into a male vampire. You've been a male vampire for a couple of hundred years. You like women..."

"And robots," Faith laughed. "Don't forget he banged that Transformer Buffy a couple of years ago." Shaking her head she added, "Spike, you suck. And I mean royally suck."

"Oh shut up," he/she Spike groaned before shrugging off the robe Dawn loaned her, revealing her naked form. Faith and Dawn stepped back towards the door while she stared agonizingly at the bed. "Can a vampire get a little privacy here?"

Dawn cutely patted the he/she's shoulder. "Sure Spike. Just don't forget to put that emerald necklace on before you start. When you... you know what it will glow and that will tell you that you've completed the trial." Turning to leave the room, the former Key found Faith snapping pictures with her camera phone. "Faith, please?"

"X-man's paying good money for these. Plus I'm a sucker for the strange and odd and it don't get no stranger or more odd than this."

After a bit of arguing and a threat of revealing that Faith sings Prince's Little Red Corvette song while she drives, Dawn was able to get the Slayer to leave Spike alone.

Summoning up all his courage while crying as he mounted the plastic love doll, Spike went about completing the trial... and it was very ewwww worthy.

1330 Cherry Lane

Brownstone Apartment Complex

Jared Kohl's apartment

Thursday, December 8, 2005 7:30 PM

Cleveland, Ohio

"So, you're into dick again these days?" Faith fired out of the blue at Willow through the cell phone braced against the shell of her ear. She was parked out front of the apartment building Jared lived in for the last thirty minutes. "Or is it kinda sorta a bilingual thing?"

While manipulating her vacuum cleaner across her living room floor via magic, Willow couldn't help but to be a bit amused by Faith's offhanded question. Subtle was certainly not her middle name. "Being bilingual has nothing to do with being on speaking terms with the penis again, but yes. I have after a period of me time re-evaluated my Gay Now stance and have refined my interest into the 'Be A Good Person And I'll Give You A Shot' category."

"Yeah, cool. Dick does a body good."

"I thought that was milk?"

"Doesn't matter. I like'em both." Having debated for the last half hour over who to call about her problem, she figured Wills was a good choice for more than one reason. And unlike Dawn she at least had a guy in her life. "So how are you and the wolfman doing?"

Was this Faith attempting to make girl talk? That peeked Willow's curiosity. "We're dating and taking things very slow and easy. So far so good."

Faith nodded, tapping her fingers impatiently against the steering wheel of her car. Jesus, she hated feeling out of her element like she felt right now. She was so much better at busting heads and cracking skulls. "So you're sure dating him is what you want to do and all that? Why not just bang him and keep it casual?"

When, if ever did Faith ask about her love life? Willow considered maybe this was her way of feeling her out over something she needed to discuss. "Oz and I are good friends again and we have history, so we've been casual for a while now. But we like each other enough to be dating exclusively and see what happens. Goddess knows I'm not hearing wedding bells or anything, but we're going someplace. I hope its nice when we get there. Colorful with flowery type shapes and such."

"That's damn spacey, Wills."

"Faith, is everything alright? I'm sensing a bit of weirdness coming from you. More than usual. Thankfully, non-violent weirdness."

And there it was. A segue way from a real friend to talk about something personal. Faith knew that was what normal people did. Especially women. If you had a girlfriend you talked to them and shared with them your worries and problems. Trouble was, she was still getting used to having friends. And if that was an ongoing learning experience then what she wanted to talk about might as well been learning to fly like Superman. "I suck at this."

Willow sensed this was important territory for Faith. "At what?"

"At this... this talking crap. I don't know where to start and I know I need to talk to someone before I lose my mind and choke someone."

"Banish the violence, Faith. Say it with me now. Do it slow. Banish... the... violence."

"I didn't mean it quite the way it came out," Faith noted behind a chuckle. Her eyes darted to the third floor of the apartment building, specifically to Jared's unit. He was cooking her dinner tonight and was no doubt pissed she was late. "I got a issue."

"Just one? I must admit I was expecting several."

"Don't get trippy, witch."

"Okay, alright," Willow smiled into her phone. "I'm all seriousness and feminine wisdomness. My counsel is confidential and free. Shoot. I mean tell me what you want to talk about in the figurative sense and not firing a weapon in the literal sense."

Faith knew she needed a beer. "You are so damn wordy."

"Its a gift."

Knowing that she had better speed things up before Jared called the whole evening off, Faith jumped right in feet first. "I like Jared allot and I know its only been a month, but he gets me, you know. I just don't want to screw it up. I want to know how to act and what to do with a guy who isn't full of shit or just out to get some. I mean, he seems like a cool guy. I want things to keep going with us. And I haven't felt that way about a guy in a damn long time. Like ever, really."

While thoroughly surprised to hear Faith talk this way, Willow felt honored that the Slayer came to her for this talk. It was as much a sign of how things had truly changed in her life as it was wonderful to see Faith slowly opening her heart to someone. "Taking things slow means taking things slow. No one is making big, huge declarations or promising forever. You date and talk and share and maybe sleep together and in time it kinda hits you over the head what to do."

"But this is me we're talking about here." Frustrated, her fist hit at the steering wheel of her 2005 Mustang, nearly crushing it. "I'm ex-con Faith who's a cold blooded killer and a Slayer of vampires. I run game on guys like guys run game on chicks. I feel'em, fuck'em, and forget'em."

"You paid your dues to society and you're a great Slayer who helped save the world. Look around you, Faith."

"All I see are an old couple walking slow as hell across the street and a stray cat looking for dinner in a trash can."

"I meant look around at your vastly imperfect friends who all have a history of badness, regret, and heartbreak. Yours truly, especially. Don't forget Buffy turned her first lover into a mass murderer, although that was accidental. Dawn's not even real and yet we love her as if she was. Xander's history with women include an insect girl, a mummy, a reformed revenge demon and that multi-armed girl he met in Africa that he doesn't ever want to talk about. I'm dating a werewolf for Goddess's sake and I'm a witch who strayed on the Dark side once and almost destroyed the world. You know none of us are perfect, but we all get up each and every day and try to be better people. I think you need to leave the past behind you and accept that you met a nice guy who has your interest."

"He's so good in bed, you know. His tongue is like a freaking..."

"Too much information!" Willow halted that sentence. "You're fine, Faith. You don't need me to tell you anything. You just need to trust yourself and then when you're ready introduce him to all of your friends. We're all dying to meet Jared. He's gotta be one heck of a guy to have you acting like this."

Jared certainly was in her eyes. "He's cooking dinner for me, Wills. Can you believe that? No guy has ever done more than reheated pizza in a microwave for me and here he is doing the whole pot and stove bit."

"You deserve to be romanced."

"Romanced?" the Slayer snorted as it was unbelievable. "I don't even know what the word means."

"Then get off the cell phone and go see for yourself. You're so worth it, Faith. You deserve to be happy and fall in love and have someone in your life. The past is over with. None of us can change it. But you have to live in the now. Go enjoy yourself and take things at your own pace."

It was the best advice she had ever received because at the heart of it, it was sincere. And though she knew Buffy would have given her the same, their competitive nature removed asking the blond Slayer about this. At least right now. For the moment Faith enjoyed the simple knowledge that she had friends she could count on. Friends that loved her.

She finally had family.

"Alright, witch. The Hallmark moment is over. I'm gonna blaze and get dinner and laid."

Message received. Willow grinned triumphantly. "Have a good night, Faith."

"You too. And uhm... thanks."


Nodding to herself, Faith ended the call and bounded outta her car. It was high time to get on with living her life.

Faith was late.

Over thirty minutes late.

And she hadn't called one time.

Here he was, actually cooking dinner for a woman. Something he hadn't done in forever, and yet she seemed special enough for him to pull out his most romantic tricks to impress her. There was some elemental force drawing him to her like a moth to a flame as he was unable to resist. She was a bad-ass who could infuriate him and just as fast say something that gently revealed the real woman within.

Perhaps that was why when Jared opened the door prepared to lay into her good and she kissed him that very second he couldn't remember being angry or frustrated or anything at all. She was a force of nature that had quickly become a vital part of his life and he was powerless to halt her progress into his heart.

Hell, he wasn't even trying anymore. And it had only been a month.

Walking him backwards into his apartment, Faith heel-kicked the door behind her while deepening the kiss as she drank from his lips. Multitasking was her middle name, after all. "Look, I had some personal issues to work out. I'm complicated as hell, but I'm... I feel bad for flaking out and not calling you. You deserved better than that."

Holding her in his arms so close, Jared had already forgiven her because of the kiss. Getting to know her ways might take years. Thankfully, he wasn't in the least bit intimidated about the wait. The mystery of her was captivating. "Are you alright?"

He didn't pry, bitch her out or demand she come clean about why she was late. He seemed to pick up on her rhythm without her ever having to tell him anything. She was very thankful he seemed to get that she didn't like explaini8ng herself. "I'm good. Better now. Talked with a pal and..." Inhaling the aroma of delicious pasta in the air, she brushed past him towards the kitchen, effectively ending all talk about her late arrival.

Jared watched her follow the alluring scent, considering how hot she looked in her tight black jeans and that she seemed woefully unused to this dating thing. Then again, he only knew so much about her. She seemed leery of tilling him to much for a host of reasons and hadn't even introduced him to her friends yet.

Still, she possessed an inner pit bull-like attitude that complimented a softer woman beneath the steely surface. That woman he was falling for. "Does the lady approve?"

Standing over the simmering pot on the stove, Faith replied, "I'm not sure about the lady part, but this smells and looks great. You some kind of chef or something?"

"It's a symptom of only-child syndrome," he explained, smiling just over her shoulder. "I had two choices as a kid. I could sit around and wait for my parents to get home from work or I could cook for myself."

"Tell the truth?" she pondered playfully, now facing him with her arms crossed. "You burned down a house or two, didn't you?"

"Almost," he laughed. "And you?"

"A whole city and a Wall-Mart in Idaho a couple of years back." She held his stare as he waited for her to laugh, signaling the punchline. She greatly enjoyed how he seemed to enjoy trying to read her. "Its a long story."

Jared arched a curious brow. "Something tells me you have plenty of them."

"More than you could possibly imagine."

Another make-out session against the wall ensued before they pulled dinner together and left for the living room. A couple of beers and good conversation later they were relaxed and above the earlier troubles. What was brewing between them was simple chemistry turned up ten notches. They complimented each other, being free-spirits who came and went as they pleased. But as the caresses lingered and the kisses grew more passionate they both knew they were somehow falling in love.

This was the tough part for Faith.

Seated on the couch, nestled against Jared's side, she struggled in letting go and simply relaxing. Sex was easy and she was great at it, but the quiet times... the truly intimate times weren't anything she was used too. She secretly hoped she didn't make him feel unwanted in some way. "We're good, right?"

Leaning over, Jared pressed a sweet kiss to her lips, smiling. "We're damn good."

"You sure?"

"Yeah. Are you?"

After taking a deep breath in preparation for this uncharted territory she was about to explore, Faith shifted from his half-embrace, sitting up straight to talk to him. "I'm not very good at this, so I'm just gonna blurt it out. I like you allot and I think its time you learned some things about me that might explain why I do what I do sometimes."

"Faith, I don't care about your prison time. Your past is your past. It doesn't define who you are now."

"Yeah, and if it was only that I wouldn't be worried."

"Okay, spill."

Jared wasn't one to beat around the bush. Neither was she. So Faith did what Faith always does. Gets straight to the point. "I've been with a good number of guys, slutty as that sounds."

"I'm no saint either." When her eyes grew big he amended with a grin, "I meant with girls."

"Oh, I knew that." A bit embarrassed she didn't right away, Faith hid it well. "Anyway, I've been with guys, but I haven't had many relationships." Here goes nothing. "To be perfectly honest I've only had one. It ended a year ago, but that's it."

This really bothered her, something he wouldn't normally expect. Taking her hand in his, Jared offered, "Its better to have fewer relationships than a ton of really bad ones. Was the one that ended any good?"

"Yeah, it was for a time. His name was Robin and we worked together... He was black, but race never meant crap to me. We were just going different places in our lives and I moved here."

"Doesn't sound like anything you should be ashamed of."

Having her hand held was new indeed. Faith accepted that it was high time she get used to how normal people lived. That didn't meant she had to or would ever conform. But at least understanding it, and maybe enjoying it a little wouldn't hurt. Letting her guard down wasn't ever going to be easy. "I guess my point is my lack of experience in relationships coupled with my absolute distrust of men makes me distant sometimes. I'm working on it, but I just want you to know where some of that comes from. It's nothing personal."

His beautiful and complicated Faith. Jared felt himself losing his heart to her more and more each day. She was like a fractured mirror of an amazing woman. Still amazing, but formed from many different sides. "We all have our issues, Faith. I'm nowhere near perfect and my past is far from rosy."

"It doesn't compare to mine."

Jared looked up. "How would you know that?"

She blinked, then pressed forward. "Trust me, the skeletons I got in my closet would make you run off screaming. And everything else that might jump out would chase after you and probably tear your head off."

"Would one of those skeletons be an explanation for how you lifted the side of your car with one hand without batting an eye lash when you parked on the curb accidentally?"

She'd hoped he hadn't saw that. The expression he wore didn't appear shocked in a terrified way as much as vastly curious. He gave off a natural sense of being trustworthy, but she wasn't ready just yet to divulge her Slayer abilities. "I'm a mystery, Jared. But if you're patient I'll reveal all my dirty little secrets. Then we'll see if you run or not."

Lifted her hand to his lips, he kissed it. She was an adventure he was looking forward to taking. "I won't run. I promise."

She wanted to hold him to it. She really did.

Sensing that this was as far as he was going to get tonight concerning her past and hidden elements of hr life, Jared saw the opportunity to expose a bit more of himself, at least professionally. "As you know I'm originally from California. I'm a private investigator on assignment here in Cleveland."

"Yeah, you told me all that."

Jared nodded. "Well, this assignment is pretty interesting and it has a six month shelf life. Want to hear about it?"

Diving back into the delicious pasta, Faith shrugged. "Go for it. Couples gotta talk over dinner, right?"

Did she know what she just said, acknowledging them as a couple? In times past women who made such assumptions so fast scared him off to some degree. But with her... "Okay, here's the deal." Reaching for a folder beneath a small stack on the inn table, he extended it to Faith. "I'm investigating these two."

Taking the folder from his hand, Faith's heart nearly stopped when she opened the folder to reveal numerous black and white photos of Buffy and Xander. Holding her Poker face in place, she feared this guy was looking into Slayer business or maybe even playing her to get to Buffy. What in the hell was he following them for? And if he wasn't playing her and didn't know she knew Buffy and Xander maybe she could figure out his plan. "What's the deal with them?"

"The guy's name is Alexander Harris. I am working for the law firm that represented his recently deceased grandfather."

Faith remembered Xander being out of town for business and the funeral. Still, she was leery. "Alright, keep going."

Laughing to himself, Jared began. "Faith, this is gonna sound like a bad plot for a romantic comedy movie, but here goes. Ron Styles, Alexander's grandfather passed away a millionaire. I mean this guy made friends in the old folks home and was secretly working the stock market for years without anyone knowing because his family was so distant from him. All except Alexander."

"Millionaire?" What the fuck? Faith tried to read Jared and couldn't pick up if this was all bull or not. She hoped her heart wasn't blinding her to the truth. "Wow. Talk about old money."

"Anyway, Ron was an old school romantic and a gentleman. Because Alexander actually took an interest in him he left his grandson his entire estate..."

"YOU'RE SHITTING ME!!!" Faith shouted all of a sudden before quickly reclaiming a sense of normalcy. Jared stared at her like she was nuts. "Don't mind me. People who inherit big money without having to work for it piss me off."

"Join the club," he replied. "But here's the kicker. Ron stated in his will that Alexander will only inherit the five million dollars..."

"Five...five..." Faith stuttered in pure shock, eyes wide open, mouth agape. "Five million?" Jared nodded. Somebody was getting their ass kicked and soon. Their last names were Harris!

"After he is happily married for a period of six months verified by an undercover private investigator working for the law firm holding the estate. I've been tailing Buffy and Alexander Harris ever since I arrived in town, watching them to make sure they have a real marriage and not a sham one to get the money."

"MOTHERFUCKER!" Faith shook her head, riled up and ready to pop. Those sons of bitches, she thought to herself. It couldn't be a scam now as she'd seen them together enough to know they were sickeningly happy, but at first maybe it was a ploy. They were lying to everyone and hiding the fact that in a few short months they were gonna be millionaires. The fuckers! "So when is the six months up?"

"March 16, 2006."

"And that's when Xan... uh, I mean Alexander gets all that dough? The full five mill?"

"Yep. Lock, stock, and barrel." Wow, Faith seemed damned amused and interested. She even started laughing out of the blue, a welcome albeit kinda strange reaction. "How crazy is that? Five million dollars for marrying a short chick."

"She is short, isn't she?" Faith grinned evilly. "What a tangled web we weave when we practice to deceive."

Jared wasn't quite sure where that came from. "You don't know them, do you?"

In Faith's eyes it was time to do what men do oh so well and often. Lie. At least for now. "Nope, never seen'em before."

"Well that's why I'm in town."

"Wanna fuck?" Jared blinked twice real fast. Faith just licked her lips, ready to pounce. "I like you and you like me. You just made me a killer dinner and we knocked back a couple, talked about some real life stuff and had a laugh. I'm in a great mood so if you wanted to get laid extremely well you better hop on this train right now. But beware. Its a rough ride."

Jesus Christ she could turn him on. Jared swallowed hard. "Choo choo."

"That was kinda dorky, but you're sweet. Now get naked. I gotta blaze afterwards, but for the next hour or so you in for the time of your life"

Buffy and Xander Harris's Apartment

321 Winchester Dr

Thursday, December 8, 2005 10:44 PM

Cleveland, Ohio

"... god, so good," Xander moaned softly, the warmth of his breath ghosting moist over Buffy's throat as her thighs slid over his hips in a erotic rhythm as they made love on their living room couch. Watching television under the covers led to some flirtatious banter as the night progressed. That, as usual, led to kissing and caressing and then...

The heady litany of appreciative sighs and pleasurable groaning only amplified Buffy's thirst for her husband, braced beneath his heaving body, writhing passionately in time with his hard impacting thrusts. A mask of delicious lust fell over her beautiful face as she rocked her slim hips each time he sank to the hilt. Her heart beat a primal drum against her chest as the couch rocked accordingly. Mercy, she loved how they could go from laughing their asses off to talking seriously and finally screwing each other like mad for no reason at all.

The squeaky old couch stirred loudly over the carpet, conveying its occupants desperate need for each other.

"You feel so good inside me," Buffy whispered throatily, her nails dragging hot over the expanse of his muscular back underneath the covers. He told her he loved her three times in a row in response, his mouth feeding from her neck while the sensuous stimulation of his hard, smooth flesh gliding inside her forced little whining sounds of praise from her lips.

He felt so good in her arms, being loved by him, giving herself to him as he gave himself to her. It didn't matter how old the couch was, or that the plaid blanket had definitely seen better days, or even that the Food Network was playing on mute in the background. All that mattered was their love making and enjoying every second of it.

As scorching as her body felt flexing and drawing tight around him, the added heat of being under the covers left them sweating and panting as one. Buffy gasped in delight as they thrashed against the couch. fucking each other hard and fast, eyes shut tight, shaking and trembling in each others arms. She felt every ridge of his manhood brush sensation from inside her body throughout it, making her thighs quiver as he moved over her, pounding her deeply into the couch. She loved his aggression... his sheer, unending hunger for her alone.

She loved him absolutely.

And then the hot waves sped savagely through her belly, tingling her nerves, lifting her higher and higher the faster he took her until she finally cried out when her orgasm hit, clutching him tightly with her arms and legs. One long, drawn out, agonizingly pleasurable climax that quickly triggered her husband's. His hips delving low and deep, buried inside her very soul, losing himself inside her in thick satisfying bursts time and time again. His voice fell mute against her neck, sated, his body shaking uncontrollably above her.

Thankful she had finally mastered how to control her considerable strength when they made love so as not to hurt him. Buffy sighed happily, holding her husband while watching Rachel Ray make a grilled chicken and smoked sausage dish she thought looked quite tasty.

For a quiet, affectionate time they kissed softly, cuddled naked in each others arms, basking in the afterglow of some great late night sex before bed. Married life for them was rocking so far. They hoped it would always be this way.

Twenty minutes later after a shared shower and changing into their bedtime clothing, they were back in the living room. Xander shut off the TV while Buffy put away the blanket in the laundry basket. Suddenly, loud banging rattled their front door.

Surprised by having a visitor this late, Buffy watched Xander walk slowly towards the closet while she made her way to the door and peeked through the keyhole. "Faith?" The Slayer was standing in the hallway looking quite disturbed and shaky. Very un-Faithlike. She quickly swung open the door. "Faith, what's wrong? Are you alright? Is evil afoot?"

"I might be going out of my mind," Faith offered as her best explanation upon walking inside, hands in her jeans, appearing as nervous as they had ever seen her. "We'll see." Turning on her heel, she found Xander standing beside the couch with his wallet in one hand and a long sword in the other. Oh, and he was wearing G.I.Joe pajama pants. "What the hell?"

"Its like this," Xander began in defense of his comical state. "Anyone knocking on our door after 11:00 PM is either looking to borrow money or needs us to help kill something evil." Lifting his wallet and the sword, he added, "I like to be prepared."

"Riiiiight." Faith shook off the weirdness as Buffy rounded her to stand beside her husband. They were patient for her to detail the whys of her late night visit. She didn't disappoint. "Okay, guys its like this. I'm not sick or broke or in trouble or needing your help to kill anything evil."

Buffy and Xander exchanged a grateful expressions after hearing that. Faith knew she'd get rid of that right away. Stealing herself for the performance to come she approached them, took a long deep breath, and spoke in a softer, more careful tone of voice than she ever had before. "I don't know how to say this, so I'm just going to lay it on the line and go for it. Somehow, someway I've fallen in love with both of you and I can't hold that inside me any longer." Startled blank stares was their first reply. Xander dropped his sword. "I think both of you are so cool as people and you've proven that I can trust you. We get along well and I just..."

Turning away from them, and neither have even blinked yet, Faith poured it on. She wrapped her arms around herself and spoke as if she were near tears. "I know this is coming out of left field but I just have to get this off my chest. Ever since we moved here I've been attracted to both of you, but I never said anything. I thought it would all go away after time passed, but its only grown stronger since you got married."

"Wha?" Xander was able to say and only that.

Faith took her time, playing the moment for all it was worth. "I don't know where these feelings came from or why they are so strong now, but I have to get this off my chest once and for all. I have to try and at least let you both know how I feel. I want both of you. And yes, that means you too. Buffy. And I think if we would just let go for one night you just might come around to the idea that we could be good for each other."

Upon slowly turning back around Faith saw Xander's panic-and-interested face as well as Buffy's absolute mute shock. "No one ever has to know. We could rock all night long and if you don't feel the same then I'll forget it ever happened. But I think we should go to your bedroom and get it on right now. So what do you say?"

"Are you on crack!" Buffy shouted, head titled sideways, pondering how in the hell did this happen under her nose. Why in the hell did people always fall in love with her without her permission! "Xander and I are married, Faith. Married! I have the last name and I will dismember anyone trying to interfere with that. So there will be no additional women added to that blessed union. None. Zero. Zilch. Nada! Like never!"

Xander knew not to say a damn word. Nope, do not say anything at all. Let Buffy handle this. He knew he'd say the wrong thing. Something sarcastic that might lead to Buffy using that dismember word in relation to him. In this particular situation he was sure only a train wreck of a statement would come flying out of his mouth. So he simply nodded in agreement with his wife.

"Buffy," Faith spoke softly, slipping her jacket off her shoulders, and then slowly undoing her belt. The Slayers eyes grew wide with shock. "We could be so good together if you just push that last little inhibition of yours aside and make love to me right now in front of Xander."

"Crack?" Buffy said again, arms crossed over her chest. "Are you smoking it?"

Xander again said nothing. The male mind, feeble and horny as it was, even though recently satisfied couldn't ignore the faint mental images of Buffy and Faith doing naked things together. Boy oh boy he knew not to say a word. It would just turn out bad. So he kept his trap shut and stood there.

"You think this is crazy, Buffy?"

"Yes," she replied, walking up to Faith. "This is insane!"

"Is it anymore insane than Xander needing to marry someone for six months in order to inherit a shit load of money?!" Busted. Their faces read busted! Totally Busted. Faith was back in control. She pointed at them in the way someone does when they know they have you dead to rights. "Yeah, I know all about your big money plot. You got married so that you could get the freaking payday of a lifetime. Now don't get me wrong. I'm not against that at all. Hell, I would have married Xan too. Shit, for five million I would have married you. And I don't dig short people. No offense."

Standing over Buffy's shoulder, Xander wrapped his arms around his wife and began laughing. "She knows and she just played us so good."

"You suck, Faith." Buffy tried not to laugh herself when Faith gave her the middle finger. "Okay, let us explain."

"Look, I already figured it out." Faith thought it over and came up with, "You guys got hitched for the cash, but then fell in love for real and now you're just enjoying all this..." Sniffing the air with her augmented senses, she found Buffy and Xander looking a bit embarrassed. "Marital banging all the time."

"How did you find out, Faith?" Xander asked. "Buffy and I have bent over backwards to keep this secret."


"Okay, Buffy. Alright," Faith chuckled in their faces. "Here's the thing. It turns out my new boy toy is the private dick, pun intended, who was hired by the law firm looking after Xander's grandfather's estate."

Awed looks abound. This was interesting indeed.

Faith continued. "Jared doesn't know I know you guys and I think its better we keep things that way until you two get paid... and for my silence and help in this fraudulent scheming plot I want a hundred grand."

"You were gonna get two, but one sounds fine," Xander grinned evilly, extending his hand to shake on the deal.

Faith's mouth hung open. "You guys were really gonna give me two hundred grand?"

Buffy nodded. "That was the plan for the whole group. But if you'd prefer less mon..."


"We figured as much," Xander declared before pulling Faith into a hug. "I was told when the inheritance rules were explained to me that a private investigator would be watching and reporting every move me and my wife made until the day I received the inheritance. Now its not that we don't trust you, Dawn, Willow, Giles or even Oz. But we cannot," he took her face in his hands, "Will not," his eye brows rose. Both of them, "Risk anything messing up our chance to never have to work again."

"He's giving you his serious expression," Buffy playfully warned. "I'd nod if I were you."

Smirking in his face, Faith nodded for the hell of it and then pushed him away. "You secret is as safe as my two hundred grand is." Gliding over to Buffy, she glanced back at Xander while brushing her hand over the Slayers slender shoulders. "You know, a threesome isn't the worst idea in the world."

Xander felt both Slayers eyes watching him. He knew not to say a word. He knew not too. But sometimes the male mind just screws up and talks anyway. "Wouldn't a Friday be better for something like... I mean its the weekend and all and..." Death Glare Buffy stopped him and quick. "I love my wife, Faith. No threesomes for me. I'm anti-threesome. I'm more of a twosome guy, myself. To be perfectly honest in high school I was more a lonesome... Okay, that's entirely to much information."

"You think?" Faith shrugged, laughing. "I wouldn't do you two anyway. We're too close and all that. Besides. Like I said, I don't do short people."

Offended, Buffy stopped in front of her. "So what? I'm not doable because I'm short?"

"Fuck, plenty of people think you're doable. But half of them were vampires, so..."

"Now what is that supposed to mean?!"

"The undead like short women."

"I'll have you know I am height proportionate to my weight."

"Still not doable to me."

"Well at least I have a night lamp that only lights up when I touch it. So there!"

Xander rolled his eyes, considering the argument before him and how when once he couldn't get a girl to spit on him when he was on fire back in the day and now he had two gorgeous Slayers debating a threesome in one fashion or another with him. And with the knowledge that Spike made love to a plastic male sex doll and still had a final humiliation to endure he felt a jolt of something... something so sweet... so pure flow through him.

He felt genuinely, politically incorrectly, happy.

Oh, and he was also going to be filthy, stinking rich in a few months time.

Life was indeed good.

And tomorrow night it was going to be even better.

Club 727

A Lesbian karaoke bar

The front lobby

Friday, December 9, 2005 7:30 PM

Downtown Cleveland, Ohio

Hands on her slim hips, Faith fired off the first shot as the Scoobies waited to go inside the bar. Xander stood ready for her worst, his arms crossed over his chest. When the challenge was thrown down she stepped up, never one for backing down on a fight. Prepared to once again wage war in this age old battle of wit, maturity, and pride she said...

"Yo mama is so fat she put on her lipstick with a paint-roller."

Laughter abounded as the Scooby Gang had drawn a small crowd of lesbians out to enjoy a Friday night on the town. Xander rubbed his hands together, prepared for face his opponent without backing down a smidgen. "Yo mama is so fat she▓s got more Chins than a Hong Kong phone book."

Humorous chatter settled in around the group as Willow chatted with her cute blond friend at the front desk. Shrugging off his reply, Faith sent her next shot. "Yo mama is so fat, when she goes to KFC, she asks for the bucket on the roof."

Xander took it all in as the crowed chuckled away, clearly amused by this public battle. Dawn just had to point out that she likes KFC, to which Buffy nodded as well. Alas, he would not suffer defeat at the hands of a Slayer who toyed with his male emotions over a possible three-way. "Yo Mama is so stupid, she stopped at a stop sign and waited for it to say go."

Even vampire she-male Spike laughed at that one. Faith shook it off. "Yo Mama is so poor, she went to McDonald's and put a milkshake on layaway."

"Yo Mama is so hairy, she looks like a Chia pet with a sweater on."

"Yo Mama is so ugly, people go as her for Halloween."

"Yo mama is so ugly her reflection quit."

"Yo Mama is so stupid, I told her to buy a color TV, she came back and said "what color?"

"Yo Mama is so stupid, when she saw the NC-17 (under 17 not admitted) sign, she went home and got 16 friends."

"Yo Mama is so stupid, I saw her walking down the street yelling into an envelope. I asked what she was doing, and she said sending a voice mail."

"Yo Mama is so old, she used to baby-sit Yoda."

"Yo Mama is so old she got hieroglyphics on her drivers license."

"Yo mama is so old that she sat behind Jesus in the third grade."

"Yo Mama is so old, she took her drivers test on a dinosaur."

Unfazed by the crowds boisterous reaction to Faith thus far, and she was a hot looking woman in a Lesbian bar no less, Xander delivered the joke that had won him no less than nine of these juvenile fights through the years. Even the great playground war of 1990. "Yo Mama is so damn hairy, she's a stunt double for Chewbacca."

Faith retaliated immediately. "Yo Mama is so stupid, if brains were gas she wouldn't have enough to power a flea-mobile around the inside of a Fruit Loop."

"DEMS FIGHTING WORDS!" Xander shouted until Buffy pulled at his sleeve, the women around him throughly amused. He pointed at Faith, who got hi-fives from the pro-vagina crowd. "You are so lucky I'm grown now! So very lucky."

"Oh hush," Faith teased, furthering the shame of his loss of pride by planting a silly smooch on his cheek. "Wills got our table and I need a drink. You lost. Suck it up and get moving." Glancing over her shoulder at Spike, she taunted, "Besides, our new gal-pal has a date with center stage and like Aerosmith I don't want to miss a thing."

Sneering as his utter humiliation was about to come to an end... hopefully, Spike followed her inside the brightly lit and very popular lesbian karaoke bar as its doors opened for the evening. Apparently to appease the curse that was specifically designed to humble, torture, and teach him a lesson about women to end his shameful lack of a penis he would have to sing... yes, sing to a crowd of women songs that uplifted, empowered, and showed great respect to women.

Only after a crowd of women were appeased to the point of rapturous applause would he return to his male form. It was stupid, ridiculous, and just plane odd. A fact Xander pointed out several times on the way over here. None the less he had no choice. It was bad enough he was in high heels. a tight black dress that showed ample cleavage, fishnet stockings, and had to endure getting his hair done today.

Yes, this was hell. And that was saying something for a guy who's actually been there. Hell certainly had more men than this place.

Meanwhile, listening to his wife yet again remind everyone how her special light only lights up when she touches it no matter how many other people do, Xander couldn't help but to look around the gorgeously decorated bar and think to himself that as much as he respected lesbians considering his best friend was/is one, each and every woman here wanted or had already had sex with another woman. They were normal people at the end of a work week looking for a good time like everyone else, but the horny male teenager that lived in every grown adult male simply awed at how all these women were looking to kiss, touch, caress, and make all forms of kinky and non-kinky love to other women. Sitting back with one arm around Buffy, he smiled.

Xander truly liked this place. It had a cool aura he felt was infectious and he didn't feel out of place as there were at least four other guys here tonight as well. Maybe those guys did or did not want what he wanted, but the lesbians sure did. And at the end of the night he intended to have sex with a woman too. And so he felt connected to the lesbians in a very good sort of way.

Spotting Xander's almost silly grin, Dawn nudged her sister. "What's Xander so happy about?"

"I'm sure its the fact that all the lesbian porn he watched through the years takes place for real and he's surrounded by it," Buffy replied.

"And Xan," Willow chimed in to her best friend. "Its much, much better than any of the porn you watched." She even had the nerve to wink.

"I shall take your word for it, oh bisexual witch goddess" Xander replied cheekily as their drinks arrived. The bar was packed tonight as the DJ had music playing already and the stage was being prepared for tonights karaoke singers. Willow performed a minor mind-altering spell on her friend at the front desk to ensure Spike would perform first and hopefully sing enough songs to elicit the reaction that would free him from his curse. Of course one small pill that resided in his wallet would end Spike's suffering, but the vampire had gotten off easy far to many times in his unlife.

He had this coming and Xander intended to enjoy every single minute of it.

"So I let my two neighbors, Jen and Belle, touch the light you know, just for kicks." Looking around their table, Buffy heard her friends groan and then delivered, "And nothing. Not even a flicker. But when I touch it BAM, let there be light. It was a very moving experience. Very God-like." Her friends eye-rolling didn't phase the Slayer as she sampled Xander's drink, then settled in beside him well aware everyone was sick and tired of hearing about her magic light. Well tough, she thought to herself. She sat next to a she-male vampire in a bathtub full of crap at the zoo for a couple of hours. If she put up with that then they could deal with her enthusiasm over her magic light. "I personally think its blond specific?"

"Damn B, if it was then why did it not light up when Spike touched it? He's at least a real blond," Faith pointed out with a drink in her hand.

"Don't make me stab you again!" Buffy warned while pointing a small drink umbrella. "I am a real blond and until verifiable and undeniable proof surfaces to counter that declaration of my blondness it is fact! Until then you will acknowledge me as such."

"Bitch, you are not a real blond! MS. CLAIROL DENIES YOU!" Faith taunted.

"That's it! Somebody hand me a knife!" Xander tickled her side, causing Buffy to giggle as the alcohol made everything funny. "You are so lucky I love my hubby and my magic light. I think both are making me less violent. I haven't beheaded anything since I got married."

"I hate all of you!" Spike chanted at the group who turned their attention to him, and secretly marveled how nice the he-she's hair was done. It had this gorgeous layer effect going that Willow has asked him questions about. Questions that made him want to bite her. "You ninnies are arguing over a stupid light and hair coloring while I am about to make a fool of myself singing these dreadful songs Willow and Xander picked out. Just this week alone I have sat in a bathtub of manure up to my neck and had to have sex with a fake plastic man." Everyone laughed at his expense. "Now I have evoke my inner Barbara Streisand and belt out jaunty tune after jaunty tune for these anti-penis blokes to retrieve my bloody manhood."

Dawn ordered another drink and then turned her attention to Spike, offering no compassion. "You broke the hearts of two women, Spike. You betrayed them and and made them feel like fools. They turned out to be sisters and cursed you because you treated them like garbage. You routinely treat women like crap that you date. Dru was nuts..."

"Nuts when I met her," Spike interjected. "Thanks to Angel."

Dawn shrugged. "Buffy was nuts."


"Sorry sis, but you took a walk on the loony side when banging Ole Spike here." Buffy gave a regretful nod. Dawn continued, "Spike, you have no one to blame but yourself."

"Ms. Key speaks the truth," Faith declared while tossing her drink back. "Trust me, you got off easy. If you would have cheated on me I would take a box of rusty nails, a pink Crayon, and a bag of charcoal..."

As Faith detailed such wicked torture Xander dry heaved... Willow shook her head in a "... no" pose. Dawn downed her second drink almost instantly and then ordered another. Buffy nodded in agreement. Spike actually shuddered him/herself. Three women in the table next to them trembled and then moved to a new table.

"... and when I took the red hot nails off the stove I would yank your pants down, bend you over the couch, then grab the Crayon and..."

"Faith!" Xander lifted his hands, his eyes pleading for her to go no further. "Please, no more. I think we all get that if someone cheats on you we will be visiting you in jail."

"Damn right you would."

Enjoying the music and atmosphere, Willow felt relaxed and ready for a night on the town. "This is so cool. I have all my buds with me at my fav all girl night spot. I'm dating Oz and enjoying good penis action again and I'm saving money on my car insurance by switching to Geico and successfully performed a exorcism on a possessed stray cat behind my apartment building. This week is kicking so much booty in my life."

"Good for you, Wills." Buffy hi-fived her friend as the DJ called the bar's attention and announced the first singer, a Ms. Wilma Spikeford was set to hit the stage and get the show started. Xander Buffy, Willow, Dawn, and Faith cheered while watching Spike slowly walk from their table to the stage as if he were about to be executed.

With some thirty tables, all occupied spread out around the bar, Spike reached the stage and was shown the TV screen where he could read the lyrics for the songs Willow and Xander chose for him to sing. My how the mighty have fallen. Once upon a time he'd be looking out over this crowd and wondering who would be dinner tonight? Maybe the brunette or the slightly plump girl with the dark hair? She looked Greek and he hadn't eaten Greek in a long time.

But no, he stood in a freaking boob-exposing black dress with uncomfortable stockings and high heels as far less than the kick ass Big Bad he once was. Now relegated to a male stuck in a females body, he had to perform like somebody who performs for these women. He not only had to sing, but win them over in order to get his penis back.

He's rather go another round with the First.

"Hi, I'm Wilma." The crowd, ever in a good Friday night mood greeted him with supportive applause. He wanted to die... again. "My first song this evening is by Whitney Houston. I believe she is the current crack head who was once a somebody here in the States. Anyway, the song is called 'I am every woman'." Clearing his/her throat, the music began playing as he read what he felt were the dreadful lyrics and began to croon.

"Whatever you want Whatever you need Anything you want done baby Ill do it naturally Cause I'm every woman Its all in me Its all in me

(chorus 1): Im every woman Its all in me Anything you want done baby I do it naturally

(chorus 2): Im every woman Its all in me I can read your thoughts right now Every one from a to z

I can cast a spell Of secrets you can tell Mix a special brew Put fire inside of you Anytime you feel danger or fear Instantly I will appear, cause"

There was dead silence in the bar as Spike was bombing big time. He stood stoic, reading the words moreso than singing them. Stake me, he thought. Stake me now and end this humiliation. And while you're at it kill Xander, who was the only one in the crowd applauding. Nonetheless Spike continued the song as his penis was on the line.

"Oh, I consent your needs Like rain on to the seeds I can make a rhyme Of confusion in your mind And when I comes down to some good old fashioned love I got it I got it I got it, got, got it, baby, baby, baby"

The strangest thing just happened.

Suddenly the two tables in the front row, the women there were sorta moving their shoulders as if they might be enjoying the performance. Spurred on by that small bit of hope, Spike put a little more rhythm to his singing, now holding the microphone a bit firmer as the song drew to a close. Yeah, maybe the women just thought he was cute and wanted to ask for his phone number, but any help was welcome to get his dick back!

"I aint braggin Cause Im the one Just ask me Ooh, and it shall be done And dont bother To compare I got it

Im every woman Im every woman"

The music ended amidst sparse applause, but the women in the front row cheered him onward. Spike sensed something growing within him. Dammit, he could pull this off. He just had to give the ladies a show. And being a showmen was something he understood very well. Sex appeal was going to work to his advantage, penis or not.

Wearing a sudden smirk the Scooby Gang didn't quite understand, Spike stood up straighter and gave his boobs a slow squeeze a couple of times, eliciting some laughter and clapping at the obvious ploy. He then sat sideways on a chair he called for exposing a ton of leg. He now had a plan and apparently the ladies attention. Thankfully, Xander and Willow had chosen the right songs to make women feel empowered, or so he hoped.

Clearing his voice, Spike called to the crowd, "My next song is by the hillbilly hick, recently divorced from a sorry rapper, mom of two who's a fan of the nose candy. Britney Spears. The song is called... oh that is so bloody dumb... 'Hit me baby one more time'." The music of the singer's first hit began to play.

"Oh baby baby, oh baby baby

Oh baby baby, how was I supposed to know That something wasn't right here Oh baby baby, I shouldnt have let you go And now youre out of sight, yeah Show me how you want it to be Tell me baby cuz I need to know now, oh because

My loneliness is killin me (and I)
I must confess I still believe (still believe)
When Im not with you I lose my mind Give me a sign, hit me baby one more time!"

Xander snickered, laughed, drank, cuddled his wife, and throughly enjoyed watching Spike sing this awful song. The rest of the Scoobs were getting a bit toasty as well, but most strange of all, no matter how bad the song was Spike kept touching himself on stage and making eye contact with women in the audience. He began settling down and actually trying to sing while groping himself and playing to the "ohhh's" and "awww's" of the crowd. Sure enough, he began winning them over if for no other reason than he was seemingly almost enjoying himself.

"Oh baby baby, the reason I breathe is you Boy youve got me blinded Oh pretty baby, theres nothin that I wouldnt do Thats not the way I planned it

Show me how you want it to be Tell me baby cuz I need to know now, oh because

Oh baby baby, how was I supposed to know Oh pretty baby, I shouldnt have let you go I must confess that my loneliness Is killin me now Dont you know I still believe That you will be here And give me a sign, hit me baby one more time

I must confess (my loneliness) that my loneliness (is killing me) is killing me now (I must confess) dont you (I still believe) know I still believe That you will be here (I lose my mind)
And give me a sign.
Hit me baby one more time!"

As the song finished the crowds smiles were infectious. Spike felt enthused over his plight instead of repulsed. Sure, the songs made about as much sense as holding an AA meeting at a bar, but he didn't care. Women were cheering and rooting for him because he gave them what they wanted. Raw sex appeal. He made sure to push his boobs out and and show as much leg as possible while winking at a few choice lovelies.

"For my next tune, its by a new group who seem to embody exactly what we all want here tonight." More cheering and applause. "Here's the Pussycat Dolls! The song is called 'Don't cha'." The music came on.

"I know you like me (I know you like me) I know you do (I know you do) Thats why whenever I come around shes all over you And I know you want it (I know you want it) It's easy to see (it's easy to see) And in the back of your mind I know you should be home with me

Dont cha wish your girlfriend was hot like me Dont cha wish your girlfriend was a freak like me Dont cha, dont cha Dont cha wish your girlfriend was raw like me Dont cha wish your girlfriend was fun like me Dont cha, dont cha

Fight the feeling (fight the feeling) Leave it alone (leave it alone) Cause if it aint love It just aint enough to leave a happy home Let's keep it friendly (let's keep it friendly) You have to play fair (you have to play fair) See, I dont care But I know she aint gon' wanna share

Dont cha wish your girlfriend was hot like me Dont cha wish your girlfriend was a freak like me Dont cha, dont cha , baby Dont cha wish your girlfriend was raw like me Dont cha wish your girlfriend was fun like me Dont cha, dont cha"

Getting drunk and waving their hands, both Dawn and Willow at this point were having a ball, while even Faith seemed to be enjoying the show despite the weirdness of it all. Buffy was trying not to smile but Spike's utterly ridiculous performance, coupled with his British accent butchering the song made it enjoyable to watch. Xander simply took it all in, and took pictures, and ordered another round of drinks. When the waitress arrived he secretly slipped a small pill in one, and then told the waitress the singer was from his table and this was her favorite drink. Please take it to her. The waitress obliged.

"I know I'm on your mind I know we'll have a good time I'm your friend I'm fun And I'm fine I aint lying Look at me, you aint blind [2x

See, I know she loves you (I know she loves you) I understand (I understand) I'd probably be just as crazy about you If you were my own man Maybe next lifetime (maybe next lifetime) Possibly (possibly) Until then, Oh friend your'e secret is safe with me

Dont cha wish your girlfriend was hot like me Dont cha wish your girlfriend was a freak like me Dont cha, dont cha Dont cha wish your girlfriend was raw like me Dont cha wish your girlfriend was fun like me Dont cha, dont cha"

The crowd was on Spike's side after his boisterous performance, a fact that pleased him to no end. Yes, he knew women, even lesbians. The entire bar was having a great time and so was he, oddly enough. Yeah, he needed a cigarette, but how often did droves of women scream for you when you weren't trying to kill them? And he meant that literally.

"My final song for the evening is apparently about love and written by a gay guy, no offense. Mr. Rick Astley and his 80's hit. The song is called 'Never gonna give you up." Taking the mike from the stand he walked off stage while singing to the cheering crowd. It was time to nail this performance and get his manhood back in his pants.

"Were no strangers to love You know the rules and so do i A full commitments what Im thinking of You wouldnt get this from any other guy

I just wanna tell you how Im feeling Gotta make you understand

never gonna give you up Never gonna let you down Never gonna run around and desert you Never gonna make you cry Never gonna say goodbye Never gonna tell a lie and hurt you

Weve know each other for so long Your hearts been aching But youre too shy to say it Inside we both know whats been going on We know the game and were gonna play it

And if you ask me how Im feeling Dont tell me youre too blind to see"

The audience was singing the 80's cult classic with him as Spike played it to the hilt, criss-crossing the bar singing, performing like the true diva he was while the Scoobies and even Xander laughed their asses off. The song was so bad it was good.

Dawn nudged her sister again. "I think we just got Rick Roll'd?"

"And it didn't even come in an email," Buffy nodded. Then all eyes turned to Faith as she knew every word to the song, singing along with such enthusiasm they were shocked.

"I swear if any of you ever tease me about loving this song I will take a pool stick and..."

"Give you up. give you up Give you up, give you up Never gonna give Never gonna give, give you up Never gonna give Never gonna give, five you up

I just wanna tell you how Im feeling Gotta make you understand "

Taking an appreciative bow on stage, Spike smiled wide as the music faded and a kind waitress brought him a drink. He downed it while reviewing the standing ovation for his performance and as the cheering and the alcohol made him feel better, he suddenly... and I mean suddenly began to glow. Like a head to toe unnatural sort of glow that wasn't because the lighting was exceptionally good.

Spike's body began to flicker as the air flew out of the bar, replaced with stunned silence. Then with a bright burst of energy Spike was returned to his male form, standing on the stage still in his dress that no longer showed boobs, but a chiseled male chest His hair was short again and he was back to his full height.

Lifting his dress, Spike shouted at his mid-section. "MY COCK IS BACK!!!"


Pure chaos!

Screaming, cursing, running, pure shock erupted in seconds as the bar cleared of its patrons in mass traffic, racing from this cursed place as if their lives depended on it. All but the Scooby Gang, who remained at their table seemingly unruffled.

"Malka Solis Aroura!" Willow's spell instantly removed her drunkenness as she was tonights designated driver. "Well Spike's back to normal. Or at least whatever normal is for him."

Faith knocked back a drink someone left at another table. "Good for him. Now let's grab all this free liquor and scram."

Standing back, Xander watched Spike pumping his fist and actually thanking God while he stood there with his arms crossed and Buffy by his side. He shared a knowing grin with Willow, who he had to confide in earlier about the real cure for Spike. "This has been the best week of my life."

"Honey, you are strange sometimes. Cute, but very strange."

"I know, but you love me anyway, right?" Turning, he pulled her into his arms.

"Yeah, I kinda love you," Buffy teased before receiving a smooch.


Buffy and Xander Harris's apartment

321 Winchester Dr

Friday, December 9, 2005 10:30 PM

Cleveland, Ohio

"Trust me, luv. This was was all a mess of a bloody misunderstanding," Spike began earnestly as he sat across from Janine Washington, Buffy's neighbor in the living room with the Slayer standing just over his shoulder. This was same neighbor he scared the living daylights out of only a few days ago when he barged in with his 'little problem'. "My sister Camille... uhm, she has a severe drug problem and buggers off all the time. She was high on a concoction of hallucinogenic drugs, human growth hormones, steroids, and had a terrible case of incurable facial acne. She was beside herself that night, ranting and raving about vampires and magic. I hope she didn't disturb you to much."

Vampires and magic didn't exist in the real world, so Janine chalked it all up to being weirded out. Seemingly judging if what he was telling her were true, she shrugged and with a smile rested a compassionate hand on Spike's knee. "Let's chalk it up to a bad night, alright? I overreacted and I'm genuinely sorry about your sister's problem. I hope she gets the help she needs."

Giving the gorgeous photo journalist a slow once over, Spike casually slid his hand over hers, giving it a non-to-subtle squeeze. "Perhaps we could discuss it further over..."

"SPIKE!" Buffy shouted slightly, smiling wide before digging her nails into the side of his neck to grab his attention. "My very happily married neighbor," she stressed, "Was gracious enough to stop by tonight so that you could explain what happened. Now thank her. It's late and I know she has to go to work in the morning."

Fearing the wrath of Buffy, Spike lifted his hand off of Janine's, stood and offered it to her. Wearing a gentlemanly smirk, he shook her hand when she stood. "Thank you, Janine. Pardon my manners. I was blinded by your captivating loveliness."

Blushing slightly, she appreciated the compliment while offering no reason for him to continue. "You're welcome. And please, all my best to your sister. I hope rehab helps her." Looking towards Buffy, she added, "And please don't think I judged you by his sister. You and Xander were the first people to befriend my husband and I when we moved in and I appreciate that so much. I hope we can get together soon for another's ladies night."

Buffy smiled the smile of a person dying for a friend who lived totally in the outside world minus any mystical or paranormal stuff. Walking around Spike she embraced her new friend, hugging tight. "How's Monday night for you? I'll call Faith, Dawn, and Willow to get them to come. I'll set out the drinks, k? We'll play poker, gossip, bitch out overpaid celebs, complain about men, and discuss fashion"
"Well, minus the drinks," Janine's eyes sparkled mysteriously, "But Monday would be great. I couldn't think of a better way to start the week."

After another goodbye Janine left the apartment, with Buffy slowly shutting the door behind her and then leaning her back against it, sighing that she hadn't become the crazy lady of the apartment building. At least not yet. "Don't ever expect to hear this often, but thanks."

Closing in on her, Spike leered, "There are so many ways to thank me properly, Slayer."

"All would involve a stake going somewhere in your body you really don't want it to go." Brushing past him, Buffy took a seat on the arm of her couch, casting her gaze his way, hands in her lap. "This is your second chance, Spike." Upon thinking it over," she amended, "Okay, for you, probably your fourth chance, but still. You have you get your life... unlife together. You can't go around treating women any way you want and expect none of that bad karma to ever reach around and grab you by the balls. This time the karma actually took your balls away. And I know you don't want that to happen again."

Touring the living room while taking in the pictures on the walls, Spike replied, "I'll never date gypsy sisters again, okay mom?"

Rolling her eyes, Buffy tried to do him a favor. "Things have changed for everyone, Spike," she began. "We've lost friends and family that we will never get back. Angel's regained his humanity, Faith and I have retired and I'm married. The Watcher's Council has merged with the Witches Coven and Giles is overseas running the whole show. Sunnydale sank into the ground. You need to wake up and smell the coffee."

"I don't drink coffee, luv."

"Fine, beer."

"What brand?"

"Dammit, Spike. You get my drift, now act like it." Sighing, Buffy continued as her patience wore thin. "Its time you stop slutting your way across the globe getting drunk all the time and do something meaningful with your life. You've done it before and I know you can again."

"Slayer, what do you expect of me?" Spike lifted a piercing gaze to her, serious for the moment. "I can't do this," his hands conveyed about her apartment. "I'm not gonna find some lovely lass and settle down to make nice-nice. That's not me. Not after all this time... and all I've done."

"I'm not telling you to do what I did or anyone else. But if you don't know what you want to do then at least do something meaningful for now. Take up Giles on his offer to work for him. Help people protect the world for a while and make the most of your life until you decide what you want to do. But stop screwing everything up. We're not going to bail you out every time you make a mess of your life."

"You make it sound so easy," he noted, sitting across from her now. "I don't want to help people."

"Fine, but you don't want to kill them either. Not anymore or you would be doing it already."

"So slutting around doesn't sound so bad."

"Its a waste of time," Buffy told him without a hint of amusement. "You changed over the years since you arrived in Sunnydale. And while you're not a good guy, you're not terrible anymore either. But you have no life. No friends and no one to love." She watched him tense slightly, his jaw tightened. "So until you figure out what you want to do with the rest of your life why not try something that will actually have meaning? Take the job, help train Slayers and see how that makes you feel. Try something different for once without being forced to by a chip or being all ghost like. You just might find your way."

She actually cared enough to say these things to him. And in some ways it was more special than any sexual encounter they had ever had. This was, after all, sincere. "No promises, but I'll talk to Mr. Tweed Coat."

Nodding, Buffy offered a small expression of warmth. "Deal." Footsteps approached and Xander bounded out of the bedroom, his car keys in hand. "What's the word?"

Smooching his wife's cheek, Xander said, "The plane's fueled and ready to take Spike away. Now whether it lands in Europe, Antarctica, or crashes in the Bermuda Triangle is anybodies guess."

"As usual your humor eludes me," Spike groaned while walking towards the door. "Buffy, luv, it's been a pleasure. And while your taste in men has taken a horrible downturn..."

"At least I'm breathing, former he/she person. And I've never had sex with a plastic doll. So ha!. Ha, I say!"

Spike wanted to bite him so bad. But he felt Xander's blood was tainted with loser. Then again, the Slayer stroking his hand had to count for something. "I'll be in the car, you ninny. And for the record I hope you get hit by a truck. A really big smell garbage truck. Oh, and die. That would be nice too."

With those parting words Spike exited the apartment, leaving Buffy and Xander alone.

"Sadly, my dear," Xander sat on the couch and pulled his wife in his lap, wrapping her in his arms. "I must drive the jerk to the airport hanger across town so that he might leave us at last."

Kissing his temple, Buffy tapped his cheek. "Don't think I didn't notice that small pill you dropped in Spike's drink at the club." His expression didn't waver, although his lips curled slightly. "I had a feeling those trials were made up as they were immature, cruel, and mean."

"He had it coming."

"True, bit still. Next time clue me in on your plot. I could have added something cool too."

"Okay, next time you'll be my partner in crime." Leaning in he kissed her softly, caressing her thigh while loving her lips. "How's my favorite Slayer?"

"Munchie hungry again," Buffy detailed. "I have a severe case of the munchies and I need some ice cream. Pick up some Ben and Jerry's Cookie Dough Ice cream while you're out."

"Okay. Anything for my hot honey."

"And some deli sliced roast beef."

"At nearly midnight?"

"And some V-8 juice."

"Buffy, you must think I really love you to drive around at this time of night searching for all that stuff?"

"I already know you love me and can find all of that stuff at a 7-11. Now go before Spike does something else crazy." Another kiss and he was on his way, waving goodbye before walking out the door.

Stretching her arms about, Buffy yawned as the day was finally at an end. She began walking towards her bedroom before a knock came at her front door. She thought of grabbing her purse and a sword, as per Xander's belief why anyone would come to their house after 11:00 PM. But once she glanced through the peephole she saw Janine again.

Opening the door, Buffy smiled. "Hey you."

"Hey, Buffy. Sorry to come back so soon, but my husband and I are planning a party two weeks from today and we wanted to invite you and Xander and all your friends."

"Oh that sounds great. Of course we'll be there and bring drinks. By the way, want a night cap?"

Smiling happily, Janine shook her head. "Normally I would, but uhm. Well, I received a bit of unexpected but really good news a two days ago." Feeling as though she were about to burst with joy, she declared. "I'm pregnant."

"Oh Janine," Buffy sighed, hugging her new friend close as they enjoyed the moment. "I'm so happy for you and the hubby. Congratulations."

"Thanks." Peering just over Buffy's shoulder, Janine caught sight of the very interesting light on the inn table. "The design of that light is so different and exotic. Would you mind if I took a look at it?"

Forever looking for a reason to discuss her special light, Buffy stepped aside as Janine strolled by. "The funny thing about that light is..."

And then Buffy stooped cold.

And didn't say a word.

Or blink.

For like thirty seconds.


Janine Washington, the brunette was touching her light and it lit up bright. Just like when Buffy touched it.

Neither Spike, nor Xander, Oz, Willow, Faith, Dawn, the UPS delivery lady or the old lady down the hall with nine cats could make the light come on simply by touching it.

But Janine could.



Which could only mean one inescapable truth!

"Janine, you're a real blond, aren't you?"

"Uhm, nope. Natural brunette. Why?"

"Shit!" Buffy chanted as she sat down slowly, her hand coming to rest over her belly. "Oh boy... or girl."

Chapter 5 preview: Two unexpected events occur in the next chapter. One joyous and one terrible.

Also be on the lookout for "NightFall" my first Buffy comic universe BX story as well as the long awaited "Mortal Sins" AU crime novel.