The fight had ended. Glory had bled Dawn and the walls had begun to crumble. And they had stopped it. Just as the key had unlocked the gates so had it locked them.

He had gone after Dawn. He knew it was too late. Dawn could not survive the blood loss but he tried anyway. The slayer had tried to stop him, it was too dangerous but she had not been able to out run him. He got there just as Dawn had taken her last breath. The slayer was right behind him.

As Dawn died the essence of the key escaped her body and attempted to jump into the closest vessel. He would have been the donor had he been pure but he had no soul and therefore was unable to contain the magnificent power. Had the key entered his body it would have killed him and the slayer knew it. She pushed him out of the way and she absorbed the energy.

Now there was only one option; bleed the slayer to close the gates. He mustered up every bit of strength he had and prepared himself to slit her throat although he really didn't believe he could do it. He didn't get the chance. A gust of wind caused by the opening of the gates picked both he and the slayer up and threw them a couple hundred yards.

He had been the only one close enough to see what had happened to the key, so the rest of the gang was still too busy with Dawn to care about them.

"Bleed me!" The weakened voice of the slayer commanded him. "Take my life. You have to"

He did as he was told and he slit her throat, let the blood drain from her body. She had sacrificed her own life and she had saved his. This woman whom he'd never even met before, yet who seemed so oddly familiar, had saved the unlife of a vampire, the very creature she was created to destroy. He had heard about this slayer, Faith, and he knew she was a kindred spirit. She was evil like he was. Nobody believed she could be anything but. They were wrong about her, just as they had been wrong about him.

Things slowly began to calm down until all the world was still and as whole as it had been before any of this had happened. He looked around and saw that nobody was near, then he looked down into Faith's eyes. He sucked in all the breath his lungs could hold even though he didn't need to breathe. Faith had given him unlife. He couldn't stop Faith from dying but he could return the favor she had bestowed upon him. He released the air he had been holding in his lungs and as he did his face changed from the smooth beautiful complexion it had been into the face of the monster within him.

His head lowered to her neck and he indulged in what was left of the blood of the third slayer he had the pleasure of "knowing". He raised his head, Faith's head still resting in his hands. His face warped back and Faith thought he looked almost human. Spike slit his own wrist and forced it into her mouth.

Faith resisted at first. She tried to spit out the vampire's blood but then she looked back into his face, into his eyes. He was silently pleading to her.

"Please!" his eyes said. "Please drink. You have given me so much here today and this is all I can give you in return." At that the tension escaped from the slayer's muscles and she swallowed this gift.