Chapter One

She's standing out there watching me… Spike could feel her eyes on him, following him as he flung his sweaty head back and stomped his foot and his mallet in time to the music. She's swaying, smiling, staring,… she knows… His voice sang harshly into the microphone, backing up Devon who was up front, hissing and screaming and jumping as the audience shouted their own lyrics back to them.

The song dragged on and the crowd was going wild. It never took him so long to get through a set before. Spike's shirt was soaked and his head was starting spin. Bloody… hell… Drusilla was bringing her arms up behind her, caressing somebody else's neck. Somebody who wasn't him.

He told himself not to look at her, but even when he closed his eyes, they seemed to be glued on her. She was wearing the black and red corset – his favorite – and somebody else's hands were inching up the ribbon lacing it up from the front.

Seize it,

Grasp it,

Kill, kill, kill,

Crave it,

Love it,

Take the pill,

Secretly hating you,

Openly loving you,

Grab me, you take my,

Will, will, will…

At this point, he forgot what he was singing. The words were mumbled and jumbled, but nobody seemed to mind. Or even notice, for that matter.

He had told her never to come. Even when they were dating, he didn't like her at his shows. Because he knew he would never be able to concentrate if she was there. And she had agreed, goddammit. She had traced a cold finger down his cheek and placed one last cold kiss on his lips before nodding and promised him that he would never catch her in the audience. "Not exactly my cup of tea, either," she had smiled, sardonically. And he was relieved. At least the music, he would have to himself.

Unlike his body, which was already reacting to her, unlike his emotions, which she had brutally stolen, unlike his heart, something she had treated like old milk. Drank her fill then threw it out.

Now he couldn't even have his music. Not with her dancing there, slowly and seductively, despite the grinding, raw speed of the rock song.

Finally, Oz caught Devon's attention, making him realize that he was bringing the song into a fourth minute, a fundamental bad thing that most bands avoided. Finally, it wound down and Spike allowed himself to breathe.

………

The probability of running into Dru and her new manslut was unusually high in the crowded club. Everyone ran into everyone. And a chance meeting with her was something he did not want. Especially if she was going to be dilly-dallying with some other bloke and rubbing it in his face.

The next band turned down his offer to help set up, so he slumped his shoulders and looked to see if anybody he knew was leaving soon. Soon as in now.

He carefully made his way to the bar, checking all around to make sure there was no pale-faced dark-haired girl that answered to the name "Vampiress". By the time he got there, the next band launched up and the crowd was dancing and jumping again. Doing a quick survey of the area, he saw a couple of guys drinking beers and laughing over the noise, a few girls looking bored, and a short girl who was standing a few feet from where he was, whistling and waving to a member of the band that probably couldn't see her… on account of her lack of height. Her blonde, sun-streaked hair was pulled up into a messy bun and even the dim, strobe-isk lights of the club couldn't hide her very obvious California tan and smooth skin that screamed "Hello, I'm a rich girl." Spike scoffed to himself, wondering what the sunny California girl was doing in the grungy section of the Big Apple.

Turning his attention away, he started scanning for a familiar male face, and by pure luck, he spotted Devon an arm's reach away. Quickly, he slapped an arm on his shoulder, turning him around. "Hey, mate, where's Oz?"

"Uh,…" Devon cast him a little look before shrugging his hand off his shoulder, "Left with Willow, I'm pretty sure."

If it were possible, Spike slumped down some more. "Bloody great," he mumbled.

"What's with the emo look?" Devon grinned, punching him lightly in the chest, "Plenty of hot chicks around here to pick up… just look around – Hey, man, isn't that your girl? What's she doing with that guy…"

Spike turned his eyes to see that, indeed, Drusilla was about twenty feet away and closing in. "Shit, shit, shit…"

His head whirled both sides, trying to scope out an exit, but he was blocked in by gyrating couples and screaming, hot bodies. Before he could think about what he was doing, he turned to the short, California-born-and-obviously-raised girl next to him, tapped her shoulder and asked,

"I might sound like a soddin' idiot for saying this… but can you be my girlfriend for, say, five minutes?"

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"I might sound like a soddin' idiot for saying this… but can you be my girlfriend for, say, five minutes?"

The first scenario that popped into Buffy's mind was one in which she slapped the platinum-blonde guy who had the nerve to come on to her like that and escape. She was five seconds away from doing just that when something caught the corner of her eye.

Something named Drusilla.

It wasn't that she disliked the girl. She didn't dislike her at all, actually. She, in fact, felt no feeling towards her that contained the word 'like'. Buffy hated her. And it was a well known fact, too. Ever since they were young and Drusilla tugged on her pigtails, laughed, and nicknamed her "Muffy". An unfortunate nickname she had to live with throughout junior high and half of high school, until she grew a self-esteem and learned to defend herself.

They had gone to the same public school in New Jersey since the age of five, and from the moment they met, Buffy learned that everything that went wrong in her life was attributed to Drusilla, the big, ugly bitch.

When Buffy got caught cheating… it was Drusilla's fault, when Buffy didn't make it to the junior high little league cheerleading squad, it was because Drusilla beat her out, when Buffy broke up with her first boyfriend, it was Drusilla who stole him from her, when Buffy got wait-listed to Columbia, it was because Drusilla actually got accepted.

And when Drusilla turned it down and she got off the waiting list, her pride made her write a rejection letter and mail it the very next day she heard of the news.

So when she saw Drusilla approaching her with a smirk on her face and a boy on her hips, she turned to face the platinum-haired guy she recognized from the previous band, reached her arm out to wrap around his neck, and brought his head down so his lips could meet hers.

"Please don't let her see me…" two simultaneous thoughts rang out the second before their lips made contact.