This is a Buffy Fanfic. Written two-ish years ago, it is a sappy, T-rated Spuffy. I'll be the first to admit that I don't like it; it's choppy due to word limits, and I don't like the way the omniscient narrative jumps around. Sighs

It was a response to a challenge;

SETTINGS

Angel's Mansion

Sunnydale Hospital

Graveyard

Any Scooby Gang House

Magic Box

PLOTS

A death of someone

A long kiss goodnight

Lyrics to any song

Spike giving Buffy a long speech on why they should be together

Dawn gets kidnapped, and Spike saves her.

Visit from Angel

FEEDBACK: Please. Be brutal.

DISCLAIMER: None of these characters and such are mine. Obviously, they are the fabulous creations of the one and only Joss Whedon. The song is, as mentioned, by Type O negative, from the album Life is Killing me. If you must know, it is track 15.

TIME- When do YOU think? (Probably around 5th season, I'd wager. )

NOTE: I am not sure if you Can see the courtyard from The road, or if there even Is a road, for that matter, But they suit my purposes.

Buffyducked behind one of the larger tombstones of the Sunnydale cemetery, neatly
dodging the blow from the larger-than-average vamp in full fang-form. She jumped up
instantaneously, plunging the wooden stake she had had at the ready adeptly into his heart. Just
after, he exploded into dust.

"Slayer." The girl in question whirled around to face a voice behind her.

"Don't call me that, I thought you were someone I should be afraid of." She retorted after
catching a glimpse of bleach-blond hair.

"And yet I seem to remember a time when right now we'd be quarreling to the doom. Good
times, eh, love?" His hands in the pockets of his ever-present duster, he swaggered over to her.

"Once again, I do own a name. Bought it on eBay." Buffy quipped, folding her arms and
rolling her eyes. " What sponsored this little dead-end journey down memory lane?"

"Just out for a stroll."

"You seem to take a few too many strolls around me recently. What's your deal? And don't give me your ' I love you, we were meant to be together' speech."

"Don't flatter yourself, love, I happen to be restless, seein' as how I recently found myself
neutered by that bloody soldier boy of yours and his crew." He pointed out. "Oh, wait a minute,
now, I seem to recall that your said toy is an ex-toy, havin' skipped town an' all 'cause 'a you. Like
Angelus did." Spike counted out on his fingers. "And that Parker boy didn't even see fit to run off.
Everyone wants a piece of Buffy."

Buffy sighed and began walking in the general direction of her house.

"Well, as much as I've enjoyed this little chat, I promised Dawn I'd be home to cook dinner. So, satisfy my curiosity.
Quickly. Did Dru come back to town so I could kick her ass again? That why you're so-" she
laughed slightly at the irony of her choice of word-"reflective?"

"You didn't-" Spike sighed, then, letting it drop, gritted his teeth. "For your information, I
gave Harmony the boot again, and I felt a bit perky."

She began walking faster, leaving Spike behind.

"I don't know why I even bother," Spike muttered as he walked in the door of his crypt,
lugging a paper bag filled with blood and smokes. He threw the back on the armchair he had moved
there, fished out a pack of cigarettes, and pulled one out. As he put it to his lips and lit it, he heard
a noise behind him. He reeled around and saw none other than Harmony standing before him.

"Bloody hell, girl," he grumbled, " When a man kicks you out, you don't exactly show up the next night with a smile on your face, ya know."

"Which is why I'm not smiling." she replied, " I only came by to get my things. And to warnyou and that slayer of yours that there's some fishy demons in town, fishy in that they have scales and gills, and they're planning some huge sacrificial thing." Spike just stood staring at his former love- wait, make that annoyance- trying to figure out how much of what she was telling him was
true. "If you're wondering how I know, there's a buzz down at Willy's, and the vampire population
that actually gets out instead of fawning over the slayer already knows." Harmony said, grabbing a small bag of things she had left and turning for the door.

"I'm not fawning, Harm, I'm- " Spike began.

"I don't want to hear it, Spike, I know you are, and, even though I'm known to be low- I won't
deny it- that's beneath even me." She cut him off, and then walked out of the crypt, letting the heavy
door slam on her way out.

"Who'm I kidding?" Spike asked the empty crypt, taking a drag off his cigarette. "A vampire
in love with a slayer. That's bloody wrong. So why am I?" He made up his mind then and there he'd
tell her-eventually; again-how he felt. After having a third girl claiming he was beneath him put him in
too shitty a mood to deal with that. Or so he reasoned.

Buffy walked into the door to the sound of the smoke detector and the smell of smoke. Coughing,
she ran to the kitchen to find Dawn holding her nose and fanning a large lump of blackened
something with a spatula.

"Dawn-what are you doing?" Buffy questioned, trying to fan some of the smoke out of the
open door.

"Cooking. Or, I was, until the grilled cheese turned into some kind of Mexican dish." Dawn
replied. Her sister looked at her, and Dawn could tell she didn't get it. "Ya know, way too hot,
flavorless, just the odor makes you sick?"

"I got that part, what I didn't get is how you can possibly burn grilled cheese."

"Well, it was all going okay, then the phone rang, which reminds me, you got a call."

"Who was it? If it was a telemarketer, I hope you yelled at them."

"Hmm-mmm, it was Angel. Anyway…" Dawn droned on, telling about the dinner fiasco, but
Buffy wasn't paying much attention. Angel had called her? Her heart skipped a beat. Maybe he
found a cure for the Gypsy-curse. Or maybe something was wrong. She hadn't even talked to him
since visiting him after Thanksgiving. He'd acted weird then. Maybe he called to apologize. Or not.

"What did he want?" Buffy interrupted, right when Dawn was getting to the part about
forgetting to flip the sandwich.

"He didn't say, but he said he's see you soon, so I guess he's coming to Sunnydale. So,
anyway, I forgot to flip it after I got off of the phone, and I realized that I really had to pee, so I ran
upstairs…" She continued her story, but once again, Buffy was too preoccupied with thoughts of
Angel to think too hard on the flambouyed-grilled cheese.

Angel was coming to Sunnydale! What if he had lost his soul again? Angel was known to
do that from time to time. This thought brought on more unpleasant ones. Perfect happiness, eh?
But with who? Memories came rushing back at her, things she hadn't thought about, feelings she
hadn't felt for the longest time. And then she thought of Spike. She didn't know what the bleached
vampire had to do with this, or why she was even thinking of him, for that matter, but he was there
just the same, like an itch she couldn't quite reach, as he had been from time to time recently.

Then all thoughts of William the Bloody were forgotten at the sound of a rap at the front door. Buffy
dashed to the door, hoping beyond hope that when she flung it open, she would see the vampire
she loved. Breathlessly, she threw open the door, revealing- Spike. She sighed and slumped down.

"What do you want?" she grumbled.

"Well, nice to know how you recieve people who are trying to save your life. So, are yougoing to invite me in? I'm feeling a bit nippy."
Without waiting for a reply, he pushed open the door and squeezed past Buffy, dropping promptly on the couch. Buffy rolled her eyes and shut the door,
then walked over to the chair across from Spike's self-proclaimed couch.

"Well?" she asked.

"What well?"

"Well, what's trying to kill me now?"

"Oh, right. Phisch."

"Fish are trying to kill me?" Buffy questioned warily.

"No, Phisch is trying to kill everything. He and his goonies are planning some huge
sacrificial thing. You just happen to be a part of everything."

"So are you. Why are you all happy?"

"A bit of excitement! I can kill something!" With this, he jumped off of the couch and
pumped his fists in the air a tad. Buffy glanced at this small gesture only barely before moving on.

"And?"

"And to fight on the side of the good. Yay, puppies!" Once again with the hands.

"If this is a way to make me like you, it's not working."

"The way I see it, you won't try my world, so yours must be pretty damn good. I want a
taste of it. And if it makes you like me, two birds." No longer was he the excited fist-pumper- he had
changed in an instant to a huggable-like Care Bear guy. He narrowed his eyes a bit, and looked
down at her.

"Whether you want to admit it or not, we were meant to be together. And if it's the last
thing I do, I will make you see that." He stepped toward her, and now his face was only inches from
her. Why hadn't she realized before how blue his eyes were? How deep they were? How you could
lose yourself in them? Whoa. She shook her head slightly, bidding these thoughts good riddance.
Then she pushed him away.

She walked to the weapons chest and grabbed a few stakes, hurling some at Spike, harder
than necessary. Pocketing a couple herself, she whirled around and was out the door, leaving Spike
to stare after her in wonderment, then chase after her. She'd felt something. He knew it. Her
concrete resolve had fluttered ever so slightly. It was painfully brief, but it was there.

After the Phisch fry, Buffy went to the Bronze, hoping beyond all hope Angel would show.
She and Spike had easily overpowered Phisch and his minions. They obviously were amateurs to
this whole end of the world thing. She walked through the door, paying the bouncer, and was
enveloped in the heavy bass of a new rock/metal band growling borrowed lyrics into the house mic
on the stage. Buffy eagerly welcomed the almost cleansing pulse and swell of the over-confident
youths baring someone else's souls to the throbbing dance crowd. Not feeling particularly dancey,
she settled onto a stool near a somewhat towering table trying to convince herself it was so Angel
could see her, not Spike.

Everything was so fucked up recently. That horrid fiend plagued her every thought, waking
or sleeping, driving her mad. To compensate for these thoughts, she had been either screaming at
him or ignoring him completely. She felt bad, she knew it hurt him, but she couldn't love him, even
like him.

The band, Thirst, according to the drum set, broke out into another song, this one an
original, apparently. The lead vocals were harsh, the instruments strumming nearly perfect riffs,
satisfying, oddly, like filling a craving for something she didn't know she had. The lead singer was
dressed somewhat extremely, a tight blood red silk shirt hugging his torso, showing off his tight abs
and pecs. The rest of the band was dressed differently as well, but the singer still stood
out. Hmm. Odd, she thought, as they started another song.

character-followyperson change

Spike walked into the Bronze, spotting Buffy immediately, but deciding against rushing over
to talk to her. There was an acceptably good band on stage, belting out lyrics he recognized only
vaguely as a remake of The Dream is Dead, by Type O Negative; the new band had changed a bit of
the tune, as well as the voice from slightly mellow to very metal rock. In place of the original
singer's flowing voices, Thirst sped the song up, and boosted the growling factor. The simple riffs
and intense vocals reverberated hauntingly off of the walls, causing the crowd to quiet momentarily.
Listening to the lyrics, both Spike and Buffy realized it was Valentine's Day.

Champagne glasses filled with blood and wine

On chocolate hearts alone I dine

Candles dripping waxing tears

Somewhere near Buffy, a cellphone rang. Spike ignored it. The girl seated with her
boyfriend at the table next to Buffy answered her phone. Buffy barely glanced at her, absorbing the
remarkable lyrics. The girl looked around, then handed the phone to Buffy. Puzzled, she grabbed
the phone, yelling a hello over the pleasant roar of the music.

"Hello?" The voice on the other end faded in and out, as if from a bad storm, but was
unmistakably Angel. Her Angel.

Ten roses for each one a year-disappear-yeah

Arrows fester in my heart

Each memory another dart

Love and death both colored red

Showing my past the dream is dead; the dream is dead, yeah

How fascinatingly appropriate, Spike thought, in light of his lack of progress with Buffy.
"Buffy…" Static. "Mansion…" Static. Stupid phone.
"I'll be there." Buffy hung up and handed the phone back to the confused girl. Something
about the tone of Angel's voice was wrong. Panicked almost.

Another lonely Valentine's Day

I can't believe that things turned out this way

And though I hate to see you go

I know it must be so

Another lonely Valentine's Day

Spike decided to spare a glance at Buffy, only to see her get up and walk out of the door.
He would let her go. Later, though, something wasn't right. She seemed upset.

Nobody will break your fall All

for none, yeah, none for all

Nothing's so cruel as the truth

Join the festival of fools

Buffy raced down the street, the cool night breeze running through her hair, pleasant after
the burning press of too many bodies the Bronze provided. She missed the song, though; it was
still running through her head.

Spike tailed her from a distance, not wanting to get too close; he realized she was heading
to Angel's old mansion. He slowed a bit more, letting her get further ahead. Though they had left the
Bronze, and, with it, the Thirst, both Buffy and Spike could hear a spectral trace of the music, either
from cranked amps, or embedded into their psyche.

Nobody will break your fall All for none, yeah, none for all

Buffy turned onto the somewhat secluded road that led to the mansion, wondering what
possibly could have gone wrong. It was in sight now, and it brought a strange sense of calm,
panicky nostalgia. Reminiscing, Buffy collided with Angel, who was also rushing. They both fell to
the floor, Buffy staying, catching her breath, Angel leaping up almost instantly, expecting a fight.
Right then, she knew she did not love him. He had done nothing; randomly, she just knew.
After trying so long and hard to forget him, to move on, after giving in to the fact there would always
be a gaping wound where her Angel used to be. She knew with a calm finality that that piercing gap
was filled. And he was running toward them.

Nothing's so cruel as the truth

Join the festival, my fools

He was running to something behind them. Spike had seen it as he started to sprint. If his
heart were able to beat, it would have skipped one.

Dawn.

She was sitting in a chair, her back to them, in the courtyard of the mansion. In front of her
stood a man in a red shirt, his face partially obscured by the leaves of a flowering tree. Hmm. A red
shirt. Familiar. He put on more speed, worried she was in trouble.
Buffy and Angel turned simultaneously as Spike charged past them. They noticed at the
same time Buffy's kid sister tied up, the man in front of her. Angel immediately ran forward, Buffy
following as the scene registered itself. Dawn.

Spike got held up at a large fence, tangling and eventually ripping his duster. He paid it
no mind. The only thought on his mind was Nibblet. Little bit. Dawn. Running on potent adrenaline,

Angel still reached the two figures before Spike; He ran through the gate in the fence, the one Spike
missed. Angel rushed into the open courtyard, finding the man extracting some sort of murky
ethereal substance from Dawn's temples with his fingers.

Everything happened at once; Spike and Buffy reached the doorway, recognizing the lead
singer from Thirst; Angel saw a massive pile of dead teenagers, some old, and some fresh, none
breathing; and Thirst saw Angel, dropping Dawn to slump in the chair, turning on him; though not
even touched, Angel dropped to the floor.

Spike rushed Thirst from behind, tackling him and beating the shit out of him, blow after
blow. Buffy went to Dawn, and, feeling a faint pulse, tried to wake her.

Thirst kicked upward, launching Spike across the courtyard, landing him in the mound of
bodies. Strangely, the bodies crumpled on impact, entirely drained and left as a shell. Shaking it
off, he looked up in time to see Thirst advance on Buffy, and Angel catching his bearings. Fuzzily,
he wondered how Thirst was at the Bronze and here. But the thought was brief, fleeting, as he
stood rather shakily, running toward the other three.

Angel's only thought was of Buffy and her sister. He charged at Thirst.

"You bother me, vampire." Thirst commented, his voice rolling lava and gravel. With this,
Thirst plunged his hand backward, forcing something to Angel, pinning him at the wrists and ankles
to the stone wall, a grim and macabre crucifixion. Immediately the skin around the wounds began to
decay almost, becoming gray. And it was spreading. Fast.

Spike rushed at Thirst again, though a little unsteadily, stake from his pocket in hand. He
gave Buffy a look, bidding her silently to go to Angel. He was going to miss him. But he had more
urgent matters on his hands. He staked the brute, who merely laughed at him.

"Bollocks." Spike muttered. He staked him again, then again, repeatedly until finally, after
hitting him on the wrong side, right side must be where his heart is. Was, Thirst exploded into dust,
screaming profanities all the way. Spike went to Dawn and began trying to untie the perfectly tight
knots. Guy must've been a boy scout. Spike felt the absurd urge to laugh, and keep laughing.

Buffy stood next to Angel, her face was within inches from his. She realized in a flash of
pain, that she still loved Angel, and always would. And now, her world was crashing around her. He
was weak. He had mere moments to live; his arms and legs were all completely charred and black.

Though Buffy was no genius, she assumed that whatever Thirst had used on Angel would kill him
when it reached his heart. Angel grimaced in pain. She couldn't do this. Not again. Tears streaming
steadily down her cheeks, she closed the last few inches with a kiss before either could talk. All
she could think of was ash and cinder. Kissing him reminded her of so much she could have done.

After several cooling moments, she broke the kiss off with seconds to spare. "Buffy, I"
Angel started, but it ended in a gasp, as he collapsed into dust. Buffy couldn't even stand any
longer. Covered in the charred ash of her dead lover, she collapsed, bawling her eyes out at how
terribly things always worked out. Buffy broke down, sinking into a state of oblivion.

Another lonely Valentine's Day

I can't believe that things turned out this way

And though I hate to see you go I know it must be so

Another Valentine's Day

The dream is dead

The dream is dead

Buffy awoke from unconsciousness with brilliant blue eyes gazing into her bloodshot ones.
"Spike?" she tried to say, but her voice came out a raspy croak. "Spike?" she tried again,
with more success.

"She's awake," the blue-eyed doctor called lightly to the nurse.

"Dawn? Is she okay?" Buffy tried to sit up, failing miserably when her head throbbed
painfully in protest.

"Your sister's going to be fine." The doctor replied, asking the nurse to bring him fifty
milligrams of something, which put her promptly back to sleep. Her last thought before sleep was of
a nearly forgotten song.

The dream is dead

Spike lay in his crypt, thinking things over. He loved Buffy. With all his heart. Nothing could
prevent him from doing so. But he had to be strong for her. In case she wanted to do something
stupid. And, God, it would tear him up inside every second. But he didn't want her to regret
anything. Especially not himself.

The dream is dead

When both girls were released from Sunnydale Hospital the next day- Dawn had had an
unexplainable mild concussion, Buffy with an even smaller one- the gang reconvened at the Magic
Box. Thirst was unable to be found in any of Giles' musty books or Watcher diaries, but was
evidently a regular vampire with fries on the side.

Buffy headed Spike off on his way out of the magic store, claiming a need to talk to him.

"Yeah, Love?" He asked charmingly.

" I've been doing a lot of thinking."

"The drugs reduced you to that?" he quipped. Buffy didn't laugh. "Sorry, pet. What about?"

"About us, and about what you said." She looked at Spike, who looked back intensely. "I
agree with you." She moved a couple of steps closer to him. As she leaned in to kiss him, Spike
grabbed her shoulders, keeping her at arm's length from him so he could look directly into her eyes.

"I don't." He said simply.

"You don't agree with yourself?" Buffy asked. "I'm confused..."

"You're upset right now." Spike explained, more thoughtful than she'd ever seen him.

"Wait. Maybe you're confused."

"I don't want you to do something you might regret later."

"I won't" She began, but was interrupted when a door opened behind them, revealing
Anya and Xander, who looked questioningly at the placement of Spike's hands.

Buffy sighed angrily and pushed his hands off of her shoulders, storming off.

The dream is dead

"Spike, there are three words I'd like you to learn." Xander began counting his points on his
fingers. "Not. Interested. And pathetic. Know them, love them, and embrace them as your own."

Spike smiled crookedly, shook his head, and walked away. The whole way back to his
crypt, he was smiling, but inside he was screaming, threatening to kill the teasing bitch. He'd
gotten quite good at ignoring this voice since falling in love with Buffy, and this time was no different.
But their parts were changed. He had to be strong and not love her. Had to.

The dream is dead.