William the Bloody prowled the streets of Sunnydale, in an attempt to get his bearings. He could feel the power of the small town, and knew someday, something big was going to go down. Going by Spike nowadays, he wasn't just an ordinary man. He had a dark side, along with a dark secret. He stuffed the hands in the pockets of the long leather duster he wore over his shoulders as he sniffed out the humans near by. Someone had told him there was a club in town called the Bronze, and he aimed to check it out. He had someone to find.

Finding the club had been a piece of cake, getting in; moving through the mass of bodies had been difficult. Sticking to the shadows, he moved through the club. A flash of blonde caught his eye as his gaze was drawn to the dance floor. That had to be her. She was dancing with a boy and girl, having a good time, but he had to be sure. He made his way closer to the happy blonde girl and asked someone near her if they knew where a phone was. He told them someone was being bit outside. Just as he suspected, the girl took off from the dance floor and he followed her out into the alley. He stayed in the shadows, trying to get a feel for her.

She was an impressive girl, with a lot of fire in her. She landed a few solid hits to the vampire's face as her friends came to join her. She needed her weapon. That was the first rule about slayers.

"Get. Me. A. Stake!" Buffy yelled to get the boys attention. Spike watched as the frazzled boy stumbled over his own feet to run back inside. So they knew about the vampires too. That was interesting. A slayer with friends.

He continued to watch her slender frame from the shadows. She was magnificent. She took a hard hit as she was slammed into the garage door and he jumped into the fray, snapping the vampire's neck to make it immobile. He staked it with his own stake and looked over at the girl sitting on the ground with a shocked look on her face. He carefully approached her and offered her a hand. She had a good grip as she grasped his pale hand. She thanked him once he pulled her to her feet and he looked her over.

"You okay?" he asked, not releasing her hand. Neither seemed to be in a hurry to let go, both enraptured by the other's gaze. She had the most beautiful green eyes that he had ever seen on a girl. She was a little smaller then he thought, but that didn't stop her from doing her job. Her blonde hair was cut in a short bob, which he thought was cute. He wondered what she looked like with long hair. He gave her a small smile as her friends came back outside.

"I'm fine," she said, softly. "Who are you?"

"Name's Spike," he answered. He didn't want her to ask him too many questions. Now was not the time to reveal all of his secrets. His body was tingling from her nearness, and he knew that he was drawn to her. She had something special, something he hadn't seen in any other slayers. But it was something he had grown to crave since his turning. He longed for someone to appreciate him and accept him. Not like Drusilla who did nothing but make him crazy. He thought they would be together forever, but that was short lived.

"I'm Buffy," she said. What an odd name, but it suited her just fine. He wanted to try her name out, knowing it would roll off his tongue like honey. He shook his head from such dirty thoughts as he listened to her next question. "How do you know about all this?" And there was the question of the hour.

"I can't tell you," Spike said, regretfully. He wanted to, but he couldn't risk putting her in danger right now. She didn't need any added stress to her life. He could only imagine what a teenage girl was going through who didn't have the weight of the world on her shoulders, even if she didn't want it. He released her hand, almost reluctantly, but he knew if he didn't, he would kiss her senseless before the night was over, and he couldn't have that.

"Why?" Buffy asked, disappointed. He could have melted under her almost pout. It was so cute. He wondered if she used that to get what she wanted. He didn't want to keep things from her, but for now it was better this way. He had to know who he could trust, and who she may talk to that wouldn't be so happy to hear about his secret.

"Maybe one day I'll tell you," he said, giving her a soft smile before taking to the shadows again. He had to get away from her before he lost all his self control. No one had ever made him weak in the knees or melt his heart before her. If he let his guard down too soon, that would be the end. No matter how cute she was, if he wanted to keep them both safe, he had to keep his distance for a little while.

The next day at school, Buffy was having trouble concentrating. After seeing Spike in the alley, she had gone home and tried to get some sleep. But she couldn't shake the feeling. When he had been standing next to her, she had chills. But the good kind of chills. She had felt like his blue eyes were trying to pierce her soul and it almost scared her. However, she had never felt so safe in her life. That did scare her. She wasn't used to that with anyone, not even Angel. So what was so different about this man? When he touched her, shocks of electricity had shot through her, and she remembered how he didn't let go of her hand for quite some time. It was like… like he knew her. It scared her, but in an intriguing way. And he knew about her being the slayer. She wasn't sure what to make about that, and sitting in the library, she was still was struggling with her thoughts.

"Buffy?" Giles asked, concerned.

"Hm?" Buffy asked, snapping out of her daze. She noticed her watcher standing next to the table where she seemed to be staring into space. The thoughts of blonde hair and leather blurred out of her mind as she tried to focus on Giles. She should have been doing homework and talking to Giles about patrol, but she couldn't seem to get her mind to think straight.

"Are you alright?" Giles asked.

Buffy sighed, figuring she may as well tell her Watcher about the man named Spike. Maybe Giles would know who he was. He could use his books to find out what his deal was. "Last night, there was this guy who helped me when I was fighting a vampire. His name's Spike but he wouldn't tell me how he knew about vampires," she said. "Maybe you could use your books and find out who he is. Could be important." She left out the part about how hot he was. Giles didn't need those comments from her.

Giles stared at Buffy for a moment. He removed his glasses, and started to clean them. She knew he got nervous whenever a stranger shows up in town, knowing about vampires. If she wanted to keep her identity a secret they had to be careful and she knew that. She started doodling in her notebook as Giles headed back to his office. "I'll look into it," he said, disappearing and leaving Buffy to her thoughts.

Buffy nodded and stood from her chair, packing her notebook. She would look for him tonight and find out what the deal was. She debated with the idea of asking Angel for information but she didn't want Angel involved. It could be too risky. She could find Spike tonight and talk to him. Get to know him a little better, and find out his secrets. Right now, she had to go to her last two classes then go home and do homework, clean her room, normal teenage stuff.

When the sun set that night, Buffy was more then ready to head out and find Spike. She had spent the past hour and a half picking out her outfit, although she didn't know what it mattered. She settled with a short skirt, like usual, in black, and purple satin camisole that hugged her curves. She slid on her black sandals and grabbed a stake before slipping out her window. Her mom had already fallen asleep, but she couldn't risk making noise throughout the house. She headed to the nearest cemetery, knowing she had to patrol, hoping that Spike would show up to help again. What she found however, was not what she had been expecting. She hadn't been in the cemetery for more then twenty minutes before she found Spike fighting a vampire that she knew very well. Angel. Well that didn't go as planned.

"You have no right to show up here!" Angel growled. Oooh, Angel was being a little possessive, she noticed. She crossed her arms as she leaned against a headstone in the distance as she watched them fight, and listened to them bicker.

"I do as I please," Spike said, as Angel landed a shot to his nose. That looked like it hurt. "I didn't know you were here, and if I had, I would've stayed away. I knew you would nag on me about my soul."

'Soul?' Buffy thought as Angel kicked Spike in the ribs, causing him to tumble to the ground, clutching his side. "Angel!" She yelled, running over to the men. That changed everything. Spike had a soul? What did that mean? Was he like Angel? Was he here to help her? Her mind was swirling with questions and she wanted to ask every single one, but that would have to wait.

Angel looked at Spike's fallen body then at Buffy. "What are you doing here?" He took a step toward her but she didn't notice. Her concern was Spike's broken face. His nose looked broken.

"Looking for Spike," she answered, kneeling next to the blonde vampire. "Spike, are you okay?" She stroked her soft fingers over his face as she smiled down at him. Once his eyes opened and met hers her smile got bigger. "There he is." She almost flinched as his vampiric features slid in, but it didn't bother her like she thought it would. He wasn't ashamed of his vampire face like Angel was. He accepted what he was and he could live with it. That warmed her heart incredibly. She didn't know what to think about it.

"Give me a minute," Spike replied softly.

"Buffy do you know who this is?" Angel asked.

"I met him last night," she said, glancing up at Angel. "So no introductions needed." She carefully pushed herself away from Spike and stood up before offering her hand. "Come on. Let's see if I can fix your nose." He would heal in a day or so, but she wanted to make sure there was no major damage. She steadied him as he swayed slightly on his feet, but he assured he was fine. She looked at him carefully before leading him out of the cemetery leaving Angel behind.

The trip back to Buffy's house had been relatively quiet. Buffy kept chewing at her lip wondering if she should say anything to Spike, but he didn't seem to be in a talking mood. He just wanted to walk in peace. She had stayed close to his side, but they weren't touching. She was pretty sure that Spike didn't want her to find out he was a vampire. She was going to find out sooner or later, and now she just wanted answers to the many questions that were still raging inside her mind. She invited him inside her house and led him to the kitchen. She told him to sit at the counter while she got a first aid kit. "Why didn't you tell me?" She asked, cleaning the cut above his eye.

"Because you're the slayer and if I remember correctly, you don't give vampires a chance to explain," he said, softly staring at the floor. She bit her lip, a little disappointed that he couldn't look at her.

Buffy smiled a little. "You may be right," she said. That wasn't what he wanted to hear, but she had to be honest. Angel had lied to her about his identity for some time, and she knew that was the reason they had such trust issues with each other. "Are you cursed by gypsies?" She only wanted to know. Was he like Angel? And how did he know Angel? She didn't think he'd appreciate sixty questions at one time. They probably wouldn't get very far tonight anyway. She was sure that he would be leaving and she would be going to her room again, wondering about the new man, or vampire, in her life.

Spike laughed softly. "No pet. I'm not like Angel. For some reason I never lost mine," he said. Her brows drew together at that. That seemed strange. Now she was wondering how many other vampires she had killed that had souls. She couldn't stop and give them a questionnaire while she was fighting for her life. It just didn't work that way. Spike was rapidly changing how she thought things were done, and she was going to have to get Giles in on it immediately. She was about to say something to him when the back door opened and Joyce came in, frowning. "Buffy?" Crap. Think fast for an excuse for why there is a hot guy in your kitchen with a busted eye and nose.

Buffy watched her mom as the older woman moved about the kitchen. "Hi mom. This is…" She couldn't tell her mom that his name was Spike. Her mom wouldn't go for that, it was too weird. She would think that Spike was in a gang or something. Even with everything else that went on in Sunnydale; her mom would ask questions about the weird stuff. She wouldn't just brush it off.

"William," Spike said, politely. What a save, she thought.

Joyce smiled. "I'm Buffy's mom. Nice to meet you, William," she said. "How do you know Buffy?"

More lies she would have to tell her mother. "He was helping me study," Buffy said, with a smile. "Remember Angel? He was helping me with history and nothing was getting done, so I got a new tutor. We had a scuffle on the way home, but he's going to be fine." Buffy could hear her heart pounding in her ears as she waited for her mom to believe her story and head to bed. Remarkably she did! And she said she was going to bed with a goodbye to both of them. Once she was upstairs, Buffy looked at Spike. "William?"

Spike smiled. "Changed my name when I became a vampire," he said. "You should go get some sleep."

He was so sweet. She would probably do anything he asked her to with that smile and those eyes. He was concerned about her, and he wanted her to get her sleep. It warmed her heart a little to hear him say that. "Will I see you tomorrow?" she asked. She took a step closer to him, feeling the electricity between the two of them. She almost hoped he would kiss her so she could finally know what it feels like to be really kissed. With those lips, she knew he would be the best kisser in the world. She could feel it in her bones.

"Count on it," he answered with a smile before he walked out of the back door.

Buffy pouted to herself as she cleaned up the kitchen, but she supposed she could wait a while before he kissed her. It wasn't like they were dating or anything. She locked both doors of the house and turned out the lights before going upstairs. Closing the door to her bedroom door, she heard a tap on her window. Her brows drew together as she made her way over to it. Once she opened it and she was startled when Spike poked his head in and he kissed her passionately, his tongue doing such sinful things that she had to force down a blush.

"Just wanted to do that before you went to sleep," he said, disappearing into the night.

Buffy stood dazed for a minute. "Oh my god," she whispered to herself. She had been so right. That was the best kiss she had ever had in her life. She closed her window and a goofy grin spread across her face as she stumbled back to bed. Her knees were week, almost unable to support her weight. She sighed happily as she flopped in bed. Maybe she would be able to get some sleep tonight. With dreams of a certain blonde vampire, who could kiss like a god. Yeah, she could sleep tonight.

The next day, Buffy walked into the library, after school was over. She had tried really hard to concentrate on her classes, but it was difficult. Her thoughts kept going to Spike and the kiss he had given her last night. She also had to think about how to tell Giles. She knew she had to tell her watcher what happened. Maybe not about the kiss, but she didn't know how to tell him. She didn't want Giles to tell her to do her job, because so far, Spike hadn't done anything to show her that he was a threat to the town. "Hey, Giles," she said, going to sit at the table. "I found out some information about Spike."

"Good afternoon Buffy," Giles said, in response to her greeting. "I was not able to find anything on our new friend, Spike. So anything you found out could be of some help to finding out what he's up to."

"He's a vampire," she said, as she watched Giles' face. "But Giles, he has a soul though. He told me he never lost it when he was turned. Is that even possible?" She needed these questions answered. Giles was the only one she knew of that could find out anything about Spike and why this happened to him. She stared at her hands on the table, wondering if she should talk to Spike about what happened to him. Shouldn't she have a right to know?

"I've never heard of such an occurrence," her watcher said, looking at her with concern. "Buffy, are you alright?"

She looked up at him and blushed, debating on telling him her feelings for him. He was going to find out sooner or later. "I really like him," she whispered. "I'll bring him by tonight so you can meet him if you want." She thought she sounded like a girl asking her mom if she could go out after she cleaned her room. She giggled as Giles agreed before he started cleaning his glasses as he always did. "I'll bring him by after sunset," she said, standing up with a bounce in her step. "Thanks Giles." She practically ran out of the cemetery, eager to get the day over with so she could tell Spike the good news.

Like the night before, Buffy spent over an hour trying to get ready to see Spike. She settled for pants this time. She slid on her tight black jeans and sat on her bed to zip her black boots. She went back to her closet to find a shirt, which was harder then pants. She bit her lip as she moved the hangers around to pick out a shirt. She pulled out a black halter with an empire waist, that flowed away from her stomach, not that she had one to hide. She slid the cotton shirt over her head and smiled at her self in her full length mirror. Running a brush through her hair, she just let it hang loose. She applied a little lip gloss before grabbing her stake. Her mom was at a gallery meeting tonight, so no sneaking out required.

She headed to the same cemetery she found Spike in last night and she found him fighting a couple of vampires. She watched him, admiring his fighting skills, for a few minutes before joining the fight. After they dusted the last of the vampires and she looked at him with affection. She put her stake in her belt and made her way over to him. "I want you to meet someone," she said, batting her eyes at him. She hoped he would agree to meet her watcher, and her friends. It was really important to her that they did that.

"Am I in trouble?" Spike asked.

Buffy laughed. "No, but um, if we're going to have any kind of relationship, I want you to know who I am." She took in his appearance and noticed that he didn't have on the same read button down shirt on that he had the last few times she had seen him. Now he had on a dark blue shirt over his tight black shirt, and she could see his abs ripple through the shirt, almost causing her to drool. She was unsure of how to approach the topic of their kiss, but she knew they would have to talk about it eventually.

He smiled and kissed her cheek. "Let's go," he whispered. She almost jumped for joy when he agreed, but the look in his eyes told her that he seemed genuinely interested. And that kiss he just put on her cheek, was nothing compared to the kiss she got last night. She slid her hand into his as she led him in the direction of the school and he asked her something that she had completely forgot to notice. "Buffy, how do you know Angel?" Spike asked, casually.

She sighed. This wasn't really a conversation that she wanted to have with someone who could be her potential boyfriend. "I met him when I first moved here. He fell in love with me I think but he's so secretive. I wasn't entirely sure I could trust him," she said. She didn't return Angel's feelings but Angel thought one day she would. She couldn't lie, but she did appreciate his help on patrols some nights, but sometimes he was just distracting her and it was better when she was by herself. They neared the school and she knew the conversation would have to be continued at a different time. She led him to the library and she smiled at her friends as she walked in. "Hey guys," she said, pulling Spike over to them. "They're not gunna bite," she said. "Guys this is Spike. He's a vampire but he has a soul. Spike, this is Willow and Xander, my best friends."

Spike gave them each a smile and Xander walked over to him. Buffy hoped her friend didn't do anything stupid. She knew Xander hated Angel, but she didn't want Spike getting the same treatment. "So are you cursed like Angel?"

"No," Buffy and Spike said and Buffy giggled. It was like they knew what the other was thinking. It was nice. She liked having that connection with Spike.

"Nope," Spike said. "Hate the guy too. Always was a bloody poofter. I'm nothing like him."

"Thank God someone else shares my feelings about the meathead." Xander said, turning to sit down at the table. Spike followed him over and they proceeded to talk heatedly about Angel's hair.

Buffy smiled and left the guys alone. This was working out better then she thought, and exactly how she wanted. Angel wouldn't be the topic of her choice but whatever made them get along. She made her way over to Willow to give her the juicy details. "I like him," she whispered. She was so happy to finally be sharing something. She didn't want to get her hopes up or anything yet. Her friend smiled at her. "I think he likes me too." The two of the gossiped for a few minutes before Buffy saw Giles come out of the office. His eyes went right to Spike and she got to her feet. "Giles, this is Spike," she said, going over to pull Spike away from Xander. "Spike, this is Giles, my Watcher." Giles was the main person she wanted Spike to meet. It was important that her watcher be supportive of her decisions.

Spike held out his hand politely. "Pleasure."

Giles smiled. "You're English," he said, shaking Spike's hand.

"See, you fit right in," she said with a smile. She felt like a huge relief was taken off her shoulders once she realized that Spike and Giles would get along. She leaned against Spike's side and looked up at him.

Spike wrapped an arm around her. "Did you think otherwise?" He teased.

"Who's up for a little Bronzing?" Willow piped in, hopefully. "Think it's a good night to hang out and have some fun."

Buffy looked at Giles. "Do you need anything?" She asked. It would be nice to go out in public with Spike finally. And the bronze was the perfect place to relax and spend time together. There was a lot she wanted to ask him, to get to know him. She was anxious. There was a lot she wanted to tell him herself. She was more then just a slayer, and to her, Spike was more interested in her as a woman and not a slayer.

"Uh, no," Giles said. "You go have fun."

Buffy smiled and pulled Spike toward the door. "This is gonna be so much fun," she said as she talked to Willow on her way out, gripping Spike's hand.

"Nice meeting you," Spike called as Buffy yanked him out of the library with her friends.

At the Bronze, Buffy and Spike immediately went to the dance floor. She slid her slender arms around his neck as he laid his hands on her waist and they swayed to the music. She could feel the tingles on her neck, indicating that a vampire, a familiar vampire was near, and if Angel was around, she had no desire to see him. But other then that, an even stronger tingle was on her neck, a warning tingle that another dangerous vampire was in her presence. She tried to ignore it and keep herself focused on Spike, but she knew it would be difficult.

Buffy stared up into his eyes and the emotion she saw in them made her heart clench. She had never seen such love and adoration in someone's eyes, not even Angel's. She couldn't figure out how Spike could feel that way so soon. They had barely just met. "Spike, I really like you," she said, shyly. And that was true, but how far was this going to go? She wasn't sure, and she wasn't ready to push it too fast.

He smiled tenderly. "I think I'm falling in love with you," he whispered. He what? How was that possible? Her heart starting racing as her body tensed. She couldn't do this.

"Um… I have to… I have to go," she said, slipping out of his arms and walking away from him briskly. She felt tears stinging her eyes as she crashed into Angel outside of the club in her hurry to get away from Spike. "Angel," she said, softly as she wiped the tears away from her face. "What do you want?"

"Did he hurt you?" Angel asked. "What did he do to you?" His hands come up to wipe a few tears that she had missed and she could already feel the lack of connection from his hands.

"What?" Buffy asked in confusion as she pushed him away from her. "No, he didn't hurt me." She didn't think Spike would ever hurt her. "I'm just not right for him." She didn't know why she was even telling Angel this. It wasn't any of his business and if anything, she was almost giving Angel what he wanted. She closed her eyes when she heard Spike run up to her, with a growl to Angel.

She opened her eyes to see Spike approaching her carefully. "I didn't expect you to say it back," he said, softly. She saw his heart break in his eyes as more tears slid out of hers. She couldn't do this and she didn't want to hurt him. What she felt when she was with Spike was so powerful that she felt like it would make her heart explode. "I'm not going to hurt you," Spike said, quietly.

"How do I know that?" Buffy asked. Just because he said he wouldn't didn't mean that a few weeks or months down the road that he wouldn't break his promise. He didn't know what was going to happen, and granted neither did she. She felt a little selfish for asking him to promise her forever and things just didn't work like that, but she couldn't help it. She didn't want to get hurt.

"You need to trust me," he said.

"I do trust you, but…" She trailed off and glared at Angel. "Could you leave? This is kind of private." She wanted to talk to Spike alone without an audience. It wasn't any of Angel's business to begin with. If she and Spike had a fight right now, she didn't want Angel to have that satisfaction. If Angel had his way, she'd be his girlfriend, and she didn't want that.

Spike walked up to her slowly as Angel slipped into the shadows. "What are you afraid of?" He whispered. "I would never hurt you Buffy. And if you're not ready, I can wait. I'm not… I'm not like other guys or whatever you're used to. I'll support whatever decision you make."

Buffy wrapped her arms around herself. "I'm scared of what might happen between us," she said, softly. "I just think… I think we need to slow down. I don't want to rush whatever might happen." She didn't want things to get out of control like they had with Angel. She wanted to get to know Spike and she wanted him to get to know here before they got serious. She gratefully snuggled into his arms when he pulled her close to him.

He kissed her forehead. "You can have all the time in the world," he said, softly. She didn't know what she did to deserve someone as wonderful as him, but she was very glad that he was in her life. "You want to go home?"

She shook her head and pulled back. "No," she said. "We can go back in and have a good time, without Angel watching over our shoulder." She looked up at him with wide sparkling eyes before she leaned up to kiss him softly. Her arms snaked around his neck as she pressed her body up against his. His muscles fit her small curves like a dream and she groaned into his mouth when his hands tangled into her short hair.

Neither blonde cared to acknowledge the set of yellow eyes watching from the shadows as they got lost in each other.