TITLE: "The Washing of the Water" (1/1)
AUTHOR: Marie-Claude Danis
EMAIL: mc@fangy.net
SITE: http://fangy.net
ARCHIVE: My site, list archives, those who have my stuff. Otherwise just ask.
PAIRING: Spike/Buffy
SUMMARY: Superheroes unwind.
NOTE: La la la. Bored at work. Alternately writing smut and fluff. This would be the fluff.

* * *

She sank further into the hot water, her feet squeaking against the warm enamel. The bubble bath foam rose up her chest and her knees poked out of the froth like little pink islands. The back of her neck met with the side of the tub; it was uncomfortable, but easy enough to ignore.

The little tendrils that escaped the loose hair tie dipped into the tub and clung to her skin. The scalding water tickled at her body, a thousand tiny pricks that melded together to make her muscles relax, finally, like over-simplified acupuncture. She let her arms float idly on each side of her, against her thighs, halfway between the water's surface and the bottom of the tub.

She looked up and met tired blue eyes. The eyes in question stared overtly. She stifled a weary grin and shot him the best scowl she could muster.

"Oh, very convincing. I'm quaking in my boots."

"You look silly naked."

He gasped in mock outrage. "Is that so? Maybe I should revoke your Spike privileges then."

"Get in."

Of course, instead of stepping into the tub like a normal person would, he sat on the edge than threw himself backward, landing in her lap with a messy splash.

She yelped and batted at bits of bubble bath that flew into her face. "Brilliant, Spike."

He joined his hands on his bare stomach and grinned smugly at her, reclining comfortably against the cold tile, with his legs hanging out the other side of the tub.

She squirmed under his weight, trying to make herself comfortable again. "You lump. Very sexy. I want you. Right now."

"You will. Later."

"I think you just broke my spine."

"I'm relying on those accelerated Slayer healing powers."

"Yeah, wait till we get out of here, you'll have to rely on yours too. Move."

He swung his feet over the edge and slid into the water between her legs with a satisfied groan. He sat there bonelessly for a moment, rolling his shoulders wearily. "Hell, this feels good."

She scooped up a handful of bubbles into her hand and spread it over his back, across the moving muscles, letting her fingers dance over his skin. He dropped his head forward, working out the kinks in his neck.

"Lean back."

He did, and the water rose around them as his back met with her chest and stomach. She propped one foot on the edge of the tub against the tiles, with her other leg bent at the knee on the other side of him. His fingers played idly against her ankle and he leaned his head back against her shoulder.

She leaned her cheek against his mussed up head. "Better?"

"Definitely getting there." He closed his eyes and yawned. Before long, her small hands sneaked onto his chest, fingers spread, palms flat against his skin. They were hot from the water, and he could feel the exact outline of her hands on his own warming skin. The muscles there relaxed too, soothed.

They stayed quiet, unmoving, unwinding. The bathroom went still but for the soft clap of the water against the tub and against their bodies, the discreet fizz of the bubble bath dying slowly around them, and her breathing, her breathing and her pulse, right there inside her wrist, over his dead heart.

After a while one of her hands disappeared and he absently felt her move behind him. Then there was a soft warmth on his stomach, a square of thick cotton, heavy with water, and the feel of her delicate fingers walking over it. He moaned gratefully; she took a handful of the cloth and started trailing it across his chest and stomach in lazy patterns.

"After this..." she began, very low, and right into his ear.


"I thought maybe..."

He smiled softly, turning his head slightly to rub the bridge of his nose against her throat. "Yeah luv..."

"We could go to bed naked, hide under the covers, and sleep for two whole days."

"Mmm..." He smiled, his eyes closed. "But then who would save the world?"

She dipped the cloth in the water and it came back heavy and warm again. She trailed it on his shoulder, along the bones and over the tired muscles.

"Someone else."