Chapter 10: Changes

Upon entering the house, Buffy was gently put down on their bed in the bedroom, while Spike removed the duster from her grimacing at the wounds covering her body. Buffy leaned up pulling Spike down on the bed with his back facing towards her frowning at the burn on his back. It had burned clear through his lightweight cotton shirt and she felt immediately bad for allowing him to wrap the duster around her to protect her instead of using it to protect him. She sighed as he got up, "I'll be back luv. I'm just going to get some blood to help heal this sodding burn and to get a first aid kit to fix you up."

She nodded as he left the room and she carefully but painfully headed towards the bathroom where she began to run a hot bath. She figured Spike could join her when he returned which would help heal both of them.

Meanwhile downstairs, Spike finished drinking his second mug of warm blood closing his eyes for a moment feeling the pain on his back lessen greatly as his burns started to heal. He then rinsed the mug walking to where she kept the first aid kit and carried it upstairs.

Leaning against the bathroom door, he could hear her singing softly. He smiled even though his back was still killing him as he entered the bathroom to find her naked and relaxing in the tub. She grinned as she motioned for him to join her. He looked hesitantly at her knowing he would have to lean up against the tub but he did want so badly to be near her. He gave in obliging as he removed the last of his clothing and boots followed lastly by his socks as he slipped in behind her. He was surprised to find his back didn't hurt nearly as much as it should but he knew part of that was because of the healing power of being close to Buffy. He recognized the song she was singing and sang it along with her. It was the first song he had ever sang to her while she had been sick and he had gotten her the CD for her birthday a few weeks ago per her request.

I'm here without you baby/But you're still on my lonely mind/I think about you baby/And I dream about you all the time/I'm here without you baby/But you're still with me in my dreams/And tonight it's only you and me, yeah/Everything I know and anywhere I go/It gets hard but it won't take away my love/And when the last one falls, when it's all said and done/It gets hard but it won't take away my love/ I'm here without you baby/But you're still on my lonely mind/I think about you baby/And I dream about you all the time/I'm here without you baby/But you're still with me in my dreams/And tonight it's only you and me, yeah, oh yeah oh

Buffy without a word turned around in the tub wrapping her arms gently around his neck as to not to hurt his back anymore than it was already hurt placing a kiss on his lips. He eagerly responded as he lifted her from the tub grabbing a towel on his way out barely taking the time to knock the plug from the tub with his toes as he walked with her legs around his waist to the bed. He lay on his side facing her as she did the same.

Studying her face, he let out a gentle sigh thankful they were both safe and sound within her house. Buffy ran a hand over the side of his face as he closed his eyes enjoying the warmth her hand emitted. Buffy took the opportunity to whisper softly to him explaining her actions, "The deal Skuttle offered me made me realize a few things."

Spike opened his eyes to look deep into Buffy's green ones which were wide and clear. It was obvious she had thought about this and was ready to talk, "Number one, we have come a long way. Just over a year ago, I was telling you not to tell me you loved me. I was fighting any feelings I had towards you with every ounce of my being only letting them through when I was weak and vulnerable. Since then, I've died and been brought back and you have saved me. You have been there for me every step of the way for over 2 years and hopefully it will continue. Spike, would you like to live here with me?"

Buffy bit her lower lip waiting for Spike's answer. She felt more nervous than she realized possible and time ticked on while he stayed quiet. Spike studied Buffy's face for a few minutes moving his lips to place a kiss into the opened palm of hers that still was lying against his cheek. He whispered his reply so softly that Buffy had to strain to hear it, "I do sort of live here. I sleep here and eat some of my meals hereā€¦"

Buffy cut him off as she put a finger in front of his mouth signaling for him to be quiet. She could see he didn't understand and needed to make him understand where she was coming from. She wanted change and this change she knew would be good for both of them, "No, I mean live here, permanently. You would have everything here. I've been thinking for the past few hours about my life and what I want. What I want is you in it. I want you to live here with me. Try the whole family thing. You'd still be a boyfriend but you'd be a live-in boyfriend. A member of the Summers' household. Would you like that?"

Again she bit her lower lip as a blush covered her face. She was embarrassed by her words and what it would mean. She had never given this opportunity to anyone else in her past and Spike could see how much it meant to her. Spike couldn't help the tears that sprung to his eyes as he nodded before smothering her face with kisses, "Like that? I'd love that. It's what I've always wanted and dreamed of."

Buffy smiled as tears fell from her eyes as well. This was a better reaction than she could even have imagined. She realized it would be something she would never regret. In fact she had wanted it even though she had been nervous about it from the start. If it hadn't been for their impending doom held on this adventure with Skuttle she might never have admitted it to herself. She was thankful she almost died and was thankful Spike had been there with her to keep her safe. She wrapped her arms tightly around his neck pulling him close as she nodded slightly, "Then it's settled. Welcome to the Summers' household and the status of live-in boyfriend."

Spike growled slightly as he rolled her under him and made love to her in their bedroom where he now lived as her live-in boyfriend.

The End

Look for a sequel coming soon!