In Enemy Hearts

AU from Primeval: As Buffy faces off with Adam, the spell is performed but the demons break through. Buffy gets distracted and tries to save her friends, but fails. Spike gets her out and they battle their way out of the Initiative. Adam assembles his army and the world is doomed…or so it seems.

AUTHORS NOTE: It's been nearly eight years since I started this story...blimey. Now with the help of Google Maps, I'm hoping it will be a bit more accurate. Really want to get some of these WIP's done!

DISCLAIMER: All BTVS characters belong to Joss, I'm just borrowing them. Couple of OC's in there that are mine.


Spike pulled Buffy up from the elevator, ignoring the screams coming from below. Fresh tears coursed down her face as they ran from Lowell House, away from the massacre that was occurring down below. As they reached her house, she stopped, collapsing into the grass. Spike stood beside her, looking behind him. It wouldn't be long now before the demon hybrid started his plan and Spike knew they had to get as far away from Sunnydale as they could.

'Slayer…' He started; only to be met by wracking sobs. 'Buffy, pet…we have to get going.'

'They're all dead. We failed.' She sobbed, not looking up at him as she buried her face in her hands. He grimaced and knelt in front of her as she continued crying. 'They're dead.'

'Pet, you tried your hardest. But there were too many of them.' He soothed her, reaching out a hand to caress her shoulder. She looked up at him, anger in her gaze.

'You didn't help. You teamed up with him.' She backed away from him, throwing his touch from her body as if burned. 'You worked with him. You wanted us dead.' She punched him and he fell backwards, landing on the ground with a thud. He stared up at her.

'Maybe I did. I'm a vampire Buffy. But I didn't kill your friends.' She narrowed her eyes. 'I tried to help you then.'

'Only because you knew I would kill you. You only ever look out for yourself.'

'Should have left you in there then, shouldn't I?' He spat, getting to his feet. 'I dragged you out, and I'm sorry I couldn't save your friends. But you survived.'

'It doesn't matter now does it?' She said faintly, and looked away. 'They're dead. I have to tell Tara and Anya what happened. Tell them to get out of town.' She closed her eyes tightly against more tears and then looked at Spike. 'I suggest you leave, before I do kill you.' Spike clenched his jaw, looking at her hard. God, he hated her. She was the Slayer; he should have left her in there to die. He couldn't find a logical reason for why he didn't.

'Fine. Just make sure you get yourself out of town. And get your mum away too.' He added, turning away from her. 'I hope we don't run into each other again, Slayer, cos I won't help you next time.'

Buffy watched him leave, and then turned towards her house, seeing her mother looking out of the window. An explosion sounded in the distance and Buffy looked towards the horizon for a second, tears glistening in her eyes again at the thought of her dead friends. It was her fault; she had led them in there. They shouldn't have tried that spell.

But then, she didn't have time to criticise her mistakes. She had to get her mom out of town and warn the others. Later, she could mourn, and then she could get revenge.

-I-E-H-

The room was dark and dingy, with no windows and a single light bulb that wasn't working properly. Instead of a bright glow, it lit the room dimly, allowing its occupants to see a little way in front of their faces. Only one person sat in the room at the moment, and she was supposed to be sleeping, but like usual, she was unable to gain the rest she needed. Just in case they attacked again.

It had been two years since the Initiative had exploded, and Adam had already taken the world. His demon hybrid army had spread quickly, killing, enslaving and taking control. Now there were only handfuls of survivors that had escaped torture and slavery, and they lived in underground bunkers, or deep in forests where the robot-demons hadn't quite invaded.

Buffy had escaped the day after it had all started. She'd packed up herself and her mom, taking a few irreplaceable items, and they had fled, driving until they heard that Sunnydale was overrun and some unknown threat had started to pollute the world. The Government, of course, had known exactly what it was but failed to stop it, falling instead to the command of the evil demonoids. The survivors had gone for shelter, finding others that had escaped and they fled underground. Eventually the televisions stopped broadcasting, followed by the radios. The last they heard was that Europe was taken.

Silence was their only company now. Electric signals couldn't be broadcast, because any cyborgs would pick up on them and find their base, destroying any they encountered. There were about two hundred people in this particular base, women, men and children. The base itself was located just outside of New York, which was overrun, a ruined city dominated by cyborgs and lesser demons who acted as minions.

Buffy sighed, picking up the letter she had received from her mother days earlier. They had separated, Buffy knowing she had to fight what demons she could. She'd left Joyce in New Orleans, hoping she could escape via the sea from there. Unfortunately it hadn't gone according to plan and Joyce had settled into the base, working with other survivors to, well, survive.

The Slayer herself had headed for LA, and located Faith. The other Slayer had busted out of jail, not quite rehabilitated, but unwilling to die. They had worked together with the survivors there, and then Buffy had left once more, heading from base to base, killing and helping others to fight the enemy. She hadn't made friends, worried that she would end up getting them killed again. She knew the leaders of each base, and kept in contact with a few via letter, the only safe way to communicate. Technology was monopolised by the demonoids, and it wasn't safe to use it anymore.

She'd been working in New York for a few months now, finding a way to bring the cyborgs down, or destroy their operations. Not a small feat, and even with the people working on it here, it was going to take time. It wasn't safe to venture outside often, what with the enemy searching for them constantly. Buffy went out to scavenge things, and to kill, but she always went alone. She couldn't risk getting anyone into trouble.

The small communities that had sprung up in the wake of the disaster were amazing, in their own way. Many residents had fled into underground tunnels, digging their way into the earth, hiding from the attackers with varying success. Many had brought animals, food and had cultivated a way of life underground. Buffy had seen the success of their efforts and was pleased that the human race had found a way.

Now it was just up to her to find a way to kill Adam and find the source of everything. There was always a weakness and she intended to exploit it.

A small alarm sound made her start and she jumped to her feet, discarding the letter on her bunk. She flung open the door to the corridor and ran out, her hand flying automatically to the machete she kept at her side. She headed for the main entrance, looking for someone to tell her what was going on. The alarm stopped and silence fell. The civilians had deserted the hallways, going into hiding, as they always did when the alarms went.

She felt someone grab her arm and she ducked into a small passage, coming face to face with the leader of the New York base. Lucas was in his forties, a stout man of military background. His greying hair betrayed his age but his kind eyes always shone with concern for the people he protected. He looked down at Buffy, his face serious.

'There's something outside. I'm sending a team to see what it is.' Buffy shook her head.

'Let me go.' She urged, waiting for his reply. Lucas always hesitated when Buffy wanted in on the action. Whilst the Slayer was now renowned, and all the big secrets were out, she was still seen by the majority as a twenty-one year old girl, who probably needed protecting. He narrowed his eyes and nodded, motioning for the others to hold back. Buffy slipped from the passage and opened the main doorway slowly, looking out into the dingy sewers that protected their home.

The darkness consumed her as she slipped out and sealed the entrance again. No one could see it properly from the outside, and a heavy door sealed it from the inside in case of a major attack. But this didn't seem like one of those. Something was out in the darkness; demon or human remained to be seen.

Buffy squinted, trying to ascertain what was out there. She could hear it moving around, quite a distance from her yet, but she still couldn't tell what it was. She stepped forward, and she felt it, crawling up her spine like a well recognised beat. It was a vampire and a cruel smile lit up her face. It had been a long time since she had bumped into a vampire. Adam seemed to dislike them as much as he disliked humans, finding them disadvantaged and weak. Their body parts were not good either, seeing as they just turned to dust when removed.

Briefly, Buffy wondered what Angel was up to. She knew he'd left LA and was still in America, but she hadn't heard from him or Faith in a while. She made a mental note to write to them and find out where they had gone.

The vampire was coming closer and she tensed, drawing the machete from its holding place at her side. This vampire was in for a world of hurt when it emerged from the dark to confront her.

She moved forward, frowning as the tingles intensified. She recognised this vampire. Maybe it was Angel. She frowned, and waited as the shadows moved. Whoever it was, was limping heavily and Buffy thought she could smell blood. Obviously the vampire had had a run in with the cyborgs.

A brown head bobbed into view in the dim light and Buffy raised the weapon again. Brown hair, shorter than Angel's, probably not him.

The vampire stopped, and Buffy heard him sniffing. Then he moved into the light and she dropped the machete to her side, frowning at the intruder.

In front of her, Spike stood, changed, and bloodied, smiling at her for a second before he hit the deck and passed out.

He opened his eyes, snarling at the dim light that invaded his vision. He tried to move but as he did, pain shot through his body and he cried out. Someone appeared at his side, concern on her pale face as she examined the gaping wound in his leg once more. As he stared at her, recognition fluttering through him, he saw the changes in the once cocky slayer. She was skinnier, and a lot paler, due to lack of Californian sunshine. Her hair was shorter, a dirtier blonde than it had once been. A long scar ripped its way down one side of her face and there was a haunted look in her eyes she hadn't possessed before. But then, it had been two years since they had last laid eyes on each other and the world was a different place.

'Surprised you didn't kill me.' He said; wincing as Buffy cleaned the wound he had reopened once more.

'You were hurt. Wouldn't have been a fair fight.' She whispered. He smiled in reply. She sat back and looked him over. 'You're different.' She stated; her voice louder.

'Yeah, well, everything is.' He sighed, running a hand through his hair. She looked at the new colour, frowning.

'No coat for one. And what's with the dark brown? I mean, not that the blonde was completely fetching, but…it's different.' She repeated and Spike smiled, pulling himself up into a seating position.

'Well, peroxide blonde is easier to spot in the dark. Figured, if I wanna stay alive, well, you get it.' He smiled and pulled out his lighter, fiddling with it.

'You quit?' She asked. He nodded.

'They stopped making them. What with the world going to pot and all.' He shrugged. 'Nasty habit anyway.' He looked up at her, frowning. 'Why am I still sitting here? Slayer? Shouldn't you be making with the threats and all by now?'

She shrugged, mimicking his earlier gesture. 'Just nice to see a familiar face. And you did save my life.' She said before standing and walking away.

'Take it the other colonists don't know I'm a vampire.' He said, looking around.

Buffy shook her head. 'I just told them you were like Angel.' He frowned again as she looked over her shoulder and smiled. 'I lied. Vampires are the least of our problems anyway.'

'Why aren't you more surprised that I'm here?' Spike asked cautiously. Buffy turned, leaning against the wall as she looked at him hard. A smile caught the corners of her mouth and she pointed at a letter on a table across the room.

'Mom told me she'd seen you. Told me all about your adventures in Louisiana. How you're a good boy now.' She walked over to him. 'Even though your chip stopped working.'

Spike shrugged. 'They don't like us either you know. And your mum is a decent lady. Plus…it's a lot harder to get blood now. Better to work with humans on the off chance they'll help me.' He said, looking up at her. 'After I got away from Sunnydale…things changed. As you might have noticed. It was better to help than to be hated by everyone.'

Buffy nodded, sitting beside him. 'I get that. Mom also said you felt bad. About leaving us behind. I don't know why, seeing as I threatened you with bodily harm if you didn't leave.'

'Yeah, well…' He shrugged. 'Guess you got to me.' He looked away and sighed. 'I came up with news anyway. They've found where he is.'

Buffy's eyes widened. 'They have?'

'Angel and Faith, they're over in Washington. Turns out the big pile of circuits made himself a home at the Pentagon. All that technology…it's a veritable theme park for them ain't it.' He looked at her intently. 'I came to tell you. As soon as this leg heals, I'm heading over to the base there, to join them.'

Buffy nodded. 'I take it you intended for me to come with you?' She asked.

'Doesn't have to be with me, but that was the plan. Have all the big guns there.' He said and Buffy smiled.

'Thank you Spike.' She stood up. 'I'll go see if I can scare up some blood for you.' He nodded and she smiled again. 'I thought you were dead you know.' He nodded again and she leant down, taking his hand. 'Guess I never thought I'd be so happy to see you.'

With that she left the room, a look of shock on Spike's face as she did so, her words echoing in his mind.

Hours passed, and when Buffy returned, Spike was still awake, sitting on the bed with a thoughtful look on his face. He smiled at her as she came in and set a plate down on the table. It had various foodstuffs on it; most likely for her consumption, but one package she picked up and threw at him. He caught it deftly and looked at the labelling. It was expired human blood and he smiled gratefully.

'I swiped it from the lab.' She said, pulling up a chair that looked to be on its way out. She sat down gingerly and started eating the meagre meal she had scrounged for herself. Money was of no use anymore, seeing as the shops no longer existed. Trade was the currency now, but Buffy was lucky in the fact that most people recognised her as the Slayer and willingly gave her some of their rations. It was never much, but she had learned to survive on it.

Spike ripped into the package, finishing it in seconds. He didn't vamp out, but Buffy could see the struggle to keep control on his demon side. She frowned and waited for him to put the empty bag to the side before pushing her own plate away.

'Why are you fighting it?' She asked and he shrugged.

'I guess it's easier. Most people know I'm a vampire, but they know I'm one of the good guys. Doesn't mean my true nature doesn't freak them out.'

Buffy's frown deepened. 'That can't be good for you.'

Spike shook his head, avoiding eye contact with her. 'Most of the time, when I'm travelling outside, away from humans, I just let it out. Easier to pick up anything dangerous, or catch a rabbit when I'm desperate for food. But as soon as I sense a human, I have to keep myself under control. The chip went, Buffy, but my instincts are still there. I'm still a demon.' His startling blue eyes connected with hers and she saw something in them she hadn't seen before.

Nodding in acknowledgment of his statement, she turned back to her food and spoke quietly again. 'We'll wait until you've healed enough, then we'll start out. Could take us a while to get to Washington. At least a week.'

'We'll have to travel by night; can use the tunnels in places.' He said, twiddling his thumbs as he waited for a reply. The tunnels he referred to were used by human survivors to travel around, mostly old sewer systems the demonoids couldn't access. Some of their minions could, which still made them dangerous. Buffy murmured her agreement. Silence befell them for a few moments, before he cleared his throat. 'I don't understand.'

'Understand what?' Buffy asked, pushing the plate away, leaving half the food uneaten.

'This.' He said simply. 'You, not wanting me dead. What you said before. If it hadn't been for me, this may never have happened.' He saw her jaw tighten and she shook her head vehemently.

'No. That isn't true. You tried to help in the end. Not your fault the spell didn't work.' Sadness tinged her tone and he stared at her. He needed to know why he was still alive.

'I helped him.'

'Maybe.' She shrugged. 'But it wasn't exactly a big deal. I would have gone down there anyway. And in the end, you tried to help me.' She repeated. 'You got me out, saved my life, even when you didn't have to. And now, you're still helping. Mom told me what you did in New Orleans. How you helped them fight back; helped them build their shelters. And you're doing it without the chip and without a soul.'

He stared at her in slight shock. She was right, to a certain degree, but it still didn't explain why she didn't want him dead. If it was in return for not letting her die, he could understand, but this was a different Buffy to the one he had left. She moved from her chair and sat next to him on the bed, sighing. He didn't speak, but could sense she probably had more to say.

'You didn't let me die.' She whispered. 'And I've spent the last two years wondering why.'

Spike looked away. 'Should only take me a couple of days to heal, then we can get moving.' Buffy stood up abruptly and frowned at him, raising her hand. She pointed a finger at him.

'No. You don't change the subject. I want to know. Now.'

He looked at her with those eyes for what seemed like an eternity. Her posture remained rigid. There wasn't any way he was getting out of this. Buffy wanted answers, to stop her going mad at night when she had nothing else to think about.

'I spent so long trying to figure it out myself.' He sighed, and she relaxed, watching him carefully. 'Dru had the answer all along.' Buffy frowned. 'Somewhere along the line…I stopped hating you. Stopped wanting you dead. Slayers are tough Buffy, but they all die – they all give up. The girl in China, she let go of an obligation she had never asked for. The one in New York died to protect someone else.' He looked at her sternly, glad that she didn't seem angry he had brought up her dead predecessors. 'Except you…I've met a lot of Slayers, watched a lot of them and there's always something there, bringing them down. None of them compare to you. You've lost your friends, the worlds gone to hell, and you're still fighting, still strong. Still alive. It's not cause you're the slayer. Not just that.' He looked down at the floor briefly and then let his eyes drift back to her, a small smile on the corner of his mouth. 'It's because you're you, Buffy. You're one hell of a Slayer and one hell of a woman.'

He went quiet and Buffy watched him, silent tears started to trickle down her cheeks. He frowned and got up, wincing slightly at the pain in his leg. He stood in front of her and raised his hand, wiping her tears away.

'I'm sorry, pet. Don't cry.'

Buffy shook her head and looked up at him, smiling slightly. 'No. Thank you.' She suddenly threw her arms around him, hugging him tightly. He tensed and then relaxed, wrapping his own arms around her. Her tight grip made him glad he didn't have to breathe. But she didn't hold on long, letting go and looking at him again.

'When did it change?' She asked, tentatively. 'Was it the spell?' He knew which spell she was referring to. Red's Will-Be-Done spell, the one that had ended with Buffy and Spike thinking they were in love and getting married. He looked back on it with fond memories; being so completely in love and belonging somewhere for those few precious hours had meant the world to him. Pity it was just a spell. But that hadn't been what had changed him.

Spike shook his head. 'Before that.' He smiled slightly. 'Guess I always respected you. Kept foiling my plans and all.' He sighed, reaching up to brush a strand of hair from her face. 'But I could never touch what you are.' His voice was soft and Buffy blushed as she raised her hand to brush his away.

'I'm not that great.' He took her hand in mid air and smiled, this time fully, that look in his eyes returning. Buffy stared at him.

'You are.' He whispered.

It seemed like an eternity passed between them and she leant forward, kissing him hard, caught in the moment. He seemed stunned at first, and then kissed back, their mouths battling for superiority.

Then she pulled away, her cheeks flushed. Her hand flew to her lips and she stepped back, looking at him apologetically. He looked at her, his gaze not wavering as she blushed.

'I'm so sorry.' She said; her voice a whisper. And then she ran from the room. Spike stood alone, frowning. He knew that wasn't rejection. That was something else. Maybe she felt she had overstepped the boundaries. The frown melted into a smile as he carefully sat back on the bed, closing his eyes.

Whatever it was, it would fuel a few good dreams.

-I-E-H-

If there was one thing she had noticed in the two of days of waiting for her vampire counterpart to heal, it was that he had changed. Somewhere along the line, Spike had become a patron of the good, moving beyond the soulless limits Buffy now realised had been imposed upon him before. The way everyone had told him he was nothing but a soulless evil thing. He had just ignored it and done what was right. Whilst it could have been put down to adapting to new circumstances, with or without the chip, he was purely one of the white hats. Yet it wasn't just that which had changed about the formerly peroxide vampire.

His whole demeanour seemed to have taken a different angle. Essentially he was still the same person, quieter maybe, a depth of pain in his eyes that registered with a shock when she noticed it. He carried himself differently; the Spike she had battled before had always been spry and lithe, but had always announced his arrival with a stealthy swagger. Said swagger was now gone, and he moved like a shadow, silent and deadly, almost crouched. She'd caught him training in the room she'd left him in, working on the strength in his leg. He was thinner, and his body language was so tense, he seemed on edge. Waiting for something to jump out at him.

She knew the chip had gone before he got there. Her mother had told her. And she'd managed to wheedle the story out of him whilst they were sitting in companionable silence the night before, all mention of the mistaken kiss the night before banned, or so she hoped. She couldn't deny it had been pleasant, and she probably wouldn't have minded a repeat performance, but she couldn't shake the feeling that it was better off ignored.

'So how'd you get it out?'

He had looked at her funny when she said that. Then a look of realisation had crossed his face and he tapped his head, smiling thinly.

'I didn't.'

She'd gotten confused then, looking at him strangely. He must have picked up on it because he had stood, stretching and inspecting his wound. Then he looked at her with those fathomless eyes and smiled.

'It's still in there. Buried. Just stopped working.'

Buffy had frowned, her first thought being "why". He had sat back down, his gaze travelling to one of his boots as he pulled absently at the shoelace. Buffy had sensed an explanation coming on and hadn't spoken. It was a few minutes before he finally related it to her.

'Was in Des Moines, escorting some civilians, bout two months after the Hellmouth imploded. Didn't even notice the bloody thing wasn't working, I was so careful.' A dry laugh followed, practically void of humour. 'Anyway, we'd almost made it to hideout on the edge of the city, when I lose all my stealth and trip, making a great lummox of myself. Landed on a little girl, whose ankle got crushed under my somewhat heavier bulk. Needless to say, she starts wailing and we all run for it, hoping no cyborgs heard. I didn't even realise until the morning, just as I'm going to sleep. No pain.'

She'd listened to him, and then he had told her he knew what had happened. The chip hadn't simply stopped working. Someone had turned it off. And it didn't take two guesses to find out who. It was only about five minutes later when Buffy actually thought to ask a question she wouldn't have taken five seconds to pounce on two years previous.

'Why didn't you just start massacring?'

Silence had greeted her question and when she'd found herself brave enough to look up into his face, he had been silently contemplating the answer he was about to give.

'Can't say I didn't think about it. I'm a vampire, Buffy, it's what I am, what I will always be. The temptation is always there.' A long sigh accompanied his statement, and it punctuated the air poignantly. 'But then, I set foot outside that door, wandered around the tunnels, saw families, little kiddies, playing with sticks cause they couldn't have toys. There were smiles on their faces. The whole world had gone to shit and I'm supposed to dancing about it. Revelling in my evil ways. Someone had turned my chip off, yeah. Probably that big git wants me to start killing left, right and bloody everywhere. But this is me. I don't like being used. Never have. I hated that chip, but guess what? Things change. I remember telling Angel that we couldn't, that demons didn't change. But I did. I looked at those humans, those people that were supposed to be food, and something cracked. These people were better than me. An apocalypse was happening all around them and they were carrying on. Surviving. Being something other than dead.' He'd smiled then, directly at her. 'Look at me. I got a new respect for Happy Meals.'

She'd smiled then, in spite of herself. Then she'd seen how tired he looked, how weary his face was. His whole body sagged, not tense for once, but only through the sheer exhaustion. He was pushing his body to the limit to heal in time for the upcoming journey. And he needed rest. Buffy had left him, promising her return in a few hours. Which was now.

As she hesitated outside the door, she'd remembered something else that had changed about the vampire, other than his overall attitude and his hair colour.

He was calling her by her name. Everywhere she went, she was the Slayer. That was who she was recognised as. But he had turned up, and he saw Buffy. The once quippy and bouncy Californian girl with a tormented past. He hadn't been using her calling as her name, not as much as he used to. And it made her feel like there was something he wasn't quite letting on.

But now wasn't the time. She could ask him on the way to Washington. It was a long trip to the capital, one they had no choice but to cover on foot. She'd collected some weapons, small but effective tools to help them. Food was something they'd have to find on the way. Spike had mentioned his diet of animals before, so she was hoping he could survive on them for now.

The door opened easily in her strong grasp and she slipped inside, seeing that the vampire was still asleep on the small bunk. He'd contorted himself into an unusual position in his sleep. One leg was curled under his body, his right arm hugging his abdomen. The other arm was cradling his head, which was buried into an old pillow, whilst the other leg was propped up against the wall. She noticed on closer inspection, as she held back a giggle at the cuteness of his positioning, that the leg propped up on the wall was the previously injured one. She took a closer look, careful not to disturb him, and saw that whilst it was easy to see where the wound had been, the skin had healed over it, leaving a pinkish scar, which would fade with time.

Buffy frowned, wondering when he had taken the bandage off. Then she saw it, tangled around his other foot. She smiled, tugging it free, her smile widening when the vampire murmured something in his sleep and rolled onto his front, one arm dangling over the edge of the bed. She watched him for a second, marvelling at how normal he looked. If he'd been breathing, he would have passed for human. Except for the fact that he was unnaturally pale.

She put the weapons down the table quietly, turning away from him as she sorted through them. Silence surrounded her and she ignored it, like she always did. Until a soft growl pierced the air. Buffy span, the slayer in her alert and her hand automatically flew to the machete at her side. Then she looked back at Spike. His face had contorted to that of the demon and he was moving, although his eyes were still shut. He muttered something and lashed out, his fist connecting with the wall. Cement showered down on him, but he didn't wake.

He was having a nightmare.

Buffy rushed to his side, sitting down and gripping both shoulders. She shook him slightly and got no response, only the thrashing of his legs against an unreal foe.

'Spike.' She said loudly, frowning as she shook his shoulders again. He bolted upright and she jumped back as his demon visage melted away, and the blue of his eyes met her hazel ones. Unshed tears glistened at her and her frown deepened. He was still shaking, and she couldn't help but wonder what had gotten him so frightened. For some reason, him being frightened terrified her – he was William the Bloody, which should mean that not a lot scared him.

'Are you okay?' She asked, searching his face for anything, anything to reassure her. He nodded, swallowing hard. She nodded, accepting his answer, even though his body betrayed him. She stood, turning to the table to grab the blood she had brought with her for him. When she faced him again, his body had stopped shaking and he was tense again, his body closing off all emotions. The tears in his eyes were gone, and a stoic demeanour she hadn't sent the likes of since Oz was all that appeared on his face. He took the blood from her gratefully and opened it, eating quickly, as if ashamed of her seeing him feed. Buffy didn't watch and turned away, beginning to talk, as if it would clear the image of a terrified Spike from her mind.

'I got weapons. Just small ones, so we don't go into this empty handed. And I spoke to Lucas, the one in charge here. He said the best route for us would be through Philadelphia and Baltimore.' She turned back, seeing he had finished. He handed her back the empty packet, and she tossed it onto the table without regard.

'That'd probably be the best idea. Probably the least overrun route, as well.' He sighed, running a hand through his short unkempt hair. He would do anything for a decent shower. It was rare he could ever get one anymore, and Buffy looked like she could do with a good hour under a hot spray. Wash the past away for a bit. Wash that nightmare away. He was glad she hadn't mentioned it. He didn't want to discuss it with anyone, let alone her. But he could tell she was spooked by his behaviour. Maybe one day he could tell her.

'When do you want to leave?' She asked, raising an eyebrow in his direction. He looked up, his hand dropping to the side again. The vampire shrugged.

'Nightfall would be best. Even if we use the tunnels, still be better to go at night.' He waited for a reply and felt rather irritated when she smiled at him knowingly.

'I'm assuming your body clock is on the blink, cause it is night. Sun set half hour ago.' He scowled at her and she giggled. 'It's okay. Everyone's a bit wonky. But if we go now, we can reach the outskirts of New Jersey by morning. Cover at least twenty miles.' She waited for his agreement which came quickly. He stood up, stretching, and then slipped his feet into his boots. 'You kicked your bandages off.' She said, pointing at his healed wound. 'But it looks better, so I'll take it you don't need them anymore.'

He inspected the leg himself and then nodded, stooping to tie his laces. He rolled his jeans leg back down, covering the gash, and then stood straight, grabbing the old jacket he had arrived in off of the chair. Buffy looked at it, noting the holes in it. The jacket was short, faded black and made of plain material. It was a far cry from the jacket he used to sport on a daily basis.

'What happened to the duster?' She asked, and he looked at her sharply.

'Lost it.' Something shone in his eyes but she decided not to press. When he felt like opening up to her, he might. Not that he hadn't done so already. She just felt like there was more to this story. But whatever it was, she had over a week to get it out of him before they arrived at their destination.

He seemed keen to get on as they walked through the complex, ignoring stares from younger members of the community who knew Spike was a vampire. He was still a character they were wary of and as they approached the exit tunnels, Lucas stood before them, eyeing the two cautiously. His gaze lingered on the vampire for a moment before he turned to Buffy.

'You have everything you need?' he was referring to food and weapons, and she knew it. She wouldn't need anything else. It was May and the weather was surprisingly warm outside. She nodded in reply and he smiled, enveloping her in a hug. It was unprofessional, but she knew he was sending her off with everyone's hopes. The older man reminded her of Giles too much sometimes.

He released her and nodded at the vampire. 'Good luck, both of you. Hope you can bring the bastard down.'

'So do we, mate.' Spike cocked his head and headed out of the door, slipping quietly into the dark of the tunnels. Buffy threw one last look around what had been her home for a few months now, and then followed the vampire, her eyes adjusting to the dark as she stepped into the tunnels. Spike was waiting for her, and she looked up at him, seeing the hesitant smile that graced his face.

'Come on luv. We got a hell of a journey ahead of us.'