Spike was lurking in an alley.

*Which is more bloody difficult to do than it sounds,* groused the vampire while continuing his mental conversation with that demon's most favorite person in the whole wide world.


In his mind, Spike watched how that handsome bloke with such a sense of style was casually leaning against the brick wall of the alley, his head a few inches below the building skirt, a horizontal line of bricks twice as long as the others, that protruded a few inches beyond the rest of the building wall. Spike didn't know or care about the reasons for this architectural feature: decoration, structural requirements, or weather protection. Other-Spike gave the original an eager nod, urging him to continue.

The vampire also leaning against the wall while awaiting his prey was not loath to do so. *See, mate, first you gotter find a place with the right amount of traffic, not just one bloke wandering by every century or so, or some place right next to the bleedin' line for the World Cup. Then once you pick your spot and time, you gotter come up with a way to lure your next meal in with you. Me, I stick with the traditional, "Got a light, mate?" Can't go wrong with the classics, you know.*

Spike rummaged in the pockets of his trench coat, pulling out a cigarette package and shaking out a single gasper. Putting this unlit cigarette in his mouth to demonstrate to his imaginary friend how it'd go, Spike was about to drop the package back into his pocket, until he noticed how Other-Spike was pointing ahead, towards the mouth of the alley, to then vanish from Real-Spike's mind.


The Englishman glanced at where his double had been gesturing, to find nobody there. Well, nobody human, at least. Instead, right now, a little white dog was sitting on its haunches on the sidewalk in front of the alley, staring directly at Spike.

The vampire blinked. The dog didn't.

It was some kind of short-haired terrier, fixedly looking at the demon in the alley, and as Spike watched, it started showing its teeth in an angry snarl, with a steady furious rumble coming from its chest, and the hair on the dog's back bristled all the way down to its stub of a tail.

*Soddin' wonderful.*

Ever since he'd become a vampire, Spike had hated dogs. They could easily tell he was no longer human and an obvious danger to their owners, so if the demon couldn't kill them at once, he tried to keep as far away from them as he could. Which wasn't possible now, in front of an animal that at any moment now was certainly going to start barking and howling at the top of its lungs, giving a clear message to the entire world of "Mugger here! Mugger here!"

*Right, let's see if a dog can fly,* thought Spike nastily, as he shifted his weight to step forward in preparation for kicking that little cur all the way across the street. However, faster than Spike thought possible, the dog sprang up and dashed forward, giving the vampire's ankle a nip on its way past, with the canine then running deeper into the alley.

"Shite!" snarled the Englishman, trying to keep his balance while recovering from a missed kick at that damn dog. Throwing out his hand against the alley wall to stay upright, Spike bashed his knuckles against the rough surface and dropped his cigarette package onto the alley floor, with this small box bouncing to end up resting against the brick wall, and any second now the remainder of his cigarettes were about to become soaked and ruined. To top it all off, they were his last ones.

"Bugger, bugger, bugger," chanted Spike in the familiar refrain for anyone who's had everything go wrong all at once, as he crouched down besides the wall to grope for his fags. In mid-search, the vampire froze, his head coming up, as he remained in his squatting position, and Spike drew in a deep sniff while cocking his head to intently listen.

Two men coming this way, one older than the other and reeking of booze and cheap pipe tobacco. The younger one, though, ahhhh….yum! Fit, didn't smoke, and smelled delicious. Right, kill Mr. Bad Habits and feed on scrumptious, loot both their bodies, and get out of this soddin' alley.

Still in his crouch and blissfully anticipating hot, lovely, blood, Spike ignored the patter of oncoming paws behind himself.

He wasn't able to ignore canine fangs then burying themselves to their gumline in his bum.

Instantly straightening up, with a final bounce of his knees that sent him several inches into the air from the alley floor, Spike started to roar out his pain and rage to the entire world, after which he'd rip that animal which had dared such a despicable thing into furry shreds. At least, that was the plan.

Spike had totally forgotten he'd been directly under the building skirt, which meant when he was still rising into the air from his agonized leap, the top of his skull smashed with immense force into the underside of several protruding bricks, promptly shattering these, and this debris then pattering onto the unconscious body of William the Bloody, which had limply collapsed onto the alley floor.

The white dog warily watched the unmoving body for several moments, absently pawing at its mouth. It had released its bite just after Spike had hit his head, darting away from the falling body to then stand ready for any required action, such as further attacks or running away again. Neither seemed to be necessary, as its foe seemed to have been overcome. Cautiously padding nearer towards Spike, the dog slowed down in its advance, its nose wrinkling at the strange smell of a human who seemed to be dead but had been walking around and muttering to itself.

Well. In any case, the dog was the clear victor in their affray, which meant its dominance needed to be established. A glint in its eye, the dog headed right toward Spike's upper body.

Several moments later, with its master's voice calling for the dog, this animal trotted out of the alley mouth, to find two men waiting for him on the sidewalk just before this passageway entrance.

"There you are! Where have you been?!" said the young man in the usual amused/exasperated tone common to owners of dogs with a mind of their own. Wagging his stubby tail, the dog looked up adoringly at his master, and happily received several pats on his head. Rising from performing this, the young man started saying, "All right, we can go-- Captain!" There was clear reproof in that last word.

Finishing off his flask of rum, the older man dressed in a seaman's coat and with a shipmaster's cap on his head smacked his lips and then wiped dry his bristling black beard with the back of his hand. In his rumbling voice, an unabashed mariner boomed, "Just a nip for the chill of the night, lad!"

Dryly, the younger man pointed out, "It's early summer, Captain. Oh, never mind that. Can we go now?"

"Lay your course, matey, and I'll follow along! Ration my rum!" At that last oath, the young man and his dog headed down the street, with the sailor accompanying them being on the far right of the sidewalk. As he passed by the alley, a burly arm casually tossed the empty flask into this passageway, with the seaman not paying any further attention to what he'd thrown away into the alley. There wasn't any sound of shattering glass, which meant the bottle had probably landed onto something soft and remained intact.

Spike wouldn't have considered his forehead to be soft.

The demon, who had become conscious again and being in a truly vile mood both from his splitting headache and what else had occurred, had just arisen to his feet and Spike would have in the next instant charged out of the alley, fangs and claws ready for a dearly-wished-for massacre, except that the bottle the captain tossed away had unerringly nailed the vampire right between the eyes.

Going down once more, and again fully out for the count, Spike collapsed onto his back on the alley floor, a swelling lump on his forehead growing to match the one on the top of his head, and with a copious amount of yellow liquid trickling from his hair to separate into rivulets around that new bump, dribbling further down his face into an unconscious Spike's open mouth.

Trotting along the street and sniffing the air, Snowy was at ease in both body and spirit, with an actual smirk on the dog's face, as he led Tintin and Captain Haddock along in their adventures.

A really good pee was always satisfactory for any dog.