Date: December 22, 2010

Fandom: BtVs

Disclaimer: It is not mine. Not even a little bit. But… I do own a shirt that looks remarkably similar to Buffy's…

Timeline: Season 4- Alternate Harsh Light of Day, before Spike actually finds the gem. Buffy knows he's around, but hasn't met up with him yet.

"Ahh, Sunnydale University. Come and be educated! We offer Sleeping in Psych 101, Meanie History Teachers, and Demon Roomates for your pleasure."

Buffy kicked at the sidewalk and scowled. Why was college so hard? And yeesh, what was up with her history professor?

"Miss Summers, would you like to teach the class?" She snorted. "Meanie."

"Are you talking to yourself?"

She turned to find three fledglings staring at her. "Why yes, actually. Is that a problem for you?"

They glanced at each other. "Uh, I guess not. Unless being crazy is carried in your blood."

She launched into a kick. "I am NOT crazy!"

Spinning, she snapped one of the vampires head off, then yanked out a stake and finished off the others.

"But, for the record, I really don't think it does."

"Who are you talking to?"

Groaning, she turned to find a couple of frat boys watching her curiously. Forcing a smile, she waved.

"Uh, hey."

"You got a friend around here? Heard you talking."

A little too brightly, she said, "Who me? Nope, no friends around."

Exchanging glances, they nodded.

"In that case…" one moved to wrap an arm around her shoulders. "No one will hear you scream." He vamped.

She tried not to laugh, really she did. When faced with two to one odds and threatened, the first rule to follow is to not laugh at the villains. But she just couldn't help herself.

"Seriously? That's your best line? That's, like, really lame."

His face wrenched in an ugly sneer. Before she could anticipate it, he flung her over to his friend and let out a yell.

"Hey, boys! Look what we found!"

And then she was surrounded by one, two, three, four… oh gah. A lot of frat vampires. Gulp.

"What do you think you're-"

He hit her. Hard. Hard enough to knock her off her feet. And that apparently was the signal for the rest of them to descend.

She fought. She kicked, she punched, she was a whirlwind. But she was stakeless now, and they just kept coming.

She felt her shirt being ripped away, and she felt a twinge of panic. There were so many of them! And only one of her…

She struggled frantically now as they held her down, suddenly terrified of what was happening. She could feel her own blood trickling down her face, and her body folding.

As the first vamp leered in her face and bent to her neck, Buffy fought the urge to just give in. Belatedly, she wondered why she wasn't more alarmed.

She was almost expecting the furious snarl that ripped through the air and stunned her attackers into silence.

And then Spike was there, an avenging angel in black leather, scattering the fledgling and toddler-vamps in every direction.

Buffy collapsed, not caring that she was currently not wearing a shirt and she was surrounded vampires who used to be college boys.

She heard the distinct sound of necks breaking, instinctively knew when they dusted, and could only feel minor surprise and embarrassment that he'd managed to take them all out when she hadn't even managed one.

She shakily climbed to her feet, running a nervous hand through her hair. She turned around on unsteady legs and squeaked in surprise when he was right there.

He ignored her and instead pressed a cool hand to her stomach. She gasped as her sore muscles protested. His blue eyes met hers and even though she knew what she'd find, she hadn't been prepared for the simmering anger just barely contained.

They both stiffened when the sounds of feet and voices carried to them. Both glanced down at her topless status, then over to the noises.

There was no time to move before the people were on them. Buffy prepared herself for ridicule and/or knowing smirks that knew jack.

She had not prepared herself to be swept into black leather-clad arms and turned away, her semi-nudity covered by his arms in the back, and his torso in front.

Startled, Buffy buried her head in his chest on instinct. He was still, obviously waiting for the passers-by to get gone. Buffy didn't care. It felt nice to be held- even if it was by Spike.

When he drew back, she stifled a little whimper of protest. She didn't like feeling so exposed.

Evidently, Spike realized this, as he immediately whipped off his coat, handed it to her, and then proceeded to take off his red button-down shirt-which wasn't buttoned down-and drape it around her. He took back his coat and shrugged into it before giving a little growl and softly smacking her hands away from the buttons and doing them up himself.

Before she could react, he'd swept her up into his arms bridal-fashion and started walking.

Buffy struggled for a minute, then gave up, letting her head fall back on his shoulder and tentatively reaching her arms around his neck. He didn't protest, and she let herself relax, not thinking about the implications of a Slayer being comfortable in the embrace of a soulless vampire.

When she realized he was taking her home, she shifted.

"My mom isn't home."

He stopped.

"Where to then, luv?"

She shivered. It'd been a while since she'd heard that voice.


Without a word, and with a certainty of destination that was mildly disconcerting, he spun on his heel and started for Giles' apartment.

Spike kicked the door.

"Open up, Watcher!"

There was a scrambling on the other side before the door swung open to reveal Giles in his robe.

"Good Lord!"

Buffy offered him a little smile and wave. "Hey, Giles. Can we come in?"

"Buffy, you- uh- Spike!"

Amused, Buffy nodded. "Uh-huh. Ya gonna let us in?"

His mouth hanging open, Giles stepped back and managed a stuttered invitation.

The vampire maneuvered past him and set Buffy down gently on the couch before stepping back non-threateningly.

"Buffy what happened?"

She sighed. "I got jumped by… a large number of vampires. They surprised me and got the upper hand."

Giles shook his head. "Oh my. And… how did you…" he glanced at Spike.

Buffy leaned back, a slight smile on her face. "I don't know whether to be relieved that I have such a possessive mortal enemy, or worried that I'm relieved that I have such a possessive mortal enemy."

Spike's lips twitched. Giles blinked.

"Hm- oh, uh, quite." He shook his head. "Well, in light of my upbringing, I feel I must thank you, Spike." He turned to the suddenly startled vampire. "For saving her, you have my gratitude."

Spike stared at him for a minute. Then he shrugged.

"She doesn't deserve to die like that."

Strangely touched, Buffy smiled. "Thanks."

Shifting, seeming uncomfortable now with the attention, he straightened. "Yeah, well. Next time, I'm killin' ya, you hear?"

She was still smiling. "You wish."

He snorted. "An' I want my shirt back, Slayer."

Giles' eyes snapped to Buffy's attire. "You're wearing his shirt?"

She rolled her eyes. "Well, I wouldn't be if those vamps hadn't ripped mine down the middle." She pouted. "I liked that shirt. It was brand new, and it had all these cute little flowers all over it…"

Giles wasn't listening.

"You gave her your shirt?" he asked incredulously.

Spike rolled his eyes. "That so hard to believe?"

The Watcher took off his glasses and began polishing. "Well, yes actually."

The vampire's eyes were still going. "Typical. You know, not all vamps are walking expressions of depravity. I may hate the Slayer, but she shouldn't have to go around exposed for all the world to see."

"Giles," she whispered in put-on awe. "It has morals!"

Spike flashed her a grin. "You said it, pet." Abruptly, he swung around, heading for the door. "I'd better be going." He shot Giles a look that chilled the Watcher's skin. "Take care of her," he growled.

Insulted, Giles replied. "As if I'd do anything but!"

The vampire only grinned, then faced the Slayer.

"Take care, luv. Nex' time I'll kill ya."

She smirked up at him. "What if someone else gets there first?"

The territorial snarl only made her smile.

Joyce Summers laid the freshly washed shirt on the ironing board and hummed as she began to smooth out the wrinkles. Buffy hadn't said who it belonged to, only that she'd had to borrow it unexpectedly and needed to return it. She shook out the blood red shirt and folded it, lost in thought. It was… familiar almost. Like she knew the owner, though she didn't recognize the shirt. Oh well. She shrugged and placed the shirt on the table, where Buffy could find it when she got home.

A/N: Yes, this is totally not something that would happen in this season. But this is fanfiction, so it is happening. They aren't really out of character either. Let's face it-or embrace it, if you're me-Spike is possessive. Buffy is his Slayer, and he makes no bones about that fact when he comes back in season 4. And Buffy… Buffy's having a hard time with college, and slaying, and boys, and so having someone who wants her-even if it's only 'cause he doesn't want anyone else to kill her before he can-is nice for her.

At least that's my interpretation. Feel free to disagree.