((A/N: I'm trying to work on updating my stories faster, so sorry for leaving this story hanging for so long))
Once Giles lectured her about magic, he promised to look up mystical memory loss. He left to go find a few volumes he had at the store, and he didn't even bother asking Willow to do it. If she was having memory loss, it was probably best not to send her out on her own. Buffy offered to take Willow home, but the witch was oddly reluctant. Spike had immediately raided the first aid box in the Watcher's house and was currently trying to dress his wounds by himself, and it was obvious it wasn't working out well. Willow glanced at him before refusing Buffy's offer to be walked home. "I'll be fine Buffy, there's a few of Giles' books he has here that I'd like to look at," she told her friend, slightly worried the lie came so easily. Spike lifted an eyebrow at her, but didn't point it out.
"Will you be alright here with him?" She asked, pointing at Spike with a skeptical look on her face. Something was going on between these two, but Buffy couldn't put her finger on it.
"Well it's not like he can hurt me," Willow lied again. For some reason the past few times she'd been around Spike, he'd been able to bite her with only minimal pain. It was weird, but she didn't want to worry Buffy. The Slayer nodded and made Willow promise she'd fill her in in the morning. With a goodbye to Willow and a glare towards Spike, Buffy left to go finish her patrol before heading to bed.
When the door closed, Spike chuckled lightly despite the pain it caused. "Lyin' to your friends now, Red? 's not like you. Although I gotta say, kinda goes with the theme for tonight," he commented, tearing off some bandages from a roll using his teeth. Willow strode over to where he sat on the couch and yanked the bandages away from him. He started to protest until she started ripping strips off to dress his wounds with.
"It would help if I actually remembered tonight. Last thing I remember was studying back in my dorm room and then I'm suddenly in the cemetery with you surrounded by dusted vampires. What's up with all this weird stuff happening only when you are around? I'm starting to think you're causing all this," she accused as she started bandaging a cut on his leg. "Wait here, and don't move," she ordered before walking into the kitchen to heat up some blood for Spike. "Oi! Don't forget the Weetabix! Ol' Rupert says he's out, but he's a liar, I found it hidden behind a box of Raisin Bran," he told her, because he hated the taste of animal blood to begin with, and since he still had the taste of her blood burned into his memory, it made it taste all that much worse. Willow simply nodded, ignoring him for the most part as she busied herself making up his blood. Her head was pounding and she felt like passing out. There had been some serious magic mojo going on, but she couldn't remember any of it. She'd do a reveal spell, but she was weak to begin with, and that would only make it worse.
Spike watched her curiously as she walked towards him with the mug of blood in hand. He took it from her and she grabbed a bowl from Giles' kitchen and took it into the bathroom with her to get a wet washrag to clean the blood off Spike's face and clean out the scrapes on his hands. She closed the door softly behind her and took one of Giles' wash clothes and soaked it in warm water. Willow glanced up at her reflection and couldn't help but notice how bad her appearance was. No wonder Buffy had wanted to take her home. There were dark circles under her eyes, her hair hung ragged around her face and there was dried blood under her nose and on her lips. She cleaned herself up a bit and then walked back into the living room with a bowl full of warm, soapy water, and a bottle of hydrogen peroxide she found under the sink.
Before she entered the living room, she grabbed a washcloth out of Giles' hall closet. Willow wasn't sure why she had the urge to help Spike, but she wasn't going to question it at that particular moment. Giles would likely be gone the rest of the night researching at the Magic Box – he had the tendency to get far too caught up in being buried in old books – so she wouldn't have to face anymore strange looks from him. "About time you showed up. Good thing 'm already dead or I'd have bled out already," he snarked when she approached the couch and kneeled next to him. His mug of blood was empty and sitting on the coffee table.
"You know, I don't have to help you," she remarked with a raised eyebrow even as she gestured for him to remove his shirt. He sighed lightly, but gingerly removed the garment and tossed it onto the coffeetable. This movement caused him to grab at his side and hiss in pain, which was good for Willow considering she was trying to reassemble her features into nonchalance at the sight of his sculpted abs. He sure is muscular for a dead guy she mused and blinked in surprise when Spike turned back towards her. From her spot on the floor, she was about eyelevel with his bare skin and she reached over to dip the washcloth into the water. "Wow you uh sure took a beating, huh?" She asked casually as she washed off the dried blood from where his skin impacted with a tombstone. It was a large gash, but was already mostly healed. All that was left was a puckered, pink line that would eventually fade back to his skin tone.
"Don't see why you're doin' this – it'll heal by itself," he complained as she washed off the dried blood. She was unintentionally pushing against his ribs and it was hurting like a bitch. Willow shrugged and finished cleaning that particular wound before answering.
"Just habit I guess. Besides, I bet you don't exactly want to walk around coated in blood. Alright, stand up – I need to wrap your ribs or they'll heal funny and we'll have to break them again to fix them," she instructed him, and for once he obeyed without a snarky comment. It was odd having one of the Scoobies being nice to him without expecting anything in return. He always had liked Willow the most out of all of them. That certainly didn't mean he liked her, but his opinion was starting to sway in that favor. Too bad the witch was off her bird right now. He'd have to talk to ol' Rup about it.
"Ow! Bloody hell! Watch it!" He exclaimed in pain as she tightly wrapped his sides.
"Oh be quiet. Thought you were the 'Big Bad'?" She asked when she finished with his ribs. All that was left was his face. Since he was standing, Willow had to lean up in order to reach his bloodied nose and mouth. She quietly wiped at the blood on his face and felt her own face flush at the close proximity. The overwhelming urge to kiss him suddenly came over her, but she ignored it. Bad thoughts crazy Willow, she chastised herself and quickly finished with his face. A deep crimson blush had spread across her face and she glared when she caught the smug grin on his face. Annoyed, she grabbed his shirt off the table and tossed it at him. Spike didn't seem to be expecting it because rather than catch it, it smacked him right in the face. Willow laughed at the expression on his face when he pulled the black fabric off his face and dressed himself.
"Maybe you should tell ol' Rup about openin' that thing in the shop," he said after a few moments of comfortable silence in which Willow was cleaning out stuff in the kitchen. The bowl in her hands clattered loudly as she dropped it into the sink.
"W-why would I do that?" She finally asked. Giles would be angry with her for opening something when they didn't even know what it was, and the thought of telling him filled her with a strange, almost foreign feeling of unease.
"Because ever since you opened that damn thing you've been actin' strange," Spike replied as he reached for his duster and pulled it on. He was about to push past her to reach the front door – because when he said that, she left the kitchen area and got in front of him – when she grabbed his sleeve and pulled him to a stop. He only stopped because he didn't feel like throwing her off.
"Why won't you tell me what happened?" She demanded of him and let his sleeve go. He was in the process of pulling out a cigarette, and shrugged as he lit it. Willow made a disgusted face, but otherwise ignored him smoking in Giles' place.
"Mostly cos 'm still tryin' to figure that out," was his vague and entirely unhelpful comment before he turned away from her and left out the front door, calling out a goodbye to Willow. Before he walked off though, he suddenly turned towards her. "Er – thanks for patching me up, Red. I appreciate it," he grudgingly admitted and then quickly wandered off. Willow shut the door with a sigh. Why was Spike acting so weird? Why won't he tell me anything!? She thought in exasperation. Now wasn't the time to worry about it, she guessed, so she sat on the couch, planning to only rest for a moment, but exhaustion won out and she curled up in a ball on Giles' couch and fell asleep.