Disclaimer: I don't own Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Harry Potter. Buffy belongs to Whedon, and Potter and related characters belong to JK Rowling. No money made.

A/N: My first HP xover for Fic-a-Day 2012. Also, I know the timeline between the books and when Buffy ended (since this is Post S7 Buffy and Post S5 Angel), but indulge me. I'm deliberately screwing with the time. Because… fanfiction. Like a couple of my other fics I've done this month, this one is based on some art I did for a contest. If you want to see this story with the art, visit my LJ at patriciatepes dot livejournal dot com (remove spaces and replace with actual periods). Please enjoy!

My Level

Sod Angel. Sod all of them. Spike shook his head, taking a long draw off his cigarette before dropping it in the street and rubbing it out with his foot. He inhaled—unnecessary for him, being a vampire and all that—but he just couldn't help it. He was home.

After having to deal with Angel and all the bratty slayers once Angel, Illyria, and himself had met back up with Buffy, Spike had decided that it was time to bounce his body back across the pond. Last time he'd been home, he'd been without his shiny soul. Oh, the blood he had shed then. But now… all he really wanted was a pint.

He brushed past the pedestrians with barely a glance, as he appeared quite normally dressed in a plain red shirt over black denim jeans with his one and only black duster, which was actually seasonally appropriate. He paid them no mind in turn, instead keeping his eyes peeled for the nearest pub. Things had, inevitably, changed—the price of being immortal. But, before long, his eyes landed on a black building that seemed quite out of place. It was a corner building, melded into the curb of the sidewalk instead of the straight line that every other building on the block followed. And, and this might have been just him, it seemed that everyone around Spike just kept passing the building by. Not in the oh-I-don't-fancy-it-at-the-moment way, but in the it's-not-there way. One bloke nearly collided with it, cutting the corner too sharply. However, just before he hit it, he stopped, blinked, and got just out of the way. Spike arched a brow, casting his gaze upward at the sign. Old, falling letters called the place The Leaky Cauldron, and unless his nose betrayed him, it was most definitely a pub. He grinned.

"Well all right, then," he said, entering.

As soon as he was through the doors, he knew why the people outside kept passing it by. It was enchanted. He couldn't feel the enchantment, but the mass of men and women in robes sort of gave it away as a magical establishment. And, apparently, magic was out to party.

A group of people were in the far corner, roaring with laughter. Lights of all colors sprouted from within the mass of black, and all the other patrons were looking mighty nervous. Spike made his way up to the bar.

"Pint of your finest," he said to the barkeep, who only nodded and bustled away to fill the order.

When he returned, with stuff so strong it nearly curled Spike's nose hairs at just the scent, Spike stopped him before he could leave. Jabbing a thumb in the direction of the crowd, he asked, "What's with that lot?"

The bartender only shook his head and moved away. Spike scoffed. "Well, then," he said, downing the drink in one go.

"Bloody hell," he said, slamming the mug back on the counter.

It was whiskey, for sure, but it felt like fire as it ran its way from his mouth to his stomach. The barkeep moved to refill, but Spike stopped him.

"Water," the vampire said, coughing. "Just water."

"Aw, can the poor widdle vampire not handle his firewhiskey?"

Spike lifted both eyebrows, turning to face the simpering voice that had addressed him.

"Excuse me?" he asked.

The woman was crazy. He'd spent enough time dating a nutter that he could spot one on sight. And this one screamed it. She was dressed all in black, a rather tightly fitting dress to have it look like it was just barely hanging on her. Her hair was all matted, as it seemed to be trying to decide whether it wanted to be curly or straight. A white streak was balled up with a weird half-up, half-down do that looked more like she had just piled it up there and it had stayed that way. Spike crossed his arms. A smile was pulling at her magenta colored lips as she stared him down.

"What's it to you?" he asked.

The smile vanished. Poof. Just like the magic everyone in here used. Now, she was snarling. And the group at the back was all staring right at him.

"How dare you address me like that."

Spike leaned back on the bar, resting his elbows on it. "And how should I address you, love?"

It was like the entire pub was holding its breath. The crazy witch was glaring at him now.

"Mistress," she said. And she was deadly serious about that. Spike could tell.

He snorted. "Like hell."

Everyone was suddenly taking a great interest in the type of wood their tables were made out of, and Spike simply smiled.

"Tell you what," he said. "Let's start over. Name's Spike. What's yours?"

Her expression changed to one of great interest. Her head cocked to the right in only the way a nutter could, she asked, "William the Bloody?"

He grinned. "Heard of me, 'ave you?"

She smiled, and there was a strange sparkle in her eye. "Oh, yes. My master told me of you. Said he would very much enjoy your company. After all, for a muggle made vampire, he said that your killing abilities were nearly unmatchable in creativity."

Spike nodded. Dark witch. Gotcha. He smiled.

"Yeah, once upon a time. But, truth be told, I don't do that anymore. Got me a soul."

Her head cocked to the other side, her eyes searching him. "Yes. I see that you have. Disappointing."

Shrugging, he said, "To each his own."

Now she inched toward him, leaning up against one of his legs. Spike wasn't sure he was gonna like where this was going.

"So, you're a good guy now? No more rivers of blood and railroad spikes?"

He nodded.

"You're soul won't allow it?"

He shook his head.

"Now… how do you know that?"


She grinned, very much like snake. "How do you know it won't allow it? Have you tried?"

"I just don't… fancy it, is all. Not anymore."

"Aw," she pouted, pulling away. "Poor widdle William's been put on a leash. Not man enough to do what he wants."

Spike was moments away from snapping at her. But he bit it down with a sound that was somewhere between a scoff and a laugh. But she caught it. She snuggled back against him, leaning up to his ear.

"Wanna have a bit o' fun?" she whispered.

Spike turned away. When he looked back, he asked, "What kind of fun?"

"Ah. Follow me," she said, beckoning him off the stool.

They headed for the backdoor of the pub, the two of them alone. They arrived at a brick wall, but before Spike could sneer any sort of reply, she pulled out her wand and tapped some of the bricks. Instantly, they began to part, forming an arch that led into a lane that was lined with shops. She stepped through the arch, and Spike followed close behind.

"What are we doing?" he asked.

She smiled back at him, pointing at a shop that appeared to sell… herbs. And not the smoking variety… the Willow variety.

"The owner's a known muggle lover. My master demands he be held accountable," she said.

"Okay, hold up. Two questions. What's a muggle, and what the bloody hell is your name?"

"My name is Bellatrix, and a muggle is a filthy thing—someone born without the privilege of magic."

Oh, yeah. Trouble was a'brewing. As if Spike didn't already know that. Before he could mount a protest, Bellatrix grabbed his arm, pulling him close and pointing through the wide window of the shop. The proprietor was closing up, and she was a middle aged woman with blonde hair swept up and porcelain colored skin.

"Can you smell her blood, vampire?" Bellatrix hissed, almost like she could. "Don't you want to rip her throat out, drain her dry? How long has it been since you've had fresh, living blood?"

Things were going down fast. But Spike played along. Licking his lips, he said, "Too long. What's the plan?"

Bellatrix was practically giddy. "Slow and painful, just as my master ordered. She must be made to understand that her ways aren't tolerable under his rule."

Spike nodded. "Okay. Lead the way."

Bellatrix nodded. Not bothering with a flashy entrance, she favored the direct approach. With a flick of her wand, she blasted the front door of the shop off its hinges, barging in. The shop owner screamed, but Bellatrix muttered a spell before the poor woman could defend herself. It sent the owner flying across the room, right into Spike's arms. He flipped her around, holding her back against his chest. His morphed his face, letting his demon show. Bellatrix was grinning.

"Do it, Spike. Do it in the Dark Lord's name," she moaned.

Woman was seriously unstable. She was really making Dru look sane. But Spike nodded, leaning in for the kill. He opened his mouth, the owner whimpering in his grasp, as he aimed for the bright blue vein on her neck.

But then he didn't. He tossed her aside, and lunged for a very surprised Bellatrix. Now he had her in the same hold, making sure that the pointy end of her want was facing away from him and the proprietor. Sometimes, childhood lessons still cropped up as an adult.

"Let me go!" she shrieked.

"Not likely," he said. Lifting his eyes to the owner of the shop, he morphed his face back to normal and added, "Dark Lord's out to kill you. Run, and run fast."

She nodded and did one better. With a pop, she disappeared. Bellatrix shrieked again.

"Sorry, love. Told you, I don't play like that anymore. Oh, and—"

He managed to knock the wand out of her hands, and he snapped it underneath a single black boot. She shrieked again as he let her go. Lifting a pointed finger at him, she snarled, "You'll rue this day, Spike. The Dark Lord does not show mercy to one such as you."

Spike nodded. "Sure. Hey, you know what? Send him my love."

With a huff, like a child denied ice cream before dinner, she disappeared with a pop too. Spike shook his head, reached into his duster, and withdrew a pack of cigarettes. He lit one and held it loosely in his lips.

"You know," he said to no one. "I think I miss the slayers. Maybe Uncle Spike needs to pay the tikes a visit."