In the Wake of the Wolf
Spike is angry when he discovers graffiti on his crypt wall. Tara's new roommate is a peculiar young woman from London obsessed with converses, astronomy and building strange electronic things. Meanwhile, the Wall is fractured, the stars are disappearing. Spuffy and 10/Rose.
Note: This is Spuffy and 10/Rose leaning fic. Just a warning. They are my OTPs. Starts after the events of Tabula Rasa for BtVS and after Midnight for DW. Both story goes au from their respective episodes.
Warning: PG13+; for violence, language and some sexual situations. Mostly the first two.
"Oh bloody hell!"
Spike let out groan at the sight of the graffiti on the wall of his crypt. The sun had just gone down, and he had stepped outside for a quick run to the butcher's when he saw it: some idiot punk had desecrated his home with some awful pink spray paint.
"What bleedin' nancy thought pink would be a good color?!" he cried out indignantly, glaring at the vandalism, "Coulda at least chosen a more proper color…" Like black, or blood red. Or real blood. At least the words weren't as poncy as the chosen color.
"Bad Wolf," he read aloud to himself, "Huh. Could be worse." Still, when he caught whoever or whatever did this, they were in for the beating of their miserable lives. He just hoped it wasn't human; he didn't fancy getting a Texas-sized headache over something so juvenile, but if that paint wasn't going to come off, he might just endure the pain for a good beating. Probably wasn't human anyways, considering most Sunnydale citizen knew not to wander around cemeteries after dark. Though there was that one oddball night funeral when he was got all poncy and sung out his heart to the Slayer. He cringed at the memory.
Anyways, he couldn't actually detect any residual scent of whoever the perpetrator might have been. It was most likely a demon or a vampire. But most demons and vamps made sure to stay away from his crypt, knowing full well it was William the Bloody's territory, and as much as a Slayer doormat he was, he could still kick nonhuman ass like the rest of them. He made a point of it too. If anything, it was probably some dumb fledgling trying to get a rise at out of him. And get dusted. Fuckin' suicidal vamp.
So Spike went and got his blood and his smokes, dusted with a few fledgling crawling out of their graves, did battle with a demon robbing a grave (which, for the record, Spike had no problem with at all. But he was on Slayer leash, and the more demons he killed, the happier she'd be.) When he came in close proximity of his crypt, the scent of a human hit him. It was an odd smell, nothing like he's ever encountered. He was sure it was human, but it was mixed with a peculiar foreign scent that he couldn't quite pin point, though, for some reason, smelled familiar.
He quickened his pace, and when his crypt came into view, he was surprised to see a human girl standing in front of the graffiti. She looked barely past her twenties, like the Scoobies. What made the odd sight even more bewildering was the black, giant ass gun she had slung over her back. A flat, gray bag hung across her body and rested on her left hip. Both looked like they had just come off the set of the Terminator or something. He didn't see a spray paint can in her hands or anywhere near her.
"Find anythin' interestin' pet?" he drawled as he got close enough, drawing himself taller and posturing the best Big Bad stance he could muster with a couple of convenience store bags in his hands. If she was surprised, she was good at hiding it. She turned to him, her expression curious and not at least bit scared or intimidated. He frowned, disappointed that he had not come off as he wanted to, and looked at her more closely. She was good looking bird, he'd give her that, with large, kohl-ringed brown eyes, high cheekbones, strong jaws and full lips. The top of her blond hair was pulled back into a half-pony tail, letting the rest of her hair hug her face. Her deep purple leather jacket fit her like glove. If he wasn't so head over heels over another petite blonde, he would have appreciated the sight before him a lot more. Of course, the giant gun she wore on her back might have been a deal breaker (or maker, could go both ways). She was either a weapon tester for a secret military futuristic weapons producer or had just come back from a sci-fi convention.
"You do that?" he asked, nodding at the pink 'Bad Wolf'.
She glanced at the words and said, "If I did, I don't quite remember it. Though it would just like me to choose pink."
Spike raised his brows at her, questioningly; first at her odd choice of words, and second, at her accent. Not every day you meet a girl with a giant gun who spoke with a London cockney standing in front a crypt in Sunnydale, California. Nope. Demons and hell gods, yes, but a Londoner? They were a rare species in Southern California. So naturally, Spike was very curious and a bit suspicious. She couldn't be from the council, from the look and sound of her. But if she was, props to those stuffy wankers for doing something right. Though he wondered if they'd forgotten guns still don't work on vamps, no matter how big they were. Unless there was big enough and aimed well enough to blow off vamps' heads.
"No, I didn't do it," she said, finally, giving him a reassuring grin. She looked around, frowning a little at the scenery as if she just realized where she was. "It's a cemetery."
"That it is," Spike muttered, shifting his bags about so he could grab a new pack of smokes, "Any idea why you a bird like you is here in the dark all alone? Bit dangerous, ain't it?"
"Oh I've been in worse places," she replied with a giggle, "But this is the first time I've ended up in a cemetery. Where am I, but the way?"
"Restfield," he answered, lighting up a cig, and looked her up and down. How stupid is this girl? Walkin' around in the cemetery alone at night in Sunnyhell, and not even knowin' where she was? She might as well a sign that says 'Bite Me' and go rollin' around in all the new vamp graves. "What's up with the prop?"
"Oh this?" She patted the handle of the gun affectionately, "Just insurance. Don' worry, s'not as scary as it looks." She flashed him playful smile.
"Not scared, luv," he replied dryly, "Just curious. Just don' think a fake giant gun s'gonna help you when somethin' from the dark comes after ya. Don' want that now, do we?"
"Let me worry 'bout that, yeah?" she returned evenly, the smile still on her face.
"Not worried at all, pet," he said, exhaling a cloud of smoke, "Now why don't you go somewhere bright and populated. Wouldn't want to get attacked and peg out 'ere in the colonies do we? 'M told funeral arrangements are a bitch."
She frowned at him, her gaze firm and stubborn. He thought he recognized that expression, and it finally hit home when she crossed her arms over chest. That posture was just like the Slayer's, and at times the Little Bit's. Must be the trademark of bleedin' bossy bints everywhere.
"Let's for a while forget that you just threatened me—"
"What? I did not!" he growled. He did the threatening thing before and she barely blinked, and now she was complaining when he was trying to save her life?! She and the Slayer would be great chums on the 'let's be infuriating and confusing chits to drive blokes crazy' train.
She held up her hand and gave him a look. "Not what I want to discuss. Let's go back when you said we're in the colonies?"
"Yeah we are. Well, THE colony. Mother land really did spread her fat, greedy hands all over, didn't it." He took a drag. "Yup, good ol' US."
"I'm in the States?!" she exclaimed, eyes widening in shock.
"S'what I said."
"But…that's not…my coordinates…" She checked the strange watch apparatus on her wrist. Spike only noticed then it was strange, but after a century plus of unliving, new things weren't so surprising anymore. She looked up at him sharply and asked, "Where in the States?"
Spike raised his brows at her. "You know, thought you were a bit stupid before—" (She rolled her eyes.) "But now I think you're just plain nutty. How can you not know where you are? What, did ya pop outta thin air or something. Or teleport?" He paused momentarily. "Not a witch are you?"
She made a face. "A witch? No." She was looking at him now like he was the one mad. Spike sighed, exasperated. He didn't feel like dealing with a crazy girl today.
"Look, you're in Sunnydale, California, in Restfield Cemetery. The exit is that way." He pointed the way. "Now take your crazy ass back to town and get your head checked or somethin'."
"I'm not crazy!" she retorted, "Just, a bit turned around." She paused and let out a tired sigh. "Look, let's just forget I said anythin', yeah? Just point me to town and I'll go."
Spike had a mind to just vaguely point out the way back to civilization, but he knew the danger of her getting attacked by a vamp was high enough that he might be hearing about it the next morning. The Slayer wouldn't like it and hell, Restfield was his territory and no one was getting any on his watch.
Bollocks, he was really turning into a sodding white hat, wasn't he? Big hero saving the girl, though said girl wasn't so harmless looking with that gun, real or not. And he didn't even have soul like the Poofter. Spike wasn't sure if that was a good thing or a bad thing.
He told himself that he was only doing it because she reminded him of Buffy.
"Look, I'll take you," he said finally, heaving a sigh, "C'mon."
"You don't have to," she said, sighing, "I'm a big girl. I can find my way out with some direction."
"Told ya, big bads out here. Not safe to be alone," he said, trying to sound nonchalant, "'Sides, need to pick up more stuff from town."
She looked at him, her expression curious but cautious, and finally nodded. "Sure, lead the way."
He stuffed his pack of smokes into his pocket with its plastic bag, and adjusted his bag of blood so it hung comfortably on his arm.
"Hey, my name is Rose, by the way," she said, jogging a bit to catch up to his longer strides, "Rose Tyler. You?"
He cast a wary glance at her. She was smiling softly at him.
"Spike," he answered tersely.
Rose giggled. "That your real name?"
"What do you think?" he growled.
She just laughed. "Well, I've heard weirder. Besides, guess it fits the look. Love it, by the way. The whole Billy Idol thing you have goin' on, and that duster is a nice touch. Is that real leather?"
"Yeah it is."
"That's ace, mate. Where'dya get it?"
"Nice. I've always wanted to go to New York. Cool place. Always dreamt of being in Time Square for a new year."
Spike was now torn between being annoyed by the sudden amount of talking (chit had a gob on her), and enjoying the rare company that didn't treat him like some sort of monster or ruffian. Well, scratch that, he was a monster; so someone who didn't treat him like an attack dog only to be used for chasing down vamps and demons and being the Slayer's therapeutic outlet, which, infuriatingly, consisted of random kissing and pretending that he didn't exist.
He also desperately wanted to tell Rose that Billy Idol got it from him, that stealing bastard, but that would lead to too many questions. Though he wasn't sure what to say, but he figured he should try to suss out what she was doing. The way she acted and popped up was a mite suspicious, and if she was gonna bring anything dangerous, he wanted to nip it in the bud. Didn't need any big bad trying to rear its ugly head while his Slayer wasn't one hundred percent.
"So, you wanna tell me what you were doin' hangin' around graveyards an' readin' graffiti off the crypt wall?"
She looked thoughtful for a bit, and smiled. "Trying to get somewhere, and gettin' lost."
"Really lost, by the sound of it," he returned dryly, "Not even knowin' what country you're in is more than 'getting' lost', pet."
She laughed, a bit nervously, he noted. "Yeah, well, let's just forgot that. Havin' a really stupid moment there and…yeah. I suppose though..." She trailed off, looking contemplative, "With that here, I am suppose to be here."
He cocked a questioning brow at her.
"Anyways, what about you Spike? Why are you here in California?"
Spike took a drag of his cigarette. If he had let William, the poet, answer, it would have gone something like this: ''Cause my heart is here', but Spike would have his tongue cut out before that happened, especially in front of a stranger. So he answered, "Friends." Was true enough, even if they weren't his best mates. Frankly, and quite sadly, they were his best; even in his life as William he never had close friends. The bond between him and Scoobies, however tenuous, was the tightest bond of friendship he's ever had, which wasn't saying much. At least he could say Dawnie was a close friend. Fuck, that just made him sound and feel bloody pathetic.
"Ah," Rose said, "Must be good friends."
Spike let out a snort and glanced at the gun. He was close enough to see that it wasn't plastic. He could smell the metal, and the scent of mixed chemicals—mixed explosives. That raised red flags, for sure. She could be from the Initiative, or what was left of'em. Spike was sure they hadn't completely destroyed that project. Perhaps the UK version had decided to take an interest in Sunnydale as well.
"That gun of yours," he started, "Got a story?"
"Told ya, insurance."
"Right, pet, for what?"
She smiled at him mischievously. "For the 'big bads'."
Spike suddenly stopped walking and glared at her. She was suspicious and dancing around something and it was infuriating and had to stop. He really wasn't in the mood to play the game tonight, no matter how attractive the girl was.
He dropped his bag of blood to ground and wrapped his hands around her throat, slamming her to the nearest tree—which didn't quite work because that soddin' gun got in the way. She let out a yelp and tried to kick him—and it was a nicely powered, well aim kick. If she were a Slayer, it would have definitely thrown him across the graveyard. Her being a normal girl, it made him wince in pain instead.
"Who do you work for?!" he growled, fighting the urge to vamp out lest it activates his chip, though he surprised that slamming her into the tree didn't even give him the tiniest of shocks, "The Council? The Initiative? Where'dya get that big fancy gun?"
Suddenly he felt a painful jolt of electricity hit him in the chest. He jerked backwards, Rose kicked him, and the combined force threw him back several feet.
"What the hell is wrong with you?!" Rose shouted. He looked at her, bewildered, and found her pointing another odd looking gun at him, though this one was normal size.
"I know you're hidin' somethin'. That gun, and walkin' around my crypt and poppin' outta nowhere!" he growled, wary of the weapon. He wasn't sure if it was what hit him, but fuck it hurts!
"Your crypt?" she repeated, baffled, "What do you mean? You live there?"
"Not the point!" he snapped, "Answer my question!"
"You tried to choke me, and you expect me to answer you? You're a right nutter! And lemme remind you, I have a gun pointed at you!"
"I told you, luv," he growled menacingly, "Guns don't worry me—" He felt that jolt of electricity again, but this time it seemed a hundred times more powerful. His vision blurred and he was out before he could form another thought.
Rose didn't know what she did to deserve this. He was a perfectly nice bloke! Well, if you got passed his wrong-side-of-the-tracks looks, he acted like a perfectly nice bloke before he went all postal. Blimey, that was weird. He snapped, just like that, demanding all those strange things. She could have just tried to calm him down by asserting her position at Torchwood, but she wasn't even sure this world even had a Torchwood. She wasn't sure how much pull Torchwood would have in the States anyways.
Rose looked down at the crumpled figure at her feet. It was too bad; he was fit, definitely her type—well, her type when she was a teenager. Never did her good that type, and still hasn't, it seemed. Her type now was more of brown, wild hair, red converse, and a long brown coat.
She felt her neck tenderly, checking damages. He was pretty damn strong too. Sighing, she put her guns down, dragged Spike to the tree trunk and pushed him against it.
This was weird, she told herself, feeling Spike's ice cold arms. A sudden horrified thought seized her, and she put a hand to his chest to feel his heart and felt…nothing. She put her ears to his chest to make sure—still nothing. She felt his pulse—nothing.
Shit. No. That couldn't have been enough to kill him! Panic seized her. Oh god, oh no…she just killed him! Rose ran a trembling hand through her hair, her breath catching. Oh please, no!
Okay, calm down, Rose. Calm. I…oh fuck. She thought back to the Bad Wolf graffiti angrily—right, lead me here and what? Make me kill someone? I'm trying to save the bloody universe, not kill a person! She had needed to find a power source, rift energy, and had locked onto this place thinking it to be Cardiff. She felt the pull of something…didn't know quite what…to this place. When she arrived, her dimension cannon had sputtered and die, so she didn't have that 30 minute assurance of being able to get back to her world to get help—she would be stuck here for the time being, as a bleedin' murderer! And she was sure she was meant to be here when she saw those words on the crypt wall.
But now this? She just killed an innocent man! Sure said man attacked her but her weapons were meant for planet invading aliens, not some random bi-polar bloke in a cemetery! Rose was in the middle of another meltdown when Spike suddenly jerked awake, crying out in pain and holding his head.
Stunned, Rose stared him, fear and joy flooding her. Oh thank the universe, he wasn't dead. If she didn't remember he had attacked her just minutes ago, Rose would have hugged him.
"Thank goodness you're not dead!" she exclaimed, relieved, "That shouldn't have been enough to kill you! Though it should have knocked you out for longer, but hey, you're not dead, so not complainin' here!"
"What the bloody hell did you do?!" he growled, still cradling his head. He wasn't sure if the pain was from his chip or whatever she shot into him.
"Uh, electric shot. A bullet size shot of compressed electricity, set to moderate," she explained, showing him the gun, "Tosh, this brilliant scientist, helped me build it. Got the idea from—" She stopped suddenly, suddenly aware of herself rambling and her audience. She had been rambling a lot lately; she figured she caught the rambling bug from the Doctor.
She aimed it at him again. "Look, don't wanna to shoot you, so don't attack me!"
"Like I bloody well could," he snarled, "My head feels like s'about to split open."
"Ah, well, okay, might be a side effect, I don't know. Hasn't been rightly tested, see."
"Lucky me then," Spike muttered sarcastically.
Rose rolled her eyes. "Right. So, gonna explain why you attacked me?"
"'Cause you're suspicious bint, that's why."
Rose crinkled her nose, disappointed. "That's all?"
"An' your soddin' weapons."
"Ah, well, my guns are supposed to deter people from attacking me. It's the reason why they're made to look so menacing and not painted pink. You know, I asked if I could put rose stickers on mine and paint little Tardises on'em, just to make it personal, yeah? Shot me down they did! Said it wasn't professional or serious enough! Can you believe that?"
Spike lifted his brows at him, his expression clearing stating that he believed her to be completely off her rocker.
Rose either didn't seem to mind or didn't notice. Her expression changed from wistful to serious in a flash, and her voice reflected the change: "Now, you accused me of bein' with the Council and the Initiative. Who are they?"
Spike frowned at her. "I reckon you're not from either, then."
"Nope," she answered, popping her 'p', "No idea even what they are."
"Then it don't matter," Spike groaned, struggling to lift himself off the ground, but discovered in horror he couldn't move either of his legs.
"Ah yeah, there might be some residual paralysis in the limbs," Rose explained matter-of-factly.
"Bleedin' hell woman!" he snarled, pinching and punching his legs in panic, "I'm gonna fucking kill you!
"It'll pass in an hour or so," offered Rose, apologetically, not even blinking at his threat.
Spike snorted sarcastically, "This is just great."
"Hey, you were the one who attacked me, mister, so enough whinging from you."
He shot her a pure, evil glare. Rose responded with a smirk.
"You must really hate the Council and the Initiative," Rose continued, placing her gun back into its holster, "Attacking me like that."
"Bad history, pet, really bad history. Neither is good news for anyone. That gun of your looks like it could have come from the twisted minds of the Initiative. Though you are right better sight than those overgrown, brainless commando boys."
"Thanks. I guess." Rose made it a note to research them while she was here. The 'Initiative' sounded like military, and Rose did not like being around pure military types. "And you live in the crypt?" Her tone was incredulous, and rightfully so. Who in their right mind lived in a crypt?
Spike threw her a challenging glare. "What? I like it there. It's a thing."
"Ah, a right trend, isn't it," Rose said, disbelievingly, "Must be cozy."
"You'd be surprised."
She smiled. Must be squatter of sorts then, she decided. "I bet. Well, suppose I could tell you a few things. Make you less likely to attack me? Deal?"
Spike glared at her for a bit, and nodded. He couldn't move anyways, so he decided he might as well get as much info as possible. "Deal."
"I work for Torchwood, that ring any bell?"
"Can't say it does," Spike said slowly, "What do you do?"
Rose gave him a bright, sprightly smile, "We work to defend the earth from alien threats!"
Spike stared at her, his expression blank. A few moments passed by in silence before he suddenly burst out laughing. "Aw, pet, that's real cute. Fightin' aliens. Never heard that one before."
Rose was used to this kind of reaction. She realized the truth of her life was so ridiculous that even if she told it, people usually didn't believe it anyways. She usually didn't push it either. She only kept smiling, took a couple of steps towards him and bent down to his level.
"Sorry. Look, Spike. I can't have you remembering this, so I'm gonna do this." She pulled out a small syringe from her bag and uncapped it. "By the way, thanks for pointing the way to town." Before he could protest, she stuck the needle into him. It immediately knocked him out.
Rose hated using the Retcon, but this was just getting too complicated, and with the Bad Wolf here, she was sure it was going to get even more complicated.