Killing Buffy Summers
Chapter One: Misery Loves My Company
Spike didn't need to breathe, but that didn't stop him from taking a nice long whiff of the California air. Smelled like Slayer and all her little gang, all right, but the air was surprisingly still. Frowning, he strode into Willy's and knocked on the counter.
"Spike!" the bartender exclaimed, looking none too pleased to see him. "They, uh, they said you skipped town."
"Well, I s'pose I'm back," he said dryly. "Make it something strong, Willy. I've got a Slayer to catch."
Willy hurried to grab a bottle, hands shaking. Spike raised an eyebrow and slid onto a stool. "What aren't you telling me, mate?"
"What? Nothing. You know me, I'm an extrovert, you know, real honest, always up front with—"
He squeaked as Spike pinned him with a glare. "What is't, Willy?" He took a long swallow. "Don't tell me some other nasty got to her first."
"No, no, uh, nothing like that. But there's been talk…" Willy looked aside and gulped, exposing his veins. Spike was suddenly aware of his uncomfortable thirst. "She's not here, anymore."
"What? Where the hell'd she get off to?" he demanded, downing some more. "On vacation?"
It'd figure. That entitled bitch would probably think she had the right to it after killing the "big Bad". Well, she had another think coming. Angelus was nothing next to him, he'd prove it to her right enough.
"Maybe. I don't know. She's been gone since…well, Angelus…and you…"
"Great," Spike said, and sighed. "Just bloody fantastic. No leads?"
The bartender shrugged nervously. It was extraordinary how rat-like the man was. "Not even her little gang knows where she is, honest. It's like she disappeared into thin air."
Spike tapped a finger against his mouth before standing again. "It'll just add to the thrill," he said to himself. "While I'm here, might as well grab a bite."
Willy's eyes widened and he stepped back from the bar.
"Not you, mate," Spike said impatiently. "I want something with a bit more…character." His eyes lit up. "Maybe one of the Slayer's little friends. Send a message, you know, even if they don't know anything. Always fancied the look of that redhead, even mousy as she is. Got a feeling there's a bit more to her, yeah?"
Willy only nodded.
"Right," he said, convicted now. "Well, I s'pose that's that."
Willy looked to the side again. "Uh…well, Spike, I just…don't want to set an example. The drink…costs, well, that is to say, I can't provide a service like—"
"Stuff it." He slipped down a bill and swaggered out the door, tipping back the last of the bottle as he went.
Willow hummed to herself as she walked home from the Bronze. To her girlfriendly dismay, it was a full moon, so she was completely Ozless. Still, she'd had a good time with Xander at the club. It had been like old times, just them hanging out. It was…nice.
She froze up when she heard a noise before immediately assuming her what-would-Buffy-do position. Sliding her hand into her coat, she withdrew a small stake. Her eyes darted around, fervently searching for the source of the sound. Willow's other hand cupped the bottle of holy water concealed in her pocket.
"Are you too scared to come out and face me?" she asked, trying to sound braver than she felt. Her hand closed tighter around the stake. "You know what, that's fine. You don't have to face me. I mean, you're just a cowardly vampire—or, or demon—or something like that. You're not worth my time."
Suddenly, two dark arms encircled her, one at her waist and one covering her mouth. "Maybe I'm not worth your time, sweet, but you're worth mine."
Willow wanted to spit, "Spike", as Buffy would have, but that was on the difficult side when he was gagging her with a hand. She settled for the next best thing: biting him.
"Hey, watch it," he said, voice tickling her ear. "That's supposed to be my job."
Breathing heavily, Willow managed to jab him in the stomach with the stake. His surprise gave her room to escape his grip, and she stumbled back, still clutching the stake like her life depended on it.
Cause, you know, it kinda did.
The vampire regained his composure, straightening his leather duster as he exclaimed, "Didn't expect to see you armed and dangerous, Red. 'Course, with no Slayer to protect you…"
She gritted her teeth in an effort to appear tough. "So you heard."
"So, where is your little mate?" he said with false camaraderie. "What was so important to her that she thought it'd be okay to run off and leave her little group. What do you call yourselves, again? Oh yeah, that's right. The Scooby gang. Not so dangerous without your leader, are you?"
He came closer with every word until she was backed up against the mailbox. "We've been doing just fine," she said weakly.
"Good to hear," Spike murmured. "Wish I could say the same for myself. Still," he added, predatory grin creeping over his lips, "I think drinking you might cheer me up a little bit." He allowed the grin to transform into his game face.
Willow slid off the side of the mailbox. Panic scribbled on her face, she yanked out the bottle of holy water and thrust it forward. Spike growled and gave chase, but she hightailed it up to the door and slammed it. "Stay out of Sunnydale, Spike," she yelled through the glass.
He sighed loudly. "What does a man have to do to get a decent bite around these parts?"
The clicking of high heels turned his head, and he watched rapturously as a juicy blonde strutted by. "Now, that's more like it," Spike muttered, running his tongue over sharp fangs before heading out for the hunt.
Jamming a cassette tape into his tired stereo, he peered out the window like it'd give him some clue. "If I were the Slayer, where would I be?" the vampire mused aloud. "Where would I go to be safe and sound from the cruel cruel world?"
Spike sighed and punched the steering wheel with frustration. "Should've finished the job after she said bye-bye to Angelus. When she was weak and…and where she's bloody supposed to be! Who does she think she is, traipsing all 'round the bloody country! Stupid bint. Slayer's s'posed to be at the Hellmouth bein' all heroic and whatnot. God."
Idly, he turned the volume higher. "Dru needs to screw her head on straight. If it weren't for her and darling Angelus, I'd've sucked the Slayer dry by now, but instead Goldilocks is playing at Carmen bloody Sand—" He stopped. Something was niggling at his brain, all right.
Slayer'd lived in LA before Sunnydale. That's where she'd been called. She was a city girl, and he'd bet his fangs that she'd gone right back to her roots. Spike grinned, making a wide U-turn.
Bitch wouldn't know what hit her.
Finding her was easier said than done. It'd been a week, and he'd already visited every cemetery and scoped out every demon bar. Not a single undead soul seemed to know that the Slayer was even in LA, but Spike was sure that she was. She had to be! Where else would she go?
He couldn't wait to get his hands on her, feel her life leaving her body as he drained her veins. That'd show Drusilla. Gone soft…like hell.
They'd had fights before, him and Dru, but never like that. He'd never seen her look at him like that. Sent chills up and down his spine. But he didn't need her anyway. Bloody women, he thought bitterly. The whole lot were insane.
It was an hour till sunrise, and the vampire didn't have a choice but to just wander the streets. Los Angeles had no shortage of tasty treats, but he was tired of the old blood diet. He'd been anticipating a nice draught of Slayer blood, and nothing else compared. His eye caught a dingy sign.
Helen's Kitchen, eh? Why the hell not. Could go for a donut or two, or maybe they'd have one of those fancy onion things. He'd picked up some cash off a bloke awhile back, and he still had a couple bucks left after getting booze and cigarettes. Spike deserved a break from the hard work of slayer-hunting.
"Hi, welcome to Helen's Kitchen," a chubby redhead said lifelessly as he sprawled into a booth. "What can I get you to drink?"
He flipped the menu round carelessly. The black on his fingernails was almost gone, he'd have to swipe a new bottle from one of those teenybopper Goth girls. They were always up for a bite anyway. "I'd like some coffee, pet, if you please."
The girl—Kathy, according to her nametag—turned redder. She obviously had plenty of blood to go around. "S-sure thing."
Spike glanced around with vague curiosity. Some skinny bird in the back was stripping off her uniform. "Anne!" she yelled. "Get your butt down here, it's your shift!"
He drummed his fingers on the table. Kathy gave him a furtive glance from the coffeemaker. Anne emerged, all perky and blonde and—
"No," he breathed.
That wasn't Anne. That was the Slayer. His eyes widened.
She couldn't see him, not yet. Not until it was the right time for him to kill her. It was too close to sunrise. Spike gritted his teeth and slid under the table. Good, she was chatting to the pale bird again. He took off running.
"Your coffee," Kathy said, but the booth previously occupied by the smoking hot punk guy was empty. She frowned, shrugged, and carried the pot back into the kitchen.
Endnotes: I love Willow voice. I just.