I'm writing this in answer to a challenge posted by jypzrose at Crumbling Walls, the B/S sanctuary forum.  My first challenge fic!!!!  YAY me!!!  The requirements are after the story, with the only change being that this is set during the afternoon, not the night, and I tweaked the general concept a bit.  This is the closest I've ever gotten to writing nc17… which isn't very close, really.  Someday I shall, I'm sure, but once again I chickened out.  Ah well.  If you need a soundtrack while you read, I'd recommend putting Ben Folds Five's "Brick" and Jewel's "Foolish Games" on repeat for this.

NOTE:  make sure that you DON'T SKIP THE POEM!

Timeline: mid-Wrecked, post- 'morning after' and pre- Willow wiggage

Aquarius

By Rashaka

"FOUR winds blowing thro' the sky,

You have seen poor maidens die,

Tell me then what I shall do

That my lover may be true."

Said the wind from out the south,

"Lay no kiss upon his mouth,"

And the wind from out the west,

"Wound the heart within his breast,"

And the wind from out the east,

"Send him empty from the feast,"

And the wind from out the north,

"In the tempest thrust him forth,

When thou art more cruel than he,

Then will Love be kind to thee."

                                    -Sara Teasdale

         Through the pane she watched the torrent pour, head against the glass, hair falling like another curtain that hid her countenance from harsh, wet world without.  Precipitation threw itself in tiny bullets at her in response, and Buffy gamely stretched out her fingers, providing the minimal effort required to touch one random bead as it hit the glass with a small watery nova, then tracing the rivulet as it fell toward the sill, pursuing fellow droplets. 

         Perpetually the process continued: as each favored drip reached the base of the glass, Buffy would look up, pick another drop as it hit the invisible shield, and once again follow its strange, wriggly path down to oblivion.   Drop after drop, tiny splash and tiny river after tiny splash and tiny river.  Buffy's mired psyche gleefully clung to the unceasing tedium of it, her insides clamoring and screaming for a piece of something easy to understand.  Maybe, if she could understand this, if she could lose herself in the endless drear it promised, then she would not have to understand other things.

         Buffy breathed deeply once, and the muggy air whispered over the glass, spread in soft gray blooms.  Her fingers gave up tracing rivers to instead play with this new fascination.  She made to touch it, maybe paint a happy face as any normal, happy person would.  At the last moment, though, her fingers ran down the chill surface, leaving instead long marks in the condensation.  Green eyes stared vacantly as those lines on foggy glass brought to mind similar marks, brought to fore thoughts she didn't want to acknowledge.

                cool planes of pale skin, her nails raking down his back, feeling the trails of blood that followed under her soft killer's hands, seeing him arched above, head flung back like man seeing heaven through broken floorboards, up through rafters and tattered patches of moonlight.  What did he see, with his eyes closed like that, face to the covered sky?  What could he possibly see, when all she could see was him?  He was everywhere to her eyes, around her, inside her, white lines and curves with blood rivers down his back and his hands woven in her currents of hair

         Buffy's fingers spasmed against the window, a reflexive twitch that always came now at the mere thought of him.  She had never thought one's fingers could ache for not having the touch of someone before, but now her body seemed boil under her stillness, the need to simply feel his skin on her own an itch she could not relieve, forever distracting her.

         The downpour surged suddenly, crescending from a heavy, dirt drizzle to a riotous cacophony of water on glass, liquid on roof tiles, splashes on cement. A maelstrom outside that forlornly echoed her maelstrom within.  She had wondered where the sun went, the same righteous, beautiful sunlight that had peaked through cracks that very morning to fall in splashes all around them, so near that for a moment when Buffy opened her eyes she had feared for him, before her proper self had whispered that maybe it would have been better if—

                 she clasped the black leather to her broken, fatigued body, and scuttled back from his beauty fearfully, eyes wide with the horror that she could even think it, that Buffy the woman could even consider such an end to someone with whom she had just hours ago— Ahh… but some one, or some thing? her other half had murmured traitorously, with an ugliness she'd never thought to sense in herself

         Buffy jerked her hand down the glass abruptly, and the fog with its testament to her indiscretions was wiped away. Once more she was free to stare at the water as it hit the world outside, and not think about—about anything.  Why think at all when out there the stuff just kept coming, like God in madness had opened a tributary in the sky, and she and Sunnydale, and perhaps the entire earth below, were left to wade through the aftereffects.  Clouds of sooty grey defined the edges of her reality now, and the water beyond the window was willing to sing her into oblivion, or maybe forgetfulness, at least.

         She'd be so lucky to have such forgetfulness, she thought coldly, as a growing shadow on the street formed into a graceful body she was achingly familiar with.  The abrupt sight of him burned her eyes and dried her mouth, and her fingers almost pulled at the glass while her mind screamed the wrongness all over again.

         With his vision came the audio-memory, the voices filtered through hazy recollection of one of Buffy's many drunken topics the night they had walked friendly-like together, tail-end to the day that wouldn't end.  She almost shuddered as the hiccup-ridden words resurfaced now.  A person can't trust their own tongue when alcohol has tainted it.

                  "You wear that awful thing everywhere, is it your security blanket?"

                  "Somm'in  like that, I suppose."

                  "Take it off."

                  "Why?"

                  "Cause nice soft security coats won't help you if you're *really* in love with me. No, if that's true, you should ditch it now cause it won't save you."

                  "Save me from what?  Other nasty things that go bump in night?"

                  "No, from the Buffy curse of destroying men.  Nope, nooo-siirrrreeee.  Be a pity when it goes."

         He moved, and the heavy coat slowly clipped from his shoulders, sliding down one arm till it was held out from his side like a banner, an offering.  She watched as it fell carelessly to the wet ground, heavy drops pounding into it, pounding into him.  It pounded onto his bare chest through the unbuttoned shirt, onto faded black jeans already soaked and dripping.  He stood in the center of the street, in the center of her world where any human's car could mow him down, no more than a reed swaying in the wind.  Through the glass and the water and the miles of numbness she watched him fall to his knees, hands lying open before him in broken offering, just staring back at her.

         Her hands pulled her from the window, dragged her along the wall and to the door, even as her feet dug into carpet begging her to stay.  It took nothing then open the door, to step outside, to feel the tears of heaven washing into her own hair now.  It smelled like sadness to Buffy, clean, numbing sorrow that washed away all one's fear and left only emptiness, wrinkled fingers and the desire to be swept away from life.

         It took no effort to stride toward the drowning vampire prince—not a king, no never that—to pull him up with a kiss and sink into his mouth, into his love.  Her fingers cut through the wet silk of his hair, through the curls and the streams, as she took a watery death from his lips.  His hands—long and beautiful and oh the things they could do—bunched into blouse, splayed on her hot, narrow waist, and took her warmth in return.

         She wept into his lips, bled saltwater onto his cheeks, and tried so intensely to find that feeling again, the effortless need of that night.  She had to know if it was still there; she need it to be there, so she could understand why it existed at all.  So she might understand why her chest burned when it should have passed emotion by, why kisses in a storm with a being her world despised made her toes curl and her eyes swim.  Why everything she wanted seemed to exist in his beautiful hands and his beautiful eyes, so much that suddenly she could look or touch at nothing else without missing him.

         Buffy's hands fell from his locks to grasp the long leather up and slowly pull it back over his shoulders, to push his arms through until he was himself again, and she could justify letting him go.  No longer her lover in streaks and splashes, but a vampire in black, an enemy, an evil thing.  If Buffy had been a kinder person, if waking underground hadn't left her with so little compassion, she might have stopped to wonder if he understood what it meant just now, maybe to even explain that she'd found what she'd wanted in his lips, and it had only made everything worse.  But she was not a kind woman anymore, and she couldn't spare thoughts for him beyond the knowledge that he'd never be hers for real.

         With a broken sob Buffy pulled the duster further over his shoulders, then forced the fool for love away from her.  It was no surprise to realize she couldn't have him; there was no point in wishing or deceiving themselves any longer.  Buffy turned away, leaving him with nothing to hold but slowly lessening torrent.  Brought to his feet with a kiss, her going left him even less of a man for it when she went.

         The door closed under the pressure of Buffy's hands and back.  The rivulets of someone's tears—hers, his, or the gods' she couldn't say—were still lacing her hair and body, still rolling down her clothing in streams and inundating the skin beneath.  She'd gone out there after all, and now she was no better than him, no dryer or safer for being inside again.

         Why? she wondered, and her eye blinked at the image of her sister entering the room, Why couldn't she just make it end?

         Buffy peered through water droplets on eyelashes as her sister stopped by the stereo, turning a knob with small, newly painted fingers.  Delicate piano seeped into the air like a slow flood, as if wash outside had dared to follow her in, claiming she had granted it passage by being so bold, so arrogant as to return after taking yet another stolen, mind-drenched moment with him.

                  "You took your coat off, and stood in the rain." 

         "Buffy?" Dawn asked gently, eyes soft and inquisitive.  "Are you alright?"

                  "You were always crazy like that."

         Letting the door catch her weight, Buffy slid to the floor and wept, remnants of the deluge pooling around her.

________________________________________________________________________
            Challenge:


-set post smashed, or right after the first scene in wrecked (i.e.-no Willow/Rack crap.)
-Spike standing in the pouring rain outside of Buffy's house at night.
-Buffy watching him through the window
-alternating POV's (either first person or third person, you decide)
-make it angsty
-Jewels' song "Foolish Games" must be mentioned, either playing in the background, or Buffy thinks of it, in particular the line about "you took your coat off and stood in the rain". But don't make it a song fic.
-MUST have Buffy rushing from the house to catch Spike before he leaves and some major kissage in the deluge. (ala Streets of Fire. For those that haven't seen it, RENT IT. Good flic)
Possible--have them seen by Dawn or one of the Scoobies. Whoever you choose, make their reaction fit the person.

I don't own the characters or the song "Foolish Games" by Jewel, but I would love your reviews if you would kindly send them my way.  And you know, I didn't use the word "rain" once in this fic.  But I bet you thought of it.
~Rashaka

Cause they sound just like Buffy & Spike....

Kagome: Oh yeah, Inu-yasha's great...for an arrogant, selfish, stubborn, misogynist, violent, angry, stupid, narrow-minded, dog-breathed jerk!

Inu-yasha: Well, and I thought you'd be eaten by now.

From Inu-Yasha: A Feudal Fairy Tale, Volume 3 by Rumiko Takahashi

.r&r.