Disclaimer: I don't own or profit from BtVS. It all belongs to Joss Whedon, ME and various other affiliates. Some dialogue taken from Something Blue.

Spoilers for Something Blue with the assumption that most of us knows how the episode proceeded, but takes a sharp left onto Alternate Universe Avenue pretty much right away. This also starts out somewhat comedic, but downshifts into angst fairly quickly.

Dawn of A New Age

Chapter One:

"It's just so sudden. I don't know what to say." Buffy perched on the straight back chair, nervousness rioting in her belly. The urge to jump up and squeal was nearly overwhelming, but this was an adult moment, and she would be damned if she would let her girlish tendencies ruin it for her.

"Just say yes, and make me the happiest man on Earth." Buffy never thought she would see something so wonderful as the man she loved kneeling before her. He was so strong and handsome, peering at her with such earnest adoration. She couldn't imagine life without him, dreaded the idea of it. He'd come into her life a whirlwind of black leather, hazy smoke, andt bad attitude, making her want to scratch the smirk off his face, but somehow he'd managed to worm his way under her skin until even the thought of breathing without him nearby caused an ache to build in her chest. She loved him so much. There could only be one answer.

"Oh, Spike. Of course it's yes!"

His smile lit him up from the inside, and made the joy vibrating in her belly burst through her whole body. When he pulled her into his arms for a passionate kiss she felt as though she had finally found where she belonged. She was a girl trying to fit the pieces of her life together like a jigsaw, a slayer one moment, college student the next, a daughter on the holidays. The pieces never quite fit. She had to finagle them, smoothing the edges until they were spread too thin. But this. This moment, this man, they fit perfectly. For once, it seemed the universe was going to give her a reward for all her hard work in saving it time and time again. A family.

Spotting Giles over Spike's shoulder she nearly burst with the news. "Giles! You'll never believe what's happened!" She wiggled her beringed finger at him. Spike's heavy skull ring wasn't quite her taste, but him popping the question had been spur of the moment. First they were fighting, letting their passionate natures get the better of them once again then Spike was peering at her with soulful blue eyes, telling her he couldn't live without her. She knew spontaneity was Spike's worst and best trait, but once he made a promise he never went back on his word. His loyalty was never negotiable.

The look Giles was giving her was pure astonishment, and she was happy to focus her attention on Spike as he turned around, wrapping his arm around her waist to provide a solid, united front to her watcher. No, her adopted father. She knew Giles wouldn't approve of Spike, and it meant more to her than she wanted to admit to her fiancée, but of course he understood. He knew her so well. The wry twist to Spike's lips told her he was trying hard to repress his normally caustic attitude. It made her love him all the more.

"Look, mate. I know that you think I'm a right git. But I love Buffy an' I want you to know that I'm goin' to be the kind of man to make her proud." He looked down at Buffy with glowing affection.

"You're not a man," Giles murmured, polishing his glasses.

Spike continued blithely, knowing his status as vampire wasn't something he could change. It was a situation that would need to be worked through one day at a time. "Family is important to me. Always has been. An' this bun in the oven is jus' a miracle, it is."

"Bun?" Giles marathon eyeglass buffing ceased as Spike's words sunk in.

Spike absorbed Giles confusion, and turned to his fiancée. "You haven't told him yet?"

Buffy shook her head shyly, her eyes darting away. She hadn't told anyone. Not even her mother. She wanted them to cherish the secret for a while before everyone else knew. It was such a wonderful miracle, and she knew there would only be questions and castigations once the news was out. "I'm only a few days late. I wanted to be absolutely sure, before we told anyone, and-"

"What, luv?" Spike grasped her suddenly cold hand, and lifted it to his lips. She turned into him, focusing her gaze at the hollow of his throat instead of his eyes. It was just too horrible to contemplate.

"It's just so early yet," she swallowed. "Anything could happen."

Spike gathered her up, laying a soothing cheek against hers. "Shush, luv. Banish the thought. Our little nipper is a fighter, he is. Jus' like us. Nothin's gonna happen to him."

She leaned back in his arms so she could meet his eyes. He always knew what to say to make her feel better. "What makes you so sure it's a he. I'll have you know we Summers women always have girls."

He smiled at her teasingly, but she could see the resolve behind it. "Makes no never mind to me. Boy, girl. It's all ours. Our miracle."

She leaned into him for a kiss. He understood. The baby growing inside her was a miracle. Their miracle. God, she desperately loved this man.

"You can't seriously believe you are capable of fathering a child. If by some miracle, Buffy is pregnant, I can assure you it isn't yours." Giles felt like a Mack truck had hit him. This had to be a spell of some sort. His fading eyesight and their delusions could only be the manifestations of magic.

Spike turned back to the watcher. He knew their battle would probably be ongoing for the rest of their lives, but at this moment he felt it important to reassure the man of his intentions. "It's our baby, mate. I honor my responsibilities. I'm goin'ta make sure Buffy and the niblet are well taken care of."

"How do you propose to do so? You can't even feed yourself."

"I'll get a job. I've got skills. I can make a right proper life for them."

"Living in a tunnel or a graveyard is hardly the place for a child. Buffy deserves better."

Buffy interjected, feeling the strain of the men in her lives arguing dancing on her nerve endings. "Don't I get to decide what I deserve? It's not like I don't spend quality time in graveyards already, but I don't think we will be so bad off as to have to live in one. Spike and I will make this work."

Giles rounded on her. "What about school, Buffy? What will your mother say?"

Buffy chewed her bottom lip. Her little hands were balling up with nervousness as she glanced between her fiancée and her watcher. "I can take a leave of absence or something. Having Spike around will be a big help when the baby gets here. I don't want to be a single mom. And besides, I really love, Spike." She looked at him with shining hazel eyes. "We love each other."

Giles threw his hands up in disgust and made his way to the phone and his crystal decanter of brandy. Clearly, it was a spell and no amount of talking was going to reverse their delusions. He dialed Willow with one hand, while pouring himself a drink with the other.

It was the smacking that made his skin want to crawl off his bones. It sounded distinctly Lovecraftian. He couldn't help but to imagine a knot of cephalopodan arms twisting and writhing around each other, waiting to tangle its next juicy meal in its tentacles. Smack – smack – smack.

"Stop that right now! I can hear the smacking."

The chair would have to go to the dump. It had been a favorite of his for years, extremely comfortable, but now the thought of it being in his home made him want to heave. Spike, with his tongue down Buffy's throat. He needed more scotch.

As startling as it was to have Anya and Xander burst into the room screaming about demons, Giles was more than a little relieved. Perhaps Buffy and Spike would show some decorum now there were more people in the room, actual seeing people. But Spike….so that was pipe dream.

"Why are you holding hands?" asked Anya clearly perplexed. Giles sat back and rubbed his brow. He really didn't want to hear this again.

"They have to hear it sooner or later," prodded Spike, leaving it Buffy's decision on just how much she wanted to tell her mates. He hadn't meant to let the bun out of the oven with the watcher. They were both ecstatic about the news, and he just assumed she would have told everyone in hearing range. He wanted to scream it from the rooftops he was so overjoyed. But he did see her point. It would be heartbreaking if something dreadful were to happen, and having other people intruding on their mourning with their own feelings and condolences would be overwhelming. Life was so fragile, so precious. He should know, having spent years ripping it away. He almost felt sick about it. Would have too if he wasn't so bloody hungry. And sad. Sad at the thought of their little miracle not making it into the world. That would never happen, he snarled silently. He would never let anything happen to his wife to be and their child.

Buffy gripped his hand tightly, and he knew she was having similar misgivings. It was all so new and special, and completely impossible. Fairytales like these never lasted. They were always taken away at the last moment. It was this knowledge that begged them to seize the day.

"I'm pregnant, and Spike and I are getting married!" Buffy burst out, her enthusiasm and happiness uncontainable in her small body. Spike tugged her closer, relishing her vibrancy.

"How? What? How?" Xander babbled.

"Three excellent question," Giles concurred while trying to find the bottle of scotch.

"What are you looking at?" Spike caught Buffy gazing up at him with wet eyes, making all the hostility in the room disintegrate like so much fluff.

"The man I love, and the father of my child." Everything about him softened. He was lost. Completely lost to this woman. He leaned closer, stroking her jawline with his fingers as their lips met. A moment of perfect happiness seared into his mind for eternity.

"I just don't think it's possible. Granted vampires are superior lovers with inexhaustible stamina and unusually large penis, but they are sterile. I mean, could you imagine? With all the sex they like to have there would be millions of vampire babies running around snacking on all the humans," Anya mused. Giles wasn't sure what was more disturbing. Vampire penises or small rabid children tearing through a town. He shuddered.

Spike who was gazing lovelorn into Buffy's eyes while their brows touched, turned his head to smirk at the ex demon. Always knew he liked her. Large penis, indeed!

"Hey! Don't talk about my man's penis." Buffy frowned from the circle of Spike's arms.

Anya had the grace to look chagrined. "Well, I wasn't talking about his penis in particular. I'm sure he has a very nice penis-"

"Please stop," Giles pleaded.

"I second that. No more talk about vampire penises," Xander said with a pained shudder.

"You have a nice penis," Anya reassured her boyfriend.

"Let's just strike the word from our vocabularies. Maybe bleach it from our brains, shall we? Wait did you say married?" Xander perked up.

"Yah!" Buffy wiggled her finger at the couple. Anya obligingly stepped closer.

"Look honey, it's a skull. Not very traditional, but fitting I guess."

Spike looked affronted. "I'll be getting her a proper ring soon enough."

"I-I like it." Buffy pulled her hand to her chest protectively.

Spike flashed her a knowing look from beneath his dark lashes. "Liar."

"I'll always cherish it." Buffy pouted.

"Look at that lip, gonna get it."

Buffy giggled and tried to get away, but Spike captured her. He cupped her cheeks in his palms, angling her face upwards so he could look her in the eyes. "I'll get you a proper ring, pet. Something you can wear on your hand proudly," he whispered over her lips. She smelled like cherry lip-gloss and shampoo. She smelled like Buffy. She smiled, her eyes dreamy as they indulged in more kisses.

"Wait….married….I know something. What is it? Everything's so familiar…work brain – work! Oh! Oh! Willow!"

Xander explained his conversation with Willow and after Buffy's ridiculous, 'I must be immune' statement; they filed out the door to head for the dorms, leaving non-smacking silence in their wake. Giles leaned his head back onto the couch with a sigh and full four fingers of scotch in his tumbler.

On the way to the crypt to do the spell to summon D'Hoffren and hopefully get Willow back, Buffy and Spike began to bicker.

"You want me to quit my job?"

"At least while your pregnant with our child. Yes. One wrong kick and our little miracle will be so much dust. Surely you agree with that?"

That gave Buffy some pause. She did get kicked in the stomach—a lot. And thrown into things. Mostly, the sharp stone edges of tombs. It would be enough to make most women miscarry, but was it enough to make her do the same? She was the slayer. The Chosen were always women. She couldn't be the first one ever to get pregnant. Maybe she was extra strong during pregnancy in order to protect her offspring or some such. Then again, maybe she was extra weak, more prone to miscarriages, because the PTB wouldn't want her laid up for nine months.

Buffy was still mulling it over when an ugly bumpy-headed, two-horned demon with a set of leathers that would have made Pinhead jealous rolled up. Automatically, Buffy stepped in front of the group in a protective stance.

"Look. We don't want trouble." She held up her hands to ward him off. "I just found out I'm pregnant."

The demon stopped, a large grin splitting his face.

"Congratulations! Whose the lucky father?"

"Me, mate." Spike shoved his fists in his duster as he sidled closer to Buffy. For the hundredth time he cursed the chip in his head. There was no way he was going to be able to protect her. He was a right worthless git.

The demon's brows furrowed with suspicion. "Aren't you a vamp?"

Spike looked away abashed. "A miracle, it is."

"Are you two joshing me?"

Now both Buffy and Spike held their hands outward in identical looks of surprise and dismay.


"Course not!"

"I really am pregnant. And Spike's the father."

The demon's reddish eyes darted between them for a moment, trying to ascertain if they were making fun of him. He didn't like it when people made fun of him for not being as bright as some other demons. It wasn't his fault he was made for fighting and not for thinking.

"Whatever. I just have an irrational urge to eat that dark haired guy. Hand him over and I'll be on my way."

"Uh, I can't let you do that," Buffy stuttered.

"That's too bad, 'cause I really want to eat him. Which is weird since I'm off red meat and all." The demon scratched the center of his chest with a big claw. He glanced around, first looking at Buffy's belly with uncertainty and then at Xander with a great deal of hunger.

"Um, how about this? You give us a head start, then you can chase us?" Buffy offered.

The demon shifted. He really didn't want to hurt anyone. He'd been a good little demon for a while now. Ever since his mate scared him straight. All that talk about the Slayer's, well umm, slaying could make any demon flaccid. His mate and their little broodlings needed him to come home every night. But he was suddenly very hungry.

"Yah, okay. But hurry up. A demon's gotta eat, you know."

"Sure, thanks bunches," Buffy and her group sidled passed.

"Thanks, mate." Spike clapped him on the shoulder.

"Yah, no problem, I'll just stand here and try to remember what I was doing before I got to the graveyard." The demon glanced around as if he wasn't certain where he was.

"Poor guy. The spell's got him all wonky," Buffy exclaimed as her and Spike barricaded the door to the crypt.

"Poor guy! That demon wants to eat me!" Xander exclaimed in horror.

"Well, it's not his fault," Buffy replied.

"I think we all know whose fault it is," Spike snarked.

"Spike!" Buffy spat.

He shrugged. "I'm just sayin', if you'll stopped trying to make Red feel better, and jus' let her sob on your shoulders a bit more, maybe she wouldn't be messin' around with magic.

Xander squealed as a demon burst through the glass and took a swipe at him. The group spread out to defend Anya as she quickly sketched out her circle to summon D'Hoffren. Buffy took a blow that had her sprawled in the dirt, and Spike spitting and snarling in fury. He threw the demon off her, barely registering that his chip didn't so much as tweak. He fought off a second demon, while Buffy tried to secure the door once more. An ugly red-skinned demon flung Spike to the ground where he lay in a daze. Buffy appeared over him, running her small hands up and down his body looking for any wounds. She was just so beautiful, he couldn't resist. He pulled her down for a kiss despite the chaos ensuing around them. If he was going to die, he wanted to do it in her arms.

Then it all just stopped. In a poof of smoke there were no more screams or calls for help. No demons or undertones of chanting. No more love. The heat in his chest evaporated as Buffy backed her body off his, her eyes wide. She took everything with her, including his child.

"I'm sorry, guys." Willow was babbling in the background, but Spike couldn't tear his eyes from Buffy's. It had been a spell. The love, the marriage, all the plans for the future. All of it gone with just a few words from a reckless, heartbroken witch. Everything except the truth.

"It's okay," Buffy murmured reassuringly. She looked away, and Spike felt absolutely bereft. He plunged his knotted hands into the pockets of his duster while she told everyone to head back to Giles'. They filed out, too exhausted and relieved to realize Spike and Buffy weren't with them. Wordlessly, she split off from the group, leaving him to trail a few steps behind. They emerged from the cemetery and headed towards the edge of town.

He held the door for her, as she walked into the Five and Dime on Ester Street. The bright fluorescent lighting hurt his eyes. He waited with hunched shoulders while she chose a rectangular box and walked it up to the register. He could hear the brown paper bag crumple in her fist as she led the way outside and around the edge of the building to the bathrooms. The door shut with a heavy thud as she disappeared inside. He could hear the tinkle of urine, and the higher velocity of the sink. The door opened and he stepped inside. Together they stood at the edge of the sink, silent as the minutes ticked by. They watched the pink plus sign form in the tiny box. Buffy picked up the wand and tossed it into the wastebasket.

"Aren't you goin' to keep it?" His voice was hoarse, as if he just spent the night throwing back whiskey shots.

She paused, her hand on the door, her back to him. "Why?"

"Jus' heard some women do. A memento, I guess."

"Memento's are for happy memories, Spike."

She pushed her way out of the room. A few seconds later, Spike followed her. The wand carefully concealed in his pocket.