Authors: 2writers4spike aka mabel_marsters & dawnofme
Warning: Mentions of Spike with others.
Betas: seapealsh & slaymesoftly. Thank you so much!
Anticipation: a: a prior action that takes into account or forestalls a later action b: the act of looking forward ; especially : pleasurable expectation
Summary: Having no idea how it happened, Spike finds himself back in 1977, reeling from a newly acquired soul and more guilt than most could handle. After dodging Drusilla, his main focus is getting back to his own time and back to Buffy in Sunnydale so that he can atone for all he's done. That is, until he sees the newly born slayer in 1981 and goes off in a new direction. Can he stop the events that brought misery to Buffy's life, or will he be forced to watch destiny destroy the woman he loves all over again?
Disclaimer: We own no part of Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Angel the Series. We write this purely for fun and not financial gain. No infringement of copyright intended.
banner by dawnofme
Spike’s jaw ticked and his fists clenched in fury. It took all his restraint to stay hidden behind the large tree so that he wouldn’t alert Merrick or Buffy to his presence. If he moved slowly in a wide circle, he could reach the dirty vampire hiding behind a stone cross on the other side, but he wasn’t sure he wanted to chance it. Not yet.
Angel. He’d never seen him so unkempt before. And yet, there he was, spying on the newly called slayer. Spike stifled a low growl and watched as Buffy loosely held a stake in her hand for the first time.
“I’m sorry,” she was saying to Merrick, “but seriously, I think you need some help. I mean, I’m crazy just for coming out here alone with you in the dark.” She shook her head. “Vampires? Is this a joke?”
Merrick leaned against a tombstone. “All I ask is that you give me another five minutes."
“My parents are going to be worried about—”
Despite his anger over seeing Angel, Spike’s face split into a grin at Buffy's horrified expression when a muddy hand broke through the ground just beneath her. Though he had every confidence in her ability as a slayer and he knew that he had to let her do it and learn on her own, Spike couldn’t help but get concerned when she stumbled back, still not holding the stake correctly.
The fledgling caught her scent as he climbed out and lunged for her. And she just let him! Buffy screamed as she hit the ground, the fledge landing squarely on top of her. Spike rolled his eyes and groaned in embarrassment for her. She had a long way to go, apparently. Spike had always assumed that she’d been born with the instinct.
He caught sight of Angel, looking lost and concerned, but wisely staying hidden, and then Buffy screamed again. This time, she managed to push the newly risen vampire off her.
“Oh, God,” she mumbled as she scrabbled on her hands and knees, reaching for the stake she’d dropped.
Spike fought the urge to shout out a warning when she stared cluelessly at the stake as the vampire advanced on her again. Buffy looked up just in time and tossed him to the ground as if she’d been doing it all her life. One quick look at the stake and a questioning glance at Merrick, and then she was after the vampire. Buffy kneeled, raised the stake and drove it down into its stomach.
Spike snorted when she said, “Ooh, not the heart.”
Then she raised the stake again and hit its heart. The vampire exploded into a fine dust. She fell back with a screech and froze where she was, her eyes wide with disbelief. Merrick slowly walked up behind her and said, “You see? You see your power?”
Buffy was too stunned to say anything. Merrick helped her up and led her out of the cemetery and to his car. As they drove off, Spike remembered Angel and went searching for him in time to see him take off in a beat up Impala.
Just as he suspected, the ugly, rusty car was parked in Spike’s spot in front of the Summers’ home. Spike pulled up behind it, got out and followed the repugnant smell of dirty Angel, who was standing on the side of the house where Buffy’s room was located on the first floor. Spike reached out to grab Angel by the shoulder when Buffy and Joyce came into view.
“Why didn’t you call?” asked Joyce, her voice coming clear through the open window.
“I’m sorry. I…I didn’t know it was so late. Tyler and I were talking—“
“That boy is irresponsible.”
“No, Mom, it’s not his fault,” Buffy said softly, taking off her coat.
“You know we worry. That’s all.” Buffy looked down, not knowing what to say next. Joyce threw her hands up and said, “Dinner’s in ten minutes.”
Spike was mesmerized by the sight of Buffy standing before her mirror, her eyes watery as she listened to her parents argue about her. He snapped out of it when Angel shifted from one foot to the other. Sneering, Spike stomped over to him and got Angel in a chokehold. He dragged the heavier vampire away from the house as Angel struggled to get away.
“So?” Spike said as he let him go. “The Powers That Be send you back here too?”
Angel glared at him. “What are you doing here, Spike. And what the hell are the Powers That—”
“Oh, come on. Don’t play dumb with me, you stupid git.” Spike shoved Angel, who didn’t fight back. “I don’t care what they’re trying to do. Buffy and I don’t need your help.” Spike looked up at the sky. “Whatever the hell you think you’re doing, you can just send him back. Buffy doesn’t need this fool. She needs me.”
Confused, Angel turned and gazed at the Summers’ house. “Is that her name,” he asked softly. “Because I’m not going to let you kill this slayer. One is all you are ever going to get.”
Spike narrowed his eyes at Angel and held up two fingers. “Two. I’ve killed two slayers, not one.” Then he looked at his boots as guilt washed over him. “You know that. And while I had a chip in my head to stop from killing the last time you saw me, I don’t have one now. Still, I don’t want to kill this Slayer and you know it.”
Angel shook his head in confusion. “Chip? The last time I saw you, I was kicking you out of a submarine.”
“Huh?” Spike walked around Angel, really taking in his appearance. “So you haven’t done any time travelling lately?”
“Is that even possible?” Angel asked, uninterested.
Now this was interesting. Spike had just assumed that the time travel thing had done a number on Angel. He circled his grandsire and they glared at each other.
“I don’t know what’s going on with you, Spike, but I’ve been asked to help this slayer and you are not going to get in the way.”
Spike chuckled. So this was it. The time when Angel started meddling in Buffy’s life. He’d always thought that Angel had started meddling in Buffy’s life once she was in Sunnydale, but now he knew otherwise.
“So, you came to get a look at the new girl, yeah? She’s young. Very young. And, just the sort you liked to torture back in the day. So now you’re all for helping the poor thing?”
Angel sputtered as he shook his head. “No. It wasn’t like that. This demon, Whistler, he found me and said—“
“A demon?” Spike asked with a raised brow. “A demon asks you — a vampire — to come and help a vampire slayer, and you’re all for it?”
Angel opened his mouth to reply, but the next voice came from behind Spike. “Should I be insulted?”
Spike whirled around and screwed his face in disgust. A short man in outdated clothes and the ugliest hat he’d ever seen stepped out of a clump of bushes.
“Who the hell are you?” Spike asked.
“Name’s Whistler. And I know who you are,” the demon disguised as a man said, pointing at him. “Coming a little early to the party, aren’t you?”
Spike stood tall and sniffed. “Just a bit, yeah.”
Whistler nodded, pulled out a slip of blue paper and unfolded it. “I just got the memo. Us peons are always last to know about changes.”
“What is going on here?” Angel grumbled.
The demon glanced around and then said, “Let’s do this some place else, shall we? A bar with alcohol and stale pretzels?” Spike glared at Whistler as he stood by the DeSoto. “What, you think I want to be seen driving around in that jalopy with Mr. Never-Heard-Of-A-Shower?”
Spike grumbled under his breath on the drive to the bar, taking turns watching the road, the demon staring at him curiously from the passenger seat, and the rusty car behind them, which appeared, in the rearview mirror, to be driving itself. He grumbled louder when he found that he was going to be stuck with paying for the drinks.
They sat in a dark corner near the pool tables, but the other patrons still gave them curious and disgusted looks. The waitress, Mary, brought over their drinks and smiled at Spike.
“Where’s Volkov tonight?”
Spike shrugged. “I think he’s out with Noreen.”
She leaned down and whispered in his ear, “Your new friend smells really bad.”
With a chuckle, he waved her on. Then he sobered up and glared at Whistler. “You work for the Powers That Meddle?”
“Real funny, but yes, I do.”
“So are they ready to tell me what the hell they were thinking by sending me back here?” Spike glanced at Angel, but he seemed out of it -- just staring at his untouched drink.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about. All I know is that about two hours ago, I put my hand in my pocket and found this note.” The demon tossed the note across the sticky table. “Then I came looking for Angel.”
Spike opened the note and squinted at the small writing before reading it aloud, “There’s been a ripple in the plan. Look for Spike the vampire. Can’t miss him, his hair is almost white. We don’t have an answer for how or what he’s doing here. It is too early for him. See if you can get him on our side. Like Angel, Spike has a soul.”
“A soul!” Angel shot out of his seat and grabbed Spike by his coat. “How?”
Spike pushed him away, readjusted his coat and then calmly sat back down. Ignoring Angel, who continued to glare at him as he sank back into his chair, Spike asked Whistler, “How can they not know what I’m doing here? Aren’t they the gits that made it happen?”
“If they’re admitting in writing that they don’t know what you’re doing here, then it’s safe to say The Powers are not the ones who brought you here,” Whistler said with a shrug. And then he leaned forward and said in a lower voice, “Where have you come from?”
“That’s not important,” Spike said, pocketing the note from The Powers. “What is important is that you go back and tell your bosses that Angel’s brand of hero won’t be needed. I’ve got this one covered.”
The glasses clicked against the table as Angel brought his fist down on it. “How did you get a soul?”
“That’s my business.” He pointed at Whistler. “I’m now convinced that The Powers are not the good guys. Whoever they are, they aren’t very intelligent. Angel has a cursed soul with only one way to lose it, and yet they send him on a mission to help a young girl —totally his sicko type — who will be too much temptation for him.” Spike stood up and threw a few bills on the table for Mary and then sneered at Angel. “I don’t know what happened for you to get like this. Last time I saw you, you were clean and working for the U.S. Government. But, stay away from Buffy. For your sake as well as hers.” He paused and ran a hand through his hair. “If you really want to do some good, stick around. This town is full of demonic evil and could use a champion.”
“That’s why the Slayer is here now,” Whistler said.
“She won’t be here for long,” Spike said and then abruptly turned and strode to the door.
He didn’t look back. He could only hope that Angel would take his advice, but seeing how he’d gazed at Buffy at the cemetery, Spike doubted that the cursed vampire would.
*~ * ~ * ~*
Spike absently followed Buffy and Merrick from a safe distance. It had been a week since he’d first seen Angel. He hadn’t caught sight of him again and he could only hope that his grandsire had re-grown a few brain cells and was staying away on purpose. It was getting later or earlier as sunrise was only a few hours away. Buffy had learned the ‘jumping out of the window’ trick early on, and her parents had no idea that she was out trolling the cemeteries with a strange man, looking for monsters to practice her newfound strength and fighting skills on.
The air around the pair had grown thick with damp fog tinged with a greenish glow. It swirled and moved around them as they pushed through it. Buffy was starting to get a sense when demons were around so he kept his distance from them, though he wasn't sure he would even set her senses off, now that he had a soul. Tonight, he slinked from tree to tree and did his best not to snap any twigs.
A very tall vampire suddenly blocked their path and Buffy raised her stake just as Merrick stepped to the side. The mild mannered man calmly gave her instructions on what to do as the vampire and the slayer both fought for their lives. Spike knew she would survive, but he still bit his lip as he watched.
Even at fifteen years old, Buffy was magnificent. She’d come a long way in just a few short days. Her kicks were graceful, packing a punch strong enough to propel the vampire up and into the nearest tree. It was no wonder that she was such a great slayer and that she had always walked away from one of their fights still alive.
The thought gave him pause as the vampire sprang back up and charged at her again, his fangs bared and eager to sink into young supple flesh. He shivered. That was Spike many years ago. Evil, living off the pain and suffering of others, reveling in the death and destruction and relishing the kill.
Movement out of the corner of his eye got Spike’s attention. Another vampire was swiftly making its way through the trees and heading right for the fight. Spike sprang into action, pulling out his own hand made stake and rushing at the vamp before he could be seen or heard by the watcher or slayer.
It was over quickly, as Spike was well practiced in the art of killing demons. It’s what he‘d done to kill time while Buffy was busy growing up. He placed bets, he drank at the bars and he hunted demons. In the same way as he had toyed a bit with his victims in the past, he often played with the demons before he killed them; but not this one. Not tonight. He’d never take a chance with Buffy’s life.
The vampire’s dust hadn’t even settled to the ground before a figure in a filmy white dress came out of the fog. Spike froze while still kneeling and looked up at Drusilla, who stood with her arms folded across her chest and a petulant pout on her lips.
“What’s happened to my Spike?” she asked softly.
They both turned to look in the direction of the other fight as Buffy shouted a victory cry and jumped up and down. “I totally had that one. He didn’t even have a chance.”
Drusilla took a few steps closer and leaned to the right to get a better look.
“Is that why you’re killing your own kind now, Spike?”
He stood, put his stake away and then hit his coat a few times to get rid of the dust. “What are you doing here, Dru?”
“I came to see you. To see if you were done playing games. I miss my Spike.”
He gave one last look at Buffy and then gently steered Drusilla in the other direction. He didn’t speak until they were out of the trees and walking down a deserted sidewalk. “Listen, Dru, I’m different now. I can’t be with you.”
She yanked her arm from him and quickened her step. “That girl in the woods - she’s a slayer. You should be smashing and bashing her, not killing ones like us.”
“I know, but some sodding crazy things have happened, Dru, and I need to be here now.”
“No you don’t.” She twirled and then walked backwards in front of him, her hips swaying provocatively with every step. “Come away with me, my Spike. Let’s go to Europe and rip it to shreds till the streets run red. Let’s feast on their blood and drink their wine.”
“No.” He shook his head and tried to think fast. What could he do with her? How could he get rid of her without killing her?
Drusilla stopped abruptly and he bumped into her. She pressed against him, but he pushed her away and she vamped out. “It’s that little girl. The new slayer. Isn’t it? You want her,” she spat out. “I’ll kill her and then you will get better.”
In a flash, Spike had his hands around her throat and he lifted her up, his face morphing into demon shape. “Don’t touch her. You hear me?” He gave Drusilla a good shake to drive home his point.
She went limp in his hands and he let her down gently, her sad eyes too much for him. Then she turned and moaned, holding her head in her hands, her eyes fixed on the mental hospital that they had stopped in front of.
“Get me away from here. Please, Spike. They think I’m crazy; they want to put me in there!”
Spike sighed and then lifted her up in his arms. For as long as he’d known Drusilla, the one thing that terrified her were insane asylums of any sort. Angelus had tortured her, killing her family and the nuns at the convent, and she’d gone mad before he had turned her. Then, to keep her in line, Angelus used to threaten to lock her up in an asylum if she wouldn’t be good. The sight of one turned her into a frightened little girl. He used to glare at Angelus and promise Drusilla that he’d never put her in one and never let Angelus do it either.
Now, she clung to him, her icy cold fingers digging into his shoulders. Once they were out of sight of the asylum, she became more lucid and could stand on her own two feet again. She shook her head and reached out to trace his cheekbone with a sharp fingernail. “I can’t let her have you, Spike. You’re mine. You’ve been gone long enough.”
Spike glanced up at the sky. “The sun’s about to come up. Let’s get you some shelter and we’ll talk about this tomorrow night.”
Can’t take her back to my place and chance her taking a bite out of Volkov. Where to go?
The flashing vacancy sign across the street got his attention and he quickly dragged her across the street. The motel attendant was a little surprised when Spike asked to pay for a full night, but took his cash and handed him the key. Once inside the room, Spike insisted that they sleep. She got on top of the bed and beckoned for him to join her.
He shed his coat and let her wrap her arms around him. He drifted off to sleep mulling over different ideas on how to get her out of town and keep Buffy safe. Just before he went out completely, he made up his mind. He was going to have to knock her out, drive her far away and then tie her up somewhere. Then, he’d tell her never to come back or if he saw her again, he’d have to dust her.
Late the next afternoon, he woke slowly, just as the sky was turning pink as the sun was going down. Spike sat up and glanced around. He shot up out of bed and rushed to the bathroom, but Drusilla wasn’t there. Then he noticed the bedspread from the other bed was missing.