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 kicked down the door to Angel’s basement apartment. “Right – you bleeding tosser – what’s all this about The Harvest and the Master?”
Angel calmly looked up from reading his book. “Hello, Spike. Why don’t you come in? Thanks for knocking.”
Spike marched over, snatched the book from his hands and threw it across the room. “Why did you tell her?” he snarled, vamping out. “Why did you fucking tell her? She’s too inexperienced for this shite. She can’t face the Master.”
Angel stood up and got right in Spike’s face. “She’s the Slayer. It’s what she has to do.”
Spike pushed him away. “So what part of looking out for her don’t you understand? This is why you need to stay away from her. I’ll keep her safe – you just end up getting her killed.”
“What?” Angel scowled. “I won’t let any harm come to her.”
“No, you let her die, you bastard,” muttered Spike, before saying more loudly, “Just keep the fuck away from her.” He turned and strode out as swiftly as he’d come in.
Spike was exhausted. He’d been hunting night and day for weeks, searching Sunnydale’s streets and sewers for signs of the Master. So far he’d drawn a blank. His mood wasn’t improved by the fact that he’d spotted Angel talking with Buffy several times. Looks like history was about to repeat itself with those two. That was something else he had to put a stop to – otherwise Angelus would be back and Buffy’s heart broken. Plus, he’d enjoy pissing Angel off.
He stopped short, raised his chin and inhaled deeply. He knew that scent. He whipped round and saw a figure walking across the graveyard. Darla. He slapped his forehead. Should have known bleeding Master’s pet, Darla, would be here. He watched her walk into the same mausoleum where he’d killed ‘DeBarge’. When she didn’t reappear, Spike jogged across the damp grass and followed her inside.
He glanced around. Where had she gone? Try as he might he couldn’t see anywhere that she could have exited. Hearing soft hand clapping behind him, Spike whirled around to come face to face with Darla.
“Hello, William,” she said. “Why are you following me?” She tipped her head on one side and smiled at him prettily.
Spike smirked at her. “Have to say, I’m not sure the preppy schoolgirl look suits you.”
“You’re still the same," she snarled, vamping out. "You still have no respect for your elders and betters.”
He leaned casually against the stone wall of the crypt. “That’s where you’re wrong, love. I really have changed. A lot.”
With a plan forming in his mind, Spike pushed away from the wall and walked towards her. He couldn’t believe what he was about to do – but he had no option. He needed access to the Master, and was kidding himself if he thought that taking the bastard down was going be easy.
Darla’s eyes narrowed as he approached. “What do you want, Spike?”
“I’ve come to offer my services to the Master.”
Darla threw back her head and laughed. “You?”
“Yeah. Why’s that so sodding funny? I am related an’ all.” Spike felt curiously offended by the fact that she found it so amusing.
Darla put her hand over her mouth in an effort to stem her mirth. “Spike, you’ve never wanted anything to do with the Master before, so why now?”
Hmm, what can I say to convince the bitch that I want to toe the family line? “Well, Angelus was always hanging around and you know how much I hate the prissy son of a bitch—”
Spike’s head whipped to the side as Darla slapped his face.
“He’s my son, and I’m not a bitch!”
Spike put his hand on his stinging cheek. “No, you’re a real lady,” said Spike, glaring at her. Shite, this isn’t helping the plan. “Look, Darla, pet. I’m sorry. I really am.” He dipped his head and looked at her through his lashes. “But you know how I’ve never got on with granddaddy.” He walked towards her. “I just hated that he was with you. I was so jealous; I just wanted to stake him. Couldn’t bear to watch the two of you…” He reached out and stroked his fingertips over her cheek. Spike smiled. “I’ve always wanted you.”
Darla’s suspicions began to disperse. Spike was very easy on the eye after all. She didn’t believe him for a moment, but it might be fun finding out what he really was up to. “What about Drusilla? All that crap about her being your destiny?”
Spike had never wanted to smash his fist into Darla’s face so badly. Only the fact that to keep Buffy safe he needed to find the Master kept his hands by his side. “I knew I could never get near you with Angelus around, so that left Dru.”
Darla’s face split into a grin. “Well…I’d never have guessed. I thought you were all wrapped up in her.”
“She’s history,” snapped Spike. This was harder than he’d thought it’d be. “So. Are you going to let me join you or what?” His patience at an end, he put his hand behind her head and pulled her into a kiss. For a second, Darla resisted and then she yielded to his attentions and kissed him back.
“My, my,” said Darla when they parted. “How the boy has grown.” Darla rested a hand lightly on the bulge in his jeans.
“’M not a boy,” grumbled Spike. He hadn’t been kissed in so long that the passionate kiss had him half hard.
“No, of course you aren’t,” purred Darla, caressing him more firmly. “So, are you serious about joining the Master? He wanted Angelus to return to the fold but he’s gone all soul having and soft. He’ll be pleased to see you. With the Harvest upon us, we need all the soldiers that we can get.”
Spike smirked; he’d be able to get the taste of the stupid cow out of his mouth later. For now, he’d achieved what he wanted. He’d meet the Master. Just have to hope that he can’t feel my soul. Spike took Darla’s hand in his. “Lead the way, love.”
Spike sighed as the large mouthful of Jack that he’d just swallowed burned its way down his throat. The meeting with the Master had gone well. He’d done everything that had been expected, even though kneeling before him had taken every ounce of self control that he had. He’d finally managed to slip away, and his feet had taken him unerringly to The Bronze.
He’d seen her as soon as he’d walked in. Buffy looked so pretty and happy, surrounded by her friends and…what the hell? Angel. Bollocks. Old tall, dark and broody actually looked happy too. Happy? Shite! Spike got up from his bar stool and took two steps towards the group before he stopped. What could he say? Buffy didn’t even know that he existed. Abruptly, he turned on his heel.
God, this guardian angel shite sucks.
Spike saw Buffy walking home one evening, for once not with her friends. He hesitated. Come on, just do it! How difficult can it be? Spike took a deep breath and walked towards her. She finally looked at him when they were only a few feet apart.
He smiled at her. “Hi, there,” he said, thanking the stars that vampires couldn’t blush.
“What? Oh, sorry. I was miles away – oh, it’s you!”
“It’s me,” he said stupidly. She’s noticed me before. He grinned.
“Yeah, you’re the one who spilled the drink on me in the Bronze that night.”
Great! Spike rolled his eyes as his grin faded. “That’s me.” He put his hands in his pockets and hunched his shoulders. “Sorry ‘bout that.”
“That’s all right.” She went to side step around him. “Well…er…nice seeing you, I guess.”
Spike watched in dismay as she began to walk away. He grabbed her arm. “Wait!”
Buffy stopped. She stared at his hand and then at his face. He got the message and quickly let his hand fall away.
“Good call,” said Buffy sharply. “Goodbye.”
“No, Buffy, wait, please.”
Spike suddenly found himself slammed up against the wall with five foot nothing of angry slayer in his face and a hand at his throat.
“How do you know my name?” she snarled.
“Let go of me and I’ll tell you,” croaked Spike.
Buffy shoved him harder before letting him go. “Speak.”
Spike coughed a couple of times and rubbed his throat. “Some grip you’ve got there.” He shrugged his shoulders to settle his duster back in place.
Buffy folded her arms across her chest and tapped her foot. “Still waiting. I’ve seen you watching me in The Bronze. What are you? Some kind of freaky stalker guy? ‘Cause gotta say, if you are, boy have you picked the wrong girl.”
Spike smiled broadly. God, she’s adorable. She leaned forward and he took a sideways step, getting his back away from the wall.
“I’m not a stalker,” he said. Okay, so I am, but not telling her that. It’s just…just that Sunnydale’s a funny place, what with the Hellmouth an’ all.”
“You know about the Hellmouth?”
“Well, yeah – like who doesn’t?”
Buffy shrugged. “Only the majority of the people who live here.”
“Good point,” said Spike, nodding. He cleared his throat and his expression got serious. “Look, I know you’re the Slayer, okay?”
Looking to the heavens, Buffy said, “Do I have a sign on my back telling everyone who I am? What is it with this town? I just happen to have two strange men—”
“Hey! I’m not strange!” protested Spike.
She glared at him and continued. “Two strange men come up to me – both knowing who I am.”
Spike cocked his head on one side and smiled weakly. “Coincidence?” He was puzzled by the fact that she hadn’t picked up on the fact they were vampires. Maybe it was the souls that were interfering with her senses?
“Did Angel tell you to keep an eye on me?”
“What? No!” snapped Spike. “I’m nothing to do with bloody Angel.”
“So you’re not here to warn me of coming danger?” asked Buffy, hands on hips.
Spike wondered when he’d lost control of the conversation. “Er…well, actually…no…there’s no trouble…I’ll take care of any trouble that comes up.”
Buffy grabbed his arm and rammed him against the wall again. Spike grunted as his head hit the wall hard enough to make him see stars. “Bloody hell, Slayer. I’m being helpful here.”
“What’s your name?”
“You know my name. So what’s yours?”
Spike toyed with the idea of making a name up, so that Giles wouldn’t be able to give her the run down of what he was, but when he opened his mouth out popped, “Spike. I’m Spike.” He smiled a touch lopsidedly.
“Spike? Dumb name.”
“And Buffy is just so classically elegant.” Spike snapped his mouth shut – wishing he’d never opened it in the first place. This was rapidly going from bad to worse.
“My mother gave me that name!” retorted Buffy, getting in his face.
Spike bit his lip. There was no way he was going to answer that.
“Let me tell you something, Spike. This is my town and I don’t need any help from you – like ever!”
Spike decided that before things got even more catastrophic he’d better extract himself from this conversation altogether. He pushed Buffy away. “Look, pet. My mistake. Silly me – thinking that having someone watch your back would be a good thing. Sod you!” He hurried away, but when he glanced over his shoulder Buffy was still standing there, watching him. He couldn’t help but smirk – maybe it hadn’t been a total loss after all.
“I’m telling you, Will. It was weird.” The girls were sitting on the bed in Willow’s room.
Willow leaned closer. “So he said he had your back?”
“Yes,” said Buffy, nodding. “First Angel and now this…Spike. I mean, what are the odds?”
Willow grinned. “Of two hot guys watching out for you?”
“Of them not really being evil,” replied Buffy with a sigh. “There’s no way that it’s a coincidence like he said.” She rubbed her temples. “I’m sure I’ve seen him before.”
“He has been in The Bronze a lot.”
“No.” Buffy shook her head. “I mean from before.” She frowned. “I think I’ve seen him before I came to Sunnydale.”
“Really?” Willow’s eyes widened. “When?”
Buffy thought back to that night in the hospital. The cool hand on her arm. That quiet voice. Suddenly she was sure of it. It had been Spike. The voice had been his. What did it mean? She glanced up at Willow’s expectant face, but she knew that she couldn’t tell her friend that her parents had had her committed.
“Er…a few times…at the mall I think. Maybe other places.” The more she thought about it, the surer she was. She had seen him before Sunnydale.
“That is weird, or kind of cool, really,” said Willow, giving Buffy a friendly push.
Buffy grinned and pushed her thoughts to the back of her mind. “So are you going to help me with this history assignment?” She successfully changed the subject.
Spike gritted his teeth as he knelt before the Master. God, did the ponce like to hear his own voice, or what? He was at the back, listening intently to the plans for The Harvest. Luke and Darla were immediately in front of the Master. Luke had been declared to be the vessel. He’d be the one to drink the blood that would free the Master from his prison. Spike had to kill him, but somehow not be seen doing it.
Darla’s hand touched Spike’s bowed head. “Come, darling. We need to prepare. There is important work to be done.”
Spike dutifully stood up and followed her out. He hoped that she wouldn’t want sex again. He wasn’t sure that he could get his little friend up to play. The woman took all the fun out of it.
He couldn’t believe his luck when Darla and Luke decided to case The Bronze for the next night, with Spike trailing after them like the well-trained little puppy that he wasn’t. When they got to the club, Luke ordered Darla and Spike to check out the rear of the building. As Spike followed Darla, he slipped his hand into the pocket of his duster. His fingers closed around the stake. This was the chance he’d been waiting for.
“Darla,” said Spike softy.
She glanced at him. “What?”
Smiling, he reached out to her. “I was just thinking how nice and quiet it is back here.” He curled his tongue behind his top teeth and raised his eyebrows.
She smiled at him. “Are you suggesting what I think you are?” Darla said, stepping in close to him.
Spike pulled out the stake and before she had time to react, he rammed it into her chest. “Bet you weren’t thinking of that, you evil bitch!” He coughed as she exploded into dust. “One down, one to go.”
Twirling the stake in his hand, he jogged around the side of the building. There was no remorse for Darla; she’d been matched in her depraved actions only by Angelus. She deserved to die.
“Where’s Darla?” asked Luke when Spike ran into view.
Spike didn’t miss a beat. “Gone back to the lair. The rear only has one door and it’s easy to defend. She wanted to take the Master a meal to keep his strength up for tomorrow.”
Luke nodded. “Good.” He waved a hand in the direction of The Bronze. “I have seen all that I needed to. Come, we shall leave. I need to rest.”
“Sure thing, big guy,” said Spike, clapping the huge vampire on his back. “Let’s get you home. You can put your feet up and…I dunno…watch some telly?”
Luke growled. “You talk too much.”
Spike nodded. “I know. ‘S a fault of mine.” He laughed.
As they walked down the street, Spike noticed Angel watching from the shadows. Spike narrowed his eyes. The pillock better not balls this up. He glanced at Luke. Need to get this show on the road. Spike slowed his step until he was slightly behind Luke. Stake at the ready… One, two, three! On three, Luke turned around and Spike thrust the stake into his chest instead of his back. Totally missing the heart. Oh, bollocks! Luke vamped out and grabbed Spike by the throat.
“I’ll rip you in half for that,” he growled.
Spike’s feet dangled about a foot off the ground as he wriggled uselessly in the huge vampire’s grip. He tried to grab the stake but Luke ripped it from his chest and hurled it to the floor.
“I won’t need a little piece of wood to kill you,” sneered Luke. “Not when I have two hands.”
Spike’s eyes bulged and he gurgled unintelligibly as his hands scrabbled at Luke’s. The grip on his neck tightened. The bastard was going to rip his head off. This was it. He was going to die.
Then he was on the floor, gasping and groaning. Bewildered he looked up.
“It’s a good idea to hit the heart when you’re trying to kill a vampire, brain trust,” said Angel, staring down at him.
“Least I was doing something,” replied Spike. “Not just following Buffy around with googly eyes.” He struggled to his feet. “Think that’s mine.” He snatched the stake from Angel’s hand.
“Thanks for saving my life, Angel,” said Angel sarcastically. “And I don’t make googly eyes at Buffy.”
“No, ‘course you don’t,” Spike retorted. “You’re not helping her, Angel. You should leave.”
Angel stared at him for a moment, and then laughed. “You’re jealous!” He pointed at Spike. “That’s why you’re always telling me to leave town.”
“I am not,” snarled Spike. “I just want you to leave ‘cause I don’t bleeding like you. How many times do I have to say it?”
Angel let his gaze drop to the dust on the floor. “So who was that?”
“That,” said Spike, “is the, or rather, was the right hand man of the Master. Because I killed him, the Harvest will have to be postponed.”
“You killed him?” said Angel.
Spike rolled his eyes. “Okay, okay. You killed him, but I was in control, another minute and I’d—”
“You’d be the one dirtying the sidewalk.” Angel laughed softly and turned away. “Way to go, Spike. Good job. See you around.”
Spike clenched his fists and growled. He hated it when Angel was right.
“Angel!” Buffy called as soon as she saw him walk into The Bronze.
He smiled and walked over to her. “Hey, Buffy.”
“Not here to tell me about some big bad heading my way, are you? ‘Cause I really just want to dance, you know?”
Angel thought of what Spike had said. It was true, he wasn’t focussed on preventing The Harvest, he just wanted to spend time with Buffy. He stroked her hair. Who could blame him?
“Not so sure about the dancing,” replied Angel.
“You can watch.” Buffy glanced around the club. Was Spike in here too? She hadn’t seen him since she’d confronted him. Her stomach knotted at the thought that she might not see him again. She needed to know why he’d followed her from L.A.
Spike knew that it would be suicidal to go back to the Master’s lair. He lay on the bed in his crypt and tossed and turned as he thought of what to do next. It wouldn’t be long before the Master selected another vessel. His thoughts turned, as they so often did, to Buffy. He’d nearly gotten himself killed tonight. He’d been sloppy and stupid. If Angel hadn’t come along there was no doubt that Luke would have killed him.
He shuddered. If he had died, would that mean that Buffy would still die too? Although he knew that she had been revived, the thought of it still terrified him. He’d have to be more careful and take his time to pick the right moment.