"Someday I will find
A love that flows through me like this
And this will fall away"
"You've gotta come. Spike is.. in trouble."
"I'm on my way."
Figuring that *Xander* wouldn't call me for nothing and that it must be bad if he actually calls me, I don't discuss it.
"I'm going out." I say to Cordy, on my way out of the hotel. The air is cool and I leave the top down, enjoying the sharp wind against my hand which lays on the open window sill, making my fingers even more icy than usual. It's not like we feel that kind of cold.
Xander Harris calls me. Wow. The world's gonna end. Literally. Since when does he care for Spike. I step on the pedal a bit harder and my baby jumps a little before pushing forward harder. I love this car.
Just over an hour later and I am in Sunnydale in front of the Magic Shop. It doesn't look like the big panic before the unexpected apocalypse. Hm.
Just before I can grab the handle of the door, Xander is there, right in front of me, staring at me with his dark brown eyes.
"Follow me in your car." he says without further preamble and I nod.
Ten minutes later, we're in front of the shiny new high school, right over the hellmouth. And who had the idea to build that up again?
"Spike's down in the basement." Xander says and pulls out a ring of keys. He guides me through the dark corridors; fast and sure. He must have been here often to gain such a sense for the surroundings with hardly any light at all. Impressive. For a human.
I hear, smell, sense him before we round the corner. It reeks of guilt and tears. A scent I am just a tad too familiar with. I see Xander tense up the nearer we get to him and I wonder what's going on. I sniff the air, trying to figure out if these two are connected in a physical way but their scents aren't mingled. Hm.
I am not even surprised; Spike has a soul. He was with Buffy and the rest too long. Willow, such a powerful witch, couldn't withstand the temptation to ensoul him, to create what she sees as good. Was just a matter of time. And Xander is the one cleaning up behind them again.
I hear him sobbing and it makes my heart ache and my stomach twist. I hate to see him down, hate to see him up too, but wouldn't wish this soul gig on my greatest enemy. Well, maybe. Great torture it is.
I look over at Xander. He has hunched up his shoulders so much, they nearly cover his ears and I can smell the desperation in him. I just can't figure out what he is so desperate for.
"I..I found him here, two.." "Ssh." I press two fingers against his lips, a hand against his chest over his heart, and push him back against the wall deeply in the shadows. He hits the wall a bit harder than I intended but he doesn't seem to mind – if the flutter of his eyelids is any indication.
The tingle at the end of my spine warns me of the nearing slayer even before her perfume and the click-clack of her high heels reach me. What is this?
I look at the boy, he has no clue as to why we are hiding in the shadows but nevertheless he keeps still, no protest of his mouth or his body, just a slight increase in his heartbeat. I breathe in deeply. I can't remember a time when the boy wasn't oozing pheromones. When he was aware of my presence, that is.
I hear Spike moan in pain, see Buffy kicking him in the side. He's already on the ground, can't she see it. I must have growled, Xander's hand is there a moment later, lightly shaking, but firm against my forehead. I lean into the warmth for a second, calm myself down with the feel of Xander's heartbeat under my palm, then I step out of the shadows and grab Buffy, just above the collar of her jacket.
"Enough." I say, when she tries to twist out of my grip for the third time. She’d have to break her own neck to get out of that grip. I love vampiric strength. She looks at me with those big eyes which mirror the shock over the new revelation.
I was never your lapdog, Buffy. You have no idea what a master vampire can do if he wants to. Pity is, we like to play and don't know when to stop most of the time.
"Angel what are you doing here.. what are.. who told.. " she says, and I frown a bit more than before.
"You knew he was here?" I ask her and nod to Spike who has curled up on the floor, silently sobbing, purring to himself. Out of the corner of my eye I see Xander coming out of the shadows. Buffy gasps and I want to laugh out loud.
The boy doesn't look at either of us, just kneels down and pulls Spike into his arms. What the hell happened to Xander?
"Xander?" Buffy squeaks and I let go of her, go over to the boy.
Xander stands up, holding Spike in his arms as if he weighs nothing. A closer look at his pale face, his sunken features and I'm sure it's not even far from the truth. My childe, such a delicate creature. Against mine or Xander's broad chest he looks - no matter whether strong and confident or broken like this - fragile.
I am frozen for a second, seeing these two together like this does that to you, Xander being the strong one and all, then I reach out and follow a tear trace over too sharp cheek bones with my thumb.
I gently take my childe from Xander's arms which fall now empty, without something to hold, limply to his sides. I search for his gaze and he meets it finally, steady if watery, beautiful as always. "I tried." He mouths at me more than actually saying it, words dying away in mid sentence.
Through all the years I've known him, it is in this moment that Xander gets the first real smile from me.
He deserves it, he looked after my childe, kept him safe and called for me when he couldn't help Spike by himself.
I turn around, the - to me - most precious creature in this world in my arms, and make my way to the door.
"You coming?" I ask when I cross the threshold.
"Not you." I smile, and in my mind nod over to Angelus. "Xander?" We do have taste.
"Someday I will find
a love that flows through me like this
And this will fall away"
3 Doors Down – Loser (acoustic)
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