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Turn to Stone, Part Five
Love Her Madly


“Buffy?” She heard the voice calling to her and buried her head deeper into the sheets. God, she hadn’t slept in so long, and now to finally be able to rest…


“C’mon, sweetness, wake up.” Buffy rubbed her cheek against the satin beneath it, groaning. She rolled over, throwing an arm over her eyes. Mmm, she felt like she had slept for hours. She flexed her arms over her head, arching her back. She threw her arms back, opening her eyes.


Angel sat on the side of the bed, gently stroking her cheek. “Hey,” he said softly, smiling down at her.


Buffy smiled sleepily back. “Angel,” she sighed happily. She glanced around, her eyes trying to focus in the dimness. Heavy drapes. Fireplace. Chains and shackles on the walls. The mansion. They were in Angel’s old Sunnydale mansion and she was in his bed, wearing a slinky bit of nothing. Hmm. Angel leaned over her, bare-chested, loose silky black pajama bottoms riding low on his hips.


He bent down and kissed her quickly on the forehead. “C’mon, get up,” he said rising. He held a hand out to her, winking. “I brought dinner.”


Buffy let him pull her up and swayed toward him, fighting a wave of dizziness. Her eyes seemed to be seeing everything at once. Light and dark, sharp and blurry. Angel yanked her to him, burying his face in her neck as he ground his erection against her side. Hmm, Buffy thought, hiding a smile against his chest, another reality without that pesky curse. Angel nipped her bare shoulder lightly with his teeth, and then smacked her ass, shoving her gently toward the door.


Buffy turned to grin at him in surprise when the dizziness hit again, sending her stumbling back into him.


“Careful,” Angel laughed as he caught her, steering her out of the bedroom.


Buffy leaned her head back against his shoulder, closing her eyes. “I’m a little out of it, I think,” she said.


He tightened his hold on her, sweeping her up to cradle her in his arms. “You just need to feed,” he said, smiling down at her.


“Feed?” Buffy pouted up at him. “Can we avoid the vamp speak that has livestock connotations?”


Angel chuckled and leaned down to nuzzle her neck, making her giggle. Buffy reached up for a kiss and then stilled as she heard chains rattling and a low moaning.


She raised her head, looking into Angel’s smiling face and then turned to look across the vast main room to see a dark-haired young woman shackled to the wall. The girl began to struggle in earnest when she saw Buffy staring at her. “Please,” she sobbed, “let me go!” She fell forward and then jerked back with the weight of the chains.


Buffy struggled out of Angel’s arms, almost falling as she tried to find her feet. She stumbled toward the girl, reaching out to grab a table for balance as she turned back to Angel.


“What is this?” Buffy whispered, her eyes whipping from Angel to the sobbing girl on the wall. Please, she thought to herself, don’t let this be Angel and Buffy’s kinky sex reality.


He shrugged, walking past her to the girl who cowered away from him. He reached up and tugged one of the girls’ dark curls, turning back to Buffy. “Dinner,” he answered.


Buffy gripped the edge of the table firmly, regaining her balance. “Get her down,” Buffy said fiercely.


Angel grinned. “Oh, you feel like playing with her first?” He turned back to the girl, his hand lunging out to grab her by the throat. “Good call. She looks like a screamer.”


Buffy shook her head, trying to clear the blurring from her eyes and quiet the thudding of her heart. Her head jerked up as Spike walked into the room, his hand fumbling loudly in a small box. He caught her staring at him and paused, his mouth half-full as he offered, “Triscuit?”


Spike followed Buffy’s gaze from him over to Angel and the whimpering young woman trembling against the chains. “Ooo, take-out,” he said, dropping the box of crackers.


Angel growled as Spike started to cross the room to him. “I didn’t bring her for you,” he said, yanking the girl to him by the chains. “There’s just enough for Buffy and me. You can piss off and get your own meal.”


Spike threw his hands up. “Oh, fine,” he said, sneering. “The next time you lot want to have a romantic dinner for two, light some candles or something. Give a bloke a bloody clue.” He jerked his duster off a chair and shrugged into it, muttering.


“Buffy?” Angel asked, jerking his head toward the now shrieking girl. Buffy clenched her fists, trying to gather her strength. She started toward Angel and was overwhelmed by the dizziness again, spinning back into Spike who caught her quickly.


“Buffy?” Spike asked, looking down at her with concern.


“Stop him,” Buffy said weakly, sagging against Spike. “He’s going to hurt her.”


“Well, yeah,” Spike said slowly. “But it only hurts for a minute.” He frowned, looking at Angel. “What, did she have first dibs on the chit and you’re trying to bogart the torture?”


Angel shook his head, glaring at Spike. “She just needs to feed. She’s a little woozy.” He held a hand out to Buffy. “C’mon, sweetness, you’ll feel better after  you have a little. Then we have all night to play.” He jerked the girl’s head aside harshly, baring her neck.


Buffy tensed against Spike, her mind finally clearing of the giddy excitement of seeing Angel again. So, okay. Angelus, not Angel. The silky pants should have been a tip-off. Great, she was alone in a secluded mansion with two vampires and the obligatory trembling victim. No stake and, glancing down to check, no cross, plus she was wearing what had to be the whitest, tightest Victoria’s-Secret-wet-dream of nightgown in creation. Not exactly standard Buffy fighting-gear.


She sighed. Might as well see if the equipment worked this time. She bent at the waist, launching Spike over her shoulder. His startled, “Bloody hell!” faded behind her as she threw herself at Angel, ripping the chains from his hands as the frightened girl attempted to assist her by shrieking louder.


Angel shoved Buffy off, glancing a kick off of her ribs as he sent her sprawling. “Fine!” he snapped. “You know, I do the hunting, the shackling and even offer you the first taste and you still act like a right bitch.” He shook his head. “Women.” He turned quickly, his face vamping as he sank his teeth into the girl’s neck.


Buffy caught herself on her hands, turning to stare up in horror at Angel as he grabbed the girl to him, draining her. Buffy could hear the heart slamming and then begin to slow and realized it wasn’t her heart she was hearing. She could sense the blood rising in the girl’s veins as Angel called it out of the her body. Buffy closed her eyes, gasping, and then opened them, suddenly realizing that the dizziness was gone, her vision wasn’t blurred and she could see…everything. She could see the light fading from the girl’s open eyes. The slow rise of color rising from deep beneath Angel’s skin. And the blood, she could hear it, smell it, almost taste it. And she wanted it.


Growling, she leapt to her feet and threw herself at Angel again, ripping the girl out of his hands.


Buffy held the girl by the shoulders, looking down at the torn neck, the gaping wound still oozing blood that stained even darker against the too pale skin that surrounded it.   She was horrified by both her inability to prevent the girl’s death and the desperate need to drink from the body in her arms. Buffy looked back up at Angel who stood licking his fingers as he watched her. He shrugged, smiling smugly. “Too late.”


Before Buffy could answer, Angel’s hand lashed out, cracking harshly across her face, his ring cutting deeply into her cheekbone. She dropped the girl and fell into a sprawled heap at Angel’s feet. He leaned over her, yanking her up by the hair to face him. “The next time I tell you to feed, do it!”


Buffy stared up at Angel, the lust a red mist rising in her. Her body shook and then she was hurling herself at him, feeling her mouth open, her teeth baring as she plunged her fangs into his neck. She broke the skin easily and then began to draw the blood out of him, tasting the girl and the deep, silky darkness that was Angel.


“Argh!” Angel rasped, his hands reaching up to pull her off of him. Buffy gripped her fingers in his hair and held on until the blood pouring over her tongue choked her and she jerked back with a shocked cry, shoving him away from her.


Angel reached up to staunch the flow of blood, cursing her. “What the fuck is wrong with you?” He looked over at Spike, who stood watching them as if he were mentally placing bets. “What the fuck is wrong with her?”


“She eyes me like a Pisces.” Spike shrugged, sighing. “Well, I am weak.” He tilted his head, gave Buffy a pointed look and then swaggered off into the gardens, his duster sweeping behind him.


Angel shook his head, looking after him. “God, I wish I had beaten all of that free verse out of him decades ago.” He stepped toward Buffy and then winced, raising a hand to cover the torn place on his neck. She glared at him and he lifted his hands in supplication before her. “Whatever,” he said, backing away. “I’m going off to hunt. You and Spike can stay here and dine on nursery rhymes for all I care.” He turned and stalked through the front door, letting it bang open and swing on its hinges behind him.


Buffy stepped out into the garden, amazed at the near illumination, even in the heart of midnight. “Spike!” she hissed. She heard a slight noise and turned at the sound, her chin lifting. Her nostrils flared, catching the quick scent. She turned and he walked slowly from behind the trellis, his cigarette glowing brightly before him.


Oh, gross, Buffy thought as he neared her. I can do the smelling thing.


“So what was that?” she asked, trying not to focus on the almost overwhelming scents of blood and tobacco and eau de Spike that hit her like an olfactory orgasm.


“What’s that, love?” he asked, squinting at her above the smoke billowing softly from his lips.


“That cryptic Nirvana you were spouting back there.”


“It’s a game, innit?” His eyes met hers with a question she couldn’t begin to answer. “Our way of keeping the Sire out of the loop.” He pitched the cigarette and crossed his arms, grinning. “I once drove him almost mad with Whiter Shade of Pale.” He shrugged. “Well, until I got to the part about the sixteen vestal virgins. You know purity’s his thing. He bent me over a straight back chair and drove me….”


“Spike!” Buffy snarled, her eyes flashing gold without her knowing.


Spike paused. “It’s our code,” he said quietly. He eyed her thoughtfully. “Me and Buffy’s anyway.” He started toward her, his shoulders swaggering, and Buffy began to back away, suddenly glad for the heightened senses that allowed her to avoid falling into the fishpond.


“You see,” Spike said as he backed her up against the garden wall, an arm slamming out to brace next to her head and pinning her there, “Angel hasn't listened to popular tunes since FM went mainstream. So when Buffy and me need an Angel break or,” he grinned down at her evilly, “wanna sneak off for a private shag,” he leaned forward, inhaling deeply as she jerked her head away. “We just start in with the musical non sequiturs. Throws him right off his game. Thinks it’s poetry, he does. Angel doesn’t understand poetry.” He cocked his head. “Unless he’s trying to chat up a bird. Then it’s always sonnets from the bloody Portuguese.”


His other arm jerked up, bracketing her head. “And Buffy knows that.” He stared fiercely into her eyes. “So we’ve got a mystery here. A slayer-vamp who won’t drink blood, doesn’t know how the game is played, and,” he dipped his head again, his hair brushing her neck as he breathed deeply up the side of her face, his lips grazing her cheek, “reeks of too much soul.” 


Buffy shoved him away from her and he fell hard. His ass scraped concrete until he slammed into the fountain. He rolled over swiftly, jumping to his feet. Buffy stared back at him, panting harshly. The need to hurt him was fierce. Not to punish him or even avenge that nameless girl’s death, but to rip into him, chasten him, dominate him. She felt so cold, but she could still feel the power of Angel’s blood racing through her. Hunger shuddered up her thighs into the very depths of her.


Spike lifted his head, smiling at her. He growled softly and Buffy heard the answering snarl burst out of her as she threw herself at him, lifting him easily and flinging both of them back to the ground. Spike’s head fell back and she lunged, biting deeply into him just above the shoulder. Spike laughed darkly and flipped them over, tilting his head to give her better access as his teeth sank into her just below her left breast.


Buffy groaned into his flesh, tasting his blood, cool and potent, as it poured into her. Mindlessly, she began to thrust against him, feeling the hard ground beneath her, pebbles grinding against her scalp, the harsh sting of Spike’s fangs in her side, the blood that flowed from her as his hands convulsed on her hips. He lifted his head from her, tearing the thin nightgown to lick furiously at the gash in her skin. He buried his face against her breast. “Buffy,” he moaned, “Your blood, your body, your heart…I can never get deep enough in you.”


Buffy raised her head, her tongue snaking out to catch blood on her chin and scraping across the cruel sharp point of her fang. “No,” she gasped, pushing him away from her and rising slowly on shaking legs, her fingers rising to brush against her mouth, her lips, her face. “No,” she said again, desperately, as he stood, nodding slowly at her.


“Get it now, pet?”


She stood staring at him, a shaking figure in a torn bloody nightgown, her hand sliding slowly from her face to the burning beneath her breast, feeling the blood, slick, cool and wet coursing down her side. She had known, on some deeper level she hadn’t wanted to acknowledge, from the moment she had torn that girl out of Angel’s hands and ripped into his neck. She had let something darker rise up in her and given over to it. Part of her had wanted to kill Angel, Angelus, with that familiar righteous vengeance that had guided her life for so long. But part of her had just wanted to bury herself in him, wanted him to sink deep into her.


And now, with Spike, the feeling was even stronger, a burning desire to tear into his flesh, feel him ripping into hers until the darkness boiled over them both. She shook her head, her fingers tightening on the blood soaked cloth beneath them as if she could rip it from her, rip this thing out of her. She closed her eyes, slipping slowly to the ground. Before, feeling that desperate love for Angel again, then Faith being her lover, even the frantic way her body had craved Xander’s, she’d been able to stay in control. She’d been able to manipulate their worlds and focus on getting out, getting back to herself. But now she wasn’t in control. She couldn’t restrain this thing that raged through her, clawing at her from the inside.


“So,” Spike asked, lighting another cigarette as he leaned back against a tree. “Gypsy curse?”


“What?” Buffy asked faintly, raising her head as she curled her knees tighter to her chest.


“Well, you stink of humanity, luv.” He walked slowly toward her, squatting down to face her. “You certainly weren’t this fragrant last night.”


“I’m a vampire,” she said flatly. Hardly a revelation, considering, but the hearing the words from her own lips caused her to flinch.


Spike nodded back at her, the cigarette moving slowly toward his lips and then back again. “Yeah, that doesn’t seem to be the question here, pet. Been a vampire. The soul coming off of you like the stench of decay is the stumper.”


Buffy laughed softly to herself. A vampire with a soul.


Spike leaned back on his heels, tossing the cigarette away. “Something you want to share?” he asked. “Cause I’m not gettin’ the funny.”


Buffy pushed herself up, walking away from him. “How long have I been a vampire?” she asked, her back to him as she focused on the deep whisper of the night, calling to her to hunt, to feed, to burn the dark energy she felt welling inside of her. She heard Spike rise behind her, coming closer.


“Since the ritual of Acathla,” Spike said, his voice deep and even. “The ritual that almost was, anyway.” He chuckled quietly. “God, what a fight that was. Me wailing on Dru, you and Angel diving at each other, swords flying. And I thought I was well rid of the both of you, at the time. I’d grabbed up Dru and was making my way into the sunset when it happened.” He stepped closer to her, his lips almost touching her ear. “Right here in this very garden. I knew he was going to kill you. You were all he could see and he knew the only way to be rid of you was to spill your blood.” “


“But he didn’t,” Spike said, his voice becoming deep, caressing. “He drank it from you. And you clung to him while he did it, like it was what you had wanted, all along.” Spike stepped away from her, his voice changing to a matter-of-fact tone. “I convinced him to let them bury you. Figured it’d keep your mum and the rest your little chums off our backs. But your Watcher knew. He was waiting, when we came to watch you rise. He was standing over your grave, tears on his face and a stake in his hand. You tore your way out of the ground even as Angel plunged the stake into him. Your re-birth was the last thing your Watcher ever saw.”


Buffy squeezed her eyes shut, her arms wrapping tightly around her body. Horrified to hear Spike speak so coolly about Giles’ death and repelled by the fierce joy she felt at knowing that Angel, no, Angelus, had saved her.


“And so you came to join us,” Spike continued, his arms gripping her shoulders as he turned her to face him. “But it wasn’t the happy family Angel had planned, you coming to replace Darla, remake our little foursome in his image. For one, Dru hated you.”


Spike stared down at her, his eyes full of remembered pain, something so twisted that Buffy couldn’t name it. “She saw it, you see. That Angel and I would come to love you in a way that force us together, squeezing her out. And Angel hadn’t counted on something else.” He shrugged, dropping his hands. “No one had turned a Slayer before, well, not that we’d ever known of, and couldn’t ask the Watcher now, could we?” He laughed shortly. “Turning you created a vampire stronger than any of us. Stronger than Angelus.” He laughed harshly. “Not that he doesn’t still try to wear the leather pants in the family. No, he didn’t see that coming. But Dru did.”


He looked at Buffy, drawing his bottom lip in to worry it with his teeth. “She probably saw her death at your hands even as Angel sank his teeth into you.”


Buffy looked up at him, the coldness in her going beyond her skin and the heart that even now lay stilled, silent. “I killed Drusilla?”


“Well, she killed your little red-headed friend, didn’t she? That was something else Angel didn’t see coming. Making you a vampire didn’t rid you of all that annoying loyalty and love.” He threw his hands up with a half-smile. “I mean, Angel ate his whole family. I staked my mum.” He frowned. “Well, only after she got uppity.”


Buffy shuddered. No Willow. No soul for Angel. No hell portal, just Angel drawing the life out of her until she rose as this…thing.


“And so we’ve hunted and shagged and fought until the blood ran from us all and we bathed in it. Until this night.” He looked back at her.  “And I can feel it, you know? The soul in you – crying out ‘what have I done?’ even as the demon rejoices in it.”


“Why you?” Buffy asked, seeing his pale skin gleam in the moonlight, the blue of his eyes burning into her.


“How’s that?” he asked.


“Why can you see the soul, and Angel couldn’t?”


Spike shrugged. “Well, you can’t smell yourself, can you? Angel’s never seen another vampire with a soul. Thought he had a monopoly on that – the one and only. But I smelled it on him, back then, clinging to his skin like a disease. Just as I see it in you now.” He walked slowly toward her until their bodies just touched, their chests both rising with unneeded air.


“And I know you,” he said, his eyes heavy-lidded, seductive. “That love you had for Angel was a little girl in love with a dream. But his love for you was a sickness. It’s eating him up, even now, knowing that what you feel for me is real, primal. The woman. The demon. They both call out to me until you’re that all I am.” He grabbed her to him then, his lips driving into hers, forcing her lips open until their mouths devoured each other, their hands clutching, their bodies shuddering together.


He lifted his mouth from hers, shaking his head as his demon visage slipped into place. “Let’s fuck that nasty soul away, shall we?”


She wrenched herself out his arms, disgusted with him and with herself. “You’re a pig, Spike.” She laughed at the hurt expression that he quickly tried to hide. “You don’t love me. And Angel stopped loving me the moment the soul left his body. What you feel is sick and twisted – lust and hate and soulless obsession…”


Spike pulled her back, gripping her face between his hands roughly, jerking her eyes up to meet his. “Love isn’t souls, pet. It’s blood – blood screaming inside you to work its will.” His eyes bore down into hers as he spat, “Love is what keeps us in Sunnydale – close to the ones you love, though God knows you’ll never trust yourself to see them again. Love is what keeps me from plunging a stake in Angelus so that I can have you for myself.” He rushed on before she could ask whose love for Angelus.  “And love is what stopped me from cutting your heart out the moment you thrust that stake into Dru.”


He shoved her away from him, catching her by surprise as he shrugged, sliding the duster from his shoulders. “Don’t tell me I don’t love, Buffy,” he said calmly, the red silk shirt following the duster and his hands reaching for the hem of his black t-shirt to pull it roughly over his head. “Maybe this soul you’ve suddenly grown is blinding you to it, but you know we love deeper, grieve harder and burn with pain and pleasure far greater than the mortal coil.”


His hands reached for the waist of his jeans, snapping one button open as he looked up at her. He smiled wickedly, seeing her gaze following the motions of his fingers on his fly. “Wanna prove it?” he said with a wink. Then he was against her, his hands in her hair as he plunged their mouths together. Her hands roamed frantically over his cool, hard muscled back. She barely felt the air grow colder as he ripped the torn nightgown from her body.


The darkness cried out in her, needing him – his body, his blood, his love. She felt him falling back, pulling her atop him and gave herself over to it. She slithered her body over his, raising her hips slightly to allow him to thrust up into her and then met his eyes as she lowered her mouth to his chest, her fangs entering gently, almost caressingly, right above his heart. The demon in her rose up, blocking out the soul, the quest, the past and her vision burned red as the flames rose up around her and she was lost in the blood and the fire.


                                        Continued in Running On Empty

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