Disclaimer: Joss would never be this stupid, hence its obvious he owns them and I do not.
Spoilers: Very AU from somewhere in season six but not spoilery really.
Feedback: Is something that is nice, even if you tell me you hate it or point out my grammatical errors, it's just nice to know its been read.
Summary: A few years after the beginning of the end (the world, life, whatever) Willow and Spike meet up. There's drinking, seething hatred, depressing sex and an end.
"I-I saw it. I saw it before it happened."
Spike doesn't bother looking up at her, instead his hand grips tightly around the shot glass and he downs his seventh whiskey for the evening. He doesn't need to look at her, he prefers not to. A man -- not a man he hasn't been a man in a long time -- a demon needs his illusions. He still pictures the girl across from him as she was then not like she is now, her black hair interwoven with strands of hideous purple, God he always hated purple, skin still pale but eyes laced with thick black kohl. She's nothing like she was. She's not Buffy's Willow and he has no idea why he's sitting here at this bar with her for the sixth night in a row. He can't stand the way her voice grates, tainted from the cigarette habit she's taken up since the end started, the way her eyes dart back and forth like a timid rabbit, though she's the deadliest serpent he's spied in quite a while. And that's saying a lot. He's seen a lot of beasties in his time.
"Don't, don't you want to know Spike?" she asks, her voice cutting through him, his hand tightens around his glass and he wishes for his eighth whiskey. "About how I saw it and I said nothing? Like maybe we could have stopped it if I weren't so deep low in the melodrama, woo-hoo spiritual residue for trying to end the world. God! How self-centered, huh? I mean that's what I thought. Don't you want to know about it? What is was like? I see it every-"
"No." He cuts her off and flings the glass against the wall behind her. She doesn't flinch and the few other bar patrons don't even look up, the sound of breaking glass in a bar hardly the sort of thing to phase any of them now a days.
"God." She drops her head to the dirty table, "Then why are you even here? If I can't, if you don't want to know, why show up here after all this time? Buffy's dead. She's been dead for three years and the girl once known as the most powerful Wicca in the Western hemisphere can't bring her back-"
"Jesus what the fuck is wrong with you anyway?" he asks, his voice steady, calm but deadly if one were to give it a proper listen. Willow, he figures, is treading on the proverbial thin ice and he wonders for the first time in six years what her blood would taste like.
"Oh, I don't know, first row seat to the apocalypse maybe?" She snorts, lifting her face away from the table leaning across black-sleeved arms.
She'd taste like poison. Like lethal venom and it would be proper to cut her down, this make-believe Willow in front of him. It'd be a tribute to Buffy after all.
He hates her when he reaches for a cigarette and she takes one first.
"You don't smoke. Scoobies don't smoke."
She lights one anyways and he finally looks up at her, her hands shake as she brings the cigarette to her darkened lips, lacquered and done up good and proper like a street trollop. He wants to grab a napkin and wipe away the ridiculous make up scarring her features. She was once pretty in her own way. Buffy she wasn't, but she had a look to her.
"Oh, God. Spike, I miss them all so much," she tells him as she gathers herself on unsteady feet shrugging her coat on. "Don't you?" She reaches for his arm, waiting to lead him out the door and into the night.
Spike wonders when it started raining after Willow closes the heavy drapes that hang in the window. It's still dark out and will be for several hours yet but she knows he's not leaving.
He thinks about leaving, but pulls off his jacket and tosses it across the cracked tabletop of the kitchenette bar.
Willow's shivering, her coat pulled tightly across the black sheer shirt she wears. 'That's it. Cover yourself up girlie.' Spike cocks an eyebrow at the figure she makes and reaches for the half full bottle of rum that sits on the overturned milk crate that serves as a makeshift table. He makes quick work of unscrewing the cap and downing a hearty swig before he flings himself down on her old couch, the sharpness of a wayward spring digging into his back just enough to annoy him, but not nearly so to make him move.
He wonders again how on this sixth night he finds himself once more in her tiny flat. His eyes scan the room searching out mementos, as he's done all week, a trace of Dawn, a stuffed animal or a tiny essence of Buffy, a photograph or a long loss weapon. There's never anything but he looks just the same because the girl before him is a perversion of those memories if she's anything at all.
It doesn't take her long to cross the room and she's on her knees in front of him, her head laying wistfully in his lap, this stranger, this girl, whose hair he finds his hands tangling in. Long dark strands wrap around his fingers, an angry scar slinks down the nape of her neck disappearing into the warm wool of her coat. He pulls more of the warm alcohol into his throat emptying the bottle and tossing it away before pushing her hair aside. His fingers trace along her deep scar and Willow shivers uncomfortably at his touch but shuffles out of her coat just the same allowing his hands easier, intimate contact with her marred flesh. Then she begins talk. He looks to the ceiling and closes his eyes as his fingers continue their dance across her warm flesh.
"I tried so much, Spike, to be the right kind of person. The girl they wanted, especially after, after everything. I was scared. I was always scared. That's why I couldn't say anything. I was selfish. I didn't want them to think... I didn't think."
"When I first met Buffy I couldn't believe she was actually talking to me. By choice. No one but Xander and Jesse ever did that. And here was Buffy all pretty and lively and good with boys, and hey, the demon butt-kicking, and she was talking to me. I killed her. I killed Xander and Anya and probably Giles, because I saw it, maybe I even did it and I never said a word. I'm alive and they're dead."
"You alive then, huh?" Spike smirks, his hand finding its way to her cheek, flushed and damp. She's crying again. She smells of patchouli and tears and weakness sheltering useless power. She's decay and lies and he has no idea what he's doing here.
Here with her again.
He wants to bloody her up good and proper when she lifts her face to him, big eyes peeping out from underneath spent and caked mascara. She looks up at him all sorrow and waste and regret, Spike knows her bedfellows well enough to turn away from her again but doesn't move away when she slinks up his body her stocking covered knees hissing across his denims.
And she's still shaking, when Spike wraps an arm around her waist, another reaching for a dull black strand of hair clinging to her cheek. Her breath smells like alcohol and cigarettes when she leans in close to him.
"I think. I know. She did love you. If it's a consolation," Willow tells him, his face in her trembling hands. His own fingers wrap painfully around the wrists she's rested against his collar bone, and he responds in a low hiss, "It's a bloody humdinger ain't it, love? Fucking consolation indeed. Now get off me." But he makes no move to shove her away or to pry his own weary body off the dilapidated couch. His hands let loose their angry grasp of her wrists moving methodically and loathsomely to her thighs.
"It began with spiders," she tells him quietly, her finger moving gently against his lip, even as his nails dig cruelly into her thighs. "They were black of course but four were red."
Hands away from covered thighs, against her back, then wrapped in her hair. He pulls her back by dark tangled strands and refuses to meet the low look in her eyes.
"It was the red ones though, all legs and bad omeny-"
She has to cease this, this talk. God how his head aches at the sound of her voice, the pitter-pat of her heart. He pulls her to him, hard, bitter and angry, he kisses her hating the waxy taste of her lipstick, the acidic taste of Willow, the shell of the Slayer's girl underneath it all.
She was Buffy's once and that's almost enough but it also keeps her quiet. Makes her stop because he doesn't want to know how she died, or how Willow died. People can breathe and pump blood through intricate veins but Spike knows. Oh, he knows. She's death, this version of Willow before him, her hands snaking to the top button of his fly.
Still she talks, button by button unleashed, she mumbles, in her faltering voice of monsters and hellmouths and incantations wasted while her hand wraps around him, stroking and touching, she buries her face in his shoulder and her words wrap into nothing. She disappears and it could be Buffy, he supposes, or a Willow in a lilac number.
Spike wakes up, the weary edge of morning peeping through tiny centimeters worth of space between the drapes and the window. His jeans are still open, his cock flaccid in his dry spunk. He bites back a curse when he catches the shadows playing across the walls of black and white, light canceling out the sunshine, static bouncing in echoes, a broken reception of Saturday morning cartoons. Willow laying on the floor her hair pulled in a high ponytail, one clump of deep purple loose and pushed behind her ear. Face scrubbed free from clotting makeup and freshly pink. Her feet are crossed at her ankles, a tattoo on her toe. She suppresses a giggle when Wile E Coyote plunges from a cliff, a spoonful of cereal raised to her lips, she has no idea Spike is awake and watching her.
The depravity of the scene is not lost on the vampire languishing in his own spent secretions that the woman in front of him suddenly resembles nothing more than a girl.
Six nights. He's wondering when, or how this will end when she finally clicks off the TV and looks back at him, he doesn't look away enraptured by gloss free lips and clean eyes.
He raises an eyebrow in response and notices the sudden reddening of her face when she sees his open trousers, she looks away like a child, like she's trying to forget she's the one who left him in that state.
Pale fingers, short black nails pumping, mouth against his shoulder, words mumbled and murmured, she moves against his knee, grinding as her hand pumps his cock in mechanical practiced movements, hard, steady and soft. Hand job by numbers, he thinks, his own hands moving further up her skirt when she quits her tormented meandering biting into his shoulder, her free hand reaching to push his exploring digits away before sliding down his body onto her knees. Willow doesn't look up at him when she snaps free another button then one more before pulling him out of his jeans. His hands grip the back of the couch and he leans deep into the coarse fabric, her cool mouth around him, he looks up to the ceiling and frowns in disgust that fades to blank ecstasy as she takes him nearly to the base.
"Shower. You can... the shower. The water's cold but clean; kinda hard to come by these days, unless, you know, unnaturally, but you can use it," she tells him, her fists balling uncomfortably before she breaks into a hiccupping cry.
Buffy, Spike thinks, always cried with grace, she worked herself up, the wide-eyed stare, barely trembling chin, perfect crystal drops down her cheeks, eyes always clear. Willow was like a child, body convulsing in sobs, eyes blood shot, nothing pretty about a crying Willow, a lot annoying about it though. He sighs and watches as she works herself into a full on jag. Minutes pass before Spike finally stands and buttons his jeans, grimacing at the discomfort. He grabs his jacket and tugs out his cigarettes. Lighting one he looks up at her.
"You about done there, goose?"
He waits for her on the seventh night. He's on his third whiskey, she usually shows up by his fifth. Downing his ninth she's nowhere to be seen. By his tenth he slams the glass down on the table disappointed when it doesn't break he kicks back his chair and it falls to the ground with a satisfying thunk.
He's on the street, the cold January wind whipping up around him, counting the cracks in the sidewalk, doing anything to distract himself, a hand grabs his shoulder and Willow stands before him. He has no idea what he's doing when he takes her by the shoulders and shoves her into the brick wall surrounding her like predator with prey when she could decimate him with a thought.
"Spike," she gasps, his hands reaching under her skirt, a tight clutch around her stockings ripping them and her panties just so before he's in her.
"Like pigs. Rutting," he whispers against her neck with his third thrust. His fifth leaving him quickly spent he leans into her heavy and hard, rolling his eyes when he realizes that she's shaking, still shaking, beneath him.
He feels the need to be sick listening to her long winded breaths, the rise and fall of her chest against him, the way she brings a hand to his neck, fingers twisting lightly in his hair. He pushes away, detangling himself from her body and falls to his knees, retching violently ignorant of the hand that lays itself against his shoulder.
"It's okay," she tells him, and for the first time in a good long while her voice doesn't grate against his ears, and he lets her pull his arm up until he's standing himself, only shaking just like her.
"After the spiders it rained for ten days straight," she tells him, wrapping an arm -- that he doesn't shove off -- around his waist, leading him down the empty sidewalk towards her flat.
Willow's flat smells like lavender masking stale cigarette smoke and sex. Nothing but a flimsy cover up, Spike thinks, finding the couch and dropping his tired body onto it. He heaves his arm across his face to block out the dim glow of the small city outside the window, the rest of the flat dark and dank and just proper enough for either of the creatures occupying it tonight. It isn't long until she's closing the curtains, the room sinking to the perfect kind of blackness. Spike feels the couch dip just so as she sits next to him her hand wrapping about his thigh.
"The earth has teeth. I saw it in England. Big teeth. Scary world-endy teeth. The Hellmouth is infinite. Sunnydale, Istanbul, St. Louis, Paris, London, the Pacific Ocean. I opened it. I saw it. I cracked it open in Devon that summer and whittled away at it for another two years. I didn't mean to. At first."
Spike knows he'll hear the story, hear what tore Buffy limb from limb, what baddie found a way to get world governments to launch nuclear arsenals, but he can't, won't hear it now, because the room is tilting and he swears he smells Buffy on the sleeve of a jacket she never so much as saw.
He flings his arm from his face violently bringing it down on the already strained arm of the couch, smashing the small rotting plywood underneath its upholstery just enough for Willow to dislodge her hand from his thigh and skirt away, her shirt rising exposing the tiniest mole on her abdomen.
"Not now." He looks at her evenly, coldly, satisfied by the way she bites on her lip nervously, "Not liquored up enough, not fucked enough. Don't want to hear it. Can't. Can't hear it, would I if I could tear your tongue from your mouth to shut you up. Would I if I could," he finishes, his voice dipping and rising like it used to in the basement, enough to make him grab his head in reflex trying to keep it all inside, locked away like it's meant to be. It's been such a long while after all.
"Spike?" her voice peeps, peeps like a little chickadee, he thinks, and shakes his head wanting to ignore her, hating that she's here, when it's actually he who is here in her flat again. Night seven.
"Quiet. Please." He struggles against dead metal, plastic and wiring, and a soul whose disuse is still quite genuine, when her hand, that tiny little touch in the street, is on him. But it's nice, he's telling himself, this touch, any touch, better still that he can't defile her, she's done herself in quite nicely on her own. She's no one good, someone he can corrupt with a look, a taste. She's been corrupted for a lifetime already. He wonders if she knows. So he looks up at her, black and purple streaks framing white, white skin, eyeliner thick, and she's smiling almost hesitantly.
"Did you ever hear the one where the caterpillar and the mosquito walked into the bar?"
Spike looks away again, finger at his temple as she prattles on, a tiny laugh, a bit of a girl breaks through his clouds. "That was Xander's favorite joke in fifth grade. It's not really that funny, huh?"
She's smiling at him, and it's fresh and clean, making him forget for a minute that she's a serpent and that he's only a monster who once fancied himself a man for her. It doesn't last long, her smile quickly dispersing, a hand full of silver glittering rings and bangles against his thigh. "Or maybe it lost something in the translation or the apocalypse?" She shrugs inching closer to him, and God he doesn't want this. Doesn't want to want this, not here and not with her but nothing can make him stop. He can hate her for who she isn't, but she's still soft, still flesh, a part of Buffy, a part of those days. Red hair, quirky clothes, cloves and cinnamon, power tiptoeing at her fingertips, unleashed a thousand fold since.
He wonders how he'll kill her when he finally hears everything, when he can't stop her, when he stops wanting to. He knows he will, kill her, just like he knew Buffy could never love him, and Willow will let him. Maybe he'll wrap his fingers around her neck, so pale and pretty even though it belongs to the girl whose shirt is sliding off her shoulders, strangle her, leave some bruises and take no blood. Her bloods a poison.
He's never seen her naked he thinks when she shimmies out of her skirt, the damage to her stockings from the scene on the street on display for shameful disapproval. For the first time since it all began on this the seventh night he finally can't look away. The soft hollow between her small breasts as she slips her bra off her shoulders, the swell of her stomach as she rids herself of shorn stockings and panties, the brown curls shadowing between her legs, she stands before him, her eyes not meeting his and he's not looking away. Her toes curl nervously as she draws in a deep breath and finally crooks her finger beckoning him to her. "It's okay," she whispers when he gets up and meets her in the middle of the tiny room. "There's not a lot of time left," she murmurs against his chest pulling his jacket off, tugging his shirt from his waistband until his hand grips her wrists and stills her, his thumb moving to her mouth, rubbing at the lipstick that stains her face so brightly, and he doesn't hate her. Not now, not really, but he doesn't want to know the things he feels crawling at the surface of her skin. Doesn't want to kill her in this moment, wants to pretend that he won't when it's all done.
But its hard to pretend or forget when she's kissing him again, or when his hands drift, stained red from her lipstick down her body, so soft, not lean muscle and physical strength. A touch doesn't betray the power that she has stored inside her. Her body doesn't grip his with equal force. She doesn't buck like an unbroken mare against him. She is nothing like Buffy, even if she was Buffy's. She murmurs low enough that he happily can't hear her through the pounding of her heart, the small hitch in her breath, the slickness of her as his fingers move across her and then in her, she gasps, her fingers lacing in the belt loops of his jeans, rising on tiptoes with each slow stroke and thrust.
A small cry coming from her lips bruised with their own color as the air raid sirens go off. A faint 'whirrr' in the distance good and far away from this part of the town, hidden between taverns and trash, people and things not good enough for advancing to shelter. It's just a test, when the bombs come, hiding won't do a thing and they both know it. In Willow's darkened flat just like they know that both of them will be finished before this seventh night is over.
She's up to her old parlor tricks, black lacquered nails clip button by button down his shirt, the floor hard and lonely underneath his body, his own hands wrapped around her, wondering about her lonely scar when she wedges herself into his head. She's done this once before, the night Buffy lost the gold in Olympic diving what with there being no pool and no judges. Just a dead hell-goddess and an opening portal. Slayers' blood, the Key's blood, blood is blood and it wasn't such an intrusion that night when she tiptoed in his head. Now, it's fury, but he doesn't stop her, knows he probably couldn't if he put a mind to it. Only now he's tired and ready to end this night. Her tongue sweeps a chilly path down his chest and they don't have to look at each other, and she won't bother to speak, it's gotten her nowhere before. He's going to see how it all happened and he'll be given his reason to kill her now, to kill himself.
She never asked about the chip or the soul. One is gone and one is not. He sees it, Willow above the opened cracked earth, hair whipping about in the wind and the rain that's pouring down through the lost ceiling of the high school, pitch black eyes. She opens the hellmouth with accurate, deadly precision. He hears Buffy, doesn't get the right to see her again, not even in twisted Willow's head> She's fighting, she's a warrior. Clueless she is.
But he isn't. Hands tangling in Willow's ridiculous ebony hair, her mouth at his navel, her hand wrapping around his cock, he lets out a groan. Willow's killing her. What's more, Willow knows. Tentative tongue going lower, the black-eyed girl in his head is crying and she's painting such a contradictory picture, enough of one that he opens his eyes to see the real one in front of him. Arms on either side of his hips she whispers, face temporarily sweet and clean, "This is the first time I've seen you... you know... too. You're nice." Then she slips back to a minx, smooth deadly wisp of a woman making him arch right into her, lips like death she forces herself back into his head.
"Get out of my mind," he hisses, holding her head, fighting not to shove and push her down harder before he hears that final cry from his girl. He doesn't get to see Buffy die, he doesn't get that last, only a shout, angry and brutal, not wanting it to be the last.
He wasn't there but he's here. Willow was counting on it, waiting for him when he pulls her up face to face, green irises fading to and fro into black. "I didn't tell anyone," she hiccups. "I had these dreams, those stupid, stupid spiders and all that omeny rain. I felt it pulling me. There were all these teeth and they could have stopped it, Spike. I could have stopped it but I never said, I only dreamed-" She stops when he flips her to her back, her body against the icy floor, he's over her but she picks back up, her hand going to his face softly and oh so sweetly. "I opened it. Me. I did this. I'm letting the world end but at least I put one over on the old hellmouth, it won't win," she finishes, reaching up, her fingers scraping along his neckline, mouth meeting his in rough violent bites. "World powers." She pulls away breathlessly. "Get weary when things get all out of sorty, not that lazy with the random hitting of red buttons and, God, will you just get inside me already?"
It isn't gentle, it'll never be nice but he complies with a deep thrust, her teeth dive into his shoulder but he doesn't fight, want to fidget, want to be rid of this girl, little murderous serpent, but there's just a quarter of an hour left to this night until the sun makes its daily show when Willow cries, "Apricus." He knows what she's done, the city is shinning in through the window. "We can end. I know you want to," she tells him as she meets him move for move. They tangle up in each other, the sun doing what it does, "End me now, this is what we've been leading up to," she whimpers. Her fingers, which tried in foolish vain to bruise and cut, turn light and almost loving, were he anyone else, were it so for her.
They don't have to worry about bombs or beautiful Slayers, dead and mangled. His soul is wasted, all curling up inside him, and God he hates this spectacle underneath him, this make believe Willow. She's not Buffy's anymore, and he never was, and by God her blood is a poison. It takes a lot not to pull away, spit it out. He thinks it's burning right through him as her heart ebbs to null, funny that fire, he lets out a laugh falling on top of her, his skin itching. He hates this soul that makes him look at her now, 'cause he doesn't see the made-up Medusa anymore, but a girl in fuzzy sweaters wearing a sad frown. Then he just sees light and ash, and finally a chance to rest.
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