So this is my life now, I thought to myself as I kicked a rock in the middle of the street. I kicked it a little too hard and it slammed into a parked car and dented the side.
Oh well. I should be sorry but … I’m just not.
Getting out of the house seemed to be the right thing to do especially after the hellish last few days that I have had. Pipes bursting, basement flooded, crazy demons, my new and improved money problems and the nasty loan people. Not to mention the not so nice looks passing between Giles and Willow. I knew something was brewing but I just didn’t have time to care. Not right now anyways.
Everyone lives at my home rent free and they blew through how much money? Seriously? I mean I should be grateful at how well Willow and Tara have taken care of Dawn but at the same time I’m left holding the bag. It’s not fair.
“Can’t give you a loan Miss Summers…blah! It’s not my fault I died. It’s not my fault that my friends used the insurance money in a few months’ time. None of this is my fault yet NO ONE can help me!” I babbled out loud.
“And now I’m resorting to talking to myself. Way to make people think you’re crazier than they already expect,” I shook my head and continued walking.
Thank god for Giles. He didn’t even think twice before writing out a check for me. What I would do without him I hope to never know. But I know I cannot lean on him forever. The money will run out and I can’t do that to him.
“I’ll have to find a job,” I sigh. Because really my life wasn’t busy enough. Slaying and taking care of Dawn use up almost all my time as it is. I want to ask those living in my home to pitch in but I second guess that. What right do I have? Realistically I had every right but still … I can’t ask.
Since coming back it’s been so difficult. The only time it wasn’t was when Spike was around. I’m so busy lost in my miserable thoughts that I don’t see the person in front of me until I literally bump into them.
The force of the collision propels me backwards but a pair of strong hands grab me and steady me.
I look up in shock and quiet surprise as I realize whose hands they are.
Wow I think of you and you appear, I think pleasantly to myself.Inside I melt a bit and soften. All negative thoughts fly out of my head as I stare into the deep blue eyes in front of me. The feel of his hands on my arms is comforting and my mind
flashes back to a few nights before when he held me so tenderly in those same arms. His body pressed against mine, his head buried in my hair. It was the best night of sleep I had gotten since I had come back and even before that.
I glance down at his hands knowing their strength and marveling at their gentleness.
“Buffy?” he asks, his voice deep. “Penny for your thoughts?”
I blush knowing I can’t tell him what I was just thinking. He’d scoff at me. My mind was burning with the memories of that night. I wanted more of that, more of him but I was afraid. Scared of what I was feeling and scared of what it meant.
I look up and meet his eyes and see the question in them.
“Just worrying about everything,” I say shaking my head.
Spike nods at me and his hands drop from my arms. I shiver as his touch disappears. Since I’ve been back it’s only him that makes me feel like I belong. That alone sends a jolt of frightened electricity through me.
“Tell me. Maybe I can help,” he says and I raise my eyebrow at him. “I did say maybe.”
He shrugs and lights up a cigarette, his face illuminated by the fiery glow.
“Those’ll kill you one day you know.”
“I'm a vampire love, immortal and all that rot.”
I laugh and he smiles, cocking his head to the side.
“I didn’t know this would be so hard. Coming back and all. Not that I had a choice but it should be like riding a bike right? How come it’s so … hard?” I asked him, looking up and seeing the shocked surprise in his eyes.
Surprise that I confided in him or surprise that I was feeling this way I’ll never know. He kept his questions behind the veil and just tried to make me feel better.
“It’ll get better. You’ll find your niche soon enough.” Spike rubbed at my shoulder, his eyes burning into mine.
“But it’s not just that Spike. It’s money and responsibilities and worries that I didn’t really have before,” I sigh and tell him everything I was thinking. All the problems and dismay come pouring out of me.
And he listened to every word and didn’t interrupt me. Only looked away once and that was to stamp out his finished smoke.
“You’re not alone slayer. You have your friends, your watcher, your sister and you have me. I’m not going anywhere.”
I nod at him and realize that I depended on him far more than I ever thought I would. Inwardly I shudder as I remembered how I was before I died. How awful I know I made him feel. The horrible things that I said. Evil and soulless? How could I have treated him that way? He had always been there for me. As a man, as a friend, as a vampire, and as a protector. I watched how he took care of Dawn and helped the scoobies.
Angel left. He always left when the going got hard. But Spike? He stuck it out no matter how tough the road ahead was. He stayed and made sure business got done. Even there at the end he tried to save me, he tried to save Dawn. I asked him for help and there was no hesitation in his answer. He did what I needed and screw what anyone else thought of it. I needed him and Spike was there.
I’ve never seen heartache on anyone like how I saw it on him. The broken look in his tear filled eyes, the absolute anguish on his face upon seeing my battered body. He beat himself up for days after my death. Crying on my grave, crying in his crypt, and at the same time patrolling with everyone and keeping the town safe.
I didn’t deserve him. I didn’t deserve the tender looks and the arms full of comfort. I wasn’t fit to lick the boots he trudged through the sewers in. I saw that now. I saw what I was and it colored me with embarrassment and shame.
“I’m sorry,” I whispered at the awakening experience that left my insides reeling.
When I woke up the first night in my room to see him sitting in my chair, the only thought I had in my head was comforting him. I knew I saw him in a different light and I saw the man he had become, the man he always had been. My time in heaven had been an awakening for me. I knew now that my relationship with Spike would never been like it had been. It would be new and I would treat him like the man he was and make up for the terrible things I put him through.
A finger trailed along my face and tucked under my chin lifting my eyes to his. He stood closer to me, his body in my personal space and I tingled all over. The leather of his duster brushed across my legs as he put his hands on my face.
His eyes burned into mine, his face inches away.
“Nothing to be sorry for,” he breathed before he pressed his mouth to mine.
His kiss was slow and thoughtful and as we broke away we knew everything had changed. We stared at each other for a breath and then our lips met feverishly, electricity and passion flaring between us. Everything fell away. All the problems and the worry. All that mattered at that moment was Spike. I realized then that he would be my savior. He would be my anchor. I may have been thrust out of eternal rest and into this mess but this man? He was my heaven on earth.