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Out In The Cold

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Gravestones made very uncomfortable seats. Buffy would have thought she would know this after all her years as the Slayer, but then, it wasn’t like she’d spent much of her time in graveyards sitting around. She’d been mainly focused on slaying things. Unfortunately, tonight she was sitting around. Against an uncomfortable gravestone in a freezing cold cemetery. Oh, and it was snowing.

At least she had Spike to keep her company. Spike, who was currently masquerading as lump of snow number three. He wasn’t moving, wasn’t breathing, and had been asleep next to her for so long that snow had almost completely covered him. Which didn’t really mean he’d been asleep very long. Really only about an hour. It was snowing very hard. Buffy had to brush herself off every few seconds to avoid becoming lump of snow number four.

 

Really, this all was Willow and Giles’s fault. They had translated some kind of prophecy for the rising of some great apocalypsey evil and decided that Buffy would be the perfect person to stop it. Which of course, she probably was, she’d admit that, but this really wasn’t a great night. Especially when it was the middle of December, the forecast was for snow, and the rising was apparently in a cemetery, in the middle of the night. Buffy had had big plans for hot chocolate and tv, but the fate of the world had other ideas.

Unfortunately, Willow hadn’t taken any of her objections. And after half an hour of complaining, she had suggested bringing Spike along.

“It’ll be fine. Maybe even fun. I came come up with some spell to keep you warm, and you two can have some nice alone time. With fighting. You guys like fighting,” Willow smiled, “besides, Spike’s a vampire, he doesn’t feel cold, he’ll be fine.”

Buffy had resisted the urge to point out that she was pretty sure that was a lie, like most of Spike’s supposed ‘facts’ about vampire physiology, including, “No, I don’t sweat, that smell can’t be me,” “I don’t need glasses, being a vampire gives you perfect eyesight,” and her personal favorite, “Vampire erections are actually caused by magic.”

Also, all of Willow’s ‘positives’ about tonight had been a miss. That warmth spell had nearly lit the both of them on fire. Nice alone time had translated into Spike taking a nap while she froze her ass off. Yeah, when this was over, she was so taking a day to nurse her frostbite in peace.

 

There was a shuffling noise from next to her, and then snow and ice was sprayed all over her. Because she really needed more snow being dropped on her. Buffy wiped the snow from her face while trying not to shift any of her three layers of winter gear. Spike sat up next to her and looked around, like a confused prairie dog coming out of its hole. Half his body was still covered in snow.

Buffy looked him over and raised an eyebrow. She was wearing two coats, and a sweater, as well as two pairs of gloves, a hat and earmuffs, three layers of thick socks inside her boots, and had a blanket wrapped around her. Spike was wearing his usual jeans, a t-shirt and his duster (all black of course). Not even a pair of gloves.

What the hell. And, not at all unexpectedly, his fingers were almost blue.

“Did something happen? What’d I miss?” he asked, subtly shoving his colorful hands in his pockets. Don’t feel cold, my ass.

“Just the last foot of snow fall,” Buffy smiled and brushed snow out of Spike’s hair.

“Aren’t you cold?” she asked. Spike shook his head with an innocent expression that said ‘I have no idea what you’re talking about’. But Spike was never innocent, so she wasn’t falling for that.

“Uh huh,” Buffy made sure to sound as skeptical as possible before turning back to her graveyard watch like the empty silent space was super interesting.

“What? I’m not cold,” Spike said, though his chattering teeth were not exactly backing him up.

“Right,” Buffy replied with a bright smile and nod as Spike pulled his coat tighter around himself.

There was a long silence as Spike shifted restlessly, pushing more snow towards Buffy.

He pulled his hands from his pockets and showed them into his armpits.

Buffy bit her lip. “Spike, your hands are turning purple. You’re cold.”

Spike shook his head adamantly, but didn’t say anything, just hunched his shoulders and hugged himself tighter.

Buffy grabbed at his wrists and pulled his hands out. Yeah, that wasn’t pretty.

She pulled the blanket off her shoulders and wrapped it around him. Then looked back down at his hands.

“I don’t think your hands are supposed to be that color. How are you going to hold a weapon or throw a punch when whatever we’re waiting for arrives?”

Spike gritted his teeth and was obviously doing his best to come up with some kind of argument. “I can still kick,” he finally said petulantly.

“Like your toes aren’t frozen too,” Buffy laughed and then sniffled. Crap. She hadn’t brought tissues or anything.

Spike offered the edge of the blanket and it took Buffy a few moments to figure out what he meant.

“Spike, that’s so gross, no!”

He shrugged and said nothing, just stared at her in the same way she had looked at his hands.

She turned away from his smug face and crossed her arms. She had some standards of hygiene, unlike Spike, apparently. She could also feel the snot running out of her nose. Yeah, everything about this was gross.

She grabbed the blanket and angrily wiped at her nose.

“Fine, that’s my problem solved, but you’re still like an icicle over there.”

Spike looked thoughtful for a minute. Then there was some hesitation. He had an idea but wasn’t sure she’d like it.

Whatever it was, he’d better say it before she got more annoyed.

“We could hug, you know, conserve body heat,” he held his arms out and bit his lip.

Buffy laughed, and tried to ignore Spike’s swollen blue fingers. She hesitated and Spike wrapped his arms around her and leaned his head on her shoulder.

Buffy repositioned the blanket and put her arm around him. This was nice. Not the warm nice alone time that she had been promised, but okay. Then something occurred to her.

“Spike. You don’t have any body heat,”

Spike didn’t respond. Buffy waited a minute. Yeah, he was pretending to be asleep.

Buffy leaned her head against his and closed her eyes.

 

Nothing rose that night, and Buffy and Spike slept peacefully. Willow came by the next morning to apologize for the mistaken translation and found them huddled together, covered in snow. They went home to spend some nice warm alone time together.