Willow lay unconscious in her hospital bed a bandage covering the wound on her head. Buffy held her slack hand. A concerned Cordelia and Xander held each other across the room. Giles was still outside talking to the doctor.
All heads turned as the door opened and the Watcher entered. “The doctor says she could wake up anytime.”
''She's okay right? Her brain didn't get mushed?” Buffy tearfully asked.
Clearing his throat Giles responded, “no damage done thankfully”.
With everything that had happened Buffy had lost sight of the fact that Willow was her best friend. Angelus was not Angel his wants and desires did not mirror those of her lost love's. It wasn't the redhead's fault that his demon had some sort of obsession for her.
Spike examined the wound on his lover's stomach it had festered, and angry red lines spread out onto her pale skin. He cleaned it the best he could being gentle with her as possible. Drusilla's fever had yet to break. She continued her delirious mumbling.
“I can take care of her. You should go check on Red before the sun comes up.” Spike cast a glance at his sire over his shoulder.
Visiting hours were over but Xander refused to leave the hospital. He sat in the hospital waiting room drinking yet another cup of coffee. The teen kept nodding off and burned himself with the hot liquid. “Shit”, he muttered under his breath as he wiped off the liquid.
The entry door swung opened Angelus entered holding a bouquet of white roses with tips of crimson. Pinned to the lapel of his jacket was a visitor pass.
“What are you doing here? Visiting hours are over dead boy.” Xander angrily spouted as he stood.
Angelus indicated the pass on his chest. “I'm family so no restrictions boy.” He leaned in closer to the angry teen. “Do you really want to start something here?” Angelus asked glancing around at all the people milling around doing their jobs unaware of the danger they could possibly be in.
“No”, Xander reluctantly admitted moving out of the vampire's way. He watched as the vampire entered his friend's hospital room. Running a hand over his weary face he sat down to keep watch.
Angelus lay the roses on the night stand as he took a seat on the edge of the hospital bed. The sound of her steady heart beat reaffirmed that she was indeed alright. She looked so small and fragile laying there.
Slowly she became aware of bright light behind her eye lids, and a presence in the bed beside her. Blinking slowly Willow focused on Angelus.
Smiling he placed a chaste kiss upon her lips. “Hello beautiful.”
“Angelus how? When?” Willow began to babble confused.
He placed a silencing finger over her lips. “Shh... Rest easy. You were injured but your safe. I'm here now.”
Concern wrinkled her brow. “But Buffy the others if they see you here-”
Angelus cut her off, “we're in public that alone assures everyone must be on their best behavior”. He neglected to mentioned he had run into Xander in the waiting room. He stretched out beside her pulling her into his arms.
Willow ask the question she'd been dreading the answer to since she overheard Kendra's conversation with Buffy. “How's Dru?”
Pulling back enough to look at her face Angelus inquired, “how did you know about, Dru?”
“I over heard Kendra saying she missed you, but got the woman you were with. I naturally assumed she was referring to Drusilla”, Willow responded.
Tucking an errant strand of red hair behind her ear Angelus smiled in spite of the situation. “You're such a soft touch. Always worried about those around you.”
Willow leaned into the hand that was caressing her face. “Tell me Angelus”, she implored.
“Drusilla took a poisoned arrow meant for me. I haven't been able to identify to the poison as of yet. She's been in a fevered stated since it happened.” Angelus confessed ashamed at his failure to help his childe.
Willow felt tears prick her eyes at the thought of Drusilla's suffering. “Kendra meant to kill you and make you suffer first. It's got to be a poison targeted towards vampires or maybe demons. If I was out of here I could research-.”
Kissing her into silence Angelus tasted her tears felt the rage well in his chest. His both mate and childe had been injured, and his demon just wanted a good kill. Trying to calm himself he took an unneeded breath. “She asked for you during one of her lucid moments. When you get released you'll have to come to her.” Placing another kiss on her tempting lips he amended, “to us”.
“Of course”, Willow quickly affirmed.
Xander was relieved when the vampire exited the hospital room. He stood automatically as the vampire approached.
Taking the visitor's pass off his chest he slapped it onto the teen “She's awake go be comforting.”
Stunned by the vampire's actions he wordlessly headed for his friend's side.
Willow was surprised to see Xander enter. “Hi Xan.” She greeted him warmly. “How are the others?”
“Spike killed Kendra. The other vamps roughed up G-man a bit.” Xander reported as he took a seat next to the bed. “But hey look at you awake and all talkative.”
Spike placed Drusilla back into bed after changing the sweat soaked linens. She had begun clawing at her own skin at some point during the day. Her long nails leaving bloody rivulets in their wake. Since she was so drained from the affects of the toxin Spike gently bound her hands to the head board with her silken scarves.
After 24 hours of observation Willow was released from the hospital. Instead of going home she made her way to the mansion on Crawford Street. She didn't bother looking for Angelus her thoughts were with the ill vampire upstairs.
To keep himself occupied Spike had taken to reading aloud to Drusilla hoping she would find comfort in his voice. The door opened and his voice faltered. He was relieved to see Willow enter looking well save for the bandage on her head.
“It's good to see you up and about Red.” Spike greeted as he closed the book he had been reading.
The sight of Drusilla in such suffering made Willow want to weep. She pulled Spike into a comforting embrace. “I'm so sorry.”
“She's been asking for her Mum. You're the only motherly figure she's got now. I gotta tell ya your a sight better than Darla ever was”,Spike confessed.
Willow still couldn't believe how intertwined in the vampires lives she had become. They had become more of a family than her own.
“Will you stay with her while I check in with Angelus?” The blond vampire looked as if he carried the weight of the world on his shoulders.
“Yes. Have you fed?” Willow asked as she took the book from his hands.
“Not recently”, he ruefully admitted.
“Well don't come back until you do. You're no good to Drusilla if you are wasting away.” Willow admonished as he headed for the door. Part of her felt guilty for encouraging the vampire to feed on an innocent person. Casting a glance at the title of the book Willow felt a twinge of surprise it was a volume of poetry.
After going out a finding himself a Happy Meal on legs Spike returned to the mansion, and sought out his sire in the library. “Red took over for me so I could grab a bite. Any progress with the research?”
Angelus looking up from the books in front of him his face was set in grim lines. “I found a healing spell. It's rather complex but looks like it maybe of use.”
“Lucky us we have a witch upstairs.” Spike bounded from the couch and grabbed the book. Scanning the page he stopped cold at the last line. “The witch has to give her life for Dru's”, he mumbled aloud.
Angelus nodded silently the ramifications running through his head. He could lose his childe or his human mate.
“You and Red are mated she's tied to you she would survive it.” Spike tried to rationalize the situation.
Angelus raked a hand threw his disheveled hair. “Or I die with her.”
“We do the spell.” Heads turned at the voice coming from the doorway. Willow stood there calm a determined look on her face. “You see this?” She asked indicating her face. “This is my resolve face.”