Spike walked through a desert made of ice.
Among the laughing, crying, fighting, hoping warm bodies, he alone was caught in a subzero hell. His body felt stiff, frozen, every move painfully awkward.
The only sun in his life, the tiny speck of warmth he held on to with a desperate ferocity, was her. Her hatred burned bright, so bright it almost felt like something else entirely.
He couldn’t have her love. Not now, not ever. But she was constant in her hate. Constant and monogamous.
He could carve “Buffy hates Spike” into a tree.
It would have to do.