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Mood Ring

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“Um, Buffy?” Willow sounded nervous but Buffy couldn't see anything over the white smoke billowing through the whole room. Xander was still coughing but he seemed to be up and moving. That had to be good, right?

Buffy stepped forward slowly, her hands out before her. “Willow? What happened? Are you okay?”

“Just don't be mad, okay?”

“Mad? Why would … “

A hand, dark blue, wrapped itself around Buffy's wrist. With a flick of her hips and a twist to the side she sent it, whatever it was, flying into the wall. “Ow!”

“Spike? Did that thing get you?”

“Hey,” Xander called out from the far end of the room. “I've got the windows open. Willow, a little help getting rid of this smoke?”

Buffy heard Willow muttering something that sounded like a spell. “Spike?”

As Willow's spell drew the smoke out the window, Buffy turned toward the center of the room where Spike had been laid out on the floor. “What the hell'd you throw me for? If you didn't want me here, could've just asked me to leave. I can take a hint you know.” But that was coming from the edge of the room. Buffy turned to see Spike down on the floor and against the wall, right where she'd thrown … where she'd thrown him. Spike's skin, what could be seen of it under his white cotton t and jeans, was blue, dark blue, a 'the sun had set about an hour ago and the sky was just this side of black' dark blue.

“Well, that's different.”

“Xander, just don't. Willow, what did you do to him?”

“What are you all going on about?” Spike saw his own arm. “Well, that is different.”

“Different? Spike, you're blue.”

“Feel alright. Wait.” Spike started patting the top of his head. “My hair's still white, right?” His skin shifted to a pale green.

“Okay, and that's just making me feel a bit ill,” Xander said. Spike's skin turned red. “Oh, that's so much better,” Xander added.

“Death cap,” Willow shouted out. “There was too much death cap in the spell. I knew we should have adjusted it for a vampire.”

Spike turned a pale yellowish-orange. “What are you all going on about?”

“Yes Spike, your hair is still white, but your skin can't decide what color it wants to be,” Buffy told him. Spike turned dark blue again.

“It's his emotions,” Willow said. “Red is anger. That greenish is concern. And blue, if I remember correctly, is love. The darker the color, the greater the emotion.”

“You mean Spike has turned into a giant mood ring?” Xander sounded delighted.

A dark pink Spike glared at Xander.

“Love?” Buffy asked. “He was blue to begin with. That was love?”

Spike's skin turned to a muddled brown. “Not like you never knew.”

“When you came back you stayed away because?”

Willow, who'd joined Xander by the corner, pointed out. “Oooh, purple now. That's both love and anger.”

“Because you were with that bloody Immortal. Moved on right quick, didn't you?”

“Who the hell is the Immortal?” Buffy asked.

“Um, cover story,” Xander said. “Slayer pretending to be you in Rome? High-profile. Very visible. Everyone knows the Immortal.”

“You thought that was me? What kind of an idiot are you?”

“Oh. Right. Because you'd never date anyone supernatural, would you? And anyway, Andrew told us it was you.”

“Andrew?” Buffy turned her glare on Willow and Xander.

“Don't look at me,” Xander said raising his hands as if in surrender. “First I've heard of it.” Willow shook her head, me neither.

“You really came looking for me?”

Spike's skin was blue again. “Well, yeah.”

“But I told you, back in Sunnydale, that I loved you.”

“You were just saying that, pet. I understand.”

Buffy opened her mouth and then closed it again. Stared at Spike. “You are such an idiot.” She threw herself across the room and into his arms. “But you're my idiot.”

They kissed. They kept on kissing.

“Hey, maybe you guys should get a room,” Xander joked.

Willow, drawing him toward the door, said, “They have a room.”