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Counseling

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“It’s just frustrating,” said Dawn, kicking at her chair legs.  “Like, this mag–majorly weird stuff is about me, right?  So shouldn’t that mean I get to know about it?”

Spike nodded solemnly, lacing his hands together on top of the desk.  Well, right now he was Dr. S. Pike, school psychologist, and looking quite a bit more respectable than he preferred.  But troubled children made some of the best wishes, especially the ones who looked sweet.  Beware the nice ones and all that rot.  “That sounds like it makes you angry,” he suggested in his best posh accent.  Hardly subtle, but he’d never been one for subtlety.  That was more Halfrek’s gig.

“Yeah, sometimes.”  She shrugged. 

When no response seemed to be forthcoming, Spike prompted, “What do you wish would happen when they kept things from you?”

Good wishes or not, he could only spend so much time listening to small children whinge.  

Instead of responding to the question, though, the girl’s eyes narrowed.  Suspicion dawned in them–directed at him.  “Is that a normal psychologist question?”

Spike glared back.  “I reckon so, yeah,” he said brusquely.

“Wait.  Your accent changed,” Dawn accused, and Spike’s scowl deepened.  Dammit–he’d trying to use his RP, but the cockney accent he’d spent decades perfecting was more natural to him now.  Especially when he was annoyed.  She leaned forward and examined his nameplate.  “S. Pike.  Spike.”  

He must’ve made a face; he couldn't lie to save his life.  Goddammit, what was this girl doing?  It’s not like she could bloody know anything, but something about her suspicious glare…  “Look, I don’t know what you’re on about.  I just want to hear about what you want to happen.”  He leaned forward, pasting on a smile so fake it hurt.  “I’m here to help you.”

The girl glared.  “I wish you’d tell me the truth,” she said.  Spike glared back, unmoved.  Was this tiny thing on to him somehow?  Sure, he ran into people who knew what he was every now and then, but they were usually witches or other demons.  Not small girls whose feet could barely touch the floor.  “Look.  My friend Anya used to have a friend named Spike.  She tells me about him a lot.  Are you him?”

Anya.  Anya.  “Anyanka?” Spike blurted out.  He hadn’t heard about her in a bit–maybe a year, maybe two, they blurred together.  And hadn’t she been turned human?

…Right.  Turned human…on a hellmouth.  Like the one he was over right now.  “Fuck,” said Spike, giving over all semblance of professionalism.  “How do you know Anyanka, anyway?”

“Oh, she’s dating my sister’s friend Xander.  They babysit me sometimes.”  

“Dating?  A bloke?” Spike asked, eyebrows raising.  “That’s new.”  

“Yeah, yeah, whatever.”  Dawn waved it off, rolling her eyes.  “If you’re a vengeance demon, then I want you to grant me a wish.”

Well, this day kept getting more interesting.  Spike decided he liked this surprising little girl.  He hadn’t met a kid quite like her before.  And maybe he’d have a chance to say hello to Anyanka.  “What’s that, then?”

“So, my sister’s the Slayer.”  Spike straightened instinctively.  A Slayer…he hadn’t had a chance to tangle with one of those yet.  Dawn pointed at him, scolding, but Spike just smirked back.  “And I wish that–for one week, and then everything goes back to normal–I get to be in charge of Slaying and everything instead of Buffy.”

A week.  That rather put a damper on things…but a lot could happen in a week.  Spike’s smirk widened as his face turned into its true demonic form; Dawn’s eyes went wide.  And he snapped.  “Done.  Pleasure doing business with you…Slayer.”