NC-17 for language
Chapter 1: here
Summer came and went, as summers usually do. Soon it was time for the schools around Sunnydale to start up classes again. Cassie, Xander and Willow started their junior year of high school while Beth began some evening elective classes at the local college.
Their paths rarely crossed. In fact, the three teenagers hadn't really noticed the young girl who worked at The Bronze as a bus person. Beth kept her head down and suppressed her usual quipping tendencies when the humans were in the club. More times than not the ensouled vampire was with them, and Beth didn't want any of them to realize she was a vampire. She had no idea why the other Slayer or the other vampire couldn't sense her presence.
Everything was going along smoothly in Beth's life until the night HE walked in. She was filling in for a few hours for one of the other girls when she noticed the platinum haired, black clad vampire circling the nightclub studying the dancers. The Slayer in Beth told her to lure the vamp outside to dust him, and that plan worked fine until she deliberately bumped into him. As soon as she looked up into his beautiful blue eyes, Beth the girl and Beth the vampire hit Beth the Slayer over the head and tied her up in the corner.
"S-sorry," Beth stuttered. If she had been alive she would have blushed crimson red.
"It's okay, luv," the vampire's British accent sent shivers down Beth's spine. He tilted his head, and studied her, "'m Spike. What's a lovely young thing like you workin' in a place like this?"
Beth shrugged her shoulders when she realized he knew she was a vampire. She wondered how he could tell when the Slayer and the cursed vampire couldn't. "It's a job. The Specter tends to burn down the whorehouses when she finds them, not that I would do that." Beth scrunched her face up, and she shuddered.
"The Specter?" Spike asked, "What about the Slayer?" He tilted his head towards the dance floor and the petite blonde dancing with her friends. Spike watched the vampiress turn to study the dancing teenagers. He could tell she was quite young, but she had amazing control of her demon. Spike found himself pulled in by her bright green eyes, and he was intrigued in a way that he hadn't been since the last time he met a Slayer. The girl on the dance floor paled in comparison to the vampiress in front of him.
Beth turned back to Spike. She realized he was studying her intently, and she dropped her eyes to the floor. "Jill just got here. I have to clock out, but we can sit and talk if you like." Beth turned, and she indicated a nearby table.
"That sounds like fun, luv," Spike smirked, "Can I have the name of my lovely companion?"
"Oh. I'm Beth." Beth stuck her hand out in a gesture of goodwill. She ducked her head again when the male vampire bowed over her hand and raised it to his lips. "Give me a few minutes, okay?"
Spike curled his tongue his teeth, and he nodded. He had no idea why he wanted to talk to the cute little vampiress when he had his wicked ripe plum back at the factory waiting for him. Hell, as soon as Spike saw Beth he forgot all about checking out the Slayer, too. At least until the flunky the Annoying One sent with him came over to remind him of his mission. Spike told the minion to go find something to eat. Then he shouted out that he needed to call the police because there was someone being attacked in the alley. Spike watched the Slayer and her little friends run out of the club. Instead of following them, the vampire sauntered over to the table Beth indicated, and he sat down to wait for her.
"Do you want a drink?" Beth's voice startled the male vampire. He indicated he wouldn't mind a shot of whiskey.
Spike watched Beth's gently swaying hips as she strolled over to the bar. The vampire was fascinated with how her petite lithe body moved so gracefully. Spike was reminded of a dancer ... or a Slayer. He shook his head at that thought. Every vampire knew better than to turn a Slayer. They were wicked bitches when vamped. Then, he wondered how she was going to get him an alcoholic drink. Spike was pretty sure she hadn't been much over sixteen when she was turned. When she returned with his drink, he asked just that question.
"So, luv, how old were you when you were turned?"
"Sixteen." Beth took a sip of her Diet Coke. "If I were still alive my seventeenth birthday would be this coming January."
"Who and where is your sire, pet?" Spike asked. He arched his eyebrow in surprise when he realized she was even younger than he first thought, not even a whole year undead. He knew if she was his childe that there was no way she would be alone in the world. Spike had sniffed her hand when he had kissed it. All he could smell on the vampiress was the scent of her own bath products.
Beth bit her lip for a minute before answering, "His name was Luke, I think. He was killed by a Slayer about the time I rose." She took another sip of her drink, and her eyes drifted to the Slayer on the dance floor.
"That Slayer?" Spike jerked his head towards the dance floor.
"Oh. No, not her. The one before her," Beth said.
"Luke? Big, ugly git the size of a linebacker? He was your sire?" Spike chuckled. "Well, well, well, cousin. I'm glad to meet you."
"Cousin?" Beth's eyes opened wide. "You're an Aurelian? Like that souled vamp, Angel?"
"Angelus has a soul? Oh ho, now that's an interestin' tidbit of news," Spike chortled, "You wouldn't happen to know the details would ya?"
Beth shook her head, and she giggled a little. She leaned in to whisper to the master vampire, "He's dating the Slayer over there."
"You gotta be kiddin' me? Angelus is shagging a Slayer?" Spike took a swig of his whiskey as he speculated this bit of information. He looked over at Beth, and he realized he was having fun talking to the charming little bint. "So tell me about this Specter git you were talking about."
"The Specter isn't a git. He's a she," Buffy said in an informative voice. "She showed up about the same time I was turned. She runs around killing vampires and such. She killed Darla and the Master. The Specter's another reason why I buy my blood from a butcher and don't munch on the natives."
"Town's dangerous for a fledge, innit?" Spike arched his eyebrow at the Slayer and her friends. "Slayer, Angelus, some bint known as Specter."
"Can be," Buffy sighed, "But for some reason the Slayer can't tell I'm a vampire and neither can her boyfriend. I think it would be healthy for me to keep it that way."
"Your secret is safe with me, pet." Spike looked at the dance floor, and he noticed that the Slayer and her pals had left the club. "Wanna dance?"
Beth looked at the dance floor, and then back at the male vampire who was holding his hand to her. She nodded shyly, and the couple moved to the dance floor. Beth couldn't believe how well they fit together. She laid her head on his shoulder and let her body move to the music.
Spike had no idea what he was doing. He should have been out watching the Slayer fight, but instead he found himself in conversation with a shy, young vampiress. He was mighty curious as to why her demon didn't seem to want to rip and tear through the populace of the small town. He knew that sometimes lazy vampires would become whores that catered to humans who wanted to take a walk on the dark side, but he had never met one that took a job to buy pig's blood. He was glad that Beth hadn't taken the whorehouse route. For some strange reason he found her innocence and shyness refreshing.
"What do you do besides work here, Beth?" Spike whispered in the girl's ear.
"I passed my G.E.D classes, and now I'm taking some evening courses at the local college," Beth answered. She waited for the master vampire to laugh at her, but was pleasantly surprised when he didn't.
"Well, there's more to unlife than murder and mayhem," Spike drawled, "Any boyfriends?"
"No, not really," Beth replied, "I can't see dating a human and I can't see most vampires being willing to not kill humans to be with me. You have any boyfriends?" Beth glanced up at the vampire slyly.
Spike gave a hoot of laughter, "No, luv, no boyfriends, but I guess I got a girlfriend of sorts. She's my sire."
Beth was filled with jealousy. "If you have a girlfriend, why are you chatting me up? I'm not a ho." Beth cried. She pulled herself away from Spike, and she hurried over to their table. "Just because I was turned young, doesn't mean I'm naive and stupid!"
"Beth, luv, that's not what I was thinking at all." Spike assured Beth as he followed her to the table, and he took his seat. "Besides, 99.9% of vampires will fuck anything that moves. Somehow I have a feeling that you and I don't fall into that category."
"Does your girlfriend fall into the bigger or smaller category?" Beth inquired. She took a sip of her now tepid Diet Coke. Beth's heart broke when she saw Spike look down in what could only be called embarrassment. She realized that his girlfriend had cheated on him, and she suddenly wished the ho vamp was standing in front of her so she could slap the bitch. Beth laid her hand on his knee and gave it a gentle squeeze.
The two vampires continued to talk until Jack the bartender made the call for last drinks. Both were surprised that the time had passed so quickly for them. Beth had revealed everything but her two biggest secrets to the male vampire.
"Let me walk you home, sweets," Spike offered. He found himself very reluctant to leave the girl's presence.
"Shouldn't you get back to Dru?" Buffy hid the jealousy that still seethed below the surface. She decided that Spike really needed a friend right now.
"Yes, but I want to walk you home first," Spike answered.
Spike dragged the sniveling little man into the factory behind him. He had a feeling that Dru might not be too pleased with him. She preferred her food younger and more tender, but at three in the morning most of the nicest morsels were home in bed. The only human Spike could find had come out of the local high school while he chortled about how he was going to make 'that troublemaker Cassie Linnell' pay for her crimes. Spike recognized the Slayer's name from his conversation with Beth.
Spike entered Dru's bedchamber as he ignored the chanting going on in another part of the factory. He stood in the doorway as he watched his wicked ripe plum lifted one of her dolls and turned it to face the wall.
"Miss Edith speaks out of turn. She's a bad example, and will have no cakes today." She turned to Spike, and she put her finger to her lips. "Shh."
"You need to eat something, darling," Spike said. He walked up behind Dru, and he pushed the man he was dragging down on the floor.
"I'm not hungry," Dru said petulantly, "I miss Prague."
"You nearly died in Prague. Idiot mob. This is the place for us." Spike lead Dru to the bed. "The Hellmouth will restore you, put color in your cheeks, metaphorically speaking, and in a few week's time..."
Dru laid down on the bed, and interrupted Spike's speech, "The stars will align, and smile down on us."
"And then, this town will burn," Spike said. He put more conviction into his voice than he was feeling. Spike carefully erected mental wards against Dru's probes. She might not want him exclusively, but she got very jealous if he showed any interest in other women. Spike didn't want the crazy vampiress to find out about Beth.
"A pretty fire," Dru giggled, "Did you bring me a present, my dark prince?"
"Yes, luv." Spike jumped up, and he grabbed the man he brought with him, "I'm sorry he isn't the sweetest of morsels, but he knows the Slayer. I thought you might have a bit of fun findin' out what he knows."
"They're preparing," Dru said when she heard the chanting become louder. She kept her eyes on the weeping little man as she tried to get inside his mind to find out what would make him sing for her. Dru could feel that her Spike was hiding something from her, but she knew that she could sneak into his mind later while he was sleeping. His dreams were the window to his heart, and his defenses were lower when he was lost on that plane.
"St Vigeous is coming up. It should be a party," Spike said sarcastically. He moved to the doorway to check for eavesdroppers.
"You should go with them and cleanse." Dru glanced at Spike when he muttered her name. "The boy doesn't trust you. They follow him." Dru stood and glided towards the sniveling man.
"Alright, I'll go up and get chanty with the fellas, while you find out about the Slayer," Spike muttered, and he left the room.
"Can you believe that Principal Snyder didn't show up the past couple of days? He didn't even call in," the school secretary said in a confidential voice to Mrs. Chase as the two watched the principal speak to another parent.
Cassie and Willow looked at each other. They had wondered why Cassie hadn't been harassed the past few days, but they hadn't realized that he had been missing. Cassie knew Angel was in the library waiting for the Parent/Teacher Meeting to be over so they could go out on a date. She had figured that was the vampire signature she was feeling, but now she realized it was Principal Snyder.
"We need to get to the library for a you know what," Cassie whispered to Willow. The two girls backed away from the group, and when they had rounded the corner they ran for the library.
In the lounge area where the teachers and parents were congregated, two vampires crashed through a large picture window. They were followed by several more vampires who moved the humans into a circle. A bleached blonde, black clad vampire in full game face stepped into the room. Several of the parents screamed when Principal Snyder's face changed into that of a demon.
"This should be fun," the blond vamp growled. He addressed the principal, "Where's the Slayer?"
"She ran towards the library." Before the vamped principal could continue he turned to dust from a stake to the heart. The blond vamp looked in the direction that the stake was thrown from. Instead of being the Slayer like he expected, it was a small female figure clad in black.
"The Specter, I presume." Spike grinned when the girl nodded and then ran down the hallway into the darkness. She was taunting him to follow her. "Nobody gets out. Especially the girls." He turned to the minions. "You three find the Slayer, the rest of you take care of this lot. I have a Specter to find."
The three minions started down the hallway opposite the one that Spike was going down. The vampire chuckled to himself when he heard a young girl's voice cry out 'oh no, you don't', the sound of flesh being smacked, and the howl of one of the minions. It appeared that some of the students weren't as scared as he first thought.
Spike circled the school until he ran into the minions he had sent in search of the Slayer. It appeared that they were as unsuccessful as he had been in finding his quarry.
"We cut the power, Master Spike. Nobody got out," one of the vampire's informed Spike.
"And either of the two young ladies we're searching for?"
"We didn't pass anyone on the search for the library. Neither of them could have gotten by us," replied a second vampire.
"Well keep searching, pillocks," Spike snarled. He whirled and marched down the hallway that he just came down. He sing-songed on his way. "Specterrr! Here, kitty, kitttyy. Where are you hiding? Come out and play with me."
One of the vampires ran up behind Spike. He touched Spike on the shoulder, and then he pointed towards the ceiling. "Spike! Listen..." The two vampires listened and they heard some activity above them inside the panels.
"Someone's in the ceiling," Spike continued to sing-song his words. He heard movement behind the door to the right of him and the other vampire. Spike nodded towards the door, and the other vampire threw himself at it in an attempt to knock it down. Spike heaved a sigh when the minion bounced off the door. Why didn't anyone make decent minions anymore?
"Use your head," Spike growled. He grabbed the minion, and he shoved its head into the fire emergency case. Spike pulled an axe out. He thrust it into the minion's hands, and then he shoved the other vampire towards the door. Spike swaggered down the hallway where he passed two other minions pounding on another door. "You. Come with me!"
Spike and the two minions made it back to the lounge area. He wasn't surprised to find several piles of dust, because he really had no confidence in the Anointed One's minions. They were stupid beyond compare. Spike stopped to listen. He smirked when he heard scratching around in the ceiling again. He found some nearby metal poles. Spike took one for himself, and he threw another to one of the minions. He paused for a minute before he poked the pole through the ceiling. When the minion saw what Spike was doing he did the same thing.
Spike continued to poke the ceiling a few more times, but he had a feeling that whoever had been up there was gone. He suddenly stopped when he felt a familiar tingle on the back of his neck. Spike turned and saw Angelus holding one of the Slayer's little friends.
"Angelus!" Spike announced happily. Oh, this was going to be good.
"Spike! I didn't know you were in town," Angel declared. He was stunned at this discovery. Usually the brash vampire announced himself to the Slayer right away and issued a death threat.
"Well, I'll be damned!" Spike tossed his pole aside, and he greeted the elder vampire with a hug. He snickered to himself when he realized the ensouled vampire was trying to play him for a fool. Spike silently thanked Beth for all of her information the other night at the Bronze. He wondered what time she got off, and if he would have time to walk her home before he had to get back to the factory.
"I taught you to always guard your perimeter," Angel said, "You should have someone out there." Angel gestured to the outside of the building.
"I did." Spike sniffed in disgust. "I'm surrounded by idiots. So, what's new with you?"
"Everything," Angel answered. He tightened his grip around Xander's neck and the boy squeaked in pain.
"Oh yeah? Come up against this Slayer yet?" Spike questioned, "How about that Specter bint?"
"Slayer's cute. Not too bright, though," Angel replied laughingly, "Gave the puppy dog 'I'm all tortured' act. Keeps her off my back while I feed. Now, the Specter, I keep out of her way. I hear she's a demon."
"People still fall for that Anne Rice routine. What a world!" Spike chortled. He glanced down at the fuming boy who muttered something about lying vampires. Spike raised an eyebrow as the boy continued to insult the vampire holding him even though his death might very well be in the next few seconds. The vampire felt a grudging respect for the human. Oh great, knowing Beth is going to be the death of me.
"Why don't you let the boy go, and we'll go find something a little more ... soft to eat?"
Growling from the nearby darkened hallway caused all three males to turn to search the blackness. Their eyes opened wide when the petite black clad figure of the Specter glided into the light.
"Come play with me, Spikey," The Specter growled, "I'm so much more fun then those two." She melted back into the darkness.
"Oh luv, I just bet you are," Spike growled. He turned back to Angelus and the Slayer's friend. "Specter wants to play."
"You understood her?" Xander asked. He was still staring at the dark hallway. That had been the closest he had ever been to the Specter.
"Didn't you?" Spike watched as the other two shook their heads. "Well, tata, gents. I'm off in search of a Specter to have fun with." He bounced off into the darkened hallway leaving the other two behind.
"You know a lot about this Spike guy, don't you?" Xander asked, "Why did he understand that chick and we didn't?"
Spike moved down the hallway trying to figure out where the Specter went when he felt her presence behind him. "Fe, fi, fo fum. I smell the blood of a nice ripe girl." Spike whirled around to see the Specter standing in a doorway carrying the axe his minion had used before.
"Do we really need weapons for this?" The Specter asked, and she indicated the axe she was holding.
"I just like them. They make me feel all manly." Spike slid his hand up and down his chest. "Came here to fight the Slayer and found something much more interesting to play with."
The Specter wondered how the vampire could understand her. She knew they had connected the other night as vampires, but this was totally unexpected. The Slayer part of Beth was starting to like the boastful blond vampire. Here might be a worthy opponent.
The two superbeings threw themselves at each other. They exchanged a few blows before Spike realized that the girl really was just playing with him. She wasn't trying to kill him, if anything he would say that she was sparring with him. Spike ducked a punch and got in one of his own. When he went to smack her a second time, she ducked much like he had, and landed four quick thrusts of her own to his nose. Spike grabbed her arm, and he shoved her into the wall. His fist went through the wall when she slid down the wall. Voices coming from the hallway caused Spike and the Specter to jump apart.
"Till next time?" The Specter asked. She inched away from the vampire, and she kept her eye on the hallway where the voices came from.
"Nice workout, luv. Oh," Spike tried to catch the Specter's attention before she disappeared. He liked sparring with her, but he also like his vampiress friend. "There's a cute little vampiress about your size working at the Bronze. She's my friend. I would appreciate it if you wouldn't bother her. She's not harming the populace." Spike smiles.
"Till next time," the Specter responded. Then, the two black clad figures ran down opposite hallways away from each other.
"Are you sure they came this way, Xander?" Cassie asked. She searched the hallway for any sign of the two combatants.
"Yes, they came this way," Xander muttered snarkily, "Yes, I'm sure that Angel knows this Spike. Yes, this Spike understood the Specter. Maybe you should get Giles on the research right away!"
"Yeah, sounds good."
Spike stood outside the backdoor of the Bronze, and he smoked another cigarette. After the fight with the Specter, he had gone back to the factory, destroyed the Annoying One and had settled Dru in for the night before coming to the nightclub to find Beth. Spike knew that his actions were crazy. He should be home cuddled up with Dru, but instead he was waiting to walk another woman home. It had been so long since anyone had listened to him like his words mattered that he found himself unable to keep away from the girl.
Beth stood in the doorway and studied the blond vampire. The fight earlier as the Specter with Spike made the Slayer inside Beth go wild. All three parts of Beth clamored for the master vampire, and she had to tell herself that patience was a virtue. He was still totally enamored with his Sire or so she thought. She would bide her time until they were both ready.
"Hey Spike," Beth called out a greeting.