ifollowmyblood: ([Emote] Still Abed)
[personal profile] ifollowmyblood
"Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase."

==========

Fever had him in its grips, blinding him with white-hot flame. Somewhere in the place where he could still think clearly, he knew he was dying and mourned the loss. Pain he could handle, delirium and hallucinations were no big deal. Hell, he could even stand in judgment and tough out having his victims paraded before him by the Almighty himself…he’d already put himself through that wringer once upon a time.

I don’t know if you can hear me…but you’ve got to trust me.

He could trust the pain, he could trust the dark. Blinding whiteness he couldn’t handle, he couldn’t go into it willingly. He wasn’t made for it, not anymore. He played at the edges, but all it was ever going to be was an act. Even his soul was a lie, torment for a demon’s life that the man had to atone for. Sins he’d committed, sins he’d never even conceived…

Don’t. God, please don’t.

Spike, come on.


The name reached him, touched something in his rational mind through the corona of the fever. It was cold, hard, blessedly familiar. God help him, it was a beloved thing, but he couldn’t remember why…

There. There…that’s it, love. That’s it, Spike…

He belonged in the dark, he always would…in the fire, he could see faces that didn’t belong to him, faces that weren’t real. Pinpricks of light on the edges of a life gone wrong, that’s all they were…

It was his last thought before he stopped thinking altogether.

* * * * *


“Sit him up and shove it down his throat.”

“The grumpy one is wise. We should build him a shrine. Let’s do this.”

“You’re all bloody daft if you think that’s going to do any good, he’s unconscious! Let me try…”


He was lifted, held by hands that, gentle as the cool night air, caused him to blanch unintentionally, his skin screaming in protest. Too much fever, too much heat…he felt like the one brush left him raw and bleeding.

“Shhh, shh shh shh, s’all right, love. Drink this…”

More heat, he needed to get away from the blasted heat…but life was there and he had so little left.

He swallowed. Swallowed again.

Then gagged and jerked when he realized it was human blood…and cried out when he realized it was Slayer’s blood.

“Bugger!!!...”

“Spike…”

“No, g’way…I’ll kill you, you ruddy--”

“Spike, HERE!”

The sharp, commanding tone was accompanied by rapidly cooling porcelain being thrust into his hand, fingers coiling around his own blessedly familiar coffee cup.

“You were poisoned, love. This is the only way…just drink it up, hmm? For me?”

With some difficulty, he blinked hard and looked up. He was slumped in her arms, head pillowed against her breast, ears finding the steady rhythm of her heart, a heart he was fairly sure shouldn’t be beating. If nothing else, she shouldn’t be there with him, in his bed…

“Amelia?”

She smiled at him, and he knew he had to have been dreaming. The fever, it made him think she was gone. This time, her fingers were a blessing as she smoothed them over his cheek with tears in her eyes.

“Yeah…yeah, hi. Welcome back.”

He smiled back, then managed to turn to the person who wanted to build a shrine to Cain, standing in the corner. One face, then another just beyond, neither of whom he expected to see.

“…Buffy? Bee?”

“Well, no brain cells died.” Buffy remarked with a grin, though her eyes were far too bright. Past her, Baileigh was less restrained with her tears as she was suddenly there in bed with Amelia and him, arms tight around his neck.

“When you’re well, I’m staking you myself you jerkwad. How dare you?!?”

“Right.” He managed to grunt, hugging her with one arm and blinking against tears of his own. “Next time someone comes at me with a poisoned crossbow, I’ll have a touch more courtesy to step out the way, yeah?”

“Damn right.”

It was a long while before she released him and sat next to Buffy, and Amelia who finally moved to allow Cain close enough for a physical.

“Memory’s okay…color’s better, but yer still feverish.” he grunted, clearly displeased. “Dehydrated as a motherfucker.”

“I’m a bloody vampire, you stupid git, how the bugger can you tell?” Spike huffed.

“Pallor changes with the lack of blood, asshole, shut the fuck up.”

“Be nice to him.”
Baileigh commanded, swatting Spike as Cain let Amelia return to his side. “You were poisoned with Killer of the Dead.He’s the one who figured out how to save your life without killing anyone.”

He would have asked, would have thought to, but he didn’t need to as he noticed, finally, the royal purple strips of bandage wrapped around the crook of her arm…one matched by the pink bandage wound around Buffy’s.

“Why drain one Slayer when you can drain a dozen?” Buffy quipped when she saw his gaze drift.

“Baileigh, I don’t give a rat’s arse if you’re pregnant, I’m gonna--”

“Save it, Fang Face, I feel *good.*” Baileigh huffed, rolling her eyes. “Turns out being pregnant made me sick and bloodletting makes it better.”

“Pregnancy polycythemia.”
Cain corrected with a weary sigh. “Aggravated by yer fuckin’ Slayer powers. Took almost a pint and a half outta that fuckin’ plasma factory right there ‘fore it did any goddamn good. Relax, she’s fine: blood tests every two weeks and a trip to the Red Cross every four’ll keep her healthy, and it’ll fix itself when the baby’s born.”

Shifting as much as he could manage, he caught sight of a cluster in his doorway. From the gathering, he could pick out Hank and Ruby, among others, each of them wearing a bandage that displayed their loyalty in their sacrifice.

“They love you, ya know.” Amelia whispered in his ear. “Almost as much as I do.”

The words didn’t quite register, not just yet, but he did steal glances at Baileigh, Buffy, and the girls hovering at the entrance of his room before he turned his face into Amelia’s chest and let her hold him, let himself hear her…and let himself believe, just for a minute, that maybe he wasn’t made to live in the dark after all.

Muse: Spike
Fandom: Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Words: 1,065
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August 2010

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