Spike was awakened by a strange sensation: bright, intense heat on his face.
With a frantic gasp, he sat up, only to be soothed and gently eased back into the window-shaped patch of morning light by a gorgeous, naked woman who had once been his archenemy.
Tenderly, gratefully, Buffy caressed his cheek and peppered kisses on his sunbathed skin.
One hand weaving into her tousled hair, the other sliding down her silky back, he remembered the baby. "Where's--"
She covered his mouth and turned her head toward the makeshift bassinet beside the bed. "Sleeping."
Of everything that had occurred in the last twenty-four hours, that was possibly the greatest miracle of all. Apparently accustomed to all the noise and attention, Chance wound up just as the post-apocalypse pizza party wound down. Subsequently, she spent half the night cradled between her parents and the other half wondering why she couldn't stay there.
Which left Buffy and Spike with a running total of three uncompleted shags and the fastest blow job in history. She'd literally just tongued the tip, and it was over.
But now... Could they actually take their time?
She brushed her lips against his while straddling his lap. "You look beautiful in this light."
His cock stirred at her touch. "Think that's my line."
"Shhh." She bit softly at his ear, "It's my turn to tell you what I love about you."
Well. In that case...
"I love," she spoke in a heady whisper and slid her wet center over the length of his hardening cock, "every inch of you."
"I love your eyes, when you look at me. When you want me."
Eyes flashing with desire, he grasped her hips as she slowly took him in. "Always want you."
"Your voice," she inhaled sharply, lashes fluttering. "Your accent. This scar..." She traced the angles of his face. "Your tongue, when it curls up like that..."
He grabbed her and sucked in a nipple.
"Mmmn!" She began to move her hips to and fro. "When it does that... too..."
"Go on." He pulled her close to speak into her ear. "I'm listening."
She giggled. "I love..." Faster, a little faster... "Your attitude... Your wit. Your bravery." She placed her palm on his solar plexus. "Your heart, that's always been pure..."
Touched, he covered her hand with his.
"Your passion..." She rode him firmly, making the bed shake. "Unh, your--"
Chance let out a squeal.
"Baby?" he concluded.
As Chance worked up a fuss, Buffy dropped her head on his chest. "I give up. She wins."
"This round, love." Exhaling his pent up tension, he rubbed her ass and gave it a brisk pat. "Not the war."
She sighed, "I'll start the coffee."
"I'll change her nappies."
Together, the new parents got out of bed.
* * *
"Buffy, come look."
Coffee mug in hand, she stepped out onto the sundrenched back porch to see him standing in his pajama bottoms, squinting at the clear blue sky, a happy little Chance in his grasp.
He wrapped an arm around her and pulled her close. "It's a beautiful day."
"This isn't the end of evil, you know."
That's what Angel told her on the front porch the night before, after she'd asked him what his immediate plans were.
She had to admire his consistency -- the man liked his brooding.
"Of course not," she replied thinly, "I mean, three slayers, nothing to slay... not seeing the hilarity in that cosmic joke."
"Hey," he said with a shrug, "if you get bored, you can always come for me."
Their eyes met and quickly diverted. She knew he didn't mean it the way it landed, but there it was. "Angel, I'm sorry--"
"Don't be." He moved his hand closer to hers, stopped just shy of contact. "I'm... happy for you."
"Once more, with feeling?"
"I mean it. You deserve what you want in life. Even if it is ...you know." He was still having a hard time with the concept. "Spike."
"You deserve happiness too." She quickly added, "But could you not find it with Faith, at least not tonight? I mean, she just came out of a coma for god's sake, not to mention the whole almost poisoning you to death; granted I don't have a leg to stand on with Spike, but--"
"Buffy," he interjected. "I'm not interested in her."
"Oh. Then. Nevermind." She chuckled, embarrassed. "I saw you talking earlier, I guess I just assumed--"
"She asked if she could come with us."
"Oz offered to drive me down to L.A. Wasn't looking forward to walking it."
"The car. Right. Spike will make that up to you, I promise."
From inside the house came a baby's shrill cry followed by a collective Ewwww. "The diaper-changing is a start."
Riley opened the front door and asked, "Have either of you seen Forrest?"
Suddenly, a siren blared and three police cars screeched to a halt on the street.
"Crap. The hospital." As the cops closed in with pointed guns, Buffy raised her hands. "If I told you I was saving the world, would you believe me?"
"No." Lowering her hands, Buffy noticed one of the cops shining his flashlight into a jeep in her driveway. "What are you--"
"In here, detective. Just like her picture, only naked."
He opened the door, and the people on the porch stared, dumbstruck, as Faith and Forrest gracelessly tumbled out of the car, struggling to get their clothes on.
Buffy stated the obvious. "There's Forrest."
"Faith Lehane, you're under arrest for the murder of Deputy Mayor Allan Finch--"
"It was an accident," she protested as he latched the cuffs.
"--and in connection to the discovery of three corpses found in the general hospital--"
"Hey, that wasn't me, all right?" She turned to her fellow slayer. "Chime in any time now, B."
"Oh. Yeah. She's telling the truth, I was with her the whole time. She didn't kill anyone."
"And you didn't assault a hospital employee?" the detective said, silencing her. "I could take you in too."
Angel stepped in front of her. "She just had a baby."
"I know. That's why I'm not arresting her yet."
Faith said, "What, no break for the girl who just came out of a coma?"
"Pet," came Spike's cautious voice from the doorway, "what do the nice policemen want?"
"Oh, you know, what they always want." She looked back to see him and the rest of the gang gathered behind him. "Truth, justice... a little jedi magic..."
"They're not gonna get it," Riley announced after speaking into his radio. "I'm sorry, detective, but this is a military matter."
"You've got to be kidding me," he sighed, eying the soldier's credentials.
"We'll take it from here."
Buffy smiled at her new friend. Evil wasn't over, but good seemed to be winning out more and more.
"It really is." Buffy touched her daughter's head and nuzzled against her boyfriend's naked chest, then whispered in his ear, "Want to spend the rest of it in a dark hotel room?"
"I'll pack a bag."
* * *
"Thanks, Mom. Love you!" Buffy hung up the phone just as Spike entered the room.
He latched the door behind him. "She okay?"
"Gram's got it covered, said to stop calling already." She sat up in the disheveled bed, reached for the aluminum pitcher he held. Took a long gulp, then gasped for air. "What took so long?"
"You wanted ice." He took an ice cube out and touched it to her nipple, then rolled it down to her taut stomach, liking the way she squealed and her skin quivered in response. He ran it over her slick, swollen labia, then popped it in his mouth, crunching as he said, "Only working ice machine's in the bloody lobby."
Failing to undress him with her left hand while chugging the water with her right, she snapped her fingers at his zipper.
"Clerk told me if I want service," he dropped his jeans and crawled over her, wiggled his brow, "I should take you to a 'nice hotel'."
She fished out an ice cube and touched it to his neck, then slid it down his bare torso, making him shudder before it melted away on his thickening shaft. "Did you tell him you broke the nice hotel?"
He looked up, breathed in. "I told him you like to live dangerously."
She tightened her thigh muscles against his hips. "Uh-huh."
"And that you're a screamer." He tipped the pitcher, aiming down her cleavage.
She shrieked as ice cold liquid coasted down her front and puddled between her legs. "You fuck!"
"And that you have a filthy little mouth." He kissed and bit her lips.
She commandeered the pitcher and poured it on his crotch.
After a shout, he rubbed his chilled tip into her crevice. "What's wrong, love? Miss the feeling?"
Her eyes rolled up. "Mmnh..."
He grabbed an ice cube and nudged it into her pussy with his cock, watching her ecstatic reaction. "You like it cold, Slayer?"
"I like it any way you give it," she said, "Slayer."
"Good answer," he praised in arousal, and stuck an ice cube into her ass.
"You did say 'any way'."
"I did, didn't I?"
Taking her coquettish smile as a yes, he motioned at her to stay and hastily rifled through their overnight bag. There it was, hiding beneath a box of condoms: a bottle of Wet. "Oh, look what I brought. Fancy that."
* * *
"Harder." Ankles clasped around his neck, hands on his ass, she pushed him in, as far as he could go.
"Fuck," he said, reeling at the heat of her tightest hole on his newly sensitive skin. "Fuck..."
"I said, harder."
Drops of his sweat fell onto her chest. "You sure?"
"Don't hold back," she said. "I can take it."
She could, but the thin motel walls could not: at the force of his next thrust, the bed careened into the neighboring suite.
It was unoccupied. And they weren't close to done...
So, when the dust settled, she dug her nails into his skin and said, "Harder."
He gave her a lusty grin. "That's my girl."
* * *
"Look, it's got a bed and a loo," Spike said wearily, ripping down the sign that said TRESPASSERS BEWARE to get to the padlock. "That's all we need, yeah?"
"You're so romantic sometimes."
He yanked it off, opened the creaky gate for her. "Chivalrous, too."
Buffy took a tentative step in to the overgrown garden.
"And now," he put his arm around her, said low in her ear, "I am going to do unspeakable things to you in Angel's bed."
"I had a hunch you didn't bring me here just 'cause it was close."
"Well, it's also pretty," he pointed out as they walked through the courtyard. "Note the rich foliage, the polished marble, the..."
They halted together at the entry, shocked by the gruesome sight before them.
"...People in chains."
Three of them, tethered to the wall, pale, lifeless, pocked with bite marks and mired in their own filth.
One looked up and whispered, "Help."
"Bugger," said Spike.
* * *
"And all of a sudden, they just... combusted," a gaunt young woman recounted in a shaky voice, gesturing at the dusty outlines on the floor. "I thought for sure we'd die here, just staring at what was left of them."
An ambulance siren sounded outside.
Spike touched her on the shoulder and said, "You're safe now."
"Thank you." Without warning, she hugged him fiercely. "Thank you so much!"
Unsure how to handle this outpouring of gratitude, he froze for a moment, blinked at Buffy, and finally returned the hug.
"You saved my life," she said, sobbing. "I'll never forget it."
As the girl cried on his shoulder, Spike felt something odd. Compassion? Whatever it was, it was weird. And he wasn't about to show it. Patting her on the back, he tried a neutral, "There there."
Handing the girl over to the paramedics, he cleared his throat and wiped an escaped tear on his sleeve.
With a smile, Buffy thought, So this is what redemption looks like.
He caught her expression. "Don't look at me like that."
"You're very manly."
"Damn right." As he watched them load the sick onto gurneys, he sighed. "This isn't the only nip-and-sip in town, I'd wager."
Accepting the unsexy task ahead, she nodded. "It's clean-up time."
* * *
"Nobody here but us rats," Buffy said as one scurried out from under the four-poster bed just as she took a seat. Vermin be damned, she was plum exhausted.
In six hours, they'd hit every abandoned building and underground lair in Sunnydale and freed close to twenty victims. Wary of alerting the authorities, she'd enlisted Riley, who organized rescue troops and gave her a radio to stay in contact as they scouted ahead.
The old factory was their last stop. Probably because it brought up uncomfortable memories for both of them.
"Nobody." He paused at one corner of the bed, a broken doll head catching his eye. He picked it up, turned it in his hand. Rats and remnants.
Buffy covered his hand with hers. "Hey."
Not surprisingly, she knew exactly what was on his mind. "Ancient history."
She stopped him from casting the object aside. "You loved her."
He looked away, stroked the doll's hair with his thumb. "She was insane."
"And you loved her. For a hundred years." She pulled him down to sit beside her, forced him to meet her gaze as she said firmly, "I am sorry for your loss."
Brow furrowed, he looked down. He didn't want to feel for his ex. Shouldn't feel for her. That life was long over, and he couldn't be more satisfied with the way things turned out.
But Buffy was wise beyond her years, wasn't she? Wise beyond his sometimes. Staring at the doll head until it blurred, he stopped fighting and gave in to his grief.
Tenderly, she brought him close to sob against her chest. To let out whatever was left.
When they woke up a few hours later, he put Drusilla to rest by ravishing Buffy in their old bed.