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Close Encounters Collection

Truce Or Dare
By NautiBitz

Title: Truce Or Dare

Author: NautiBitz (

Show | Pairing | Rating: Buffy the Vampire Slayer | Spike/Buffy | R

Summary: Buffy makes an intriguing statement. Spike suggests a fitting game. Are the Scoobies bored enough to play? Of course they are.

Timeline: Season 4, between 'Something Blue' and 'Hush'.

Originally Published/Completed: November 2002

Genres: Comedy, Romance, Deleted Scene

Length: 4,646 words

Awards Won: "Best Short Story", "Best Comedy", "Year's Best Spike Characterization" from Love's Last Glimpse Awards, "Best Anya Line - Hon. Mention" from the Rabid Rabbit Awards, and more. See 'em in all their shiny glory here.

Author's Note: A million thanks to the fabulous 1st-Rabid, who supplied, among other things, the 'language of the dead' line. Honey, you give good beta. Dedicated to Trish, listmommy at One Good Day, for her enthusiastic feedback.

Author's Note the Second: This is the third story in the Close Encounters collection, a grab bag of teasy, naughty 'deleted scene' one-shots set in Season 4, arranged by BtVS timeline. Each fic stands on its own, totally disregarding the one(s) before it, though a few of them are treated as 'canon' in my fic, Wild Things.

Distribution: Links only, please. Do not reprint. Do not post translations. Thanks!

Disclaimer: You know the drill. 20th Century Fox Corp owns everyone but me.

Rights: I do not own these characters or the worlds they inhabit. However, the text I have written is not YOURS to paste into your own fic in any way, shape or form. That is called plagiarism, and it is not cool. Not that YOU would ever do that, because YOU are awesome. Obviously. :)

Feedback: I dare you.

"Fifteen in one night," Buffy announced after flopping exhaustedly onto her absent Watcher's couch and draping an arm over her eyes. "Think that's a record?"

"For orgasms?" Anya asked casually from the recliner as she leafed through an issue of Cosmopolitan. "'Cause I'd have you beat."

"She's talking about slays! Not -- lays," Xander clarified, then squinted. "We are talking about slays, right, Buff?"

"Yes, slays," Buffy said snidely. Without moving her arm, she added, "But at this point, I'd settle for just one really good..." When she heard Xander's gasp, she realized she'd been thinking out loud.


"Sorry, attack of the TMI monster. It's just, lately it's been all slay, no play for Buffy," she explained, then peeked at Xander. "Fifteen, huh?"

"Uh, sixteen, actually." Xander shrugged humbly, hands in his pockets.

"Wow," Buffy commended, and hid her eyes again.

"He knows just how to please me," Anya chimed in. "It helps that I'm highly orgasmic, of course."

"Speaking of the TMI monster," Xander laughed nervously. "I don't think she needs to know all this, An."

"Hey, if I'm not gonna have 'em," Buffy reasoned as she sat up and tucked her knees under her chin, "I may as well hear about 'em."

Anya frowned in concern. "How long has it been since you've had one?"

"Long," Buffy sighed. "A very long, long time. I mean with the really good kind."

"And have you tried self-pleasure?" Anya asked like a doctor giving an exam.

"Anya!" squawked Xander.

"It's just not the same," Buffy shrugged. "All the magic's gone out of the relationship between me and... me, you know? I mean, where's the fire?"

"You and who?" Xander sputtered, cleaning out his ears. "And what?"

"Oh, I know what that's like," Anya commiserated. "I once went thirty years without a man."

"I should not be listening to this," Xander commented to no one in particular.

"Thirty years?" repeated a wide-eyed Buffy. "How did you deal?"

"With lots of gratuitous bloodshed," Anya answered, and realized happily, "Just like you!"

Buffy looked worried. "I've got to get a boyfriend soon."

"You do," Anya nodded, then swiftly clarified, "Oh, but you can't have Xander."

"Got it," Buffy said, amused. "Xander off-limits."

"Hey, what about that Riley guy?" Xander asked, shooing the topic away from himself.

"I don't know. I mean, I like him. And there's potential there, but--"

"I know!" Anya said, snapping her fingers. "What about a vibrator?" She flipped through the magazine and turned a page towards Buffy. "They've got all kinds here. Some are dolphin-shaped."

"Nah," Buffy said with a wrinkled nose. "I have a bad track record with heavy machinery. And, have to say, never really thought about dolphins that way."

"But it says here, the nose is for stimulation of the--"

"Okay!" Xander yelped nervously. "That'll be enough of the emasculating girltalk now thankyou!"

"Oh no," a deep, lilting voice from the second floor landing interrupted. Spike peered down the stairwell, eyes twinkling. "Go on, you two. This is fascinating."

Buffy recovered from the near-whiplash she'd suffered to face the smirking vampire. "Where did you come from?"

Spike nodded at the bedroom while making his way down the steps. "I was napping. Thought I was dreamin' when I heard you lot gabbin' about something remotely interesting. Imagine my surprise--"

"In other words, you eavesdropped," Buffy accused.

"Well, can't much help the vampire hearing, can I? Besides, your piercing little whine carries over hill and dale, let alone these cardboard-thin walls."

Buffy's face contorted. "'Piercing little whine'?"

"Yeah," he said, as if she'd illustrated his point. "Like that. So, what's this about you... and you?"

She narrowed her eyes. "I wasn't talking to the dead."

"Funny, that," Spike smiled as he strode over to her, planting his hands on the table behind the couch and leaning forward. "You were speaking my language."

Buffy looked skyward and shook her head. "Why are you still here?"

"I'm under house arrest. Remember?"

"Well, I declare you free," she breezed, wafting a hand at him. "Go where you want, do what you want, as long as it doesn't involve me. Bye, now."

As tempting as that offer was, the image of his feisty Slayer in the throes of orgasm was somehow winning out. "No, think I'd rather stay in tonight."

She studied him curiously, and finally said, "Fine. Then I'll leave."

"What, and miss all the fun?"

"You're not exactly my idea of fun, Spike." She searched the floor for her bag.

"Stop that," he said saucily. "Might just hurt my feelings, Slayer."

"Somehow, I think I could still sleep at night," she countered just as saucily.

"Even if," he asked with a leer, hand running down his torso, "there's no one to help you... unwind?"

She dropped her bag and lunged at him.

He caught her wrist in mid-air. "This the hand you use?" He pried open her fist and circled a fingertip on her palm, grinning at her.

Mouth agape, Buffy yanked her hand away, and slapped him with the other.

Recovering from the blow, he nodded at the hand that slapped him. "So it's that one, then?"

She smirked, and replied with a twitch of her brow, "It's neither."

He frowned.

Wrap your mind around that one, pervboy. She huffily sat down.

Spike's interest was decidedly piqued. "Now, wait--"

"Hey guys," Willow greeted as she walked in the front door.

"Willow! Come," Xander hailed. "Join the hilarity. It's like our very own sitcom: 'Spikesitting.'"

"Or 'My Favorite Vampire'?" offered the redhead.

"Exactly," Xander said.

"Speak for yourself," Buffy griped.

"I'm not your favorite?" Spike said in mock surprise, and bent his head to her level. "How quickly we forget."

"Or 'I Love Buffy'!" Anya threw in.

Spike stood up, and everyone turned toward the former demon.

"What? I've seen sitcoms before. Familiar situations with unconventional spins, and a string of disquieting yet humorous misunderstandings that last for only thirty minutes each week. Like I Love Lucy, or Everybody Loves Raymond, or Joanie Loves Chachi. And last week, Spike loved Buffy--"

"Hey!" Spike chirped indignantly, "you mean she loved ME!"

"And unfortunately, that lasted for more than thirty minutes," Buffy said.

"Sorry," Willow deferred guiltily while placing her laptop on the dining table. "Again, so very, very sorry about that." Changing the painful subject of her disastrous do-thy-will spell, she asked, "So... where's Giles?"

"He said he's doing some grown-up stuff tonight," Xander answered. "Wouldn't tell us what."

"He's probably just having sex," Anya suggested, flipping a page in her magazine.

The Scoobies cringed with a collective "Eugh."

"I'll wager my left arm he's not," Spike said, sifting through the bookcase. "Besides, sex isn't just for grown-ups. Right, Buffy?"

She scoffed. "What the hell is that supposed to mean?"

"Speakin' of your other favorite vampire and his cradle-robbin'... ooh, Scotch," he said, pulling a bottle out and examining the label. "Good year."

"Spike, put that back!"

He defiantly ripped the paper off the top. "Too late now, pet."

Buffy groaned and flopped backwards. "I give up."

"Well. If I knew you were that easy--"

"Hey!" Xander shouted. "Enough with the lip, buster."

"What's wrong wif my lip?" Spike asked, touching his bottom lip.

"There's gonna be something very wrong with it if you keep with the Buffy-inspired innuendoes."

"Thank you, Xander, but I think I can put Spike in his place all by myself."

"Yeah?" Spike took a step forward as he unscrewed the bottle cap. "What place is that?"

"Come here and I'll show you," she come-hithered in a sugary voice.

Almost doing as she asked, he stopped himself, smirked at her, and took a swig. Looking at the bottle in surprise, he marveled, "Dead good."

"Watch out, covert-ops," Willow muttered to her computer screen as she opened Netscape. "You'll be overt in no time..."

"Whatcha doin', Will?" Buffy asked, welcoming the distraction.

"Just looking for more info on our fatiguey friends."

Spike said with a snort, "What, you think they'll have a bleedin' website? Commandos dot-bloody-com?"

"Shows how much you know," Willow hrumpfed. "I'm a hacker. I'm gonna... hack."

"Oh yeah? Got anything at all to go on?"

"Well... no..." She grumbled, "No thanks to you."

"So what's the point?" Spike asked, downing more Scotch. "Let's not do work. It's Friday night, innit? Let's have fun!"

"Again with the fun," Buffy said. "I repeat: You plus fun equals none of us are interested."

"Oh, come on. Your Watcher's not... watching."

"What kind of fun do you have in mind?" Anya asked, closing her magazine.

Spike gave her a mischievous grin. "Would you like to play a game?"

"Uh-uh, no way," Xander said, hand in the air. "We learned our lesson from Joshua."

Buffy looked quizzically at her friend.

"Hello? 'War Games'? Am I the only one who owns two well-worn copies?"

Willow pursed her lips. "Actually I think one of them is mine?"

"Oh. Yeah. Then, one well-worn copy, and one pristine, untouched-by-me copy?"

"Well, I've never heard of this Joshua, so I'm willing to play. Unless it's Tiddlywinks." Anya shuddered at the thought.

Xander broke the vexed silence that followed. "Dare I ask why?"

"This vengeance I did back in the '50s," she explained. "I had the guy trapped in an enormous crockpot with demonic Tiddlywinks bouncing in to attack him. Well, long story short, they got completely out of control, and," she added defensively, "giant anthropomorphic Tiddlywinks just aren't that easy to contain in a single dimension! Do you have any idea how high they jump?"

Numbly, Xander nodded. "That clears that right up." He turned to Spike and deadpanned, "Better not be Tiddlywinks you're suggesting."

"No," Spike said, and snuck a sideways glance at Buffy. "Truth or Dare."

"Oh, that's original," Buffy said, rolling her eyes.

"Maybe not, but it is fun," Spike said suggestively. Actually, the only time he'd played was with Harmony and it had bored him to tears. But this time, he might get some illuminating answers... and watch Buffy squirm in the bargain.

She delivered. "Whatever. Count me out."

"Me too," Willow said, voice wavering. "Those kinda games always made me a little queasy."

He addressed Buffy. "And is the Slayer queasy?"

"No. Just smart enough not to play a ridiculous game with you."

"What's the matter, pet? Got something to hide?"

"Even if I did, which I don't, I wouldn't show it to you."

"Oh, come on!" he urged, arms in the air. "What've you got to lose?"

"My dignity?" Buffy offered for starters.

"This does sound like fun! I'll play," Anya volunteered. "Xander will too. Right, Xander?"

"Lemme think. Worst case scenario? I make a fool out of myself in front of my girlfriend, my best friends, and a vampire who'll never let me live it down as long as I roam the earth." He shrugged. "Sure. Why not. Bring on the frolic."

Anya clapped her hands together. "How do we start?"

"Can't play unless they're in," Spike said, motioning to the other two.

"Buffy?" Xander ventured. "All Slay, no play?"

"Makes Buffy a boring little twig," Spike added.

"Now I'm a twig?" Buffy scowled, and appealed to her friends. "You guys? Are we this bored?"

Xander and Anya shifted uncomfortably as their eyes darted around the room in guilty response.

The Slayer sighed in exasperation. "Fine. I'm in."

Willow looked horrified as the ball settled in her court. "I... uh... Promise you won't make me sing or run naked outside?"

"No singing or nakedness," Xander promised.

"Well, I can't promise the naked part," Spike said with a wiggle of his eyebrows.

"Spike," Buffy and Willow chided.

"Alright, alright. No nudity. Ruin my fun."

* * *

"God, Spike! Does that track in your mind get lonely all by itself?"

"I'm waiting," he said impatiently.

"You know, you are just way too obsessed with this topic. It's a little freaky. No, it's a lot freaky--"

"JUST answer the question, Slayer," he spoke over her.

She pouted. "I don't want to."

"Then you lose," he shrugged and shook his bottle in the air. "I, William the Bloody, claim victory--"

"Stop, stop!" she yelled, tackling his victory arm. "Okay, William." She cleared her throat. "I don't have to use my hands, because..." her voice dropped to a lower decibel. "All I have to do is squeeze." Off the blank looks around her, she added, "My muscles?"

Spike's gaze traveled down to her crotch. Slayer muscles.

"You're kidding," Anya said, trying to squeeze her thighs together.

"Not even like that. It's all, um, internal."

"Wow," Willow said, crossing her legs. "So you can do it in public?"

"Well, I -- I guess I could," Buffy admitted. When she heard Spike's quick intake of breath, her eyes grew big. "But I won't!"

"You can reach orgasm like that?" Anya asked.

More embarrassed than ever, Buffy squeaked, "Uh-huh."

There was a reverent hush for a moment.

Slayer muscles, Spike thought.

"Looks like you've stunned the boys," Willow noticed, and snapped her fingers. "Earth to boys... Come in, boys..."

"Huh? What?" Spike and Xander came to, blinking.

"Okay, you got your stupid answer," Buffy said. "Am I off the hotseat yet?"

"No," the boys answered in unison.

* * *

"Alright then." Spike waved his freshly-opened bottle in front of the Slayer's face. "I dare you to drink this. All of it."

Buffy snorted. "That's your dare?"

Spike shrugged. "Simple enough."

Willow spoke up. "Um, Spike, I don't think this is a good dare. Can we find another dare?"

"Yeah," Xander said. "Don't think I don't know what you're up to, Evil Dead II."

Spike lifted a brow at the boy in question.

"A drunk slayer is a sloppy slayer, right? That way you can sic all your little friends on her on her way home." He shook his head in disappointment. "Can't you just make her bark like a dog like any respectable demon would?"

Anya clapped excitedly. "Oh, I'd like to see that."

"Remind me not to give either of you dare," Buffy said suspiciously. "Anyway, it's not like this'll make me all Cave Buffy."

Xander said, "The entire bottle will make you all Cave Buffy. That I guarantee."

"As I thought," Spike said, taking the bottle back. "Slayer can't hold her liquor."

"Oh, I can hold it just fine," she said, grabbing it but apprehensively eying the neck.

"So what's the problem?"

"The problem is your spit," Buffy retorted. "And how much I don't want it to come in contact with my mouth."

Spike opted to let that prime springboard go. "Wipe it off if you want then. I don't care."

She hesitated.

"What's wrong, Slayer? Afraid of what a little alcohol might do to your..." he swept his eyes over her form, "constitution?"

"No." Buffy put the bottle to her mouth and sipped. With a grimace, she began to cough.

Spike watched in amusement.

"This is disgusting! How can you drink this crap?"

"Uh, you're asking the guy who's favorite aperitif is people," Xander pointed out.

"Oh yeah," Buffy said. "No wonder."

"You lose," Spike said simply.

"Why? I drank it!"

"The whole thing?"

Buffy glared at her nemesis, then held the bottle up again. "Well. Take care of the new slayer when I'm gone," she said somberly to her friends, and chugged the contents down with a sour face.

"'Atta girl," Spike said. "Now I'm impressed."

"That was... just foul," she finally gasped in revulsion. "Your turn. Finally."

"Dare," he said with a head-tilt.

Smiling, she responded immediately, "Bend down and lick my shoe."

He stilled. "What'sat?"

The Scoobies giggled.

She stood up, swaying slightly. "Bend down. And lick my... shoe." She pointed a booted toe at him.

"You're pissin' me, right?"

"Nope. I want you to grovel at my feet, and tell me I won. I'm the best slayer there is, there's no way you could ever beat me. And lick my shoe."

"Wait, that's more than one dare..."

"You lose."

He grumbled at her. "Stupid bitch, how'd I ever--"

"Excuse me?"

"Your Holiness," he said melodramatically. "I grovel at your feet."

She giggled. "Be serious, now."

He sighed, collected himself, and bent down before her. "Buffy, you're the best slayer there is."

She kicked his chin. "Serious!"

He glared, and launched into acting mode. "You're the greatest slayer ever there was. There's no way I could ever beat you." Hardest part over. He looked up, searching for the right words. "I tremble... in fear whenever you approach. You're a divine goddess of all things good and proper on this earth and I," he said, on a roll now, "I am but a lowly servant of Hell."

"All true," Xander agreed.

"Well?" Buffy prodded Spike, liking this treatment entirely too much. The whiskey must have started to take effect because she was feeling an intense, almost sexual power over him. "And?"

Spike caught the glint in her eye and played it up. "And... I am now your faithful slave. You've won. You've conquered me Slayer, and I cower at your feet."

Unsteadily, she lifted her foot to his mouth.

He took it in his grasp and languidly ran his hand up, under her pantleg, sending involuntary shivers through her body. Then he descended, and slid his tongue from the toe to the top of her leather boot, and back down again.

"Whoo." Anya fanned herself. "That's pretty hot."

Xander, like Willow, was too mesmerized to disagree.

Buffy started to shake, and lost her balance, falling backward. Spike dove and quickly caught her. She laughed in his arms.

"Vamp speed also comes in handy for saving the Slayer," Xander observed.

"You're welcome," Spike said to the girl underneath him.

Buffy sat up, brushing him off. "Now that was fun."

Xander asked, "So, who here knew Buffy was a closet dominatrix?"

"I did," Spike said, fishing a cigarette out of his back pocket. He shrugged. "Slayer thing."

"Is not!" Buffy said, pointing at him. "Ya big... poop!" She fell into giggles on the floor.

"She's gone," Xander declared. "Hellmouth short one Slayer."

"At least 'til tomorrow," agreed Willow solemnly.

"All part of my evil plan. Sauce the Slayer, kill her friends."

They gaped at Spike, cigarette dangling from his mouth.

"I'm kidding, you soddin' prigs. Can't any of you take a bloody joke?"

"I thought it was funny," Buffy said, waving a hand in the air as she lay on her back.

Spike couldn't help but smile. "See? Just needed a view from my perspective for a change."

"What perspective is that?" Xander asked. "The falling-down-drunk perspective?"

"No, the perspective that isn't so damn tight in the ass region."

"Tightass region," Buffy laughed again, and popped her head up. "Wait. Are you makin funna me?"

"No, love, just them."

"Oh. Ha! Then it's funny again."

Spike smiled at her, almost affectionately.

"Is the game over now?" Anya asked. "Because I have many more questions and dares."

"Oh no," Spike said, flicking his lighter. "The fun's just started."

* * *

"Truth or Dare, Xander." Anya sat up in front of her boyfriend. "Say truth."

"I have a sneaking suspicion I'm gonna regret this... but okay, truth."

"Do you still have feelings for Willow?"

Willow moaned and covered her face.

"Uh... Will's my best friend, Anya."

"Not those kind of feelings. The other kind. As in, do you want to kiss her again. Do you want to have sex with her."

"No!" He yelped, and looked over at Willow, who was turning a deep shade of red. "I mean, not that she isn't--" He looked back at his girlfriend. "No! No way."

"Do you still want to sleep with Buffy?"

"Nooo!" Buffy groaned, and leaned on Spike's shoulder for support. "He doesn't wanna do that! 'Sides, tha's too many questions. And you already asked me the same thing only in reversible. And 's'my turn to give 'im a dare."

"She's right, Anya," Xander said sheepishly. "Only one per--"

"Fine," the ex-demon grudgingly gave in.

"Dare, Xander," Buffy said, rising to a kneeling position on the floor.

"Don't I get any say in the choosing anymore?"

"Nope," Buffy said, grabbing the bottle from Spike's hand. She held it out for Xander. "Drink up, puppy."

* * *

"Looks like it's just you an' me now, Slayer," Spike commented to the head that was now lolling about in his lap.

Buffy hoisted herself up enough to peer at the slumbering Scoobies. Willow had passed out on the couch, and Xander and Anya were slumped together on the floor, snoring intermittently. She dropped her head back down. "Pfft. Stupid puppies can't hold their lickers."

"Not like us, pet," Spike agreed, moving a strand of hair out of her face. "Not like us."

She blinked at him. "Whose turnsizit now?"

"Yours, love."

"Kay." She smiled, running a fingernail along his chin. "I'm ready for ya."

He grinned at that thought. "Which one you want?"

"Um. Dare. No, truth. No. Truth."

He laughed. "You sure about that, pet?"

"Yeah. Which one'd I say?"


"Yup. Truth. I'm all truthy and... honest and stuff."

"Okay then. Here goes."

She opened her eyes as much as she possibly could to focus on his face.

His voice dropped. "You fancy me, don't you?"

She paused for a beat, and burst into raucous laughter.

He frowned. "Wha's so funny?"

"I think there's gotta be some kinda law 'gainst, um, questions that are funny like that?"

"Right then." He thought for a second. "Who'd you rather shag? Me or, uh... Xander?"

Buffy laughed even harder and lightly slapped his cheek. "'Shag.' You get Englisher when you get drunker."

"Pet, stop avoiding the question," he scolded. "Who'd you rather?"

Buffy rolled over in Spike's lap, realizing too late that she was facing his crotch. She shot up, and held her spinning head. "Whatzawhat? Anyway. Anyway. What?"

He smiled and rephrased the question slowly. "Rather have a sixteen-orgasm-long roll in the hay with the little runt there, or yours truly?"

Buffy squinted at his grinning face as she scooted backwards. "You know what? That is, thassa dumb, wrong question. And Anya already askeded me already! Xander is like, my brother!" She ungracefully pointed at the snoozing subject. Grabbing his bottle, she took a swig, then handed it back. "Uch."

"So I guess the answer is..."

She hiccuped and waved her hand. "Gimme a dare."

He chuckled and said smugly, "Knew you 'ad something to hide."

"Shut up!" she whined, and swatted his leg. "Dare me something."

"Okay. I'll make a lil' allowance for you, pet. In fact, I'll give you a choice. Either you A) bend down and grovel at MY feet, and lick MY boot, or B) you give me a demos -- a demonstration."

"Demostrayshun a' what?"

He smiled. "You know what. The no-hands technique."

She pointed at him. "Yer sick."

"Don't I know it."

"No way I'm showin' you that!"

"So lick my boot."

"No fair! Your boot's way nastier than mine. It's all muddy, and have you even ever taken them off?" Her nose wrinkled.

"I gave you a choice."

"Yah well, yer choices suck ass!"

"Now, now, don't gimme any more ideas. Jus' do as you're dared."

She glared as well as she could as she put her palms on the carpet, beginning the short yet degrading crawl towards him.

He settled back to watch her grovel. Not his first choice, but...

Pausing at his feet, she groused, "Dumb..."

"Hey now, Slayer. Shouldn't that be, 'you're the best ever there was...?'"

Buffy considered him with a sarcastic smile. Then, something indiscernable flashed across her features.

Before he could figure out what it was, she'd turned and cradled her back against his chest, her body between his knees.

He cocked a brow.

She drew her legs together and shut her eyes.

Spike blinked his eyes into focus.

Buffy's thighs were twitching almost imperceptibly.

Astonished, Spike swallowed, trying to get his vocal chords to work. She'd chosen the other thing. She really had.

Anything was better than groveling, Buffy decided. Besides, this was starting to feel really, really good...

She bit her lower lip and began to breathe erratically, her movements becoming more visible as she concentrated on the sensation.

As she slid downward, her shoulders rocking back against him, she suddenly became aware of his arousal. It was hard to miss.

She opened her eyes to see him staring down at her, his expression dazed, bewildered and hungry.

She didn't stop. Instead, she grabbed his biceps for support, her nails digging into his skin.

Slowly, tentatively, he reached a trembling hand out to touch her.

Just then, the front door jangled open.

Buffy sprung up and away from Spike.

Giles, with guitar case in hand, gaped at the sloppy tableau of scattered Scoobies and empty liquor bottles.

"What the bloody hell is going on here?"

* * *

"This is all your fault," Buffy accused, ice pack on her head.

Spike laughed. "But you look so cute like that. All weak and in pain."

She narrowed her eyes. "You're a pig."

"Oh, I may be, but I seem to recall a certain slayer barking like a dog last night."

"You're lucky I don't remember anything."

"Can't say I remember it all either -- just every blessed second of your humiliation. Want a little rehash?"

"No," she scowled. "I can't believe you convinced me to drink that... mulch."

"That was very expensive mulch," Giles huffed, shutting his book with a slam.

Buffy hung her head. "I'm so sorry, Giles."

"You should be," Spike said, pointing at her.

She glared at him. "I'm sure Spike will find a way to replace them all."

"Me? You're the one who--"

"I'm not the one who opened the first bottle!" She shot up, momentarily forgetting her headache.

"Yeah, but you convinced me to open the third, fourth and f--"

"You know," she said conversationally, a stake materializing from her back pocket, "there's not enough dust around here, why don't I add one more pile--"

"Hey, back off! Rupert!"

"He's not gonna help you now, you lowlife excuse for a--"

"BUFFY!" Giles shouted, fists clenched.

She stopped to regard her irritated watcher. "Me?"

"Don't you have university classes or... somewhere to be?"

Her jaw dropped. "You're kicking me out? What about him, he's the thief!"

"Oh, you're one to talk," Spike countered. "'Let's all get trashed, tee hee!'"

"I do NOT talk like that!"

"Think not? Next time I'll record every bloody word out of--"

"There won't BE any next time--"

At his wit's end, Giles hollered, "If one of you doesn't leave I will forcibly throw you BOTH out!"

Silenced, vampire and slayer stood awkwardly, looking anywhere but at one another.

In a boyish voice, Spike sulked, "Broad daylight out there."

"Exactly." Giles said, pinching the bridge of his nose.

Buffy tucked her stake away and cleared her throat. "Well. I guess I'll be going."

"Not a minute too soon," Spike muttered under his breath.

"This isn't over," the Slayer hissed as she unlocked the deadbolt.

He smirked. "Oh, I'm quakin' in my muddy, unlickable boots."

For a split second, her eyes widened as she held the door open.

Giles banged his tea mug down on the kitchen counter.

"Good," she said stiffly before exiting and slamming the door behind her.

"Good!" Spike repeated, absentmindedly running his fingertips down the closed door as he watched her through the eyehole. When she was out of sight, he turned, only to see the Watcher scrutinizing him. "--bloody riddance," he covered, and added for good measure, "Bitch." Then he hightailed it over to the couch, away from Giles' puzzled gaze.

Placing his mug in the sink basin, Giles found himself quietly reciting, "What men daily do, not knowing what they do..." He hazarded a disapproving glance at Spike, who was now flipping channels on the television set. "Oh, what men dare do."







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