Happy Birthday to Me

Blocker


pairing: Spike/Evil Goddess (OC)
genre: romance
rating: MA
disclaimer: I beg you to forgive me; this is a Mary Sue that was written by request
time frame: AtS s5, soon after 'Time Bomb'
dedicated: to Pet and Jessie, with Love

 

 

"Bloody fucking hell, what now?"

Spike opened his eyes and found himself lying on the floor of a large and opulently appointed bedroom. It took him a moment to get his bearings, but when he did, he couldn’t help but whistle.

"Nice digs. ’Bout time Angel sprung for a decent spread for us."

He walked around the room, taking in the cream walls and the violet silk draperies.

"’S a bit girlie, but he always was a right poof."

Spike sat on the king-sized bed, nice and firm, with just a little give, just the way he liked it. He nodded his approval. He liked the black iron headboard – and the array of handcuffs that hung from it. He got up, checking things out, expecting Angel to arrive any moment. He was deciding which handcuffs he was going to use on Peaches first.

Not a lot of various and sundry in the room, just the essentials; the bed, a plasma screen television, an armoire full of porn – ’Lots of variety, not bad, Peaches, you usually stick to the same ol’ vanilla cheerleaders and whipped cream and what all; nice change.’ He lifted a box with two women on the cover, standing over a man who was bound and gagged, lying on the floor. ’Maybe this one first.’

He put it on top of the armoire so that he could find it quickly later. He looked behind a Chinese black silk screen to find a sex swing hanging discreetly in the corner.

Can’t wait for that’ he thought with a seductive smile.

Along the wall in the back he found a tall thin cabinet and opened it. Whips, floggers, chains, ropes, cuffs, manacles and other instruments for pleasure and restraint hung in neat rows. He pulled out a thick black leather collar and played with it, thinking about the possibilities.

Closing the doors, he walked some more, liking the look of a black velvet reclining chaise, built for two. ’Lots of uses for that.’

He was a little startled – and painfully aroused – by a piece of art hanging on the back wall. It was one large drawing, broken up into six thinly-framed pieces. Overall, it took up the whole wall, from floor to ceiling. When you stepped back, the image formed into a woman, bound and blindfolded, lying on a bed. She was wearing a black corset and stockings, black stiletto heels and a necklace. What made the picture fascinating was that the woman wasn’t there. He could see her form, her curves filling the corset and stockings. He could see the way her legs were splayed on the bed, writhing or struggling. The ’movement’ of the woman - her being - her essence - was there – but her body wasn’t. He was squatting to see the name of the artist when he heard a woman’s voice.

"Do you like it?"

He jumped, he hadn’t heard anyone enter. He hadn’t felt her come up on him.

"Do you like it?" she asked again, her voice amused with his discomfort.

"Who the bleedin’ hell are you?" he shouted, then looked around the room, "And where’s that wanker, Angel? This isn’t funny!"

The woman crossed her arms, the movement showcasing her voluptuous bosom, which, he noticed for the first time, was covered, sort of, in black leather. His eyes moved up, past her creamy white throat, over her full pink lips, past her laughing hazel eyes, to her mane of auburn hair. It looked so soft. His mind wanted to reach out and touch it, his fingers itched for it, but he restrained the impulse. Instead, he continued his inspection, moving back down her body, once again past those – ’Bloody brilliant, those are’ – abundant tits, noticing the hourglass shape to her figure, in at the waist then back out to full, round hips, down – ’Fuck me!’ – long legs. She wore black leather pants, laced up the sides, and black boots with her black leather nothing of a top. – ’Points for fashion sense.’ His eyes couldn’t help it, they went back to, and settled on, her chest.

Spike stared. She rolled her eyes.

He decided to just go with it and see what the hell Angel was up to. He answered her question.

"Yeah, I like it. It’s brilliant. Who’s the artist?"

"A friend of mine. A –" she thought for a moment before a small smile touched her lips, "a protégé, of sorts."

"You an artist?" he asked.

"Not the kind you mean," she told him with a sly smile. "What I taught her wasn’t taught with ink and paint. That’s me, in the picture."

"Oh yeah?" he asked, he was beginning to get a suspicion of what Angelus was up to. If he wanted a threesome, why didn’t he just say so; this elaborate build up was fun, but unnecessary. Spike wasn’t a patient vamp. He’d rather get past the chit chat and right on to the removal of clothing.

"So uh, where’d Angel find you?" he asked, turning on the charm.

"Angel?" she asked, seemingly mystified.

"Yeah, tall bloke, dark hair, dark eyes, broody but with a big dick. Angel," he prompted, "The guy who," he was about to say ’hired’ but changed his mind, "brought you here."

She turned, amused, and sat in a violet brocade settee.

"Sit," she said, and for some reason that he couldn’t fathom, he did.

"No one ’brought’ me here, vampire," she said, he voiced smooth and even, "I live here. This is my home. And Angel had nothing to do with this." She smiled. "But if he's willing" she smiled again and a chill went down Spike’s spine, "maybe we’ll think about bringing him here at a later time."

The confusion was soon replaced with panic. Not Angel? Then what - - oh.

"Let me guess," he offered, not pleased. "You’re one of Illyria’s flunkies." He was getting right pissed now. He tried to stand but found that he couldn’t so he raged on from the chaise he was sitting on. "I told that bitch I wouldn’t be her pet! I’m William the fucking Bloody, fer cryin’ out loud. Who does she think she is? Wait’ll I get my hands on –" he stopped when he saw her confused face. Bugger.

"Not Illyria," he said and she agreed.

"Though I do know of It. Is that scoundrel out and causing mischief again?" She seemed genuinely amused.

He was really in trouble, he could feel it. But he wasn’t going down without a fight.

"Then who the fuck are you? And what the soddin’ crap am I doin’ here?"

She stood and smiled at him fondly, as if he were a misbehaving child. "I’m afraid your being here is something of a practical joke," she confessed.

Oh, well that wasn’t so bad. Sort it out and go back to LA.

"Right. Then, I can go?" he asked and he wasn’t really surprised when she shook her head ’no’.

"You see, some worshippers of mine decided to give you to me. It would be rude to give you back."

Worshippers? Oh, no. No, no. Not another

"Goddess."

"Yes," she said, "but not the hell-dimension sort, don’t worry. I’m nothing like Glory." He wasn’t in the least surprised that she knew about Glory.

"So, what sort are you then?" his eyes were scanning the room for possible escape routes.

"Oh, your average evil goddess," she said with amusement, "But not evil in the ’apocalypse’ sense. More evil in the ’Almost give ’em what they want and then make them wait just a little longer for it’ kind of evil. You could say I’m good at making you want, and then making you wait." She laughed, amused at her own joke.

"And what it exactly that you think you’re gonna make me want?" he asked, already knowing the answer.

"Why, me of course," she answered and then strolled over and stratled herself on his lap. "I’ll tell you what, Spike," she purred in his ear as her fingers skimmed across his neck and then up through his soft as cornsilk blond hair. "You give me a week," she paused to lick his earlobe, "and if you’re not begging," she drawled out the word, "me for it by the end of seven days," her lips rubbed across his cheek, "I’ll let you go. Back to LA, back to the poof, I’ll even stick you in at exactly the same moment that Jessie and Pet pulled you out." She stood, slowly, making sure he got a good eyeful of her two most noticeable features as she did. "How’s that?"

Spike swallowed, noticeably. He looked up into her eyes, recognised the challenging lift of her eyebrows – how many times had he used exactly the same technique? – he could do this.

He stood, forgetting for a moment that he hadn’t been able to before, and was glad that he was at last mobile again.

"Tell ya what, Pet. I could use a vacation. You’re on."

She smiled and turned away. At the door, she turned back. "The name," she said, speaking very clearly, "is Feen, not Pet. Don’t forget." She turned to go, then turned again.

She smiled. "Or you’ll be very sorry."

She snapped her fingers and a movie started to play on the television. It was her, Feen, and another woman, a blonde, naked and enjoying each other on the floor in a room with mirrors on all the walls.

"My friend Marcie," she explained. "And by the way, you’ll find it impossible to wank off in this room. Your friend Willow owed me a couple of favours." She moved her fingers in a mocking imitation of a wave. "Bye, lover."

And she was gone.

"Bloody fucking hell!"



Part II

He tried the window, he tried the door. Wouldn’t budge. He tried turning off the television and the images of the two women eating each other into sweet oblivion. Nope, not shutting off. He couldn’t even turn down the sound.

At 4 am, a really big man, who looked like he might have been a Nazi tank commander in a former life, came in and brought him a goblet of blood. He refused to drink it, thinking She might have tainted it in some way. The guy assured him that Feen would never have to drug anyone to have sex with her, so when Spike didn’t believe him, he drank the blood down himself. Right in front of Spike. Spike salivated watching it go down, it had smelled so good. Human, but not quite, so no nasty guilt trip with the meal. The man, who said his name was Kenny and that he was Feen’s right hand man, asked if Spike had changed his mind about accepting the Goddess’s hospitality. Spike had.

Kenny brought him three more goblets of blood and Spike drank them all. He’d never tasted anything quite like it. "Chimp?" he asked Kenny.

"Asshole," Kenny told him, "if you’re going to insult Feen, I’m going to drop a Coke machine on your head." Not wanting to argue with the really big man of questionable species who drank blood like a vampire, Spike shrugged and went back to checking out his swanky new vacation digs.

It was a little after noon when he finally fell asleep on the bed.

It was a little after two when he was awoken by the Goddess herself.

"Spike! Get up, time to play."

He sank deeper into the covers and complained, "I don’t wanna play."

Feen ripped the blankets off the bed and informed him, "Not you, Spike. Me. I get to play. Goddess, remember?"

He’d had about all the goddesses he could take for one unlife, but he’d made a bargain and he was a vamp that always did what he had promised. He stood, rubbed his hands across his face and asked, "So, what salacious torture do you have in mind for me today?"

Feen looked at his appearance. "Do you always sleep in your clothes?" She looked down. "And boots?"

"No," he conceded, "But I don’t trust you not to do something nasty to me when I’m starkers."

She smiled and nodded, "Smart boy." She seemed genuinely pleased and this confused Spike. "I thought you were going to try to tempt me with your goodies?" he asked, suspicious.

"Oh, I am, I am." She sat on the same violet settee she had sat on last night and motioned for him to sit as well. He took the same seat on the black chaise. "But I like a man who challenges me. Fucking’s fun, but its not everything."

"That right?"

"You’ll find that I’m not quite like other women you’ve met, Spike. I want you to stay, yes; but more importantly, I want you to want to stay."

"Not gonna happen. I’m sure you’re a right catch; you’re not bad lookin’, for a goddess. But I got an unlife somewhere other than here."

"Yes, true, you do. But you could have one here as well."

"I’ll pass."

"Giving up already? I thought I had six days left."

"Yeah, I’m not going back on my word. Just thought I should warn ya."

"And I appreciate it. Now, there’s something I’ve been wondering about –"

Here it comes he thought, Bitch wants details about my sex life so she can tempt me. "Yeah?"

"Xander."

Maybe I was wrong. Spike rolled his eyes. "What about the whelp?"

"Why did you take all his shit? I mean, really, you could have hired someone to hurt him for you."

Spike considered for a moment; bird’s not dumb, none of the others ever thought of that. "Don’t know."

Feen didn’t look as if she believed him.

"Fine," he spat out, "Ya wanna know?" He took a breath, calming somewhat. "At first, I couldn’t. Had to feed, had to get blood, didn’t know I could hit demons, so I needed ’em to live ’til I could figure out how to get the soddin’ chip out. After that – after that, well, she wouldn’t have liked it, would she?"

"She?"

"Buffy. You know, the Slayer. I’m sure you’ve heard of ’er. Fell in love with ’er didn’t I?"

"Did you?"

He wouldn’t look up and meet her eyes. She dismissed it. "You didn’t fall in love with the Slayer until almost a year later, Spike. So why didn’t you get revenge, I know you didn’t care about Xander. Who were afraid would be hurt?"

Spike stood up and started pacing. "You’re a right pisser, ya know that, goddess? You ask me a question, I give you an answer, you’re still not happy."

"You gave me an answer, Spike, not the answer."

"Fine, you wanna know why I couldn’t hurt the asshole comedian wannabe who made every day an unliving hell?!" He was yelling now, pacing furiously, "Because she wouldn’t have liked it! He was her friend, right? Her only friend, until Buffy. Bestest buds since diapers and all that shite! She was the only decent one of the bunch, the only one with an ounce of human compassion! Hell, I’m a vampire and I still feel more than that lot of self-righteous do-gooders! If I’d hurt her," he paused - quieted, ran a hand through his hair and sat down, "I just couldn’t, all right?"

He sat with his head in his hands, waiting for the condemnation.

He heard footsteps and looked up, watched her walk over to the cabinet that held all the toys he’d seen yesterday.

The goddess opened it up and pulled out a small hand size blue suede flogger. She looked at Spike, smiled.

"You like pain, Spike?"

"Givin’ or gettin’?" he asked, standing. The change of topic was welcome and appreciated.

"Either," she asked playfully. She dropped the robe she was wearing. "C’mere."

Spike ran.

Part III

Spike fell exhausted into bed – alone - just after dawn.

Kenny had come with more of that heavenly blood and he fell asleep full, sated and delightfully in pain.

At sunset, Feen appeared; he’d been sitting and waiting for her. He was beginning to think this vacation could be fun after all, even though it was forced.

The goddess appeared, smiling, very happy that he’d been anticipating her return.

She walked up to him and gave him a kiss of greeting on his cheek and asked if he’d slept well. He was jittery and pacing; eagerly awaiting her next game. She was relaxed. She sat on the floor near the fireplace and he noticed for the first time what she was wearing. Faded jeans and an oversized denim button down. ’What the hell’s she up to now?

"Spike," she began cheerfully, not seeming to notice his unease. She did of course, but she didn’t pay it any mind. It would get worse soon. "I understand you were a poet as a human."

"Oh, no, Feen. You’re not dragging me into any poofy romantic poetry readings and before you ask, no I don’t remember anything I ever wrote, so don’t ask."

"Well, that’s good. Your poetry sucked, I’ve read it." He started to protest but she held up a hand. "Don’t go on about it, Spike, I’m only agreeing with your assessment. And I wasn’t going to ask you to read, I was going to ask you if you’ve ever read any of Shakespeare’s poetry –" she held up a hand again just as he opened his mouth, "And that was only a segueway to asking if you’ve ever read any of his plays. Now you can talk."

Spike didn’t know what to say. "Oh," is what he finally went with. "Well, that’s all right, Shakespeare’s a good guy," he said, settling on the floor in front of her. "Which in particular? Like the histories m’self, even if he did get some of the facts wrong."

"I’m a fan of the comedies myself," the goddess confessed. "Although all of the stories are excellent. I think the true test of greatness is in whether someone’s work can stand the test of time. If someone writes a play that is just as relevant five hundred years later as it was the day it was written, that is true genius."

"You’ve got a point, never really thought about it much."

The goddess snapped her fingers and a tray with two ice-cold bottles of Guiness appeared on the floor next to them and they each picked one up, the goddess sipping hers as Spike went on.

"That works more with the tragedies than the comedies though; most today don’t appreciate the things that were funny in Old William’s day."

"Oh, I don’t know about that," the goddess countered, "The first one I ever read is still my favourite. ’The Taming of the Shrew’ – and arranged marriages are hardly commonplace anymore. But its still hilariously funny and still relevant."

"Really, pet, you just have to laugh over Petruchio’s behaviour. But I don’t agree that its relevant, no woman today would put up with that. She’d leave him and take half of everything he owns. No self-respecting woman would allow her man to keep her away from everything she enjoys, take away her food, allow her no comforts, hide her away – even in the name of love."

"Maybe, after being treated like that, she deserves half of everything he gets."

Spike laughed. "Maybe. But first find me someone who’d be fool enough to let that happen to her!"

The goddess snapped her fingers and a paper appeared in her fingers. "Here you go." She handed him a snapshot.

"What? This is me, luv, what game are you playing now?" He was real angry, real fast.

"You let the woman you love hide you away, keep you away from the human blood that your body needs to survive, force you to live in a crypt, be at her beck and call twenty-four hours a day, fight her battles, protect her family – what did she do for you, Spike?"

He had the decency to look embarrassed, "The shagging was great!" It was lame, he knew it.

"What would you have had me do?" His voice was a little desperate.

"I think you should have done exactly what you did do, Spike. You loved her. People will do amazing things in the name of love. Even some things that are amazingly stupid. Its all they can do. When you love someone, really love someone, you’ll do anything for that person – anything at all."

He was temporarily mollified, "And I did do everything, everything she wanted, everything she asked me to do." He touched the place on his chest where he had once tried to rip out his soul. "Even some things she didn’t ask me to." His gaze turned toward the goddess, accusing, "And in the end, she did love me."

The goddess got up, started to walk away.

His voice stopped her. "Why are you doing this? Why are you making me go through all of these things again?" His voice cracked, he was close to tears.

She turned back, took him in her arms and held him close. "Because you didn’t go through them the first time, dear heart. And until you go through them, until you face them, you can never move on. I want you to be able to move on." She pulled back, looked him in the eyes, "Even if its not with me."

That broke down his reserves and the tears that had been so long, so many years in coming, finally came. They held each other until the tears stopped, peace and quiet restored to the room once more. And there was a new peace, Spike found. Things that had been there before were suddenly gone, or near enough to the surface to be able to talk about. He told her about his life, his human life. And about his death and his new life with his new family.

Everything. Happiness, hope, heartache. Destiny, dreams, despair. Love, loss, longing.

And she told him about herself. Because even goddesses fall in love. And everyone, even a goddess, can have a broken heart.

They fell asleep on the floor, not in each others arms, but close. Closer than Spike had ever been before.

Part IV

Spike woke up Sunday evening in chains.

His eyes shot up to where she stood. Black leather mini-dress. Thigh high boots with stiletto heels. Auburn hair loose and wild around her head like a lion’s mane. A riding crop in her hand.

One brassed off Evil Goddess.

"I’m done being your Mommy, Spike. You’re a big boy. You got problems, go see a shrink like everybody else."

The riding crop came down like a bloody red ribbon of pain across his chest. The wound healed instantly before his eyes. He stared at his chest, amazed.

"That’s my blood you’ve been drinking. You’ve been here for three days now. You’ve had a taste of what I can give you. Its time to see what you can do for me in return."

Spike stood straighter, defying her. He wasn’t giving in, he didn’t care how much she had done to help ease his mind and his body. It was the principle of the thing. You don’t just kidnap William the Bloody and expect him to submit to you. Even if you are a goddess – in more ways than one.

The goddess was slowly walking around him, letting his thoughts go wherever they needed to go for him to work this through. She felt his indecision, even if he didn’t. She stopped in front of him. She decided to play one of her aces.

"Spike, I want to show you something. You see, I wasn’t always a goddess. I was once a human girl. And when I was human, something happened, it doesn’t matter what, but I bit my tongue in half. Clean through, it came off. They put it back on of course, but ever since then I’ve been able to do this –"

She opened her mouth and Spike could see that she had folded her tongue back in on itself. The front half was lying back completely flat against the rest, like a perfectly folded towel. He’d never seen anyone with tongue control like that. His eyes opened wide as he thought about that…

"Yup, its exactly what you’re thinking Spike." She looked down in amusement at his rapidly growing hard on.

"I can give you such pleasure, Spike, you have no idea. I can also give you pain; the pain you want –" she hit his thigh with the blue flogger from the other day. "And the pain you sometimes think you need." She hit him across the back with the riding crop.

"I can be everything for you. I can give you tenderness –" a vision of the night before when she held him came unbidden into his mind. "Or I can give you violence." She smiled. "Think of it, Spike, I’m a goddess. You’re a vampire, something you’ve been suppressing for far too long. Violence runs through your body like blood. You crave the hunt, you need the kill, but that soul and your good heart won’t allow you to do what comes naturally to you. You can’t hurt me Spike, I will never die. No sunlight, no stake through the heart, even beheading won’t get rid of me. So you can do your worst – or should I say your best - do everything that you’re body’s been crying out for – no more holding back, no more taking it easy. Act on every impulse, every instinct, every whim, fantasy or nightmare. I can take it – and I’ll love it.

"I can be your savior –" she suddenly morphed into Angel, who said "Or I can be your doom." And now Buffy was standing before him. And then she was gone and the goddess was there once more.

"I can give you everything you’ve ever wanted. I’ll provide things you didn’t even know you need. I can be your life; I can give you death. And I can resurrect you over and over again, mind, body and spirit. Just say the word.

"You don’t want to let your friends down, I can understand that. You’re a good person, Spike, no matter what anyone else has led you to believe. That’s one of the reasons I want you. I’m not proposing to take you away from everything you have now; you can go back, you can help make things right, you can fight the good fight along side your friends.

"But at the end of the day, when all is said and done, when you’re too weary to hold on or too joyous to sit still, who is it that you really want to run to? Who can be everything for you, everything – not just whatever he thinks he should be, or everything she feels she can allow herself to feel. Everything. All for you. Just for you."

And she was gone. The shackles were gone and he was free to walk around. He slumped to the floor. He needed a cigarette; he wanted a drink.

As if by magic, Kenny walked in with a glass of Jack and a pack of Marlboros. "Here," he said, "Feen said you’d need these." He handed him his offerings and turned to leave.

"Can I ask you something, mate?"

"Sure." Kenny turned back and sat down with him, and identical glass and cigarettes appearing at his side.

"You’re her right hand man, you say –"

"Always have been." Kenny said, pride evident in his voice.

"When you say ’always’ –" he prompted.

"Me and Feen go way back. We were in middle school together. Miss Tracks’ science class. Feen didn’t want to dissect the eyeball." Kenny laughed, remembering.

Spike was surprised. "You knew her when she was human?"

"Sure. And she’s more human now than she wants anyone to know. Feen’s the best; I’d do anything for her."

"Really?" He could picture this woman inspiring great loyalty. But he wanted to know the price. "What is it that she promised you?"

"Nothing," Kenny answered, confused. "Feen’s never promised me anything, but she’s always there, she’s always listening. And she always tells me the truth, even if its something I didn’t want to hear. But she’s a little too fiercely loyal to her friends if you ask me. She seems to think we’re miracle workers with hearts like lions. If one of us gets down on ourselves, Feen’s right there, kicking our ass back in line, telling us that we have no business insulting one of her friends because she wouldn’t bother to love someone who wasn’t wonderful in the extreme." Kenny smiled. "Feen’s great for the ego."

It seemed there was no end to the wonders of this woman. "What is she, a bloody saint? Doesn’t she have any soddin’ flaws?"

Kenny roared with laughter. "Spike, man, she’s put together with flaws and contradictions. She’s stubborn, but she sees both sides to every argument. She’s opinionated, but she’s also open-minded. She’s loud and in-your-face, but she’s really shy. She drives like the devil, but she gets car sick. She throws up if she sees blood or brains in a movie, but she shoves everyone else out of the way so that she can take care of you if you’re hurt. She always tells the truth and the downside to that is that she always tells the truth. She curses like a sailor and blushes like a little girl. She’s not afraid of anything because she spent her whole childhood terrified." He paused, took a breath. "I didn’t intend to tell you that, that’s her story to tell, not mine."

At Spike’s look, he amended, "But I wouldn’t count on hearing it, she’s over it. It’s just part of the past. The way she figures it, if she hadn’t gone through that, she wouldn’t be who she is today. And who she is today is pretty cool. But then, she’s my best friend, has been since we were eleven. I may be biased. Look, man," he said, standing, " I gotta go. I got a day job. What you do is up to you."

Spike held out a hand, stopped him, "And if it was you standing where I am?"

Kenny smiled. "I’m here every day, man. And I don’t have to be."

He left, leaving Spike to think.

Part V

Sunset came and went. Spike waited, no goddess. Kenny didn’t even visit. Spike explored the room again while he waited, his inventive imagination conjuring up uses and positions. He wasn’t at all surprised to find that it was Feen he was now picturing in the handcuffs and the swing. He smiled. That chick could grow on a vamp.

He briefly considered watching a video, but since they were all porn and there was still that ’no wanking’ spell in place, he decided to play it safe and wait for his goddess.

It was close to three am when she finally stormed into the room, covered in black leather, much as she had been on that first night.

"I only came here to tell you that I can’t come here," she fumed, pacing. "Why can’t anyone here do anything by themselves? Why must every single one of them come screaming and crying to me when something goes wrong? But no, they gotta charge in, both horns forward, making a bad situation even worse!" She waved dismissively and turned to go.

Spike ran ahead of her, "Wait!"

"What?!" Her mind was on other things, she didn’t have time for this right now.

"If ya go out there like this, you’re just gonna make it worse. Plus, you’ll lose it in front of the minions and that’s never good. Take a breath, sit down, think about what you’re going to do. Have you even thought about how you’re gonna fix the problem?"

"I thought making them all rot in Hell would be a good start!"

"But will it solve the problem?"

"Well, no. But it’ll make me feel a lot better!" She stood up to go.

"Can you crush a pop can with a bull whip?" he yelled to her retreating back. It worked, she stopped. Turned.

"Can I what?"

"Can you crush a pop can with a bull whip?" he asked again, calmer now.

"I can snap that fuckin’ can in half and then half again, you insolent pup! I’m in the middle of a domestic idiocy situation and you’re insulting my whipping skills?!"

"Fine. Right-o. You can snap it in half. But can you crush it? Just crush it, without breaking it?"

"Of course, I c – " she thought about it. "Well, I’m sure I could if I t –" She looked at him. "Can you?"

The big patented-by-Spike smirk appeared on his face. "Try me, goddess."

"Kenny!"

Kenny dutifully appeared and Feen asked that he bring them some pop cans.

"Some what?"

"Pop cans," Spike repeated.

"What the fuck’s a pop can?"

The goddess heaved a weary sigh. "Soda, Kenny. He means soda cans. It’s a west coast thing, don’t ask me. Just get him the cans."

Kenny left to do as Spike wanted, giving Spike a surreptitious wink behind Feen’s back.

Spike walked to the cabinet and pulled out two bullwhips, handing one to Feen.

When Kenny returned with a box full of soda cans, the room disappeared and they were standing on an outdoor basketball court. It was late afternoon and very overcast but not raining.

"Thanks for that," Spike said, looking up at the clouds.

"Not just for you," Feen admitted. "Can’t stand fuckin’ sunshine. Ought to be outlawed." She took a swipe at one of the cans Kenny had set up for them; she whipped it in half.

"Fuck!"

Spike stepped up and with a delicate flick of his arm and wrist, hit the can with just enough force to crush it without cutting it.

Over and over Feen tried, over and over Feen failed. Spike had to tell her to be gentle thirty-eight times before she managed to do it. By the time she had crushed just one, Spike had crushed fifty-seven of them.

She was so pleased when she finally got it that she was jumping up and down, hugging Spike and then Kenny and then Spike again.

"Feel better?" Spike asked, flashing the patented grin once again.

Feen started to feel miffed, but decided to be happy instead.

"Bitch," she accused with no malice at all.

Spike’s mouth opened in an exaggerated gasp.

"You did that on purpose," she said cheerfully.

"What if I did?" Spike asked, admitting nothing.

"Kenny," the goddess dismissed her friend and the bedroom reappeared, but slightly different. All of the purple was gone, replaced by black and grey with a few touches of red for colour.

"What happened to the room?" Spike asked.

"It must like you," the goddess answered, slowly advancing on him. "I told it to give you whatever you wanted; its your room, it should be the way you want it. It’s been resisting until now."

"I know how it feels," Spike said, liking the look in her eyes. "That my punishment for distracting you?" He was stepping backwards now, toward the bed.

"No, for your punishment, I’m going to show you the wrath of one of my powers."

"Oh, yeah?" Spike said, not at all afraid. In fact, he stopped and waited for her to take another step and then pulled her roughly up against his lean form. "Which power ’s’at?"

She leaned in and whispered in his ear, "I’m gonna show you the damage I can do with my tongue."

Part VI

Tuesday at sunset the goddess awoke in Spike’s bed.

To find herself wearing the black leather collar.

"Fuck no!" she cried out, eyes turning menacingly toward Spike.

"You’re half right," he responded with a laugh that sounded a little too smug for her comfort.

A wonderful, awful idea formed in her head (as wonderful, awful ideas are wont to do) and she stretched gracefully – like a big jungle cat – and stood. She got down on all fours and crawled to Spike.

His jaw dropped as he watched her. He hadn’t expected her to actually go along with this…

"You like this, Spike?" she purred as she crawled. "You like me on my knees – on all fours – crawling before you? You get you off watching me humble myself before you? You get off on watching me beg?"

He didn’t say anything, just nodded.

"I’m your bitch, Spike. I’ll do anything you ask - anything," she continued, holding his gaze. "What’s your deepest fantasy? What’s your most depraved wish? What’s the sickest thing you’ve ever wanted to do to a woman? What’s the most tender? What’s so far inside of you that you won’t even admit it to yourself?"

He didn’t say anything. But she saw the wheels turning.

"Wait," she said.

"I thought you were my bitch," he told her, his voice rising slightly. "I thought you’d do anything –"

"I am and I will. But just remember, Spike. You can do anything you want to me, you can force me into anything – but only because I allow you to. If I didn’t want to be your pet, I wouldn’t be here."

He smiled.

Her screams were heard for hours.

~~*~~*~~*~~*

When Kenny brought Spike his blood, Spike was alone in the room. Kenny delivered the goblet and pitcher, then bummed a cigarette and sat down in a chair.

"You said you’re here every day-" Spike said to Kenny.

Kenny exhaled a lungful of smoke and nodded.

"You gonna keep doin’ that?" Spike asked, "Even after -? I mean, will she be –"

"She got along just fine before you got here," Kenny answered the questions Spike didn’t know how to ask, "She’ll be just fine after you’ve gone."

Spike stood and started pacing. "Then why?," he asked, his voice bewildered and a little angry. "Then why do this? Why put me through this? If I don’t matter, why bother bringing me here at all, why make the proposition, why go to all the trouble?"

"I didn’t say you didn’t matter," Kenny told him wearily, tapping out his cigarette and standing. "I said she’d be all right. She always is – eventually." He started for the door then stopped, turned around.

"I’m gonna miss ya, Spike. Here," he reached into his pocket and pulled out a business card. "You ever want somebody to get a pint of Guiness with, give me a call."

"Yeah," Spike said, smiling and taking the card.

When Kenny reached for the doorknob, Spike called out, "See ya t'morro’ night. Still got one more day."

Kenny didn’t say anything.

On the other side of the door, the goddess sat waiting. Kenny closed the door behind him and shook his head.

On Wednesday morning, Spike woke up on the couch in Angel’s office in LA.



Part VII

An hour of round and round explanations lead nowhere; no one believed that Spike had simply been zapped into another dimension by an Evil Goddess that wanted to keep Spike as a pet.

No one except Illyria, that is. She kept prodding him with questions on what the goddess had done and if it was working.

A call from Gunn took everyone’s attention off of Spike and onto the business at hand. Helping the hopeless and fighting the good fight.

It took them six and a half hours and almost cost them Wesley’s life, but the Brotherhood of Canaan was defeated. In large part to a weapon that Fred had designed not long before she died.

Everyone was too overwhelmed with weariness and emotion to do much except drag themselves as best as they could into the offices of Wolfram & Hart. The weapons were laid on the conference table; Harmony was dispatched to find someone to clean them thoroughly and put them away.

Each member of the team walked in silence out of Angel’s office and toward their own offices, even Illyria seemed to grasp the somber mood of the souled beings and headed quietly toward the lab.

Everyone went with one eye on Wes, knowing that this was hardest on him; Fred had been the love of his life for so long and he only had a few short days with her. Everyone here was in bad shape, everyone here would have given almost anything they had to have someone they loved to go home to. Someone to hold off the rest of the world, if only for a little while. Life was nothing if you didn’t have someone to go home to.

Someone who needed you as much as you needed her. Someone who made you their first priority. Someone to -

"Come on, Spike."

Angel held the door to the elevator for Spike, waiting so they could ride up to Angel’s apartment together.

Spike watched Wesley go, it was heartbreaking to watch, even for those that didn’t have a heart.

He turned to Angel and looked at him. Really looked at him. It was making Angel uncomfortable.

"Spike, come on. I’m too tired for games now. Get your ass in here!"

"Go on. I’ll be up later."

Spike walked over to Angel’s desk and pulled something out of his back pocket. He heard the elevator doors close as he dialed.

"Kenny? It’s me, Spike. I need to get back to her. Tell her I’ll do anything. I’ll beg, I’ll wear the collar, I’ll get on my knees and roll over. Tell her –"

In the blink of eye, he was gone.



The End