Out of Time
by Knightie ( email@example.com )
Work In Progress
Rated pg-13 for now heading for R rapidly (might make it to NC-17 <G>)
"People still find the subject of Jack the Ripper an interesting topic and my lectures on him are always the best attended," the professor announced as she walked in the door of the History of England class. "I see this year is no exception," she added with a smile as she scanned the packed lecture hall.
The students chuckled softly as the instructor began opening her notes and checking role. When she was finished, she smiled again, "As usual when I give this lecture we seem to have several students that I've never seen in my life. Which I don't mind, provided they don't cause any disturbance and they learn something."
"Everyone has heard the story of Jack the Ripper. He spent the fall of 1888 committing what many consider to be the first serial murders. You can watch numerous films or read hundreds of stories about him. Even though the murders were committed over 100 years ago... I'm betting half of you know the list of victims." She turned to the chalkboard and quickly wrote five names and dates. Mary Ann Nichols - August 31, 1888, Annie Chapman - September 8, 1888, Elizabeth Stride - September 30, 1888, Catherine Eddowes - September 30, 1888, Mary Jane Kelly - November 9, 1888. "These are the list of Ripper victims that are generally accepted by most people. Some people believe there are up to thirteen more."
"I was wondering something," Buffy commented as they left the class and drew away from the crowds, "and it's probably just 'cause I'm the Slayer and all... but what if Jack was a vamp?"
saw a show one time that mentioned that... well, it was a fictional series so
I'm thinking they didn't really believe that,"
"Yeah, detach-O-girl. I said maybe we should talk to Giles about it?"
Giles! Yeah! That's a great
"Well... I've got to get to my next class."
"And I have to meet Riley... for study help."
"Sure ... study."
"Alright, alright. Go, 'study'. I'll see you at Giles' tonight."
"Bye Wills!" Buffy called as she trotted off toward the student union building.
After her last
The sun dropped below the horizon just as she burst through the door, "Sorry... I got a little distracted studying," she murmured as she moved into the room and began to set her laptop on the table.
"Only person in the bloody town that could get distracted studying," the platinum blonde vampire muttered from the corner.
reminds me!" Buffy exclaimed, earning a shocked and hurt look from
Spike got this odd look in his eyes before he turned back to the book in his hands as Giles stood. "It's not a popular theory, but some of the members of the Watchers Council believed it was possible. They, however, had no proof."
"But it's possible?" Buffy asked with a slight grin. It was the kind she always got when she actually knew the answer to a question.
"Yes, Buffy. It is technically possible," Giles told her patiently,
"But at this moment we have more important things to worry about."
Buffy sighed, and then glared at Spike, "Why is he here again? I mean... I thought he was only here when we paid him?"
"I go where I want, when I want," Spike muttered as he grabbed a dusty, leather encased tomb and buried his nose in it.
Giles gave everyone the brief description they had of the demon, then set everyone to researching. She listened to the group discussing this demon in amongst the current goings on in their lives as she absentmindedly searched the web for information on the troublemaker.
She noticed Spike seemed distracted and not in the usual 'I want to kill them all' way. She checked to make sure no one was paying attention to her, and then went to the kitchen. She grinned to herself that she knew how to ring the 'chipped vamp dinner bell'. Almost as soon as she opened the refrigerator, Spike appeared.
"Hungry?" she asked as she began to prepare him a mug of blood.
"Sure," he murmured.
"Something's bothering you."
"Wanna talk about it?"
really," Spike murmured. "It's like I can almost remember
something... but not. I don't know." He shook his head and sat down as
about this demon?"
about Jack the Ripper. We were in
"Maybe, but it hasn't affected any other memories, has it?" She asked cautiously- the last thing she wanted to do was make him mad. Even though he was chipped, he still scared her.
Spike closed his eyes and seemed to be scanning his memory. "Not that I can tell."
"Then I don't think it's the chip."
"Then what is the damn problem?" Spike asked, a suppressed growl rumbling in his chest.
"Don't think about it so hard... maybe it'll come back to you." She glanced at her watch and smiled, "I better get back in there before they notice I'm gone." She rose to her feet and carried her cup back into the living room.
"Yeah," Spike murmured, "I'll try to figure out what I've forgotten."
It took half the
night to find any information on this demon, and what they did find was rather
sketchy. It was called a Gravlok. It was big, dumb
and trouble causing but easy to kill. They did find one description that
mentioned it was intelligent and weak, but that it held magical abilities. But
that was only one mention and the name was spelled differently, Gravaloke, so it was probably a related demon, but not
theirs. The group split up and went off in search of their big, dumb demon. Buffy, Riley, and Giles in one group and Spike,
"Well that's just ... gross," Xander exclaimed as they walked onto the scene as the creature turned into a puddle of yellowish-green goo.
"Looks like someone blew their nose."
"XANDER!" The group yelled.
"What? Well, it's true," he mumbled, then grinned. "So Bronze now?"
I've got some homework to finish,"
going to research on the Ripper, but that can wait until I've had some time at
the Bronze," Buffy said with a grin. "But first we walk
The young ones
of the group left Spike and Giles and headed for the dorms to drop
A few hours
later, the light from the laptop screen glowed in the darkness of the room.
That was the first thought
inside the trunk and found two dresses as well as underclothes.
There was no way this was Sunnydale. Suddenly, it struck her. This was like a scene from a movie set in Victorian England. "Oh no. I didn't cast a spell. It wasn't me. I didn't do it!" She exclaimed as she pulled back inside. She looked at the chest of clothes and numbly moved toward it. It took her forever to get herself dressed. Who knew a corset was so complicated when you were trying to put it on yourself? Once she was dressed, she slipped on the ill-fitting boots and headed out of the room cautiously.
decide to wake up?" A young woman's accented voice called as
"I... Um... I wasn't feeling well, but I'm better now,"
"What an odd question," the woman replied as she made her way across the room. "Next thing I know you'll be telling me you don't remember my name," she chuckled, shaking her head "Why it's Friday August twenty-fourth, of course."
"Wh- what year?"
The young raven-haired woman stared at her then grabbed her arm and pulled her to the side. "What do you mean ... what year? It's the year of our lord, 1888."
"Yes, did you hit your head?" She asked, concern filling her face and voice as she raised a hand toward her.
"Oh you poor thing!" The woman exclaimed, slipping her arm around her waist and leading her toward a nearby table. "Should I call a doctor?"
mean, no. I'm fine. Just a little confused. I'm fine... honest." The last
arrived here last week from
"Vaguely," she murmured.
remember me," at
"The Ten Bells?" The name struck a cord. The Ten Bells, it had something to do with the Ripper Murders. Didn't those women congregate there or something?
"Yes, it isn't the best place to work but it's certainly better than the alternative," Gwen murmured. "And we'd better go before Jonathan decides he doesn't need us to work for him any longer."
sure. I'll just ... follow you,"
smelly, drunk 'gentleman' grabbed her butt,
"Do you still feel alright?" Gwen asked as she stopped beside her at the bar.
better if men kept their hands to themselves,"
"That's good. If--"
you know if I start to feel worse or something. I promise."
"No, we're fine, Miss," one of the women replied, winking at her.
"Oh, Liz, she don't have any more money than we do, and if she did wouldn't be wanting your attention."
"I'm Mary," the girl with the blondish brown hair told her as she stared,
"What did you mean by ... bad?"
Friday August 31, 1888
Tonight would be the first murder, at least the first one that everyone agreed on. She hadn't seen Polly Nichols, so she hadn't had the opportunity to warn her personally. She only hoped her 'friends' had.
The night seemed a bit busier than usual but it was probably just her imagination. That and there was once again a group of sailors that were drunk and pawing at her. As she finished with one particularly 'hands on' patron, she heard one of the last voices she ever expected to hear in this place and time.
"Bloody hell Angelus," the familiar voice complained, "what are we doing back here?"
mentioned being in
my boy, Darla and Dru wanted new dresses and they had
to be from a particular maker here in
Angelus leaned toward William and smiled that bone-chilling smile of his. "I think we both will be able to find something to entertain ourselves with here."
William glanced at Angelus then scanned the room. "Most likely," he agreed as his eyes slid over the raven-haired barmaid.
"Seeing something already, me boyo?" Angelus whispered.
"Perhaps," William murmured as he watched the girl.
"W-what can I get for you gentlemen?" a nervous, almost frightened American voice asked.
"Hello, little one," Angelus purred, causing the girl to flinch and stare wide-eyed at him.
William pulled his eyes from the woman he had been staring at and glanced at the girl at his side. Red headed girls didn't usually hold his attention but there was something different about this one. Something that almost called to him, the other girl was forgotten in an instant. He ordered their drinks and when she walked away, he turned to Angelus. "Do you get the feeling she knows something?"
"I'm sure it's nothing, William. Perhaps she'll be your playmate for the evening?"
William frowned, "Perhaps, try not to scare her too much when she returns." Angelus chuckled under his breath and William noticed that his grandsire was giving the young redhead the same smile he used to lure young girls off to their deaths.
"This isn't my Spike," she whispered to herself as she hefted her tray onto her shoulder and headed for the table, adding that he wasn't really 'her' Spike. She just meant the Spike she knew. Well, she didn't 'know' him but she - oh forget it. I even babble in my head, she thought with a sigh. She knew she had to keep on her toes or she just might end up being dinner for Angelus or Spike. Oh wait, she had heard Angelus calling Spike 'William'. So this was before he took up the nickname, she needed to remember that. She didn't want to be around them more than she needed to, but she didn't want to tick them off either.
"Here you go, Sirs," she murmured as she slid their drinks onto the table and turned to go as a cool hand closes around her wrist.
"Why don't you stay? Have a drink. Keep us company." Angelus suggested as he tugged her toward him.
For a moment she thought she heard a growl, but not from Angelus. "I- I can't. I have to work. Jonathan doesn't like us to... I mean. I have other customers as well, sir."
"Angelus, let the pretty little thing go. She has work to do," William murmured as he smiled in an almost reassuring way.
She realized that it probably wouldn't be nearly as hard to differentiate between 'Spike' and 'William'. She had to remember that William didn't have chip in his head and he wouldn't hesitate to drain her dry in most circumstances. She smiled back at William as Angelus released her wrist.
"Thank you. Maybe next time I can have a drink with you two," she told them, knowing there would be no way that would happen if she had any control over it.
The two vampires smiled at her with predatory grins but allowed her to walk away with no further attempts to keep her with them. Unfortunately, she was so busy thanking who ever was listening for not letting her become their dinner that she didn't notice her octopus of a customer from earlier. He grabbed her about the waist and hauled her into his lap.
"Hello, luvey. I knew you'd be back," the young yellow haired seaman murmured as he buried his face in her neck.
"Don't be like that," he murmured as he nipped at her ear.
"The lady said to let go," William's voice growled and suddenly she was being pulled away and pushed against a hard cool body.
After a moment, she realized that William was holding her and Angelus had freed her. Now she was really confused. This didn't seem like something the pair would do... at least not according to the Watcher's Diaries that she wasn't supposed to have ever read.
"I think the lad and I will be having a talk outside," Angelus murmured as he shoved the sailor toward the door and tossed William a grin as the rest of the table rose to follow them.
"Looks like you found an admirer," Gwen giggled beside her. "He's a handsome one and a gentleman, too."
from him and his friend. They're trouble,"
"I doubt you'll be seeing that pair again. Those sailors will be back soon but your boys won't," Jonathan told her with a shake of his gray head.
I'm almost positive the sailors won't stand a chance,"
"Your gentleman probably didn't want to you to see him after the fight," Gwen told her as she helped clear off one of the larger tables. "I'm sure he is fine."
"Ah, but don't you wish he was," Gwen laughed as she carried her heavy tray away.
A few hours
later as Jonathan ushered the last of the customers out the door,
"Jonathan! You're not gonna believe it! A bangtail got butchered over on Buck's Row! It's bloody awful!" the man cried.
know, just some whore, but cor... from what I've
heard... it wasn't pretty," the young man said as he turned and headed off
into the night.
finish up then we'll head back home," Gwen suggested as she cast a
concerned glance toward
Once they had finished cleaning the Ten Bells, Jonathan insisted that he walk them home as the other girls had left hours ago. He left them at their door and told them to be careful coming in the next night.
A few of her
regulars mentioned that she was quiet. She just apologized and continued
to make her rounds through the bar. Other than the normal happenings of the
bar, nothing seemed too out of the ordinary.
As the night wore on she once again found herself avoiding grabbing hands and ignoring lewd comments. She was getting tired and a bit cranky and Jonathan noticed.
"Be careful. Keep to the more traveled streets."
Gwen. I'll see you tomorrow,"
"So William, headed back to visit the maid at the Bells?" Angelus asked as he dropped the body of his evening meal.
"What?" William asked, glancing toward his grandsire.
"The flame haired lass. She's captured your attention," Angelus laughed.
William groaned and rolled his eyes. "She is ... interesting and I'm not the one that took on six sailors because one of them grabbed her."
Angelus snorted, "I just beat you to it, boy. Your eyes were yellow before you were out of the chair."
William hoped that Angelus would leave this be. He didn't understand why he felt the need to protect this mortal young woman. Maybe it was the way she looked at him like she knew him and though he knew she was frightened, she hid it well. "I want a drink," he muttered storming toward the Ten Bells as his grandsire's laughter followed him.
They were only a few streets over from Buck's Row when they heard the scream. Angelus glanced at him, "Shall we see who is in trouble? Maybe cause a bit ourselves?"
William nodded as he took off toward the sound.
"LET GO!" An almost familiar voice screamed. "I'm warning you!"
The vampires turned the corner into a dirty alley to see a flash of red hair in the dim light.
"I'll be takin' what I want," the mugger growled as he shoved the red head against the wall.
William felt his demon push forward and snarl as the grubby human pawed at the girl. He started forward when he saw her close her eyes.
I didn't warn you,"
"Red," he breathed, then stilled when the man flew across the alley. Angelus grabbed his arm and pulled him back.
"Witchcraft," the elder vampire breathed.
William nodded, then moved toward the alley. Glancing at the would-be attacker, who was still lying mostly unconscious on the ground, he tried to sound calm, like he wasn't itching to tear the man apart. And he knew he now had to be careful about the girl. She could cast any number of annoying or deadly spells on him if he upset her. "Good evening, my lady. I was going offer my assistance, but it seems you were able to handle ... it without our aid." Even from here he could smell her fear, the sweet smell of it drifting in the night air. There was a tinge of blood in the air as well, it was only a small amount, but it was there. He couldn't help wondering whose blood it was.
"It's alright, little one. We saw what he had planned," Angelus told her as he moved toward the mugger.
She didn’t think the vampires would have much to say about the magic, but what if anyone else had seen her? She could have been in deep trouble. She wrapped her arms around herself and squeezed. She flinched slightly and pulled her hand away from her right arm when she felt something warm and sticky. Suddenly, William was in front of her.
“You’re bleeding,” he murmured as he pulled a handkerchief from his pocket and pressed it against the cut.
“I’m okay,” she murmured as she glanced at the cut. It stung a little, but there was no real pain. She cringed when she heard the sound of breaking bones echoing through the dingy alley.
over his shoulder and quickly urged
“I-Jonathan told me to take the night off. I think he was afraid he’d have to fire me if I kept working tonight. I was snapping at everyone,” she explained as she glanced at down at her injured arm. It had stopped bleeding, but she knew she needed to clean it. She had no idea where that knife had been.
“It’s dangerous for a lady to be out alone after dark,” Angelus murmured as he joined them.
“I know. I was thinking about …” she hesitated, she couldn’t say ‘about you two being vampires’, “things,” she finished lamely. She noticed a few of the other pedestrians giving them a wide path. She felt safe for the first time since she got here. What was she thinking? Her brain screamed that these were two dangerous, soulless vampires. She glanced at some of the less than reputable characters walking past her. Was she really in more danger from these two then any of them? Somehow she doubted it.
“Where are you staying? We’ll escort you home and make sure you get that wound taken care of. It could become infected,” William told her, as he glanced at Angelus.
alright. I’m certain you have things you need to take care of,”
“My dear William wants to take care of you,” Angelus whispered in her ear, the cool air tickling her ear.
“Angelus,” William growled, warningly. “Ignore him,” he murmured warmly to her.
“I can take care of myself,” she assured them.
Angelus laughed, “I know you can, little one. I saw just how well you were doing.”
“Please don’t tell any--” she was silenced by the dark vampire’s finger on her lips.
“We saw nothing,” he whispered. “Do not speak of it again,” he told her as he glanced toward the church they were passing.
With a nod, she told them where she was staying and quietly walked between the pair of vampires as they escorted the young witch to her lodgings. She wondered if the pair planned to kill her, or something worse. “Well, here we are. Thank you, both of you, for walking me home. Now, I’ll just run inside and get this scratch cleaned up--”
broadly to William, and then bowed to
evening, Mr. Angelus.”
“I should apologize for Angelus--” William began.
“William,” she sighed, “It’s just a scratch. You can’t really call it a wound. I’ve had so much worse before. I mean there was this time that this demon chunked me into a tree and I had this hole in - ” She realized what she was saying and that it probably wasn’t the best thing, so she did her best to back track, “I mean I was riding my horse--”
“Demon,” William interrupted, his eyes boring into her. “You were attacked by a demon?” He asked, pulling her away from the people on the street.
“No, my horse…his name was Demon,” she lied quickly. He couldn’t know that she was terrified of horses; at least she hoped he couldn’t tell that she was lying, “and he got spooked and threw me and I hit a tree--”
lying,” William interrupted her babble as he took a step closer.
“When did this demon attack you? Where? How badly did it hurt you?”
He had a strange look in his blue eyes as he spoke, one that
been a while, “ she began slowly, “It was
when I was in
“It healed well?”
“Yeah, a little scar … no big deal,” she said with a grin, then noticed the confused look on his face.
“That is … good,” he murmured, and then smiled. “Come, we need to get your … scratch taken care of. This environment is only good for causing infections and I don’t want to think about what he used that knife for last.”
what room you are in and I can get there without being seen,” he assured
She opened the door and smiled. “William,” she murmured, waving him inside. He took a step forward and bounced off the invisible wall, with a look of confusion on his face. It disappeared as quickly as it had appeared. “Is something wrong?” she asked.
“I was waiting for an invitation,” he explained.
He smiled, then stepped inside and closed the door. “I wouldn’t think a lady such as yourself would use such words.” He headed for the washbasin and poured some water in it. He glanced at her then sighed. “I have no intention of harming you,” he assured her. It was a bit unnerving watching him watch her and she just grew more nervous as he motioned her toward a nearby chair. With a sigh, she moved toward him. She stood staring a moment longer, before he told her to sit. She did so quietly as he cleaned the wound.
“Mind if I … kiss it better?” He asked, as he finished cleaning it and began to look for something to use as a bandage.
“What?” She asked, startled.
“It’s something my mum did,” he explained.
“You’re mother never did that?” He asked surprised.
He smiled and leaned down planting gentle kiss on it. Suddenly, he licked the injury and stood up. “There,” he said as he quickly bandaged it. “Leave this alone for two days.”
“But don’t I need to change it and check it--”
“No, it will be fine,” he assured her.
“I’m mortal you know. I can get infections, even if you can-cannot imagine that happening,” she added quickly hoping he didn’t realize.
“Should have known a witch would realize I’m not mortal. I’m assuming the door was a test to confirm your suspicions,” he said as he rose and turned away from her. “I’m a demon, pet. A vampire.”
He seemed to be waiting for something, “And so is Angelus,” she replied as she rose and began pacing the room.
“I can’t answer that.”
“It wasn’t a question. It’s a fact. I knew that. I saw his golden eyes last night when he left with the sailors and yours were flecked with gold earlier. I just wasn’t sure who you were angry at then. I was afraid it was because I was a witch, but then I figured you were a vampire and so you really shouldn’t be all weird about me and now I’m babbling so I’ll stop and sit here. If you’re going to kill me just make it quick please,” she requested as she took a seat.
She was shocked by the laughter that followed her lengthy babble. It wasn’t sarcastic or condescending. It was a wholehearted laugh. “Pet, I don’t want to kill you. Don’t know why, that’s usually the first thing I think about when I see a beautiful woman.”
“Beautiful?” She breathed. Spike thought she was beautiful?! He always acted like she was just one of the Scoobies. Someone to be tolerated and that he could talk to if he needed to, but not in the ‘she’s anything special’ category.
“Yes, beautiful,” he murmured. “No one ever told you that before?” He asked, disbelief clearly written on his face when she shook her head no. “Bleeding idiots,” he muttered as he moved to her side and took the bandage off her arm. “Vampire saliva has healing properties.” He licked the wound again then smiled at her, “That should be all better in the morning.”
you,” she murmured distractedly, wondering why she had never heard of
this before. They began to talk about a little bit of everything. Mostly about
life here in
“I should be going. Angelus could be up to eyeballs in trouble.”
“Yeah… uhm, will Angelus kill me?” she asked suddenly.
“No, luv, he won’t,” he assured her with a smile.
“Good evening, my lady,” he said with a smile and a kiss to her
hand. Then he quickly left a dazed
“Well, color me confused,” she murmured as she sat down, then leapt up and began pacing her room. “These two are just… not like what they are supposed to be.” She shook her head and continued talking to her room, “William isn’t that old yet, and I thought it was the older ones that weren’t all blood thirsty. Of course, when Spike was first chipped, he said he liked to play the blood lust kinda cool, so maybe that had always been a part of him.”
She shook her head and climbed into bed, she’d try to sort all this out later when her head wasn’t all jumbled with thoughts.
to himself. He had actually enjoyed his time with the mortal. He knew for
certain that had his mortal self met her, he’d be spouting poetry and
maybe even would have given up on that bitch Cecily. He pushed the demon back,
even after nearly ten years he would love to have killed her again. He shook
off those thoughts. She was dead by his fangs and he was pleased with
that. “Beneath me,” he snorted, “No, Cecily, you are beneath
me by about six bloody feet,” he chuckled to himself as he walked into
the home they had taken for their stay. It was near the Whitechapel
district, but in some ways so far removed that it seemed a world away. He
stilled when he scented the blood, lots of it. He followed his nose and entered
one of the seldom-used rooms and saw Angelus and the man who had attacked
“It’s still alive?” he snorted.
“William,” Angelus murmured as he lifted the knife, painted crimson with blood, and glanced at the younger. “I was just about to finish this.”
“I wondered why you had broken the bloke’s back in the alley,” he murmured.
“I felt like having a bit of fun.”
Angelus looked at him again and smiled, “I take it your evening with the witch went well.”
“Yes,” William murmured, then turned his attention to the dark vampire, “She knows what we are. She knew before I went to her room.”
“Well, I can’t say that’s all that surprising. She is a witch after all.”
William just nodded and glared at the bloody mess that had been the witch’s attacker. He smiled when Angelus buried the knife to the hilt in what remained of the man’s chest. He could feel the sun rising over the horizon. “I’ll have one of the minions dispose of tomorrow night.”
Angelus smiled, “Yes, that would be good. I’ll go clean up a bit.”
“I think I’ll get some sleep,” William murmured as he turned and headed for his rooms.
“That witch must be something,” Angelus whispered as he watched him go. He glanced at the body and frowned. He hadn’t managed to get all the information he wanted from the man, but it was all the attacker had known. When Angelus was sure his boy was out of earshot, he continued aloud to the empty room.
“Maybe I’ll talk to the girl alone. Something just doesn’t seem … right. Perhaps she can help.” He shook his head and then headed for his own rooms.
Sunday September 2, 1888
She yelped when one of the squid boys, she wasn’t sure when she started thinking of them as those slimy little critters but she had and it fit, pinched her butt. “Keep your damn hands to yourself,” she snapped, slapping his hand away.
“Oh, come on lass. We’re just having a spot of fun,” one of the creeps purred. Another wrapped his arm around her waist and hugged her to his side, “We just want a little service.” A round of lurid laughter followed that comment.
At their enthusiastic cheer, she pulled away and rushed to the bar to get their order. As she waited for the drinks, she rested hear head on counter and sighed. “I’m so tired of men grabbing me.”
“It takes a bit to learn the moves to avoid that,” Gwen chuckled. She then began giving her a few tips to try.
A few minutes later, she returned to the bar after delivering the drinks, “It worked. I managed to side step the squid boys,” she laughed.
“You are an odd one,” Jonathan muttered with a shake of his head.
“Ah, but they don’t get much prettier.” The voice caused her to spin and stare wide-eyed at the tall dark vampire.
“Angelus,” she breathed, heart began to pound when she realized she didn’t see William anywhere. “I--”
“Thank you, is what she was trying to say,” Gwen tossed in
helpfully. With a sly smile, she leaned into
“You don’t need to be frightened, Sweet. I have no intention of harming you,” he purred.
Her eyes continued to dart around the room, searching in vain, for any sign of William.
A knowing smirk crossed his deceptively handsome face, “He’s not here. He’s … busy right now.”
“Oh,” she murmured. “Why are you here… if I’m not about to die?”
Angelus laughed as he offered her his arm and then led her to a table in the corner away from most of the other customers. “I told you I wasn’t going to harm you. But if it’s what you want, I’d be happy to oblige.”
“No. Thanks. Really. I’ll be fine with the talking,” she assured him, earning her another chuckle. She was still trying to figure out how this was the same vampire that had killed Ms. Calendar and attempted to kill her. This just wasn’t the same man ... demon. She shook her head, and blushed when she realized he had been talking to her.
“I—ye—What?” she asked, feeling like a heel for getting lost in her own thoughts again.
“You have to be careful. I don’t think we were the only ones to see your attack in the alley,” he repeated patiently.
“What do you mean?”
“I’ve heard rumors,” he told her softly, smiling slightly when she unknowingly leaned toward him. “Vague ones. They flared up after last night, about someone that is looking for a special someone.”
“So you automatically assume it’s me?” she asked incredulously.
Angelus shook his head and sighed, “For several reasons, which I will not discuss here, yes. I do.”
“Either William or myself will be here to walk you home. Do not leave until one of us is with you. Do you understand, little one?” Angelus’ voice was hard, yet in some strange way compassionate at the same time.
Angelus watched her intently for a moment, and then nodded. “I’ll be going now, but one of us will be back soon. Stay inside and with the crowds. I will not settle for your disobedience.”
He raised his hands and smiled a lopsided grin, “Of course not. Forgive me.”
She snorted; somehow he didn’t seem too sorry about what he’d said. “I’ll have you know I’ll do what you said… but not because you said or threatened or whatever. I’m doing it because I like being alive.”
Angelus rose and laughed again, she still wasn’t used to Angel laughing, “I’ ll be back soon, Spitfire.” And before she could react, he was gone leaving her staring at an empty chair.
Sunday, September 9, 1888
She smiled as William settled himself at the end of the bar. She returned and gave Jonathan her customers’ order before she turned her full attention to the blue eyed vampire. “So it’s just you walking me home tonight?” She asked, glancing at Gwen who seemed to have found herself an admirer. The young man had been coming in for the last few nights and talking to her every chance he had.
“Yes, Angelus had something he had to take care of. I hope you’re not too disappointed.”
“I’m not. Honestly, he still give me the willies at times.” She smiled at the look he gave her for her choice of words. “You know the creeps? Scares me a little?”
He nodded, “I understand.” He smiled broadly, “You aren’t scared of me?” He asked, pulling her closer to him and allowing his eyes to shift to demon gold.
“Only an idiot wouldn’t be,” she whispered, “But I’m not afraid of you. For some insane reason … I trust you.”
“Good,” he told her as he released her. “Looks like you’re about finished here, pet.”
She chuckled,“More like another hour or so,” she told him as she gathered the drink order and turned to the remaining customers.
Angelus stalked through the streets. Another girl had been murdered last night, the news had spread rapidly and it seemed everyone who even looked remotely like the descriptions given of the man last seen with Annie Chapman was a suspect. There had been two slightly different descriptions, and if you squinted, or were scared shitless, almost anyone could match one of them.
As he walked he’d had the oddest sense that he was being watched. It wasn’t the first time. It had been like this all night. Possibly, someone thought he was the killer. More likely it had to do with the fact that he had been seen escorting the witch home almost every night and that he had threatened all the younger vampires in the area with death if they laid a hand on her.
intended to find some answers, which meant going to the part of town where all
manner of demon could be found. He entered a section of
is little chance we’ll find her like these other girls,” William
replied with a nod, not noticing how
“I thought we’d take a walk before getting you home.”
“Is that safe?” she asked softly as she allowed him to lead her forward.
“Yes, pet. After all, Angelus isn’t here to stir up trouble,” he told her with a wink. They walked silently for several more minutes before he sighed.
wrong?” she asked, glancing around. She still found it odd to be here, in
“Nothing,” he assured her with a pat on the hand. They walked a moment more. “It ’s simply … you never speak of your home and family, other than the mention of being attacked by a demon and your mother never kissed your wounds.”
“There is nothing to talk about,” she told him quickly, not certain she should mention that she was from the future and that was why she didn’t talk about that.
“I think there is much to talk about,” he countered, then stilled and sniffed the air.
“Blood. Angelus’ blood,” he told her quickly as he scanned the area. “Stay close and behind me,” he instructed as he began to follow the scent.
The last thing she wanted to do was find a wounded Angelus. She couldn’t think of anything worse. Oh, wait. Yes, she could. Finding the thing that could hurt Angelus, one half of the Scourge of Europe. Where they the Scourge yet? She didn ’t know and that thought quickly left her mind as William led her through the foggy, dark streets. She bit her lip and tried to think of a protection spell that she could do without supplies as they moved down the alley. Just as she remembered something that would work, she bumped into William’s back as he came to a stop.
“Don’t move,” he whispered as he scanned the area and walked toward a large dark lump in the street.
William moved toward the lump as a groan came from it. “Angelus, it will be alright.”
The lump moved
“Could he take some without killing?”
“I don’t know. I doubt it.”
William lifted Angelus on his shoulder. “Stay close,” he told her as he started moving toward her. “Just don’t touch him, and try to stay downwind.”
“Downwind? Why? Oh, never mind,” she murmured, realizing that she’d be a temptation that Angelus didn’t need.
She explored the darkened room, noting a few books lying about, but nothing of any major interest. She then moved to the hallway. Silence, punctuated by an occasional pain-filled groan. She headed toward the sound, her only intention to see if there was anything she could do to help.
As she neared the door to the room the sound came from, it opened and she was snatched into the room. Before she could even identify who had her, there were fangs buried in her throat. “No!” she screamed as she struggled against the arms that held her tightly. It was no use. She was no match for the vampire’s strength. The fangs tore at her throat and she could feel the room beginning to spin around her. “Please, help,” she called weakly. Now that she was too weak to do anything, she remembered a spell that would increase her strength, but it was too late to cast it.
“Let her go!” William’s voice bellowed just before the fangs were ripped from her throat.
certain his unbeating heart had begun to pound again
when he walked in the house and smelled blood accompanied by the sound of
Willow’s soft cry of pain. When he saw her in the arms of a minion, it
was nearly his undoing. Snatching the young vampire away, he plunged a stake
through its heart and grabbed
He glanced toward the bed and saw that Angelus was still unconscious, even though the scent of fresh blood was making him restless. He turned his attention to the woman in his arms. “Why didn’t you stay in the sitting room?” he asked softly as he carried her to his rooms.
He settled her on the bed before hurrying out to find one of the minions. Once he’d given his orders, number one being the next one to lay a hand on the redhead would cost them all their lives, he returned to his rooms. He could count on the others to get Angelus the blood he needed. Right now, he had to take care of his little witch.
“Easy, pet. You need to rest,” a soft voice murmured as a blanket was tucked around her. “I shouldn’t have left the house,” he whispered.
“Spike?” she groaned, trying to open her eyes again.
“No, luv. It’s William.”
“William. Yeah, that’s what I meant,” she mumbled as her eyes cracked, then closed quickly. She was exhausted. Suddenly her hand rose to her throat and she began to tremble.
“You’re safe, pet,” William assured her. “Just rest.”
“I wanted to check on Angelus, but he--”
“Good,” she breathed. “Uhm, where is he? Angelus, I mean.”
“Angelus is resting across the hall.” The bed dipped as he stretched out beside her. “The one who did this,” his finger brushed the wounds on her throat, “is gone. He’ll never hurt you again.”
She couldn’t help the shiver his touch and his soft words caused in her. “Oh. Angelus… he’s alright?”
“Yes,” he hesitated a moment, then continued. “Will you be alright if I go across the hall to check on him? I promise not to be gone long.”
“Sure. I mean … it’s not the first time I’ve gotten bitten by a vampire. I can think of twice right off the top of my head,” she told him with a slight upward twitch of her lips. She kept the fact that the most recent bite was the closest she’d come to actually dying from a vampire to herself.
“Rest. If you need me, call for me. I will hear you.” With those words, his weight shifted off the bed and his steps crossed the floor. She assumed in the direction of the door. A quiet squeak from the door and the sound of the latch catching behind him let her know she was alone in the room. “And I thought I had to worry about the Ripper,” she groaned. This was William the Bloody. Half of the Scourge of Europe, and she was getting lightheaded from his touch?! Okay, so the lightheaded could actually be from the blood loss, but it got worse when he’ d touched her throat, so that meant something, right? Even if it really shouldn’ t.
“Yeah, well haven’t gone by that in a century or so,” he said with a shrug.
“But I wasn’t here. I was… Where is everyone?” she asked, noticing how empty the apartment seemed.
“We’ve been looking for you, pet. You’ve been missing for a couple of weeks. Even Soldier Boy’s been helping. If you call forcing his tongue down Slutty’s throat helping.”
“Be nice,” she muttered.
“Yeah, well it’s bleeding miserable around here without you. So I’ve been searching all over. Even thought about calling Peaches.”
“You missed me?” she asked, surprised.
Spike rose, grabbing his duster off the back of a nearby chair and rummaging through his pockets before pulling out a pack of cigarettes and lighting one.
“ ‘Course, I did, luv. I--”
I’m worried about you,
“No, luv. It’s still William. If you’ll tell me where this Spike is, I’ll go and get him for you,” William replied quietly as he turned away.
“No, I don’t—I mean you look like him. It just, I guess I’m more out of it than I realized. I didn’t mean to upset you,” she whispered, watching as he fussed with the tray that sat on the bedside table.
“Are you thirsty?” he asked as he turned back to her with a cup in his hand. She nodded, not sure she wanted to know what was in the cup. She took it and as she drew it near, realized it was tea. From the smell of it, it was tea with honey, just the way she liked it. She meant to take a dainty sip and ended up guzzling it down. She didn’t realize just how thirsty she was.
“You should eat as well,” he murmured handing her a steaming bowl of soup and taking the now empty teacup.
“Thank you.” She took the bowl and cuddled around its warmth. The delightful smell of chicken soup wafted up to greet her.
Angelus was stalking around the sitting room when William walked in. “How is she?” he asked as the younger vampire dropped into an armchair by the fire place.
“A bit dizzy and a little weak, but she’ll be alright. I’ve threatened to stake the lot of them if anything else happens to her,” William assured his Grandsire.
“Good. I was about to go out again. I need to feed to regain the rest of my strength,” Angelus muttered, then shook his head. “If you’re certain she doesn’t need anything,” he paused, waiting for William’s nod. Once he received it, he continued, “then I’ll be back soon. If you go out--”
“I’m not bloody well leaving her alone here again,” William muttered his interruption.
“That’s my boy,” Angelus chuckled. “Take care of what’s yours.” The younger vampire’s eyes widened for a moment before he slouched back in the chair.
As Angelus reached the door, William’s voice floated to him causing him to stop in his tracks. “What happened? I didn’t think much, if anything, could get the drop on you?”
“Couple of demons. Didn’t hear them coming,” he murmured. “I don’t think I’ve run into them before, and I’m not sure I could even tell you what they looked like. They were fast and strong. If it had just been one, I don’t think it would have been able to do much damage.”
“No idea what stirred them up?”
“I was checking some leads. I’d heard someone was asking about your spitfire,” he replied. “I came out of a bar and they attacked.”
William was at
his side, “Could they be after
Angelus grinned as he looked at him, “If they are … they’ll have to deal with both of us and it’s not likely they’ll catch me unaware again.”
outside his room. He’d put
“No. No frogs. Toads… run,” she murmured, stirring in her sleep.
William chuckled to himself. So the witch was scared of frogs and toads. A smirk stretched across his face as he wondered if the sight of them would send her into his arms. He might have to take her for a walk near the pond soon.
“No Xander. No frogs. Don’t,” she cried softly, twisting in the bedding.
“Shh, luv. No frogs about. Not certain what a Xander is, but I assure you it’s not here either. It is just William. Sleep pet. You’re safe,” he murmured, stroking her hair back from her face.
“Safe,” she breathed, nuzzling her cheek into his hand.
William closed his eyes as her warmth soaked into his chilled hand. He sat there unwilling to move. She seemed content to snuggle against his hand. He watched her, losing himself in the rise and fall of her chest with each breath, the soft beating of her heart and the fluttering of her eyes beneath their lids.
know how long he’d sat there before
“William? Is something wrong?” she asked softly, her voice still heavy with sleep.
“No, pet. Just making sure you weren’t too cold,” he replied, pulling his hand back as he rose and tucked the covers around her. He could feel Angelus returning and entering his rooms across the hall.
“I’m going to find a place to sleep. If you need me, call out. If I don’t hear you, Angelus should. He’s just across the hall.”
you mean find a place?”
“I gave you my bed, luv. Figured you’d be safest there.” He smiled; it was obvious the girl wasn’t totally awake. Her eyes were still clouded with sleep and not really focused on him.
She seemed to look at the bed then began to climb out of it.
“What are you doing?” he asked, hurrying back to her.
“I can’t take your bed.”
“You aren’t taking it. I’m giving it. Now, back to bed with you. You aren’t ready to be up and about.”
“Don’t go,” she sighed as she laid back. “I—I mean—please?”
He stared at the chair he’d brought to her bedside earlier and sighed. He had slept in worst places. “Alright, pet. I’ll stay,” he agreed as he locked the door and settled into the chair.
He watched as
“William,” a sleepy voice called, “lots of room.”
He turned his eyes to the form on the bed. She was still sound asleep. He leaned forward and brushed his hand over her hair, “Hush, kitten. Sleep.”
He was surprised when her hand captured his and tugged him toward the bed and whispered, “Come to bed.”
He thought about it for less than a moment, before he slid into bed behind her. He couldn’t contain his smile when she snuggled back against him. He just hoped he woke up before she did or she might stake him for being in her bed.
Suddenly, the events of last night came back with startling clarity. The vampire pulling her against him and sinking his fangs into her throat, hurting more than ever before. Now she was being pulled back against him, again. She sat up screaming in terror as she struggled to get away.
William woke to
“Pet, it’s William. You’re safe, luv,” he called softly, afraid to move toward her.
resounding crack, the door to the bedroom was forced open and a very angry
Angelus stood in the doorway, his eyes golden as they roamed the area. “
“I’m not sure,” William replied. “Woke up to her screams. Was trying not to make it worse by grabbing her and scaring her more,” he added, glaring at the shattered door.
and then moved into the room towards the panicking redhead. “Spitfire.
at his grandsire for a moment before he turned his attention back to
“William?” her wavering voice called as she slid out from behind the chair.
“Yes, luv. It’s me,” he assured her as he stepped around Angelus and held his hand out to the girl, who bypassed his hand and flung herself into his arms. He glanced down at her and hugged her to him. “What frightened you so?” he asked softly as he held her.
“Nightmare,” her reply was muffled against his chest, “thought that other vamp was getting me again.”
Angelus growled quietly enough that even William barely heard him, before turning and leaving. “Call if you need anything,” he ground out over his shoulder.
William hugged her again as he led her to the chair by the fireplace and settled her into it as he began to build a fire. “I told you that you were safe,” he murmured before sighing as he tossed a log in and glanced at her. “You were frightened of me.”
William moved to kneel at her feet. “What hurt?” he asked, concerned that perhaps in his sleep he had done something to harm her.
“The bite. It’s never hurt so much before,” she whispered, looking into his eyes. William began to question her about the previous times she’d been bitten. He wanted to rip that Harmony person to shreds. She mentioned another attack, leaving out a name, but she did say ‘she bit me.’ “So, luv, the vampires that bit you were all females?” he asked.
She thought for a minute, “Yes, at least as far as I can remember.”
“Females tend to have thinner fangs. That’s not saying it doesn’t hurt or that a male vampire will always hurt, but if this was worse… that could be the reason,” he explained, then smiled at her look of surprise.
“No one ever mentioned that before.”
“So you go talking about vampires a lot, luv? People sit around and discuss their physical attributes where you come from?” he teased.
William went still as he stared at her. “Where have you found information about vampires to read?” he asked quietly as his blue eyes drilled into her own.
She stilled, wondering what had possessed her to open her mouth about that and to almost say watcher diaries… that was possibly the stupidest she had ever done.
“I—please, William. It doesn’t matter. They aren’t where anyone else can get to them,” she assured him. The only ones that could get to them were the ones that needed to.
“Luv, do you have any idea how dangerous it is to have those books?” he asked as he rose and began pacing. “I’d heard the watchers had books on most of the more well know vampires, Angelus for example, but I didn’t know there were oth--” He stopped mid-sentence and turned to face her. “You’ve seen the Watcher’s Diaries,” he breathed, glancing toward the door. He seemed to be listening for something.
“What is it?” she whispered.
“Cor, luv, I don’t know what
to do,” he admitted. “I should be torturing you until you tell me
where the diaries are and how in the hell you got your hands on them,” he
shook his head and began to pace again, unaware of
“I can’t,” he murmured as he passed her. “Don’t want to… won’t do it,” he growled, then turned to her again. “Do not mention this to anyone. I mean no one.”
“I-I won’t,” she stuttered. “I didn’t mean to tell you. I promise no one here can get them.”
“Don’t mention them again,” he warned, then sighed. “How did you get your hands on the watcher diaries?” he asked again then returned to tending the fire.
“I can’t tell you,” she whispered, watching as he stilled and slowly turned toward her.
“You realize any other vampire--”
“Would have killed me a few minutes after they met me.”
“Don’t Willow me… I’m willing to lay money on the fact that that’s just what you and Angelus planned to start with but something changed your minds… and I am thankful for that but… don’t even try to make me think I wasn’t dinner when you first saw me.”
“I wouldn’t lie to you, pet,” he whispered.
“I’m probably stupid for believing you … but I do,” she admitted as she leaned back in the chair and pulled her feet up underneath her.
“You’re not stupid,” he informed her. “And you’re probably right, luv, but I’ve given my word… and so has Angelus… you won’t be harmed again if we can do anything to stop it.”
“Someone is in the hall,” he breathed and when she nodded, he removed his hand as started toward the door.
“Did you two not learn your lesson earlier?” Angelus asked as he flung one Kracken demon across the alley as its twin tackled him. He struggled against the weight of the bile green creature. He was fairly certain this was the same pair he’d knocked out less than an hour ago, of course with Kracken’s it was hard to tell. They all looked pretty much the same, the only difference was in the patterns of scales on their heads. That usually meant only another Kracken could tell them apart. Of course, there are rarely more than six in a town at a time. They don’t get along with their own very well, except their twins, of course.
As the second one joined the first in pinning Angelus down, he decided on something, same pair or not they were going to die. All he had been doing was talking in one of the few local demon bars. It wasn’t even like he had heard anything new. When he walked out, he was jumped. This time he was ready and he heard them before they even reached him.
Kicking the pair off, he grabbed a piece of a broken wooden crate as he pulled a small dagger out of his great coat. When the foolish Krackens attacked again, they fell, one after the other as Angelus stabbed his weapon into their oddly placed hearts. He pulled his dagger from the demon’s side and wiped it off on the cleanest part of its clothes before putting it back into his pocket and heading toward the next stop.
“Angelus! Where have you been?”
Angelus cringed as Demetri, a young Russian vampire that had been pestering him for the last few decades, bellowed over the rowdy crowd of demons. “I’ve been around,” he growled as he moved toward the bar.
“Have you heard?” the black haired vampire asked as he settled onto the barstool next to him.
“Those murders… one of us did them and--” he leaned in with a conspiratorial tone, “I heard there is a witch about that he’s after.”
“Oh and where have you been hearing this?” Angelus asked, his Irish brogue thickening slightly. He smiled as the young vampire began to tell all he knew.
I can't wear that,"
"Why the bloody hell not?" William asked, confusion written on his face. "It's your size. I made sure," he grumbled under his breath. Couldn't the woman accept a gift without all the protests?
"It's too nice."
"You're not serious?" William gasped. "Too-bloody hell woman! It's a sodden dress! Now put it on so I can take you to dinner!" He bellowed as he turned on his heel and stormed out the door.
Angelus chuckled. "Problems, boy?"
"Sod off!" He muttered as he stormed down the hall.
After a few minutes of attempting it by herself, she broke down and went to call for help. She cracked the door. "Anyone there?"
"Did you need something, little one?" Angelus called.
"Uhm, well... yeah. I mean yes," she murmured. "William wants me to go out with him and ... I kinda.. well.. Ineedhelpgettingintothedressandwilliamsmad atmecauseIsaiditwastoonice."
Angelus chuckled, "I'd be more than willing to lend a hand... although I am much better at taking dresses off than putting them on."
She was beet red... she knew it. She could feel it. "Well... uhm.. I-"
Angelus sent me to attend you," the young woman murmured as she curtsied
before her. "My name is
She sighed, this was going to be interesting. "Just
"But Master Angelus said to treat you like you were a Master."
"Oh please don't call me that," she laughed as they closed the door and made their way to the bed where the dress lay. "I'm afraid I--"
There was a
knock at the door and before
"Mistress Willow?" William murmured.
William nodded, "Good. Go."
William smiled warmly at her. "No, luv, it's not." She lowered her head in shocked surprise, uncertain why it hurt when he said that. After all, it wasn't like she was a beauty like Buffy or Cordelia nor had ever given her the time of day before. "It's not just okay. You look bloody beautiful."
"Thank you," she murmured turning away as tears began to gather in her eyes.
"Bloody hell, you cry because I like how you look?"
"Yes. No. I-- I don't know," she sighed.
"We should be going," he murmured. "They will only hold the table for so long."
"Where are we going?"
"You'll see when we get there."
"I'm a vampire, luv," he reminded her proudly.
Angelus found himself sitting there listening to Demitri for the second night in a row. The younger vampire had wanted to join the Scourge of Europe for several years now but Darla despised him and Drusilla muttered about him being sticky and rotten. He fought to keep from growling as the now drunken vampire tried to impress him with his tales.
"And last night... I found him. Said he'd been having a right good time," the Russian vamp laughed doing an awful imitation of a British accent. "Said he's smelled her a few weeks ago. Saw the flash of her power, or something, and was going to get her if he had to rip through every bangtail in Whitechapel."
Angelus froze, but quickly covered it. "Really? And who would this be?" Demitri's face scrunched up as he tried to pull the information out of his drunken brain. "A vampire."
It took all his control not to bash the young fool's head in. "Did you know him, Dimitri?"
The black haired vampire shook his head. "No, but he was older than me." He looked at Angelus hard for a moment. "Maybe older than you."
Angelus nodded and paid for another round for the drunken vampire before rising and heading for the door.
"If we follow it... we find her," a young man whispered to his companion.
"True... if we don't get killed by it! You saw what it did to those two demons we sent to follow it."
The first figure
shook his head, "They didn't follow... they attacked. Now we have to have
that witch for this to work. You know how hard it is to find a real one. This
girl is the only one in
"So you say... if she is a witch, why is she working in Whitechapel?" the younger of the two muttered.
"Well, there is no doubt you're a Giles," the first man muttered. "Just glad I've got more brains than you."
"Travers," the young Giles growled. "I'll show you just who has the brains, you wanker." With that, he set off to follow the vampire.
Travers chuckled, maybe tonight they would have the last ingredient, and they could do what he needed to get what he deserved.
"Actually, pet," he replied, pulling her to his side, "There isn't anything fit for you to eat in that place, trust me."
She was suddenly plagued by visions of men and women hanging from chains in the kitchen. "Remind me to not go to the kitchen," she whispered, shuddering.
"Luv, it's not that bad," he assured her as he led her up a series of steps. "I just meant, we've been in that house a while. If there is any food left... it is probably far past the stage you could eat it. Even if Charles does eat like a pig... I don't think anything edible is left in there."
William nodded, "The lady is hungry, so ... don't dawdle."
The man paled, and then scurried away.
"I hear your stomach growling," he whispered back as he escorted her to a table in the middle of the room and helped her into her seat.
She flushed with embarrassment, "I didn't- I mean -- "
"It's fine, luv."
"I guess you're wondering why we're the only ones here?" He smiled when she only nodded. "Well, the owner ... owes his life to Angelus and I. He's a demon... had a bit of trouble with a demon hunter. We ... took care of it for him."
"But this is the not demony part of town."
"Actually, pet, there are several demons in this part of town, they just look human."
"Oh... interesting," she murmured.
there weren't that many vampires in
He smiled at the thought of the blushing young redhead covered in blood from her kill. Of course, if what Demetri said was true and this other vampire, this Ripper, wanted her dead, he might never get to see that vision in flesh and blood.
As he made his way through the darkened streets, he thought he heard something. A few minutes later, he was certain that the sounds were still following him. Two mortals. Two mortals playing detective from the sounds of it. "Stupid fools," he muttered to himself as he turned down an alley that led to a place that meant death to an unclaimed mortal... if they were lucky.
"I say, governor, my friend and I seem to be a bit lost."
Winston Giles stared at Peter Travers like he'd just grown a second head. First off, they were not friends and secondly... calling out to the demon was suicide.
The dark demon stopped and turned to stare in surprise at the two. "Is that so, gentlemen?" It asked with a smirk.
"Yes, we were looking for the Ten Bells... it seems I've gotten a bit turned around... right, Win?" Peter replied nudging Winston.
"Er, yes... quite right. We thought we'd come -"
"See where the murders happened," Peter finished.
Winston's heart stopped. He was certain it had when the beast's eyes flashed yellow.
"And why would two fine young men be doin' a thing like that?" The dark vampire asked, his Irish brogue thickening as he eyed the pair warily.
"Well... you see we want to be detectives, and thought that perhaps if we could solve this ... We'd be famous," Peter lied with a pleased smile on his face.
Winston stared at the man that stood beside him. Didn't he realize the vampire would know he was lying? What shocked him was when the dark haired demon nodded, seemingly accepting the lie. "Y-yes... I do believe that my friend," he nearly choked on the word, unable to believe there would be a day when a Giles would willingly call a Travers a friend, "is a bit more anxious for this than I. I'd like to see the monster that did the crimes brought to justice but ... I find I don't have the--"
"Gall?" the vampire interrupted with a smile.
"I was going to say the nerves, actually," Winston corrected. "Perhaps, we should go home to our families and try this again in the light of day." Peter glared at the other man, "Perhaps, though I don't believe we'll find it in the daylight," he muttered as he tipped his hat to the vampire then turned and stormed away.
"Forgive him ... he's disappointed," Winston apologized, then turned to follow.
"You should be more careful who you follow... and where," the vampire warned, before turning and disappearing into the shadows.
"Believe me ... I know," Winston muttered as he hurried after Peter. The man was keeping something from him... and it was time he knew what.
think I've eaten that much really good food in ... ever,"
"I'll have to turn a cook for you then." He couldn't be more pleased with how the evening had gone. He couldn't have been... until then. As soon as he'd said the words, he realized he'd said the wrong thing. She was mortal, they tended to frown all sorts of things like that.
"No! Don't!" She exclaimed. "I don't need to eat. Not like that anyway," she assured him.
"I-Of course," William agreed. "Maybe we can have the chef from the restaurant send over meals for you a few times a week."
"That would be-Wait. I can't stay here. I have to go home."
you wish," William snarled, before turning and storming out. He didn't
want her to leave. His demon was pushing at him to make the mortal see that she
was his. He growled at the idea that she probably had a husband or at least a
number of suitors waiting for her in
He needed to
kill something ... soon. "
Within moments, the vampiress was before him, "Yes, Master William?"
"Help Willow change, then make sure nothing happens to her. If it does ... you haven't seen anything as horrible as what I'll do to you."
sir," she murmured before turning and rushing down the hall, snarling
orders to the other minions. He'd known she was a smart one and he knew
Winston Giles walked into the library and saw Peter bent over a battered old book, scribbling notes in a small journal. When he looked up and saw Giles heading towards him, he hastily closed the journal and put it away. "Do you mind telling me just what you want with that witch?"
Peter glared and glanced around. "Would you be quiet! We don't want anyone else to know about this."
Winston frowned as he glanced around the library. It was run by the Council and used to train the Watchers. The Giles family had joined the Council only a few generations ago. His grandfather had been the first to join, but Peter's family had been part of the Council forever, it seemed, and it was almost certain that one day they would be leading it. So why wouldn't he want the Council to know? "I'd like to know just what it is that we're doing."
Peter smiled, and it wasn't a friendly one. "You don't want them to know about your little secret ... do you?" When Winston shook his head, Peter continued, "Then I would not ask questions." With that, he shut the book he'd been reading and rose to his feet. "I think we should head back to the Ten Bells, Maybe someone there has heard something that would prove useful to us."
Winston groaned, he wished he hadn't been so stupid as to let Travers find out his secret. No one could ever know; if they found out he was through. Even his family wouldn't stand by him.
For the second night in a row, William slammed into yet another demon bar. His clothes were ripped and covered with a variety of blood types from numerous demons, in nearly every shade, from a lovely deep purple color to a rather sickening shade of green. His eyes settled on Angelus playing poker with a group of demons and confidently strode toward him.
"Childe, what's wrong?" Angelus asked, his eyes never leaving his cards.
"There's nothing wrong."
"Then why is this the second night I've seen you like this?" he asked, glancing up at him.
"None of your bloody business," William snapped, turning on his heel and heading for the door.
William froze. He didn't like it but the tone his sire used meant if he didn't, he'd be beaten and bloody. And this time it wouldn't be fun.
"Sire," he muttered. He heard Angelus telling the others he was done for the evening and then walked up behind him.
"Let's go, boy," he growled walking past the younger vampire and out into the night.
vampire ground his teeth as he followed his sire. " Sire,"
he murmured, "I was looking for information." It was not a lie. Not
really. He had hoped to find something out about the murders that were
occurring, and the rumors that something was searching for a witch. Angelus had
"All right, my boy. Tell me what is wrong."
as he began to tell his sire the events of his dinner with
"William-- Haven't you noticed he hasn't said more than three words at a time to me?" It had been running through her head ever since he'd stormed out last night. What exactly had she done to upset him?
"You don't understand! This isn't good." She couldn't come out and explain that she wasn't going to be able to stay.
"Master William will ... I'm not certain what he will do. Most vampires would simply remove any other potential suitors. Of course, most vampires would have turned you by now," the young vampiress murmured.
The taller of
the two grinned, his fangs showing as he did, "I could-" his words
were cut off as the smaller vampire grabbed his throat and
dead before you laid a hand on her,"
have known you were too young for this," the smaller minion growled, then
"I told him
to keep anyone less than a year away from you," Virginia turned back to
Willow, her vampiric features slipping away revealing
the young beautiful girl Willow had begun to think of as her friend. "The
fool will be dust when I tell the Masters of this," she muttered as she
"But Giles!" Buffy whined, "Wills has been missing for two days." The blonde slayer threw herself onto the couch as Rupert Giles glared at her over the book he was reading.
"I'm quite aware of that, Buffy, but I have yet to find any clues to where she has gone.
"Don't say it, Xander," Buffy snapped. "She isn't dead."
"No, I just mean... well... maybe she's invisible, you know like that girl in high school."
"Maybe she found a nice handsome man and is off having lots and lots of orgasms," Anya added with a smile. "I'd certainly like to be having a few right now myself."
"Anya, not in front of other people," Xander groaned, then began to try to explain the kind of topics that were for private conversations.
Giles cleared his throat and when he had everyone's attention began to speak. "Xander, Anya, on your way home, stop by and have Spike come here as soon as possible. Perhaps he can search and talk to some of the demons who might know what is going on. Buffy, you will patrol as usual. Xander, Anya ... you can talk to her friends. See if-"
"I've already talked to her friends and teachers," Buffy reminded the watcher. "No one has seen her. And Spike? That's a waste of time. He only helps when we pay him and he hates it. I -"
"Spike will be more likely to have demons talk to him," Giles reminded the slayer, "Now as I was saying... Anya and Xander, talk to Willow's friends and classmates, find out exactly when she was seen last and if anything unusual has happened."
A figure outside the window chuckled to itself and scurried off into the coming night. Its plan was slowly coming together. The little witch was ... well somewhere. It didn't know where it had actually sent her, but it didn't matter. She was gone, and probably much happier there than here on the Hellmouth. Humans didn't like Hellmouths, but its kind thrived on them and soon its brothers and sister would begin to gather.
The figure paused and wondered if the blonde vampire would be any trouble, then it shook its scaly head and continued toward the burned out remains of the old high school library.
"Stupid wankers," Spike muttered as he headed for Willie's. "Bloody Slayer and her soddin' scoobies don't bother to let me know the witch is missing." He growled when he realized he'd been talking to himself, and that he actually cared that one of the slayer's little friends was missing.
He settled into a seat at the bar and waited for Willie to notice him. He frowned as he got another of those annoying almost-memories. He still couldn't place it. There was a flash of green and the urge to ripe something's throat out. He clenched his jaw as the chip shot him a warning pulse.
"S-spike?" Willie stuttered as he turned to face the blonde vampire.
"Want information," he muttered as he lit a cigarette and glared at the weasel-y looking little man.
"'Bout what?" Willie asked as he glanced around.
"Someone touched the redhead. She's missing and I want to know who has her," he growled.
A pale lavender demon nearby started laughing. "Ooo! What are you gonna do if he doesn't tell? Yell at him? Kiss him?"
Spike growled and nodded to a nearby table of silvery demons, they rose and headed toward the bar. He turned back to his purple pest. "Actually-," he rose and stalked toward it. "I don't feature telling you," he growled before he used his speed and strength to snap its neck.
He turned back to Willie. "Now these nice Larkin's have agreed to begin to devour you... starting with your toes and other ... dangling bits," he laughed when Willie paled, "if you don't tell me what I want to know."
"Don't know... heard the witch was missing but no one has claimed anything! I swear! Come on, Spike! Would I be stupid enough to lie to you?!"
"Possibly," Spike muttered as he took a drag off his almost-forgotten cigarette. "But not with four hungry Larkins eyeing you as dinner," he laughed, as he headed for the door. "I don't have to tell you I want to know the instant someone mentions the witch... do I?"
"NO! Of course not." Willie called.
As Spike neared the door, he hear a frantic Willie. "Spike! The Larkins!"
"I know you have a jar of human eyeballs around for those damn Marsicans! Give 'em to the Larkins," he called as just before the door slammed shut. "That was a bloody waste of time," he snarled as he headed off to see what other demons he could beat some information out of.
He frowned, wishing he could put his finger on what seemed off in his memory. He knew it started the other day when Red and Slutty had mentioned Jack the Ripper. He shrugged and headed off to find ... something to kill.
Winston Giles had finally found the time to sneak into the library without Peter Travers hanging over his shoulder. After twenty minutes of searching, he found the book he'd seen Travers with on several occasions. He stared at a particularly disturbing phrase in shock. Did Travers think he'd actually help him with something as disgusting as this? He stared at the last ingredient for the power and immortality spell, the heart of a witch who is touched by darkness but fights for the light. He had done a horrible thing when he was younger... but he wouldn't be part of this. With that he rose and hurried out of the library. He had to figure out what to do.
Angelus stood outside a rundown warehouse near the docks, with William at his side. "Boy, are you going to fidget all night or are you going in there with me?"
Angelus had told him he'd found the vampire that wanted to hurt
The dark vampire gripped the younger by the throat, "If you want to keep her... yes. That is exactly what I expect."
The blonde stilled and lifted his eyes to his elder's. "Do I have to talk to it?"
Angelus laughed and clasped his shoulder. "Only if it asks you something."
William grumbled as he fell into step behind his grandsire and entered the seemingly abandoned warehouse that they had discovered to be the lair of Jack the Ripper.
"Mistress? Are you alright?"
"Do you think you could run out and get me ..." she wracked her mind trying to think of something, "Dinner! I mean, I'm a bit hungry and there's nothing left in the house."
"I'll send someone-"
"NO! No, please? I want you to do it. I think I'd just feel better if you went."
stay right here... not moving... in this room. Promise."
She gave her best 'Trust-me-I'm-the-sweet-innocent-one-that-would-never-lie'
look as she raised her hand and gave her the scouts honor sign. Were the girls
scouts even around yet? She had a feeling they weren't, especially when she
noticed the confused look in
"Okay... I might move, but only in here. Please?"
incredibly not fair,"
William stood behind Angelus, fidgeting, as they waited for * it* to arrive.
William,” Angelus growled softly. The blonde vampire rolled his eyes and
he stilled himself. Maybe, after tonight, he’d be able to take
A tall thin man walked into the room and dropped a long dark cloak on a nearby chair. “I believe my valet said you were Angelus,” the vampire began as his gaze swept over the duo. William bristled when this other demon seemed to write him off as insignificant. He was kept in place by a glare from Angelus.
“Yes. I, however, don’t know what I should call you,” Angelus replied with a slight nod of his head.
The other vampire chuckled to himself, “You may call me what the press does… Jack.”
“So it was you that sent that letter to the press?” Angelus asked.
“Yes, well… I had it done. May I ask how you heard of the letter? It has yet to be printed,” Jack replied with a sly grin that showed his fangs.
William was surprised that this vampire was showing fangs without the wrinkles that normally came with them. He wondered if the ability to show only fangs came with age. He’d ask Angelus about that later.
“I have my ways. “ Angelus chuckled, “It’s very clever. It’s obvious that you’re a more educated man than that letter has led them to believe. I suspect they’ll never be able to catch you. After all, they’re simply stupid mortals.”
Jack laughed, “Yes, these bobbies and detectives seem to be among the most idiotic.” He fingered the cloak he’d laid on the chair and smiled slightly. “Now if I can just find …” He shook himself and turned his attention to Angelus. “Why, exactly, are you here?”
The Irish vampire shrugged, “I’d heard there was another master vampire in town. I only wanted to assure you that my family and I are not looking to settle here. We are only visiting.”
Jack nodded, “Yes. I had heard that as well. The Order of Aurelius is well known. You may leave now.”
William growled and Angelus gripped his arm, “Of course. Perhaps we shall see each other again?”
“Perhaps,” Jack replied as he headed toward a door that lead deeper into the building. “Oh,” he paused and glanced back at the pair, “and … say hello to your little witch for me.” With that, he slipped out the door and left them alone.
William nearly launched across the room but was halted by Angelus’ grip on his arm. “We are leaving,” he snarled, dragging the younger vampire from the room and out of the building.
“He threatened her,” William growled as he was drug away from the warehouse.
“I’m not sure if he is certain she’s the one he’s looking for,” Angelus told him as they headed out in search of a meal.
“I know. I simply have a strange feeling that he doesn’t quite know what he’s looking for.”
she’s safe at home,” William replied, knowing
“That she will, my boy. Now, let’s find a quick bite and go have a talk with our little witch.” He chuckled as William bristled. “What’s yours is mine you know.”
Hoping to ward
off the chill that soaked into her bones,
She relaxed a little when the Bells came into view. She had almost reached the relative safety of the bar when she heard a woman cry out in fear and pain. Before realizing what she was doing, she was rushing toward the sound, gathering her magical energies.
She concentrated on a spell of protection for herself and the woman, as she scanned her mind for a defense spell. Unfortunately, she couldn’t think of one single thing that could help her aid whoever was hurt.
At her tiny sound, the vampire raised glittering eyes. “My witch,” he growled as he flung Gwen against the wall. Her head made a sickening sound as it slammed into the stone wall.
“It’s dead,” the vampire snarled as he approached. “That weak little mortal was a pawn, which I no longer need.”
“Are you in trouble?” a voice filled with false concern asked.
“No, I’m not,” she murmured, then added a quick apology and tried to skirt around the man.
Her eyes landed on the bed and saw the note. She picked it up and turned toward the door. That’s when she felt it. The masters had returned. “Be safe,” she murmured and headed out of the room to face her masters for what would, in all likelihood, be the last time.
don’t trust him. We can’t let
“I know,” Angelus agreed, as he tossed his coat over a table and sank down into a large leather chair near the fireplace. “I can’t quite put my finger on it, but there is something not right with him.”
“You bloody well don’t have to tell me,” the blonde muttered.
his mouth to say something, then paused. “
William turned and frowned at the look on the woman’s face. “What’s wrong?” he asked, his demon coming to the fore. He reached out with his senses and heard, minions chattering throughout the house, the floor boards creaking, the wood in the fire snapping, but no heartbeat. “Where is she?” he snarled as he stormed toward the blonde female.
“Master, I—I don’t know,” she murmured, lowering her head as she held out the envelope. “She left this.”
Angelus was there, a low growl rumbling through him. “What happened?”
“She asked me to fetch her dinner and I did,” she explained, nervously. “I went back to bring her down and she—the window was open and that note was left lying on the bed.”
William quickly opened the letter and read it to himself.
I’m sorry. I know you won’t understand, but I have to go home. I can’t stay here. I have to find a way home. If I could, I would stay. Honestly, I’ve enjoyed the time I’ve spent with you more than I can say. Except for the whole people dying. And while you’re a vampire so that’s part of the big fun for you, I’m mortal so… not so much.
God, I even babble in letters. I don’t have time to rewrite this, so … forgive me.
I will miss you
PS. Don’t hurt
He finished reading the letter and growled. “You get to live.”
and shook his head. “
“She’s not getting away. She can’t leave,” William snarled, he whirled toward his grandsire and added softly, “She could be killed.”
about to gather some of the others and go out in search of her,”
“Then do it,” Angelus told her. “We’re heading out now.”
William was already gathering weapons. “Are you about bloody ready?”
a proud smile at the young vampire’s impatience. “Careful
boy,” he warned, “We’ll leave when
The female vampire headed for the door, “I’ll be ready in a moment.”
Winston Giles stared at Peter Travers in shock. He stood there, with a redheaded woman unconscious in his arms. “Don’t bloody well stand there all night, move so I can come in!”
Winston moved out of the way then checked to make sure no one had seen Travers enter with the woman. How he’d managed to capture the witch was beyond him. “What have you done?”
“What we’ve been planning the whole time. She’s a witch. She’s evil. It’s our job to make sure evil doesn’t take over,” Travers reminded the young Giles.
“Now that you have her, what are you going to do?” he asked. He knew the answer. He’d seen the book. He just wasn’t sure how to stop him.
“Kill her, of course.”
Spike walked into the Watcher’s apartment. “Rupert?”
Giles stepped out of the kitchen, a surprised look on his face. “Anything?”
Spike sighed and shook his head. “Nothing. Not a bleeding word. They’re either scared, or they truly don’t know anything.” He tossed his duster over a chair and dropped to the couch. He’d been growing more concerned as he’d searched for information. It was almost unheard of for something to affect the Slayer and her friends and no one know anything.
“The others haven’t learned anything. The last time she was seen was when we dropped her off at the dorms.”
Spike drew himself up. “I’ll go look around. Slayer might have missed something.”
Giles nodded and picked up an old watchers diary. “I hope we find her soon.”
here,” Spike muttered and started toward the door, pausing as he passed
Giles and glanced at the book. Something caught his eye, the words,
‘Jack the Ripper,
Giles nodded. “I thought she might enjoy this. I’d forgotten about it,” he admitted. “I hope she will be able to enjoy it,” he added softly as he flipped open the book and leafed through a few pages.
Spike stared at the book. From where he stood it was upside down, but he did see his name and Angelus. He frowned and took the book. There was the mention of a witch that had been with them. He frowned, Dru wasn’t a witch, she was a seer. “Who wrote this?” he asked, thumbing through the pages, as a half memory of a mortal woman floated into his brain.
“An ancestor of mine, Winston Giles,” he replied, holding his hand out for the book. He closed it and placed it on the table.
Spike growled as another memory lurked just out of his reach. His fingers gouged at his temple and he snarled softly. “Bleeding chip, stirring up –“
“Is the chip firing?” Giles asked, frowning.
“No,” he snapped, not wanting Giles or any of the Scooby gang knowing something was up. Well, that wasn’t true. Red knew, but he could trust her not to throw it in his face. “I’m going to search for bit longer, then crash.” With that, he turned and left the Watcher standing in his living room.
“I wouldn’t count on it,” the man from the street informed her. He smiled at her. “You’re wondering who I am. My name is Peter Travers.”
“Why doesn’t that surprise me,” she muttered.
“What’s that?” Travers asked, without moving from his place by the door.
“Yes, well. I want you to relax. You’re an essential part in my plan.”
Travers smirked, sending shivers down her spine. “Now that would be telling. Don’t worry, little witch. It’ll all be over soon.” With those ominous words, he turned and slipped out of the room.
She heard locks clinking into place and shuddered. “I should have stayed with William and Angelus.”
October 5, 1888
"You're wearing a hole in the floor, lad," Angelus' voice boomed
from his seat at the desk. The papers were still filled with the news of the
Ripper's double murder. "I'm certain there was at least one more that the
papers don't know about. The night
found murdered; not like the others but still," he informed the younger
vampire who was currently pacing in front of the door waiting for the sun to
"I don't bloody care about any other mortals," William snapped.
smiled softly as he rose. "I know, me boy. The sun is
setting and we have a witch to find.
morning. I think we should follow it."
blonde vampire simply glared at him in a way that seemed to be typical
of those his age. "The wanker hasn't made any kills since the day after
"Yes, but others where killed." He paused and eyed the blonde. "Thevery next night. I don't believe that the Ripper has her."
nodded his agreement as he began pulling on his coat. "He's
been seen since then as well. He's still searching."
believe his double event the other week was a result of his
frustration at not finding the witch he sought." At least that's what
Angelus hoped. The thought that he'd gotten the redheaded witch, killed her
and found she wasn't what he needed didn't sit well with the Irishman. He
rose and snatched on his great coat. They had to find her; he couldn't keep
William from tearing the town apart much longer. And if he went up against
Jack in his current state of mind... he would lose.
got a couple of leads I need to follow up," William mumbled
without looking back at his sire.
there, and she hated to admit that she was beginning to lose hope that
William and Angelus would find her. Travers came every day, sometimes
several times; on each visit he would chant a few words and shove some god
awful tasting liquid with even worse tasting herbs down her throat.
Sometimes he would mumble about it taking so long to get the ingredients he
or tonight or whatever time of day it was, it was different. This
time he was mad.
"Stupid fools!" he snapped as he walked over to the bed. He glared down at
her and something in his eyes scared her more than Angelus had back in the
future. She couldn't help but giggle at the thought of the silly movie. It
had been the wrong thing to do. "Oh you think it's funny?" He roared as he
drew back and punched her in the gut.
couldn't help but scream, which only served to enrage him more. He was a
flurry of fists; she bit back the urge to scream more. It would only make
are you doing?!" a shocked male voice yelled from the doorway, just
Winston Giles couldn't believe what he was seeing. For the first time since
Peter Travers had brought the young witch here, he'd forgotten to lock the
door. When the sounds of her pain-filled scream were heard, Winston found he
couldn't stand by any longer. He'd rushed to the door and tried to open it,
and was surprised when it did. Now he was staring at Peter maliciously
beating the young woman. "What are you doing?!"
"What are you doing in here?" Travers snarled as he turned toward the door.
"I heard ... her."
out. She'll be dead soon enough. I have to wait... just a littlelonger.
The last of the rare ingredients are on their way. Another week at
the most and it'll be ready."
isn't right!" Winston exclaimed, looking at the now unconscious woman.
Blood was spilling from her swollen and busted lips. A nasty cut on her
temple was bleeding profusely. She would barely be recognizable by morning.
The tone of his voice bordered on hysterical, "What isn't right
... is that something like her is alive with all that power."
quickly realized that Peter was far past the point of reasoning. He
clenched his fists. "Of course. It's just... she looks so harmless. I know
it's an act," he added quickly, seeing the look of anger that was now being
directed at him. "I'm going to pick up the Calamus Root and Witches Grass.
It should have arrived today."
seemed to calm slightly, then turned back to the girl. "Yes. Yes. We
do need those. Nearly out," he murmured nodding to himself.
closed his eyes as he pulled the door shut behind him.
He had to find help. Travers had lost his mind. You killed evil creatures,
not beat them and hold them prisoner.
William was nearly blind with rage and three unfortunate Camputa demons now lay in a orange bloody mess at his feet when Angelus walked up and shook his head, “Feeling better, Boy?”
“Not even six more of the buggers would have made me feel better,” William snapped, as he wiped his hands off as best he could. They’d had a meeting with some little purple git and he’d given them nothing, then these demons had smarted off and he had lost it. “Wanna find my witch.”
“I want to find her as well,” Angelus assured him. “Now, why don’t we go back to where we know she was last seen.”
“Where that friend of hers was killed? We’ve been there already and the bobbies have trampled all over the area. Won’t be able to find a thing.”
“Maybe we’ll get lucky,” Angelus told him as he clasped his shoulder and drug the younger vampire out of the alley and in the direction of Gwen’s murder.
Winston Giles hurried through the darkened streets, he couldn’t help but see that young woman’s face, bruised and bleeding. Who knew what Travers was doing to her as he hurried through the streets trying to think of who could help him. He wasn’t paying attention to his surroundings, not something one could usually accuse a watcher of. He stumbled into the large solid form of a man. “Excuse me,” he mumbled and started to step around the man.
“Angelus,” a voice to his left snarled as a hand closed on his throat.
Giles’ eyes widened as he looked up into the face of Angelus, he knew then the voice had been none other than William the Bloody. “Bloody hell,” he sighed.
“I smell it too,” Angelus growled, prying Williams hand from the watchers throat. “You have our witch.”
“Your witch– The girl? She’s... Travers you idiot,” Winston growled, then pleaded with Angelus. “You have to help me–“
“Help you?! Help you?!” William snarled, “You take her away from me and then you want my help?”
“I didn’t take her! It was Travers, he’s planning to kill her! I want her safe.”
Angelus pushed William back and held him in place with a look. “What do you mean you want her safe?”
“No one deserves to be beaten,” he heard William’s growls growing louder as he spoke, “He’s kept her locked in a room. I didn’t know what he was doing until... just a short while ago.” He went on to explain what he’d just recently witnessed. He’d nearly wet himself when Angelus and William reacted to the news of the witch’s condition. “I don’t think witches are inherently evil. I don’t like Travers and I don’t want her at his mercy any longer than I have to.”
first thought was to torture the git until he told
“Where is she?” Angelus asked, quietly. To anyone that didn’t know him, they’d just think his tone was polite, but to someone who *DID* know him, knew that the wrong answer would get you killed.
Giles swallowed then motioned for them to follow as he began to give a detailed description of the layout of the house.
William and Angelus began to discuss rescue plans and Giles offered his opinion and it was actually quite good, for a mortal, and very useful.
was the first thing that
She flinched when she heard the bolts on the door slide and the hinges creaking. She couldn’t handle this again. She didn’t do anything, no matter what she said Travers was never happy. He’d curse her and beat her; the throbbing of her entire face told her he’d done a good job. She waited for him to begin, she tried to relax, it hurt a tiny bit less if she just went with the hit. She almost began to laugh as she wondered if she had a concussion.
A new voice whispered almost directly in her ear. “Do not scream. He will hear you. I will get you out of this place.”
The voice almost sounded familiar, but her head hurt too much to try and place it. “Please,” she chocked, through swollen, cracked lips. Pain lanced through her jaw and she whimpered softly.
“Quiet now, Miss,” the polite if slightly gravely voice whispered as hands released her bonds and her slight body was lifted from the bed.
“Oh god,” she gasped swallowing the screams of agony that threatened to spill from her mouth.
There was a soft chuckling as the smell of blood filled her nose making it harder not to wretch. She wondered if the blood was hers.
“Remain quiet as you will be away from here soon,” the voice of her savior whispered. “All will be as it should very soon,” he chuckled as she slipped back into the peaceful darkness.
Winston opened the door and walked in on a scene that sent him stumbling back out the door, heaving what little he’d eaten that day into the flower bed by the door.
is the—“ William’s words died as he
took in the scene before him. There were bodies strewn around the room.
Actually, there were parts of bodies. He didn’t see more than one intact
was on his heels as he flew through the carnage, following the faint trace of
stood at the door of a dark room. The windows had been boarded up and there was
only one unlit lamp in the room. It reeked of blood, pain and misery.
William started to protest, until he saw the look on the elder vampire’s face. “She’s not dead,” he muttered as he backed away.
Angelus watched as the young vampire strode down the hall kicking open doors. He turned back to see the young human that brought them here standing in the doorway staring at a head. “Someone you know?”
“T-t-travers,” he mumbled. “He’s dead.”
“That’s man you were with in the alley a few weeks ago.” Angelus watched as he nodded. “He’s the one that had our witch?” Again the man nodded. “He was torturing her. Did you know that?” The vampire asked calmly, smiling at the fear and shock that filled the mortal’s eyes. He grabbed the human and dragged him into the room showing him the tools of torture that were still covered in blood. Angelus laughed and released him as the man began to gag and wretch.
room was thick with her scent. She’d been here the entire time. All this
time they’d searched the city, and she’d been here, being carved
upon by an amateur. His demon roared and began to trash the room. He knew if
William had truly seen how bad the room was the younger vampire would have been
insane with anger. Pulling the door closed and stepping into the hall, Angelus
followed the rapidly evaporating scent of
“I can’t smell her,” the young vampire murmured, an angry growl rumbling in his chest. “It’s too … I can’t tell which way.”
Angelus growled, “Neither can I.” He stilled, sniffing the air. A second almost familiar scent drifted just out of memory. “Let’s get the gent that brought us here, maybe he’ll remember something… after he pulls himself together.”
William turned and followed Angelus, as the elder began barking orders at the human and herding the group back toward the house.
“I want to know what the bloody hell happened there!” Winston Giles bellowed from behind the locked door.
“Shut up!” Spike snarled as he slammed his fist into the wall beside the door. “If you don’t I’ll come in there and make sure you never say another word!” His face was rippling back and forth between its human and demon visages. The anger and fear he was feeling was unlike anything he’d felt before, even waking up in a coffin. When he was convinced the man, who Angelus was sure was a watcher, was going to be quiet for a bit, he turned and walked down the long hallway snarling at every minion that dared look his way.
“I—I was wondering what happened? I heard the man, Giles, saying something about Mistress Willow. Was she hurt badly?” Concern was visible in her face and stance, and fear as well.
fear and a request from
“He didn’t do it. He came looking for us because he wanted her out of there,” William reluctantly admitted.
“I will go out again once the sun sets,” she vowed, turning on her heel and heading toward her room.
watched her go and then started down the hallway. Who had his witch? Who could
he make pay for any harm that came to her? He only wished he had been able to
take a little revenge out on the bastard that he KNEW had hurt her. The smell
the blood and filth and fear that filled that room still filled his senses. It
all belonged to his
“William, we need to talk,” Angelus called, interrupting the younger vampire’s thoughts. He motioned in to the study he’d taken as his own when the acquired the house.
William growled and stomped into the room like a petulant child.
“I might know who has her.”
Those six words caused William to still for a moment. He slowly turned and looked at his sire expectantly.
“There was a scent. It was familiar to me.”
I smelled was
“I know, me boy, you’re a bit young yet,” he said, earning himself a growl from the younger vampire. “Enough. It’s true. You were concentrating on her. It made it hard to catch the lighter scents.”
William sighed, “So leave off with the lessons. Who has my witch?!”
Angelus smiled for a moment, but it faded quickly. “I think it was the Ripper.”
William’s pale skin grew paler and he fought the fury that was welling within him at the thoughts of what could be happening to his witch. “We’ll round up the minions, gather a few demons and go---“
“No. We won’t. I’m not certain it is him, but the scent was similar.”
“I’m going to get her.”
“We need to find a way to make sure she’s there without tipping him off or angering him in case he doesn’t have her.
She had no idea who had taken her, but at least he hadn’t beaten her … yet.
She groaned softly as she heard the locks on the door and before the door opened, she slipped into unconsciousness once more.
William sat in
the carriage opposite Virginia, the minion dressed in her ‘Sunday’
best. She was to be a ‘gift’ to the Ripper, and while she was there
she would act as a spy, and if possible, get
“I will find her Master William,” she assured him, “I will or I will die, again, trying.”
his throat, “
“Including hurting her, if there is no way to avoid it, or if it would cause her more harm for you not to.”
The carriage crunched to a stop on the crushed stone drive and the driver prepared the steps and held the door as Angelus stepped down, followed by William and lastly Virginia, with her head down. She shivered as she looked up at the lair of her new Master. The fog swirled around the house, causing the shadows to move as if alive. Even her enhanced eyesight couldn’t cut through them. She shivered and wrapped her arms tightly about herself. “This place is … frightening.”
“This from a vampire,” William muttered, shaking his head.
“If I knew what I was walking into, I would not mind,” she countered, then realized her tone and swallowed, waiting for the stake.
“A smart minion. I didn’t know those existed,” Angelus chuckled.
and shook his head. “Do not fail me or
“Into the lion’s den,” William murmured as he fell into step behind Angelus, glancing over his shoulder at her.