Reliving The Past by Persephone




Prologue

Willow hung in a black abyss. The air was warm on her skin and there were no concerns here. There was no other sensation but the air on her skin and of floating in nothingness. As Willow’s head tilted and her body shifted, she became aware of a new sensation.

Pain.

It exploded through her body. Her breath caught in her throat as she bit back an involuntary scream. A burning sensation was spreading across her body and Willow floundered in the pain, desperately seeking relief. Suddenly a cool hand drifted across her face and from that touch the cold began to spread across her body, numbing the pain.

Willow’s head relaxed into the hand with a sigh, her muscles unclenching as the pain eased. Slowly Willow became aware of the pillow under her head and the sheets covering her body. The hand continued to stroke her face, fingers combing through the thick mass of her hair. Willow didn’t open her eyes; she knew that touch better than her own. Instead her head turned and her hand brought the other hand to her mouth where she pressed a kiss to the palm.

“Hello Dru,” she whispered out of dry lips. Distantly Willow wondered why her throat was so dry and she hurt so much. “Did Angel call you?”

“Hello, Pet,” the softly English accented voice flowed over her.

The effort of holding Drus’ hand was too much and with a small groan she released the hand. Willow’s hand fell limply back onto the bed as she struggled to stay awake. Her brow furred in confusion as she tried to remember what she had been doing that could have caused this much pain. “Dru?”

“Yes?’ The voice was gently questioning and soft in Willow ears.

“Did you get the number of the truck that hit me?” Willow asked through dry lips. A damp cloth brushed across her lips and Willow groaned in relief, delighting in the cool wetness.

“Truck pet?” Dru’s voice was confused and a little closer to Willow’s ear as her hand stroked the damp cloth across Willow’s mouth again.

“Sorry Dru. Rhetorical question,” Willow explained as she sank deeper into the bed and gave up the fight against sleep. Her head felt like it weighed a hundred pounds, her body ached when she tried to move and her mind was moving sluggishly. It was too much of an effort to try and stay awake; she couldn’t even get her eyes to open. Willow began to sink deeper into the darkness, the pain slowly fading away and her breathing become deep and slow.

A hand shook her gently and Dru’s cool breath caressed her cheek. “Don’t go to sleep yet, Pet. I have questions.”

Willow groaned. “I’m fine Dru. Angel worries too much.” She tried to brush Dru away. “Just tell him to breathe and not to brood. It wasn’t his fault and all I need is sleep.”

“You still have to answer the questions kitten.” Dru voice was insistent.

Willow had to smile at the nickname. It had been so long since she had heard it. “Okay Princess. Fire away.” Willow still didn’t try and open her eyes. She was pretty sure if she opened her eyes, her head would explode.

“What year is it?”

“2005.”

“Your name?”

“Willow Ann Rosenberg.”

“Age?”

“21.”

“Where are you?”

“Los Angeles, California.”

“What’s the last thing you remember?”

Willow had to pause for a moment. A frown touching her face as she tried to remember what had occurred that night, unfortunately she just couldn’t remember. A sigh escaped her and she started to shake her head, only to stop when a memory began to take shape in her mind. Slowly Willow began to reconstruct the night in her mind and she started to speak.

“There was a demon,” she said slowly, her voice unsure. “I can remember using magic to hold down the demon. Angel was above the demon and he brought the sword down….” Willow’s voice trailed off as she became lost in the images.

She could see Angel. His hair mussed and a streak of blood on his forehead, chest heaving from unneeded breaths. His arm muscles straining with the power of his downward stroke, face fierce in concentration. She could feel her own muscles straining from the constant magic use. She had taken a blow early on, when trying to subdue the minions and now her vision was blurred and doubled. She struggled to hold the demon down for Angel to kill. Distantly, her mind registered the swords downward arch and slicing through the demon’s neck.

As the sword cut through the neck, Willow noticed a flash of light. Before her mind could figure out what it was, it was racing towards her. Distantly she could hear Angel and Xander yelling for her to move. A figure raced towards her as Willow stared dumbfounded at the light coming at her. Spike was picking up speed, trying to beat the light.

He didn’t make it.

Willow was knocked backwards suddenly. The light seemed to consume her. It filled up her sight and burned through her. Her shields hadn’t even slowed it down, Willow noted absently as she arched through the sky. There was no time to try and brace for impact and Willow struck the ground hard. From far away she could hear voices and then those too faded away as darkness rose around her.

Willow came back to herself slowly. The memory still clung tightly to her and Willow had no clue that she had continued to speak while lost in the images. She was only aware of Dru’s soft voice whispering in her ear.

“Sleep pet,” Dru’s voice echoed through Willow’s head. “Sleep now.” Willow could do nothing but follow the direction and tumble down into oblivion.

For a long moment the room was silent save the sound of Willow’s breathing. Four pairs of eyes remained locked on the woman’s slight figure as she sank deeper into sleep. They didn’t move until Dru finally moved away from the figure and towards the left corner of the room.

“What in the bloody hell was that about,” Williams’ voice was harsh and disbelieving.

His eyes were wide as he looked towards his grandsire and great grandsire, searching their face for answers before looking towards his sire.

“I’m not sure,” Angelus, replied slowly, his voice calm and thoughtful.

“She’s obviously lying,” Darla burst out, her hand waving dismissingly at the bed. “I say we just kill her.”

“She’s not lying,” Dru spoke suddenly. Her blue dress swirling around her legs as she settled on the floor next to William, her dark gaze fixed on Angelus. “Her magic tingles across my skin and the stars whisper that she tells the truth.

“Oh, please,” Darla scoffed.

Angelus was silent. His dark gaze focused on his insane childe’s gaze. In them he could see only the belief that the girl was telling the truth. He blocked out the sound of his own sire’s ranting and thought it out. The girl had appeared in a shower of light and sound in the middle of their mansion. Her clothes had been torn and burnt. Bruises and cuts had marred the girl’s milk white skin. Angelus had to admit that looking at the girl had been arousing. Her brilliant red hair spilling across the floor like blood, her mouth full and open, and her skin so white. Even now, Angelus was exerting all of his will not to go over there and ravish the girl. She smelled of vanilla, innocence and pure magic. His dark gaze flicked away from his childe and landed on the figure in the bed.

His long, pale fingers began to stroke across the top of his cane. The carved ivory was cool to the touch and supple against his fingers. His dark eyes heated and flickered with gold as he imagined how she would feel beneath him. His muscles tensed and the blood began to pound through him. His mouth dropped open and his tongue swept across his lips, imagining how she would taste.

Angelus delighted in the feelings of arousal pounding through his body. It had been so long since he had been tempted. The women here were weak and uninteresting. Even his sire had long since become an annoyance in bed. No longer did he delight in her pale blond body, her tricks failing to fully arouse him. Now a girl had been dropped out of the sky into his life. A wicked grin tilted Angelus mouth up and his dark eyes glinted. He couldn’t wait to play.

Chapter 1

William was sitting in the corner of a darkened room. For the first time he wasn’t upset about guard duty. His pale blue eyes were fastened firmly on the figure in the bed, which for the past two days had barely moved. Her red hair was spread out across her pillow, her blankets rising and lowering with every breath she took. Her long dark lashes laid unmoving against her white cheek and her ruby red lips slightly parted in her deep sleep.

William couldn’t help but feel a stirring of arousal as he continued to watch the girl. His fingers flexed against his own thigh as images began to assault him. His blue eyes blazed in hunger as he focused on the girls’ long, pale fingers. They were twitching slightly, curling into the silk spread, before releasing the fabric and stroking it lightly. William felt an unneeded breath catch in his throat. He could almost feel those fingers grasping at his skin, pulling him closer to her, her mouth opened and panting, her skin flushed and slick against him.

A movement from the bed jerked him from the daydream, the girl moaned and shifted restless on the bed. “Goddess,” the girl whispered as she raised a hand to her head. “No more partying with Spike to all hours in the night,” her voice was wry and husky from disuse.

William moved quickly, his pale eyes delighting in the form being revealed to him. The girl had been placed into the bed naked after the servants had bathed her. Now with her movement, the silk spread had fallen around her waist, baring her breasts. His mouth watered at the sight of her pale skin and rose colored areoles that were tight and unblemished. He could almost feel his mouth closing around them and the taste that would explode on his tongue.

His weight settled on the bed, her warmth instantly began to sink into William, even as Willow turned towards him. Her eyes were blinking and unfocused as she tried to see who was beside her, unable to through the darkness. William immediately reached a hand out and placed it on her shoulder. Willow sighed and relaxed, her head falling sideways onto Spike’s chest. She knew his touch as well as she knew Dru’s. She had often sat in this very position, she contemplated as Spike’s arms wrapped around her.

Willow snuggled deeper into Spike’s embrace, delighting in the feel of coolness against her flushed skin. Her hands slid up Spike’s chest and then stopped. Whatever was beneath her hands was soft and silken against her skin. There were tiny pleats and buttons pressed into her check. Willow took a deep breath and was assaulted by a crisp, fresh scent.

Her brow creased in confusion and her hands began to explore the chest under her cheek more thoroughly. Her fingers stroked over his shoulders and down his arms, noting the looseness of the fabric and how it was gathered around the wrists. Then her fingers traced down his waist and met more fabric, not the jeans she was expecting. Her hands brushed upwards, over the pectoral muscles and his nipples peaked at the contact.

William tensed as the girls’ hands began to slide over his shirt. Her fingers were stroking and brushing across the planes of his chest and across his nipples. William jerked and bit back a moan. As he jerked, his hair brushed across the girl’s cheek and she instantly threw herself back. His hands moved to catch her but the girl was already rolling off the side of the bed.

Willow’s eyes narrowed as she spoke a single word. Instantly a light appeared above her head, throwing everything into stark relief. The room began to take shape and Willow’s eyes traveled around the room. The bed she was kneeling beside was high and huge. A blood red silken coverlet, with silken black sheets were tumbled and disheveled in front of her. The bed was solid wood; it’s darkened finish stark in the light, its corner posts reached towards the ceiling.

Willow’s green eyes followed the posts upwards, taking in the white staccato finish on the ceiling before sweeping back down. In the far corner, a fireplace took half the wall and was surrounded by several chairs, also done in a blood red fabric. Willow absently noted that the fireplace was made of white and black marble. A wry smile touched her lips as she was confronted by the proof of Angelus need for luxury.

Her eyes continued around the room. The wood floor was polished and glistening in the light, a few hand woven carpets were placed on the floor. Willow’s absently noted the quality of the rugs before slowly returning her gaze to the man on the bed.

“Bloody hell,” Willow breathed as her eyes met his pale blue eyes. The face before her was familiar and yet completely unknown. The face was pale in the light. The dark brows arched over the pale blue eyes, their line unblemished by the scar that Willow knew should be there. Light brown hair spilled over his shoulders, his chest encased in a white silk shirt. The shirt was handmade, the collar high against his throat and unbuttoned to mid chest. The dark pants stretched over powerful thighs and ended high on the calf.

“William the bloody,” she breathed as she once again met pale blue eyes. “Not my Spike but William the bloody.” Her head fell forward onto her hands. “Why me?” She moaned in despair. Her thoughts in an uproar as she considered this new evidence and what it meant. Instantly Willow knew that something had gone very wrong. What was she doing in the past? How in the world had this happened?

Willow’s mind searched feverishly for any possible explanation and came up with nothing. She shook her head in frustration, her hands clenching on silk coverlet. I need more information. I just have to think. Sooner or later I will figure it out. Willow assured herself as she finally gave up trying to make her mind come up with the answer. All she had to do was wait.

A hand stroking her hair caused Willow to look up. Calm pale blue eyes stared into her confused green eyes. The hand continued to stroke, downward his fingers moved over her brow and across her cheek. Willow stared spellbound into those familiar eyes, her head tilting into the familiar touch without thought. Those fingers stroked under her chin and raised it up even as his head tilted and slowly began to lower to hers.

Willow’s own lips began to part; her breath quickening in anticipation as Williams’ pale lips began to come closer. Then Willow’s eyes widened and she jerked backwards, landing hard on her rump. “What the hell are you doing?” Willow asked incredulously as she stared dumbfounded into William’s eyes.

An amused smile curled on those lips. “I would think what I was doing is obvious, pet.” His voice was amused and his eyes drifted down over her. “If you can’t figure it out, then you definitely haven’t been doing it right. I will be delighted to teach you.” His hands reached out for her again.

Willow’s eyes widened and she slapped at the hands reaching for her. “You will not!” Willow exclaimed as she scuttled backwards. Her legs and arms pushing herself backwards away from the hands reaching for her, green eyes wide with panic as she watched the smug smile gracing those lips.

“Now, now pet,” the voice chided gently as those pale blue eyes continued to trace her features. His hands hung loosely between his legs as his eyes traced downwards. Her firm breasts jiggled slightly as the girl continued to move backwards. Firm muscles flexed under the skin of her thighs, and her small feet continued to push away from him. The beauty in front of him and the passion that flared in those emerald green eyes entranced William. A small smile curled his lips as he watched her pale breasts in the light. “You’re going to hurt yourself if you’re not careful,” he told her without lifting his gaze from her breasts.

“What are you…?” Willow’s voice was confused as she followed those blue eyes downward. Her eyes were met with nothing but her skin. Her eyes widened in shock as she realized she was naked. “Oh my goddess…” she exclaimed as she wrapped her hands around her breasts and crossed her legs.

William watched in amusement as Willow suddenly realized she was naked. Her green eyes were wide and disbelieving before her hands wrapped around herself. William watched fascinated as a blush began to spread across her cheeks and down her neck. William couldn’t help but laugh as she glared at him.

“Where in the bloody hell are my clothes?” Willow demanded as she stared at the laughing vampire.

“Pet, your clothes were shredded and burnt, there was no choice but to put you to bed naked.” He explained as he watched her, those blue eyes burning into her skin.

“Oh, please,” Willow scoffed and rolled her eyes at him.

“You don’t believe me,” William asked innocently. “I’m hurt and amazed that you wouldn’t take a gentleman’s word.”

“You are not, nor have you ever been, a gentleman since the day you were turned William.” Willow replied with a smile, amusement glinting in those green eyes as she considered the vampire in front of her. The same and yet so different from her Spike.

“I am very much the gentleman, pet. Just wait and see,” William told her, his voice thick and heavy with desire.

Willow didn’t reply. She simply reached for the coverlet and wrapped it around her, glaring at the smirking vampire in front of her. Willow desperately searched her memory for information about William the Bloody. She knew that he made up part of The Scourge of Europe. William the Bloody, Angelus, Darla and Druscilla had cut a bloody swath through Europe. The watcher journals had hinted at the fact that they had killed entire villages, raping and pillaging along the way.

William the Bloody had quickly gained his own name after killing 2 slayers. He was said to be the more impatient and boyish of the two male vampires. He was reckless and inclined to follow impulses, whereas Angelus liked to play mind games and delicately destroy everything in his path. William had a terrible temper and always struck back quickly. Angelus would wait and bide his time before completely destroying who ever had gotten in his way. It was said that Williams’ only weakness was Druscilla; William would often do anything to please his ‘Princess’.

Willow already knew this though; she had seen it first hand. Willow sighed and her fingers tightened on the silken coverlet, completely unaware of the picture she portrayed. Her brow was creased in concentration; her green eyes were focused inward and burning brightly, her red hair tumbling down around her shoulders, mixing with the red of the coverlet.

William watched in fascination as Willow’s fingers tapped gently against her mouth, the lips parting and closing around the fingers. Willow seemed oblivious as her wet finger dipped out of her mouth and began to trace her lips. William’s own lips parted as he followed the path of her finger with his blue eyes. His eyelids drooped and desire began to burn in their depths.

Willow’s head was beginning to ache again. This situation is just way too confusing, she mused and ran her right hand through her hair. Her fingers absently untangling the curling mass, unaware that she had began to gnaw on her lip. It was an old habit and one she was completely oblivious too.

Her white teeth sank into her red lower lip and began to worry it. Suddenly, she was knocked backwards and Williams’ arms wrapped around her form. One hand cupped the back of her head, fingers tangling in her red hair. While his other was used to keep his weight off of her fully. His blue eyes were burning brightly into hers, his chest heaved with unneeded breaths and his lips were parted slightly as he brushed them against hers. She instantly tried to twist away from him, her legs spreading to get leverage and only succeeding in winding around his.

William pressed harder against the resisting form below him, feeling her settle deeper onto the floor. The silken coverlet was bunched around the two of them. He could feel where her legs tangled with his and groaned slightly, trying to deepen the kiss. Her lips were firmly closed and her wide green eyes glared furiously into his blue eyes. Her hands pushed at his shoulders and she made angry sounds deep in her throat.

He lifted his head slightly and turned his attention to her neck. Her skin was soft and warm under his lips. His own lips parted and he ran his tongue along the vein throbbing in her neck. Her blood pounded just under the surface and the throbbing of her heart seemed to call to him. William could feel his fangs descending and ran them along the skin of her throat.

Suddenly he felt himself being lifted away from the girl and tossed across the room. His head slammed against the wall and William bit back another moan, this one from pain. His eyes were golden when he looked up, ready to blast whoever had interrupted his fun. To his surprise Willow was the only person in the room. Her eyes were glaring at him, no longer green, now swirling a murky black.

He took a deep breath and smelled evil. The innocent, weak girl in front of him was suddenly transformed into a serious threat. As she slowly came to her feet and began to stalk towards him, William felt something he hadn’t felt in a very long time.

Fear.

There was something in that black gaze that made William wish that he had restrained himself. The very air seemed to crackle with the power that he could feel radiating off of the young girl’s frame. Even being wrapped in the coverlet didn’t detract from the girl’s presence; instead it seemed to enhance it as she came ever closer. The scarlet coverlet shimmering and flowing down her body like blood. Her red hair beginning to streak with black as she slowly knelt in front of him.

William flinched away from the hand that cupped his face and then tangled in his hair. He felt the hand tugging his head backwards and he felt the fear grow a bit stronger. He couldn’t fight against her embrace, the strength in her hand was more than he expected. His blue eyes met her empty black gaze and saw his own death in them. Her hand tugged his head back even farther and her knees settled on either side of his legs.

The coverlet flowed around their legs for a moment before settling with a whisper of sound. Williams blue eyes followed her other hand up and flinched slightly at her touch on his throat. Her fingers began to trace his throat, tugging his collar out of the way. William made a small sound and tried to tug his head from her grasp.

“Shh,” she whispered to him. Her breath was lightly caressing his ear before her nose nudged against his cheekbone, slowly moving downward. Her black gaze traced the features of the vampire before her. The confusion and fear that had formerly filled her was a distance memory. Willow felt secure in her magic and unconcerned with the notion of how dark she was going. A lock of hair fell across her eyes and she absently noted that it was black.

The vampire was silent in her embrace, his blue eyes staring up at her. She could feel the tension in his muscles and knew that he was waiting for an opening to strike. She smiled down at him, silently shaking her head at him. “It’s annoying isn’t it?” Willow mused, her tone quiet and off handed. “The way that the prey can become the hunter,” she explained and dipped her mouth to his throat.

Willow felt him tense to pull away from her mouth. She paused there, her breath warm on his skin, waiting for him to still. When he did she simply pulled away and let him up. His blue eyes were confused as he stared up at her. “Too easy, William the Bloody. I expected more of a fight,” Willow chided as she turned her back on him. “But you are still young compared to the Spike I know, so I’ll forgive you this time.”

Willow looked back over her shoulder at the vampire, her black eyes meeting his dazed blue eyes. He hadn’t moved from his position against the wall, his hand absently rubbing at his neck.

“I’m not a vampire you know,” Willow teased lightly. She released her magic and her hair began to bleed red again. William’s wide blue eyes watched the transformation in awe. It was like the red color was beginning to bleed from her head, slowly painting the black to red. First there were thin streaks, the red dribbling down the hair and then it was like a damn had burst. The red began to flow steadily down the hair, the strips widening until the black disappeared. His eyes switched to hers and found the same emerald green gaze from before.

“I know,” William responded to the warmth and humor in that gaze. “You are a right smart lass though. And a surprise.”

Willow laughed delightedly at the appearance of the humor that she knew so well. His accent was thick like Spike’s got when he was emotional about something. She couldn’t help but respond to it as she offered her hand to help him up. “Come on, William. I need to find clothes,” she tugged slightly on the hand he had slipped into hers.

He rose smoothly, fluidly in front of her. Willow became aware of a vague sense of uneasiness as he deliberately brushed against her, his body crowding her, seeming to reach out and embrace her without ever touching her. His head was bent towards her and she could feel his cool breath against her cheek as she stared fixedly at his shirt. An unexpected warmth was pooling through her at the nearness of William and she bit back a groan of dismay. She became aware that she was still holding his hand, as his fingers began to stroke across her palm and wrists. Her eyes closed and she swayed slightly on her feet.

William took a step closer to this red haired beauty that had managed to subdue him. Instead of killing of his desire, her actions had only served to heighten it. What would it be like to have this witch bow to me? To submit willingly to my attentions? William could feel the arousal beginning to pound its’ way through his system again and his pale blue eyes heated with that desire. When the girl swayed closer to him, William wrapped an arm around her waist and drew her ever closer.

He moaned when her curves and warmth settled against him with a sigh. Her hand still grasped his and her head rested trustingly on his chest. His free hand stroked up and down her back, delighting in her warmth and the coolness of the silk coverlet beneath his hand. Her free hand slowly moved upwards, stroking over the muscles of his arm. His eyes closed in delight, enjoying the sensations she was provoking. Her hand went ever higher and combed through his long brown hair. He sighed and tilted his head into her hand.

Pain.

It suddenly exploded across his head. Willow had her hand on his ear and was tugging downwards. He tried to dance away, his hands instantly releasing her and trying to twist away from the pain.

“Listen to me,” Willow stated firmly and tugged on the ear again. Williams’ pain filled blue eyes stared confusedly into her. “I am not a whore. I am not here for you to try and seduce. Trust me when I say that it is sick and wrong. If you try it again I’ll turn you into a rat.” She paused for a moment and tugged at the ear again. “Do you understand me, young man?”

“Yes, Ma’am,” William groaned and then collapsed to the floor when she let go of his ear. “That hurt!” He glared up at the girl, his face shifting into his demon form. “You can’t just go around and do that to a bloke,” he continued as he rubbed at his wounded ear. “It’s not fair.”

“Please, William. You’re acting like a child,” Willow responded calmly, her green gaze meeting his golden orbs fearlessly. “And there is not point in going Grr with me. It won’t work. I’ve seen it too many times.”

“Grr?”

“Demon face,” Willow explained and leaned down to trace finger across his ridges. “Grr face, you see.”

William had to laugh at the girl as she stood there with her nose scrunched up and making that grr sound in the back of her throat. He could see what she meant though and he suddenly realized that this girl really wasn’t afraid of him. He stared up into those mesmerizing green eyes and was determined that she would seduce him. Of course, William had seen the possessive gleam in his grandsire’s dark gaze when he had told William to watch the girl. It was perfectly possible that the girl would come willingly once she met Angelus. The girls always went for that face.

And yet, staring up into those girls green eyes, he wondered if Angelus had finally met his match.

Chapter 2

Two hours later, Angelus returned from the hunt. While he had found many willing women, his mind was occupied with the girl sleeping in his bed. He was oblivious to glares that Darla was sending his way or of Dru’s delighted humming. Angelus was too focused on getting home as quickly as possible. He was getting impatient, and he never felt that way, for the girl to wake up.

Arousal was pounding through him at the thought that she might finally be awake. He felt himself harden and bit back a groan. Darla’s hand suddenly drifted across his lap; cupping him through his pants. His dark eyes flashed with annoyance as he met his sire’s blue gaze.

“That feels good,” Darla purred and pressed herself against him. “I can’t wait to get home and use it.” She stood on tiptoe and traced his neck with her tongue. “Guess you need to find a real woman to satisfy you.”

“That I do,” Angelus replied as he dragged Darla closer and captured her lips. “It’s a good thing there is one waiting for me at home.” With that he shoved her away from him and glared down at her. “You’re just not satisfyin’ any more Darla.”

Darla glared up at Angelus from her position on the ground. She sneered at him, “and you think that little girl is going to give you more satisfaction than I can?”

“Darla you haven’t been worth the effort in a very long time. Why don’t you go find a new boy to play with?” Angelus taunted as he stepped over her and continued on his way.

“You shouldn’t try and get between Daddy and Mommy,” Dru whispered as she kneeled beside Darla. “Miss Edith told me that they are meant to be. Mommy is here to correct a wrong.”

“Oh they are, are they?” Darla replied thoughtfully. “We’ll have to see about that.”

Angelus burst through the door and hurried upstairs, completely ignoring the minion that was following him up the stairs. He threw open the door to his room and charged in, only to come to a stunned halt when an empty bed met his gaze.

“Master Angelus,” the minion stuttered slightly behind him.

“Where is the girl?” Angelus growled as he whirled around and wrapped a hand around the minions throat, squeezing slightly.

“She’s…” the minion trailed off as Angelus shook him roughly,” …downstairs with Master William.”

Angelus tossed the man aside and charged back down the stairs, concentrating on the heart beat that sounded in his ears. The beat was soothingly familiar in his ears; after all he had been sleeping next to it everyday since her arrival. It had taken all of his willpower not to take her, but he wanted her awake and aware when he finally slid into her tight core.

As he pulled open the door to the study, the sight before him brought him up short. The girl was awake, dressed in one of Williams white shirts. The white collar was brushing against her jawbone, her red hair spilling over the whiteness in a startling contrast. Her head was down, concentrating on the book opened in her lap. Her legs were tossed over William’s shoulders, trailing down his bare chest.

William was resting with his back against the chair, one hand resting casually on the girl’s legs the other holding a book open. Both had slight frowns on their faces as they flipped through their books. A bolt of pure lust shot through Angelus at the sight of the two of them together. He could picture the two of them twining together in his bed and driving him wild. Angelus couldn’t help but groan at that thought, but it was drowned out by a loud yelp.

“Enough William,” Willow told him absently, her hand still tangled in his long brown hair. “I told you that it wouldn’t work. I’m sure you are quite irresistible but trust me when I say that it is wrong and icky.”

“Why do you bloody well keep hitting me,” William exclaimed and tried to move his head away from her. “It’s not natural! Women are subservient to men, Pet!”

Willow’s hand tightened on Williams’ hair and his head tilted, yelping emerging from his throat. “I told you no Pet, luv, or Red out of you. It confuses me and watch your bloody hands!” Willow tossed back and released his hair. “Are you sure this is all of Angelus’ books?” She asked as she closed the book she was holding.

“Yes I am bloody sure,” William replied as he rubbed at his head. “What are you looking for anyway?”

“A book that I read from all the time at home. I know that Angelus has it because Angel does. I just have to remember when and where he got it,” Willow told him as she stood up and headed for the bookcase. “What about his apartment?” Willow asked William as she perused the shelves in front of her.

“What apartment?” William asked in confusion.

“The apartment that Angelus would use for the dollies that he didn’t want Darla to know about. You know the one that Angelus keeps as a break away from everything or when the two of you wanted time alone. I know that he kept books there. Angel told me.” Willow explained casually, bending over slightly to look at the spine of a book.

“I don’t know who this Angel chap is but he is a bit off lovey,” William replied. His eyes on her ass as the shirt lovingly cupped its shape. “I’ve never heard of any apartment of Angelus’.”

William shifted a bit as his body reacted to the sight. It was hard for him to concentrate when he knew that under that she was naked. She had refused Darla and Dru’s clothes earlier, deciding to swipe his shirt for the time being. William couldn’t say that he minded. Seeing her in his clothes filled him with an odd sort of satisfaction. So far the girl had been one surprise after another. The minions were already devoted to her, rushing out to get human food and tea. He couldn’t blame any of them though.

“I just don’t understand why it’s not here,” Willow’s annoyed voice broke through his thoughts and his blue eyes landed on her again.

“Maybe we haven’t got it yet,” William proposed absently.

“Yes!” Willow exclaimed and straightened. She turned towards the fireplace in the room, still oblivious to Angelus presence. “That could very well be. So now I need to know the year Angel said that Angelus obtained it.” Willow paused for a moment, her expression thoughtful. “I just need to call up the memory again. That’s not too hard.”

Willow’s eyes fluttered closed and her hands slowly extended to the fire. The flames began to writhe and jump towards her. William bit back an oath and jumped towards her only to stop when Willow began to chant. Her red hair began to blow in a nonexistent breeze, her head tilted up as the flames began to wrap around her.

Her brilliant red hair turned blacker than the darkest night. And when her eyes flickered open William realized that her eyes were once again the swirling inky black. Her voice became colder, deeper and darker as the chanting continued. A movement at the door caught his eye and he realized that Angelus, Darla and Dru were all watching the girl. Suddenly her hands dropped and a flash of light nearly blinded all of them.

When William managed to open his eyes again he sucked in an unneeded breath. The study had been replaced by another room, lit by only by the fire in the fireplace with a long settee set in front of it. As William was getting ready to move towards Willow a voice sounded in the quiet.

“Angel?” Willow’s voice was hesitant as she rounded the corner in her nightshirt. Her movements were hesitant and slow due to the beating she had taken earlier in the evening. Angel’s thoughts and emotions had been assaulting her long enough and she was determined to knock him out of this funk.

“Willow?” Angel replied and rose from the coach, a glass of wine in his hand. He was shirtless, wearing only a pair of black silk pajama bottoms. The fireplace caressed the hard planes of his body and added a hint of darkness to the angles of his face. “What are you doing up?” He questioned anxiously as he put the glass on a table and moved to meet her, his arm easing around her.

Willow rested against him in relief. It hurt so much to move and remain upright but she wasn’t going to allow Angel to continue on in this mood. She would never get any sleep if she did. He eased her down onto the sofa and as he went to move away she caught his hand and brought it to her heart.

“Tell me what is going on Angel,” Willow begged softly and tightened her grip on his hand, keeping her eyes locked on him. “Your thoughts and emotions are so chaotic that I can’t rest and normally you are so good about keeping those to yourself.”

For a long moment Angel said nothing and then he sighed and scrubbed his face with his free hand, “I’m sorry I worried you little one. Today is an anniversary of sorts.”

“Anniversary? How is July 31 an anniversary Angel?” When it looked like he wasn’t going to answer Willow’s voice got commanding. “None of that now,” she told him tugging on his hand, her face fierce with determination. “I am not going to put up with a brush off. Now tell me.”

Angel sat down with a sigh and relaxed against the sofa, his dark eyes fixed on the flames. Willow relaxed her grip on his hand, not surprised when he looped it around her and tugged her closer. “It was a trip to Prague, 1792 and Angelus, Darla, Dru and William were getting ready to return to England. Darla wanted to enjoy our last night there and came up with an idea that involved lots of deaths.” He paused and took a deep breath, “we laid waste to an entire sea port that night. Hundreds dead and raped by my hands. I even got that book about time displacement there. The one that you enjoy so much.” Willow nodded and waited for him to continue. “I guess when I saw you go down by the Masters’ hands and realized that the vampires were going to try and rape you that I thought…” his voice trailed off as Willow placed a hand over his lips.

“It’s not your fault Angel,” Willow told him firmly. “You and Angelus are two separate people. While Angelus is inside you, you are not inside Angelus. It wasn’t your fault. You could never do anything like that to me. Or to anyone else. We all know how twisted and vengeful Angelus can be. You could never be him.”

There was a long moment of silence in the room and then Angel pressed a kiss to her head and pulled her into his arms. “Thank you so much Little One,” he whispered. “I don’t know what I would do without you.”

“It’s okay Angel. That’s what friends are for and we are friends,” Willow told him softly, pressing a kiss to his check before easing from his embrace. A wince crossed her face as her body protested the move.

“Are you all right?” Angel questioned anxiously.

“Just a bit sore,” Willow replied and patted his hand reassuringly. “I’ll be better once I get some sleep.”

“Then we should go to bed,” Angel told her.

“That would make my day,” Willow agreed with a smile as Angel gained his feet.

“Pet?” Spike called as he walked into the room.

Willow smiled at Spike, taking in the sleepy expression, tousled blond hair and the jeans unsnapped around his waist. “Did I wake you?” She asked softly as she held out her hand to him. “I’m sorry if I did.”

“Don’t worry about it Red,” Spike told her as he took her hand. “Just not used to sleeping by myself anymore. And with both you and Peaches gone it seemed that the bed was awfully empty.” He explained with a shrug. “Besides I got worried about you. You know you are not supposed to be out of bed for the next three days.”

“I know Spike, but Angel needed me,” Willow told him earnestly and allowed the two vampires to draw her up. A groan passed her lips as the two tried to get her steady on her feet and then her legs buckled under her.

“Careful there Red,” Spike chided as he swept her off of her feet.

“Yes Little One,” Angel chimed in as he followed Spike towards their bed. “You must be more careful. Definitely bed for you for the next couple of days.”

“I figured I would put myself to sleep for about three days,” Willow told them with a smile. “That will give my powers enough time to heal my body.”

“Sounds like a good idea,” Angel agreed.

“That it does Pet,” Spike added. “We’ll be fine for a couple of days by ourselves.”

“I know you two will. That is why I love both of you so much.”

“And we love you Willow,” they both told her as they entered the bedroom.


The image faded away slowly and Willow was left standing in the center of the study again. From outside the magic a faint glimmer of sadness flowed over her. She wondered how they were doing. Did they believe that she was gone forever or was she currently in a coma there? Not that they had been talking lately, in fact she had recently moved out of the house. But she didn’t have time for that now. She took comfort that the memory spell she had learned came in handy and she now knew when Angelus got the book.

“What year is it William?” Willow asked without turning to look at him.

“1787,” he replied hesitantly, still shocked by what he had witnessed. For the first time he actually began to believe the girl was actually from the future. And that brought with it all sorts of new problems.

“Bloody hell,” Willow exclaimed. “I really do not want to wait around here for almost 6 years. Definitely not on my wish list.”

“Think of the fun we could have little one,” Angelus breathed in her ear.

“Angelus!” Willow spun around to face him. Her heart was pounding in her chest and she lost her hold on her magic. She stared at him with frightened green eyes. All of her poise and knowledge seemed to disappear beneath the panic she felt.

Willow began backing away from the dark vampire. Her eyes fastened on his gleaming dark brown eyes. There was a fire there that she hadn’t seen since just after he came back. His lips were twisted into a semblance of a reassuring smile, dark hair caught back from his face by a simple tie.

“Now, now.” Angelus chided gently as Willow kept backing away from him. The fear in her eyes was breathtaking and arousing. “Don’t be like that. You are a guest in my home.”

“Guests in your home have a nasty habit of dying Angelus!” Willow hissed at him as her back came up against the shelves in the wall.

“Only after I have been satisfied,” Angelus assured her as he came to a stop in front of her. His hands bracketed her in and his head lowered towards her. “And I think it will take me a very long time to become satisfied with you.”

Willow’s eyes widened as his meaning became clear. Her green eyes stared at him in sheer disbelief as his head came closer. He desired her! Willow was struck speechless by that thought. While William had been flirting with her, she had assumed it was because he was quite the ladies man. It had never actually occurred to her that he might have been following Angelus lead. The vampire had rarely acknowledged her existence after losing his soul. Not that he paid any attention to her before then either.

Angelus lips brushing against her own brought Willow out of her memories. For a moment she did nothing but stare wide eyed into the satisfied gleam of Angelus’ eyes. When he went to wrap his arms around her, Willow struck back. She reached for her magic and lost herself in the sudden rush of pure power. Angelus was thrown across the room, crashing through the wall next to the door.

Her magic was pounding its way through her. Eye black as night watched as he struggled up from the floor. His expression of stunned anger struck Willow as funny and she couldn’t help but laugh. It was chilling and without humor as it echoed around the room.

“That wasn’t nice little one,” he murmured as he wiped a trace of blood from his lip. He began to stalk back towards her. “So you have claws huh? Let’s see how sharp they are,” he challenged and then rushed towards her.

Willow’s head tilted to one side as she watched him rush towards her. At the last moment she stepped out of the way and he crashed into the shelves behind her. Books tumbled to the ground and Angelus was stunned for a moment. Then a hand was on his shoulder and he found himself spun around. Before he could react a hand wrapped around his throat and he was lifted off of his feet.

Willow wrapped her hand tighter around his throat, beginning to hear the bones crushing together. Angelus was trying to pull away, his hands wrapped around her wrist. A movement in the corner of her eyes caught her attention. Her head turned and she watched as Darla rushed towards her. A softly spoken word had lightening catching the vampire square in the chest. She went flying backwards and slammed into the wall.

A blow across her face had Willow’s head snapping back. Instead of letting go Willow concentrated and lightening coursed from her hand through his body. He screamed and jerked in her hold before Willow dropped him to the ground. He laid there, stunned, shocks still jolting his system.

“I’m being very very nice Angelus,” Willow whispered into his ear. Her lips brushed against his cheek and her breath was warm against his skin. “I didn’t kill you. And I can in a heartbeat. You are not allowed to call me little one. Instead why don’t you make it master.”


TBC


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