TITLE: Fear
SERIES: Surfacing (story one)
STATUS: Incomplete (last modified 3/07/2001)
AUTHOR: n. bjelica
EMAIL: n_bjelica@hotmail.com
FEEDBACK: Yes, please.
CLASSIFICATION: B/S UST, angst.
RATING: PG-13 (language)
SPOILERS: Season five through "Shadow"
SUMMARY: Post-ep for "Fool for Love," -- what happened between Buffy and Spike after we left them, but before Spike and Riley chatted in "Shadow"?
DISTRIBUTION: Available at http://www.angelfire.com/weird/bjelica/. Please email me if you're interested in archiving my fic, I'll be stunned speechless.
DISCLAIMERS: All characters, locations, and such contained herein are the property of Joss Whedon and his band of merry men. The albums Surfacing and Solace, and all songs contained therein are the property of Sarah McLachlan and her label. Not for to sue the nice fanfic author!
AUTHOR'S NOTE: This story was my first attempt at writing fanfic. After "Fool for Love" aired, this tiny voice in my head, previously utterly silent, started yammering on about what happened next. Years of reading X-Files fic, nothing. A couple months of Buffy fic and this happens. Who knew? A week and a half after the ep aired, I gave up trying to get the voice to shut up, and put pen to paper. Hope it doesn't suck too much. :) It is written in first-person format, with an alternating POV.
Misc Notes:

Concept:

At the end of "Fool for Love," we see Spike and Buffy together on Buffy's back porch, both moody and contemplative. Buffy, having just been told by her mother that Joyce's "nothing" might not be nothing and that she was going to have a CAT scan, appears to be lost in her misery.

Spike, on the other hand, is in a flurry of murderous rage despite Harmony's best attempts at talking him down, after he received a particularly hurtful rejection at Buffy's hands before the pair separated outside the Bronze. (Lesson the last: Don't give the object of your affections a perfect phrase to throw in your face if she doesn't want to make with the kissyface when you do, stupid!) Spike grabs a shotgun and heads towards the Summers', but when he arrives, he finds the Slayer sobbing on the back porch. Best homicidal intentions notwithstanding, he is seized by a fit of uncontrollable empathy and tries awkwardly to comfort her. Curtain falls on "Fool for Love."

This fic picks up with that final scene and continues it, covering the ground referenced by Spike in the beginning of "Shadow" (when Spike surprises Riley by knowing more than he does about Buffy's mom, and inquires why Riley isn't at the hospital doing the supportive-boyfriend thing, and Riley tosses him out into the sunshine in a fit of pique). Spike continues bumbling his way through trying to be kind to the Slayer by making some tea. Before Spike can make too big a fool of himself, Buffy drives her mom to the hospital for the observation. Spike stays behind and entertains himself at the house.

 

Last scene of "Fool for Love":

Spike: cocks gun
Buffy: unemotional, "What do you want now?"
Spike: face changes, looks at Buffy. "What's wrong?"
Buffy: "I don't want to talk about it."
Spike: lowers gun, "I-is there something I can do?"
Buffy: pauses to think, Spike moves to sit beside her, looks at her, she looks away slightly, he pats her back awkwardly for a minute, then he stops and just watches her
Spike: looks down at her feet
In unison, both inhale, look forward, and sigh.


"What's wrong?" I couldn't believe I just asked the woman whom I had intended not one minute ago to obliterate what was wrong, why she was being a perfect target for me. She answered me in a small voice, and just sat there on the steps, curled 'round herself in a miserable ball. I swallowed at the image she presented; she wasn't the Slayer just then, she was just Buffy.

I lowered the gun, and asked in a quieter voice, "Is there anything I can do?" Oh, what is the matter with me, anyway? She actually looked like she was considering the notion...for a minute, anyway. When she didn't answer, I stepped closer, walking slowly, only pushing the shotgun off to the side when I remembered it. Part of my head was screaming: kill her, kill her now, she listened to me spill my guts and then walked away, nobody gets to me, kill her now. The other part of my head was, fortunately for her, in the driver's seat, and I sat down carefully, as if sitting on back porch steps trying to comfort a weepy Slayer was the most natural place in the world to be right then.


What is he doing? Does he think I didn't hear a click as he cocked that shotgun? That I didn't feel him coming towards the house, towards me, towards Mom? He asked me what was wrong. Who are you and what have you done with Spike? I cautiously looked up, looked at the man in the

(stolenbloody)

leather duster he was so goddamned proud of, and there he was, glaring at me with all the cruelty his pride could dredge up, and all I could think to say was, "What do you want now?" I stared up at him. And I saw something strange. It was like Spike grew a conscience while I was looking at him. He relaxed his jaw and the furious expression faded into what? confusion? fear? curiosity? and he spoke up again. I could have laughed. Fate loves me; she loves to kick me around and make sure I never have a moment's surety of where I stand in life. Spike, concerned about me? Worried? What a joke. I tried carefully to conceal any emotion. Only in my head, I answered him. No, you can't help, my mother's got something wrong with her and I can't kill it, I don't know what to do, I don't know where to go, who to ask. Nobody can help me, and I'm so scared I I what is he doing? He sat down next to me on the stairs and set the shotgun down and Spike, pet vampire in residence, frustrated killer and largest single consumer of Sun-In on the entire west coast, he reached out and patted my back. Now I knew something had gone wrong. Some Gypsies came by and cursed him with a soul too, something, anything. I stared off into the distance, and he stopped. I almost missed the contact when it's gone; it was Spike, but it was something.


She's ignoring me, I guess. The part of my head that was incoherent with rage stopped paying attention too as soon as I put the shotgun down. Just as well. I could never hurt her like this now. Should've never gotten to know her at all. It'd be much easier to kill her later, when I get this damned chip out, if I didn't know about her. Didn't know all of her friends, didn't know she couldn't play eight ball worth a damn, didn't know the color of her eyes and how big they look in her face when she's mourning the death of yet another dream, didn't know a thing about her didn't desperately need to know her better, know why she's hurting or want to know how to make it okay again. I sighed, and she sighed at the same time.


He's still here. I don't get it. Do crying females turn him on? Psychos like Dru and crybabies like me. Whatever.


She's stopped sniffling. Maybe that's a good sign. Could be she's just broken up with that pathetic nancy boy, perhaps? No that was desperation and horror and misery on her face when she looked up, and it wasn't because of the boytoy. Something's gone seriously wrong in Buffy's world tonight. I cleared my throat, tried to speak. It came out in that same voice again. William's voice. My bad-assitude has deserted me in my moment of need.

"Do you want something to drink? I- I could make you some tea."

Way to go, Tiger. Tea. Ooooooh, what a manly man you are, protecting the womenfolk with a fierce cup of Orange Pekoe. Bloody hell.

She sniffed once more, still looking off into the backyard. Quietly. "Thank you, Spike. That would be nice." No spunk, though. Got to get to the bottom of this. She stretched her legs out and slowly came to her feet on the bottom step, turning to face the house as if it was something horrific to contemplate. She dropped her gaze and stared at the floor of the porch instead. I came to my feet as well, and took the stairs in one step, boots clomping on the wooden stairs. She still hadn't taken a step by the time I turned to look, still lost in her thoughts, so I interrupted. "Coming, pet? Or shall I just make tea for me and Mum, and we can sit and discuss your Slayerly exploits over biscuits?" She blinked at me and for a moment came to the surface: "Bite me, Spike. I'm coming." And she stepped up and across the porch in a few swift, economical movements and disappeared into the kitchen.


He followed me in. I thought he was kidding. Oh well. Might as well get this stupid tea fetish of his out of the way, then I can kick him out and think. Oh, I'd better check with Mom. "Be right back, Spike, you know where the, uh, tea paraphernalia is." I dashed out of the room and ran upstairs to Mom's room, where she was just finishing up her packing.

"Buffy, do you mind driving me to the hospital and dropping me off? Ah, the doctor said that I shouldn't really drive myself. He said it would be a while before they can fit me in, and then I'll need to sleep. They're giving me some medication or something while they, ah, while they wait on test results." She swallowed, and continued. "You should stay home and get some sleep and then come by the hospital in the morning after Dawn goes to school." Mom smiled at me, kind of timidly, like she didn't know how that would go over. She should've known better.

"Mom, I'm going to stay there with you. Both Dawn and I are going to be there for you," I amended, and crossed the room and smiled brightly. "It's going to be like a sleepover. Did you pack chocolates and nail polish and smutty novels? Well, smutty novels for you and me. Teen Beat for Dawn. Or maybe Weekly World News, I think she likes that kind of stuff more than N'Sync. Siamese twins and poltergeists and Elvis sightings." I'm babbling now.

She smiles again, that funny little smile that I've always suspected means something like "ha, ha, but we're still doing it my way." But this time I'm going to get my way. I'm not going to just ditch her at that awful hospital, with all the sick people. Because she's not sick: she's not like them. She's just not.


I prowled around the kitchen for a bit, snooping a little, and occasionally rattling the teakettle to keep Buffy from thinking I was up to no good and dropping in unannounced. Found some prescription medication bottles with Joyce's name on them, and raised a brow at that. Sick mum?

Finally the water boiled and the teakettle whistled its shrill wail. It startled me and I nearly dropped the framed picture I had been examining. It was the Slayer, with some of her pals, taken recently. Willow's hair was shorter and Xander had that perpetually goofy grin on, and both of them had their arms looped around Buffy, who was smiling and looking at someone off to the side. I thought that the photo would look better in my collection than it would on the kitchen windowsill, and slipped the frame into the pocket of my duster before turning off the flame under the kettle.

"Mom, don't be silly." Buffy came into the kitchen suddenly, talking to her mother who was, presumably, following behind her. True to form, Joyce came through the door immediately after her daughter. I grabbed the teakettle and moved to pour the water into the pot and add tea leaves. But I had to protect my image, and being a bloody tea- drinking poofter was not high on my list of priorities. So I made a condescending face and poked the Slayer rudely on her arm. She twisted around, mouth in a pouty moue surprised I was still here, I suppose. So I pushed the tea tin into her hands and said "You know how to make tea, I know how to boil water. My part's done." Then I caught a peek at Joyce and the pouf took control of me: I pulled a chair out for her to sit down in. "You've time for a cup of tea before you head to," I nodded at the duffel bag in her hands, "wherever you're going, don't you?"

Joyce is such a kind woman it's a mystery to me how a spoilt brat like Buffy is related to her. She answered me quite graciously and sat down. "I'd love a cup of tea; thank you, Spike. I'm, ah, I'm headed to the hospital. Buffy's going to drop me off so they can poke more needles into me." She smiled, but there was something in her face I don't recall seeing before.


Jeez. What a headcase. First he's all sweet to me in a bizarre way, of course outside and then he almost dumps boiling water on me in an effort to be all chivalrous to my mom. Wonder if he has a crush on her or something ewww! I can't believe I just thought that!


The strange expression faded and Joyce smiled up at me, eyes twinkling merrily. "Although I suppose you might prefer hot chocolate with those little marshmallows, I don't think we have any. Oh, thank you, Buffy," she continued as Buffy leaned over to pour her a cup of tea. I got a view of a rather nice backside before the Slayer stood back up and shot me a dirty look. "What?" I smirked openly at her as she slammed the teapot back to the kitchen counter.

"Spike." She smiled testily, and obviously fakely, for her mother's benefit. "It was very nice of you to make tea for mom and me, but now," she looked pointedly towards the door, "we need to be off to the hospital."

"Oh, it was no problem a'tall," I answered breezily, wandering back over to the photos and picking one up at random. "You have such a lovely home, Mrs. Summers." She blushed and thanked me, before finishing her cup of tea. "We'd better get going, Buffy. I need to be there before the shift change so my doctor can see me."

Buffy gritted her teeth and stared at me, but as her back was turned towards the kitchen door, Joyce didn't see. "Spike, want to walk out with us?"

"Oh, no, I can just let myself out here in the back, can't I?" I smiled at her.

"Of course you can," Joyce answered warmly. "Feel free to drop by any time, Spike." She exited the kitchen towards the front of the house.

Buffy narrowed her eyes and looked at me. "You're going to let yourself out?"

"Sure, pet." I was really enjoying this by now. "I've got places to be, asses to be kicking now, haven't I?"

"Whatever." She continued to look suspiciously at me as she backed out of the room after her mother.