In My Bathroom

In My Bathroom


Chapter 13:

Spike began to wonder if maybe he was destined to have permanent brain damage as he flew back and hit his head on the floor.How times do you have to hit your head before you start forgetting things? He wondered.

Angel seemed pissed and it was probably because he didn't know that Spike was pulling for the bad guys. Angel was just shaking him at this point, but Spike knew that punches weren't to far away. It was a brilliant time to start having one of the chip induced headaches.

"If you laid a hand on them I swear you'll be even deader then you are now." Angel said as he shook Spike again.

Why was he doing that? Shouldn't he be throwing me out only so I can come back in with the key that Buffy leaves around the flowerpot for Dawn? Angel thought. His crew had stayed out of the way and backed up on the porch.

"If you ever come near Buffy or Dawn again I will kill you. What are you doing here anyway? Shouldn't you be out killing some innocent people?" Angel asked not letting go of Spike's shirt. Spike couldn't answer because of the searing pain in his head.

"Aren't you going to answer me?" Angel asked in a low scary voice.

"Hey people are trying to relax over here. It would be nice if. hey who the fuck are you and why are you on top of Spike?" Maddy asked. She could hear the pounding in the basement and came upstairs to see what it was about.

"I could ask the same question about you." Angel said.

"Yeah well I'm a guest in this house. I don't think Buffy or anyone for that matter would approve of you beating up Spike. He's been through a lot." Maddy said.

"What are you talking about? Buffy would be happy that I helped her get rid of this piece of scum." Angel said pointing to Spike. He hadn't noticed that Spike didn't seem to be moving. Angel really hadn't hit him that hard.

"Actually she's quite right on the pissed off part." Buffy said. She was standing on the bottom stair slightly glaring at Angel. He had brought the whole cavalry that was for sure.

"Buffy what are you talking about?" Angel was very confused at this point.

"It's all right. I'll explain everything in a minute. Everyone can come in you know."

"I think they were a little scared and didn't want to get involved with the pounding that was going on." Maddy said.

"How bad is this one?" Buffy said trying to hide her worry for a little bit longer. Maddy could sense it coming of her in waves and knew why she was hiding it. She didn't want the other vampire to find out before she had a chance to explain.

"They're getting pretty bad. Not sure I can wake him up from this one. Those damn initiative guys need to get here fast. Won't be much longer before this chip problem gets too huge we can't handle it." Maddy said as she examined Spike.

"Okay well put him in bed and do the best you can. He needs to get his energy. Did he have any blood today?"

"A packet or two. He's getting a little hostile about the being babied."

"If you wake him up shove the blood down his throat if you have to. He needs his strength."

"Right Oi ma'am!" Maddy said as she picked up Spike and carried him upstairs.

Everyone who stood in the doorway was a little stunned. Well in all honesty they were completely stunned, especially Cordy, Angel and Wes.

"Okay so come in and I'll explain all the weirdness that has been going on in Sunnydale." Buffy watched as the group of people filed inside. Some she knew and some she didn't. There was even a big green demon dressed in a tacky suit. Finally Wes came in and Buffy saw her.

"Faith I didn't know that you'd be making a guest appearance." Buffy said.

"What can I say, B. They need my help so they broke me out of prison."

"Well isn't that nice. Angel failed to mention that on the phone." Buffy said turning to look at Angel. He was sitting in one of the chairs.

"Well there were a few things you managed to forget on the phone as well. Like this whole Spike thing." Angel said with his arms crossed over his chest. After a moment of calmness Angel smelled Spike all over Buffy. Sure he knew they hadn't slept together, but his smell was all over her and that doesn't just happen by accident.

"The Spike situation is very simple. The army put a chip in his head. He became a good guy then went and got his soul." Buffy said.

"Well everyone just has a soul now." Angel said in a voice that sounded like a pouting child.

"He's a good guy and he's going through a lot right now. His chip is malfunctioning causing him to feel a searing pain in his head. It's been happening more often now and we have generally avoided touching his head. Slightest touch sets it off." Buffy said.

"Well thank you for that lovely story, but mind telling us why we're here." Said a boy that Buffy didn't know. He looked Maddy's age.

"Fairly simple as well. Willow went off the deep end with magic and is causing some very bad things to happen. We need the champions and according to the coven Angel is one of them."

"That would be right, Buff." Cordy said.

"So what do you want us to do? This sounds like it has a lot to do with magic. Not exactly our area of expertise." A black guy said. Buffy didn't know him either.

"Willow has joined forces with some very powerful demons. I think that she sent the one that came after you. Big rock looking demon." Buffy said.

"That'd be our guy." Angel said.

"I think it would be best to join forces on this one. We could use the muscle on this fight. There's going to be a combination of magic and demons and I have the magic front covered. We need some more strength which is where you guys come in. Research is barely getting done because we don't have the best lookers. Wes should be good with that." Buffy said.

"He can help out Giles and the others. Tonight shouldn't be about that though. Just get settled in and we'll go to the Magic Box tomorrow and do the whole 'how you been what's what thing.' I don't have much room. A spare bed and the living room are about all I can offer. You can try and see if you can bunk with Maddy, but I doubt she'd want you to." Buffy said.

"Well that should be easy. Cordy, Fred, and Faith can take the room. Us guys will sleep out here." Angel said.

"Fine I'll get you some blankets."

"Already accomplished. Figured you'd need them so I grabbed them when I was looking for towels." Maddy said as she jumped down over the banister.


"He's good. Up at least. Cracked a joke so I think he'll be fine. Had a nasty cut on his head though. Healed it right up."


"So this the cavalry?"


"Seem strong enough. Demon hunter, vampire, smart, Watcher, part-demon, slayer, and I don't know what's going on with the kid, but he's strong. And you're an anagogic demon aren't you. From let me guess. Pylea. Am I right?" Maddy asked Lorne.

"You know about Pylea?" Lorne asked.

"Yeah been there once. Couldn't stomach it that much though. Came in touch with a lot of clans there."

"Oh how interesting."

"Do you do magic?"

"I dabble."

"Interesting. Well I better get some sleep. See all of you at the Magic Box tomorrow." Maddy said as she made her way back to the basement.

"Make yourselves comfortable. Cordy, Fred, Faith follow me." Buffy walked up the stairs with the three girls following behind her.

"So Buffy there is just so much that we have to catch up on." Cordy said. She was glad to see Buffy again even though she pretended that she didn't care about her when they first meet. Those days were behind her. She was the new and improved Cordy now.

"Yeah I know, Cordy. Tonight is about sleep though. You guys must be tired."

"Yeah we are. I'm so sorry to hear about your mom. She was such a cool, nice lady." Cordy said. She never got to tell Buffy that to her face. She remembered Angel going to Sunnydale to comfort Buffy about it.

"Yeah thanks. You'll be sleeping in her room. It used to be Willow's.well now it's not." Buffy said as she opened the door to the room that they would sleep in.

"Well good night. I have tomorrow off and we'll be heading to the Magic Box. Giles and Anya own the shop."

"Okay we really need to catch up." Cordy said.

"Sure, but right now I'm really tired and all that. Life of a working adult." Buffy said.

"Okay well we better let you get back to your business, B." Faith said. There was something in her tone that made it sound like going to bed was wrong.

"Yeah okay, Faith, um I'll be going now." Buffy said as she turned around and walked to her room. She walked in without looking back at the girls that were sleeping in her mother's old room. She looked over to her bed to see Spike sleeping. He always looked so innocent when he slept. Buffy felt like she was on autopilot as she walked over to their bed. He was rolled on his side of the bed.

It was funny how they had only been sleeping in the same bed for a week and they already had sides. He slept on the left and she slept on the right. She knew that he needed his sleep, but she so desperately wanted to shake him awake. She got dressed in pajamas and got ready for bed. After debating with herself on what she should do she decided to wake him up.

"Hey Spike can you wake up please?" Buffy whispered in his ear. He groaned and moved a little.

"Come on please wake up we need to talk."

"Wha' luv?" Spike asked sleepily.

"Are you okay baby?" Buffy said with her voice filled with concern that she had been keeping in.

"Yeah, Peaches was jus' shakin' me. Hit my head on the floor an' thas' what started the headache."

"Oh he shouldn't have done that. What was he thinking?"

"That I was a big bad vampire out ta kill you." Spike said propping himself up on his elbows.

"Well you aren't. Anyway I didn't straight out tell him that we're. you know, but he'll figure it out soon."

"If he already wasn't."

"What do you mean?"

"Vampires have a big sense of smell."


"Buffy we've been sleeping in the same bed for quite some time now. My scent is all over you."

"And here I thought that I smelled like the Doublemeat Palace."

"So Peaches knowing that there's somethin' between us doesn't bother you?"

"Hello Spike remember that conversation we had this morning. I don't care what he thinks. That point in my live is over."

"Okay comin' in loud an' clear. So why did you wake me up from my joyous slumber?"

"Just had to make sure you were okay and I need to hear your voice."

"Well I'm okay, luv."

"Good because I don't want to have to beat up Angel.

"You would be up Angel for me?" Spike said with an incredulous tone in his voice.

Buffy looked at him. "Of course I would. No one beats up my boyfriend and gets away with it."

"'M your boyfriend?" Spike said with a shocked look on his face.

"Didn't your mother tell you if you keep making faces it will stay like that?" Buffy said outlining his brow with her fingers.

"Sorry luv, 's jus' a lot of information to take in five seconds." Spike said.

"It's okay. But you are you know that right."

"Are what?"

"My boyfriend silly vampire." Buffy said.

"Know that now. Come on pet why don't we go to sleep. I can get my smell all over you."

"That a good thing or a bad thing?"

"A good thing. Proves that you're mine."

"I'm yours huh?"

"Yeah right?"

"Yeah I guess I am." Buffy said as she lay down next to him. Spike pulled her close to him and her head rested on his chest. Her legs and arms wrapped around him while he held her with his right arm.

"Mmm nice Spike-smell." Buffy said as they drifted to sleep.


"Why can't I go?" Spike complained. He had been arguing with Buffy about going to the Magic Box for at least ten minutes now.

"Because I don't think that there's room in the cars we are taking and you're still a little."

"You say weak and I swear I'll."

"What, Spiky, there's nothing you can do to me."

"I seem ta remember being able ta hit you."

"Now baby I know that you wouldn't hit me." Buffy said rolling her eyes at him.

"Oh really."

"Yes you big kitty cat. You love me too much."

"Full of your self much, Slayer."

"Oh come on, Spike both of us know that you wouldn't." Spike groaned in frustration and sat on the bed. He ran his fingers through his hair. God did he look so good when his hair was all up and spiky. She wished she could be his hands.

No Buffy! You are trying to calm him down and tell him why he can't go to the Magic Box. No sex thoughts. She mentally chastised herself.

Buffy walked over to him, grabbed his hand and sat on his lap.

"I just want you to be safe." Buffy said. Spike tried desperately not to put his arms around her, but he failed. In the end one arm was wrapped around her back and the other came to rest in her lap.

"If 'm gonna be in this fight I need to know the plans." Spike said.

"I know but don't you think that I could just tell you the plans? That way you don't go out and I don't have to worry about you."

"You're worryin' 'bout me too much. Let me live a little. I 'aven't killed anythin' in over four months. Gettin' cabin fever over 'ere, Summers."

"It's just if you go out then you run the risk of getting hurt. I can't be there to save you all the time. I just want to know that you're safe."

"Buffy I can take care 'f myself. I don't need my bodyguard around all the time. Demons an' such will think 'm gettin' soft. Already datin' the slayer. I need to hang on ta some of the Big Bad image. You know for my sake."

"It's just I don't want you hurt. Can't you just become one of those whipped boyfriends?"

"Buffy I think that I already am."

"Well then listen to me on this one." Buffy said. Now she was getting frustrated.

"Luv, I know this may upset you, but I should go. I need ta feel useful. Can you understand that?" Buffy thought for a second. She knew that people needed to feel useful and she understood were Spike was coming from. She just hated the idea of him getting hurt from anything.

"Yeah I guess. Can you understand that I don't want you to get hurt?"

"Yes, pet. 'S the same way I feel 'bout you. So where does that leave us on the whole 'me going ta the Magic Box'?"

"I guess, but like I said how are you going to get there. Not any room in Angel's car or your Desoto. Besides the sun is out." Buffy said. She was hoping that he would see the logic and be defeated.

"'S called the sewers, kitten."

"You are so not going down there alone."

"So I won't. Send someone with me."

"I'll go with you."

"Who's gonna guide the new guys ta the shop?" Buffy thought about it for a second and then her lips formed into a pout realizing he was right.

"All right then Maddy's going with you."

"Okay. Actually like 'er."

"Okay then that solves it. I'll tell her that she's doing. Get dressed."


Buffy stepped out of the room and Spike looked for some clothes. He decided to put on some black jeans, a black muscle shirt and a red dress shirt to go on top of it. He put on his combat boots and duster and was ready for Buffy and Maddy to come up to the room.

Buffy walked down stairs and searched for Maddy. There were just too many people in the house. Dawn had already gone to school. Of course she pouted, but Buffy put her foot down. Buffy walked into the kitchen and saw Gunn and Wes sitting on the stools that surrounded the island in the middle.

"Have you guys seen Maddy?" Buffy asked.

"I think that she was in her room. Buffy it seems that we have a problem. The sun is up and Angel doesn't know how to get around in the sewers." Wes said.

"Well now this is going to sound a little weird, but he can go with Maddy and Spike." Buffy said.

"Why is Maddy going?" Gunn asked.

"I don't want Spike to go alone and Maddy is very powerful." Buffy said.

"Well how do we keep Angel and Spike from killing each other?" Wes asked.

"Well Spike won't kill Angel, but I don't know about Angel." Buffy said.

"You could always use a spell." Maddy said. She was standing in the doorway to the basement.

"What kind of spell, because Spike doesn't."

"Like magic I know. Simple confining spell. Keeps the two from touching each other and if I put a little oomph to it, it keeps the sun from getting to them."

"You're going to use magic?" a voice from the other side of the kitchen said. Everyone turned to see Connor standing there.

"Yeah no big."

"Magic is dangerous. Hasn't anyone learned that from this little fiasco?"

"Hey I've been doing magic since I was like two. No harm in it. Magic's in my blood so don't be afraid of me going of the deep end."

"Whatever magic's a bad idea."

"Yeah okay whatever yourself kid. Just get the two in here and I'll do a quick spell."

"Sure now if I can find Angel. Shouldn't be too hard. Not a very big house." Buffy said as she wandered around to look for Angel.

"So coffee made or what?" Maddy said as she took a seat at one of the stools.

"No I don't think so. Donuts though." Gunn said.

"Why don't you explain to us your magical line." Wes said.

"Nothing much to tell. My mom came from a long line of wiccas and she passed it down to me." Maddy said looking for a glazed donut.

"Why did you go to Pylea?" Gunn said.

"Just a visit. As part of the coven." Maddy said as she took a bit of her donut.

"Couldn't pay me to go there again. Hated it." Gunn said.

"Well it was more of a 'gather information thing'. We didn't stay that long." Maddy, Wes and Gunn continued their conversation while Connor stood in the doorway listening in.

Something about Maddy didn't rub him the right way. She was pretty, but there was something about her. He looked at her. She was wearing black Dickies, a white wife-beater shirt, Converse shoes, and black leather jacket. Her hair was dyed all different colors and it was straightened. She wasn't wearing any makeup. She seemed like a normal girl, but there was just something about her.

"I better go see if I can find out what is taking Buffy and the vampires so long." Maddy said getting up and finishing her third donut. She got up and walked to the doorway only to be stopped because Connor was in the way.

"Okay move kid."

"Why are you calling me that?"

"Calling you what?"

"Kid. I'm as old as you."

"Because technically if you didn't go to a hell dimension you'd be like a year old. Any more questions?" Connor answered by moving. Maddy walked up the stairs and looked around. She spotted Angel and Buffy in an argument.

"Buff, I don't want to go with him."

"Angel you sound like a two year old. Face facts."

"Buffy I know that you two are seeing each other or something like that. It hurts too much."

"Angel there's no way that you can get to the Magic Box without going with them. You won't have to talk to Spike, just follow him and Maddy. Angel I know that this must be hard for you, but we were over a long time ago. I have to move on with my life."

"But with Spike. He's tried to kill you."

"So have you. Look Angel you may not approve, but it isn't your decision to make. You aren't the person who makes my life decisions." "Buffy I know that, but I don't want you to make a bad choice."

"Mistakes are what life is all about. Besides Spike loves me and would never hurt me. I know that. Just accept that soon or pretend like you do."

Angel had a defeated look on his face. There was no way to convince Buffy that Spike was a bad guy and not the one for her. Although neither was he so what did he know. He knew that he loved her, but it wasn't that same kind of love. Maddy saw that they were done fighting and decided to announce her presence.

"Hey there you are. Geez that cavalry is getting restless. We told Giles we'd be there at ten and it's already ten past ten."

"Okay we're going." Buffy said. She walked inside her room. Maddy wasn't sure what to say to the vampire. He seemed so distraught. Maddy decided that it would be better to just stay quiet. Buffy came out dragging Spike by the arm.

"Pet, I don't need magic to get to the sewers. Jus' a good blanket."

"It's not only a spell to keep the sun from getting to you, but also to keep anything from hurting you."

"You're babyin'."

"Yes and so. Just do it if you love me. Besides Angel's going with you and I so don't need you two fighting."

"All right do the bloody spell."

"Okay, Maddy."

"All right well I hate to do this, but Angel and Spike have to..."

"Have to what." Angel said with a dangerous tone in his voice.

"Have to hold hands."

"What!?" Angel yelled

"No! No! No!" Spike screamed.

"It's only for a couple of minutes."

"No! What part of No don't you get." Spike said.

"Yes I'm with Bleach Boy on this one."

"All right well if you don't do it on your own accord then," A bright green light shoot out of Maddy's hand. It turned into a rope and tied Angel and Spike together.

"Hey untie me." Angel said.

"I told you that I would do this the hard way if I was forced to." Maddy said in an 'I told you so' voice.

"This is jus' great." Spike mumbled.

"It's no better for me." Angel said loudly.

"Both of you stop acting like two-year-olds or I will turn you into toads. Quit your jabbering I have to concentrate." Maddy said in a serious tone that dared anyone to argue with her.

Maddy closed her eyes and started to mutter words in Latin. A blinding white light shone through the hallway for about a minute before dissipating. The four people in the hall blinked a few times before their eyes readjusted to dim hall light.

"Well that was. bright." Buffy said.

"Did it work?" Angel asked impatiently. He didn't want to be tied up to Spike any longer then he had to be.

"I don't know. We could check." Maddy said walking down the stairs.

"Well how s'actly are we gonna do that?" Spike called after her.

"Follow me." Maddy said.

"We're still tied together." Angel said. Suddenly the ropes became lose and untied on their own.

"Well I guess that solves that problem." Angel said as he made his way down the stairs as well.

Buffy came over to Spike and wrapped her arm around his.

"Do you feel okay? No weird spell after effects?"

"Everythin' feels the same. Don't know if the spell worked yet." Spike said.

"Maddy doesn't seem like the type to have a mix up with magic." Buffy said trying to reassure him that he had done the right thing.

"Yeah she really doesn't, but still." Spike said getting lost in thought. Magic had never been very good to him.

"Well I guess we'll just have to wait and see." Buffy said leading him down the stairs to join the others. As soon as they got to the last step Maddy ran over to them.

"There you guys are. We were about to do the test." Maddy said as she pulled Buffy away from Spike.

"Stand right here, Buffy. Spike don't move." Maddy ordered as she picked up a small battle-axe and twirled it around.

"What're you gonna do wif' that?" Spike asked looking at Maddy curiously.

"Buffy call the Calvary over here. Tell them we're just about to take off." Maddy said. Buffy looked at Maddy with the same curiosity, but did as she said. Within minutes everyone was assembled in the doorway of the dining room.

"Kid come here for a second." Maddy said motioning to Connor.

"I have a name you know." Connor said as he walked over to Maddy.

"What do you want me to do?" Connor asked.

A devious look passed over Maddy's expression for just a second. Anyone who wasn't looking at her wouldn't have noticed it, but Spike was. He suddenly realized what kind of stunt she was pulling. He smirked in kind and went back to listening to her talk.

"Well I would like you to hit Spike with this axe." Maddy said in a matter- of-factly tone.

"Why what did he do?" Connor asked in a skeptical tone.

"Nothing at all. We're checking his reflexes after his chip episode. To see if he's strong still and alert." Maddy said lying easily.

"Okay." Connor said shrugging and picking up the axe. He advanced towards Spike, lifted the axe in the air and was about to swing when some unseen force knocked him backwards.

"Well I guess the spell worked." Maddy said barely containing her laughter. She and Spike were wearing identical grins.

"You set me up?" Connor said picking himself up from the ground.

"Well I had to check if the spell was working." Maddy said innocently.

"Still that wasn't very nice Maddy." Buffy said.

"Yeah I would say that it was bad." Spike said trying to look serious when he was on the verge of cracking up.

"I'm sorry. I just had to see if it worked." Maddy said.

"Yeah well you didn't have to use Connor as a demonstration." Angel said angrily.

"It was really low." Connor said brushing himself off.

"What can I say. I'm the Queen of Low."


"Are we almost there?" Angel asked for what seemed like the millionth time.

"Almost, Peaches." Spike said in an irritated tone.

"It seems like we've been down here for hours. Are you sure you know how to get there?" Angel asked.

"I've only been there a billion times. Don't question me. I know what 'm doin'." Spike said looking back at Angel. Maddy was trailing right behind him.

"Can't you two just get along a little bit?" Maddy asked.

"No we can't." Spike said as he kicked an empty soda can.

"Yeah what he said." Angel said.

"You guys are like two year olds. Never mind I'm insulting two year olds." Maddy said.

"Can we jus' get there wifout talkin'?" Spike asked.

"Geez Mister Grouchy. Buffy really needs to let you out more." Maddy said.

"S'not her choice 'bout when I get ta go out. I've jus' been... weaker then usual." Spike said.

"Sure whatever you say. Look I just don't see why you guys hate each other so much." Maddy said nonchalantly.

"Maybe because he's annoying and has to have everything that's mine." Angel mumbled.

"Vamp hearin', Peaches and I think you got that the other way around." Spike said.

"Right that's why you're with Buffy." Angel said bitterly.

Spike turned around and glared at Angel. If looks could kill then Angel would have been very dusty by now.

"If you think for one second that 'm wif' Buffy ta get your knickers in a twist you are sadly mistaken. 'Sides I wasn't the one who stole the girl from you. She hasn't been yours in a good long while Peaches. Dru on the other hand was mine when you took her away from me. 'S always been that way, Angelus." Spike said turning around and continuing his journey to the Magic Box.

Angel stood there a little dumbstruck before Maddy's voice shook him out of it.

"Well I guess he told you, huh?" Angel glanced over to her then back to Spike's back.

"Yeah I guess he did." He said continuing to follow Spike.

"So what's with the cold shoulders you two give each other?" Maddy asked when she caught up to Angel.

"It goes back very far. Stuff I really don't feel like discussing." Angel said walking a little faster.

"Hey I'm all for secrets. Secrets make things a lot more interesting, but it would seem to me that you do a little too much brooding." Maddy said as she practically ran to keep up with him.

"It's my thing." Angel said.

"Yeah that and hair gel." Spike hollered to them. He was a good five feet away from them.

"Didn't your mother ever tell you that listening to other people's conversations was rude." Angel said snidely.

"Yeah, but what do I care 'bout rude." Spike said.

"See what I have to put up with?" Angel asked turning to Maddy for support.

"Oh she won't support you. Your logic is on'y half cocked." Spike argued.

"You're both nuts. Come on your like at least a hundred years old and yet you act like five-year-olds. Blaming everything on the other one. That's kindergarten and I would say children after that, but I'm only eighteen and you guys are like a century older then me so it wouldn't be right. Get over it already. What ever pent up regression you have towards each other just let it freaking out already. It's getting annoying listening to you bicker. It's not good to leave things bottled up for too long." Maddy said.

"It's his fault." Angel muttered under his breath.

"Oh my God! I can't believe you two. I need to be around some real grown- ups." Maddy said as she walked past Angel and Spike.

"S'not my fault." Spike said.

"Yes it is."


"Is too."

"Whatever, 'm gonna go ta the Magic Box." Spike said as he threw his arms up in the air and strutted off. Arguing with Angel was pointless. They would never reach an agreement in this lifetime or any other for that matter.

Angel walked as Spike walked off. He wasn't sure what it was about Spike that made him act the way he did. It was a competition thing that didn't go away. It didn't help that he and Buffy were some sort of item. In the back of his head he had always thought that he and Buffy would live the happily ever after. So far that was not happening. Not that Angel had been complaining before.

Angel knew, if not consciously then subconsciously that he was over Buffy and had been for some time know. He didn't hold those same feelings that he used to hold. Things were different and he had been content in keeping them that way. Until he came back to this town. Maybe it was the town or the Hellmouth or maybe he just didn't like to see Spike happy. Whatever it was he would have to get over it fast.

"Hey wait up. I don't want to get lost." Angel called out to Maddy and Spike as he ran after them.

Chapter 14:

"So time for introduction." Buffy said when she saw Maddy, Spike, and Angel come up from the basement.

"Right are we going to do the whole touchy feel-y thing cause that's kinda not my style." Faith said.

"It's better if we do that. Let's get to know everyone." Buffy said.

"Whatever, B. You're the boss."

"Okay well let's start with you, Fred."

"Oh I was kinda caught of guard by that. Well my names Winfred Burkle. Everyone calls me Fred. Not really good with the demon fighting yet, but I'm great at research and stuff like that." Fred said. She turned to Gunn and he spoke up.

"Names Charles Gunn. Everyone calls me Gunn. Good with the demon fighting and I'm ready to kick some ass."

"Hem... there'll be no ass kicking to the witches or Willow." Xander said.

"Why she's evil isn't she?" Connor spoke up.

"It's far more complicated then that. The prophecies that we've found have indicated that there is a way to save Willow, but it will be at the cost of someone else." Anya said.

"Oh great so one of us dies to save someone evil. That's just great." Connor said.

"Connor, please try to be a little more sensitive. Remember what we talked about."

"Sure dad I just don't see why we have to sacrifice one of us for someone who clearly is unstable."

"Whoa did you just say dad." Xander said.

There were at least six pairs of eyes on Angel.

"Did I forget to mention that Connor is my son?" Angel said a little uneasily.

"Yeah you did. And I'm still wondering how the undead had a kid and if other undead members can have a kid." Xander said looking at Spike.

"Hey those boys aren't alive. Looks like you've got some explaining ta do Peaches." Spike said.

"Well it was sort of prophesized and all that. Two vampire having a baby." Angel was trying to explain Connor as best as he could.

"Wait there was another vampire? Who?" Buffy asked. This was new news to her.

"Darla." Angel said.

"I thought she was... wait no one ever stays dead." Buffy said plopping down on Spike's lap.

"How can you have sex without loosing your soul?" Anya said.

"It's all very complicated." Angel said rubbing his head.

"Okay let me see if I can explain this a bit. You were the one that was prophesied to have a baby as a vampire. The details were always a little sketchy, but it was always messed up with the one were the dad was supposed to kill the son. Of course that already happened a long time ago so... okay judging by your faces you accidentally mixed up the prophecies. Explaining a little bit why he's eighteen when he should be one and I'm rambling." Maddy said as she took a seat in one of the chairs.

"We could have used you when we were trying to figure out the right prophecy." Fred said trying to lighten the situation.

"No it's okay. Actually that was what was supposed to happen. Then the boy becomes the Destroyer faster. Although it must still be a touchy subject. So let's go back to the happy introductions and just accept the fact that Angel has a son and that's the kid over there." Maddy said.

"Is that my new nickname and is it going to stick." Connor asked his irritation coming through in waves.


"Dontcha think you should give the kid a break, Doll." Spike said.

"You just called me kid too." Connor said. He felt trapped with irritating people.

"Well I can. 'M much older then you."

"Yeah, but not older then my dad. I bet he could kick your scrawny..."

"I don't think you want to finish that sentence. Remember happy thoughts. Back to fun introductions. I want to some about you, Lorne." Buffy said trying to lighten the situation.

"Oh thanks for trying to change the subject, Sweetcakes." Lorne said.

"Just trying to help." Buffy said.

"This is a tough crowd though. I think that we should just get to the plan part of the meeting." Anya said.

"Yeah, but I just want to make sure that I know what everyone can do. You know be able to sort out people by their good qualities. Obviously Wes will help with the research and I guess Fred will help too, but I need to know everything about the group." Buffy said.

"Well, luv, it looks like, Peaches, Gunn, Faith and the kid are good at beating things. Everyone else can research or help Maddy out with the magic stuff." Spike said.

"Well not exactly. You're right about the fighting thing, but you forgot to add Wes and Cordy they're good fighters." Angel said.

"Yeah, but what 'm sayin' is that everyone helps with the research, but the big guns would be you four."

"Wait everyone helps with research. I didn't sign on for that." Gunn said.

"Well that's how things work. I mean there isn't always evil to fight." Xander said.

"But that's not how we work." Gunn said.

"Look getting testy isn't going to get us anywhere. If you don't want to research fine, but you'll just be sitting around." Buffy said.

"I thought that there would be a lot of evil on the Hellmouth. Stuff that we can fight." Connor said.

"Not all the time though. Try just training all day. That's what I used to do." Faith said.

Everyone was quiet for a second. "Okay so I'm not the greatest person to be giving advice to young minds, but he wanted something to do and I gave him an idea." Faith said.

"Look research is tedious, but it can be okay. You get used to it." Cordy said remembering all those nights she stood up with the Scoobies looking for information.

"Uh yes all the nights of staying up and looking for a shred of evidence in big books. Gotta love those days." Xander said.

Anya couldn't help, but feel a little jealous. Even though she was mad at Xander she still loved him. They were making progress with their relationship. It might be slow, but it was progress. Now his ex-girlfriend rolls into town and it was making her uncomfortable.

"Um anyway research isn't as boring and tedious as some might think. It's okay. Look if you guys don't want to research then you can train in the training room at the back of the store. It's big and has weapons and dummies." Buffy said.

"Sounds great why don't' we go and check it out." Gunn said to Connor.

"Sure." Was all he said as he followed Gunn into the training room.

"All right then I think that we should get started. Wesley and I will look at the more difficult texts that are in hard languages. Everyone else will look at the vengeance demon files. Anyone else want to join them in the training room?" Giles said.

"Yeah I think that I might do that." Faith said getting up and walking over to the training room.

"Okay so let's start looking at the texts." Buffy said as everyone made his or her way to the table. There were more then a dozen books on the table and each person grabbed one to get started.


It was almost three in the afternoon. At one point Angel had left to go to the training room to see if they were hungry and never came back. Anya had taken a break saying that someone had to run the store. Now the rest of the people sat in his or her seats with brows furrowed and heads about ready to explode.

"No Wesley that is not a symbol for a bird. It's a symbol for a dog."

"What would a dog have anything to do with our situation?"

"That is why it is clearly not the right text."

"I think it is if you would just realize that that is a bird."

"Will you blokes please shut up already? People are trying ta concentrate." Spike said. He was getting really frustrated with all the reading. He just wanted to hit something.

"Well this bloke won't realize that that is the symbol for a dog and not the right text."

"Oh bollocks. Give me the bloody book." Spike said walking over to the counter where Wes and Giles were standing. He looked at it for a couple of seconds and said.

"Well Rupes was right that it isn't the right text, but it innit a dog or a bird, 's the symbol for paradise." Spike said returning to his seat next to Buffy.

"Spike are you fluent in other languages specifically this one?" Giles asked.

"Well yeah. 'S actually a dead language that came from a language I do know, but 's practically the same."

"Hum we could use you. Please help us with the texts in the office." Wes said.

"But I was doing fine out here." Spike tried to protest.

"No buts Spike you are going to help us in the office and that's final." Giles said dragging Spike into the office.

"Help." Spike mouthed to Buffy.

"It's okay, honey. It's for good." Buffy said.

"I think it's safe to say that Spike is lost to the British alliance. Only god can save him now." Maddy said.

"Well I think he has a good idea. Just to help decipher text and not have to read these cryptic messages is a good thing. Damn why couldn't I learn any other languages." Xander said closing his book.

"Be careful with those Xander they're very old and D'Hoffran will get really pissed off if they are broken." Anya said. "Right okay I can do that. I think we need a break though." Xander said.

"Usually I don't complain about research, but now I have to say that I'm a little pooped." Fred said.

"I was pooped hours ago I just didn't want to say anything." Cordy said.

"Okay we'll break for food. Let's order pizza." Buffy said. Everyone agreed and Buffy got up and walked over to the phone. She was talking to the guy at the Pizza Hut when Dawn walked inside the Magic Box.

"Hey Dawnie, why don't you sit down and help with the work." Buffy said as she listened to the guy on the phone.

"Okay what can I help with?" Dawn said as she took a seat next to Maddy.

"You can help with making sure our brains don't explode all over the carpet." Maddy said jokingly.

"Well how am I supposed to do that?" Dawn said deciding to play along.

"You can get big buckets. Really big buckets."

"I don't know if we have any, but I promise to look." Dawn said.

"Actually we were taking a little break from the research, Dawnster." Xander said.

"Yeah, breaks are good." Fred said.

"Oh hi, you must be one of the people that Angel brought. I'm Dawn, Buffy's sister." Dawn said extending her hand so the girl could shake it.

"I'm Fred. Nice to meet you." Fred said accepting Dawn's hand. Dawn looked at the green demon with horns with a curious look on her face.

"Hi Sweetie I'm Lorne. Don't worry I'm a good guy." Dawn nodded.

"Hi Cordy. It's been awhile." Dawn said. She had always liked Cordelia. She had been nice, but could be a bitch when she wanted to be.

"Yeah it's great to see you to. Sorry that you aren't out having fun, but duty calls right."

"Well you were doing this stuff at my age and you weren't even related to anyone." Dawn said.

"Where is everyone else? I only saw a few people this morning, but this isn't everyone." Dawn said after a minute of silence.

"Mostly everyone is in the training room trying to avoid the research." Maddy said.

"Well don't they have the best ideas? It's too bad that I don't have any strength because then I'd have an excuse. Where's Spike?"

"Well he was recruited to work for the stuffy old British alliance. They are congregating in Giles's office right now." Xander said.

"Oh he must hate that." Dawn said.

"Yes I think that the right word to describe it was fear actually. Like a frightened cat that was being dragged away by awful people. It was funny and sad at the same time. Hopefully he doesn't start to lose it with the chip because I'm getting tired of bringing him out of a state of catatonia. Takes a lot of patience and that's not my best virtue." Maddy said.

"Okay well pizza should be here in a little bit. Maddy why don't you go tell the little warriors in the training room that it's coming. They should be pretty hungry by now." Buffy said.

"Sure send me on the scary mission. Thanks ever so much." Maddy said sarcastically.

"Just do it."

"Alright I'm getting up." Maddy said as she walked over to the training room.

She opened the door to see to sparring matches going on. One was Faith and Angel and the other was Gunn and Connor. Faith and Angel appeared to just be messing around, but Gunn and Connor looked like that they were really going at it. Gunn was losing, but Maddy assumed that they didn't call Connor the Destroyer for nothing. Maddy cleared her throat loudly and everyone stopped fighting.

"Buffy order some pizzas and she want me to ask you if you guys want any." Maddy said.

"Sure we could use something to eat." Faith said.

"Um do you want to some blood? I'm sure there's some in the fridge they have here." Maddy said looking at Angel.

"Yeah I guess I could go for some. A little after everyone is done eating though would be better." Angel said.

"Yeah don't want to gross anyone out." Maddy said.

"So I take it that the research was a little less then exciting." Gunn said.

"Well it was tedious, but it seemed like you guys were having fun in here." Maddy said.

"Yeah well training comes naturally to us so it isn't a big deal. You guys are the brains and we'll be the brawn." Connor said.

"Oh you don't think I could be the brawn. Could kick your sorry ass." Maddy said.

"Oh little witch has got a pair on her." Faith said.

"I wouldn't want to hurt you and you wouldn't want to break a nail now would you." Connor said.

"Oh puh-lease. You think just because you were prophesied about that makes you some big shot." Maddy said.

"Okay kids let's stop with the arguing. You both are pretty powerful in your own ways." Angel said. He didn't think Maddy knew what she was getting into. Connor was almost stronger then him.

"You don't think that I'm strong enough to take the kid. Well you'd be wrong there." Maddy said.

"So why don't you prove it." Connor said.

"That a challenge cause I never back down from a challenge."

"Well then it's a challenge. Although you can't use magic cause that would be unfair."

"Oh then how am I going to fight the big bad kid?" Maddy said sarcastically.

"The old fashion way." Both got in their fighting stances.

"I really shouldn't be fighting in these boots, but I'll make an exception."

"Oh afraid you'll mess them up when I kick your ass."

"Right cause you're so scary."

"Angel don't you think that you should stop this. You know Connor's pretty strong." Gunn whispered to Angel.

"Yeah well she'll just have to find that out on her own." Angel said hoping that Connor wouldn't hurt her too badly.

"Don't underestimate the chick. Looks like short stick will be able to fight for herself." Faith said.

She didn't really like Connor all that much, but she tolerated him. She was really hoping that Maddy kicked his ass even though she didn't know how that could even happen. She had seen Connor fight and knew that he was pretty good.

"Okay so no magic right?" Connor said.

"If that's the way you want to play the game then no magic." Maddy said.

"I don't know if I can hit a girl." Connor said.

"Well let me make it easier on you." Maddy said. She punched Connor in the face and then back away.

"So are you going to fight back or what. This is really getting boring." Maddy said.

"Oh I think that I can manage." Connor set of his attack. He tried to punch, but Maddy blocked each one.

"Come on a few punches is all you got. I know you can do better then that." Maddy said. It was too easy and she knew he was holding back.

"I told you it isn't nice to hit a girl. Just give me a second to get warmed up over here." Connor said.

He was throwing some of his most powerful punches and she was blocking all of them. Connor decided that this was no time to hold back. He threw a couple of punches and a few landed, but they didn't seem to faze her. She started to punch him as well. Her punches actually hurt more then Connor expected. He had thought that they wouldn't hurt at all, but they stung an awful lot.

Connor made an attempt to trip her, but she jumped in the air to escape the trip. When she was back on the ground she kicked him in the stomach did a kick turn and kicked him again then backhanded him affectively sending him stumbling backwards.

Connor regained his composure and went to punch her again. She avoided the punch by doing one of those cool matrix leaning back moves. She flipped in the air kicking him in the face sending him flying backwards. Maddy stood back up and went back in to fighting stance and glared at him.

"Had enough yet." She asked him. Connor wiped the blood that was on his lip on his sleeve and got back up.

"Just warming up." "Better land a punch soon or you're going to be beaten by a girl."

"Oh I don't intend that to be the outcome." Connor lunged at Maddy and tackled her to the ground. He started to punch her in the face multiple times. Maddy pushed him off of her sending him straight into the brick wall and smashing it some.

Angel, Gunn and Faith watched with fascination. The two people were really going at it. Maddy was pretty strong. Stronger then anyone thought. They seemed evenly matched, but Maddy always had the upper hand. They were just fighting like neither was hurt. Both were bleeding pretty badly.

"Um this is getting to be too much." Gunn said when Connor was thrown against the wall.

"Yeah I know, but I'm a little afraid to go over there. They are really good fighters." Faith said.

"I know I didn't think that Maddy knew how to fight like that." Angel said.

"Well it just gives us another reason not to mess with her." Gunn said.

"Yeah if she wasn't a threat before she sure is now." Angel said.

"Well I want to know where she got those moves especially that matrix looking one. And did you see how high she jumped to avoid getting tripped. Pretty cool if you ask me." Faith said.

"Granted her moves are pretty good and different. Connor has some pretty good moves too though." Gunn said.

"Yeah that they are." Angel said.

"Picked some up from dad I see." Faith said noting the move that Connor just did.

"Yeah he learned a few. Most were from his time in that hell dimension though." Angel said.

"Either way they're two good fighters that we'll need on this thing." Gunn said.

Meanwhile the pizza had just arrived. Maddy hadn't gotten back with word on the gang in the training room.

"I wonder why she's been gone so long." Cordy said.

"I don't know. I sent her in there like ten minutes ago." Buffy said. Just then they heard a loud crashing noise. The group at the table and the various customers looked at the training room door.

"Maybe we should go check it out." Lorne said. Wes, Giles and, Spike ran out of the office.

"What the bloody hell was that? Is everyone okay?" Spike said with concern.

"Yeah we think that the training is going a little more intense then anyone anticipated." Xander said.

"Well let's go see what all the ruckus is about." Dawn said.

The group of people got up and made their way to the training room. Nothing could have prepared them for what was going on. Connor and Maddy where fighting really fighting. Faith, Angel, and Gunn were sitting on the couch just watching.

"What the hell is going on here?!" Buffy said. Faith, Angel, Gunn and Maddy turned to look at her. Just then Connor punched Maddy again.

"Hey that was a cheap shot." Maddy said rubbing her jaw.

"Yeah kind of like the one you gave me."

"That was to start things. The punch that you just gave me was very low. Chicken shit even."

"Hey what can I say I'm the king of low." Connor said. Maddy glared at him.

"Okay can someone clue us in as to why they were fighting?" Buffy said.

"Just friendly sparring, B. Nothing more then that. Getting out the anger." Faith said.

"There are better ways of getting out the anger then pummeling someone." Xander said.

"Look no harm, no foul. We're alright." Maddy said wiping blood off of her face. She had been in worse fights.

"Have you two seen a mirror? Your eyes and faces are all puffy and black and blue." Cordy said.

"It's no problem. They'll heal fast." Connor said wondering just how badly she had beaten him.

"Is this going to be a problem? You two fighting." Wes asked he hadn't seen anyone that could beat up Connor like that and he wondered if there wasn't more then just magic in that girl's blood.

"No prob whatsoever. Just doing it for fun. Right of passage and all that shit." Maddy said.

"Yeah just horse play." Connor said. The both had a new respect for the other.

"Well if this isn't going to be a problem then it's okay. Try not to do it anymore." Giles said.

"I guess this takes them out of patrol for a little while." Buffy said.

"Why?" Both said.

"Well because you two look like punching bags that's why. I don't want you getting any more hurt then you already are. I should have stopped this little fight before it was too late." Angel said in that annoying parental tone.

"Please these are a few minor injuries." Maddy said.

"Minor?" everyone said with shock in their voices.

"Yeah just look." Maddy waved her hand in front of her face. When everyone saw her face again it was healed.

"See minor injuries that go away like that." Maddy said snapping her fingers.

"Right we forgot about the magic thing." Fred said.

"Well I guess you would need magic to fight him." Xander said.

"No not really. Look it's a long story that can wait, but let's just say I know how to fight." Maddy said.

"Yeah I remember. You were fighting that Brian guy. He said that he was a demon hunter or something like that." Buffy said.

"Did he have it in his blood or is he like Gunn." Angel asked.

"I don't..."

"It's in his blood. Strength or something like that was passed down to him from his dad." Maddy said. Everyone looked at her.

"Again a long story that would bore everyone."

"Well I guess we have an extra pair of demon fighting hands." Angel said.

"Got that right." Maddy said.

"Do you mind working the mojo on Connor? I don't like to see him beat up like that."

"Sure, shouldn't just leave him like that." Maddy said.

She put her hand in front of Connor's face and healed him. Connor opened his eyes. They were swollen shut before. He looked around and saw a pretty face that wasn't there before. Dawn tried to look away from him, but he had the most piercing gaze. He was pretty good looking too. Dawn knew that it must have been Angel's son that Cordy was telling her about.

He was eighteen. That wasn't that much older then her. She was sixteen. It wasn't like Buffy would disapprove. She was dating someone who was over a hundred years older then her. He had a lean muscular body. His eyes were green or maybe hazel, Dawn couldn't tell because of the lighting. His hair was a little long and brown. He didn't look that much like Angel, but there was a resemblance.

Connor couldn't take his eyes off of her. She was really pretty. She had long brown hair that was haloing her face. She was a little taller then Buffy, but Connor thought that it could have been the shoes. She seemed really delicate, but able to hold her own. Her face was pretty too. She was wearing a little makeup, but Connor thought that she didn't need it. She had the prettiest blue eyes he had ever seen.

"Hello. Earth to kid." Maddy said. When he didn't move everyone was pretty freaked out.

"What did you do to him?" Angel asked.

"I didn't do anything. Hey lover boy take a picture it'll last longer." Maddy said. Everyone looked around and realized that Dawn and he were staring at each other intently.

"Huh what?" Connor said.

"I said put the snake back in the garden." Maddy said. Everyone laughed.


"It's rude to stare and I don't think that her sister or her overprotective vampire would like it very much." Maddy said. So she was Dawn. Connor thought.

"Oh right sorry."

"I think you embarrassed him." Faith said giggling.

"Sorry didn't mean to embarrass you."

"No it's okay." Connor said trying to hide his face.

"Well as fun as this is the pizza is getting cold. Let's go eat." Buffy said.

"Yeah I'm hungry after fighting it just works up and appetite. Come on let's go get some pizza." Maddy said to Connor.

"Sure." Connor said.

They started to walk out and everyone followed them. Dawn was a little sad. She liked Connor, but Maddy had obviously gotten there first. It was just great. Dawn decided to push it aside. It wasn't like he was hers to lay claim on. She followed everyone out of the training room until Buffy and Spike were the only ones left.

"Aren't you going to come and eat pizza?" Buffy asked.

"Not in a pizza mood." Spike said sitting down on the couch. The truth was he felt another one of his headaches coming on. He had tried fighting the pain, but it was just too much. He had to sit down to stop everything from spinning.

"They reminded me of us didn't they?" Buffy said taking a seat next to Spike. She clearly couldn't see anything wrong with him.

"Which two?" Spike said jokingly.

"Well I'll have to admit that Maddy and Connor remind me of us in the early days. They were really going at it. I didn't realize that she was such a good fighter."

"Yeah well she never said anything." Spike said barely able to maintain speech now.

"Yeah I guess so. I was kind of talking about Dawn and Connor though. They couldn't take their eyes off of each other. It was cute."

"Yeah really cute. Peaches junior with the Bit. I don't really like that."

"Geez Maddy was right. You are Dawn's overprotective vampire. At least Connor is pretty normal and not a vampire."

"Yeah that's a plus I guess." "Well we don't want a repeat of Halloween. He's strong so he can protect Dawn."

"He's also going back to LA after this whole thing."

"Yeah, but that can work. I mean he's eighteen and not in school so he can come over whenever."

"Forgetting the fact that he might not interested in Dawnie."

"You don't think so." Buffy said a little hurt for Dawn.

"There's no right answer to that, is there. Look I was jus' sayin' that he might be interested in Maddy."

"No I think that's more of a work thing."

"Jus'..." Spike didn't finish his sentence. He blacked out before he knew what was happening. Buffy looked at Spike and he was out cold and twitching.

"Spike! Spike! Wake up!" Buffy shook him, but he wouldn't wake up.

"Somebody help!"

Chapter 15:

It had been two days. Two horrible days that Spike was unconscious. Maddy had tried everything to wake him up, but nothing worked. Buffy didn't know what to do. She would sit with Spike and make sure he was okay. Everyone else had gone to the Magic Box and went along with the plan. Only Maddy and Buffy stayed behind. This was how he was going to die. Slowly whither away to nothing and just die. Stupid chip was getting to be the end of him.

The initiative had finally returned Buffy's e-mails. They were coming tomorrow. That would make it three days since Spike was out. At least they were coming was the only thing Buffy could thing about to get her through the days. She was sitting on her side of the bed and Spike was laying motionlessly on his. Every once in a while he would twitch around. Everyone was at the Magic Box deciphering things or training.

"Hey come on. You need to wake up already. Angel's trying to steal me away." Buffy said jokingly. She hoped that that would shock him awake. It didn't work.

"Trying to shock him awake." Maddy said. She was standing right in the doorway holding some herbs. She was trying to keep his brain intact and she said that the herbs would help.

"Time for his daily herbal medicine?" Buffy said.

"Yeah." Maddy said coming inside and sitting at the edge of the bed.

"Is he going to be okay?" Buffy asked.

"He'll be a little disoriented for awhile, but he'll still be the same Spike." Maddy said.

"Well before he wasn't the same Spike. A little more moody then usual."

"That was just the soul. He was acting guilty about everything. It's normal really."

"Yeah I know. I just need to have my Spike back."

"Okay so are we talking from the coma or period?"

"From the coma mostly. I know it's selfish of me to just think that one day he'll get over it. He's trying and there are some things about his soul that I enjoy. The sweetness and the caring. All those things that make him so sweet and like a kitty cat. It's just the guilt is a lot to take in. I just have to be patient."

"Yeah just be patient. He'll come back to you sooner or later. There isn't a curse on him so he should be fine. He chose to do this for you and you will just have to get him out of this."

"You know you're right."

"Yes I am."

- - - - - -- - - -- - -- - - - - - --- - -- - -- - -- -

"This is all very boring." Connor said as he put down one of the books he was looking at.

"Yeah, but we have to do this. This is the boring part of the whole thing that leads to the big fight sequence." Xander said.

"Yeah well you got the boring part right." Gunn said.

"Look if you guys just want to train then go ahead. No one is stopping you." Cordy said.

"Yeah we know that it's just when are we going to fight. I'm itching for a good fight." Faith said.

"Well we have to wait until the team is fully up to strength. Besides we would just go out and slay vampires that are so abundant in this town. There hasn't been any demon activity so let's just enjoy the peace." Anya said.

"What are we waiting for? Buffy and the vampire. If you ask me we should just do a quick patrol and get the fighting out of our system." Connor said.

"Yeah, but Buffy is the one who gives the orders. Well that sounded a little like she was a general or something. It's just we wait for the whole group to be here and decided. And the vampire has a name. It's Spike." Dawn said.

She wasn't sure if she disliked Connor or not. Sometimes it seemed like him and Maddy were together, but others it felt like maybe they weren't. She just wasn't around all the time to be sure.

"Okay so I understand that we wait to make the big decisions, but just a kick sweep of those Sunnydale cemeteries would be fun." Gunn said.

"Obviously you've never lived in Sunnydale." Angel said.

"Come on let the troops have a night out, Angelcakes. They're obviously getting restless." Lorne said.

"Well I'll have to agree with Xander on this one. We can't just do anything we want now. This isn't our town and we don't run it. Buffy makes the decisions." Fred said. Everyone looked at Giles and Wes. They were spilt on what to do.

"Well don't look at us. I personally could do with a little action, but this isn't our decision to make. Buffy makes the decisions here. Besides we don't want to alert Willow into knowing that we are on to her. Let's just wait a while." Wes said.

"Personally I think that they should go out. What with Buffy out right now we need to make sure that the demonic activity is down." Giles said.

"So we're still spilt." Xander said.

"It would appear so." Connor said.

They started arguing over which was the right decision. It wasn't the wisest decision to make, but they didn't know what else to do. Just then Maddy walked inside the shop to hear the loud voices arguing.

"Wow, can't leave the troops alone for more then a day." Maddy said over the voices. Everyone looked over at her. She had been helping Buffy with Spike so she hadn't shown up for the last two research sessions. It felt different to see her there.

"So why are you here? Thought you were playing magically nursemaid to Spike." Connor said. It bothered him that she spent so much time helping Buffy with Spike. He wasn't sure why, but it did.

"Well kid I have news from the big commander." Maddy said.

"Oh really what did Buffy say." Xander asked.

"She said that the initiative guys were going to show up tomorrow. Everyone needs to be on their best behavior seeing as there's going to be that research thing tomorrow." Maddy said sitting down next to Connor. She had done it without thinking much about it. It wasn't like she liked him or anything like that. He seemed like he would make a good friend. They were both relatively the same age, in theory anyway.

"Did she say anything about going out and patrolling?" Gunn said.

"You mean other then to not do it." Maddy said.

"So what she just expects us to sit and stew for another day." Connor said.

"Not stew, but research. You should train and then do lots of research. We shouldn't start going out half cooked. Besides we don't have a concise plan on what were are going to do with Willow. Let's just keep it slow. What's the hurry." Maddy said.

"I need to stake something." Connor said.

"Well calm down okay. Here we'll compromise. If you run into a vamp feel free to kill it."

"Sure whatever."

"Now what are we doing here?"

"Trying to read the sun." Xander said.

"That bad huh?"

"Worse I think my eyeballs popped out an hour ago. Why do vengeance demons have to write so cryptically?" Fred said.

"It was a system designed to keep intruders from them." Anya said.

"Oh well that make sense." Cordy said.

"Yes it really does. It's very sensible, but it doesn't help us." Angel said.

"Well we'll just have to keep deciphering." Giles said.

"Great that's great." Gunn said.

Maddy sat and listen to them talk. She wasn't really sure what to say. She hadn't been researching for a while know and didn't know how she could contribute.

"You know what I'm going to go into the training room and blow of some steam." Maddy said.

"Okay," was the general response from everyone. Maddy walked into the training room and turned on the light. There was too much going on in her mind. She had had hopes of changing Brian back into the sweet lovable guy that she feel in love with. Now she knew that she would have to kill him to save Willow.

She wasn't sure if she could make that decision, but it seemed that she would have to. Maddy wrapped the sparring tap around her hands and walked over to the punching bag. She just wanted to hit something. She started to punch the bag, hoping that she could just forget about the apocalypse that she would have to help avoid. Everything in her mind went blank accept for hitting the bag. She didn't even notice when Connor walked in.

Connor had wanted to see if she was okay. She seemed sort of distant, but he figured that must have been because of Spike. She was punching the punching bag really hard. She was in her sweats and a baggy shirt. Her hair was up in a messy bun and a thin sheet of sweat was visible one her forehead. Connor was so confused at what he felt. Was Maddy just a friend or did he like her. Then throw Dawn into the mix and you got one confused eighteen-year-old.

"Hey." Connor said for lack of a better word.

"Oh hey. How long have you been standing there?"

"Just a minute."

"Well didn't your dad ever tell you it isn't polite to stare?"

"Sorry just wasn't sure what to say. You seem to have a lot on your mind."

"Yeah well I guess so. It's just. these initiative guys don't seem very trustworthy from what Buffy's told me. Against all demons and I'm just afraid that they'll do something bad. The house will be filled with demons." Maddy said trying her hardest to lie.

"I never thought about that. I only know a little about the initiative from Dawn."

"Dawn huh?"

"Yeah and your point?"

"Nothing it's just there was major sparks between you two when you first saw each other. Thought you might have asked her to the prom or something." Maddy said.

"I'm not sure what I feel about Dawn. She seems nice, but there hasn't been any alone time."

"Well maybe there'll be alone time soon. Once Spike gets back into the swing of things."

"Yeah I guess. Maybe we should get back to the research. I think you killed the punching bag."

"Yeah okay." - - - - - -- - -- - - -- - -- - -- - - -- - - -- - --

"What time is it?" Maddy asked.

"Almost three, why?" Xander asked.

"Because I was wondering if it was too early to have a drink."

"Yeah like three years to early." Giles said.

"Yeah I guess you're right although the other troops seem to be drunk with the training."

"Yeah, well that's them for you. Find anyway to get out of research." Cordy said.

It was just the four of them at this moment. The fighty gang was all training and Wes had decided to join them. He wanted was helping to make stakes and sharpen the weapons. Lorne was upstairs taking care of Spike while Buffy went to work. Fred had won the game of rock paper scissors and was the lucky soul who got to go out and by food and things like that. Anya was staying at the Magic Box until about three-thirty. She said it was to keep up appearances and no one disagreed.

"I propose we take a break." Maddy said.

"I second that." Cordy said.

"And I vote yes on it." Xander said.

"Oh all right we'll take a break." Giles said shaking his head at the lack of enthusiasm they had. Sure the research was hard, but it had to get done and Giles was unsure that it would at their pace.

"So these initiative guys sound hardcore." Maddy said.

"Oh they aren't as bad as they sound. Well at least some weren't. okay so most are pretty hardcore, but some are okay. At least Riley is. or well was." Xander said. He wasn't so sure he could defend Riley anymore.

"They work for the government. That sounds a little weird." Cordy said.

"Yes well the government failed in their experiment here, but they didn't stop trying." Giles said.

"Sounds like she leave the demon hunting to the professionals." Maddy said.

"We have to take the help that we can get." Giles said.

"They didn't help much Giles. More like almost brought on an apocalypse." Xander said.

"Yes I will admit that Americans don't know exactly know how to handle things, but they do their best." Giles said. Cordy and Xander looked at him with shocked expressions. Maddy wasn't fazed by the American comment.

"Giles that was really racist." Cordy said.

"Yeah and insulting." Xander said.

"Where are the Brits when you need them." Giles said with a sigh.

"One is in a coma and the other is playing super fighty demon hunter." Xander said.

"So you don't think that these guys are anything to worry about. I mean we are kind of big on the demons here." Maddy said slightly worried.

"I never thought about that. I don't think they will. What do you think Giles?" Xander said. Anya was coming over later and she was a demon. He hoped that the initiative didn't pull anything stupid.

"I'm sure they won't do anything." Giles said in a not too convincing voice.

"Well I hope not. I've already been attacked because of my part demon status." Cordy said.

"You're part demon! And you never told me! That's it now I know I'm a demon magnet." Xander said.

"I wasn't always part demon. I became this way so I could keep my visions."

"Visions?" Everyone at the table said.

"Yeah see the Powers sent Angel a person who had visions to guide him through things. Doyle was the guy and when he died he passed the visions to me. But I couldn't keep them without my head exploding because I was only a human. Doyle was part demon so he was able to have them. So to help Angel and keep the visions I chose to become part demon. Then I became a Higher Being and things are sort of muddled after that."

"Fascinating." Giles said.

"That's cool." Maddy said.

"That's a relief. Not that being a demon magnet is bad considering that all the demons look very nice, but it tends to stick with you throughout life." Xander said.

"Why don't you tell us more about your experiences as a Higher Being." Giles said.

Cordy started to talk about what she remembered and Giles and Xander listened intently. Maddy was a little distracted by the pencil in front of her. When she was bored she would make random objects float in the air. That's exactly what she was doing. She wasn't sure what to do really. She could go in the living room and watch TV to pass the time or she could go in her room and listen to some music.

"Hey, guys, I'm going to go to my room and listen to some music." Maddy said.

"Okay." Everyone said in unison. Maddy got up and made her way to the basement. She walked down the steps and saw a flash of two half-naked bodies.

- - - -- -- - -- - -- -- -- - -- -- - - - ---- --- - -- ----- - - - - -- - - -- -

Angel and Connor had to train in the basement. When the research started they made their way there. Faith, Gunn, and Wes went into the back yard.

"Should we tell Maddy that we're using her room." Angel said.

"No, she'll go crazy and start making rules for us." Connor said.

"You seem to know a lot about her." Angel said. He knew that his son was older know and he didn't know what to do with him. Angel had only been in love once and that didn't work out. "I guess." Connor said making his way down to the basement. Angel followed behind him.

"So." Angel wasn't sure how you start these conversations.

"So?" Connor said watching his dad squirm. He knew what Angel was trying to get at. He was just as confused as he was. Holtz never told him anything about girls, because there never was any.

"Do you like her?" Angel said holding an unneeded breath.

"Yeah I guess."

"You guess?"

"Well I think she's nice and friendly when she's not kicking my ass." Connor said.

"Do you like her like her?" Angel said feeling very stupid. This was a conversation that he wasn't prepared to have so soon. Even then he was going to have Cordy do it.

"I don't know. I mean I spent my whole existence in a hell dimension. No girls there. There are all these weird feelings and I'm not sure how to react."

"Well is there someone else you have your eye on?" Angel said easing in to the conversation a little more.

"Yeah all the girls in the world." Connor said.

"Try narrowing it down a bit." Angel said sitting on the cot. Connor pulled out one of the chairs and sat in it backward with the back of the chair on his chest.

"Well there's Maddy and then there's Dawn."

"Uh Dawn. I thought that she might have something to do with it."

"Well when I first saw her there was major sparks, but with Maddy there was this weird feeling like she was different."

"Different good or different bad?" "I'm not sure. I got a weird vibe off of her."

"Maybe it was the magic thing."

"Yeah probably. I'm just so confused."

"Well you just have to go with what makes the most sense to you. Look you're not going to figure that out right away. Spend some time with both girls and then make your decision." Angel said. It seemed like that most logical thing.

"Yeah that seems like a good idea. So are you going to tell Cordy that you like her?" Connor said blatantly.

"I don't know. Ever since she came back she's been a little different. And now being back in Sunnydale."

"Look Sunnydale has nothing to offer you. That's why you left right?" Connor asked.

"Well I left to give Buffy a normal life, but I realize that she can never have one." Angel said.

"Right because her life is with a vampire and that vampire isn't you."

"You make it sound so bitter."

"It is isn't it. You're just mad that that Spike guy has her now after you thought that she needed a normal life. It turns out that she doesn't need a normal life. She needs someone who will love her and not leave her. Just give it up. It's never going to happen again. So move on and get with Cordy already."

"And you say you know nothing about love. Seems you've got it down."

"Yeah now it's just my love I have to deal with."

"Well enough with this. We're men and as men we can't get all emotional. Let's spar already."

Connor and Angel started to spar. For some reason it is inevitable that when guys spar their shirts come off and that's how Maddy found them. Shirts off and fists flying. She had seen guys with her shirts off before, but Connor looked very nice.

Angel was a little bulky for her taste, but she could appreciate it. Muscles were a big plus with her, and if they were nice and lean then things were even better. Why else would she help Buffy with Spike all those times. Sure she said it was because she was a wicca and could help and that was true. Seeing Spike half-naked was only a bonus.

"Uh-Hum." Maddy said clearing her throat. The two men looked her way with sheepish smiles on their faces.

"Oh hi, Maddy. We didn't realize that you would be coming down here." Angel said and thought about the stupidity in that sentence. This is the room that she slept in and why wouldn't she be coming in here.

"Yeah that's why you're in my room." Maddy said.

"Don't get mad at him. He can't go in the sun and we didn't want to do research." Connor said.

"Forgetting he can technically go in the sun. Well as long as you didn't ruin anything." Maddy said. It was hard to be mad when she had six-packs staring her in the face.

"Right forgot. It'll take some getting used to. No nothing was ruined." Angel said.

"So what's up with the research?" Connor asked.

"We dispersed for a little while. I just said dispersed hanging around Giles too much. Anyway Cordy is currently telling everyone about her adventures as a Higher Being." Maddy said sitting down in her cot.

"Oh well that's good." Angel said.

"I'm thinking that every demon should hang out down here until the initiative guys come. Xander and Giles seem to think that they have a mission to destroy all demons." Maddy said picking up a magazine and flipping through it. She looked in their direction briefly to see them put on their shirts.

"Yeah I met the initiative guys. Riley Finn in particular. Big on getting the demons and killing them." Angel said with distaste.

"Well maybe staying down here isn't a bad idea." Connor said with a little concern.

"Oh puh-lease. I think that if they pull anything we can take them. Just humans right. Just thought that I should warn you, but I guess you already know." Maddy said.

"Just humans?" Connor said.

"Well I meant that they probably don't have any powers to kick our asses." Maddy said trying to cover her tracks.

"Oh yeah that makes sense." Connor said.

"I think that I'm hungry." Angel said.

"Want me to bring you down some blood?" Maddy asked.

"No I'll go upstairs. Should make an appearance you know." Angel said.

"Yeah and I want to get something to eat." Connor said.

"You can look, but we sent Fred out to get food because there wasn't much left." Maddy said

"Okay let's go." Connor said. They walked up the stairs and into the dining room and were shocked at what they found.

- - - -- - - -- - -- - -- - - -- - -- - - -- - - -- - -- - - - - -- - -

"Well at least I only have to watch him. Gets a little boring though." Lorne said as he came downstairs and sat in what used to be Maddy's seat.

"Yeah well at least he's not talking. Then you would really be pooped." Xander said. Just because he had reached a truce with Spike didn't mean he couldn't make fun of him.

"Well he seems like a nice enough guy. Didn't get to know him that well though." Lorne said.

"Lorne you think that everyone is nice." Cordy said.

"Sweetness everybody is good when they want to be." Lorne said.

"Hey that makes a lot of sense." Xander said.

"So how goes the research front?" Lorne asked.

"We are taking a break from it. It was too much for our little brains." Cordy said.

"Where are the troops?" Lorne asked.

"Right here." Gunn said.

"Where's the food in this joint?" Faith asked.

"Buffy wasn't expecting guest so we sent Fred out to get some a little while ago." Xander said.

"Oh did you tell her where to go?" Wes asked.

"No she said she'd figure it out. I think that she just wanted to get out of the house. We all did, but she won the rock paper scissors tournament." Cordy said.

"So no food?" Faith said.

"No food." Xander said.

"Shit I always get hungry after training." Faith said.

"We know we've heard the stories." Cordy said.

"So what are we supposed to do? Just wait until Fred comes back." Gunn said.

"Well that won't be too long. A little help with the groceries." Anya said rushing over to the kitchen. The gang made their way outside and grabbed a bag each. They started putting the food away when they heard a knock.

"Someone should go answer that." Lorne said. No body made a move to answer the door.

"Well I can't do it." Lorne said.

"Oh for the love of Pete I'll answer the door." Anya said. She walked over to the front door and opened it.

- - - - --- --- -- --- - -- - - -- - - -- -- - - - - - - - - -- - - - -- - - - -

Riley sat in a chair in the van assigned to him by the initiative. They had been staking out Buffy's house for an hour now. They were just waiting for Buffy to come home, but the group could see the demonic activity on the radar screen and were getting antsy. They were all about the kill. Demons were bad and there was a point in time when Riley agreed. That was before his friend Glen.

He didn't know his demonic name. He just knew him as Glen. He had been part demon and had been trying to live his life peacefully. Riley and Sam had met him when they went to Australia to take down a pack of Fujiian Demons. Riley and Sam hadn't asked questions and just went to kill. That's when they both met Glen. He was a good guy who was helping the Fujiian demons. It turned out that Fujiian demons were harmless and Glen, being half demon, was helping them stay alive.

Riley and Sam soon learned that not all demons were bad like they had thought. Of course it was too late. One night they were coming back from a visit with Glen and found the camp deserted. They were supposed to kill the pack themselves and the camp got restless and did it themselves.

They killed the pack and Glen. Riley had been so sad over the lose of his new friend and finally realized what Buffy was talking about all those years ago. Too little too late. Now he was here in Sunnydale ready to help Spike with his chip. Riley wasn't sure if Buffy and Spike still had something and although he hated that he was here.

He had Sam to make him happy. Soon they would be away from the initiative. This was their last assignment. Riley looked around at his team. They were rookies, which was okay because this would be about the doctors.

Agent one, as Riley called him, or Patrick Swanson as he's parents would call him was a twenty year old man with brown hair and brown eyes. He was a bit timid about things and had just joined the initiative a few months ago. He wasn't anything special to look at that was for sure. Just a regular joe with no muscles and all brains with glasses. He was shorter then Riley, but a nice guy.

Agent two or Jack Barker was an aggressive overly cocky twenty-four-year- old man. He had green eyes and curly brown hair. He was a rookie who thought he knew everything there was to know. He was pretty strong and very good looking.

Agent three or Greg Potter was a mixture of the two other men. He had blonde hair and hazel eyes. He was twenty-two and joined the initiative after the army didn't satisfy him. He was good with weapons and had a good mind. He was okay looking, but nothing like Jack.

Riley could see that the guys were getting impatient and wanted to hurt something. Of course they had come here with the understanding that nothing big would happen. It would be fixing Spike's chip and leaving unless they were absolutely needed. The level of demonic energy coming from Buffy's house didn't help matters.

"Are you sure that there isn't something risky going on in that house." Jack asked. He was an impatient man.

"Yes, I'm positive. There are supposed to be demonic waves coming off in that house." Riley said.

"Yeah but this isn't just one vampire energy. This is at least four demons energy." Greg said.

"Yes well Buffy was a lot of demon friends. Harmless really." Riley thought ticking off how many demon friends Buffy had in his mind.

"And this girl is supposed to be the Slayer? I hardly believe that." Jack said.

"Well believe it." Riley said.

"So what do we do? Just sit and wait for her to show up? I mean there are people in there and we could just talk to them. Maybe get some juice. They have to be aware that we are going to be here today. It has to be nicer then this van. If we did that then if there is something wrong going on in there we can fix it." Patrick said.

"I have to agree with the logic in that." Riley said.

"We'll leave the doctors and Sam here and go see if things are okay." Sam was in the back of the van sleeping.

"Okay let's go." Jack said sticking his hand in his pocket and fingering his gun. He opened the door and the four men followed him. Riley took the lead. They made their way to the front door and Riley knocked. It was a minute or two before someone answered.

"Oh hi Riley. We weren't expecting you till later." Anya said.

"Hi Anya. Sorry if we're early. Can we come in?" Riley asked nicely.

"Yeah of course. Come in." Anya said.

"So where is Buffy?" Riley asked when they were standing just inside the house.

"Oh she's at work." Anya said.

"Who the heck was it?" Lorne said coming out from the kitchen and standing in the dining room. Before anyone had time to react Jack had pulled out his gun and shot Lorne in the stomach. The loud sound pierced through the air and everyone in the kitchen ran into the dining room.

"Agent Barker who told you could disperse your weapon." Riley said meanly.

"I saw a demon and I shot. It's in the training." Jack said trying to defend himself.

"Oh god Lorne!" Cordy said. She bent down to try and help him. He wasn't awake.

"Oh my god. Some help you guys turned out to be. You shot our friend." Gunn said.

"What's going on?" Angel said.

"Yeah we heard a noise and were a little freaked out." Connor said.

"These guys shot Lorne." Wes said.

"What? Is he okay." Angel said with worry in his voice. Riley was too busy yelling to hear anything else that was going on.

"We aren't sure. Demon anatomy is different then human." Giles said.

"What if he doesn't make it?" Fred said in a frightened voice.

"He'll be fine. Minor injury." Maddy said.

"Minor injury? I may not know much about demons like him, but getting shot isn't minor." Xander said.

"Everything is a minor injury with me." Maddy said going over to Lorne and bending down.

"Okay now this won't hurt a bit." Maddy said in a mock soothing voice.

She put her hands over Lorne's wound and white light glowed from her hands. The wound healed up quickly and Lorne woke up coughing.

"Thanks, Sweetcakes."

"No big." Maddy said. The sound of Lorne's voice made Riley and his group turn around.

"He's okay." Patrick said in disbelief.

"Just a little magic. No big. Just don't go shooting all the demons in this house. That would be way too many people to heal." The initiative guys all looked stunned.

"Well it seems there is a lot to clear up." Anya whispered to Fred.

Chapters 16, 17 and 18

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