Working Out the Issues

Working Out the Issues


Chapter 6:

I was nervous. A lot more nervous then I thought I would be. I mean its just time with Spike right. We've shared time alone. Except that time was in a crowded bar with many other demons and people.

Either that or we're beating the crap out of each other. I don't know what possessed me to ask him over to my place. Like we can just sit around and watch television. I don't even watch television.

Of course it's too late now because there's only a few minutes before Spike is supposed to show up and he may be late, but he will show up. He'd do it just to annoy me.

So it's no surprise that there's knocking on my door right now and if I don't answer it then he's going to just knock harder. So I suck in some unneeded breath and walk over to the door.

"I brought chips." He says when I open the door.

He's holding three bags of three different chips. I'll never understand his obsession with human junk foods. He used to love chocolate back in the day.

"That's... nice." I say moving aside from the door. He walks in a little bounce in his step.

"So, what movies do you have?" Spike asks as he plops down on my leather sofa.

"Um... movies?"

"Yeah you know things people watch with popcorn and stuff. You do have popcorn, right?" He says.

"Um... no I don't have much. I have beer." I say.

"Beer's good... it's a start. But you don't have movies."

"Well... I'm told that my... tv has a lot of channels. Movie channels included." I say.

"Yeah, but movie channels always play stupid movies everyone's seen a million times. I thought you were going to rent some new ones... though I wouldn't exactly trust your judgement." Spike says.

"Rent movies?" I ask as I sit down on the couch next to him.

"You do know how to rent movies right. I mean I know you've been brooding for the last hundred years or so, but you have heard of Blockbuster right?" Spike asks and he's looking at me like he can't believe that I would be that far behind the times.

"Yes I've heard of Blockbuster. Look I wasn't thinking when I invited you here. It just kind of... happened. Look maybe we should just go out somewhere." I say.

"Fine by me. I was a little shocked when you asked me to come here. Thought maybe you had taken a blow to the head or something."

"Yeah, I guess. So where should we go?" I say looking towards him. We're silent for a few moments before he gets up and starts to pace his coat swishing back and forth. He runs his fingers through his hair messing it up so it isn't perfectly slicked back like usual.

"This is ridiculous." He says standing in front of me his hands on his hips. I'm not sure what he's talking about, but he looks kind of agitated.

"What is?"

"This." He says gesturing between the two of us.


"Angel, we're grown vampires here. We've lived for over a hundred years... two hundred in your case. We should be able to talk about things like regular people." He says.

"We don't really have anything in common." I say.

"There's gotta be something we can talk about. Seemed like you had a lot to say before."

"Maybe I don't want to talk about that stuff anymore. Maybe we should pretend like none of that stuff happened." He frowns and then comes to sit next to me. He turns his body towards mine and I can feel him examining my face.

"But it did happen." He whispers.

I tense at the low volume of his voice. He so close right now and it's making me slightly uncomfortable.

"What do you want from me Spike?" I say turning my face towards his.

"I think I already answered that question."

"Yeah, but I'm not you. I don't sit and examine the hell out of my feelings. I mean I've always known that you... feel the need to talk about things when others don't want to, but I thought your attention span was a little to short... I don't know who you are anymore." I say and it's the honest truth because I don't' know who he is. Maybe he's right that I never knew who he was, but I always thought I knew the basics.

"You're not the only one. I don't know who I am with this soul. I mean before it I was trying to be good. Just feels so useless. Like instead of making things clearer it's making everything even more muddled."

"Well I could have told you that."

"But I don't think it's for the same reasons as you. I don't have voices in my head telling me that I'm evil. I don't feel bad about the things I've done. I just feel... I don't feel anything. I was kind of hoping that maybe you were lying about your soul so I could figure out why everything just feels the same as before." Spike says.

We're quiet for a few seconds and I can feel him waiting there for me to answer him or say something or do something.

"I don't feel like that... ever. I feel burdened down by all the bad things I did." I say. Spike nods and turns away from me.

"You know what, maybe talking about all this stuff is a bad idea. Definitely killing the fun." He says as he opens one of the bags of chips.

"So we're going to stay here?"

"Sure why not. I'm sure there's got to be something good on the telly. We just have to check out the channels." Spike says grabbing the remote.


I've been sitting here watching this movie for what seems like forever and I still don't get it. Spike said it was supposed to be a good movie, but I think he just likes the gore involved in it. I'm not sure what's happening, but it involves a lot of people running around doing crazy things.

And there's hired killers and talk about cheeseburgers in France. Right now they're cleaning out a dead body that the John Travolta guy, Vince I think his name is, accidentally shot. They just got done showing a boxer and this big guy I don't know who he is or how he ties into all this, but he hired John Travolta to watch his wife. And I think John Travolta is dead.

"Spike, Spike, I don't get this movie. Spike!" I say.

I look over to see that he's asleep and using his duster as a blanket. He's curled up in a ball and it's kind of cute. I push him a little trying to get him to wake up. He really shouldn't be tired. It's only ten o'clock.

"Wha?" he says and his eyes are still kind of closed.

"Are you tired? Do you want to go home?" I ask.

"What, no I was just resting my eyes for a minute. I'm not tired. So what's going on?" He asks.

"Oh, I was hoping you could tell me."

"Oh, right, probably a little too... yeah well where is it right now?" Spike asks as he sits up and stretches a bit.

"I don't know. They just stopped at some guys house and that guy from The Piano just showed up to clean it out." I say. He looks over at me with a puzzled look on his face.

"Movie's almost over Angel." He says.

"Yeah I know and I have no clue what happened. It was like little bits all sewn together." I say.

"Well yeah that was the point. Movie kind of works in flashbacks and things like that, but everything's connected."


"Are you sure you didn't nod off to. It's really simple if you just watch it."

"Yeah I guess. Still doesn't make any sense to me. What about that robbery in the beginning?"

"Oh I can't tell you about that. It would ruin the ending." Spike says.

"Ruin the ending. This movie is ridiculous. I mean really does this kind of stuff happen everyday. I don't think it does. I think that this is all just cleverly crafted..." I stop when I realize Spike's head is leaning against my shoulder and he's asleep. He's asleep again.

"Spike..." I say but he just curls up closer to me his whole side plastered against my side.

I remember that weight. It's so familiar to me that I find myself leaning against him just a little. I move my arm around him and he just curls up closer to me and makes a little noise in his sleep. Why is he so tired? I don't know, but it must have something to do with the fact that he goes out hunting demons all night every night.

"Spike, wake up." He moves slightly at the sound of my voice and opens his eyes to look up at me.

"Bloody hell... I'm sorry Angel." He says moving away from me.

"It's okay. Just... just tell me why you're so tired." I say.

"It was a rough night last night. Didn't really get any rest. You know me I have to have at least eight hours of sleep or I'm no good to anyone." Spike says with a smile on his face.

"Maybe you should go home. We could do this some other time." I say.

"Yeah it's not like we're really doing anything. Sitting here watching a movie. We're not talking about anything important."

"Yeah, but we're not fighting. That's a step up from our former relationship. We're not yelling uselessly over stupid things which okay we could be if we really wanted to, but we're not." I say.

"I guess. Still... what are we going to go in there and talk about this Wednesday... assuming you're still coming." I look over at him and he's got a hopeful look on his face.

"I'm still coming. It's just... I don't like that stuff dragged up Spike. You gotta understand that everything I'm doing with my life... unlife is so that I can make amends for what I did in the past. I spend more than enough time thinking about the past deeds of Angelus. Why would I want to drudge it up on purpose?" I say.

He's quiet for a long time. It looks as though he's thinking something over in his head. What I don't know, but it must be something important because his forehead's furrowed and he's pinching the top of his nose.

"It hurts, doesn't it. The soul. Thinking about all those things that you did as an evil vampire. All of it hurts that you can't think about it because remembering it twists your stomach." He says. I nod.

"It doesn't for me. I think about all those things I did and... and I feel nothing. My soul doesn't hurt I don't feel anguish by it. I've killed thousands of people. I've killed Slayers warriors for the light and I don't feel anything about it." He says and there's pain in his voice.

"I'd rather feel the sting of all those murders of all that blood drawn then feel nothing. Then feel like this. Because what kind of evil person what kind of evil soul do I have that I can remember every single horrible thing that I did and not even care about it."

I look at him and wonder about what he just said. I feel tons of guilt over what I did and yet here he is killed just as many people as I have and he claims to feel nothing.

"Maybe... maybe its not that you're evil, Spike. Maybe... maybe it's something else."

"What else, Angel. What other explanation could there be? Maybe I don't have my soul. Maybe that demon fucked up." He says.

I shake my head.

"Even if I couldn't feel your soul I would know it was there. The Amulet remember. Only works on Champions with a soul."

"Maybe the Amulet was wrong. Maybe that bloody Wolfram and Hart was wrong. Maybe this is all just one big set up..."

"Spike you're sounding paranoid. You have your soul. I can feel it." I say.

"I know... I felt it... when Sunnydale became a crater. It felt good." He says and his voice is small sounding. So very William.

"It is good. Spike you aren't a bad person. No matter how much I say I hate you or say that you're not. It's just me feeling guilt about my shit. I think about everything that could have happened to you if... if you hadn't been turned. If I hadn't set into motion the events. You're right, I do feel guilty when I look at you. I did make you a monster. You weren't one before. Even as a vampire. Look you went out and got your soul all by yourself. I was cursed with mine. Maybe that's why it feels different."

Part of me is cursing myself for trying to make him feel better, but I can't help it. I think back to those times when William was a sweet thing denying his nature even after he was turned. He clung on to his human side long after he was a vampire and I always hated him for it.

Saw him as an abomination and no vampire living under my house was going to be like that so I turned him into a ruthless killer because it was fun and because it boosted my name, but also because I had to keep him from reminding me of being a human.

Had to keep him from making me feel human things. He is different. He was cut out to be a vampire, but Spike doesn't just give up. Not after he was pushed around so much in his life. I showed him a way to become more than he was. To prove himself to the world and he took it because he was so oppressed as a human.

"You know... I didn't set out to get my soul. I had done something really terrible and I wasn't sure what I wanted. It was so much easier to be a vampire Angel. To not care about things..."

"Before the soul you were that."

"No, I wasn't. I tried... I tried to be caring again you know like how I was for that little time after I was turned. And I did, but I had that reputation behind me... no one was going to believe that I was actually trying to be good. No matter how much I tried. They just kept spitting on me and then it just reminded me of... well Angelus. I thought maybe if I could become that blood thirsty killer again then things would be better."

"When did you realize that you wanted your soul?"

"I didn't. Not really. Not until after it happened. I guess it was a subconscious thing that the demon could sense. I tried to make sense of it afterwards and it did make sense because..."

"Being a vampire was never really in your nature."

Spike nods his head.

"But then I wasn't any good to them all weepy. I wasn't really weepy I just... I was trying to make sense of everything, but I picked the wrong time to get my soul back. There was a big battle..."

"It wasn't right of her to just expect you to be fine."

"You were. I think everything just got to her head."

"I wasn't. It took me years after the soul to get used to things. I was only a little better after the second time. I just can't understand why she would tell you that you were better without your soul."

"Because then she wouldn't have to feel bad about ordering me around. She got used to me being hired muscle. It's not important though. She's not a part of my life anymore."

"You don't want her to be?"

Spike was quiet for a few seconds as he plays with the loose threads on his shirt.

"I don't think I wanted her to be in the first place. I wanted to love her because she was good and maybe if I loved her, if I did things for her then that would make me good. I don't know I was just trying to fit in." Spike says with a smile on his face. I smile back at him.

"Never could be alone, huh William." He lowers his eyes a bit smile still on his face and then look back up at me blue eyes shining brightly.

I always loved those eyes. Before I can stop myself I'm leaning putting hand under his chin to tilt his head up a bit and then I'm kissing him. It's been such a long time since I've kissed him and his lips are still as soft as ever and he can still kiss better than anyone I've ever kissed before.

His hands are on my forearms and he's leaning in more almost sitting on my lap and my arms are around his waist and I'm pulling him closer as our kiss deepens. He's making those same noises I've heard him make before moving against me like he doesn't care.

There's just a hint of desperation in his kisses and it just makes me want to kiss him harder. Makes me want to pull him close and never let him go and there's something wrong here. I know there is because no matter how much I... care for Spike it doesn't translate into me pulling him onto my lap and kissing him like I'm kissing him.

I have to stop because this could get nasty. We're not supposed to be leaping into this. I'm not supposed to be leaping into this. There's too much I could loose by doing this. I can hear that tiny voice in the back of my head telling me I don't deserve this. Because I don't. Because any happiness I feel with Spike can't ever be acted upon.

I can't just go from hating him one second to throwing him down on my mattress and fucking him so hard he can't see straight and that was a bad thought. I'm having too many bad thoughts right now. Thoughts that include a naked Spike and all the things I could do with a naked Spike.

So I push him away and it's so hard to push him away. I don't want to push him away. I want to pull him closer, but that wouldn't be right for the both of us. Nothing can start right now. He looks only a little disappointed when I stop us.

"We can't do this." I whisper against his lips. He gulps and nods.

"You're... you're right." He says a little hoarsely. He gets up from my lap and picks up his duster.

"Besides I'm tired. I should really be getting back to my flat anyway." He says.

"Yeah right. You're tired. It's late." I say and I can only manage two word sentences.

He smiles at me and shrugs on his duster. That thing is like a second skin. I haven't seen him without it in a very long time.

"I guess... I'll see you Wednesday." He says and he walks to the door.

I wait a couple of minutes before I hear the door open and close before I start to brood.

Chapter 7

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