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From Bad to Worse 
by Gypsy Gray

Spike stood beside Xander. He put his hands on his mate's shoulders and
offered what support he could. Even he was saddened by the waste of
potential that he was witnessing. Buffy had been a great slayer, but vanity,
pride, and her own ego had undone her. She was barely a step above a rabid
dog. She had to be put down. And Red.... that was the thing that was really
bothering Spike. The little witch had been such a good soul. When he'd first
met her he could taste the purity in the air around her. But she
was tainted. Her soul reeked of corruption. She was beyond saving.

The vampire was worried for his family. If this was disturbing him, then
what must it be doing to Oz and Xander. Stepping forward, he placed a kiss
on the back of his love's neck.

"I'm sorry Kitten. I'm sorry."

Xander said nothing. He simply stepped back into Spike, so that his back
rested against the vampire's chest. A glance to his right showed the
sorcerer that Wesley was holding Oz in the same way that Spike was holding
him. They were both staring at what was happening in front of them. Xander
didn't want to look. He didn't want to see what was about to happen. Taking
a deep breath he turned to face what was one of the worst nights of his



All eyes turned to Angel and his lover. The smaller man was on the
ground clutching his head in pain and staring into the distance at nothing.

"No you bloody well don't!!"

Giles' shout brought Xander's attention back to the fight. Buffy had
turned away from Willow like the rest of them. The witch had taken the
opportunity to try and run for it. The ex-watcher had her trapped in a kind
of shield spell. It kept her from moving, but she was nearly as strong as
him and was using everything she had to get away. Xander added his own
strength to the spell and was trying to think of away to get Buffy back into
this mess when things went even further into the shit.

"Xander, her blood. The Slayer's blood will send the fucking thing
back." Doyle's voice reached Willow's brain faster then it did Xander's. The
witch reacted in the worst possible way, at least as far as the sorcerer was

"Buffy. They're not telling you the whole truth. The half-ling
called me. He gave me Willow. It's him you have to kill."

Buffy, of course, tuned into this instantly. It would give her a valid
excuse to do what she had already planned. Xander saw the calculating look
enter her eyes. Willow saw it too.

"He has Angel under a spell. Once he's gone Angel will remember how
much he loves you. He'll be yours again."

"Angel look out!!"

Xander screamed before Buffy moved, but the vampire only just managed to
get in front of Doyle before a charging Slayer was baring down on them.