Author: Kat Lee
Fandom: Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Character/Pairing: Spike, Willow/Tara
Challenge/Prompt: nekid_spike A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words: Day 20:
Warning(s): Cannon Character Death
Word Count: 1,044
Date Written: 22 August 2017
Disclaimer: All characters within belong to Whedon, not the author, and are used without permission.
He watches her, thinking she doesn’t see him. It’s been a pleasure in the past to watch a human crumple before him. The destruction of a single soul has provided Vampires with hours of entertainment for as long as there have been bloodsuckers, himself included, but this time, it’s different. This time, he hurts as he watches her.
She lifts her tear-streaked face from her girlfriend’s grave to meet his gaze. “I’d be easy,” she speaks softly, her voice seeming to blend with the night wind that’s blowing in the forewarning of a coming storm, “if you wanted to kill me.”
He doesn’t understand how her words seem to hurt him even worse, or why it’s painful to watch her grieve, but they do. He steps from the shadows, having realized that she’s known he’s been there the entire time. “I won’t do it,” he says calmly, surprising them both, her only a little more than he himself. “You’re stronger than this, Red.”
“Am I?” Willow asks, her voice so small and still that even Spike’s ears barely hear her. She looks back to Tara’s grave. “Maybe I don’t want to be,” she admits, “not without her.”
“She’d want you to be,” he tells her, pulling a cigarette out of his pocket and lighting up. He sucks on the cig, but even it provides little comfort tonight. “Tara was a strong woman, and you’ve always been strong, stronger than you know. That’s part of what pulled her to you. Do you think this crying, feeble girl you are right now could’ve stopped her family from taking her back with them?”
“Shut up,” Willow growls. Spike looks up, alarmed, as the cemetery shakes. “You know nothing about me.”
“I know plenty about you, pet. I’ve watched you grow up, remember, from that sniffling, little cowardly mouse of a girl to a brave girl who’s always been there for her friends who -- “
“I wasn’t there for you,” Willow cries, and rain falls from the darkening sky. “I wasn’t there when she needed me the most.”
“You didn’t know,” Spike tries to tell her. “You couldn’t have guessed.”
“No, but I do now,” she says, and Spike watches her gather her strength as she rises back off of her knees. “I know exactly who killed her, and they’re going to pay.” Her head swings toward him. Her eyes are darker than he’s ever seen them as she hisses, “Unless you stop me.”
He shrugs. “I’m not stopping you, Red. You wanna avenge her murder, I get it. I’d do the same thing. But it’s not what Tara would want.”
Willow’s black gaze swings back to her girlfriend’s grave. “If I hadn’t tried to give her what she wanted, if I’d been more in tune to what was happening, listened to the magic more, maybe I would have been warned. Maybe she’d be alive now.”
“Maybe, but I doubt it. Death has a way of claiming what she wants only when she’s ready. That’s why we’re not supposed to intervene.”
“I could bring her back,” Willow thinks aloud, whispering again, “but that’s not what she wanted. She’d never forgive me if I did that. Buffy still hasn’t.”
“She will -- “
“I don’t care if she does or not.” The wind rises with each word Willow produces more loudly. Somewhere in the cemetery, a branch breaks off of an ancient tree. Spike tosses his cigarette to the ground; the wind snuffs it out before it ever lands. “I DON’T CARE WHAT ANY OF THEM THINK! LOOK AT WHERE CARING HAS BROUGHT ME! I CARED ABOUT HER! I LOVED HER! AND NOW SHE’S DEAD!” The whole Earth around them seems to come to a complete stop as she bellows, “AND SOON THEY WILL BE TOO!”
Spike steps back as Willow literally takes up off of the ground. He watches her go and wonders how long her anger will last. The cemetery’s suddenly colder even to his undead skin. He looks down at Tara’s grave and shakes his head. He knows this isn’t what she would want. She would want to Willow cry, grieve, and eventually move on like a normal person should. She wouldn’t want her delving even further into the black magic. “Sorry, pet,” he whispers and turns his back on her grave.
Walking away, Spike debates what to do with what he’s witnessed tonight. Willow’s just slid pass the line that has always separated them, the line that separates the good from the evil. She’s not going to stop any time soon, but Buffy and her other friends won’t want to hear what he’s learned. They won’t believe him.
But soon, he thinks, soon, they’ll see for themselves. Soon, they’ll have no choice but to recognize what everybody’s favorite, little redheaded Witch has allowed herself to become. There is a storm coming with this wind and slanting rain, but it’s not one of the Earth’s doing. It’s the worst kind of storm, the kind that comes from the pain of a broken heart and soul, and this one’s going to cover all of SunnyHell before the Witch is through.
He should warn Buffy, but she won’t believe him. She’ll never believe him, and the information may just be enough to finish turning her against him. No, he can’t tell her. He’s got to let her see for herself. Shoving his hands deep into the pockets of his leather trench coat, Spike recognizes the storm for what it is.
It may not be natural, but he’s going to have to treat it like any other storm. He’s going to have to wait and watch while the others around him come to see it as well. He’ll have to help them as he can until it’s over, and when it is over, he’ll have to pick up the pieces. Maybe then, Buffy will finally be able to see that he’s not the monster she thinks he is. Spike smirks. Yeah, right, and this sucker’s going to take them all to Oz where monkeys fly and lions cringe. No, she won’t see him as anything but a monster, but maybe, just maybe, if he’s really lucky, she might learn to trust a monster a little bit more before the storm is over.