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Chapter 37

 

 

The door to hospitality opened and Angel came out and stood there. He looked at the back of Spike, not realising who it was at first.

 

“Is everything alright, I think, well, not sure, but well I may have put my foot in it with-“

 

“YOU are ALWAYS putting your foot in things…” Spike turned and advanced on Angel, who began to back down the corridor.

 

“I want a word with you…I want you to keep away from my girl, do you understand me?” Spike said menacingly

 

“Now hold on, just a minute, who do you think-“ Spike saw red and grabbed Angel by the shirt front and head butted him. There was a loud crack, and Angel sagged to his knees clutching his face.

 

“You so much as LOOK at her wrong again – don’t think I didn’t see how uncomfortable you made her on the quiz show, you kept on touching her even though she repeatedly asked you not to…or that little stunt you pulled outside Scandals…well don’t forget, Angel, I know more people in this business than you can shake a stick at, I suggest you re-locate and soon, do you understand me – coz I’ll make sure you’ll never work in this city again!” Spike gave him a hard shove, there was a loud ripping sound, and Angel fell backwards clutching his face.

 

Spike turned on his heel and went back to the hospitality room to see if there was any more nasty little surprises. There was. One.

 

“So…you are?” Spike asked, thinking he could take an educated guess. The guy held out his hand, but Spike didn’t shake it, so Hank dropped it.

 

“Hank Summers, Buffy’s father, and you are?”

 

“Never mind. Well Mr Summers, you’ve had a wasted journey”

 

“What – oh, but I was-“

 

“Do you honestly think that Buffy would want to see you, like this?”

 

“I’m sorry, but who are you to know who and what my daughter-“

 

“Look. I know you haven’t seen Buffy since you divorced her mother. I know when she won the talent show, you contacted Aphrodite records, and I also know you phoned her at home, and I also know that she asked you for some time so she could think about things”

 

“I only want a chance to explain, to put my side of the story, her mind had been poisoned by my ex-wife, and-“

 

Spike held his hand up in the recognised ‘Halt’ signal.

 

“Mr Summers………I can appreciate that, I really can, but do you really think this is the way to go about things – a forced reunion, on live TV, in front of roughly…what, three million people? – How much humiliation can you face – because if you back Buffy into a corner, which is exactly what you’d be doing by being here tonight, she’ll come out all guns blazing, it’ll be ‘My dad left me in my formative years, never contacted me when my mom died, only when he thought I was famous did he deign to get in touch…how much of a caring father do you think you’re going to sound like?”

 

“I just want to see her, that’s all” Spike almost felt sorry for the poor sap, and sat down next to him.

 

“You seem to know my daughter very well” Hank said

 

“I’ll make no bones about it Mr Summers, I love your daughter very much, and I won’t see her hurt, not by you or anybody. I’ll tell you what I’ll do. I can’t promise you that she’ll meet or even contact you, BUT, if you leave now I’ll tell Buffy you had a change of heart, and would rather see her under her terms and conditions, than a surprised forced meeting on a show. And actually, the woman doing this show is totally devious, she has some hidden agenda, and I’m sure she’s trying to harm Buffy’s career” Hank Summers studied Spike.

 

 

“You really do care for her, don’t you” Hank said, and Spike replied,

 

“Don’t ever doubt it” Hank nodded

 

“You British?”

 

“Yes, I’m from London, originally”

 

Hank nodded again and thought for a moment.

 

“What about the hotel bill?”

 

“Don’t worry about anything like that, I’ll make sure your bill is paid, and there will be no come-backs on you”

 

“And you’ll tell her what you said, about seeing her on her terms and that?”

 

“I promise I’ll tell her that, but I can’t or won’t force her to see you” Spike stood and held out his hand. Hank stood slowly and shook the offered hand.

 

“If she doesn’t decide to contact me………well, look after her okay?” Spike smiled

 

“You got it”

 

“Well, I’ll go then”

 

“What hotel were you at?” Spike asked, and Hank told him.

 

“Well…see you” Hank left. Spike went out and closed the door. Coming towards him was a researcher Spike recognised.

 

Cassie Newton had wrestled with her conscience for long enough, and she KNEW she had to do or say something, and quick. Then she spotted him, Mr Carling, Buffy’s manager………

“Mr Carling – look…we haven’t got long, but we’ve GOT to stop Glory!”

 

Spike frowned at the frail looking girl.

 

“I know you, you work for her don’t you” Spike said, wondering if this was another one of Glory’s devious ploys.

 

“Unfortunately, yes, but she’s turned into a monster – I just can’t let her get away with what she wants to do. She’s trying to force Riley and Buffy back together on-screen, and of course Buffy will reject him, but it will put her in a bad light – the guy that got her fame being shunned, then there’s her father – Buffy will probably shun him too – it’ll look awful for her, like she’s some sort of Diva, which I know isn’t true…Oh god, I wish I’d never heard of Glory Benson, she’s evil – pure evil!!” Cassie said

 

“I know – but-“ Spike began

 

“Look, we don’t have time, she’s become this real megalomaniac – a complete tyrant who wants to ruin Buffy’s career…she thinks Sweet will sit up and notice her then and make her his number two, as she’s so ruthless”

 

“And you’re telling me this, why?” Spike asked

 

“Because, well, it isn’t fair, Buffy’s done nothing wrong, I loved her song, she was just a regular girl, a role model for young girls to aspire to, and it isn’t fair!”

 

“You’ve got that right love, but look, don’t worry, all the guests have gone”

 

“GONE? – Gone where?” Cassie looked wide-eyed at Spike. A rest-room door opened a little way down the corridor, and out came Angel, his white shirtfront covered in blood from the broken nose Spike had given him.

 

“Oh my god, what happened to you?” Cassie asked Angel

 

“He took a nasty tumble in the hospitality room, didn’t you mate – ooh, looks nasty, you want to get some ice on that” Spike said daring Angel to contradict him.

 

“I’ll be okay, I just want my jacket – my pants have ripped………I can’t appear on the show looking like this, I’m going home” Angel said, wanting to leave as he felt scared of Spike.

 

“That’s it my friend, you get yourself off home…” Spike put his arm around Angel’s shoulder, giving it a warning squeeze.

 

“I will, don’t worry, bye”

 

“But what about her father – and that soldier – I let him bring his wife, Glory didn’t know about her I thought it would soften the blow of what Glory was trying to do if his wife was here too – she’d realise that she couldn’t force -”

 

Spike gently put his arm around Cassie’s shoulders and they began to walk down the corridor slowly.

 

“Cassie, Cassie, calm down………has anybody told you, you worry too much?”

 

“Yes, my cardiologist – I have a weak heart…she’ll be the death of me Glory Benson will, and I just know she’ll blame me for tonight”

 

“No she won’t”

 

“She will, she said she’s holding ME responsible for tonight if anything goes wrong”

 

“Cassie, look. I’ll take the blame I’ve got to see Sweet on Monday anyway and if there are any repercussions, I will make sure that you are totally exonerated”

 

“Could you write me a reference too – coz I’ll be out of a job!”

 

“No you won’t, come and work out of my office, I’m always telling Cordelia she works far too hard. Look, if Buffy asks, just don’t say anything about her father being here okay, I sort of made him a deal that I’d tell her he decided to go and not force the issue of seeing her, okay?” Cassie nodded

 

“I promise – oh you’d really let me work for you? – Oh wow – oh hell…can you hear her – quick, let’s hide in here!” Cassie opened a door marked ‘Makeup’ she and Spike went inside.

 

They could both hear the loud sanctimonious tone of Glory barking out orders.

 

“Hey, so have you found out anything about the show?” Spike and Cassie turned to see Buffy in the makeup chair.

 

“Oh, hi. Um, Plenty, there isn’t going to be one…the guests have gone” Spike said

 

“Guests? - Gone, gone where, why?” Buffy looked slightly worried

 

“Don’t fret, I’ll let Cassie fill you in, I – Oh, excuse me”

 

Spike’s mobile rang, he saw it was Xander.

 

“Spike – have you heard the news, Rack’s dead. He’d been put on a ventilator and a dialysis machine as his kidneys packed up, but he had a final cardiac arrest an hour ago.”

 

“I see  - look, I’ve just had a brainwave – Xand, can you get to the office, bring those tapes and DVD’s I’ve made for the ‘Best Of Noiz…the interviews and stuff, we’re going to have a change of programme…”

 

“Sure, I can be with you in…half an hour”

 

“Perfect” Spike ended the call to hear Buffy almost shriek,

 

“She WHAT – I’ll kill her, you wait until I get my hands on that-“

 

“Kitten, don’t fret”

 

“Fret – I’m SO-“ Buffy was incandescent with rage

 

“Baby, look, no time to loose, Rack’s dead – over the last few weeks I’ve been putting together interviews and clips of Noiz concerts and back-stage stuff – we can run it as a ‘Tribute’ show instead, I was just going to leave Glory in it up to her neck, but, THIS is too good an opportunity to miss.  I’ll try and get hold of Ford…Cassie, you go to reception and find out if we can stall broadcasting”

 

 

                                                        **********

 

Spike, Cassie and Buffy came out of makeup, and Spike suddenly spied a very dejected looking Riley coming back in to the building.

 

As neither Cassie nor Buffy saw this, Spike told them to carry on down to the studio, he’d follow.

 

Riley came back in.

 

“What’s up?”

 

“She’s taken the hospitality car  - we had a car and driver – I don’t even have cab-fare to get back to the hotel”

 

Spike turned and saw Glory’s driver sitting reading in reception.

 

“George, take this man to the Holiday Inn, then onto the airport, okay”

 

“But Glory-“ he began

 

“Don’t worry, I’ll square it with her”

 

“Thanks mate…I just hope I can salvage my marriage”

 

“You will – now go!” Spike said and the two men left.

 

Spike took out his mobile and phoned Ford, his favourite cameraman, but got no joy.

 

He tried phoning Sweet’s mansion, but only got the Ansa-phone.

 

He’d wing it, front the show himself, as he had been their manager, Spike had an encyclopaedic memory of all Noiz’s album releases and general info of them, with the DVD’s he’d burned and tapes he’d made, he could put together a decent show.

 

 

From above him, Spike heard a shriek, and guessed that Glory had found out something was wrong.

 

A few seconds later, a very harassed woman, the one who’d taken the guests up to hospitality came flying into reception looking ashen.

 

“Oh my god, oh my GOD! – Please, has ANYONE seen the guests for Glory’s show – I took them to hospitality ten minutes ago – I TOLD them not to leave the room, but they’re gone – GONE vanished off the face of the earth, and Glory is having a blue fit up there!” The woman fumbled with her glasses and clipboard.

 

“Don’t fret pet, I’ve sort it”

 

“Do you know where they are – oh please, for the love of-“

 

“CASSIE…CASSIE NEWTON, YOU GET YOUR SORRY CARCASS HERE THIS MINUTE!” Glory strode into reception. She narrowed her eyes at Spike

 

“WHAT, are YOU doing here?”

 

“Saving the day, apparently, you know Glory, you REALLY ought to be a little more grateful…”

 

“What do you mean?”

 

“You want the guests – I’ll show you where they are”

 

“You don’t even know who I’ve got coming”

 

“Oh…let me think…Angel Stebson…Hank Summers…Riley – whatever, anyway, the soldier boy”

 

“So? One of my researchers, couldn’t keep her mouth shut, proves nothing…I know which one it is too…the one that’s conspicuous by her absence now…well she better just wait, when I-“

 

“You can go love, I’ll take it from here” Spike said to the harassed woman. She looked scared, and glanced from Spike to Glory. Spike smiled and nodded, quietly said,

 

“Go on pet, I’ve got everything covered here” The woman scooted and Spike grabbed Glory by the elbow.

 

“You want the guests, come with me”

 

Glory tried to get her arm out of his grasp, to no avail,

 

“Get your hands off me! If you’ve done anything to ruin this show, I’ll – “ Glory threatened

 

“You’ll what? – Glory, you’re not half as scary as you like to think you are…and definitely not as clever…you want your guests, they are in there” Spike nodded towards a door. Glory frowned, looked at the door, then at Spike

 

“Go on…” Glory slowly turned the handle and pushed open the door, it was pitch black in there.

 

Suddenly Spike gave her an almighty shove and she flew inside, Spike quickly followed slamming the door behind him and switching on the light.

 

Glory looked around what was essentially a linen cupboard

 

“What the fuck is-“

 

“I’ve never hit a woman in my life before, but in YOUR case I’m willing to make an exception, if you give me cause to, now sit down…………I SAID sit DOWN!” Glory looked around, and plonked herself on the floor.

 

“Sweet’s going to be so angry with you, you’ll be lucky to come out of this with any money left at all – he’ll sue your sorry ass from here to kingdom come!” Glory sneered.

 

“S’that right? - Well, let me worry about that, it’s of no concern to you. Now, I’m under the impression that you are getting quite used to being tied up so to speak, so…turn around……………Glory, don’t make me ask you twice”

 

“I’ll kill you…I fucking kill you mysel-hmm uh” Spike rolled a dish-cloth corner to corner to make a gag, and tied it quite tightly around her mouth. He then unrolled one of the roller-towels and tied her hands and feet to the framework of shelves.

 

He squatted down, and re-arranged her hair tidily.

 

“Comfy? – Good. Oh, and Riley’s wife was with him, but you didn’t know that, did you…I know what you were going to do, trying to ruin Buffy’s career, well you had better put as much energy into salvaging yours, because otherwise ……… well, like you say, you KNOW how un-forgiving Daddy can be.”

 

 Glory was trying to shout and wriggle, all to no avail.

 

“Don’t worry, I’ll let somebody know where you are, I shan’t leave you ‘hanging’ around, like that boyfriend of yours did………later”

 

Spike left quickly closing the door behind him Glory tried to scream, but all she succeeded in doing, was to give herself a headache nearly bursting a blood-vessel.

 

Spike went down to the studio. Trying to contact Ford on the way, again to no avail.

 

“Kitten, you know how the DVD player works don’t you, you’ve seen Ford do it often enough”

 

“Sure”

 

“Cassie, can you work a video camera?”

 

“Yes, but – “

 

“But nothing – could we delay the scheduling at all?”

 

“There’s been a big load of trouble in the Middle East, some leader has been killed in a suicide bombing, the news will over-run but ten minutes, and then we can run four minutes of commercials, then announce the change in scheduling, and say we are going to show a tribute to the singer Rack, that gives us 16 minutes extra, the network boss said if you can run this show for 38 minutes, that will give you two commercial breaks of four minutes each, and end transmission at the allotted time, so nothing else will over-run – they’d be very grateful to you”

 

“No problem, I can waffle on and show clips – how long until we’re due on air?”

 

Cassie looked at her watch and calculated…

 

“50 minutes – yes, that’s right…50”

 

“Good girl, right, Buffy, help me shift this sofa”

 

“Excuse me…excuse me has anybody seen Glory Benson?” a rather nervous director asked Spike, then he asked,

 

“Um, what are you doing? – Miss Benson specifically asked to have the sofa’s arranged like-“

 

“Don’t sweat it, mate, Miss Benson is a bit tied up at the moment, there’s to be a change in programming…we’re screening a tribute to Rack – lead singer with Noiz, he died today”

 

“Oh, um why wasn’t I told of this?”

 

“Well, I’m telling you now, and because it’s only just been decided…there, that’s better – um, you, yes you, and you, can you get me a video and a DVD player – and I want a spot light on that sofa, and you can get rid of the autocue, it won’t be needed” The two floor hands looked at the director, who relieved at not having to work with Glory Benson shouted,

 

“Come along, chop-chop, you heard him, do as the man says!” This spurred them into action.

 

“Cassie, go to reception and get onto security, tell them a Mr Xander Harris is coming in with vital show tapes – to wave him through, okay?”

 

“I’m on it”

 

“Buffy, don’t look so worried pet, when I want you to run the DVD, I’ll say just that, you hit the play button – the first DVD I’ve burned runs for 18 minutes, should take us nicely to a commercial break – then we can set up the next” Buffy nodded, but she felt nervous.

 

Cassie came back form the errand and said

 

“I’ve okayed it with security about Mr Harris, and put the schedule announcer on stand-by for the programme change announcement”

 

“Good girl! – I can see you are going to be a great asset in our office! Right…I need access to a computer?”

 

“Through there” One of the floor hands pointed to a door and Spike went off.

 

“I’m sorry what Glory was going to do, I said to Mr Carling, that I thought it was horrible…” Cassie went onto explain a little more to Buffy.

 

“So Riley’s married eh – well, well!” Buffy said smiling

 

In the computer room, Spike hastily drew up a copyright on the DVD, and  videos he was about to use, he emailed Sweet with some scant details, and downloaded a previously unheard-by-the-public track from his own personal music file to use as backing music.

 

Cassie was just about to go to him, when Spike came out of the office

 

“How are things, how are we doing for time?” he asked

 

“We have 19 minutes before start, and Mr Harris has just driven onto the lot”

Cassie informed him

 

“Good work...well – relax, take five everybody, this is going to work out fine, I know it!” Spike said putting his arm around Buffy.

 

                                                        *************

 

Riley had just missed his wife at the hotel, she’d packed her things but left his there, the flight ticket had gone, so he quickly threw everything he could find into the suitcase left, and raced out to the car.

 

“Airport, and quick!”

 

Fifteen minutes later, the car screeched onto the forecourt outside the airport entrance. Riley looked around for the flight information desks, and went over. The queues were horrendously long at all three, and he quickly scanned the people waiting, looking for his wife. It was only when a family moved away from the middle desk, he spotted her, and pushing through the queues, excusing himself as he went he heard her say,

 

“Change this double ticket to two singles, and can I leave the one here for him to collect? We weren’t due to fly until tomorrow, but – oh!” Riley’s hand covered hers and Sam dropped the pen.

 

“That won’t be necessary – we’ll be flying together” Riley said, looking hopefully at his wife.

 

“Mrs Finn? – What do you want me to do, I have rather a large queue of people waiting” The ground staff lady behind the desk said.

 

“Oh, um, I erm…sorry…it’ll be fine, thankyou” She took the double ticket back and they both moved out of the queue.

 

“So, you didn’t do the show then?”

 

“No. I didn’t want to be there without you. I  - where do I start………I kept getting these phone calls from Glory Benson to contact her………………I asked if you could come, and I was told yes of course, I wanted you to have a nice break, that’s all, I would have never come on my own, baby it’s YOU I love……………Buffy was never really in love with me…”

 

“How can you say that – she wrote you a love song?”

 

“Did she? Does it say, Oh Riley where are you, I love you, come home to me?”

 

“Well, no but, she always said that-“

 

“That song…to be truthful – I think it was more about missing her mom as much as she was missing me, she’d not long died, then Buffy didn’t hear from  me, so, for one reason or another…you know how things are when you’re a teenager, you moon around in your bedroom listening to sad songs, writing poetry, thinking nobody understands…”

 

“I’m sorry.. over-reacted some, didn’t I?” Sam felt silly and embarrassed at her actions and looked down at her feet. Riley raised her chin so she’d look at him.

 

“Just a little…I don’t know why I didn’t really tell you who it was I , well we were coming here to see………well, perhaps I do, but I didn’t want you to say no. I WANTED us to have a few days in a swanky hotel full of luxuries that I couldn’t afford to give you. You deserve nice things, I thought it would be a treat, but I got it wrong, and I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to hurt you”

 

“No…no you didn’t get it wrong, I did…well perhaps we both did! I shouldn’t have over-reacted, and you should have told me who it was in the first place!”

 

“Um, excuse me sir, but will you be needing me again?” Riley turned to look at Glory’s driver.

 

“Well baby, we DO have another night booked and paid for, shall we?”

 

“But as you haven’t done the show, oh my god, what if they try and-“

 

“Got it covered, come on, I’ll tell you on the way back to the hotel!” Grinning, Riley and Sam went back to the car to be driven to the hotel.

 

“……………So this guy who is Buffy’s boyfriend by the way said not to worry, he works for the same company as Glory, he’ll make sure everything is okay, she won’t sue us”

 

“Her boyfriend – oh!”

 

“Yeah, he’s her manager too – seemed to know what he was talking about anyway” Riley said, and safe in the knowledge that she had been really silly, Sam slipped down into the comfort of her husbands embrace as they were driven back to the hotel.

 

                                                        **********

 

“………Change in tonight’s scheduling, Due to the untimely death of one of rock and roll’s more outrageous characters, we will now screen a Tribute to Rack, who sadly died today”

 

Inside the studio, the director counted down and pointed to Spike. Much to Buffy’s relief, Xander stayed and helped her, he’d also bought Harmony with him, and she said she’d do a ‘live’ interview with Spike about Rack when they were both at the ‘Party in the Park’ in London the previous year.

 

                                                        **********

 

Lorne was sitting on the sofa, Dru was curled up asleep next to him, and Daddy was in the office. Not really listening to the announcer, he was expecting to hear the name Glory Benson and the show’s title. The video timer kicked in, and when he heard the words, Tribute to Rack, Lorne looked up sharply at the screen, Daddy needed to see this, NOW!”

 

“Daddy!” He knocked and didn’t wait to be told to go in, he just entered the office.

 

Sweet was seated behind his desk, looking at papers.

 

“Daddy, you better come and see this”

 

“What – oh god…don’t tell me I’ve played right into one of Glory’s fucked-up stunts – she made me promise to-!”

 

“No, nothing like that at all – it’s been pulled!” Lorne said excitedly walking on ahead back towards the lounge.

 

When they got in there, Dru was sitting up grinning, she had the remote control in her hand and she’d turned up the volume. On screen was a scene of Noiz on stage, playing one of their huge stadium gigs. Rack was sweaty and screaming down the microphone, the camera panned around to show a crowd of thousands, absolutely loving it, jumping up and down singing. Spike was doing the voice-over.

 

“So I take it you didn’t know about this…it’s brilliant – the timing is perfect – that man Spike is a genius!” Lorne said. They listened as Spike said,

 

“………………………The band’s meteoric rise to fame gave them the Midas touch, with their first three singles, Slayer, Devil Child and Exorcist all hit the Billboard chart at number one, their first album, Rite of Passage went double platinum in a week of it’s release, selling in excess of half a million copies a day.”

 

Sweet stared at the screen, leering his leery grin. – Perfect! He had to hand it to Spike…Lorne was right, the guy WAS a genius, and how on EARTH Spike had persuaded Glory to give up her prime-time slot for this, he’d NEVER know!

 

                                                        ********

 

Spike ended the show with a series of clips of Rack and the whole band, then the final still of Rack on his own, with the words Rack- 1959-2004 RIP. The song faded and Spike watched the director count him out.

 

“That’s a wrap”

 

Everybody cheered, it had been an absolutely BRILLIANT success, the switchboard was jammed with calls, and Buffy went up and hugged him

 

“You were totally awesome!”

 

“Why, thank you Kitten!”

 

“Mr Carling…Mr Carling, excuse me, but um – “

 

“Call me Spike, Cassie!”

 

“Spike…Mr Sweetly’s on the phone for you” Cassie passed Spike one of the studios mobile phones.

 

“Spike – that was brilliant – the tribute show – best I’ve ever seen - totally amazing – I want you in my office first thing – well, not first thing but-“

 

“Actually Sweet…I think I’ll leave it until our scheduled meeting on Monday, if you don’t mind – I have plans for my weekend, I’ll see you on Monday 9am, as arranged”

 

Buffy, Cassie, Harmony and Xander looked at him in total awe – usually when the boss said ‘jump,’ you said, ‘how high’ – and here was Spike telling Sweet just exactly how it was going to be!

 

“Oh, very well then, yes, you deserve some time off, Monday then” Sweet acquiesced

 

“Yeah, bye” Spike ended the call with a grin.

 

“WOW – Kudos my friend – no one else would DARE speak to him like that!” Xander said totally awestruck.

 

“Nobody else just got the network out of the mire like Spike did!” Buffy said. 

 

Cassie declined going for a drink with them, saying she was tired, and said goodnight.

 

“Come on then, shall we go back to mine – I’ve got some Champagne in the fridge…I’ve been looking for an excuse to open it!”

 

Outside security were having an argument with a paparazzo, who insisted that he’d got a pass from Glory Benson to be inside.

 

“Pavayne, my name is Pavayne, she SAID she’d leave me a pass”

 

“I’m sorry sir, but Miss Benson has left, her show didn’t air, there was a tribute show broadcast instead”

 

“Tribute show?”

 

“Yes, the rock-star Rack died this evening”

 

“WHAT – OH FUCK!” Pavayne should have been outside the clinic taking photos, not hanging around here, arguing the toss like a dick…he stormed off to his car promising himself to see Miss Benson, and thank her for not letting him know her show had been cancelled.

 

“There’s always one…come on, let’s go get ourselves a break” the one security officer said to the other, and they went inside.

 

“Shh…did you hear that?” The one officer stopped and listened

 

“What?”

 

“I don’t know…tapping?”

 

The other guy listened, and heard nothing

 

“No”

 

“Just me then…actually, my ears could be water-logged from swimming”

 

“Swimming eh, my Mrs has got me onto tennis………”

 

Inside the linen cupboard, Glory stopped trying to tap on the wall with her heel, she was getting cramp in her leg from doing it, not that anybody could hear it. She resigned herself to the fact that she’s be there until the cleaners found her in the morning…

                                                        ***********

 

 

At twenty past midnight, Harmony and Xander left. Buffy and Spike waved them from the doorstep.

 

“Are you tired, kitten?”

 

“A little………but then, we’ve got the whole weekend to ourselves!”

 

“Baby, can I talk to you?” Spike looked serious and Buffy felt a little ominous chill, and nodded.

 

They sat on the sofa, nursing a brandy apiece, Spike had cuddled her to him.

 

“……………So, I told him I wouldn’t force or ask you to see him, nothing like that was promised, but I did say I’d tell you that he thought better of his actions, changed his mind, wouldn’t force a meeting on you and decided to leave it up to you.”

 

“Half of me wants to see him………but, well, I don’t want him to start doing a character assassination on my mom…it would be so easy for him to say, oh, your mom did and said this, your mom said and did that – she’s not here to defend herself”

 

“I know Kitten, you told me…and I know it can’t be easy”

 

“When he first went…it was a relief that I didn’t have to hear them arguing………sometimes I’d sit on the stairs and listen. They always used to wait until I was in bed, thinking I was asleep…and then after he’d gone, I didn’t hear arguing, but I used to hear mom cry herself to sleep. If I went in to her, course she’d pretend nothing was wrong, that everything was all right”

 

Spike stroked the hair out of her face.

 

“Nobody can force you to do what you don’t want to do baby – take your time – and if you don’t feel ready to see him, then you could always write him a letter or something first – you don’t even have to send it, sometimes it helps to see things written down” Buffy nodded and downed her brandy, put her glass on the coffee table and stood up.

 

“Come on………enough talking for now………I want some action from my ‘Superhero!’”

 

She pulled a grinning Spike to his feet, and he swiftly scooped her up making her giggle. She immediately threw her arms around his neck and said,

 

“My Hero!”

 

Spike carried her carefully upstairs – they were both giggling at first, but that soon gave way to passionate kisses and a swift removal of clothing…………

 

 

 

 

More please...

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