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We have officially moved into our new apartment, kitties have even ventured out
from under my bed and explored their new domain. Unpacking like a madwoman, which
is why I'm late with the posting yet once again.

Hope you enjoy - please feel free to comment or encourage as you see fit.


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Buffy stomped into his crypt looking like someone had pissed in her cornflakes. Spike who’d been sitting in his ratty old armchair watching something inane on the telly sat up and waited for her to make the first move, as always.

“I need you to tell me something, Spike,” she said, staring at him with hurt and indignation blaring from her eyes. “And I want you to tell me the absolute truth – no mocking allowed.”

“I always tell you the truth, Slayer… even when you don’t want to hear it.” Spike cocked his head, studying her posture and demeanor closely.

“Do… do I have a funny nose?”

“Do you what?”

“I said it clearly enough, didn’t I?” she asked, impatiently waiting on his answer. “Spill!”

“You, love, are unique. Your nose fits your face like it was made for it,” he said, softly. “It wouldn’t be you without that lovely little bump at the tip.”

“Argh!” she shouted to the ceiling, balling up her fists. “What do you and Dawn have against my damned nose? I hope Daniel doesn’t have to deal with this crap.”

Spike’s ears perked up. “What’s it got to do with Cardboard Junior?”

“Dawn said Daniel has my nose,” she explained. “And you should have seen Riley jump up and snatch the baby away from me when she did – like I was a monster or something that would scare his precious child.”

“Now I want you to hear me out before you freak…” Spike said, holding his hands out in a placating manner. “When I first found the bitling, I thought there was something familiar about him. Like… family. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it then, and it’s hazy now… ”

“But we’ve never… and even if we did ever… you can’t make babies!”

“That cleared things right up,” Spike laughed, amused at Buffy’s attempt at rebuttal. “We need to check out the bit when the toy soldier isn’t around.”

“And how do you expect that to happen? I’ve pretty much torched what there was of a relationship with Daniel’s parents this evening,” she said, mumbling something else under her breath that was too low for even Spike to make out.

“You’re gonna have to repeat that last bit, love. Despite vampire hearing, I’m not quite fixed up with sonar.” Spike watched as she obviously struggled over whether or not to share her thoughts.

Finally, she gave in. “I said, I defended you to Riley and the Scoobies, and that went down like a lead balloon.”

Spike was positively gobsmacked. His Slayer - the woman he loved beyond all reason - had stood up to her friends and her ex over him? He would have given up an arm to have been there to see it.

“So what did you say,” he asked, still not quite believing his ears. If his heart could still beat, it would be jackhammering in anticipation by now.

“Don’t get cocky about it, Spike,” she said, a tinge of snark in her words. “I just told Riley that although he thinks he knows all about vampires, he doesn’t know thing one about you… And that the Initiative was wrong to shove a chip in your head against your will.”

Now he knew he had to be dreaming. Buffy Summers was against the do-no-harm chip in his head? Hell must have frozen over. After being told time and time again that the chip was the only reason he was not dust by her hands… this was a revelation.

“I think you’re being something of a hypocrite here, love,” he said, slowly and softly. “All I’ve ever heard from you was it’s a good thing I’m ‘impotent’ or that, without the chip, I’d be blowing in the breeze. Your own words, petal.”

“In the long run, I might have been wrong,” Buffy admitted, “but I have to say, in the short run, that chip worked to curb the worst of your violent tendencies. And your impulsiveness,” she added. “It also gave me time to think – to get to know you more.

“I think I’d miss you if you weren’t in the world anymore, Spike,” she concluded, nodding her head for emphasis. “You do tend to make things interesting, to say the least.”

“Hell really must have frozen over,” Spike said with awe. “Never thought I’d hear the day when Miss Buffy Summers stepped down from her high horse and admitted she liked me.”

“I really didn’t say I liked you, did I?” Buffy looked horrified for a moment, before her shoulders slumped in defeat. “I guess I did. Huh! Are we due for an apocalypse? It’s not quite May, is it?”

Before Spike could answer, there was a knock on the crypt’s door.

“Another sign the world is ending, pet. Nobody ever knocks.” Spike opened the door and nearly fell on his arse in shock. Standing before him was a woman and baby Daniel.

“Sam!” Buffy yelped, pulling the woman into the crypt and closing the door behind her. “What are you doing out here in the middle of the night? Alone?”

I had to find you.” Samantha Finn’s eyes were wet with unshed tears as she held her son tightly to her chest.

“You need anything? Not much here to offer a human,” Spike apologized, “but I do have some cold water or soda in the fridge.”

“No, no,” Sam demurred. “We’re fine. I have milk and snacks for Daniel, if he gets cranky.”

“Let me take him,” Buffy offered, as Sam put down her bag. “By the way, Spike, this is Samantha Finn, in case you haven’t guessed.

“Sam, this is Spike.”

“Pleased to meet you,” Sam said, offering her hand.

“My pleasure, Mrs. Finn,” he managed, his voice nothing but sincere as he shook her hand.

“I needed to apologize for my husband,” Sam said, eyes cast down at her lap. “I don’t know what he was thinking involving you in this debacle with the Suvolte. The way he’s acting… I wouldn’t be surprised if he engineered it, himself.”

“Bloody git,” Spike snarled softly. “Still has a hard on for Buffy.”

“Spike!” Buffy hissed. “Sam is his wife and she loves him.”

“More fool her, then,” he snarked. At Buffy’s glare, he sighed. “S’not my place to comment on your love life. It’s just that, when it affects Buffy, I tend to be a bit protective.”

“I understand,” Sam said. “And Buffy was right last night – we might know vampires, but we clearly don’t know you,” she said, blushing slightly.

Buffy blushed, too, obviously not at all comfortable at having her words confirmed.

“What can you tell me about the niblet’s biological parents?” Spike asked with no preamble.

Sam startled, clearly not expecting the question, but answered nevertheless. “Riley told me that he’d been orphaned on one of the Initiatives missions and he was being cared for by a rotation of personnel in the labs. Since we’d just gotten married and wanted children, Riley offered to give him a happy home.”

“So is there a file showing his parentage?” Buffy asked. “Or did you just take Riley’s word on the matter?”

Spike watched the shock creep across Sam’s face as the implication sunk in.

“You think he flat-out lied to me?” Sam’s tears finally fell. “Maybe I was naïve, but it felt like we were doing the right thing. I mean, look at him,” she said, stroking the boy’s hair. “Who wouldn’t fall in love with him?”

“Would you mind?” Spike asked, motioning towards Daniel.

“By all means, Spike,” Sam said, “just don’t be offended if he starts to cry. He’s usually not comfortable around other people.”

“Come to Spike, little man,” the vampire crooned as he picked the boy up and looked into his face. “Let’s see what all the fuss is about.”

He sat down on the couch next to Buffy. “Two beautiful hazel eyes,” he noted, as Daniel just stared at him. “One little nose, complete with the infamous little bump I’ve heard tell about, and a cupid’s bow upper lip for a smile.”

“Now that you’ve taken inventory, Spike,” Buffy said with slight trepidation in her voice, “what do you think?”

Spike nuzzled Daniel’s neck and took a deep breath, then kissed the boy on the forehead. “It’s crazy,” he said, shaking his head. “Dunno how it would be possible, Slayer, but he smells like family – and you.”