Title: Crazy Eights
Author: Spike’s Heart
Rating: R to be safe, so far for violence
Setting: BtVS Sometime around Season 5-6, maybe.
Disclaimer: If they were mine, I’d treat them nicer than Joss ever did.
Feedback: Yes, please!
Archive: Ask me, nicely.
Warning: Character rape – not an overly graphic description.
A/N: Spike is not chipped and not souled. Buffy never died. The relationship between Spike and Buffy is friendly in the beginning. Spike NEVER attempted to rape Buffy. Angel and Dru are out of the picture. Don’t even know if there is a Dawn, Glory never existed. Joyce may or may not be deceased. Nobody’s heard of The First. The story is like a game of Crazy Eights with everything wild, and I’ll most definitely change the game rules as I go alone. **grins**
Beta’d by: the lovely willa_writes, as always
Summary: There’s a new club in town, and things don’t seem kosher.
Crazy Eights - Chapter One – Bleeding Hearts
It was a dark and stormy night. Buffy had to roll her eyes at her own inner monologue. The most hackneyed of all cliché beginnings to the telling of a tale, but it was dark, she reasoned. And stormy, and well, duh… night! Her tired little brain just rambled on and on as she patrolled the back alleys and cemeteries that comprised Sunnydale.
‘Bored, bored, bored’ ran through her mind, in time with the swinging of her arms as she walked alone on her path. As she entered Restfield cemetery - his cemetery, the Slayer realized what had been niggling at the back of her mind for hours. Spike wasn’t with her. She was fairly sure he’d offered to meet her for patrol, as he often did these days. Maybe she was mistaken. Unsure, she headed towards his crypt, to see what was up.
Her goal in sight, she paid no attention to the ground and stumbled when her heel caught in something soft and squishy behind a larger gravestones. At first glance, it appeared to be a large pile of dark, wet rags. As she bent down to investigate, the coppery smell overwhelmed her… blood. Lots and lots of blood, and relatively fresh at that.
Wishing she had a large stick to prod the pile of rags with, Buffy gingerly reached out with her fingers to remove the topmost piece of bloody cloth from the pile. What she saw made her turn her head and heave up the contents of her stomach.
Spike’s platinum blond hair was almost unrecognizable, completely saturated with congealing blood. His left cheekbone had been crushed and he’d been gagged with what looked to be his own red silk button-down. His arms had been tied behind his back with sufficient force to dislocate both shoulders, and his right leg was twisted at an unnatural angle.
Buffy gently pulled up the sodden t-shirt, running her fingertips gently over the vampire’s bruised and mangled torso, from his chest to his pelvis. Nauseous, she ascertained that at least 3 of his ribs had been broken and he’d been stabbed several times for good measure.
As her hands fluttered nervously over his belt, Buffy felt a cold wave of fear form in her belly, and she hesitated. She had no trouble with the idea of a perfunctory exam of Spike’s lower anatomy, but there was no way she was going to expose the unconscious and bloodied vampire further in the indefensible open space of the graveyard. A quick glance at the lightening sky put an added sense of urgency into her movements.
Gazing at Spike, she softly whispered “I’m sorry, so sorry,” over and over again as she hoisted his broken body over her shoulder in a fireman’s carry. Buffy was grateful for his unconscious state as she practically sprinted towards his crypt; the pain from his broken ribs and limbs would have been devastating.
She edged her way into the crypt, careful not to jostle Spike anymore than she had to. Knowing there was no way to get them both down to the lower level where his bed was, she had to make do with the stone sarcophagus that sometimes served the same purpose.
Grabbing blankets and pillows from the battered sofa, she arranged them as best she could with one available arm, and gently deposited the vampire in the middle of the nest she’d made of the bedding. Mindful of his injured right leg, she’d straightened the limb out as best she could. He’d not made a sound since she tripped over him in the graveyard. Skin mottled with bruises flowering against the almost translucent white, Spike looked well and truly dead.
With fear still coiling in her belly, she knew what had to be done. She had to assess the damage to the rest of Spike’s body. Taking a deep breath to brace herself, Buffy unbuckled his belt, and opened the buttons of his fly. Gently reaching under the comatose vampire, she managed to ease his jeans down to his knees. Swiftly removing his boots, she was able to remove the jeans altogether.
What she saw did nothing to assuage the roiling mess in her stomach. Dark bruises were found on the skin covering each of the vampire’s delicate hip bones. If she looked carefully, separate finger shaped bruised could be discerned. His groin, penis and sac were covered in bloody welts, indicative of a whipping of some sort. Gently rocking his body, Buffy found similar welting patterned over his entire back, worsening in intensity towards his buttocks. Oozing blood was suggestive of intimate damage, and the Slayer knew she had to get him cleaned up, and then fed.
There was no bathroom to speak of, since Spike had no use for an actual working toilet, but he had jerry-rigged a running shower. Fresh water and towels would aid immeasurably in the cleanup. The petite blonde Slayer placed her supplies next to the sarcophagus and rummaged around the crypt until she came across Spike’s actual first aid kit. Lots of fresh bandages and gauze, some needles and thread – it wasn’t pretty, but it would suffice, aided by vampire healing.
She set about her task with the air of someone who’d spent far too much time around battlefield injuries. Placing a towel under his head to catch the excess, Buffy poured the warm liquid through the injured vampire’s bloody hair, gently sluicing away the blood and gore, and trying to assess the damage to his skull. She’d found a nasty gash – probably the one responsible for all the blood in the first place. While the wound still oozed, it was well on its way to closing with no intervention necessary.
Running a clean towel lightly over his face, skimming the shattered cheekbone and torn lips, Buffy cried. To see such a beautiful face so damaged broke her heart. Spike may have been a pain in her ass, but she couldn’t imagine what he’d done to deserve a beating this severe. She also didn’t like thinking about who or what could possibly have overpowered him – more than likely a whole bunch of someones or somethings. Not that she’d want to, but if Spike needed putting down, a simple stake through the heart would suffice. Gratuitous torture was not her thing.
She knew his dislocated shoulders would need to be popped back into place, but they would wait until the blond’s ribs healed enough for him to sit up on his own. Taking care not to jostle his torso more than necessary, Buffy had to cut the black t-shirt apart in order to remove it.
Gods, she thought. There was so much bruising, he looked like he was wearing a tie-dyed shirt. A few soft swipes of the towel revealed three deep stab wounds that required stitching. With a shaky hand, the nervous Slayer stitched the wounds closed, with nary a peep nor twitch from the patient.
“Saved the best - worst for last,” she mumbled. Replacing the cold water with warm, she swiftly washed his genitals, wincing at the slightly oozing welts. She rolled Spike gently onto his side and wiped down his back. Gently prising his cheeks apart, she delicately cleansed the damage there. The bleeding had stopped, which she took as a good sign.
Buffy shook her head in disbelief. “If someone had told me a week ago that I would be playing Nurse Buffy and stitching up injured vampires, I’d have laughed in their face,” she thought. “If Spike told me that I’d be playing Nurse Buffy, I’d have smacked him across his smirky face. Now, I just wish he’d open those baby blues and say something about finally getting my hands on his ass.”
Sighing deeply, she resettled the still unconscious vampire onto his back and tucked the comforter around him. It wouldn’t do much for warmth, but it would be a soft barrier between him and the rest of the world.
The tired Slayer walked to Spike’s fridge in search of blood. The only way he was going to heal would be if he fed. He’d certainly lost more than a fair amount of blood due to his wounds. Finding a handful of containers, she placed two in the microwave that her mother had gifted him with last Christmas and pushed the button marked with red nail polish to read “Blood.”
She found a straw, and not bothering with a mug, brought the containers over to the sarcophagus. Settling in behind Spike, cradling his head against her chest, she raised the container to his face.
“C’mon, Spike. Wakey wakey! Chow time. Lots of nummy blood to make you grow big and strong,” she cajoled, to no effect. Dipping her finger into the viscous fluid, she swiped it gently against his lips and tried again. “Please, Spike. You’ve got to snap out of it. If you don’t eat, you won’t heal. You’ve got to get better, and tell me what happened. I think I really need to put some hurting on whatever did this to you.”
Just as she was about to give up, she felt his lips twitch slightly. Encouraged, she re-dipped her finger into the blood, and tried again. No doubt about it, this time he swiped his tongue around her finger, swallowing the blood. Dipping one end of the straw into the blood, she reversed the straw again, and placed it against the vampire’s lips. He suckled the life-giving fluid noisily through the straw, and groaned in disappointment when the container was emptied.
“You want more, ya big baby?” Buffy teased. Taking his grunt for an affirmative, she placed the straw in the second container, and held it for him. He finished that container in record time and settled back into his nest of blankets, the effort to feed taking all of strength.
“That’s all right, Spike. You sleep and feel better. We’ll talk when you wake up,” she murmured.
Suddenly overcome with exhaustion, Buffy settled herself onto the sarcophagus facing the now peacefully sleeping vampire, and fell asleep.
Crazy Eights – Chapter Two - A Fistful of Diamonds
Buffy awoke slowly with the realization that she was unable to move. Wriggling in her restraints, she realized exactly where she was and how she was immobilized. Somehow, in the middle of the night, Spike had awoken, spooned up behind her and gathered her into his arms. Gently disengaging herself from his grasp, she eased off the sarcophagus to check on her patient.
Her first glimpse was gratifying. Some of the bruising and swelling on the vampire’s face had gone down and his cheekbone seemed to be rebuilding itself. His face bore a grimace of pain, however, and Buffy realized it must be his dislocated shoulders causing the discomfort. The time had come to definitely do something about resetting them.
Running her fingers through the riot of curls on the sleeping vampire’s head, she said: “Spike, you need to wake up. We’ve got to do something about your shoulders. There’s no way you can be comfortable lying on them.”
With a groggy “Bloody hell,” Spike attempted to sit up, and was unable to do so. “Lend a hand ‘ere, pet. Seem to be havin’ some difficulties in getting upright.”
Buffy snaked her arm around his thin waist, and helped to push him upright into a sitting position. “Gods, Spike. What the hell happened to you? If I hadn’t’ve tripped over you last night, you’d’ve dusted in the sun, or else have bled to dust. What did you do to piss someone off so badly?” she asked, sympathy coloring the words that were harsher than she’d meant.
“Don’t rightly remember much, luv. Went to a new club for a few games of poker to pass the time. Must’ve won more than they wanted to pay out.” He groaned, trying to stretch out his back. “D’ya think you could help me reset the shoulders? Not quite able t’do myself with both of ‘em out.”
One after the other, Buffy raised his arms, pulling them out slightly to realign the ligaments, and then pushed forward with all her weight behind her, to push the shoulder back into it’s socket.
“Bloody, buggering FUCK!”
Gingerly testing out the function of his arms, Spike rolled his shoulders and twisted his torso from side to side. “Better, luv. Thanks for the pain and suffering.”
“I’m really sorry for hurting you, Spike – there was just no… “
Cutting off her apology, Spike said, “No worries. Been through worse in the day. Might linger for a bit, but give me a day or so and I’ll be right as rain. Can do me a favor, pet – if you’ve a mind.”
“Sure, if it can wait until after I stop off at home, first. I’ve got to let Mom know I’m still alive. You know she’s still not thrilled with the Slaying gig, especially when I stay out all night”
“No worries, pet. Just want you to find my duster, if you can. Don’t see it in around the crypt, and I doubt you threw it downstairs,” he sighed. “I get that it’s not your favorite piece of m’wardrobe, knowing how I came across it, but I’ve had it near thirty years. S’more of an homage these days, than a trophy piece.”
Heading towards the door, Buffy turned and said, “Doesn’t matter, Spike. It’s a coat. If someone or something hasn’t stolen it I’ll bring it back. Dunno if you’re up for it, but do you think you’re steady enough to get downstairs and shower?”
Flexing his right leg, Spike grimaced. “Leg’s a mite tender. If I remember right, the buggers broke it with a baseball bat. Feels like you set it good and proper, though. Think I’ll give the shower a go. See you later, Slayer, and thanks for – well, everything.”
“Later, Spike,” Buffy said, smiling fondly. “I’ll pick you up some human blood from Willy’s to help the healing along.”
Waving her out the door, Spike attempted to stand – and realized for the first time he’d been conversing with the girl whilst starkers. And it hadn’t phased her one bit. Looking down at his Technicolor body, he noticed the sets of stitches and remembered. Three stab wounds.
He tried to catalogue his injuries; to remember what happened. Bat to the head and face - healing, broken leg and dislocated shoulders – reset and also healing. Busted ribs – aching, but healing – all good so far. Running his fingers over the knife wounds, he realized he’d be able to remove the stitches the next day. Quite the little seamstress, Buffy was. He also remembered her forcing him to eat a couple of containers of blood, which had gone a far way towards healing his injuries.
He’d made it down to the lower level of the crypt without much trouble when the waves of nausea hit. There was more – much more, to the injuries he’d received. He’d felt it when he climbed down the ladder. His bits and pieces… bruised beyond all recognition – remembered them being grabbed and twisted near to being torn off. His stomach lurched as he recalled trying to fight when he realized what they were after - being held down by four men as he was ripped into and buggered dry by the rest of the pack.
And Buffy had seen it all. She knew what had been done to him, and …
Vomiting up whatever remained in his stomach, and sobbing wildly, he stumbled into the shower and turned the water on as hot as it would go. Stepping under the burning hot spray, he never heard Buffy re-enter the crypt.
“Spike? You downstairs?” she called out. Hearing the shower running, Buffy deposited the duster she’d found on the couch, and climbed down to the lower level, calling out his name again.
Getting no response, she approached the shower cautiously. “Spike, you in there?” Hearing sobbing but no reply, the blonde pulled open the curtain and found the distraught vampire huddled against the wall, hot water cascading unnoticed over his pinkening skin.
Buffy turned off the steaming water, wrapped a towel around Spike’s waist, and led him to the bed. He’d tried to push her away, sick with shame. Instead, she held on tightly, whispering words of comfort, making shushing sounds and crooning softly to him, gentling him as best she could.
Settling him under the covers, she said, “Spike, it’s over. It’s gonna be okay, I promise. It’s not your fault.”
Looking up at her with the most wretched expression she had ever seen, he whispered, “But you saw… what they did to me. You touched me – their filth…” he broke off abruptly, unable to continue.
Buffy sidled into bed, next to the overcome vampire, and just hugged him tightly to her. “Nothing’s changed, Spike. All I did was clean you up. Had to make sure you were okay. I’d have done the same for any of the Scoobies. You’re no different – well, except for the being a vampire thing.”
Pulling back a little, she placed her hands under his chin and tilted his face upwards so he could see her. “We’ve got history, Spike. You may be a pain in the ass, but you’re my pain in the ass. Nobody does this to someone I care about. We’ll find out what’s behind all of this, I swear it.”
Feeling him relax somewhat, she pulled something out of her pocket.
“One more thing if you can – before you go back to sleep. When I found your duster, there were cards scattered all around the area. All of them diamonds. Do you have any idea what they mean?”
Taking a deep, unneeded breath Spike answered in a shaky voice. “I took a deck from that club I told you about – The Crazy Eights – as a souvenir. I guess they took exception to me lifting it, and when they were done with me, the bastards threw those cards at me. I think they took back the deck I had. Don’t rightly remember.”
As she watched him slip quietly into slumber, Buffy covered him gently with his blanket. She climbed up the ladder, and closed the vault door behind her. There was something seriously wrong, and she’d have to look into it.
She took off for the Magic Box, to see if Giles or any of the Scoobies had heard of this mysterious Crazy Eights place.