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New Chapter Of Crazy Eights - Chapter 4

Chapter Four - The New Club In Town, in which Spike has some issues and moves into Buffy's home, and Giles has some information about The Crazy Eights.

Crazy Eights – Chapter Four – The New Club In Town

After throwing a few belongings into his duffel bag, Spike decided it would be a good idea to feed before he left the crypt. While he no longer needed to eat daily at this point in his unlife, the added blood was a big plus in healing his injuries. Warming the two containers he had left in the fridge, he sought out the Slayer.

“Pet, since we don’t know how long I’ll be residin’ at Casa Summers, m’gonna need to make some eating arrangements.”

“We can stop by Willy’s on the way. Does he make deliveries?” A shadow crossed her face as she had a troubling thought. “Spike, can you afford this? I mean, I’ve never given it much thought before – but it’s not like you have a steady income or a vampire trust fund. And I know that Willy does not make with the demon philanthropy.”

He pulled a small roll of cash from a hidden inner pocket in his duster’s lining, rolling it around between his fingers. Cocking his head, he mused, “It’s strange, innit – those blokes went through all the trouble to smash me to bits – to go through m’duster and take back a soddin’ deck of cards, and left the dosh I’d won.”

Buffy said, “I guess that’s the Scooby mystery of the week. Why don’t we get this settled with Mom, and then head over to The Magic Box and see if anyone’s got a clue.”

Embarrassed to have to bring the situation to her attention, the vampire mumbled, “Not sure this is the best course to take, Buffy. Your mates don’t like me. They hate the fact that we spend any time together, and they damned well resent the fact that we patrol together – that you trust me enough to watch your back.

“Truth be told, no way I can deal with them finding out what’s been done to me. The witches might have a sympathetic moment, but Harris? He’ll not let me move past this. Can hear the whelp now,” he mocked. “Always knew you were a bitch, Fangface. Moved on from sniffing after the Slayer?”

Buffy stood by, watching the agitated vampire kick at the ground, attempting to curb his growing distress. From what she’d recalled from her Psychology textbook, victims of sexual abuse often had issues with self esteem and helplessness that manifested themselves in bursts of anger.

With his reputation as one quarter of the Scourge of Europe, Spike’s helplessness at the hands of his captors must have been devastating to him. The best thing she could do for him was to let him vent. He’d come to her when he was ready.

“Bloody hell, Slayer – I can’t do this. S’not like I haven’t had worse done in my time; vamps and other demons right near to killed me on a steady basis when I was a fledge.

“I’ve been a predator for more’n a hundred and twenty years. These bastards were humans, my prey. Only ‘bout a dozen of ‘em fucked me into the ground. How’m I s’posed to bare my secrets to the kiddie brigade and s’pect them to help me?” he pleaded, head bowed low in a gesture of defeat.

Buffy shook her head. “They wouldn’t have to know what happened, Spike. It’s none of their business. And showing up bruised or bloody has always been a badge of honor for you. Especially in their eyes.

“They know what it’s like to be outnumbered and overmatched. Every time they go out patrolling, they run the same risk coming face to face with even one vampire. You faced a dozen men and unlived to tell the tale. There is nothing to be ashamed of.”

Spike stared wordlessly into Buffy’s hazel eyes, as if searching for something. Exhausted and shaken after his outburst, the emotionally spent vampire leaned in closer, his lips brushing hers in just the barest hint of a kiss.

Buffy raised her fingers to her lips. As if in a daze, she walked slowly to stand in front of Spike, raised her hands to his face, gently cupping his cheeks – and pulled him down until their lips met and melded in gentle passion.

With a gasp of surprise, the stunned vampire’s lips parted, allowing Buffy’s tongue entrance. Their tongues slid softly against each other, just testing and tasting, exploring and enjoying the delightful sensations of the experience.

When they parted, they wore mirrored expressions of surprised awe, and a tenderness neither had experienced in regards to the other.

Flustered, Buffy was the first to break the spell. “Oh god… I’m sorry, Spike. Honestly, I just don’t know…”

“Don’t say it, Slayer. Don’t apologize for kissing me unless you’re bloody well sorry it happened...” No longer stunned, his expression was rapidly turning to one of hurt and anger, his arms wrapping around his body as if to protect himself from the forthcoming rejection.

“I’m not sorry that it happened, Spike. Surprised is all. I mean, we’re been friends for a while – what with the neither of us wanting to kill each other. And obviously we care enough about each other to want to protect and defend. We’ve never really touched each other outside of sparring and a hug or two for comfort.”

Looking a bit discomfited, she continued. “The kiss was… well, hello aggresso-Buffy. I think that’s what’s bothering me. I usually don’t just force myself on anyone, and here I was – just macking on you without even knowing if you’d…”

“Ah, luv,” he interrupted. “Not complaining here, just surprised is all. P’raps it would be better to see where this could lead after we’ve sussed out what’s happening. Wouldn’t be so – distracted. Would love to pay much closer attention to you.” His velvety rich baritone a honeyed purr, his scarred eyebrow lifted in a suggestive manner.

Teetering on the edge of suddenly wanting to slowly divest the yummy vampire of all his clothes and climb on board, and the need to get back home, Buffy reluctantly agreed.

“Yeah, it’s probably a good idea for us to get moving now. Mom’s expecting us both and I don’t want her to worry more than she normally does.”

Retrieving his duffel bag, the vampire and Slayer left the crypt.

The walk back to Revello Drive was uneventful; their pace slower than usual due to Spike’s slight limp from his healing leg and residual soreness from his other injuries.

They were greeted at the door by Joyce. “Hello, Spike. Welcome to our home.”

The invitation – freely offered with no hesitation, even though it was unneeded for several years at that point – warmed the vampire’s unbeating heart. Outside of the axe incident during Parent’s Night at Sunnydale High School, he and Joyce got on well.

Even before Spike had formed an alliance with the Slayer, her mother always made time for him. She’d listened to him pour out his heart over Drusilla’s betrayal and abandonment. They’d shared an interest in art and sculpture, discussing her work at the Gallery.

In fact, it was over a shared cuppa that Buffy came to accept him into her life. She’d come home after a night at the Bronze, and found him and her mother deep in discussion over a tome of Shakespearean Sonnets. Said she was studying the Sonnets with a Professor Okati, and joined the discussion, then asked Spike if he’d patrol with her. The beginning of… whatever it was they shared. An understanding, companionship… trust.

A slight nudge from behind told him he’d been caught out daydreaming, and he offered his thanks as he walked into the house.

“I’ve set up the spare room for you, Spike. Found some blackout shades and heavy curtains that will keep the sun from being an issue for you. Do you need anything?” Joyce asked, concern showing in her expression.

“M’fine, Joyce. Your daughter makes a right decent nurse, but thanks for askin’.”

“I’m going back to the Gallery this evening for inventory. I know you have to investigate what happened to Spike, but I want you to make sure you’re both careful. I have a really bad feeling about this.” Saying her goodbyes, she left for the evening.

As soon as the door closed behind her mother, petite blonde turned her attention to Spike. “I’m going to call Giles, and see if he’s heard anything about Crazy Eights, or if any of the Scoobies have turned up. Why don’t you settle your stuff into your room, and I’ll see what’s the sitch.”

“S’a good idea, pet. The leg is twinging a bit, so I’m goin’ to lay up. Let me know when it’s time to leave.” He put his bag down next to the bed, removed his Docs, and lay down to rest and wait.

Buffy picked up the phone in her room, and dialed The Magic Box. “Hey Giles. You have any news for me?”

“There’s not too much known about The Crazy Eights, Buffy. Apparently, it’s a new gaming bar that caters to both demons and humans. A couple of steps up from Willy’s.”

After a few moments of silence where the Slayer could hear Giles cleaning his glasses, he continued. “I suppose that Spike hasn’t mentioned exactly where this establishment is located.”

“No, he hasn’t, but I’ve been more concerned with him healing enough to walk than interrogating him up to this point,” she said.

“The Crazy Eights is located in Spike’s old factory. The top floor has been turned into a bar that serves both food and drink, and probably several other substances that don’t bear looking into too closely. It’s the basement that holds the gaming tables, complete with back rooms.

“I spoke with Xander and Willow, and told them you were going to investigate the place. Both are willing to accompany you. As to what you tell them about Spike’s involvement, I leave that to you.”

“Thanks, Giles. I’m not really sure Spike and I are up to a night of Xander-barbs at Spike’s expense. It’s gonna be tough enough with them breathing the same air. I’m gonna go call and see if we can find out what’s the what about this place.

“I’ve got a bad feeling there’s so much more involved than a simple case of vamp beating. I’ll fill you in tomorrow, unless something urgent shows itself. Bye.”

She called Xander, then Willow, and settled back in her bed to await their arrival.

Beta'd by the ever delightful willa_writes, who makes me better than I am.


( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 5th, 2004 07:06 pm (UTC)
::sigh:: Very nice Spuffy interaction. There's been such a plethora of angst in the stories I've been reading lately that it's nice to read a little fluffiness. Even if it's in the midst of angst. :)

And, the club is located in Spike's old lair? Hmmm, the plot thickens. Can't wait to see what happens next.
Mar. 6th, 2004 08:41 am (UTC)
Gods, do I get what you're saying - everything is bleak, bleak, bleak! It just feeds my own soul to give them some respite.

And yeah - the factory... wonder what I'll make of it? Sounded like a good idea when I wrote it - and now I'll have to make it mean something. Or not. **grins** Glad you're enjoying.
Mar. 5th, 2004 07:49 pm (UTC)
I really like this chapter.
I love the mushy Spuffy kiss (Gah!)
And I really like the Spike/Joyce interaction - I've always liked how she almost becomes a substitute mum to him. It's so cute.

And I'm really enjoying caring, considerate Buffy...where did you find her?? LOL

thanks, pet - can't wait for more!
Mar. 6th, 2004 09:00 am (UTC)
Caring, considerate Buffy? Heh - she's been revamped! I just think I needed to get her away from Joss. Very simple. She's lovely to me.

So many things appealed to me in the show, that were never explored fully - gonna try and do them justice. Glad you're enjoying... and I promise not to rag you too much on enjoying the Spuffyness.
Mar. 6th, 2004 09:08 am (UTC)
I'm very glad you're re-vamping - I'm enjoying your exploration.

Mar. 5th, 2004 11:57 pm (UTC)
Read. Liked. More?

*has fried brain syndrome*
Mar. 6th, 2004 09:39 am (UTC)
**rubs balm on the burn**

There'll be more, for sure. Glad you enjoyed.
Mar. 6th, 2004 12:46 am (UTC)
This made me remember why I loved Spuffy so much. It's full of heart and incredibly believable.

Get writing girl!!!!

Liz needs more.
Mar. 6th, 2004 10:25 am (UTC)
I always liked BtVS - but it was the introduction of Spike that sunk it's real fangs into me. From his appearance with the annoying one, to stalking Buffy in the Bronze - that's all it took!

I'm glad you don't find it jarring - want to make it as real as possible. I'm very happy you're enjoying the fic.
Mar. 6th, 2004 04:24 pm (UTC)
When he turned and said 'Drusilla' in that voice......

That's when I fell.

More than enjoying the fic...

....jumping up and down waiting impatiently is more like it.
Mar. 8th, 2004 12:34 pm (UTC)
Loved this chapter. (especially the Spuffy kiss!)

I can't believe I missed this update! And I noticed you already posted another chapter. Which I'll review when I get out of work. (gives me something to look forward to when I get home!)
Mar. 8th, 2004 12:40 pm (UTC)
Hey, Mandi! Glad you like it enough to follow and look forward to. It's just beginning to flesh itself out for me. Don't know if it'll be a long one, or if it'll wrap itself up fairly quickly - I guess we'll find out together. **grins**

If you want Crazy Eights, or Rome for your site? I'd be sooo honored. Finally getting over the nerves about posting somewhere other than LJ.
Mar. 8th, 2004 01:21 pm (UTC)
If you want Crazy Eights, or Rome for your site? I'd be sooo honored.

Oh yes! I'd be honored to add you! And it would even have a nifty little review form. :)(not that everybody reviews, but you know...) Did you want to email them to me or just have me nab them from your lj?
Mar. 8th, 2004 01:31 pm (UTC)
Feel free to take 'em right off the LJ, if that's what's best for you... whatever works. Let me know what you want to do, and I'll do it.

You made me **squee** with joy, girl! I adore your site.
Mar. 8th, 2004 08:58 pm (UTC)
That works fine for me! :) I tried to reply before I headed off to work earlier, but lj was acting up on me. Anyways, I'll definitely have your stories up on my next update. Thanks again! :)
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )