I know it has been done before - but this is just my idea. This is my first fic - so hope you all like it. 9 Chapters, and 11,479 words!
Here is the second half ... continued from here
Thanks to underthis_shade for the banner.
Time was running short.
Buffy was rapidly heading towards becoming a Mom. She was dreading it, but looking forward to it at the same time.
One breakfast she was able to laugh about the baby’s father as she said that even from the grave Spike was still nocturnal – or at least his child was. As the months progressed the baby showed a real tendency to be active during the night and as dawn approached settled down to rest. Sharing her laughter, the others were also glad to be able to talk about Spike in such a relaxed way after all that had happened in the past.
Meanwhile in LA
What was Angel planning?
Would Illyria ever feel comfortable living on Earth? Would Wesley ever get over the loss of Fred?
Well at least it distracted Spikes from thinking of Buffy …. How could she move on? Moreover with The Immortal of all people?
Spike acknowledged that un-life was moving in a very sad pattern. Once he realises what Angel is up to he would head off on his own – Maybe see if there were any other Hellmouths to go and help with. He knew he couldn’t go and join Faith in Cleveland, much as he got on well with The Dark Slayer - now that she was married to Robin he knew that was an impossible location. Robin would never forgive him for having killed his mother, which Spike could fully understand. It had taken him over 100 years to forgive himself for what happened to his own mother after all.
He thought about contacting Giles and seeing if he could give any suggestions, but that would lead to too many complications. After all he knew that most of the Scooby’s didn’t like or trust him; and anyway he didn’t think that Andrew (or Angel) had let them know that he was alive again.
So at present all he could do was wait and see, letting time pass while waiting for Angel’s plans to unfold.
“Yes, I know, I’m nesting. Willow came in ½ hour ago and told me. So Dawn you can quit worrying, everything is under control” yelled Buffy. She had spent the last 24 hours panicking about quilts and diapers; and was getting fed up with people trying to feed her chocolate! When the hospital had asked her about her worries when she was last in, she found herself clamming up. She knew that when she first saw this baby she would wish that its father was there as well … it was no new sadness to miss Spike, but she was worried that those minutes would overwhelm her and so she would miss out on their child’s first few minutes of life.
Dawn had been voted to try to get Buffy to open up again, but knew that the best she could do at present was waiting, while also being there for her sister. She guessed that some of the tension was evoked by Spike’s absence, and not just the panic of impending motherhood.
Dawn had enjoyed her stay in Rome. It had given her the perfect opportunity to shop and party while using the excuse that it was all for her language research. She had also been pleased to help her sister’s cover story, even though it meant that she had to spend time with Andrew. However he had settled into the Italian lifestyle easily and through his contacts Dawn had got to meet The Immortal and found out quite a bit that would help Giles with his research. Dawn also discovered that The Immortal was as charming as his reputation stated - but then Darla and Dru had also found that out when their paths had crossed during the nineteenth century! She was able to use the fact that she knew Angel and Spike to learn much about all their last lives. So Giles was pleased. She was now glad to be back with her sister and looking forward to being an Aunt. She had also made a promise to herself to care for the child. She still felt guilty about having purposely distanced herself from its father in the last months of his life. Spike had been her best friend, yet she hadn’t treated him like a friend should. She hadn’t listened to Buffy, only to Xander’s jealous moans. So although she knew she couldn’t ask Spike for forgiveness, she felt the least that she could do would be to love and support his “family”.
“Willow, it’s time!” At long last the yell echoed through the building and everyone began to panic, except Buffy who calmly collected her overnight bag, and dragged Willow towards where the car was parked. “See you guys later” she shouted as she pulled the witch out of the main door.
Timing – However much you plan things, there are certain events that will always take their own time; giving birth being a prime example. Buffy and Spike’s baby was only going to make its appearance into the world when the time was right for it!
As they made their way, over Westminster Bridge to St Thomas’s Hospital, Willow began to take control. When they had their last appointment in the maternity unit they had been shown the room that they would probably be in and she had taken careful note of how tough the furniture was. Buffy had lost none of her Slayer strength over the last months and so both were concerned that if things got emotional or painful she would easily demolish the room. So over the past few days they had spent some time going through some meditation techniques, as well as Willow taking the precaution of buying some splints for her arm so that Buffy wouldn’t accidentally break her rather than the furniture!
Buffy tended to disagree with the midwife when she said that things were progressing well – and rapidly. However, time can do weird things to you. In one of the quieter moments Willow told her that she was thinking of asking out the trainee midwife. She seemed to be a nice girl, and Buffy was pleased to see that Willow was beginning to move on, although secretly she felt that her friend was hoping that Oz would come to The Watchers Council. And ask her out. Giles had been in touch with him over the last year, so only time would tell what he would decide.
As the time got closer and the pain got worse, neither Willow or the room suffered too much as Buffy began to focus on Spike; remembering those last few days, remembering how he had unconditionally given his love, support and strength to her. In the final few minutes before his child came into the world one phrase focussed in her mind, over everything – the pain, the future worries - everything
*You are the one, Buffy*
Then the time came for there to be another – a son to carry on Spikes name. A son for Buffy to love, support and give her strength to.
As Buffy hadn’t needed pain-killers and everything had gone fairly easily she was soon allowed home. All the Scoobies knew her aversion to hospital, so they had earlier agreed that unless Willow phoned they would wait at “home” to meet the newest member of their group.
What a welcoming committee – led by Dawn and Giles; with Andrew having arrived in time to record the grand entrance on video.
Once Buffy was settled in the lounge she proudly, with a truly happy smile lingering on her face -
“I would like to introduce you to our son – William Drew Summers. He is named after his Dad and also his Dad’s nearest relative”
“Erm, I thought that you didn’t want to know about Spike’s family, Buffy” questioned Giles.
“That’s correct, but you all know Spike’s next nearest relative – His sire.”
“Do you mean Drusilla?” Xander eventually mumbled, as the others were still too shocked to come to terms with what Buffy had decided.
“Yes” stated Buffy. “I know you will think that I have flipped, but I want you to hear me out. Spike was a vampire who was unusual, because he loved. I was lucky enough to be the recipient of that love, but Dru was even luckier as she had his love and devotion for a century. He was Victorian and family ties were significant to Victorians, just as they are to vampires. So I think that it is important that his child carries his heritage, as he does my surname; and there was no way I was going to name him after Angel, even if he is Spike’s Grandsire. I know you will find it hard to accept, but please try to.”
The group of people were consciously counting to 10! As ever Buffy had surprised them and had them cornered, as she knew that they wouldn’t say anything to hurt the baby.
“Hi William, I’m your Auntie Dawn. Your Dad and I used to be best friends – he fact he taught me lots that I want to pass onto you!”
“I am not having you teach my child breaking and entering,” replied Buffy – and at that the Scooby’s laughed and peace was restored.
So the newest Scooby came home to live and soon everyone was only too aware of his presence. He was a very quiet child, although he would soon let one and all know when he wanted something!
As the days passed it was soon noted that the easiest way to settle him down to sleep was to let him lie in his Mom’s arms. There he would look into her eyes and soon drift off to sleep. It was something that she was happy to let him do, as she felt it was paying his Dad back for all the love he had passed onto her.
The Scooby’s had bought Buffy a couple of baby books, but she said that she had become the longest living Slayer without ever seeing The Slayers Handbook, so why change the pattern of her life now. One thing that she did accept from Giles, and that she wrote up every night, was her own diary for William. Her Watcher said that he had spent the last 7 years chronicling her life, so now it was her turn to write down the account of her days.
She decided that it would be lovely to write something each day – in the form of letters to Spike. That way he could be as involved as possible in their life even though he was lost to them both. So every night before she settled down to sleep she would write about their son’s latest achievements. She often tried to include a photo as she was reminded that as time moves on, babies grow, and memories begin to blur. This way, she was able to remember everything in William’s life.
As well as her diary another promise that she had made to herself during her pregnancy was not only that she would tell William how much she loved him every single day, but also that she would reveal the story of his Dad – good or bad, he should grow up knowing about his parents’ history and how much they loved each other.
Meanwhile in LA
"I want you to do something for yourselves. I want you to live this day as if it were your last" Angel gave this final thought to the group as they gathered for their last briefing. Spike had led the agreement to help Angel in bringing down the senior partners and now the time had come to put these plans into action.
Was this going to be their last day - Had time finished for them all?
The group slowly began to separate, to move towards their last few hours before battle.
"Spike, can I speak to you for a moment?" Wesley said.
"Yes, when - now, or tomorrow?"
"Spike, now is not the time to joke. It will only take a few minutes of your time"
Spike smirked as he replied "OK".
Once the two of them were alone at last, Wesley was able to say what he wanted to.
"I don't know whether you have made a will, Spike ..." As he paused, Spike quietly replied that he actually had. It was the final thing that he could do for Buffy. He had died to give her a normal life and now knew that as she was moving onto that normality he could give her the money he had stashed away, so that whatever the two Summer’s girls wanted they could have!
“Well I have made a will which is with my solicitor, but I have been keeping a Diary of events here at Wolfram and Hart. In fact I had started it when I joined Angel Investigations. We don’t know what the future will bring and I would like to think that there are two people who know about these chronicles; because I feel that the time is right that they should be in The Watchers Council in London.”
“So what has that to do with me?” asked Spike.
“If I don’t make it and you do, then will you promise me that you will take them to London and hand them over to Rupert Giles personally? I have put a covering letter with them, so that you won’t even have to explain anything if you don’t want.” Wesley had a second reason for wanting Spike to do this, other than the fact he trusted him to do the job. When Andrew had come over they had a chat and Andrew had dropped a few hints that the general belief about Buffy wasn’t quite what the group in LA had been led to believe. He had spoken to Giles on the phone a couple of times as well and felt that there was more to The Immortal story than anyone was letting on. Giles had been quite vague about Buffy as well. So maybe Wesley was adding two and two and making five, but he hoped for Spike’s sake he wasn’t. But even if he was he felt that Spike needed to face Giles before he would be able to move onto whatever was to come his way in the future days.
“So do you promise?” He asked again, when Spike continued to be silent.
“OK, for you I will do it, but only as a fellow Englishman”
The two men shook hands and moved off to see what this “final” day would bring.
Buffy was finding time doing weird things. The days were long – spent loving and caring for William, but when she looked back at the end of each day she couldn’t believe how quickly this last year had passed.
“Wonder what next year will bring?” She said to her three month old son. “This year brought my best gift, you. So what can top it next year?”
After breakfast one morning Giles announced that he had some disturbing news to pass on to everyone. Having watched the news the day before, he learnt of an earthquake in LA. According to the reporter it had been very localised to one particular area, and fortunately there had only been a few casualties and one main building destroyed.
At this the Scoobys looked at each other. They all knew that this probably meant that there had been a problem involving Angel. Giles confirmed that he had done some research and found out that Angel and his group had taken on The Black Thorn and thus Wolfram and Hart. Giles said that he had tried calling both Angel and Wesley but their phones were going straight to voice-mail. This was not to say that there was anything wrong, probably that they were a bit busy. However Willow agreed that she would fly to LA to find out some details and Giles confirmed he would keep trying to phone.
Buffy didn’t know whether to be sad or relieved that having William meant that she would be staying in London. Although she and Angel were no longer close he was still her first love and, of course, a relative to Spike and thus to William!
That evening while Willow was “somewhere over the Atlantic” Angel phoned Buffy. He told her that they had been correct in their analysis of the situation and although they had not actually won the battle they had done serious damage. He had stayed vague about the actual details, but a phone call like this one is never easy at the best of times. It wasn’t as if they were in regular contact; so for their own private reasons they found that it was easier to stick to a few basic facts and leave it at that.
Meanwhile it turned out that Illyria had huge reserves of strength which she was able to draw onto once in this plane of existence. So she managed to destroy many of the advancing demons. She had kept this fact a secret as she didn’t want to feel that she was being exploited, but decided that this had been the right time to draw on those resources.
Gunn had been injured before the actual battle, but had managed to take down a few demons before being killed by a vampire, of all people. Spike saw it happen, but was pleased to see that it was a quick-kill, instead of being turned into the creature that this human warrior had fought against for most of his life.
Wesley never made it to the street. It had been expected really, by Spike, who knew how much he had missed Fred, and how seeing Illyria had made that pain worse. Spike realised that Wesley felt his death approaching by making him promise to take the Diaries to Giles.
Angel was badly mauled by the dragon, but 250 years of unlife had taught him to keep going whatever the odds were. He had taken on this battle voluntarily and realised that he had extra help. He accepted the human help, as he had got used to that in the years since meeting Buffy - but his main support he knew came from his Grand-Childe. He wished that he had let Buffy know about Spike being “alive” – as much as a vampire could be - but knew that however long the three of them lived he would always be jealous of her relationships. He guessed that people would call that petty, as he had a great time with Nina and had loved Cordelia, but he had put Buffy on a pedestal and no amount of time would remove her from that in his eyes.
Spike had always said that he wanted to “go down fighting”. He had lived un-life with the zest for life that he never found in mortality. As a poet he had been a dreamer; but as a vampire he had experienced the full range of emotions in actual fact, rather than fiction.
Buffy was glad to be able to go and speak to Giles, Dawn and Xander and to assure them that though the damages had been done, but there had been no major casualties. When the group later found out that Wesley was dead they were astounded to receive further proof as to how impersonal Angel had become. Although Wesley had only been in Sunnydale for a short time it had been in the role of Watcher, so he had been close to both Buffy and Giles. Dawn had even received Buffy’s memories of him, so they all felt that it was a pity that Angel didn’t consider that they would need to mourn his loss.
Meanwhile - in a basement flat in LA
"How are you doing?"
"How do you think I am doing, you poof!" replied Spike, as Angel collapsed into the spare comfy chair.
"Yes, about as good as me, I suppose."
"Yeah, but you still got Nina to go to when you feel up to it, haven't you? And Connor?"
"Spike, that is why I am sitting here resting, rather than with either of those two people. Spike you are my Grandchilde and I know that family is important to you. I am sorry that I haven't been able to give you what you have needed over the years. It also seems wrong that Dru always came back to me if she had a chance."
"Well, I always knew she was daft."
"No, don't mock this, I need to say it. I think you should go and see Buffy ..."
"Are you mad?"
"No. I have just spoken to her to let her know what happened here, but I still haven't told her about you. However I wonder if things are still okay with The Immortal because when I said that I must speak to Giles, well it turned out that she was in London. Actually she has been for some time. So go and see her, even if it is to settle things for your own peace of mind. If you still want to be away from her then come back and let's see if that family-thing really is as important as you think"
Spike was silent - as silent as only a vampire can be. Angel let him take his time, and eventually got almost the answer he wanted
"I'll see, time will tell what I decide."
It seemed that he had to go to London. If it wasn't for Angel, then it was for the previous promise to Wesley. Oh well, a quick visit then - maybe taking off for parts unknown and see what Angel found so great about the drifting life of a vampire.
Spike debated with himself as to whether he would use the W&H jet that Angel said was still okay and available. Although he hated owing favours, he knew that a plane trip was fraught with problems as he couldn't guarantee where the sun was. So reluctantly he asked for the jet to take him to London, but then to return without him. Eventually he would let Angel know what he would be doing with his time.
On his way back to his flat from Nina's he stopped off at the bank to collect the packet that Wesley had entrusted to him, from the safety deposit-box. There was a large sealed case with Giles' name on and a smaller box with Spikes name on. There was some money in the box - both Dollars and Pounds - so that Spike wouldn't have to steal to eat on his travels (well that was what the envelope said!). There was also a letter, which Spike read in the comfort of his own lounge, complete with a mug of blood and a large glass of whisky.
If you are reading this it means that we won - but I lost. Still hopefully it means that I will have met up with Fred again, so then I am a winner as well, aren't I?
I am sorry that with all my worries over what Angel was getting into and my sadness at the loss of Fred we didn't get to spend much time together. Although I think that you had even more major sorrows to work through than I did. I wish I could have managed to persuade you to go and see Buffy when you first became corporeal. However if you had then you probably wouldn't have been able to do this favour for me, would you?
As you can see I have put some details about The Shanshu Prophecy together – I have also included the same information for Giles. The Powers-That-Be had a great laugh at Angel’s expense, because I have now confirmed that you are the more likely recipient as you went and searched for your soul for altruistic reasons. However there are still other criteria that have to be met before you will be granted the transformation to human. These details are in Giles envelope, and I leave it up to you what you decide – maybe it will end up being up to Buffy ?? !! ??
I do hope that whatever the future brings, you will find the peace that you truly deserve.
Thank you, again, for your help
Spike decided that Wesley was being very fair to him – it was great that someone felt that he was up to making his own decisions!
So he put both the boxes in his holdall as well as a few clean tee-shirts and a spare pair of jeans, then collected his spare cigarettes, a couple of spare stakes, shrugged on his new duster and walked out of his bed-sit. He had paid the rent for another few months, so to give himself a bolt-hole if he wanted it. For now, London and his future were ahead of him, so he walked to LAX to meet the jet with a real swagger to his step. Angel had organised the perfect flight times – so that he left in the dark, and arrived 10 hours later as it was turning to dusk.
Things were quiet at The Watcher Headquarters. Giles had taken some of the trainee-slayers on a trip to Stonehenge and then to Bath. He had wanted to postpone things, but Buffy felt happy that Willow would find out the details and then they could make plans if necessary.
Dawn and Xander had also got a trip booked – to visit Paris. They had originally arranged it for the week following Giles’ trip, but hotels were pretty busy, so their plans were amended.
So Buffy was enjoying a time of tranquillity. She answered the phone to a couple of enquiries, and to a persistent double-glazing salesman, but other than that she was able to sit and watch as much TV as she wanted! However it seemed that William had other ideas. The evening was drawing in and as she was hoping to relax and curl up on the sofa in the lounge, he started crying.
“William, what’s wrong?” She asked him with no expectation of an answer. He had recently been fed and changed so she tried working out what could be causing him to be so unsettled. She walked him up and down, chatting away in a soft voice, hoping that he would relax as she did that.
“So, what is it? Have you got a tummy ache?” She asked as she rubbed him slowly. “No, what about your head, are you just feeling poorly?” She suddenly dreaded that he was coming down with some illness, just at the time when she was by herself. However, as she put her hand on his forehead, she also rubbed across a cheek that seemed slightly rosy.
“Oh, poor boy, is that what’s wrong? Are you growing a tooth? Is it trying to break out? I am sorry, baby.” She carried on with her soothing talk walking around the muted lights of the lounge area; not realising that she had a silent, but awe-struck observer.
“Poor boy – Just think what would have happened to your Daddy if he had this much pain ever time he grew his fangs. At least you only will have this for a short time. Never …”
The words penetrated her spectator’s brain and he gasped. She turned round in shock and for the first time almost harmed her baby by dropping him. Fortunately she was near a settee, so dropped herself and her precious bundle into it. As she stared, she realised that William had quieted and was looking at this new face.
“Buffy,” started Spike “Erm, I didn’t expect you to be here. I thought you would be in Italy, although Peaches said you were visiting Giles I didn’t dare hope that I would see you. How are you? Where is everyone?” He realised that he was rambling and trying hard not to mention or even to look at the baby; trying not to think about the implication of Buffy saying *daddy* about the child, although his brain hadn’t yet caught up with the rest of her sentence. Basically, he was hoping that Buffy was baby-sitting, because to think that it was her child meant that she had finally moved on and he was relegated to history.
The silence stretched as Buffy took in the sight she never thought she would ever see again . The man she loved – and at a loss for words!
“No, I have always lived in London. The story about The Immortal was to help us to investigate him, but that is just about finished now. The Scoobies are on holiday at present, so I was enjoying a quiet few days,” she finally filled in.
“Quiet,” he quipped. “It didn’t seem all that quiet when I arrived. Although the kiddy seems happier now? Are you doing a bit of baby-sitting so as not to work in The DoubleMeat Palace?” He asked in the continued hope that there was still some possibility of being with her, however remote that seemed.
“He’s fine” she replied, completely ignoring the question. “I’ll just go and settle him down and then we can chat. Do you still like hot chocolate?”
“With marshmallows? Yes please”.
So Buffy went upstairs leaving Spike to pace up and down the lounge. The minutes apart that this gave would allow them both the time to “take a deep breath” and so be able to chat and find out what the last year had done for them both.
They needed to discover if their last few days in Sunnydale had meant the same to both of them. And if the passing of the weeks had changed them.
Was the time now right for them, or had they missed their special moment, never to able to regain their unique relationship?
Buffy made her way slowly back to the lounge with her tray of drinks. She stopped just outside of the door to try to hear what Spike was muttering. But as he was also pacing it was hard to understand him. It didn’t help because all she could hear was her own mind shouting the words *He’s alive! He’s here*. While she had been settling *their* child and getting the drinks she kept that reminder going through her head, along with telling herself that she must get the courage to talk to him – and allow him to talk to her. She needed to tell him that …
*You are the one, Buffy*
… was really important – but more importantly that …
*He was the one*.
While Buffy had been out of the room, Spike had spent the time telling himself that it was just great to see her, and even if this was to be the last evening that they would spend together, it would be enough.
How far both of them would have gotten with their private monologues was hard to say, as just when Spike spotted the hovering girl, he was immediately there, and went to take the tray out of her hands - to prove that his Victorian manners were still as his mother had taught him. The tray was set down on the coffee table and both of them sat on either end of the large settee adjacent to it. Buffy slowly sipped her drink before turning to tuck her legs under her and to face the man she loved.
“Well,” she started, “what shall I ask first?”
“I know that I didn’t contact you, pet, but there were reasons, actually lots of them. And although I will give them to you, I know now that they won’t make sense.” At that Spike petered out, as he realised that whatever he said would hurt “his” girl. She seemed so calm, which must mean that she had moved on and her words of love were only that of giving a dying man his last wish.
“Spike, please try. I have missed you so much and to realise that you have been alive and avoiding me is very hard.”
“As ever I made the wrong call. To begin with I couldn’t get to you as I was a ghost and then tied to LA …”
“Yes, with the poof. Not that it made either of us happy, but over the last few weeks we have come to understand each other a little better. I died so that you could live, Buffy, and although it hurt more than you can imagine to realise that you had moved on to The Immortal of all people, I dealt with it in the hope that you were at long last truly happy.”
He looked at Buffy as he spoke in the hope that she would answer him and let him know that she was at peace, both with her own life and also with his explanation. She just sat there with her head tilted, looking at him, and waiting for him to continue.
“So, are you happy?” he persisted. It was the one thing he needed to know so that he could move on with the rest of his un-life.
“That’s great, so you see it was right for me to leave you to find your own path …”
“Don’t you dare say that” Buffy interrupted at long last. “Yes, at this present time I am happier than I ever dreamed possible, but a huge part of that is because I am looking at you! I just hope that you can say the same. Don’t you love me any more?”
“There will never be a minute in the rest of my existence when I won’t love you Buffy. You mean everything to me, how can you think that I have changed my mind. I didn’t stop loving you when you were dead, so why should I stop loving you even when you are with someone else?”
“But that is one of the main points, Spike. I am not seeing anyone”
“Well I can’t say I am sorry that you are no longer with The …”
“I was never with him. It was a plot so that Giles could do some research. I have lived in London ever since we left Sunnydale.”
At his lack of response she felt that she needed to ask the question that she had wanted to know all evening. “So, how about you, Spike, you hooked up with anyone?”
“Buffy, it will always be you. No one has, or could, take your place. The last person I was truly with was you, on that magical evening in your basement.” As he said this he slid slightly along the settee to interlink his fingers with hers, as they had done in their final few minutes together. At long last this jolted Buffy into her final confession –
“I meant it, Spike. I do love you.”
Before she could say anymore she found herself wrapped in his arms – just holding each other as the tears, at long last, began to fall. For both of them the time for passion would come, they needed this time to just hold and be held. Gradually the tears slowed and words of love were gently spoken. Who started to kiss whom would have been impossible to say, but both wanted to reassure the other of their love and thankfulness. Slowly but surely they settled down onto the settee, although in reality Buffy was now on Spikes lap as they just spent time “together”.
As Buffy sat in his arms she realised that she still had one major explanation to make. “Spike, I love you, and counted the days while you were gone. In fact, to begin with I counted the minutes, but after 108 days I found out something and since that time I have been keeping a diary each night. All the entries are addressed to you and to someone else as well. You see when I said I wasn’t seeing anyone it was true, but I am no longer alone”. She felt him stiffen up under her, so while stroking his arm she re-iterated “I love you, Spike”. At this she stood up and grabbing his hand pulled him to his feet.
Keeping his hand tightly clasped she took him upstairs towards her rooms. It was peaceful as they approached. There was a small nightlight on, so he wouldn’t need his enhanced vampire eyes to see the special person he had gone to meet. They stood in the doorway, with Spike even quieter than before.
“Spike, I would like you to meet William Drew Summers”. At the sound of her voice he turned to look towards his Mommy and so she left the shocked vampire in the doorway to go and pick up their child.
“William,” she said to him as they walked across the room. “I would like you to meet your Daddy, whom you have heard so much about.”
She stood a little distance from him and as Spike looked at the two sets of eyes trained on him, one green and one so blue and he started weeping again. Holding out a shaky hand he stroked his child’s cheek for the first time.
“How about we go down to the lounge again?” asked Buffy, as she walked in that direction followed by someone trying to get a grip on his emotions.
She settled back on her seat, but this time she was the one doing the cuddling. Spike sat at the far end again and for a moment neither spoke.
“Can I hold him?”
“Of course. He is your son, Spike.”
She put William in his Dad’s arms and sat silently crying as the two sat looking at each other. William then copied his Dad’s earlier action of touching his cheek.
“I love you Buffy. This is amazing. I’ve never thought I would ever hold a child, let alone father one.”
“I love you too, Spike. William certainly came as a shock, but Giles said that it was probably something to do with the amulet that was on the bed that night and that the timing was right for it to happen!” She was thrilled that he hadn’t questioned William’s paternity, so felt that she should offer the only explanation that they had come up with, despite all the research they had done.
“I know my timing is wrong pet, as in the era when I was alive you got married, then you had a baby, but we have never done anything properly, have we?” As he was speaking he was standing up carefully and moving to kneel in front of his love. “But will you marry me?”
“Yes” came the immediate answer. “However I want you to promise me something first.”
“I thought it was traditional for the women to obey, not the men,” quipped Spike as he avoided answering the question.
“Yes, I will marry you, I love you. But on our wedding night I want you to claim me as well; so that by the time William gets to know of his vampire heritage, then his parents will have been married by both human and vampire law.”
“Buffy, I love you and I promise that if after we have talked through the eternal implications, you still want to go ahead, we will do the claim on our wedding night”
Spike sat carefully back onto the settee and held out his spare arm so that Buffy could climb onto his lap and thus the new family was settled.
Maybe Spike’s opening line to Buffy all those years ago that he was going to kill her was not how most relationships would start; But there again who of us knows what is round that next corner –
*“It’s All A Question Of Timing”*
The End ... or The Beginning!