DISCLAIMER: The Buffy the Vampire Slayer characters are the property of Mutant Enemy, Joss Whedon, and Fox Studios. The story contents are the creation and property of Djinn and is copyright (c) 2000 by Djinn. This story is Rated PG-13.
It's like a drug. Hell it is a drug. I can't stop, don't want to stop. I like it.
I shouldn't be saying this. Shouldn't confess how good I feel when I'm with them. When I let them touch me—bite me. When I feel the blood leaving my veins and the intoxicating apathy filling me. It hurts at first. Teeth ripping my flesh, stabbing fire as they start to suck. I have to fight to stay still, to not reach for the stake. To not do to them what I did to Sandy. That was out of fear, done too fast the moment I realized that I liked what I was feeling way too much. Sandy. I regret that.
I worry that I'll be caught. Made them pick a less conspicuous place to bite. The arm is so much easier to hide. But nobody's noticed. Buffy is too caught up in taking care of her mom and sister to pay much attention to what I'm doing. So I keep going back. Safe for now. Safe as long as it's my secret.
Blighter thinks nobody knows. Believes word hasn't got around about him, even to a demon non grata like me. Vampire junkie, that's what they call him. And he is too. You can see it just by looking at him. The way he seeks them out, the furtive conversation, the hasty exit. I've followed him a few times. Just for the sheer fun of seeing Captain America giving vein to one of my kind. The irony appeals to me.
I could ruin him too. If I wanted. Tell the slayer what her boyfriend's been up to. But I won't. Not right now anyway. She has enough to do with her mum and the young one. Probably wouldn't be able to appreciate it anyway. I'll save it for a better time. Besides, with him in the opium den so to speak, it leaves my way open to be with her. With her, my enemy. Buffy.
She's like a drug. She hates me, I know that. She told me it would never be me. But she lets me in when no one else even knows she needs someone. She talks to me now, maybe without even realizing how much she's saying. If I didn't love her, I would have everything I needed to destroy her. But I can't destroy her. I feel high when I'm with her. Strung out on the thrill of being around the bane of my kind. Of touching her, of entering her house whenever I want. Of knowing her, wanting her.
I'm getting closer. Every day that he's not here and I am, I get closer. He better watch his step.
Where's Riley? The gang won't say it outright, but I know he's let them down somehow. I see it when Xander talks to him; he has that "disappointed in you" look only Xander can get. And Willow seems more withdrawn around him. I don't know what's up with him. And I don't have time to find out. Mom needs me. Dawn needs me. And there's Glory out there to find and stop, or, who am I kidding, to at least elude. I can't spend time worrying about Riley. He'll come around.
Have to check on mom. She's recovering so slowly. But they think she's going to be okay. At least I don't have to worry about Dawn right now. God, who'd have guessed I'd feel safe leaving a child with Spike? It's too weird. And she acts like she doesn't like him—"Icky old vamp," she calls him. But I can hear her in there laughing. He's so good with her. The gang doesn't get it, I know. But I have to do what I think is right and for whatever reason I trust him. In a way I don't trust Riley right now.
I wish I knew where he was.
I feel different. More alive somehow. The vampire I was with tonight, she was pretty gung ho. Took more than usual. I felt light headed for a while. But then she gave some back. I didn't want it at first. Told her I didn't want to turn. She told me I wouldn't. This would help me feel stronger. And she was right. My senses feel amplified. I feel like my old self, like I did before the initiative came crashing down around me. I feel great.
I need Buffy. And she needs me now with all she's going through. I can be with her now. I feel strong again. Feel like someone she could love again. I have to see her.
The boy is playing with fire. He doesn't even know how dangerous this game is. He comes in here, barging into the house. Not happy to see me, I can tell you. "Where's Buffy," he demands in that annoyingly stalwart way. Little Bits tells him hospital. I'd have let him guess. Big dumb lug. Where do you think she is?
I can't be responsible for what comes next. He can't just leave, has to get his digs in. Tries to insult me by calling me a neuter. Better a neutered vamp than a vamp groupie, I say. His eyes narrow warily. I press my advantage, goad him with what I know.
Neither of us realizes she's come back in. She hears it all. Her face is like stone. No tears, no hysterics. Just says, "Get out." To him. He tries to argue. She pulls a stake. He swears he isn't a vamp. She just smiles. A very strange smile. "Works on humans too." He stands around for a moment. Bravely. Or foolishly but she's implacable and he leaves.
"You knew." She turns on me then. I nod. Tell her she had enough on her mind. She says she needs to know all of it. So I tell her and at the end I warn her to be careful. She tells me the same thing. I'm not sure whether she means of Riley, or of her.
Why? I keep going over it. Trying to see how this could have happened. Trying to understand.
I can't. I try to say it was like Dracula. But it isn't thrall because according to Spike it hasn't been the same vampires. Riley doesn't care who bites him, apparently. What does he think he's doing? Does he want to become them? To become Angel, or Spike, in some sick way? I know since he left the initiative and had to give up his enhanced abilities that things haven't been the same for him. But to do this? Eww. And damn him!
He's going to be after Spike now. I know Riley; he won't let this go. But I don't have the energy or the luxury to baby-sit a vampire. He's just going to have to look out for himself. I'm sure he's thought of that and is already planning a new place to spend the daylight hours. Spike's a survivor; I can't worry about him.
But I do worry about Riley. Would he let them turn him? And if he did, could I kill him? I suppose I better have Willow and Tara back over here for an uninvite spell just in case. He's my enemy now. I have to think of him that way. But why?
I'll kill him, I rage, as I walk away from her house. I can see one thing and that's Spike. His face and the mocking expression it wore when she ordered me out of her house. If it's the last thing I do, I'll make him pay.
She comes out of the darkness. I'm alone and then she's there. She's small and dark and doesn't look entirely sane. I'm afraid for a moment but her power is immense. I can feel it in the way she moves, the way she carries herself. As I stare into her eyes, I feel my fear drain away. "Be in me," she says.
And I am.
I feel her teeth rip into my neck. She's taking so much. Too much. My heart pounds in my ears. I try to struggle but she's too strong.
As everything goes black, I feel her lift me up, she moves my lips to her chest. There's blood there. My blood, and hers, mingled together. As I drink I hear her voice. The voice of my salvation. The voice of my damnation.
As I sink into the stillness that precedes my rebirth, I hear her say, "We'll make them both pay, dearie."