- If it’s Tuesday, this must be Sunnydale: First Post
- If it’s Tuesday, this must be Sunnydale: Second Post
- If it’s Tuesday, this must be Sunnydale: Third post
- If it’s Tuesday, this must be Sunnydale: Fourth post
- If it’s Tuesday, this must be Sunnydale: Fifth post
- If it’s Tuesday, this must be Sunnydale: Sixth post
- If it’s Tuesday, this must be Sunnydale: Seventh post
- If it’s Tuesday, this must be Sunnydale: Eighth post
- If it’s Tuesday, this must be Sunnydale: Ninth post
- If it’s Tuesday, this must be Sunnydale: Epilogue
As if I haven’t had enough computer-related problems, with my broadband out for much of the week and then LJ going down, I have somehow managed to log off LJ, and I can’t remember my password. I’ve contacted LJ for a reset, but they haven’t mailed me back. As a result, I can post from Semagic, but I can’t read locked posts or comment.
I mention this in case Semagic fails me too and I have to ask someone else to post the rest of this for me, or create a new account to get it done. The fact that this tale proves I’m an idiot is just incidental.
If it’s Tuesday, this must be Sunnydale
The story begins here.
Disclaimer: All characters are the property of Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, etc. Only the lame plots and dialogue herein are mine.
Notes: Set in version of S6 that is so AU it’s nearly angst-free. Buffy either didn’t die at the end of S5 or was happy to come back. Everyone gets along, more or less, at least until someone gets a really nifty notion.
Rating: R, barely
Thanks: to keswindhover and revdorothyl for the beta, not to mention coming up with the plot bunny in the first place. I am wholly to blame for any errors. And thanks to itmustbetuesday for the comm, and because her name prompted me to think of a title at last.
I forgot to acknowledge Katharine Briggs’ Abbey Lubbers, Banshees & Boggarts in some earlier posts. (Wow, look at that price for a new copy! It looks like you can get used ones for a song, though.) I have several of her books of folktales, and after browsing through some of the stories in this one for the first time in many years, I’m tempted to reread the others. Several of the “demons” in my story are stolen borrowed from Briggs’ collection, although I’ve changed their habits, physical characteristics, and even their names to suit my purposes.
For a very different treatment of selkies, see also The Secret of Roan Inish.
Lies and Missing Demons
Saturday, Day Four of the Tour
Xander collapsed in Giles’ desk chair. “Well, that was a night.”
“Tell me about it.” Spike was sitting at the table with his head resting on his arms. “I spent the first few hours helping Buffy clear out a vamp nest, a few more helping her wreck mine, and the rest dealing with everything from Puddleglum’s nerves to a junior pyromaniac. It never occurred to me that brat could be part fire demon. They usually don’t have much hair. ”
“Look on the bright side.” Xander said. “Mausoleums don’t burn well.”
“Yeah, well vampires do. Saw my unlife flash before my eyes, I did.”
“Well, at least this time most of them liked the food,” said Willow. “Only Felix threw any of it at us.”
“Professor Ish got sick.” Tara cringed at the memory. “I had to help clean that up.” She picked up her bag and followed Willow and Xander to the door.
“Hey, where are you going?” Anya yelled after them.
“To pick up the ones who signed up for the tour of the mystical glen!” The door slammed shut on Willow’s last words.
“I forgot about that. Spike, don’t go to sleep.” Anya thumped him on the back. “You need to keep an eye on our guests. Some of them said they’d be souvenir shopping, and Felix is shoplifting again, I know it. There were twice as many chicken feet in that bin yesterday.”
“For the Hope Diamond, you might get me to stay awake. Chicken feet haven’t got a prayer.” Spike raised his head a bare three inches off the table.” Besides, why me?”
“Because you can’t go outside during the day anyway. And you know what they say. It takes one to catch one.”
“Are you insinuating I steal things?” Spike considered his words and dropped his head back on the table. “Well, yeah, I do. Doesn’t mean I care if anyone else does.”
Anya rolled her eyes and was about to protest again, but Spike was already snoring, and a customer was entering the store.
Except it wasn’t a customer. It was a Slayer.
“Buffy! What are you doing here?”
“Hello to you too, Anya.” Buffy dropped a small talisman on the desk. “I borrowed that from Giles a few weeks ago. It let me see past that glamour those sorority girls at UC Sunnydale were using to hog the best parking spaces without getting a ticket. I just remembered to return it.” She was staring at Spike. “Anya, what is my boyfriend doing here?”
Anya considered this question for a moment, then brightened as she came up with an answer. “I think he’s sleeping. Maybe you should go. You don’t want to wake him up, do you?”
“No, I want to know why he’s sleeping here instead of someplace else. Like maybe his own bed?”
This was a much harder question, and it took Anya longer to think of a response. “He, uh, helped me move some things in the cellar, and then it was too late to go back to his crypt.”
Buffy was well into exasperation mode now. “Anya, your cellar leads to the sewer tunnels, which lead to his crypt.” She shook Spike’s shoulder. He sighed and snored gently.
“Well, I didn’t mean he couldn’t go back because it was all sunny outside. I meant he was too tired. From all that lifting, you know.”
Anya expression was so aggressively innocent it hurt to look at her. Buffy tried a different tack. “There seems to be an awful lot of sleeping going around this morning. I couldn’t wake Dawn up either.”
“Maybe there’s a sleeping spell!” Anya looked triumphant. “That must be it.” She grabbed a book off a shelf. “Here. Why don’t you take this home and read up on it?”
Buffy looked down at the book that had been shoved into her hands. “The Identification and Care of Magical Creatures of the Australian Outback. Well, if I wanted to wake a demonic kangaroo from a nap, or was curious about a wombat’s sleeping habits, this might help. Otherwise, not.” She tossed the book on the table. Spike snorted in his sleep. “Anya, what’s going on?”
“Going on? Why, I’m just a patriotic American doing my best to preserve the capitalist way of life. What else could be going on?”
Buffy gave up. She turned to leave. “When Sleeping Beastie over there wakes up, tell him I want to see him.”
“Of course you do!” Anya ushered Buffy to the door. “I mean, he’s your boyfriend, and you want to spend all night having lots of sex with him, don’t you?”
Out on the street, Buffy shook her head to clear it. Then she peeked in the window of the Magic Box. No, she hadn’t imagined it. Spike was still asleep at the table. Anya had gotten out her feather duster and was running it over some shelves. Then she ran it over the table. And Spike.
When Anya moved on to the countertop, Buffy turned to go home.
Hedley was the only one really interested in the factory tour. Most of the others found it dirty and pointless, although a few of the elementary students picked up some sticks and started playing light sabers with them.
Hedley had dowsing rods that he said could find magical residue and he kept everyone waiting while he walked around the floor, searching for echoes of the presence of the Judge or one of the factory’s other famous visitors.
“Do you think we should tell him dowsing is completely discredited?” Tara whispered to Willow.
Willow shook her head. “It’s keeping him busy.” She looked around. “What’s Dawn doing?”
“I’ll check it out.” Tara picked her way to the room Dawn was investigating. It had been a bedroom once, but the furnishings were now in tatters. “Honey, it doesn’t look safe in there.”
“I know. I’m being careful. I can’t find Felix, and I’m worried he’s trapped somewhere.”
Tara reached out a hand to help Dawn over a pile of shattered lumber. “I haven’t seen him for a while either. Maybe we should check and see if he snuck outside.”
“Spike, I’m serious, I want an answer!”
“Can’t talk now. I’m busy.”
He was crouched between her thighs, and he was definitely making good use of his lips and tongue. Third time tonight. I didn’t think I’d ever find that annoying.
“No!” She shoved his head up and pushed him into a sitting position. “No more sex. At least, not until you answer my question.”
“And what question would that be, love?”
She was about to say something his not being smart enough to play that dumb, when she saw something that made her yelp and jump off the bed. “What’s in here?” She looked around wildly.
He sat back on his heels. “Not the question I was expecting.”
“Oh, shut up, Spike. There was something here. It was little, and furry, and—” She stopped. “Oh, forget it. Maybe it was just a raccoon. I’ll close the window and— Where are you going?”
“To check out the furball.” He was already almost fully dressed. “Can’t have any nasties sneaking into your bedroom, excepting myself, of course.” He finished pulling on his boots and was halfway out the door before she’d moved from the window. “Don’t worry, love. I’ll find that thing, no matter what it is, or how far I have to track it!”
She stood open-mouthed as he fled down the stairs. The door slammed. She sat down on the bed, staring around her room.
This is just too crazy. Redecorated crypts, sleeping at the Magic Box, being late, telling lies, Anya lying too… She didn’t want to think about what it meant, because it all added up to one thing. But that’s only with normal guys. If he were normal, or even a real person, I’d think he was cheating. But this is Spike, and he’s the one guy who would never cheat on me.
Then she noticed something that drove even these fears from her mind. Her eyes widened as they rested on an empty space on her dresser. A space that should be filled with something very, very precious.
I’m going to go bake banana bread and hope that email is here when I get back.
Originally posted at http://seasonal-spuffy.livejournal.com/167278.html