Here is the start of the other story that I wanted to share with you…
Title: In It Together
Warnings: Foul language, some torture, sexual situations. AU but not AH.
Betas: seapealsh and dawnofme
Summary: Cash strapped twins, William and Spike, reply to an advertisement to take part in a clinical trial. They soon realise that it’s not like anything they’ve participated in before, but it’s already too late to escape the clutches of Maggie Walsh.
Buffy is suspicious of exactly what the Initiative is really up to, so she reluctantly agrees to join their ranks to learn more. What she discovers turns her world upside down.
Disclaimer: I own no part of BtVS. I write for pleasure and not financial gain. No infringement of copyright is intended.
William glanced over at his twin and shook his head.
“What the hell have you done to your hair?”
“Shut your gob. It looks cool.”
“It looks something alright, just not sure cool is the word for it.”
Spike bumped shoulders with William. “So you’re not going to copy it, then?”
“Hell no! And how old do you think we are? I haven’t copied you since we were about ten, and then it was only ‘cause of Mum.”
They both sobered a little at the memory of their late mother. She’d lost her battle with lung cancer just six months earlier. That was when his brother had his name legally changed to Spike, began to dress in head-to-toe black, and basically began to do anything he could to not look like his twin. Will couldn’t decide whether he was hurt by this desperate search for individuality, or relieved that Spike could no longer cause trouble and lay the blame at his door.
“I don’t suppose you’d be interested in doing this?” Will pushed a piece of paper across the table as Spike sat down. “It pays well.”
Spike frowned as he read the advert Will had cut from the paper.
“It doesn’t say where it is.”
“I know, but it does say that all travel expenses would be covered.”
“I dunno.” He glanced at Will. “Don’t you think it sounds too good to be true?”
Shrugging, Will pouted. “Forget it then, but unless you have any money stashed, we’re going to get booted out of here in a couple of weeks.”
Spike got up and turned the kettle on. “So what’s for dinner?”
“Cheese on toast.”
“Yup. Rent, remember?”
With a sigh, Spike picked up the advertisement. “Oh, fuck it. Call them if you like. What harm can it do?”
Two days later, the twins found themselves at the main rail terminal in Sunnydale, waiting for their ride to the Initiative building. A tall man in army fatigues strode into view, glanced up and down the platform before his eyes settled on them.
They exchanged worried looks as he approached. He didn’t look like a doctor.
“William and Spike Pratt?”
“Good guess, GI Joe,” Spike said with a bravado he wasn’t really feeling.
Will kicked his ankle and hissed, “Don’t start.”
“The name’s Finn. The transport’s this way.”
Finn turned on his heels and marched away. With a shrug, Spike picked up his rucksack and began to follow him. A hand on his arm arrested his progress.
“Let’s just go home. I’ve got a bad feeling about this.”
“Don’t be a bloody wuss. They’ve already given us an advance and we can’t give it back, ‘cause you made me pay the sodding rent with it.” He wrenched his arm free. “Come on!”
Will hesitated a moment longer before he too followed the soldier out of the rail station.
Later he’d often think of that moment. If he’d only tried a bit harder to convince Spike to go home…
They started to relax a little as they entered a room with at least twenty sets of twins in it. All identical. More male than female. Spike picked out the prettiest girls and, with a grin at his brother, dumped his bag on the floor and went over to introduce himself. Judging by his self-satisfied smirk, Will guessed Spike’s attentions weren’t unwelcome.
He wondered how Spike had come to have all the confidence and he all the anxieties. Didn’t seem fair.
“Please fill this form out.” The voice at his elbow made him jump and, blushing furiously, he took the pen and paper from the white-coated man.
“Okay. Er…looks like you had a good response to the ad.”
The man’s smile was more like a baring of his teeth, but he nodded. “Yes, the Professor is very hopeful that this will be a successful program.”
Nibbling at the top of the pen, Will found a chair and filled out the questionnaire. It mostly consisted of personal stuff like next of kin and such. He glanced over at his brother who was leaning over one of the dark-haired twin girls ‘helping’ her to fill in the form. Despite being one of a pair, Will sometimes felt lonelier than an only child.
A buffet meal was served and just when all the people gathered were beginning to wonder if they would ever be told what exactly was involved a woman walked in, flanked by the man who gave out the questionnaires on one side and Finn on the other. Unease clutched at Will’s gut. He wished Spike was next to him so he could, once again, ask him to leave.
“Thank you for coming to the Initiative. My name is Professor Walsh and I will be overseeing the program. As you can imagine, our selection process has to be very rigorous. You’ll be told whether you were successful as you leave tonight. Don’t worry, any monies paid to you remain yours.”
Spike finally looked at Will when she said that. He grinned and winked, but got only a weak smile in return.
The woman whirled around and walked out. The white-coated man left with her but Finn remained behind and ambled over to the doors where people were slowly filtering out.
Spike rejoined Will, grinning from ear to ear and holding a scrap of paper in his hand. “Got her number. Could probably fix you up with her sis?”
Rolling his eyes, Will said, “No thanks.”
“You really need to lighten up, little brother.” He laughed and put his arm round Will’s shoulder. The six minutes between his arrival and that of William were of paramount importance sometimes.
When they got to the door, Finn stepped in front of them. “I’m pleased to say you passed the selection process, and so we just need you to sign a few more things before you leave.”
“Uh…” Will glanced at Spike. “We were thinking of pulling out, weren’t we?”
Seeing how spooked Will was gave Spike pause and so he nodded.
“That’s no problem, sir. I’ll just need to get you to sign a form for that.” He smiled lopsidedly. “You know what red-tape’s like these days.”
“Tell me about it,” Spike said, as they followed him the opposite way down the corridor to the others.
Finn stepped back to allow the twins entry through the door he’d just opened. They’d taken just one step when something hit their backs and, bodies spasming, they collapsed unconscious to the floor.
“Well done, Finn. Take them to the Prep Room. They’re perfect specimens.” Maggie Walsh grinned at her latest captives. “No next of kin. No current partners. No one to look for them.”
Forged letters of resignation were already on the way to their employers. Neither man was high enough up in the company for their bosses to be more than miffed at the lack of notice.
Spike came to first and promptly wished he hadn’t. His head throbbed fit to burst. Groaning, he tried to reach up with his left hand. His eyes flew open when he couldn’t move it.
“What the fuck?”
He tugged frantically at the straps that held his arms. Eyes wild, he glanced round the room.
His brother was strapped to a similar chair, just a couple of yards away.
“Uh…” Will stirred, but his eyes remained closed.
Heart pounding, Spike tried to calm down and take stock of the situation. By the time he’d done that, panic was back full throttle.
They were naked.
They were strapped to some sort of chairs.
Their legs were held up and wide apart, secured in stirrups.
“Oi! What the fuck is going on?” Spike’s voice echoed back at him from the white tiled walls and floor. Even the ceiling was white.
He rolled his head to the side to look at Will.
“Yeah. I’m here.”
Spike watched as William went through the same jerky movements of panic that he had. They stared at each other, chests heaving.
“Looks like you were right that we shouldn’t have come.”
Despite the situation, Will couldn’t help a snort of laughter, albeit a slightly hysterical one. “So you’ll listen if there’s a next time.”
“Hey.” Spike raised his head as much as he could. “Less of this ‘if there’s a next time’ shite, okay? This is just a misunderstanding. We’ll be home in a couple of hours.”
They both started when a voice from behind them said, “Oh, I really, really don’t think that’s going to happen.”
Professor Walsh walked between the two brothers and turned to face them, resting her hands on one of their feet.
“You’re mine now.”
Buffy stepped out of the elevator and stared open mouthed at the vast expanse before her.
Riley grinned. “Some place, huh?”
“How did it get built without anyone knowing about it?”
“Well, it’s mostly a system of caves that were already here. We widened them a bit, but the entrance is out in the woods so we could get the equipment in from there.” He guided her to some rails that guarded an area below.
Buffy peered down and grimaced. “So… you do what here? Cut up demons? Why?”
“So we can learn more about them. See if we can use that knowledge to help the human race. I dunno, maybe we’ll find a cure for cancer. I’m not one of the techs. I just catch the guys.”
“That one over there,” Buffy pointed to a Gnituocs demon currently being dissected, “isn’t a threat. It eats leaves and keeps out of the way of people.”
Riley shrugged. “It’s still a demon, isn’t it?”
“I suppose.” But it didn’t sit right with her. As the Slayer, her duty was to defend the world against evil. What was so evil about a shy vegetarian demon who looked a bit like a small cow?
“Just wait until you speak with the Professor, she’s amazing.” Riley’s eyes got a faraway look that gave Buffy the creeps.
“Hmm.” Her eyes narrowed as she began to regret allowing Giles to persuade her to take an interest in what the Initiative were doing.
“There she is.”
Glancing further down the corridor, Buffy could see her psychology tutor coming out of a doorway, wiping her right hand on her lab coat.
The woman looked up sharply and locked the door. “Finn. You’re early.”
“Sorry, ma’am. Just keen to show Buffy around the facility.”
“Is that blood?” Buffy stared at the red streaks on the coat.
“Yes… yes, it is. I dropped a glass and cut my hand. Only a nick, but it bled a lot.”
“Oh… right.” There was no sign of the injury. “What’s through there?”
“That’s the professor’s office,” Riley said, earning him a curt nod of the head from Walsh as she acknowledged the lie he’d used for her.
“Finn tells me that you’re incredibly strong. Do you mind if we test that strength?”
“Uh… I guess not, as long as you don’t start cutting me open like the demons.”
Both Finn and Walsh laughed at her words.
“Miss Summers,” Walsh said, “Rest assured, we are only researching demons here. Now, if you don’t mind we’ll get started.”
“Okay.” Buffy squinted at the door as she walked by it. Her gut told her that there was more behind the steel door marked 312 than the woman’s office.
Spike spat out a mouthful of blood and ran his tongue over his teeth to reassure himself that they were all still there.
“Are you okay?” William’s voice held a tremor that increased Spike’s rage.
“Yeah. She hits like a girl.” More blood was spat out.
“Just don’t make her angry, Spike. Keep quiet.”
“Why? Do you think we’re going to be allowed out of these chairs and to walk out the door?” Spike tugged at the straps to no avail.
“If you don’t make her mad, she might—”
“Oh, for God’s sake, Will. Wake up! This isn’t what it was advertised as. She’s basically kidnapped us. Whatever we say or do won’t make a blind bit of difference.”
“Is she…? Are we going to die?”
Spike closed his eyes. “I think we might.”
Originally posted at http://seasonal-spuffy.livejournal.com/399607.html