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Author: readerjane
Title: Sun-Worshipper
Rating: G
Word count: 367
Setting: School Hard (the Bronze)

Glad to see Seasonal Spuffy kicking off. And what a great idea for opening weekend!

Nutters, the lot of them.

He’d think it was something in the water made Sunnydale residents congenitally suicidal. But any town this close to a Hellmouth suffered population losses every year. That Sunnydale’s bars stayed in business meant a steady stream of victims willing to move here. And what excuse had the newcomers?

Sunlight in the day and a threshold at night. That’s what he’d insist on, if he were of the breathing persuasion. Yet here they were: young and lively, their hearts pumping and veins so full of sweet red ambrosia. Spike glided through the crowd like a shark through schools of fish, bright tropical colors flashing and whirling as the Bronze’s latest band drove a steady beat just quicker than the hearts tap-tapping all round him.

He loved this part. Circle and dance, eye them and choose. Pick a girl to tempt outdoors. Pick another to bring home to Dru. What would his dark lady like tonight? Impossible to predict her mood. He could gift her with a vixen in a silken gown and she’d cry for a boy all muscled and brawn. Or bring her a matron and she’d pout for a waif.

Only constant was the darkness. Funny, this town named for the day was so full of souls dancing into the dark. Dru said they were the tastiest: minnows who longed for his jaws to snatch them; who knew, somehow, they belonged in the dark with him.

The music beat. The dancers swirled.

Gold flashed at the corner of his eye. He was safe indoors, else Spike would have thought he’d overstayed and been trapped by morning. And the buzz beneath his senses felt like day, like the lick of flame before his skin began to sizzle. Spike’s eyes widened.

She danced in the crowd, all helpless-seeming. Slight and small, shining with power. Spike fought to hide his sharky grin. Who’d chase helpless fish when he could leap to catch the sun itself, bite into that burning aurora and drag it down, warming the deeps with fire?

She paused. Wary. He let the crowd wash around him. Nothing more reckless than a creature of night who permitted himself to worship the sun.

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