Buffy dug her heels into the mattress, her hands above her head, clinging to the sheet, pulling it tighter with each snap of her hips. The lamp was still burning but the candles had gone out sometime between the chair and the floor.
Spike leaned down to kiss her quickly, moved one hand down her thigh, his fingers on the back of her knee. His hand covered her knee and she slowed her movements, allowed him to straighten her leg so it rested over his shoulder. Her mouth open, Buffy rolled her hips beneath his, her eyes impossibly wide.
Her voice was hoarse when she said his name, her back arched and hips rising towards him. “Spike,” she repeated, her hands still above her head, neck stretched forward.
Her eyes met his. She couldn’t stop moving, her hips rocking in rhythm with his, their movements steady. Her breathing was a series of pants and gasps, hitching every time she exhaled or he moved ever so slightly to the right.
She pressed her leg against his shoulder, shifting her right leg around him. He shifted his weight, barely moving, waiting for her. Buffy wrapped her legs around his thighs and tilted her neck so their lips were touching. It was a soft kiss, his lips gentle against hers.
Spike pulled away and flashed a smile, increasing the pace of his thrusts. She called his name in surprise. Her fingers went to his shoulders, pressing against the tight muscles, the ripped sheet beneath them.
He chuckled deep in his throat, the sound vibrating between them as they moved faster, mingling with her rough gasps. She couldn’t pull air into her lungs fast enough, couldn’t control the speed of her body or the way it connected with his, each stroke sending her closer and closer to the edge.
Buffy tensed, the muscles of her thighs shaking uncontrollably and Spike kissed her suddenly. He pulled away slightly but she resisted, her body draped across his like a blanket, hands trembling against his skin. Buffy raised her tired head, her lips beside his ear and whispered hoarsely, her voice scratchy, her loose limbs wrapped around him.
Spike reclined against the pillows. Buffy’s head rested on his stomach, knees drawn towards her chest. He lit a cigarette, blew the smoke away from her and stroked the outside of her thigh with his left hand. She nuzzled her head against his skin, eyes still closed, teetering between sleep and awake.
He didn’t sleep when she was in his bed; remained alert for the moments like mercury, surprising and slippery, stretching and pushing through the darkness. She surprised him. Her emotions ran deep, closer to the surface than he had seen before; anger and destructive urges cutting through blank stares and plastic smiles like water through spun sugar.
Her eyes were still blank when he let her sit too long without saying a word. But there were fleeting interruptions, moments when he saw her come back to herself, when he felt the looseness in her limbs when she wound her body around his or the graceful play of muscles beneath her skin.
Did she trust him? The question, eight days gone, lingered unanswered.
She had nightmares that made her twist and flail, made her cry out and strike the mattress. She would wake up, heart thundering in a panic, wrapped in Spike’s arms. He wouldn’t admit to shaking her gently to draw her out of her own mind, didn’t tell her how he called her name to wake her up.
Five days past she had flung herself at him, a girlish smile on her lips, laughter in her voice, her too wide eyes bright. For a few hours he held a different girl in his arms, one who giggled and blushed, her body humming with joy.
The previous night after patrol they had caught Dawn trying to sneak out. They had been on the side of the house, hidden by shadows, Buffy’s feet inches off the ground, but Spike had heard the door open. Buffy had started yelling before he had a chance to make himself presentable. By the time he was on the back porch, they were in the kitchen. Dawn crying, Buffy yelling. He had waited outside and smoked until the shouting stopped and Dawn had slammed her bedroom door. He had followed Buffy down to the basement, sat on the stairs while she shrieked and paced. The entire scene was outside his element until she knelt at the foot of the stairs, her shaking hands spread across his thighs and kissed him fiercely.
Spike touched her hair softly. She was exquisite, lying sated beside him.
Her fighting was glorious, movements certain, muscles following familiar patterns without thought. Her focus slipped before she launched herself into a flip, a slight hesitation he couldn’t ignore, but he didn’t tell Buffy. The moments they stole were more beautiful still – naked limbs tangled on woolen rugs or leather chairs – her voice reduced to a series of gasps and cries.
Buffy felt his hand against her cheek, tracing her hair. With her eyes closed she could be anyone in bed with someone who adored her – any woman in bed with her lover – and the thought pleased her. She could smell the minty smoke, felt her cheek burning where it touched his skin, her body pulsing. Her skin felt charged with electricity, emotions stronger and brighter than she remembered, desire flaring quickly.
The things she said in the darkness came back in the daylight, unbidden fragments that made her blush and her heart pound. His words twisted into her memories, rising at unexpected moments.
She hadn’t planned to quit her job, but five days ago his words had flowed over her lips when she stood in front of her boss. I quit. Two simple words supported with his arguments. Afterwards she had called Giles, unconcerned whether it shocked or surprised him. When he had fumbled through her reasoning, the words “I’m borrowing money from Spike” hit harder than “longest living Slayer” or her threat to quit.
She repeated the phrase until the words were blurred nonsense: “I’mborrowingmoneyfromSpike.” She had heard him. His offer was as light as spun sugar, the brass ring surprisingly easy to grasp. When she said them to Willow, the other woman’s eyes had gone wide and she had tripped over her words, made excuses and apologies that Buffy barely heard. Her friend was so quick to offer money when the alternative was unfathomable.
Buffy inhaled slowly through her nose. When she was alone she repeated his name over and over until it felt heavy on her tongue. Inside her mind, in conversations played out when she brushed her teeth or made coffee, he understood. There was no pressure, no obligation, no misunderstandings.
She could tell him, acknowledge what had spiraled from his quiet statement. Buffy imagined the scene, how she would approach him with hesitation and a smile, wearing something less Slayer and more Buffy. She would smile, flirt, make disarming small talk and inconsequential gestures, one hand on his arm, another on his chest. His suspicion would falter under the glow of her smile; they would laugh, fall into bed, think about beautiful things.
She wouldn’t tell him. Once her secret was exposed, it would become distorted, twisted and sharp. He would insist on actually giving her money. She would resist, they would fight, circling each other; the offer would tarnish. The words would be bitter in her mouth but her reckless relief would give way to resignation, his satisfaction would erode under the weight of obligation. Words would sour, heavy with his interpretation, her bitter denial. I’m borrowing money from Spike. Safely contained, the thought buoyed her in the hours between sleep and awake. The relief made her strong.
Two nights before she had blurted out a request without an offer, words so muffled he hadn’t understood a word. “The gang’s having a party for me.” She’d delivered her lines flawlessly but when he hadn’t answered right away, she had felt the familiar disappointment building. Buffy had held her breath, refused to blink despite the burning in her eyes; he had laughed, the unasked question easily answered, had teased her about being greedy for presents. The relief had filled her, effervescent and bright. It made moving through the day tolerable, her role easier to occupy.
Buffy felt his hand along the outside of her hip, his fingers moving higher towards the side of her breast. She opened her eyes and met his stare, her lips quirked in a half-smile.
She wasn’t lost; he saw her.
Spike smashed the cigarette in the stone bowl beside the bed. His left hand rested on his stomach, close to her head. Buffy rubbed her cheek against his skin softly, nodding her head up and down, staring intently at him.
“Is it tomorrow already,” she asked hoarsely, her lips barely moving.
Spike nodded. “Happy Birthday.”
Originally posted at https://seasonal-spuffy.dreamwidth.org/794302.html