Angel watched as Anya and Xander practically ran away from the graveyard. They both looked upset and disgusted. From their location and stakes and holy water they were carrying Angel assumed that they were patrolling. He’d just gotten back to Sunnydale, he hadn’t felt comfortable leaving Buffy on her own. She had assured him that she could handle it, but he wanted to be sure for himself. He had decided to watch her from a distance, protect her if need be. Besides, it wasn’t like he was Mr. Popularity around the office after the whole Darla scandal.
If Buffy wasn’t out patrolling, things must be worse than he thought. She’d always told him that it relaxed her, the routine of it all. No matter how bleak things were, she usually patrolled. He emerged from the shaded area beneath a large pine. He was going to follow Xander and Anya, announce his presence to them and get some information about Buffy when he heard a commotion coming from a row of tombstones. Stealthily, he made his way over so he could see what was going on.
“Spike! Oh, Spike! You are the big bad! Big, BIG, bad!” Buffy was on top of his blonde granchilde, grinding against his pelvis. It was obvious what was happening. “Oh, yes! Yes! YES!” She keened, her hair swishing around her shoulders. Spike groaned as he found his own release.
“Oh my God!” Angel stumbled backwards, tripping over a headstone and crashed to the ground, completely blowing his cover. He couldn’t believe his own eyes. The couple broke apart, Buffy discreetly putting her clothing back into place. “Well, well, well, if it isn’t gramps.” Spike drawled, getting to his feet. He rudely pulled up his zipper and buckled his belt as Angel watched in outrage. Buffy stood up and he put a possessive arm around her, squeezing her waist.
Angel stared at Buffy, bewildered. This was downright creepy and disturbing but not painful. They were no longer together, he knew she’d had another boyfriend after him. Knew that she had loved the young man. But he was a human, could give her things that Angel couldn’t -- children. . . a life full of sunshine. But Buffy was now with another vampire. Namely, Spike, his own grandchilde. A demon. “How could you do this with SPIKE!?” He asked her.
Spike’s grin grew wider. “Buffy, you remember Angel, don’t you?”
“Oh, yes. Angel’s bloody stupid and his hair sticks straight up.” The Buffybot repeated dutifully, reading the words on her information file screen.
Angel recoiled, hurt by her behavior. He clenched his hands into fists and glared at Spike. This couldn’t be his Buffy, she loved him. Wasn’t in love with him, but she loved him. Trusted him. And she’d never make fun of him! And his hair did not stick straight up! “What the hell did you do to her?” Was it a spell? Extreme grief over her mother’s death? Drugs?
“Nothing, peaches. I guess she just woke up and smelled the blood. Realized who’s the better vampire.” Spike grinned maniacally.
Angel shook his head, trying to sort out the facts. Something had to be done. His hand shot out and grabbed Buffy’s sleeve. Since when did she start wearing a black leather jacket? “Come on, we need to talk about this. You’ve obviously lost your mind.” He glared at Spike. “Of course, he really likes that sort of thing.”
“Let me go!” The bot said indignantly as she struggled in his grasp. “I want to be with Spike. Not you!”
“You heard the lady, she wants to be with me.” Spike said smugly. Angel let her go and watched her snuggle against Spike’s side. “Come on, baby. Let’s go back to my crypt.” He spared Angel a glance. “Why don’t you go back to L.A.? As you can see, you’re not needed here.” And they walked away from him. Leaving him alone in the cemetery.
Angel once again examined his emotions. No pain. Only a hefty dose of revulsion, anger at Spike, and concern for Buffy. He stared in the direction they left in and thought of following them, taking her out of there by force. It was impossible though. He couldn’t fight a Slayer and his childe at the same time. “I have to go. Something’s wrong here. Very, very wrong.” He muttered. Something terrible must have happened to Buffy. She hated Spike, there’s no way she’d straddle him in a cemetery if she were in her right mind.
Angel jumped in his car and drove at a fast pace through the streets of Sunnydale. Wondering who he should go to. He found himself on the campus of UC Sunnydale. ”Willow.” He said with a sigh. **********
“I’m coming!” Willow shouted, but the pounding on her door didn’t stop. She threw open the door. “What’s the emergency? Oh, Angel! Hi!” The dark vampire continued to stare at her. “Are you alright? Something wrong with Buffy?”
“You could say that.” Angel said. “Can I come in?”
“Sure. Come in, Angel.” The barrier disappeared and Angel walked in. “You look upset. Oh, Goddess. There’s a new big bad in town? He’s going to kill us all, right?”
Angel smiled wryly. “Maybe you should ask Buffy about big bads, she’s an expert.”
“I ran into Spike and Buffy in the graveyard tonight.”
“Oh, were they fighting?” Willow gestured to the futon which was currently folded into its couch position and Angel sat down. Willow sat across from him on the edge of her bed. “They’ve been kinda angry at each other lately.” I’m not mentioning Spike’s crush on her unless he directly asks me about it. She had no desire to see an Angel meltdown. Fish had a way of turning up dead when he got mad.
“No, they didn’t look angry. They were–“ Angel broke off, he knew they were in the new millennium, but he was an old-fashioned man with old-fashioned ideas about women. You just didn’t speak about such things with ladies and Willow was definitely a lady. She shouldn’t be subjected to something this sordid. He didn’t want to say something to embarrass Willow or himself but he wanted to get the point across.
“They were. . .?”
“Making love.”Angel said finally. That descriptor was woefully inadequate to characterize the frenzied coupling he’d witnessed.
Willow laughed loudly. Angel watched her in puzzlement, maybe all of the scoobies had gone insane while he was gone. Then, she pressed a hand to her chest. “Oh, Angel, I’m sorry. For a second there, I thought you said they were ‘making love’, you said . . .’making gloves’ or ‘baking slugs’ or something else, didn’t you?”
It was time to be honest, he needed her help. He just hoped she wouldn’t be too shocked. “No, in fact, she was straddling him in the middle of a bunch of tombstones, shouting ‘you are the big–“
”Please stop!” Willow held out a hand. “Are you trying to scar me for life?”
Angel grimaced. “Sorry, Willow. But we need do something about this.”
“She’s lost her mind.”
“That’s what I thought.”
“Do you think it’s the grief?”
Angel nodded. “Seems like the most likely explanation.”
“Are you okay?” Willow asked gently, she put her hand on his arm in a friendly gesture.
“I’m fine, Willow.” He ducked his head. “ We were over a long time ago. I just don’t want to see her get hurt.”
“That makes two of us.”
“Good. Now, has she been acting strange the past few days?”
“Well, she’s been crying a lot, but I think that’s normal after you’ve had a death in the family.” Willow thought a moment. “OH! She was supposed to go on this vision quest thingy with Giles. She must have just got back, maybe she saw something there that triggered this.”
“We need to go find her, she should be in his crypt.”
“Should I call the others?”
“And embarrass her in front of everyone else? She can trust the two of us.”
“Okay. You’re right. Oh. . .wait. . .eww. What if we. . .what if we. . .y’know. . .interrupt something?”
“We’ll knock before we go inside. And get a spell book, Willow. We may need to subdue her, she probably won’t come willingly.” *******
Willow paused at the entrance to Spike’s crypt. “Are you sure I should just bust in?”
Angel made a face. “Well, from the smells in there, we might be out her quite a while before they–“
”Enough said.” Willow spoke in a furious whisper. “And smells. . .eww!”
“Review the plan. I want you to go in and distract them and then I’m going to get her out. Okay?”
Angel sniffed again. “Why do I smell plastic?”
Willow shook her head and pushed the door of Spike’s crypt open. She jumped in, hands over her eyes. “Stop whatever it is your doing!”
She could hear Spike’s laughter coming to her from across the room. “Hello, Red. Come on then, let me see those pretty green eyes of yours.” Willow peeped at him from between two of her fingers. Luckily, all she saw was Spike sitting on top of his bier clothed in only his jeans and smoking a cigarette. Buffy sat on the ground by his feet, her head was slumped forward. She looked like she was sleeping.
“What’s wrong with her?”
“Wore her out, I guess. I’m a bloody demon in the sack. Actually, we’re about to have another go of it, luv. Care to join in?” Spike eyed her lasciviously. “Wouldn’t mind that a bit.”
“Anyone ever tell you that you’re a pig, Spike?” Angel said, strolling inside the crypt. He pulled a crossbow from his coat and aimed it at Spike’s chest. Good thing I keep these in the trunk! “Come with me, Buffy.”
And that’s when Glory’s minions came.
They knocked Angel over the head with a rock and he fell to the ground. They did the same to Willow. Buffy remained on the floor, immobile. Four of them jumped on Spike, tied his arms behind his back, and dragged him from the crypt kicking and screaming behind his gag. *******
Angel was the first to wake up. Willow’s collapsed form swam into view. A trickle of blood flowed down her forehead. He resisted the urge to taste , even though she smelled delicious. “Supposed to be helping, not trying to cop a taste!” He muttered to himself angrily. He checked her pulse, it was fine. Her breathing was even. He moved his hands behind her head and checked for bruising. She moaned in pain and came awake under his ministrations. “Angel? Is it you?”
“It’s me, Willow. How do you feel?”
Willow licked her dry lips. “Like someone hit me on the head with a rock.”
Angel chuckled. Then he noticed Buffy’s form by the bier. He walked over to her and touched her arm to get a pulse when he recoiled in dismay. “She’s plastic!” He picked up her arm and sniffed. “No blood, plastic and. . . the scent of Spike. “
”Again. . .eww!” Willow made her way over to where Angel knelt and touched Buffy. “She is plastic!” She thought a moment. “Wait a minute! I think I know where she came from, there was another robot in town a couple weeks ago. I bet Spike had her built to be Buffy because he. . .eww!” Willow dropped the Buffybot’s arm. She looked around desperately for something she could wipe her hands on but found nothing. Dammit! Now, she had perverted vampire germs on her hands.
Angel started to laugh. Great gails of laughter that bent him over, he held onto his stomach and really cackled. “Spike’s sleeping with a big Barbie!!” He slapped his hand on the cold cement floor. “He had to make a girlfriend!”
Willow watched him in bemusement. Then she remembered. “Wait a minute! Glory’s minions have Spike. She said they were grody little hobbits who have leprosy. That must have been them. Oh , Goddess! Spike knows who The Key is!”
“Who is Glory? Who’s The Key?” Angel asked, sobering up.
“Glory’s a god. Dawn is The Key.” Willow said, coming to her feet. She hauled the Buffybot up and searched her head for an ‘on’ switch.
“Buffy’s sister.” Willow flicked it on and the Buffybot’s eyes open and closed.
“She doesn’t have a sister.”
“Now, she does. Her name is Dawn.”
The Buffybot smiled her best ‘toothpaste’ smile. “Dawn is my sister. We fight a lot but I love that little nibblet.”
“Nibblet?” Angel asked.
“Spike’s nickname for Dawn.”
“Where’s Spike?” The bot looked around the room dumbly. “We were supposed to try a new position. I was going to be on top and –“
”Stop!!” Angel and Willow shouted.
“Okay.” The Buffybot said cheerily. “But where did he go?”
“I don’t know.” Willow said with frown. She bit her lower lip. “We need to call everybody, try to find out where Glory’s hideout is. We have to stop Spike before he tells her who The Key is.”
“Glory wants The Key.” Buffybot said with wide eyes.
Angel wasn’t exactly sure what was going on but he didn’t miss the urgency in Willow’s tone. “We’d better bring the robot, too. If Buffy’s still gone on the vision quest, we may need it for a diversion. Besides, if Spike survives this I don’t want him to go home to his. . .toy.”
“Spike likes toys.” The Buffybot told them. “Our first time together, he took out a whole chest of them and he–“
”Stop!” Angel and Willow shouted again. They walked out of the crypt, the bot walked behind them obediently.
“Don’t talk about sex with Spike. Please?” Willow begged.
“Why? It was fun, and he does the most amazing thing with his–“
”Buffy!!” Willow screeched.
“I’m sorry, Willow. You’re my best friend. I don’t want to upset you.”
Angel glared at the robot. Last thing he wanted to do was babysit his child’s sex toy which looked exactly like his old girlfriend. “Can’t we shut it off? Or gag it?”
“You want to touch it? ‘Cuz you’d have to carry it around.”
He opened the side door and the bot crawled in back, Willow took shot gun. No telling where that thing’s been. “We’ll let it operate on it’s own, Willow.” He went around to his side of the car and sat down.
“Willow’s my best friend.” The bot chirped happily. “She’s recently gay.”
Angel stared at Willow, mouth open. “You’re gay?”
Willow smiled. “Yes.” Was it her imagination or did he look disappointed?
“When did that happen? When I left town you were straight.”
“And you were depressed. Things change.”
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