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That Easy (Spuffy fanfic!!!!)

fool-on-the-hill
Title: That Easy
Summary: After an unexpected reunion, years after the fall of Sunnydale, Spike and Buffy take a walk.

Word Count: 2024
Disclaimer: I don’t own ‘em.  I’m just borrowing them for a while.
Rating: PG, for mild sexual suggestiveness.
Author’s Note:
This is a companion piece to Anywhere, the second half of the reunion as told from Spike’s point of view.  It’s been a long time, and Anywhere is very short, so I recommend you re-read it first before your read this. I found this mostly complete on my harddrive.  It's simple and unlikely, but as I wrote Anywhere, I was in the mood for an uncomplicated reunion and thus, this second piece needed to have the same feeling.  It is not the best thing I've ever written, but my writing muses are finally waking up again and the desire to share something has been exceedingly strong lately.  So, here you go!


That Easy
*~*

They walked hand-in-hand along the crowded boardwalk, the warm ocean breeze teasing their hair and carrying with it a hint of salty mist.  Neither one of them noticed where they were headed; they were simply walking, a slow, unhurried stroll entirely in contrast to the frantic pace of their former lives.  They had yet to speak, though between them the promise of a conversation years in coming hovered tangibly, enticingly.

Spike hadn’t known what to expect, when the tingle of recognition first zipped up his spine and he realized that it wasn’t just slayer he felt, but Buffy.  Seeing her—as beautiful as ever, and older, certainly, but carrying a maturity that suited her even more than the soft curves of a body finally treated to good food and enough rest—brought him right back to the past, to Sunnydale, to the ache in his heart that hadn’t faded despite time and distance.  He had often fantasized, in the first few years after Los Angeles, about what he would do, what he would say to her if their paths ever crossed again.  But they hadn’t met, and as the years continued to pass, he’d eventually resigned himself to an existence without her, knowing that as long as she was alive, and happy, he could believe he’d done the right thing by staying away.

He had almost gone to her, in the aftermath of the Black Thorn battle, when a chance meeting with Andrew revealed that it hadn’t truly been Buffy, but a decoy, fawning over the Immortal in that nightclub in Rome, and that as far as Andrew was aware, only he and Giles knew that Spike was back.  He’d apologized for the ruse, but he’d been under orders and...

Andrew’s expression had grown remorseful, and he tipped his head to the side.  Spike had followed the motion across the rain-soaked, bloodstained alley, and caught Rupert’s eyes as he tended to the injured slayers, whose arrival at a pivotal moment had turned the tide of the fight.  Buffy hadn’t been among them, nor any of the Sunnydale group, and the look in Giles’s eyes clearly conveyed the reason.

She’s moved on.  She’s happy.  She doesn’t need you.

In the end, he’d stood in the window at LAX and watched the airplane, bound for London, take off without him.

Maybe that made him a coward, but in those days, with heart and mind and demon still reeling from both the intrusion of a soul and the taking-back of his hero’s death, nothing much made sense, least of all what to do where Buffy was concerned.  His entire being felt as drawn to her as ever, the fierce yearning for her having only strengthened in her absence, but was it fair, to Buffy, to impose himself on her if she really had found a niche in life?  What good would it do either one of them to dredge up the past, especially when, despite his desperation to believe it, he couldn’t be certain that her final words to him meant anything more than goodbye?

In his darker moments, before he’d learned to live without her, his musings of their unlikely reunion ended with violence, accusations, and Buffy storming out of his life again as quickly as she’d stumbled back into it.  Even when he managed happier daydreams, the reality that Buffy wouldn’t take kindly to his deception always managed to sneak its way inside, make him doubt the wisdom of even wanting to see her after so long.  Too much time had passed without a word, and any hope they’d had to rekindle their spark had died alongside the demons in the alley behind the Hyperion.

But this, this immediate, firm acceptance without accusation, without anger, combined with her declaration of love—that had taken him by surprise.  He didn’t doubt, when she heard his tale, that she’d have some choice words with which to punctuate it, but the fact that she even wanted to hear it stirred the hope in his heart that there was something left for the two of them after all.

Buffy’s fingers—those of her left hand, promisingly devoid of jewellery—tightened around his, and he glanced at her to find her smiling dreamily.  The smile widened, showing teeth glinting silver in the moonlight. 

“It’s really you,” she said, for what might have been the sixth or seventh time.

He felt himself smiling back, something he’d rarely had occasion to do in her presence.  “You keep saying that,” he replied, coming to a stop and tugging her toward the low retaining wall separating the boardwalk from the sandy cliffs above them.

They set down on the wall, half-turned to face each other, their joint hands, still tingling in memory of painless flames, resting half on his knee, half on hers.

Buffy’s fingers combed absently through the ends of her hair.  “I’m just having trouble believing that I’m not dreaming,” she said, her thumb lightly stroking his.  She glanced down at their hands and added, in a breathy whisper, “I watched you dying, Spike.”

She looked up again, and fresh tears glinted in her eyes, but where he had expected anger, he only saw confusion, and sadness.

“You did,” he whispered, brushing a tender thumb across her moistened cheek.  “I did,” he said.  “Just didn’t take, is all.”

“Just didn’t…” 

She laughed, and the genuinely amused sound mingled with a stifled sob.  The next moment saw her face planted firmly into his shoulder, her own shaking lightly with a mixture of tears and laughter.

Buffy’s hand slipped from his and her arms snaked around his waist, fingers digging possessively into his back through his thin shirt.  He tightened his own arms around her, dropping a kiss into her hair before resting his forehead against the top of her head.

She pulled out of his hold and raised her head off his shoulder a minute later, smiling despite the tears streaming down her face.  “I missed you, you jerk,” she said, punctuating jerk with a light fist in the flank.  “I know it wasn’t Willow, so...who brought you back?”

Spike didn’t miss her emphasis on you, and with that notice came the knowledge that, in the span of mere minutes, Buffy had come to understand something vital.  She, too, had been the subject of an unwanted resurrection, and recognized all too well the utter devastation of being torn out of well-earned peace and thrust back into a thankless, violent world.  She understood the at times crippling confusion and feelings of utter disassociation inherent in coming back from the dead, and had seemingly forgiven him for the indiscretion of not telling her he was alive before even hearing the reasons why. 

“Wolfram and Hart,” Spike answered, watching as her eyes widened in surprise.

To her credit—and even more telling of how much she had grown since he had last seen her—Buffy stepped on the snappish comment he could practically see her thinking, and after taking in a deep breath, asked, “How long after Sunnydale?”

Twisting his lips into an apologetic half-frown, Spike answered, “Three weeks, give or take.”

“It was the amulet, then?”

“The amulet and a couple of Wolfram and Hart wankers with a hate-on for Angel.”

Buffy sighed, sounding weary.  “So this is why Giles didn’t want me in L.A.  You were there, weren’t you?  Did you see..?”

“He fought brilliantly, love,” Spike said softly, his former animosity towards his grandsire, and his relationship with Buffy, having faded in the wake of Angel’s death.  “Gave ‘em what-for and brought down a dragon before he bought it.”

Buffy nodded slowly as he spoke.  “You’ve been back ten years,” she whispered, after a moment, looking down at her feet, shuffling in the light dusting of sand covering the weathered planks of the boardwalk.  “Why didn’t you tell me?”

“Let’s walk, Buffy,” he suggested, finding her hand again and feeling a jolt of relief when she immediately laced her fingers with his.  “And I’ll start from the beginning, all right?”

“All right,” she agreed, rising with him as he stood.  “But promise me something, okay?”

“What’s that?”

She smirked, and, taking his other hand, turned to face him.  “If I get mad enough at you to run away, promise me you won’t let me go.”

“Sweetheart,” he said, chuckling softly at her amused determination.  “There’s not a chance in hell I’m letting you get away now.”

They walked.  He spoke and she listened, her attention rapt despite her gaze cast out in front of them.  Whenever Spike came close to wondering if he’d said to much, Buffy’s fingers tightened their grip on his, keeping him level and calm and right there with her.

In the end, she didn’t run.  Her eyes were glossy, shining, but she didn’t cry.  “I should be mad,” she said, with a shake of her head.  “I think I am, a little bit, but not as much as I am grateful you aren’t dead.”

Despite the seriousness of her declaration, Spike snorted.

“All right, aren’t deader.”  Buffy rolled her eyes and grabbed his other hand, pulling him toward her. 

“Vampires,” she said, affecting an exasperated tone even though Spike saw right through it.

He went willingly toward her, then carried the motion further and backed them up toward the half wall.  He let go her hands and settled one at her waist to pull their bodies together.  The other he slipped into her hair, fingertips stroking her neck while Buffy shuddered softly.

“For a dead guy, you’ve really always been terribly alive,” she whispered, gaze settling on his before she leant forward and pressed her lips to his.

The kiss was tender, almost tentative at first.  Much as it had when they had first kissed at the café, this was familiar but also not.  The years spent apart stretched between them, and yet Spike already knew kissing Buffy now, even cautiously, meant so much more than their desperate hours of before. 

Buffy’s hands slid up his arms, her fingers curling into his skin.  Spike tugged her closer, and when she swept her tongue across his bottom lip, he parted his lips and welcomed her home.  Still learning, still searching, the kiss stretched on until lips and tongues and teeth remembered how this went, and the fire between them smoked and smouldered and lit anew.

The shrill voices of the children protesting the public display tore them apart, Buffy breathless, Spike playing at it, just as the moment threatened to go just a little bit too far to be proper in public.

Buffy laughed and planted her face into his chest, still chuckling as he circled his arms around her and held on tightly.

“It’s really gonna be that easy?” he asked, feeling daring.

Buffy snuggled deeper into his embrace, and tipped her face up so that one eye was looking at him.  “Yeah,” she said, voice muffled.  “I really think it is.”

He dropped a moist kiss on her forehead.  “Right, then, Summers.  What now?”

Buffy straightened up, and he leant forward to touch his forehead to hers. 

“Like I said before.  Anywhere.  Anywhere you are.”  She paused, and though her face was too close to his to see, he heard the subtle slide of her tongue over her bottom lip.  “But I think, right now, my hotel is about a block away.”

The promise in her words coiled warmly in his chest and rumbled outward in a little sound that made Buffy’s heart race just a little harder.  “Yeah?” he said.

Buffy grabbed his belt loops and tugged his hips toward her.  “Oh, yeah,” she said, wriggling knowingly against his erection.  “Ten years is long enough to keep me waiting, don’t you think?”

Spike couldn’t really argue with that, and let her grab hold of his hand to lead the way.  He followed, toward the promise of the moment, and the promise of the rest of it. Ten years on, they’d finally figured out how to make things simple.

Anywhere, she’d said, as long as they were together. 

That, Spike thought, was the best idea she’d ever had.

*~*

The End

Comments

( 6 have spoken — take the speaking stick )
slaymesoftly
Dec. 21st, 2013 02:16 am (UTC)
Awwwwwwww! Love your explanation for Buffy's easy acceptance - that she'd been there, done that, and knew how it could mess up your ability to make good decisions. I don't think I've seen that expressed before. Good job!
beloved4always
Dec. 21st, 2013 11:06 am (UTC)
just wonderful. And true to life IMO. when I come across stories 10 or 15 or 20 years into the future and Buffy is written the same as when she was younger it never seems 'real' to me. People change - life experiences change people - especially how they respond to situations. So this was lovely and believable to me. thanks for sharing!
gillo
Dec. 21st, 2013 07:07 pm (UTC)
Gorgeous - and believable, despite the long gap. And very, very sweet.
treadingthedark
Dec. 21st, 2013 07:56 pm (UTC)
Lovely.
jeleyne
Dec. 22nd, 2013 07:07 am (UTC)
Oh,it's lovely. Just totally lovely. And really not so unlikely. If it had only been six months or a year, the reunion could be problematic, but a decade? That's time enough for the rawness to recede, for perspective to be gained, and makes it a lot easier for a ton of baggage to be discarded when a miracle is suddenly staring you in the face. Of course, in my fantasy epilogue, they would walk off into the sunset (figuratively speaking) and never have anything to do with Rupert Giles ever again. I'm quite a bit less forgiving than they are.
sarian71
Dec. 22nd, 2013 09:17 am (UTC)
<3 <3 <3

Oh, how I have missed your writing! I'm so glad to see you haven't lost your touch in any way. I'm a puddle of goo, as usual. :)
( 6 have spoken — take the speaking stick )

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