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The Longest Distance Between Two Points - Chapter 10


The next morning, Angel woke to a single loud thought in his head.


He would claim his Childe, today.

He stretched luxuriously in the bed, put a hand out to the still sleeping Spike and nestled close to him, breathing in his warm, sleepy scent.

Angel thought back over his very long life and tried to remember if he had ever felt this content on waking. He thought perhaps he would have, if he had been allowed his waking with Buffy. But this was the first time he had ever lain in bed not worrying about the day to come, the first time brooding thoughts had not crashed in on him as his mind returned to consciousness.

He was acutely aware of himself and his Childe in this bed, his whole being focused on the tiny space the two of them now occupied. He could feel the sheets crumpled and sticky under him; one corner had pulled off and his head was lying on the bare mattress. He could smell his body and Spike's and the intense aroma from their spilt, dried cum. He could hear sounds in the large hotel, voices downstairs, light chatter. He had no desire to move or to think. He just wanted to be.

He tightened his grip around Spike and pressed his nose into Spike's back, licking a tiny area of skin, hopping his Childe would wake. He smiled when he heard a muffled, slurred voice. 'Getorfstillsleep.'

He whispered in Spike's ear. 'Wake up you lazy, dead thing. It's tomorrow.'

Spike's eyes flew wide open, but he didn't move except to push farther back into Angel's embrace.

'Morning. Sleep well?'


'Oh. Are you okay?' Angel desperately wanted Spike to be more than okay. He wanted him riding his cock, split open and bleeding out onto his thrusting hips, but he thought 'okay' would do for a start.

Spike turned over in Angel's arms and they lay with their noses almost touching. Spike thought he could see himself reflected in Angel's deep brown eyes, but put it down to a trick of the light.

'Yeah, I'm totally peachy. So…' Spike gave Angel a shy smile. 'Today's the day, huh?'

'Um. About time, wouldn't you say?'

'I would.'



Angel's hand slid over Spike's hip to dip down over his raised cheek. Spike smiled and rolled right over onto his stomach, parting his legs slightly. Angel propped himself up on his elbow and started kneading Spike's ass, creating friction for him between his cock and the bed. Spike groaned slightly and stretched his arms up over his head with pleasure.

Angel moved up to Spike's back and was about to start slow lazy circles there when he drew back his hand.



'Dried cum.'

'Let's hope it's yours then pet, hey?'

Spike twisted around and saw the genuine disgust in Angel's face. 'Oh come on then, Howard fucking Hughes, let's go get sterile again.' He sat up and swung his legs off the bed. He looked briefly at Angel and stood up. He wobbled, but stayed standing. He flashed a triumphant grin at Angel but suddenly felt his knees go and sat back down with a huff of annoyance.

Angel put an arm briefly around his shoulders. 'Give it time, Spike. It's only been a few days. Stay here, I'll run the bath and come get you when it's ready.'

Spike lay back down. He felt completely shattered. He'd hardly slept at all. He'd had vivid dreams all night, sometimes of Darla, sometimes of Angel. He dreamt of Buffy and of his…but he didn’t want to remember those dreams.

He felt as if he'd run a fucking marathon. Everything hurt, even though he'd polished off the last of Cordelia's Zydol. He suddenly realised he was starving too. He couldn’t remember what day it was, but it seemed days since he'd fed. He reached for the box of chocolates and stuffed a few in his mouth while searching under the bed for the coolbox full of blood Angel had left there for him. When he found it he quickly downed a couple of pints and lay back down on the bed to think. He decided the taste of blood and chocolate was interesting. Not nice, but definitely interesting. He knew he was procrastinating in his mind, thinking about other stuff, trying to prolong the moment before he thought about…today. It was today. Angel had promised to claim him…today. Angel wanted to take a part of his own body and put it inside Spike's body.

Spike thought about the feel of Angel's hips thrusting into his face the previous evening; he pictured Angel's face contorted in ecstasy above him. He remembered the feeling of utter ‘rightness’ this had given him. He had been a receptacle for Angel’s pleasure instead of taking pleasure from someone else. It had been a unique experience for him and he wondered if it was entirely due to his role as Angel’s Childe or whether he was just turning into a huge frigging poof. Lying in the warm spot Angel had left in the bed, Spike didn’t really care either way. Frigging poof was okay by him this morning; he’d be the Big Bad again later. After Angel’s cock in his ass! Angel’s cock…in his ass. Spike thought about this for a while and he was quite aware that he had come a long way since the last time that this had been a possibility. But Angel had come even further. Spike found it hard to reconcile in his mind the Angel he had here with him now, with the Angelus who had come to him in that moonlit room so many decades ago. He switched the images in his mind, alternating Angel on top of him with Angelus on top of him and decided he liked the Angel version much more.

Spike turned over on his back, he was feeling strangely lightheaded again. He found it surprisingly hard to concentrate on his fantasy of Angel on top of him. The more he thought about it, the more Angel's body started to change and distort. His beautiful features were changing into white, dead, puffy flesh. Angel's deep brown eyes became red-rimmed and evil. The Master. His Greatgrandsire. Spike hissed in disgust, and tried to think about something else, but the image of The Master fucking him with gleeful delight stayed in his mind. He turned over and put a pillow over his head. He didn’t need to breathe, felt he wanted to, but found he couldn’t. His chest was heavy as if a great weight lay on his back pressing him down. The Master had gone now; now he could feel the hands of a human man on his back. He turned his head cautiously and almost screamed aloud at what he saw. The Bishop that Dru had killed in Prague was taking his cock out and working it over Spike's back. His neck was slashed to its backbone and hanging on only by one flap of skin. Spike didn't know how he knew whom this apparition was, but he felt its truth. He sat up and hunkered back against the headboard. He closed his eyes but opened them again quickly. Much better to see what was coming at him. He thought perhaps he had fallen asleep again and was dreaming, but even he had never had dreams as vivid as this before.

He wished he hadn't looked into the room. He really wished that he had stayed with his head under the pillow. The room was lined by people, in a neat row, each one of them impaled on a spike that they had had to carry themselves to their place of death. They squatted obscenely on the stakes, their feet tied so they could not stand up enough to relieve their agony, but enough to stop the spikes piercing through their bowels too quickly. Pooling round their bound feet, their body fluids glinted at Spike. He knew that smell so well. Their screams of abject terror and agony rent the air. He knew that sound too. They cried for pity to the demon that had impaled them, but one hundred years distant he was now powerless to help. But he would have helped them if he could. So not only did their pain threaten to destroy him, his guilt started to corrode at his gut and he thought he would go mad.

Then he sensed her before he saw her. He smelt her before he saw her. That light vanilla smell that had so attracted him to Buffy because it had reminded him of…her. He turned to look at her. She was walking towards him past the specters of his past. She was dressed in the dress he most remembered her in, a light spotted muslin. Her lace handkerchief was tucked into the bodice of the dress for modesty. Her hair, usually covered by her matron's bonnet was bare and the deep, natural blond caught the light and made it shine like a halo around her face, sanctifying her. This was how Spike always thought of her, as his sainted mother. She held out her hand to him and smiled.


He screamed. This was too much. He'd dreamt of her, on and off, for over a hundred years, but she had never, ever spoken in the dreams and it totally unhinged him. He felt tears come to his eyes. He so wanted this to be real, but knew it couldn't. This was not how he had last seen her. As if conjured by this thought, he saw another shadowy figure emerging from the corner of the room. He didn't need to look. He knew who this would be. He closed his eyes.

This was better not to watch.

He had it in his memory anyway like a video that would play unbidden in his nighttime thoughts.

So he heard, rather than saw, the fledging vampire, William approaching his mother. He heard her delighted greeting of him, heard the joy in her voice that he was finally home. He heard her gasp of shock when he had changed into his new visage. He remembered the look on her face and knew that if he opened his eyes, he would see it again. It was all playing out for him like a visual confession of his evil. He waited for the thump as she hit the floor and heard it even though, by now, he had his hands pressed tightly over his ears. He heard her scream as he ripped the yellow muslin. He started to hum so he would not hear her repeated crying of his name as he ravished her. He buried his head under a pillow so he could not hear himself grunting as he entered her in every way.

But he heard it all anyway.

He thought it could not get any worse until he felt her move under him. He had become his old self once more. He turned his head and could see his other body still on the bed. He was not huddled against the headboard with a pillow over his head; he was face up and still, as if in a deep coma. He looked down. His mother looked up at him. He had come into this body at just the right time because it was not the raping of his mother that always sent him screaming from the nightmares, but that look. His mother had wanted him to kill her. She had wanted to die. So he had given her death, a slow, agonizing, torturous death that had taxed his ingenuity. Spike played it all out until she was gone and to him it seemed as if this took the week it had taken for real. His spectres kept him company, some of them seeming to delay their dying on the stakes just so they could accompany his mother to her longed-for rest. When he was finished and the taste of his mother's blood was strong in his mouth he felt himself again on the bed. He heard Angel coming back into the room.

Why had Angel been gone a whole week? Spike couldn’t work it out.

When Angel came into the room he thought Spike was asleep again, half wrapped in the sheet. He smiled to himself and decided to rouse him in more ways than one. He put his face to Spike's groin and slipped his tongue in under his penis, lifting it slightly and testing its weight and firmness.

Spike woke but looked down at him with an unfocused look.

'Where have you been? Leave me alone.'

Angel thought Spike was joking and continued to play with his cock, now biting it lightly, playing with Spike’s soft balls with one finger. Spike turned onto his stomach to stop Angel's access and put his arms over his head.

Angel sat astride his back and started nuzzling into his neck.

'Angel, please. Don't'

Angel looked at Spike's turned face and to his utter horror, saw tears forming in Spike's eyes.

'Jesus, Spike. What's wrong?'

'I don't know, Angel, I've never felt like this before…but can you hear it, luv? Can you hear her singing? She's still singing to me from heaven, even after I…after…can you hear heaven, Angel? I made her sing another way, didn't I? All week she sang for me. Why did I do that?'

For the first time in his existence, Angel felt only utter confusion and dread. He'd seen Spike in every conceivable way over their long history together. He'd seen him angry, sad, lonely, afraid, happy, drunk, alive, dead, undead, naked, cuming, clothed, hungry, replete, awake, asleep, unconscious, but he'd never, ever seen him confused, rambling and crying.

He quickly dressed and ran down to the office.

Wesley and Cordelia were there drinking coffee, Wesley trying not to think about the noises he had heard coming from Angel's room the previous evening. He blushed a deep red when he saw Angel come in, half dressed and with his hair mussed and sticky. Cordelia only grinned a happy grin. The more she liked Spike, the more she liked the idea of Angel liking Spike. They both froze, however, at the look on Angel's face.

'Wesley, come up and look at Spike. Please. Something is wrong.'

'I'm not surprised its taking this long, Angel. He fell over fifty feet. It was a…'

'No! It's not that. This is different.'

Cordelia and Wesley rose together and ran up the stairs with Angel into his bedroom.

Angel had forgotten in his anxiety for his Childe that Spike was naked and in a very disturbed bed. He didn't have the time now though to explain about Sire, Childe relationships.

Spike greeted Cordelia like a long-lost friend, trying to sit up and hold her hand. 'There you are, Princess, where have you been? The dolls are all gone. I'm so sorry; I had to kill them again. And they took so long to die. Why didn't I help them? I should have helped them.' Large tears rolled down his face, which he wiped away with the heel of his hand.

Cordelia grasped Angel's hand for support and sank onto the end of the bed.

Wesley tried to examine Spike, but it was hopeless. Whatever was wrong with him was in his mind, not on his body. This was totally beyond his experience.

'Could his internal wounds have become infected, Angel?'

Cordelia leapt in to support this idea. 'Yes, he's delirious and hot.' Her cool hand lying on Spike's forehead seemed to disturb him even more.

'I had the fever once and she stayed with me all night and I saw monsters and she told me there were no such things. I believed her.' He looked sadly at Angel. 'Till that monster got me.'

'Do you think we should feed him?' Wesley noted how thin and drawn Spike looked and it was the only thing he could think of to suggest.

'Oh God, of course. He had a strenuous…err, he may have overdone it…I mean…yes, I'll feed him.' But when Angel tried to get Spike to fasten onto his neck, Spike screamed and pushed him away, crying about the monster.

Cordelia suggested putting some of the bagged blood into a mug and making him think it was tea. When Angel looked derisively at her she raised her eyebrows. 'What! Angel…he's English. The English always boil the kettle and drink tea in every crisis.'

So they ripped open a couple of the bags and put them into a mug for Spike. Angel sat behind him, trying to make him take it. Spike thrashed against him, attempting in vain to fend him off. Eventually, Wesley held Spike’s mouth open and Cordelia tipped the contents of the mug to the back of this throat, Angel forcing him to swallow. When they'd finished, they laid him down again and Angel told them to leave them alone. They hesitated until they saw Angel's face and realised that he was only just holding it together for their sakes. They reluctantly left and when Cordelia cast a last look over her shoulder she saw him put his head down and rest his forehead on Spike's.

After a few moments, Angel sat up. Spike was becoming increasingly more feverish and delirious. He stopped saying coherent sentences and only shouted out random, nonsensical words. Occasionally, Spike's eyes would fly open and Angel was terrified by the look he saw in those blue depths. He'd seen it before in countless victims. It was the look of terror and impending death.

He sat with Spike through the long morning. Cordelia even brought Lestat up to put him into Spike's neck, hoping the sound of the kitten's purring would help him. But Spike's tortured motions distressed the animal and he jumped off to sleep alongside him on the pillow. Cordelia felt embarrassed that she had thought the cat could help Spike, but ironically it was Lestat that saved him.

Lunchtime came and they tried to feed him again. Angel sat behind Spike, trying once more to stop his thrashing and violent movements. Cordelia poured the blood into the mug and passed it carefully to Angel. But as she moved her arm over the bed her bracelet dangled temptingly down in front of Lestat's nose. Unable to resist, he flicked up his claw, entangling it in the chain. A tiny drop of the blood splashed out of the mug and landed on Angel's outstretched hand. He ignored it for a moment then gave a hiss of pain as small trail of smoke rose from his skin and the sickening smell of burning flesh hit their noses.

Angel's eyes widened and he stared at Cordelia. They both said, 'holy water!' at the same time.

There was holy water in Spike's blood.

'How much could he have had?' Cordelia's thoughts were much as Angel's…this was not good.

'I don't know…wait…he was fine when I left him to run the bath. He could only have had a couple of pints before I got back. I was only gone a minute. Check for empty bags.'

Cordelia searched around the bed. 'We gave him two as well, Angel. Oh God, four pints maybe. What's it done to him?'

'Help me get his mouth open.'

They prized open Spike's mouth and Cordelia reeled back in shock when she saw the blistered, burnt lining of his throat.

'Jesus, Angel. Why didn't he stop? Why didn't he feel it burning him and stop?'

Angel looked grimly at the empty bottle of Zydol on the table. 'How many of those were in there?'

'Oh damn, Angel. It had at least ten or so, you are only meant to take two at a time!'

'He must have taken them after we…err…he must have felt worse and taken them in the night. And I didn’t even feel the burn for a moment or two, the holy water must be too dilute, it wouldn’t affect him till it got into his body.' Angel's self-hatred knew no bounds. He felt directly responsible for this tragedy. He felt again that exquisite orgasm he had enjoyed in Spike's mouth; he remembered the pounding of his hips against Spike's neck and back. He looked down at the unconscious vampire in his arms.

"Why didn’t you stop me?"

'Angel…Angel.' The sound of Cordelia's anxious voice brought him back. 'Have you ever heard of this before? What will happen to him?'

'I don't think it's ever happened before.' He looked up her, wondering if she would understand. 'We have codes and Lore that no demon would ever transgress. Duty to your Sire, care for your Childer but this, this is beyond all that. This is demon blasphemy. Making another vampire ingest holy water Cordelia? I can't begin to imagine the hatred that led to this.'

She suddenly looked up and around the room nervously. 'Darla. It was that hell Bitch again, wasn't it, Angel?'

Angel just gave a grim nod, not trusting himself to speak her name.

'I'm going to try and feed him again, Cordelia.'

She turned back to look at his face. She knew exactly what Angel meant and would normally have made a face and an 'eeew' sound, but this was different somehow. She wasn't sure if it was her growing liking for Spike, or her liking for the idea of them together, but she stayed on as Angel sat behind Spike and opened up his wrist and slowly forced Spike to take in the healing liquid. She watched, mesmerized. The sight of the two vampires nestled together aroused her more than she would have thought possible. Angel's head was bent down over Spike, one hand feeding him, the other stroking his throat to force him to swallow.

She unconsciously put her hand on Spike's leg where it stuck out from under the twisted sheets. She stroked it gently to the rhythm of Angel's hand on Spike's throat.

After half an hour she roused herself reluctantly from the intimate scene on the bed and ran downstairs to fetch Angel some blood from his supplies in the kitchen. She only hoped they had not been contaminated too. Wesley was in the office making a phone call. She waited till he'd finished and raised one questioning eyebrow at him.

'As soon as Spike is well enough, we're leaving. I've arranged it with Rupert. We should have thought Cordelia…she got in before…we should have known she'd do it again. We can't keep them safe here. So we're going back to Sunnydale.'

Cordelia just nodded, asked him to pack for her too and ran back up to Angel's room. She was delighted to see Spike's eyes were open and he seemed lucid.

But he couldn't speak to her because Angel was still forcing him to feed from his wrist.

She washed out the mug in the bathroom, poured Angel's blood into it and carried it back to the bedroom. Before she let him drink it, she dipped her finger in and looking directly into Angel's eyes, placed the finger on his hand. Nothing. It was pure. Darla had not touched it. Angel drank it greedily down and leant back against the headboard, clearly exhausted with blood loss and anxiety. He closed his eyes and pulled Spike close to him to continue the feeding.

This slight movement caused the sheet that was covering Spike to slip off, exposing his naked body. Cordelia's eyes widened in embarrassment and she looked away. Then she decided that rearranging the sheet would be more effective and turned back to tuck it over Spike. She had to look to do that, didn't she? So she did.

As she leant over and started to pull it up she glanced up at Spike and was shocked to see him watching her. Suddenly, his eyebrows twitched up and he grinned at her around Angel's wrist. Then he winked.

She let out a peel of laughter and buried her face in her hands in mock embarrassment. Spike was feeling better. Relief shot though her. She wanted Spike in LA, she wanted Spike and Angel together in LA and she wanted them both with her. She could not have rightly said why, or analysed her own feelings about either of them. She had just decided that life with Spike was going to be fun. She finished making him decent and moved closer, taking his hand in hers.

The three of them stayed like that for a while until Wesley came into the room.


Angel opened his eyes and roused himself. He looked down at Spike, pulling away his wrist. Spike looked up at him and grinned.

For once, Angel seemed to ignore the fact he had an audience and kissed Spike feverishly over his face and lips.

After a moment Spike pulled away and looked up at Angel with a puzzled expression on his face. 'What happened, Angel?'

'Darla put holy water in your blood.'

Spike glanced down at the cool box. 'Shit.'


'I dreamt her Angel, last night, she was here looking at us.'

'It wasn't a dream you idiot…surely you knew that…why didn't you wake me?'

'Hey Mate, I have really weird dreams all the time. I also dreamt we were both human and I dreamt you told me you loved me, so I don’t give my dreams any bloody notice. How did I know she was real? I thought this fucking hotel was safe.'

'Don't argue you two just pack, NOW! Cordelia and I are all ready. We're going to Sunnydale….NO Angel…there is nothing you can say that will change my mind. We are not safe here, any of us. We are leaving.

Angel bowed to the inevitability of their flight. What else could he do? He did not seem to be able to stop Darla and she had now crossed the line.

As Spike didn't have any clothes - the one set he was wearing when he came to LA having been destroyed in the fall - his packing didn’t take much time. Angel dressed him in some of his own stuff and with Spike's duster over the top; thought he didn’t look too bad. Angel threw a few things into a bag, stuffed a protesting Lestat into his carrier and gathered all his weapons. Carrying his Childe downstairs, he led the beleaguered group to Spike's car. His was not protected enough against the sun for them to make this daylight escape. Even the Vampires felt reassured by the bright light outside, no Darla in that light.

Angel put Spike onto the backseat and climbed in alongside him. Wesley drove and Cordelia, still nursing her broken arm, sat grimly alongside him in the front.

Spike was feeling very much better by this time. Angel's blood had stopped the burning in his body and diluted the effects of the holy water. But he was very, very tired and felt incredibly weak. He lay with his head in Angel's lap, Angel's hand stroking though his hair and around the back of his neck. His cheek was directly over Angel's cock and with some judicious movements he could feel it swelling under him.

Angel leant over and whispered very clearly in his ear, 'quit it,' which only made him do it some more.

Angel then leant forward to Cordelia and told her to put some music on. This surprised Spike, he knew that Angel never listened to anything but boring classical shit and that he especially hated Spike's music. But Angel's reasoning came clear as, under the cover of the raucous sound, they were able to talk quietly to each other without the others overhearing.

Spike shifted slightly so he was lying on his back, looking up at Angel.

Angel smiled down at him. 'So, you dreamt of us human, did you?'

'Yeah. I've had that dream a lot.'

'Are we human as we were, or human as we are now?'

'Now, mostly, but it gets confused. You are English sometimes…it's weird.'

'Huh. What's it like then, us being human and together?'

'Usually a lot messier.'

Angel took a while to get this, which was perhaps an indication of his general naivety in this area. But when he did, Spike thought the wait was worth it: Angel's face was a picture of disgust. He screwed up his nose and pouted. He even made a very Cordelia-like 'eeew' sound.

He looked down at the laughing Spike. 'Yey for being dead then.'

Spike had a feeling he knew where the conversation would go now and knew he was not ready for it yet. But when would he be ready for it?

So when he heard Angel take a small, human breath and ask, 'do you remember it all, Spike?' he knew exactly what Angel meant. And yeah, he remembered all of it. He remembered The Master and the feel of The Master's dick. He remembered the strange figure of the Bishop. How could he forget the hundred-year-old screams of his impaled victims? But most of all he remember his mother and still had the distinct impression that he had been torturing her for a week even though clearly, this had not been so.

He gave a tiny shrug at Angel.

'Yes, and I don't want to talk about it.'

'Why not?'

'Because I'm a fucking demon, Angel. I don't have hallucinations and I don’t fucking feel sorry for myself or anyone else, okay.'

'But you do, don't you? Don't try to dismiss this, Spike. I think this is critical.'

'What do you mean, you poof? You are always making mountains out of fucking molehills. Let it rest.'

'No. Listen Spike. It's never happened before. A Vampire, swallowing holy water. I've never heard of it before. And you are not a normal Vampire, are you?'

'Thanks ever so.'

'You have a chip and you haven't hurt anyone or fed from fresh human blood for years. It makes you unique on both counts.'


'Spike, take this seriously. I think…I saw you…I heard what you said…you were upset Spike by things you had done, weren't you?'

'Fuck off Angel. Alright I'll tell you shall I? I saw my victims lined up, each one on the stake I'd made them carry for miles until I impaled them, each one shitting out their pain and horror at what I'd done to them. I saw my mother come to me again and I raped her again and she begged me to die again, so I tortured her for days, again and when she could take it no more, I drank her. Again. Happy? I fucking hate you sometimes Angel.'

Spike had put his arm up over his eyes so Angel could not see his face, but Angel knew he was crying. He was utterly entranced by this. He did not understand exactly what his soul was, but he did know what it did…it made him relive his sins and cry hopelessly for the forgiveness he felt he did not deserve. And here was Spike, reliving his nightmares and suffering for them as if, he too, had a soul.

'This is incredible Spike, don't you see? It is as if the holy water couldn't take full effect and kill you because it didn’t find a fully formed demon inside you. It found something very like a soul, or guilt, or conscience – something it couldn’t react with. But it sort of kicked started it, gave it a boost. Don't you see?'

Spike didn't. He felt like shit, he was confused and he knew he'd rather be a demon than a crying wuss, which he feared he was turning in to. He put his other arm over his face too; it was the only privacy he could find enclosed with Angel as he was.

Angel only hugged Spike to him and whispered in his ear, 'welcome to my world, Childe.'

Spike took his arms away from his tear-streaked face and looked up in fury at Angel. 'You think this is good! Angel, this is the fucking pits. I'm a demon. I can't feel pity or guilt. If I do, then what the fuck am I?'

With his mouth still pressed against Spike’s ear, Angel only said four words, 'you are my lover', but those four words effectively silenced Spike for a very long time.

With Spike quiet in his lap and with the hideous music preventing any conversation with Cordelia or Wesley, Angel at last had time to mull over the events of the day. He had not wanted to discuss Darla with Cordelia and he had not wanted to discuss her with Spike. He knew that he should feel intense hatred for her. She had crossed the boundaries he had spoken of to Cordelia. But then, so had he. He had staked his Sire, he had denied and neglected his Childer. At least she had acted out of love; he had only transgressed through his own self-absorption and guilt at being a demon.

Angel knew he should hate Darla, but he still couldn't. He could not get the picture out of his mind of her standing at the end of the bed watching him in bed with Spike. This did not confuse him because he thought he still loved her and would rather have had her in his bed than Spike. Rather the opposite. He loved Spike so much now that he knew she would have seen the contrast between his love for her and his love for Spike. And he could not help but wonder what this would be like. What if in a few years Spike grew tired of him? What if Spike found a new, more interesting lover? Would he stalk Spike and try to force him back? Would he creep into his room at night and watch him with his new lover, seeing the contrast between them, just as Darla had done. It was Angel's curse to think too deeply and empathise too much with everyone. Perhaps having a newly replaced soul made him fanatical, like all converts. He couldn't use his soul rationally like most humans do, being 'sort of good, some of the time'. It was all or nothing with Angel and he felt Darla's pain and was sorry for her.

But some good came out of Angel's brooding on the back seat of that car. By imagining a future when Spike no longer loved him or wanted him Angel came to the realization, for the first time really, that he wanted a lot more from Spike than to just regain his Childe. When he had come to Buffy's Birthday party that had been his main aim. He had remembered William and he wanted William back. He had thought they would forge the Sire, Childe relationship they had been denied all these years. But looking down at Spike, now asleep in his lap, Angel knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that he was in far deeper than he had realised. He was desperate for this maddening, but beautiful creature. Not as Spike’s Sire, not as his Master, not even as a fellow Vampire. He wanted him, as he had admitted to Spike, as a lover.

But love makes you weak and he needed to be strong. He needed to be strong for both of them.

So, traveling towards Sunnydale with his team, Angel was scared.

For the first time in a long time he felt he had something he was not prepared to lose.

The only trouble was he had no idea how to bind it to him.

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