by Liz Barr
Rating: PG-13. Possibly R
if you like small children to survive beyond the end of the story.
In "School Hard", Spike describes
Angel as "his Yoda". So, is Spike a Star Wars fan? Do you even
need to ask?
Erm, spoilers for The Empire Strikes
Back. (Don’t laugh! I have a friend who saw it for the first
time six months ago, and she was *very* peeved when we accidentally gave
the ending away.) And a line stolen from season 5 of Buffy. About
the title … sorry. I just can’t help myself sometimes.
Spike dropped the SoHo prostitute’s
body in the gutter and savoured the taste of her blood as the rain smeared
her cheap makeup. She tasted of nicotine and alcohol, but there was
the vague aftertaste of cocaine.
Spike shuddered. Cigarettes
and booze, sure, but … well, the humans did like to say that "you are what
you eat". It was particularly true for vampires, and he didn’t particularly
want to be one of the pathetic types who hung around addicts as if they
were some kind of delicacy. Of course, beggars couldn’t be choosers…
Spike glared at the woman’s body
and gave it a meditative kick. Why’d Darla have to go to America?
They’d had a great thing going, she stripping, he hunting the customers.
Food and money, right at their door. And then Darla had gotten bored
and gone off, leaving Spike in London with Drusilla to feed, no money and
increasingly few good meals.
And the rain. This bloody,
constant rain. Sure, the cloud-cover meant that he could wander out
in the early mornings and late afternoons, but even a vampire could get
sick of the rain!
Spike checked the dead prostitute’s
purse, but she only had five pounds and the phone number of a local charity.
Spike paused a moment, then pocketed the number. Drusilla hated the
stringy old biddies doing charity work, but at least some would come straight
to their door. Meals on wheels.
Spike stepped over the woman’s body
and out of the alley.
A cinema. Spike had wandered
into a slightly more affluent area, hoping to find a teenager or two.
A rich teenager for preference, with lots of money from her parents and
no one but a poncy boyfriend to protect her from punks, muggers and vampires.
Or in Spike’s case, all three. There were no teenagers here, but
a cinema … yes, darkness, the loud soundtrack, money … and a movie.
Dru hated the cinema – she found moving pictures disturbing – although
she had enjoyed The Avengers for some reason.
Spike checked his pockets.
He had eleven pounds.
Darla would chastise him – he quivered
at the memory of Darla’s discipline – if she knew … but Darla was in America.
And he was his own vamp, wasn’t he? Not some pansy I’ve-got-a-soul-and-a-brooding-gaze,
sire-whipped puppy dog like Angel.
Spike stepped up to the box office
and gave the cashier a charming smile. "One for the new Star Wars
movie," he said.
He found a seat at the back, tucked
away in a dark, secluded little corner. He’d been hoping for some
necking teenagers, but by the time the credits rolled, the only people
sitting nearby – right in front, in fact – were a young mother and a small
child. The little boy was asleep before fifteen minutes had elapsed.
Spike grinned. The combined
smell of popcorn and humanity were a heady mixture, and it took all of
his self-control to resist the urge to kill the woman and suck her dry
immediately. But he waited, watching …
Thank God for these movie composers
who think that their score rivals Beethoven, he thought as he snapped the
woman’s neck about half way through the movie. Any sound was muffled
by the soundtrack. The child’s neck followed soon after.
The woman’s blood was perfect – nicotine,
sugar, a hint of quality alcohol – and he savoured it like a fine wine.
Her purse was gratifyingly heavy. No charities needed here.
When the movie ended, Spike pushed
the woman’s body down under the seats. He pocketed her purse, and
then picked up the dead child, carrying it over his shoulder as if it were
merely asleep. He wrapped his coat around the boy to disguise the
broken neck. A tasty treat for his Drusilla.
Walking out of the cinema, Spike
saw the people queuing for the next session and smiled. What a surprise
someone would get when they stretched out their legs …
Speaking of surprises …
Spike addressed the child’s corpse
as he walked passed the queue. "Damn fine movie, hey son?" he said
loudly, "and who would have thought that Darth Vader was Luke’s father…?"
Hearing the angry complaints behind
him, Spike stepped out into the night with a smile.
Copyright © 2000 Elizabeth M.
Buffy ® is the property of Mutant
Enemy (grr, arrgh) and Twentieth Century Fox. No profit is derived
from this fan fiction.