The Moonlight Series
Rating: R (might move into NC 17 eventually)
Spoilers: thru Prom episode (just to be safe)
Disclaimer: I don't own the BtVS characters, Joss does, all bow before him. No copyright infringement intended, please don't sue.
Summary: Willow is tired of being a good girl and wants to have fun, Spike is in town, Angel has been having dreams of Faith, wackiness ensues
Part 1: Things Change
*Willow. Shy, dependable, wussy, unnoticeable, innocent Willow. I am sick and tired of being a goody-to-shu.. Why do I always have to be and do what everyone wants and expects?* Willow was laying on her bed contemplating her life. *I want to be the bad girl, to do something unexpected, to have fun, and wear revealing, alluring clothes. I want to be spontaneous, and outgoing, without worrying what others would think,* Willow mussed. *I want to be like Faith, before she killed the guy that is.*
The last time she had voiced her feelings was when her dopplegang look-a-like had shown up, and nothing had come of it. Those feelings of inadequacy had never gone away, in fact they had been growing. When she had seen her counterpart she had been secretively jealous. Her other self was so confident, carefree, and sexy *in leather*. Willow had always wanted to wear leather, and skin tight clothes, and short skirts and tops, and boots, high boots. But she had always been too shy to even try on any of the above mentioned attire. Once she got a quick glimpse of them walking by a store in the mall; but that was it.
Everything about her life recently had been getting on her nerves. She felt as if everybody else treated her like she were unimportant, and incompetent. Except if they needed something looked up, or help with homework. She wanted to be wanted, to be needed, for things other than what pertained to books. She wanted to be treated like a capable, mature, person. Not a sheltered little girl who had to be protected and looked after all the time. Even Oz treated her like a frail weakling. It was as if he thought if he wasn't there to help and protect her she would fall apart. He wasn't very passionate at all, like it would just be too much for her. She wanted a guy to treat her like she was strong, and capable of handling things for herself.
"Well, self-pity is getting me pretty far, I better slow down, too much is getting taken care of, if I don't stop now all my problems might just start solving themselves." Willow muttered sarcastically as she rose slowly from her bed.
She strolled over to her bookcase and picked out one of her favorite spell books.
As she resumed her position on her bed, Willow thought about her new "hobby." Her knowledge of spells and witchcraft had been very useful for fighting evil, but it was more than that. She didn't know when exactly she had become aware that the Wiccan faith was the one she wanted to follow, or when her parent's god had ceased to be her own. *A year ago I didn't even know Wicca was a religion; much less that the worshiping of the God and Goddess would make me feel more complete.* When she had first read about the pagan faith it had been like she was coming home. Every time she read a belief or opinion held by most Wiccans she realized that she agreed with it.
"Ahhrrgggg! This is so annoying! I can't concentrate!" Willow cried as she slammed the book shut. "I guess I should go to bed, it is pretty late. Well, sleepy time for Willow." With that Willow changed into her pajamas and went to bed.
Part 2: Moving On
The scenery went by in a dark blur as the car sped across the highway, the heavy pounding of rock music filtering through the black night. Cigarette smoke hung heavy in the air inside the Desoto, as the driver struggled to see through the car's blackened windows to the street beyond. "Why the fuck did I even go back to that bloody wack? She must have fucked every demon on the continent while I was in Sunnyhell. Bloody whore!" Spike continued to mutter obscenities under his breath in memory of his ex. As his head moved in time to the fast paced beat of the music he once again thought of the last time he had seen the object of his fury.
* * *
He had returned to Brazil to torture her into liking him once more. By the time he got there she had gone through about 48 demons and various other creatures. She was even more whinny and childish than before. She spent most of her time playing with her dolls or muttering about Angel. *The bloody walker!* When he tried to talk to her she just started mumbling about red rain or something. He tortured her just like he planed but she didn't even acknowledge his presence, as if she weren't even there herself. It was like she was crazier than he remembered, if that was possible. Spike could barley handle being in the same room with her for over an hour. She was absolutely annoying. *How the 'ell did ya put up with 'er fur so long mate?* He questioned himself.
Finally, after an agonizing month he got tired of her and just left. He walked into his room, picked up his few belongings, put them into his duffel bag, and walked out the door. Upon seeing his departure Dru woke from her stupor and attempted to follow him. When he heard her recognize his existence he expected to be overcome with joy and relief. Instead he was just irritated and pissed-off.
He stopped and turned around to face her. However, much to her surprise it wasn't to welcome her into his arms. "Oh, so now ya talk to me. You are bloody pathetic. For a hundred years I gave you everything. Waited on you hand and foot. I was completely loyal, unlike some people in this room. Ya even funked Angelus, that poofy haired ninny. He abandoned ya, and ya took him back without question. I was faithful when you were sick, but when I was in that damn chair ya screwed every bloke within 100 feet. I put up with ya, and got shit to show fur it!" He let out every little thing that had pissed him off, but that he had excepted gracefully as just part of her nature. But now, he had reached the end of his rope and was going to unload everything he had been carrying around.
A pout began to form on her face and she started to whimper like a puppy. "Ah, Dru, shove it. That whimpering always did drive me up the bloody walls. Now, I am leaving and am going to find me someone who I can actually have an intelligent conversation with that doesn't involve dolls, or Angelus."
With that said, and his emotional baggage unloaded Spike left without a backward glance. He could hear Drusilla's outraged cries as he got in his car and drove away. She never was used to not being the most important thing to everyone. People almost never walked away from her, let alone insult and cuss her out first. Spike laughed as he turned on his radio, picturing her wide eyed face as she watched him walk out on her.
Spike drove for several days without really knowing where he was going. At last he decided on going back to Sunnydale. There was always a good meal, and he could easily reassert himself as the local master without much effort. Plus he always had enjoyed terrorizing the slayer's friends, and she was the only person he had come across that actually presented some sort of challenge.
Spike punched the gas as a new song came on,
*Sunnyhell look out, Spikey's back.*
Part 3: Memories
Angelus and Faith walked down the dark street and as they passed Xander, his fist hit the boy's face and he fell to the ground as the two walked on...
Faith and Angelus were kissing, hard as Buffy watched from her position, chained to the wall. Buffy's face was covered with hurt and betrayal. As Angelus watched the pained expression on her face he thought, "serves you right, for sending me to hell, knowing that I had my soul."
Angel awoke with a start, sweat coving his forehead. Ever since his experience with Faith, he had been having dreams of what he had done with her. He remembered the feel of her in his arms, the feel of her lips on his, the freedom he felt with her. When he was with Buffy he had to hide his feelings and try to avoid the subject of who and what he was. With Faith it wasn't like that at all, she did not think him horrible because of his past, but instead identified with him, knowing what it was like. Even though he had been acting, pretending to be Angelus it was as if in that amount of time he actually felt some of the feelings he had pretended to have, and when he ceased his pretending the feelings did not go away.
Now that he had broken up with Buffy the feelings and dreams came more often, lasted longer, and were more intense. He couldn't keep Faith out of his mind for very long. Nor could he help but remembering the way it felt to be free of guilt, to be Angelus. As Angelus he was confident, more powerful, and felt so much more in control. He tried to keep Faith and his secret longing to be Angelus and free in the back of his mind but it was hard, almost harder than keeping control of his demon. He was fighting, but he knew he couldn't hold on much longer.
Part 4: Homework
"What do ya think G-man? We fighting any big bad uglies tonight?" Xander asked as he sauntered into the library during lunch.
"Fist of all I have asked you repeatedly to stop calling me that. And second, not that I can see. I have checked all of m-my books, as has Wesley and we have b-been unable to find any information pointing towards a, uh, d-disastrous event in the immediate future of which we should be concerned."
"So, were Bronzin' tonight. What do ya think Will, you in?" Buffy asked as she took her set at the table.
"Well, I was going to stay in tonight and work on a project." Willow said as she logged onto 'her' computer.
"Ah, come on Willster, you can work on your project another time. You know you want to come party with your bestest buddies." Xander prodded.
"Ok, Xand, I'll come." Willow gave in. *Cause after all, my stuff isn't important, at least it hasn't been to you guys lately.* Willow added silently.
Ringgggg. Ringgggg. "Oh man, chemistry. Quick Will, can I see your homework, I think I did mine wrong." Xander said.
"Did you even do your homework Xander?" Willow asked although she already knew the answer.
"Not technically." Xander said shyly.
"Ya, can I see it too, It was so late when I got home from our research party last night I just fell asleep." Buffy said while rushing over to Xander who had already gotten the paper out of Willow's backpack before she had even answered the question. *I stayed later then both of them looking things up for Giles and I still stayed up even later and did the assignment.*
"Did it ever occur to you that I might not let you copy my homework and that you might actually have to do it, or that I didn't do it either, I am up as late if not later than you I do need sleep too you know." The two of them looked up from her paper and stared at her as if she had grown a second head.
"Are you ok Will?" Buffy asked.
"Ya, I am fine." Willow said with a sigh. *They didn't even take me seriously. They just assume that they can just copy my work. It's not fair, I do all the work and they just copy it. They never do it themselves. What would they do without me? I am so sick of being everyone's slave. Did it ever occur to them that I might have something better to do then their work?*
"Oh, and W-Willow, could you come back for a few hours after school before you go to the, uh, Bronze and look up some things for me on that, that, contraption of yours?" Giles asked as he pointed to the computer. "Thank you, I appreciate it." He said too engrossed in his books to even wait for her reply. "Of course, I don't have anything better to do." Willow answered sarcastically as she headed off to class.
Part 5: "Why Didn't You Tell Me?"
Buffy and Xander walked into the bronze hand in hand as Willow stopped to pay the cover. By the time Willow had found a table Buffy and Xander had already begun dancing within the throng of bodies that crowded the dance floor.
Willow just sat at the table as she did every other night and watched her friends have fun. *They are dancing a little closer than they normally do. Come to think of it they have been getting a lot closer ever since Angel and Buffy broke up two weeks ago.*
As if on cue the duo walked over to the table and began to sip the drinks Willow had gotten them a few minutes earlier. Willow watched closely at the frequent glances and smiles that they exchanged and noticed how Buffy laughed at Xander's lame jokes and playfully swatted his arm. *They are flirting. They are so totally flirting with each other* Willow thought.
Without really thinking Willow blurted out the question that had been on her mind for the past twenty minutes. "Are you two dating?"
Buffy and Xander looked at Willow surprised by the question and the fact that Willow had asked it straight out. Then they looked at each other and then back at Willow. "Not exactly," Xander replied. "You see, after what happened with me and Angel we decided that we should take it slow," Buffy added.
Willow just sat there, staring at her two best friends. *I can't believe they are together. Great, can you say third wheel.* "Why didn't you tell me? You are my best friends and you didn't even tell me that you decided to go out," Willow said becoming upset about being left out.
"You're overreacting," Buffy told her, not quite understanding why her friend wasn't happy for her. "We're sorry Wills. We thought you would be happy for us," Xander said, sharing Buffy's confusion.
"I am happy. For both of you." However Willow looked anything but happy as she stared at the still full glass of soda in her hand. "It is just," Willow paused and took a small sip of her soda. "I don't want to be like a third wheel and all."
"Don't worry about that Will," Buffy said." They both tried to reassure her. "Oh, I love this song, lets dance Xander."
"See ya in a few Will." Xander said as they went back out to the dance floor.
The rest of the night continued as Willow saved their sets at the table and the newly publicized "couple" danced. However, instead of going to get ice cream cones like they had planned, Buffy and Xander went patrolling, leaving Willow by herself.
*I could have been at home trying to de-rat Amy with the new spell I found. Instead they had to drag me on their not quite date. And why the heck didn't they tell me they were "sorta going out," as Xander put it? They never did answer that question. I didn't want to come in the first place but they insisted that I should come with them. So I did. I sat at the table all night so they could ditch me and "patrol." I bet they are making out right now. I guess they just enjoy each other's company more than mine.*
Part 6: Musings
Thump! Willow dropped her backpack onto the floor. *They are supposed to be my best friends, but they hardly pay any attention to me. They're too wrapped up with each other. The most attention I have been getting from Buffy, Xander, or Giles lately is when they need my help with something or want to copy my work.* Willow was in a really bad mood after a day of both Buffy and Xander coping every assignment they had due, and Giles wanting every minute of her breaks and lunch to research the mayor's upcoming ascension, not that it was anything new of course. The only reason she got out of it after school was because she wasn't feeling well, and everyone else was going to patrol with Buffy.
"Everyone else is doing just freaking perfect. And they don't even notice that stuff has gone from bad to worse for me. Why should they? Little Willow isn't important. They are just so darn selfish!" Willow continued to add to her list of all the things that pissed her off as each book in her backpack landed heavily onto her desktop. "And to top it all off Oz broke up with me because his band is going to go on tour! What a jerk. He didn't even have the decency to drive me home, he just left me at the coffee shop on Monday." She added as she plopped onto her bed, burying her frustrated screams in her pillows.
She was interrupted by a soft knock on her door. It was the first time in two months that her parents were home for longer than it took to repack their suitcases for another business trip. "Someone is here to see you." Willow talked to her mother so seldomly that she barely registered who the voice belonged to. "Yeah, fun fun!" Willow mumbled sarcastically. "Ok mom!" Willow yelled with fake cheerfulness. "I'll tell him to come up then." Ms. Rosenberg said as she headed down the stairs. "Him? Great, cause I really feel like talking to Xander! The only reason he would be coming is to copy my homework anyway. Jerk!" Willow continued to mumble about Xander's not so honorable qualities as she rose to a sitting position on her bed and tried to calm herself down. "Not that he would even notice I'm upset, no one has lately and it has been pretty darn obvious, too. They are so absorbed in themselves they don't even notice me. I always help them when they are in trouble but is anyone rushing to my side? Noooo."
Part 7: Late Night Stroll
Angel's dreams had once again forced him to wander the streets, thinking. He wanted so badly to just forget about his worries, concerns, and fears. He was tired of being a slave to his guilt. He wanted to let go and just allow his desires to guide him. He also felt alone and isolated. No one could understand what he was going through; the conflicting feelings were more than any normal person had experienced. He didn't want to become a monster, but he wanted to be free. No one else knew what is was like to be torn between two worlds. He belonged to both, but which one would claim his future? He didn't know. He remembered the power and freedom he had once felt. He longed to reclaim it but he feared what would happen if he did. "I don't know what to do, I don't want to hurt anyone!" He added with a sigh.
"You think way too much Angel." He turned at the voice, startled.
"I didn't know anyone was there." Angel said, not knowing whether to be worried or extremely happy.
"It's the slayer thing, makes ya good at sneaking up on people. It's more useful when the person you are trying to attack doesn't hear you coming."
"I can see where that might help." He added unsurely.
"As I was saying. You really shouldn't worry so much about everyone else. You
should really think about yourself more. Shit Angel, sometimes you're all ya got." With that she withdrew into the shadows.
"I'll try to remember that Faith." Angel called to her retreating back.
Part 8: "W-What h-h-happened?"
Xander and Buffy walked into Willow's room holding each other's hand. *Oh, look. He brought Buffy. I shouldn't be surprise it seems like they have been connected at the hip these past few days. And where have I been? In the library, doing the work they were supposed to be doing, but do I get so much as a thank you? No, of course not. So much for taking it slow, Willow thought sarcastically.*
"Hey Wills, Giles sent us over here to get you, he wants you at the library as soon as possible." Xander told her, looking anywhere but at her face. "Why, what's wrong?" Willow asked as she hurriedly put on her shoes and followed Buffy and Xander downstairs. "Something happened during patrol. Something bad." Buffy answered as she ushered Willow out of her house and towards the school. "Lets just get to the library, Giles will fill in the blanks." Xander said, obviously not wanting to tell her anything.
When they got to the library Willow practically fell over when she saw what was on the table in the middle of the room. Giles was off to the side talking to a man who looked in his late 20's. Buffy and Xander, soon joined by Giles tried to detour Willow into the librarian's office, but she walked straight up to the table; ignoring their pleas that she didn't need to see it. *I am not a sheltered five year old, I've seen as much as them. I can handle it.* Willow thought as she reached out her hand and touched what lay on the table. Cold to the touch and extremely pale, Cordelia lay completely still. "She's, she's, she's..." Willow whispered, not quite believing what she saw or felt. Cordelia didn't have a single scratch on her, only two small holes in the side of the neck.
"W-What h-h-happened?" Willow asked, her voice shacking considerably.
"We, uh, were patrolling when we, uh, heard something. By the time we got there she was dead, and the vamp was leaving. I, uh went after it and staked it, but, uh, there, there was nothing that, we, uh, could do." Buffy explained. Tears rimed her eyes, but the slayer refused to let them fall. Xander, however couldn't hold out as long and was already weeping in Buffy's arms, and the slayer soon lost the strength to hold in her own cries and joined Xander in his grief.
Willow, still stunned, walked over to where Giles was still talking to the young man she saw when she first came in, trying to organize her thoughts. "Xander and Buffy said that you wanted to talk to me?" Willow questioned the tweed clad librarian.
"Yes. This is Mr. Duncan Macleod, Willow." Giles said "Mr. Macleod says that he was drawn to Sunnydale by a dark force of some sort.
"You mean the hellmouth." Willow affirmed.
"I don't think that is it. I think it might be something more." Duncan told the hacker.
"Well, it might have something to do with the mayor." Willow suggested.
"Yes, well there was also something else." Giles said. Willow looked at him and then at Duncan. "He claims that he is an immortal." Giles continued. Never having heard or read of anything referring to immortals Willow looked at Duncan to explain further.
"You mean you can't die?" She asked him, somewhat taken aback. "Well, I die, but only for a little while, then I wake back up. Unless my head is cut off, then it is permanent and all of my power and strength is transferred into the immortal who killed me." Mr. Macleod elaborated. "Furthermore, I have reason to suspect that your friend, uh, Cordelia, is one of us. An immortal that is. In other words, she will be waking up in a few minutes. It takes longer to wake up the more severe the damage, or the younger the immortal."
At this point Giles had taken off his glasses, preceded to clean them and then put them back on. "As many weird things as I have seen in my time as a watcher this is somewhat inconceivable. If I have learned one thing, it is that death is one of the few things we cannot fight." Giles said, obviously not about to take the man's word.
"No, Giles, I think he might be telling the truth." Willow said. "Cordelia is waking up."
By now Giles was beginning to believe Willow had lost it, considering she couldn't even see Cordelia from where she was. Xander and Buffy hadn't said anything, and they were siting at the table. "Now Willow, lets not be rash. I know you are shocked by today's events, but..."
However, Giles' statement was cut short by a gasp from the table. It was Buffy. "Giles, come over here quick. I think she is waking up."
At the sound of the slayer's voice Giles, Willow and Duncan walked over to the table in time to see Cordelia sit up.
The entire library was silent as all eyes turned on the former cheerleader. "W- What h- happened?" Cordelia asked, eyes wide with fear.
Part 9: Confessions
"Another late night stroll? What's the matter, couldn't sleep?" Faith questioned as Angel walked slowly down the ally towards where she was standing.
"I could ask the same about you. Why is it that I always seem to be running into you lately?" Angel asked.
"Maybe it's fate? I don't know. Anyway, what is wrong with you, you look like shit with a frown?" Faith inquired. "Wait, let me guess. You found out who Sunnyhell's newest love birds are. Am I right?"
"If you are talking about Buffy and Xander, then ya. Why him? I mean he is a complete dimwit." Angel wondered out loud as he ran his fingers through his hair. "What could she possibly see in him anyway. And what about us. I thought our relationship meant something."
"Well I don't have the slightest idea what she could see in that idiot, but I can tell you one thing. If your relationship meant anything to her, she wouldn't have been able to get another boyfriend so fast, especially not one like Xander." Faith said as she closed the distance between them. "You know what you need to do? You need to forget about Buffy. I mean, what have you gotten out of the relationship anyway? You need to think about yourself now because obviously Buffy isn't. I just hate to see you like this. Don't you think you have done enough brooding? You need to think about having a good time."
Angel didn't respond so she continued. "Let me ask you a question Angel. When was the last time you smiled? You spend way too much time trying to change. You are what you are Angel. You have to accept that. Don't think so much, just feel." Faith said, putting her arms around his neck so that she was looking right up into his face. "Now relax and close your eyes." Faith softly instructed, and when he had reluctantly done so she continued. "Answer me a question, what do you really want? Now don't think, just feel."
Angel knew what he wanted, but he didn't know if he wanted to tell Faith what he wanted. However, it had been building and festering inside him and he had to tell someone, and it seemed that Faith was the only person who wanted to listen to what he wanted, so he did what she said and didn't think, and just said exactly what was on his mind.
"I, I want to be able to do things without thinking about the consequences. I know I am always brooding and depressed but I don't want to be. I want to just have a good time. I want to feel things in a way I know I never can again without becoming a monster. I don't want to live the rest of eternity hating what I am. I want to have power and freedom." As Angel spoke Faith ran her fingers through his thick hair. She then leaned in close and whispered in his ear, "keep going, tell me everything, don't hold back."
When Faith spoke he could feel her warm breath on his check. "For weeks I have been having these dreams. They are so vivid. Most of them are of my past, but they aren't just about killing and maiming, but of all the fun nights and days. Most of them however, are about, about, uhm, when I was uh, pretending to be Angelus, to uh, get information out of you. I remember tying Buffy up, and I almost wanted to actually tie her up and smack her or yell at her for all the times she got upset about my past, or I felt that I couldn't talk to her about my problems because hers were too important. And especially for sending me to hell.
I remember how difficult it was to resist going beyond merely convincing you I was Angelus. I remember when you were telling Buffy about when you were little, I wanted to protect you. I remember thinking how brave and strong you must be to have survived everything you have been through. Don't misunderstand me, I don't pity or feel sorry for you, I respect and admire you because in so many ways you remind me of myself. I have tried to fight it, but I am not going to run from who I am and what I want any longer. I accept that I am a vampire, and I admit that what I really want is, is to, be with you." Angel told her, suddenly feeling much better that he had finally let everything out. *Man, I haven't talked that much since I was human.*
Angel closed the distance between them, and pulling her against him he kissed her, hard, not holding anything back.