Fic Title: The Rose Remembers
Summary: Death isn't done with Sandford, but a Slayer and a vampire on the run have something to say about that. Spike/Buffy, Nicholas/Danny
Rating: Eventually NC17
Warnings: Violence and sexual content.
Banner number: 47 by athenamuze
Setting: About 2 1/2 years post-NFA
Disclaimer: Not ours, as much as we would like them to be.
Author Notes: This is a crossover with the movie, Hot Fuzz, but honestly, you shouldn't have to be familiar with the movie to be able to understand the fic. However, by reading the fic, you *will* get spoiled for the entire movie. Just so that you know.
Previously on Buffy: Nicholas staked Gabriel, and Buffy and Spike reunited...
The story begins here.
Walking back to town center with Spike at her side was weird with a capital Twilight Zone. Her body hummed with the memory of his mouth, of the hard muscles that seemed exactly the same. Buffy itched to reach over and take his hand, to prove to herself that Spike really was there and she hadn’t been thralled by Dru into just thinking he was alive, but she didn’t. They had never been hand-holders. If she tried to do that now, he’d cock that brow, look pointedly at their clasping fingers, and then say something about having something else he’d prefer her to wrap her hot little hand around.
So she stuffed her hands into her coat pockets and babbled on about New York and Dawn and how things were different now with so many Slayers in the world and how she was going to totally kill Angel for keeping the secret for this long. Spike never said much at all, which scared her even more that this was all some hallucination on her part. Spike always had something to say. Well, not that last year, so maybe it wasn’t so much that he wasn’t acting like himself as she wasn’t remembering him correctly.
Apparently, she could babble in her thoughts, too.
The address Giles had given her came both too soon and not soon enough, and she hesitated on the doorstep before knocking. “Last chance to avoid the Watcher Inquisition,” she warned.
Spike smirked. “Bring it on. I just spent the last two years with Angel. I think I can handle your Watcher.”
Taking a deep breath, Buffy knocked at the arched door. Sharp footsteps echoed inside, followed by the sudden sight of Inspector Angel filling the narrow space. He wasn’t a large man, but in the context of his home, he seemed so. Her gaze flickered over his sweater and trousers. Jesus. Even in civvies, he was starched.
She gave him her best I know you’re an authority figure, so I’ll suck it up until you piss me off smile. “So a little birdie tells me you staked your first vamp tonight.”
“Yes, apparently. I wouldn’t have believed it myself, but I can still taste the ash.”
“Yeah, that’s a bitch,” Spike agreed.
Inspector Angel glanced over to Spike with a sharp, curious gaze. “Who is your friend?”
Before Buffy could answer, Giles appeared in the foyer behind him. His eyes grew wide, fixing on Spike. “Oh my dear Lord.”
“Was never much for titles myself,” Spike commented. “But if it suits you to call me lord, can’t say I’d stop you.”
Sergeant Butterman appeared at Giles’ elbow, to stop and gape at his amazed expression. “You look like you’ve seen a ghost.”
Giles’ jaw hardened. “No. A vampire.”
“Well, I was a ghost for awhile,” Spike volunteered. “Right pain in the ass that was. Couldn’t eat, couldn’t leave Wolfram and Hart. All I could do was annoy Angel. Couldn’t even play with…” Spike’s voice faded off of Buffy’s hard look. “But I’m all solid now.”
Inspector Angel blinked, his gaze moving between Spike, Giles, and Buffy. “I’m afraid I don’t understand. Anything at all, really.”
“That would make two of us,” Giles murmured.
His gaze was unforgiving, a combination of shock and disappointment that Buffy knew all too well. “Spike’s an old friend,” she said to Inspector Angel. To Giles, “I ran into him out at the castle.”
“What, exactly, is Spike doing here?” Giles asked.
“Look, I’d love to tell you the whole story, but it’s cold as a witch’s tit out here. Do you think we can come in?”
“No,” Inspector Angel said, “I don’t think that’s a…”
“Sure,” Danny said, cutting him off. “Come on in. Would you like some tea? Or a beer?”
“Danny!” The inspector spun to face his partner. “What are you doing?”
“You don’t invite vampires into the house!”
“Buffy said he’s her friend, didn’t she?”
“That, she did.” Spike shot her a pleased grin. “And I’d love a guinness if you’ve got one, mate. Best part of comin’ home. Don’t have to put up with that watered down swill the Yanks try to pass for beer.”
Buffy leveled him a look she hoped he’d take a little more seriously than he was taking everything else. “You haven’t actually been invited, Spike.”
“Sure, I have.” And with that, he stepped over the threshold, shouldering the inspector out of his way.
Buffy shot the inspector a curious glance. Was he living with his partner? Now didn’t seem like a good time to ask. Especially since Giles was staring at Spike like he was a particularly disgusting form of fungus. Spike, for his part, seemed oblivious as he followed Danny into the kitchen for his beer.
“Is he dangerous?” Inspector Angel asked, his eyes never leaving the pair.
“Yes,” Giles said.
“But not to us,” Buffy added. “Spike changed his ways a long time ago. He even died to save the world.”
“And that’s when he became a ghost?”
“Inspector Angel, it’s all a bit…”
“Hey!” Spike shouted from the kitchen. “I’m tired of that name. Angel this, Angel that. What’s your name, mate?”
“Nicholas,” Danny provided.
“Now wait a minute…”
“Why don’t we go and talk about what happened tonight?” Buffy suggested. Anything to change the subject. “I think that’s a little more important than trying to explain all this history that doesn’t really mean anything?”
Except it did. And it would. Especially when she mentioned that it was Drusilla she caught lurking around the castle first.
Giles and Nicholas still looked like they’d rather stand there and argue some more, but they begrudgingly led the way back to the living room, Buffy on their heels. The inspector’s house wasn’t a large one, and the room overlooking the front yard proved that. There was a rather comfortable new couch along one wall, and a rack of DVD’s next to the large television opposite, but other than a flourishing lily in the corner, the rest of the room was as Spartan and efficient as Nicholas.
Nicholas gestured at the couch, indicating Buffy and Giles should have a seat, but Buffy didn’t feel much like sitting. Danny and Spike followed them into the living room, each with their hands full. Spike thrust a glass of guinness into her hand, and then collapsed on the couch, stretching his legs out in front of him. Nicholas accepted his beer from Danny, but didn’t even seem to realize he was holding it.
“Well, as you heard, we did have a run-in with Gabriel tonight,” Nicholas started. “I suppose you’re looking for the creature who…made him? We need to contain it as soon as possible.”
“It’s called siring,” Buffy offered. “And it’s not an it. It’s a her.”
Giles frowned. “I thought Spike was the vampire you encountered tonight.”
“He was.” She looked to Spike for help, but he was studiously absorbed in his drink. Coward. “He was just the second one, not the first.”
“There were three vampires in Sandford?” Danny asked, with equal measures fear and excitement.
“You ran into a female vampire tonight, Buffy?” Giles asked. “Did you get the chance to stake her, or were you too….distracted?”
Distracted was code for wrapped up in Spike. She’d certainly heard that one enough that last year in Sunnydale. The only problem was, this time, he was actually right.
“No, she’s still fangloose and fancy free.” Buffy took a deep breath. If Spike wasn’t going to be vamp enough to expose his ex as the local danger, she didn’t have a choice but to do it herself. “It’s Drusilla.”
“Who’s Drusilla?” Nicholas asked.
“Spike’s crazy girlfriend.”
“Ex crazy girlfriend. And she’s my sire.”
Nicholas rubbed his forehead. “So, we’ve got a crazy vampire using my village as some sort of all-you-can-eat-buffet, and she just happens to be the sire of a vampire who died to save the world?”
“And came back as a ghost.”
“Thanks, Danny.” Nicholas shook his head. “I don’t even care about all of the backstory here. All I want to know is, why is she here and how can we get rid of her?”
“Don’t know the why of it,” Spike said, “but these are Dru’s old stomping grounds. She lived here when she was a girl.”
Buffy stared at him. “You didn’t tell me that.”
“You didn’t ask.”
“Why would Drusilla come back here?”
Spike rolled his eyes. “Already said I didn’t know that, Rupert. Stay with the program.”
Nicholas sighed. “What can we do to keep the village safe while she’s here?”
“A curfew would be a good start, wouldn’t it?” Danny suggested.
“It’s a start,” Giles confirmed. “Spike, might I ask how it is you’re here at the same time Drusilla is?”
“No, pet.” Some of Spike’s earlier braggadocio was gone, and he sat forward, his pint glass between his hands as he rested his forearms on his knees. “Can’t blame him on this one. After all, me and Dru cut a bloody great swathe back in the day. And now she’s back where she started from, and I’m here, too, so Rupert, for once, is perfectly justified in his paranoia.”
“Thank you, Spike.” Giles frowned. “I think.”
“No problem, Watcher. But what I’m doing here, it’s kind of a long story.” He looked pointedly at Nicholas and Danny. “You sure you got the time to hear it now?”
“We’ve got time,” Nicholas said, taking his ever-present notebook out of his back pocket. “Maybe you can give us something helpful.”
“Right. Well, the story isn’t that long. Angel and me have been laying low for the past two years, trying to avoid the Senior Partners, yeah? We got word that Drusilla was raising hell in the English countryside, and since we were laying low in London, Angel thought we should put a stop to it before she attracts the wrong sort of attention. Except, because Angel is a big wanker, he sent me to do the nasty deed. You know how Angel can be about Drusilla as soon as she calls him Daddy.”
Buffy wrinkled her nose. “So not the imagery I need right now,” she muttered.
“So your purpose here is to…what? Stake Drusilla?” Giles still looked unconvinced. When he said it like that, she had a hard time with the story, too. Because when it came to Drusilla, Spike’s judgment was less than crappy.
Spike shrugged. “I came here to do what needs to be done. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that sometimes you got to do things you don’t want to do.”
“The important thing is, we’ve got a Drusilla expert here to help us,” Buffy said.
“Can’t you just see her?” Danny asked Buffy.
Nicholas frowned. “What do you mean, Danny?”
He nodded at Buffy. “You’re psychic, aren’t you? You figure out where she is, and tell us where to go, and we’ll finish her off.”
Spike arched his brow. “Psychic now, Slayer?”
“Buffy’s visions are sporadic, at best,” Giles jumped in. “She can’t control when or even if she gets them.”
“Besides, this is a small town. There can’t be that many places Drusilla can hide.”
“Wouldn’t count on that, pet. Once, I caught Dru holed up in this bloke’s wardrobe with his missus—”
“Spike.” There was that crappy Dru judgment poking its head up again. “We’re making them feel better. Not scaring them even more.”
“If she’s hiding in the catacombs, it could take days to find her. And that is if she’s not moving around. Clearly she is.”
Danny nodded. “And there are lots of other places. Reaper’s farm is still empty. He’s got barns and sheds up there. Also Arthur Webley’s place.”
“It might help to do some genealogical research and see if there are any locales that might have personal significance.” Giles looked to Spike. “Unless you can shed some light on that particular topic?”
Spike shook his head. “Never came here with her. Your guess is as good as mine.”
“Right. Well, then, I believe I know what I’ll be doing.”
Buffy didn’t follow as Giles went to the doorway. “I think Spike and I should go back out and look for her.” She deliberately didn’t look toward the couch. She didn’t want to know if Spike was looking smug or surprised at her announcement. “We can meet up for lunch tomorrow to talk about what we’ve found.”
Nicholas glanced at Danny. “I think we should go out, too. I wouldn’t be surprised if those other boys are out wandering around tonight. They’d be sitting ducks for her.”
“So will you,” Buffy said. “No offense, but you got lucky tonight. A fifteen year-old newly turned vamp is nothing compared to Drusilla. She’s fast, and she’s deadly, not to mention so off her rocker, she might as well be on the moon.”
“Don’t forget the thrall thing,” Spike added.
She nodded. “Right. The thrall thing. So don’t go out. If we don’t get her tonight, we’ll talk tomorrow about splitting up into different teams.”
Danny perked up. “Thrall thing? Like Dracula? Can she change into a bat?” He looked over to Spike. “Can you turn into a bat?”
Spike scoffed and waved a hand in dismissal. “Bloody gypsy trick. ‘S’all smoke and mirrors with that one. Don’t believe a thing you’ve seen in the pictures.”
“Plus Dracula is way more gorgeous in person.”
Buffy shrugged. She never had understood the rivalry between Spike and Dracula. “Well, he is. That tall, dark, and undead thing goes pretty far.” She smiled sweetly, unable to resist taking the jab. “Just look at Angel.”
Spike jumped to his feet. “Yeah, Angel is real handsome, if you like hulking ponces with stupid hair and giant foreheads. You know, Summers, I’ll tell you one thing about Angel, and that’s…”
“You know Dracula?” Danny exclaimed, as though it took a few moments for the words to sink in. “Dracula is real? What’s he like? Well, other than being gorgeous?”
“Perhaps this is a discussion we can save for tomorrow,” Giles said. “When there isn’t a mad vampire roaming the streets of Sandford.”
Spike scowled. “I’ll give you a mad vampire,” he muttered, shooting daggers at Buffy.
She smiled. Good to know she still knew exactly how to get to him. Getting him alone again was going to be very interesting.
“We’ll put the curfew in effect immediately tomorrow. And if there is anything you need, or anything we can do, this is my mobile number,” Nicholas said, passing Giles a small card. “You should be able to get a hold of us at the station, but just in case.”
Danny crossed the small room, sidling close to Spike. “What’s it like being dead?”
His eyes locked with Buffy’s, dark with intent. “Ask me again tomorrow.”
“Danny, why don’t we let them get back to work?” Nicholas said. “The more time they spend here, the more time this Drusilla has to find trouble.”
Danny sent one last inquisitive look to Spike and then shrugged and dropped on the couch. He didn’t seem at all perturbed by Spike’s response.
Buffy wasn’t, either. If anything, it sent a shiver rolling down her spine.
Reverend Hugh Harner rubbed his hands together briskly as he pulled the front doors of the church shut. It was a cold night, much colder than he was accustomed. His last parish had been in Croydon, and the heat of the city’s bustle had done much to keep it warm. Well, at least, warmer than this.
He didn’t bother with any of the lights as he strode up the center aisle. The residents of Sandford were God-fearing folk, but when the sun set, the only ablutions they partook were down at the Crown. It certainly made his job easier, especially since he didn’t mind taking a nip now and again himself. In fact, that sounded like a splendid idea. He’d just finish locking up and head on down to the pub, too.
The windows rattled in their frames. Reverend Harner paused at the bottom of the pulpit and turned his head in the sound’s direction. Silvery moonlight washed through the colored glass, casting shards of scarlet and gold across the pews, but otherwise, everything else remained the same.
The Reverend smiled, shaking his head as he resumed his path. He must remember to bundle up before going out. A scarf and hat wouldn’t be remiss. Wellies, too, if he wanted to perfectly secure. If he spilled his beer, he wouldn’t ruin his shoes that way.
He was locking up the poor box when the front door creaked.
Peering through the darkness, Reverend Harner cursed himself for not fussing with the lights. He couldn’t see a blasted thing. Not a sliver of light from the doorway, not an outline of a figure.
“H’lo?” he called out.
He waited another moment before shrugging. Probably just the wind. The doors were old. They needed to be replaced. Or the locks oiled. One of the two.
His knees popped as he straightened. Grimacing, the Reverend stooped and rubbed at the caps, the blood rushing to his head. It was too bad the town was still in so much turmoil. He could use a younger aide around the church to help with some of the more menial jobs. Maybe he’d see if one of the lads who’d hung around with Gabriel Weaver wanted a part-time diversion. It would keep him safe from whatever new danger was lurking about town.
A woman’s voice, high and delicate, rang through the church.
“It’s Reverend, actually,” he replied. His ears buzzed as he stood up too quickly, but when he squinted, he still couldn’t see who had spoken. “May I help you, miss?”
“Forgive me, Father,” she said, ignoring his correction.
He frowned. “Forgive you for what?”
Fabric rustled. In the next blink, a pale woman emerged from the dark, but the eyes that locked on his were golden and the teeth bared in her wide smile sharp and deadly.
Her hand shot out, faster than he could see, and wrapped around his throat. The blood that had already pounded in his skull swelled into a cacophony. When she hauled him against her like he weighed nothing more than the morning paper, his feet lashed out in protest, but all he connected with was the poor box.
It clattered when it hit the floor. Reverend Harner barely heard it. All he saw were those hypnotic eyes, and all he heard was her singsong response to his last query.
“For you have sinned.”
To be continued in Chapter 6…