Lake Erie smelled like dead fish and smoke. The Slayer didn't particularly care if it was on fire. She was sore. Her arm hurt from staking an entire nest of vamps down by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. She was sore and tired and hungry and she wanted to get laid.
And not necessarily in that order.
She rotated her shoulder and winced at the sharp twist of pain that greeted her action. One of the vampires had decided to play tug of war with her before meeting the business end of her stake, and now she was feeling the after effects. "Goddamned vampire. Do I look like a pull toy?" she muttered to herself, pushing open the door to a tiny apartment with her good shoulder. Above a fish market and close to the pier, it was a shithole even the foulest demon wouldn't think of looking for her in. The floors were old and moldy--wood with all sorts of strange stains. There was a plug for a hot plate on a rickety table by the bed. The bathroom sink was just big enough for her to stopper it and dunk her head in every few days. And the single lightbulb that hung from a chain in the middle of the ceiling usually didn't work.
She tossed her battered leather jacket in the general direction of the moth eaten mattress, feeling the scar on her lip itch. It hurt some days more than others, but tonight it was a mild tingle across her face. She frowned. It had only been a year ago, that she'd gotten it. She'd been a lot stupider, more reckless, then, and had been lucky to crawl away from the scene with just a cut lip. Her attackers hadn't been so lucky. It had taken her weeks to wash the slime stains out of her best shirt.
Gwendolyn had bitched her out royally for letting the situation get out of hand, but Buffy had pointed out that she didn't see Miss Wound-Up-Too-Tight Post out on the battle fields. It wasn't her face that was scarred permanently. It wasn't her that was currently suffering from what felt like a ball and socket dislocation. No, the uptight bitch was probably drinking tea at her downtown hotel and yakking long distance on the phone to England.
Buffy rubbed at the scar with her thumb, feeling the odd tingle again. And a slow smile spread across her face. Suddenly, the ash and sweat on her skin felt more like perfume. Suddenly, the throbbing pain in her muscles felt more like a different throb. She moved across the small, dark, room, eyes focusing, like a cat's, on the figure that was sprawled on the bed. The figure who had escaped her notice when she'd unlocked the door.
"Hello, Francis," she drawled huskily. "What the fuck do you want?"
The man got up from the bed, and Buffy could make out the vague outline of his tousled dark hair. He stepped closer and she smelled the faint odor of whiskey. Her smile vanished and a scowl took its place. She exhaled. "God! Are you drunk again?"
He made a sound that was something like a snort and half a growl. "I'll be as soddin' drunk as I like if ye keep callin' me 'Francis'." Even in the blackness, his eyes were bright and blue. Like the neon sign of a XXX peep show. His voice was layered with whiskey and Ireland and it annoyed her as much as it soothed her...as much as it made her want to topple him back on the mattress and straddle his lean hips.
Buffy decided to play with him just a little. She stepped closer, carefully placing her hand on his cheek. He needed a shave, but the rough shadows suited him as well as the normally smooth planes of his face. It made him seem a little more wild. She felt him tense a bit as she continued running her fingers across his cheek, and underneath his chin, but he quickly relaxed and gave into her touch.
Her hand alternated touching his face and his neck. When she finally leaned in and inhaled the scent of alcohol and the fainter scent of his soap, he gave a small groan and clutched at her, then cursed as she nimbly danced away. She chuckled. "Soooo....if I can't call you Francis..." She undid the top button of her jeans. "What do I call you?" Her hand paused on the zipper tab, and gave it an experimental pull. It was the loudest sound in the room.
He gasped as she yanked it all the way down and let her tight jeans pool at her ankles, looking like a man who had just found the world's largest supply of Glennlivet. "Sweet Mother of God."
"I guess I could call you that....its a little long...a little girly. You always were kind of a pansy." She arched an eyebrow, noting how much he liked her black satin g-string and the little imp tattooed just below her pelvic bone.
"A pansy am I?" The growl was back and a spark lit up in his eyes. His hands closed around her waist--hands she could easily rip off--and he turned her, slowly backing her up against the bed. "A pansy? You listen here, Slayer...Allan Francis Doyle ain' nobody's pansy," he assured, hotly. "That isn't what ye called out when I came by last week..."
"So what was I calling out?" She furrowed her eyebrows, giving him her best innocent look as the backs of her legs hit the metal bedframe.
He leaned over her, pushing her back into the mattress. When she was fully sprawled underneath him, his lower body fitting snugly between her thighs, he slid his hands from her waist to the edge of her thin tank top. He slowly nudged the flimsy fabric aside until he uncovered a tantalizing stretch of pale skin. He rested his hands on her stomach for a brief moment, knowing how sensitive the area was. She squirmed. He smiled.
"I believe you were callin' out something like..." His thumb circled her navel. "Ohhhhhhh...Doyle...Doyle....." He slid the tank up a little further, trailing his fingers over each exposed inch until her bra came into view. He whistled in appreciation. The darkness of the satin set off her skin beautifully. Buffy was visibly trembling as he slowly surveyed her body in quiet appraisal.
Her shoulder no longer ached. Instead, the ache was deep inside. Somewhere that wouldn't scar but would still make Gwendolyn Post get into a disapproving snit. She doubted the bitch had ever gotten laid at the Watcher's Council. Buffy inhaled the mixed smells of liquor and sweat and fight and lust and the essence of Brachen. Her thighs rubbed restlessly against the rough denim of Doyle's jeans, demanding for him to stop staring and to start acting.
"Easy, Princess," he murmured, leaning back on his heels, and she knew he was focusing on the imp tattoo. A black devil with blue eyes, holding a pitchfork. Not unlike the demon above her. Its curved tail disappeared past the line of her g-string. He knew from experience where it led.
Her hips jerked up when he slipped down low and covered the tattoo with his mouth. His tongue...oh, his tongue was brutal. She moaned raggedly. "Goddammit!" He followed the tail with his lips and left a wet trail of kisses as he slid her panties down and out of the way. And just when he reached the triangular end of the imp's tail, and she was writhing and cussing at him to "finish it", he pulled away.
He rocked, calmly, back on his heels. Waiting. The little drunken, Irish, half-breed was waiting. "Well?" His coal-dark brow arched, expectant. He looked just as cocky as that first day, when he'd stumbled into her in an alley in Detroit, trying to hide from the Scourge. He felt cocky, too, under her right hand...and she knew he was close. As close as she was.
She tossed her head back, sighing defeat...and the call was genuine. "Ohhhhhhh...Doyle...Doyle....."
His grin of triumph was buried in the ferocious kiss and the death grip that brought him sprawling on top of her. Buffy ran her hands across his back, nails catching on the folds of his shirt. She quit kissing him long enough to gasp, "in...the...way," and then gave it a questioning tug. Doyle grunted his consent, and before he could stop to fumble with his shirt buttons, she'd ripped the back of his shirt into two ragged halves. His back bare, Doyle could keenly feel the cool chill of the room, then the pleasant sensation of Buffy's legs sliding further up his torso. She was rocking against him, and the motion and the damp heat she was sending through him was almost too much.
"Witch," he muttered as she began to apply her nimble fingers to the fastenings of his jeans. He ran the tip of his tongue over the scar on her upper lip and she hissed.
"Slayer," she corrected, roughly, tugging his jeans and green cotton boxer shorts down over his hips. She clasped him between her thighs, capturing his mouth again with hers and, with an uncharacteristic gentleness, took a hold of his cock. He knew she could break it in half...that she could, with one twist, unman him. But they both knew that, now, she had more pressing needs than violence. With one swift, decisive motion, she guided him into her voracious depths.
From there, the ride was fast, wet, and wild. Flesh against flesh in harsh slaps...breathy gasps mingling as they strained. She stared up into his accusatory, ultra-blue eyes, unblinking as they got deep inside...so inside each other that she could feel all her control slipping. All the day's work vanished into the feel of this one half-creature impaling her over and over again. Lake Erie. A Hellish world. The smell of rotting dead fish. None of it mattered when he was fucking her. None of it could. He sped up, and she dug her nails into the tender skin of his shoulders. She drew blood. He gasped and just kissed her. Hard. So hard her bottom lip split. He drew blood. And the tremors finally ripped through her and dragged her completely into oblivion.
"Doyle...oh, damn it, Doyle..."
He always liked to climax with a quip.
They slumped together on the dirty sheets...panting...sticky...spent. For a few minutes, neither of them moved. Doyle found he was too tired to do much than breathe in quick spurts, and Buffy relished the feel of him within her. Secure. Security in the arms of a half-demon. She would worry about the fucked up consequences of that thought in the morning. Right now, she was content to lie still for awhile and breathe in the mixture of whiskey and their own scent. Doyle nuzzled her cheek and she laughed, turning mischievous eyes to him. "Up for another round?"
He groaned and gingerly slid out of her comforting warmth, causing her to pout. "I think we've had enough fun and games for the moment, Darlin'...let a man get his breath back." He scooted to her side, and slid his arm underneath hers, pulling her back to him. Her hair had come undone from the tight braid she wore, and he combed his fingers through the golden waves, admiring the softness. "You have beautiful hair, you know. You ought to wear it down more often."
Buffy snorted. "Right, and get it yanked out by some loser vamp or slobbered on by a monster? No, thank you. It's out of my way for slaying." As she said the words, she felt guilty. Doyle was just trying to be nice. Compliments were rare and few for Buffy, so she found it hard to respond. The Watcher's Council thought of her as some kind of servant, a servant with weapons, but a servant nonetheless. And Gwendolyn? Well, she thought of Buffy as her trophy. Do the Watcher's bidding, and get a good note in the watcher's diary. Big fucking deal. Buffy sighed, the cozy afterglow fading into an irritated awareness of her reality. She squeezed Doyle's hand. "Look, I'm sorry. I mean, thank you." He was quiet for a minute, and Buffy could sense he was thinking about her sudden change in behavior.
He sighed, and finally just nuzzled his nose in the space between her neck and shoulder, the place that had been so sore just a short time ago. "It's okay," he mumbled, "I know what you mean."
They lay there in silence...until long after sunrise. Somewhere outside screams were echoing. The first kill of the day. She still couldn't bring herself to leave the bed. To leave his arms. To leave this spare, barren, room and face the world outside.
"When are you coming back?" she asked him softly, sighing as he gently rubbed out the kinks in her back and shoulders.
"I'll surprise you," he murmured, affectionately pecking her cheek. "You know you like surprises."
"Surprise THIS, Francis!"
Within seconds, drowsing laziness gone, she had him pinned beneath her. He growled, rising to the challenge. "Not. Feckin'. Francis."
And as they melted back into mutual denial, another scream shattered the bloody Cleveland morning. And something died. She didn't care. For the moment...for this one moment...she was still alive.
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