"Ohhhh, my head...." she moaned as she slid off the bike and stared, balefully, at the lit windows of the Revello Drive house.
He cut the engine, chuckling as she staggered onto the lawn, a pale shade of green. "There's drinks in my world, Pet...and then there's hangovers."
She rubbed her temples with her fingers. "I don't think I want to visit your world anymore."
"'S okay," he shrugged, solicitously, following her. "I'll bring you a kitten next time."
Her brow puckered...the three lines an endearing indicator of her confusion. "Do they really eat the kittens?"
He had the grace to look down at the ground and kick the curb. "Yeah."
"Do YOU?" she asked, then, making a sound that was half-gasp and half-retch. Whether that was because of the whiskey or the idea of somebody chomping down on kitty paws, he didn't know.
"No!" he cried, with at least a bit of exaggerated disgust. "What d'you take me for? I let 'em go as soon as I'm 'round the block." That, at least, was true.
She nodded once. Twice. "Thought so."
"I'm that transparent?" he wondered, leaning back against the tree and rifling his pockets for his smokes.
"Yep...like a wading pool," she pronounced, dropping down the front steps as her stomach, apparently, lurched yet again.
His eyebrows danced...the smile that had been smeared across his face all night growing vaguely lecherous. "Wanna take a skinny dip in me, then?"
He waited for her to snap at him. To threaten to kick his ass. But, for the thousandth time that night, she seemed unfazed by the proprietary flirting.
"Uh uh!" she said, cheerfully. Her face was growing paler by the second. The poor brave little toaster. "Can't swim!"
He shook his head, ruefully. "Can't hold your liquor neither."
"Can too." Her pouty lower lip made heat pool in his belly...but the glazed look in her gorgeous eyes was dangerously telling.
He abandoned his search for cigarettes and bounded up the stairs past her prone form. "You're about to kill the bushes, Baby...you need to get inside."
"Who died and made you Dr. Drew?"
He ignored the slurred barb, ringing the doorbell. "I fancy meself more of an Adam Corolla, actually."
And then the Watcher was opening the door..."Oh, Dear." He stepped back, letting Giles haul her inside and direct her to the downstairs bathroom with the paternal advice of "Soak your head for a good five minutes."
He leaned in the entryway, ignoring the other man's pointed gaze, listening to the reassuring sound of the water running and the tinny sound of Dawn's t.v. from upstairs. "I didn't get her sloshed, Rupert," he said, softly, after a while. "She did it to herself."
Glasses were removed, the bridge of a nose pinched. "I know."
"Yeah." He nodded, tightly. They stood in silence for a few more achingly uncomfortable minutes and then his senses tuned to the living room...where Buffy finally emerged, looking frail and exhausted. And beautiful. As always, so bloody beautiful.
Her lips turned up just barely as she nearly walked towards him and then veered to the stairs at the last instant. "Thanks for bringing me home, Spike," she whispered from the third step.
As she lifted her hand to wave a weak 'farewell' from behind her steadfast Watcher, he stepped out of the warm light. Melted back into the shadows where he spent most of his time. Into the darkness that was never quite full without her.
"Any time, Love. Any time."
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