Xander was dancing with Ampata and Willow was a sulking Eskimo stacking cheese cubes when Buffy arrived on the scene. She did not want to interrupt Xander and she did not feel like sulking so she avoided both of her friends and went in search of her own fun.
It did not take very long for Buffy to realize that without Xander and Willow she was pretty much alone. Cordelia was being her usual witchy self with her entourage, not that Buffy would have wanted to spend her evening talking to Cordelia Chase anyway. It still stung a little when Cordelia made a snide comment to Buffy about her costume, or lack thereof, as Buffy had not taken the time to change into a costume; she came to the dance as she was. As soon as Giles had released her from assisting him for the evening, she had fled the house on Revello Drive as quickly as she could.
"Is she always such a bitch?"
The voice was familiar. It brought with it a sinking feeling in the pit of her stomach that was a mixture of fear and anticipation. She spun around to face him, cursing herself for not bringing a weapon. She had ancient Incan mummies on her mind when she left the house not vampires. She glared at him, her glare softened when she did not see the swaggering vamp from Parent-Teacher night. At least for the moment he did not have killing her on his mind. "Yes," she said with a shrug. "Life would be off-balance if Cordelia was any other way."
"You should have just said you decided to come as an American teenaged girl."
"I didn't think about that," she said, shoving her hands in the front pockets of her jeans. This was the vampire that recently wanted her dead merely because of who and what she was and now he was standing here talking to her.
"Did your chums bail on you?"
"No," she said, scanning the room for Xander and Willow. Both were relatively easy to spot given their outlandish garb.
Spike's gaze followed hers. "Ah, I see, Girl A is left out in the cold because Boy wants to be with Girl B."
"Something like that," Buffy said.
"So why aren't you over there consoling your friend?"
"Because I didn't feel like being a consoling friend tonight. I've spent all day in the library researching and almost didn't make it to this dance. I came to have a good time and dance."
"But you don't seem to be doing either of those things."
"Well, I guess I hadn't thought much about Xander having someone he wants to dance with exclusively. Usually, the three of us, you know, dance."
"Care to dance with the vamp that ruined your special night?"
"You're asking me to dance?"
"Sure, why not, I am British, so you are broadening your horizons, doing your part to learn about another culture."
"I suppose then," she said, glancing around to see if anyone was looking. To see if Angel would show up after all.
"He's not here."
"Who?" she asked quietly. Actually, she would have the best-looking dance partner now that she stopped to really look at Spike. The blonde spiked hair was so eighties, but somehow it did not look dated on him. The leather duster was well worn but now that she was close enough to touch him she realized that it still had that leather smell. That leather scent intermingled with other scents like cologne, perfume, cigarettes, whiskey, and blood. And his eyes, Buffy could not recall seeing purer blue eyes on a man. They were beautiful, and yet there was nothing feminine about Spike.
"You know who. Your boyfriend. My sire."
"I wasn't expecting him to be here."
"Then why were you looking for him?"
"I was just looking around to see whom I was going to be embarrassing myself in front of if I dance with you."
"Right, Blondie. Let's go," he said, offering her a hand.
Buffy glanced at his offered hand, hesitated to take it. She had only held the hand of one vampire before tonight and never in her wildest dreams would she have imagined willingly holding hands with a second one. Spike did not even have a soul, Spike up until tonight was hell-bent on killing Buffy. Finally, she took his hand and let him lead her to the dance floor. If it was a trick, she deserved to die for being so stupid as to fall for it.
"And you so did not ruin my night," Buffy said defiantly as they began dancing.
"You weren't upset I ruined all of your hard work?"
"I was a little upset that you turned the girl that was supposed to help me, but I got over it. And you helped to get my mom off my back."
"Glad I could be of service, Blondie."
"Don't call me that," she said with disdain. "And if you were trying to help me out, couldn't you have gotten Principal Snyder off my back, too?"
"I could eat him for you."
"No. We've already had one principal eaten at this school."
He laughed and Buffy frowned at him. "You're serious?"
"Right, I forget sometimes who I'm dealing with. You've seen quite a lot, haven't you?"
"Sure," she said with a casual shrug, not wanting to talk about all that she had seen and done in the past two years tonight. She had a good looking dance partner, one who knew how to dance even; she did not want to ruin it by talking shop. "Can you just not talk?"
"You have something else in mind then, Blondie," he asked, waggling his scarred eyebrow suggestively.
"Is your mind ever out of the gutter?"
"It's the best place for it to be, baby," he said.
"No, I don't have anything else in mind. You asked me to dance, not to dance and listen to you talk."
"Don't you normally talk to your dance partners, Slayer?"
"My dance partners normally weren't trying to kill me the last time I saw them."
"Hate can lead to a great deal of passion, Blondie, you should try it."
"Gross much?" she said, drawing away from him. "I have no intention of getting passionate with you, Spike. End of story," she said just as Willow approached them.
"Uh, Buffy?" Willow said, obviously confused by her choice in dance partners. "I haven't seen Xander in a while, have you?"
"Xander?" Buffy asked confused. "No, he was dancing last I saw."
The three of them scanned the dance floor, no Xander and no Ampata. "Saved again," Spike said dryly.
"I don't need anyone to save me from you, Spike."
"Right," he said bitingly. "Anyway, I'll leave you to go hunt your friend down and make sure the pretty foreign girl hasn't done something unthinkable to him."
Buffy would have laughed if this was not Sunnydale and they were not situated on the mouth of hell. Since they were, Buffy did not bother responding to Spike, she grabbed Willow by the arm of her winter Eskimo coat and tugged her off the dance floor. She was not sure why she was in a panic, but she had to find Xander. She sensed that Willow shared her panic just then because her best friend did not ask one question about what Buffy was doing dancing with the blonde vampire.
Story ©Susan Falk/APCKRFAN/PhantomRoses.com