POV: Shifts Perspective
Spoiler Alert: There are tidbits from past episodes and Spanderverse: stories.
Notes: Story number twelve in the Spanderverse-universe, following “Hunting Our Needs”. Everything from the television series through the defeat of Adam also occurred as depicted, in the Spanderverse.
People’s thoughts are depicted in italics. You’ll find emphasis depicted with an underline.
Thanks to the authors of Fanfiction, wherever you may post. It’s probable that I’ve read at least one of your stories somewhere. I apologize for recycling concepts inadvertently from the plentitude of stories I’ve read.
Note that this story begins the same night as Chapter 10 of ‘Hunting Our Needs’. In addition, it is the night before
The Family We Choose
Ch 1 – Not Quite Home
“Hey, sweetie… uh, how’d things go with your family today?”
“Oh, f-fine. Uh, it was fine. I mean, it’s –uh- nice- that they came for my birthday, you know?”
“There’s never been much to tell. I mean, you guys lead way more exciting lives than anyone back in Petite Crique. I mean, it’s –uh- a very small place. You know, everyone knows everyone else and there aren’t many secrets you can keep. I spent the last few years before coming here though with my gran in
“Your family seems… nice. Uh, Donnie seemed to be a little bit anti-magic, though.”
“Sounds a little rough for a young witch,”
“You know, Will…, can we just n-not talk about it. Its… there’s just some bad memories about that period of my life that I don’t want to get into tonight. I promise though, someday I’ll tell you everything. Okay?”
“Oh…, sure. I’m sorry that you’re not more glad to see your family, though.”
“Well… families, you know? They drive you crazy. I’m feeling really beat. Can we just try to get some sleep? Big day tomorrow, after all.”
“Yeah, of course,”
In a penthouse overlooking
The relief of the minions surrounding her was short lived. She spun around with a glare at the seven scabby dwarves causing them all to fret and tremble. Their eyes remained downcast as she spun her back on them and turned her attention again to the window.
“Sobek should have found my Key by now,” she muttered before turning her baleful gaze back on her servants. “Unless, of course, someone was lying to me about his effectiveness!”
Guev cowered even further as he blurted out, “Of course not, your Glowing Wonderousness! Sobek was highly recommended in all of the texts!”
As Glory marched the few footsteps it took her to reach him, the others wisely inched away from him. Her Most Temperamental wasn’t someone you wished to speak to when she was like this. A fact which Guev (who Glory could never remember the name of, anyway) sadly had forgotten.
“The texts!? The texts!? The texts were recommended?” Glory’s voice continued to rise as her anger was unleashed on the little shaking twerp before her. The little nothing who had the audacity to even speak to her, let alone raise his voice in her presence!
“And just who recommended these texts? Hmm…, perhaps a little skinny blonde? Are you in league with the little bitch who stole my monk?! Huh? Are you?!”
“O-o-of course not, Your Grace! I serve only you, my Goddess, my Ecstasy.”
“Ew!” Glory exclaimed in disgust. In the blink of an eye she had her hands around the troll’s throat and squeezed until he stopped jerking. As she released her former servant and worshipper to the floor, she sagged back onto a settee nearby.
“Oh, poor little whatever your name was. Sorry ‘bout that. I really cannot have the word ‘ecstasy’ in my brain in conjunction with your nasty little ugliness. Why don’t you guys go dump his body somewhere unfindable. I’m suddenly feeling like I need a nap. Oh, and Gronx… I’m still waiting on my ‘find the Key’ spell. My patience, if it’s still not clear, is wearing very, very thin.”
“Your Worshipped, I believe that the little blonde you were speaking of may have all of the answers you need. If the Order of Svratka really did send the Key to her, she must have been told what its true purpose is.”
“Do I look stupid? If it were that easy, I would have already beaten the information out of her, no matter how strong she thinks she is. No, when I found my little robed friend, he was trying to cast a locator spell. It’s obvious he didn’t have time to find the Key and that means he probably didn’t have anything to tell the little bimbo.”
Glory got up and crossed to the window again, still gazing out for any sign that Sobek wasn’t going to disappoint her. She couldn’t imagine why she thought a frickin’ Egyptian crocodile god was going to do her any good. Stupid whatever his name! He deserved to be denied basking in her glorious light for eternity for misleading her. Taking a deep breath of the vanilla scented air of the apartment, she turned her mind back to her current problem.
It wasn’t that she was particularly worried yet. She still had plenty of time to find what was hers. But she’d feel much, much happier when she had her little glowing token in her own hand where she could feel its power radiating through her. The problem was the Knights of
“Besides,” she said more to herself than to Gronx, “If she’s really a white hat, she’d probably let me kill her before she told me anything. Like that stupid dried up old crone in
“We have time your Splendid Beauty. I will locate your means home long before the destined time arrives.”
“You better! But for now, when the others get back, have them look for the petite blonde. I want her watched… closely. If she was told where my Key is, she’ll be guarding it like it’s the Hope Diamond. Her very actions may point it out to us. You’d better start scrying again for the Knights, Gronxie. If they find the Key before we do, they may be able to figure out a way to destroy it… or lose it in that oversized cathedral in
As Gronx scurried away, (they always scurried; like humanoid rats, Glory thought) the hell goddess returned to staring out of the window into the park below. To herself she whispered that she wasn’t worried. “Even if the super-chick does have the Key and tries to hide it, it’ll still be mine in the end. It was foretold. And unless there’s another God walking this trash heap of a realm, that trampy twig of a girl isn’t going to be able to do a damn thing about it.”
Buffy let herself into Riley’s apartment when there was no answer to her knock. Going straight to the bedroom and the little bathroom beyond left her disappointed. He wasn’t there and again she’d had trouble getting in touch with him.
She was kicking herself extra hard for even entertaining Giles’ notion of talking to Spike, never mind actually doing it! And just like she thought, it’d ended up being a nightmare.
As she poured a glass of milk in the efficiency kitchenette she grimaced as she remembered the evening. Stupid Spike had tried to kiss her! And his ramblings about how they were so much alike! Hello!? She wasn’t the one that had spent a century torturing and killing innocent people for kicks and she sure as hell wasn’t soulless! What could they possibly have in common, except that they had both tried to kill each other more than once?
The whole incident made her sick to her stomach. In fact, she’d never missed more than tonight the nights when he just wanted to drain her and she wanted to stick a stake in his heart. Well, she still wanted to do that and who knew, maybe draining her was still his ultimate kick. But this whole nearly-kiss thing had her repulsed and disturbed beyond words. And it was obvious he still hadn’t learned his lesson about talking trash about her boyfriend. Evil, scheming and stupid to boot… who the hell would want him?
Xander popped the top off the bottle of beer and crossed into the living room. Anya was busy in the spare room using the computer to trade stocks or try to conquer the world or something. It was just as well; if she was in here now she’d be wanting to snuggle and Xan’s head wasn’t in the game.
And it is a game, isn’t it? He took a swig of beer and listened for his internal voices, but they were silent. Nothing to say guys? No advice about how I break Anya’s heart so I can pine away after a murderous vampire in peace?
Sooner would be better than later, Commando piped up. And talking to
You already know my opinion, Hyena’s growled voice echoed in his head. Kill her instead.
We are not killing her, Commando raged before Xander could. You’re talking about the woman I was going to ask to marry us. Get over the whole ‘law of the jungle’ thing.
“I think that’d be ‘law of the savannah’ thing,” Xander whispered before remembering that Anya was just in the next room. But at least we’re still on the same page there. Not that I think for one second that you two could force me to hurt her anyway. You may be keeping me from spilling the beans that you two ain’t gone, but I still seem to be in the body’s control seat.
Secret’s going to be blown anyway, sooner or later, Hyena thought. If we were still spending nights close to Spike, he’d have probably smelled us by now.
That’s actually a good point, Commando agreed. Sooner or later somebody is going to come across us. So, what are we willing to do to stop that?
“Okay, guys,” Xander said allowed again. Fortunately the television masked his voice from Anya’s earshot. Let’s not start planning anything rash.
I’m a soldier, not a murderer. Commando’s ‘tone’ made his received offense clear.
Well, before you decide to do anything rash, Xander Harris, Hyena said darkly, Just remember that it’s probably one of us who are going to keep you alive. Especially if you keep throwing yourself into the fights. Sooner or later, Commando’s hand to hand or my flexibility and agility is going to save your ass. I suggest we find some way to make this work for all of us. Starting with dumping the skirt, so we can finally grab us some dick.
Buffy lay in bed flipping through a magazine on hunting. Not that she’d ever be interested in doing anything of the sort; she did that enough already night after night. But it was the only thing in the apartment to read unless she wanted to know everything there was to know about maintaining a firearm. Thankfully, Riley finally came in before things reached that level of desperation.
She’d already called Joyce to make sure she was still feeling well and been told to stop acting like the mom. Now she just wanted to snuggle up next to her honey and get some sleep. She was still smarting from her shoulder and tomorrow she’d have to spend the afternoon after classes searching for the April-bot. And, oh crap, I forgot to get Tara a gift, she realized.
When Riley came into the bedroom he seemed pretty subdued to see her. Even when she gave him a super-Buffy kiss, he didn’t seem to perk up any.
“Oh, yeah, never better,” Riley replied a bit listlessly. “I’m, uh, just worn out. Patrolling was easier when I had the Initiative’s chemicals to boost my energy. What did you do tonight?”
“Nothing much. I patrolled a little bit, but then I ran into this robot looking for her creator. She managed to toss me away and aggravate my snake wound, but I’m fine. I’ll need to find her… uh, it… and stop it though before it manages to cause any more damage. On the good side, I got to see Spike thrown through a window which is always entertaining.”
Riley wanted to confront her with her being in the Bronze with Spike. He wanted to rage at her over her hanging out with the bastard that caused him to have a heart attack. He wanted to throw in her face that he’d had to keep the vampire population down while she’d been busy with pool games. He did none of these things, he was too tired both physically and mentally to do anything but sleep.
“Listen, Buffy? Would you be horribly disappointed if we just slept tonight? I’m really feeling exhausted.”
“Oh, no, of course not baby. I’m not exactly feeling randy myself tonight. In fact, I’ve been feeling a bit sick to my stomach all night,” she said, again remembering the bizarre turn the evening had taken while interrogating Spike.
He gave her a small and insincere smile and went into the tiny bathroom. He winced as he removed his shirt and turned to stare at himself in the large mirror over the sink. His skin was pale in the harsh fluorescents of the overhead light all but around the two sets of fresh bite marks. They were luridly and angrily red and when Riley ran a digit gently over them, they stung in a way that immediately made him harden. His nipples were grievously sore where
Thankfully the wounds themselves didn’t bleed anymore. In fact once the girls had stopped sucking on him, they seemed to stop leaking relatively quickly. He could hazard a guess that their saliva contained some form of coagulant, possibly to assist in keeping their blood from running out of an artery during the siring process.
He was just grateful that there’d be no awkward questions from Buffy that he couldn’t answer as he replaced his T-shirt. There was no way to mistake the injuries to his pectorals as anything but vampires and that was a fight he wasn’t ready to have. He wondered if Buffy had allowed Spike to bite her yet and although the speculation caused a little guilt, it was quickly buried under despair and anger. After all, wasn’t it really only a matter of time before she ended up bedding another dearly not-so-departed? Wasn’t that her M.O.?
When he returned to the bed, he gave her a brief and distracted smile before slipping in next to her. As she turned to put out the light, Buffy murmured sleepily that she loved him.
He returned the sentiment, but then lay on his back for hours staring at the darkened ceiling. He wondered what he was doing and whether
End Chapter 1