Three Vampires, Two Slayers, Twenty Love Poems, and a Song of Despair
By Tara R.
Glimpses of a
Spike/various others, including M/M implied situations... gee that boy gets around.
disclaimer stuff: Wish it belonged to me, but it don't, except most of the words
in that particular order, and even then I've used loads of poetry. Nope, the
rest belongs to that creative Wunderkind Joss Whedon and co... Also, owe
half the title to Pablo Neruda. Oh, and if you wanna know who the poetry is by,
look at the section heading!
thanks to Codename Joaquinista, beta-reader extraordinaire, and Spicywings,
for her great advice!
Part One: Talking
York, 1977 (Pablo Neruda)
“I always wondered if Neruda was a
ceiling fan rotated sluggishly. It was so hot, so muggy, that the dusty plastic
fan had to slice its way through the thick air. A fly thrashed between the dusty
curtains and the window. Its buzzing was driving Spike mad.
dead.” Drusilla said flatly, “All wormy in the ground.” She licked each of
her fingers slowly, then left Spike’s lap, sitting up on her knees. Her creamy
satin nightgown fell back over her hips, catching on Spike’s arm where his
hand nestled between her thighs. She moved away from him, and his arm dropped
back to the musty cotton sheets.
crawled across the bed, towards the window, staring at a beam of sunlight
slicing through a gap in the curtains. Spike watched her concentrate on the beam
of light: the play of dust; the twist of his cigarette smoke. It was too hot to
sleep. She reached her fingers out slowly.
play with the light, love. It burns, remember?” He knew she was well aware of
the danger, but also knew that sometimes she didn’t care.
twisted her body, looking at him with the intense focus she had just been
granting the beam of light. He loved the sight of her there, almost all
silhouette, bottom resting on ankles, hips flaring juicily. “Again.” She
picked up the worn paperback book resting on its spine beside his hip, and
started again. Something pertinent, he thought, with an inward smile.
black yearning sun is braided into the strands
your black mane, when you stretch your arms,
play with the sun as with a little brook
it leaves two dark pools in your eyes...”
stopped as she crawled back towards him, a grin on her face. She settled her
body on top of his, laying her cheek against his bare chest. “I play with the
sun too, don’t I.” She said confidingly.
do,” he replied, stroking her black hair. “A little too much sometimes.”
fuck the sun was starting to set, Spike thought. Maybe we’ll be able to get
cool, go for a walk somewhere with breezes, then maybe go dancing. Somewhere
filled with the smell of hot beating human flesh. Instead of staying in this
crummy hotel room with only that fucking fly to eat.
I prefer to talk to the stars. They’re my friends.” She said perkily, and
rolled so that her back was to his chest. “Can you see them?”
looked up at the cobwebbed, cracked ceiling. “No.” he stated baldly.
Sometimes he liked to go along, but it was too hot for that. Damn, it was too
hot for anything. Even fucking. It was a sorry state of affairs, he thought,
when he didn’t even feel like a screw. Drusilla hummed and swayed her head a
little, and he wondered if she was having a vision. And that if she was having a
vision it wouldn’t be irritatingly obscure and pointless.
started to talk quietly to… something, so Spike picked up the poetry book
again. He had meant it. Sometimes he did wonder if Pablo Neruda was a vampire.
His poetry had that urgency, that consuming urgency that Spike felt every time
he wanted to feed. Or the other thing. Vampires were truly above humans, he
thought. More alive that those that were really alive, they felt everything more
brightly, more intensely, more greedily and more overwhelmingly than anything
that breathed. And Pablo Neruda knew what that felt like. He read aloud, hoping
to bring Dru out of her stupor.
have lost even this twilight.” He read.
She moaned: sublime. Spike paused, then continued reading.
one saw us this evening hand in hand
the blue night dropped on the world
have seen from my window
fiesta of sunset in the distant mountain tops.
a piece of sun
like a cloth between my hands…”
this poem reminded her of Angelus too. They had been in LA, found out that
he’d been seen there during the fifties, but had gone north. Something about a
double murder, a hotel. It had given Spike a flare of hope, until they had been
told that the murdered men had been shot and hung. Not drained. So they had come
north too. Figured that at some point Angelus would make his way to the Big
Apple. To good old New York New York. Fucking hot New York, thought Spike,
shifting in the sweaty sheets. Drusilla was crying gently now.
always you recede through the evenings
where the twilight goes erasing statues.”
then when he arrived, they could get some answers to their questions. Where
did you go? Where did Darla go? Were you together somewhere? And a smaller,
more childlike voice, that Spike tried to suppress as often as possible; Why
did you leave us?
had spent the rest of the fifties in New Orleans. He had hoped to meet Angelus
there. Would have liked to share the cooling and heating of jazz with his sire,
the magnolia blossoms and rich, wine-like blood of the locals. He had loved New
Orleans. It reminded him of Chicago and Absinthe and Speakeasies in the
Twenties. Something else he would have liked to experience with Angelus.
poem, this sad, sad poem, reminded him of Angelus so much it made his jaw
clench. He resisted.
1888 (Lord Byron)
always wondered if Byron was a vampire.” Angelus commented huskily. “Or
maybe he was in love with one.”
us vampires were too manly to write poetry,” Spike said cheekily, squeezing
the sponge over his body.
were sharing a claw-footed bath, Spike spooned against Angelus in the steamy
room. It was February and icy outside: the canals at midnight, as they hunted,
frozen over, solid. Angelus had insisted they come during the carnival months;
he said it was easier to hunt in the chaos and debauchery. So far, however,
Spike noted that they had hardly left the bedroom.
to this.” His sire ordered.
was in him a vital sign of all:
if the worst had fall'n which could befall,
stood a stranger in this breathing world,
erring spirit from another hurl'd;
thing of dark imaginings, that shap'd
choice the perils he by chance escap'd…”
said Spike, not really paying attention. “Very… vampiric.” From another
room in the pensione he could hear Dru singing nursery rhymes to her
turned onto his belly, slopping steaming water over the edge of the tub, and
kneeled between his Sire’s bent legs. He dipped the large sponge into the
water again. It became dark and heavy in his hands; he liked the feel of its
weight. Lifting it out of the water, he squeezed it over Angelus’ chest.
you not like poetry?” Angelus asked, putting the book down on its front and
lying back, allowing Spike to bathe him. Spike blushed at the question, thinking
of the last humiliation of his life. No he bloody well didn’t like poetry.
shrugged. “It’s alright. Bit poncy.” Spike grinned and licked his tongue
against his front teeth. He dropped the sponge into the water, over Angelus’
belly, and reached for the book that had been cast aside. He had vague memories
of studying Byron at Oxford. But then wondered if that was someone else’s
memory. Sometimes he seemed so much that man that it seemed nothing had changed.
And then at other times that man, that William, seemed like a complete stranger.
He shuffled the pages, mimed pushing a pair of glasses up his nose, gave a
slight ‘ahem’, and read aloud, putting on a over-the-top upper-crust accent.
It was all eerily familiar.
him inexplicably mix'd appear'd
to be lov'd and hated, sought and fear'd.
varying o'er his hidden lot,
praise or railing ne'er his name forgot.
Huh, sounds like you.” He said with a half-laugh. Angelus smiled almost
secretively. Their eyes met. Something told Spike there was more to this
than just poetry. “Did you know him?”
laughed, pulling him forward and kissing his forehead fiercely. “Some things,
my boy, are better left none of your business.”
fell forward and relaxed against him, his head tucked under his Sire’s chin.
it a big secret? Can I ask Darla? Did you kill him? Did you screw him? Why
can’t I know?”
cuffed him gently on the ear. “Enough.” He said lightly, but it was a
warning, nonetheless. It made Spike want to know even more. It must be good if
it was a secret. A door slammed outside their room and he heard Darla tread down
the hall and into Dru’s room. It seemed she had taken exception to the
late. Even Darla is trying to sleep.” Angelus commented, settling his hand on
the back of Spike’s neck, his hold loose but possessive. Spike shivered at the
feel of his Sire’s strength, his control. Angelus felt the tremors and sat up,
taking Spike with him. “And this water is cooling. Dry yourself off and get
both got out of the bath, and Spike shivered at the rush of cold air. The worst
part about such warmth and comfort was the way it felt when it was gone. Which
was inevitable. All things had to end. He watched as his sire slung a towel
around his hips and walked into their adjoining bedroom. And he remembered: the
had (if 't were not nature's boon) an art
fixing memory on another's heart.
was not love perchance, nor hate, nor aught
words can image to express the thought;
they who saw him did not see in vain,
once beheld, would ask of him again.
York, 1977 (Pablo Neruda)
me another one, pretty Spike.” Dru turned to him and stroked his face,
bringing him out of the past.
pet. Are you feeling better? Did you have a vision?”
the stars were whispering but it was all sour, so I stopped listening.” She
ran her fingers across his chest and he shivered through the heat. The fly
hammered against the glass. The ceiling fan droned. The sun slowly sank.
witching hour is coming, Spike.” Drusilla stretched on him, writhing against
his growing erection. He growled, grabbing her upper arms and rolling over until
he had her pinned to the bed. She giggled.
rested his head against her breast bone. It was just too hot. The window was
nailed shut, presumably to stop people from dodging the rent, so they couldn’t
get even a hint of breeze. The fly buzzed incessantly. The poetry sang in his
head. The fly buzzed incessantly. On and on.
something between a growl and a roar he sat up and smashed his fist through the
window, taking the curtain with it – it was the only thing that stopped his
hand from catching fire. The glass tinkled to the ground below, a back alley.
Someone shouted up, swearing. But at least the buzzing had stopped, Spike
thought with a wry grin, picking tiny glass shards out of his knuckles. And
maybe now they’d get a hint of breeze.
was very naughty, Daddy.” Drusilla said with an excited frown. She reached out
and licked his knuckles, flecked with tiny cuts, oozing slightly. “Mmm,
yummy.” She licked her lips slowly, and he watched her. “Can we go out to
play soon? I can hear the pretty people’s pretty hearts. All pumping…”
as the sun sets, Dru.” He said, wiping his knuckles on the sheets and lying
back down. It couldn’t be long now. Maybe half an hour: he could feel it. She
lay with her head on his shoulder.
on go on, another, again.”
took him a second to realise what she wanted. Then he picked up the book, and
turned away from the sad poems. Love poems. Love poems for his black goddess,
that’s what was called for. He flicked to the front of the volume. These were
of a woman, white hills, white thighs,
look like a world, lying in surrender.
rough peasant’s body digs in you
makes the son leap from the depth of the earth.
was alone like a tunnel. The birds fled from me,
night swamped me with its crushing invasion.
survive myself I forged you like a weapon,
an arrow in my bow, a stone in my sling.
the hour of vengeance falls, and I love you.
of – ”
stopped abruptly because Dru had sat up. She had her hand over her mouth and was
swaying. He realised that she was having the vision now. Sometimes it happened
that way: there would be an opening act, an intermission of almost startling
lucidity, and then the true show would begin.
was moaning now. “Its not me. Its not me. Its not me.” He slid forward
slowly: no sudden movements.
Dru, love, what are you talking about. What’s not you?”
she wailed loudly, right in his ear. He flinched back. “Its not really me,
it’s the other me, the one surrounded by darkness… my picture in the
you don’t have a reflection.” He explained patiently.
dark where she is… and there are worms in the earth… big ugly worms and
darkness and earth and teeth and Angel…” she babbled.
Do you see him?” he asked urgently, taking her by the upper arms. She had
started to sob. “Dru, where is he? Is he near?” He breathed in, restraining
himself from shaking her with all his might. “Dru!”
let her go and she fell back on the bed. Tears ran down her cheeks. She
hiccoughed, seemed to be coming out of it. He turned away, running a hand
through his hair.
slayer.” She moaned faintly. He turned back at this.
There’s a Slayer here?”
Slayer. Kill the Slayer. Kill her Spike… Kill her for Princess?”
grinned. At last, something interesting was happening. A Slayer. Opportunity #2.
looked over at Drusilla. Now that the vision had stopped, she was looking almost
normal. He pushed her back onto the bed with the weight of his body almost
crushing her, and kissed her, hard. She giggled girlishly into his mouth, and he
bit her lower lip roughly. It started to bleed, and he sucked it into his mouth,
thought of killing another slayer was making him hard again, and he crushed
Dru’s wrists in his grip, sliding his tongue into her mouth, pushing a knee
between her legs. Fuck the heat, he thought. Literally. She writhed and gasped
beneath him. The sheets tangled, and their bodies wept with sweat as the stars
2002 (Pablo Neruda)
was reading. He hadn’t read for years. He read when he missed her and could
still smell her on his fingers and it made him crave her even more. He was
like for you to be still: it is as though you were absent,
and full of sorrow as though you had died.
word then, one smile, is enough.
I am happy, happy that it’s not true.
if Neruda wasn't a vampire, he should have been, Spike decided ruefully. All
was reading this when she arrived. She kicked the door in, and she was a weapon.
me you love me…”
of Part One
Continued in Part Two: Fighting