Previously on Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
Tensions run high as the Scoobies and Slayers in training express their worries about Spike and the First Evil's control over his mysterious trigger. After an unreliable attempt to de-trigger the uncooperative vampire, Buffy released him and Wood approached the disappointed Watcher. After saying something had to be done about the very dangerous vampire, Giles agreed but said Buffy would never allow it. Wood told Giles of the Watcher who raised him making Giles recognize whom Wood's mother was.
"You're Nikki Wood's son... Spike killed your mother." Giles said. "And this would have nothing to do with a personal vendetta?"
"Does it matter? Spike is an instrument of evil." Robin answered. "I'm talking about what need's to be done...for the greater good Giles."
Giles listened and was in agreement. After a moment of deep contemplation, a troubled look came over his face. "What exactly do you propose?" Robin advised him to keep Buffy away for a few hours.
Buffy and Giles patrolled together as Wood confronted Spike. Giles asked Buffy
if she was prepared and able to make tough choices in order to save the world.
She replied quickly, resolved that she could. Giles continued to push until
Buffy became uneasy with his questioning.
"Spike's a liability Buffy. He refuses to see it, and so do you..." He urged as she ignored him and ran off to save Spike.
"It's time to stop playing the role of General, and start being one," Giles yelled as his departing Slayer disappeared into the night to save Spike.
Buffy discovered Spike battered but well, leaving Wood's sanctuary and workout room. The vampire told Buffy he spared Wood's life this once on account he killed his mom.
Later that evening, Buffy tucked Dawn into bed and stepped into the hallway to meet a somewhat regretful Watcher who began to apologize for his actions. Buffy told him that Robin failed and Spike was still alive. Giles began to say that changes nothing and she still needed to learn. Buffy interrupted, "No, I think you've taught me everything I need to know." With that, Buffy closed the door in Giles' face.
Giles examined the shackles bolted to the basement wall and wondered what they felt like. Did they cause a dull ache from lack of movement as Spike would sit for hours, a quasi-prisoner of both the First Evil and the Slayer?
"You were going to let that Slayer's brat kill me," Spike crept out of the shadows, puffing on a cigarette as he stepped up behind the Watcher. "I don't take kindly to that."
"No, I don't suppose you would," Giles mumbled. "It was for the greater good, Spike, nothing personal." Giles kept his back to the vampire, wanting to goad him into taking things too far. Perhaps then Buffy would realize what a threat he was to the safety of the future Slayers and what a liability he was to her.
"Didn't work now, did it? Oh wait... I seem to recall a little ditty... lovely little chorus. Seems I can enjoy the top 40's again, thanks to you and the schoolboy. But I wager you aren't satisfied till my ashes dust your shoes. What have you got planned next for me, I wonder?" Spike strolled closer and sat on the bench that served as his temporary home away from crypt.
Giles noticed Spike's burned and battered face and felt a hint of regret. But
like a breeze, the emotion vanished as quickly as it had come and Giles now
felt the hollowness inside. He'd grown accustomed to feeling empty, void of
any emotion. Within a few months, he'd lost many of his friends and acquaintances
with the destruction of the Watcher Council Headquarters, lost much of his reference
materials, and lost his Slayer's trust and respect, not to mention came close
to death to many times to count. Now he felt the years had weighed heavy on
his conscience, so much so he couldn't find it any longer. Perhaps this was another
example of how cold his heart had become.
"She doesn't see it that way. That's good enough for me."
"Buffy is blind when it comes to you, Spike. She is not able to function as a leader with you confusing her emotions."
"I am the only thing standing between the bads and those would-be Slayers when Buffy is out there patrolling. She's the boss, she gets to say whether I leave or stay." Spike jumped to his feet and approached the Watcher wearing a steely gaze. "I'm through discussing this. I have a score to settle with you."
"Yes, I'm sure you do." Giles stood at ease, unwilling to let the vampire intimidate him. "Bloody chip's out and you don't have a freelance demon hunter to interfere any longer. Buffy's refusing to see me... now seems as good a time as any for you to have your say."
"Through talking. Action's more my style." Spike taunted Giles with a push that sent the Watcher stumbling backward, slumping down onto the bench. Giles remained unconcerned, settling in for a passive demonstration.
"I'm not going to fight you Spike."
"I hoped you'd say that." With a vicious blow straight to the nose, Giles head slammed back and bounced off the cement wall behind him. He cupped his face, stinging furiously, and waited for the inevitable flow of blood that would come from his freshly broken nose. The vampire moved so quickly, Giles never heard the shackles snap shut until it was too late.
"There, all cozy." Spike shook the chain, testing the security of
the binds. "Now that I have you all tucked in for the night, I'll let you
in on what I have planned for *you*." He took a seat next to his
prisoner and casually lit another cigarette.
"As I see it, I have a little payback coming to me. So, I figure I have the right to bit of fun."
"Buffy might not agree with your presumption." Giles tried futilely to swat the vampire's arm away but the chains proved successfully awkward for mobility. The attempt only encouraged Spike to enjoy the spectacle of a manacled Giles as he scooted in closer to the Watcher.
"True, but she's not here at the moment and I've got you all to myself."
"Then you'll have to settle for harsh words, Spike. Buffy needs me," Giles warned.
"Actually, no... she doesn't. But the little Power Puff girls do. That's why I spared Wood's life."
"How considerate of you." Giles' sarcasm brought a smile to Spike's bloodied lips. "Seems that soul of yours might not be a total loss after all."
"Renewed appreciation for life, Rupert. That's the new me. Wood means more to us alive so I decided not to kill 'em." Spike's face twisted fierce and his eyes blazed yellow. "You won't be so lucky." He attacked, burying his fangs deep within the stunned Watcher's neck.
Giles gasped, stunned by the sharp pain of teeth puncturing his flesh. The petrifying effect of the vampire's bite immediately overtook him. He found his limbs useless, weakened. All he could do was observe the brutality of his suffering, experience the painful yet extraordinary sensations that ran through his body as Spike drank him. Some part of him had always assumed a vampire would be the death of him; it seemed somehow appropriate for Spike to do the honors. Spike pulled back and let Giles fall lethargically to his lap, taking stock of the Watchers curious smile.
"Enjoying this, are we?" He asked with a raised brow.
"Buffy... will finally know... understand the dangers..." Giles gasped, feeling his head swim with confusion as he struggled to speak. "End this."
"Not to worry. This is just a beginning," Spike brushed an unruly curl from the fading Watcher's forehead and gently removed his glasses. "You won't be needing these anymore."
"K-kill me..." Giles gasped, suddenly realizing what Spike had in mind.
"Not in the plans." Spike hefted Giles up and caught his head as it fell back. With a deceptively tender stroke of his fingers along Giles neck, the vampire examined the bite marks with anticipation. "It's not personal... for the greater good Rupert, remember?" The fangs returned for more, penetrating Giles with savage force. His body began to fail him. It didn't take long before breathing became the last controlled act Giles could manage as his life was sucked slowly away drop by drop. Spike released the half-dead Watcher and lit up a cigarette as Giles fell to the cold cement floor.
"K-kill... m-me..." Giles whispered.
"I'm recruiting for the good guys, Rupert, and I don't fancy bringing any of the whiney crew on board. You've had a good run, mate. Got a good head on those somewhat broad shoulders. I say you'd make a fairly impressive night stalker. Just need Red to whip up one of her world famous soul spells and we've got ourselves a new and improved evil bashing army." Spike knelt down and gave a sympathetic smile. "Now open up. Time for your medicine." With a swift motion of a sharp claw-like fingernail, Spike cut his wrist and let a few droplets' of blood dribble along Giles lips. The Watcher wanted to spit out the vile fluid, hoping death would claim him before the potion had its chance to take affect but he knew better. This vampire had many years to perfect his technique.
"This... isn't... over..." Giles choked on the ruby rich solution coating the back of his throat.
"Oh, you sweet-talker you." Spike looked on with proud satisfaction as the Watcher's eyes grew pale, staring up at him with muted rage. With his final strenuous gasps for breathe, Giles' fell silent and died at the feet of Buffy's strongest warrior.
"Spike? What are you doing out of your... um, bracelet thingies?" Andrew asked as the vampire worriedly paced in the shadowy area of the living room.
"Buffy get up yet?" He glanced up the stairs then back at the newest and oddest choice for a Scoobie member.
"No. She must have had a busy time last night. Should I get Mr. Giles to um... lock you back up downstairs?" the young man asked nervously and slowly shuffled towards the stairs.
"Giles is uh, out; dead to the world. Had a rough night of it. Maybe I should go wake her?" Spike suggested.
"Or you could save yourself the trouble and just stake yourself right here and now. Rule one of living under the Slayer's roof, don't wake her up unless it's an apocalypse or we're out of chocolate."
"Thanks for the tip." Spike nodded and cocked a curious brow at the eccentric nerd. "If it's all the same, I think the Slayer would want to know the news I have for her." He started up the stairs and Andrew shrugged off the vampire's nervous behavior as some undead thing.
Spike softly opened the bedroom door and stepped into Buffy's haven away from
the world. She slept soundly, looking very much like an angel as she peacefully
cuddled the oversized pillow trapped beneath her. He could watch her sleep for
hours but he had more important things to do.
"Go away." she grumbled and pulled the sheets over her head.
"Can't do that, luv. You need to know what happened... give me a chance to explain," Spike carefully made his way to the bedside and knelt down beside the grumpy Slayer.
Buffy's eyes cracked open and she snuck a peek at the pest. Seeing the seriousness in the vampire's eyes, she knew this was important. She sat up and gave the mattress a pat, offering Spike a seat.
"Spill it," she grinned.
"This is going to be a bit... uh, difficult to say but..."
"Spike, time is money," Buffy said then reconsidered. "Actually, time isn't money for me. It's more like... um, whatever. Cut to the chase!"
"We need help. We can't fight the First with the band of potential baby Slayers and the usual vaudeville routine we have going for us. Desparate times call for desparate measures," he started and Buffy immediately showed symptoms of impatience.
"Spike, enough with the colorful lead-in. Time for the punch-line."
"Giles is dead."
Buffy sat silent for moment, unable to understand the words spoken to her. She'd misheard Spike, that's all. "What about Giles?"
"Buffy, Giles is dead."
"That's not funny. Enough with the jokes... Andrew put you up to this?" Buffy shrugged it off as she straightened her pajama top.
"It's true. He's..."
"No! You're wrong. Giles can't..." Buffy tossed the covers off her and jolted to her feet, pacing frantically back and forth as Spike looked on.
"Buffy," he said softly. "I'm sorry but it was necessary..."
"He can't be gone. Giles is... he's my..." She realized she couldn't breathe.
"I know this is hard..."
"What happened? When?" Tears filled her eyes as she paused to catch her breath, almost to the point of hyperventilating. "How? The First?"
Spike stood up and went to her. He took the distraught Slayer into his arms, ignoring the beam of light searing into his wrist as he tried to console her. She needed him more than ever now.
"Oh my god!" Buffy sobbed the second Spike's arms met her. "Oh my god! Giles?"
"There was nothing you could do," Spike offered as he caressed a hand down her back.
"I need to see him... need to... oh my god..." she slipped out of Spike's arms and fell to the floor.
"Buffy, there's more you need to know." Spike knelt down and took her hand. "It was..."
"Where is he?" She shot up to her feet and headed for the door. She gripped the knob and looked back at Spike, waiting for the location of the fallen Watcher.
"Buffy, you don't understand..."
"Where?!" she yelled as she tore the door from it's hinges and held it upright in her powerful grasp.
"Basement." Spike mumbled and watched the door slam to the floor as she ran down the hall and stairs, determined to find Giles. "Buffy!" He followed after her, managing to stop her just as she reached the basement door. "He wanted this."
The exasperated Slayer paused and looked anxiously back at Spike. "What? Wanted what?"
The vampire ran his fingers nervously through his bleached blonde locks and took hold of the doorknob. "After last night..."
"Oh my god..." Buffy eyes teared over as she struggled to control her emotions. "We fought. The last... the last words he heard me say to him... no..."
"Giles realized the trigger was deactivated. He recognized that we needed more help, more strength, more... ferocity. You said it yourself."
"What happened?" The Slayer's face grew stern as she strained to show some restraint.
"He understood the necessity for... for more warriors," Spike explained, unsure how she would take this.
"What are you saying, Spike?"
"Giles demanded to be turned," he paused as Buffy's eyes grew wide with disbelief. "He figured Willow could make with the soul spell before he had a chance at any wicked behavior."
"Never! He'd never!" Buffy shook her head, unwilling to accept the
preposterous story as Spike explained his version of the facts. "What did
"Where is he?" Buffy yelled up to Spike as he made his way downstairs.
"What do you mean?" Spike asked as he reached the final step and peered around toward the bench where he'd left the deceased Watcher. The shackles were unlocked and folded neatly over one another on the bench.
"Spike? What did you do?" Buffy sobbed as she picked up a handwritten note placed purposefully over the abandoned restraints. Spike approached the weeping Slayer and took up the note. The handwriting was handsome and clear, simply stating:
"Always check for the keys.
Spike crumpled up the note and growled, "Bugger!"