Hallie and Willie
by Am-Chau Yarkona
Title: Hallie and Willie
Author: Am-Chau Yarkona
Summary: Post- As You Were, Halfrek visits Spike in his crypt. Disclaimer: Whedon is God. Mutant Enemy and various others hold arcangel status.
She materialised just inside the door, silently, and looked around. Spike was leaning on the wall, surveying the ruins. Without making sound, she stepped up to him and touched his shoulder.
"William," she said. He jumped, startled, and stared at her.
"It's only me, Halfrek." She went on, talking into his silence, "Bit muddled in here, aren't you?"
He dropped his head, looked away, but let her hand remain. "Yeah, he said softly, "A bit muddled."
"Plans go wrong?" she asked.
"Yeah." He was sullen, sad.
"That's not all, is it?"
"Something wrong?" she asked, persisting.
"Yeah," he said, and then cracked. "Will you just stop asking?" He moved away from her, but she ran her hand down his arm, until she had a firm grip on his wrist, and followed him. Spike sat down on his old armchair, which- luckily- only got dusty, not damaged. She perched on the arm beside him.
"I'm sorry, William," she said, "but I need to know. Are you in love?"
He didn't reply, staring down at the floor.
No reply. Gently she said, "Tell me."
Finally he did so, quoting Shakespeare, the old words coming back to him, "Out of her favour where I am in love."
She replied in kind, the next line fitting perfectly, "Then I was not wrong in supposing that you loved."
"No. No, indeed you weren't." After a few moments of silence, he went on, more to himself than Halfrek.
"It's now I miss Joyce most, you know. When Dru left me, she made me cocoa. Oh, God, I wish I could have some now. It always seemed to dull the pain before..."
He tailed off, sensing a movement beside him, and looked up at Halfrek. She changed into her demon face and said, "Wish granted." A cup of steaming cocoa- with little marshmallows floating in it- appeared, balanced on top of what had previously been a table, and was now more akin to a pile of planks.
"Thanks, Halfrek," he grinned, "Though it was hardly a vengeance wish."
"I'm hoping we might get around to that," she said, grinning right back, "Tell me the name of this girl who doesn't want you, and I'll curse her any way you like."
At that, he jumped up, horrified. "No," he said- half shouted- pulling free of her hand, "She does want me, she just can't have me while she doesn't love me. Poor girl, she's been on the receiving end of one of your curses already this month, and I don't want her feelings to be created by magic."
"Oh, William," she said, soothingly, "I can't do anything you don't wish for. Come and sit down again."
Slowly, warily, he sat, but he pulled his hand away when she tried to take it again.
"So, then," she said, "Just out of idle curiosity, who is this girl?"
She got no reply. Spike was drinking his cocoa, sip by sip.
"Guessing, is it then? Alright, if that's the way you want to play it." She paused to think, and then rattled on, "Let's see, wants you but can't have you while she doesn't love you, receiving end of one of my curses, you know about it- that must be the one on the Summers household. Who was there? Not Anyanka- she only wants that dreadful whimpering human- not Dawn; she wasn't the receiving end of the curse; the Sophie girl or the Slayer, then. Must be the Slayer, she's got morals like not staying with men you don't love."
Spike still didn't answer, though he'd finished the cocoa.
"I'm right, aren't I? You love Buffy Summers, the Vampire Slayer. Bad move for a vampire, especially a proper one, not a brooding cursed type."
"I'm not quite a proper vampire, though, am I?"
"What do you mean?"
He put the empty mug down and twisted in the chair to face her. "I got this chip put in, didn't I. By the Initiative or whatever. Soldier-boys. Stops me hurting humans without a great whacking migraine. But the thing is, since Buffy came back from the grave, I can hit her- no pain."
Halfrek struggled to take this in. "You can't hurt humans anymore, but she's not human now, so you can hurt her- but I thought the Slayer stayed human, always?"
"She was, until she died and the witch brought her back by magic. Now she's not, but I don't know what she is. And I love her, want to help her. Oh, Halfrek..." He looked down, trying to hide the tears in his eyes, and failing.
"I'm sorry, William," she said, "You really love her, don't you?"
"Yes," he said, "I love her. I can see this, this having me around, is hurting her. One of these days, Halfrek, I've a mind to go and watch the sunrise, just once more."
"Not yet, William," she told him, "Give it time." And with that she slipped out, leaving him alone- with a fresh cup of cocoa.
If you enjoyed this story, please send feedback to Am-Chau Yarkona
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