League of Souls by DawnofMe


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Chapter Notes: All parts of this series but Torchair Air Eideadh can be found here at this archive. Torchair can be read by going to my livejournal site. A link is in my profile here.
Many thanks to my betas: Mabel Marsters, Slaymesoftly and Tanit.
“You can stop glaring at me like that,” Faith said with a roll of her eyes, her sword swinging loosely at her side.

“No, I really can’t,” Buffy said, as she walked beside Spike.

Buffy knew that he was just as annoyed with Faith as she was, but he stared straight ahead and didn’t get involved with the conversation. After months of working with Faith, Buffy told herself that she should be used to her no nonsense ways. They didn’t patrol together as a group often. Faith preferred to work alone and Buffy and Spike were happy to patrol on the other side of town most nights.

“Look, I’m sorry if I killed the last vamp too fast to suit you.” Faith shrugged. “I don’t have the blood lust like I used to. It’s a job, you know, and I just wanted to get it done.”

“Yeah, well, stop being such a hog with the baddies. It’s just a job for you, but Spike and I have to get our violence in somehow.”

“Let it go, pet,” Spike finally said with a smirk. “The witch is probably waiting for her back at the house. I’d be in a hurry to get back to you, if you were waiting there.”

Faith started to speak, stuttered and then fell silent. Buffy gazed at Spike and shook her head at him. How he always managed to know what was going on with everyone still amazed her. When they were around the others, he was usually quiet, but he paid attention. Faith and Willow had been doing the are we together dance since Spike, Buffy and Giles had gotten back from England, but because Faith closed off her emotions so well, Buffy would have never guessed that Faith was so invested in the relationship.

Spike got ahead of them and took the steps to the porch two at a time. He held the door open for them, Faith going in first.

“Yo, that’s getting old, man. Even if I wasn’t the strongest woman on earth, I could open a door by myself.”

“Didn’t do it for you,” Spike answered back with a sneer.

Buffy reached up and gave him a quick peck on the cheek as she went by.

“And do you guys have to be all over each other all the time?” Faith asked peevishly.

“I think it’s kind of cute,” Willow said from the living room.

Spike grunted as he took the swords from the girls and kicked the weapons chest open. He tossed them in and let the lid clap shut.

“You would think so,” Faith said, brushing past Willow on her way to the couch.

With a steaming mug of tea, Giles entered the living room. “Any luck with that vamp nest?”

“Yep. There were only seven of them, not twelve, but we got them all,” Faith said as she put her arm across the sofa and behind Willow. “So what now?”

Buffy stood just inside the living room with Spike at her back, watching the exchange, and couldn’t help but feel jealous of how well the watcher and slayer worked together.

Giles sat down and took a sip of his tea before saying, “Now we keep an eye on the news and hope that the reports of missing women stop coming in.”

“I still think something is off about all this,” Spike said. “Vampires rarely care what color hair their dinners have.”

“You keep saying that, but they’re all turning up with wounds on their necks and all the blood drained from their bodies,” Giles said with a slow shake of his head. “What do you think, Buffy?”

She shifted from one foot to the other and shrugged. They’d started taking notice of the serial killings after the sixth one was reported. The other five had happened in another city, but the sixth had happened in Sunnydale. A blonde co-ed had gone missing from the college and her body turned up a few days later at one of the cemeteries. And like the other victims, she’d been draped over a tombstone, her neck torn open and her blood drained.

A week later, another blonde victim turned up dead across town at a second cemetery. They took interest after that and assumed that it was a vampire. But, Spike had commented early on that he thought something didn’t smell right about the whole thing. Buffy said, “The ones we dusted tonight didn’t seem to know what we were talking about, but it’s not like they could be relied on to tell the truth. Still, I trust Spike’s instincts. Even if a vampire was getting very selective in his meal choices, why would he hold on to the body for days?”

“Someone needs to have a look at that last body. I’m betting it’s not even a vampire that did this,” said Spike.

“What do you think, Giles?” Faith asked. “The last victim is probably still at the morgue. I could get in there, no problem.”

With excitement lighting up her face, Willow stood. “I’ll go with you. I can distract the employees while you slip in the back and””

“Slow down,” Faith said. “I won’t be going until the morning and there’s no way you’re going with me.”

Willow’s bottom lip came out. “Why not?”

“I told you; I’m not Buffy. I do better when I’m alone.”

Giles was just getting up, ready to make a hasty retreat from the upcoming battle when the front door swung open. Xander stepped in, jiggled his keys when he saw the group congregated in the living room and gave them all a lopsided grin.

“I have returned with our young charge.”

Dawn rushed past Xander and started to climb the stairs.

“Hey, Niblet! Don’t run off so fast.” Spike went to the stairs and called up. “Come down here and tell us how the dance was.”

“You wanna know how the dance was?” the teen asked as she descended the steps. “I’ll tell you how it was. Freaking embarrassing.”

Buffy rolled her eyes and wished she could follow Giles and leave the room. The Watcher said good night and disappeared up the stairs while Dawn stood in the hall, tapping a blue-heeled foot on the hardwood floor. Dawn allowed Spike to guide her to the living room where she flopped down on the chair that Giles had vacated, the scent of expensive French perfume lingering in the air.

“I don’t see why Rodney couldn’t have taken me home.” Dawn directed her complaint at Faith.

Faith took a deep breath, but just stared at her, affecting a bored look. Buffy sat on the arm of the chair opposite Spike and patted Dawn’s shoulder.

She looked up at Buffy. “When you were in high school, Mom didn’t make you wait for some adult to pick you up.”

“I didn’t go to a lot of dances in high school. I was busy trying to keep Sunnydale safe,” she told her sister bluntly. “I’m glad Xander was there to pick you up.”

Xander put his arms out defensively as Dawn glared at him. “Don’t look at me. I just do what I’m told.”

Spike gave her the third degree about what her date did and didn’t do and when Dawn couldn’t take it anymore, she got up in a huff and went to her room. They jumped when her door slammed, but they all grinned at each other.

“Well, it’s getting late,” Xander said, “and I’ve got to be on site early. You ready, Wills?”

“Yeah.”

Faith grabbed her hand and kept Willow from getting up. “Just a minute.”

The intense look between them was everyone’s cue to leave. Buffy grabbed Spike’s hand and led him towards the kitchen. They heard Xander telling them that he’d just wait outside in the car for Willow. The refrigerator’s motor kicked in as they passed it; she gazed longingly at it but as hungry as she was for a bit of blood, she wanted out of the house even more.

Spike gently shut the back door and followed her down the porch steps. Buffy leaned back against his chest when he came from behind her and wrapped his arms around her.

“The night is still young for us vamps,” he murmured into her ear. “How about we go see what other trouble might be brewing and get in a spot of violence before we turn in?”

Looking up at the stars in the crisp and cloudless sky, Buffy nodded. “Sounds like a plan. Although the pickings have been slim lately. I doubt we’ll find a demon or vampire that’s out and about.”

“Buffy!” Xander called as he threw open the back door. “There’s a vampire at the door and she’s insisting that we invite her in.”

Spike arched an eyebrow. “Didn’t know they delivered violence to your door now.”

Xander let them go first and by the time they got to the front door, Faith was brandishing a stake.

“You’re not a very bright vamp, are you?” the Slayer was saying. “You can’t get in, but I have great aim with a stake and it can get out.”

Spike gripped Faith’s wrist just as she went to toss the stake and Buffy said, “Stop!” Then she addressed the vampire. “What are you doing here?”

“It took me forever to get here, and yet you keep me standing at the door.” The vampire clucked and shook her head. “Americans are so rude.”

Spike chuckled, even as he fought with Faith to keep a hold on her wrist. Buffy folded her arms across her chest. “Someone invite Andra in.”

Faith got free of Spike, glared at Buffy and pointed, “You’re just going to invite”wait, Andra? Come in.”

“You must be Faith, the current slayer,” the amused vampire said in her faint but evident Scottish accent, as she stepped over the threshold and looked Faith up and down.

“You didn’t answer Buffy’s question,” Spike said.

Andra took her time looking around the entry hall while Xander, Willow and Faith gawked at her. Then Andra grinned and stepped in to the living room with the gang following at her heels. “I’m taking a holiday.”

“Have a seat,” Buffy said. “I thought you said you’d never fly in an airplane.”

“Still haven’t. I hitched a ride on a boat with a bunch of BMWs and then I took my time sightseeing across America.”

Giles came into the room, his jaw ticking, and eyed her. “We were wondering where you disappeared to.”

“Hmph! Your cousin’s the one that suggested I take an extended holiday.”

~ * ~ * ~

A slight breeze had picked up as Buffy and Spike walked along the path through Restfield Cemetery. Being close to dawn, dew had formed over the grass and Buffy didn’t want to get her shoes wet, so they’d kept to walking on the concrete. They hadn’t found one thing to kill and she was getting restless.

“We should head back, I think,” she said, disappointed.

Spike groaned but changed directions with her. “The basement isn’t big enough for three, you know.”

“Yeah. We’ll have to come up with a different arrangement tomorrow.”

“Good,” he said, grabbing her and pulling her in for a kiss. “I want you all to myself and I don’t think I could stand to keep my hands off you for too long.”

“You’re going to have to wear something when you go to bed, you know.” Buffy traced a finger over his shirt and slowly blinked.

“Oh, don’t remind me.” When her hand dipped into his jeans, he tried to step away. “Now don’t start that. I’m already feeling the frustration without any teasing from you.”

She glanced over her shoulder and then blinked again as she pulled him close. “Your old crypt is still empty. There’s no bed or anything, but…” She shrugged.

He grabbed her hand and pulled her towards the crypt. “Since when do we need a bed?”

“We don’t have much time before sunrise.”

“We’ll make the most of it.”

They broke out into a run and shoved the door open together. The place looked different without all of Spike’s things, and she made a remark about it. He placed his coat over their favorite sarcophagus and they rushed to shed their clothes.

“You’re the only possession that means anything to me.” He hopped onto the sarcophagus, holding his hands out to her in invitation.

Just thinking about the claim caused the marks on her neck to tingle. “I am yours,” she whispered.

Spike pulled her on top of him, nuzzled her neck and playfully said through a growl, “Mine, mine, mine.”

TBC
Chapter Endnotes: Thanks for reading!


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