Love and Poetry

A Buffy the Vampire Slayer Fanfic

By Jaelle


Disclaimer: So not mine. Josh Whedon and Mutant Enemy own all. I'm not worthy!

Spoilers: Everything up to "Selfless" (7.5), especially "Older and Far Away" (6.14) and "Fool For Love" (5.7).

<Sections in angle brackets are flashbacks.>


Buffy came to see me again, telling me that I needed to get out of here. Out of the dark. But I belong in the dark.

She smelt so good, she always smells good. Like... wine. Intoxicating, seductive, inviting.

This time she had a slightly more acrid smell though, like bitterness. Fresh blood on her, and not hers. I know that blood.

"Has Anya been bad again?"

She's quiet all of a sudden.

"Did you kill the demon girl?"

"No. And she's not a demon anymore. She wanted to stop."

Bitter laughter echoes around the room. It takes a while to realise that it's mine.

"Lost another pendant has she?" She used to rabbit on about that damn pendant all the time. And rabbits. Rabbiting about rabbits, rabbits with pendants and dancing bunnies and... what?

"What?"

"God Spike, you are so out of it. I said no, D'Hoffryn kicked her out because she wanted to take back what she'd done."

If only I could take back what I'd done. All of what I'd done, every last thing. Take it back, take it back, I want to take it all back.

"So she's free." I don't want to be free. Free to starve, free to drown, free to feel. No more please no more feelings.

"Yeah, but D'Hoffryn killed her friend Halfrek to pay the price."

Somebody always suffers, somebody always pays. You have to pay the piper but don't pay him till you get to the other side.

Halfrek?

"Halfrek?"

"You remember, the vengeance demon who trapped us all in the house last year? Didn't she know you or something?"

Cecily.

<William?>

<Hey, wait a minute.>

<You guys know each other?>

<Uh, no. No.>

<No, not really.>

<No.>

Oh Cecily, I remember you so well. How could I not, my precious sweet Cecily, my first love. I ached for you, I worshipped you. You made me breathless and giddy, like I was drunk all the time. I spent hours crafting poems for you. They were awful, God they were awful, but they were full of my feelings, the ones I couldn't express in any other way.

<I'm going to ask you a very personal question. And I demand an honest answer. Do you understand? Your poetry, it's... they're... not written about _me_, are they>

<They're about how I feel.>

<Yes, but are they about _me_?>

<... Every syllable.>

<Oh, God!>

What was it now? "My heart expands/'tis grown a bulge in it/inspired by/your beauty effulgent."

Oh God.

<I know I'm a bad poet, but I'm a good man. All I ask is that... is that you try to see me...>

<I do see you, that's the problem! You're nothing to me William. You're beneath me.>

Beneath her. I'm always beneath them. Beneath her, beneath Buffy. From beneath it devours. Beneath beneath beneath beneath beneath.

"Spike, can you hear me? You're totally spacing out. Try to focus."

God forgive me for what I've done, because I never can and noone else will. Lord I am afraid and ashamed of myself. I'm not worthy of your light or forgiveness, but please find it in your heart to forgive Cecily, because she was always a stuck-up cow and it wasn't really her fault. And after I became a vampire I never even thought about her. I never went back, never looked back. I threw William off like a tired old coat and left him lying in the dust, but he's been waiting there all this time and now he's back and he hates what I've done and a part of him still loves her. So please forgive her because I don't know how or why she became a vengeance demon but maybe part of it was my fault and I'm so very sorry for everything. I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm sorry.

I am beneath them all. When the hellmouth comes, let it devour me first.

"Spike! Spike!"

"I should have done better for her. Should have done something better. She deserved better, and so do you."

"Spike listen, you have to get out of here. It's killing you."

"I want to try and do it better."

"Good. That's good. Now to get better we have to get you out of here."

"Listen. Just listen. Please listen."

"... I'm listening."

"My heart expands/My love, you're magnificent/I'm inspired by/your beauty effulgent."

"... That's sweet Spike. Sweet, but kind of weird. Is effulgent even a real word?"

"It's not good."

"Not very, no."

"But it's better."

"Better than what?"

"Better than it used to be. I want to do it better. I want to make it better."

"You do?"

"Yes. I'll make it better. I'll do it all over again, and make it better."

It's all I can give you now. I'm sorry. Goodbye Cecily.

**

The End

**

Author's Notes:

Okay, that was kind of weird. I just watched "Selfless" last night (New Zealand is a bit behind the rest of you guys in Buffy terms) and I wanted to do a kind of farewell or eulogy to/for Halfrek. Yes, she was somewhat annoying, but I rather liked her. Originally I wanted to do a really nice poem for her at the end of this story, but it turns out I suck even more than William at writing love poetry, so instead I just fiddled with his to try and improve on the original (not that difficult, fortunately. Come on,  'bulge in it'? That's the best you could do?). In retrospect, I think refining the original works better for the story anyway.

I did some looking around today when trying to double check my quotes (thanks to Buffyguide.com by the way, for having so many of them on their quotes pages) and I see that some people have a theory that William caused Cecily to become a vengeance demon. Personally, I don't agree with this (as you can tell from the fic), mostly because he doesn't recognise her at once when he sees her, and once he does they're both more embarrassed to see each other rather than angry.

Anyway, hope people liked it. Comments are greatly appreciated.

Jaelle,
28 March 2003.


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