Ten Years After

Chapter 14

Dawn awoke as sunshine crept through the chink between her curtains. She lay in bed, and considered the small shaft of light bisecting the cream coloured cover of her duvet. Had Spike stayed with her last night she would have had to be more careful closing those curtains, or that cheerful sign of a dry, pleasant, spring day would have damaged him. The reality of life shared with a vampire is a lot less romantic than the story-book romance version.

She thought back to that lunch eaten in Prince’s Street Gardens such a short time ago, the squirrel, the tourists, and the sunshine. Spike would never be able to share that sort of moment with her. Disneyland – she intended to go to Disneyland Paris sometime during the next few days, to remind her of the US, but it would have to be alone. Which was sad; somehow she could see Spike loving the rides, particularly the ones that made you scream. ‘Not going to happen,’ she thought, ‘it wouldn’t be safe even if it was overcast and raining, and they’re not going to open the park in the dark just for him, not as if he’s a rock star or anything!’

“It is so not fair!” She said out loud suddenly, glowering at the bright white line across the duvet. “What is it they say – ‘life’s a bitch, and then you die!’ If only it was that bloody easy!”

She got out of bed, and made herself coffee, then curled back up on the bed to drink it. She thought about a future spent with Spike. They would be like those wooden figures in the weather houses you sometimes saw in Europe – when the man is outdoors the woman is indoors, and when she is outdoors he is always in.

‘I am too well named,’ she thought. ‘I am the morning, he is the night. If I am Dawn he’s Dusk, or Midnight. Dusk – dawn has shades of grey and so does dusk, and if I can cope with him just draining the odd bad guy, rather than staking him on the spot, then I do grey, and if he’s doing the odd bit of restrained draining then he definitely does grey as well! Midnight might be more romantic sounding, but less accurate.’ She smiled despite herself, ‘oh Dawn! Giles and Dr. McStay have trained you well – always be accurate, even when considering a suitably descriptive name for a vampire you are considering as a long term relationship!’

‘It must have been easier for Buffy,’ Dawn thought then. ‘Slayers are sort of creatures of the night as well – it’s when they are most likely to find their prey, after all. Not that I can’t cope with spending most of my social life in the dark, but it’s a shame to not be able to do so many things together.’

“Bloody Angel!” she shouted suddenly, throwing her pillow across at the other bed. She thought ‘if he hadn’t been so fucking righteous about the Gem of Amara he could have kept it somewhere, taken it out now and again, and lent it to Spike sometimes!’

Then she laughed out loud at herself, and realised that if Angel had kept the Gem of Amara Spike would have kept on chasing it, and probably not got chipped. Life, the Universe and Everything would have been very different. Even if they had all survived Sunnydale without Spike playing any part, she would certainly not have been considering him as a romantic proposition!!

‘Angel’s much longed for solution of the Shanshu would be no bloody good either,’ Dawn thought. ‘Make Spike able to go out in the daylight, then he grows old and dies, and I’ll still be all alone. Bloody stupid Angel!’ That rang a bell in her memory, and she thought ‘Wonder if his hair still sticks up?’

Then she had a sudden flash of inspiration. Willow was regarded by those who knew these things as one of the strongest magic users of her generation, possibly of many generations. Surely if anyone could make another magic item to prevent vampiric combustion it would be Willow! Perhaps she could ask her about it. Perhaps she should ask Spike about it too, she thought; he might not want one any more.

On second thoughts, perhaps not a good idea to mention the possibility of Willow being able to make such a thing, it might be better to see how things went with Spike first. She wouldn’t want to ever have even a vague worry that he might be with her just to get a Ring of Sunshine Invulnerability!

She decided to read up on the Folies Bergeres before going out, and got out the information file from the bureau drawer. Apparently it had been the place to go in Paris from the late nineteenth century right through to the middle of the twentieth. It had been somewhat superseded by the Crazy Horse and the Moulin Rouge, particularly after the film which Dawn remembered seeing in Sunnydale with Janice, and had had to somewhat reinvent itself. Now it had one of the most extravagant cabarets in Paris again, and was once more one of the major tourist attractions. From the illustrations it looked as if posh frocks and tuxedos were the correct clothes – perhaps she shouldn’t have thought Spike in a tux would be too much to ask for when she’d planned that river cruise!

It seemed to have a separate dining room and theatre, mostly decorated in blue and gold – so probably not a blue or gold dress then, Dawn decided – wouldn’t do to be camouflaged against the wallpaper!

Designer prices were a bit out of reach, but shopping in some of the boutiques and big department stores was great fun, and eventually Dawn found something she really liked in the Galeries Lafayette; a simple dress that clung in the right places and draped in the others, in a dark purple shade – the colour of damsons, or aubergines, and underwear and strappy sandals in the same shade. ‘Probably best not to have Spike with me,’ she thought, ‘I really don’t want to know how many other people have tried these sandals on before me!’


The telephone in Dawn’s room rang just as she was finishing pinning up her hair. It was Reception, telling her that Mr. Aurelius was waiting for her – ‘Good thing he told me about the passport name,’ she thought, ‘or I’d have been totally confused!’ “I’m on my way down,’ she answered, and giving herself one last check in the mirror, put off the light, and went down.

Spike was standing in reception, in just the right place for no-one to notice his lack of reflection in any of the mirrors, and he did look very impressive in a tuxedo. The girl on the reception desk was blatantly staring at him – and gave Dawn a rather envious look when she realised that Dawn had noticed her.

He let out a low whistle when he saw Dawn, and said “Stunning – you’ve definitely got the hang of this shopping thing pet!”

On a whim Dawn asked the girl on reception to take a photo of her and Spike, to send to Willow later. Spike stood slightly behind her, his arm casually around her waist and his head just touching hers, and they both smiled.

In the taxi Dawn asked Spike how his business meeting had gone, and couldn’t help adding ‘Did you get something to eat at it?’

He looked at her and grinned – aware of how innocuous the question would sound if their taxi driver could be bothered listening to their English conversation – and just how barbed the question was in reality. “Wasn’t a terribly important meeting, not a completion or end of contract meeting,” he answered her amicably. “Just networking, keeping up contacts – you know the sort of thing. Probably won’t be winding things up here for a month or two yet. Financially it was useful, and I just used up some stuff I had in the fridge when I got home – before it went off.”

Dawn gave him a long cool look. “Just wondered,” she said, “hope you’ve got an appetite for dinner tonight … and things.”

“No problem, steak and wine’ll go down a treat!” He paused, and then laughed “Steak and wine – sounds like you when you were younger!”

Another cool look. ‘I wonder if I was the first person it reminded him of?’ passed through Dawn’s mind. “Sounds good to me as well,” she said, then a pause for one heartbeat. “Going down a treat doesn’t sound too bad either,” she said with a sidelong glance.

Spike burst out laughing. “Sure as hell got the hang of this flirting thing as well, pet, haven’t you?” he asked, not sounding as if he really expected an answer.

The outside of Les Folies was interesting but not stunning. “Art Deco,” Spike said, “not the original – added in the 1930s sometime I think.”

Once inside, however, Dawn had to stop and gaze around her. “Wow!” she said eventually, “kitsch so over the top as to be stunningly spectacular!”

“Should have seen it when they lit it all with gas lights,” Spike said, “and almost all the men were smoking and, by the Twenties, some of the women. The light was swirling and mystical, felt like Fairyland. Dru loved it. ‘Course it could sometimes be hard to keep her from dining on the diners, and I s’pose all the smoke must have ruined the gilding, but still …

“S’funny – I can cope with the memories now, and remember the ‘good’ bits without getting so distressed by the things we were doing. Don’t know if that’s a good thing, or whether I’m slipping back a bit. I mean I know now it was wrong, and terrible, but at the time it was fun, and that memory of happiness is still there. Didn’t eat many of the showgirls either – didn’t want to spoil the show!”

Dawn still looked around her, and decided to file the question of whether Spike having non-distressing memories meant he was ‘slipping back a bit’ in her brain for later contemplation. Spike hadn’t sounded as if he wanted to discuss it in depth right now. It was interesting, in a good sort of way, that Spike seemed occasionally to almost be seeking reassurance from her about morality – sort of being his private Watcher! It made her feel that she had something to offer in a relationship with him.

Dinner was eaten in alcoves around the great central area – three or four tables to the alcove. The place was not full, and in their alcove only one other table was in use. Seated at it were another couple in their late twenties, who gazed at each other to the exclusion of almost everything else, and murmured endearments at each other – “in Hungarian” Spike said, as he could hear them better than they would have expected. It meant that Spike and Dawn felt that they could speak to each other as if there was no-one else who would listen.

Steak and wine was the order of the evening for both of them; Spike’s so rare that Dawn felt slightly squicked. She laughed at herself, and told him why, ending “I have no problem with you warming up blood in the microwave and drinking it out of a mug, or having it in a bowl with Weetabix, so I can’t possibly find the sight of your steak bleeding on the plate ick-making, it’s just silly!”

Spike laughed with her, and told her she’d just have to look elsewhere – although the main problem with very rare steak from his point of view was all the chewing. She took his advice – and whilst he ate his way through his meat she alternated between watching the passers-by, and looking at Spike, rather than his plate.

More wine came with dessert. Spike insisted that, just as he had predicted, he had had to glare at ‘at least half a dozen men’ who had been ‘ogling’ Dawn as they had been shown past to their own tables. The look in his eyes as he said it gave Dawn a warm fluttery feeling in her stomach.

Over coffee Spike told her stories of earlier visits to the Folies, firstly with Angelus, Darla and Drusilla, later with just Dru. “Josephine Baker was a smart bird – American – had all of Paris eating out of her hand. Dru used to love coming here when she was performing – so many men hung around the stage door afterwards hoping for a glimpse that there could be easy pickings. She used to say that as almost all of them were supposed to be respectably married men it served them right!”

‘Hmm – Drusilla the pseudo-vengeance demon – that’s a new take.’ Dawn thought, but she didn’t say anything. She looked across at the Hungarian couple, still gazing into each other’s eyes and murmuring to each other, heads almost touching across the table, and thought wryly ‘They do romance, and I get tales of his mad ex-girlfriend draining the life-blood of middle-class men out for a bit of excitement!’

Then Spike reached across the table, took her hand, and gazed into her eyes, saying “But this is the first time I’ve wanted to stand up and shout ‘Look at this woman, this perfect woman, and envy me, because she’s leaving with me!’”

‘Now that,’ Dawn thought, ‘is romance!’


They were ushered through into a theatre area as spectacular as the dining one had been, and the cabaret itself was equally impressive. There were dancers in scanty sparkling costumes, a couple of top French singers, and a stunning magic show; but nothing gave Dawn more of a thrill than the tingle she felt where Spike’s arm lay across the back of her seat, and his hand rested on her shoulder.

As they walked out of the building, Spike’s arm around her waist, he kissed her briefly as they waited for a taxi. ‘I’m confused,’ Dawn thought. ‘I don’t know what this relationship is yet. One minute we feel as if we are just the old Dawn and Spike of years ago, another minute he tells me I am a perfect woman and he wants to shout that I’m his, and then I just get a ten second kiss! Still, I suppose if it was anyone else that I’d met less than a week ago I wouldn’t exactly be expecting life-time commitment – but I’m still confused!’

As they got into the taxi Spike gave the driver the address of Dawn’s hotel, then pulled her close, and nuzzled her hair, nibbled her earlobe and her neck, and made her squirm as much as she had the night before last, laughing gently at the effect he was having. He was holding her so closely that reciprocation was difficult, and Dawn gave up, and wallowed in sensation until they reached their destination.

Spike paid the taxi driver and walked into the hotel lobby with her, now with just their fingers touching. He told her to go on up, he’d be with her in a minute, and patted her on the bottom as he pushed her in the direction of the lifts. She caught sight of herself in the mirror as she waited for the lift – dress still looked good, hair a little mussed, face a little flushed – total effect probably someone who’s been snogged in the taxi, she thought, smiling slightly. Then, as the lift arrived, ‘Wonder what Spike’s doing to not come up with me?’

Arriving in her room, Dawn decided to send the picture taken by the receptionist earlier to Willow. She squinted slightly at the phone, and came to the conclusion that she’d drunk slightly more than she’d thought. She started to scan down her friends list, and hit send just as Spike came through the door, carrying a bottle of champagne and two glasses.

“Champagne for milady,” he announced. “Didn’t bother with the caviar – we’ve eaten already, and it’s very like fish flavoured blackberry jam!” He popped the cork, and poured out the wine. Passing Dawn a glass he said “A toast. To you – because you deserve the best.” He took a sip, whilst Dawn blushed, but took a sip herself. Then he continued “To … us?”

“To us!” Dawn said firmly, raised her glass, and took a large mouthful as the bubbles went up her nose and made her laugh.

Spike looked over the top of his glass at her. “How drunk are you pet?” he asked.

“Not very – why?” Dawn answered.

“Couple of reasons – selfish one first,” he continued, with a grin. “Wondered if you were still going to be up to the ‘things’ as promised earlier.”

“Of course I am, although I thought being ‘up’ was the bit you did!” Dawn retorted. ‘OK,’ she thought, ‘that helps me with the question of what sort of relationship this is – it’s definitely one between two consenting adults.’

“Secondly,” Spike continued, after the merest hint of a grin at Dawn’s answer, “We could do with a bit of sensible conversation first, which is why I’m standing here whilst you’re sitting there!”

“I can do sensible conversation,” was Dawn’s reply, “at least at the moment. I’d better leave drinking any more of that champagne until after the conversation though!”

This time Spike’s grin was wide, and he ostentatiously moved the bottle out of her reach. “First – how long are you staying in Paris, love?”

“I booked the hotel for a fortnight, so about another week, but Giles did say that I could have as long a break as I like. Although from what Willow said last night they might want me home for the Key research by the end of my fortnight, and they are doing that for me, so I guess I’d better go! Why?”

“Well like I said, I’m here for another month or two, and if there is an ‘us’ it’s going to be an ‘us’ at a distance for a while, just wanted to make sure you realised. Or do you just see this as a holiday romance?” Spike asked, suddenly rather sombre.

“I’d rather it wasn’t.” Dawn said, equally seriously. “But I don’t know what you want either.”

“Been thinking about it. Been thinking about it quite a lot ever since the evening at the Café Ma Bourgogne, when I was knocked over by how you’d grown up, and I realised I couldn’t just say ‘nice meal, nice to see you, bye.’ When I began to get an inkling as to why you’d suddenly got in touch, and realised it was all a bit scary for you.” Spike said, totally serious now.

“Began to realise that I could be around for you for as long as you needed, or wanted. Thought about it, and knew that I not only could be around, but that I should be around, running off was not an option. Not that I think it’s exactly why I’m still here – not that big-headed – but as I am still here (alive I mean, not just in Paris) it would be wrong to just abandon you.”

Dawn went to say something, but Spike continued without letting her break in. “Knew almost as soon as I thought about the running off option that I didn’t want to do that.” Dawn relaxed again.

“Trouble then was I knew that I could fall for you big time, but didn’t think you could want me like that, not really. ‘Cos of how we were before, and ‘cos why should you? – you’re beautiful and clever; even your name shows you’re light, and new; and me – creature of the night, demon thing.” Spike paused, for a moment, and then continued.

“Thought I should keep it all platonic, be your knight in shining armour, at your beck and call. Damp down the fancying thing. Be a sort of punishment for all the bad things I’ve done over the years, y’know, to not be all jealous if you were with someone else; be a shoulder for you to cry on and things. Only I knew after just a couple of days that it would be like putting a diabetic running a sweet shop, or me in charge of a blood-bank, sodding torture! I would do it, still will if it’s what you want either now or in the future, but I’m not totally stupid – I know flirting when I see it!”

“Good,” said Dawn, “Glad you’re not getting slow in your old age!”

Spike grinned, but went on solemnly, “I want this to be a man/woman thing, but if you don’t, I’ll still be around for you, for as long as you want me to be. And if you decide you don’t want people to know about it being a man/woman thing, I don’t mind – if you want Giles and Willow and … people to think it’s just platonic …”

‘Ah-ha!’ Dawn thought, ‘that’s why the cool some of the time thing – not because he’s ashamed of me somehow, but because he thinks I might not want people to know!’

Out loud she said “Spike – if you and me are having any sort of relationship that’s up to us – and I won’t want to keep it a secret. If I was ashamed of you for some reason, how could I fancy you? I’d be stupid to be being shagged senseless by you at regular intervals and be trying to hide it – look at all the envious looks you’ve been earning me this week!”

“S’different though,” came the reply; “they don’t know what I am.”

“No,” Dawn answered, “but they don’t know what I am either, or they might think you’re mad to go with something that isn’t even a real person!”

“Isn’t even a real person? Don’t be stupid!” Spike almost yelled.

“OK – I think I’m real, but no more or less real or what I seem to be than you – stupid vampire!” she finished, affectionately.

“Another thing – whilst we’re being serious and talking this through – I don’t want to become some sort of puppet on the pay-role of the bloody Watchers’ Council, just because I’m with you. Sort of tamed sample vampire. S’not me.” Spike said.

“OK. Actually if you and me are going to be together for a very long time, not exactly spending every day in each other’s pockets might be a good thing,” Dawn agreed.

“As long as you don’t mind Giles and Willow knowing about us I’d like to be able to tell them, ‘specially the Watcher, that I want to be around for you as long as you need. Tell him it’s because I want to before he finds some bloody prophecy somewhere that says that it’s what I’ve got to do!” Spike said, almost grudgingly.

Dawn laughed. ‘Better not mention my dreams just at the minute,’ she thought.

Out loud she said “So are we kinda sorted now? I want you to want me in a man/woman way, and you do. You know I feel like that, I know you feel like that. I don’t want to hide you from anyone, as long as you are happy to be seen out in public with me! You don’t want to be employed by the Council, so you’ll do your own thing, but I love my job, so I’m staying in it. We’re going to spend some of our time together, and then we’ll spend some of it apart.”

Before Spike could say anything she continued “And I’ve got an empty glass, and you’ve got a fullish bottle of champagne, and there are ‘things’ to do!”

Spike reached for her glass, but was still looking somewhat serious. “Before we go any further,” he said, “I’m warning you that I’m not staying the night!”

Before Dawn could ask why, or complain, he added “Because I don’t want to be stuck in a bloody tuxedo until tomorrow night! I almost asked you to come back to my apartment with me, but then you’d have been the one stuck in evening dress in the morning, so I’m going to sneak off later!”

“Alright,” she agreed, “I can cope with that!”


They drank almost all the champagne, by the time Dawn’s glass was finally empty they were half-sitting half-lying on the bed she thought of as ‘Spike’s’. Spike had shed his jacket and tie, and was peeling Dawn out of her dress – which he carefully hung-up for her - ‘better than having a lady’s maid!’ Dawn thought, and although Dru’s face swam before her briefly, it didn’t bother her.

Spike sounded more sober than Dawn felt, ‘years more practice and a different metabol ... metabol … metabolism,’ she thought, and then giggled.

Spike smirked at her “You’re tipsy!” he said.

“You could be right!” Dawn answered, “‘s all right though – ‘things’ are fun when I’m slightly drunk!”

“OK then,” Spike laughed, “you can have the last drops!” He pushed her back onto the bed and slowly dribbled the remaining champagne down her torso, and then as Dawn gasped and laughed he followed by licking it all off her again.

When every drop was licked off, Spike paused, and gazed at her. She loved the way he looked at her; there was lust yes, but also admiration, as if she was a work of art, and caring, caring that this was Dawn, not just any woman. Such an expressive face; such expressive eyes, to be able to convey all that with the way he looked at her, she thought. Then his hands were cupping her face, and his head came down to hers, and as he kissed her she lost all ability to think.

Dawn found herself pulling Spike’s white shirt out from the waist of his black trousers, and he stopped kissing her, and pulled back for a moment to take his clothes off. Soon the only things left that anyone was wearing were the tiny knickers and sandals in the colour of Dawn’s dress that Spike had left on her when he had so carefully removed her dress.

She asked “Should I take these off?”

“No, leave them,” came the answer, “they look good.”

His tongue was still cool from the champagne, it had not warmed from contact with Dawn’s own tongue, and as it flicked against Dawn’s nipples they responded by swelling and hardening. “Bugger,” said Spike, “I wished I’d kept some of the champagne for these guys – and for here,” as his fingers ran under the edge of the scrap of damson coloured silk. “Next time I will!”

“Mmm – that would be nice.” Dawn murmured, thinking that she liked the sound of that ‘next time’. “I want to lick champagne off you too – perhaps I should ring room service for some more?”

“No.” Spike said, “Don’t care if they are used to people shagging in their rooms all the time – don’t want any waiter looking at you like this, and don’t want you to put anything else on! Could get some cold wine out of the mini bar though!”

“Go on then.” Dawn giggled, and pushed him off the bed in the direction of the mini bar.

Soon Dawn’s nipples had been bathed in a nice Sauvignon Blanc, as had much of the rest of her body, and she had reciprocated, dribbling wine onto Spike’s body, then licking it off; rolling around together until he was on his back, and she was swirling both cool wine and her tongue around the head of his cock; trying not to giggle as he made a low groan of appreciation.

Still Dawn’s sandals and knickers remained in place, and when eventually one thing led to another, and she reached her climax, it was with her sandaled ankles crossed behind Spike’s neck, whilst the action of his cock moving inside her rhythmically pulled the, now very wet, scrap of fabric backwards and forwards against her swollen clit.

The friction of the fabric was also increasing the sensation for Spike, and he came almost at the same time, his eyes flashing yellow for a few seconds at the loss of control.

Lying together in the afterglow, Dawn finally kicked off the knickers, now positively wet with a mixture of her, Spike, champagne, and white wine. They lay together quietly for a little while, then Spike sat up, took Dawn’s sandals off for her, and shared the rest of the wine with her. Then he carefully covered her with the duvet, and got dressed.

Dawn watched, through a haze of wine and warm fuzzies, thinking disjointed thoughts; ‘That was fun!’ ‘What a beautiful butt.’ ‘Spike is very good at that!’ Pity he’s got to go or we could do it again in the morning.’

Spike broke into her train of thought “I’d better go, and you need some sleep. I’ve put you some water in a glass here – ward off the hang-over. I’ll ring you tomorrow, love. Sleep well.” He kissed her gently, turned off the light, and left her alone.

Dawn’s last thought as she went to sleep was ‘Wonder if Willow was awake when I sent the photo? Wonder if she was alone, of if she was getting her happies as well?’


  • Chapter 15

  • The characters in this story do not belong to me, but are being used for amusement only and all rights remain with Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, the writers of the original episodes, and the TV and production companies responsible for the original television shows. BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER ©2002 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. All Rights Reserved. The Buffy the Vampire Slayer trademark is used without express permission from Fox.