The Luck of the Irish


by Saber ShadowKitten
Holidays: Part 4
PG-13 Version







Part One







"We're what?!" Spike looked incredulously at Buffy, not believing his ears.

"Going to Los Angeles," Buffy calmly explained. "Angel is having a problem and I've been

elected to help."

"And who was the brilliant wanker that came up with that idea?"

"That would be Giles," she told him. "Faith can't go on count of her new job. If you don't want

to come with, I can always go myself."

"Hell no!" Spike exclaimed vehemently. "There's no way I'm letting you get within five feet of

that hairball alone."

"Jealous much?" she asked slyly.

Spike growled something obscene under his breath and shoved his hands in the pockets of his

duster. "Fine. When do we leave?"

"Tomorrow night as soon as the sun sets," Buffy replied. "Mom's calling me off school sick for

the rest of the week, just in case. Oh, and we'll be staying with Angel."

"Bloody hell," he muttered.

"Now, Spike. Don't talk about your sire that way," she scolded.

"Technically half-sire," Spike corrected offhandedly.

"Huh?"

"He drained me, Dru gave me her blood," he said. "Though it'd be hard pressed to tell, seeing as

how Angelus was the one to teach me everything. That's why I call him 'sire.'"

"But I thought you were over 200," Buffy said, confused.

"Nope. I'm somewhere in my 130's," Spike said, then shrugged. "Cor, how the hell am I

suppose to remember how old I am."

"Angel does," she told him.

"'Angel does,'" he mocked. "I don't care what that twit does or doesn't do. I thought we were

going to a picture?"

"Well, if you're going to get all huffy about things," Buffy said, frowning.

"'Huffy'?" Spike asked, a smile tugging at his lips. "I think you've been around Giles too much,

luv."

"Hey, stop trying to make nice," she admonished . "I'm trying to get mad at you."

"We wouldn't want that, now, would we?" he asked innocently, grabbing her around the waist

and pulling her flush against him.

"Why don't you just shut up and kiss me," Buffy instructed, a small grin on her face.

"Isn't that a country song?" Spike said.

"Ooh, you," she said, mock scowling at him. Spike laughed and captured her lips in a playful

kiss.

"Get a room," Cordelia said loudly from behind them as she entered the library. This only

prompted Spike to deepen the kiss, practically devouring Buffy with his ardor. The former May

Queen snorted in disgust, then went in search of Giles.

"Giles, you do realize Buffy is making out in the other room with a badly bleached vampire who

has no fashion sense what-so-ever," she said to the librarian, who was at his desk in the office. "I

mean, he hasn't changed his clothes since we first met a year and a half ago. Can we say loser?"

"Cordelia, is there something that you wanted?" Giles asked, not looking up from the book he

was perusing. He knew full well what Buffy was doing, because he could see them through the

side door from his desk.

"Rude much?" Cordelia said. "I wanted to know if there were any big evil nasty things coming

for St. Patrick's Day on Wednesday, because there's a party I want to drag Xander to."

"Not that I know of," he replied. He turned in his chair and looked thoughtfully up at the

brunette. "How are things between you a-and Xander?"

"I haven't killed him yet, if that's what you mean," she said. Giles gave her a look. "Oh, fine,

we're doing good. He barely goes 'Buffy-this' or 'Willow-that' anymore, completely dotes on

me, and buys me more shoes than I really need, which is saying a lot."

Giles chuckled under his breath so she wouldn't notice. "I'm glad. He was quite miserable

without you."

"Really?" Cordelia asked, fighting to keep the hope out of her voice.

"Yes, really," he replied.

"Well, good," she said, then turned on her heel and left.

Giles shook his head. "Don't you two know the meaning of public indecency?" he heard Cordelia

say. He glanced out the side door and saw his ward and Spike kissing as if there were no

tomorrow. At the rate they were going, he'd end up seeing something he'd rather keep his

delusions about. Standing, he walked over to the doorway and cleared his throat loudly.

Spike broke the kiss and looked over at the Watcher, a slightly dazed glaze over his eyes. Giles

crossed his arms over his chest, giving the vampire a pointed look, which he returned with an

embarrassed grin. "Sorry, Watcher. We're going."

"What?" Buffy asked, breathing heavily. She looked over at Giles, then blushed. "Oops. Uh,

bye Giles!" She grabbed Spike's hand and pulled him out the library doors.

Giles sighed heavily, took off his glasses, and began to clean them. "She is such a strange girl."







Part Two







Spike hated what they were doing. Not the car trip part. He loved driving his car at night,

window down, radio blasting, smoking a cigarette - all of which he was doing at that moment. It

was the destination he dreaded. His gut was telling him something was going to happen to upset

his perfectly content world, and he didn't like it. Not. One. Bit.

He looked over at the love of his undead life, his mate, who was bouncing along with the music,

singing off-key. They had fought over the radio station for the first ten minutes of the trip until

they landed on a station that played sixties music, which they both enjoyed.

*Cor, I love that girl,* he though before returning his eyes to the highway. She was everything to

him, the reason the demon inside of him was subdued. Spike had told Angel last month, though

his sire didn't hear, that Buffy was his soul. And she was. She touched something in him that

he'd never known, not even when he was still human.

Spike was anything but a nice man when he was mortal. He'd taken his first life by the time he

was eight, a street urchin fighting against a would-be rapist. It was one death after another from

that point on as he tried to survive. Then Angelus had come along when he was 19 and the rest

was a history of blood and death until he'd arrived in Sunnydale with Drusilla.

That's when he saw the vision beside him, dancing at the Bronze with her friends, radiating

innocent sexuality. None of the Slayers he'd met, or killed, had exuded such power, and when

he'd fought her in the school, he had learned about her wit, strength, skill and beauty. And he

knew he was sunk, that his unlife was somehow changed forever. But never in his wildest dreams

had he imagined that he would claim the Slayer. Turn her, maybe, or use her and discard her, not

choose her for a mate.

"Hey, fang. What'cha thinking about?" Buffy asked, interrupting his musings.

"You," Spike replied, sending her a devilish grin.

"By that smile, I take it I was sans clothing," she said, rolling her eyes at him.

"With whipped creme," he added, lying through his teeth, but loving the picture that appeared in

his head. "The spray kind."

"You are one naughty vampire," she said.

"Guilty," he replied. He frowned when he saw their exit coming up, moving over to the correct

lane. He could hear the Funeral March playing in his head and he growled quietly to himself.

"I hope whatever Angel needs help with doesn't take long," Buffy said, absently tapping her nails

on the door. "Then we can have some fun time in LA, maybe meet my dad for lunch."

"I can see that going over well," Spike said. "'Hello, dad. That pile of dust in the chair is my

mate.'"

She swatted him. "Funny man. I meant that in the Hollywood way."

He picked up a piece of paper with instructions to Angel's and glanced at it. The Watcher's small

script was pretty much unintelligible to him, especially with his patience, or lack there of, to

decipher it. He thrust it at Buffy. "Read this."

"Um, left on Belvue. Right on Carter. Right on Larson. Left on Milton. Third building on left,"

she read.

"Are you sure we can't stay somewhere else?" Spike asked as he maneuvered through the streets

of Los Angeles.

"Angel's is sun proofed, free, and convenient," Buffy answered. "Plus, we haven't seen him or

talked to him in a month now."

"Which is a bloody good thing in my book," he muttered.

"And I'd like to visit with him," she continued as if he said nothing. "We can't leave things

strained between the three of us. I don't want that."

"I know you don't, pet," he said begrudgingly. They'd had many a discussion about his sire and,

although he'd never admit it, he was extremely jealous of the ensouled vampire. Again. Even

though he was technically not in the picture. Unlife sucked sometimes. "Here we are."

Buffy unrolled the window to peer up at the warehouse. "What is it with vampires and their love

of living in warehouses?"

"Free rent?" Spike suggested, pulling to the curb. "Lack of neighbors?"

Buffy sighed and shook her head, rolling up the window. "Come on, Blondie. We're not on a

pleasure trip."

"Don't I know it," he muttered to himself as he got out of the car after grabbing the one large

duffel and one small one from the back seat. He followed her to the door and shifted his weight

from foot to foot as he waited for it to be answered. He really didn't want to be there.

"Hi, Buffy," Angel said upon opening the door. "Spike."

"Wanker," Spike said under his breath.

"Hi, Angel!" Buffy greeted more enthusiastically. She stepped forward and hugged him, much to

both vampires surprise. "Your troops have arrived."

Angel gave her a small smile. "Come on in," he invited, stepping back from the door to let them

pass. The warehouse was typical, converted to livable style, with sparse furnishings and drywall

walls built between posts to make rooms. He had added a second bedroom, complete with

furnishings, because Whistler had stayed with him when he first returned to LA. "You guys will

be staying in here. The bathroom is in the far corner."

"This is a great place, Angel," Buffy commented, sticking her nose in his bedroom. "Much nicer

than your old apartment or the drafty mansion."

"At least here the sunlight won't kill us," Spike grumbled to himself in memory, throwing the

duffel bags on the guest bed. He exited the bedroom to see Buffy examining everything with a

curious eye. With a sneer to Angel, he went over to her, kiss her full on the lips, then headed for

the door. "I'm going out."

"Don't get lost," Buffy called after him. She heard the door slam in response and gave a half grin

to Angel. "He didn't want to come."

"Obviously," Angel replied. "Would you like something to eat or drink? I still have a lot of

things from when Whistler was here last."

"Diet Coke if you have it," she answered, flopping down on his soft, blue-cushioned couch.

"How is that ugly demon, anyway? Someone didn't kill him, did they?"

"Unfortunately, no," Angel said, getting her a can of the recently purchased drink. He lied when

he said Whistler left some food, the demon was a chow-hound. He didn't want Buffy to think he

went all out for her. "He's been in New York since Valentine's Day, probably terrorizing some

vampire bum who wants nothing more than to wallow in his guilt."

Buffy laughed, accepting the proffered drink. "I take it he's known to do that sort of thing."

"It's an annoying habit he's picked up over the centuries," he replied, sitting on the opposite end

of the couch from her. "How is Giles and the rest of the group?"

"Good. Faith got a job at a factory assembling something," she said. "She hates it, but it pays

her rent. Cordelia and Xander are back together, fighting and making out in the closet again."

"I'm glad," Angel said. "He really loves her."

"How do you know?"

"He...he looks at her like I look at you," he replied, avoiding her eyes.

"Oh," Buffy responded. She shifted in her seat, then took a long sip of soda. "Um...Giles is

Giles, up to his eyeballs in books and lecturing me to hone more. Willow and Oz help out all the

time in the library and are the epitome of a cute couple."

"'Epitome?'" Angel asked, looking over at her with a raised brow.

"Something Spike used once," she told him. "I responded with 'I pity you, alright.'"

"And how is my unruly dolt of a childe?"

"Fine, Angel," Buffy said, sighing dramatically. "Feel the love in this room." Angel shrugged.

"Oh, hey. He told me yesterday that you were his half-sire. Does that mean you have less

influence over him?"

"No. I'm still the master of our 'family.' In fact, of our line, I am the oldest vampire," Angel told

her. "That would actually make me the Master with a capital 'M'. Of course, since I have a soul,

it makes it difficult to lead."

"I would imagine so," she said. "Which would mean next in line to take up the helm would

be...Drusilla? Ugh. That's not something I want to see."

"Yes, it would be Drusilla," he replied. "Then Spike, then whoever they made that's the next

oldest."

"Well, Spike's out of the running now," Buffy said.

"Actually, he's not. You saw the way the vamps reacted on Valentine's Day to him," Angel said.

"Even with you as a mate, he is still a soul-less master vampire. The others probably think he's

got huge ones because he hasn't changed you yet."

"Loving the imagery there, Angel," she said.

"Just watch yourself, Buffy," he said. "I worry that you've gotten over your head with him and I

don't want you to be hurt - physically or emotionally."

"I'm not," Buffy replied. "For whatever unexplainable reason, Spike's in love with me and I'm in

love with him."

"Promise me you'll still be careful?" Angel asked, looking at her with his soulful eyes.

"I promise," she answer. "Now, let's change the subject. Tell me what's up."

"Tomorrow is St. Patrick's Day," Angel started.

"Brought my green," Buffy told him with a smile.

"I heard there might be a little problem that starts at noon and lasts until midnight," he continued.

"And what would that problem be?"

"Leprechauns."







Part Three







"Leprechauns?" Buffy repeated incredulously. "As in Frosty Lucky Charms?"

"Leprechauns are in no way cute, Buffy," Angel said, his voice lilting with the Irish word. "These

little people are full of mischief that can be quite harmful to humans."

"Am I going to be looking for a pot of gold?" Buffy asked with a laugh.

"Buffy, this is serious," Angel admonished harshly. Buffy quieted immediately and gave him a

shamed look. "They are dangerous creatures at the height of their powers tomorrow due to the

increase in Irish traditions and celebrations."

"Why are they in LA and not Ireland?"

"They can appear anywhere they want," he told her. "And they especially like cities with large

areas of concentrated Irish-Americans. Like this area."

"This area looks like a bunch of warehouses to me," she said.

"A few blocks north of here starts one of the prominently Irish Wards," he said.

"Ward?"

"Like a vampire's territory, only related to government instead," Angel explained the term.

"What am I suppose to do?" Buffy asked, setting her can down on the end table and getting into

Slayer listening mode.

"I need you to go out tomorrow during the day and patrol the streets, especially the pubs," he

said. "I have a fake ID set up for you, as well as a backup student ID from Berkeley that says

you're twenty-two. That way, you should have no problems."

"So, I go from bar to bar looking for little, pointy eared men?" Buffy said.

"Basically. I have a few drawings of what they look like," Angel said, standing and walking over

to a heavily papered desk against the wall. A tall bookcase piled with books sat next to it.

"Here."

"Well, they shouldn't be too hard to find," Buffy commented sarcastically, looking at the

drawings. Each showed a normal looking man or woman, with pointed ears she was glad to note,

and a bag around their waist. "What are these bags?"

"They hold the Leprechaun's 'faerie dust' or magickal powder," he replied. "It's used to cast

spells over unsuspecting mortals. Take away their dust, you take away their power."

"Right. Purse snatching," she said, handing him back the drawings. "I can do that."

"I had no doubt," Angel said with a smile. "I'll give you an extra key as well as some money..."

"Cool."

"...So you can eat while you're out," he continued. "I'll meet you at O'Malleys on Devon at

6:00, after the sun sets."

"Got it," she said with a quick nod. She glanced at the clock on the wall, noting the time. "Can I

use your phone? I promised I would call mom. And Giles. And Willow."

"Go ahead," he motioned to the desk. "If you can find it, that is."

Buffy stood and went over to the desk. She started moving around piles of papers looking for the

elusive phone. "Angel, you need a little organization here."

"I am organized," he commented from his seat on the couch, feet propped on the coffee table,

book open in his lap. "I know exactly where everything is."

"Uh-huh," she replied, finally finding the phone. She quickly dialed her mom's number, telling her

they arrived safely and would see her on Sunday, then called Giles. "Hey, Giles."

"Hello, Buffy. I take it the trip down was uneventful," Giles said over the line.

"I wouldn't know. I couldn't see out of the blacked out windows," she joked. "But we didn't

die, so that's a plus."

"Er...yes," Giles replied.

"Here's the skinny, as Faith would say," Buffy said. "Leprechauns."

"A-are you certain?"

"That's what Angel says," she replied.

"Be careful, Buffy," Giles told her. "Leprechauns are very dangerous from what I've read."

"Giles, what haven't you read?" Buffy teased. "And I'll be careful. I won't even use my fake ID

for the bad."

"What?"

"Oops, gotta go," she said quickly. "I'll call you later this week if we have any news. Bye."

She hung up on her Watcher and grinned over at Angel, who snorted. "What?"

"Buffy, I don't know why he puts up with you," Angel said.

"Must be my sparkling personality," she said, batting her eyes. She dialed Willow's number and

walked towards the bedroom with the phone. "Don't pounce on Spike when he gets back."

"I can't believe that you let him go out and kill people," Angel said under his breath so she

wouldn't hear. He heard the bedroom door close and sighed. She smelled so good, looked even

better than she did a month ago. He loved her so much. Too bad she was in love with Spike of

all creatures. He sighed again. This was going to be an interesting visit.

*****

Spike wove his way through the pre-St. Patrick's Day party crowd at Lucky's Tavern. He had

fed on a few overweight drunks before coming inside, and now was feeling quite jovial. "Set 'er

up, mate. Black & Tan if you got it," he said to the bartender as he took a seat at the crowded

bar.

As he waited for his drink, he surveyed the crowd with a predator's eye. He spotted another

vampire chatting it up with a buxom red-head and nodded when they met eyes. He wasn't about

to get in any scuffle while he was in town, although it would be fun. *Maybe later,* he thought as

he accepted his drink in exchange for the bills he laid on the counter. He didn't want to be out

too long, but he needed to get his temper under control before he returned to the warehouse. It

wouldn't do him good to stake Angel when Buffy wanted them to get along.

"Hey-ya, sexy," a low, feminine voice said from next him. He turned his head and saw a young,

brunette who couldn't have been taller than five feet, with beautiful Asian features smiling

seductively at him. "You're not a regular."

"That I'm not," Spike replied, giving her a slight grin.

"Neither am I," she told him. "Can I buy you a spot?"

"Already have some," he replied, holding up his glass slightly.

"Pity," she said. "I'm Michael." Spike arched an eyebrow. "My mum was a bit off in the

noggin," she said with a lilting voice.

"Spike," he responded, taking a sip of his drink.

"Now, why would a man such as you be named Spike?" Michael asked. "Unless is relevant to,

shall we say, certain physical attributes?"

Spike almost choked on his drink. He set his glass down and looked at her. Her lips were curved

up slightly, giving her a definite sultry aura. Not one to back down from a confrontation, even a

sexually charge one, he said, "Might be. You never know..."

Michael's laugh was a twinkling sound and he found himself drawn in by her. *This is not right,*

he admonished himself. *I think you fed on one too many drunks.* "I have to be going, luv," he

said to her, finishing his drink in one long swallow.

"Will you be back tomorrow for the celebrations?" Michael asked.

"Celebrations?" Spike repeated, the alcohol shooting right to his brain. He looked at her and

frowned.

"St. Patrick's Day is tomorrow, pet," she said. "Wear your green and celebrate Ireland."

"But I'm not Irish..."

"You don't have to be," she interrupted, giving him a sexy, half-smile. "I'll see you tomorrow."

"Right, tomorrow," Spike said, turning for the door. When he got outside, the cool March night

air hit his face, blowing the long, leather duster back slightly as he started for the warehouse. He

was almost to the door when he realized that he was rather aroused and he'd just agreed to meet

some woman named Michael at a bar tomorrow. *Bloody hell,* he cursed to himself, yanking

open the door. *As the Slayer would say, this is so not good.*

"Spike," Angel greeted with no inflection in his voice from his seat on the couch. Spike didn't

bother to answer, he kept walking past to the bedroom, opening and closing the door with a bang.

"Hi, sweety," Buffy said to him, then returned to the phone conversation. "Spike just got back,

Will. I'll have to-"

Spike grabbed the phone from her hands. "She'll call you tomorrow," he said into the phone,

then disconnected.

"Hey! I was talking to Wil-" Buffy was interrupted a second time by Spike's mouth on hers,

forcefully silencing her with his rough kiss.

*****

"Um...what was that?" Buffy asked when she found her voice. She stroked the back of his blond

head as he lay on top of her.

Spike pushed up on one arm and looked at her. "Some girl was hitting on me," he told her

truthfully. "It was unnerving."

"Did you like it?" Buffy said carefully, jealousy rising up in her.

"No," he replied. "It was...off somehow. Like I wasn't in control. Bloody hell, I don't know."

He rolled off of her and covered his eyes with his arm. "Maybe I had one too many drunks."

"Don't you mean drinks?" He lifted his arm and gave her a pointed look. "Oh. Well, maybe."

"Bloody hell," he swore. He sat up and took off his clothes completely, then dug in his small

duffle for a pair of cut off sweats. Sliding them on, he grabbed his bath gear and headed for the

door. "I'm going to take a shower, pet. Wash some of this muddiness out of my brain."

"Ok," Buffy replied, pulling her T-shirt down to cover herself as he left. As soon as the door was

closed, she retrieved her panties, then changed into her sleep wear which consisted of a pair of

silk, drawstring pants and a thin-strap tank top. Barefoot, she went out into the living room with

the discarded phone and plopped on the couch.

"What's wrong?" Angel asked, turning the book over in his lap to mark his place. "Spike came

skulking out of there like he was mad at something."

"He was mad at himself," Buffy said, then sighed. "Nothing to bother you about. I'm just going

to wait until he's done in the bathroom, then clean up and go to bed. Busy day tomorrow."

"If you're sure..." He looked over at her, love and concern plainly visible in his eyes.

"Yeah," she said, reaching over and squeezing his arm. "I'm sure."

"Well, I'm always here for you," he said. "You know that."

"Thanks, Angel. That means a lot to me," Buffy replied. She yawned and laid her head back on

the corner of the couch. "What time should I leave tomorrow?"

"Leave around 11:45 and start at Carter's Bar and Grille, then work your way north from there.

You won't have any trouble finding the other pubs, especially since it's St. Patrick's Day. The

patrons will be spilling out onto the street," Angel said. "And be careful of dangers of the human

kind. Even as early as noon, there's bound to be a lot of drunks on the streets."





Part Four







"A lot of drunks, he says," Buffy commented as she forced her way into the second bar of the

early afternoon. So far she'd been propositioned five times, grabbed at least twenty and given

every pick up line in the book. She looked down at her green stretch pants and matching baby

doll tee, the black leather jacket and ankle high boots offsetting her outfit. Her hair was left loose

around her face, to give her the appearance of being twenty-two, as her fake ID's said.

Senses on alert, she managed to get to the bar and ordered a Diet Coke, then looked around the

pub. Murphy's was packed to the gills already, people drinking and joking as they watched one

of the many parades on the televisions set up in the corners of the room. When she got her drink,

she noted absently the amount of green clothing. St. Patrick's Day was nothing to joke about in

this Irish section of LA.

"Hi there," a husky male voice said from her left. Buffy turned her head to see a young, very

good looking man leaning casually against the bar next to her. His semi-long, dark red hair

brushed his shoulders, and his dark green eyes slanted upwards slightly in the corners. He was

dressed in a dark green, untucked T-shirt and black jeans. "Happy Irish day."

Buffy couldn't help but smile in return. "It's not easy being green," she joked, raising her glass in

greeting.

He laughed, a light, airy sound that made her body tingle. "I'm Timothy," he said, holding out his

hand.

"Buffy," she replied, shaking it.

"Is that all you're drinking?" Timothy asked, indicating her Diet Coke.

"It's a little early to be drinking anything else," Buffy said, taking a sip.

"Not to some of us," he stated, gesturing to the other patrons of the pub. The bartender walked

by and Timothy stopped him, ordering two specials. Almost instantly, he had two, tall, green

beers in front of him. He pushed one over to Buffy.

"Oh, that's ok. I'm fine with mine," she said.

"You can't get through St. Paddy's Day without having a sip of green beer," Timothy prompted.

"I don't think..."

"It's the luck of the Irish to have a drink with a mate," he said in a lilting voice, the low tones

rolling over her senses like a caressing wave. He raised an unobtrusive hand over one of the

glasses and rubbed his fingers together. "Just one sip, I'll be happy to drink the rest."

"One sip?" Buffy asked, setting down her own glass and picking up the one with the green liquid.

"One sip," Timothy replied. He raised his glass in a toast. "To seeing your friend as your lover

and your lover as your friend."

"Right," she said, giving him a puzzled look.

"It's not a proper toast if you don't repeat it, lass," Timothy prompted, his voice lilting

seductively again.

"To seeing your friend as your lover and your lover as your friend," Buffy repeated, smiling at

him. They clinked glasses, and she took a sip of the alcohol. She was pleasantly surprised it

didn't taste half bad, not at all like the drink she'd had at that frat party long ago. She allowed

herself to take two, long droughts of it, then set it on the counter. "That's it for me."

Timothy smiled, his perfect white teeth gleaming in the dim interior of the bar. "That's all you

need," he replied mysteriously.

*****

"Erin go bragh, so sang she did, on this lovely land of Eire," Buffy sang off key as she swayed

down the block. Somehow two sips had led to four, which led to a glass, which led to ten

glasses, and she didn't even know it happened. It was if she wasn't in control of her actions as

she joked around with Timothy for a few hours before moving on to the next bar as instructed by

Angel. She had hit six of the twenty in the Ward, meeting new people and singing lively tunes as

the day turned to night.

"Looking for O'Malleys at six o'clock at night," she sang. "Will someone help my with my

terrible plight."

"I'll help you, missy," a portly, drunk man sashayed up to her, flinging his arm over her shoulder.

"I'm heading to O'Malleys meself."

"Shall we sing a tune on the way?" Buffy asked, taking the green, plastic bowler off of his head

and plunking it on her own blond head.

"Oh, Danny-boy, oh Danny-boy," the man began to sing in a loud tenor. "How lovely are thy

branches."

Buffy giggled and picked up the tune. "Oh, Danny-boy, oh, Danny-boy. How lovely are thy

branches..."

They arrived at the pub, but couldn't get through the open door together, so the gentleman

picked Buffy up in his arms to a crowd of cheers and carried her inside to the bar. He managed to

snag a stool and sat down, leaving the Slayer on his lap. "Two of your finest green beer," he

called to the bartender.

Buffy picked up her drink and made a toast to the stranger. "To green, the color of the Irish!"

"Here, here!" He and several other patrons near them toasted with her. She drank half of the

brew down before turning her attention to the patrons in the bar on the lookout for both Angel

and any Leprechauns. "Hey, you haven't seen any Leprechauns tonight, have you?" she asked the

man.

"Not yet, but the night's still young," he answered with a conspiratorial wink. She giggled and

drank some more.

Angel entered O'Malleys a few minutes after six and looked around for the blond Slayer. The

crowd was getting thicker as employees finished working for the night. Luckily, he was rather tall

and could see over most of the people. He pushed his way further into the pub to ask the

bartender who he was friends with if he'd seen her.

Then he heard her laughter over the sounds of the patrons. Following the wonderful noise, he

continued on his path until he ended up next to a large man with a petite woman on his lap, who

was wearing a bright green, plastic bowler. "Buffy?"

Buffy turned her head and looked up at the man who called her name. She smiled brightly and

slid off the mans lap, then jumped up into his arms, wrapping her legs around his waist. "Spike!

You're here! Hey, everyone, this is my boyfriend Spike! Isn't he a hottie?"

Cheers went up around the room as Angel looked at the Slayer in confusion. "Uh, Buffy. I'm

not Spike."

"Of course you are, silly," Buffy said, leaning closer to his face, the bowler rising up as it hit his

forehead. "I'd recognize those blue eyes and bleach job anywhere."

Angel caught a whiff of alcohol on her breath and tightened his hold on her as she began to

squirm in his arms. "Buffy, you're drunk. And I'm not Spike. I'm Angel."

Buffy cocked her head to one side and looked at the man holding her. She saw the familiar blond

hair, blue eyes, scar and beautiful cheekbones of the vampire she loved. "Spike, stop being

a...a...goof! And I'm not drunk, I only had two sips at noon."

"I think it's time to take you home," Angel said. "It's obvious that you are completely plastered."

"No! I don't want to go yet! It's Irish day!" Buffy shouted loudly. Everyone who heard her

cheered and she let go with one hand and lifted the hat on her head in acknowledgment.

"Buff-" Angel started to say when he was suddenly cut off by her extremely passionate kiss.

*****

Spike forced his way through the doors of O'Malleys where he was suppose to meet up with

Angel and Buffy. He shoved past a group of twenty-somethings, then jumped up on the back of

someone's chair to look over the crowd.

The world dropped out from under his feet. Over by the bar was Buffy kissing Angel with a

flourish. It looked as though she was trying to eat him alive as she clung to him, her legs wrapped

tightly around his waist, one arm holding the back of his dark head.

His heart feeling as though it were being ripped out of his body, he stepped off of the chair and

pushed his way out of the bar. He managed to get around the corner into the alley before he let

out a savage growl and punched the brick wall, shattering the rock. Blood was going to run that

night.

Continued