Right or Wrong


by Saber ShadowKitten
My Childe 20




I enfold Buffy in my arms the moment she steps off the last stair into my home, my heart aching. I had cleaned myself up in the kitchen sink, and I'd just finished mopping up the blood trailing across my floor, although there's still a stain, when she arrived. I'm immediately comforted just by holding her in my arms.

God, I've missed her.

Buffy hugs me back tightly, and I can literally feel the love she has for me in the air. It feels so right and so wrong at the same time.

I hate this curse.

"How is he?" Buffy asks quietly, looking up with worry in her eyes.

"Scared," I answer truthfully. "Very, very scared."

Buffy bites her lower lip and it makes me want to bite it for her. Damn it! Now is not the time for my hormones to be acting up. It doesn't matter how good she smells, how beautiful she looks, or how wonderful it feels to have her in my arms. Stupid male body.

"What happened?" she inquires, stepping back from me. I am loath to release her, but she has grown to the point where she knows how long she can be in my arms before it becomes dangerous or painful.

I love her so much.

I turn and lead her to where the blood stain is, and gesture at it. "A man dressed in fatigues and a ski-mask got in here and we fought. I killed him," I tell her.

She frowns at the stain, then up at me. "Why do I think you're not telling me everything?"

"I...," I start to say, but trail off. How do I explain to her what I did? And when I do tell her, will she hate me? Will she fear me like my terrified boy now does? Or will she understand?

Buffy put her hand on my arm. "Angel?"

I stare at the blood stain on the floor. I don't regret killing the bastard, nor do I regret my little uncontrolled display of victory over my foe. I was enraged, borderline animalistic. Both my demon and my soul had felt exactly the same thing when Spike cried out for me -- pure, unadulterated rage. No one hurts my Childe. No one.

"I broke his neck," I tell her in a flat tone. "He had Spike pinned, and I came up behind him and broke his neck. Then I ripped his heart out and drained the blood from it."

"Oh."

I didn't look at her, but the way she said that short word made my own heart feel as though it was being ripped from my chest. I take a purposeful breath and continue. "I did it in front of Spike, and he...he thought I lost my soul again."

When she did not say anything, I dare to look at her and find myself falling into her eyes. She easily strips away all my defenses and I can't stop the words tumbling from my lips.

"I terrified him, Buffy," I rush out, my voice becoming choked with repressed tears. "He thinks I'm going to kill him next. He was doing so well, and now I've gone and screwed up! He's hiding in the bathroom, and he flinches from me like I'm one of those Initiative men trying to hurt him! Me!"

My last words are a plaintive whisper as the tears start to fall from my eyes. "Oh god, what have I done?"

"The right thing," Buffy says in a soft, comforting voice. I look at her skeptically and she gives me a small smile.

"Okay, so you got a little carried away-," I arch one of my brows, "-make that a lot carried away," she corrects herself. "But these Initiative guys show no mercy. I know that for a painful fact."

Concern for her flares up inside of me, and I quickly look her over critically from head to toe, looking for injuries. She notices and shakes her head. "I'm fine, Angel. It's been so long that I've been hurt a hundred times over already since then."

"I wish I could stop you from being hurt," I tell her as fear that one day she will be taken from me hits. I raise my hand and cup her jaw, brushing my thumb along her soft skin.

"I know," she replies softly, nuzzling into my hand.

It's not fair.

"I'm going to have to dispose of the body," I say, dropping my hand, although I didn't want to, but I'm used to not getting what I want by now. "And we're going to have to try and figure out how they found Spike."

"Well, I can tell you for certain the guy didn't come from Sunnydale," Buffy says, taking a step back from me. She's all business again, pushing aside her feelings for me just as I have to do for her. "The underground facility is a ghost lab. Not even the baddies go near it, which I don't blame them for."

Her eyes turn sad and she gets a faraway look. "Back in January I had to kill so many creatures. I had nightmares for weeks because of what the Initiative did to them. Evil or not, no one deserves to go through that. Spike was only one of three I was able to save...," she trails off, then suddenly gets a hard set to her jaw, her eyes now flashing fire. "On second thought, you didn't go overboard at all."

"He was a human, Buffy," I point out, despite the fact that I could care less that the dead man had been a mortal. He tried to take my boy from me.

"Sometimes humans are the most evil," Buffy states.

"But-"

"It was a kill or be killed situation, right?" she asks, interrupting me.

I nod, although I'm uncertain if that was the true case. Everything happened so quickly, and when Spike cried out for me, my entire being was focused on the need to protect my Childe.

"Then you did nothing wrong," she reassures me. "And I'll tell Spike the same thing."

She starts past me towards the bedroom, and I listen as she knocks lightly on the bathroom door, calling out Spike's name. The door opens and closes again, leaving me surrounded by the silence of the apartment. My eyes fall to the blood stain on the floor.

Buffy's incorrect, I did do something seriously wrong.

I've hurt my Childe.



End