Spike's head hurt.
It felt as though an elephant was tap-dancing on his skull.
While holding a hippo.
Needless to say, his head hurt.
"'Ere 'e comes."
Drusilla? No, he couldn't have heard left. His aching head was effecting his hearing.
"Are you sure? He still looks...well, dead, but that's a given."
Slayer? Now he knew he was hearing things. There was no way the five of them would be in the
same room together.
"Dru is usually not wrong."
And Daddy? What was he...
Where the hell did that come from?
Spike's head pounded as he tried to think. He'd heard nine voices - Drusilla's, the Slayer's,
For the unlife of him, he couldn't recall Dad's name.
"My Spike's little head is still messed up."
"No. It had to work, Queen Amidala."
"Buffy, the doctor said there were no guarantees..."
Doctor? He didn't like the sight of that. Prying open his eyes took more effort than it was
probably worth, but he had to see what was going on.
"Hey, you're awake."
Spike focused on the blond vision who sat down on the side of the bed. Little Buffy, he thought
immediately. He wanted to frown at the thought, but it hurt too much to do anything other than
look at her.
"How are you feeling?" Buffy asked.
"'Urts," Spike croaked out. His mouth felt like there was a dirty sofa inside and the sound of his
voice made his head throb.
"Here, help him drink this."
Spike shifted his gaze and saw Dad standing beside the bed. What was his name? He saw Dad
hand a plate to Buffy and he could smell the claret inside. Buffy slid her hand under the back of
his head and lifted him up slightly, as she pressed the edge of the plate to his lips.
"Drink, Spike," Buffy instructed.
The claret that flowed down his throat tasted mad. He drank until the plate was empty. Buffy
wiped his mouth off with a tissue after lowering his head back onto the pillow. "Wha'
'appened?" he asked, his throat no longer parched.
"My Spike got a bump on his head," Drusilla said. Spike turned his head slightly, which he
regretted instantly, to see her sitting royally in a chair. "Then you loved the icky Slayer and not
your Princess. The stars didn't like that."
Buffy glared at Drusilla, but didn't say anything. Spike's eyes went between the two women as
he tried to piece together what was going on.
"Spike, what do you remember?"
That was Dad again. What was his damn name? Spike wracked his brains, but all that did was
cause him to feel nauseous. His eyes fell shut and he swallowed heavily, trying to make the
feeling go away.
Images tumbled through his mind, snippets of memories and conversations, of dreams and
confusion. Events seemed muddled, disassociated, as if he'd drank a bit too much.
"I think...I remember...," Spike trailed off as he tried to convey the things in his mind. He gave
up after a moment, the ache in his head preventing his focus. "Me 'ead 'urts."
"I would imagine so, what with the big hole in your skull," Buffy said.
Spike opened his eyes and stared at Buffy. "The what in my skull?"
"The fat doctor opened your head up," Drusilla said. "And he took out all your bad brains."
Spike was confused as hell. "I'm found."
"You're what?" Buffy asked.
He raised his hand and felt a bandage wrapped around his forehead. When he touched the top of
his head, he winced as pain lanced through him. His hand dropped back on the bed beside him.
"What the bloody 'ell 'appened to me?"
"You had a blood clot in your head that was killing you," the man he could only think of as Dad
explained. "Dr. Walters removed it."
"Oh," Spike said. Perhaps things would make more salads when his head stopped hurting. He
closed his eyes again and sunk into the pillows. He started to get very tired.
"We'll leave you to sleep, Spike," Dad said. "Come on, Dru."
"Bye, luv," Drusilla said.
Spike heard two sets of footsteps, then felt Buffy stand up. A warm kiss brushed across his
"Sleep, Spike," Buffy said quietly. "I'll be here, like I promised."
"Promised?" he mumbled, already on the verge of sleep. He realized someone slipped a mouse
in his claret.
"I said I would never leave you," she replied. "And I won't."
His lasts thoughts were about how snappy that made him feel.