Part 26

Buffy lay curled in a ball, her hands over her eyes, the screaming had stopped she didn't want to come out the other side mad, now she just waited.

She pictured herself away from here, in a field, not in a box.

She pictured herself lying in her own bed, not on the padding of a coffins floor.

When she got to were her captors were taking her she would be ready.

The people who opened it might have dart guns, real guns, stakes, flamethrowers it wouldn't matter, the Slayer would kill them all.

She kept her eyes covered but still sodded out. "Spike were are you, SPIKE! please come get me, if you don't when I get out of here you are so going to wish you had."

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"So you reckon that's the gate then," Spike and Browne were sat in Bakull's limo, the Blonde was intently studying the entryway 300 meters ahead of them whilst the vetala loaded and checked their weapons one last time.

"Yep," locked and loaded Browne placed Spikes Heckler and Koch on the floor under his legs then prepared one of his own Uzi's. "Remember mate this is the bosses car, just drive 'er up to em steady, an we'll sit 'ere an' watch the gate open up."

Shrugging Spike did as he was told, side-kick he might be but Browne had been right every time so far. Normally he would have found this bloody irritating but tonight was his only chance to save Buffy, he needed his fellow vampires apparent never ending luck.

"Ok then, steady as she goes."

There was a gatehouse next to the entryway, two blue uniformed guards were visible through the glass. They were looking at the limo and at each other, at 50 meters from the gate one of them reached down and pressed a button and the vampires way was cleared.

"Why is everything so fucking easy for you?" Spike's grin was broad, they were home and dry already if the rest of the night was anything to go by.

"Karma."

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"Two sentries on each side of the 'anger, a couple of blokes out at the side of the road and a couple more 'idden near those sheds." Carefully crawling back into the shadows of hanger 100 Browne rejoined Spike who was busy whittling extra stakes whilst he waited for the vetala to return.

"We've three 'ours to go mate," Morphing Browne's fangs flashed in the moonlight. "Fancy a snack."

Spike glanced at his watch, true nearly three hours left and Browne's hide out was nearby. "Just two of em you say."

Keeping low the two hunters headed for the storage sheds and Bakull's perimeter guards.

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Keeping her eyes closed Buffy ran her hand over the leather interior of the box, trying to find some chink in the resonance of the magick surrounding her. There was none.

*I don't think I've flown, I don't think I'm away from LA, I've not been raped, I'm not naked I've still got my pyjamas on. But it won't last, I won't last, if only I had a stake.....I'd......I'd.......stick it straight up that limey bastard Beresford's ass and give it a very hard twist!*

In her heart though Buffy knew that when the box was opened it would be in such a way that she would be powerless to hurt her captors, and then the pain would really begin.

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The black limousine was a shock to the guards on the front of hanger 104 they hadn't expected their boss to come back till the following evening. The men exchanged glances then one smiled.

"Told you he'd wanna come back and take another look at that little gal, didn't I just."

"You figure," the second guard pulled back the charging lever on the assault rifle he carried. "Cause I don't know, he didn't look like he wanted to fuck her when he looked in the box earlier."

"Well now he does," The limo lights flashed and the first man ran to open the doors, hoping he'd at least get to watch.

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"Are you sure it's him?" Mahmud was puzzled, but not surprised that his master had returned, but unannounced without a phone call at least. "Hold on......"

The hanger doors were locked from the inside, Mahmud stood using the wall phone that was his only connection to the outside world, his finger was poised on the button that would trigger the electronic mechanism that locked and unlocked the doors.

*Why would the master return without calling ahead?* The minion considered the cellphone in his pocket, but then pressed the button, he had seen the look on Bakull's face as he beheld the sleeping Slayer. "Imsallah the girl stays and the English die!"

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Two well fed vampires sat in the limo and watched their enemies again clear their way.

Browne belched loudly, "Scuse I, didn't realize 'e'd have so much blood in 'im, the fat bastard."

"Don't mention it," having dined handsomely on strip club owner already that night Spike had let his fellow vamp have the larger mortal as they killed the sentries. "Shall we party then?"

"Hit it!"

The limo slammed forward, the mortal with the assault rifle didn't have the slightest chance to jump clear before the vehicle slammed into him, he went up over the bonnet and crunched into the bullet proof windshield. "That had to hurt," Blood was splattered on the glass in front of Spike, then they were in even as the mans body tumbled on the tarmac behind them.

A circle of shocked faces, two small jet aircraft, and a silver box on the hanger floor and a cacophony of gunfire as Browne let rip through a firing port in the passenger side window with his Uzi. All this flashed by Spike as he began to make 360 degree circuits of the spacious building.

Return fire pattered against the cars armored sides but the majority of Bakull's guards just dived or ran for cover. Two of the mortals were down and several vampires bleeding as Spike drove the Limo round and round the hanger slamming any obstructions out of the way.

Mahmud couldn't believe what he was seeing, his masters own car used as a trap against him. Carefully he aimed at the vehicle with an assault rifle and fired off the whole clip......at the tires.

"Oh fuck!" Spike wrestled hard with the wheel as his right side tires blew, the vehicle slammed out of control into a wall. "Out we bloody go then." He snatched his gun of the floor even as Browne dived out.

Screaming a vampire ran at the vetala a pistol blazing in his hand, a bullet grazed Browne's neck even as he cut his target down, sawing the vamps legs away with half a clip.

Exiting the vehicle Spike cut down a mortal with a burst then fired over his adversaries heads as he ran for cover. He failed to notice the perimeter guards running in through the hanger doors however and a bullet in the chest slammed him to the ground beside a pile of crates.

Screaming indecipherable battle cries two mortals ran towards him weapons poised, Spike met them with controlled fire both were flung back dead.

But the firefight had swung towards Bakull's men, both the Englishvamps were pinned down as Mahmud reorganized his forces.

His master was dead Mahmud was certain of this, how else had the infidel dogs secured the car he had taken such pride in driving. Their identity, they worked for Beresford of that he was certain, the Slayer was their certain objective.

His orders had been simple, drawing a stake he ran for the box, kill the girl and leave his enemies empty handed. It was what the turk would have wanted, a suitable revenge.

Browne took aim at Mahmud as he ran but was driven down by automatic fire, Spike was locked in his own battle trying to keep the hanger doors clear of Bakull's mortal helpers, he didn't even see the attack on his friend.

Keying the combination in Mahmud threw the lid open and stabbed down right handed at the blue and blond form within......or tried to.

"Hey guess what," his hand was locked in mid air by a clawed hand that emerged from the magick box. "I woke up...and I'm hungry."

Before the vampire could even try to struggle a morphed Buffy grabbed him by the throat and pulling him in the box with her, savagely the Slayer sank her fangs into the minions neck. His circulation was poor but as a powerful lords servant he was well fed, she drained quite a lot of borrowed blood before he ripped clear leaving tendrils of flesh on her fangs.

"Hey come back here!," she shouted after his stumbling form. "I'm still thirsty, is that anyway to entertain a guest?"

Whipping up the fallen stake Buffy threw it hard, Mahmud took it in the back and disintegrated.

"Were the hell am I?" About to stand up Buffy suddenly took in the staring faces......and the guns. "OH SHIT!"

The box tilted over as Buffy threw herself back, and behind it. Bullets sent up showers of sparks as they struck the silvered underside but none penetrated the strengthened metal.

With his opponents distracted Browne was back in the game, his Uzi roared as he took three of them down.

Spike rolled forward and coming up to his knees behind an oil drum fired over the top of his new cover taking a vampire out with a head shot.

Then the opposition melted away, their leader down, their boss nowhere to be seen the survivors ran.

"BUFFY!" Spike was in pain but jubilant. "Kitten, come on luv, I'm over here."

"SPIKE!" Buffy turned and seeing the blond vampire sprinted over and threw herself at him, both hit the ground hard the Slayer on top. "I'm so totally, utterly, absolutely, stupendously, awesomely...." A gap developed as she kissed him."Glad to see you."

It was more that just his wounds that was making Spike feel light headed at this point, a silk clad lithe Slayer pressed against you is a pleasant sensation indeed, still he gasped out. "I'm glad to see you to pet, really glad."

Two gunshots cracked out behind them, grabbing a stake from Spike's coat pocket Buffy would have thrown it at a pistol armed vampire standing behind them were it not for a rapid. "He's with me ducks."

Smiling Browne gave the Slayer a brief bow. "James Cahill Browne at your service Miss," he winked at Spike. "If you two love birds is finished perhaps we can get this motor going again before the cops arrive, that's unless you wants to take on the LAPD as well."

The left side tires were now as flat as those on the right, the car might have to run on its wheels but it would run. Throwing a rear door open Browne held it while Buffy helped her wounded savior in. "You two relax, I'll get us out of 'ere."

"Another god damned Britisher." Buffy looked at Spike. "And a vampire too, where'd you find him, can we trust him?"

The car moved off even as Spike replied. "Yes he is to both, he found me, an' he hates the liver and lights of Lord Charles bloody Beresford, provided you let him kill the toffy nosed bastard he'll 'elp you all he can."

"What!?" Buffy looked like she was ready to pout. "You negotiated away my slaying rights....that is so unfair, I'm the Slayer here not some weird vamp with a big mustache."

"Sorry luv," Spike tut tutted and shook his head in mock sadness. "But having seen him torture people....."

"Why is he good?"

"Sometimes he even scares the shit out of me."

"Perhaps I shouldn't be so hasty, after all he is a guest in this country." Buffy tucked her feet up under her legs and rested her face on Spike's leather clad shoulder. "We're we going to do....something....something kinda nice before we got disturbed and I got kidnapped."

"Yeah....."

Even as the two kissed Browne slammed the limo through the perimeter fence and pulled up alongside the De Soto. Opening the window that separated the two compartments he grinned at the sight that greeted him.

"If you two could stop tradin' spit for ten minutes, I reckon I could get us all to shelter." He looked at his watch. "The sun will be 'ere soon, and that matters to you, Spike, if not to your girl."

Spike flashed him the vee sign, but a few seconds later pulled clear of the Slayers questing tongue. "Sorry Buffy, but he's right."

"Ok," Buffy turned to her new 'friend', "You drive, you drive fast, any unnecessary rear mirror usage and I fill your eye sockets with holy water.....understood."

Stunned Browne could only nod. Then hastened to obey thinking. *Vampire Queen indeed, typical bloody royalty not a word of thanks......she's bloody pretty though, I wonder if gratitude might extend to a quick......*

Part 27

"There, that should do it."

Buffy had been busy for the past hour, making sure no sunlight could penetrate into the house. Now she was satisfied, she could avoid spending far to long crammed into a tiny room next to a smelly garage with a not all together trusted vampire.

Spike....with him she couldn't be cooler.....ok she could be cooler if she didn't constantly want to tear off his clothes and jump him. But that was her demoness talking. Browne on the other hand.

Arrogant, sexist, over weaponed and 'h' free. She trusted Spike, Spike had come looking for her, Browne, he just wanted bloody revenge. She'd seen him wiping crusted blood from his khyber knife, as if the weapon was his most precious possession, it wasn't scary but she hoped not to have to see it again.

"Are you done pet?" Spike emerged from where he had been lurking, she smiled at him and he felt his heart tighten in his unmoving chest.

"Yeah, no nasty rays in here now." She glanced down at her clothing, or lack of, she was so glad she hadn't put on the neglige she'd considered in her 'fuck my brains out Spike' period rather than the more substantial pyjamas. Also the not sweating was a good thing, picture having been in that box on a hot day. "Glad I don't sweat."

"Eh!" Spike had been busy concentrating on not running over grabbing the Slayer and whisking her off to the nearest bed. "What was that Slay...."

He stopped as Buffy put a finger to her lips. "Please don't call me that, I don't want to be her here, I don't even want to be Buffy, she goes with Angel, she's his girl. Here, I'm something else, here I want to be with someone else;."

Spike's jaw dropped as the vampiress' hair changed, from blond to brunette. "I feel her calling to me, she hungers for blood, for the hunt and.....and for sex, for wickedness. It went away while I was out cold, now its coming back, stronger."

Walking forward Buffy halted just as inch away from Spike and leaning forward rested her face against his shirt. "I'm afraid of what might happen if I let her loose."

"Your safe with me, kitten." A hand came up and gently stroked her cheek and then ran through her hair to rest on her neck. "I'll keep you safe, keep you from harming other people, too. And if you want some...release, then you know you've just got to ask."

Buffylus tensed against his hand, then her hands came up to his chest, he prepared to be pushed back but felt instead the fingers creep up over his shoulders. "Understand Spike, I am going back to Sunnydale."

Drawn down Spikes lips clashed with the brunette vampiress', he felt her tongue wrestle with his, and let her win, it was a hard harsh kiss. Which she broke. "Do you understand what I mean?"

"Sure luv, we can live together where ever you want.." He was stopped by the look of sadness that crossed her face. "Oh.....right.......you mean back to him.....Angelus."

"Buffy loves him, I don't know what I think.....let's face it, if he hadn't have made me, he'd have walked away, even though I'd given him my very life blood to save him, he'd have ended it, crept away some dark night." The vampiress smiled cruelly. "Sometimes I see the guilt over that in his face, and I say good for you, keep right on brooding Soul Boy."

"So what the hell....why not?" Spike couldn't believe this. "If you don't go back......"

"She wins, Buffy dies, people bleed into my mouth.....by the score." She kissed Spike again.....gentle this time......loving, wanting to be loved. "That can't happen, I need my friends, I need you to be my friend. You mustn't boast, you mustn't tell him.......ever."

Feeling like he might die for saying the words Spike nodded and somehow managed to gasp out. "Alright kitten.....if that's really how it has to be.....then you have me word......not a hint of it to the bastard."

"Good," she stepped back and extended one tiny hand towards him. "Come with me."

Without protest Spike let himself be drawn towards the bedroom door.

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Cleaning Harry's PPK, Browne sat and listened to it all, a wetness on his cheeks went almost unnoticed.

"Poor blighters, its an 'ard road their makin' for themselves, but still that's love eh 'Arry? That's love."

Forty five years, it had been a long time since the vetala had been alone, and now here he was left with nothing but Harry's old gun, not even a photograph to remind him of the many happy years they had passed together.

Silently the vampire cried even as he holstered the weapon and patting it placed it to one side.

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Spike stood silently Buffy had let his hand slip from hers straight after they got into the bedroom, now she stood beside the double bed, her hands invisible behind her turned back.

Hesitantly Buffy undid the buttons of her pyjama jacket and drawing the material apart let it slip back over her shoulders and down her arms.

Unable to repress a gasp at the sight of the Slayers alabaster skin Spike moved forward even as the blue silk dropped to the floor. His fingertips traced gently down the grove of the girls spine making her gasped the sensation.

Her hands went to the waistband of the trousers, put Spike gently took them in his. "Let me do that pet, if that's ok?"

"Yeah," the Slayer turned and Spike almost died, her eyes were troubled but she smiled at him so beautifully, her brown hair spilled down from her shoulders but didn't quite cover her breasts, her nipples were erect, he longed to caress the heavy globes that hung before him, to kiss those nipples and caress them with his tongue, to lick his way across her stomach, but first.

Without any hesitation Spike dropped to his knees, his hands went up to the fastens of the sole garment his/Angel's beloved now wore, slowly he undid the button and began to draw the material down.

"Get up, Spike," Buffy looked down at him, alarmed, alarmed that her power had driven the vampire down. "Please you don't need to kneel to me.

Easing the trousers over Buffy's hips Spike pulled them down her legs, first a nest of brown curls emerged, then toned thighs, then they were round her ankles and with a laugh the Slayer was holding onto the vampires shoulders as he tried to get her feet out of the pooled silk.

"Ok, now you get naked too," Buffy ran her fingers through his short blond hair. "Your not shy are you."

Then she gasped again as Spike ran his cold tongue up her thigh and gently over the lips of her sex, "Spike!"

"Do us a favor pet," Spike looked up and gave her a big wink."Put your ass on the bed and open your legs, your my dark vampire queen, I want to pay you my homage."

Startled Buffy sat, being royal sounded fun. Opening her thighs as wide as she could comfortably get them she nodded, "Worship away, my good man."

Then she moaned out loud as Spike's tongue penetrated her folds. "Oh yes!....you are.....so......so......so gonna enjoy what I'm gonna.......gonna do to you for this..oooooohh."

Spike had morphed the action adding an extra inch to his tongue's penetration. Conscious that they weren't alone in the house Buffy bit her lip to keep from shouting out her pleasure, then nearly drew blood as the vampire took her clit between finger and thumb and began to roll it expertly. "God yessss!"

Morphing back Spike replace his fingers with his tongue and teeth, gently nipping and licking her most sensitive spot even as he drove two fingers into her cold wet core.

Fingers thrust in her mouth to still a scream Buffy came.

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Browne had moved into the kitchen, the room furthest away from his noisy house quests. Not that he begrudged them their doomed romance.

"What you gonna do Jamie lad, once you've killed 'im?" The vetala shook his head, then his eyes rose up to the kitchen cupboard's. "Salt cellar! no she wouldn't understand."

All the same he reached up and took the glass vessel down, shaking it's contents and thinking back to times long past and a land far away. "She wouldn't understand!"

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Spike lay back on the bed his fingers dug firmly into the sheets, brown hair was flying as Buffy bobbed her head up and down, her tongue and teeth sending him crazy as she gave him the blow job of his unlife.

He'd had her begging in the end, even naked he had refused to let her touch him for awhile, giving her body first a massage then a tongue bath. Finally though he'd rolled over and with a courtly nod said. "Ok M'lady, do your thing."

"Tar very much," Pumping her hand on his length she raised an admiring eyebrow at his solid eight inches. "It's about time."

Her tongue darted out, featherlike it ran from the base to his glans, then again harder. Her mouth closed over him and with practiced ease she took as many inches as she physically could down her throat.

Spike hissed, the pleasure was intense, but bitter sweet, Angel had taught her to do this.

He was straining to hold back now, and Buffy knew it. Withdrawing her mouth she switched back to feather like kisses. "What's the matter Spike, don't worry I like a mouth full of cold cum." She licked his glans again and smiled at him. "Let it go baby.....do it for me."

"I want to make love to you Buffy, I'm afraid one orgasm might send me off."

She looked at him properly. "Shit Spike, when did you last sleep?" She moved up to join him, he had bags under his eyes. "Oh god, I let you do all that stuff to me when you were tired as......lie still, let me help you."

Making no protest Spike lay back and thought of Buffy, She straddled him and smiled down. "You're going to like this, I promise."

Positioning him carefully in the entrance to her womanhood Buffy slowly sank down. The vampires administrations had left her wet and ready he entered her easily.

Rolling her hips gently Buffy began her rhythm. "Before this is over, you and I will spend a day together, then we go home......back to Sunnydale......can you live with that.......please."

"OK.......god girl are you trying to kill me?"

The Slayer speeded up. "Yes......with kindness.........picture a better way to go."

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Gently, hoping not to wake him Buffy eased herself out of Spike's arms, it was an easy task he was sleeping soundly, a contented smile on his face.

*Poor boy, what am I going to do with you?* Buffy could feel tears starting, but she had other things to do.

There was a small suitcase in one corner of the room, opening it Buffy took out a selection of mens clothes. A small quantity that might be sufficient for a hideout. Which this was.

She held up a shirt to her nude body, it came to mid thigh, good she didn't want to do this naked.

Mentally she ran her first opening question through her head. *Hey, Mr Vampire, what are your intentions now and in the future. Oh and by the way, are you the English vamp who had my lover shot through the leg?*

Resolutely Buffy headed for the door, gratitude has its place, but business came first.

Part 28

The vetala was sat more or less where he had been when Buffy had last seen him, in the little windowless room, but the oil stained table was empty of weapons now, all save one holstered pistol and a shaker full of salt.

"Hey," she said. "Don't you think you should be sleeping, we have a battle tonight, remember?"

"No luv." Casually the vampire eyed her from head to toe. "Nice new 'air color me dear, like the outfit to. I reckon you'd 'ave more reason to be tired than me."

"I was asleep for almost a day, I'm not tired." She ran her fingers down the material of the shirt. "Hope you don't mind me borrowing this."

"It's one of 'Arry's luv, an 'e ain't in a position to mind." Browne patted the holstered PPK. "Not no more."

Realizing that she was missing important information Buffy found herself a chair and positioned it so she was sat facing the vetala. "Everything about you suggests bad guy.....but you saved me...suggesting possible good guy...however Cain told me he got hired by two Englishvamps.....your English.....so."

"What the fuck am I doin' 'ere?" Browne smiled. "Do you want the full 'istory or the h'edited 'ighlights."

"The edited 'ighlights," Buffy frowned at what she'd just done. "With h's, if you don't mind?"

"Alright, I'll see what I can do." Opening a draw in the desk Browne took out a red filled plastic bag. "For you, just in case you gets peckish."

"Thanks," Buffy picked up the blood bag cautiously. "What is it....other than blood?"

"Nice drop of O-negative that is," Browne made uncapping motions. "Don't worry, from a bag it don't taste no different than animal."

Hunger gnawed at the Slayer, she uncapped it. The smell of the blood and her demon did the rest.

"You know I was impressed by what you did in that hanger, it h'aint h'often that you gets to see one vampire feed on another." Browne watched her down the blood with interest. "Well not in a full throat ripping way anyhow."

Finished the empty bag was dropped on the floor, Browne had been right, it hadn't tasted any different than pigs blood.

"No adrenaline see, no smell of fear." Winking at her Browne really started to get on her nerves as he chortled. "You bein' such a good girl you don't have the foggiest idea what youse missin'."

"Ok," Buffy made to stand, "get to the point, tell me your story, bore me to tears, or I go back an curl up next to Spike, even asleep he's more interesting than you."

"Fine," sitting back Browne began......

"I was born in eighteen-'undred and forty four, in Brixton, that's in London luv, above a pub called as I was told the Carpenters Arms. My mum an dad was decent folk, for all my place of birth, an tried to raise me right but I was always into mischief and had the obvious makin's of a bad lot.

"Poverty in those days was no joke, the slums was 'aunted by disease but I stayed 'ealthy, and my dad had enough paid employ to keep us from the work house, that's were those as couldn't find work got locked up to keep em off the streets."

"Excuse me," Buffy raised a hand. "We read Dickens in America to you know, I may be immortal but please cut to the chase?"

Despite the mustache Buffy could still recognize a pout when she saw one, huffily Browne went on. "By Sixty-One I has the Peelers full attention, then some bloody Yankee sea captain stops a British vessel and seizes a couple of Southern gents, I gets all patriotic in the war fever that follows and runs off an enlists in the army.

"Course it blows over but there I am stuck in a red coat, I drifts from barracks to barracks for the next nineteen years, soldiering here and there till eventually as would happen me regiment goes to India to form part of the garrison there.

"Now India is the jewel in the Queen Empresses crown, we robbed it from those it belonged to and thus we're nervous, other robbin' bastards might try to do the same, Russia for example.

"To gets to India your Russian would have to cross Afghanistan, so after first trying to conquer that country and failing we is careful to keep the Afghan ruler strong, an friendly and that works till near the end of the seventies.

"Then we gets greedy, we must make sure, we must impose our will. Our army goes north.

"My regiment the Berkshires gets stationed in the south at Kandahar, in the flat bit if you like, things h'aint to bad an occasional scrimmage 'ere and there but then all hell breaks loose. The Russians supply an Afghan general with artillery and advisors, irregulars flock to 'is banner as he marches on Kandahar.

"Our General 'e don't know about no Russian guns, so he marches out with just my battalion and a brigades worth of sepoys plus two batteries and we meets em at Maiwand, five hundred of my regiment went out, scarce two 'undred stumble back. I was a sergeant then I led in what was left from a company.

"Besieged, relieved, Afghans took a belting, we gave up, pulled out and decided to be pals again," Browne smiled as he added. "Damned politicians was right though, the Ruskies did march in, an 'undred years later.

"Now your asking, what's he feeding me this line of bollocks for, it's cause I walked out of there feelin' invincible, like nothin' could 'arm me, a dangerous feelin' as it turned out.

"The regiments gettin' ready for the march to Bombay, there to ship for 'ome, when a mate of mine tells me of a place out by the jungle were the cunchunee girls was the prettiest in India, but it's out by the jungle so don't go alone."

"You went alone?"

"Course, took me rifle though, three blokes jumped me ten yards from the place. I put a bullet through the first ones gut....guess what!"

Buffy had to laugh at the vampires expression. "It went straight through and fangs became involved."

"Yeah," Browne's eyes cast down at the memory. "They'd have left me dead too, 'ceptin for that shot, bloke had a hole in his back so big that a little thing like you could put 'er fist in. Course he didn't turn me out of kindness.

"They were vetala, that's Hindu for vampire, they taught me what minion meant over the next two an a 'alf years, be grateful luv you'll never learn, even a pretty thing like you when your sire got bored would 'ave found out what it was like to be thrown to the whole clan an......."

"Yeah," Buffy rolled her eyes back. "I don't need that skanky image, what happened?"

"The berk's kept me rifle, they were the stupid as fuck type that gets vamps a bad name. I gets me hands on it, and this time does in right." Browne mock aimed a phantom rifle at Buffy's head. ".45 caliber Martini-Henry it took the first two's 'eads clean off. Then I pins my sire to a tree with me bayonet, unclips it from me rifle, slices his arms off with a saber and builds a fire round 'is feet."

"Enough......" She shook her head. "Isn't killing your own Sire bad mojo, doesn't in lead to every other vampire wanting to kill you?"

"Only if they finds out, that bit in Interview with a vamp were they can tell by looking at the kid, pure cobblers. But yeah I 'ad quite a posse after me at first, but I can tactically withdraw with the best of em, an I heads north for the frontier. When they gets away from the forest and the shelter gets further apart there interest gets less. When there was just six left I fell on them like the wrath of god. An the urge to 'unt me disappeared.

"In the hill's I wasn't welcomed, till they saw me rifle, and realized what I was. A soldier, a man who could fix their guns, who could walk into the British forts an steal more, an knew enough of tactics, well pretty soon I was in a clan, careful mind, I drank a lot of goats blood when we wasn't feuding with our neighbors or raiding on the plains."

"You mean you fought your own people, and you lived amongst the native people and didn't feed?"

"It was a bloody long way 'ome Slayer, the plains of India didn't beckon an I was along way from a port. The Pushtun didn't exactly welcome me with open arms, an they made damn sure the mullahs never found out, but I made meself useful, till the British left in 1948 an they didn't feel the need of me anymore.

"So there I was, the white vetala, understand they didn't try to do me in, asked me to go all nice an courteous save for the knives they carried, out into a desert land, but I'm a survivor. I made it home, that was in fifty six."

*God I wish Giles were here,* Suddenly Buffy longed for a tape recorder, and wished she'd asked for the full length version.

"I arrives in London, the locals don't like a new face they ain't created themselves, but I'm a warrior through and through, they die. Bosses gets to 'ear, they thinks 'ullo here's a fella could come in handy. So they offers me a wedge of money and their respect. An cause I'm rattlin' on in 'indi more that English they gives me Harry Greenway as a minder, him 'avin spent some time in India afore he came 'ome an got turned.

"We got on like a house on fire, he never tried to boss me an I always looked out for 'im, I loved 'im by the end. We 'unted, for sport, an for the bosses, we killed for pleasure, food, an profit. Then they 'ear about you, Beresford come over an makes a complete upper-class balls of it. "Kindly go over and sort it out for us James" says the bosses, they shoves us in coffins and on a plane an 'ere we are.

"We tried," he shrugged, "Your bloke as 'is mishap, we 'ave to do a runner and Harry......Harry dies in my arms an that leaves me were, in a strange place again......alone."

So he had been behind Angel being shot, but still.......Buffy leaned forward and gently kissed the vampire on the cheek. "Can you be good, is it just revenge that has you here with me, you lived with people for decades, feeding on animal blood I suppose, would you be there still, if they hadn't driven you away?"

"That's why the salt's there." Browne whispered.

"Huh," Buffy looked at the salt cellar. "Why is the salt there?"

"Shake a little onto the palm of your 'and luv." Browne nodded to her as he spoke. "Please, I don't mean you any harm."

Confused Buffy did as she was asked, and nearly dropped the grains on the table as Browne drew his knife and laid it on the wood between them. Gently he pressed the fingers of his left hand to the steel blade.

"On the haft and hilt, I am thy man and soldier." With the fingers of his right hand he picked up some of the salt from her hand, and brought it to his lips licked it away and added. "Command me lady."

"This could so go to a girls head," stunned Buffy could only stare at him. "What is it with you vamps today...?"

An irritated voice interrupted from behind them. "Turn me back for half an hour an what do I find? That your tryin' to get into my girls pants, you old bugger."

"She's not wearing any mate, technically impossible therefore."

"HEY!" Borrowed blood rushed to Buffy's face, both vampires laughed to see her blush. "I'd like to say now that even if you didn't wear that ridiculous wiggins inducing facial hair there is no way that I'd.......I have a man, oh well actually I have men.....I don't need another."

"Actually what I was offerin' was my fighting services," Browne's cheeky wink sent another deeper blush to the vampiress' cheeks. "If you don't decide to run me out of town then understand me when I say that if it comes to it I'll die beside you, I won't feed on your people, I won't tell Angelus you screwed that reprobate over there an....."

"Alright...." Buffy snapped. "Spike what do you think? He's a killer for hire, and he pisses me off even more than you do sometimes, should I trust him?"

Back in 1975, desperate to get out of the States and on his financial uppers, Spike had traded on his skills to settle a little union difficulty, in return for a nice sea cruise to Italy. "Killer for hires a little strong pet, bloke has to eat, forgive him his trespasses eh? An' anyway I like the bloke."

*What is it the Brits say, in for a penny, in for a pound?* Extending her hand Buffy said simply, "Welcome onto the team, can't wait to introduce you to Giles, and all the rest of the crew."

She hadn't expected tears, that was what she got.

Continued

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