Drink This

She holds the bottle towards him, a pleading look in her eyes. “It’s something Willow made. A very specific memory spell. It’s not wrong if you choose to drink it, is it? Not like what she did to Tara...”

His eyes are wary as he prepares to be hurt. “And just what memories would those be, Slayer?”

Her eyes drop and she flushes. “The ones of us, you know, when we - the things we did, the way I ...”

He nods. It’s what he expected. “You going to take it too?”

She’s startled now. “No! I don’t want to remember but I need to, to stop me ever doing that again.”

He shrugs, hiding the pain that’s making it hard to focus on her words. “And you want me to forget so I don’t have any memories of us together? I can see how that must bother you but they’re all I have left.”

She frowns, puzzled. This isn’t the reaction she was expecting. “You want those memories?” she asks, disbelieving, incredulous. “I thought you’d be glad to get rid of them.”

It’s too much for him and the words pour out, unfiltered by the need to seem distant, in control. “Glad? Slayer, those weeks we were lovers, when you let me in, into your body, into your mind – I helped you, I don’t know how but I helped you, you needed me. When we made love, it was as close to heaven as I’ll ever get, soul or no soul. If you wanted to wipe out what happened at the end, I’d understand but the rest of it – was it really so bad? I tried to make you happy, I tried so hard –” He can hear himself pleading and his voice turns bitter. “But I was and am a vampire, right? A filthy thing. Can’t have me walking around knowing what you look like, what you taste of, the things you scream when you come, the way you’d crawl all over me, kissing every inch... suppose it makes you blush now you’ve come to your senses. So, right, you want to take it all away from me. Figures. Give me the bloody bottle.”

He’s shouting now and her eyes are wide, frantic. He finally quiets enough to hear what she’s saying as she takes his arms, shaking him to make him listen.

“No! Spike, you don’t understand... the memories are of me hitting you in the alley, of all the hurtful things I ever said...I want us to start again and I don’t think we can when all you see when you look at me is the one who hurt you.”

His eyes widen as her words reach him. Slowly he reaches out and takes the bottle from her, raising it high and letting the liquid spill out, sinking into the ground.

"That's not what I see."

Not now, he added silently.

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