Title: All Along the Watchtower (Chapter 2)

Author: Hafthand

Summary: This is the "All Along the Watchtower" series. Things tend to spin out of control. What if something happened in the past that changed the future, and not for good. In the future Spike and Willow, with the help of the new Slayers, battle it out against the deadliest enemy yet as Hell slowly makes it's home on Earth. Meanwhile in the past, Buffy and Spike and the rest of the Scoobies are only beginning to fall down the path that changed the world.

Rating: R

Disclaimer: Not mine. Property of Joss and his wonderful company of Mutant Enemy

Archiving: I would love it archived, but please ask me first so I know where it goes!

NOTES: PLEASE READ VERY IMPORTANT! Okay folks, this is going to be a long story with many chapters, and be somewhat confusing at first, but I promise it will make sense later. Okay this is how it is set up. Each chapter begins with a song, this song should be read because it helped influence the chapter and may give clues to what will occur. After that, the story. Now the story goes like this: The future world of Sunnydale is where the action of this story takes place. The flashbacks to Buffy's time sheds light on how the Earth came to be overrun by demons. The flashbacks are also the lighter parts of this fic seeing as the future parts are pretty dark.

This is a drama fic with dark parts and humorous parts.

Any questions, please e-mail me at Hafthand

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Chapter 2: I Wanna Dance With You

****This song fits best with the second part of this story, the bit that takes place in the past****

"Sitting on the beach

The island king of love

Deep in Fijian Seas

Deep in some blissful dream

Where the goddess finally sleeps

In the lap of her lover

Subdued in all her rage

And I'm aglow with the taste of the demons driven out

And happily replaced with the presence of real love

I wanna dance with you

I see a world where people live and die with grace

The Karmic ocean dried up and leave no trace

I wanna dance with you

I see a sky full of stars that change our minds

And lead us back to a world we would not face

The stillness in your eyes

Convinces me that I

I don't know a thing

And I've been around the world and I've tasted all the wines

A half a billion times came sickened to your shores

You show me what this life is for

I wanna dance with you

I see a world where people live and die with grace

The Karmic ocean dried up and leave no trace

I wanna dance with you

I see a sky full of stars that change our minds

And lead us back to a world we would not face

In this altered state

Full of so much pain and rage

You know we got to find a way to let it go

Sittin' on the beach

The island king of love

Deep in Fijian Seas

Deep in the heart of it all where the goddess finally sleeps

After eons of war and lifetimes

She's smilin' and free, nothin' left

But a cracking voice and a song, oh lord

I wanna dance with you

I see a world where people live and die with grace

The Karmic ocean dried up and leave no trace

I wanna dance with you

I see a sky full of stars that change our minds

And lead us back to a world we would not face

We would not face."

-"I Wanna Dance With You" by Live

~~~~~~~~~

Sunnydale, CA

Cliff

April 18, 2264

The wind whipped her shoulder-length red hair in the pre-dawn air. The sun preparing to rise and shed light on another day of fighting for survival. Dawn always reminded her of them. The ones she had loved long ago. The ones she fought for now. Sitting on the cliff, looking out over what was considered Sunnydale, she allowed her mind to wander to the past for the first time in a while. She remembered Xander and Buffy; Dawn and Giles; Tara and Oz. All of them people she had loved, all of them people she had lost.

She recalled last night's meeting in the Bronze.

~~~~~

"The other slayers and their watchers arrived about an hour ago. As for why, I don't know yet," Anya answered.

Spike groaned, "Great! All four slayers in one place, like Angelus isn't gonna know somethin's bloody well goin' on now!"

"Oh come on dead boy, do you really think that poof is that smart?" Spike turned to the owner of the voice and let out a holler of joy and gave one of his rare smiles. Running up to the man he embraced his friend. Darcy was somewhat shocked to see Spike happy and so openly friendly with someone, let alone a human.

"Alex my boy, how are you?" Spike asked the newcomer. Darcy knew who it was, he'd known him almost all his life. He watched silently though as Willow ran into his open arms and hugged him for what seemed like eternity.

"Oh Alex, when Anya said the slayers were here I was hoping you had come as well," she said allowing the man to finally breathe.

"Well Will, you really think I would let my slayer come by herself to this dump? I think not." Alexander Lavelle Harris the 12th looked exactly like his ancestor. His brown hair sticking every which way, his clothes, though watchery, were baggy. Willow and Spike loved the boy greatly, but it still hurt a little to look at him. At that moment Anya walked into the room and approached the other watcher. The man turned and smiled. "Well grandma, you miss me?" he asked earning him a playful slap from his great, great, great, etc., grandmother.

"Keep it up Alexander. You call me grandma again I will so go vengeance on your ass. Do you see wrinkles on this face, do you?" Anya asked seriously causing the other adults to laugh.

Growing serious Alex turned to the vampires. "I hear you had a bit of a run in earlier?" The others quickly sobered up and Spike put am arm around his old friend.

"Well whelp, we did, but later okay. We've got a meeting in twenty minutes, we'll fill you in then. Now tell me, and don't get me wrong, happy to see you, but what are you all doing here so soon?"

"The Council thought it 'prudent' we arrive unexpectedly and together. Their seers see something big coming and soon. They feel slayer services will be better here then all spread out." Suddenly they were interrupted by a tiny ball of colour that ran and tackled the stunned watcher. "Emma, Emma calm down," he was able to gasp out under the bone crushing hug the tiny slayer was giving him.

"Oh Dad, I missed you sooo much. Did you know Laura wouldn't even tell me you were gonna be here. I mean come one, I'm the friggen slayer, I should be prepared for everything, but then I saw Taylor and I knew you were here and I just had to find you and-" Alex effectively cut of the slayer with a hand over her mouth. "Sorry," she mumbled from behind his hand.

"It's okay honey. I missed you to," he said returning his daughter's hug. Emma Harris was a tiny slip of a girl. She had her father's dark curly hair, and her mother's pleasant face. She was 5 foot, when she stretched and skinnier the a piece of paper. Hard to believe so much power was present in her. She was uncommonly pleasant and hyper for a slayer. Most slayers looked grimly upon their fate, but Emma chose to enjoy each moment she was given. Darcy envied her that.

Having untangled herself from her father she finally noticed the others and let out another squeal before throwing herself at Spike. Only his vampire strength saved him from tumbling to the ground. "Now, now pet, watch the ribs," he said while smiling down at the girl.

"God I missed you too Uncle Spike. I was in Paris, fighting this Dehonna demon and he knew who you were, and I told him you were my Uncle, and he went on about traitors, and vamps gone soft, so I told him where he could shove it, then I killed him." Before Spike could comment, she was off again. "Did you know that little Alexander was called to London? He's there right now with Ms. McKelly, and he's so young. One of the youngest ever!" She said proudly informing the others of her brother's progress. Noticing Willow she threw herself at the vampire and hugged her dear friend closely.

Spike, finally free, looked at Alex. "You didn't tell me little Alex was getting called. My god man he can't be more then 9."

"Um, 8 actually, and well those bastards didn't tell me either till the night before. But I got to tell you, my boy is one brave kid. Took the news quite well and was even a tad bit excited. Did me proud he did," Alex said with a father's smile on his face.

"Well you should be proud. Little Alexx is going to make a fine watcher," Willow said joining the conversation.

Darcy took this opportunity to disappear into the next room where he lit up a cigarette as the other's caught up. He heard soft footsteps behind him and sniffed the air. That was one trait the girls did not have. He sniffed again and turned to greet the other slayer. "Shouldn't you be catching up or something. Getting your kumba yayas out?"

"Just thought I'd say hello is all. Its been a while since we last saw each other," Emma said leaning against the wall opposite him. He gave her a slow assessment and realized she had changed a lot in the two years since they had seen each other.

"Yeah well, been a bit busy s'all. You?" he asked offering her a smoke. She politely refused, her hyperness from before gone. This was shop talk, and for this she was always serious. She might be a tad more flighty and cheerful then most people he knew, but when it came to the fighting she moved like the wind. They had trained together for most of their youth. He had always envied her relationship with the others. He had always felt that they pushed him away a little.

"Well after we left Sunnydale, Laura and I went to London first. Didn't stay long, took out a master while we were there, then continued on to Paris. Man Darcy, it's horrible there. The demons Angelus has ruling are just ruthless. I don't know why people stay there."

"Where else have they got to go. Besides with a slayer in town, they probably figured they might as well stay," Darcy said. He turned and walked further down the room till he came to an entrance to a tunnel. He glanced over at Emma and walked into the tunnel. He waited for a moment and heard her following. When she appeared they walked in companionable silence through the sewer system beneath Sunnydale.

"Dracula is there," Emma stated.

"What?" Darcy said, actually surprised.

"Yeah. I thought he and Angelus were on the outs but apparently he's got the prick ruling over Paris for him. Wonder what Drac's gettin' out of the deal. No way he would take orders from Angelus otherwise," Emma said while kicking stones into the water beside them.

"Did you try to take him out?" Darcy asked stopping and looking at his companion. She to stopped and turned to him giving him a smile.

"Yeah right Darcy, good one. You want me dead that badly?" she said laughingly.

"No, you know I don't its just, I don't know. It seems like we sit back a lot more then we take chances," Darcy said angrily.

"Yeah, well we do what we have to right. Laura said it'd be foolish to go after Drac alone. I agree. He's got all that mojo and shit." Darcy remembered Emma's watcher Laura Premont as being beautiful, but overly strict. It didn't surprise him that she had opposed the idea of going after Dracula. "Well anyhow, how have things been going in good old Sunnyhell?"

He laughed a little at the name. Spike always called it that too. "Same old I guess. Except the vamps are getting bolder and more numerous. The demons too. Spike and Willow think Angelus is trying to make us leave. They think he's trying to drive us to him in L.A.." They had reached the end of the tunnel and began climbing the ladder to the sewer access. Pushing the hatch away, Darcy emerged into the daylight in the middle of what used to be main street. Pushing himself out he reached down and needlessly helped Emma out onto her feet. She bent down, replaced the cover and they started walking into town.

Back when they had been training together, they used to walk the town by day, the only time their vampire keepers couldn't follow them. Darcy was always curious as to why they felt the need to personally train them for so long. The vampires trained all the slayers of course, but they had never been as overprotective of the others as they had been with them. Darcy had always brushed it off saying that they were like that with him because he was the only male slayer, and they acted that way towards Emma because she was practically family to them. But now he wasn't so sure.

"Darcy, you still with me," Emma asked cheerfully. Darcy came out of his thoughts and looked at the girl beside him. He was a year older then her, yet she had always managed to lead when they were together. She had grown a lot in the two years she had been gone. If things were different, he might actually have taken her to one of those clubs from the past. But things were different, and he didn't want to think about what could be, instead he had to live with what was.

"Yeah just thinking s'all. I was wondering, why are you all here now that- bloody hell. Demons," he said grabbing Emma's arm and pulling them into an alley.

"What kind?" she asked pulling her short sword from behind her.

"A Bauta, we can take him. He's alone," Darcy replied while reaching down and pulling his pant leg up. He retrieved his own sword and stood up. "Ready?"

"Oh hell yeah. Haven't killed anything in two days. Getting rusty," she said and giggled before going to do her job. He stepped out after her, preparing for battle.

~~~~Back inside the Bronze, the watchers, vampires, and the other slayers sat around a long, wide wooden table discussing the recent increase in demon activity. Anya had expressed concern that Darcy and Emma were absent, but Spike said to let them be. He had seen them go into the tunnels and figured they were catching up. Right now though, a heated discussion on what action should be taken was going on.

"No it isn't just coincidence watcher. He knows what we're planning and he's trying to throw us off, trying to drive us out," Spike said angrily glaring at Tobithias Smith. Toby, as they called him, was Sarah Prepon's watcher and he was rather new at his job. The previous slayer had been led into an ambush in Hong Kong about a year ago and Sarah had been called. She was the youngest of the slayer, only 14, but she was the tallest at 5'4". She had white blonde hair that fell to her hips, and a look of complete innocence on her face. Most slayers carried a swagger, a confidence, but Sarah was quiet and rarely spoke. Toby on the other hand was young, and somewhat rash.

"Oh come on Spike, How could Angelus possibly have found out about the spells? He isn't that smart. More muscle then anything," he said glaring back at the vampire. "Most vampires are."

This earned a growl from Spike who stood up so quickly his chair went flying backwards. Taylor, the third slayer stood and held him back. "Spike," she hissed at him, "he's just pushing your buttons. Let it be." Spike grunted but retrieved his chair and sat back down. Willow shot Taylor a grateful look before patting Spike's arm and whispering in his ear. Taylor turned to Toby. "You need to learn some tact young man," she said glaring at Toby and sitting back down.

By some weird twist of fate, Taylor was actually older then Tobithias by three years. Taylor was actually the oldest slayer in a long time. She was 23 years old, had long silky black hair, and was of Asian decent. She had been called when she was 14 and was fast approaching her ten year mark. She knew her time would be up soon, and had accepted it. A calm peace surrounded her and she was the most level headed of the group. Alex was her watcher and so was close to Emma. Taylor too had trained with Spike and Willow, and she respected them as they respected her. She had been sent to Peking five years ago and there she had stayed traveling throughout Asia to where she was needed. Because of her efforts, Asia was the safest place to live next to Sunnydale. If you could really call anywhere safe.

Alex took this moment to speak up, breaking the tension in the room. "Listen, we have to assume Angelus knows we're all here. We also have to assume he has an idea about our plans. Why else would we call all the slayers to Sunnydale. He's not stupid, but there is hope. He can't possibly know everything we plan, so we have to work with that."

"Well, I agree. He can't know everything, and we can't just dump these plans we have worked so hard on," added Anya. She brushed a stray lock of hair away from her face and looked at everyone at the table. "You slayers are the most powerful in a long time. Darcy and Emma alone are far stronger then any slayer has been since-" she stopped and looked at Spike and Willow before continuing. "Well they're stronger then anyone has been in a long time. And Taylor, you are older and more experienced. Sarah is just as strong as Taylor and has the added advantage of a magical background. Add in Willow who is the sorceress of all sorceresses and Spike with his inside knowledge and strength and that is enough to hope." She paused now looking around the table. "We are stronger and more organized now, then we have ever been. If we start fighting with each other, or giving up, then we really don't have shot. But if we stick it out till the end, I think we have a shot."

A silence hung over the others as they soaked in Anya's words. She sighed and looked at Spike. "Spike, we have worked so long, so hard for this. We have lost so many loved ones. Isn't it time to end it?" she addressed Spike quietly. The two looked at each other and for a moment the others were gone. A tear fell from Anya's eyes and Spike's features softened as he looked at his old friend. "Can't we make the pain go away now?" she asked.

"Yeah pet, I think its been long enough. Don't you agree Red?" he asked looking fondly at his childe beside him.

"Yeah. I think Angel has had his fun. Let's have ours, for old times sake," she said grabbing his hand and smiling at Anya.

The others felt uncomfortable at the closeness of the three. They were all aware that the two vampires and the vengeance demon had been fighting this battle long before they were born. They didn't know everything, they didn't know the truth of the past, but they knew that if they hoped to beat the evil, they had to have those three with them.

~~~~~~~

Willow sighed remembering the meeting from last night. She wiped a tear from her eye and blew out an unneeded breath. Raising her eyes she looked out where Sunnydale lay in ruins. She cast her gaze over crumbled buildings, ghosts of structures that once stood. The city lay in destruction, yet there were signs of life present here and there. The scene reminded her of pictures she had once seen of cities after World War II. The city looked as though it had seen a war. She laughed bitterly at that thought. War. She'd been fighting a war for over 260 years. 260 years. Never had she thought she would live that long. In the back of her mind she still considered herself a young girl surrounded by friends and family.

True, she was still surrounded by friends and even a little family, but she was a young girl no longer. Glancing at the sky again she figured she should return inside before the sun rose to a dangerous level. Turning slowly she cast one last glance over the ruin that was her home and whispered to the wind, "I miss the sunlight."

Making her way to the cave entrance she noticed Darcy leaning against the cool rock smoking a cigarette, and lost in his own thoughts. She paused and allowed herself to look at the young boy before her. He was different then the other male slayers she had trained. It wasn't just that the prophets thought he was the one, Willow had felt certain he was different the moment she had first seen him as a baby. So much depended on him and the others, so much depended on the youth.

The boy had learned quickly, and had excelled at his studies as well. He was very strong, fast, and very opinionated. Back in the tunnel yesterday she had not really been shocked by his question about Spike. She was surprised that he had figured out that piece of the puzzle. How long before he asked the other questions? Questions that couldn't be answered, but should be? Willow wondered if he ever yearned for a normal life, though she feared he didn't know what normal was.

She smiled sadly as she remembered an old friend telling her how she wished her life was just normal. That slayer had even quit the Council trying to obtain a semblance of that normal life. But Darcy and the girls would never know a normal life, even if they did defeat Angelus. "God how had things gotten so bad," Willow thought to herself. It just wasn't fair any more.

The vampiress approached the young slayer and leaned against the rock next to him. "You really shouldn't smoke you know. They'll give you cancer," she smiled at the boy.

"I won't live that long," he said grimly.

"Don't say that Darcy," Willow said in a whisper.

"Why not?" he asked turning to face her. "Tell me why I should care about getting cancer, or getting sick? It's my destiny to die. Death is all I have. Ha, I guess you could say death is my gift." Willow froze, her heart would have been pounding if it still worked. She stared out at the lightening sky and remembered. Remembered fighting to bring her back from her own mind. Remembered mourning her. Remembered bringing her back. Willow remembered everything she tried to block out. "Willow, you okay?"

The vampire turned and gave the slayer a cold dark look. "Don't you ever say that again Darcy. Never say that unless you understand it. Do. You. Hear. Me? Death is not your gift, it is no one's gift. You have no idea..." she let her thoughts go unfinished. Her head was aching and her heart seemed to be aching as well. Darcy, seeing how upset Willow was chose not to continue. Something about that statement obviously unnerved her. He was startled when she spoke again, and even more so at what she said. "You even hear of Glorificus?"

"Of course, Buffy defeated her. She was a goddess trapped in this dimension seeking the key that would open the portal that would bring her home. But even as a god she was no match for the slayer. Buffy never gave up in her fight against the god and eventually defeated her though at the cost of her own life. Locked in a hell dimension for eternity the slayer seemed to be fated to suffer for eternity. However a powerful witch brought back the slayer for her journey was not yet over. Ms. McKelly really liked that story. She said it showed that even against impossible odds, if you stay true to yourself then you can beat the bad guy. Used to think that myself," Darcy muttered the last bit while taking another drag on her cigarette.

"Well it's a good lesson and you should always remember it. Don't give up hope Darcy. Just because there doesn't seem to be an end in sight, it doesn't mean we won't win." After this Willow paused and seemed to consider something before continuing. "Buffy did give up though." This statement brought a look of shock from the young slayer. "For a moment she gave up, and for that moment she completely shut down. She was overwhelmed, tired, and afraid. There didn't seem to be an end in sight. Glory kept chasing them, kept killing, kept destroying, and every time Buffy fought her, she gave up a little more hope. But the slayer's friends refused to give up and they fought to bring her back from herself, they fought so she could."

Darcy was slightly shocked but soon disappointment crept in. "You mean to tell me, the Slayer of all slayers, the exalted Chosen one, gave up. Bloody hell Willow. What kind of slayer was she then? Gave up. I don't believe it. A good slayer never gives up, no matter how bleak the future looks," he said gravely. "Even I would never give up. I may question certain things we do, but I don't ever let the darkness get the best of me." Darcy threw his cigarette on the ground and was about to step on it when Willow's booted foot beat him to it. His eyes traveled slowly up her lean body till they met her dark, cold, angry eyes. Darcy pressed back into the rock, not afraid, but shocked at the emotion present in his trainer's eyes.

"Buffy was the greatest slayer that has ever walked this earth. She lived longer then any other slayer. How do you think she did that? Yes she gave up, yes she was afraid, but she was also prepared to die for the one's she loved no matter the cost," Willow sighed. She lowered her gaze and backed off the boy a little. "Darcy, Buffy gave up because someone very close to her was taken away. She had been fighting so very hard for so very long that she didn't know what else to do. She was tired, hungry, angry and there seemed to be no hope. But she found her way and saved the day. Like always."

"Like always? Yeah, until the day when you aren't the one doing the saving any more. Buffy died twice before she finally was offed. Not all of us can look forward to not only one, but two resurrections. This life, this pathetic existence is all we have to look forward to. Buffy got lucky. We won't. Besides where are you coming up with this stuff anyway. This isn't what I was taught, this isn't what the history books say. What makes you so sure it went down like that?" He watched as Willow walked to the mouth of the cave and he glanced at the sky. The sun was peeking over the horizon. He turned to follow her and stopped when he saw her looking longingly at the sky.

Willow turned her eyes to the boy and made a decision. "I was there Darcy. I watched my best friend die so we wouldn't have to. And when I couldn't accept that she was dead, I tore her out of Heaven and brought her back to life. And you know what? I'll never forgive myself for it." With that the vampire turned and disappeared into the cave.

Darcy stood shocked as the new day's sunlight washed over him, warming his body. He knew Willow was old but he had never thought that she had been around when the legendary slayer lived. It made sense to him now. He turned and looked back over the city of rubble. It all made sense. Willow, a vampire with a soul, fighting with the good fight. He had always wondered how she had found her way to the good side, but had never asked. He had just accepted it like everyone else had. A sudden thought occurred to him. If Willow was there, then Spike... It was too much.

He couldn't think anymore. He didn't know what to think anymore. So many lies, so many fights, so many battles. He was fated to a life of battling evil, was he also fated to battle for the truth? How could they expect him to fight for their cause, when everyday he found out more of the truth behind lies they had told him? He knew his job, knew his destiny, so if the world rested on him, wasn't he entitled to the truth? He just couldn't understand why they would hide the fact that they had fought along side Buffy Summers and Faith. Why wouldn't they want the world to know that they had done even more heroic things then they already had? Darcy made a decision then and there. He was going to get to the bottom of these mysteries.

He turned to go back into the Bronze when another realization hit him "Did she say Heaven?" he asked the silence around him.

~~~

Sunnydale, CA

Beach

April 18, 2002

Buffy watched as the water rushed towards her bar feet and let out a sigh as the cool liquid surrounded her feet. She glanced at the pre-dawn sky and saw the sky beginning to lighten. Her hands ran through the sand and she allowed herself a moment to just relax. She closed her eyes and let her body fall gently to the sand. It had been a long night and she wanted nothing more then to go to sleep, but there was so much in her head that she had come to the beach in hopes of escaping the world for a moment. She turned her head so her cheek rested on the sand. She opened her eyes and watched as in the distance a bird stuck it's bill in the sand looking for food.

Inevitably her thoughts turned to last night encounter at the Magic Shop.

~~~~~

"This, Buffy, is Isabella; the slayer."

"The what!" Buffy shouted. "Oh my god, is Faith dead? How Giles? When? Why didn't Angel tell us?" Buffy asked Giles all the while advancing on him.

"Actually, um, I assure you Buffy, Faith is not dead," he said and cleared his throat. Buffy, Spike, and Dawn looked at the others who were just as confused as they were. They all then looked at Isabella, who pushed her shoulders back with a confident look in her eyes.

"Well if Faith isn't dead, then why is she here Giles?" Buffy asked.

"Well you died, didn't you?" asked the new slayer in an accent that sounded either Spanish or Italian. What she said however caused the group to grow still an quiet.

"Well yeah, she did, but look, she's back, good as new. She's like the Energizer bunny. She keeps going, and going, and-" Xander was cut off by a jab in the gut from Willow's elbow.

"Yes Buffy did die, but Faith carries the line now," Giles told Isabella.

A throat being cleared behind them drew all their eyes to a young man at the door. He stood about 6'2", was about 25, had shaggy brown hair and was extremely good looking. He wore a baggy black sweater over tan kakhis. "Well yes that is what we thought was true Rupert. But as we have never dealt with to slayers before, we really didn't know what to expect. Buffy is a slayer, as is Faith. Buffy died. When a slayer dies another is called, regardless of the fact that there is already another one."

"I think I understand. It doesn't matter that one had already been called. Buffy died again therefore calling forth another slayer. So now there are three lines from which the slayer blood runs. Incredible," Giles said glancing back and forth at the two girls.

"Yeah, okay. Yay new slayer. Let's hope she isn't like the last one. You I take it are her watcher," Buffy addressed the man at the doorway.

"Why yes. I am William Percy Tindall. You I gather are Ms. Summers," Mr. William Percy Tindall said in a very British voice.

"Great another Wesley. Gillllesss!" Buffy whined turning to her watcher. Spike couldn't contain his laugh and took out a smoke.

"Another slayer. Jesus Christ! Can't you ponces stop with the slayers already. Cut us vamps a break for cryin' out loud. Bloody hell, no matter this is the Hell Mouth. Demons are gonna stop coming," he said as he walked over and settled down next to Xander.

"Ah yes, Mr. William "the Bloody" I presume. The Council informed me of your participation. I hope you will not cause trouble or I will be forced to have Isabel stake you," said William. Spike just looked at the watcher with a look of utter amusement.

Xander started laughing and pointing at Spike. "You are so...gonna get...staked," he managed to get out between gasps for air. "You are always causing trouble."

"Oh bloody hell Harris," Spike said before hitting him upside the head. They both yelled in pain and looked at each other before both bursting out laughing.

"I don't think they should live together any more," Dawn whispered to Anya, who nodded in agreement.

"Okay back to what's important here. Me, her, and Faith. Three slayers Giles, three. Well, kinda with Faith being locked up and everything," Buffy said.

"Yes well, this could be beneficial. You will be able to hunt less and well maybe when Faith is released you could retire," Giles said hopefully. The room grew quiet as they waited for Buffy's reply.

Her face was sad and she smiled to herself. "Have a normal life, kids, family," she said almost to herself. "No, Giles, no," she said shaking her head. "That isn't for me. I didn't come back from the dead twice just so I could sit back and let people I could be helping die. No, I want a warrior's death."

"Here, here!" Xander and Spike shouted at the same time. They looked at each other and dissolved into laughter again.

At this point Tara stood up shyly and said, "Maybe we should um, assssk, Isabella what she feels about all this." Again the room grew quite as all eyes turned to the young girl on the floor. She was young, 16 years old, brown shoulder-length hair. She was tall and beautiful, definitely foreign. She didn't back down under the gazes of those present. Instead she stood up and met Buffy's eyes.

"I too am a slayer, though not as experienced. I will fight beside you till I meet my death," she spoke firmly.

"Okay, we are so gonna have to lighten you up," Buffy said turning to the new watcher. "So, Watcher, tell me, how are you at breaking the rules?"

Before William Percy Tindall could answer Xander walked over to the new slayer and asked, "So you ever wrestled an alligator, nude?"

"Xander!" Three female voices shouted at him in unison.

"What?" Xander asked looking shocked.

~~~

Last night had been long and painful. Painful because part of Buffy regretted not retiring. She was 21, lived a lot longer then most slayers, and averted more apocalypses then she cared to think about. Didn't she deserve a rest, a normal life? She sat up, brushing the sand from her face. She laughed and realized she would never have a normal life. Nor did she want it, well mostly. Sure she dreamed of kids and PTA meetings, and soccer Saturdays, but really she would always feel something missing if she gave up slaying. It had been a part of her for so long she refused to let it go. The other thing was that she would never be able to sit back and let people get hurt if she knew she could help them.

It was still another 15 minutes until sunrise but she couldn't sit still any longer so she stood and stretched. She turned and walked back up the beach then stopped as she noticed a certain blonde vampire leaning against a cliff face smoking watching her progress up the beach. She sighed and walked to him leaning against the rock beside him. "What are you doing here Spike, it's almost sunrise?"

"Not for a good fifteen minutes it ain't," he replied.

"So then why are you stalking me?"

"Just making sure you're okay pet," he said and turned to look at her. He reached a hand up and lightly brushed some sand off her face. He noticed her blush slightly at the contact and smiled, allowing his fingers to linger before dropping his arm. He took another drag on the cigarette and looked back at the quiet ocean. "Are you? Okay?"

She watched his profile and considered if he was playing with her. She decided they had gotten past that and answered him. "Not really, but I will be. It's just like a blow you know. Each time a new slayer has been called. I was the only one, the Chosen one, then I wasn't and yeah I was jealous at first but then I realized it was a good thing. Two is better then one."

"That was then love. You're older now pet, it isn't jealousy that is making you upset," he said glancing at her.

"How do you do that?"

"Do what?"

"Read me so well?" she asked. He smiled and pulled on his smoke. "You see right through me Spike. Well you're right, I'm not jealous. I'm upset I guess. With her here it could mean I could stop. Stop the killing. I could spend more time with Dawn, enjoy my friends, start a real life," she whispered the last part and turned away from the vampire beside her.

"That life isn't for you love, and we all know it. You could never sit idly by as people died. You believe that an extra slayer out there could make the difference. And you're right. It does. Besides, you're the best. You quit, world goes to hell," he smiled at her. He actually got a genuine laugh out of her.

"Yeah I guess it would," she said.

Spike threw his smoke away and looked at the sky as if considering. Deciding he had enough time he turned to the tiny slayer and put out his hand. She looked at him strangely and asked "What?"

"Dance with me Slayer?"

"What? Spike, here? What?" she asked somewhat shocked at his odd request.

"No one here love," he said and gestured around. "No one here to see you relax. No one here to see you dance."

"You're here," she said looking at him.

He grinned slightly and stepped closer to her. "Yes love, I am." She seemed to consider for a moment before slowly reaching up and grabbing his hand. She had had such a horrible few months, she just wanted to dance in the arms of a friend and feel comforted.

Spike smiled as she took his hand and he pulled her behind him onto the beach. He turned to face her and pulled her slowly into his chest, his arms circling around her tiny waist, holding her protectively. She allowed herself to relax in the arms of her one time enemy and circled her arms around his neck, bringing her head against his chest. She let out a sigh and then smiled and she heard him purr softly.

They danced to an silent song and both allowed the world to melt away. After a few minutes Spike pulled away slightly and brought a hand to her face, pushing a strand of hair away from her face. Their eyes locked and Buffy could feel her heart quicken. His eyes were so very blue. He started to lean in towards her, but she gently put her hand to his lips.

"No, Spike. We can't. I can't. Not again," she said quietly, her eyes never leaving his.

"I'm not him Buffy," he said using her name. "I won't ever leave you."

"You don't know that," she whispered, tears beginning to form.

"Yes I do love," he said as he removed her fingers from his lips. He closed the distance and captured her mouth in a soft, innocent kiss. A few moments later Buffy pushed back violently. Spike's eyes grew big as he asked "What? What did I do?"

Buffy grabbed his hand and began to pull. "The sun Spike, move!" It was then that Spike noticed he was smoking slightly and allowed himself to be led away by the slayer. Thankfully he had brought his car and didn't complain when the slayer threw him in it. When he looked back up he was surprised to see Buffy laughing.

"What?" he asked shifting into a better sitting position.

"That was quite a searing kiss Spike!" she said still laughing.

"Oh Ha ha Slayer. You weren't the one who almost went poof!"

"Oh Spike, " she muttered as she wiped tears from her laughing eyes. "Take me home Spike. I need the rest." He looked at her afraid he had ruined what they had worked so hard to get by that moment on the beach. But thankfully she was smiling back at him. He hadn't seen her smile that way in a long time.

"Right love. You need your slayer sleep," he said as he started the car. He paused when he felt her hand on his arm. He turned and looked at her.

"Thank you," she said softly.

Spike put the car in Drive and pulled away from the beach. 'Well,' he thought 'the future looks mighty interesting.'

End: Chapter 2: I Wanna Dance With You

Next: Chapter 3: With or Without You

"I can't live, with or without you." -U2

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Well folks, what say you, verdict please!

By: Ally (Hafthand )