The Writing on the Wall by Holly

Reviews (20)Rating: NC-17

Summary: There was no body to bury. There was no funeral. There was nothing but the three rules and the knowledge that a thousand years of torment was nothing compared to a world without her in it. Spike embarks on a journey through the Gates of Hell to rescue the one he loves, but in order to save her, he must risk losing himself.


Author's Notes: I first got the idea for this story a year ago while watching the first few episodes of Season 6. It grew from a short-fic to a series once I realized there was no way I could do it justice without focus and consideration. The outline grew as days went on, becoming more detailed and complicated, and I knew I couldn’t—I wouldn’t—start writing it until I had killed off at least one WIP. Earlier this year, I completed Tempesta di Amore, and would have started on this story immediately were it not for the fact that I had a seasonal_spuffy story to write—Southern Comfort—and then went months without a computer. I know I have readers who are waiting for Strawberry Fields, and for that I’m sorry. This story has been begging to be written for a long, long time, and while I am still devoted to Strawberry Fields, I have to go where my muse takes me, and my muse, right now, doesn’t want to move.

Therefore, to my Strawberry Fields readers: I’m sorry. I love that story and I will finish it…but to work on it right now when my muse is elsewhere wouldn’t be fair to me, the story, or even you in the end. The last time I forced myself to write something I hated the outcome, and SF is too important to me to force it. It’ll come when it comes.

About The Writing on the Wall: This story is incredibly important to me for reasons I can’t explain. My betas, just_sue, elizabuffy, megan_peta, dusty273, therealmccoy1, and spikeslovebite have been absolutely wonderful over the past few weeks, and I can’t thank them enough. A special thank you to elizabuffy, who cheered this story on from its conception, egging me on every now and then, asking when she could expect the first chapter. She was there when the idea originated and gave me the courage not to let it slip. Likewise, just_sue has been amazing in her criticism and suggestions. I really don’t know how I managed without her as a beta as long as I did.

This story is not complete.

Chapter 1
Added: 10-09-08 • Reviews (1)

Chapter 2
Added: 10-09-08 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 3
Added: 10-09-08 • Reviews (0)
Chapter Notes: A brief editorial note: The Tale of Brychantus and the Demon King as well as all other mythology presented in this story is entirely my own.

Chapter 4
Added: 11-09-08 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 5
Added: 11-09-08 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 6
Added: 11-09-08 • Reviews (1)

Chapter 7
Added: 11-09-08 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 8
Added: 11-09-08 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 9
Added: 11-09-08 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 10
Added: 11-09-08 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 11
Added: 11-22-08 • Reviews (0)
Chapter Notes: I know these last few chapters haven’t been pretty; I just wanted to express my thanks to all my readers who stuck it out. You guys are awesome, and you don’t get told that enough. Thank you so much for your reviews, comments, and support.

Likewise, and as always, thanks to my betas. You ladies are amazing.

To everyone: I promise, your patience will be rewarded.

Chapter 12
Added: 11-22-08 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 13
Added: 11-22-08 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 14
Added: 11-29-08 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 15
Added: 12-28-08 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 16
Added: 12-28-08 • Reviews (1)

Chapter 17
Added: 01-02-09 • Reviews (0)
Chapter Notes: I know it’s been a little longer than I planned since updating, and for that my apologies. Between birthday, graduation, a trip to Vegas, Christmas (six of them this year, three with my family and three with my boyfriend’s), my boyfriend moving in, and New Years, I’ve been fairly drained. I’m almost finished with Chapter Eighteen, though, so I figured there was no harm in updating with the chapter I’ve had in storage the past few weeks. Hopefully, you guys will forgive me.

This story, as well as others, have recently won awards at the SunnyD Awards and The Rogue Poet Awards. The Writing on the Wall won for Best Angst in Spike Pairings, Best Characterization for Spike, Best Drama, Best Original Character for Larry, Best Conventional Pairing and Best Plot for Spike Pairings. Southern Comfort also won for Best Romance and Best NC-17 for Spike Pairings. My Wesley/Faith story, Elements, won Best Unconventional Pairing, and my Willow stand-alone, Healing Crystals, won runner up for best Quickie Fic. Thank you so much to everyone who voted, and to the wonderfully kind person who nominated me. It really made for getting back into the writing spirit.

Likewise, The Writing on the Wall won Best WIP at The Rogue Poet Awards, and I won runner-up for Best Author. Thank you so much!

Chapter 18
Added: 01-27-09 • Reviews (2)

Chapter 19
Added: 03-21-09 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 20
Added: 03-21-09 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 21
Added: 03-21-09 • Reviews (2)
Chapter Notes: Dedicating this chapter to dampersnspoons, who has kept me busy (and horny) at work. Thank you so much for sending me your stories.

Thanks so much to all my readers. You guys have been so wonderful and patient. I’ll have to think of a way to reward you…

And, as always, thanks to my wonderful betas.

Chapter 22
Added: 04-11-09 • Reviews (2)
Chapter Notes: Thanks to Megan, Mari, and Tami for the incredibly quick turnaround. As promised, without FULL BETA APPROVAL, here is Chapter 22. I’ll make an announcement when a fully betaed chapter is available…until then, however, you’ll have to live with my mistakes.

Thanks so much to everyone who voted for this and my other stories at The Spuffy Awards. You guys are awesome!!

Chapter 23
Added: 05-21-09 • Reviews (1)
Chapter Notes: I know, it’s been ten years since I updated this story. I’m sorry! One of my betas had a computer crisis, and while I am still technically waiting for revisions, I’ve decided I can’t wait any longer…so there will be a better version of this available—I’ll let you all know via my personal LJ when it’s up.

I waited for-freaking-ever to write this chapter…I really hope it comes across as intended.

Thanks so much to all my extremely hard-working betas and all my wonderful readers who have stuck with me through this story. Also, thanks to whoever nominated this story at The Fang Fetish AwardsIt won for Best Dark/Angst in the Spuffy category.

Chapter 24
Added: 06-08-09 • Reviews (1)
Chapter Notes: So it hasn’t been quite as long between updates. YAY! And I am going to get cracking on the next chapter—hope to get a bit done this afternoon before I go to the movies with my mum.

Just a note about this chapter: this is the only time I’m going to write from Buffy’s POV…and even still, it’s not entirely from her POV. I know a lot of people wanted to see inside her head, but I resolved a while ago not to leave Spike’s POV, and I’m going to stick by it. I only broke that for this chapter because I felt if she spoke the words it would lose its impact. I went for more of a “we’re inside the narrative” effect. Not sure if it works, but that is what I was aiming to accomplish.

ABUNDANT THANKS to my wonderful betas, who hauled ass to get this chapter back to me. You all rock so very hard.

Chapter 25
Added: 09-08-09 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 26
Added: 09-08-09 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 27
Added: 09-08-09 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 28
Added: 09-08-09 • Reviews (1)

Chapter 29
Added: 01-02-10 • Reviews (0)

Chapter 30
Added: 01-02-10 • Reviews (0)
Chapter Notes: I really don’t have anything to say here that I haven’t said on my LJ. The past few months have been terrible for me in terms of writing. I’d open TWotW and just stare at the cursor, and it'd blink at me until I gave up with a sick feeling in my tummy.

It wasn’t limited to TWotW; inspiration was in extremely short supply. I do apologize to my loyal readers who have been waiting for an update. I don’t want to jinx myself and say I’m out of the woods, but I do have a good start on the next chapter. Right now all seems well—just send me good vibes.

And for the two people left on the Internets who haven’t heard…I’ve been published! My novella, Firsts is available through Loose Id.

Chapter 31
Added: 01-02-10 • Reviews (8)
Chapter Notes: I’m immensely pleased with how quickly this came to me, all things considered, and I’m aiming for another chapter before Christmas, but that might be a bit optimistic. I’m also toying with Christmas fic ideas…though I’m beginning to think it’s a bit late to try. I’d really like something fluffy, to counter the angst, and something…all-humany. Don’t have any solid ideas yet (though a lot of really good suggestions!) so that may or may not come to pass.

Thanks so much to my betas for their quick turnaround, and MASSIVE thanks for the amazing response to the last chapter. I was very grateful to see that this story still had readers. Thank you, thank you, thank you.