Buffy sat up on the edge of the bed, and the Slayer and the vampire undressed quickly in silence, as the weight of what they were about to do began to become real to them. Buffy finished before Spike did, turning the bedspread back and lying down on the bed to wait for him.
The impact of what he was preparing for – taking an eternal mate – as well as the risks involved, was beginning to dawn on him, and showing itself in the nervous trembling of his hands as he fumbled with his belt, finally managing to get out of the restrictive confines of his dark jeans.
When he turned to face her, drawing in a deep, slightly uneven breath – it was immediately stolen away from him by the sight that met his eyes.
Buffy was lying on the bed on her back, completely naked, her perfectly bronzed body revealed to him, as he stood there and simply took in the breathtaking sight of her. She had already fastened the manacles to the bedposts on either side of her, and locked her left wrist into one of them. She fumbled awkwardly to get her right wrist into the other, having only the use of her right hand to work with.
Finally, she gave up with an adorable, frustrated little pout as she turned her anxious emerald eyes up to him.
“Help me?” she requested, her eyes wide and pleading, and full of a certain innocence and vulnerability, in spite of everything, that caught him off guard.
His nervousness was instantly forgotten, swallowed up in sheer desire, as he swiftly closed the distance between them, in once quick motion fastening the loose manacle around her wrist.
“Try and get away,” he instructed, his voice low and husky with his arousal, but his eyes serious.
He had to know if she was going to be able to break those chains, should she end up trying.
She strained against the bonds, writhing slightly on the bed as she tried to break their hold – with no success. “Can’t,” she assured him with a note of satisfaction in her voice.
His serious expression shifted to a teasing smirk, as his eyes slowly trailed up the length of her luscious body.
“You sure? Maybe you ought to try again.”
Buffy’s eyes narrowed in an expression that would have been dangerous, had she not been chained up at his mercy, but she smiled as she replied cheerfully, “Pig.”
Spike’s response was a self-deprecating shrug, accepting the mildly stated insult, before silencing her mouth completely with a tender, thorough kiss that left her suddenly breathless and straining toward him against the chains that held her, when he pulled away.
He smiled at her useless efforts, as he climbed onto the bed, straddling her and leaning down to kiss her again – once again pulling away before she was satisfied, lowering his mouth to kiss his way down to her throat. He paused for a moment over the rapidly fluttering pulse point where he would later leave his mark.
She moaned softly when he sucked gently on the spot, closing his teeth lightly around it in a tempting promise of what was to come, before continuing the blissfully torturous journey of his mouth down her body to her sensitive breasts, now aching with need.
His blunt human teeth closed carefully around one erect nipple, grazing it lightly as he pulled slowly back away from it, and drawing a soft whimper of protest from her lips when he released it and raised up slightly to look her in the eye, his own gaze hooded and darkened with lust.
“Spike,” she gasped. “Please – don’t stop…don’t…” she whispered, her back arching off of the mattress, her needy breast seeking further contact as her wrists strained futilely against the manacles.
“Impatient little chit, aren’t you?” Spike smirked, running his cool fingertips slowly down her ribcage on either side, driving her mad with the light, tingling touch.
“You’re the one – who said…” Buffy struggled breathlessly to get the words out as his thumb obligingly moved to circle the mercilessly teased nipple his mouth had just left. “…gotta…make this quick…”
Spike’s low, warm laugh was musical in her ears, warming her heart as he lowered his mouth to kiss her again, his hands increasing the intensity of his exploration of her body, pulling her closer to him as his throbbing erection brushed against her sodden, longing center, without actually entering her – yet.
“Maybe not so quick,” he murmured against her throat, just before his teeth nipped gently at her sensitive skin and drew another little gasp and shudder of pleasure from the deliciously helpless Slayer. “Might have a bit of time…how do you feel?”
Somehow even the softly spoken reminder of the danger of their situation sounded sexy when he said it in that low, throaty voice that was almost a purr – or a growl – or some equally predatorily sexy feline noise.
“Fine,” she admitted in a soft, distracted voice, nodding as he scraped his teeth lightly along her neck down to her shoulder, before resuming the tender kisses along her collarbone that made her moan softly with pleading and pleasure, longing to hold him in her arms, to pull him closer to her – frustrated and aroused by the fact that she could not – that for once, she was his to possess – to command…
Her eyes suddenly shot open in alarm, and her body tensed as the unfortunate train of thought she had taken caused a strange stirring deep within her that had nothing to do with the pleasurable stirrings Spike was creating elsewhere in her body.
Spike immediately felt the difference in his lover, and pulled back slightly, frowning as he searching her distant, hazy eyes.
“Buffy?” he said in a low, cautious whisper. “Not so fine after all?”
With an extreme force of will, Buffy pushed back with all her strength against the indignant rage she felt building up inside her, deliberately focusing on her mate through the rising struggle.
“Spike,” she whispered, her eyes finding his and struggling to get her words out while holding back the Slayer demon that was trying to overcome her. “she’s fighting. It’s the chains – she doesn’t like it…”
Spike rose up off of her slightly, concern and uncertainty in his eyes as he glanced at the manacles, and then at their key where it lay on the nightstand beside Buffy’s cell phone. He wasn’t sure what he could do to help her; would it be easier for her to fight it back if she was not bound – if the demon didn’t feel so restrained?
“*No*!” Buffy snapped in alarm, without meaning to, and the fear in her voice, for his safety, took the sting from her tone. “No,” she repeated, softer, laying her head back on the pillow, her breath coming hard and fast as she closed her eyes and tried her best to fight the demon back. “Whatever I tell you to do – don’t unchain me…”
Spike watched her closely, his mind racing as he tried to come up with a way to help her. “That’s all well and good, love – until you order me to later and I can’t resist it…” he reminded her.
Buffy let out a soft little groan as the struggle within her intensified, and her body tensed up again under him. “She shouldn’t be able to – order you…” she gasped, frowning with concentration as she tried to keep her thoughts together. “…*I* claimed you…not her…”
“But if she’s in your body, your voice, making a command…the claim’s not just emotional or spiritual, pet, it’s physical too…” Spike tried to explain, wondering even if he did if Buffy was still in enough control to be able to understand what he was telling her, and if their time could be better spent, considering that it appeared that the demon was starting to get the upper hand.
“Still,” Buffy protested a bit weakly, pausing, her jaw set with determination as she pushed back as hard as she could against the force trying to take her over. “you’d think…*my* command would…would…”
Spike’s eyes widened as he finished her thought in his mind, realizing what it was she was saying – and how very important it might be.
“…would override hers,” he said aloud, in a voice of grim certainty. “Buffy!” he put a hand to her cheek, turning her face to look her in the eye, piercing blue eyes seeking hers and struggling to make her focus. “Buffy, you have to order it now…so that she can’t undo it when she – when she takes over…”
He saw a flash of understanding in Buffy’s confused, pain-filled emerald eyes, before she nodded weakly, her right hand straining slightly against the chains. “I have to – have to…” she whispered, unable to finish the words, her voice fading even as she attempted to speak, with the physical exertion of the struggle.
Spike knew he was taking a terrible chance, but he knew what she was trying to say. They needed all the force of the claim behind the command she was about to give him, so that it would be as binding as possible, as unbreakable by the Slayer demon as it could possibly be. He reached for the key and unchained her right wrist, drawing it with trembling hands toward his throat.
He felt sick with fear, knowing the risk he was taking, the damage that could be done if the demon overwhelmed Buffy in this moment – but she had to be touching him for it to work.
He felt her hand clench slightly on his throat, as another forceful spasm hit her, and she struggled to fight it back. He watched her face intently as her jaw worked with the effort of pushing back the intruder within her, and felt a sense of relief as she managed to gain a moment’s advantage, and her hand on his throat relaxed a little, as her eyes opened and focused momentarily on his with an arresting gaze.
“Spike,” she said in a voice of unquestionable authority, and he recognized the power of her claim in her tone. Whatever she was about to say, he would be powerless but to obey her. “No matter what I tell you to do after this – no matter what happens – you will *not* unchain me until I’ve accepted your claim. You will not stop, even if I tell you to, until I have been claimed as your own – and *accepted* it.”
“Yes, Buffy,” Spike softly accepted her command, his hand gently caressing hers where it rested, trembling, over her mark on his throat. He nodded once, slowly, solemnly, closing his eyes and simply *feeling* the intense power of the bond that made him hers.
He felt the power of her claim, knew that he would hardly be physically capable of disobeying, if it came to that. He gently removed her hand from the mark, though he hated to break the intensity of their connection, and drew it back to the chain that had held it, locking it around her wrist again *now*, while she was still in enough control to allow it.
Except – control did not seem to be much of an issue at the moment. Not anymore.
Buffy’s labored gasps as she slowly caught her breath, were the only sound in the room for a few moments, as his questioning gaze studied her, noting how the tension seemed to be slowing easing from her body, as she laid her head back on the bed, her eyes closed.
“Buffy?” All he said was her name, but the question was clear.
She shook her head, a weak little smile of triumph rising to her lips. “She’s gone. Well – not *gone* gone – but she quit. For now. She’s not trying to come out anymore,” she assured him, opening her eyes to meet his with elation.
Spike’s eyes widened in surprise. “ ‘M not quite sure I get it, love. Why would she just give up like that when she knows what we’re about to do?”
Buffy shrugged slightly, looking away thoughtfully. “Makes sense, I guess,” she said after a moment. “if you think about it. Why would she keep struggling to take over when she knows that she *can’t* make you unchain her, no matter how hard she tries — *can’t* make you stop until you’ve claimed me…what’s the point, when the command I just gave you would override anything she tried to make you do?”
He nodded slowly, realizing that she was right, before his mouth set in a grim line as he pointed out, “She’s most likely saving her strength for the battle. The dominance ritual.”
“Won’t do her any good,” Buffy smiled softly at him, her breath becoming steady as her body began to relax, no longer wracked by the painful battle that had consumed her moments before. “She doesn’t stand a chance.”
“So – I’ve got one question, love,” Spike said slowly, his eyes once again trailing in a lingering gaze down the Slayer’s supple body, none-the-less enticing to him glistening with the slight sheen of the perspiration from her struggle, her golden hair disheveled and falling slightly into her face.
“What’s — *uuhh* — that?” she gasped in surprise, her head falling back against the pillow again as Spike’s roving fingers found her swollen center.
“Since demon-girl doesn’t seem to be planning on making another appearance – does she?” he paused for confirmation, one eyebrow raised questioningly over a self-satisfied smirk, as he dipped a finger tentatively inside her in an almost casual manner as he waited for her response.
A soft moan was his response as Buffy’s back arched slightly and she squirmed impatiently under his far-too-gentle touch. “No,” she replied in a shuddering whisper.
Spike nodded his acceptance of the answer he had expected as he went on in a low, measured and incredibly enticing voice,
“Well, then. Any reason you can think of – why we’d still need to rush this?”
Buffy’s eyes widened in realization of his meaning, and she looked at him with a bit of dismay in her eyes. “Spike – please…” she said in a voice that was little more than a whimper. “Please – I can’t wait – I need you…she – she *could* come back,” she pointed out weakly. “Never know…please…”
Spike chuckled softly, his cool lips vibrating lightly with the sound as they came to rest on the top of her breast for a moment, before he raised his head to meet her eyes with a wicked smirk.
“Good. Didn’t think so.”