Summary:AU from Life of the Party, Spike deals with a local ghost
Angel was a pain. Worse, Angel was a pain who didn't even realize how much of a pain he was, a pain that didn't realize how easy he'd always had it and how disgusting it was for others to see him floating through life and complain about every little obstacle that dared to bother his path. Angel was the kind of pain that started in your ass and went all the way up to your brain and down to your toes.
Not like Spike had wanted to go to Angel’s stupid Halloween bash, it wasn’t like he could have actually done anything there, seeing as how he couldn’t even touch anyone or anything. He couldn’t snack on anything, couldn’t even dance with Harmony without the risk of someone walking right through him. So no, he probably wouldn’t even have gone in the first place, but then the stupid bastard had to go and tell him specifically to stay the hell away from Lorne’s party so he wouldn’t, quote mark, ruin things. He almost came just for that, till he remembered what a sorry thing it’d be. Lorne had pouted when Spike told him he couldn’t come. Sure Spike had only been trying to get an invite from Lorne to shove it in Angel’s face, but that’s no reason for Lorne to go all un-host like. Telling him to leave and go deal with his ghosts elsewhere.
Stupid demon, stupid humans, all siding with Angel and stupid Harm for looking so hot in that tight pink number that could made you forget she was little more than a Barbie doll in the brains department.
It was Halloween and most sane demons were stuck in their happy little nests, sucking the necks of whatever or whomever they’d caught, bought or sliced up the day before. Not a single one of them would be vulgar enough to go out and hunt on a night like this. Not that it mattered. It wasn’t like he could get in a bit of violence, couldn’t even scratch them in his current state. Even getting a sodding drink was beyond him right now. He really wished he could get drunk.
He sat down on one of the barstools of one of the seediest pubs he’d seen in a long while. The place was filthy; beer rings were visible all over the table. Yet despite that, the place was stamped full and for some reason all eyes were turned to a barstool at the left side of the counter. There was a clock hanging over the bar and some people were even counting down. Spike didn't have a clue what for. It wasn’t even close to New Year.
Spike wondered if he'd looked away for a second when all of a sudden the chair no longer free. A scrawny young man, somewhere in his twenties dressed in tweed had taken place. The man, more like a boy still, was smiling.
"A beer my good man, so that we who will be working tomorrow can enjoy our night."
The bartender set up a glass in front of the man and filled it. Spike wondered why he didn't even ask for the kid's ID. Ah well, he probably knew him.
His hand went down and Spike practically froze when he saw the man's hand pass right through the beer, yet bringing something to his mouth. Spike wasn't sure what, but it was something.
"It's like so cool." he heard someone behind him say. "Old Tommy has been coming here on and off for the past sixty years. They don’t know why, just that he comes in for a drink, says the same few words every single time. Then he takes two, three sips of some beer that only he seems to see and leaves."
Spike got up from his chair and started moving up to the other ghost, hoping to talk to him, maybe get some clues, maybe some teaching on how to haunt, simple ground rules. Maybe even a hand guide? Who knows what tricks the other guy could give him? Hey it worked for the guy in that movie Ghost.
A big fat guy didn't move out of the way and Spike passed right through him, hoping to get to the ghost before he disappeared. Fatso yelled at him, Spike almost wondered if that’s what made the boy notice him. Either way Spike felt himself pulled in to follow him as he left
Several onlookers stared after them, he ignored it, ran right through the wall, same like the other ghost. He yelled after him, but it was like the ghost didn't even hear him, walking in some other world that only he could see.
A car passed through him and it didn't even make him stop. Spike could hear brakes behind them as the startled driver desperately tried to stop. But he didn't care enough to check up on the guy, to busy following the ghost. The ghost wasn't stopped by anything, just moved on to a room and faded through the door. Spike tried to follow but found a barrier in front of him. As strong as the one on a home he wasn't invited in.
"Mate, I just need a bit of help here. Just help a bloke out."
Then as if something outside of him took over, he could hear words leaving his lips.
"I'm here to get that money you owe to Georgie. Now invite me in before I let myself in."
The door opened and Spike grabbed for his coat, finding himself wearing tweed instead. He almost panicked, where had his coat gone? What the hell was going on here? And that sodden tweed was itchy, there was a reason he’d sworn an oath to never again wear tweed unless his life depended on it.
The door opened and the boy stood there facing him. Spike found he was grinning as the boy pronounced his own death sentence. “Come on in.”
Spike wanted to run like hell when he realized what was about to happen. He could smell a second scent somewhere behind the closet door. A third, female scent still lingered somewhat, but was mostly gone.
"I've got the money,” Tommy said. "I've just got a job so you can tell George I can give it to him as soon as I get paid."
But Spike could hear a voice inside of him telling him that it wasn’t about the money, that anyone could have used the local loan shark’s name to get entry wherever they wanted. Not that Tommy noticed this. He waited until the man had his back turned to grab him, his fangs ready to sink in.
It was like being under the Firsts control all over again. Only this time he was fully aware of what his body was doing, while he shouldn’t even have a body to be controlled. He didn’t, he fought to stop himself. Don’t kill; don’t kill, his soul, his mind was screaming at him to stop. But it was useless and soon the body sank limply in his arms.
"Please." the man whispered. "My little girl."
"She'll do nicely as an appetizer."
Spike could feel his hands snapping Tommy’s neck, his hand moved to a handkerchief that he somehow knew was in his pockets.
His hands hit a letter that he pulled out, the scent purely Dru's. He knew that letter; she'd mailed him, telling him she was still in Italy.
"It's your lucky day kid."
He wiped the blood off his lips and made ready to move, a soft drumming heartbeat softly fading on the floor.
Spike was frozen, as his body didn't care; too happy that he was about to see Dru as soon as his boat left. This was nothing but a quick snack before he caught his ride.
He didn’t regain his control until he opened the door and set one foot over the threshold.
Spike stopped, turned back and stared at the body on the floor, a happy meal with legs is what he’d been and Spike hadn’t even recognized him until now.
"I'm sorry." he kneeled down next to him. “But at least the kid got away."
He turned back to the door, feeling a chill form over his shoulder, making him turn back. The ghost was no longer a corpse; he was standing up, his eyes dark like coal. He was shaking his head. “Think again.” Cold rage shone in his voice.
“I didn't kill her”
Face to face, the boy coming closer until they could almost touch.
"You .. left ...her! Left ...her ....to ...die."
His fist hit Spike's face with every word, Spike didn't even bother to defend himself.
“She was waiting for me you bastard. Waiting for me to let her out, couldn’t get out, not on her own, not with her little fingers unable to get a hold and break out of there. She was waiting for me and she died. So hungry, so thirsty and I never came to get her. I … never. Killing her would have been kinder.”
"I'm sorry." Spike wanted to say. But he couldn't form the words.
He was a vampire, vampires killed, it had been what he was supposed to do, but none of that meant anything, not to him, not to his soul and not to the ghost still kicking at him as he was down on the floor.
“I didn’t think…”
“You didn’t even remember her, probably forgot all about her the second you left the door.”
Spike knew it was the truth. He wished to god that it wasn’t.
The ghost was reaching for the door, unable to touch. Spike looked at him as he fell down to his knees, reaching…
He wasn’t sure why he did what he did next. Maybe part of him expected her body to still be there. Silly as it were. He gently unlocked the hatch on the closet door and opened it to nothing but a doll. He picked up the doll and held it; it was a rag doll, the kind they stopped making decades ago
“Hush little baby. Don’t you cry.”
The father’s neck was bleeding a ghostly red where Spike had bitten him. A small form appeared in the closet. “Daddy is it time to come out yet?”
As if a spell was broken, the man grabbed his daughter and pulled her in his arms. Hugging her smaller form like it was made of mist, as if terrified that she’d fade away from him if he didn’t held on to her. Spike watched as the little girl waved a last goodbye before they both disappeared going wherever ghosts where supposed to head off to. He stood there, still holding on to the doll, until even that fell to rags and old age that sank through ghostly fingers.