Notes in part 1. Archivist notes at end of part 3.|
TTR/TDF [CF] Rock the Casbah 2/3
by Mags L Halliday
"So where are we, anyway?" Spike asked.
They were propped up at the bar in This Time Round. Adric had a plain
lemonade in front of him. Spike had managed to convince Francois to let him
have a bottle of tequila. On Adric's tab. He'd also, much to Adric's
surprise, got on the good side of Polly. Polly was the self-appointed
continuity consultant to the pub. If someone wasn't on the list, they weren'
t coming in. Spike wasn't, technically, on the list. He was, however, able
to charm her with his mockney accent and the faint whiff of rough trade that
clung to him. When he had called her 'pet', she had all but melted. Adric
had been impressed.
"This Time Round," Adric told the vampire. "It's a pub Outside Continuity.
The village, where the UA meet, came after the pub."
Francois, pausing in pouring a pint, grinned at them. Both men instinctively
leaned back from that smile.
"Francois remember when all this were fields."
"So where is he?" Buffy asked.
She had found Harmony alone in the crypt her former classmate was sharing,
some of the time anyway, with the bane of Buffy's life. Harmony had been
unwilling to tell on him, claiming not to know where her 'Spikey-baby' was.
Buffy decided that slamming Harm against a pillar and threatening to punch
her face would work. She had also decided it was fair revenge for three
years of sub-Heathers clique behaviour.
"What, are we speaking in tongues now, Harm? You never even mastered 'mea
casa es su casa' at school."
Buffy eased the chokehold slightly, just enough to let Harmony speak. It
wasn't like she needed to draw breath.
"Outside, OK? He goes off somewhere, every week. Won't tell me where. I
think he's seeing someone else."
"You mean someone else is willing to kiss him? Besides you, I mean." Buffy
asked. She got a flash of Spike's mouth on hers, his sharp teeth biting her
lip gently. Oh God. She'd kissed Spike. And she'd been doing such a good job
of repressing those memories as well. Damn Willow's spell. She dropped Harm
back onto the floor.
The blonde vampire and former classmate crawled over to
the only armchair in the crypt. Harm flicked her hair out of her face with
the same old shampoo advert swish that she'd had as a sixteen year old
fashionista. And, just as she had at school, her face crumpled up as she
started to cry ugly tears. She reached into her jeans back pocket and thrust
a piece of paper at Buffy. It had been rapidly torn off a notebook, and was
going blue around the edges from the dye in the jeans. Buffy squinted in the
gloomy light, trying to read the scratchy handwriting. Harm sniffled some
"I was going through his coat pockets one night and found that. That's all I
know, I swear it."
Buffy wrinkled her nose. "You go through his pockets? Could you get any more
housewifey pathetic, Harm?"
Buffy raised her eyes when that set off another burst of self-pitying sobs.
Just leave it.
Back in the street she was able to read the slip of paper properly.
"Outside Dimensions. The hut on the green. Tuesdays. 7pm."
Nyssa automatically looked towards the bar as they walked into the pub. He
wasn't working tonight: he always seemed to take Tuesdays off nowadays. She
didn't know why. And she didn't care. Well, she wanted to know but only
because if he was off-duty he was fair game and she was annoyed that he kept
disappearing on one of the few evenings when he was available for her. He
should be more considerate. Stick around so she could kill him.
She huffed as she sat at the round table near the door of the bar. She
automatically chose the seat that gave her a view of the bar itself and the
main door in. If he showed, she'd see him. Tegan and Turlough returned with
a tray of drinks and multiple packets of crisps. Turlough shoved his
hold-all under the table.
"Food's off," the Australian told Nyssa, "Shockeye's gone home for the
"We'd have been in time if we'd not come via the woods and the hilltop,"
Turlough muttered as he struggled to open a bag of dry-roasted peanuts.
Tegan took it out of his hands and ripped it open.
"I just thought we could do with some exercise," Nyssa told him. Turlough
"Yeah, and it had nothing to do with- ow!"
Tegan smiled at Nyssa, offering her the peanuts. Nyssa looked at her. Tegan
was one of her best friends: she told her everything. Well, almost
everything. She hadn't mentioned her Christmas Eve encounter on the hillside
with Adric. But...it was conceivable that Tegan and/or Turlough had put
together the two snowball splattered coats, the way she and Adric had
returned to the pub separately... The signs of a battle on the snow-covered
hillside as the party had left later that Eve... They were probably drawing
completely false conclusions from it all, probably thinking that she
insisted they walk to the Round via the woods and hillside on the off-chance
that they would find Adric. Which was patently ridiculous. She would be
happy never to see the swamp rat again. Ever. And she'd tell him that the
next time she saw him.
"Oh sh--. She's here."
Spike leaned out of the booth at the back of the bar, putting one hand out
to steady himself. "Where?"
"Don't look! Don't *look*! Don't **look**!!" Adric hissed as he frantically
grabbed hold of Spike's coat lapel and hauled him back out of sight. They
were hidden from the main bar area by the high backs of the settles, having
retired to the booth to avoid any more of Francois's attempts to be the
convivial host. Spike had brought the entire bottle of tequila with him and
convinced Adric to down a few slammers. Now both of them were slurring a
little, their actions slightly blurred and clumsy.
"Watch the leather!" Spike shook the younger man's hand off him and leaned
back out, scanning the room.
"Why can' I look? 'S'not like she knows me. Ooh, who's the little blonde? I
could just eat her up."
Adric peered cautiously out, checking Nyssa still had her back to their part
of the pub and then looking to where the vampire was indicating.
"That's Sam Jones. Trust me, you're not her type."
Spike shrugged as they both leaned back into the safety of the booth. Adric
poured them both another shot of tequila. He was sort of enjoying the
vampire's company. Most of his friends would have started to wind him up
about Nyssa's presence by now but Spike didn't care. It had to said that
Spike didn't care because he was too busy moping about his own problems but
it was *something*.
"...an' then she said "he's not my boyfriend" which hurt, you know? Hurt
more than that Glory bitch throwing me into a wall. I mean, she could have
just got on with beating the bint up, didn't need to make a big deal about
"The denial is the worst thing," Adric agreed.
"S'right! I mean, she can't have not noticed. How can she not 'ave noticed?"
Adric was wondering the same as Spike's voice rose. How could the
psychopathic killer not have noticed he was here by now? He wanted to check
but he knew, the laws of Outside being what they were, that the moment he
stuck his head back out of the booth would be the moment she looked in their
direction. He heard the main door slam but still refused to turn round and
look. He wasn't *that* drunk.
"I wrote her a poem, you know? Tried to tell her what I...oh hell..."
"Are you sure this is a good idea? I mean, the book was pretty specific
about the rules for this place."
Buffy paused and assessed the front of the pub, letting Willow ramble on. It
looked like a fairly normal English country pub. Well, like she thought
English country pubs ought to look like. Lots of windows, heavy oak door, a
car park. There were the odd signs that the place had seen some action
though. There were sword marks in the wood frame of the door, smoke damage
in the car park and bullet holes in the leaves of the ivy.
"Ah, come on, Will. I'm pretty sure I've been here before. Plus, we can
legally buy beer."
She led the way, slamming open the main door. Everyone in the bar looked up
and stared at her. The jukebox, in accordance with pub rule number 2,
unexpectedly jumped a track. The two young men playing pool took one glance
at her and hurriedly hid their pool cues behind their backs. Yep, she'd been
"...to tell her what I...oh hell..."
And Spike was half-falling out of a back booth with a tequila bottle in his
She vaulted the table in front of her, ignoring the three locals sat at it.
A flip took her across to the bar. The creature behind it tried to grab the
broom handle just too late and she had it snapped across her knee and ready
to plunge as she twirled round and grabbed Spike by the lapel.
He put his hands up in surrender.
"Alright, you got me Summers."
"Where is it?"
"You know what I want, Spike. Don't play games with me."
Shifting her grip on the broken broom stick so that she had him pressed up
against the wooden back of his seat with it, she let go of his lapel and
started to go through his pockets. She'd had enough of him. No more. As soon
as she had that monks' dust he was...er...dust.
"Oh, that's it. Have a good root around." Spike had gone into leer mode.
God, she hated him when he was like that. Strike that, she hated him all the
time. He wiggled as she reached inside his long coat and patted the back
pockets of his jeans.
"Spike. Do I have to check your front pockets?"
She was surprised to see a look of alarm on his face and he was suddenly
reaching down, pulling the small velvet pouch out of his jeans and throwing
it on the table. Then he batted the improvised stake away from his chest and
went to walk out of the booth. And stood on Willow's foot. Hard. All three
of them automatically winced and then Spike frowned.
"Hi Willow. I did just stand on your foot, didn't I?"
"And that must have hurt, right?"
"Yeah, it did. Well, you do wear those big ole army boots."
Spike nodded and glanced at Adric. Buffy looked at the other occupant of the
booth for the first time. A scrawny kid. Not really who she expected to find
Spike drinking with. Adric shrugged at them all.
"Outside rules," he remarked. Spike's face cleared and he grinned.
"You mean, I can do this?" He swung at Buffy, a wild hard roundhouse punch.
Automatically, she blocked and stabbed her other hand forward. The one with
the sharp, splintered pointy piece of wood in it. Spike looked down, then
back up. His face crumpled at her, the eyes full of shock as they exploded
"Oh my Gods," Willow whispered, "you killed Spike."