Part 3: Dance Card
His grip on her loosened, and his face slid back to human as she moved down his body, delicately smearing blood across his chest and licking it off along the way. With a proprietary gleam and a belly-deep growl, she mouthed every inch of his body, marking him hers, and hers alone, unaware of the demon's departure.
Murky aqua eyes glassed over with desire, then widened in horror. A cry from far away escaped his lips as his glance shifted to ice, "Oh Buffy, love. You can't mean to..."
Lifting her head at his words, she watched helplessly as man and monster both disappeared into smirking nothingness that grasped her chin and pulled her up, clucking his tongue, "I like it nasty, baby."
He was back. Predatory instincts took hold. Buffy shifted her weight and, with a flip of her wrist, sent him flying across the graveyard to land in a grassy patch beneath a tree.
Advancing on him, a cat toying with her prey, Buffy kicked him back against the tree. "You don't know what nasty is until you've messed with what's mine."
Roughly, she jerked him up and pulled him in. "And as for not meaning to have them--I can." Hazel eyes flashed fire, and with a quicksilver motion, she slid her hand into his pants. "And I do." A momentary flash of yellow lit his eyes, but was gone before she could hold it.
She needed the poet to stick it out, or they had no prayer. Rude gestures and violent bloodplay wouldn't call him to her; only honest emotion had a chance.
She pulled her hand from his pants and summoned every ounce of courage she possessed. Looking straight into those emotionless eyes, Buffy leaned in to kiss him gently on the lips, whispering her heart, "I need you, William."
He hissed as if she'd burned him, then pushed her backward and lunged in for the kill. Buffy closed her eyes as she fell. If this was the end, she didn't want to watch him bring it.
When moments passed with only the sound of her breathing, she opened her eyes to find him regarding her with a mixture of hope and despair. The longing in him stretched his body taut as his fingers found the bridge of his nose and slid anxiously up, as if to push glasses that didn't exist into a more comfortable position.
"You mustn't goad him, girl."
Scrabbling to his knees and looking her in the eye, he reached out as if to touch her, then pulled back. "I cannot protect you from it, and you must kill us all to save yourself from him."
She leaned forward, and the invisible gap between them pushed him back against the tree. "He's the one who needs to worry. You're mine..." The feather light touch of his hand on her hair urged her forward.
Faced with every frantic dream, every forbidden fantasy she'd denied in the long, lonely months since he'd left to destroy himself for her, she drew a deep breath, "And let me show you how to handle it. I have plenty of experience."
Buffy was frozen in place by the man in front of her. She was lost in his musky scent, mesmerized by the soundless bobble of his adam's apple as it jerked in his neck. Her aggressive stance was faintly familiar, and her words brought to mind the lessons he'd sung to her shadow not so many months ago. Attack, relent, tease, deliver -- love...leave.
Her eyes hardened. She wouldn't let him leave her again. Not now that she knew: they'd both been there all along.
His mouth moved as if to speak, and she lay a finger on soft lips to still their protests. "Shhhh. You belong in the moonlight, with me." The power she held rippled through her when his body shuddered at her touch. She inhaled his sweat and fear. "Trust me."