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Author Brutti ma buoni
Title New Leaves
Rating PG
Setting Buffy season 7 – around First Date, becoming AU
Words 400
Prompt from week 1:

Human Chain
(The Conway Stewart, 7-12)

The nib uncapped,
Treating it to its first deep snorkel
In a newly opened ink-bottle,

Guttery, snottery,
Letting it rest then at an angle
To ingest

I take up my pen to write-

I take up my pen-

I can't write, any more, is the thing, Slayer. I used to write, when I was human, and I never truly lost the habit, though you probably didn't spot the signs in my crypt, back when you were a daily visitor. I hid them well. It was my mask, the mask of Spike, which I've worn so long I often forget it's a mask.

The mask is still there, but the man inside is changed. The visage cracked in the fall, perhaps, though there's no mirror to show me and crack from side to side in turn.

Sorry. Poetry, you see. That's what I used to write. What I've lost. Not quite as bad as Tennyson, I hope (that's Tennyson, up above, you see - "the mirror crack'd from side to side, the curse is come upon me cried-") Well, you can look up the rest for yourself. It's not specially meaningful, except that image there, of splintering. It's how I feel, inside, with this soul carrying me onwards. Sounds poetical too, but it doesn't feel it. Hurts. Cuts through me. Reminds me of what I've been and never will be. What I'm not to you.

And there we are. I can write a bit, seems like, when it comes to you. But not anything you need to hear.

You say you're not ready for me not to be here? Yeah, love, you are. Always have been. And now I'm less than half a man, and know it, I can't stand to be there at your side, unneeded.

Whatever the First wants with me, it'll be easier without me around. I can wrestle that demon alone (metaphor, there, on account of the First's intangibility – but you knew that).

Oh, Slayer. I take up my pen and write to you, and all that comes out is drivel. I wanted this to be big, and meaningful, to make 'I love you' and 'I'm sorry' sing anew with meaning. But I find my words are wanting.

So, goodbye, love. If I can call you so without offence. You'll smash this villain the way you did all those before, and you'll do it without me by your side. Which you've done before too, often enough. Don't doubt yourself. You're one hell of a woman.

See you on the other side.



( 22 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 19th, 2013 08:33 pm (UTC)
This is a lovely piece. You've really captured that piece of William awkwardly buried beneath the layers of Spike.

Sep. 20th, 2013 05:19 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much!
Sep. 19th, 2013 09:24 pm (UTC)
This is excellent.
Sep. 20th, 2013 05:19 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much!
Sep. 19th, 2013 10:44 pm (UTC)
Oh god, Spike....Not too many pieces make me want to cry for him, for their mutual misunderstandings (although watching the show makes me want to very often). this one does. Very lovely and melancholy.

"the mirror cracked from side to side" is one of my favorite phrases, but I'd forgotten it was from Tennyson. I think it has special resonance for me right now.

Sounds poetical too, but it doesn't feel it. Hurts.


Sep. 20th, 2013 05:20 pm (UTC)
I love it too (though some of Tennyson is just as bad a Spike suggests, I think this line still works). Glad you liked this!
Sep. 20th, 2013 12:03 am (UTC)
Ouch. My poor, broken boy.
Sep. 20th, 2013 05:25 pm (UTC)
Just a bit, poor lad. I must write them happy soon, it's been a sad tale lately.
Sep. 20th, 2013 12:10 am (UTC)
This was really lovely, hun.
Sep. 20th, 2013 05:27 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Sep. 20th, 2013 12:57 am (UTC)
Ouch! But you really capture his awkward blend of Big Bad and romantic poet. I can see Spike writing this!
Sep. 20th, 2013 05:30 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much!
Sep. 20th, 2013 08:26 am (UTC)
Poor broken poet. This fic is lovely <3
Sep. 20th, 2013 05:30 pm (UTC)
Aww, thank you so much!
Sep. 20th, 2013 08:41 am (UTC)

This is beautiful.
Sep. 20th, 2013 05:31 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much!
Sep. 20th, 2013 02:47 pm (UTC)
Oh god! This was perfect and it brought tears to my eyes. Sniffles...
Sep. 20th, 2013 05:32 pm (UTC)
Aww, thank you so much!
Sep. 20th, 2013 07:57 pm (UTC)

That, right there, was magnificent. OH I loved it so. *hugs it* I can feel the ink on the page.
Sep. 21st, 2013 01:27 am (UTC)
Heartbreaking and lovely. William is front and center in this one, but with Spike's years of wisdom to guide him.
Sep. 21st, 2013 08:59 am (UTC)
Sep. 21st, 2013 10:57 am (UTC)
Oh dear!

( 22 comments — Leave a comment )


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