Authors: cordelianne, reremouse, savoytruffle
Warnings: Books, a reuben, pie, chatting up
Summary: Xander's got places to be, things to do. Giles wishes Xander had given the Council a heads up. Spike figures, what the hell, the pay's good and it's not like he's got other plans at the moment.
Note: Now with fantastic movie poster by the talented katekat1010 beneath the cut. Both can be seen here. Thank you, kate!
Previous parts are here.
They stay two nights in Asheville and Spike's supply of surprise has completely run out so when he catches up with Harris chatting up a bird in a bookstore he just grabs a chair and the latest Suzanne Brockmann and settles in for a wait.
Within snooping distance.
"Here's my card," Harris says once Spike's snooping. "I'm writing my local phone number on it."
"Are you sure you're not from that council thing? Because I know I told them I have no intention of - "
"Not exactly," Harris interrupts, conspicuously not glancing at Spike.
She's giving him a hard look.
He caves. "Okay so I'm with the council." He holds up his hands. "But this is strictly on my own time. Independent project."
She doesn't look much less suspicious.
"Think it over," he says. It's his mantra these days. "And do you have the new Lee Child?"
Spike's actually sitting next to a stack of them but he recognizes a bird who wants a man to leave.
Apparently Harris does too because he does.
And the slayer behind the counter's giving Spike and his book the hairy eyeball.
But Spike's got confidence in the rightness of customers and he is a customer right at the moment. He delivers the book and a charming smile. "That bloke who was here before me - "
"Twenty six-fourteen," she says.
Spike charges it to his council account and catches up with Harris in the diner across the street.
There's sweet potato pie and a cup of coffee waiting for him.
Harris is demolishing a reuben. "I have no luck with the women," he says.
Spike arches an eyebrow.
"Okay, so my luck with men may make up for the deficiency but seriously - aren't women supposed to go for the puppy dog look?"
"Dunno," Spike says like a man who's never had much success with the puppy dog look himself.
"Maybe I should try for mysterious and dangerous." He fiddles with his patch. "Except - dangerous - kinda risky when you're chatting up slayers."
Spike takes a bite of pie and doesn't disagree. "Works, though. Danger makes it more exciting."
"Danger makes it more painful."
"Well," Spike says. He suspects Harris isn't the sort to see the vamp side of things when it comes to pain.
And Spike doesn't mind.
Makes a nice change.
He's enjoying it.
"Tell me," Harris says eventually, "What is the secret to chatting up slayers?"
Spike chokes on his pie. "Harris," he says pityingly. "I'm a vampire."
"I don't chat them up. I kill them."
Harris snorts into his coffee.
"I do! Killed two of them!"
"Yeah, in the - what - seventies?"
"Fuck off. Still could if I wanted to."
"Yeah, yeah. Sure."
Spike lifts two fingers and lights a cigarette in defiance of the no smoking section. "Pillock."
Harris sucks grease off his thumb. "Yup."