Bittesweet Symphony (The Unsweeted Remix)
by Minim Calibre

Remix of Bittersweet Symphony by jodyorjen

She makes the request, firmly, but politely, like her time spent with Xander taught her to do. The teller calls for the manager, both of them looking at her nervously, their voices strained but quiet as they request her paper work in triplicate.

Firm, but polite. That, a nice smile, her fortuitously all-American good looks, and her foresight with regards to the paperwork keep them from pressing the silent call button or alerting the authorities. They count the bills, and she forces herself to stay calm and remain smiling. Finally, she walks out, impervious to their furtive glances and irritating suspicions.

She sets the suitcase containing the carefully counted and sorted stacks down gently at the foot of the Honeymoon Suite's king-sized bed and strokes the fine-grained leather like a lover's hand. Then she disrobes and crawls onto the bed, pulling the suitcase up until she can reach the latch.

For a moment, she breathes in the smell; it's crisp and firm, almost overpowering. She pulls the money out one stack at a time, scattering them across her body like confetti or something else cheerful, until only her toes are sticking out from beneath the warm, green, comforting blanket of currency.

Tender she can trust in, for all debts, public and private.


Even Harm was a better substitute, that's what you think as you open the door.

The hair is blonde, but it's straw instead of sunlight, and the eyes are dull grey-blue. You think she might be thin enough, but there's no strength there, no power, just skin and bones and breasts made of plastic.

But, of course, you get what you pay for.

You tell her to come in, call her pet, make her put on that pair of panties you stole the first night, just so you can take them off again.

Silly bint can't stop giggling, so you send her home, frustrated.

Next time, you'll pay extra.



Hard and rough and wild.

She tastes like strawberries, it tastes like sex.



It careens through her veins, starting where Rack's hand is pressed against her chest, and pooling between her thighs where she's already wet and starting to tingle and shudder before that stops mattering because the feeling is everywhere.

This is what Oz felt.

What Glory felt.

What Buffy feels.


She's stopped fighting.


You turn to him for comfort.

You beg. You explain as best you can, not that you've ever been good with the explanations.

He tells you that he can't help you. You want to scream, want to hit him, want to remind him that he helps the helpless, or the hopeless, or whatever it is his answering machine says, so why isn't he helping you?

He tells you all about how he's changed, his life has changed, he's done things you wouldn't understand. You don't need anyone telling you about doing things you don't understand.

"Angel, I love you." One last shot.

One last apology.

Fuck that.


He doesn't like to think how many years it's been since he found himself the sidekick instead of the swashbuckler.

Same hair, curving over her shoulders, same mouth smiling as she says "Hello".


Same turn of the head, and the same raise brows as she takes it all in. "This is your apartment. You live here." Okay, she states the obvious a little more than the real thing, but not by much.

He watches those pink lips purse and a cloud of confusion cross the smooth plastic brow. "There were two of us. I was hurt." She can't parse it.

"Yeah, well. Will fixed you. Took some spare parts from Spike, and now here you are, good as new."

"Spike!" The lips split into a grin that makes his guts ache. "Where is he? I should find him."

He has to nip that perky certainty in the bud. "Spike's not here. You're with me. Spike doesn't like it if you bother him, remember?"

"Have I done something wrong? Why doesn't he like me?"

Those lips feel so warm under his fingertips, and that hair so soft. It can't be wrong if this is what she was made for, can it?

"Spike just doesn't know what he's missing. We'll show him, won't we?" He slides the dress off her shoulder and strokes the almost-skin above her collarbone. "I don't mind if you bother me."

"Thank you, Xander," she whispers as he rubs his thumb against her nipple. "You're my best friend."


There's a reason they call it cold, hard cash.

She realizes when the first flush of euphoria wears off that it's more uncomfortable than comforting. Money is something that just sits there when it's not being used. It doesn't provide orgasms, and while it may give the occasional paper cut, that's hardly enough blood to make up for the former.

There's war coverage on the television, if you can call it that. War isn't what it used to be. People have grown soft, lost their edge. Modern life is just a series of irritating paper cuts.

She needs something more than that, and she knows just who it is she should ask.

There's nothing in the borrowed closet of the hotel room that will suit her purposes. Too much time spent trying to be just another piece of paper has seen to that, but that's fine, she knows what she wants, and she can use the money in the at the one adult store in town.

She knows just the outfit; she'd put it on her trousseau list months ago. She's practical enough for repurposing. While she's at it, she'll pick up a couple of other things she's been missing lately. Assuming, that is, that she can find a flail and a choke collar to match the aforementioned outfit.

If not, there's always the pet store.


Bint's not happy about being sent home, even if you have promised to pay her the full amount for services not rendered.

It's like getting the sodding chip, only worse.

You remember the frustration of trying to bite into the little witch, the frustration at not being able to hit anything, the satisfaction when you hit Buffy and the chip didn't go off when your fist lit into her face.

That's not all you remember. You also remember her hitting back, the smell of crumbling plaster and shattered timbers, and suddenly, you're hard.

Just your bloody luck.


He takes away his hand, and it's gone.

She shudders, not in the good way. He's taken the power away, and now everyone can see her, softer side of Sears and all.

Now she's hollow, empty. She staggers out the door, the sound of Rack's laughter in her ears.


You're flip, asking about her, taunting until the motherfucker backhands you. You can taste the blood from your split lip as he uncuffs you, but you taunt him some more. You know he can smell the blood, cause hell, so can you, so you smear it on your lips like it's Revlon Red then wipe the excess off on his mouth, sliding your finger between his lips until he sucks like a baby.

You withdraw your finger, lean in, ask about killing something.

He starts the car and agrees it would be a good idea. You take your hand, still wet from his mouth, and slide it up his thigh, your fingers just brushing his cock.

It's not like he needs to breathe, but you hear him inhale just the same, so you put a little more pressure on it.

"What about fucking?" you ask.

He growls, kills the engine, and slides over, twisting until he's on top of you, his hands pulling up your skirt.

"That too," he says.


He leads her to the bedroom, helps her arrange herself on his bed, her hair spilling like cornsilk across his pillow.

As long as he doesn't think about it, he's the luckiest man in the world. It's everything he's dreamed of for so long...

She knows just how to kiss, how to move, how to touch. Even how to say his name.

"Xander." A half-sigh, half plea, rising to a whimper as he enters her.

Her eyes go dim with worship as he thrusts harder, faster.

When he comes, she screams his name like a blessing.


You think Survivor would be much better if it had cannibals.

Then again, the contestants are skinny enough that you could butcher them all and still not have enough for a Weight Watchers meal, so you could be wrong.

You tilt the bottle of whisky towards your mouth for the umpteenth time when you hear the door crash open.

Odds-on it's the usual.

"For Christ's sake, aren't you..." you trail off. It's not Buffy.

Anya's wearing some sort of get-up involving PVC, red fishnets, and a complete disregard for the laws of gravity. Well, she's also wearing a smile.

And she's holding a bullwhip.

"You busy?"


She walks home, feeling dirtier each step as the last traces of euphoria fade and she starts to think about what she's done.


When she gets there, she can't wait to shower. She strips, just wanting to feel clean. It's not until she starts running the tap that she hears the sobs. They're coming from Buffy's room.

She throws on a robe and opens Buffy's door, asking if anything's wrong.

Buffy looks guilty for a moment, then mutters something incoherent about being alone.

It's awkward, but Willow sits down next to Buffy. She tries to tell Buffy that she's here for her, that Buffy's not alone as her hands work their way to the back of Buffy's neck.

More denial, more reassurance, and more crying. She hasn't seen Buffy cry this much since Angel left.

"Hey," she says. "I'm just as large with the pathetic as you right now, if not more so. I was thinking I'd try the bath and cocoa method, but we could just relax and hang instead."

Buffy murmurs an apology, her hand brushing across Willow's breast as she pulls away.

Willow tries hard to remember the whole breathing thing, even though she can feel her nipple harden against the terry cloth of her robe, and knows that anyone with an eye can tell just by looking at the rise in the fabric.

She does remember the breathing thing, just not the part where she's able to regulate it. She stares, panting, at Buffy, an apology hovering on her lips until Buffy leans forward and suddenly--no gap. Buffy's mouth is on hers, Buffy's hands have pushed away the robe, and Willow doesn't dare ask why.

She hears her name as a question when they break apart.


You slam an elbow into the case and let the glass spill around you like quarters from a slot machine as you grab what you've come here for.

Not that he trusts you to have grabbed right one or anything.

"Is this it?"

"I dunno, lover. You tell me. You're the one with the vamp vision."

He sounds excited, for him. "This is it."

"Do I get a reward?" You run your hand over his chest.

He looks at you with those dark eyes. "Mostly." You aren't expecting the smack on your ass. "Too bad you made a mess you're going to have to clean up."

He smacks you again, and you whimper. "You're hurting me."

"That's what you want, isn't it, Faith?" He unzips his fly and pushes you to your knees.

You open your mouth and swallow him, not bothering to argue.


It's a business transaction, so it stands to reason that there would be haggling.

He wants more money, so she reminds him that the blood is part of the program, assuming he holds up his end of the bargain.

Sure, he tries to make it seem like somehow her blood is substandard because it's not human blood, but she knows that's just standard bickering. Besides, she reminds him, she's selling (or rather, buying, but this is why he should go with it despite the seemingly low buy-in payment) the whole experience, including the sharp fangs in soft neck part.

If and only if he is first able to provide her with three good orgasms.

He complains about the whip not being strong enough, so she offers to blow him without lowering his fee.

It's a deal.


He tells her about leaving Anya at the altar. "I didn't want to hurt her."

"But she must have been sad and lonely. I was sad and lonely when Spike didn't want me anymore." The 'bot is sadly matter-of-fact about it.

All the things he should have said before the wedding come out. Everything that got on his nerves, everything that made him feel like he was just the gift-with-purchase in Anya's quest for humanity.

"Anya loves her money. Did she love it more than she loved you?"

"It felt like it, sometimes."

A pretty frown forms. "Pleasing your man is important. It's the most important thing that isn't him. He should feel important."

He smiles a little sadly and runs his hand across her face. "And if all women thought like you do, well, they'd probably all be robots. But thanks, Buffy." It doesn't feel right to call her that, even though he fell into the habit over the summer. "Say, I don't suppose you've got some other name I could call you?"

Her face goes blank, and then she smiles brightly. "Cecily."


It feels like a good idea to kiss the question away. It's kind of comfort, kind of not. Willow's hand slides down Buffy's body and lands on her hip, stroking the exposed flesh above her pajama bottoms.

Buffy pulls back with a nervous apology.

"Sorry. Is this too weird?"

"Maybe a little."

"I should go." Willow pulls her gaping robe back together and starts to get off the bed, but Buffy's hands pull her back down.

"Don't... it feels. It feels good. I just don't know what I'm doing, is all, so I tense up. It makes me wish I had wine or something so I would just stop thinking and go with it."

"Does pot count as an or-something?"


"I have some in my room. It takes the edge off on the really bad no-magicky days, so it's medicinal."

Buffy stares at her in shock. "I don't do drugs."

"What, you thought you'd make it through our crazy college years without experimenting at least once?"

"Technically, these are your crazy college years. I dropped out, remember?"

"Doesn't mean you can't experiment."

Willow leans in and kisses her again, gently at first, playing with her hair, letting her fingers brush against the back of her neck until Buffy's mirroring her touch and deepening the kiss.

"So," Willow says, breaking away from Buffy with a grin. "You up for some experimenting?"

Buffy grins back. "Seize the day, right?"


You can feel yourself get dizzy from blood loss as he sucks in time with his thrusts. You never figured a cold floor against your ass would get you quite this hot. When you start to throb and tighten around his cock, he pulls his face away and watches you come.

In the afterglow, you tell him you love him.

He pulls out, telling you not to say it, so you say it again, drawing your nails along the ridge of his spine until he shudders.

"I love it when you hurt me."

He slaps you dizzy, well, dizzier.

You thank him from around a mouthful of blood.


Anya's proud of her work. The neat crosshatches of blood on his back could have come from a professional. In a fair and just world, he'd be paying her instead of the other way around.

She sets down the whip and walks up to him, licking the wounds. She should have thought to bring salt. Her body is still tingling from the three orgasms she had when he went down on her, the two she had while her drank from her, and the one she had midway through flogging him. He's earned his bonus.

He moans and asks to be let down, but she's not ready for that yet. Expert hands (he's not likely to find anyone as expert as she is, with 1,100 years experience at his service, she thinks with a smug smile) fondle his cock until he's whimpering.

Only then does she unchain him and drop to her knees.

"'S'all right," he pants, "You don't have to."

"Our agreement was three, you gave me six. I'm just upholding our oral contract."

"Yeah, but that was when I thought the whip wasn't going to do a thing for me.

"Doesn't matter, a deals a deal." She closes her lips around the head of his cock, working her tongue under the foreskin and teasing it down. Her mouth is every bit as practiced as her hands, and it doesn't take long to make him come.

Licking her lips, she stands. "Well, did you like it?"

"Did I like it? Bloody hell, do you even have to ask?"

She smiles, pleased with herself for pleasing him. "I'm glad."

"I'm still charging you, so we're clear on the matter."


Willow thinks this isn't what they mean when they tell you pot will give you the munchies, or maybe it is, and it's like Kiss Rocks or the Divinyls song about touching yourself, and it's just taken her this long to get it.

It's a good thing Buffy didn't choose tonight to wear the sushi pajamas, or else Willow thinks there'd be a little more laughing and a lot less licking going down. She stifles a giggle, circling her tongue around Buffy's clit.

Buffy's hands are on her shoulders, fingers digging in helplessly. They're going to leave bruises.

That's okay.

Buffy comes with a scream that fills the room, fills her ears, fills her whole body. All that power, focused, and she's tasting it.

This is almost as good as being at Rack's.


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