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H E L L  F O R  L E A T H E R

Unlife didnít come much better than this.


A fast car, so much better because itís nicked from Angel, a rock station, the volume cranked up to ear-splitting levels, blasting Ministry like its life depended on it, and a race to beat the ponce at his own Champion game. Feels like a good time to re-capture a little bit of Spike, have a little fun around here.


One hand on the wheel, he lights a cigarette. Itís the first heís had in too long and it tastes too good. He hauls the Viper off the slip-road and onto the freeway, cornering with a fury and screeching rubber like a banshee enraged. A booted foot has the accelerator pinned to the floor, and the dial goes 50Ö 60Ö 70Ö 80Ö Those inhuman reflexes come in handy at a time like this, weaving a black bullet trimmed with chrome and leather, through LA traffic with an Angel of the wrong sort on his bumper. Oh God yes, is Spike having fun.


Fun, like pleasure, is something that he has almost forgotten, like it never existed in the first place, as if heís not let himself out for so long. The past few years havenít had many moments as carefree as this and the last month or so, not being able to touch or feel, to only exist and speak, even for a few short weeks, heís missed sensation, the fight, the feeling of grabbing life by the balls. Now heís solid again and itís a head rush of a good sort. He wants to celebrate, wants the full-on sensory overload, Ďtil blackout or bust, gorging on every sensation just for its own sake, because he can. Tonight is about freedom, fists and a fuck, at last a release from the shackles the worldís put upon him. No rules, no consequences and thereís no more chip, no more crushing guilt when he sees her face (but maybe heíll get back to that later). Itís time to grab his unlife with all his fists and fangs and just live it for once.


The excitement, the rush, brings back memories of more irresponsible times, when he didnít have the soul to make him feel guilty about doing wrong. A nightmare of carnage and chaos behind him, buzzed on havoc, thereíd be a couple of corpses slumped on the back seat of the DeSoto, limbs tumbled together, a hand dragging lifelessly into the foot-well, their warm blood and old whiskey stoking a fire of lust in his belly. Dru would be waiting for him in his bed, ready with the chains, to share what heís brought home to her and then shag to daybreak. Spike grins in glee, forgetting that nagging guilt for once. Those were the fucking days, my friends.


Pushing 100mph now, undertaking a truck dumb enough to sit in the middle lane and get in his way, he knows that nights like those are behind him forever, part of a long past he would rather forget than forgive. Itís time now to find a new way of being reckless for the good of the world. This night, this chase - the goal doesnít really matter, whatís this shanshu got for him anyway? He has his body back and Buffy still wouldnít love him. But it would be nice to have something for himself for once, something that Angel cannot touch, cannot aspire to, something that belongs to Spike alone. Something that wasnít Angelís first.


He takes a final drag of the cigarette and stubs it out onto the pristine leather of the passenger seat, burning a hole through to the soft foam. This is Spike, ready for unlife again.


Going Hell for leather down the highway.



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