Characters are the intellectual property of Joss Whedon. No profit intended or made. For Twig. Title from Fiona Apple.

love ridden


Riley, sprawled naked on the bed.

Legs slack, knees bent and grinning, Riley naked was an impressive thing. Cock twitching, goosebumps up and down his calves from anticipation or just plain chill or fear-- no, it's never about fear with soldier boy. It's about, losing something.

Not sure what, yet.

I think, he hates me.

I think, I don't care. She loves him.

But that's not really what it's about anymore.

Take the leather jacket off, and he's got holy water and garlic and a semi-automatic weapon by his bed at home, yet still he's in my crypt. Huge, ex-military, fucking masochistic, Riley Finn. Women aren't enough for you, are they, baby? Break too easily, don't bite hard enough. He says, harsh and low, "Bite me."

I shake my head. He kisses my throat, and whispers little things at it. I wonder if he's trying to activate my vocal cords through the skin there, trying to make them sing for him, explain this madness in a way that will make sense to a man who can take a gun apart in ten seconds, but can't keep a girl in line.

To be fair, no one can keep that bird in line. Not even--

I don't think his name. Riley bites me, leaves bruises, and I'm his drug of choice for now. Poor little soldier boy. They declawed you, too.

--or was it, her?

Darla, the whore, used to tell me that the demon in me must be weak, stupid, useless. Barely twenty years old and I thought I'd kill myself a slayer, just for fun, just because. Didn't think I needed a reason for things to happen, but I was young.

Yeah, I'm still stupid.

His blood sings in my ears.

Riley Finn, breathing harshly, likes me to trail my teeth over him. It's a lesson in control, but not over him. Over me. Can I keep it in.

He wraps tough, tight thighs around my waist, and clenches, rubbing, my cigarette ash falling on his chest because he likes it there. Sweat mixes with it, and we make mud together.

It's one of two things we share, that stickiness. That, and her.

He says things, breathing frantically, things the demon in me likes about him, and things that I want to kill him for. Maybe I will kill him for it. God knows it'd be a pleasure.

Darla used to call me weak. Finn never says it, but I know that's what he means every time he stands in front me, looking down.


Huffing, and snorting, and painful things coming out of his lips. I've bitten mine straight through, taste a bit of blood. Riley leaves bruises, and some part of me wishes he didn't because his brands, I don't need. I'm just a demon quietly reflecting on the difference of men in my life, and what he would say to Buffy when he was on top.

Bad name to think. Almost as bad as--

Back arched, whole body incapable of motion, faint tremors and eyes closed. I don't want to see him underneath me, and I wish I could close my ears as easily, to block out him saying the things that remind me of Darla.

Or anyone else.

"Bite me," he commands. I shake my head again, drop it down to my chest and lay on my back, exhausted, bored, already wishing I'd killed the bint one of the thousand times I'd had the chance. Like when she was sitting on the steps, maybe, bawling her eyes out, or maybe that first night I fought her and I had the upper hand.

I mutter, "All I've got is you, now, Captain America."

Riley doesn't laugh, just kicks me, hard, and lays back down, drink in hand. But it's true. All I've got against her-- of her-- is him.

So when I bend over double, and put him in my mouth, only half-hard, I can't help thinking, 'been here, done this'. And it's just another thing that her and I have in common; we've both sucked off Finn and Ang--

He comes, groaning and grinding his back into the squeaky mattress, and then slaps my head, hard. My ears ring with the blow, and I rub my skull, feeling something in it itch. "You didn't have to do that, you know."

He grins. "I know."

I sigh. "Eventually, she's going to leave you, you know. And there's nothing you can do to make it anything but her fault. Not even this. It'll still be all her wot does the leavin'."

He just about hits me again, and then drinks. "Yeah." Pause. "And the worst part is? She doesn't really love me."

I take the bottle. "She might--"

"She doesn't."

"Yeah, probably not."

He starts putting on his pants after a minute or two. We've already gone through a bottle of cheap red wine, or was it two? Darla rings in the back of my head, asking whether Dru chained me up at night as a good puppy. I say, "You poor sod. And she really loves me."

He stares. "She hates you."

I mutter, "Same thing."