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grazieprego

Fic: The End

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Apr. 17th, 2009 | 06:00 pm
posted by: brutti_ma_buoni in grazieprego

Author: Bruttimabuoni
Title: The End
Rating: R
Characters: Spike/Angel
A/N: written for grazieprego ficathon
Prompt: from stultiloquentia “Humans? They're long gone. Vanished. Extinct. They only exist in stories.”




It is fimbulvetr.

Who would have expected that to come true? No one, frankly. No hold-out Norse folklorist had tutted on a late night chat show, “Ah yes, well, you can’t say you weren’t warned about the prelude to Ragnarok.” The tales were known, of course, but discounted; called cute, mythic, disbelieved. And then they came true. It was a hell of a shock.

Not literally true, sad to say. “Three successive winters where the snow comes from all directions.” How long is that? Eighteen months, perhaps, before the end of days? Sounds bearable, surely? Not so much. Before civilisation finally gave up the struggle, it was pretty well agreed that the ‘winters’ signified ice ages. Which was a lot of snow. Unsurvivable snow for most.

So what is left? The tiny, warm-blooded, burrowing types. Cockroaches, naturally. Some things in the deep seas, probably, though there is no one left to fish them up and check. Faeries and other ethereal spirits - ghosts are the new big boom population, needing no sustenance beyond their own distress.

And the vampires.

*

It has been one hundred and thirty-three years since summer.

The long winter nights are vampire heaven. Surely?

Except no. Because there’s little prey. Small, squeaky nocturnal beasts, yes - but there’s hardly gourmet pleasure in draining a vole.

And also no. Because there’s no new companionship. No fledglings, awkward and irritating. No newbies to amaze with tales of the old ways. No new lovers, spicy and intoxicating. All that ever will be already is.

Their numbers are shrinking. Not a surprise, what with the (lack of) food situation. Feuds and wars have erupted, mainly through boredom. Even suicides; immortality not quite the big prize when the world becomes a white blank, heading for the Twilight of the Gods.

Spike hasn’t reached that point. He’s focused on living. Someday, maybe, the sun will shine again. New populations will arise. He wants to be there to tell them what came before. Some memories should remain. Besides, he’s only got the one unlife, and hellfires await when he loses it. So he unlives on.

Angel is less convinced the struggle is worthwhile. He spent decades protecting the last of the humans. Watched with silent pain as his little flock dwindled and faded into the dark and the cold. Then sought out Spike, his last charge.

Their relationship is fractious. This surprises no one. Or wouldn’t, if there were anyone left to be unsurprised.

*

Sometimes when they fuck, it’s furious and punishing. You’re not her, him, them, whoever it might be that the other misses most at that moment. Skin is clawed and stripped. Fangs are bared. They end by breaking apart unspeaking, and lick their wounds distantly for days before returning irresistibly to each other.

Sometimes it’s melancholy. They tell stories of the past. Vampire life, pre and post souls: the horror, regret and secret nostalgia for guilt-free times. Darla and Drusilla; all their atrocities, their painful glories, their transformative power. Even Buffy. She was the great unspoken for many years. But one day Spike made a glancing remark about blondes past, and the words flooded out of both men. Her strength and honesty. The grace of her fighting. A little, even, about her in love and sex. Her life unspoken, they both fear she will be forgotten, and so they choose instead to bear the pain of each other’s love. It keeps her alive, for them.

Mostly, though, they huddle for closeness and companionship. Warmth for the spirit, if not the body. They have known one another for three hundred years, on and off. It makes for a lot of talking points.

And every once in a while, when news of another loss reaches them, Spike makes Angel promise, in blood and desperation.

“Don’t you leave me. We’re going to make it through. Promise me.”

And Angel promises. Spike is his purpose now. It’s almost enough.

~~~~~~~~~~

Link | Hop On! |

Comments {25}

(Deleted comment)

brutti_ma_buoni

(no subject)

from: brutti_ma_buoni
date: Apr. 18th, 2009 05:09 pm (UTC)
Link

Thank you for commenting - glad you enjoyed it!

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crow_girl_74

(no subject)

from: crow_girl_74
date: Apr. 17th, 2009 09:32 pm (UTC)
Link

The picture you paint is beautiful, but, oh so heartbreaking. In the end there is only hope and our two broken knights endure.

Very wonderful.

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brutti_ma_buoni

(no subject)

from: brutti_ma_buoni
date: Apr. 18th, 2009 05:10 pm (UTC)
Link

Thank you so much for a lovely comment!

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(Deleted comment)

brutti_ma_buoni

(no subject)

from: brutti_ma_buoni
date: Apr. 18th, 2009 05:10 pm (UTC)
Link

Thank you! Very much in need of comfort, these two - go for it!

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(no subject)

from: stultiloquentia
date: Apr. 18th, 2009 12:35 am (UTC)
Link

Oh, wow. Your prose is fantastic, sharp and brittle and darkly funny. I'm saving this.

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brutti_ma_buoni

(no subject)

from: brutti_ma_buoni
date: Apr. 18th, 2009 05:13 pm (UTC)
Link

Thanks so much - both for the comment, and for the prompt, which started the whole thing beautifully. I'm glad the end product worked for you!

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dancing till the world ends

(no subject)

from: lynnenne
date: Apr. 18th, 2009 01:52 am (UTC)
Link

Wow, this is bleak and beautiful.

Because there’s no new companionship. No fledglings, awkward and irritating. No newbies to amaze with tales of the old ways. No new lovers, spicy and intoxicating. All that ever will be already is.

Wonderful, evocative writing. Thanks so much for posting it for this ficathon.

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brutti_ma_buoni

(no subject)

from: brutti_ma_buoni
date: Apr. 18th, 2009 05:15 pm (UTC)
Link

Thanks for running the ficathon - I love having new prompts to work to! (I also have a frivolous historical fic in total contrast which I'm hoping to have ready to post here too - a very big contrast!) Thanks for commenting.

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dancing till the world ends

(no subject)

from: lynnenne
date: Apr. 18th, 2009 05:37 pm (UTC)
Link

More fic, WHEEE!

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(Deleted comment)

brutti_ma_buoni

(no subject)

from: brutti_ma_buoni
date: Apr. 18th, 2009 05:18 pm (UTC)
Link

Thanks so much - glad this stripped down style worked for you!

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of_too_minds

(no subject)

from: of_too_minds
date: Apr. 18th, 2009 03:03 am (UTC)
Link

Tragic and heartbreaking with a touch of hope. As long as they have each other, they have something to hold on to.

Very well written.

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brutti_ma_buoni

(no subject)

from: brutti_ma_buoni
date: Apr. 18th, 2009 05:21 pm (UTC)
Link

Thanks for commenting and enjoying!

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brunettepet

(no subject)

from: brunettepet
date: Apr. 21st, 2009 03:05 pm (UTC)
Link

You painted a vivid picture of loss and loneliness in this apocalyptic tale. I love that humanity goes out with a whimper here, nothing to fight but the endless snow. These two are going to have a long, grim time of it, even keeping one another company.

Beautifully done.

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brutti_ma_buoni

(no subject)

from: brutti_ma_buoni
date: Apr. 23rd, 2009 06:17 pm (UTC)
Link

Thank you for commenting so thoughtfully - of all people to be unable to fight, these two I think have a particularly hard time of it. And there is indeed a lot more to be endured.

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Shapinglight

(no subject)

from: shapinglight
date: Apr. 23rd, 2009 06:00 pm (UTC)
Link

So the world ends in ice. Beautifully written like always, and of course it would be Spike who was last to give up.

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brutti_ma_buoni

(no subject)

from: brutti_ma_buoni
date: Apr. 23rd, 2009 06:18 pm (UTC)
Link

Thank you so much - and yes, Spike just keeps on fighting, even when all he can do is survive.

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FemailoftheSpecies

(no subject)

from: cafedemonde
date: May. 4th, 2009 05:22 am (UTC)
Link

Wow, that was amazing. How hard it must be for them and Spike, being the optimist and also not too fond of hell, getting Angel to promise to live.
*sighs*

Very good premise and I'd happily read more :-)

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brutti_ma_buoni

(no subject)

from: brutti_ma_buoni
date: May. 4th, 2009 04:01 pm (UTC)
Link

Thank you! Very glad you enjoyed reading this. I'd quite like to explore it more, but it's a very bleak situation - not easy to see an convincing next step that isn't just depressing!

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FemailoftheSpecies

(no subject)

from: cafedemonde
date: May. 5th, 2009 12:23 am (UTC)
Link

I like to think Spike is right and they do find some people eventually.

I'm being optimistic as well

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acacia5

(no subject)

from: acacia5
date: May. 7th, 2009 02:50 am (UTC)
Link

I really loved this. Sad, but not without some hope, and at least they still have each other.

Because there’s no new companionship. No fledglings, awkward and irritating. No newbies to amaze with tales of the old ways. No new lovers, spicy and intoxicating. All that ever will be already is.

Haunting and beautiful!



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brutti_ma_buoni

(no subject)

from: brutti_ma_buoni
date: May. 7th, 2009 07:35 pm (UTC)
Link

Thank you so much! I'm glad you found hope and beauty in the bleak. It was a great prompt to play with!

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Kiki May

(no subject)

from: kikimay
date: Jan. 10th, 2014 10:51 pm (UTC)
Link

This is so beautiful and melancholy. Again, thanks for the link. I needed a good Spangel fic, so much. I love how you portrayed their couple dynamic.

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do you want orcs? because this is how you get orcs

(no subject)

from: kita0610
date: Jan. 7th, 2017 05:13 am (UTC)
Link

Apparently, I'm having a nostalgia renaissance of sorts. This was lovely and I'm glad I found it.

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do you want orcs? because this is how you get orcs

(no subject)

from: kita0610
date: Jan. 7th, 2017 05:14 am (UTC)
Link

Apparently, I'm having a nostalgia renaissance of sorts. This was lovely and I'm glad I found it.

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