Across town, the clouded sky provided the perfect shroud to cover illicit activities. At the cemetery behind the ruins of Trinity Baptist Church, Mike Mooney’s gang worked to dig out the obelisk from its entrenched location.
“Heave to it, men,” Mike ordered from the top of the crevasse. “We got an hour to get this back to base before Kalesh gets bitchy about it.”
Always giving out orders, the demon priestess was not one to take failure lightly. At least Mike had never discovered if she was the forgiving type. It was only the fancy European types who got away with it like that swanky vampire. Nicky Boy could try his schmoozing and ass-kissing without him around to see it.
That hot blonde of his was much better to look at, but Mike wasn’t born yesterday. He recognized a killer when he saw one. Isobel was definitely not the type he would want to cross paths with on a dark night. Guessing they had that in common, Mike reminded himself that the gang did not call him ‘The Undertaker’ for nothing.
Still, he had more important things to do than think about a nice piece of ass. He was in this for the power and money he would get when Amolon made his way to Earth. After that, women would be falling at his feet. Just the thought of it forced him to reach down to adjust his fly.
“Get your collective asses in gear,” he barked when the heavy obelisk budged only two feet off the ground. “Crank it up a notch.”
They had gotten a break. Someone had already done most of the digging. The obelisk stuck out of the sand like a giant stone dick covered with strange markings. Mike had no idea what any of it meant and honestly did not give a crap. All he knew was that Kalesh wanted it, so she was gonna get it.
Stomping over, he flipped the switch on the automated pulley to a high speed. The metal cord attaching it to the rope work that was already wound about the stone monument pulled taut vibrating with tension. Finally, it began to move. His men scrambled out of the way. Climbing back up the ladders they had used to get down into the trench, they made it up top in time to guide the obelisk onto a flatbed.
“Good work,” Mike pounded the nearest man on the back, his way of showing that he wasn’t going to have to kill anyone tonight for pissing him off. “Get it covered up. I want to be out of here before some cop or that nosey Slayer we’ve heard about turns up.”
The truck’s wheels dug in hard as it pulled away from the edge of the crevasse. Deep tire treads gouged the ground leaving muddy marks on the asphalt of the parking lot.
Taking the opportunity to recover a bit while her sire distracted his blonde inquisitor, Spike kept his head down. So far the bitch had gone easy on him. Toying, really. She got off on giving him pain. Lucky he did not mind roughing it up a bit.
Drusilla’s escape meant he got to stick around to enjoy the fun. Didn’t matter as long as she was out of harm’s way. Instinctively, he knew she would go straight home to Daddy. It made him want to puke at the way Captain Forehead could still get a wobbly-kneed reaction out of her. If the soul was not enough to put her off, nothing would.
“Excellent work, my dear Isobel, but I must take my leave” Spike overheard her sire preparing to go. The two of them were doing the kissy-faced routine again. Refusing to watch, he listened in disgust as they reveled at being one step closer to obtaining their goal.
Isobel had not asked many questions yet. She had been having far too much fun getting him ready. Chaining him up, stripping him down, leaving raw red welts and clawing bloody streaks into his skin, bruising deep. No, the fun was just starting.
“Stay, Nicolau,” the soft plea was seductive. Not at all like the cast-iron bitch Spike knew lay beneath that deceptive exterior. He could hear the pout on her pretty lips. “Don’t you want to watch?”
A chuckle sounded from her sire. He knew her game. “I have seen enough to know this will take a while, even for you. Spike is resilient. He will not be easily persuaded to talk.”
Damn bloody straight.
“Never fear,” Isobel assured him that she would discover the hiding place of the Pure One. That would be easy enough for Spike to avoid revealing since he didn’t know a damn thing about it. But Isobel’s promise to extract Drusilla’s whereabouts left Spike less confident when Isobel purred, “I never fail.”
Looking up, Spike watched through narrowed eyes as Nicolau put on his coat, hat and gloves. Even if the accent was not a dead giveaway, his froo-froo manners were a clear sign that he was not from around these parts. Sunnydale tended to get all sorts, but there was something about this particular vampire that seemed familiar.
“Come, Anton, bring the little miss,” ordered Nicolau. His minion held Drusilla’s doll like it was precious. His master had declared it would bring Drusilla to them. The idea might seem crazy, but Spike knew it to be true. He wondered how well this vampire knew his sire and why it was so important that he find her.
Nicolau took no notice of his scrutiny as if Spike was just a lowly thing, a means to get what he wanted. From the sound of it he wanted Dru—and something else. The only thing he could guess they might be after was the cheerleader. Drusilla’s recent obsession with Angel’s new pet made her the obvious choice.
Normally, Spike would not hesitate to give up the girl, but if he knew Angelus, the arrogant bastard had his little piece of fluff tied to his bed. Then again, this was not Angelus, just his bleeding heart soul. He could not imagine Angel letting the chit out of his sight.
Wherever the girl was Angel would be there. That was where Dru would be. Considering what Spike already knew it was a good guess that they would all be holed up in the mansion. Realizing that he knew more than he thought he did, Spike warily eyed Nicolau and Isobel wondering what Dru and her visions had gotten them into this time.
The moment Nicolau left, Isobel turned on her heel to face Spike who now made no pretence of being unconscious. Her cool blue gaze swept across the wounds she had already made admiring her handiwork. Catching her shiver of anticipation, Spike took the opportunity to tell her she was wasting her time.
Smirking, “Torture me all you want,” he figured he might as well tell her it was a waste of time. “You won’t get anything from me.”
“Oh, but I will.” Isobel glanced over at the two remaining minions who controlled the pulley of chains set up to hold him in place. Ordering them to comply, “On his feet,” they did so instantly.
A jerk of the heavy chains yanked him back into a standing position. The excess links rattled as the rest pulled taut. Spike clenched his teeth at the strain on his muscles, but it felt good to move. He stared back at Isobel imagining what he might do when he got loose.
“Got nothing to tell you.”
Isobel reached out to trace a fingernail down the center of his chest pressing just hard enough to leave a thin red trail behind. Her hand opened up continuing its downward path, nails scraping at his thigh, palm skimming close to his loins and getting a reaction. “By the time I’m through you’ll be begging to tell me everything.”
His scarred brow quirked upward, “Best get on with it, then.”