Chapter Notes:

Buffy has received a number of questions from the readers, rather than attach them to the end of a chapter I am opting to add them as a supplement. 

The next chapter will be posted in a day or two. 

In the television show Buffy drowned in a puddle of water when she went to face the Master?   If so, did Xander or someone else need to perform CPR to bring her back

Was there an Acathla?  Was Riley based on a real "boyfriend"?    Was the "Iniative" a real threat?    Was Maggie Walsh  real, as well?   Was Glory for real, and was Dawn really the "Key"?   If so, did Buffy have to jump to close the portal?  

If Buffy jumped, were things like they were in Season 6 the show for Buffy?  

Did Buffy ever abuse and beat Spike just because she was angry with the Scoobies, Giles, or something else?      

First the quick and dirty that will partially answer most of the questions. The TV show was based on reality, but because the dictates of a television show many things were rearranged, changed, mashed together or taken apart. Some of that was due to time constraints, the need to make a cohesive story that spanned a season, many things simply could not be replicated, or the writers felt were too dull or slow to include. 


As you continue to read you might recognize bits and snips that the writers cherry picked for the show.  


Over the course of MY book I only go into great detail regarding two or three significant “Big Bads”  that had the greatest impact on my life and my relationship with Spike. The reasons for that are explained as you keep reading. 


Pretty much, if you’ve gotten to Chapter four of this story, you’ve heard as much as you’re going to hear from and about Angel.


Some of the things you saw on TV sort of happened to him, but he and I were never a “thing”, we never had sex and I never killed him, even though I wanted to.


Riley was based on a real person. Maggie Walsh was just an annoying professor. I have no doubt something like the Initiative exists, but I was never working directly with or against that organization and that is all I’m going to say about it. 


I’m not going to give any spoilers but yeah, uh huh, kinda, oh shit yes, and gulp are the replies to some of your other questions.


You will read about portals, death, depression, and life’s hard knocks if you stick around.


Not sure if this constitutes a spoiler or not, but it’s a subject close to my heart so I’m responding to it. The TV show needed lots of drama and conflict, and my life DID have that in spades, but it didn’t come in the variety and timing that was needed for a television show. Spike and I have had our moments and misunderstandings but I was never the Buffy who said horrible things to him or beat him up.


That part is really hard for both of us to watch because it felt unnecessary. Our relationship had a ton of sadness and pain all on its own without us ever intentionally hurting each other.


I’ve done stupid things and things I’m not proud of, but other than a few actual fights in the line of duty early on Spike and I never beat on each other.



You have mentioned the Watchers and how they were less than forthcoming did you have a bad relationship with Giles and Wesley?  Did you get close to Giles like in the show? 

I will address quite a bit of this in the book, especially concerning the flow of information. My relationship with the Watchers wasn’t bad. Wes was more of a teacher, Giles was more of a coach. I never got close to Wes, even though I respected his knowledge, it just wasn’t the vibe.


With Giles things were more relaxed, though he did push me hard (read relentlessly). He kept crazy stats on my training. Track and field coach was the perfect cover for him. Lists of times, distances, heights…he was all over that.


Things with Giles were very much like they were on the show the first 5 seasons (except he never got fired by me or the Council) They weren’t like S6 or S7 at all.



How accurate is the vampire lore on the show? Are their strengths and weaknesses accurately depicted? 

Some of it is totally made up, mostly for convenience and drama, and some is true but with caveats. I’ll jump in and hope I hit the main points.


Dead or undead:

Vampires aren’t brought back from the dead. They never, actually died. It’s a bit like a caterpillar in a cocoon. They give the appearance of being dead, so convincingly that some were buried and did have to claw their way out of the ground. Usually when a vampire turns someone, they don’t leave the body lying around for the family to find. Most vamps are turned for a specific reason, and never go through burial.


It’s uncommon for a vampire to go around turning people willy nilly (Spike's word). Most predators aren’t keen on creating more competition for themselves when it comes to hunting. It’s much more difficult in modern times for a vampire to safely hunt and feed, so it’s even less common now for them to turn someone without a heck of a good reason. You will find out some of those reasons in the book.



Vampires don’t HAVE to do all the things normal people do. They can go into suspended animation for very long periods of time where they don’t need to breath, eat, etc. They look dead but they don’t rot. What does happen is they dehydrate over time, and to be brought back need to be rehydrated. Vampires will do that for one another…sometimes. Again, with the not wanting to share limited hunting resources.


Vampires eat, drink, use the bathroom etc just like us, but because they don’t maintain the high body temperatures that humans do, they don’t need to eat nearly as much. They CAN, but they don’t have to. 


They have blood lust. Spike says it’s similar to not being able to catch a breath, if you are human. It makes you panicky and desperate. You stop thinking about anything else and all you can focus on is getting a breath. 


They don’t NEED to have a huge amount of blood all the time. They may feel the panic/lust, but they aren’t as desperate for blood as it feels. An experienced vampire understands that, doesn't panic and can control the blood lust for a long time, until the situation actually gets desperate, then instinct takes over. 


New vampires don’t know this and go off half cocked on killing sprees. Like most lusts, if you do nothing to control them, they will control you. 


They can live off any bird or mammal blood. They have preferences, that vary from vamp to vamp. The jury is still out on whether or not they can live on non human blood indefinitely. Spike doesn’t think it’s possible. At least not for him. He can be (can being the operative word) very disciplined but at some point the blood lust gets the better of him and he needs human blood. 


Without human blood their bodies break down more easily. Basically they wear out without the input of human material to replace worn out bits. Not having human blood can age them more quickly and make them sort of crazy. 


Except when they go into suspended animation, either by choice or circumstance, vampires DO breathe and do have a pulse. It's generally quite slow. When they are active their body temperature rises and they need more food/blood/air. 


Strength and senses: 

Vampires are stronger than average humans, but they can’t run up walls or leap over buildings. They can see much better than humans can in the dark. They have heightened sense of smell but not to a wacky degree. Better than human, not as good as a dog or bear. Their hearing is about what it is for humans when they are very young. People begin lose their ability to hear high frequencies very early on in life. Spike can hear better than I can, but he can’t hear a heartbeat in the next room.


What sometimes makes it SEEM like their senses are more powerful than they really are has to do with their brain processing. Every animal’s brain has certain things it focuses on, and certain things it filters out. There is SO much stimuli in the world that if all of it registered and the brain tried to process it, there would be no brain power left for anything else.


So, while Spike’s hearing isn’t super powered, his brain does this thing where he can focus his hearing resources on a certain type of stimuli. Humans can learn this to a certain degree as well. It has to do with pattern recognition. You can train your eyes and ears to pick up on certain things. 


You know how the buzz of a bee immediately gets your attention, even if there are louder noises around? It’s like that, when Spike is listening for something in particular, he can filter out the static and focus only on what he needs to hear. Same with smell and sight. It’s like tuning a radio to a certain station.



Vampires DO dust.  (their clothing doesn’t dust with them) Dusting doesn’t happen instantaneously. Their body will turn to dust, usually within an hour, longer in rainy conditions. There is a lot more dust than it looks on TV, but that’s ok because you’re not getting a face full of it.


It is very hard to drive a stake into a chest. Much harder than they make it look on TV, plus the heart is about the size of a human fist, that is a small target. The heart is mostly protected by the breast bone. It’s not as far to the left as most people think.


Even a strong person can’t drive a broken broom handle through breast bone. The amount of force needed is shocking and most types of wood, would break. Good strong stakes need to be made of certain types of fine grained wood.


If you don’t have any of those around, there is an alternative, you go up from below and avoid the rib cage. Enter somewhere around the kidney or liver and drive forward and up through the soft organs and into the heart. A broken broomstick works just fine.


Holy Water melts vampires, it’s messy and disgusting. There’s a lot of screaming and steam and it smells gross. Sort of like burning hair but moldy at the same time. It takes a LOT of Holy Water to actually kill a vampire. Mostly it leaves them with bad burns that take a long time to heal and leaves nasty scars.


Vampires do scar, so in that sense they do physically age.


Sunlight burns them/melts them, and ultimately will reduce a vampire to dust. It’s not instantaneous, but like Holy Water, it causes a lot of pain and damage and can leave horrible scars. A vampire stuck in Sunlight will die a horrible death. 


They can be killed by taking off their heads. 



The bit about vampires turning into bats etc. is based on a different kind of demon which also sucks blood, but was never a human to begin with.


Health issues: 

Vampires do sweat from exertion. Because of their low body temperature very few human diseases are able to use them as a host. However, they are prone to fungal infections. Spike says that has to do with not being able to be in the Sun where the UV rays would kill the fungal growth. Taking activated vitamin D pills clears most of those infections up. Another cure is something Spike says has been around since his day, it's a liquid called gentian violet. It has a lovely purple color but it stains the skin and takes a bit of time to wear off. 


One of the reasons Spike sleeps in the nude is to allow time for his skin to be exposed to air and dry out, it helps prevent the fungal infections. I hope this isn't too much information, but you did ask.  


Because of Spike’s  (and all vampire's) slow metabolism, he is actually MORE susceptible to the effects of alcohol. He enjoys wine with meals, but if he drank like the character on TV he’d  basically be blacked out and non functional all the time. The nicotine in cigarettes is a stimulant, he get’s a rush from it, an energy boost. Things with caffeine do that too, but again, he has to be careful not to over do it or he gets too jittery. 



The famous vamp stamina! Is Spike lustier than the average man? In my experience yes, not insanely so but he likes a steady diet of sex. He says that all men want it as much as him but aren’t as good as getting it or have their pesty consciences keeping them from acting on it. 


Stamina goes back to the metabolic rate. Put Spike on slow and he probably could have sex for 5 hours straight, but as he puts it, why the hell would he want to? What’s the bloody fun in that?


And who the heck would want to have sex with him for 5 hours? I adore him but seriously? Get a life dude.


He has quicker rebound than most men, and can  get more erections in a row but again...why the hell would he want to? He says it would be like eating 10 pizzas in a row. Spike’s done all kinds of things over the decades and he has done the sex marathon thing and swears it’s not all it’s cracked up to be. He proved his point and isn’t interested in a repeat. He says he prefers many separate encounters rather than one long tiresome one. 


He’s the only vampire I’ve ever been with, and I am sure they differ in preference just like humans do.


Do vampires have souls? 

Souls aren’t some neat distinct thing that something has or doesn’t have. You can’t put one in or take one out like a battery. Spike has as much of a soul as any human.


Thing is…and this is important. Mortality is a force which drives a great deal of human behavior. Death is the ultimate consequence for most people (at least in their minds and bodies). Most of us won’t ever know what we would do when it really came down to the line in a life/death fight.


A lot of what we attribute to a “soul” has to do with us being mortals and trying to get by in a civilized society.This is less of an issue when you are a vampire because with a bit of cunning you have the potential to be around for a very, very long time. Things that mattered before, and that you had to talk yourself into doing or not doing, don’t matter the same way.


Spike acts “soulful” regarding things that are precious to him and have limited availability. He’s irreverent about nearly everything else. He can afford to be.


He does agree that, to an extent, the soul has to do with the spark of human dignity. As the result of the myriad things he has seen (and done), his faith and belief in that spark, and human dignity is shaky, hence his tendency toward irreverence.


Knowing him as long as I have, I’d describe him as cautiously optimistic and amorally pragmatic. Getting the job done is more important to him than right or wrong. Still, some method of judgement had to go into whether or not the job is worth doing. It’s a chicken/egg argument that he and I go round and round with.


Buffy, how tall is Spike? Is he like as tall as the actor version of him or did you have to look really high up just to see his face? 

I am two inches taller than the actress that played me on TV. I am 5’6” (168 cm) tall. Spike is only a few inches taller than me. (he prefers I don't give his exact height) He was slightly above average height for men of his time, which is low average for men these days.


He often comments that men today are the size of a giant but have the sense of a gnat. It’s kind of a play on words, well, at least written words because giant and gnat have the same letters. He likes little things like that.


He’s about the same height as Wes, shorter than Giles and quite a bit shorter than Xander. Xander is about 6’1” (185 cm) which is tallish for a man.


Spike and I fit together quite nicely!


 What did you think or feel when you saw that the show made Angel be your first love?  

In the original book (The collaboration) there was very little detail about our personal relationships. The show was based on that, so when they chose Angel as Buffy’s first love, it wasn’t that big of a deal because it was fabricated. The actor who plays Angel isn’t much like the real Angel so there wasn’t much of an “ewww” factor.


I watched it and it was sort of fun/funny. Then it got sort of stupid and overdone. But that is television writing for you. They had to appeal to the teen heart throb vibe.


I would like to know what Spike's opinion was. 

The idea of my (our) life being turned into a television program disturbed him at first and he didn’t watch the show. Once they introduced his character he began to watch regularly. 


When Buffy was involved with Angel he referred to her as “that young girl” and didn’t use my name. He does that whenever the show went someplace he didn’t like, he distances the characters from the real people by not using our real life names.


Spike said that young Buffy on the show was quite a bit like me and truth is that Spike was the one knocking on my window when I was a young girl in high school sooo…if you do the math, that was more like my real life relationship with Spike than Angel.


Spike says, at least he was worth opening the window for. 


Was he angry because Angel in the show had been like the reason his character never got a chance with Buffy? 

Well, Spike does have the luxury of knowing he got me in the end! He blames the writers, not Angel (real or pretend) as the reason Spike and Buffy never ended up together on the program. The writers of Buffy weren’t about happy endings. 


Or did he react differently? 

The Buffy/Angel (I’m almost tempted to say Bangel) relationship was so cocked up (imaginary) that it didn’t bother him much. He was much more reactionary when the show began to portray our relationship.


He LOVES the way they introduced him on the show and the way he and I met, because it’s not that far off from the truth. We were originally enemies that ended up working together. 


He thought the parts where Buffy and Spike bantered etc was fun, but once things got nasty…the beating each other and all that, he hated it. He said that when they were frenemies (no, he does NOT use that word) that even though it wasn’t exactly like real life (but there are similarities) it was fun to watch.


Some of the fan's favorite episodes are the ones he hates the most. Don’t even get him started on “Something Blue”.









Chapter End Notes:

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