DISCLAIMER: The Buffy the Vampire Slayer characters are the property of Mutant Enemy, Joss Whedon, and Fox Studios. The story contents are the creation and property of Djinn and are copyright (c) 2001 by Djinn. This story is Rated PG.

Not So Stupid

by Djinn


Harmony held up her new treasures.  "Spike, please?" 


He didn't even look up from the television. 


"You know I can't do it myself."  She was pouting now.  It usually worked.


"Oh, all right, but you have to keep it down.  Dawson's Creek is about to start."


"Whatever."  She happily snatched up her package and hurried over to him. 


He let her settle into his lap then inspected her booty.  "More makeup?"


"Isn't it the coolest?"  She was glad he was so good at doing her face.  She hated the thought of not looking her best.  And she really wanted to look her best tonight. So she'd splurged for this awesome stuff.  Eyeliner, liquid of course, harder to put on but she loved the way it looked.  Or used to, when she could still see her reflection.  She'd grabbed every color they had.  She saw him reach into the bag for something else.  Oh, crap—she tried to reach it first.


He evaded her hands and held up the receipt.  "Harm?  Did you pay for this?"


She tried again to snatch it out of his hand but he pulled it away.  "Like, duh.  I'm a vampire.  I take what I want.  I just needed a bag so I grabbed this from another customer."


He read the receipt out loud.  "Eyeliner peacock $23.00, eyeliner cobalt $23.00, eyeliner jet $23.00.  I'm seeing a pattern here."


She turned on her best defiant look.  "Well, I really like this store.  I want to be able to go back."


He read a little more of the receipt.  "Oh hold on.  You charged this?"


She tried not to look guilty.  "Ummm."


"You have a charge card?  I've been letting you live here free and clear and you have a charge card you forgot to tell me about?"


"Well, it's not exactly mine."


"Whose exactly is it?"


"Daddy's," she mumbled as she reached into the bag and grabbed the first color that came to hand.  "You said you'd put this on for me."


He pushed the tube away.  "You're using your Father's credit card?"


She shrugged. 


He pushed her off suddenly and stood up.  She fell onto the floor, grunting as she hit the cement. 


He stared down at her.  "You told me you killed your parents."


She began to gather up the contents of her bag.  "Just because that's what you and your other sick friends did, doesn't mean I have to do it.  I have a mind of my own, you know."


"Actually, that's news to me."


She scowled at him.  "I hate it when you get mean like this.  What's your problem anyway?"


"I'm running around, hustling every day for money, reduced to selling information to the slayer and her gang of morons for cash to buy blood and you've had revolving credit this whole time?"


"So you think I should have let you borrow it?  Oh that would look just great.  I can see my dad now, 'Gee, honey, why are you buying so much stuff at the liquor store and the butcher?'  I'm just sure, Spike." 


"You still talk to your father?" 


"Yeah, Spike.  I still talk to my dad.  And to my mom.  And to my brother in Boston.  What's your deal?"


He stalked toward her.  "Maybe you missed the orientation lecture during that graduation kill-fest you were turned at, but vampires don't keep in contact with their families!"


"There was no lecture so don't try to trick me.  And why shouldn't I keep in contact.  I was rich, and I still can be.  All it takes is a little bit of work to keep them from worrying about why I don't live with them."  She was momentarily distracted as she thought of all her parent's daytime activities.  "That would be ugly, I can just see mom rushing in and trying to get me to go out to see her new azalea.  That would so bite.  This way I can just go home when I want to and I can live you know"—she glanced around the crypt in barely veiled disgust—"other places."  


At his look she threw her head back in impatience.  "I got the idea from that guy the slayer is doing.  You know, secret agent soldier guy.  My parents think I'm working on this really, really secret project.  I told them I couldn't talk about it but I was protecting the free world."


"And they believed you?"


"Of course they did.  My parents believe in giving back to the community.  Mom recycles, you know."


"No, Harm, I mean they believed that the government would actually want you for a special project?  Other than as a subject, of course."


"There you go being mean again.  Of course they believed me."  She held up an eyeliner and shook it at him.  "You're in a really bad mood now.  I don't want you to do my eyes anymore—you'll mess it up on purpose and I'll never know until someone laughs at me."  She glanced down at her new gold watch.  Now he'd made her late.  She moved around the crypt, gathering up her things.


"What are you doing?"


"I'm moving out."  She threw the last of her stuff into an expensive carryall and walked over to him.  "The slayer seems to have forgotten all about me.  And you're never nice anymore.  I've been meaning to tell you I was moving but you're always out.  So, I'm telling you now."


"You can't just leave.  How will you fend for yourself?  I mean look at you, Harm, you're slow or something."


She hid her hurt.  "No, Spike.  I'm not.  I've had to do a lot of thinking the last few months and I found out something kind of amazing.  I can take care of myself.  I don't need you, or anyone else."


"So you're going off to be by yourself?"


"Of course not.  I met this amazing man at that boutique Cordelia was working at before she bailed.  I've seen him quite a few times."  Not that Spike had even noticed.  "Anyway, he's from LA.  Has this huge mansion up in Bel Air.  It has very thick curtains."  She smiled happily.  "And he's going to take me to all the cool shops.  Versace, Prada, Manolo Blahnik.  It will be so perfect."


"So you met another vampire."


"He's not a vampire.  He just likes them.  You know, really, really likes them.  Especially blonde, pretty ones."


"What happened to Harmony the Liberated?"


She laughed as she opened the door.  "I said I could take care of myself.  I didn't say I wanted to.  See you around, Spike."  She threw her bags outside then laughed meanly as she glanced around the crypt.  "Or maybe not." 


As the door closed behind her she heard the sound of crashing glass.  So much for that new bottle of single malt she'd surprised him with.  She saw the slayer coming down the path and for once didn't feel like running away.  She stood defiantly in her way.  "Buffy."


Her enemy looked confused.  "Harmony.  Shouldn't you be fleeing in terror?"


"I'm moving out."  Hope you're happy now, she thought bitterly.


"Oh.  Gee.  That's too bad."


She gathered up her things and squared her shoulders.  Bel Air was a great place.  She was going to be so happy.  "Well.  Bye and all that."


Buffy stood in her way, seemingly stunned.  "Yeah.  Bye."


Harmony moved around her, tensed for a moment in anticipation, then relaxed as no stake entered her back.  See, I'm on my way.  She made it five steps before tears began to well.  Take care of him, she tried to mentally send to the other woman.  Take care of my blondie bear.  


A man got out of a parked limo, opened the door and took her bags as she climbed into the back seat.  She saw her new friend waiting for her with a wide smile on his handsome face.  He took her hand, bent his lips to touch her skin, then noticed her eyes.  "Why are you sad, my lovely one?"  His accent was as exquisite as she remembered.


"I'm just happy to see you, Francois." she said as she brushed the tears away.  "These are tears of joy."


As the car pulled away, she allowed herself one quick look, just long enough to see Spike and Buffy leaving together.  She fought back more tears then pasted on a bright smile as she turned back to her companion.  "Totally tears of joy."