Dark Side of the Sun.
Word Count: 1486
Disclaimer: Joss said we could use his toys
Thanks ever so much to Jo for the quick beta. You’re a doll. And thank you for the brilliant prompt ‘Dark Side of the Sun’ over at http://ba-rosebuds.livejournal.com/
Any errors are mine alone.
Summary: Buffy is at the beach.
Dark Side of the Sun
Breathing in the hot scent of the fading day, Buffy relaxes on the rug she had brought along as part of the paraphernalia one brings along to the beach. Her bare legs prickle in the heat, absorbing the last of the sun’s rays, tanning her legs a golden brown. She wriggles her toes and stretches her legs, and smiles into the hat that is covering her face, protecting her fine features.
She sighs, content. Lying in the sun. On holiday. By the sea. What more could a girl want? The sun is on its way down, disappearing into the ocean, its passing heralded by a spectacular display of red and gold splashed across the open sky.
The heat of the day hangs heavy and it’ll be hours before the temperature cools. Perhaps a moonlit swim is in order, she thinks. Buffy sits up and scoots back until she’s beneath the beach umbrella again. Brushing off sand from her arms and legs, she takes a sip of water from the bottle that has been sitting in its cooler and stares out at the ocean. The waves curling onto the sand sing a song of wide skies and distant shores. She hums quietly in response, and a few words of a song escape her lips. Her toes flex and her feet tattoo the rug-covered sand with a beat. She sways a little, in time with her tune.
Buffy looks right, left, and she twists to peer behind her. She’s alone on the beach. It’s unusual for the place to be deserted. It’s a popular spot for locals and tourists alike. Still, Buffy can hardly blame anyone for their absence. Word got around, and then there were the newspaper reports.
She pats the rug beneath her hand and gets to her feet.
“Time for a swim,” she says, and strolls down to the water.
Dipping a toe in, she smiles. The water is warm enough to be pleasant, and yet cool enough to refresh. With a whoop, she dives in. Buffy revels in the pull of the waves as she swims away from the beach. Back and forth, the force of the sea tugs her about, and she allows it. She bobs about in the ocean until she comes to a place she thinks will do. Gauging it just right, she kicks away, and shrieks as the wave carries her back, fast, terrifyingly, exhilaratingly quickly, to the shore. She stretches her limbs out before and behind and, using her body as a board, she glides ahead of the wall of water threatening to overpower her. Not one to be overpowered, Buffy flies, sliding along until she feels the scrape of sand against her. Then she lowers her arms and tumbles in the foaming surf. She laughs with delight.
“Again!” she cries, and she does.
Hair full of salt and sand, Buffy finally emerges from the waves, a goddess of the ocean, golden and beautiful. Striding out of the water, Buffy hears an odd sound, a scream, coming from behind her. She makes a mad dash up the beach, looking over her shoulder. There’s a monster clambering out on to the shore. Two, she can see another’s shape silhouetted beneath the waves.
Buffy yells, “Action stations!” and plucks up an object that has lain buried in the sand.
She turns and races back to the monster that has made it to the beach, her blade swinging out before her in a deadly sweep. The monster, a demon, staggers back, its exoskeleton taking the brunt of her blow. A growl from behind has Buffy pivoting about. A sand-covered shape has burst forth from beneath her rug, a black-clad Angel wielding his sword. Though the sand clings to him, Buffy admires his form. He’s tall and lithe and moves with lethal grace. His long legs eat up the distance between them. His wide shoulders and powerful arms carry the long blade as if it were a twig. He’s past her, blocking the blow that had been aimed at her back.
Oh. Right. Demons to kill.
Buffy pivots back, flashing Angel an apologetic grin.
“Sorry. I got side-tracked.”
Angel spits out a mouthful of sand before he replies.
“You Are My Sunshine?”
Buffy spins about and, holding her sword in both hands, catches the demon’s eye-stalks – to Buffy the creature looks half crab, what with its exoskeleton and pincer claws. The demon’s scream makes her teeth itch. It backs away, shaking its head. Angel has landed a kick with his booted feet on the other demon scuttling out from the water. The creature staggers back, with Angel following him, stabbing at it with his sword. The waves crash over them both, the water washing some of the sand from Angel’s body.
“It seemed appropriate,” Buffy says, as she manages to find a weak spot in the demon’s armour. It loses a claw.
“Huh,” Angel huffs, before he’s knocked aside by his opponent. He lands full length in the sea, and rolls away, avoiding being stepped upon. He’s still holding his weapon, and as he rolls, he slices at the feet that are attempting to make fish food out of him. His blade bites deep and the demon’s foot is severed. The creature yells, a high-pitched sound, and falls away.
“I don’t do sunshine,” Angel says, and he’s upright, taking the demon’s head from its shoulders. He twists around to see if Buffy needs help. She doesn’t.
Her monster from the deep lies at her feet, dead. Buffy slides her sword free from its carapace.
“Okay. Then I think you’re the dark side of the sun.”
“The dark side of the sun. It burns bright, though nobody can see.”
“The sun does a full rotation once every 25 days.”
“What are you, Giles? No,” she holds a hand up to forestall him. “You may live in the dark, but you burn bright, Angel.”
Angel stares at her. God, he loves the girl with all his being.
“I love you,” he manages to say.
Buffy grins. “Back at you.”
She eyes her sword.
“You did bring our cleaning gear with us, I hope?” she asks, knowing that Angel is meticulous that way. He takes very good care of his weapons, like he takes care of her as well.
Angel submerges beneath the waves and attempts to see if more creatures threaten. It’s impossible. The pounding surf churns up the sand. His vision is limited. He resurfaces and shakes the water from his hair. Angel walks out of the surf, soaking wet.
And like a dog with a bone, he is worrying at his previous concern. “You danced on my grave, Buffy,” he accuses.
Buffy drags him up the beach with her. The evening is deepening with every minute, but the sand still glows and there is enough light to see by.
She giggles. “I tapped my feet. What’s wrong with that? I thought you might have been getting bored.”
“On my face,” he grumbles. But Buffy can see a smile twitching at the corner of his mouth.
She kisses that mouth. He tastes like the sea. She supposes she does too.
“You’d been buried all day. I was keeping you company,” she pouts good-naturedly.
They were taking a break for the Christmas holidays in Southern Mexico when they found a newspaper article warning readers away from a beach near Cancun. People had gone missing. Body parts had washed ashore and had been attributed to shark attacks. Buffy and Angel had decided to investigate. The missing people had all disappeared in the early evening. It seemed unlikely that a shark was responsible. So Buffy had been the bait. Angel was the cracker-jack surprise. Only he had had to dig himself below the sand in the early hours of the morning, and he had had to wait all day for the trap to be sprung.
“I slept most of the day. God only knows how, what with all the noise you made.”
Buffy kisses him again.
“Come on. You liked it. You love my singing.”
Angel’s mind is suddenly on other matters. Buffy is in a bikini. Buffy is almost naked. And he only just noticed.
“I love your singing,” he agrees, and captures her lips with his mouth.
She breaks away to catch her breath.
“What if there are more of those creatures? We have to keep a look out,” she asks, coyly.
“We can do that right here,” he says, nibbling at her neck.
Buffy shakes her head. She turns them around and begins pulling him back towards the sea.
“First we have to rinse off. Sand and sex, not a good thing.”
Angel’s clothes leave a trail on the beach that leads to the water’s edge. Two swords stand watch, upright in the sand, as a sun goddess and her dark champion frolic in the sea.