The endless hours and the days
My heart will pain and ache for you

I donít sleep much at night.  There are too many distractions to keep me awake.  Most nights, I lie awake at night counting.  The Scoobies probably think that vampires donít sleep much at night because we have too much energy.  Thatís partly true, especially considering that it is unnatural for me to sleep the humanís hours.  Since Xander and I have been together however, I just canít help but want to keep his hours.

Thereís nothing else that I can do

The thing of it is vampires are compulsive counters.  Itís not our only compulsive behavior, but itís by far one of our most debilitating.  It takes 252 licks to get to the center of a tootsie pop.  It takes 50 licks before Xan gets frustrated with my teasing and then it takes only one swallow around his hard length before he loses all control.

Nothing more I want than this
Love, comfort, peace and bliss

I donít always get to spend as much time with my pet as I would like.  His new position as foreman at the construction site keeps him working long hours.  Those nights that he comes home late, I curl around his side as he falls asleep.  I love his warmth, and especially his scent.  Those nights are almost lonely for me.  I lie awake at night ever counting.

Vast is your love vast is your heart
From you I will never part

His heart beats an average 23,040 times on a good night.  The rise and fall of his chest hypnotize me.  I will count 5,280 breaths this night.  I sigh needlessly and think back to the past. 

I dream of you so constantly

In the dark days after Buffyís death, I could do nothing but count.  It took her 13.64 seconds to fall to the ground, beyond the reach of her sisterís tears.  147 days later, she came back, but it was too late for me.  My own grief and guilt over her death had taken me too far away from her side.  I wanted nothing to do with her. 

The times my eyes have cried their tears
The times I gave into my fears

Everyone forgot about me in the aftermath Ė the witches, my sweet niblet, and even Xan.  We had all grown so close in those summer months, but the return of their champion left me bereft.

The loneliness I feel inside
I hope this feeling will subside

I donít think any one of them noticed my absence for many days.  When Anya left Xander, he finally noticed.  He came to me with his head hung in both sadness and shame.

When I see you my heart skips a beat

I stood as he entered, but faltered beyond taking a single half step towards him.  We stood in silence for 64 seconds before he finally gathered the courage to speak.  He only had to speak but my name and I was lost, ďSpikeÖĒ

I crave the day I feel you

Tears gathered in my eyes as his eyes met mine.  I knew then what I felt building between us during those long days was not a mistake.  I moved swiftly to close the distance, both in body and spirit.

I only need you to be complete touch
I want to hold you oh so much

A soft puff of air against my cheek rouses me from my musings.  I shift to see his beautiful face, but the movement disturbs him.  He pulls me in closer to him, not wanting to lose the closeness even for a moment.  I lean up to brush my lips softly against his, and softly stroke his cheek.

I close my eyes and see your face
My time with you will not erase

As I lay back down, resting my head on his firm chest, I canít help but consider how short my time will be with him.  The gentle rise and fall of his chest brings me back to my original thought of the night.  If he lives to a ripe old age of 80, I figure he has 2, 869, 909 breaths left.

Your tender lips, your graceful walk
Your loving smile, the way you talk

I know that some day I will lose him.  I know that day will be my last.  I close my eyes tightly against the pain, not wanting to think too much about something I canít change.  I only want to savor the time I have left with him.

So count the ways
The endless hours and the days
I have spent on loving you

I burrow closer to his side as I relax.  I force myself to stop counting his breaths, not wanting to waste any more time on calculating how much time we have leftMy last thoughts before sleep claim me is of him.  I see that soft smile, love shining out of his eyes.  I only hope that I can reflect that back to him on his dying breath.





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