Rules of Life


by
Jenny



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Part One

~Present Day: November~

 

The old, beat up car pulled up and stopped in front of the “Welcome to Sunnydale” sign.  The driver got out and pulled a camera out of his pocket.  Setting the camera up on the roof of the car he then posed against the sign.  A few seconds later a ‘click’ sounded.  The driver smiled to himself, grabbed the camera and got back in the car.  “That should prove to everyone that I made it back okay,” he explained to the empty car.  The car pulled back onto the road and slowly made its way through Sunnydale.  It stopped several times, once in front of the burned out hulk of the old high school, and three other times in front of three separate houses, but the driver never got out of the car, simply sitting for several minutes just looking, before moving on.  Just before dusk, the driver pulled up in front of the Sunnydale Motor Inn on the outskirts of town.  He quickly checked in and drove around to park in front of his new, temporary home.  Lugging his overflowing duffel to the door, he glanced at it and then back down at his room key.  “Number 13.  Well, that’s appropriate, I guess.”  Walking in and setting his bag down, the dark haired man kicked his shoes off and picked up the phone, dialing a long distance number by heart.  “Hey Tom!  I just got in.  I’ll send you the picture to prove it.  No, I haven’t been to see them yet; I just got in to town.  Yeah, I will.  No, I’m not scared to see them again.  It’s just, it’s been months and I’ve changed, and…Yes, I remember, Rule Number One.  No, I won’t forget.  Yeah, I’ll go see them tomorrow.  Thanks Tom, yeah, say hi for me.  Okay, bye.”  Hanging the phone up, Xander Harris lay back on the bed and stared moodily at the ceiling, chanting softly to himself.  “Rule Number One, Rule Number One.”

 

~July~

 

Xander was engaging in his new favorite pastime, people watching.  Well, technically he was working, but bartending gave him a great opportunity to people watch.  His fascination with people watching had started during the month long stint at The Fabulous Ladies Club in Oxnard.  Between the strippers and the patrons, there were always tons of interesting people to watch.  The male strippers particularly fascinated Xander.  Here were men, many not much older than he was, confident in themselves, not only in their appearance but their sexuality too, walking around in G-strings not caring who saw them or what others thought.  The zeppo of the Scooby gang and Sunnydale High couldn’t imagine what it felt like to not care what others thought of him. Xander envied that kind of confidence.  Now, a month, a new city and a new job later, he was continuing the habit of people watching.  ‘The Darker Side’ was San Francisco’s premier kink club.  It was also mixed; meaning it catered to both humans and demons.  Xander found it pretty ironic that he left Sunnydale only to end up working at a demon club.  Well, you could take the boy out of the hell mouth… 

 

Smiling to himself, Xander nodded at some of the regulars who had just come in.  Hearing a loud, booming laugh, Xander turned to see Tom strolling into the room like he owned the place, which, technically, he did.  Tom was a huge man, making Xander’s six foot one seem tiny.  He had short black hair and dark eyes, and looked a little like that guy ‘Ares’ from the Xena and Hercules shows.  Plus he wore lots of black leather, which helped the image along.  Xander had met Tom on his second night in San Francisco; Tom had saved him from a couple of demons that had thought Xander an easy meal.  Tom had swooped in, saved the day and then brought Xander back to the club to patch him up and lecture him on walking around certain parts of town after dark.  Xander still couldn’t figure out why, but after spending most of the night talking, Tom had given Xander a job.  So here he was, bartending for gay, kinky demons and humans, and actually having the time of his life. 

 

Tom made his way through the crowd, collecting his boyfriend from the dance floor and making his way to the bar.  Tom’s boyfriend was about Xander’s height, stocky, with dusky skin, waist length auburn hair and bright green eyes.  He was also named Jerry, a fact that had Xander laughing for a week; luckily they were pretty easy going about it. 

 

“Hey Xander.”  Jerry purred, eyeing Xander appraisingly.  Jerry flirted outrageously with Xander, which at first had embarrassed Xander immensely, but eventually he had gotten over his blushing and stammering and learned to flirt back.  It also helped that Jerry was the only one who was allowed to flirt with him.  During the first two weeks of work, Tom had hovered around Xander, making it very clear to the patrons that Xander was not to be messed with.  Now, if a new customer hit on Xander, one of the regulars would mention that he was ‘Tom’s boy’ and Xander would be left alone.

 

“Hey Jer.  How’s it going?”

 

“Absolutely lovely.  What do you think of my outfit?”

 

Xander examined Jerry as the man held out his arms and twirled like a model.  Jerry was dressed in skintight maroon leather pants and a matching vest over his bare chest.  Multiple tattoos and piercing were visible.  His hair was pulled back into a low tail at the base of his neck, and his throat was ringed with a studded black leather collar.  The collar never came off, and it had taken the better part of his first two weeks for Xander to figure out that it was more than just weird jewelry; after all, he wasn’t exactly well versed in alternative lifestyles.

 

“You look hot, Jer.  But you always do.”

 

Jerry preened and kissed Xander on the cheek before heading off to see to some new customers.  Tom’s large hand reached out and grasped Xander on the shoulder, squeezing gently.  “How’s the bar tonight?” 

 

Xander leaned easily back against Tom’s chest.  “Good.  We’re pretty busy for a week night.”

 

Tom grunted and ruffled Xander’s hair before moving off towards his office.  “I’ll have to up the order for next week then.  The party on Saturday should clean us out.”

 

Xander waved to Tom as he walked off and turned back to the bar.  His attention, however, wasn’t in serving drinks.  Jerry had always flirted with him, and Xander could finally admit to himself that he found the other man attractive.  But Xander was now pretty sure that Tom was easing him into the idea of a relationship of some sorts.  The older man was going very slowly, getting Xander used to casual touches and caresses.  Xander was more than a little confused about the whole thing.  He wasn’t sure if he was gay or not, and wasn’t totally against the idea.  But the type of relationship Tom and Jerry had bothered Xander.  Jerry called Tom his ‘Daddy’ and acted pretty submissive around Tom while Tom called Jerry ‘his boy’ and often treated him like he treated Xander, like a parent would a favorite child. Xander just couldn’t see what was sexy about the Daddy/Boy dynamic they had going.  His own experiences at home had lead him to shun any sort of parental relationship, and here he was pretty sure that he was being offered a place, albeit temporary, in a weird, kinky version.  Shaking off his worries for now, Xander turned back to his customers. He’d worry about stuff when it happened, not before.

 

~Present Day ~

 

It actually took Xander a week to go see the Scooby Gang. After talking to Tom on the phone he had quickly fallen asleep, a full day of driving having finally caught up with him. The next morning Xander took a walk through town, seeing what, if anything, had changed in the months he’d been gone.  He stopped at a café for breakfast and grabbed a newspaper so he could start perusing the want ads for a job.  He couldn’t live in the motel indefinitely, he wasn’t about to move back home, and he couldn’t get his own place without a job to pay for it.  It was sheer luck that he spotted the ad for entry level construction workers, starting at easily twice what he could make working in fast food.  After breakfast he walked over to the construction site and ended up being interviewed and hired on the spot. The whole process, including a tour of the construction site and being introduced to his coworkers, took several hours and it was mid afternoon when he left with a promise to start early the next day. 

 

While walking back through town, Xander spotted a ‘for rent’ sign and went to investigate.  The apartment building was small, just six units, and looked a little run down. The area of town wasn’t one Xander was too familiar with, but it was close to the construction site, and close to downtown, so he decided to give it a try. When the manager opened the door, Xander knew why he didn’t know this part of town.

 

The tall, lavender skinned demon that answered the door gave Xander a strange look. “Yes, what can I do for you?”

 

Xander put on his best ‘please don’t eat me’ smile. “Hi, I’m wondering about the apartment for rent?”

 

The manager of the apartment, Frea, had turned out to be pretty nice. She had warmed to Xander after discovering that he knew about demons and that being neighbors with them didn’t bother him. The apartment was small and basic: bedroom, bathroom, and kitchen that melded into the living room/dining room area. But it was cheap, and he could afford the deposit with the last of his savings.  He signed the lease and wandered back into town in a bit of a daze.  He stopped off and picked up some takeout to bring back to the motel and collapsed early, overwhelmed by all the changes that had taken place in one short day.  The rest of the week was spent learning his new job and getting settled into his new apartment, not to mention scrounging the Goodwill for any super cheap and serviceable furniture so he didn’t have to sleep and sit on the floor.

 

Finally, the following Saturday afternoon, Xander stood outside the door to Giles’ apartment, silently arguing with himself. Squaring his shoulders, he took a deep breath and knocked, chanting ‘Rule Number One’ in his head.

 

~August~

 

Xander stood in front of the mirror, fidgeting nervously. Tom stood behind him, an indulgent smile on his face. “You’ll be fine, boy. Calm down.”

 

Xander tugged on the tight leather pants and ran his finger under the black leather collar around his neck. “I…I don’t know Tom, this just really isn’t me.”

 

Tom sat on the edge of the bed with a sigh and pulled Xander to stand between his legs. Huge hands encircled his waist. “First off boy, what did I tell you to call me outside of work?”

 

“Daddy.” Xander whispered, blushing fiercely.

 

“That’s right. Secondly, what are you afraid of? Everyone will be admiring you, you look good enough to eat.”

 

Xander squirmed. “That’s what I’m afraid of, people looking at me. What will they think about me when they see me in this getup?”

 

Tom pulled Xander down onto his lap and Xander relaxed back against his chest. “Boy, I’m going to tell you a secret that has helped me greatly in my life. There are certain rules that everyone learns rules that help you make your way through life. Rule Number One is ‘never be ashamed of who you are.’” It doesn’t matter what other people think of you, because only you can live your life, screw what everyone else thinks.”

 

Xander buried his head against Tom’s broad chest and sighed. “Right, Rule Number One, ‘never be ashamed of who you are’, I can remember that. What are the other rules?”

 

Tom laughed. “That you have to figure out for yourself. Now stand up boy and let me look at you. Jerry! Get out here, we’re leaving!”

 

Xander stood up and Jerry hurried out of the bathroom and stood next to Xander. They were dressed similarly for this party, leather pants, boots, collars and nothing else. Jerry was dressed in his favored maroon leather while Xander was in a deep brown. Tom smiled widely at them and pulled them into his arms, leaning down to kiss them both soundly. “There’re my beautiful boys!” Tom squeezed them both then headed for the door. Xander shot Jerry a nervous smile.

 

“Don’t worry gorgeous, we’ll be a huge hit!” Jerry brushed his lips quickly against Xander’s then grabbed his hand and dragged him out the door.

 

 

~Present Day~

 

Xander excused himself from the two babbling girls, the need for a moment of silence almost stronger than the need to pee.  He was glad that he had been accepted back so easily into the group, but had forgotten how much they all talked as they tried to fill him in on the last six months of life in Sunnydale.  There had been only a brief, shocked silence as he stood there on Giles’ doorstep that had quickly given way to happy shrieks and hugs and laughter. They had spent the whole afternoon talking, trying to catch up on each other’s lives. Buffy and Willow seemed to be doing well, much to his relief, but they seemed a little more interested in telling their stories than hearing his and he was starting to feel a little overwhelmed. He went into Giles’ bathroom and shut the door with a sigh.  “Gods, I’d forgotten how much those two can talk.”  Walking over to the toilet Xander quickly relieved himself.  As he was tucking himself away, a snarky British voice suddenly sounded behind him. 

 

“Oh, now, let’s have a look-see, show old Uncle Spike how much you’ve grown up.”

 

Xander whirled around, quickly zipping his jeans up as he gaped at the sight of Spike, the Master Vampire who had kidnapped him and Willow, who had tried to kill them all on Parent –Teacher night, sitting chained up in the bathtub.  “Um…”

 

Spike leered suggestively at him, “Come on boy, let’s have a look.”

 

The retort slipped out without thought. “I’m not your boy, and no Daddy of mine would allow himself to be chained up like that.”

 

Spike looked surprised, then laughed loudly.  Xander took that moment to slip out and head back to the group gathered in the living room.  “Um, guys?”

 

“Yeah, Xander?”  Willow looked up from the book she was reading.

 

“Wanna tell me why there’s a century old dead guy chained up in the bathtub?”

 

“Oh, that.”  Buffy waved her hand dismissively.  “He can’t hurt humans anymore, but we don’t really trust him.  He gives us info and we feed him.”

 

“You keep a Master Vampire chained up in the bathtub like a pet?”

 

Buffy blinked at him.  “Well, yeah.”

 

Giles looked up at him.  “Spike isn’t chained up all the time, Xander.  It’s just he has been particularly annoying lately and he was putting his boots up on the table when I told him not to, and…”

 

Giles trailed off and Xander just blinked at him.  “Looks like the Scooby babble is contagious G-man.”

 

Suddenly a rattling of chains and an annoyed shout came from the bathroom.  “Hey!  Any of you white hats gonna remember to feed the Vampire today?”

 

Giles rolled his eyes and Buffy and Willow groaned.  Xander wasn’t quite sure why, but the whole situation pissed him off.  “I’ll do it, what do I do?”

 

Giles directed him to the fridge and the mug he was allowed to use.  Xander quickly heated the blood to Giles’ specifications and headed back into the bathroom.  Spike blinked in surprise as Xander entered with his meal.  Xander handed the mug to Spike and sat down on the floor, back against the wall.  “So, Spike.  Wanna tell me what the hell is going on here?”

 

Spike snorted, “Didn’t your little friends fill you in on their newest pet?”

 

Xander shook his head.  “I guess they figured I didn’t need to know details.  Will you tell me?”

 

Spike eyed him suspiciously, but finally shrugged and leaned back in the tub, sipping his blood.  “Well, it all started when I heard about this thing called the Gem of Amara…”

 

An hour later Spike had drunk three mugs of blood and finished relating his tale.  Xander was sitting on the edge of the tub, a look of consideration on his face.  “Wow. And I thought I’d had some weird experiences on my trip.”

 

Spike snorted.  “Yeah, well, that’s the hell mouth for you. Just when you think you’ve seen everything, it throws up demon fighting government soldiers.”

 

“Have the gang been looking for these guys? I mean, they sound pretty dangerous to me.”

 

“Naw, I think her majesty the Slayer figures that they’re doing her a favor by getting the demons off the street.”

 

“Weird experiments, behavior modification chips? It sounds more like they’re getting them off the street and into their own controlled demon army.”

 

Spike nodded thoughtfully. “Could be, some of the stuff that I saw in there, it wouldn’t surprise me.”

 

Just then Buffy and Willow burst into the bathroom. “There you are Xander! We wondered what happened to you!”

 

“Yeah, what’s going on? Was Spike telling you more of his lies?”

 

The Vampire flipped two fingers at the girls. “Sod off Slayer.”

 

Xander scowled at the girls. “Actually Buffy, Spike was telling me how he ended up with a chip in his head, since you two seemed to think I didn’t need to know any details.”

 

Buffy frowned at him. “Honestly Xand, we would have told you, there were just more important things to talk about first. Like Willow’s broken heart, and my cave slayer episode!”

 

Willow sniffed pointedly and Xander stood up and opened his arms to the girls. They happily allowed themselves to be gathered in for a hug. “I’m sorry Buff, Wills. It’s just I thought that evil Master Vampires working for our side now was pretty much top of the list of ‘hey what’s new’.”

 

“Hey now! I’m evil! I’m still very evil! I’m not one of you. This is just an arrangement of convenience, is all.”

 

Xander grinned at the Vampire. “Right. Check. Still evil, just hanging around us for the posh accommodations.”

 

“Damn straight.” The Vampire mumbled under his breath.

 

Buffy scowled at Spike and turned to leave. “Come on Xander, we were gonna go to the Bronze and do some more catching up.”

 

“Sure Buff. See you blondie.”

 

“Thanks for the blood, boy. And the peepshow.”

 

Xander blushed and followed the girls out of the bathroom.

 

“Xan?” Willow looked at him curiously. “What peepshow?”





Part Two



It was Friday again, and Xander had come home to a message from Giles asking him to drop by. He took a quick shower to remove the coating of sawdust and sweat before heading over to Giles’ apartment. He got there to find Willow and Buffy just heading in the door.

 

“Hey Girls, what’s up?”

 

Buffy and Willow chatted away happily, Willow telling him about this Wicca group she had gone to, when Giles looked up from his desk “Xander?”

 

“Hey G-man, the message said you wanted me to swing by?”

 

“Oh yes, I meant after sunset. I want you to take Spike for a few days.”

 

Xander stared. “What?”

 

Spike sat up from his reclined position on the couch. “What? I’m not staying with him!”

 

Giles spoke slowly and patiently, as if to a five year old. “I’ve a friend that’s coming to town and I’d like us to be alone.”

 

Buffy and Willow looked up at that. “What kind of friend?” “Who’s visiting, Giles?”

 

Spike leered at Giles. “Is it an orgasm type friend Watcher? That why you want to be alone?”

 

Xander gaped as the Watcher actually blushed. “Yes, that’s exactly the most appalling thing you could have said.”

 

Willow and Buffy were working themselves up into a tizzy at the thought of Giles with an orgasm friend so Xander decided to take pity on him and gave into the request. “All right Giles, I’ll take the pet Vamp for the time being.”  He motioned to Spike; “Come on Blondie, sun’s almost down.  Grab your gear.”

 

Spike tossed his used mug unceremoniously into the sink and grabbed his duster and the blood from the fridge. Xander hugged his girls goodbye and headed out the door. Behind him he could hear Spike remark. “Bye Rupes, have fun with the bird.”

 

Giles spluttered and Xander grinned.

 

 

Xander led a silent and chain smoking Spike first to a video store, then to a Chinese take out place.  He stopped outside the door of the restaurant and turned to Spike. “Do you eat? Human food that is.”

 

Spike eyed him curiously before shrugging. “Yeah, sure.”

 

“What do you want?”

 

“Whatever, something spicy maybe.”

 

Xander figured that that was as good as he would get out of the blonde and headed in to get them some food. Bags in hand, Xander and Spike headed through town and towards Xander’s apartment. As they walked up to the building, Spike stopped and sniffed the air.

 

Turning, Xander eyed the suddenly wary Spike.  “What?”

 

“There’re demons round here mate.”

 

“Um, yeah. The whole building except for me, and most of this block are demons.”

 

Spike’s eyebrows disappeared into his hairline. “You know?”

 

“Yeah, of course I know.”

 

“And you’re not worried that the first time Slutty comes to visit your neighbors will all end up slayed?”

 

Xander stepped up close to Spike and lowered his voice. “First, don’t call her that. Second, Buffy doesn’t need to ever visit me here. I may have learned the difference between demons who want to take over the world and those who just want to live their lives, but Buffy hasn’t and until I can convince her that the world holds shades of gray, she doesn’t need to know about my neighbors.”

 

Xander headed up the stairs and Spike strutted after him. “Well, well, well, a member of the Scooby gang consorting with demons. How the mighty have fallen.”

 

“Shut up Spike. Oh, and come in.”

 

Spike followed Xander into the apartment and looked around, taking in the old couch, rickety coffee table, the small T.V. and VCR sitting on a milk crate, and the tiny table and two chairs that made up the sum total of his living room and dining room furniture. “This is down right Spartan, this is.  Didn’t know you were scraping the bottom of the barrel Harris.”

 

Xander set the bags down on the coffee table and tossed his coat onto one of the dining room chairs. “Yeah, well, I was on the road for six months Spike, you don’t exactly accumulate furniture and nick knacks during a road trip.”

 

Spike carefully folded his duster over the other chair and took his blood into the kitchen. “Surely you could scam some stuff from Mummy and Daddy? An all-American, worshiper of Capitalism teenager like yourself must have piles of shite just lying around at home.”

 

Xander tried not to stiffen at the mention of his parents. “I don’t speak to my parents, and I doubt they’d give me anything even if I did.” Xander grabbed a couple of forks out of the kitchen and opened the bags of food. “General Tsao’s or Kung Pao?”

 

Spike accepted the box of food and sat on one end of the couch, alternating forkfuls of food and sips of blood.

 

Xander picked up one of the movies he’d rented, something action packed and violent, and stuck it in the VCR before sitting back on the couch and digging in to his own food. Two movies later, Xander found himself drifting off to sleep where he sat. Yawning loudly he stood up and looked at his new roommate.

 

“I’m afraid your choice of sleeping arrangements are the couch or the couch. Let me get you a blanket and pillow.” Xander retrieved the bedding and handed it to the blonde. “I hardly need to say it, but if you won’t attempt to bite me in my sleep I won’t tie you up. Deal?”

 

Spike rolled his eyes. “As if I’d bite you.”

 

“Oh you would. I have it on good authority that I’m moist and delicious pal.”

 

“All right, fine, you’re a nummy treat.”

 

“And don’t you forget it.”

 

He and Spike grinned at each other and the absurdity of the conversation. “So do we have a deal?”


”Yeah. Deal.”

 

“Good. Sorry about crashing so early, but my job has me up at 5am and I just can’t pull the all-nighters any more. The T.V. is small, but it’s got cable, so knock yourself out. Just let me sleep. Night Spike.”

 

Spike waved him off and turned his attention to a late night talk show, but Xander noticed how he spread out over the couch and tucked the blanket around himself. Glad he could make the Master Vampire feel at least a little more comfortable, Xander headed off to bed.

~~~

 

Xander knew that Spike had to have more questions about why he was so comfortable living with demons, but the issue of waking up unable to speak took precedence over Spike’s curiosity. Dealing with the Gentlemen kept them busy for a few days so it wasn’t until Spike had been living with him for almost a week that the questions Xander was expecting finally came up.

 

They were at the Bronze playing pool. They had settled into a sort of camaraderie living together, and Xander now felt comfortable enough with Spike that when cabin fever struck, he didn’t think twice about inviting the man out to play a couple games and get a few drinks. Spike racked up the balls and stepped back, gesturing for Xander to go ahead and break.

 

“So, Harris, wanna finally tell me how a white hat like yourself ends up consorting with demons, kinky male demons at that?”

 

Xander barely missed fumbling the shot as Spike’s words sank in. “What do you mean?”

 

Spike rolled his eyes. “I heard you the other day on the phone. Could smell the pheromones a mile a way, don’t try to deny it.”

 

Xander flushed at Spike’s words. He had been home from work and just out of the shower when the phone rang. It had been Tom, calling to check up on Xander in the aftermath of the citywide ‘laryngitis’ outbreak that he had heard about on the news. Xander had been sprawled out on his back across his bed, towel still barely on, talking on the phone, one hand tracing idle patterns on his stomach, slowly working towards the substantial erection he was sporting when he had looked up to find Spike standing in the doorway leering at him. He had jumped up and slammed the bedroom door shut so he could finish his conversation in relative privacy, but he had no doubt that Spike could hear everything that was going on. Tom did, after all, know exactly which of Xander’s buttons to push, and Xander wasn’t exactly quiet in bed, or on the phone for that matter.

 

Xander took a swig of his beer and glanced over at Spike. “Well, it all started after graduation, when I decided to take a summer road trip…”

 

Xander had lost three games of pool to Spike, and told his story up till he left L.A. and Tom and Jerry behind, when he turned and saw Willow and Buffy making their way towards the table.

 

“Hey, how are my favorite Super Girls this fine evening?”

 

“Hey Xander, what are you doing here with Spike?”

 

Xander shrugged. “Playing pool, what does it look like?”

 

Buffy wrinkled her nose. “Yeah, but with Spike?”

 

“Buff, Spike works with us now, albeit reluctantly. Plus he lives with me, it’s in my best interests to be civil with the evil undead.”

 

Spike smirked at Buffy and blew a long stream of cigarette smoke her way. “Yeah, Slayer. The boy and I are all friendly like now. He’s full of hidden surprises, Harris is.”

 

Buffy looked like she wanted to argue with Spike but just then Willow tugged on her sleeve and whispered something in her ear. Buffy’s eyes gleamed and she turned her attention to Xander. “Oh yeah, I almost forgot. We’ve got someone we want you to meet, Xand.”

 

Fixing on his goofiest grin, Xander tried desperately to get out of what he knew was coming. “It’s not a giant bug lady or a mummy, is it Buff? ‘Cuz I’ve done that already thanks.”

 

Willow grinned at him. “No silly. She’s one hundred percent human.” Xander’s eyes followed to where Willow was pointing, taking in the petite brunette college girl pretending to sit casually at a nearby table. “Her name’s Christy and she’s in a couple of classes with us. She’s really nice Xander, you’ll like her.”

 

Sighing, Xander pulled Willow and Buffy over to the table he and Spike had been using and pushed them into chairs. “Girls, I appreciate the set up, I really do, but there’s something I’ve got to tell you.”

 

Two pairs of feminine eyes regarded him curiously. Taking a deep breath and whispering “Rule Number One” to himself, Xander flashed his best ‘please don’t be mad at me’ puppy dog eyes at the girls. “The thing is, I’m kind of doing the gay thing now.”

 

~!~

 

Xander closed his apartment door with a grateful sigh. “Well, that didn’t go quite as horrifically as I thought it would.”

 

Spike smirked at him from his sprawled position on the couch. “Yeah, they only asked you if you were possessed five times, could have been worse.”

 

“Yeah, well, I don’t exactly have the best track record with that sort of thing, so it was a valid question. The first time anyway.”

 

The girls had taken the news pretty much as Xander had thought they would. Disbelief followed by a demand for thorough explanations. Then they had argued with him for an hour about how he must be mistaken, hadn’t he dated girls in high school? Xander had patiently explained that the controlling and scornful Queen C., an insane Slayer who used him and then tried to kill him, and one prom date with an ex-vengeance demon who spent the whole night describing the various tortures she had visited upon men did not exactly a sexual orientation make. The girls had eventually accepted his explanations, scolded him for not telling them sooner, and left the two men to their pool games once again.

 

Xander tossed his jacket aside and stumbled over to sprawl on the couch next to Spike. “At least they know now. I would have told them sooner if they could have let me get a word in edgewise. Really, you’ve heard more about my trip than they have. All they ever want to talk about is college.”  Xander turned his head and glanced at Spike. “Um, Spike? Are…are you okay with the whole me being gay thing? What with living with me and all?”

 

Spike waved the question aside as ridiculous. “No worries mate. Vamps don’t exactly worry about stuff like that. Once you’re turned, you’ll pretty much shag anything that moves.  You should have seen some of the demons Dru took up with. Forget male or female, some of them weren’t even bipedal.”

 

Xander laughed and they sat staring at the T.V. for a while. “Hey, Harris?”

 

“Yeah Spike?”

 

“What’s rule number one mean?”

 

“Huh? How do you know about that?”

 

“Heard you whisper it before coming out to the girls.”

 

Xander turned on the couch so he was facing Spike. “It’s something Tom taught me. He told me that there are certain rules that everyone learns to help them get through life. Some of them are different for different people, but rule number one’s pretty much the same all across the board. He told me what number one was and I had to figure the rest out for myself.”

 

Spike actually looked interested. “So what’s rule number one?”

 

Xander smiled shyly. “Never be ashamed of who you are.”

 

“Huh.”

 

Xander watched in amusement as Spike turned back to the T.V. “Huh? That’s all you have to say?”

 

“Well, yeah. That’s wisdom, that is. Can’t argue with it.”

 

Xander relaxed back into the couch. “Well, Tom’s a pretty smart guy. You can meet him if you want. He and Jerry are coming to visit the week after Christmas.”

 

Spike shrugged. “Yeah, maybe.”

 

Xander smiled.

 

~!~

 

Over the next couple of weeks the two men fell into a comfortable pattern. When Xander got home from work he and Spike would either watch movies, go out to play pool, or go to the occasional Scooby meeting. Xander, in an attempt to relieve the tedium of constant take out food bought a cookbook, laughingly entitled “Cooking for Dummies” and tried to learn to cook. Tried being the operative word, luckily Spike was really brave about the sometimes-scary looking cooking experiments. Xander could tell that Spike was getting more and more depressed as time went on and no solution to the chip in his head appeared, but there was little Xander could do about it, other than ensure that the gang researched behavior modification chips along with the demon of the week. While they weren’t exactly friends, Spike and Xander had a system and it worked for them.

 

Then the earthquake hit.

 

Xander was jolted awake by the quake and he was standing braced in his bedroom doorway before he was even awake enough to process what was going on. The tremors knocked Spike off the couch and he rolled a couple of feet before springing up and joining Xander in the doorway. The quake stopped and several things happened at once. Xander realized he was naked, so did Spike, who immediately started to leer, and a pipe burst in the bathroom.  Swearing, Xander grabbed his last clean pair of sweats, threw them on and ran for his tool belt.

 

Spike had waded into the bathroom and was trying to tighten the pipe by hand but it wasn’t working. Xander finally found the wrench he was looking for and ran into the bathroom to help. Between the two of them the finally managed to get the pipe closed, but by then they were completely soaked and so was everything in the bathroom.

Xander looked around in disgust. “Great. So much for having dry towels.” All their towels were in the bathroom, and now soaked. Also, what had been a huge pile of dirty clothing that they kept putting off washing was now a wet pile of dirty clothing. Xander sighed and ran a hand through his wet hair. “Well crap.”

 

Just then the phone rang and Xander ran to answer it. As he was on the phone, Spike stalked by muttering darkly to himself. Spike dug in his duster pockets, looking for his cigarettes, the drips from his clothing making a large puddle on the carpet.

 

“Spike!”

 

“What?”

 

Xander gestured to the puddle at Spike’s feet. Spike scowled. “Well, I don’t have any other clothes, now do I?”

 

Hanging up the phone, Xander stomped back into his bedroom and grabbed his last pair of jeans and clean tee shirt. “You’ll have to find something of mine to wear while you do laundry. Good luck though, I think everything I own is in that pile in the bathroom.”

 

Spike puffed angrily at his cigarette. “Why do I have to do laundry?”

 

Xander pulled his work boots on and grabbed his tool belt. “Because, that was my boss. The site is fucked because of the quake and everyone has to go in right this second and stay until it’s all fixed. So while I am at work cleaning up the site, you get to clean up this mess.”

 

Spike was obviously working himself up into a huge snit about how Master Vampires didn’t do housework but at that moment Xander didn’t care. He grabbed his wallet and car keys and slammed the door just as Spike opened his mouth. His roommate could deal with the flooded apartment; he was on his way to what promised to be a hellish day at the site.

 

Hours later Xander returned home to an eerily quiet apartment. “Um, Spike? Hello?”

 

Suddenly a deep growl sounded behind him. “Don’t turn around.”

 

“Spike, what is it, what happened?”

 

The growl sounded again. “Don’t look at me.”

 

Xander turned quickly only to collapse in laughter. Spike stood before him, dressed in an old pair of Xander’s baggy khaki shorts and a hideously bright Hawaiian shirt. Spike scowled and shook a tiny black tee shirt in his face. “I shrunk them, bleeding shirt, trousers. I hate this place.”

 

Still laughing, Xander walked back to check the bathroom. The water was all mopped up, but he pile of laundry was still there. He dropped his tool belt and hardhat off and turned to Spike. “I’d ask you to do the rest of the laundry, but considering the results, I think I’ll do it myself. Thanks for cleaning up the water though.”

 

Spike sat on the couch and pouted. “Go out and get me some decent stuff.  And I want more blood.”

 

Xander grabbed the last bottle of JD out of the cabinet and handed it to Spike. “Here. Drink this, you’ll feel better. I’ve got to go check in with Giles, since the last time we had an earthquake the hell mouth opened. As for new clothes, you may be sort of a friend, but I’m broke. You’ll have to buy yourself new stuff. I’ll see if Giles has any more blood though.”

 

A few hours later and Xander and Willow walked in to the apartment to find a very drunk Spike balanced on the edge of a chair. “Goodbye Dru, see you in hell.”  Then Spike fell. 

 

At Willow and Xander’s exclamations of surprise, he jerked to the side and crashed into the coffee table, splintering it. ‘Bloody rot, can’t a person knock?”

 

Willow looked at Spike in shock. “What are you doing?”

 

Xander saw Spike’s eyes flick guiltily to the coffee table. He leaned down and searched through the debris, pulling out a stake that had been taped to one edge. A sick feeling twisted in his stomach. He hadn’t realized that Spike had gotten this depressed. “You were trying to stake yourself?”

 

Spike slumped onto the couch. “Fag off, its no concern of yours.”

 

Xander waved the stake at Spike. “Is too, for one think that’s my shirt you were about to dust. And for another, we’ve shared a lot here. You should have trusted me enough to do it for you.”  The jibe was meant to be a joke, make Spike smile, but all it got him was a glare from Willow.

 

“Xander!”

 

“What? He wants to die, I want to help.”

 

She punched him in the arm. “It’s ookie. We know him, we can’t just let him poof himself.”

 

Spike got up and grabbed the mostly empty bottle of JD. “Oh but you can. You know I’d drain you drier than the Sahara if I had half a chance. And besides, I’m beyond pathetic; stuck in this crap apartment washing skivvies for a blighter I wouldn’t have bothered to bite a few months ago.”

 

Intellectually, Xander knew that Spike was just depressed and drunk but the insult still hurt. “Hey!” To cover it up he started to grab the weapons they’d come to pick up in the first place. Spike was still talking to Willow.

 

“I mean, am I even remotely scary anymore?” He lunged at her, “Tell me the truth.”

 

Willow looked uncomfortable. “Well, the shirt is kind of not very threatening and the short pants…you know, it could also be because I know you can’t bite, which I know is not exactly what you need to hear right now.”

 

Spike threw up his hands in disgust. “Stop. Look, just clear out okay?”

 

Xander hoisted up the bag of weapons. “Fine, but you break anything else while we’re gone and you’ll be sleeping on the roof buster.”

 

Willow grabbed his arm as he headed out the door. “We can’t leave him here like this, we’ll have to take him with us to the museum.”

 

“No you go on. I won’t do anything. I feel better now. Promise.”

 

Sighing, Xander threw his arm around Spike’s shoulder and steered him towards the door. “Think of the happy. If we don’t find what we’re looking for, we face the apocalypse.”

 

“Really? You’re not just saying that?”

 

Smiling, Willow followed them out of the apartment.

 

~!~

 

One frustrating search of the museum and much pissy Spike snark later they were back in high school. Or what was left of it at least. Spike was reduced to sulking now and Xander was glad. As much as he had grown to like Spike over the weeks they had been living together, he had reached his tolerance point for Spike’s insults and jibes. They had gone way past playful sniping to hurtful jibes. Calling him and Willow 10th grade losers was just uncalled for.

 

They followed Buffy down the dark, charred hallway towards the library. Xander tried his hardest to keep from slipping in year old snake mayor bits while still keeping his eye on the grumbling Spike. Buffy pushed through the double doors to the old library and suddenly they were back in Xander’s best subject in high school, demon fighting.  Xander and Willow tag teemed one of the demons while Buffy took the second and the third went after Spike. Out across the library, Xander saw Spike finally getting tired of being beaten on and fight back. His triumphant roar when he found out he could hurt demons would have made Xander smile, if he wasn’t so busy trying to keep himself and Willow death free. For once the demons were more interested in completing their ritual than fighting, and soon it was down to Buffy to finish preventing the apocalypse. Xander found himself dragging an unconscious Spike out of the rubble as he and Willow tried to get out of harm’s way. Buffy finally joined them out in the main hallways, accompanied by a guy Xander immediately assumed had to be Riley, looking very inconspicuous in his commando outfit. Xander distrusted Riley the instant he saw him. The man was too clean cut and his ‘all-American boy’ act grated on Xander’s nerves. Behind him, he felt Spike tense as Riley approached them. Luckily, Riley seemed too preoccupied with convincing them he wasn’t one of the mysterious commandos to pay too much attention to Spike.

 

Buffy and Riley took off and Willow followed Xander and Spike back to Xander’s apartment to have some best friend bonding time. Spike was obviously ecstatic about finding out he could hurt demons and he begged Willow and Xander to go out ‘patrolling’ with him. Finding out he wasn’t as helpless as everyone had assumed gave Spike some of his spark back. So several days later, when Spike announced he was moving out, Xander wasn’t really surprised, but he did feel a pang of loneliness as he stood eyeing the now Vampire free apartment. Telling himself it was actually his radio he was missing; Xander fell back into his pre-roommate routine of work and hanging out at Giles’. Luckily, he’d have plenty to distract himself with soon enough.





Part Three



Xander sat on a couch in the Bronze, his leg jiggling constantly as he sipped his soda and listening to Buffy and Willow talk about classes and Buffy's almost-relationship with Riley. Spike was nearby, playing pool. Even though Xander had actually missed Spike in the week since he'd moved out of the apartment, he didn't have the concentration he needed for a game of pool, let alone the steady hands. Tom and Jerry were arriving in Sunnydale tonight and meeting Xander at the Bronze. Between being excited about seeing the men again and being terrified of what his two groups of friends would think of each other, Xander could barely keep sitting still.

Spike ended the game he was playing and sauntered over to slump bonelessly in the chair next to Xander. "Can hear your heart beating across the club. It's going a mile a minute, pet."

Xander grimaced and shifted in his seat. "Sorry Spike. I'm just so nervous. I really want you all to like each other."

Spike patted Xander on the shoulder and took the soda out of his hands. "Everything will be fine. No more caffeine for you though."

Xander grinned as Spike proceeded to drink the soda himself. Then the door to the club opened and all his focus was on the two men who entered. They looked just like when Xander had seen them last, four months ago. Tom towered over the crowd, his closely cropped dark hair and goatee complimenting his all black wardrobe and lending him a menacing and mysterious air. Jerry stood just behind and to the side of Tom, long auburn hair pulled into a braid, the color set off nicely by the dark green silk of his shirt.

Tom scanned the room and spotted Xander, grabbed Jerry's hand and dragged him towards the couches. Xander sprang up and hurtled himself towards the two men. "Tom! Jer!" Xander launched himself through the crowds and into Tom's open arms. Then he didn't notice anything as he was pulled into a strong chest by equally strong arms and his lips were captured in a demanding kiss. Xander wound his arms around Tom's neck and opened his mouth to Tom's onslaught. Tom was tall enough that when he finally let Xander up for air, Xander's feet were several inches off the floor. Xander slid down to the ground with a sigh and a happy grin. "Hey Daddy."

Tom chuckled and rubbed his thumb over Xander's red, swollen lips. "Beard burn," he said with a grin. An affronted huff sounded to one side. "And what about me?"

Tom released him and Xander turned with a smile and open arms. "Hey Jer." Jerry grinned and slammed himself against Xander, pressing their bodies together and capturing Xander's swollen lips with his. Jerry didn't let up the passionate kiss for several seconds, and when they came up for air they were both gasping for breath. They turned to Tom who was grinning widely. "There are my beautiful boys." He hugged them both to his chest, and finally they all turned to the quiet group on the couch. Buffy and Willow looked shell-shocked but Spike was leering at the three men. Xander took each man's hand in his and walked towards the group. "Tom, Jerry, these are the friends I told you about. The redhead is Willow, best friend since childhood; the stunning blonde is Buffy, Slayer extraordinaire; and the leering evil undead one is Spike. Guys, this is Tom and Jerry, no jokes, they've heard them all before, mostly from me."

Buffy looked like she'd been hit upside the head with a particularly blunt object. Willow had a little better grip on things and nodded hesitantly at the men. "Um, hello?"

"I thought I was the stunning blonde, pet." Spike stood and stared Tom in the eye, not an easy thing seeing as Tom was easily a foot taller than the Vampire. Tom looked Spike up and down then nodded, apparently satisfied with what he saw. "Master Spike, it's an honor to meet you."

Spike held out his hand and Tom engulfed it with his much larger one. "The honor's all mine, Master Tom. Xan told me how you looked out for him." The two men shook then Tom released Spike's hand and pulled Jerry in front of him. "Master Spike, this here's my boy Jerry." Tom nudged Jerry forward. "Say hello to Master Spike, boy."

Jerry broke out in a seductive smile that Xander was very familiar with. He stepped forward and paused just inches from Spike, somehow managing to look smaller, even though he was the same height. "Hello Master Spike."

Xander saw Spike's eyes flicker to gold before fading back to blue. "Well hello there boy. It's lovely to meet you too." Satisfied he had made an impact, Jerry finally stepped back and into Tom's arms. Xander motioned for them all to sit and the three of them took a couch. Spike flopped back down into the chair he had been in earlier.

Willow eyed the three men snuggled on the couch. Xander watched his oldest friend as she visibly steadied herself and affected her best 'friendly Willow'; smile. "So, Xander hasn't told us much about you. How did you all meet?"

Tom was cut off before he could even start by Buffy's sharp tone. "You two aren't human."

Willow turned wide, shocked eyes to Xander, who winced at Buffy's tactless remark. Before he could answer, Tom responded. "No, we're not Slayer. Xander knows."

Buffy looked at Xander. "And you're okay with it?"

Xander sat up and glared at Buffy. "Now wait a minute Buffy..."

"What type?"

They all froze and turned to look at Spike. The Vampire was lounging casually in his chair, sipping Xander's soda. "There's plenty different type of demons Slayer, and most of them are harmless. Seems that more important than them being demons is what type of demons they are."

Tom nodded and settled back into the couch. "Very true. Jerry and I are both V'ranta demons."

Buffy looked at Willow. "V'ranta. What do we know about them? Have I fought them before?"

"S'not bloody likely Slayer. V'ranta are clan focused, peaceful, don't bother others too much. Strong, smart, long lived, often scholars, artisans, sometimes the rebellious ones become mercenaries. Usually set up shop and settle down, don't often see a V'ranta away from his clan."

Xander turned wide eyes on Spike. Spike just shrugged as if to say 'what, I know stuff too'. Buffy was still eyeing the men suspiciously. "If they're so clannish, where's your clan?"

Tom scowled but Jerry just patted the unhappy man's hand and leaned towards the girls on the couch opposite. "The clan didn't exactly approve of our, relationship. We had to leave if we wanted to be together." Willow immediately went into sympathy mode and Xander knew that she at least would give the men a chance. Buffy took a minute longer to think about Jerry's answer before finally nodding to herself and relaxing back into the couch. "Fine, but this is my town and if you step out of line you'll have to answer to me."

Xander tensed, sure that Tom would not stand the insult, but to his surprise the larger man just laughed. "I like her boy, she's not afraid to take control. I like that in a girl."

Xander smiled and relaxed back into the couch. Buffy blushed prettily and the group relaxed back into more casual conversation.

An hour later Jerry sighed loudly and flopped back across Tom's lap. "I'm bored!" He looked hopefully at Tom. "Dance with me Daddy?"

Tom chuckled. "Xan and I are talking. Maybe Master Spike would like to dance with you?"

Jerry sat up and eyed Spike appreciatively. Sinuously he slid to the floor and rested his chin on Spike's knees. "Would you like to dance with me, Master Spike?"

Spike didn't hide his quick flash to game face. "I think I could be persuaded, boy."

Spike rose and reached down to pull Jerry up. Jerry slithered up Spike's body, and Xander couldn't see a sliver of light between them. Spike smirked at the auburn haired demon and pulled him to the dance floor.

Still a little uncomfortable around the newcomers, Buffy and Willow soon excused themselves, leaving Xander and Tom curled up together on the couch. Tom ran his hand through Xander's hair and dropped a quick kiss to his head. "I missed you, boy."

"I missed you too, Daddy."

"Don't see why you had to leave L.A." Tom said, grumpily.

Xander sighed and hugged Tom tighter. They had had this conversation before. "I love you both, so much. And I owe you guys more than I can say, but my place isn't in L.A. I don't know where my place is yet, but I'll figure it out."

Tom frowned. "Well, whoever your 'place' is, they better be okay with sharing. I expect visits and lots of them."

"Hey, who said my place was a 'who'? Why can't my place be a where?"

Tom chuckled. "I know you boy, you won't be happy till you've found 'the one'. Then you won't care where you are, as long as you're with him."

Xander frowned but didn't dispute Tom's claim. Tom kissed him softly and stood up. "Come on, let's go see what trouble Jerry's gotten himself into."

They wandered over and stood on the edge of the dance floor, looking for Jerry and Spike. They weren't hard to spot. Jerry was wrapped around Spike and they moved effortlessly to the beat of the music, hands traveling each other's bodies, eyes locked. Between the two of them it was less like dancing and more like fucking with clothes on and Xander was instantly hard from the picture they created.

Tom and Xander swayed gently to the music as they stood there watching the men dance. One of Tom's hands stroked Xander's hip. "They look good together, don't they boy?" Tom's voice was low and hypnotic in his ear.

"Yeah, they do.'

"If you want, we can invite Master Spike back to play with us tonight."

Xander's first reaction was a deeply ingrained Scooby reaction. He wanted to loudly and vehemently deny that he would ever want anything to do with the evil undead. But Tom's arms were strong as they encircled him and the repetitive strokes at his hip had him relaxed and feeling safe. Tom's voice was a low growl in his ear. "Rule Number Two, boy."

~August~

Xander was sitting in a chair, watching as Tom and Jerry played. He was so new to this relationship that Tom was content to let him sit back and observe for now. Xander knew Tom was anxious to include him in their scenes but Xander still felt held back.

Xander's musings took his attention away from the two men on the bed for a split second, so he missed what it was that Jerry did, but suddenly Tom was growling something about learning lessons and tossing Jerry across his lap. Before he could blink, Jerry was being spanked. Xander shifted in his seat, torn between being reminded uncomfortably of scenes of corporal punishment from his own home life and being turned on by something that both men were so obviously enjoying. He was so wrapped up in the scene he was observing and his resulting emotional response that Xander never noticed Tom taking in his every reaction.

Eventually Jerry's 'punishment' was over and Tom set Jerry aside and beckoned Xander over. Xander hesitantly stepped to Tom's side. "Boy?"

"Yes, um...Daddy?"

"You looked like you were enjoying that. Do you need a spanking too?"

Xander's response was immediate and unthinking. "Why in the hell would I want that?"

Tom's expression darkened. "Are you talking back to me boy?"

Xander stiffened. "Look, I don't have to..."

Tom grabbed him and pulled him down onto the bed. "You need to learn a lesson, boy."

Xander struggled in Tom's grip but it was useless. He quickly found himself pulled across Tom's lap.

"Wait...Tom, I don't think..."

Smack!

Tom's hand fell across his ass and Xander stiffened. "No...no, wait."

Smack!

Tom's blows fell in a repetitive rhythm across Xander's ass and the back of his legs. Unable to fight, Xander soon found his body relaxing into the spanking, though his mind was in turmoil. The longer it went on, the more the pain turned to pleasure and the harder he got. The harder he got, the more he despaired for what it meant for him. He couldn't like this, he just couldn't. It was wrong, bad, dirty, like him... Before he knew it Xander was sobbing uncontrollably, all his fears pushed to the surface and overflowing. Tom gathered him up in his arms and rocked him gently as he cried, shushing and soothing him. Tom.s gentle queries teased out Xander's fears and misgivings till finally Xander had confessed all his fears, his feelings of inadequacy, every blow his father ever landed on him, everything was laid bare for Tom. Xander finally felt his sobs quieting as large, warm hands soothed over his hair and back.

"There now, that's my boy." Tom gently laid Xander out on the bed and Jerry curled up around him. Tom knelt down next to him and began stroking Xander's softened cock back to full hardness. Xander gasped as his cock was engulfed in the warm heat of Tom's mouth. Jerry plastered himself to Xander's side, his hands stroking and tweaking all of Xander's hot spots.

"Oh...oh...Jer! Tom! Please..."

Jerry sucked on his neck, his hot mouth working up the sensitive column of his throat to trace around the shell of his ear. "Don't be afraid to ask for what you want, Xan. Tell us, let us know."

Xander moaned. "Harder, please Jer. My...my nipples, harder..." Jerry obliged by pinching his nipples harder as Tom's tongue expertly worked his throbbing length. "Gods yes Tom...more, more!" Xander came with a harsh cry, the aftershocks of his orgasm leaving him limp and shaking. The two men curled up around him, kissing and petting him. "Mmmm. Rule Number Two."

Tom chuckled. "What was that boy?"

Xander grinned and cuddled into their embrace. "What Jerry said, about asking for what you want? That's gonna be Rule Number Two."

~!~

~Present, Late December~

The song drew to a close and Spike and Jerry finally stilled, turning to walk over to where Tom and Xander were standing, watching them. Xander looked Spike in the eye as he approached. "Hey Spike, have any plans for the rest of the night?"

Spike looked surprised and eyed the three men speculatively. Finally he met Xander's eyes and leered. "I think I could be convinced to change them."

Tom nodded and grabbed Xander's hand, Xander grabbed Jerry's and Jerry grabbed hold of Spike's and they made their way out of the club. They all piled into Tom's car and silently drove back to the hotel where the men were staying. They entered the hotel room and Xander toed off his shoes and followed Jerry over to kneel between the two full size beds, already falling back into the rhythms of being Tom's boy. Spike took off his duster and hung it in the closet then sprawled in a chair, taking in the two kneeling men and Tom as he went about setting up the room. Comforters were stripped off the beds and tossed aside and Tom's bag of toys came out. Tom searched through the bag for a few minutes before pulling out what looked like a travel medicine kit. Tom eyed the kneeling Jerry with amusement. "Do I even have to ask, boy?"

Jerry shivered. "No Daddy."

Tom opened the kit to display an array of knives, scalpels and other equally sharp looking things. From under his lashes Xander saw Spike sit up and take notice.

"Master Spike, perhaps you could do me a favor?"

Spike strode over to stand by Tom. "And what would that be, Master Tom?"

One of Tom's large hands reached down to caress Jerry's hair. "M'boy Jerry has a mighty powerful kink. Seems he likes cutting, likes the feel of the blade, the smell of the blood. Now, I try to indulge this, but seems to me a Master Vampire such as yourself has picked up a few tricks over the years that I've probably never thought of." Tom set the bag of sharps down on the right hand bed. "Can I offer you the use of my boy Jerry for your pleasure tonight?"

From his position on the floor, Xander could see Spike's fist clench till his knuckles were bone white. Even more surprising was hearing Spike take a deep breath. "I'd be honored, Master Tom. Your boy is safe with me."

"Not too safe, I hope." Jerry muttered.

Tom grinned as he grabbed Jerry by the collar and hauled him up. "Talking without permission, boy. That definitely merits a punishment. Strip."

Looking apologetic, Jerry quickly and efficiently stripped and stood there, waiting for Tom's next command. Tom pulled a leather harness out of the bag and trussed Jerry's cock up tightly. Tom looked at Spike and grinned. "He doesn't come till I feel he's earned it."

Spike nodded and grabbed Jerry by the hair, wrapping the long braid around his hand. "On the bed boy, face down."

Jerry complied and then Xander wasn't paying attention to them because Tom turned to where Xander had been patiently kneeling. "Now, boy. It's been so long. Whatever shall I do with you?"

"Whatever you want, Daddy."

Tom grinned and cupped Xander's face. "Good to know you remembered your lessons. Let's see what else you remember. Unzip me."

Xander leaned forward and maneuvered until he had the tab of the zipper between his teeth, then gently pulled down. To his pride, he found that he could still do it without slipping up. It had been a while since he'd had to use this particular skill and it was good to know that he hadn't lost it.

Tom's voice was gruff. "Take me out boy, let me feel your sweet mouth."

Moaning softly, Xander pulled back and let Tom's cock fall free of his jeans before leaning in licking up the length. Slowly, to the sound of Jerry's moans, Spike's dirty talk, and Tom's murmurs of encouragement, Xander re-familiarized himself with his Daddy's cock. Tom was huge and it took awhile for Xander to go from suckling the head to working the rest of the length down his throat, but when he finally made it, Tom's appreciative swearing was worth it. Xander worked the length of Tom's cock, reveling in every swear, groan and moan his actions pulled from Tom. Xander knew that they were just getting started and sure enough, Tom soon pulled him off his cock and tucked himself away. "Stand up boy."

Xander stood, wincing as his knees protested. Tom sprawled on the free bed and eyed Xander appreciatively. "Strip boy. And I know you've danced before, so it better be slow and sexy."

Xander grinned and began to slowly remove his clothing, teasing Tom as much as he could. As he tossed his shirt aside, he glanced at the other bed and froze. Jerry was streaked in red from small cuts that covered his body. The white sheets made the red of the blood all the more vivid and Spike was standing over Jerry, gameface to the fore grinning and licking a smear of blood off of the knife he had just been using. Xander opened his mouth to protest Jerry's treatment, but strong hands grabbed him and turned him around to look into Tom's face. "Relax boy. It looks worse than it is. Master Spike's an expert and Jerry's enjoying himself, look."

Xander looked back at the blood soaked bed, and indeed, Jerry was moaning and writhing on the bed, his cock rock hard and dripping as Spike made a series of cuts up the inside of his thigh. Xander took a deep breath and relaxed, turning back to Tom. "Sorry, Daddy. I just...wasn't prepared for that."

Tom smiled and hugged Xander close. "It's alright boy. Now come on. Focus on me. Finish that lovely strip tease, yeah?"

Xander nodded and Tom resumed his position on the bed. Xander finished his strip by focusing on Tom, then crawled up to straddle Tom's lap when Tom motioned for him to. Tom leaned in and kissed Xander deeply, rubbing his hands possessively over Xander's flesh. "Mmm, missed you boy."

"Missed you too, Daddy."

Tom's hands roamed Xander's body, hitting all the places he knew drove Xander wild and Xander lost himself in Tom's embrace.

An eon later Xander whimpered as Tom pulled his fingers out of Xander's ass and replaced them with a medium sized plug. Xander had been spanked, pinched, pulled and manipulated every which was by his Daddy and was now on his back, legs spread and ass supported in the air by a couple of pillows. His cock strained against the ring Tom had placed on him and every nerve ending was on fire.

Tom knelt down next to Xander and stroked his hair. "Boy, listen to me."

Xander forced his lust-fogged brain to focus and met Tom's dark eyes.

"Jerry's high as a kite after all the blood-play, and I'm gonna go finish him off, help him come down, he needs something safe and familiar after such an intense scene."

Xander nodded. He understood. He'd been in Jerry's position before, blissed out of his mind from endorphins and unable to deal with the onslaught of emotions after a particularly intense scene.

"I'm gonna let Master Spike finish you off okay?"

Xander whined a bit at that, he wanted his Daddy's cock; he'd been waiting months for it.

Tom stroked his hair soothingly. "It's okay boy, we've got all week to play. Jerry needs me now. Tell me it's all right, boy."

Xander nodded. "It's all right Daddy. I'll be fine with Master Spike."

Tom smiled. "That's my good boy."

Tom disappeared from Xander's view and he heard Tom and Spike talking quietly in the background. Spike soon appeared, kneeling next to him so they could talk eye to eye. Spike was shirtless, the top button of his jeans was undone and his hair was a rumpled mess. Blood was streaked and splattered all over the Vampire's pale flesh. Spike was grinning hugely and Xander was sure he had never seen Spike so happy.

"Hey boy, how's it going?"

Xander grinned at Spike.

"Harris. Xan, you have to tell me, I know we're friends and all, but are you really okay with this?" One of Spike's hands ghosted over his chest, tweaking his sensitive nipples. Xander groaned and leaned up, brushing his lips against Spike's. "Please fuck me, Daddy."

Grinning, Spike leapt up and made his way to the foot of the bed. Cool, soft hands began ghosting over Xander's stomach, cock and ass, lightly tweaking here and there. Xander groaned and thrust his hips up at Spike. Spike chuckled and slapped Xander's thigh. "What's the matter boy? Need to come?"

Xander moaned and nodded.

"Oh please, boy. You never shut up, no reason to be so quiet now. I want to hear you beg."

"Please, Daddy. Please touch me, fuck me. Want to feel you."

Spike growled, his cool fingers playing around the edge of the plug. A press on the plug had it rocking against Xander's prostate and he whimpered. "Daddy, please, please fuck me."

"Sounds good boy, I like to hear you beg."

Spike twisted the plug and began to slowly extract it from Xander's body. Xander's groan was long and drawn out and Spike chuckled. Cool fingers brushed his grasping hole. Spike leaned over and whispered softly in Xander's ear. "I'm gonna fuck you now Xander. Last chance to back out." Spike pulled back enough to look Xander in the eye.

"I'm not gonna freak out Spike. You're my friend, I trust you. Now fuck me damn it, before I explode!"

Spike grinned and slapped Xander's ass. "Pushy bottom."

Then Spike opened the fly of his jeans and Xander felt cool flesh pressing against his ass. He moaned and arched his back; opening himself as best he could for Spike. Spike rubbed across his opening several times, just enough for Xander to start whimpering in frustration, then all breath was driven from his body as Spike slid into him with one strong thrust.

"Oh fuck, Daddy, yes!"

"That's right boy, tell Daddy how much you like it."

Xander cried out wordlessly as Spike started up a quick, hard rhythm of thrusts. Spike was bigger than Xander had thought such a skinny guy would be, and the contrast of cool flesh to his heat was intoxication. "Gods, yes, Daddy, please, harder, faster...oh yes!"

Spike's fingers had found their way to Xander's cock, where they were tracing around the metal of the cock ring.

"Have you been good boy? Should I let you come?"

Xander was near out of his mind with need and he shamelessly begged Spike. "Please Daddy, let me come! Please, I've been good, please, please."

Xander was watching Spike through eyes hazy with lust. He saw Spike's face ripple and change and if possible that made Xander even harder. Spike fumbled with the clasp on the cock ring, releasing it and tossing it aside then grabbed Xander's cock and stroked it roughly.

"Oh...fuck...Daddy please..."

"Tell me, boy!"

"Oh gods, coming! I'm coming..." Xander's cries disintegrated into a wordless scream as his body was wracked with his orgasm. Spike pumped his cock as he shot his load, then released him and grabbed his thighs hard, pulling Xander's body closer as Spike thrust frantically into him. Xander watched as Spike's eyes drifted shut and his head fell back, his whole body shuddering as his orgasm hit.

Panting softly, Spike finally lowered Xander back onto the bed, pulled out with a groan and flopped down next to him. "Bloody hell, boy. It's been a long time since I've been with a human. I forgot how warm you are."

Xander hmmm'd and stretched limbs that ached from being held in place for too long. "You felt cool, I didn't expect that." Xander thought over what he had just said. "Cool as in temperature, I mean."

Spike laughed and began tracing designs in the puddle of come on Xander's stomach. "Yeah, well. Room temperature here mate, Vampire, you know."

Xander stuck his tongue out at his bedmate. "Well duh!" Turning his head he finally noticed that the bed next to them was empty. "Hey, where'd they go?"

"They're in the bathroom. The boy needed washing up after I finished with him."

Xander eyed Spike speculatively. "Was it like before the chip, like torturing someone or something?"

Spike snorted. "I was never much for torture. I liked the hunt, liked the kill, but the torture game was never my strong suit, was more the poof's bag." Even though Spike's eyes remained locked on the fingers that were still tracing designs on Xander's flesh, Xander could hear the honesty in Spike's voice. "It was closer to the sex games that Dru and I used to play. But still, it was different. With Dru it was about love, pleasure and pain. This was about pleasure and pain, but also about power. About feeling like a Master Vampire again." Spike's eyes finally flicked up to meet his. "Yeah, I enjoyed it. Needed it, even. I owe you one pet." Spike leaned over and brushed his lips against Xander's, then slowly lifted one finger off of Xander's stomach and stuck it in his mouth. Licking Xander's cum off his finger, Spike made a 'yummy' face. "Mmm, you are a nummy treat." Grinning, Spike sprung up out of the bed, straightened his jeans and began digging in the pockets of his duster for his cigarettes. Lighting up, he started gathering his shirt and boots and getting dressed. "Well, it's been fun kiddies. But the night's almost gone and I've got things to do, people to scare, that sort of thing."

As Xander lay on the bed, still limp from his orgasm and covered in cum, Spike bustled around the room, putting his shirt and boots back on and smoothing his hair. Sticking his head in the bathroom, Spike spoke to Tom and Jerry, too quietly for Xander to hear, before heading for the door. Spike paused in the open doorway and glanced back at Xander. "See ya, pet. You have fun now."

Xander grinned. "Oh, I will."





Part Four



Tom and Jerry left just after New Year’s and life for Xander returned to what passed for normal. He worked hard at the construction site, learning all that he could and actually being surprised when he showed skills in carpentry. He and Spike hung out once or twice a week usually playing pool at the Bronze, though occasionally they would end up back at Xander’s place for pizza and movies. Xander was pleased to find that their budding friendship continued without any backlash from the night they spent together. In fact, other than talking to Tom or Jerry on the phone when one of Spike’s visits intersected with one of Tom’s calls, Spike never mentioned that night. Normally, having been that open and vulnerable in front of Spike would have made Xander shy away from the Vampire, but Spike treated it as if it wasn’t any more remarkable than them playing pool together and as a result, Xander felt more relaxed around Spike than he did around any one else. He actually felt like he could be himself around Spike.

 

His friendships with the Scooby Gang weren’t going so well by half. Giles treated him as he always did, like the older man wasn’t quite sure how to connect with him. Xander hung out at Giles’ for research meetings still and the like, but his relationship with Giles was distant at best. Willow had made an effort to see Xander regularly, but the appearance of Tom and Jerry had shaken her and she was more withdrawn around him of late. Though Xander suspected that also had something to do with the ‘someone special’ that Willow kept mentioning. As sad as it was to be distanced from his best friend, Xander was glad that Willow seemed to be moving on after Oz.

 

Buffy was a completely different story. The surprise birthday party they had thrown last month for Buffy was the last time Xander had really spent much time with her. She was wrapped up college and in Riley, who Xander didn’t trust, and ever since Buffy had met Tom and Jerry she had been eyeing Xander oddly. Like he wasn’t the same person she had known before. Well, he wasn’t, but instead of making an effort to get to know the new Xander, Buffy was acting as if his changes had hurt her personally. He tried to make an effort to hang out with her, volunteering to help her patrol on the weekends and such, but she kept blowing him off. It was all too frustrating for Xander to think about too much, which was why, once again snubbed by Buffy, he was currently sprawled across his couch, matching Spike drink for drink and indulging in the guilty pleasure of some gratuitous sex and violence movies.

 

Xander lifted the shot glass, eying it warily, and then looked to the identical one in Spike’s hand. “Hey! I think there’s more in mine, that’s not fair.”

 

“Whelp, I’ve been drinking three shots to your one. This drinking contest is about as fair as it gets between a Vampire and a Human.”

 

“Well, I still think you’re not as drunk as you should be.” Xander grumbled.

 

Spike shrugged and tossed back his shot then set the glass back down on the coffee table. Only he missed and dropped the glass on the floor. Xander burst out laughing. “Never mind, you’re drunk enough.”

 

Spike snorted and picked his glass up, carefully setting it on the table and pouring himself another shot. “No such thing as drunk enough.”

 

Xander shook his head as the fiery alcohol poured down his throat. “Yes there is, and I’m it.” He tossed his empty glass aside and collapsed back into the couch. “You win. Go ahead, do your evil Vampire guy victory dance. You drank me under the table. I’m under you, or the table. Only I’m not. Huh.”

 

Xander paused and tried figure out what he had just said. Spike however seemed to get it, because he was suddenly leaning over Xander and leering. “You’re not under me but you could be. You’ve been before.”

 

Xander looked up into blue eyes that were suddenly very close. “Um, yeah, but that was, you know, different.”

 

“Different pet?” Spike leaned in close and began sniffing his neck.

 

“Yeah, um, it was special.”

 

“Mmm, yes it was.”

 

“No!” Xander pushed Spike away. “I mean special like, a special cir…circumstance, not a normal thing.”

 

“What’s the matter?” Spike’s eyebrow arched eloquently. “Didn’t you like it?”

 

Xander flashed back to that night and was suddenly very aware that it had been a full month since he’d last had sex. “Yeah, of course I did. But…”

 

“But what pet? You liked it, I liked it, why don’t we do it again?”

 

“Because…” Spike was really close and Xander was having trouble getting a coherent thought through his liquor-addled brain. Suddenly it hit him.  “Because we’re friends! Friends don’t have sex!”

 

Spike pulled back and seemed to think about that for a minute. “But we’re friends and we did have sex.”

 

“Oh, yeah. Well, I guess it’s okay then. Can I be on top?”

 

Spike grinned. “Not on your life pet.”

 

~!~

 

Xander woke the next morning with a pounding head. He groaned and stretched, wincing when places that shouldn’t have been sore twinged painfully. Why the hell am I sore there? Xander lay still and tried to remember the previous night. He’d been pissed off at Buffy for blowing him off when they were supposed to patrol, he’d run into Spike on his way home, invited him over for movies and drinking…

 

“Oh god!” Xander sat up quickly and winced as his ass reminded him exactly what he’d been doing last night. Xander scanned the bedroom. It was empty except for him…and a slip of paper on the pillow. Xander picked up the note and quickly scanned it.

               

Xan-

                Thanks for the shag pet. It was fun. Catch you later.

                Spike.

 

Groaning, Xander buried his face in his hands. “I am so fucked! I just wish I could remember it.”

~!~

 

Spike was scarce the next week or two, which was good because Xander hadn’t decided if he was going to freak out about them sleeping together or not. He went back and forth in his head as the week wore on, one day deciding that if it hadn’t affected their relationship the first time then it wouldn’t the second time, while the next day he was convinced that he had ruined the best friendship he had going for him in Sunnydale. It didn’t help matters that Spike was nowhere to be found on their normal Bronze and pool night.

 

It was almost two weeks later when Spike finally showed up, barreling into Giles’ place under cover of a blanket, swearing up a storm and babbling about being followed. Willow and Xander were over on the premise of helping Giles research, but really they were just worried about the older man, he had been awfully quiet since the whole ‘turned into a demon’ thing a couple of weeks back.

 

“Spike? What’s wrong?” Xander shut and locked the door behind Spike and turned to the agitated Vampire.

 

“They’re following me. Those commando blokes. They ambushed me in the cemetery last night. The bloody tossers, shot me I haven’t been able to shake them since.”

 

Giles glared at the Vampire who was invading his home. “And we should help you why?”

 

Xander went to jump to Spike’s defense but the Vampire beat him to it. “Because I helped you the other week when you had that little turned into a Frayrl Demon problem.”

 

“And you helped me out of the goodness of your own heart?”

 

Spike looked at the watcher incredulously. “No, you paid me…oh bloody hell.” Scowling, Spike dug a wad of bills out of his pocket and slapped it into Giles’ outstretched hand. “That’s all there is left. The rest went into blood and smokes, lot of good it did me. Fucking soldiers.”

 

Willow watched the transaction with shock. “You made Giles pay you to help him?”

 

Spike tossed the blanket and his coat aside and began removing his shirt. “Yeah. How else am I supposed to eat? Can’t very well hunt for my blood like a normal Vampire now can I?”  Spike removed his shirt and turned his back to the small group. “Now, make with the helping.”

 

Xander could see the entry wound from whatever he’d been shot by high up on Spike’s right shoulder. Hurriedly he went to grab the first aid kit while Giles instructed Willow to get towels and fresh water. Xander came back with the first aid kit and a bottle of whiskey he’d found it Giles’ kitchen. “Here you go Spike, anesthesia.”

 

“Ta pet.”

 

They set to work digging the bullet out of Spike’s shoulder, or more appropriately Giles went to work, assisted by Xander while Willow hovered and worried loudly.

 

Finally, because whatever it was, was in deep, they found the bullet. “Huh, that’s odd.”

 

“What’s odd watcher? Just get it out already!”

 

“It’s blinking.”

 

“What?!”

 

A flash of memory and Xander felt a cold clench of fear in his stomach. “It’s a tracer. They’re using it to track Spike electronically.”

 

“How do you know that whelp?”

 

“Halloween a couple of years back I was possessed by a soldier. I still have some of the memories.”

 

Giles wiped the blood off his hands. “Yes, well, we know what it is now but it’s not out yet and the soldiers could be here any minute.”

 

“Oh! Oh, I can help!” Willow’s face lit up and she began bouncing excitedly.

 

“What are you thinking Willow?”  Giles’ face was understandably concerned at the excitement the Witch was showing.

 

“Static electricity interrupts electronic signals. So does magic. I can do a spell to keep them from being able to trace Spike while we fix him.”

 

Spike was swearing about trusting to ‘Red and her wonky magic’ but Giles’ overrode his protests. “Very well Willow, but you best hurry.”

 

A few minutes and some seriously scary hair later and they were back to working on digging the tracer out of the now very drunk Spike. Xander stood pressed up against Spike’s side as he assisted Giles, offering whatever silent comfort he could as they worked. Finally, finally it was out and Xander was racing back to the bathroom to flush the tracer down into the sewers and away from them.

 

An hour or two later Buffy arrived at Giles’ to find Spike passed out on the couch, Xander helping Giles look through some books and Willow surfing the web on her laptop.

 

“Hey guys, what’s up? What’s fangless doing here?”

 

Xander glared at Buffy. “Your boyfriend and his gang attacked him. He came to us for help.”

 

Buffy frowned. “How do you know it was Riley, or the Initiative for that matter?”

 

“Oh I don’t know, Buffy. Probably the military issue tracer we dug out of his back.”

 

“Xander! It’s not Buffy’s fault.” Willow admonished him for his harsh tone.

 

Buffy flung herself into a chair and scowled at the unconscious Vampire. “You haven’t seen the Initiative Xander, I have. They’ve let me in, gave me a pager and everything. They’re huge and the work that they’re doing is amazing. With they’re help we won’t have to worry about demons anymore.”

 

Xander stared at Buffy. “What the hell are you thinking getting involved with them, Buff? They’re dangerous. Did you ask why they’re doing all these experiments on demons? Do you even wonder what their real plan is?”

 

“Their real plan? Come on Xander! They capture and kill demons. How bad can that be? They make my job easier and that’s all I care about.”

 

“Damn it Buffy! They capture and do experiments on demons. They figure out ways to control them! Does the idea of a government organization being able to control demons not freak you out at all?”

 

By now Spike was up and eyeing the argument with barely disguised glee. Buffy glared daggers at Spike. “Not one word out of you fangless. You haven’t been any help to us, I should just turn you back over to Riley.”

 

That was the last straw. Xander was already worried about his friend but to have Buffy threaten him completely unprovoked like that made him see red.  “You know what Buffy? Spike has been a huge help to us. He’s been here more than you have lately. But you don’t want his help and you’ve made it clear you don’t want mine. Well fine then, we’re out of here. I’m not a sheep and I refuse to just blindly follow along anymore. You trust the Initiative. I don’t. Come on Blondie, we’re out of here.” Tossing Spike his shirt and duster, Xander stalked out of the apartment, Spike following closely behind.

 

They stood in the shaded courtyard as Spike smoked and Xander tried to get his anger under control. Finally, Spike glanced up from his cigarette. “Um, Harris, not to piss you off more, but sun’s still up.”

 

Xander sighed and ran his hands over his face and through his hair. “Yeah. I brought my car today; it’s just around the corner. I’ll bring it as close as I can.”

 

Spike nodded and Xander jogged off to get his car. A few minutes later and a slightly smoking Spike was curled up in the back seat as Xander drove them through town.

 

They made it back to Xander’s place in silence and it wasn’t until they were safely behind locked doors that Spike finally asked the questions that must have been driving him crazy. “So, not that I mind you sticking up for me and all, but what was that about? Sure, Slutty’s annoying but I’m not worth pissing her off like that.”

 

Xander frowned at Spike. “Don’t say that.”

 

“Don’t say what?”

 

“That you’re not worth it. You’re my friend, probably the best friend I have right now. Of course you’re worth protecting.”

 

“Don’t need protecting.” Spike grumbled, but Xander could tell that Spike was pleased by what he had said.

 

Xander got up and wandered into the kitchen to grab a couple of beers. “I’ll make you a deal. I’ll answer this, then you answer a question for me. Truthfully.”

 

Spike took the beer from Xander and nodded. “Sure, mate.”

 

“Okay. It was about Rule Number 3.”

 

“Care to explain a little more than that?”

 

“Yeah, I’m getting there.” Xander took a deep breath. “You’ve already heard the story of my trip up until I left L.A. right?”

 

“Yeah.”

 

“Right. So I left L.A., not because I didn’t love Tom and Jer, I loved being there with them, but I knew it wasn’t where I was supposed to be, not forever, you know?”

 

Spike nodded.

 

“Well, I drove north after that, headed up into Oregon. I stopped in this little college town for a few days, I had been driving for days, hadn’t slept much since leaving L.A. Even though I knew that my place wasn’t there, it was still really hard to leave. Anyway, the second day I was there I was hanging out at this bar and started talking to this girl. She was different than girls in Sunnydale. Piercing, tattoos, dreadlocks, she was an activist. We talked for most of the night and it was nice to talk to someone who wanted to save the world in the non-superpowers sort of way. Anyway, she invited me back to her place and I went, I’d been with only guys for months and I wanted to see if I still liked girls too, or, well, you know.”

 

Spike nodded.

 

“So we hit it off and I stuck around for a little bit. She introduced me to her friends, I went to meetings about saving the old growth forest and the evils of World Bank.”

 

Spike snorted with laughter. “In other words you became a hippie.”

 

“Yeah.” Xander smiled. “So before I know it I’m building furniture for the commune and going to earth first meetings.” They laughed at that. “Anyway, it was a whirlwind couple of weeks and I didn’t realize what was happening because I’d just been so lost after leaving L.A. and here were these people accepting me without question. They didn’t ask too many questions about my past. They accepted that I was bisexual.”

 

At Spike’s raised eyebrow, Xander shrugged. “It’s what I was going by at the time.”

 

“They appreciated that I could help out and build things. So it shocked the hell out of me when I questioned something we were supposed to be protesting and they just turned on me. I realized then that they didn’t want a thinking person they wanted a sheep. And that was what I had been. It’s what I had been during high school, blindly following Buffy without question, and it was what I was doing then, blindly following along for any scrap of affection. So I left, and that’s how Rule Number Three came about: Think for yourself. Don’t be a sheep.”

 

Xander sat back and took a long drink, draining his beer. He held up the empty bottle to Spike, “Want another one?”

 

At Spike’s nod Xander went to the kitchen and exchanged their empties for new beers. Heading back to the couch he caught Spike looking at him speculatively. “What?”

 

“Just when I think I’ve got you figured, you pull something completely unexpected. You keep me guessing, pet.”

 

Xander flushed a little at that. “So, um. Did I answer your question well enough?”

 

“Yeah. I suppose so. So, what’s the question you want to ask me?”

 

Xander settled back onto the couch, turning so he could look into Spike’s face. “I said before that I consider you a friend, probably my best friend right now. I don’t want to lose that over something stupid. So I wanna know, what’s going on between us, with the sex?”

 

Spike laughed. “I’m not sure what you mean Xan.”

 

“Well, I’m used to sex usually leading towards a relationship of some kind. That doesn’t seem to be happening with us and I don’t want things to get awkward if we have different expectations here.”

 

Spike sighed and leaned his head back, staring up at the ceiling. “I’m not sure what to say Xander. I’m not used to having ‘friends’ minions sure, groupies, sires, but I don’t know if I’ve had a friend since I was turned. Before I was turned actually.” Spike grimaced at that. “I like what we have pet and I don’t want to screw it up either.” Spike rolled his head to the side and leered at Xander. “On the other hand, no strings attached sex is good too.”

 

Xander grinned. “I can’t argue with that.”

 

Spike sat up and turned to face him. “Look, pet, I don’t know what’s going on either. But I like you and I like having a friend. Feels nice, feels safe. I don’t have any expectations; I’m not looking for a boyfriend or nothing. Let’s just say we’re friends with benefits and leave it at that, yeah?”

 

“Friends with benefits huh? I guess I can live with that.”

 

“You’ll have to, poofter. It’s the only way you’ll ever see my sweet ass again.”

 

“Actually Spike, I don’t think I’ve ever seen your ass.”

 

“Hey! What about that little strip I did for you last time?”

 

“Um, Spike, I don’t know how to tell you this, but I was so drunk that most of that night is a complete blur. I don’t remember much at all.”

 

“Oh bloody hell!”





Part Five



Xander and Spike didn’t stay estranged from the group for long. Willow quickly fell into her role as peacekeeper and smoothed over the argument. It helped that Prof. Walsh, the head of the Initiative, tried to kill Buffy when she started asking too many questions. Buffy got pissed off and in her drive to get to the center of the Initiatives plans conveniently forgot that Xander had ever questioned her. Soon the Scooby gang was embroiled in trying to infiltrate the Initiative compound and hide the AWOL Riley.

 

Stepping into the Initiative’s underground base scared Xander more than anything in all his years on the hell mouth ever had. Here, right under their noses this huge government operation had sprung up without their knowledge; working unchecked experiments on an entire section of the population of Sunnydale. Xander shivered as he followed Buffy through the base, just the thought of Spike, or any of his friends at these people’s mercy was terrifying. He didn’t have much time to think about it however because there were soldiers and doctors and some creepy Frankenstein’s monster and by the time they made it out of the base, surprisingly alive and unharmed, they began to understand the true evil of the place.

 

Things didn’t calm down after that. The gang was hiding out at Willow’s parent’s house while they tried to figure out if the Initiative was going to come after them. Then Riley showed back up, partially recovered from his drug withdraw. Xander got a certain satisfaction in asking Riley if the Army had put a chip in his head. Just when things with the Initiative were mellowing out, Faith woke up and blasted back into their lives and Xander was unwillingly reminded of the nightmare of his brief ‘relationship’ with the brunette slayer. It was a testament to Spike and Xander’s friendship that when Xander and Giles ran into Spike in an alley while searching for Faith, Spike postured a bit in front of the watcher, claiming to hate the gang, but seemed to sense Xander’s unhappiness with the situation and showed up at Xander’s apartment later that evening with movies and alcohol. Spike nonchalantly claimed it was just because he was bored, but when they stayed up half the night talking about Faith and Xander’s past, Xander knew that Spike had come over with the express purpose of comforting him.

 

Finally the Slayer body switch fiasco was fixed and Xander was aiming for his first full night of sleep in weeks when he was woken up out of a sound sleep by a pounding at his door. Pulling on a pair of boxers, Xander stumbled to the door and blearily looked through the peephole. “Spike?”

 

Xander yanked the door open and stared in shock at the bruised and bloodied figure that stood swaying in his doorway. “S…spike? What…I mean…for crying out loud, get in here!”

 

Spike grimaced and stepped inside. “Ta mate. Got into a bit of a scrape, wondered if I could hang out for a bit?”

 

Xander closed and locked the door and rushed to Spike’s side, catching his elbow just as he started to topple sideways. Swearing softly, Xander led Spike to the bathroom and sat him on the closed toilet seat. Digging out the first aid kit he babbled at the oddly silent Vampire. “Of course you can hang out, as long as you need to. What happened? I mean, if you look this bad I’d hate to see the other guy.”

 

Spike’s bark of laughter sounded harsh, broken. Worried, Xander helped Spike peel off his duster and ruined shirt then got a damp washcloth and started wiping the blood off of Spike’s face. Spike’s face was swollen and bruised almost beyond recognition and the rest of him wasn’t any better by the looks of it. “Spike? Talk to me man, tell me what happened.”

 

Spike groaned as Xander wiped the cloth down his chest. “Xan, luv, can we just focus on fixing me for now? I’ll tell you later, I promise, I…I just can’t deal with talking about it right now.”

 

That coming out of the snarky and self-assured Master Vampire, more than anything that had happened in the last few minutes, told Xander that something was really wrong. “Yeah, yeah Spike. Okay.” Xander eyed Spike’s injuries. His left arm was broken, some ribs as well, and he was covered in blood and dirt. “Let’s set that arm set, then you can take a shower. We’ve got to get all this dirt off before I can finish patching you up.”

 

Spike nodded and they set the broken arm as quickly as possible, then Xander went to heat up all the blood he had in the house while Spike showered. Making his way back into the bathroom ten minutes later, Xander found a naked, clean and wet Spike sitting, shivering, on the counter. Xander handed over one of the mugs he was carrying, set the others down and wordlessly set about sewing up the worst of the gashes covering Spike’s face, torso, back and legs. Wounds sewn up and arm and ribs wrapped up Xander finally declared Spike as patched up as he could get. “If I bandaged everything, you’d end up looking like a mummy.”

 

Spike smiled weakly and slipped on the sweatpants Xander had brought him before slowly made his way out to the living room. As Spike began to lower himself down onto the couch Xander had a brief internal debate. “Hey, Spike?”

 

“Yeah?”

 

“Get up. You’re really hurt and that couch isn’t very comfortable. You can share the bed with me tonight.”

 

Spike eyed him warily. “Are you sure?”

 

Xander shrugged. “Yeah. Why not? The bed will be more comfortable, and besides, I’ve had your cock up my ass twice, if you have cooties I’ve already caught them. Come on.” Xander led the wobbly Spike back to the bedroom and got him laid out on the bed.

 

“Vampire cooties, huh?”

 

Xander grinned. “Yup. Worse than girl cooties, or so I’m told.”

 

~!~

 

The next morning was Friday and Xander left for work reluctantly. Spike was sleeping soundly and already looked a bit better, but Xander could tell that this fight had been bad and it would take a couple of days even with Vampire healing for Spike to heal fully. Xander rushed through work then stopped and picked up supplies for a weekend of hanging out in the apartment. He got all of Spike’s favorite movies and snacks so if the Vampire felt the need to hang out for a couple of days he could. Xander finally stumbled through the door of his apartment late Friday afternoon, arms full of bags, to find Spike camped out in front of the TV, wrapped up in a blanket and a pair of Xander’s sweats.

 

“Hey Spike.”

 

“Xander.” Spike arched an eyebrow at the bags in Xander’s arms. “What’s all this then?”

 

“All the supplies we need to spend a weekend as couch potatoes.” Xander thankfully dropped the bags onto the kitchen counter and started unpacking them, doing the bag full of blood packets first. He tossed one in the microwave and the rest in the fridge.

 

Spike wandered into the kitchen and pulled the blood out of the microwave as it dinged, emptying it into a mug. He sniffed the blood then eyed Xander. “This is human, mate.”

 

Xander shrugged. “Yeah. The guy down the hall owes me a couple of favors and I called one in. I figured you needed to heal as fast as possible and pigs blood just wasn’t going to cut it.”

 

“What kind of deals are you doing with demons that warrants this much human blood?”

 

“Don’t worry Spike, it’s nothing bad. The guy down the hall, Mer’k, is really nice, works in the black market somehow. Anyway, he doesn’t pass for human and I ran into him in a graveyard one night last month during a patrol with Buffy. Buffy was pissed about being sold up the river by Maggie Walsh and was on a rampage, killing everything in sight that wasn’t obviously human. I got Buffy off his back and got him out alive, so he owes me.”

 

Spike hmm’ed around a mouthful of blood. “Well, that’s okay then, I suppose. I just don’t want you doing anything dangerous on account of me.”

 

“Spike. You’re my friend. I care about you. I’ll do whatever I can to help you, dangerous or not.”

 

Xander finished unpacking and looked up to find Spike staring at him, an odd expression on his face. “What?”

 

Spike sighed and sat the empty mug down. “Did you buy any Jack pet? I’m gonna need a little liquid fortification to get through the next half hour or so.”

 

Puzzled, Xander handed the bottle of Jack Daniels to Spike, grabbed himself a soda and followed Spike out into the living room. Settling on the couch, Spike took a large swig of the amber colored liquid and sighed. “Right. So Xan, I’ll tell you what happened, about the fight, and then I’ve got a question to ask. Don’t interrupt me, all right? Don’t know if I’m gonna be able to get through it all in one go otherwise.”

 

Worried now, Xander reached over and squeezed Spike’s hand. “All right Spike. Whatever you need. I’m here.”

 

Nodding, Spike took a couple more drinks and leaned back against the arm of the couch, wincing as his ribs protested. “Right. So last week I went into Willy’s for a drink, thought maybe I’d try to get in on a poker game. No sooner had I sat down then I’m grabbed from behind. Turns out some of the demons round here are taking offense at how I’ve been helping the Slayer out. Said I’d sold out our side. Anyway, they worked me over good, threw me out and told me I wasn’t welcome there anymore.” Spike sighed. “So last night I wasn’t quite healed up from that, stupid feckin’ pigs blood, but I couldn’t stand sitting around my crypt anymore so I went out to the Bronze to play a few games of pool, see if I could win some money off of the college students. Some girls started getting flirty with me and their boyfriends took offense.”

                               

Xander opened his mouth but Spike glared at him, reminding him that it wasn’t his turn to speak yet. Spike took another drink and continued. “Anyway, these muscle bound college boys took offense that their girls were giving me the eye and asked me to step outside. Now I told them to fuck off, that I wasn’t interested in their girls, just wanted to be left to my game, but they insisted. There were three of them against me, and I can’t so much as pinch a human without the chip going off so…”

 

Spike finished the bottle in one long swallow and jumped up, hurling the empty glass container against the wall and cursing. “Stupid buggering fucking chip! Fucking bloody soldiers! I can’t so much as think about defending myself against a human, against my own food! Time was I could have killed those three boys and their birds without breaking a sweat, now I’m helpless. Can’t be a demon anymore, the demons don’t want me! What the fuck am I supposed to do now? What the fuck!”

 

Spike stood there shaking, his eyes burning with anger, fear and shame. Xander stood up slowly and gently pulled Spike into his arms. Spike clung to him for several minutes before pulling back with a sigh and flopping back down onto the couch. “Thing is Xan, I’m tired. I’m hurt and I’m tired of being helpless, of being beat on and used. I just want to forget about it all for a while. To not have to be the Big Bad. I want to feel safe again.” Pain filled blue eyes met Xander’s own. “This place is the only place that feels safe to me anymore,” Blue eyes lowered to the floor. “You feel safe. I want…can you…?”

 

Spike trailed off but his question was perfectly clear to Xander. Spike wanted to feel safe and cared for, he wanted to let go and not have to worry about anything at all. And he wanted it from Xander. “Spike? Are you sure, I mean, with me?”

 

Spike’s voice was soft. “Don’t make me ask again pet because I can’t do it.”

 

“No! It…it’s okay Spike. I understand. It’s just, um…for how long? I mean, tonight? Or…”

 

Spike was fiddling with the edge of the blanket now, not looking at Xander. “The weekend, maybe? From now till the meeting on Sunday?”

 

Xander took a deep breath. Spike wanted him to be the one in charge, to basically be the ‘Daddy’ for the whole weekend, to help give Spike space to feel safe, space to heal. He hadn’t topped much but Tom had trained him well, he knew what to do and how to do it, the question was could he do it for Spike? Could he give his best friend what he needed? No question, really.

 

“Yes Spike.”

 

Spike looked at him, a little surprised. “Y…yes?”

 

“Yeah. If you trust me, really trust me to do this then I will.”

 

Spike frowned a little. “Of course I trust you Xander, you’re my best friend.”

 

Xander grinned. “Well, in that case you better start calling me Daddy.”

 

~!~

 

They stayed curled up on the couch for a couple of hours, watching TV and relaxing. Spike started out curled up on one end of the couch, but a few hours later had worked his way over to lay curled up against Xander’s chest. They talked quietly about boundaries for the weekend. Spike wanted to give up all control for the weekend, he didn’t want to have to  make any decisions for himself. Sex was good but nothing too rough, though too rough for a Vampire was probably more than Xander could ever do on his own. Even though Spike trusted Xander, Xander insisted on a safe word to keep things from going too far. After a while Xander got up and made them some spaghetti for dinner, pasta being one of the few things he could reliably cook, then Spike had some more blood. Spike’s arm was healed, though still sore, and the worst of the gashes were closed. He was still bruised and sore though.

 

Xander had been watching the clock the whole evening, and when he deemed it late enough, he stood up and headed back to his room, leaving Spike on the couch. Xander dug through his closet for some clothes appropriate to what he had planned. He settled on some black jeans and a dark green skintight shirt. It was casual enough for the Bronze but looked more like something one would wear to a gay club. Plus it was easy to move in and would hold up well in a fight. He then grabbed some of Spike’s clothing and headed back out to the living room. Spike had taken to doing laundry at Xander’s place and had left a few changes of clothing there since he also came over to use the shower after particularly messy fights.  Spike looked up in surprise as Xander handed him the clothing. “What…?”

 

“Get dressed Boy, we’ve got to go out for a little bit tonight.”

 

Spike looked puzzled but took the clothing and wandered back to the bathroom to change. When Spike emerged, fully dressed and hair slicked back, Xander wordlessly handed him his boots and duster. Once Spike was ready to go Xander grabbed his wallet and keys and led the way out of the apartment.

 

They drove in silence, Spike looking over questioningly at Xander every few minutes, but the blonde remained silent for the time being. When they pulled up and parked in front of the Bronze however, Spike finally spoke. “Okay, now I have to ask. What the bloody hell are we doing here?”

 

Xander smiled. “I have a little bit of business to take care of. Then we’ll go home.”

 

Grabbing Spike’s hand, Xander led the way into the club. Once inside Xander bought them both a beer and led Spike over to a dark corner, leaning up against the wall and pulling Spike back against his chest. Xander took a sip of his beer and spoke quietly into Spike’s ear. “Now boy, I want you to check out everybody in this place and point out to me the guys who hurt you. Be sure now that they’re the right ones.”

Spike nodded and sipped his beer as he scanned the bar. Spike wasn’t asking any questions and Xander was glad. He wasn’t sure he could justify what he was about to do and didn’t want to try. Finally Spike stiffened and pointed to a table where three guys sat, drinking a pitcher of beer. “That’s them.”

 

“Are you sure.”

 

“Yeah, I’m sure.”

 

Xander moved them so they could get a better view of the three men and continued watching them. They were the average college frat boys that Xander saw whenever he visited the girls on campus. One was blonde and two were brunette, and all three wore the same tee shirt with some designer name in bold letters across the front. Xander watched them as they finished one pitcher and got halfway through another. Brunette number one got up and made his way to the bathroom. As he emerged from the bathroom, Xander made his move. “Stay here. When I go outside, give me a few minutes then follow, but don’t let them see you, okay?”

 

“Xander, what are you doing?”

 

Xander cupped Spike’s face and pressed a soft kiss to his lips. “Trust me, okay?”

 

Spike nodded and Xander smiled then made his way over to intercept brunette number one. He met the guy just a few feet from the table where the other two sat. Xander pouted his lips, widened his eyes, and put on his best ‘I’m flamingly gay’ act. “Hey you. What’s a big, handsome guy like you doing in a place like this?”

 

Brunette number one looked pissed at first, but Xander saw his eyes flick over Xander’s shoulder and catch those of his friends. Xander could almost hear the silent conversation the three frat boys had. Brunette number one relaxed and smiled back at Xander. “Not much, just looking for that someone special.”

 

Trying not to roll his eyes at the line, Xander stepped closer to the man. “I could be that someone special.”

 

Brunette number one grabbed his hand. “Wanna take this out back?”

 

Xander smiled. “I was just gonna ask that myself.”

 

Xander allowed himself to be led outside and into the alley in back of the Bronze. Brunette number one pushed him up against a wall and pressed up against him. The brunette leaned close, his breath hot and reeking of alcohol as he spoke. “So, what do you think a faggot like you can do for me?”

 

Xander smiled sweetly. “Well, for starters I thought I’d beat the shit out of you.”

 

The brunette looked surprised then began laughing. Xander used the moment of distraction to knee the man in the groin. As brunette number one stumbled back, groaning, Xander pushed off the wall and launched himself at the man. Xander’s fist slammed into the man’s nose, eliciting a cry of pain. The man was drunk and surprised that Xander was actually attacking him, so he went down quickly. Just as the first man collapsed, brunette number two and the blonde came out into the alley, looking to get in on the queer bashing. They stopped in surprise at the sight of their friend down on the ground in a heap, moaning in pain. Xander smiled at the men, “What’s the matter boys, never seen a queer fight back before?”

 

They launched themselves at Xander but Xander was ready for them, plus they were drunk and Xander wasn’t. Two humans weren’t much compared to the demons and fledges that Xander normally fought, but still he did take a hit or two before they both went down. Xander stood there, panting over the three men when Spike stepped up to his side. Xander grabbed Spike’s hand and pulled him into the view of the three downed men.

 

They looked up at him in confusion. “Wh…what did we do to you?”

 

Xander smirked. “Besides planning on beating the shit out of me because I was gay? You touched him.” Xander put his arms around Spike and pulled the blonde back against his chest. “Nobody touches my boy and gets away with it.”

 

Turning, Xander led Spike out of the alley and towards the car. He was surprised when Spike pulled them to a stop. “Spike, wha…?”

 

Xander’s question was cut off as Spike pressed up against him and kissed him passionately. Spike’s lips were cool against his and Spike’s tongue delved deep into Xander’s mouth, tangling with his and driving the breath from his body. When Spike pulled back Xander realized a little breathlessly that that had been their first real kiss. “Wh…what was that for?”

 

Spike smiled softly at Xander. “Thanks, daddy.”

 

Xander grinned. It was the first time that Spike had called him that all night. “Anything for my boy.”

 

~!~

 

They drove back to Xander’s place and stumbled inside, laughing at the frat boys. When they got inside, Xander wordlessly handed Spike his jacket and turned to lock the door. Spike hung their jackets up in the closet and toed his boots off.

 

“So daddy, what next?”

 

Xander took Spike’s hand and pulled him towards the bathroom. “First a shower, then bed. I’ve been up since five am and you need to heal.”

 

“But I’m not tired yet.” Spike grumbled.

 

“Oh don’t worry, you will be.”

 

Xander led them into the bathroom and turned on the shower, letting it run to get hot. Gently he undressed Spike, being careful of his injuries. Once they were both undressed Xander climbed into the shower and pulled Spike in after him and into his arms. They stood under the hot water kissing softly, learning each other’s taste. Spike taste of smoke and whiskey and copper and his tongue was agile as it danced around Xander’s mouth. Xander grew hard as he thought of all the things that he might get that tongue to do to him.

 

Eventually Xander pulled away to catch his breath. Turning Spike around, Xander grabbed the shampoo and squirted some out, working his fingers through Spike’s hair as he washed the gel out. Once Spike’s hair was rinsed clean Xander quickly did his own, then grabbed the bath gel and sponge and began washing Spike. He took his time, learning Spike’s body as he went. He massaged Spike’s shoulders, petted down his stomach and tweaked his nipples, trying to find all of Spike’s hot spots. By the time he washed down both of Spike’s legs and back up towards Spike’s previously ignored cock, Spike was panting softly and leaning up against the shower wall for support.

 

Xander stood and dropped the sponge, squirting some more gel onto his hands. He rubbed them to work up lather then reached for Spike’s cock. Spike moaned as Xander’s soapy fingers lightly traced his length. Xander traced Spike’s cock from root to tip then loosely wrapped his hand around it and pumped once, twice. Spike’s cock was long and curved slightly up; it was red but still pale like the rest of his body. Spike was uncut and Xander took a moment to trace around where the head peaked out from the extra skin. Spike moaned as Xander continued his gentle explorations. “Daddy, please.”

 

“Shhh,” Xander soothed, “Let Daddy play.”

 

Xander finally began moving one hand in a steady rhythm on Spike’s cock while his other hand worked down and back to fondle Spike’s balls then trace the sensitive strip of skin behind them. Spike panted and thrust into Xander’s hand. Xander stepped up and pulled Spike into his arms so his side was pressed into Xander’s chest. One hand kept working Spike’s cock while Xander traced down Spike’s back and along the crease of his ass with the other. One soapy finger began playing with Spike’s opening. Spike’s breath caught and he thrust forward hard into Xander’s fist. Xander quickly clamped his hand down hard on Spike’s cock, cutting of his orgasm. Spike groaned in wordless disappointment. Xander began kissing and nipping along Spike’s shoulder and up his throat, murmuring soothingly as he worked the tip of one finger into Spike’s ass. Spike shuddered at the intrusion and Xander began pumping his cock again in distraction.


Xander played with Spike’s cock as he worked one and then two fingers into Spike’s ass. Soon he was pumping his fingers in and out, both hands in sync. Spike was moaning and cursing as Xander worked him up to a fever pitch and then abruptly stilled, cutting off Spike’s impending orgasm two, then three times. All the while Xander kissed and bit whatever piece of skin he could reach on Spikes face, neck and shoulder. By now it was only the fact that Spike was trapped between Xander and the wall that was keeping him standing on his shaking legs.

 

Spike was begging continuously now, a low litany of “Please, and Daddy, and ohgodfuckplease.”

 

Xander finally took pity on Spike crooked his fingers to hit Spike’s prostate and began pumping his fist faster. Spike cried out as his long delayed orgasm hit, shaking and shuddering as he shot stream after stream of cum over Xander’s fist. Spike’s orgasm went on and on till finally the blonde gave a final whimper and passed out in Xander’s arms. Xander caught the limp body just in time, placed a soft kiss on the top of Spike’s head and lowered him to the shower floor, propping him up in a corner. Working quickly because the water was starting to cool, Xander squirted more soap into his hands and washed himself before wrapping a fist around his own long ignored cock and bringing himself off in a few rough pulls.

 

Feeling pleasantly exhausted, Xander managed to get himself and the unconscious Spike out of the shower, dried off and into bed. Once they were tucked under the covers Xander curled up around Spike’s cooler body and placed a sleepy kiss on Spike’s lips. “I told you that you’d be able to sleep.”

 

Grinning, Xander drifted off to sleep.

 

~!~

 

Saturday morning Xander woke tangled up with a cool body. Smiling he kissed the top of Spike’s head.

 

“Mmrph.” Spike grumbled and tried to press himself closer to Xander’s heat.

 

Xander chuckled and unwound himself from Spike so he could stumble into the bathroom to pee. Natures call taken care off Xander climbed back into bed and turned on his side. A now awake Spike mirrored his position. “Morning.”

 

“Good Morning. How are you feeling?”

 

Spike shrugged. “Fine. A few more pints of blood and I’ll be good as new.”

 

Xander glanced at the clock. “It’s barely 10:00am. Do you want breakfast now or do you want to sleep some more?”

 

Spike yawned and reached over, rolling Xander onto his back. Then he curled up against Xander’s side, resting his head on Xander’s chest. “Sleep more, definitely.”

 

Xander wrapped his arms around Spike and drew him close, settling back in to sleep. Spike lay still for several minutes before beginning to fidget. Xander sighed. “Boy?”

 

“Yes daddy?”

 

“I thought you wanted to sleep.”

 

“Yeah, but I’m not tired anymore.”

 

Xander sighed and released Spike. “What am I going to do with you then?”

 

Spike pressed himself up against Xander’s side. “You could make me tired, Daddy.”

 

Growling softly, Xander grabbed Spike and pulled his smaller body on top of his own and pulled Spike’s head down for a kiss. Spike’s soft lips parted under his assault as Xander mapped out every inch of his mouth. Spike moaned and thrust down against Xander but Xander’s arm was wrapped tightly around Spike’s waist and held him still. Spike tired to protest but his mouth was full of Xander’s tongue. Once he was sure that Spike was wrapped up in the kiss Xander unwound his fingers from Spike’s hair and blindly reached for the bedside table. He quickly found what he was looking for. Releasing Spike’s lips he waved the tube of lubricant in front of Spike’s eyes. Spike’s eyes narrowed suspiciously. “What’s that for?”

 

Xander laughed. “If I you don’t know then I guess I’ll have to show you.” Xander slicked up a couple of fingers while he pulled Spike back in for a kiss. One hand remained on the small of Spike’s back, keeping him in place while the other traced down and began to circle Spike’s pucker. At the first touch of Xander’s finger Spike gasped and bucked forward, driving their cocks together. Xander couldn’t help the groan that was pulled from his throat as Spike’s hard length rubbed against his own. He thrust up against Spike as they kissed and he worked the first of several fingers inside Spike’s tight channel.

 

Spike was moaning continuously and grinding down into Xander as they kissed. Finally Xander couldn’t take it anymore and pulled Spike up into a sitting position. “Wha…?”

 

“Ride me.”

 

Spike’s eyes were heavy lidded with passion as he looked down at Xander lying beneath him. “Are you sure?”

 

Xander grabbed Spike’s hips and pushed him to kneel about Xander’s cock. “Please baby, daddy wants you to ride his cock. Can you do that for daddy?”

 

Spike nodded and began working himself down onto Xander’s slicked cock. Xander gasped as he was slowly taken into Spike’s tightness. “Fuck baby, so tight.”

 

Spike just gasped wordlessly and sank down lower, until Xander was fully encased in his channel.  They both stilled, panting as they adjusted to the new sensations. Spike was almost painfully tight around Xander’s cock, the muscles fluttering and grasping as they adjusted to the intrusion. Xander could only take so much and soon he was ordering Spike to move. “Please baby, move. Ride daddy.”

 

Spike knelt up till only the head of Xander’s cock was inside before slamming back down hard. They both cried out and Spike began moving in earnest. Xander’s hands were clamped tightly around Spike’s hips as they moved on the bed together, pants and moans filling the air. Too soon Xander felt the beginnings of his orgasm looming closer and grasped Spike’s cock, pumping it in time to Spike’s movements. Spike’s head fell back and his hands tightened on Xander’s biceps as Xander worked him to orgasm. Spike’s orgasm hit not a moment too soon because Xander couldn’t hold back anymore. He cried out wordlessly as Spike’s channel fluttered and clenched around his cock, milking him as he came.

 

Spike collapsed on top of Xander, panting needlessly. Xander pulled Spike closer and turned them on their sides. Curling up around Spike, Xander placed soft kisses on his face and throat. “So good baby. You felt so good.”

 

Spike murmured agreement as he drifted off to sleep. Holding Spike close, Xander soon followed.

 

~!~

 

They woke sometime after noon and stumbled into the bathroom for a quick shower. Xander gently washed Spike clean before washing all the sweat and cum off of himself. They climbed out of the shower and Xander dried them off and found them some clothing. He pulled on a pair of sweatpants, but Spike went for simply a pair of boxers. Xander was starving so he headed out into the kitchen and fixed them a large breakfast. Spike came into the kitchen and heated up a packet of blood, which he sipped while Xander finished cooking. Breakfast ready, they sat down at the table and ate their omelets in compatible silence. Spike seemed more relaxed today, less like he was constantly looking over his shoulder and more like someone just hanging out during a lazy weekend. Xander was relieved that there didn’t seem to be any tension between them regarding the change in their relationship, Spike seemed content with their arrangement.

 

After they were done eating, Spike wandered into the living room while Xander put the breakfast dishes in the sink.  Xander turned and stopped, caught by the sight of Spike wearing only a pair of Xander’s silk boxers that rode too low on his hips, standing in the diffused afternoon light.  The Vampire’s lips were red from feeding, and as Xander watched, Spike’s pink tongue darted out and licked across them.  A moan threatened to escape Xander’s throat and he suddenly wanted something very badly.  “Spike, baby?” 

 

Spike looked up at the endearment. 

 

“Baby, Daddy wants something very much, but if you don’t want it, you have to tell Daddy, okay?”

 

Spike’s eyes got wide and dark as Xander stalked over to stand just inches from the Vampire.  “Wh…what do you want, Daddy?”

 

Xander reached one shaking hand up to trace the outline of Spike’s lush mouth.  “Daddy wants to fuck your mouth baby.  Daddy wants to see what this gorgeous, smart mouth looks like wrapped around my cock.  Can I baby?  Can I?”

 

Spike nodded, speechless and Xander ran his fingers through the Vampire’s loose blond waves and then pressed down, urging Spike to his knees.  Spike knelt in front of Xander, looking up through impossibly thick lashes.  “Undress Daddy, baby.”

 

Slowly, Spike reached up and pulled Xander’s sweat pants off, easing them over hips and Xander’s already substantial erection.  Xander stepped out of them and Spike tossed them aside.  Then Spike knelt there, waiting.  Xander reached down and ran the fingers of one hand continuously through Spike’s hair, while the other traced the contours of Spike’s mouth.  Finally he couldn’t take it anymore.  Gently he bumped the head of his cock against Spike’s lips.  “Open up for Daddy, baby.  Take me in.”

 

Spike was breathing now, sharp, hitching breaths.  His moist lips parted and his tongue darted out to lick the fluid welling at the tip of the cock bobbing in front of him.  At Xander’s groan, Spike gave another lick, then leaned forward and sucked the tip into his mouth.  Xander held perfectly still, shaking with the effort. Spike’s cool mouth was suckling him tentatively and it was maddening.  Finally, Spike relaxed his jaw and took Xander in to the root, then held there, letting Xander take control. 

 

Xander took in Spike’s moist, red lips surrounding his cock, Spike’s eyes, dark with desire peering up at him through thick lashes, and knew that he wouldn’t last long, the picture Spike painted was just too erotic.  Grasping Spike firmly by the hair, Xander began to rock his hips gently in and out of the cool suction of Spike’s mouth.  It felt so good; Xander couldn’t control the babble that began flowing from his mouth.  “Oh, gods baby.  So good.  You feel so good, sucking Daddy like that.”

 

As he felt his balls drawing up, Xander began to piston in and out of Spike’s mouth, passionate babble disengaging to moaning as he shot his load deep into Spike’s open throat.  Xander’s world went gray, and he remained where he was, bent over Spike, for several minutes as he got his breath back.  He straightened up with a groan.  The Vampire was still suckling gently at Xander’s softening flesh.  Xander pulled out with a wet pop and grasped Spike gently by the arm, pulling him up and over to the couch, where he collapsed with a tired groan and pulled Spike into his lap.  Xander stroked Spike’s hair gently, murmuring into his ear.  “That was so good baby.  You felt so good.  Such a good boy for Daddy.”  Xander reached down and loosely grasped Spike’s hard cock through the silk of the boxers.  “Daddy wants to give you a treat now.  How do want it baby?  How can Daddy make his boy feel good?”

 

Spike whimpered softly, “However you want Daddy.”

 

Xander grinned and bit Spike’s earlobe gently, “I think I want to know what my boy tastes like.”

 

The blonde in his lap shivered.  Chuckling, Xander rearranged them so Spike was on his back spread out over the couch.  Xander removed the boxers and tossed them aside, then slowly leaned over and licked up the length of Spike’s cock. Spike whimpered, his hands clutching at the couch. Xander blew a gust of air over the wet stripe he’d left, causing Spike to shiver. Xander sucked the head of the pale cock into his mouth, happily exploring the extra skin with his tongue. Spike was groaning and thrashing on the couch when Xander finally began bobbing up and down Spike’s length, slowly sucking more and more in until the head was hitting the back of his throat.

 

“Daddy, please!”

 

Xander released Spike’s cock and looked up at lust-fogged eyes. “Please what, baby?”

 

“Please Daddy, make me come.” Spike whimpered softly.

 

“Anything for my boy.” Xander grinned and took Spike back in his mouth, deep throating him and swallowing around the length. Spike wailed, head thrown back and body straining for release. Xander squeezed Spike’s sack gently and pressed on the sensitive strip of skin behind them. He pulled up until only the head was cradled between his lips, and then sucked the length back in, scraping his teeth on the underside as he worked his way back down. Spike screamed and came hard, shoving himself deep into Xander’s throat. Xander continued to suckle until Spike was limp and had collapsed back onto the couch in a boneless heap.

 

Releasing the soft cock, he sat up and arranged them so he was resting against the arm of the couch and Spike’s head was in his lap. He grabbed the remote with one hand and began petting Spike’s hair with the other. “I feel like watching some cartoons. What do you say?”

“Mmmhmm.” A low moan was all Spike could manage.

 

~!~

 

Before he knew it, it was Saturday evening and after they’d finished dinner Xander remembered that he had some paperwork from work to get done.  “Spike?”

 

The blonde Vampire looked up from where he was sitting on the couch, flipping through a magazine, “What?”

 

“Be a good boy and go take care of the dishes.”

 

Spike’s mouth dropped open.  He stared at Xander for several seconds before he closed his mouth with a snap and glared at Xander.  “You want me to what?”

 

“Spikey, boys need to do their chores and Daddies need to do their work.  Go take care of the dishes, good boys get rewards.”  Spike finally threw the magazine aside and got up, stomping towards the kitchen, muttering under his breath.  Xander knew he had pushed the scene farther than Spike had intended, but he did need to look over those blueprints from work, and the kitchen did need to be cleaned, and Spike had wanted to be the boy for the weekend.

 

Xander tried to read, but the crashing of pans and slamming of cabinet doors kept distracting him.  Finally he slammed down the papers and headed into the kitchen.  Spike stood in the middle of the room, glaring at the pile of dishes in the sink.  In half and hour he hadn’t cleaned a thing, in fact, he’d made more of a mess.

 

“What’s wrong Spike?”

 

“What’s wrong?  What’s wrong is you do your own bloody dishes, I’m not your fucking slave!”

 

Xander walked over, grabbed Spike by the back of the neck, and drug him out into the living room.  “Spike, did you or did you not want the Daddy-Boy scene this weekend?  I’m only doing what you asked.”

 

The Blonde snarled at him, “I wanted a good shag, not to be your little slave.  I didn’t ask to be used.”

 

Xander met the hard blue eyes with his own steady gaze.  Spike’s eyes were a maelstrom of emotions: fury, pain, fear, and a haunted look.  It was the haunted look that made Xander’s decision for him.  Grabbing Spike again, Xander hauled him over to the couch, stripped his boxers off and turned Spike over his knees.  “Right then, if you won’t do your chores like a good boy, then you get punished.”  With that, Xander brought his hand down hard on Spike’s naked ass, eliciting a howl of rage.  Spike struggled and bucked and cursed, but Xander kept on, one hand firm on Spike’s lower back, holding him in place, the other building a rhythm of slaps.  Spike’s ass tinged pink, then grew rosy, then an angry red, and Xander knew that Spike would be bruised and sore, but his struggles had ceased, and instead he held himself rigid, ass arching up almost imperceptibly to meet Xander’s hand, moans being strangled through clenched teeth as Spike raged a silent battle within himself.  Xander kept on spanking Spike, the Vampire’s rigid form across his knee reminding him of his first scene with Tom and the emotional breakthrough that had followed.

 

Xander began a low litany of endearments and suggestions, barely heard over the angry slap of skin on skin.  “That’s it, you know you want it.  You know you deserve it.  You were a bad boy weren’t you?  Daddy knows just what to do to bad boys.  That’s right, take it.”

 

Spike’s body began to shake, and it took Xander a second to realize that he was shaking with silent sobs.  Underneath his running comments and the slap of flesh, Xander became aware that Spike was speaking as well, a quiet litany of “I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry…”

 

Finally, just when Xander was sure his hand would give out, Spike arched and came with a harsh cry, then  collapsed in a limp, sobbing heap across Xander’s knees.

 

Whispering soft, soothing nothings, Xander gathered the limp form up and cradled him in his arms, gently rocking them back and forth as he rubbed Spike’s back and begged Spike to tell him what was wrong. 

 

Finally, taking great, gulping breaths, Spike began to speak.  He told Xander of his life, of growing up quiet and dreamy in London, his father abandoning him and his mother early on.  Of his yearnings to write poetry and the ridicule he received from his peers.  Spike told Xander of Cicely, and the soul crushing pain of ‘I could never love you, you’re beneath me’.  Xander learned of the joy of being turned and the struggle to become everything Drusilla needed.  The contentment of belonging to someone who needed him, the fierce joy of learning the ‘family business’ alongside Angelus, and the struggle to meet his grandsire’s expectations.  The complete and utter desolation of being cast aside again and again by his sire and family.  “Never good enough.”  Spike whispered brokenly, “I’m never good enough. And…and now the chip. Can’t be a proper Vampire, can’t feed, can’t defend myself against a sodding human child, can’t be a man, I’m nobody, nothing.”

 

Xander held tight to Spike and stood up, carrying the sobbing form back into the bedroom.  He laid Spike out on the bed and stripped out of his sweatpants before climbing in next to Spike and pulling the covers over them both.  He wrapped himself around Spike and rocked them both for a while.  When Spike’s sobbing had quieted, Xander pulled the covers back and looked, really looked at the form spread out before him.  “Spike, baby, you’re so beautiful.”  Leaning over, he brushed kisses over both tear filled eyes, then traced down Spike’s nose with his lips to brush kisses over the gently parted lips and back up to trace each cheekbone with his tongue.  With each touch and caress, Xander whispered about how beautiful Spike was, how perfect he was, how strong he was.  As he made his way down Spike’s body, touching and caressing each inch of skin, he recited everything he’d ever admired about the Vampire, every trait he felt made up one of the most strong, fearless creatures he’d ever met.  Working his way down an arm, Xander kissed each finger, sucking them one by one into his mouth and laving them with his tongue.  “Such strong hands Spike. Can easily kill with barely an effort; rip the throat out of your prey, yet they can be so gentle too. I’ve felt them touch me, so easy, giving me the best pleasures.  Such amazing hands.”  It went on like that, over Spike’s entire body, back and front.  Till finally Spike was a quivering mass, making soft, begging vocalizations.  Xander hovered over Spike and looked deep into his eyes as he slowly prepared Spike for penetration.  Finally, he covered the thin body with is own and held Spike’s eyes as he slowly, slowly entered Spike.  “You’re so perfect Spike, so amazing, so strong.  I can’t tell you how much I admire you, respect you, what you’ve been through, what you survived.  My friend, my boy, my Spike.” 

Slowly Xander began to move, kissing away the tears that trailed down Spike’s cheeks as he  rocked gently in and out of his body.  Xander rode Spike as long as he could, constantly rubbing against Spike’s prostate, until he was sure that the Vampire could do nothing more than feel the sensations running through his body, until all thought was wiped clean, until Spike surrendered fully.  Xander could see it; brown eyes locked with blue, the moment when Spike let the last of his guards down, when the last internal wall crumbled and Spike surrendered completely.  That was the moment he had been waiting for.  Xander doubled his efforts to praise Spike, tell him how wonderful he was, as he pushed up slightly on one arm and snaked the other between their bodies to fist Spike’s weeping cock.  Three or four rough pulls and Spike’s eyes were rolling back in his head, his body arching up off the bed as he came and came and came.  As Spike came, Xander let himself go, shuddering as he emptied into the cool body surrounding him.  They collapsed together onto the bed, and Xander didn’t give Spike any time to recover and withdraw, he rolled over, pulling Spike tight against his chest, and stroked along Spike’s back as he placed soft kisses on the white blonde hair tucked into the curve of his shoulder.  The tremors wracking Spike’s body slowly subsided until the emotional and physical drain of the weekend took its tole and Spike slept.  Holding his bedmate close, Xander soon followed.

 

Sunday was spent quietly, neither anxious to speak much after the emotional roller coaster of the previous day. When they woke Sunday afternoon Xander made love to Spike once more, speaking only in praise of Spike, words coming only when he was buried deep inside the blonde. Later, Xander wouldn’t let Spike do anything for himself, bringing Spike blood and snacks, holding Spike practically on his lap while they cuddled on the couch, and washing Spike in their final shower Sunday afternoon. Spike finally arched an eyebrow in question as Xander brought him yet another mug of blood but Xander only shrugged and said “I have to take care of my boy.”

 

Finally they couldn’t put it off any longer so they got dressed and headed out to the Sunday night research meeting and patrol that was planned. Spike was silent as they walked through the darkening streets to Giles’ place but the closer they got to the apartment the more Spike’s casual walk changed to a swagger and the more the peaceful expression that had previously donned Spike’s face turned to the familiar ‘Big Bad sneer’. Just before they walked down the stairs and into the courtyard of Giles’ apartment building Xander grabbed Spike’s hand and pulled them to a stop.

 

“What is it?”

 

Xander took a deep breath and looked Spike in the eyes. “Spike, I just want you to know that this weekend will only remain between us. And that if you ever need anything, I…I’ll always be here for you. I know you don’t like the rest of the gang, and they don’t really trust you but I want you to know that I don’t see you the way they see you and I’m glad that you’re here and…”

 

Spike chuckled low and deep and captured Xander’s lips for a slow, sweet kiss that made Xander’s heart skip a beat. “Shh pet, you’re babbling.”

 

Xander nodded and made to head into the Watcher’s apartment.


“And Xan?”

 

“Yeah Spike?”

 

“Thank you.”

 

Xander smiled and led the way into the Scooby meeting.





Part Six



A/N: I realize that there actually wasn’t much time between ‘Wild at Heart’ and ‘Pangs’, so I’m playing with the timeline a little, just think of the month of November as an extra week long. ; )

 

Xander was supposed to be researching but right now he was people watching, or more technically Scooby watching. He was trying to figure out the dynamics of the Scooby Gang. They were all gathered around Giles’ living room, even Spike, eating pizza and trying to figure out what Adam was and how to bring him and the Initiative down. Giles was in his favorite armchair flipping between three books at once, Spike was sprawled in another chair dipping pizza slices into his mug of blood and smirking as Buffy and Willow made ‘eww’ faces. Buffy and Riley were sitting together on the couch looking through several books but talking together under their breath. Willow and her friend Tara were crowded together at Giles’ desk working on Willow’s laptop.

 

Xander liked Tara and was glad that Willow had finally brought her into the group. Willow had shown up at his door one evening the week before bearing chocolate chip cookies and a nervous expression. They had spent the evening catching up and Willow had finally confessed that she and Tara were more than friends. Xander had of course teased Willow about watching her and Tara ‘do spells’, as was his duty as oldest friend. But secretly Xander was relieved that Willow had come to talk to him first. Xander was pretty sure that no one else knew, except Spike that is. When Xander had let slip during a pool game that Willow was now gay too Spike had given him the ‘well duh’ face. When Xander had demanded to know how Spike had known he just tapped his nose and quipped, “Vampire senses, pet.” The fact that Willow was still keeping her secret from Buffy and Giles bothered Xander. It wasn’t like them to keep secrets from each other.

 

Xander was watching the group tonight instead of researching to try to figure out just when the dynamics of the group had changed so much. Sure, several things were different. They had another magic user in the group, but Tara was shy and quiet and didn’t affect the group dynamics that much. Riley was hanging around regularly now, which put Xander and Spike on a bit of a defensive, since neither man trusted the soldier. But still Riley was knowledgeable about demons, a good fighter, and Willow and Giles seemed to trust him, so his presence shouldn’t have upset the group that much. Then there was the presence of Spike himself. In the few weeks since Spike and Xander’s weekend together the Master Vampire had mellowed some. He was still the snarky Big Bad but he was less likely to rise to Buffy’s quips or to try to bait Buffy into anger and more likely to lend a hand in researching and patrol. Xander still had to remind the Scoobies that part of the Initiative research included looking for a solution to Spike’s chip, but since Spike’s attitude change Willow had taken more of a liking to the blonde Vampire and so was likely to back Xander up when he had to remind Buffy and Giles to research the chip too.

 

Finally there was Xander himself. He had changed since coming back from his road trip, he knew that. He just had a hard time believing that standing up for himself and refusing to be the donut boy and comic relief could affect the group that much. Still, after weeks of wondering, Xander was finally ready to admit that somehow his role had been crucial to the group dynamics. Somehow the Slayer needed her Watcher, a Witch, and a Zeppo. The only problem was that Xander couldn’t be the Zeppo anymore. So Xander researched and thought and researched and thought some more, and finally something finally clicked in Xander’s brain and he began to smile.

 

Xander couldn’t implement his plan right away, a sex possessed frat party kept him and the gang a little distracted, then it took Xander a while to find the person he was looking for, but finally Xander was heading towards Giles’ place with a nervous young man in tow.

 

“Are…are you sure about this Xander? I mean, I’m just a normal guy, not a superhero like you all are. What help can I possibly be?” Jonathan bounced along beside Xander as they walked, his arms wrapped around a large box of donuts. In his bouncing Jonathan tripped over his own feet and Xander had to catch him to keep him and the donuts from biting the dust.

 

“Trust me Jonathan.” Xander steadied the boy on his feet. “You’ll be more help than you realize.”

 

Xander entered the apartment with Jonathan in tow. Willow smiled as he entered. “Hey Xander, hey…Jonathan?” Her smile faltered. Buffy frowned at the two men. “Jonathan? What’s he doing here?”

 

Xander smiled and patted Jonathan on the shoulder. “Well Buff, I was thinking that with Tara helping out now Willow’s focusing more on the magic side of things and less on the computer geek side of things. Luckily Jonathan here is a huge computer geek so I figured he could help us out with that side of things. We need all the help we can get with Adam and his pet commandos.”

 

Jonathan smiled bravely in the face of Buffy’s frown. “I um, I brought donuts.”

 

Xander smiled as the girls rallied at the offer of donuts then immediately put Jonathan to work. Xander headed over and sat down next to Spike, grabbing a book for himself. At the question in Spike’s eyes Xander just shook his head and mouthed ‘later’. The group settled into research mode and Xander smiled to himself as the atmosphere seemed more relaxed than it had in months. It looked like the Scooby gang had their Zeppo back.

 

Just as they were all getting ready to call it a night there was a knock at the door. Before they could all even wonder who it could be the door swung open and in walked Oz. “Um, hey everyone.”

 

Everyone immediately tensed as they waited to see what Willow would do. Xander hadn’t been in Sunnydale for the worst of the Willow/Oz breakup and aftermath, but he’d heard the stories. No one was sure what would happen. Oz just stood their, fidgeting slightly. Xander glanced at Willow and saw her trying to pull herself together. He also saw the crushed look that flitted over Tara’s face. Clearing his throat Xander stepped up to Oz and hugged him. “Oz, hey, long time no see. Did you just get back into town?”

 

Oz smiled slightly and hugged him back. “Yeah, just now. Thought I’d stop by and say hi.”

 

The next few minutes were pretty much chaos as Willow finally pulled herself together and greeted Oz, Tara left in a hurry and Buffy tried to balance being angry at the guy who had hurt her friend and being glad to see Oz again, back and safe. Xander managed to slip Oz a note with his address and phone number on it before he and Spike left. As much as Xander wanted to help smooth things over, no one could fix things except Oz and Willow themselves. The rest of the Scoobies would just have to see how things played out. Xander hoped for Tara’s sake that Willow was honest with Oz. Xander really liked Tara, she balanced out Willow’s flightiness and the feelings between the two women were obviously strong.

 

Xander and Spike walked slowly back to Xander’s apartment, neither saying much. Finally about a block from Xander’s place Spike tossed his cigarette aside and turned to face Xander. “All right pet, two questions. One, what’s with bringing the runt into the group? Two, what’s going on between you and dog boy?”

 

Xander sputtered slightly, “What do you mean, between me and Oz?”

 

Spike just gave Xander a knowing look and tapped his nose. Sighing, Xander began walking towards his apartment. “Both have to do with Rule Number Four. Come on up and I’ll tell you the story.”

 

~Early November~

 

Xander scrubbed at his eyes and tried to focus on the road. He had been in the car for about seven hours and still had at least three to go. The scenery wasn’t much, scrub forests and low rocky hills but mostly just road stretching on for miles and miles. He briefly contemplated pulling over and taking a nap, but a soft whimper from the back seat reminded him that time was of the essence so he took a swig of what was now ice-cold coffee and kept driving.

 

Xander had left Oregon and his brush with the hippie lifestyle behind and headed north, finally stopping in Seattle when his funds ran low. Tom had a friend, another demon who owned another bar, and Xander had been promised there would be some work for him there if he wanted it. The bar wasn’t much, it was nothing like Tom’s place, just your average little dive bar nestled among the warehouses and stadiums of South Seattle. Xander had been working there for about three weeks and had earned enough that he was starting to look at maps and contemplate where he wanted to go next.

 

That night had been a game night and the Seahawks had won so the bar was filled with lots of rowdy football fans. Usually Xander washed dishes, carried ice, swept floors and did whatever else Jim, the owner needed. But on game nights Xander filled in as an extra bouncer, mingling with the crowd and trying to spot trouble before it started.  The bar had a young werewolf who worked as a busboy. Barely nineteen, slight and delicate looking, not to mention painfully shy, Jace was often a target for teasing from the patrons. Mostly it was good-natured and all the regulars knew that Jace was under the protection of Jim and the other staff. Unfortunately that night things got too rowdy when some super macho sports fans took offense to Jace’s feminine appearance and Jace ended up in the middle of a fight he couldn’t win. Xander and the other bouncers tried to get to Jace in time but most of the bar was between them and then it was too late. By the time the bouncers had thrown out the four men Jace was a bloodied mess. Xander helped the others carry Jace back to the office where an angry and cursing Jim met them with a first aid kit.

 

They cleaned Jace up, splinted his broken arm and twisted ankle and bound his broken ribs but that was all they could do for him. Jace lay on the couch whimpering softly as Jim paced the length of the small office and tried to figure out what to do.

 

Xander sat near Jace, offering the boy what comfort he could. “Is there a hospital or clinic around here that deals with non-humans?”

 

Jim shrugged. “There’s an underground clinic or two for those who know where to find them, but they’ll just tell us the same thing I’ll tell you now. What Jace needs is to shift. The change helps the healing process.”

 

Xander glanced at the calendar. “But the full moon’s over a week away.”

 

Jim nodded. “Yeah, I know. Look, there’s this pack out in Montana, they’re kind of a stop off for young Were’s who don’t have a pack or teacher. They know just about everything there is to know about Were physiology, history and customs. Rumor is some of them even know how to change at will, instead of with the moon. Jace was saving up and planning on heading out there in a month or two, but maybe they can take him now. If we can get him there.”

 

Xander looked at the helpless form on the couch then looked back at his boss. “I can take him.”

 

So a phone call was made and Xander was given a couple hours to gather his things together and check out of his motel room then Jace was bundled up and tucked into the back seat of Xander’s car, as comfortable as they could make him. Jim handed Xander a cooler of food, a thermos of coffee, and a paper with hastily scribbled directions on them and Xander was off. Now here Xander was, somewhere in Northern Idaho with cold coffee, an unconscious werewolf, and directions that started out with: Get on I-90 and drive east for 10 hours; and ended with a complicated series of directions for navigating a bunch of unmarked forest service roads in Western Montana.

 

Xander pulled out of the forest and into a clearing dotted with cabins just as the moon was rising. Figures were moving around the clearing, illuminated by the moonlight and the light of a large bonfire in the center of the cabins. Xander pulled to a stop and climbed gratefully out of the car. He stretched and groaned and waited to be approached. He didn’t have long to wait, a couple of guys came jogging up to him before he’d even finished his stretch. “Hey, I’m Xander. From Seattle, Jim sent me.”

 

The guy in front nodded and held out his hand. “I’m Nathan. Thanks for getting here so quickly.”

 

They quickly got down to business, Nathan directing two other men to help a groggy Jace out of the car. Xander grabbed his keys and followed the men as they carried Jace through the campsite and to a particular cabin. Nathan turned to Xander while the other’s carried Jace inside. “He’ll be fine now, we’ll take care of him. Why don’t I get you a place to bunk down for the night? It’s a long drive to the nearest motel.”

 

Xander accepted gratefully. “Thanks, I’m beat.”

 

Nathan gave Xander a quick tour of the camp, pointing out where the latrines were and where he could get fresh water. Xander took everything in with wide eyes. There looked to be about thirty people living out here in a permanent campsite. As they walked Nathan talked about the pack, how they were kind of a school for young Were’s who didn’t have anyone to train them, about how people came from all over the United States to learn from them and how they never turned anyone away who honestly wanted to learn. “Society isn’t going to fight for us, so we have to fight for ourselves.” Nathan said as they walked through the moonlit meadow.  He and Nathan were standing by the bonfire, warming up from the chill Montana night air when Xander heard a familiar voice behind him. “Xander, is that you?”

 

Turning Xander found himself face to face with Oz. “Oz! Oh my god, is it really you? What are you doing here?”

 

He and Oz hugged and Xander found himself suddenly homesick for the first time in his trip. Oz pulled back and looked up at him. “What are you doing here in Montana Xander?”

 

Nathan spoke up. “Xander brought the injured boy over from Seattle. He’s going to spend the night since it’s so late.”

 

Oz grabbed Xander’s arm. “Xander and I are old friends. He can bunk with me tonight.”

 

Nathan nodded and bid them goodnight before striding off to see to other things. Xander turned back to Oz. “What are you doing here man?”

 

Oz grimaced. “It’s a long story. Let’s go back to my cabin and get warm.”

 

Xander followed Oz back to his cabin, which was very basic, just a square room with one window, a fireplace and a small bunk. They sat on the floor in front of the fire, close enough that their legs touched, and talked about the last couple of months. Xander told Oz about L.A., Oregon, and Seattle; Oz spoke about he and Willow starting college, about Veruca and realizing that he had to leave Sunnydale to learn to control the wolf.

 

If they scooted closer and closer together in front of the fire it was because they were the only familiar faces in a strange place. And if they stripped down and climbed into the small bed together it was only because there was no need for Xander to find his own bed when they were friends. If their kisses were deep and slow it was only because Oz tasted like California, like home and if the way their hands ran over each others bodies was more soothing than arousing it was because Oz was afraid and alone and Xander reminded him of everything Sunnydale. If as they tangled their bodies together, thrusting against each other as they brought each other to completion it was more about comfort than attraction, it was okay because they each understood what it was like to be so far from everything that said home and about the need for something familiar.

 

~Present Day~

 

Xander looked up from the empty bottle he had been playing with throughout his narrative. “The next morning I left and started driving South and I didn’t stop for more than a day’s rest until I got back to Sunnydale.”

 

Spike drained his beer. “Okay, so what was Rule Number Four?”

 

“Help those that can’t help themselves.”

 

“Hmm. So I get how that might have come out of taking that boy to Montana, but how does Rule Number Four tie into brining that Jonathan nerd into the group?”

 

“Well, see Jonathan went to High School with us, same class and everything, but he was always on the outskirts. He never had any real friends. During senior year he actually tried to kill himself, but Buffy stopped him. Then of course we all went back to ignoring him. Just a couple of weeks ago he did that spell where he was famous and everybody loved him, then after it was over Buffy gave him some speech about being yourself and not using magic to get friends, then of course we ignore him again. Think about it, Jonathan is so desperate for friends, so desperate to belong that he’ll resort to dangerous spells. That kind of desperation could very easily go bad, and that would be dangerous because unlike most people in this town Jonathan knows about Vampires and Demons, he knows about magic and he’s really smart. I’d rather that Buffy own up to her fancy speeches and start including other people than see someone like Jonathan go to the dark side, so to speak.” Xander grinned.

 

“So basically you’re telling me that what Angelus said about you was true.”

 

Xander was puzzled. “What did Angelus say about me?”

 

“That you were a white knight.”

 

Xander blushed. “No, not really. It’s all just self preservation really.”

 

Spike snorted. “Sure mate, you just keep telling yourself that.”

 

~!~

 

Spike eventually headed back to his crypt and Xander went to bed. When Xander got home from work the next day he was half hoping to find Oz waiting for him, or at least a note from the werewolf, instead he found Spike inside his apartment, looking troubled.

 

“Spike? Hey, what’s going on? You don’t look so good.”

 

Spike seemed fascinated with a spot on his jeans because he wouldn’t look Xander in the eye. “I um, had a visitor today.”

 

Xander sat down on the couch. “A visitor?”

 

“Yeah, tall, ugly, made up of lots of different parts…”

 

“Adam! Adam came to see you?”

 

“Yup, he wanted to make a deal.”

 

Unable to tolerate Spike’s fidgeting anymore, Xander grabbed Spike’s hands between both of his. “What sort of deal?”

 

“He wants me to help get the Slayer to him at a specific place and time, in exchange I get the chip out.”

 

“He knows how to get the chip out? Spike, that’s fantastic!”

 

Spike looked at him like he had grown another head. “What are you going on about mate? It’s not bloody fantastic, I made a deal with the devil to sell out your friends.”

 

Xander was thinking hard now, staring off into space and absently playing with Spike’s fingers. “Yeah, but then you came to me. We can totally use this to our advantage. If Adam doesn’t realize that we know, we can play him.”

 

“It’s worse Xan.”

 

“What?”

 

“Seems the soldier blokes captured your boyfriend, dog boy, earlier today. Adam, as a show of good faith told me how to get in a back way so we can break him out. It’s how I’m supposed to win your trust.”

 

Xander was up and off the couch in a flash, rummaging though his closet. “Xan, what are you doing?”

 

“Looking for my soldier gear from the last time Buffy and I broke into the base. We’ve got to get over to Giles’ place and get the rest of the gang.”

 

Spike wandered into the bedroom and stood in the doorway, watching as Xander threw some things into a small duffle bag. “Aren’t you mad at me pet? When does the yelling come in?”

 

Xander zipped up the duffle and walked over to Spike. “Spike, I’m not mad at you. You didn’t betray us and you didn’t betray me. In fact this is about the most useful things that’s happened in weeks. Oh, and another thing.” Xander pulled Spike in for a deep kiss. “Oz is not my boyfriend. One time thing, comfort, blah blah blah. If you’re actually jealous I’m gonna have to slap you upside the head for being so stupid.”

 

Spike followed Xander out of the apartment. “I’m not jealous.”

 

But Xander couldn’t help noticing that Spike looked secretly pleased.

 

~!~

 

They drove to Giles’ place and entered the apartment to chaos and panic. Xander stood in the doorway watching as Willow, Buffy, Giles and Jonathan frantically ran back and forth between the laptop and a pile of books, all talking at once as they tried to figure out how to rescue Oz.

 

“SHUT UP!” Xander yelled as loud as he could.

 

They all froze in place as they turned to look at Xander and Spike standing in the doorway. Then the babbling began again as they tried to tell Xander what had happened. “QUIET!”

 

Everyone froze again. Xander held up his hand. “I know that Oz has been taken by the Initiative. I have a plan to get him out. Now first, Spike has something important to tell you, so sit down and listen.”

 

Surprisingly everyone sat quietly. Spike quickly relayed his meeting with Adam.

 

Buffy glared at Spike. “So basically you’re telling us you sold us out.”

 

“No Buff, what Spike is telling us is that we now have an inside guy who can find out where Adam is and what all his plans are. Plus Spike can get us into the base to get Oz out.”

 

“How do we know we can trust him though?”

 

Xander sighed. “Because as soon as he could get away from Adam he came to see me, that’s why.”

 

Buffy scowled. “Just because you and the bleached menace have some sort of unnatural friendship going on…”

 

Surprisingly it was Giles who cut Buffy off. “Really Buffy. That is uncalled for. It is perfectly obvious that Spike is on our side.”

 

“Yeah Giles, but only so he can get his chip removed.”

“Of course he wants the chip out Buffy! It hurts him, it keeps him from being able to take care of himself. Wouldn’t you if you were in his place.”

 

Buffy glared at Xander. “It’s pretty weird that you of all people Xander want to set a mass murderer loose.”

 

“That’s not what this is about Buffy, and I’ve grown up a lot since High School, I see things differently now. Not everything is black and white.”

 

Willow’s voice was strained with worry, “Guys, can we please stop arguing and work on saving Oz?”

 

Xander grasped Willow’s hand. “Sorry Wills, of course.” He turned to the rest of the group. “Here’s my idea. Buffy, Spike and I can go in and get Oz…”

 

“I’m coming in too.” Willow interrupted.

 

Xander met his friend’s eyes and saw the determination there. “Okay, Willow too. Now Spike saw that Adam has a link into the Initiative’s computer system, he can see everything that’s going on. I’m hoping that he’s going to be too busy watching us to notice anything else. Jonathan,”

 

Jonathan looked surprised at being included. “Yeah?”

 

“I want you and Willow to hack into the Initiative’s system before we leave. Use magic if you have to. Then while we’re inside, Jonathan’s going to be here, downloading everything he can off of their computers. Especially look for anything regarding the behavior modification chips. Adam says he’s going to deactivate Spike’s chip but I don’t trust him. Giles can be our getaway driver, ‘cuz I’m thinking that we’re going to have to leave in a hurry and Oz probably won’t be up to running.”

 

Surprisingly everyone agreed to the plan and soon they were headed toward campus and the Initiative base. Xander tried not to snicker at Spike in the army uniform, but when Willow told Spike he looked like an evil olive he couldn’t hold back the laughter.

 

“Just you wait Harris, you’ll get yours.” Spike muttered as he helped Xander up from where he had fallen down laughing.

 

The whole operation was ridiculously easy and if Xander hadn’t already known that Adam wanted them to succeed he would have been suspicious. As they drove through the dark streets of Sunnydale and back towards Giles’ place Xander just hoped that Jonathan had been successful as well.





Part Seven



It turned out that Jonathan had been more than successful, he had downloaded several disks worth of information. They didn’t dare trust it until Spike had reported back to Adam, but Frankendemon seemed oblivious to the computers having been hacked so they began the tedious process of searching through the information they’d found.

 

Oz and Willow came to an understanding and Oz left Sunnydale again. Oz had stopped by Xander’s apartment on his way out of town and he and Xander had talked for a bit, Oz telling Xander all about his travels after he left Montana and about learning to control the change. As Oz was leaving Xander had given him Tom’s number in L.A. and let Oz know that in case of emergencies Tom would always know how to get a hold of Xander. Oz said he might head back up to Montana, he and Jace had become friends before Oz left the pack and Oz wanted to get back in touch with the young werewolf. Almost immediately after Oz had driven away Spike had come out of the shadows and invited himself up to Xander’s apartment. Spike had hung out the rest of the night, watching TV and occasionally asking a question about Oz’s visit. It seemed to Xander that Spike was still a little jealous of his friendship with Oz, which made Xander feel warm and fuzzy in a way that it really shouldn’t if he and Spike were just friends. Xander really wished he had more time to think about his relationship with Spike but things were moving rapidly on the Adam front, and no one in the gang had much time for anything other than research and planning.

 

The gang decided that Adam needed to feel that Buffy was vulnerable if they were going to get close to him so Spike fed Adam a story about how he was weakening Buffy by driving a wedge between the Slayer and her friends. To perpetuate the story the Scooby Gang stopped meeting so much. Buffy spent more time patrolling with just Riley, Willow and Tara researched spells at school and Giles and Jonathan continued searching through the files they downloaded from the Initiative. Spike came and went between Adam and Xander, reporting everything Adam told him to Xander who then took the information to Giles. Jonathan, as the most recent member of their group and probably the least likely to show up on Adam’s radar, acted as a go between for Buffy, the Witches and the rest of the group.

 

Finally a few days after Oz’s rescue, Xander came home to find a message from a very excited Jonathan on his answering machine. Tossing his tool belt aside, Xander turned around and headed back out to Giles’ place.

 

“Hey, G-man, Jonathan?” Xander blinked as his eyes tried to adjust to the dimness of Giles’ apartment after the bright spring sunshine.

 

“We’re here Xander, do come in.”

 

Xander flopped down onto the couch. “What’s so important that I had to run straight over here from work?”

 

Jonathan sat on the couch next to him, a sheaf of papers in his hand. “This is.”

 

Xander looked at the lines of text and the diagrams covering the papers before handing them back to Jonathan. “You’ll have to translate for me Jonathan, I may be a geek, but I’m not a techno geek.”

 

Jonathan took the papers back and began reading. “These are all about Spike’s chip. Diagrams, experiments, information on how they inserted it, that sort of stuff.”

 

Xander stood up and began pacing. “Does it tell us how to get it out? Could we like, take those to a doctor and they would tell the doctor how to remove it?”

 

Jonathan shook his head. “It’s in too deep. In all the test subjects, removal of the chip meant permanent brain damage.”

 

Xander felt his stomach sink. To cover up the shaking of his hands he walked into the kitchen and got a glass of water. “What does it tell us then?”

 

Jonathan flipped a couple of pages. “It tells us how to reprogram it.”

 

“What?”

 

Giles came over and placed a hand on Xander’s shoulder. “We have figured out that it is possible to reprogram the chip once it is inside the subjects brain.”

 

Jonathan nodded. “Yeah, the only problem is that the reprogramming can only be done with the Initiatives equipment.”

 

“Which is, of course, contained in the Initiative’s base.” Giles concluded.

 

Xander walked back into the living room and sat back down. “Oh. Wow.”

 

“Yeah, that’s what I said.”

 

Giles looked at the hand that had been resting on Xander’s shoulder. “Good lord, Xander. What are you covered in?”

 

“Cement dust. I told you I came over straight after work.”

 

Giles began to make noises about his furniture but Xander ignored him and focused on Jonathan. “Jonathan, do you understand this stuff? Could you, if we got a hold of the equipment needed for the reprogramming, could  you reprogram the chip yourself? Or better yet just turn it off?”

 

Jonathan paled slightly. “Um, I guess. I mean, yes. Yes I could.”

 

Xander nodded. “Okay. Well, that gives us options then.”

 

Buffy came in just then, looking decidedly upset. “Hey Buffy, what’s wrong.”

 

She barely looked at them, just flopped down onto a chair. “I was in the woods near those caves, looking for Adam.”

 

“Buffy! Why? What if Spike had been there? You could have ruined everything.”

 

Giles sat beside Buffy. “While I won’t be as negative as Xander, he is right Buffy. That was a terrible risk to take.”

 

Buffy sighed. “I know. I just wanted to see if he was still as tough as I thought he was. I thought maybe I could take him this time.”

 

“And did you?”

 

Buffy sighed and rubbed a hand across her eyes. “No. And worse, Adam got Forrest.”

 

“Forrest?”

 

“One of Riley’s friends, one of the soldiers. He and I met up and he started following me. We were arguing about what was best for Riley and didn’t really pay attention. Adam killed him.”

 

“Oh dear lord. Are you all right Buffy?”

 

Buffy smiled weakly. “Yeah, I’m fine. But how am I going to tell Riley? They were friends.”

 

Giles patted Buffy’s hand. “You just will. You owe him that much.”

 

“Yeah, you’re right.”

 

Eager to change the subject, Jonathan told Buffy the news about Spike’s chip, along with some other information they’d managed to glean from the downloaded files. Willow and Tara soon showed up with more of the downloaded files that they had managed to decrypt. They sat around talking for a while when Buffy finally really looked at Xander. “Hey Xand, no offense but you kind of smell.”

 

Xander rolled his eyes. “Yeah, well. I came over right from work, I didn’t really have time for my beauty regimen.”

 

Willow wrinkled her nose. “You are kind of muddy looking. Maybe you should shower.”

 

Giles sighed in relief. “Yes, by all means, please feel free to use my bathroom. I’m sure I can even find you some clothing to change into. Anything to keep more of that dust off of my furniture.”

 

Xander grumbled a bit but headed for the shower pretty quickly, glad to get all the caked on dust out of his hair and skin.

 

Ten minutes later he was finally clean and just enjoying the heat of the water on his sore shoulders when he thought he heard the click of the door. “Hello? Guys? I’ll be out in a minute.”

 

Nothing. Shrugging to himself Xander stepped back under the water and finished rinsing off. Suddenly a cold hand slid down his back. “Aargh!” 

 

Xander turned only to stumble and fall right into Spike’s open arms. “Spike! What do you think you’re doing, scaring me like that? And why are you naked and in Giles’ shower? With me?”

 

Spike grinned and backed them up under the hot water. “Thought I’d get clean too pet.”

 

“But, everyone’s right out there, they’ll hear. And…and…” It was really hard to protest when Spike was rubbing up against him and sucking on his neck like that. “Um…I have a point, I’m sure I do.”

 

“Yes you do pet. And I’m gonna take care of it for you.”  Before Xander could even protest the bad line Spike was sliding down his body and engulfing his cock.

 

Xander hissed and grabbed onto the wall for support as Spike proceeded to suck his brains out through his cock. “Ooooh gods, Spike. Fuck yes.”

 

Spike worked Xander’s length with mouth and tongue and soon Xander was grasping white blonde hair as he shot deep into Spike’s throat.

 

“Jesus Spike. That was intense.”

 

Spike stood up and pulled Xander into a deep kiss, licking at the blood welling from Xander’s lip where he had bitten during orgasm to keep from screaming.  “Mmhmm. Know what would be even better?”

 

“What?”

“If you do me too.” So saying, Spike pushed Xander down to his knees. Xander smiled and proceeded to return the favor.

 

Twenty minutes later Xander stumbled out of the bathroom, clean and dry and dressed in some of Giles’ clothing, to find Spike sitting innocently on a chair, looking through a book.

 

“Evil Vampire.” Xander muttered as he flopped bonelessly into a chair next to Spike. Spike just smirked and sipped at his mug of blood.

 

They all worked on searching through more of the files for information they could use. Spike had brought over four disks that Adam had given him and Willow was now working on decoding those. They knew that any information contained on those disks would be designed to lead them into a trap, but hopefully once they figured out what the information was they could figure out what Adam’s trap was before they fell into it. Finally they had to call it a night, agreeing to meet back tomorrow afternoon.

 

Spike followed Xander home after the meeting, silent and chain smoking as they walked. Xander let Spike brood until they reached Xander’s place. Once they were inside though, Xander turned to Spike. “Okay Spike, what’s going on? You’re brooding worse than Angel.”

 

Spike scowled. “Take that back whelp.”

 

“Only if you quit brooding and tell me what’s on your mind.”

 

Spike tossed his duster off and began pacing the living room. “Do you really think that this reprogramming thing can work?”

 

Xander shrugged. “We won’t know for sure until we try it, but if we can get access to that equipment then yeah, I think it’s our best shot.”

 

Spike shook his head. “You would really do this, get rid of my chip, knowing who and what I am?”

 

Xander stood and grabbed hold of Spike’s shoulders. “Yes Spike. Over these past months you’ve shown me who and what you really are, because of that I’ll gladly get rid of the chip.”

 

“Why are you doing all this pet?”

 

Xander looked surprised. “Because what the Initiative is doing is wrong. What was done to you is wrong. Rule Number Five Spike: fight back. If we don’t do it, no one else will.”

 

Spike looked amused. “How many of these rules do you have Xan?”

 

Xander smiled. “Five so far. If I come up with any more I’ll let you know.”

 

Spike smiled back but then seemed to shrink in on himself. He sat down on the couch and stared at the floor. “You do realize that if I get the chip out I’m leaving Sunnydale.”

 

Xander tried to ignore the almost physical pain that Spike’s statement caused. Moving very carefully he sat down next to Spike, taking hold of one cool hand and squeezing tightly. “Why?”

 

“Because I hate this town. Because only bad things ever happen to me here. Because if I stay I’ll end up being just another of the Slayer’s lackeys and I can’t do that anymore. Most of all I’m leaving because I need to make a new start of it and I can’t do that in this bloody place.”

 

Xander sat stiffly. “Not…not everything that happened to you here was bad, was it?”

 

Spike smiled and pulled Xander in to a hug. “No pet, not everything. The chip and this bloody town gave me you and I can’t forget that, I’m grateful for that.”

 

Xander sighed and relaxed into Spike’s hold. “I…I’ll miss you.”

 

Spike dropped a kiss onto Xander’s hair. “I’ll miss you too luv. But we’ll see each other again. No worries.”

 

They remained curled up together on the couch most of the night, talking quietly about their pasts and the future, but mostly just thinking on what the past year had brought them, and what they were about to lose.

~!~

 

The next afternoon they were all gathered around Giles’ living room when Buffy burst in, babbling frantically. “Riley’s gone. He took off and now he’s missing. I know Adam has him, I just know it.”

 

Willow tried to calm a frantic Buffy while the others continued brainstorming ideas.

 

“We know what Adam’s plan is, basically. We know how to get in and out of the base and how to access the equipment for Spike.” Giles explained to Buffy once she had calmed down. “We just can’t figure out how to defeat Adam. He is too strong for  you and magic alone will not harm him.”

 

Buffy looked puzzled. “Why won’t magic hurt him?”

 

Giles sighed. “We found some of Prof. Walsh’s notes in the files we downloaded. She used parts from several types of demons that are naturally magic resistant.”

 

Buffy scowled. “Stupid Prof. Walsh.”

 

Xander sighed. “It’s too bad we can’t juice you up and make you super Buffy. Like give you G-man’s brain and Willow’s magic, and maybe Spike’s strength too just for extra whammy.”

 

Jonathan began bouncing in his seat. “Oooh yeah, just like Captain Planet!”

 

He and Xander intoned together. “By your powers combined, I am Captain Planet!” They both fell back, laughing.

 

Spike rolled his eyes at them. “You two are such nerds.”

 

Xander turned to say something to Giles but his words died on his lips when he saw the way that Giles was looking at him. “What’s wrong Giles?”

 

Giles began cleaning his glasses. “You were joking I know, but you may actually be on to something.”

 

They all looked at Giles with equally blank looks on their faces.

 

Giles jumped up and began frantically searching through his bookshelves while the Scoobies watched. Finally with a loud “Aha!” Giles pulled a book off the shelf and began flipping though it. “Yes, here it is. It’s a binding spell of sorts. It combines the essences, the spirits of the participants and focuses them into a single vessel.”

 

Xander’s mouth dropped open in shock. “So it could really work? Buffy could have the extra magic and knowledge and strength and be Super Buffy?”

 

Giles looked up from the book. “If the spell works yes. If it doesn’t we could all die painfully. But in theory there is no reason why it shouldn’t work.”

 

Giles continued on, unaware of their horrified stares. “We will need three participants plus the vessel, that’s you Buffy. Head, hand, heart and vessel. I will be head, that’s knowledge; Willow hand, for magic, and we will need you Xander and not Spike for the heart. I’m afraid that the binding will not work if the person in the place of the heart doesn’t have an actual working heart. Besides, Spike will be busy with other things.”

 

Buffy looked more determined now. “How long will it take to get this spell ready?”

 

Giles finally looked up from the book. “If Willow and I work on it, two hours maybe?”

 

Buffy nodded. “Good. Then we’ll get the rest of the stuff we need and be ready to go at sundown.”

 

~!~

 

Sundown found Giles, Willow, Buffy and Xander quietly entering the deserted frat house that acted as a front for the Initiative. They repelled down the elevator shaft, trying to be as stealthy as they could, only to open the elevator doors and find themselves at gunpoint. It wasn’t totally a surprise but they had hoped to sneak in unnoticed. Their guards took them to the control room, exactly where they needed to be and when the power shut off, distracting the soldiers it wasn’t long before they had overpowered their guards and located the space needed to perform the spell. Willow figured out where Adam was most likely to be hiding and they set off.

 

By the time they got across the main floor and into the storage room they were aiming for, the base was a writhing mass of demons and humans fighting for their lives. Xander spared a brief thought for Spike and Jonathan, hoping that Spike had managed to sneak Jonathan in unnoticed and that they had found the equipment room they needed before the demons were set free. Then all of Xander’s attention was taken up by the spell. It was amazing, the feeling of being joined with the others. He could feel Willow, feel her magic and hear the mental giggle as it drifted across her thoughts ‘like a Vulcan mind meld’; feel wisdom, age and an undercurrent of darkness from Giles; then they were all joined with Buffy, looking out her eyes, and the absolute power and strength that radiated through her was astonishing.

 

They/Buffy confronted Adam, deflecting his weapons with magic and using their combined strength to combat his, eventually tearing his power source straight out of his chest. Then as abruptly as they had been joined they were snapped out of the spell. Xander sat on the floor of the storage room woozy and disoriented. He barely noticed the demon that burst through the doors but somehow Spike was suddenly there and the demon wasn’t a threat anymore. Xander wanted to run to Spike and ask him if his part of the plan had worked but Buffy and an injured Riley were there and Jonathan was babbling about the demons running loose and they had to fight their way out of the base.

 

They emerged into the woods next to campus and Xander was shocked to find that it was only about midnight. With everything that had happened in the last couple of hours it seemed like it should be morning at least. They stood there in the cool night air when it suddenly hit them that they had succeeded. Willow immediately started babbling about how cool the spell had been and Jonathan was babbling just as fast about the computer system and equipment.  Giles was trying to question Buffy about the strategy of her fight with Adam but she was too busy trying to help an injured Riley. Xander noticed Spike standing quietly to the side and he walked over to stand with is friend.

 

“Spike? Did…did it work?”

 

Spike looked up at Xander and Xander was shocked to see his blue eyes filled with tears. “Yeah pet…it worked.”

 

With those words Xander’s world was narrowed down to one thought. ‘It worked, Spike is leaving.’

 

“Will…will you come home with me?”

 

Spike nodded and grabbed Xander’s outstretched hand. Without a word to the rest of the group they turned and walked back towards town and Xander’s apartment.

 

The trip home was a blur, they didn’t speak and Xander didn’t notice anything about the walk other than the feel of Spike’s cool hand in his. They stumbled through the front door and immediately fell on one another, kissing frantically. Xander tried to devour Spike’s mouth as he pushed the duster off and to the floor and began working on Spike’s shirt. They walked back towards the bedroom as they kissed, tossing clothing aside as they went. They fell onto the bed, naked and panting and Spike immediately wrapped his legs around Xander’s waist.

 

“Need you in me love, need to feel you.”

 

Xander nodded and groped for the lube, sucking hard at Spike’s neck, desperate to leave a mark. Spike thrust up against Xander, rubbing their leaking cocks together while he kissed every inch of skin he could reach. Finally Xander found the lube and quickly squirted some out, clumsily lubing up two fingers and reaching for Spike. Spike growled and grabbed Xander’s hand before it reached his opening, detouring it to Xander’s own cock. Before Xander could protest Spike had flipped them over, smeared the lube on Xander’s cock and was slamming himself down, taking Xander in all the way with one thrust.

 

Xander cried out wordlessly as he was engulfed in Spike’s cool channel then grasped at Spike’s hips and flipped them again. Spike wound arms and legs around Xander, kissing him frantically as Xander pounded into him.

 

“Fuck, Xander. Yes please yes harder please love, need to feel you.”

 

Spike’s begging drove Xander’s pace faster and he pounded into Spike, constant moans and cries of pleasure falling from his lips. Both of them were panting now, kissing, sucking and biting everywhere they could reach. Spike scraped his nails down Xander’s back and bit at Xander’s throat with blunt, human teeth and it pushed Xander over the edge. He came screaming, barely remembering to reach between their bodies and grab Spike’s cock. Two rough pulls had Spike following him over the edge, his whole body arching up off the bed as he shot all over their chests.

 

They collapsed back on the bed, panting harshly. Xander pulled out of Spike with a groan but didn’t go any further, pulling Spike close and cuddling into the cool body beneath him. The two lay quietly for a while, hands petting, kissing occasionally.

 

Finally Xander couldn’t stand it any longer and voiced the question that was bouncing around in his brain. “Spike? Is there any reason you’d stay? Any one you’d stay for?”

 

Spike sighed and held Xander close. “Luv, do you remember months ago when you told me that no matter how much you cared about Tom and Jerry, and no matter how good you had it in L.A. with them that you just knew that L.A. wasn’t the place you were meant to be?”

 

“Yeah?”

 

“It’s like that pet. Despite the people here, Sunnydale isn’t my place. There are too many bad memories here pet, I can’t stay.”

 

Xander tried to stifle the sob that seemed to want to break free. “Wh…when will you l…leave?”

 

“I’ve got to get a few things in order, get the Desoto out of storage, but that won’t take me long. I should be heading out of town come sundown.”

 

Tears began a slow drip down Xander’s cheeks but he didn’t notice. “So you’re just going to leave? Even though…even though I…I…lo…”

 

Spike flipped them over and crushed his lips to Xander’s. “Don’t say it luv, please gods don’t say it. I know, okay? I feel the same way but this town is killing me. It doesn’t matter if Sunnydale is home to you because it will never be home to me.” Spike was crying now too as he kissed Xander. “If you say it, it will just be harder to leave and if I stay I’ll end up hating it, hating you. Don’t you see pet?”

 

Xander nodded, tears falling unchecked. “I understand Spike, I do.” He kissed Spike again, their tears mingling as they kissed. “Fuck me Spike, please? I want to feel you.”

 

Spike nodded and quickly slicked a couple of fingers, hastily preparing Xander then entering him with one long, slow thrust. Their moans mingled with their tears on their lips as they kissed and where their earlier coupling had been almost frantic, this one was slow, both trying to draw it out. Xander tried to make it last, to memorize the feel of Spike moving inside him but despite their best intentions, Xander’s orgasm eventually snuck up on him and pushed him over the edge, Spike following soon after. Xander held on to Spike, wanting to spend their last hours together awake and talking, but exhaustion hit them both and they fell asleep wrapped in each other’s arms.

 

When Xander woke in the pre-dawn hours, images of his father ripping his heart out still vivid in his mind, he found he was alone. Spike had left and only a note remained:

 

Goodbye Xander love, and thank you.

 

Xander lay in bed, clutching the note to his chest as a million thoughts flitted around his brain. Only one thought stood out in the confusion. Spike was gone.





Part Eight



Xander lay in bed as the sun rose, thinking alternately about Spike and about the weird dream he’d had. Buffy had called soon after he’d woken up and told him about the First Slayer and why they’d all been hunted in their dreams. Xander’s dream had been a maze traversing Sunnydale and his past. Throughout the whole dream he had been trying to follow someone down the maze, afraid of being left behind. It reminded him a lot of how he felt as High School was ending, before he’d taken his road trip. Afraid of being left behind. It occurred to Xander that he hadn’t felt that way since coming back from his trip, but he couldn’t quite place why.

 

Finally, just after 8am, Xander gave up trying to figure things out on his own and called Tom. Tom’s voice was groggy with sleep when he answered the phone, but he soon woke up when he heard Xander on the other end.

 

“Xander, boy, what’s wrong?”

 

“We took down the Initiative Tom, they’re history. Also, we fixed Spike’s chip.”

 

“That’s wonderful boy. Is everyone okay?”

 

“Yeah, no one got hurt. Tom?”

 

“Yes?”

 

“Spike’s leaving.”

 

Tom was silent for a moment. “Why is he leaving?”

 

Xander quickly explained Spike’s reasoning.

 

“Xander? Why aren’t you going with him?”

 

“What? Tom, Sunnydale is my home.”

 

 “Is it really Xander?”

 

Xander thought hard. He had a job he liked and that he was good at, but construction jobs were everywhere. There was his place in the Scooby Gang, but he’d already given that up willingly to Jonathan. The Scoobies had their Zeppo, he was just another guy on the sidelines now. If he stayed, he risked falling back into his old role, just like in the dream. The Scooby gang didn’t have any place for an independent Xander. What else was keeping him in Sunnydale? His apartment was crappy, the only thing he really liked about it was all the time he and Spike had spent hanging out here. Then it hit him. Sunnydale wasn’t home, Spike was.

 

“Oh gods. Tom, I’m in love with Spike!”

 

Tom laughed. “Took you long enough boy. I thought you were smarter than that.”

 

Xander scowled at the phone. “So I’m a little slow. I haven’t exactly fallen in love much before.”

 

Tom’s voice was soft. “No, and that’s why you shouldn’t let him leave without you. You two are good together, don’t let him get away Xander.”

 

Xander was hard pressed to keep the tears from starting back up again. “I won’t. Thank you Daddy. I love you.”

 

“I love you too boy. Promise you’ll come see us when you two pass through L.A.”

 

Xander smiled. “I promise.”

 

Xander hung up the phone and jumped out of bed, heading towards the shower. He had a lot of work to do.

 

~!~

 

An hour before sunset a taxi pulled up on the outskirts of Sunnydale. Xander handed the driver the fare and climbed out of the cab, lugging his duffle after him. “Yes, I’m sure this is where I want to be dropped off. Thanks.” Shaking his head the taxi driver headed back into town.

 

Looking around, Xander lugged his duffle over next to the “Welcome to Sunnydale” sign and sat down. He had spent the day running around town, attempting to wrap up his life in Sunnydale. He had quit his job and picked up his last paycheck, cashed it and done a little shopping. Then he’d stopped by Giles’ place and talked to Giles and Jonathan, followed by a visit to the dorms and a tear filled conversation with Buffy and Willow. He had talked to his landlord about breaking the lease on his apartment, then piled everything worth selling in his car and taken it to the pawnshop followed by dropping the remains off at the Goodwill. Finally he left his car with Jonathan. He had done everything he could to prep for another road trip. All he could do now was wait and hope that Spike was receptive to the idea of company.

 

About half an hour after sunset, just when Xander was starting to get really freaked out, a loud rumbling came from the direction of town. It got louder and soon Spike’s Desoto was cresting over the hill and heading towards Xander.

 

When it was just opposite him the car screeched to a halt. The engine shut off and a shocked looking Spike climbed out. “What are you doing here pet?”

 

Xander smiled. “Waiting for you.”

 

“Okay, but why?”

 

“Rule Number 6 Spike.”

 

Spike stalked towards Xander, stopping just inches from him. “There’s a sixth rule?”

 

Xander shrugged, “There is now.”

 

Spike reached out, his hand hovering next to Xander’s face. “Didn’t you just take a road trip luv? Why do you want to go on another one?”

 

“Sunnydale was getting boring. Besides, the gang doesn’t need me but you do. Can’t turn you loose on the world without someone to watch over you, can I? Buffy’d never forgive me.”

 

Spike smirked. “You just can’t get enough of me.”

 

“Yeah, well, that too.”

 

Spike lowered his hand the last centimeter and caressed Xander’s face softly before leaning in for a kiss. When they parted Spike ran his fingers down over Xander’s neck.  “It’s a big, dangerous world out there. Now that I’m a proper Vampire again I should mark you, claim you so everyone we meet knows you’re mine.”

 

Xander moaned softly, both at Spike’s caress and at the thought of belonging to Spike. “Um, the marking, claiming, I read about it. It’s permanent yeah?”

 

Spike nodded, “Yeah, you’d be mine, forever.”

Xander leaned into Spike’s caress for a few minutes before pulling back with a sigh.  “As much as I like the idea of belonging to you, we’ve been doing the friend thing for barely half a year, I’m not quite ready to offer you forever yet.” 

 

Spike looked about to argue and Xander quickly pulled the special purchase he’d made out of his pocket. “Here, maybe this will work for now.” 

 

Spike looked shocked, but took the cloth wrapped object and opened it. Inside was a beautifully tooled black leather collar, held closed by a small silver padlock. Spike examined the padlock closely. On one side was etched a railroad spike, on the other ‘William the Bloody’ was engraved in beautiful calligraphy.  Blinking back tears, Spike smiled at Xander, “It’s beautiful love.” 

 

A relieved smile broke out over Xander’s face. “Put it on me?”

 

“Gladly.” With only slightly shaking hands, Spike unlocked the collar and placed it around Xander’s neck, making sure it wasn’t too loose or too tight before clicking the lock closed. The keys to the padlock were on a silver chain, which he then slipped over his head and tucked inside his shirt. Spike ran his fingers along the edge of the collar, “You’re breathtaking boy.  I love you Xander.”

 

Xander threw his arms around Spike’s neck and hugged him close. “I love you too, Spike.  Just, just give me a year, okay?  If we’re still certain in a year, then you can claim me. In a year I’ll gladly offer you forever.”

 

“Anything for you, love.”  Spike kissed Xander fiercely, then grabbed Xander’s bag and tossed it into the back of the Desoto. “Climb in love, we’re out of here.”

 

“Sounds like a plan, Vampire mine.”

 

“So,” Spike glanced over at Xander as he shoved the car into gear and took off. “Rule Number Six, huh?”

 

“Yup, Rule Number Six. When you find love, don’t let it go.”



The End



The Rules of Life according to Xander

 

Rule 1: Never be ashamed of who you are.

Rule 2: Never be afraid to ask for what you want.

Rule 3: Think for yourself. Don’t blindly follow others.

Rule 4: Help those who can’t help themselves.

Rule 5: Fight Back. 

Rule 6: When you find love, don’t let it go.









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