Disclaimer: Not Joss, just Tis.
Rating: PG, I think.
POV: Spike’s.



  Pride   Anger   Greed   Gluttony   Sloth   Lust


Bloody hell, this is so not fair.

When did I become so sodding caught up in watching him?

Might be after the so-called ‘final battle’ in L.A…. might be when I found him wandering ‘round that New York alley, looking thin and starving and like he barely knew who he was, much less where.

Hell, might have been that first moment nearly five days later when his eye opened on the safety of the hotel room we’d holed up in and the brown was somewhat aware.

“Spike?” he said then, as though he wasn’t sure if he could actually trust what he thought he was seeing.

Watched him while he took in the fact that he was clean and dry and not sleeping in some dumpster or box, hiding from the light because it was too bright, too sharp, too jagged.

Watched his lips—too thin by half, much like the rest of him—while he made an obvious effort to string a few words together.

Was funny, that. Seeing Xander bloody Harris at a loss for something to say. Or it would have been if he hadn’t seemed so… lost.

“What happened ta ya, mate?” I remember saying, crouching down beside the bed, my hands in no way trembling as he swallowed hard and shook his head.

“Life… and death,” he whispered, his eye closing as though whatever he saw behind it was haunting him in the bad way.

Watched pain and some sort of longing sweep over his face, watched the too-pale cheeks twitch while his lips compressed into a grim line—a line too grim for the boy I remembered—and somehow, some way… maybe that was when.

Might be that was the moment I made him my new… what? Mission? Obsession? Don’t know what he is to me exactly, but… know I want to see him smile again. Want to see him taking joy from life, even with the brand new darkness that fills him so full it hangs about him like a…

Bloody hell, I was going to say shroud, but that word shouldn’t be applied to this boy. Not one for tempting fate after spending so much time on the bloody Hellmouth, am I?

So that was definitely a moment… not sure if it was the moment, though.

Guess it doesn’t much matter, in the end.

Want the bloke.

The bloke’s oblivious.

* * * * *

Kept him there, fed him up right, got him back to some semblance of what passes for health. Almost shouted in relief the first time he made a bloody stupid joke, but I couldn’t do that, right? Couldn’t let him see how thrilled I was to see that the boy I remembered so well was still lurking somewhere inside the depths of what he’d become.

Still don’t know how it happened or who did it to him. Don’t want to know. Doesn’t make a difference in any case, does it? What’s done is done and there’s no going back, no changing things. Have to just… bloody hell.

We’ll work it out.

Help him, teach him, let him rediscover who he was and lend him a hand in finding some way to blend that boy with who he is now. Not right to let this bloke go on with no joy, no happiness, no sense of having a purpose.

Won’t let him fade out. Lost enough already, haven’t I?

And some day when he’s feeling ready, I’ll take him to my Sire and see what the great poof thinks of this Xander Harris. Have a feeling Angel’s going to be bloody well surprised by how the lad’s changed.

But that’s not now. That’s later, and for now… we’ve got us some hunting to do, me and the boy.

“Get up,” I tell him, the slow, lazy swat on his arm not making him jump for a change and that’s a good sign, I’m thinking, “Got us some things to do, don’t we?”

I don’t watch while he rolls out of bed naked. Don’t try to peek as he pads across the floor, those big feet barely making a sound even to my ears.

I don’t look at him at all until the soft rustling of cotton against skin stops and I hear the nearly inaudible gust of displaced air as sock-covered feet are shoved quickly into shoes.

Know what he looks like starkers, don’t I? Spent days washing him, working to get the ingrained filth and stench from his skin after I found him.

Yeah, I know just what he looks like naked, though now—after nearly a month—he’s looking a good bit better. Fleshed out more, stronger… on his way to being something rich and fierce and stunning and when he is, I’ll…

Not do a sodding thing. Harris isn’t wired that way from what I recall.

Bloody hell, I am so screwed.

* * * * *

“Need ta get ya fed,” I tell him. “Goin’ ta need your strength if we’re goin’ ta hit th’ streets, yah?”

He shrugs, almost like he doesn’t care and I suppose he doesn’t.

Yeah, the boy who once traveled entirely on his stomach doesn’t seem to be hungry and I know that’s just a part of what he’s become, part of the changes, but he should be hungry. He should be bloody well starving by now. Used to eat every hour or two, didn’t he?

“Right, then. Come on, mate.” And I lead him off into the night, looking for the perfect meal to tempt him.

I’ll find it. I always do. And for an hour or a minute or even a moment… I’ll see a bit more of the boy I once knew and I won’t be able to keep myself from smiling.

* * * * *

His teeth are white, even now while covered in blood. Tiny red flecks drip to the white t-shirt and I don’t care. Happy to buy him another, aren’t I?

His hands—strong, thick fingers though thinner than they once were, hold the knife, splitting flesh, carving, slicing, digging deep as the juices flow.

He’s almost finished. I can tell. Know the signs by now, don’t I?

So I watch as another sliver of hot, red flesh disappears between his lips, his eye closed, face looking slightly dazed as he savors the flavor.

Just the tip of his pink tongue slips out, lapping the small tinge of blood remaining on his lips and I barely manage to swallow my groan.

Whatever else has changed about Harris, this is the most noticable for me. Gone are the days of carelessly shoving whatever he can find into his mouth and swallowing it nearly whole and… bloody hell, that thought is not helping with the not-so-little problem I’m sporting at the moment.

“Just about done there, mate?” I nearly growl, looking at anything—everything—but him.

“Yeah, Spike,” he finally says and I swear he almost sounds like he’s purring, “I think I’ve done all the damage I can do for tonight. You said something about hunting?”

And that’s a relief.

“Right. We’re off.”

I toss a few bills on the table and stand, pulling my coat around me to hide just how much I’m affected by the boy… and also because it’s bloody winter in New York. Might be a bit obvious if I strolled around in the sodding snow without a bloody coat, right?

I watch him get into his parka and I groan slightly when he reaches out and runs his fingers through the bit of juice still on his plate and licks them clean, his lips shining just a bit with the slick fat from the sirloin.

And as we leave the restaurant and head off to find whatever the prey du noir will end up being, I can’t help but look back through the window and sigh.

“Never wanted ta be a steak so bad in my life,” I murmur. And it’s true…


Sequel to: Envy
Rating: Possibly R-ish for language
Disclaimer: Joss owns the boys and such. I have no rights to them and make no money from their illicit use.
Summary: Someone’s not as oblivious as Spike thinks.
POV: Xander’s.

Okay, so maybe I wasn’t the brightest crayon in the box before… just before. But that doesn’t mean I’m an idiot, right?

I’ve seen how he watches me. I know what he wants. And maybe-- maybe-- some part of me wants that too.

But I’m not gonna have it. No matter how much the watching says he wants… me.

Hell, fuck the watching. Kinda figured out what he was after when I woke up here to soft sheets and clean skin and hair that wasn’t crawling with a colony or two of lice and nits.

He should have left me there. Should have just… walked away. I mean, shit. He’s a vampire, right? Even with a soul, he should have just left me. It’s not like we were ever really friends or anything, and even if we had been, well… I didn’t-- don’t-- deserve friends. Not now. Not after what I did. It would have been totally fair if he’d left me there.

Then again, I shouldn’t expect the world to be fair, should I? Why would it be, and especially to a creature like me. A monster. A former white hat whose soul is so dark that he didn’t even think twice about…

No. Better not to think about that. Better to pretend I don’t remember it. Remember them.

I can’t let him see me. Can’t let him recognize what I am inside.

He thinks he’s helping me. Thinks he’s saving me. Hell, he probably thinks I was depressed or something and that that’s why I was trying to… die.

It’s okay, though. I’ll let him believe it, let him think he’s making me better… healing me, for fuck’s sake. And then, when he’s convinced…?

Another city, another place with a dark, seamy underbelly where a thing like me can get lost so easily that nobody even notices. And when I sink, fall, turn to nothing and just exist until this body fades, fails and finally dies, it’ll be over. Finished. No more Xander Harris. No more monster.

I’ll become forever what I already am.

A warning. One of the scary things.

So I pretend.

I smile and he doesn’t notice that it doesn’t reach my eyes.

I laugh and he doesn’t hear the bitterness.

I eat and I talk and I act like the kid he remembers, and somehow… he buys it.

And that’s good.

I don’t have the strength to try any harder. I’m just glad he’s not making me.

So when he swats at my arm and says something about having things to do, I roll from the bed and find my clothes… the clothes he bought me.

I dress, entirely sure that he isn’t watching me now. He never does when I’m dressing; I don’t know why.

Maybe he’s afraid I’ll see how much he wants me. Wants my body, I mean, because if he knew… Jesus-fuck, if he knew what I’ve become, he’d kill me himself and as much as I might deserve that, he doesn’t. He wants to believe I’m still a good man… and a part of him would go on believing it, even as he ripped my head off.

Whatever else I’ve done, I’ll never deliberately hurt him like that. Not when he thinks he’s helping me, anyway.

* * * * *

“Need ta get ya fed,” he says. “Goin’ ta need your strength if we’re goin’ ta hit th’ streets, yah?”

I’ve got plenty of that kind of strength, but he doesn’t want to know that. More to the point, I don’t want to tell him. As much as I’m ready to be gone from this life, there’s something kinda… nice… about the time we’ve spent together. It’s almost like…

No. It doesn’t matter. I won’t let him make me think about the future. There is no future. And even if there was, it for damned sure wouldn’t involve Spike. He really is a white hat these days. I won’t take that away from him.

So I just shrug and follow him when he says to ‘come on’.

* * * * *

He takes me for steak and I can’t help asking for it extra rare, and I pretend not to see the raised brows the order gets from him. I guess he remembers how much I hated meat with even a little pink before… everything.

But I don’t say a word because then he’d know I noticed and that might make him wonder what else I’ve noticed about him and that way leads to a world of bad, bad, badness.

I ignore him while I eat. Okay, I ignore him as much as I can, considering the way he’s staring at me. Finally, though…

“Just about done there, mate?” he demands, and I nod, putting down the silverware.

“Yeah, Spike,” I say slowly, my voice thick from some bizarre reaction to that gaze, “I think I’ve done all the damage I can do for tonight. You said something about hunting?”

And thank God he’s standing up. I can only take so much of that yearning stare.

I almost rethink not letting him close once we leave the restaurant, though.

“Never wanted ta be a steak so bad in my life,” he says, so quiet I know I’m not supposed to hear it, but years in Africa, listening to the sounds of wind and the dry sand racing before it… the sounds of wild animals in the distance, chasing and fleeing, howling and whimpering, roaring and crying sharply as life is taken…?

I guess all that made my hearing sharper because I do hear him.

I hear him and the wanting, wistful, despairing tone makes me… shiver.

God, it’s been so long since I’ve had a fuck and Spike wants that. Wants it so bad it’s like he’s wearing a sign lately, but I don’t think he knows it.

But no. I won’t do that to him. Won’t let him think I’m something… worthy. I’m not. Hell, I don’t even deserve to be looked at like that. Not by someone like him. He’s… way too good for me. And I won’t let myself be that weak. Won’t have him and watch him unravel and become something… less… because of me.

“Well?” I finally demand, forcing myself to look curious and unknowing, “Where are we off to, Fang?”

He give me a look. Like he isn’t sure of whether he wants to laugh at the nickname or punch me. Then he shrugs.

“Somethin’ on th’ news earlier ‘bout a rash of stabbin’s ‘round Central Park North, yah?”

“So?” Yeah, I’m confused. “It’s New York, for fuck’s sake. Stabbings are kinda a dime a dozen, y’know?”

And damn. He raises that scarred brow and gives me look number fifty-three from the Spike-arsenal. “Stabbin’s with a livin’ bone knife, pet?”

I pretend yet again, this time that I didn’t hear him call me ‘pet’, and I frown. “Living bone…? Like… like some demon-part, huh?”

“Got it in one, Sherlock. Now let’s get goin’, yah? Can’t be sure ‘bout th’ sort of demon part, but… someone’s either usin’ their natural… bits… ta mug folks or tryin’ ta mate. Either way, ‘s not rightly a good thing, is it?”

I make a face and he relaxes a little. “Okay, and that’s just… gross, Spike. Christ! Now I’m having all sorts of disgusting mental images. Thanks a lot!”

He smirks, those pale pink lips twisting at the corners and if I wasn’t so determined to let him stay pure, I’d kiss him long and hard until he...

No. No, I wouldn’t. I don’t want… won’t want him. He’s… not for me, no matter how many times he looks at me like he wants me. He just doesn’t know any better, is all, and fuck me if I’m gonna tell him.

“How disgustin’, mate?” he says, his voice low and rumbling and I will not be affected by it.

So I remind myself of what I am. I replay the memories of what I’ve done. And even though it’s a long-ass film, it only takes a moment.

“You wouldn’t believe me if I told you, Spike,” I say slowly. “I mean, demons mating with humans? Hell, even without the whole force issue, the idea alone is repulsive, right? Like… Deadboy and Bu… the Slayer. Gah.”

Yeah. Another nail in the coffin. Another rejection from a so-called Scooby for Spike. Good.

I see it hit him, see the tiny frown line appear between his eyes. I hear the small, hurt breath he takes, and… I’m glad.

I’m glad his feelings are hurt. I’m glad he thinks I’d never even consider something like that.

Maybe it’ll keep him from pushing, keep him from looking at me that way.

Maybe it’ll make him leave, and if it does… he’ll be safe.

Safe from me. Safe from what I am.

Safe from the darkness in me that would… consume him.

I owe him that much for trying to help me, and… it doesn’t matter what I want.

Other than the death thing. That’s what I… need. Yeah. I need it as much as I want it. I want to forget, and nobody will care, anyway. Good riddance, they’ll think. Hell, they’ll most likely even say it out loud. Assuming they even bother to find out.

I see Spike’s hand rising, see it moving towards my shoulder and I… move. I step aside, avoiding the touch ‘accidentally’. I don’t let him touch me often, and never like that. Never as comfort or some sort of connection. I’m resolved to never having him, but… monster that I am, I’m still human and…

I’m proud of my restraint, but it’s not unlimited.

I take one more step, shifting away from him a little more.

“So are we going?” I add, giving him my most innocent look, and he nods.

And we go.


Sequel to: Pride and Envy
Rating: R-ish for language
Disclaimer: Still not Joss, damn it.
Summary: Spike gets his first real clue as to what’s wrong with Xan.
P.O.V.: Spike’s.
Warnings: Slightly dark... go figure. lol

NOTES: Thanks so much to those who gave FB on 'Pride'. As always, truly appreciated, though RL work hasn't left me time to write AND respond to all the wonderfully encouraging words, so... thank you all so VERY much! *hugs*

Don’t know what the bloody fucking hell’s wrong with him, do I? But I know there’s something. Hell, I’m starting to think he was trying to die when I found him.

And he’s trying to play me. I can tell. He’s doing his best to act at least a bit like the boy he once was and it took me a good month to realize he was pretending. Guess all that time with Broody’s really affected my mind, yeah?

But I know now. Know he’s hiding something. Know that whatever it is, he’s tied up in knots over it. On the inside, where he thinks I can’t see.

And I’m guessing that technically I can’t see there, but again with bloody Angel… I remember the way the great prat acted when he came back to us in China. All fine on the surface but still slightly off, while underneath he was twisting in his own personal wind.

Yeah. Harris is giving off that same bloody vibe, but… seems more like he’s trying to protect me rather than himself and that’s a bloody world of difference from what Broody the Wonder Git did, isn’t it?

Not clear on what he thinks he needs to protect me from, though. Not like he wouldn’t already be dead from anything that could hurt me, after all.

And where does the bloody fucking white hat get off trying to protect me, anyway? I’m the Big Bad, aren’t I? Can protect myself.

On the other hand… doesn’t it mean he cares? At least a little?

Bloody fucking hell. He can’t, can he? If he cared even in the slightest, would he make such a point of never touching me, never letting me get near him except when we’re sleeping?

Fuck. I get it. He cares. But he doesn’t want me.

Shouldn’t be surprised, should I? Knew he was straighter than a bloody arrow. Doesn’t mean my cock knows it, though, because… well, enough said, yeah?

Frustration aside, can’t just leave the bloke. Not when I’m so sure he’s playing me.

Don’t want all my hard work at getting him back to some semblance of health going to waste and I have a feeling he’s just waiting for me to be gone so he can finish the job.

Shit. I’m going to have to find out what’s happened to him and the only way I can think of to do that is by talking to his little friends.

The friends he hasn’t mentioned by name even once since he woke up almost six weeks ago, and it took me ‘til now to realize that little fact.

Bloody hell.

* * * * *

Don’t believe it. Won’t believe it!

He couldn’t have, wouldn’t have… not bloody Xander!

The bloke’s too much of a sodding hero to ever do that, and I know it, even if his so-called friends are too bloody daft to see it!

Fucking shit, even bleeding Red seems to think he…

And I need to calm down or at least keep the demon inside. Don’t want the bloke wondering what’s got me so sodding furious, do I?

Don’t rightly need to breathe but I take a few deep ones anyway, letting the taste of ice and coming snow in the air freeze me a little. Yeah. That’s better.

“ ‘s nothin’, mate,” I tell him, catching the odd look he’s flashing my way, “Just some shit in my e-mail before, yah?” True enough, that.

He shrugs and looks away but I see the bit of pink in his cheeks that’s not from the cold and… maybe he’s not quite as unaffected by me as I thought.

The idea warms me a bit in the bitter winter wind and I’m not going to look too closely at it. Just going to let myself think it’s so for a while… you know, until the next time he pulls away from even the most innocent touch.

Oh, who the bleeding hell am I kidding? Nothing innocent in me wanting to touch him. Counting myself lucky that I always wake up before him so I can slip away to take care of the bloody clue to my interests.

Yeah, he’s still oblivious and that’s good, I’m thinking. Won’t take the chance of scaring him off before I find out exactly what happened. It can’t have gone down the way Red and the Bottom-boy said.

If Harris actually did what they say he did, then… the bloke must have had a bloody good reason. You’d think his bleeding friends would have realized that as well, but I always knew they were useless bints… even the Watcher, danglies aside.

So. Kill the bloody demon we’re after tonight, then get Harris back to the room. Wait ‘til he’s sleeping and head out. Need to do me a bit of research, don’t I? And… need to do it somewhere he won’t be able to look over my shoulder.

Somehow doubt he’d be all happy about me prying into the things he doesn’t want to say.

* * * * *

Bloody stunning when he fights. Stunning and sexy and… oh, the boy’s learned some new moves! Ones I haven’t seen yet, I mean.

He’s definitely changed. Never saw him so fluid and graceful back in Sunnyhell. Seems to have solved his little depth perception problem, as well. Hasn’t missed a punch or a kick yet and I might as well not even be here. Bloke’s got this demon covered. And even though I’ve seen him fight many a time since I found him, each new instance is like seeing it anew.

Yeah. Stunning. That’s what he is when he’s…

It’s the furious and heartbroken shout he lets out that has me suddenly blinking.

“Fucking heartless bitch!” he screams, beating the Chathric about the head with the axe he’s somehow gotten away from it, “You and that fucker! How could you! How could you! WHY!”

I should be stopping him. Should be trying to talk him down. But he’s cracking. He’s breaking. Letting something deep and hard and frightening and painful out and… maybe this is what he’s been hiding. Maybe this is why he’s been so… off.

So I don’t stop him. I just let him burn.

I lean against the wall and light a smoke, taking a deep lungful of that hot, curling poison in and holding it for a moment, my eyes drifting from my bloke to the small, rapidly cooling body of the child the demon was eating when we found it.

Poor little chit. Must’ve been right cute for a human before half her face went missing down the Chathric’s throat. One little blonde pigtail is spread over the cement, the curled ends matted with blood. Going to have to arrange to have her found. Wouldn’t do for the wee thing to rot away here and never be given a decent burial.

Yeah, the soul in me likes that. Give her family some closure. And bloody hell, I’m an enormous ponce.

* * * * *

It’s the gut-wrenching sobs that pull my eyes back to Harris as he drops to his knees beside the demon’s body, the axe clattering on the pavement as he huddles into himself, still screaming as best he can although his voice has more or less given out.

“Die, you b-bitch,” he nearly whimpers, his eye closing tightly as bloody hands rise to cover his face. “D-die… you a-and your fucking asshole Wav… your Watcher!… Kids, Shayna… j-just k-kids… and h-how c-could you… w-why!”

Oh… bloody fucking hell, they were right. His fucking friends were right. He did do what they said, and… and now I know it. But more importantly, I also know why he did it… and why he’s smashed this demon’s head into a smear of neon sludge and small chunks of tissue.

I didn’t even notice pushing off the wall but I must have done, because I’m suddenly beside him on the cement, pulling him close, wrapping my arms around him and holding him tight while he sobs on and struggles and fights to get away.

I’m not going to let him, though. Not going to open my arms and let him run, let him pull back inside, let him hide away all of this.

Bloody fucking hell. I’m not letting him kill himself. He was almost there when I found him. Another week and it would have been too late. Hell, maybe another day.

He’s broken inside. Not just by what he’s done but by the way his bloody fucking friends reacted.

We were never friends, me and Harris. But at the end there, we weren’t enemies either, and now…

Bloody hell, now it looks like I’m all he’s got. The only one who believes in him.

Not giving up on him. Won’t.

“Hush… hush, luv,” I murmur, rocking the boy slowly and still not letting him go, not even when he struggles harder to get free. “ ‘s goin’ ta be alright, pet… promise ya, Xan…”

“You don’t know,” he moans, his hands pushing at me now as that one eye opens, red and swollen around the edges, “You d-don’t… I’m a m-monster, Spike… I k-killed… and I… fuck, I…”

And he’s sobbing again, harder now, but that’s fine. Think he’s been holding this in for too bloody long. Do him good to let it out, won’t it?

I want to scream, tell him I do know, tell him he’s not truly one of the things that go grrrr in the night, but…

I’m not fully sure of what I think I know, so I don’t tell him he’s wrong. I just hold him harder, tighter, rocking him more as the shattering winter seeps into my knees.

“Sometimes… takes a monster ta kill a monster, luv,” I finally tell him, and there’s no bloody way I’m leaving him alone in our room tonight, not even to surf the net and find out what really happened. The minute he gets the chance he’s going to pull a runner on me. I can tell.

So I hold on, hold tight, try to let him feel how much I… don’t hate him. And when he’s all cried out, all loose and exhausted, I force my frozen knees to unbend, manage to get us both on our feet.

The Chathric’s almost completely dissolved into that neon slime now, and that’s a good bloody thing. Doubt I could haul its body away at the moment. Not without giving my bloke a chance to disappear and I’m for damned sure not going to do that.

“C’mon, luv… lets get ya home, yah? Think ya could use a shower and a good sleep.”

And if my voice has that tone you’d use with a wounded animal, so what? I’m thinking my Xan can use a bit of coddling right about now, and fuck me if he’s not going to get it.

He doesn’t respond. Not with words, anyway. He just nods, staring at the pavement beneath our feet as I loosen one arm, the other still tight around his waist.

Yeah, my boy’s broken inside. But I’m going to put him back together. Make him smile and laugh again because he knows he deserves to. Because he knows that no matter what he’s done, he’s still Xander-bleeding-Harris, white hat and all ‘round good bloke.

I’m going to take him back to Peaches and let the enormous git put the boy to work, make him feel useful and needed. Show him that there’s more to life than being just the ‘donut-boy’ to his pissing Scoobies.

And some day… some day he’ll forget why he ever cared what they thought or what they said. And when that day comes…

I’m going to kill his bloody fucking ‘friends’. With a smile on my face and a song in my heart.

He deserves some closure, too.


Sequel to: Envy, Pride, Anger
Series: Sins (#4)
Rating: NC-17, I guess, for language and some not terribly graphic sex... just to be on the safe side.
Summary: Now that Xander’s secret is at least partly out to Spike, how does the former Scooby react?
P.O.V.: Xander’s


Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck.

And… can I say fuck again?


He knows something. Spike knows something. Or he thinks he does. That’s the only reason I can think of for him to be acting like this.

It’s… not okay. If I weren’t so… dirty… maybe I wouldn’t mind. Wouldn’t mind that he’s still holding me, even hours after I fell apart and dripped tears and snot all over his coat. Wouldn’t mind the strange peace of his arms around me, his chin on my shoulder if I didn’t know just how much I don’t deserve his comfort… his care.

Fuck. I swore I wouldn’t let myself want him. I swore it! And I didn’t. I didn’t want him! I just… wanted him to believe I was okay so he would…

Shit. I can’t even lie to myself anymore.

I want him.

I won’t have him, though. I can’t. Not when I don’t know what it would do to him.

I could… Fuck, Spike’s a vampire. With a soul.

I’m a human… no matter what the things I’ve done make me feel like. Also soul-having, supposedly.

And that’s the problem. How could I do what I did to Shayna and Wave? I shouldn’t have… it wasn’t my place!

And Spike knows I’m a monster. I told him. Told him and told him and he didn’t…

‘Sometimes… takes a monster ta kill a monster, luv,’ he said last night, and God I want to believe him. I want to think that maybe there’s some purpose to what I’ve become… some big, good reason for what I did.

But there isn’t. I’m just… evil. I must be. How else could I have… killed… someone I loved?

Someone I thought I loved… maybe I didn’t?

Hell, I don’t know.

I know when I followed them, Slayer and Watcher, I thought… God, I know what I thought they’d been sneaking off to do, but when I found them…


I lost it. I lost it and it felt good, it felt right and I wanted… needed… to finish it. Finish them. I needed to… stop them. Stop the whimpers and moans, stop the looks and the horror in my own mind… and I…

God, fucking help me, God, if you’ll even listen to something like me!

I did it and it was… easy.

They were still shocked that I was there when I did it. They didn’t even fight back.

I didn’t give them the chance.

I don’t want to remember anymore. I don’t want to… see it. But I do. I see it every time I close my eyes, see it even when I’m awake.

I stare at the ceiling and I see them dying.

I look in the mirror and I see… the blood.

God, how can Spike even stand to touch me? How can he not feel the… evil?

But he doesn’t. He must not because if he did, he wouldn’t be here, wouldn’t be curled behind me, his chest to my spine.

His hands wouldn’t be hard but soft, cool but hot on my skin.

His lips wouldn’t be pressed to the back of my neck and he wouldn’t be doing something that sounds and feels like purring.

I… want him. But I can’t have him. I can’t!

I… I have to tell him. Have to make him see. He can’t go on doing this; I can’t keep resisting temptation.

Hell, he is temptation and I’m only human and… am I even human anymore? Would a human have…

Christ, I’m so fucked up.

But his hands are still on my skin and he’s pressed against my back and he’s hard, which he never is in the morning, and God this is bizarre. He… he can’t be turned on because I’m a monster, can he?

“S-spike…” I finally say, not looking over my shoulder at him, not trying to see him, because if I see him I won’t be able to say what I have to say and… “Wh-what are you doing…?”

“Hush,” he says, his fingers flexing in my skin as his lips move to my shoulder. “Let me do this, luv… show ya how ta live again, yah…?”

‘No, Spike… don’t touch me, don’t care, don’t let me make you dirty and worthless, you’re too good for this…’ I want to say all that and more, but his hands… his lips… God, his tongue is… and I find myself saying none of those things. I find myself nodding. “Y-yeah…”

* * * * *

God help me… God, please help me…

“God…” is all I manage to get out, my head falling back on his shoulder, eye closing tightly while his hands stroke and skim, fingers plucking softly—too damned softly—at my skin…

I can feel him inside me, where only Wave’s ever been before and it’s good, it’s right, it’s…

Maybe Spike can wash him away, flush him from me, take away the… hate.

I thought I loved him, thought he was it… thought he was mine and how stupid was that? Nobody would ever want to be mine. I know that now.

I must have had it in me all along… the desperate killer. It was always there, must have been, and I was so lucky for so long that nobody noticed, nobody saw, or I thought they didn’t but they must have because if they never knew…

“Thinkin’ too much, luv,” he murmurs, hips shifting while he presses himself deep again, and the pain of it makes me shudder even while the pleasure builds higher… higher… too high… don’t deserve this, shouldn’t feel this good, not with what I am, what I did, how I liked it, and…

“C-can’t stop,” I hear myself admitting, and God, I don’t know if he thinks I mean I can’t stop thinking or I can’t stop moaning every time he’s deep in me, every time he pulls back, every time he rubs against the spot inside me that’s making me shiver around him.

I want him to hurt me. Need him to hurt me. I deserve to be punished, broken, torn… and that’s exactly what he’s not doing.

No, he’s… God, it’s almost like he…

And I can’t even think it, can’t let myself believe that it could be anything like that. He just… wants to comfort me, take my mind off what happened before, and… his hand wraps around me, pulling and stroking, fingers tightening almost painfully but not quite, and…

“Don’t… deserve this…” I whisper on a gasp, shallow thrusts forcing me closer and closer to what I want… what I fear.

He just moves faster, harder, shallow becoming deep again, and when I bite my lip to keep the pleasure at bey, he growls, sharp teeth pricking lightly at the skin of the crook of my neck.

“Deserve whatever I say ya do, pet… now, cum for me, yah…?” and those teeth drive deep, spearing into my flesh, and I keen and wail and try as hard as I can not to listen, not to do what he says, but…

Fuck, there’s no choice, and my body seems to know it even if my mind disagrees and the next thing I know, I’m fuller of him, of the coolness bathing my innards, than I ever would have imagined and it feels so… good…

Too good, I tell myself, even as I spill over his hand, onto my thighs. Too good, too right, too… painful that I let myself enjoy it, too… addicting.

Oh, fuck.

I was fine before, before I knew, before I gave what he wanted to take and now I…

God, I want it. Want it even more than I thought I did and it’s Spike and he… he…

“Hush, luv,” he says, his voice quiet and soft as his tongue moves over and over the skin he just bit, “Through lettin’ ya drift, I am.”

Fuck, he’s still hard, still in me, still holding me against him and I can’t escape, can’t move without losing this feeling, and… how sick is it that I don’t want to? Because I don’t.

No, I… I want to stay right here, right like this, stretched around him, full of him, his body cool and strong against mine, and…

“Hush,” he says again, one hand sliding up my chest to run slow, pale fingers through my hair and I can’t hold back the sigh. “Goin’ ta take care of ya, pet,” he adds, “Make ya whole again, yah?”

I shouldn’t be nodding, shouldn’t let him think it could happen. Hell, I shouldn’t be letting myself enjoy the way he’s touching me now, but I am.

I know now that I really am a monster because I can’t tell him no. I can’t pull away, can’t make myself let go of this… feeling.

And I know this evil inside me is gonna wrap around him eventually, tarnish him, dirty up that beautiful soul of his, and… I don’t care.

Right at this moment, I just don’t care.

I’m a monster, and… I can’t get enough of him.



Series: Sins (#5)
Rating: NC-17 for language and sexual themes/acts.
Disclaimer: Behold, I am not Joss. Which means I’m making no money from this. Pay me in FB. :D
Summary: Spike’s getting closer to the truth… and closer to poor Xan. Too close? Maybe.
P.O.V.: Spike’s again.

At least he’s finally sleeping through the night now. Not sure if it’s because he’s feeling a bit better or because I make such a point of wearing him out when we come back from our ‘patrols’.

Yeah, we call them patrols, but I know what they really are, even if Xander doesn’t.

Therapy. That’s what it is for him, and I’ll be bloody well damned if I’ll ever say so. Don’t want the bloke brooding off into one of his ‘I don’t deserve to feel better’ moods, do I? Not after I’ve put so much bloody time and effort into bringing him this far, anyway.

So, yeah. We ‘patrol’. Find whatever nasty thing doing no good that we can, and… I stand back and watch my boy take it out.

I help a bit; won’t deny that. Hell, if I wouldn’t let Xander bloody Harris off himself, what are the chances that I’m going to let some piece of shit demon do it?


Not even between slim and none, either. Just… none.

See, thing is… the boy’s mine. Doesn’t know it, of course, but it’s the truth. Covered him in my scent, filled him with me, drank him in and left more than one mark on that still-too-pale skin. An’ maybe I should have asked him, right? Not bloody likely. I don’t feature that conversation as one that would have gone well.

Mind if I mark ya, mate? Make ya my own? Ya know, ‘til we head back ta L.A. an’ I can get th’ Mighty Poof ta make it all official-like?

No, Spike, don’t,’ he’d say, I don’t deserve ta be happy an’ smile an’ such… I’m a monster, I deserve ta wallow in pain an’ misery forever because of what I done.

Easier by far to just do it. Let him carry on about it later. When he’s feeling more himself. When he understands exactly how close he came to drowning in his own…

Fuck, I don’t know what it is he’s been drowning in. But I know more than I did.

Had to call the sodding morons again to get even so much as the first breadcrumb, but I did… and every morning when he finally drifts off, I climb out of bed and log on, and I usually find at least one more crumb to follow.

Bloody Watchers haven’t made it easy, have they? Protecting their own, I guess. Question is, if they’re trying to protect Xan, then how could they let him get so… broken?

Yeah, the whole bleeding organization is made up of fucktards. Knew that, didn’t I? But they seem to have forgotten who they’re dealing with. Or the ones I know have, in any case, and since they’re the ones I’m concerned with at the moment, they’re what counts.

I’m William the Bloody, right? Childe of Drusilla—crazy as the chit always was, still feared in her own right—GrandChilde of Angelus—and fully fledged Master Vampire of the Order of Aurelius.

Saved the world once, shagged a Slayer, drank down two others. I’m a bloody force to be reckoned with and they…

They hurt my boy. Or at the very least didn’t help him. So yeah, they’re still going to die.

Might even let Xan help me with that.

Then again, maybe not, considering how killing one Slayer’s wrecked him. He’d probably go along, of course, because he thinks he’s an evil man, but… I know better, or I think I do. Going to find out, I am.

Because I wasn’t kidding when I told him I was through letting him drift that first night when he let me inside him. Yeah, I’ve still got ‘the mission’ as sodding Angel calls it, but my priorities have changed.

My boy’s my priority now, and… he’ll win out over the mission every time.

* * * * *

He smiles more now. More than he did a few weeks ago, anyway. And late at night, when the sky outside our window is just turning that odd, bright sort of dark, he almost never begs me to hurt him.

‘Harder, faster, bite me, Spike, God please make me cum…’, sure. But he rarely whimpers ‘use me, make me cry’ anymore.

I can’t help thinking that’s a good sign, even though I catch him frowning at himself in the mirror most days. Must be hard for him, after all, knowing whatever he did, knowing he’s not sorry.

Harder still knowing his friends—the ones who should know him best—care less for him than the former enemy turned…

Fuck. Don’t rightly know what we are, do I? Friends? Maybe. Lovers? Not… quite. Won’t say we’re lovers until he understands what we’ve been doing and that’s not going to happen unless…

Strike that.

Not going to happen until I find out exactly what happened to him.

Still, the fact that he’s smiling more has to be a good thing, right?

Like now, in fact.

Learned a few of his fighting-kinks, I have.

Give him a demon killing humans and he’s bloody hell on wheels. Give him someone—anyone—abusing kids…? Hell runs from him, more often than not.

He gets wild, my Xan does. Pulls up some sort of… something… from inside him and when he goes after them… ‘s like he knows what they’re going to do before they do. He’s vicious and cruel and entirely too bloody stunning for his own good. And then after… Yeah, like the after a good bit, I do.

So I watch him from under my lashes, flicking gazes quickly over his body though I know he’s not hurt. A few bruises, yeah. A long scrape on his cheek from when that Fodostin bitch hurled him into the edge of the doorway when she finally caught on to his blind side, but other than that he’s fine.

Covered in slightly smoking splatters of fluid, but fine.

“Have fun, Xan?” I say with a chuckle as he stalks towards me, and yeah, he must be feeling better because there’s a grace to his steps that wasn’t there before. “Look a right treat, pet…”

He pulls the smoldering fag from my lips and takes a long, deep drag, and I can’t hide the frown on my face. Fucked if I’m going to let him find another way to kill himself, even if it is slower.

He smiles just a bit as I snatch the small roll of paper and tobacco away from him, then leans against the lamp post. “Yeah… you could have told me those things have retractable claws, Spike…”

One brow arches and I give him a smug look. “Yah. Could have. Didn’t, pet. Wanted ta see how ya’d handle it, what with bein’ surprised an’ all.”

And just like that, he’s laughing.

I don’t mean one of his usual little chuckles where he sounds half-ashamed to be enjoying himself, but… he’s laughing and it’s a full-on Xander laugh! Bloody hell, his eye’s even sparkling a bit.

It’s the first time I’ve heard him laugh without something dark under it since I found him and I focus, ears peeled for even the littlest bit of bitterness or anger or self-loathing, but… it isn’t there, and I can’t keep from laughing, myself.

It doesn’t last. No matter how much I want it to, it doesn’t last.

I see it when he remembers. I see his mouth tighten, his brows clench closer together. I watch the despair settle over him like a mantle and I stop laughing, too.

“C’mon, luv,” I murmur, holding out my hand, “Let’s get ya home b’fore that thing’s blood eats through your jeans, yah?”

Still count it as a victory when he doesn’t hesitate to wrap his fingers ‘round mine. Time was, I’d have had to fight for even that much.

* * * * *

“Make me forget,” he whispers, sliding one big hand behind him to rest on my hip. “Please, Spike, please… make me forget him… just for a while, okay? P-please…”

Doesn’t matter how many times he says it, it always hurts. Hate it. Hate knowing some bloke’s got his hooks in my boy so deep and hard that he can’t put him from his mind even when I’m inside him. Never been good enough to be someone’s ‘one and only’, have I? Know that. Still, somehow I manage to forget… mostly for the week or two that passes between the reminders.

Can’t tell my Xan that, though. Can’t tell him what he means to me… what this means to me—feeling him around me, trusting me… wanting me enough to let me touch him this way.

Yeah, I’m a demon. And yeah, I have a soul.

Doesn’t make me worthy, does it. Doesn’t make me a good, righteous man.

Doesn’t mean I can ever get enough of this man, either. Damaged, broken, wretched, twisted, dark… whatever he may be, Xander is mine. And I’m bloody well going to make sure he stays mine, aren’t I?

“Nothin’ ta forget, pet… Xan… luv,” I finally whisper against his ear, sliding deeper into him, twisting my hips just enough to pull that shaky little gasp I love so much from his lips. “Nothin’ matters but this. Us. Now. Nothin’ existed b’fore now, yah…? Me inside ya, makin’ ya so full, luv… goin’ ta fill ya with me all night, pet…”

He moans softly and I know his eye is closed, but that’s fine. I couldn’t see it even if it wasn’t. Never lets me do this facing him; I’m guessing he’s afraid of what his face might show. Never does me, either, and fuck if I know why.

Don’t much care for the ‘why’ at the moment, either, because my boy is as tight and hot as only a human can be, and…

“Goin’ ta have ya over an’ over, luv,” I growl softly, feeling the shiver just under his skin. “Have ya ‘til I don’t can’t stand ta have ya any more. An’ then, when ya wake up from bein’ shagged unconscious?” I nip at his shoulder, blunt teeth becoming sharp in an instant as the demon slips out, “I’m goin’ ta have ya again. Won’t be able ta remember anythin’ but me, Xan…”

And bloody hell, I wish that were true.

* * * * *

He wheezes slightly when he sleeps, my Xan does. Used to be, he snored. Remember that like bleeding crystal from the old days, but now he wheezes.

Almost enough to have me worried, that, but… I’d know if he was ailing. Be able to smell it, wouldn’t I?

So, no. Xander’s not sick, as such. Not physically. But his soul is. His heart is. And now… now I finally know why.

Took weeks to find all the bloody tiny clues, weeks to read between the lines. Night after night of surfing the bloody net ‘til I thought my eyes would bleed, but it was worth it.

Might not know all the details, but I get it. I know what happened to my boy. Know not only what he did, but why!

Want to jump up and shout, want to scream my relief into the sky. Knew he wasn’t the monster he said he was. Knew it!

But a part of me wondered. Part of my soul wondered. Good people do bad things every bleeding day. Get caught up in desperate emotions, lose themselves in hatred or fear or jealousy… but not my boy.

Know there was a part of him that was jealous, now that I know who he’s been trying to forget, but… that wasn’t what it was about.

White hat to the end, he is. Did what needed to be done. Deserved a bloody medal, even.

And the Watchers—and his ‘friends’—have been punishing him for it ever since and I am going to kill them for it.

I’d hop a plane right now if I didn’t know he’d wake up alone and think the worst. Not to mention the bright bloody winter’s day and my lack of desire to be a flaming vamp… again.

‘s alright, though. I know now. Still need to hear it from the bloke himself, but that’ll come.

Until then, I’m going to do just what I told him.

I’m going to crawl back into bed and hold him tight. And when he wakes up…

“Goin’ ta do ya so good, luv,” I murmur, pulling the blankets up to our chins as I tuck myself gently between the toned globes of his ass, “Won’t remember Wave as anythin’ but a soddin’ nightmare…”

And so what if I never stop touching my bloke? Think he deserves to know how worth touching he is.

And ‘enough of Xander’ really only lasts a minute or two, so… I can give him that.

Forever, if he’ll let me.


Series: Sins (#6)
Rating: NC-17 for… the usual. LOL
Disclaimer: I am still not Joss Whedon. I still own no characters from B:tVS or A:tS. No money made.
Summary: Emotional baggage is opened, but will it be claimed or simply go around and around forever?
P.O.V.: Xander again.
Notes: This part decided to be kinda long so I’ve split it for ease. Hope nobody minds. :)

Part 1
* * * * *

I don’t know what I’m doing.

I just don’t.

How can I be… enjoying this? Enjoying Spike? And… why does he want me to?

I know what I am. I know what I’ve done. I know how evil I’ve become, how… unforgiven.

And that’s fine. I don’t deserve forgiveness. But Spike…

Fuck, it’s like he thinks he can… fuck the monster out of me or something, and God knows I’m letting him try, but it’s not gonna work. It can’t.

He doesn’t get it. Doesn’t see, and I don’t know what he does see when he looks at me, but it can’t be the truth.

Jesus-fuck, I wish I could just… show him. Maybe if I did he’d stop trying to save me. Stop wasting his time and energy on making me moan, making me scream his name. And I want him to stop. I want him to stop before it’s too late.

Too late for him, I mean, because I’m already past the point of saving and I know it.

I just… can’t make myself say the words. Can’t tell him to stop touching me, to give up.

Hell, I think Spike’s looking at me as some bizarre personal challenge to his vampirey-goodness, and I never thought those words together would cross my mind, but there they are, just dripping with truth and substance, and why can’t I tell him to stop?

Hell, it might be because of the way his cock is sliding hard against my prostate, or his fingers, cool and tight around me… it probably is. ‘Stop’ isn’t something I can say right now. I don’t think I could say anything right now. But neither can he so I guess it can wait…

God, please don’t let me make him like me. I haven’t fucked him even once, and not because I don’t want to, God, but because… I can’t let what I am inside him, so… Please! Keep Spike safe. Protect him from me!

* * * * *

Okay. Okay. Breathing. Coming down from the too-high heights he always drives me to.

I don’t deserve to feel so light, so… good. Not even close.

But I can’t tell him that. I know how he gets when I try. ‘If I say ya deserve it, then ya do, Xan,’ he always says, and… I wish I could believe that but I don’t.

So I lie here, long, cool arms still wrapped around my body, his cock twitching inside me while his lips move slowly over the nape of my neck and down my spine to bite the skin between my shoulder blades, and… I shudder. “Th-thanks, Spike,” I try to say, but it comes out as more of a whisper than anything else and I cringe. ‘Way to hide the deep thoughts, moron,’ I tell myself. Spike’s been fucking me for long enough to know what whispering after means.

Okay, color me shocked and ready to search for the pod when his lips twist into an obvious smile against my skin and he bites a little harder.

“Goin’ ta order in some brekkie from th’ diner down th’ way, pet,” he says, still holding me as he slowly—so slowly it almost hurts—pulls his less-than-hard dick out of my ass. “Go have yourself a shower. It’ll be here by th’ time you’re done, yah?”

I can’t help sighing in relief when he lets go of me and rolls from the bed. He’d usually spend a good hour trying to find out what I was thinking about so hard, but I guess he’s got other things on his mind, so… I lucked out this time. Not sure why that disappoints me, but it does.

I never said I made sense, did I? Yeah, didn’t think so.

My knees shake a little when I stand, but that’s okay. It isn’t far to the bathroom and I’d be hobbling anyway, considering how tender my ass is right now. Note to self: Three times when I wake up, after four times before sleeping, makes for a very achy Xander.

Need to remember that one.

The hot water feels good. Almost too good. But the lye soap doesn’t work right with cold water, so I leave the temperature alone as I scrub myself as clean as I can get.

Too bad they don’t make soap for the soul. That’s something I could really use.

It takes longer than usual to get myself lathered and rinsed, mostly because I have to sneak up on my anus with the soapy cloth. It seems to know what’s coming, and God, that was a really bad pun.

Finally, though, it’s done. I’m done. Teeth brushed, hair still wet but pushed back out of my eyes… I grab a pair of sweatpants from the bedroom floor and head into the small kitchen area, and I’m so glad we moved out of the hotel last month. It must have been costing a fortune, but Spike never complained. He just said something about being tired of the maids bursting in whenever they felt like it.

I think it has more to do with the one time when I was in the bathroom and the young woman who showed up to clean found a ‘dead body’ in the bed and called the police. Jesus fuck, it took some fast talking to keep the EMS guys from checking Spike’s vitals, and that would have been fucking funny, but… whatever. Didn’t end up happening, so…

And yeah, Spike was right. The food is here.

I have no idea of how he manages to get them to deliver. They don’t do that. But I guess they do for Spike, and… wait. Never mind. That explains it right there.

So I give him the best smile I can and dig into the rare burger and side of mashed potatoes. Because mashed potatoes are so much healthier than fries, according to the undead nutritionist, which just shows how much he doesn’t know. All that butter, alone… not to mention the cream… or in the case of the diner, probably milk, but that’s not the point.

Kinda used to having burgers and stuff for breakfast, these days. Makes sense, what with ‘morning’ coming around two in the afternoon for us; sometimes later. Pancakes and waffles we usually stop for on the way home after we patrol. You know, unless we’re in too much of a hurry, so I guess ‘usually’ isn’t really the right word, but whatever.

It’s a good thing we do patrol, because the way Spike feeds me? I’d be like… two hundred pounds in a week without the exercise.

It’s not until I’ve eaten pretty much everything and I’m pushing the leftover potatoes around in the styrofoam container that I realize… Spike isn’t looking at me.

It’s a weird feeling. I’m used to the weight of his eyes on me whenever we’re in the same room. Hell, sometimes I think I feel him watching me when we’re sleeping, and how fucked up is it that not having a vampire staring at me is freaking me out?

But maybe he’s just realized what I am. Maybe he had some sort of epiphany while I was in the shower and now he wants to let me down easy.

Yeah… that’s probably it.

And fuck! I should be happy! This is what I wanted, right? For him not to become any more sullied by me… for him to stop wanting me so he’ll be safe. Right? Right?

It’s kinda scary that I didn’t even notice feeling less dark until knowing that I’m actually getting what I thought I wanted has the coldness rising again.

What the fuck? I… he’s… and I’ve gotten so… and now I can’t… I can’t…

“I can’t go back!”

I nearly shout it.

I can’t go back!”

Make that I do shout it.

“I can’t, Spike, I just can’t, and I know you don’t want this now, don’t want me anymore, and I never should have let it start but I did and now I’m screwed because I started to feel again, you bastard, and it’s all your fault and I know I’m dirty and disgusting and evil, I know I’m not good enough, not clean enough, not anything like what you deserve, but I still want you and I want to be that good and I know I can’t and now you’re gonna go away and I thought I wanted that but I don’t and God, why didn’t you just let me die to begin with if you were just gonna turn around and walk away after you did those things to me and made me care and I don’t want to care, I don’t want to love you but you made it happen and what am I supposed to do now? How am I supposed to live or die when I feel all these things I shouldn’t be feeling, and when I tried to save you, to keep you clean and you still are but God help me, I want to make you dirty now so you’ll stay!”

I’m shaking. I know I am. I… maybe it’s from lack of oxygen, because I don’t think I’ve ever said that many words on one breath; not even back in Sunnydale. Or maybe it’s because I’m fighting the urge to puke my burger right back into the container. I don’t know. I just… I don’t even know where all of that came from, all the words. Hell, I don’t know if they even made sense. And God, I can’t look at Spike to find out because I just told him I love him and I can’t stand to see him when he shrugs it off.

And he will shrug it off. He has to. There’s nothing good or pure or noble in me now, if there ever was, and the gang knew it as soon as I told them what happened, so why shouldn’t Spike know it too? He’s got all those dandy vampire senses and stuff, so maybe it took a while but he must smell the rotten stench of evil on me. I guess not even the lye soap could cover it up for long.

How ironic is it that when he found me, all I wanted to do was die… and now that he knows he should have let me, I don’t want to anymore?

Then again, I don’t want to live, either. I… need him. And he’s done with me.

It’s true what they say. We get what we deserve.

* * * * *

I don’t know when he got up. I don’t even know when I ended up on the kitchen floor.

Hell, I have no idea of how long I’ve been between his legs, his arms around me as he rocks me, mumbling something into my ear over and over.

I can’t process it. Any of it. I can’t understand why he’s still here.

He should be gone, should have just left—the way he should have done when he found me to begin with.

But he didn’t.

He isn’t.

And I almost want to hope.

But then I make out his words and I know… I can’t hope. Not now. Not like this.

Not when he’s only sticking around because he wants to see me break.

“Tell me,” he murmurs again, his hands rubbing up and down my spine to fool me, to make me think he cares. “Tell me, Xan. Tell me. Tell me ‘bout Waverly Fontaine an’ Shayna Bradley.”

The names alone make me shake, and bastard that Spike is, he pretends to soothe me.

I love him. I can admit it now. After all these weeks, these months… after all the time we’ve spent together, I… fuck! I love him, and… if seeing me, hearing me, feeling me shatter is what will make him happy, then fine. I’ll give him that.

I’ll give him that because it’s all I can do.

I’ll show him the ugliness that’s hiding inside me and when he leaves, I’ll… I don’t know. I guess I’ll live. Or die. It doesn’t matter which. Not anymore.

Part 2
* * * * *

He gets me a beer and settles down beside me again, one hand on my leg as we lean against the kitchen wall while the other holds on to an almost full bottle of Jack Daniels, and… he doesn’t look at me. He just waits for me to start.

I can’t help the bitterness in my voice any more than I can keep my hand from shaking as I lift the bottle of Heineken to my lips and take a swallow.

“You want to know about Wave and Shayna?” I ask bluntly, “Fine. Wave—Watcher. Shayna—Slayer. I loved them.” And that’s true, even if I loved them in very different ways. “And I killed them.” Also true.

He lets the silence go on for a few minutes, then he growls. “Already knew that, luv,” he says, and it pisses me off no end.

How dare he call me that now? How dare he pretend that he’s not leaving as soon as he gets the story out of me? How dare he…

And then I remember.

He’s Spike. He dares. It’s kinda his thing.

“Fine,” I snarl, my eye tracking the room for something other than the blond beside me to focus on and finding a medium-sized cockroach near the baseboard on the wall. I watch it, even as I speak.

“I went to Africa after what happened in Sunnydale, but I’m guessing you know that since you’ve obviously been talking to your friends. Or… oh, wait. He probably told you when he was in L.A., right? Because you two were always so close.” Yeah, sarcasm there. Spike and Andrew were never friends, but then again, apparently Andrew and I weren’t, either, and… Fuck, who cares, right?

I hear one swift, indrawn breath, as though he’s about to say something, but I don’t care. He asked, he dared… and it’s my turn to talk.

“I found Shayna in the Sudan but she was actually from South Africa. She was almost eighteen. Old for a new Slayer. She was on holiday with her parents, and I guess I should have known there was something wrong when I finally told them about their daughter being a Slayer and the Watcher’s Council needing her, and they… looked relieved. Hell, they signed the papers like five seconds after they knew the Council wanted to take responsibility for her. They didn’t even care that she’d be all alone with some strange one-eyed guy who was taking her to Kenya. Seventeen years old and her parents couldn’t wait to get rid of her and I should have known something was wrong because they were good people, Spike!”

“Pet,” Spike starts to say but I shake my head. He wasn’t there. He can’t understand.

My turn. Because you told me to!” And that shuts him up.

“So, Shayna. Beautiful. Blonde. Wide blue eyes. Privileged from birth. Because, white family, South Africa…? No matter what they say about equality, Shayna’d had it good. Too good, I guess. Too much time on her hands, too many whims catered to, too much certainty that the world existed to please her. And somewhere along the way, she got… well, not time for that yet.”

I watch the roach crawl a few inches while I order my thoughts. Spike wants to know. Fine. I’ll give him the good, the bad, and the uglier-than-fugly. Might as well, right? He’ll never know what it’s cost me. Not really.

“I really should have known something was wrong when the questionnaire she filled out for the Council came back twice. Usually Gi… I mean, the Watchers… matched a new Slayer with a Watcher on the first try. But not Shayna. I sent the paperwork in three times before they finally got a match. But she was so good at playing me. Had the whole ‘spoiled but not a brat’ rich girl thing going on… and she was so much fun just to talk to. To hang out with. She had me totally fooled.”

I can’t help sighing as Spike’s hand clenches slightly on my thigh. God, I want to believe that he doesn’t hate me, but… even if he doesn’t now, he will by the time I’m through.

Meanwhile, I’m starting to wonder if roaches have ballroom dancing because the one on the wall is doing something that looks a lot like the man’s part of the waltz. And I’d know, since I learned that one for my wedding. But better not to think about that now.

“That was when I met Wave,” I finally say, and my heart feels like it’s about to just… stop. I thought I loved him. I did. But… why did I trust myself? Why did I love him or… why did I think I did? Because I would have done anything, been anyone, to have someone care as much about me as themselves? Stupid, stupid Xander. Still, I guess it doesn’t matter why.

“The Council sent him. Duh. Why else would he have been there, right?”

And yeah, I feel like an idiot for being Mister States-the-obvious.

I can’t even glance at Spike from the corner of my eye. I can’t stand to do it. Not when I know he must be rolling his eyes at the slow pace.

So I try to hurry only to have him squeeze my leg harder.

“Take your time, pet,” he says, his voice so soft that I barely make out the words.

Oh, okay… he wants the version with the most possible pain for me. I can do that. I should do that. I was stupid and it made me a monster. I made myself a monster. And I should have to relive it as often as possible. It’s only fair, right?


“Wave—Waverly Fontaine—was new to the Council. He’d only been training for six months when he was matched up with my latest ‘discovery’. And maybe that was why Shayna’s forms came back so many times before Wave was sent. He’d was still in training when the first two went in.”

There’s so much I want to tell him, but I also don’t want to. Fucking souled vampire. He’d never understand anyway.

“Usually when a Watcher showed up for a new Slayer, I’d move on. That’s how it worked, y’know? But this time, I guess because Wave was so new, Gi… the Council asked me to stick around for a while. Just to make sure things were okay.”

“So I did. I stuck around. It was a nice change from wandering. Nice to have a place to call my own, even if it was worse than the ‘basement of doom’. Hell, it was nice to just… unpack my backpack for once.”

The roaches in New York definitely take dance classes because the one I’m watching is suddenly cha-cha-cha-ing.

I almost look at Spike, but… no. I close my eye instead and just… remember.

“Wave wasn’t tall. He was a good inch or two shorter than me. But he was… God, I don’t know how to explain how beautiful he was. Not as blond as Shayna, but it would be hard to be without chemicals, y’know…? And he had the most amazing eyes. Green on blue. They actually shimmered in moonlight, and in the sun? God, in sunlight they were… smoky aqua, even if that does make me sound like a big girly man. Amazing.”

“He told me he was an accountant in his family’s business before he became a Watcher, but I never really believed him. He was… compact, but lithely muscled. Like a cat, almost. And after we’d spent a few weeks hanging out—me, Wave and Shayna—it was… almost easy to take him back to my room. Easy to kiss him and touch his… him.”

I can’t stop a small shiver at the memory.

“God. I didn’t know what I was doing, really. Always thought I was into girls, especially with the way I’d reacted to Shayna at first but she… well, let’s just say she made it real clear that she wasn’t interested in me. But Wave… that first night… Christ! He was so tight that night. Tighter than anything I’d ever felt. Then again, I’d only ever slept with Faith and Anya. That counted, anyway. And Wave…”

“Don’t care ta hear all your bloody encounters with th’ soddin’ git,” Spike finally says, snarling, and I guess he’s getting bored because as much as it sounds like he’s jealous, I know that can’t be it.

“So we had sex. A lot.” I tell him, still watching the bug that’s dancing its way up the wall. “I thought… Christ, this is so sad, but… I thought I was in love with him. I thought he was in love with me! I thought… we belonged together, y’know? But after another month or so, I…”

I feel the frown creasing my forehead and try to relax. I might not have talked about this since… just after… but that doesn’t mean I have to show Spike of all people just how much it hurts, although… it hurts less to tell him than I thought it would. Huh. Must be because I already know he’s done with me. I… didn’t know the last time I told anyone.

“I noticed that Wave and Shayna were disappearing every week or so. Noticed that they were lying to me about where they were going. Only because Wave told me one night that they’d be somewhere and I ended up near there by accident…”

I hear the disbelieving snort as the long, pale fingers on my leg twitch.

“Fine. I was bored. Lonely. Figured I’d go hang, okay?”

Spike chuckles and flexes his fingers again and I’m still not looking at him.

“The point is, they weren’t there. They’d never even been there according to the guy who ran the place. So I got… suspicious.”

“What could a seventeen—no, she was eighteen by then—year old girl and a twenty three year old Watcher be doing that would have them lying to me? I was Shayna’s friend and Wave’s lover, so… it was a mystery. Or it was until I saw them coming out of the trees one night.”

“They were laughing and holding hands, and… they’d been getting closer and closer, even while they’d been pushing me away so carefully that I never even noticed until then.”

I swallow hard and take another sip of my beer before I get up and move away from Spike. I don’t want him touching me now, don’t want to have to feel his hand tense against my leg-- or pull away-- when I tell him the rest.

So I drain the bottle and set it on the counter before grabbing another Heineken from the fridge and popping the cap off.

I sit down slowly, but that’s okay. My ass still hurts and besides… I feel like I could break any second now, even though I’m surprised I haven’t done it already.

“I got really good at pretending in Sunnydale, y’know? Pretending I wasn’t afraid, pretending I really believed I wasn’t gonna die from whatever random demon was running around that week… pretending I was strong, that I mattered to my ‘friends’.”

I hear Spike’s snort and I almost echo it, but… I guess he always saw through me, so there’s no point in agreeing with him, is there? I was more blind with two eyes than I am now.

“Yeah,” I go on, fingers peeling the label from the bottle just to be going something, “I could pretend with the best of them, couldn’t I? Or as well as anyone under a hundred years old, anyway. So when I saw them like that, holding hands and laughing and looking so fucking… pleased with themselves, I… pretended.”

“It wasn’t hard, either. I just acted like I’d never seen them, like I had no idea they’d been lying to me. And I watched them. Every minute I could, I watched them. Hell, I even tried to follow them when they slipped off together, but they always lost me. Until the last time.”

“And meanwhile…” I sigh.

The label is just so much shredded paper now, littering the top of the small table, and I find my eye moving to the wall again, looking for my good buddy the dancing roach. Guess he made his escape while I was distracted, though, because he’s not there now. So much for my new friend. Of course, this being New York, I’m sure another one will be along any second now. Until then, I’ll have to make do with tracing the tiny crack in the ceiling.

I guess I’ve been quiet too long because Spike’s making that curious sound deep in his throat and it always makes me… used to make me smile. It doesn’t now. Not when I know he just wants to enjoy my misery and probably congratulate himself for finally coming to his senses.

Fine. On with the pain.

“Meanwhile,” I finally say, taking a sip of my beer, “They kept disappearing and I kept acting like there was nothing wrong, even when Wave was fucking me and telling me he… loved me… and all that time I was so suspicious, so hurt. I knew what they were up to. Didn’t take a genius to figure it out, right? I couldn’t even blame them for wanting each other. Not really. I mean, they were both so beautiful, so… so not me, y’know? Hell, I’m surprised it took Wave that long to start fucking around on me.”

I ignore the growl I hear because it doesn’t make any sense. I know Spike’s growls by now and that’s his ‘angry’ one—as opposed to his ‘oh, you’re funny and I’m gonna spank you’ growl, or even his ‘go on, kill the bastard, Xan’ growl, among others, and… I know he’s not angry. Unless he wishes I was suffering even more right now.

Yeah, that’s probably it. I told Spike I love him and now he hates me, and that’s fine. It’s not like I planned to say it, and… God knows there’s nothing in me, in my soul, that deserves anything but hatred; especially from someone as good as Spike is these days. He’ll be better once he’s gone, and… I’ll just… I don’t know. Maybe die like I was trying to do when he found me. Maybe not. Maybe I’ll just go on like this. Empty except for the monster inside.

“That didn’t stop me from being jealous, though,” I nearly whisper it, my mouth dry as I reach across the two feet or so to the refrigerator and grab another beer. “Hell, even with knowing there was no way I was as pretty as Shayna, I was so jealous I thought I’d explode, even if I pretended I wasn’t, and it got worse when their little ‘training sessions’ got more and more frequent. At… in the end, there, they were ‘training’ every night.”

“I… fuck, it took me over a month to finally manage to follow them without losing them right away. Even then, it took me an hour of searching to figure out where they’d gone… and when I did, I found it.”

“It was kind of a shack, off in the middle of nowhere. Hidden off in the trees against a fucking huge pile of rocks.”

Another sip of beer and I manage to find my voice again.

“So I slipped up, put my ear to the wall… and I…” I swallow hard, then pour half of the new beer down my throat. “I heard them. And they sounded so… happy.”

It still makes me nauseous to remember this part, but I don’t close my eye. If I close my eye, I’ll have to actually see it again and I do that more than enough in my nightmares.

I don’t want to see them naked right now… I don’t want to see the wicked pleasure on their faces, the enjoyment that was so obvious in the split second before they realized the door hadn’t blown open from the wind but because I was there. And I don’t want to see the rest of it…

God, please… please let me just get through this without crying.

Then again, if I do cry, maybe… maybe he’ll just leave and I won’t have to do this anymore… won’t have to tell him what… what I did…

God, please… I’ve changed my mind. I don’t care if I cry or not. Just let this be over. Just let it be fucking over!

“An’ ya killed them, didn’t ya, pet? That’s when ya did it.”

I hear his voice but I don’t want to hear it. I don’t want to have to try holding it all in when he sounds so… so here, so much like he actually cares, and I know he doesn’t because how could he but he…

“It was easy,” I finally say, and I can hear the moan in my own voice but I don’t care.

He wants my pain, wants my suffering, and fuck it, I’m gonna let him have it.

“It was easy,” I say again, the first of the tears slipping down my cheek. “I… I shoved the door open and it wasn’t even locked. They thought they were so special, that no one would ever find them, no one would ever know… and even if someone did catch them, they had connections, right? They’d get out of whatever trouble they might get into just because of who they were…”

I try to find the crack on the ceiling again but my eye is too blurry, too wet. I don’t want to do this, but… I can’t stop now. Somehow I can feel Spike’s eyes on me and I can’t stop, even if the full story finishes driving him away. But maybe I’ll get lucky. Maybe he’ll be so disgusted that he’ll kill me himself before he leaves, and… that would be fair.

God, I hope he kills me… I don’t want to live like this. Not alone. It’s too… hard.

“They were surprised to see me,” I tell him, the tears sliding down the side of my face now. “I only saw the joy in their eyes for a second, like I said, and then… so shocked, so scared—the both of them were. They didn’t even reach for the tools on the table, and… and they barely even breathed when I pulled out my knife, and then…”

I’m gasping, shaking, and I can’t seem to stop no matter how much I want to and I don’t know what I’m expecting, but it definitely isn’t Spike’s arms wrapping around me from behind the chair and it isn’t his cheek against my hair or his voice whispering low and intense in my ear and I can’t do this, can’t take this because I’m evil, a monster, and he’s good, so much better than me and I won’t trust that he’s not going and I can’t stand it that he’s touching me and…

“Hush… hush, luv,” he murmurs, and I can’t help the wrenching sobs, but he’s not letting go. “ ‘s alright, Xan… know what ya did, know why ya did it…”

He can’t know. Maybe he thinks he does but he can’t. He wouldn’t be holding me if he knew, and… he thinks I killed Shayna and Wave and he’s right, and… God, they deserved it, but… it’s so much worse than that. It’s what I did after that’s so…

Fuck, I’m filthy with it. How can he not smell it?

But he is holding me, and Jesus fuck, I’m selfish enough that I don’t want to lose the feeling. Not right now, now even knowing he’s gonna leave and that he hates me, or will hate me once I tell him the rest, so I…

I lean back in the chair, pressing my spine as close to him as I can what with the metal bars between us, and… when he pulls me up and kicks the chair away I don’t fight it.

Just a few more minutes of this, of his arms… a few more minutes of comfort and letting myself believe this could end any way other than how I know it will… just a few more minutes and I’ll tell him the rest. And if he doesn’t kill me when he leaves, then at least I’ll have these minutes—these last minutes—to remember when he’s gone.

I’m not gonna move until he makes me. I don’t want to move. I just… want to stay here forever and never finish pushing him away. I want to stop time and just…

Fuck, I’m such a coward.


Series: Sins (#7)
Rating: NC-17 for language and sexual acts/themes; also for reference to violence.
Disclaimer: I am not Joss Whedon. I am also not God, which… same diff. No money made, but I will accept payment in the form of yummy FB. :D
Summary: The truth comes out. How will it affect the boys?
P.O.V.: Spike yet again.
Notes: This is the last and final story in the Sins series. I apologize for the overall angst, but what can I say? I’m an angst-whore. Thanks for sticking with me. :D

My boy. My poor, poor boy. All bleeding out on the inside, thinking I don’t know what he is.

Do know, though. ‘Course I do. Problem is, he doesn’t.

Thinks he’s evil, doesn’t he?


Know a thing or two about evil, right? And Xander bloody Harris isn’t it. Especially not now, when he’s crying in my arms, sobbing like his heart’s not only breaking but slicing through him, gnawing its way out.

Can’t do anything to help him now, so I do the only thing I can think of. I hold on and whisper to him, and it’s nothing that matters, just whatever comes to mind, yeah? Need him to know I’m here. Not letting him go.

Need him to know I’m not afraid of him.

Am I afraid of what he might do if I let go of him? Yeah. But afraid of my boy—my Xan? Not bloody likely. Done worse things for fun than he’s done of necessity, and so what if he enjoyed killing that bitch and the fuck-puppet who hurt him so bad? Didn’t eat them. Didn’t roll around in their blood and string their innards ‘round that bleeding shack he mentioned, so… Yeah, done worse than he has, hands down.

Not going to tell him that, though. Not now. My bloke’s got enough going on in that head of his. Besides which… don’t really want him pulling the ‘demon’ card and making himself feel even worse, do I?

So I don’t say anything about that. I just go on muttering and rubbing his spine, holding him against me and focusing on the most important part of everything he’s said so far.

He loves me. My boy said he loves me! And when he talked about that bloody fucking shitwad ‘Wave’, I… Well, yeah. Wanted to kill the bastard myself, just for hurting my bloke the way he did, but… Xan took care of that already, right?

Makes the demon in me right proud, it does.

He shifts a bit in my arms, but he’s not trying to pull away so I let him. Let him sniffle and sigh a bit, let him hide his face in the crook of my neck, and I don’t mind.

Fuck, almost love it, to tell the truth. Could stay here all night and all day, just like this.

* * * * *

I hold him as long as he lets me, and even with it being close to an hour, it’s not bloody long enough, is it? Wish I could put this off, just go on holding him, but I can’t. He needs to get this out of him, needs to say the words…

Needs to know that what he did was bad, yeah, but… he was right to do it. Strong, even. And if he doesn’t do it now, we’re going to have to go through all this mess again and that… bloody hell, that would break him even worse and I won’t let that happen! Can’t sit by and watch him start all over, no hope and all full of despair. Not again. Not my boy.

Wish I could take him out to the couch, make him more comfortable for the rest of it, but this feels like a kitchen kind of thing; don’t know why. Just does. So when he pulls back a bit, putting a couple inches between us, I swallow my sigh and drop my arms.

“Right, then, luv… tell me more…?”

Won’t look at me now, but then he hasn’t actually done that since he ate. See his eye close tight, still red and swollen from the crying and I can’t keep myself from sitting down at the table beside him, taking one of those strong, broad hands in mine.

“Xander,” I say when he just breathes roughly, “”Think it’s time, yah? Been so lost, so hurtin’. Ya need ta say it out loud, luv. Even if it scares ya, right?”

I get why he doesn’t want to. Makes it that much more real, doesn’t it? And the last time he told someone what happened, I’m betting it was his so-called friends, and look what happened there. They pushed him away-- chased him away, maybe, and…

Bloody hell. Bloke probably thinks I’m going to do the same if he tells me the rest, and… much as I want to tell him he’s wrong, I don’t think he’d believe me. Not now. Not ‘til after he’s through.

So I tighten my fingers on his and try to catch his eye when it opens but he’s still avoiding that. “Xan…”

Feel the shivers racing through him, even though I’m just holding his hand. See the moment he steels himself to losing me, too.

“Fine,” he says, and his voice is so dead I almost want to stop him. My boy… my boy shouldn’t sound like this. Hasn’t sounded like this in months. Not this bad. Not since a few days after I found him, at any rate.

“Fine,” he says again, and I don’t stop him because… bloody hell, I hate it that he’s hurting like this, hate that he really thinks I’d only want the good parts of him. Only way to prove I want all of him is to still be here when he’s done taking, right? Right.

“I killed them,” he’s looking down at the table, or more properly at our hands on the table, and his voice gets a little stronger. “Shayna was first. She had to be first. It was her fault.”

He swallows hard and shudders. “I… God, I hope it was her fault. I… if it was Wave who… started it, then… fuck, Spike, I thought I loved him and if he had that inside him all the time, then how could I have ever… and why would he have wanted me unless he saw something… twisted in me even then, and…”

His voice drops to nearly nothing and even my hearing can barely make out the words when he begs “God, please let it have been her…” before he clears his throat and goes on.

“The table was small. More like a crate set on end than a table. But it was big enough. Big enough to hold all their… toys,” he says, a sickly grimace on what I can see of his face. “Not much else. We… weren’t really in a civilized part of the country, so they’d had to…”

“Make do?” I suggest softly when he can’t seem to find the right words.

His hand squeezes mine hard-- hard enough that I can feel my fingers cracking just a bit. Don’t care, though. He can mash my hand to a bloody pulp if it helps him get through this.


Close my eyes as his voice gets stronger still, fury and loathing building under the anguish and… I can see it all in my head.

I can see my Xan, worried, jealous, afraid he was losing the bloke he loved to the girl he loved like a sister… see him standing outside the shack, back against the rocks while he listened.

I know exactly the look that must have been on his face when he tore open the door. Betrayal, pain, sorrow… And I can imagine the sudden shift from those feelings to darker ones.

Hatred, repulsion, disgust… and more betrayal on top of it all because… he’d been wrong about them.

Yeah, they were naked, and yeah, they’d been happy. They’d also been covered in blood. Streaks and splashes on them, on the ramshackle wood-slat walls…

Puddles of it soaking into the dirt beneath the children… thick around the edges where it had started to dry over the last few days… flies buzzing about, feasting on the carnage and effluvia of humans tied in place for far too long.

The small whimpers of the ones still alive must have shattered my boy, even while he slashed the edge of his knife through the Slayer’s throat… while he jammed that same blade deep into his lover’s gut and twisted before dragging it up until it got caught in the fuckwad’s sternum…

“Hush… hush, luv,” I tell him, and it’s only now that I realize my own voice is thick with tears. My free hand lifts, fingers finding the back of his neck as his bowed head drops lower, his sobs silent now, but not even remotely dry. “Did what ya had ta, yah? Couldn’t let them go on doin’ what they were, an’… they would have gone on. Ya did a good thing, Xan… ya stopped th’ monsters. Proud of ya, pet. So bloody proud of ya.”

And finally, finally, he looks at me. First time in close to three hours and the look in his eye is… worse.

He actually looks worse and I know he’s not through, know he’s got more to tell me… and somehow I know this is the part that’s made him believe he’s evil so I just… meet his stare and try to let him see how much I know he’s a good bloke and not a monster, for fuck’s sake! Been a monster. Know what we look like, don’t I?

His voice, when it comes, is shaky and raw but he doesn’t look away, doesn’t try to hide from my reaction even though he obviously expects me to be shocked.

“Th-the kids, Spike… th-they… three of th-them were s-still…” he swallows hard, takes a couple deep breaths and I’m lucky I already know where this is going. Figured it out seconds after he started speaking again.

“I… I killed them, too, Spike,” he says, looking sicker than he’s ever looked in all the time I’ve known him. “I tried… to tell myself I had to. They… God, you don’t know how… they were hurt so bad, I… so much blood and the little boy, his… God, something was… coming out of his… s-stomach, and the girls… Christ, they were so… I think Wave… so much blood, Spike, too much b-blood, and I couldn’t… it was too far and I couldn’t take them back, couldn’t c-carry them all and they… God, I could hear them screaming behind the gags and… two hours, Spike! Two hours back to the village, then another hour explaining why I was covered in blood, and two more hours to get back to the shack, and… by then it would be t-too late, and, and I c-couldn’t just l-leave them but I… I couldn’t h-h-help them, and…”

And he can’t breathe. My boy can’t breathe! He’s gasping and trying, and turning red and purple, and fuck this! Fuck all of this ‘not crowding him’ shit! Worked himself into bloody hyperventilating, heart pounding harder and faster til I think it’s going to explode, and I’m not having it!

And fuck the kitchen table, too. Don’t need it, we can eat on the couch for a while, and it’s a good bloody thing because the wall is stronger than the lightweight metal when I kick the sodding thing out of the way and drag my bloke onto the floor and into my arms.

Hold him tight again, his head to my chest. “Slowly, luv… slowly… deep breaths, now; not so fast… ‘s goin’ ta be alright, Xan… slow, pet… in… out… c’mon, luv, ya can do it. In… out… in… out…”

Bloody hell, if my heart could beat it’d be going like a sodding jackhammer by the time he starts breathing with my words, falling into the rhythm of it as he shudders. Know he’s going to be alright when he whispers against my shirt, and I can’t help the thrill of joy that races through me then. Never heard of a human dying from hyperventilating, but with the way his heart was going, could have given himself a bleeding coronary.

“I… I killed them, Spike. The… the kids. I… God, I killed them and… fucking Shayna and Wave… how… how could they d-do th-that to k-k-kids…? And… how c-could I… I… I’m a monster, Spike. And I… you’re right to l-l-leave m-me…”

Yeah, that’s what I thought he thought was going to happen. Guess me having a soul now means I’m a fucking moron, yeah?

“Not goin’ anywhere, luv,” I murmur against his hair, my hands stroking up and down his spine, “ ‘cept maybe ta L.A., but only if you’re comin’ with me, yah?”

His whole body stills for a moment. Think even his heart stutters before starting up again, faster this time.

“You knew,” he accuses, but his voice is so tired, so worn and nearly petulant, that the tone doesn’t do anything but make my lips twitch into what would be a smile at any other time.

I shrug a little, as much as I can with his body draped heavily over mine. “Knew some of it, luv,” I admit softly, rubbing my cheek against slightly shaggy brown strands of silk. “Not th’ part ‘bout how ya helped th’ kids, but th’ rest? Yah. Made a point of findin’ out, didn’t I? Couldn’t let ya go on like ya have been. Knew ya wouldn’t get any better for real if’n ya didn’t face it, pet.”

Not sure of how he’s going to take that. Might think it’s none of my business, right? But it is my business. He’s my business. My boy, my… human.

So I wait for him to get all offended that I went sticking my nose in where it didn’t belong, and… he surprises me yet again.

“Why?” he says, his face still buried in my shirt. “Why do you even care, Spike? W-why don’t you h-hate me?”

And those are possibly the simplest questions in the world to answer, so I do.

“Because I luv ya, Xan. Didn’t always, but ya know that. Luv ya now, though. Have done for a while. But even more today, knowin’ how ya looked after the wee ones.”

Can feel him starting to sob again, but this time it’s less… wrenching. Might be he’s relieved to find out someone understands.

“Had a choice, luv,” I go on gently, stroking his hair. “Leave them hurtin’ an’ bleedin’, most likely ta die slow while ya left for at least five bloody hours… or stop their pain, yah? Ya know what a mortal wound looks like, pet. Know ya do. Seen enough of them in your time. Ya would have helped them if ya could have, but ya couldn’t. So ya gave them what ya could. Swift an’ merciful.”

I don’t mention that those kids probably would have died anyway, after who knows how many fucking days tied up there, wounds open to all sorts of bloody parasites and bacteria and whatnot. Even if they’d managed to hold on until my boy got help, bleedin’ Kenya doesn’t have sodding good medical care outside the major cities.

No, my boy did them a service, and… he’ll get it once he thinks. Once he’s past the horror of what he had to do; past the immediacy of remembering it now. And then… well, maybe then he’ll really start to heal.

For the moment, though, I say nothing about that and just… soothe him as best I can.

My hands move on his spine again, slower this time, pressing into the tight, thick cords of muscle along each side.

“Must have been so bloody scared, luv… so afraid of hurtin’ them more. But you’re a good bloke, Xan. Forced yourself ta do what ya knew was best for th’ chits an’ th’ little bloke, no matter how it made ya feel. An’ if there’s any bloody justice in th’ world, luv… they’re thankin’ ya from wherever they are now.”

And he’s still sobbing as he lifts his head, his eye wide and wet and… bloody hell… nearly happy! Or almost as close to as happy as I’ve seen him since Sunnyhell. Not quite, because what he had to do is likely to haunt him for the rest of his life, but…

“Xan,” the word leaves me on a tiny breath and he shakes his head, smiling some and I never saw anything so bleeding beautiful in my life, mucus and salty tracks and red blotches and all. “Xan…” I say again and that smile gets just a little bit bigger, and…

“Quiet,” he tells me, shifting higher on my chest, and then…

Bloody hell, he’s kissing me. He’s kissing me and his lips are just as hot and firm and plump and tasty as I thought they’d be, and… and I’m kissing him, too, wanting to crawl into him from the mouth down, wrap around his heart, keep it and him safe, and…

After everything we’ve done to and with each other, how fucking strange is it that this moment—lips against his, tongue just barely touching his warmer one—in this moment, I don’t think I’ve ever felt so close to him.

Of course, we’ve also never kissed before, so maybe that explains it.

* * * * *

Love kissing the bloke, I do. Who the hell knew he was so bloody good at it?

Maybe the demon-chit, back in the day. Maybe that fucking bastard who was his first. Doesn’t matter, though, because they’re dead and now I’m the only one who knows that he can sit on the couch and snog for hours without it going anywhere. Just be there, holding on, lips, tongue, teeth sliding, touching, moving slow and sweet, then fast and rough… He’s a bloody marvel, my boy is.

Don’t know what makes tonight different from any of the other twelve since ‘that night’, but I don’t have to know. All I need to know right now is that… he’s not afraid anymore. Not afraid of ‘infecting’ me with his ‘evil’ or whatever it was that had him all constant bottom-boy.

Started out on the couch, watching some bloody stupid reality show… was right in the middle of my usual rant about how staged the shit was, and… he laughed.

Stopped my words, that; mostly because I’m still not used to him laughing like he means it, and my boy—my wonderful, beautiful boy—took that as a sign, I’m guessing.

Pulled me into his lap, his lips soft and hard on mine, and… bloody hell, wanted him so bloody bad, didn’t I?

Rocked against him, nipped his chin, gnawed on his neck…

And now, here I am on my back in our bed, his fingers up my bum, and…

“Fuck, luv… don’t be teasin’…”

Can hear the whimper in my own voice and I’m thinking he can too because he’s chuckling and giving me that slightly wicked little smile that always makes me… breathe.

“I… can I have you, Spike?” he whispers, and how can he even ask that when I’ve been waiting for this for… fuck! Months, now!

He’s still wearing that smile, even though his eye is desperate, and… “I… God, Spike. Please, I… I need…”

So I shift a bit, sitting up and forcing his digits deeper while I kiss him hard. “Almost gave up hope that you’d want ta, luv,” I admit sheepishly. “Not that I’m complainin’ ‘bout havin’ your ass all th’ time, pet. ‘s a bloody amazin’ ass, after all, but… want ta feel ya, Xan. If you’re sure ya want ta…”

Only takes a minute for him to decide it’s past time, and when he presses me back against the mattress, his fingers leaving me empty, he does it. He finally does it.

He lifts my leg over his arm and leans over me, his eye hot and wondering and intent on mine while my other leg wraps ‘round his waist, and when he presses forward, presses in, his thick, hot head forcing its way inside me, I don’t know which of us shouts louder—me because he’s so hot and perfect and I can feel his heart beating in me as he slides deeper, shoring up against my ass—or him because of the “So tight, God, so fucking tight, Spike… J-jesus fuck… love you, Spike, love you, always wanted this, a-always will…”

And he’s moving, sliding in, out, rubbing so perfectly inside me that I almost can’t stand it. “Xander,” I hear myself groaning, “Luv… bloody hell, luv…”

Don’t know which of us decided that biting was a good idea, but I think it was probably me. My boy. Inside me. Being so full of him. His voice, moaning my name. Yeah, probably me.

Not that it matters because his teeth are just as deep in my neck as mine are in his and I can feel him throbbing, swelling just a bit more, and my balls are so hard, so tight and high that I know it’s only a matter of moments, if that, and…

Never had a human cum deep in me before. Never knew the heat of it, the over-bloody-whelming heat! And my fangs are in his skin, my cock spewing between us, covering him in my scent just as he’s filling me with his, and he’s drinking me in with every sign of pleasure, and…

“My boy,” I tell him after a few minutes spent catching my breath, and yeah, I don’t need to breathe, but talking works better with air to make the words, and fuck me if I could manage it before now.

His head rises slowly from the still-oozing bite one my neck and he smiles a bit uncertainly.

“My vamp…?” he says softly, and I can’t help but nod.

“Yours, luv,” I agree, because I know he needs to hear it out loud, and “Not lettin’ ya go, yah?”

Nothing quite like watching another piece of that self-loathing die in his eye. Nothing at all like seeing a tiny mote of joy replace it.

Yeah… think I can handle this for as long as he’ll let me. Not a bloody problem.

Don’t move or make a sound when he drifts off, still on me, still in me. I just hold him closer, his head on my shoulder.

Wait ‘til I know he’s deeply, peacefully asleep for once, then I brush my lips against his temple and smile.

“Goin’ ta keep ya safe, pet,” I whisper carefully, smiling more when he mumbles something that sounds contented. “No nightmares this time, yah?”

And he doesn’t have any. Guess he feels protected here in my arms... and he is.

* * * * *

He’s not better, exactly. Not all recovered and going on like nothing ever happened.

Hell, he’s never going to be ‘all better’. Never going to be the same bloke he was in Sunnydale, or even the young man he was in Africa before Shayna and Wave… before his ‘friends’ decided that putting those poor kids out of their misery was something wicked and evil rather than compassionate and caring.

They were supposed to be the ones who knew him! The ones who would always assume the best of him, not the worst! And maybe that’s a big part of what broke him to begin with, but even so…

No, my Xan will never be the same.

Know that, don’t I?

Don’t expect him to be that bloke ever again.

‘s fine, though.

Love the man he’s becoming, love watching him figure out who he is now.

Love that he’s not as ashamed of himself as he was in New York.

L.A. seems to agree with him, even if he’s not quite willing to take orders from the Mighty Poof. Not most of the time, anyway, but even Angel admits that my boy’s a valuable addition to the team. Finds all sorts of things we would have missed without him and I can’t help wondering if that Caleb bloke wasn’t right on the bloody money when he called my boy ‘the one who sees everything’. Seems to know when something’s going to become a problem later, anyway, and manages to nip things in the bud, so to speak.

Still has a mad-on for anyone or anything abusing kids, but so do I these days. Fuck it, if something’s important to my bloke, it’s important to me, yeah?

And we’ve been talking about forever, me and my Xan. Still trying to figure out how having a demon inside with his soul might affect him. Would it make him less anguished than he still is? Or would it make him harder, colder in his heart?

Don’t know, but I’ve got a team looking into it. Don’t want to lose him, after all, and it seems likely that I will one day, what with humans being so bloody fragile.

No, I don’t want to lose him, but for the moment… it’s enough just knowing that he’s considering eternity. That and the shagging, biting, making each other mad with want… driving Broody the Wonder-Git crazy with smelling us when he walks into some random room we’ve been shagging in… and meanwhile, underneath it all is the love we found entirely by accident, and all because I walked down a particular alley in New York and noticed a dying bloke.

Yeah… want him forever, but I’ll take what I can get.

As long as it’s my Xan, I’ll take what I can get… and even eternity wouldn’t be enough.

And some day, if he does let me turn him… well, maybe I’ll ask him again about killing his little ‘friends’. Gift to the Sire and all that.

Yeah, I’ll have to remember that one. Just in case.

The End

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