“One of us should talk.”
Spike looked up at Xander’s face. Looked down at their hands that were entwined and he sighed. Pulled him close and rested his head on top of Xander’s, taking in the scent of Xander’s hair.
“I bought your freedom.”
Xander pulled away slightly. Looked at him incredulously, eyes wide and confused and Spiked leaned down and kissed his lips softly.
“You what?” Xander whispered against his lips.
“I bought your freedom.”
“But… half a million dollars?”
“And then some, but that’s not important.”
“Yes it is. That’s very important. You… you’ve already spent so much money on me and this…”
“I told you. Something big is going down and you’re in the middle of it.”
“I’m in the middle of it no matter what way you look at it.”
“Yes, but this way I can protect you. I can make sure that none of those legalities matter. And if I need to I can…”
Spike opened his mouth to say it, to tell Xander that he’d leave if he had to, but he knew that that wasn’t what Xander wanted to hear. It wasn’t something he wanted to hear either, but it might be necessary.”
“You can what Spike?” Xander asked.
“I can leave you and know that you’ll be safe.” Spike said.
Xander swallowed harshly and blinked a few times.
“Look this war…”
“Don’t give me that. The least you could do is be honest.”
“I am being honest. I couldn’t… we couldn’t do this forever Xander.”
Spike sighed and held on tightly to Xander’s forearms. Not too tightly otherwise Xander would have said something, but just tight enough that he could feel the warmth of Xander’s body seep through to his hands.
“I don’t deserve you.”
“Don’t you think I should be the one to decide that?”
“I’m deciding it for you.”
“So, what? You just paid all that much money to make sure that I’m safe and out of the way just to leave me? And you’re trying to tell me that you don’t love me.”
“It’s not about that.”
“Because… I love you. I love you so much that I’d… I’d stay. I’d stay with you and I’d…”
“You’d what? Drag me down with you? Make my life miserable? Put me in danger?”
“Something like that.”
“So you’re going to leave me?”
His eyes were wide and so dark and his face looked so broken and Spike knew that it was his fault. He’d put that look on Xander’s face and he hated it. Hated that he had had to tell him, but it was better this way. Better to get it over with now then to surprise Xander when the time came.
But the time wasn’t then. He wasn’t going to leave Xander right then and there so he grabbed him. Pulled him close and let his own body mold against Xander.
“Not right now.”
“But you are. You’re planing on it.”
“But I’m not leaving right now.”
“You shouldn’t leave ever.”
Spike tilted up Xander’s chin. Leaned down and kissed Xander, lips brushing against lips and Xander clang to him. Pushed his body against Spike as their kisses heated up and he moaned against Spike’s lips.
“Let’s not talk about this, pet. Let’s talk about what you want to do with your first day of freedom.”
Xander smiled, a little sad, but still pretty bright.
“We should probably talk about this whole fight that Angel wants you to take part in.”
Spike rolled his eyes.
“How do you know about that?”
“Some friends tried staging an intervention. Told me I’d be the key in convincing you that this was a good idea. Which I don’t really think it is, but…”
“I’m gonna do it.”
“I figure you would. Any chance to get back at those minion bastards.” Xander said in a teasing tone.
“Something like that. It’s a pretty good idea.”
“Might keep you in Sunnydale for a little while.” Xander said hopefully.
“It’s supposed to go down tonight.”
“I know. Angel and I were just talking out the details. I don’t want you there by the way.”
“I figured as much.”
“But I don’t want you here alone. Anything can happen. Word has to have gotten out that you’re mine now.”
“Yours huh?” Xander said, leer on his face.
“Something like that.”
“So, as yours, what do you want to do to me?” Xander said as he linked his arms around Spike’s neck.
“I’ve got a few ideas.”
Joe sighed as he looked at the confirmation fax that his bosses at Wolfram and Hart sent. They had got the money that would pay for Alan’s freedom. He had sent the money straight away as soon as he had gotten it.
He hadn’t wanted to be around Spike and the other guy for longer than he had had to be. Took the money and went straight to the bank to deposit it in the accounts that Wolfram and Hart had set up just for this occasion. It had only happened three times in the entire time that Joe had been working, but it did happen.
He had spent all day worrying about Alan because he remembered the interest Lindsey McDonald and his Senior Partners had taken in Alan, but the transaction had gone through.
Joe looked up to see a bunch of vampires standing on the other side of the counter.
“What can I do for you guys?” Joe said.
“You could tell us where Spike is.”
He had been waiting for this. Waiting for whoever beat the crap out of Spike to start looking for him. To put two and two together and come up with Joe’s place.
“He’s a customer fellas. Can’t give away information on a customer.”
“We have it on good authority that he’s not a customer anymore. That he paid in full for his whore. So… we can do this the easy way or we can do this the hard way. Personally I’m hoping the hard way. There’s a few tasty morsels here I wouldn’t mind sinking my teeth into.”
Joe’s eyes go wide and he groped under his desk to find the crossbow still there. Gripped it in his hand just in case.
“Well, I hate to disappoint, but that’s all at my discretion. And considering I don’t want to give that information away, I think you guys should just leave.”
“But we’re under specific orders to get that information.”
“And I’m protected by some pretty powerful people.
The vampires started to laugh at that, teeth gleaming in the artificial light and the leader guy fixed Joe with a yellow glare.
“Those pretty powerful people… they made a deal. With my master. They don’t care about you as long as my master pays them in full for Spike. That means they don’t care if there’s causalities.”
Joe took a deep breath and figured it must be true. Figured it was one of the reasons they let Alan go with no fuss.
He could do it. Could just hand over the information and the vampires would leave. Go after Spike and, by default, Alan. Joe knew, even before he pulled out the crossbow, that he wasn’t going to let that happen.
“Guess we’re doing this the hard way.”
Spike looked down at Xander’s sleeping face.
He looked so peaceful in his sleep, young and careless and Spike thought he looked so good this way. They’d celebrated Xander’s freedom, repeatedly and Spike smiled a little at that thought.
He looked over at the clock on the bedside. He already knew that it was night time, could tell because of his vampiric senses. Angel had told him exactly where to meet him and his little gang of good doers.
He knew he could make it down to the library in the high school in time if he left now, but he didn’t want to leave Xander. He couldn’t leave Xander. He hadn’t been joking about the news getting around.
Vampires of all sorts probably already knew and Spike thought that that was the point. Get the word spread that Xander wasn’t up for grabs and Spike knew that that was going to cause an uproar.
With the vampire minions out there not caring about claims and Master vampires like that, Spike didn’t doubt they’d try to come after Xander. He couldn’t leave Xander in the motel room. He had to find some place that would be safe.
But finding a place to live wasn’t on the agenda right then and there. What was on the agenda was kicking some Anointed one ass and if Xander had to come along then he’d just make sure that he was safe. He could kick ass and keep an eye on Xander at the same time.
So he pushed Xander a little. Watched as his eyes fluttered a bit before opening and looking over at Spike, wide smile on his face. Spike couldn’t help but smile back.
“Time to go be ass kickers?” Xander asked a bit sleepily.
“Yeah. Angel’s going to go crazy if we don’t show up on time.”
“Does he know I’m tagging along?”
“I think he gathered as much. Didn’t ask direct, but there were a lot of not questions. He’s like that.”
“I thought he wasn’t the same vampire. Had a soul or something?”
“He’s a white hat, yeah, but it’s surprising how similar he still kind of is.” Spike said.
Xander nodded. Stretched out a bit, smooth skin brushing against Spike’s smooth skin and Spike has to remind himself that they have to get going.
“So, what does this make you? You’re not a white hat.”
“A Master vampire that’s asserting his claim over territory.” Spike said.
“I think you already did that.” Xander said with a leer on his face.
Spike couldn’t help leaning over and kissing him. Long, drawn out kisses that had hands roaming over skin and teeth biting lips and Spike somehow managed to get between Xander’s legs.
“We shouldn’t do this.” Spike said.
“We already did do this.”
“That’s not what I mean.”
“I know. I’m being difficult on purpose. I think you like it.”
Spike rolled his eyes.
“Why don’t you just tell me what’s on your mind, pet. Instead of trying to distract me with sex.”
“I thought you liked sex with me.”
“Best thing in this world, pet, but something’s bothering you.”
Xander sighed. Put his hands on Spike’s back and rubbed a bit. Spike watched the emotions play out on his face before he said anything.
“I’m a little scared. These are the guys that kicked your ass.”
“I’ll be backed up by a Slayer and Angel. And the didn’t kick my ass that bad.”
“No, they probably looked worse. I’m just saying… these are dangerous guys.”
“I know. It’s one of the reasons I don’t want you there.”
“But you’re afraid to leave me alone. I get it. But…”
“Hey, no worries, luv. I fully intend to come back from this. We have to do it though.”
Xander sighed again. Closed his eyes and pulled Spike close. Spike could feel Xander’s breath against his neck and he just let it happen. Let Xander hold him close because it was what he wanted and Spike wasn’t very good at denying Xander something he wanted.
“Okay. Okay… let’s do this.” Xander said, his voice only shaking a little.
Spike leaned down and kissed his neck.
“No worries. This’ll be a piece of cake.”