A follow-up/sequelly thing to Domestic Bliss, using my favorite of darkhavens’s first lines.
Unlife in Seattle
“Now, the chip was history! It would be so very simple to install himself as Master of Seattle! But he just won’t! He’s so - lethargic and mopey.
“God, and he hasn’t even fucked me since I rose - yeah, but - I know, I know it’s a period of adjustment for me, too, but you don’t see me grousing, not eating - staring off into space like I’d lost my best friend!
“And he used to be so sexy and cool! When we’d fuck, sometimes, he’d say, “come, pet,” in that voice and I’d just -
“Oh, okay - but don’t call me back till after nine, man. Yeah, nighttime minutes. ‘Kay. Yeah, Clem. . .’kay, laters.”
Xander shuts off his cellphone and turns to face his silent, brooding Sire, who’s watching scrambled rugby on their motel room tv.
“Sire? Spike? Sweetheart? Take me hunting?” The pout is pure Xander, but -
“You’re not him. Fuck off and leave me be.”
- said without even looking up from the tv. Not even as his Childe slams out into the wet Seattle night.
The letter spent two days locked in the top righthand drawer of the desk before Spike confronted him about it.
Confront, however, is too mild a word for picking his Childe up by the throat and throwing it across the room. Either the wall or its back goes crunch.
“What the fuck do you mean by getting letters from this Vittorio ponce? Has he had you?” Spike demands, balling up the letter, hurling it at his sullen, glaring Childe. Seeing hatred in those big dark eyes, where love and humor used to be, only makes him angrier.
“Do I smell particularly well-fucked to you -” a pointed, insolent sneer. “Sire?”
“You smell like an idiot about to be dusted!” In a second, Spike’s across the room and lifting his Childe, this - thing, by the neck. Pinning it to the wall, seeing the fear and arousal in its dark eyes; wanting nothing more than to kill it.
The air is rife with both their pheromones.
“Sire. . .please. . . .” Spike’s Childe begs hopefully. Though it obviously expects nothing more than the beating of its young unlife. That’s all Spike has ever given it.
Turning his Childe to face the wall, Spike surprises them both, that night.
Xander woke feeling sore in odd places.
It takes him a moment to recall what had happened, and when he does, he’s afraid to move, afraid the room temperature body at his back will be a dream.
“Know you’re awake.” That lazy, sexy drawl melts Xander’s bones. He rolls over, finding himself nose to nose with his Sire, the one he loves and fears above all others.
He wants very badly for Spike to kiss him.
“You’ve been out the whole day and some of the night,” Spike murmurs mere millimeters from Xander’s lips, then sits up. “Brought you a pressie.”
Xander sits up and follows Spike’s line of sight. Laying on the floor of their motel room is a semi-conscious fratboy.
“Haven’t been feeding like you ought. That stops now.” Spike is standing, scratching his stomach, walking to the bathroom. “Eat that, get your strength up; we’re going hunting tonight.”
Xander smiles as the bathroom door clicks shut.
The fratboy dies screaming.
It was the silences that made him think.
Probably why his idiot-Childe yammered on so damn much about anything and everything that crossed its microscopic little mind.
“You have that sexy, British-guy thing going on, you know? Like Jude Law, or Captain Picard,” Spike’s Childe had panted one night. Spike had rolled his eyes and kept fucking the brat into their crimson-stained carpet; unlike his Consort, his Childe needed no oxygen. It could, theoretically, talk forever.
“One of these nights I’ll rip your tongue right out, pet,” Spike muses aloud, as his Childe talks ceaselessly through yet another football match.
His Childe looks at him, not in the least afraid, then goes to its knees and proceeds to suck Spike’s brain out through his cock.
Theoretically, it could suck forever.
In a silence broken only by enthusiastic slurping and swallowing, Spike thinks he may let the brat keep its tongue after all.
At least for tonight.
Hunting the Hunters
The rules are quite simple, really:
Heed your Sire. Do as he commands.
These rulemakers? Not really counting on how insane your Sire may have gone from grief.
The frat-rat Spike brought back to our, ahem, lair - can you imagine? Our lair is a cheap motel room that doesn’t even get Skinemax - was the first insanity. He’d picked the jerk because he’d been raping and murdering girls at his college.
The frat-rat wasn’t the last. Nope. There was the guy who drowned his wife, the woman who poisoned her mother - these are the people we feed on.
Hunting the hunters, Spike calls it.
Protecting a soul I no longer have, is what I call it.
I mean, what does he want from me? Why does it matter who we kill?
“Come on, pet. He’s on the move.” Spike glances at me, looking disturbed and vaguely disappointed, as usual, then takes off down the alley.
“No amount of Yoda-ing is gonna change what I am, Sire,” I mutter, walking back the way we came. Even if Spike hears me, I’m not him, so he’s not listening.
And he sure as hell isn’t trying to stop me from leaving.
“Xander, please tell me this is one of your lame-ass practical jokes....”
Been muttering that for hours, now, because I promised. . . .
I lost his scent hours ago, but I know the places he haunts. The arcades, the movie theaters, the bowling alley - there's a case for a person’s tastes not changing when they get turned - but there’s been no sign of him. None of the many friends he cultivates in these places - the boy has the common touch, losing the soul hasn’t changed that - have seen him all night.
It’s my fault he’s gone. I turned my boy then left him to twist in the wind.
Frustration drives me back to the motel hours before dawn. Everything’s just as we left it. Neither of us is a homemaker and the room is utterly trashed, papers and clothing laying everywhere. The dent where I threw him against the wall -
Suddenly, I know.
Where my Childe’s at, who has him. . . probably not against his will, either, I’ve been such a piss-poor Sire.
I stalk over to the dent and poke around the detritus under it till I find cream-colored, ponce-quality paper. I uncrumple the letter. There’s an address and a fancy bit of scrawl at the bottom.
It may be a trap, it may be too late, but he’s my Consort, my Childe, my beloved.
I promised. . . .
The Silken Cage
Cold sweat, fear of monsters and a twinge of inappropriate, swiftly-stifled -
“Xander. . . .”
- forever to be denied lust.
These are Xander-flaws totally independent of a piddling soul.
When Spike let me walk off, I really hadn’t expected the night to end the way it had; the burst of rainbow-colored magic, the unconsciousness, the manacles and satin sheets I’d woken up in. Least of all the kabuki-white body of the Master of Seattle looming over me.
It’s been three nights, now, of being chained and fucked whenever milord gets a stiffy. Which is, unfortunately, often.
I’ve resigned myself to the fact that Spike’s not coming to save me like I'm ‘some silly bint in a bodice-ripper’ but it still hurts. Dunno why; all I have to do is become Vittorio’s Consort and my unlife’ll be nothing but satin sheets, Playstation2 and hot-and-cold running victims. Not to mention hourly fucking -
Damnit, Spike’s never coming for me! I got what I deserved! This is what happens when stupid Childer disobey their Sires.
My fault, all my fault. . . .
“So beautiful, Xander.” Vittorio’s fangs graze my neck lightly. His body’s still warm from feeding. I haven’t eaten in four nights and he burns like fire, on me and in me.
Please come get me, Sire -
“So very sweet and human.” One sharp bite and one hard thrust that tears something in me. I close my eyes before the tears fall.
What He Needs
I didn’t know I loved him until I saw him like that.
Lost-looking in whore’s-red satin sheets, silent and still as I unlock his manacles. I’ve never seen him look that way, before or after turning him.
“Pet, are you alright?” I smooth his damp hair away from his face. His wrists are chaffing, bruised, bloody. He’s bruised and bloody in lots of places. Must’ve put up a hell of a fight.
“He’s dead, luv.” I ignore the din that’s half of Vittorio’s court, dying in the main room of this abandoned warehouse. The dark eyes I’d thought were empty because of the missing soul are deep pits of absolute nothing, now. He doesn’t smell like mine anymore. He smells like a can’t-be-dead-enough ponce who thought he could take what’s mine.
I know what he needs. Whether I’m ready to give it - whether he’s able to take it -
“Xan, listen to me,” I command. Those eyes drift to mine, unfocused, unrecognizing. “You’re still mine, hear me? And I’m yours. Your Sire, your lover. Yours. It’s time for you to take what’s yours, luv.”
Those dark, empty eyes are suddenly focusing intently on mine, then I’m being tackled down onto the bed and pinned with more strength than I would’ve expected. I hear, but barely feel, my jeans being ripped off. Then he nuzzles my throat gently. Something wet drips on my neck.
“Sire, please. . .let me.” Hoarse voice and cold puffs of air against my skin. All of him is cold. Vittorio’s been starving him, trying to break him.
I wrap my arms and legs around him, whisper his name for the first time since I turned him. Dunno which’ll hurt better, his fangs or his cock, but I know I love him. My Xander. My own.
Always has been.
Always will be.
“I get home from work and she’s all packed and ready to go!”
“He told me to get my stuff and get out, Jerry! What was I s’posed to do?” The screaming woman with the flaming red hair and receding chin launches herself at her boyfriend’s mistress. The ensuing catfight is clumsy and somehow sad.
“Bloody hell, luv. Isn’t that your mate?”
“Hmm?” Xander doesn’t look up from his job of painting Spike’s toenails. The color is Morte, but Xander just calls it black.
“What’s-his-name - uh, Ray, Ron - Roy. Roy Baker. Came over for dinner that time,” Spike says, turning Xander’s head to face the tv once more. Watching his women fight is a tall, hillbilly-looking drink of water with dirty-blond hair and smug grey eyes. Xander grunts and returns his attention to Spike’s toes.
“Oh, that fucking guy. He’s a shit to his girlfriends. If I was one of ‘em, I’d have cut his balls off in his sleep. Stop wiggling or you’ll have black toes.”
“Well, stop tickling and I’ll stop wiggling, pillock.”
They go back to their respective tasks of polishing and viewing. The only sounds are a large audience member berating Roy and heavy, Seattle rain hitting the room’s single window.
“I hate the fucking rain. Let’s move.” Xander blows Spike’s toes dry then kisses them.
“Like you bloody read my mind, luv.” Spike turns off Springer and tackles his laughing child to the bed.
Road Trip II
Xander stared blankly for a moment, then laughed.
“You’ve gotta be fucking kidding me, Spike!”
Spike kicks the DeSoto’s tires. “Serious as a heart attack, pet. This baby’s gonna get us all the way to New York City.”
“Doesn’t look like it’ll get us to the end of the motel parking lot, Spike, let alone the Big Apple.” Xander crosses his arms and leans against the driver's-side door. Spike paces around the car, examining it critically.
After driving his Uncle Rory’s POS, Xander knows a lemon when he sees one.
“This monster’s been mine decades longer than you have, you know?” Spike grins over at Xander from the other side of the car.
“Yeah, pointing out how many decades you’ve had it? Not exactly instilling a sense of confidence in it’s reliability, bleachy. Not at all.” Xander looks down at his shoes and doesn’t feel jealous of a car. Especially not a DeSoto.
Not at all.
Spike’s reclining on the hood of the car, back against the windshield.
“I’ve never been fucked on the hood of a DeSoto before. Be a nice way to re-Christen her. Make her ours.” Spike muses, giving Xander a leering once-over.
“What do you say, whelp? Fancy a ride?”
And just like that, Xander’s so not jealous of this wonderful, wonderful DeSoto.
Not. At. All.
Clem hates keeping secrets. They make him nervous.
So it’s something of a relief when he can give the letter to the Slayer.
She reads it once, eyes wide and disbelieving, then reads it again out loud. Finally, she tells Clem to stay put, which he does. He's really not interested in getting a ‘Slayer-sized arse-kicking’. Not if half of Spike’s complaints are true.
The Slayer’s friends arrive. Willow looks wan and worried, Tara nervous. The ex-Watcher, Mr. Giles, looks old and tired.
The Slayer reads the letter to them, her voice cracking with anger. Mr. Giles takes the letter from her before she finishes. Reads it himself, frowning. Willow starts crying, and Tara holds her tightly, eyes bright with unshed tears.
“When did you receive this?”
Clem starts at the ex-Watcher’s voice.
“He told me to give it to you three days after I got it.”
“‘He’ who?” The Slayer looks like she wants to hit him. Despite her past kindness to him, Clem has no doubt she would if it meant getting information about her friend.
“Xander. Said he wanted to be far away when you guys found out he was - you know. A vampire.”
“I’m so gonna make Spike the kind of dead that’s permanent. Tara - you do a another locating spell, Giles -”
“Uh -” Clem interrupts the Slayer. All eyes in the room turn to him. “He, uh, sounded really happy, you know? Said he was sorry for worrying you guys, but he can’t have you trying to find them. That the spell that’s been hiding them from you - they got it from a ‘caster at Wolfram & Hart. Let me tell you, when those lawyers hide something, it stays hidden.” Clem nods sagely.
But the Slayer and her friends are already ignoring him, talking spells and research. It’s as if Clem isn’t even there anymore. But he understands. Humans only hear what they want to hear.
Just the same, Clem thinks it’s time for him to take a nice long vacation. Somewhere a little less Hellmouthy. Like Cleveland. . . .
After This Brief Message. . . .
Xander had been guilted into ferrying a rare book and a fractious vampire out to Angel in LA -
That’s kinda how it all started. With a stupid road trip neither of us wanted to take. To this day, I don’t know why Giles trusted us with something as rare and valuable as that funky old book.
I don’t know why I said yes and I don’t know why Spike tagged along. It’s enough that we wound up together. Stayed together. I’ve known for awhile that he was it for me. That there could be no one else and that if he ever died - so would I. As I am currently what you might call living impaired, I know for a fact that Spike feels the same way.
Before you guys freak out, no, I’m not just taunting you with the news before I come to hunt you all down.
Or am I?
Okay, seriously, I’m not. I just wanted you guys to know that I’m okay, that I’m - I’m happy, is what I am. I love my Sire and I love my unlife. I don’t miss the soul so much, though Spike does. Maybe one day I’ll get some wizard to mojo me up a soul as a present for him.
But probably not.
We’re only eating bad guys, yay us! You’d think there wouldn’t be enough truly evil humans strutting around to keep two vampires in blood and stolen cash, but - you’d be wrong.
Anyway, this letter is getting ramble-y. I just wanted to touch base with you guys, let you know I’m doing good. Not literally, just, you know, metaphysically.
Spike and I are gonna disappear and stay disappeared for a decade or two, give you guys a chance to mellow. Twenty years from now, around Yuletime, you could get a knock on your door and surprise! Two vamps in Santa-hats - okay, one vamp in a Santa-hat, and one in a duster - bearing gifts!
And I promise, if you invite us in, we won’t try to eat any of you.
Till then, lurve yas,
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