Quantum Xander


Part Forty-Six

We’re back at the hotel. Angel offered to let us stay, but we declined. I didn't want to make this world’s Spike uncomfortable, not after he's finally showing signs of improvement - maybe. At least I hope he is.

Spike is being pretty quiet; right now he's listening to the CD player and writing in his book. I pretend that I don't know he has one; he pretends too. He seems to think that it isn't manly or something - having a journal. Maybe it's just too William-y for him. I don't know, but if it helps him, I'm all for it.

I haven't been tempted to read it. I don't think I'm ready to know what kind of things he's written in there. Most likely it's a retelling of his life with Riley. If he wanted me to know, he'd tell me himself. At least I hope he would.

I have some clue as to what he's been through; I can guess from his actions and reactions. And what he asked me to do to Riley? Well, let’s just say that I hope that was the worst thing he had ever had done, but I know it isn't. It's the worst thing that he felt he could ask me to do for him. I castrated the bastard and made him eat his own nuts. Me, Xander Harris, full-fledged scooby and all-around white hat. Guess my hat's not so white anymore now. Thing is, I'm not sure that I ever was a white hat. A grey hat maybe, but not white. I didn't join up with Buffy's little group of slayerettes to save the world. I did it because my best friend was killed by vampires and I wanted a little payback.

The fact that Willow stayed, that she wanted to help... That's why I stayed. Yeah, Buffy's pretty hot, and yeah I lusted after her but that wasn't enough for me to risk my life over. There were other pretty girls who could ignore me just as well, some better. I stayed because I couldn't let Willow do it alone; if I lost her too, my life would have been meaningless. And look how she repaid me.

So here I sit, after six years of slaying the bad guys, killing demons to protect the human population, with the blood of a human on my hands. Not literally, cause eeewww! Also, I think Spike did a thorough job licking them clean. But I have led a man to his death - A human man - to protect a demon, a vampire, my lover.

Angel did a fair bit of damage to Riley. He stuck something the size of my arm up the guy’s ass, electrocuted him, beat him, cut him, bit him, peeled the skin from his back and then had me piss on him. And that was just today’s torture session. I have no idea what's planned for tomorrow, he only told us to be there again at sunset.

I think, if it weren't for Spike - not mine, the other one - Angel would have kept on hurting Finn until he died from it. But as it was, Spike needed rest; he had spoken to Angel, called him sire. When Angel smiled at him, he smiled back. Then Angel kissed him. I was wigged out. I mean Angel and Spike? Okay yeah, Angelus and William I can see. But Angel and Spike hate each other - at least the ones back home do. Anyway, after the kiss, Angel went back to his torture and Spike and I watched. I helped out when I was asked - like the pissing thing, and the other Spike slowly slipped back into himself again. By the time Angel called it quits, there was nothing behind his glassy-eyed gaze. I hope it's a good place he escapes to, somewhere that makes him feel safe and happy.

I asked Spike about the kiss after we left. He said that the bond between sire and childe was stronger than a soul, stronger than hate and pain, longing and love. It was everything. He explained that in Spike's current state, he needed that bond, to be connected to his sire. That after everything he'd been through, the Initiative, the torture, losing his childe, that Angel was the only hope of ever bringing Spike back. Spike still thinks that Angel should stake him, or drain him, something. That he's too far-gone to save and death - final death - would be a mercy. I don't know; I just can't stand the idea of Spike being dust, but I don't like thinking of him spending eternity the way he is either. I don't envy Angel; I wouldn't want to have to be the one to make that choice.

I did something else I should tell you. I took revenge for myself as well. I pulled Riley's teeth out. With a pair of pliers and a bit of assistance from Angel - he held him still and kept his mouth open. It was petty and mean, I know. I don't regret it though. I actually feel pretty good about it. You wouldn't understand, but then again, it wasn't your lover who had this done to him. You didn't see Spike - in game face with no fangs - if you had, you might understand.

I kept his teeth. I'm not sure why though? I just... wanted them. Like a trophy I guess. Not sure what I was thinking there, I mean what am I gonna do with them? Make a necklace? Hmm, maybe yeah. I could have them cleaned up and holes drilled into them, give it to Spike as a gift. I can't present him with his heart - as would be a proper token of love to a vampire, but I can do this. Give him something to keep with him, a message that he endured, and Riley did not.

I wonder what my life is going to be like when I get back home? Will the gang accept the changes in me? Will they accept Spike as my lover? Yeah, I can just see that going over well. Especially Spike - the Spike back home that is. I'm sure he's gonna be real comfortable knowing that I've seen him naked, seen him hard, felt his mouth on me, heard him calling my name, screaming it in ecstasy. Yep, that'll go over really well.

Buffy's gonna be a problem, she won't understand the gay thing, let alone the Spike thing. And when she finds out what Riley was capable of? Not gonna be fun. Fuck! I wonder just what the hell did happen to Spike back home when the Initiative first had him? Did Finn touch him? I always felt there was more behind Spike's hatred of Riley than simple jealousy over Buffy. Fucking bastard! And to think I defended him, stuck up for him to Buffy when all the shit with her Mom was going down. God I feel sick.

The way we all treated Spike, like he was a parasite or something to be scraped off the bottom of our shoes, it was beyond cruel. He may be a vampire, but I know the real Spike now, not the bad ass that he shows the world, but the caring, loving, funny, feeling man that he is inside. You know, from the day he was turned he was never alone? There was always Angelus, Darla and Dru. Then Angel got cursed and left them. Darla followed suit not too long after. But Dru was still there, and as long as Spike had her to care for and protect, he wasn't alone. Then she left him. Can you imagine what that must have been like? A century with someone, then to find yourself abandoned and alone?

Then after what the Initiative did to him, taking away his ability to feed himself, leaving him to starve to death or depend on his enemies for survival? I'm surprised he didn't choose to die. He's a proud man - vampire - whatever. The fact that he could do it, put up with all of us constantly teasing him and making cutting remarks... It shows how strong he is. Or how lonely he is. Maybe both.

It's really sad if you think about it. That Spike could be so lonely that he'd hang about, put up with the constant belittling, not to mention the beatings, just so he wouldn't have to be alone. I mean, it's not like he couldn't leave Sunnydale. Plenty of places he could go in the world, but he stays. Why? My guess? Because we - the scoobies - are the closest things he has to friends, and that's just pathetic.

Xander closed his book and then watched his lover as he sat hunched over the small table in their room scribbling away in his book. He wondered how much - if any - Riley's torture helped him. Did it make him feel better? Safer? In this world, yeah, maybe. But what about the next place? Was he going to have to do this every time they came across Riley Finn? Would it make a difference in the long run? Xander sighed; he had too many unanswerable questions running around inside his head. He was confused, tired and in need of a hot bath.

With a quick kiss to the top of his lover's head, Xander entered the bathroom and began filling the tub with hot water. When it was about halfway full he stripped off his clothes and climbed into the tub. Lying back with his eyes closed, he didn't see Spike enter the room and stand watching him from the doorway.

When the water level reached the top of his chest, Xander sat up and turned off the taps. He jumped in alarm when he saw Spike standing there watching him.

"Spike? What're you doing?"

"Admiring the view, pet. What else?"

Xander held out a hand to the vampire and smiled as Spike hurriedly undressed and joined him in the tub. Resting his head on Xander's chest, Spike closed his eyes and relaxed. This was nice.

"I wanted to thank you, luv."

"For what?"

"For today. For telling Angel, for taking me there, for making that bastard hurt. I know that it couldn't have been easy for you, he is human after all, and I just wanted to thank you for doing it."

Xander sighed and dropped a kiss to Spike's head.

"See, that's the thing. It was easy. I didn't ever consider not doing it. He hurt you, and yeah okay maybe it wasn't that Riley that did those things to you, but he did them to that Spike and that's enough of a reason. I only wish I could have done this to the one back in your reality. I love you, I would do anything to make your pain better."

"You did, luv. You did."

The pair fell silent, enjoying the feel of the hot water on their skin, the pleasure of being together and the love they felt for one another. It had been a long, emotionally draining day.

Eventually they drained the water from the tub, dried off and curled up together under the blankets. Sleep would not be long for either man, both were worn out on a mental and a physical level. Tomorrow was going to be another long day, filled with torture, revenge, and hopefully - for a couple of mentally fragile vampires - some much needed healing.

Part Forty-Seven

Tonight was good. Woke up with my Xan cuddled in my arms, all warm and toasty, had a little while to just lay there and enjoy the feeling without worrying about being a ponce. Then we went over the hotel to start in on day two of torturing the soldier git. A fun time was had by all. God, my pet bloody amazes me! For a white hat, he has some wickedly cruel ideas in his head. Hells, even Angelus was impressed by him. And that's saying quite a bit; my sire doesn't impress easily.

Xander never even balked once throughout the whole thing. Not when Angelus poured acid on Finn or when he pulled off his fingernails, not even when he rammed the hot poker up his ass. Hells, even I was a bit nauseated by the smell of that; burnt flesh and excrement, not a nice aroma. The boy seems to have a particular fondness for pulling Finn's teeth. I think he's got all of them now. Kept them too. Don't know why, souvenirs I guess. Like that about him, sentimental fool.

I guess I’ve been avoiding the real issue here though. Threw me for a fucking loop, what happened tonight. Angel- Angelus more likely - slit the bastard’s wrists and let that other Spike and I drain him. Dead as a fucking post. Not for long though, he turned him. By tomorrow night, Finn'll wake up with a demon in him. But that's not the best part, oh no. Angel is gonna give the bastard his soul back.

So yeah, I'm thinking he's coming dangerously close to losing himself here. I mean, I understand the reasoning behind it, but he could be in serious jeopardy of losing his redemption, his promise of mortality. I wonder if I should stop him, make him stake the bastard and get on with his unlife. Bloody Finn shouldn't get to have that kind of power over him, be allowed to screw with his redemption; he isn't worth it.

And why am I sitting here brooding over Angel? Good question, that. Wish I knew. Seeing him though, the way he is with my double... It stirs up a longing in me, one I thought was long dead and buried. I miss the days when my Angelus was my world. He was everything to me back then: my father, my lover, my God. Then those fucking Gypsies took him from me. I thought I had gotten past all that, that I hated the fucker now. Guess not as much as I thought.

I never knew how much of my sire is still in there, hiding behind the soul and the guilt. He's still there though, just buried beneath the surface. I wonder what happened to my Angel, if he's okay. I hope so, God I hope so. Just the thought of him at the mercy of the Initiative... No. Buffy stills loves Angel, she'd never let that happen. At least I hope not.

Maybe I should ask Xander to talk to Angel. Get him to make the blighter understand the concept of enough is enough. Spike'll be okay I think, given enough time and encouragement. He tasted Finn's death, same as I. Nothing more can be gotten from dragging this out. Angel would be better served concentrating on getting him better than continuing his plans for revenge. Yeah, I'll get my Xan to talk to him. Maybe we both should.

My pet's sleeping; bloody worn out, he is. Not surprising though, it's been a hell of a couple days here. Torturing someone can really wear you out. Not to mention that I wasn't exactly gentle with him once we got home. I have to remember that the boy's only human, can't fuck him like that too often or I'll likely kill him. But, bloody hell what a shag that was!

I haven't felt this much like my old self in years. Not since I became the property of the US military. Amazing what a little revenge can do for you, even when it's just revenge by proxy. Christ it felt good though, telling Angelus and my pet what to do to him and having it done. Like having minions again, not that I'd ever tell Angel that - likely to earn myself a good beating if I ever did. Never call my boy that either; if I could turn him, he'd be a childe - my first - not a minion, never that. Not that there's even a point to thinking about turning Xan, with this fucking chip in my head.
‘Course that brings me to wonder just what the hell's gonna happen to us. He's human, supposed to be my food or a vessel to house a demon should he be worthy of turning. I'm a vampire - a demon for fuck’s sake. I'm not supposed to fall in love with a human. Did though, didn't I? So now what? I mean, if I turn him - if I ever get this chip out - he won't be the man I fell in love with, the man who risked his life to save mine, the man who stood bloody and smiling at me after cutting soldier boy's nads off. The man who looked at me with such love and longing as I slowly slid his length inside myself. That's the man I fell in love with, the one I want for eternity. A demon with Xander's face just wouldn't be the same. It's so bloody frustrating! Demons just weren't meant to love humans. Unless you have a soul that is; then you fall for little blonde girls with super strength. Look how well that turned out for the old poof. She's still shagging psychos and he's brooding in L.A. See? Demons and humans just don't work. It's against the laws of nature, against the rules of society or something. Then again, when did I ever follow the rules?

Spike closed his book as Xander began to stir in his sleep. With a gentle smile that really didn't belong on the face of a soulless demon, Spike crawled back into bed and pulled his lover into his arms. Xander sighed happily in his sleep and snuggled closer into the embrace. Spike pressed a soft kiss to his face and began a light, rumbling purr deep in his chest. He drifted off to the sound of his own contentment.

Back at the hotel, Angel watched as his childe sat up in his bed, blue eyes glassy with unshed tears. He could smell the desperation and pain on his childe and wanted nothing more than to make him better. Slowly - so as not to startle him - Angel made his way into the room and joined his childe in the large bed.

A single tear rolled down the blonde's face and the older vampire caught it with his finger and brought it to his mouth. He licked the tear away and gently pulled the smaller man into his arms.

"If I could take your pain, childe I would do it without hesitation."

The sobs broke free and Spike curled into his sire's embrace. He cried out his anguish and pain, he cried for all the times he couldn't bring himself to do so in the past. He cried because he had lost his childe, and finally he cried because he knew that he was finally safe. That it was over now, that his Xander had brought him here - to the safety of his sire - at the cost of his own unlife.

At first he had thought he had truly gone mad, seeing an older human version of his beloved childe, seeing him standing there with William, the human he had once been. But it didn't make sense, why would his soul and that of his childe's be there in the first place? Then seeing Riley, remembering that Angelus had told him he was there, that he was going to be a part of his torture and death.

He could remember now, every scream, every moan of pain. He knew the scent of Riley's fear, the sound of his begging, the taste of his blood. He knew the taste of his death. That had been what finally allowed him to come back to the real world. Knowing that he would never be hurt by that bastard again, that his sire cared that much for him, even with his soul. He still craved death - oblivion - but perhaps now he could find a way to ask for it, to be at peace, maybe find his beloved childe in the next life.

"Sire… Angel."

"Will? I'm here. Will. I'm here, everything will be okay now."

Spike shuddered and then opened his eyes. Crystal blue eyes shining with pain and loss looked into deep brown eyes that were filled with hope. Spike took an unneeded breath and forced himself to speak.

"Thank you."

"You're welcome, childe. I would do anything to make it better."

"Would you? Really?"

Spike sounded so hopeful, Angel could have wept for the pain he had caused him in the past, the betrayal that put that tone of wonderment in his voice, as if he couldn't believe what he was hearing.

"Anything, Will."

"Kill me. Please sire, I don't want to go on. I can't live like this; I'm tired, sire. Let me join my Xander."

"Oh God, Will. Please don't ask me to do this."

Angel's arms tightened around his childe and he felt his demon screaming inside.

"I don't know if I'm strong enough to let you go childe. I don't think I can do it."

"My life is yours sire. Yours to give and yours to take. Take it, please?"

"Let me think on it. Sleep Will, I'll give you my decision tonight."

Angel kissed his childe deeply and then laid them both down on the bed. He spooned behind the smaller man and held him tightly, knowing that this could very well be the last time he felt his childe's body pressed against him, the last time he smelled his childe's scent. Sleep would not come for Angel this day.

Part Forty-Eight

Middle of the afternoon and Xander found himself in the very pleasant position of waking up to a wet suction on his cock. He cracked open one bleary eye and took in the sight of his lover's brunette head as it raised and lowered on his throbbing shaft.

"God, what a way to wake up."

He felt more than heard the vampire chuckle, the sensation dragging a moan from his throat. He could still hardly believe how much his life had changed in such a short time. A few months ago, if someone told him he would be in love with Spike - from any dimension - he would have first laughed his ass off and then had them tested for signs of possession. The fact that he had this beautiful man - vampire - practically worshipping his body right now, was beyond what his rational mind could take.

Spike released Xander's cock with a wet slurping sound and sat back on his heels to appreciate the view. Xander was magnificent in all his naked glory. Tanned skin over taut muscle, a light sprinkling of dark silky hair covered his body - thick in all the right places, beautiful brown eyes full of love and desire, a thick, long cock that just begged to be touched, licked, sucked upon, straddled.

Spike considered that idea for a minute; he had thoroughly enjoyed the sensation of having his lover inside him. He wasn't quite sure if he was ready to give over control to him just yet but he thought he might like to take another go at riding him. Xander seemed to know what he was thinking as he handing over the lube with a look of absolute lust and longing on his face.

With no hesitation, Spike slicked his fingers and began to hurriedly stretch himself. When he was sure that he could take Xander with a minimum of discomfort, he applied the cold gel to Xander's hot flesh and slid astride him. Looking into eyes darkened with desire, Spike slowly sank down until he was completely filled.

Xander groaned and reached out blindly for Spike. He felt the vampire take his hands and place them on his hips as he began a slow undulation that had him gripping his lover almost painfully in a bid to hold onto his control.

"You feel so good, luv. So hot and hard inside me, I could ride you for hours."

"N-not gonna l-last that long."

Spike chuckled and began to raise himself up before slowly sinking back down. He repeated the movement several times before speaking again.

"We need to go see Angel today."

"Wha... huh? You want to talk about Angel? Now?"

Xander could barely think, let alone carry on a conversation, and Spike wanted to talk about Angel?

"What? Can't shag and talk at the same time? This a human limitation? Or just that I'm too damn good a shag for you to concentrate on anything else?"

Spike had that look, the 'smug smarmy bastard' look. Xander decided to try and focus on conversing with him. Better than letting him know that yes, indeed, he was too damn good a shag to concentrate on anything else.

"Er, Angel? Talk, why?"

A deep rumbling laugh and Spike smiled before clamping his internal muscles around Xander's shaft in an almost painful grip. Xander groaned and his eyes rolled back in his head.

"I've been thinking about his redemption, his need for vengeance is going to screw it all up. We have to make him see that, make him end this thing with Finn."

Xander thought about what Spike said, knew he was right and nodded his head.

"We'll do that, make him understand. But first can we just..."

Xander trailed off as Spike smirked at him and slammed himself down on his cock. There were no more words spoken, the only sounds were of harsh breathing, moans, groans and the sounds of flesh on flesh.

While Xander and Spike were making love, Angel was sitting in his office thinking about the decision he had to make. His childe had asked for help; no matter what the request, he was honour-bound to fulfil it. The problem was, he didn't want to. If he was perfectly honest with himself, he would admit that he was afraid. Afraid of being alone, of losing the one person who truly knew and understood what he was. He had given up everything to help Spike - his friends, his purpose, his redemption. He had thought that he would be able to bring Spike back, restore him to the vampire he once was. That they could rebuild the relationship they had once shared, on equal footing this time around; partners.

Now, all his hopes and fantasies were shattered. If he did as he was asked, he would lose his childe. If he didn't, if he refused, Spike would resent him, and he would lose his childe. Or he would find a way to do it himself, and still, he would lose his childe.

Angel refilled the tumbler in his hand with the remains of the bottle of whiskey that he had opened early in the morning hours. He brought the glass to his lips and drank as he realised he had no choice. He would do what Spike had asked; he would give him his peace. At least this way, he would get to hold Spike again, feel him in his arms and his veins one last time.

Angel drained the glass and then picked up the bundle of spell components he had on his desk and made his way down to the parking garage. He stopped and looked at Riley, noticing that although the demon was in full possession of the body, he had yet to move or even open his eyes. In fact, as Angel got closer and closer, the new vampire tried to appear stiller and more lifeless.

Angel ignored him completely and set up the spell. He didn't even look over to see if the demon realised what was happening until he had belted out the last line of the curse. Then he looked; he looked and watched with satisfaction as his eyes flew open and the flames appeared in his irises.

Knowing that the curse had worked, that Finn's soul had been restored, Angel smiled and went back upstairs to his childe. Stripping out of his clothes he climbed into the bed and pulled Spike into his arms. He kissed the top of his blonde head and began to purr deep in his chest. He wanted his childe's last hours to be peaceful.

Spike and Xander arrived at the Hyperion just after dusk. They had meant to come earlier but between the sex, the shower and then the sex again, they hadn't made it. Plus they had had to stop for something to eat, and to get Spike some blood as well. Now that they were there, they wished they would have made it earlier, maybe they could have made sense out of what they were seeing.

What they were seeing was an obviously intoxicated Angel - in full vamp mode - destroying the lobby of his hotel and making this high-pitched keening sound. Xander looked at Spike for an answer but only received a wary look and a shrug of the shoulders. It didn't make him feel any better. In fact, he was thinking that turning around and leaving would be a very good idea. Unfortunately, Angel realised they were there before Xander got the chance to put his plan in motion.

Spike barely had the opportunity to brace himself before he found himself holding two hundred and fifty pounds of sobbing master vampire. He instinctively began petting him and purring. It was what he'd done when Dru was having a bad spell, it had always worked with her and it looked to be helping with Angel as well.

Xander stood in shocked silence as his lover lowered himself and the older vampire to the floor, all the while continuing to caress and soothe him. He didn't know what was going on, but he knew it wasn't good. He also knew better than to approach them at this time.

"Angelus, er Angel? What's wrong luv?"

Spike had never - never - seen his sire like this. Frankly it scared him.

"Gone. My beautiful Will, gone."

Spike tightened his arms around the older vampire and just held him. His double was gone. That explained everything, to lose a childe was hard, probably more so for Angel, his soul would cause him to feel pain as well as his demon.

"What happened? Can you tell me?"

Angel shook his head and continued to sob into Spike's chest. Spike motioned for Xander to bring the bottle of whiskey that was sitting on the floor a few feet away. Xander did so and was just backing away when Angel reached out - faster than either Spike or Xander had expected - and grabbed him. Spike tensed and began to growl possessively but then stopped as Angel merely pulled Xander into his arms and held him as he was being held by Spike.

The three men passed the bottle between them, sharing in the grief and pain of the older vampire. Eventually Angel told them about Spike's request for an end to it all. Then he told him what he had done to give him that final peace.

"I drained him, it was gentle. He was gone before the stake entered his chest."

Angel cried and clung harder to the warm body in his lap. He needed the contact, the feeling of warmth that Xander gave him. He was grateful to this human, for giving him back his childe, even if it was only for a few days. Spike waited until Angel had quieted again before he spoke.

"Sounds to me like you did what he wanted. You didn't live through it, I did. If he said he couldn't go on, trust me, he couldn't."

Xander shivered and gladly accepted the bottle when Angel pressed it into his hands. The thought of no Spike made him think about how close his Spike had come to wanting death. It was a thought that scared the bejesus out of him.

"I can still feel him, in here."

Angel pointed to his chest where his unbeating heart was breaking in loss. Spike looked at his lover, looked at Angel and then sighed. This would be so much easier if Xander was a vampire, and Angel didn't have a soul. Taking a risk that he wasn't out of line, Spike lifted Angel's head and looked into his eyes before leaning forward and pressing his lips to his sire's.

Xander watched as Spike kissed Angel; he should have been jealous, he should have been furious, he wasn't. He understood that this was about comfort, about blood ties that were strong enough to survive a century of pain and hatred, that were strong enough to be felt across dimensions. He made an effort to withdraw, to give the two some privacy when two sets of yellow eyes fixed on him and he was held in place by both Angel and his lover.

"Xan? You okay with this?"

Xander nodded and sighed in relief as Spike leaned and kissed him. He felt himself being drawn away from Spike by Angel and expected to see the older vampire claim his lover's lips once again. He was stunned when Angel kissed him instead.

Part Forty-Nine

Oh my God! I had sex with Angel! Angel!!!! What was I thinking? I'll tell you, I wasn't thinking. That's always been my problem, I don't think. That's why I'm the guy who gets strangled as foreplay, the guy who gets thralled by vampires, chosen to fertilise a giant bug lady's eggs. I thought I said NO MORE BUTT MONKEY! I know I did, so what? The fates ignore me again? One more crappy thing to dump on Xander. Oh my God! I had sex with Angel!

Okay, panic attack dealt with. Babbling under control. I had sex with Angel, but that's okay because no one knows. We'll shift out of here and the only one who'll know is Spike. Spike, who watched as Angel took me, who stroked himself while watching as Angel fucked me. Spike who kissed me and told me how hot it was, watching us together. Spike who I'm in love with, who says he loves me but watched me get fucked by someone else.

All right, in all fairness it's not like I was the only one. Spike had sex with Angel too - and yeah, I watched, and it was hot. It was... primal. Like watching a cross between the best porn ever and the discovery channel. I mean, wow. They were so... I don't have the words.

Then of course, there was the free-for-all where I found myself wedged between two vampires - not a bad place to be. I will so die of embarrassment if anyone sees this. I wasn't even going to write it down but I had to. If I'm going to keep an honest record of my little "adventure" I should include the life-altering things that happen. I'll just make sure this never gets read - by anyone!

It was the first time I've been in control with Spike, inside him and being able to do whatever I want to him. Of course, having Angel in me at the same time made it different than I had fantasized about. Not bad, just different.

It was sex. Not love. Angel was hurting, simple as that. I don't know a lot about demons - vampires - but I understood what last night was about. It was Spike's way of offering comfort to his sire. I don't know what my reasons were. Too much whiskey and an overwhelming sense of loss? Knowing that it could easily have been my Spike that was pushed so far he didn't want to come back?

Maybe. But is that enough? Is Angel making Finn pay for what he'd done enough to make me forget two weeks in a hell dimension? Is seeing Spike drain the life from his worthless hide enough to forgive Angel for the horrors I witnessed? I don't know. After what happened to Willow in that place, I don't think I'll ever be able to forgive him, but it wasn't him though. It was Angelus. Angelus who gave me the opportunity to avenge my lover, Angelus who was howling his grief over his childe in my lover's arms.

I'm so fucking confused. I want to hold onto my anger at him. I do. But I'm so tired of holding a grudge. He's a demon - and not a very stable one at that - it's what they do. After a century of being locked up by a soul, having a conscience, what would you expect though?

I have to wonder though, what happened in that world? It seems to me that my decisions have had a bearing on the different realities I've been to. If that's true, then what did I do that let Angelus finish the ritual? Did I talk Buffy out of going after him? Did I delay her in some way so that she was late? Maybe when I jumped out of the bush at her she hit me and knocked me out, then had to call an ambulance to come and get me? Maybe I never brought her back to life after the Master and it was Kendra or Faith who had to go up against Angelus when he was trying to open Acathla.

So, in that context, it was my fault that he succeeded. My fault that the world was sucked into hell. My fault that all those people... That Willow... God! It was my fault. Everything, my fault. Spike. Oh God, Spike was my fault! If I had been there, not in L.A. with Angel and Wes, he wouldn't have been recaptured. He would have been safe. And here, I was a vampire - turned by Spike - so again, no cosy basement to hide out in, no scoobies to take him in. They wouldn't, not if he had turned me - defenceless or not, Buffy wouldn't have helped him. How the hell did I get turned anyway? What did I do in this reality that made me a vampire?

Now I understand the depth of the curse. I hope Anya is happy, I couldn't be more miserable. It's all my fault; how many people have been made to suffer because of my actions? Or inaction? Jesus Christ, how many more horrors do I have to endure before she's satisfied that I've suffered enough?

I'm sorry Anya! I'm so, so, sorry. I never meant to hurt you, please make this stop. I want to go home, please. I just want to go home.

Xander closed his book, lay down on the bed and let the tears fall. He hadn't cried like this in a very long time and he found that once he started, he couldn't stop. He was glad Spike wasn't here to see it. He couldn't face him right now, not after figuring out that this was all his fault.

Spike stood in front of the newly souled vampire and smirked. He had finally convinced Angel that he needed to let this go, to get back on track with his life and his mission. Xander had been a big help there, convincing him that his co-workers would come back, that if he explained to them what had happened - leaving out the torture of course - they would understand.

So now Spike had the pleasure of giving Riley his final death. He just couldn't decide how he wanted to do it - other than painfully of course. The table was still set up, the various torture implements in place. Of course, he could just leave him to starve; even if he let him go, he was defenceless.

Being turned with no teeth or finger nails, meant no fangs or claws. In fact the only thing Finn had going for him now was added strength, and being a minion, it wasn't much. He considered stuffing him in a trunk and having him delivered to the slayer, but it would only come back on Angel and he was in enough pain as it was.

"Hmm, not sure what I want to do with you yet. Tell me, how does it feel to be neutered? In every sense? Didn't you ask me that once or twice?"

Spike chuckled nastily at the glaring yellow eyes as Finn's demon made its presence known.

"See, thing is, mine grew back. Both bollocks and fangs; you? Well, you wouldn't survive long enough for it to happen even if they could. Turned without means you stay without. Think your little slayer would want you now? Knowing that you're a demon, an impotent one at that?"

Spike morphed into game face and growled in the fledgling's face.

"Stupid, stupid boy. You have no idea what you messed with, do you. Thought you could get away with it, that no one would care what happened to a demon. You thought wrong."

Carefully lifting one of the newer additions to the table of torture - a squirt gun filled with holy water - Spike walked closer to Riley and aimed the plastic gun at the soldier's face before pulling the trigger.

Riley screamed as the water burned into his skin like acid. He felt the droplets land on his chest and run down. It was agonising. Panic gripped him as he opened his eyes and saw the gun was now aimed at his groin. He shook his head frantically, hoping - praying that he wouldn't pull the trigger, knowing that it was futile, that his life was forfeit.

Spike snickered and lowered the muzzle of the gun. He watched as relief followed by suspicion flooded Riley's features. Then he took aim again and fired. And fired, and fired, and fired. By the time the gun was empty, there was nothing left of Riley's groin, his legs were covered in burns - clear to the bone in places.

"Be lucky I didn't have a hose handy, otherwise... well you remember don't ya? How I screamed, how I pleaded and begged? You remember how you made me suck you in order to stop it? Do you?"

Riley made no move to answer. Spike grabbed him by the throat and smashed his head against the wall.

"Answer the question - when I ask you something, you will answer!"

"Yeeeessss! I remember."

That earned Riley a backhand to the face so hard that it shattered his jaw. Spike was still disgusted by the memories of how this pathetic little pissant had broken him. Sure he had been helpless to defend himself, thanks to a nifty little piece of metal in his head... which gave Spike an idea.

As the former-blonde demon searched for something suitable to carry out his plan, Riley tried to recall everything he had ever done to the blonde version of this vampire. He cringed at some of the memories, knowing full well that he would likely experience them firsthand now, wondering if there was any way to escape the torture before he died.

Spike turned around - a maniacal grin on his face - and showed the helpless fledge what he held in his hand. It was a small surgical saw, an electric one at that. In his other hand was a jagged piece of sheet metal, not much larger than a quarter. Seems Angel - or possibly Xander had planned for this as well.

For the next few minutes the only sounds were of the saw's low buzzing and Riley's screaming as Spike sawed through his skull and then painfully shoved the metal deep into his exposed brain.

Spike stood back, satisfied that he had made that as painful as possible for the ex-soldier. He remembered well, the pain he felt when they had cut his head open to install the chip. He made sure this was worse. He didn't have the time to repay every painful, humiliating torture that he had endured, so he made sure the ones he did perform were as nasty as he could make them.

"Only a shame that I can't give you the pleasure of the chip going off. Nice piece of work, that; can't even step on a human's toes accidentally without a fucking migraine. But don't you worry, I've come up with something close to what it feels like."

That said, Spike drove a rusty spike through Riley's left eye. He pulled it back out with a wet sucking sound and then repeated the process, shoving the now bloodied and dripping spike into the right eye socket as well.

He left the spike deeply embedded in Riley's eye and withdrew a stake from his pocket.

"Well, it's been fun and all that, wish I had time to do this proper but my Xander is waiting for me, and given the choice between spending time with you or him, he wins."

Riley disappeared in a shower of ash and Spike walked away. He nodded once to his sire on the way out of the hotel and climbed onto the bike. He was looking forward to getting back to the hotel and Xander; hopefully he could persuade him to join him in the shower.

Part Fifty

There was something wrong with Xander. Spike knew the instant he entered their room that he had been crying; he could smell the salt in the air. Figuring that this whole dimensional travel gig was just getting to the boy, he decided to leave off and let Xander have the illusion of privacy. If his lover didn't want him to know he'd been crying, he'd pretend he didn't know. After all, Xander played the game for him from time to time.

Hoping to cheer him up somewhat, Spike stripped off his jacket and outer shirt. He toed off his sneakers - still not believing he actually owned a pair - and peeled off his socks. In nothing but his soft blue denims, he crawled onto the bed and lay down beside the television-watching human.

"Whatcha watchin' pet?"

Xander started at the sound of Spike's voice. He hadn't realised that Spike was back already. Struggling to get himself under control and not burst out in tears and beg the vampire to forgive him, Xander gave Spike a small sad smile.

"Everything go okay? You dust that asshole?"

Spike grinned and then sat up on the bed. He was practically bouncing as he told Xander the details of what he had spent the afternoon doing. He couldn't help but feel a little grateful to Angel for turning and then souling him, it let him get his hands dirty, so to speak, and give back some of the pain that he had been forced to endure. Xander smiled as he saw that Spike was actually happy, that he was more like the "big bad Spike" from back home.

"I'm glad you had fun. Did it... Does it make it better?"

"Bloody hell yes! I feel like a new man! Er, vampire. Christ love, I haven't felt this bloody good since before I tried to bite that little redhead and realised I was... damaged."

"Again with the me being happy for you, but you need to shower; I don't know how you didn't get stopped on the way here, you have blood on your face and your hands."

Spike looked down at his hands and realised Xander was right. He shrugged and then put on his best leer.

"Care to come wash my back Xan? Or something a bit lower, whatever you fancy."

Xander couldn't help but smile at the obvious innuendo. He wanted to, he just felt horribly guilty and wasn't sure if he deserved to touch Spike that way again.

"I... Um, well..."

"Come on love, not taking no for an answer. I'm a very... dirty boy."

Again with the leer and Xander finally broke, a smile lit his face and Spike kissed him before dragging him into the bathroom and undressing them both.

Spike was in heaven, hot water on his back, Xander on his knees before him, wet, warm suction on his cock. There was nowhere he'd rather be. He closed his eyes and gently tangled the fingers of one hand into his lover's damp hair.

"Christ, luv. You feel so fucking good."

Xander grinned slightly around his mouthful of vampire. He continued to suck on Spike's cock as he reached one hand down between his own legs and began to stroke himself off as well. The noises coming from the vampire were making him so very hot, and he desperately needed to cum.

Spike opened his eyes and looked down at Xander. His eyes were closed but he had such a look of contentment on his face as he bobbed his head up and down, like he was exactly where he wanted to be, doing exactly what he wanted to do. Spike looked lower and saw what Xander's hand was up to and groaned at the sight.

There was nothing hotter than watching his boy jerk himself off while giving him a blow-job. The very idea that Xander was enjoying this so much that he had to touch himself made Spike lose what little control he still had. His demon roared to the surface and he tore through his lower lip as he thrust into his boy's sweet mouth and came with an ear-splitting howl. He felt Xander swallow around him and then tense as his own orgasm ripped through him.

Xander vaguely remembered being pulled to his feet, kissed soundly and spun into the wall before Spike plastered himself against his back and began kissing and nibbling his throat. He moaned at the sensation and felt himself begin to harden once more. He spread his legs and thrust his ass back in invitation.

Spike frantically searched for something - anything - that could double as lube. Settling on the shower gel, he flipped open the cap and squeezed some onto the small of Xander's back. After setting the bottle down on the side of the tub, he ran his fingers through the small pool of soap and began to gently push first one and then two into his lover's body.

Xander pushed back against the invading digits, eager to feel more, needing to be filled by Spike, to feel him as deep inside as he could get. He panted as a third finger slid in beside the previous two and began to pump in forcefully.

"Spike. Now, please now. Need you in me."

"Shh, luv. Just another minute, don't want to hurt you."

Xander sobbed in frustration as Spike denied him his request, he was ready - more than ready - and he needed this so badly. He didn't even realise he had been chanting 'please, now, please' over and over until Spike finally withdrew his fingers and whispered in his ear.

"Okay. Relax luv, you got me."

And then Spike was pushing inside and Xander was pushing back against him. They were finally joined and Xander could have wept, he never wanted to lose this - the feel of his lover's cool skin against him, hard cock inside him - possessing him, soft lips brushing over the nape of his neck.

"God, Spike. Love you."

"Love you too, Xander."

And then they were moving, long slow strokes that made Xander shudder. Spike's hands were holding him steady, one on his hip and the other one tracing circles on his chest, absently pinching a nipple every once in a while, before trailing down to stroke his hard cock.

Xander came first, his muscles tightening and dragging Spike's climax out of him. They rested against the cool tiles for minutes before finally rinsing off and exiting the shower.

Dry, sated and exhausted they tumbled into bed and curled around each other to sleep. Xander still felt the guilt of his earlier revelation, he felt awful about what Spike had gone through, knowing that in some way it was his fault. He only hoped as he drifted off that he wouldn't have nightmares.

Spike watched as Xander closed his eyes and drifted off. He was more than a bit worried about his boy. He had seemed so... desperate earlier. As flattering as it was to have someone so eager, so needy to be filled by him, it wasn't normal behaviour for Xander. He wasn't sure what had set him off. Perhaps it was the whole 'sex with the sire' thing. Humans could be so weird about physical relationships.

Just as Spike was relaxing into sleep - having decided to talk to Xander about the sex-with-Angel issue tomorrow, he felt his lover's body tense. Xander hadn't had a nightmare in awhile now, not since before the reality where Xander was a vampire and Dru's childe. He had hoped his lover was past the terrors he had witnessed and endured in that demon dimension.

"No! Spike, God no, I'm so sorry."

Xander was sitting up in bed, his eyes wide and unseeing, still caught in the horrible images of his nightmare. He could see Spike, flayed and screaming as soldiers surrounded him. He watched as one of them buried a stake into his shoulder and then turned toward him. It was his face; he was one of them.

"My fault. All my fault."

Tears were streaming down his face and Spike was holding him, petting him gently trying to wake him without scaring him further. He hadn't seen Xander like this before. This was worse than the dreams he'd suffered from when they had first met up.

Eventually Xander came back to himself and sobbed in relief. He let Spike hold him until his tears finally tapered off and his chest stopped heaving. He soaked in the comfort being given, knowing that he didn't deserve it.

"Shh, pet. Spike's here, everything'll be all right. Nothing's gonna hurt you."

"Sorry, so sorry. My fault. All my fault."

Spike started to purr and wrapped himself around his lover. Xander relaxed into the embrace and held on to Spike as tightly as he could. Sleep eventually claimed him again, and he was met with the images of his lover's brutal torture - by his hands - once again.

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