Characters in order of appearance: Buffy, Dawn, Xander, Spike, Giles, Willow, Tara.
Pairing: Spike/Xander... sort've... pre-slash.. kinda... slash? *sigh* labeling is so confusing. You tell me when you read!
Summary: Fun ficlet. It’s Dawn’s birthday party. She makes everyone play 'I Never'.
Disclaimer: Nothing, I own nothing I say! Except this silly plot bunny and the craziness that ensued. Don’t blame JossW, ME, WB (no wait blame them! Just for something else *g*)… I merely borrowed the strings to the puppets that they own *sob*.
Notes: 1/ This is set somewhere in season 5 BtVS. Riley left coz Buffy didn't love him. Anya is no more. She gets in the way of Spander… so she must go. How? Well, there’s the school of thought says that when Xander professed his love, she freaked and skipped town.
2/ Joyce is still alive. It’s just that after the surgery was a success she needed to catch up on her work, left for a convention in… I dunno… New York and was held up for some reason or another. Let’s say, the flight was delayed. So she missed Dawn’s b-day and Buffy wanting to make it up to her sister, fell under the pressure and invited Spike. For no more reason than to stop her younger sis from whining about how crappy her life is, and better than Dawn sneaking off to Spike’s crypt like she usually did when she was upset, Buffy twisted Spike’s arm into showing up at a kiddy party. Literarily!
I Never … I didn’t make the game… but I sure converted it to my wicked pleasure here *smirk*
Thanks to Farah for the quick read!! *smooch*
Who's the Coolest?
It was Dawn’s birthday party, and everyone wanted to make the young girl happy.
The Summers women had planned on a night just for them then a big party at the Bronze for Dawn and her friends the day after. Joyce couldn’t return in time from her business trip and the Bronze was closed for renovation. Therefore, the teenager, backed up by her lack of luck in life and of quote ‘too girly presents’ minus of course Spike's ‘cool Sex Pistols CD’, demanded that the gang fall to her requests.
Dawn wanted to play ‘I Never’.
Dawn puffed her cheeks. “It’s my birthday wish, Buffy.”
Buffy shrugged. “Well, it’s a stupid one. I’ll light the candles again and this time when you blow them out, wish something impossible- without saying ‘I wish’, 'cause there only lies demony badness--- oooh, like a pony!” She pasted on an eager smile.
Dawn crossed her arms. “If you make me do-over a wish, I’ll say I wish, and you’ll get stuck with a demonic pony.” She narrowed her eyes. “That eats ALL your shoes… except flip-flops.”
Buffy’s face turned indignant but before she could retaliate, a mediator from the observing group intercepted.
“Buff. Deep breath!” Xander stepped between the girls. He turned to Dawn. “You know better than to attack your sister's shoes, Dawnster,” he chastised her, only to have Dawn turn her glare at him.
“You’re taking her side!” she said in a huff, nearly stomping her foot. “Like usual, it’s all about Buffy.”
Buffy pushed Xander out of the way. “Dawn, stop acting like a kid. I’m not letting you play this 'cause it’s an adult game.”
“Better she does it here than out on the streets.”
Emerald eyes turned in a fierce look. Spike acted like he didn’t care as he played with his lighter.
“Don’t you dare light that thing in here. Oh. And yeah, who asked your opinion?”
Spike flicked his zippo closed and replaced it in his duster. He looked at Buffy like she was missing something. “Niblet wants to try something she saw on TV.” He ignored Buffy’s darkened expression stating ‘What the hell were you having my kid-sis watched when she went mental and snuck out to hang out with the undead!’. Buffy’s looks were very expressive. “You rather she experiences it first hand with a bunch of one-track-mind whelps, or here under your slayer powered thumb?”
Buffy opened her mouth, closed it then scrunched her trying to rebut that.
Giles, who had been silent all this time, spoke up, “You have no idea how it pains me to say this, Buffy, but I have to agree with Spike.”
Buffy sighed reluctantly. “I guess.”
“Excuse me.” Xander raised a finger, turned, walked to the window, moved the living room curtains to look out, then returned to the group surrounding the cake. At everyone’s look he explained, “Just checking the world still exists.”
Buffy rolled her eyes. “Okay, guys, dig in, the sooner we eat Dawn’s face---” She grinned innocently when she saw Dawn scrunch her nose at the hideous face on the childlike cake. “---the sooner we start the game and the sooner Dawn gets bored.”
Dawn squealed but she quickly held it back as soon as it was uttered. She bit her lip to stop a smile that wanted to emerge full blown in response to Spike’s conspiring wink.
After Willow and Tara helped Buffy clear out the cake and the presents to the kitchen and dining room, the three girls came back laden with drinks and glasses, placing them on the living room table. Dawn pouted when all the alcohol was placed as far away from her as possible seeing as Buffy’s unwavering condition was changing the rules so that Dawn would drink soda instead.
The group took places on the ground surrounding the table.
“Let’s keep it easy and light …” Buffy started only to end with an exaggerated ‘ow’ when Dawn’s elbow rammed into her rib.
“Buffy, you promised, everything goes.” Dawn grinned widely. “You were outnumbered in the vote. Everyone agreed that it’s not real ‘I Never’ otherwise.”
Willow giggled when she heard Buffy mumble, “Traitors,” in stage whisper. The redhead caught everyone’s attention with a small wave. “Okay, I think the birthday girl should start.”
Dawn picked the soda bottle and frowned trying to remember how the people on that late night movie acted. “Uh, I never… smoked.”
Giles and Spike took a drink.
Dawn frowned. “I meant … you know, ‘I never smoked pot’,” she explained on Giles’ behalf. “Not smoke smoke.”
Giles shrugged, and again both he and Spike raised their glasses. A gasp to the right turned their attention to Tara’s eyes bugging as Willow took a drink as well.
“Willow?” Tara placed a boat load of questions in one word.
Willow blushed. “Um, Oz… well…” she trailed off.
“Here’s for dog boy, showing his gal the ropes!” Spike toasted, but an inch before the glass reached his mouth, Xander’s hand shot out to grab him.
“No toasts.” He wiggled his finger at the vampire. “Evil vamp wants to mooch on free drinks, he does it playing by the rules.”
“On this cheap drink that can’t fuzz out a pup?” Spike snorted and placed down his glass. “I’ll win this hands down, Scrappy.” He titled his head. “No real competition here… except maybe Ripper.” Spike chuckled at the competitive gleam that appeared in Xander’s eyes.
To the left, Giles had taken off his glasses and placed them in his shirt pocket. He made himself more comfortable.
“Okay, going clock wise, I guess I’m next,” Buffy said. She seemed to be getting into the mood of things. “I never … skinny dipped.”
Again, Spike and Giles took a drink. Several grinned and held back loud hoots at a blushing Tara who took a sip as well. Willow bumped shoulders with her girlfriend and gave her a meaningful ‘complete details later’ and they both giggled.
It was all silent for a while until Spike nudged Giles with his docs. “Oi, mate. Don’t tell me that little sip made you conk out already.”
Giles blinked noticing that everyone was looking at him expectantly. He hadn’t realized it was his turn. Suddenly, what Spike had said registered and he turned to look at the smirking vampire. “I’ll have you know, William, that I could drink you under the table.”
It was Giles’ turn to smirk at how the reference darkened Spike’s expression. The watcher had been apprehensive of this game. He had intended to try and sway Dawn from playing this, or at the very least excuse himself for some odd reason. However, the sad look that would have befallen the teenager’s face put a stop to that all too soon.
“As Spike’s haughty attitude suggested, I should say mine. Well, then…” He frowned thinking. “I had never… wait, no. That’s not right. Ah, right, I’d never worn black nail varnish.”
“Really??” Xander exclaimed. “'Cause with that picture I found with Will… ye-ouch!” He rubbed at his calf where long witch nail had dug in. “Never mind.”
Giles twisted his lips, but observed as Spike, Buffy, Willow picked up their drinks.
Spike made a loud burp as he leaned back. He blew a kiss at Buffy’s disgusted look. “My turn then. This one's a thinker.” He tilted his head back in what seemed like it would be deep thought, but that took no more than a second. “Right. I never dyed my hair.” And promptly took a drink himself.
He raised his eyebrow over the glass at everyone’s infuriated look. As he pulled down the half empty glass he snickered as everyone, minus Xander, took a drink.
“I vote that unless you honestly never did ‘I Never’ you are banned from the game. No, from the whole game area even! All in favor?” Xander shot a deadly glare at Spike.
Dawn exasperatedly rolled her eyes.
“Here here!” Buffy, however, agreed wholeheartedly as she unconsciously played with her hair. “Xander. It’s your turn.”
Xander opened his mouth and had to stop himself from grinding his teeth together when Spike whispered only for his ears, “Wish you hadn’t said that just now, don’t ya?”
With anger choked words, Xander said, “I never got so drunk that I got confused.”
Buffy was the first to drink, followed by Giles and Spike.
Dawn pouted. “I really hope you all don’t stick on saying grownup ‘I Never’s.”
Buffy patted her sister’s hair. “This is your choice, Dawnie, remember.” She grinned evilly. “This way if you drink to a grownup ‘I Never’ I’d know.”
Dawn’s eyes widened, she hadn’t thought of that. “I could like not drink and you’d never know,” she said defiantly.
Buffy shrugged. “Well, that’s against the rules, and you could get hexed or something.”
Dawn turned wide eyes at Willow, who shrugged. “This is the hellmouth, Dawnie. I wouldn’t try my luck,” she said, raising her shoulders apologetically.
“Keeping to the rules of truth games is a sacred bond.” Xander was physically set to pounce the minute that the next ‘I Never’ applied to him.
Spike snickered. “Easy to say for the boy who has yet to drink.”
Xander pretended that Spike didn’t exist anymore while he turned pleading eyes at Willow.
Willow gave a small smile. “I never ate a whole box of Twinkies by myself.”
With a whoop, Xander chugged down his glass as if drinking the entire glass would have him catch up to the others. He placed his glass down with a satisfied sigh.
Spike shook his head in mock sadness. “Pity play.”
Xander, still loopy from the quick drink, stuck his tongue out at Spike.
Spike looked at the childish act with half lidded eyes. “Better do something with that dangling meat, mate, or put it back where it belongs.”
Xander took a moment to process that before he felt his face heat up and he turned back to the table.
Spike was filled with satisfaction and when his eyes turned and caught Buffy’s, he stuck his tongue to the back of his teeth and leered.
“I-I never was attracted to s-someone I claimed to hate,” everyone snapped their attention to Tara’s whisper and watched her hair drop around her face, still not hiding the red tinged cheeks. The shy witch’s brand of bringing them back to the game shocked even her girlfriend.
Reluctantly, Xander, Spike and Buffy picked up their glasses. A second later, Giles did the same with a sigh.
Tara smiled when her girlfriend gave her a rolled eyed grin.
“I never made out with the same sex!” Dawn said trying to break the silent tension. She narrowed her eyes when all she got was shocked looks. She tapped his fingers. “We-ll? You really don’t want to enrage the ‘I never’ Gods, do you?” That showed them for ignoring the birthday girl.
Naturally, Willow and Tara sipped their drink, pretty blushes on their faces.
Buffy pushed around her glass with her fingers, before picking it up and taking a swallow. She had a firm look when she placed it down. “Beer bad.” That explained enough.
Spike picked up the open bottle, poured down more alcohol into his glass, then upon a moment of thought, he did the same for Giles who only let out a low snort. The two Englishmen gulped down the whole glass with nearly no wince to register.
Buffy’s eyes were as big as saucers. “I don’t want to know!” She looked fearfully between both men.
Xander was captivated at the table. It was the center of his being; no other reality existed to this. He even contemplated making a brand new living room table. One that didn’t hold bad memories.
Spike and Giles caught the different young stares before wincing as they barely looked at each other. “Bloody hell, never,” they said in unison.
Buffy hummed in thought. It was her turn to play again, wanting to move from the topic as soon as possible, “I never made a spell that went wrong.”
“Thanks, Buff,” Xander said, though the tone of his voice claimed the opposite.
Everyone at the table -other than Buffy- took a drink, only Spike and Giles didn’t have guilty looks on their faces, it was more of faraway gaze of someone who was trying to remember exactly what had transpired in their past dealings.
Buffy gave her sister a pointed glare when she sipped her soda guiltily.
And the game continued for several more rounds, in which Xander only got in two more drinks, even less than Dawn. It didn’t matter that Buffy was upset at Dawn for stealing a fish for God knew what reason, or that her baby sister saw a porno, it mattered that in the ‘I Never’ record, little Dawn was cooler than Xander.
The only victory that Xander had was when Spike mentioned in bored tones as he had tried to look down Buffy’s blouse, that he had never worn any ‘chit undies’. It was a testament of everything he HAD done, also a clear effort from the vampire to counter Xander’s hopes in getting a drink sometime in the near future, as the blond had done all night.
Xander would have given him that round if Willow hadn’t thrown at him one of her disapproving looks. So everyone ended up drinking in that round- yes, even Giles, who would be sure to get the weirdest looks the other day- all but Spike.
Xander snickered when Spike looked shocked and not a little impressed at him when he loudly slurped his drink, then made a satisfied sound with his tongue. Luckily for Xander, there was nothing in the rules for him to explain the when and how of the events. He would never live down that fraternity embarrassment, but at least it would only be between him, Willow and his college tormentors.
Why had he told her about that humiliation again? Right. She hadn't stopped nagging about why Xander had lipstick on his lips, thinking that he had kissed a girl. To save his sanity, Xander had given up and told her everything, but only after he made a pact with his friend not to tell anyone. They had spit-sworn and everything!
What threw the young man though, that he could have sworn that there was a moment where Spike was looking a little too intently at the ladies of the room. He wasn’t going to over-think that. There lied badness and a crazy vampire who would do anything to gain an upper hand, even if it were in a future game of ‘I Never’.
And, yeah, Spike was right in what he had proclaimed early on in the game, Xander thought hiding an unmanly pout. Spike was the first place in the number of drinks he had, and he still wasn’t the least bit fuzzy headed. Drinks sucked. This game sucked. There was a reason he only played ‘Spin the Bottle’.
“I never rode on a motorbike,” Willow said forlorn.
As always Spike and Giles refilled their drinks, but this time with the addition of Dawn.
Buffy smiled nicely at Spike. “Mr. Pointy has been asking about you.”
Tara giggled too intoned in the game, and a little lightheaded, “I never had sex with a guy.”
Xander, Dawn and Tara sat this round out.
Xander mumbled, “I’m gonna pretend that I saw Giles not drink. Heck, I’m gonna pretend I didn’t see SPIKE drink. I’m young, and apparently too innocent, and I need my sleep.”
“Gonna stay awake all night thinking about me, Xander?” Spike said in a falsetto tone. He dodged Xander punch. “That Ethan bloke seems like a fun loving guy, eh, Rupes?”
Giles gave Spike his best Ripper look, even the vampire had to admit he felt a knot in his throat at that dark look.
“La, la, la, it’s a happy place, full of red and purple flowers and none shoe eating ponies and Giles didn’t have sex with evil Ethan…” Buffy sighed blissfully. Beer was bad but cheap whiskey wasn’t.
“Oi,” Spike said interested. “In that paradise of yours, slayer, am I blissfully non-buggered by your ex-honey?”
“Riley?!” Dawn’s eyes widened.
Buffy suddenly noticed her sister, and clamped her hands over her ears. “No! Save what little innocence you have!” she cried out desperately.
Dawn slapped Buffy’s booze weakened grip. She caught a sick look on Spike’s face.
“Does Captain Cardboard’s hair stand straight up?” Spike asked with a tilt.
“Angel?!” the squeak was from Xander who was looking frantically around. “Bleach, any kind. Even the kind that Buffy and Biteless use!” He scrubbed at his head as if to release the evil images.
Giles looked contemplative. “That’s quite understandable seeing as…”
“No.” Buffy actually held Giles’ lips together. Slayer swiftness seemed to be all in order. “I knew this was a bad, bad idea. It screamed to me ‘Buffy, I’m bad,’ so no more understandable seeing. I am blissfully drunk and will wake up with no memory of this night.” She nodded assertively then she sat back down. “Dawnie.”
“I never had a tattoo.” Dawn grinned at Buffy.
“I’ll have you know it wasn’t consensual!” Buffy said as she took a drink. She mumbled in her drink, “It’s was all Giles’ boyfriend’s fault.”
Dawn rolled her eyes. “Yeah, the first one you mean.” She watched as Giles took a drink.
Spike titled his head. “I honestly dunno if I have any tats.” He swung his gaze around the table. “Anyone care to check? Harris?” When Xander pretended that he couldn’t hear Spike's questioning 'innocent' tone, the vampire sighed. “Ah, well, don't want to chance some game god taken offence, so I’ll set this one out. Inking was more Angelus’ thing anyway.”
When Buffy replaced her glass with a contented sigh, Spike continued as if he was having a conversation with her, “Remember that wicked beast on his right shoulder? How you could feel it if you closed your eyes and lick…”
With a swift move to the right, Spike chuckled as he avoided the stake now embedded in the couch cushions.
Xander didn’t move. He was frozen in his spot. His wide eyes though swerved as much as they could to his right and watched as the pencil thin stake pulsated with the impact.
“Buffy!” Dawn said in shock. “You actually tried to kill Spike!” She pointed. “And so telling mom the couch is totally your fault.” She huffed. “Who’s acting like a baby, if you read any of the books Giles told you to study…”
Buffy banged her head against the table top. “Short term memory, it’s really nice… alcohol bad, made my reflexes girly… Spike dust nice…”
Xander’s motor movement finally kicked in. “Spike, couch, what about, gosh, I dunno, ME?!” he spluttered pointing at the short distance separating him and the sharp projectile. Looking around, he searched for some kind of acknowledgment at the very least, he found none. Well, other than Spike snickers but those could have been due to Buffy’s hair soaking up the spilled liquid.
That was funny actually.
A loud groan was heard. Giles was stretching as he got ready to stand up. “I’m afraid this has to be the last one for me, as it is, I wonder how I will drive back.”
“Wait!” Dawn stood up to face him. “Just one more, and I’m the birthday girl, and I should say it!”
“Hurry up then, Bit, don’t want me to catch the morning light. I don’t freckle well.”
“Maybe you should try it,” Buffy said with venom, raising her head. If it weren’t for Spike, this night wouldn’t be as revealing as it was. It was his fault.
“I never kissed a guy on the lips.”
Collective groaning at the reopening of that topic echoed in the room.
Buffy took a large gulp, somewhat unusual for her, but after the recent events no one faulted her. Willow took a sip finishing her glass, Tara right on her heels with a mumbled, “Prom,” as an explanation. Spike chugged down his glass, before standing up, and handing Giles his own. Giles placed his glasses on his face, but took the offering with a brief incensed shake of his head then finished it off.
“Great,” Xander whined as he and the others stood up. “Just me and Dawnie… w-w- what are you doing?!” the last was said in a horrified rush.
All eyes turned as one to look at Dawn who just finished wiping away the residue of gulping down the entire soda bottle.
She smiled sheepishly at them all.
Spike stalked over to her and took a sniff.
“Ew.” Dawn slapped at him. “Don’t smell me, Spike!”
“Just want to know who the bugger is so I can have… a nice talk with him.”
Buffy stood next to Spike in full slayer mood. “Dawn, let Spike sniff you.”
“What?! No. Guys. Listen. This is the only way I could tell you all, I have a boyfriend. And no, I’m not telling you his name, coz you all need to get used to that idea first, ok?” Dawn looked pleadingly at the protective group. “Please.”
Tara patted Dawn’s shoulder. “You know, Dawn, you could’ve told us this in another way.”
Dawn shrugged sheepishly. “This was way more fun.”
Buffy groaned. “I can’t deal with this tonight. I’m too info-ed out.” She yawned. “Okay, people who don’t live here, leave. Dawn.” She caught his sister’s eyes. “Tomorrow we’re buying you a chastity-belt.”
Dawn took on an outraged appearance especially when she saw Spike nodding.
“Don’t think they sell those anymore, but I bet I can get a fine deal with a demon I know…”
“Good night, ladies!” Xander waved at Tara and Willow who were making their escape. “It was… interesting. I don’t think I know a group of people more, sadly.”
When Spike was about to write down his demon supplier’s name Xander grinned in goodbye at Buffy, wished a last happy birthday at Dawn then he dragged Spike out by the arm.
Behind them, they heard Giles say his goodnight before pulling the door closed behind him. The watcher stood next to the two men on the porch.
“I think I’m sober enough to drive now.”
Xander raised his eyebrows in uncertainty.
"I am," Giles defended, offended. He stumbled towards his car, hearing Xander's unsure voice behind him calling, "Are you sure?"
Giles didn’t answer and Xander and Spike watched as he moved down the driveway drunkenly, getting into his car and driving away.
“You know he went back home to his ‘secret’ single malt stash.”
Spike grunted in response.
“What?” the vampire sighed after a couple minutes of silence only punctuated by the sounds of the girls inside the house getting ready for bed.
Xander smacked a hand on his face. “This got to be the cheap booze talking, but what’s the deal with everyone’s ‘gay experiences’. I mean, I know I never went to college, that doesn’t mean that experimenting is limited to people in college! You never went to college!”
Spike scoffed. “I graduated top of my literature class, Numchuck.” He shook his head. This sure was a night of honest revelations. Thankfully, Xander was too wrapped up in his current pitiful life to notice Spike’s previous one.
“It’s not fair! Giles!” Xander said the last word in an offended way.
“I’m sure he was headboy back in his day.” Spike sniggered.
Xander slapped his hands over his head, gripping his hair. “That’s just wrong! I mean Dawn’s way cooler than me,” his voice dropped and so did his shoulders.
Spike scratched the back of his ear. “Want a snog then?” he said promptly.
Xander could hear his neck snap from the quick moment, but he couldn’t care. “WHAT?”
“I’m your best choice if you want to get that off your closeted ‘must experience’ list. You prefer Rupert, then?”
“Thank you for noticing.”
Mop of hair shook in an effort to make sense of it all.
Xander finally turned contemplative eyes at the bored looking vampire. “When did you last drink blood?”
“Why? You offering?”
“Fine. Uh, ‘round sunset.”
Xander did quick calculations in his mind.
Xander might be less tolerant to drink than he gave himself credit for.
Spike raised his eyebrow. “Well, no wonder you’re sweepin’ them bints left and right.”
Xander beamed cheekily. “Just trying to catch up with you, Matcho-man.”
“Let’s do this and be over with.”
“How…” Xander didn’t get to finish, because his mouth was otherwise occupied.
Xander had a moment of hesitation, the urge to pull back and pound at the cool alien feeling of another man’s lips on him, but that was fleeting. He felt Spike respond to him giving in without hesitation, lips softening against his, less forceful than at first. It was kissing, nothing new in that. Except everything. It was different, from the feel of the body against him, to the strong hand gripping his face into place, the firm shoulders he was leaving his nails imprint in, the feel of the hand sliding down his back, and the cool tongue dominating his. It was overwhelming his senses.
It could have been only a ten seconds or ten minutes for all Xander knew. He just knew that he wasn’t the one who moaned when it ended at the loss. He would swear on his parents’ life if it came to it. He also didn’t feel lightheaded nor experienced what the teenage girls call ‘jelly knees’.
“That ‘nuff experiencing for ya?”
Xander blinked. “Uh huh.”
Spike smirked. “Still have it.” He nodded as if speaking to someone else. “That’s nice to know.” He stuck his hands into his duster and walked away.
Xander nodded to himself after several moments standing there alone. He walked down the path to the driveway, and stood next to his car, a distant look in his eyes. He shook his head as he searched his pockets for his car keys. A frown marred his face. He could have sworn that the keys were in his jeans pockets. He even patted them to make sure right before…
Right before he dragged Spike outside, a second prior to Buffy declaring the vampire Guardian of Dawn’s virtue which in her intoxicated mind might have seemed the best course of action. Xander didn't know if he should take up that position himself as he thought about Dawn having a teenage admirer, God he hoped he was a teenager, you didn't know with those Summers girl. However, something held his thoughts at that particular moment for him to focus on tearing the anonymous – for now - boy a new one...
Spike had his keys, which were attached to his wallet.
And Xander could care less.
He had supplied the party with drinks and his wallet was empty save for an expired library card he had kept because it made him look cool. And he had forgotten his license like usual right next to his spare car keys.
With a shrug, Xander started to whistle as he walked down the street to his apartment.
He didn’t need to look cool. He was. Being pick-pocketed, groped and French kissed by a guy, a dead guy, put him three points over Dawn in the game.
He was even tied with Tara!
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