Rating: R
Pairing: Spike/Xander
Prompt: Prompt 331: Wander @ tamingthemuse & Prompt 'E' @ stories_a_z
Fandom: Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Word Count: 968
Genre: AU
Beta (s): Unbeta'd but proofread
Disclaimer: Not mine.
Summary: It wasn't every man that got Spike to wondering but this one did....

Every Man


He couldn't remember when exactly he started to wonder about him. It could have begun during those interminable nights tied up in the bloody orange torture device it was wrong to describe that thing as a chair. The first night there, going on about being a nummy treat, shaking his arse in Spike's face like an engraved invitation.

Of course, it could have been during a research party what a complete misnomer, calling those things a party. Apart from the change to get his hands on some of the Watcher's more impressive volumes or wind up Buffy with crude gestures and smirks until Giles sent her off to the training room like a petulant child, they were tedious in the extreme. Until his mind began to wander and he was dragged back to reality by the realisation that (a) he had inadvertently said something helpful and (b) the boy was staring at him and it wasn't the first time. Wasn't like he could catch his eye and tease him either the boy was staring at his mouth. The same way he knew he would sometimes look at Dru's mouth when he was overtaken by the desire to take a bite of his Dark Plum, crush her to his chest and eat from her mouth like the juiciest fruit ever.

It might have been during patrol when they were paired together yet again, meandering through the cemetery waiting for someone or something to wake up. Bloody hell, it was boring sometimes and that was why he noticed the boy was staring again. But this time it was at his hands. To check if he was mistaken, he rolled a cigarette taking way longer than was necessary. Then he launched into a story about the good old days, gesticulating wildly, fascinated by the blush that coloured the boy's cheeks as he followed each move. Was he imagining what those hands had done in the past? The violent actions that had earned him the moniker William the Bloody? Or was he imagining something else?

Of course, it could have been when they had 'accidentally' bumped into each other at a local bar, the blushing boy offering Spike a pint and a blooming onion, gesturing to the currently empty pool table. He wasn't gonna turn down free booze and food, and hustling pool was probably one of the most honourable ways he made money nowadays. Beer seemed to loosen the boy's tongue and with very little encouragement he was telling tales out of school stories about Buffy, Willow, even the great Pouf. All told with that sharp, sarcastic tone that made Spike wince at the same time he was laughing. Boy was quite often spot on with his observations from the perspective of 'every man', he could more often than not see stuff that the others missed. The nights at the pub passed so quickly the most quickly since the bloody chip was installed. He got used to listening to the pup when everyone else was busy brushing off his suggestions as wisecracks, ignoring the fact that almost half the time they ended up using some variation of something he came up with.

Got to where when The Gentlemen came to Sunnydale, Spike actually missed the sound of his voice. Of course, the two of them still managed to snark at each other even with the mini whiteboards not conveying the proper tone of contempt and sarcasm. And going out for a drink after Buffy used her glass breaking voice for good for a change, he enjoyed listening to the boy going on about Riley and Angel. Well worth paying for almost his full share of the rounds they drank.

He wasn't sure he would have ever done anything about his wonderings. After all, catching the boy staring a time or twelve (nearly all the time now), and sharing night out at the local pub didn't necessarily mean anything. Not really, not when all previous partners had been female demonic more often than not but decidedly female nevertheless. Left to him, he probably would have ignored his need to protect the idiot boy from his white hat tendency to throw himself at everything bigger, uglier and stronger during patrol; would have ignored the times he found himself staring back until things got more than a little uncomfortable and awkward; would have ignored the feelings sparked when he heard the boy defending him to his friends because he didn't want to stir anything up or cause any problems for him.

But he didn't get the chance.

Dived in to save his the boy one time too many, felt the sting of a pincer going through his shoulder before he was shaken like an errant kitten and the last thing he saw before blacking out was a look of fury on Xander's face as he took his ax and proceeded to make a massive crab salad out of the a demon too stupid to realise they were protecting each other.

He didn't have to wonder any more. Woke up all warm and cosy-like in a saggy double bed, half smothered by arms and legs with snuffly breaths against the back of his neck. Stayed still for the longest time, just luxuriating in feeling safe. And judging by the sizable lump knocking against the base of the spine, desired. Hairs on the back of his neck rising until he was lying on his back, turning his head until he realised that yet again, the boy was staring. This time, instead of wondering, he leaned forward slowly, not sure he wanted to risk everything but unable to stop himself.

Xander met him more than halfway and he never had to wonder again.

The End

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