Rating: pg-13
Warnings: angst, character death(off screen)
Disclaimer: The boys don't belong to me, but I kidnapped them to put in this fic :)
Summary: ...um, I don't even know.
Word Count: 685



From Beneath


by
Spiceblueeyes


“Spike, we have to talk.” Xander stood in the kitchen, with his hands in his pockets. Spike, who had been about to warm up some blood, put the blood bag back in the fridge and closed the door. But he didn’t turn around. Not yet.

For a few weeks now, ever since Buffy brought Spike out of the school basement and Xander had, begrudgingly, let him stay at his place, things between Spike and Xander had been warming up. It had taken a while, since they were pretty cold toward each other to begin with. But eventually Xander had seen that Spike had changed, and Spike had a new perspective with his soul, and so they started to talk. They spoke of random things at first, unimportant things, like movies and music and what kinds of demons smelled the worst.

Then, as they talked, they started to sit closer together, touch a little more. A clap on the back that lingered, a brush of arms as they passed by, a ruffling of hair, followed by smoothing it back into place. Things were definitely getting warmer.

Last night the heat had gone up even more, flaring as they kissed for the first time. There hadn’t even been any tongue action, but it was intense. Xander had looked a little freaked out, but had smiled shyly as he retreated to his room. Spike had thought it was good.

Now Xander wanted to talk.

Spike turned to face Xander, standing tall, but with a wary look in his eyes. “About what?”

“Last night, I…look, I wasn’t, don’t.” Xander ran his hands through his hair and shook his head. “I just can’t do this, this thing. You’re a vampire, soul or not. I hate vampires.” He paused and Spike tried not to shake as the one good thing in his life rejected him. “I respect that you’re different now, and you’re trying to help out, but,” Xander pulled one hand out of his pocket to gesture abstractly, “you can never make up for what you did. You’re were a monster, and now…you’re just, nothing.” Spike sucked in a breath to say something, defend himself, when Xander said one more thing. He said “you’re beneath me.”

A roar filled Spike’s ears as he heard those words, a roar filled with echoes. ‘You’re beneath me,’ Cecily, ‘beneath me,’ Buffy, ‘you’re beneath me,’ now Xander.

Spike didn’t hear Xander leave the room, eyes closed lost in his memories of never being good enough, and in his reality of never being man enough. He didn’t hear anything else for a while.

Hours later, after he’d pulled himself together as much as he could. He was still broken on the inside, Xander’s words had struck hard and deep. Arriving at Buffy’s house for the nightly training, and it was quiet. Whispered words and murmurs, soft tears, but no shouts or laughter or even screams. He found them all in the living room, in a circle, surrounding a body. Xander’s body. With a giant hole where his liver used to be.

Spike, already emotionally drained from earlier, could only ask, “When?”

“We don’t know, we just found him an hour ago.” Willow’s eyes were bright with tears as she answered, and Buffy’s face was even more like stone than it had been before.

Only found him an hour ago.

So who knows how long he’d been dead.

So the talk in the kitchen, had Xander touched anything? No, Spike thought back, no he hadn’t. That was far from proof though.

Had it been the First? Trying to mess with his head once again?

Or had it truly been Xander who said those words that tore his soul apart; that followed him through the years to cause him anguish again and again.

Spike wanted to believe it was the First, that Xander would never say those words, be so cruel. However he feared that it had been Xander, and he had been rejected, had been denied for who he was once more.

Now there was no way to know the truth.

And he would always wonder.<




The End



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