Disclaimer: I'm not Joss
Warnings: angst, slash, non-worksafe art
Summary: Post-AtF and ignoring the comics. Spike and Angel deal with the aftermath of the Shanshu prophecy.
AN: Today's fic was inspired by lovely art by blondebitz
Fallen from Grace
He should quit, he reckoned, now that he was actually doing his lungs harm. But decades of routine didn’t die easily—much like himself—and besides, he had so many potentially lethal habits, what was one more? So he flicked on his lighter and held it to the tip of the fag, inhaled deeply, and then exhaled with satisfaction. He set the lighter on the sofa cushion next to him, near the overflowing ashtray. Hell, maybe it wouldn’t even be cancer or emphysema that got him, but a stray butt igniting the doilies and throws and pillows and floral fabrics in this poncy flat. He chuckled at the thought of it—going up in flames once again, wouldn’t that be a riot?
The john was late. He was a new one, and he’d been very specific in his emails about what he wanted. Nothing particularly creative about it, either. Not that there was much that would have been new to Spike, after all these years.
He wiggled a little so that the late afternoon sunshine that poured in through the window was directly on his bound cock. It felt good. Warm, like a caress. It was such a luxury, to be able to sit in the sun. Nearly worth the price of admission.
Heavy footsteps were coming up the stairs. The john was a big bloke, by the sound of him. He wasn’t in any hurry.
Spike took another drag and arranged himself artfully, invitingly, with one booted heel up on the sofa and his legs splayed wide. He let a knowing smirk play about the corners of his mouth, something a bit wicked. Something disrespectful and deserving of punishment.
The doorknob turned—no polite knocking today—and the door flew open almost violently. The john stepped inside, keeping to the shadows near the doorway. Spike froze when he saw the face that looked down at him with contempt.
Spike took another drag, hoping the shaking of his hand wasn’t visible, knowing it probably was. “Of course,” Spike said. “I should have known.”
The only reply was a scowl.
“How’d you get here in the daylight?”
“Sewer tunnels. I came out right behind your building.”
“Then I expect it’s lucky my sense of smell isn’t what it used to be. If you want to wash up, bog’s down the hall.” He gestured with his chin.
“You’re the one who stinks, Spike. How many men have you let fuck you today? I can smell them on you.”
Spike used the end of the cigarette to light another, and stubbed out the first. “You’re my first for today, Peaches. I still do most of my work at night.”
Angel shut the door. He crossed his arms over his chest and leaned back against the door as if he were keeping Spike in. As if he couldn’t beat Spike to that door no matter where he stood. “Why are you doing this?” he demanded.
Spike looked down at his naked body. He fingered the collar at his neck for a moment. “It’s what you wanted, innit?”
“Why are you whoring yourself?”
Spike shrugged. “Why not? Have to eat now, fancy a roof over my head. Don’t have many marketable skills, do I? Don’t have a green card or a drivers license or a social security number. But I have this.” He gestured at himself.
“Humanity is wasted on you,” Angel spat.
“Yeah? Didn’t ask for it now, did I? Not my fault the Powers chose me.”
He could see Angel’s jaw work and his hands curl into fists. “Come here,” Angel growled.
Spike didn’t have to. He could have stayed where he was, in his safe pool of sunlight, and Angel wouldn’t have been able to get near him, at least not until dusk. Spike took a last, long drag from the cigarette, ground it out, and then stood. He walked slowly toward Angel, his boot heels clomping noisily on the wood floor. He stopped when he was only inches away, and neither of them said anything. Angel just looked him up and down, his face expressionless.
“Some Champion,” he finally snarled. “If Buffy knew….”
Spike looked away. “Don’t,” he whispered.
“Don’t tell her.”
Angel’s hand gripped Spike’s chin with one frigid hand and turned Spike back to look at him. “Why shouldn’t I?”
Spike huffed out a breath. “Please.”
“Don’t want her to know how far you’ve fallen? You think she could still love you?”
“No. She’ll never love me. Just don’t want her to despise me. It’s better…. Let her think I’m dead, yeah?” He met Angel’s brown eyes, looking for any sign of mercy or kindness. There was none. Never had been for him.
Angel tilted Spike’s head up a little more. It hurt a bit. “Why should I do anything you ask?”
“I was there, wanker. I was there at your side, fighting those bloody lawyers, just because you said it had to be done. I believed in you, fought as hard as you did, got myself sodding dusted!”
“But now you’re alive.”
“Never expected that.” And he hadn’t, not really. Even if the prophecy had been true, in his heart of hearts, he’d never believed it was about him. In fact, if Angel hadn’t wanted it so badly, Spike never would have wanted it himself. What was so bloody wonderful about being human?
Angel frowned and for a moment Spike thought he was going to shift to his demon face, was going to tear out Spike’s throat. But instead he leaned forward and took possession of Spike’s mouth. Spike allowed his lips to part before the assault, and he didn’t struggle as the cool tongue entered his mouth, claiming every bit of it as Angel’s own. Angel tasted of blood and whiskey, a combination that made Spike’s heart lurch with revulsion and longing. Angel’s hands moved up to clutch the sides of Spike’s skull, holding him in place. Fingertips dug into his tender skin hard enough that he might have cried out, had he been able.
When Angel let him go, Spike was breathless, and he stumbled a little from being suddenly released. Angel grabbed at Spike’s cock, which was now fully hard, the metal ring digging in painfully. Angel gave it a single contemptuous tug and let it go. “On your knees,” he commanded.
It had been over a century since they did this, and yet as Spike dropped to the floor, it all felt very familiar. His hands were steady now as he unfastened Angel’s wool trousers, as he reached in through the fly of the silk boxers. Angel’s cock was only half-erect, but it quickly filled when Spike pressed his lips to the tip in a reverential kiss.
Angel tasted different than he remembered. Perhaps that was due to his now-human tastebuds, or maybe the vampire really had changed a bit in a hundred years. He certainly tasted nothing like the men Spike had been servicing these past three years, the endless parade of nameless humans who used his mouth or his arse and left the dosh on the table. Angel tasted less salty than they did, cleaner, and yet Spike was suddenly very aware that he had a dead man’s dick in his mouth.
But Angel didn’t let him contemplate this for long. He wrapped his fingers in Spike’s hair and shoved Spike’s head forward, forcing more of himself down Spike’s throat. Spike had shed most of his gag reflex some time ago, but still he choked a little and he felt tears leaking from the corners of his eyes. Of course that meant nothing to Angel, who began to rock his hips, slamming his cock inside so that Spike’s nose was smothered in the curls at his groin.
Spike’s hands had been floating around aimlessly, but Angel said, “Hands behind your back!” and Spike complied, clasping his hands tightly, relaxing his body as much as possible, allowing himself to be propelled forward and back. He felt powerless like this, but then he was powerless. He had been since sunbeams streaming onto his face had awakened him in a trash-strewn lot, somewhere in the middle of Oakland. Why the Powers had seen fit to resurrect him there, he’d never known, but he’d stayed put, more or less. He had nowhere else to go.
He rolled his eyes up to look at Angel, and saw the lines on the vampire’s forehead, the slight flash of yellow in his eyes, the way his upper lip was lifted to reveal blunt teeth. Spike wasn’t surprised at all when Angel made a choked sound and then his semen spurted inside Spike’s mouth, thick and coppery.
Angel pushed hard at Spike, sending him sprawling back on his arse. The floor felt splintery. “Come here,” Angel said for the second time.
Spike rose slowly to his feet, rubbing slightly at his sore jaw. Angel grabbed at his arm, yanked him forward until Angel’s clothing was pressed against his bare skin and Angel’s damp, still-hard cock was poking into Spike’s belly. “You can’t fuck the humanity from me, Peaches,” Spike said.
Angel’s eyes really did go yellow then, and his teeth sharpened into fangs. “I could kill you now. Or I could turn you.”
“Still wouldn’t make you a real boy,” Spike replied. He wasn’t certain what response he expected, and he was even less certain what response he hoped for. Maybe he did want to be a vampire again, a soulless, murdering monster. His existence had certainly been a lot easier that way. Simpler.
But when Angel relaxed his grip and let his features melt back to human, Spike felt relieved. Angel moved his hands then to Spike’s shoulders, and Spike allowed himself to be shoved face-first against the wall. Angel held him in place with one enormous hand between his shoulder blades, while the other hand slapped Spike’s arse—whap, whap, whap—three strikes on each cheek.
When a thick finger prodded into Spike’s cleft, though, Spike couldn’t help but tremble. “Liam, don’t damage me. Slick’s on the table. Please.”
A hundred years ago, Angel had never bothered with oil or preparation, and Spike’s blood had been the only lubricant. But human tissues would not heal so easily. Angel poked him again, just at the edge of his sphincter, and Spike thought the vampire was going to fuck him dry anyway. But then Angel moved away, quickly, and he grabbed the plastic tube off the table. Spike sighed in relief as Angel drizzled the stuff into his crack, and then worked it into Spike’s hole almost gently.
Spike grunted as the blunt head of Angel’s cock pressed against him, pressed into him. It hurt a little. But it was no worse than many of his customers did—most weren’t exactly gentle—and he’d learned how to relax, to breathe through the burn. Which was good, because Angel didn’t give him more than a moment to get used to the intrusion, and then Angel was slamming into him. With every thrust, Spike’s face and cock thumped into the wall, and he expected he’d have bruises by morning. On his hips as well, where Angel’s strong fingertips dug into him.
Spike could have got off on it, if the ring wasn’t on him. He’d never minded a bit of rough handling—had even preferred it, perhaps—and Angel’s bulk felt good against him. Whether by intent or by luck, Angel was rubbing against Spike’s prostate with nearly every lunge. And then Angel latched human teeth just where Spike’s neck met his shoulder and Spike cried out in pain and need, and Angel juddered into him and then was still.
Their bodies made an obscene sound when Angel pulled out. Spike put his arm against the wall and hid his face against his forearm. Behind him, Angel zipped up and then just stood there.
“Off now to rescue the downtrodden?” Spike asked without turning around.
“I don’t—“ Angel stopped himself.
Another brief pause, and the sound of footsteps, then the door opened and shut.
Spike turned around. He was alone. There were two hundred dollar bills on the sofa next to his cigarette packet. Spike tucked them under the loose board in the corner of the room, where they joined the rest of his worldly wealth. Then he grabbed a brown towel from a hook near the door and wrapped it around his hips. He glanced at the clock atop the chest of drawers. It was 5:45. Good. He still had time to wank and clean up before his next appointment arrived at seven.
As he limped down the hall toward the bath, he refused to admit that there were tears trickling down his face.
Angel hunched against the wall of the sewer tunnel. He felt ill, and it wasn’t from the smell of the sewer. He’d accustomed himself to that reek over a hundred years earlier. No, what was churning his stomach was the scent of Spike on him, the knowledge of what Spike was. And of what Angel had just done to him.
Angel growled and turned around and punched the wall. It didn’t make him feel better.
He followed the tunnel to the parking garage where he’d left the Viper. By then it was almost dark, and he pulled out of the garage into rush-hour traffic. It took forever for him to get to the bridge and then over, into San Francisco. As he drove, he refused to think.
He’d rented himself a room in a corporate hotel. That’s what he did, nowadays. He’d choose a city and find a hotel—a Sheraton or Marriot or Hilton or the like, it didn’t matter—and he’d get a room. The rooms were all the same no matter where he was. He’d leave instructions that housekeeping not disturb him during the day, and he’d go to the room and draw the curtains and drink the whiskey he’d brought with him.
And there he’d stay.
Sometimes he’d go out and wander night-empty streets or sit in a bar for a while. Sometimes he’d just stay in his room and read. He knew how to find places or people who could provide him with blood—cow or pig or sheep—and he’d drink the disgusting stuff and wash away the taste with more whiskey.
He’d bought himself a laptop, and spent nearly a year learning to use the damned thing, but it was worth it when he discovered online porn. He could find something on the internet to satisfy every one of his fantasies, it seemed. But once in a while, when he thought he’d go mad from his own company, he’d use the laptop to find a local whore, one who wasn’t apt to notice his lack of a heartbeat, or at least not likely to care. He’d take his time at researching. He had plenty of time now, all the time and money he could want.
That’s how he’d found Spike. On Craigslist, of all places. A small, specific ad plus a photo of Spike smirking, bare-chested. Standing on a green lawn somewhere, with the bright sun shining on him. Human. Angel had emailed all those requirements to Spike hoping to humiliate him when he arrived, but of course he was Spike and refused to be humiliated at all. Even in bondage gear he managed to look smug and cocky.
Angel left the car with the valet and took the elevator up to his room. It was on a high floor, with a view towards the Bay Bridge. Towards Oakland, where even now Spike was undoubtedly being fucked by his next john. The thought of it made Angel grit his teeth, and he didn’t understand why. Because Spike had stopped being a hero? Well, so had he, his dreams of redemption as dead in that alley as Gunn and Illyria. Because Spike was whoring himself? Surely no greater a sin than hiring prostitutes, as Angel had been doing. Because he was jealous? Certainly not! This was Spike. Not someone he cared about.
No, it must be because Spike was human, goddamnit, and wasting it, while Angel was still imprisoned in the darkness.
Angel went to the armoire, where he kept the bottles of whiskey, and opened a fresh bottle. Tonight he didn’t bother with a glass.
He’d had enough of San Francisco, he decided. Tomorrow he’d drive east. He hadn’t been to Lake Tahoe in a while.
Spike’s seven o’clock date dropped some bills on the sofa and slammed the door behind him when he left.
Spike lit another cigarette and pulled the blanket more tightly around himself. There was just enough light in the room for him to watch the smoke drift lazily towards the ceiling. He felt filthy, but he was too sore to even think about making his way down the hall. Besides, Serena, the pre-op tranny who lived in the other upstairs flat, was always in the loo this time of night, putting on her makeup and doing her hair. She probably wouldn’t mind sharing, but Spike knew the looks she’d give him if she saw the state of his body.
On the little table next to the bed, his phone rang. Likely his next date, wondering why Spike hadn’t shown up at the bar at nine, like he was meant to. Spike just let it ring.
He was fairly certain at least one of his ribs was cracked. It hurt like bloody hell every time he moved, every time he breathed. His arse ached as well, and his back felt like it was in shreds. He must be getting bloodstains all over the bedding. He coughed out a harsh laugh.
Lake Tahoe was too cold, so he went to Phoenix, but that was too sunny, and then to Seattle, but that was too wet. The East Coast had too many memories of his rat-eating days, the Midwest felt too empty and flat, the South was too provincial. And LA—well, that was the worst of all. So here he was, back in San Francisco. And it really was a good city for a vampire, what with the fog and the general acceptance of eccentricities. This time he’d even found a hotel he liked better. The Drake was an older hotel—although still two centuries younger than him—and the rooms were a little smaller than, say, the Hyatt’s, but the place had class, a feeling of history. It wasn’t exactly like every other hotel in the world, and that pleased him.
There was some kind of protest going on at Union Square, just down the street. The amplified voices were carried to his open window, and he found himself happy that people could still get incensed over things, even though all he could find within himself was a thudding emptiness.
Spike flicked his lighter on and off, on and off. He was out of cigarettes and didn’t have time to get more before the john arrived. Perhaps this would be a fast trick. It was a new one, some bloke who’d seen his ad online. This one might be new to the trade, because he didn’t seem to have any specific requests. “Whatever you want,” he’d typed when Spike had asked the bloke how he’d like Spike to prepare.
So Spike hadn’t done anything at all. He wore a pair of comfortable jeans and an old t-shirt. His feet were in Docs. If the john wanted something else he could ask when he got there.
The footsteps on the stairs were heavy and slow, and the knock on his door seemed hesitant. “Come in,” Spike called, not bothering to get up from the sofa.
“Oh,” Spike said when the customer entered. “No bondage getup this time?”
Angel stood in the doorway and shook his head. Spike couldn’t read his expression at all.
“So what’ll it be, then, mate? Got a flogger and cane in the cupboard there, or—“
“That’s not what I came here for.”
Christ, Spike wished he had a cigarette. Still playing with his lighter and trying to be nonchalant, he said, “Then what? Meter’s ticking, you know.”
“Come with me, William.”
Spike looked up sharply at the use of his given name. “Come where?”
“Anywhere. Not here. I…I don’t know. Wherever you want to go, I guess. Just…I have plenty of money, all we need.”
Spike tried not to read too much into that last pronoun. “You want to buy me? Take me on as your permanent rent-boy?”
“No! That’s not what I meant. I only meant paying for food and housing isn’t a problem for me, and…I’ve got plenty to share.” He wasn’t meeting Spike’s gaze.
“No,” Spike said.
Angel looked like he’d been hit. “Okay,” he said softly, and turned as if to leave.
“I wouldn’t be any good to you anymore anyway, Liam. I’m weak. Not much better a fighter than I was before Dru turned me.”
Angel stopped and turned back toward Spike. “I don’t want you to fight with me. I don’t do that now.”
Spike felt his eyebrows fly up. “No more hero?”
Angel shook his head. “No more.”
“Then what is it you want from me?”
Angel looked like someone was sliding hot pokers into him. He sighed and walked closer, and then crouched down in front of Spike so they were eye to eye. “Companionship. You’re all I’ve got.”
Spike blinked at him in shock. “That’s pathetic.”
“Know what’s even worse?”
Spike smiled a little. “You’re all I have as well. Pouf.”
Angel smiled, warm and wonderful. Christ, he was beautiful like that. Spike couldn’t resist—he leaned forward a bit and kissed Angel softly, like a lover might. Angel’s mouth parted for him and Spike felt like they both might melt. When they pulled apart and Angel looked at him, a bit bewildered, perhaps, Spike smiled. “Companions with benefits?” he asked.
Angel laughed with genuine delight.
They both stood. Spike grabbed his duster off the back of a chair and shrugged it on. He dropped the lighter in his pocket. “Let’s go,” he said.
Angel put a beefy arm around Spike’s shoulder and they walked to the door together. Before they left, though, Angel paused. “There’s nothing here you need?”
Spike didn’t even need to look. “Nah.”
Angel took another step, and then stopped again. “Um…maybe could we take that collar and cock ring?”
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